Dragon Age 4 Delayed Internally Following BioWare Restructuring
Details from a recent GDC 2018 panel featuring the series’ former Creative Director Mike Laidlaw giving some bad news, as he revealed that the fourth installment of the Dragon Age RPG series had been delayed internally at BioWare due to restructuring, leading many players to wonder what it means for the RPG sequel’s future.
When the topic of Dragon Age 4 came up during the aforementioned discussion at GDC 2018, Laidlaw expressed his reasons for leaving BioWare, saying that he “wanted to try a new challenge” and he “knew that [the staff reassignments] would change the date” of the game’s release. As explained by the former Dragon Age Creative Director, “I was going to have a very small skeleton crew . . . I thought if I’m ever gonna go, this is the least disruptive time for me to leave. So I would be stunned if whatever plan I had remained completely unchanged.”
“For those unaware, a similar restructure occurred within BioWare during the production of Mass Effect: Andromeda, with many veterans of the science fiction franchise having been reassigned to work on the development of the forthcoming title Anthem instead. As lots of folks would argue, the replacement of the original team for ME:A with a staff of newcomers ultimately led to the disappointing performance of the sci-fi sequel, with many speculating if Dragon Age 4 is to suffer the same fate due to a repetition in this business practice of “reshuffling” development teams.
While some might be worried about the future of Dragon Age 4, Laidlaw doesn’t seem to be concerned, as he believes that BioWare holds the series’ lore in high esteem. According to Laidlaw, “I don’t have any fear that they’ll change the world, because there’s a pretty deep respect for what it’s done.” Of course, that’s not to say he isn’t interested in the direction that the franchise is taking. In fact, the former Creative Director touched on possibilities of where Dragon Age is headed, saying, “Very likely they went through a redesign phase, that’s pretty normal . . . I would find it unlikely to be a new Star Trek kind of thing. It’s more likely that the existing plans will be re-examined in light of existing leadership.”
All things considered, we will simply have to wait and see what is in store for Dragon Age 4, as it has yet to even be officially announced. Hopefully, though, current BioWare GM Casey Hudson and everyone else involved with the project at the studio will be able to do the series justice with the next entry.
Dragon Age: Inquisition began development around early 2011, and released November 2014. If BioWare are planning on a three-year development period again, that would place Dragon Age 4 in a late 2019 release window.
Dragon Age 4 has yet to be officially announced.”