Poppy is the author of "A Bard's Lament." She lives in Enoshima and likes to read novels and play video games, especially open-world RPGs.
The Dragon Age games by BioWare have captured the hearts and imaginations of thousands of players worldwide since the release of Dragon Age: Origins in 2009. There are multiple fandoms creating fan fiction, fan art, merchandise, and more to celebrate the enchanting storylines and characters that players have enjoyed with this series for over a decade.
One thrilling aspect of these games, a feature which we can also find in BioWare's Mass Effect games, is the ability to create your character with their own personality and looks. You create the story as you play, and one part of the story is who your character decides to enter a romantic relationship with. Romancing is something that BioWare does best, sometimes causing us to crush hard on characters, laugh, swoon, or even cry.
As a huge fan of the Dragon Age series, I have played through the games again and again to romance different characters and experience their fun, cute, and sometimes heartbreaking storylines. Here are the top ten emotional romance stories in the Dragon Age games.
Requirements: Male, any race
Cassandra Pentaghast is one of the first characters you meet in Inquisition, and she is a familiar face for those who played as Hawke in Dragon Age II. Though she seems to be cold, serious, and completely disinterested in anything unless it's war-related, Cassandra actually holds a soft spot, which you can see whether you romance her or not.
Cassandra loves romance novels, and abashedly reads Varric's Swords and Shields. If you pursue a romance with her, one of her personal quests is gathering flowers and candles to spend a romantic night with her.
Cassandra struggles with her feelings for the Inquisitor, believing his duty to the Inquisition and her potential duty as future Divine will get in the way of their love. Her serious and passionate romance storyline will be a difficult one to forget.
Requirements: Female, any race
You can find Warden Blackwall in the Hinterlands after Leliana expresses her concern about the Grey Wardens. A polite man with a good heart, it's easy to see why many female players of the latest Dragon Age installment decided to romance him. He was certainly my first choice.
Blackwall approves of doing good deeds and also for Grey Warden tasks such as killing Darkspawn. His shocking revelation was heartbreaking for those who were with him, making for an unforgettable storyline.
Game: Dragon Age II
Requirements: male or female
Anders is another Grey Warden, a mage who is helping people in Kirkwall by healing them. Though he deserted to avoid being captured by the Templars, he seems like a kind-hearted man who is a joy to romance whether your Hawke is male or female. However, Anders is not who he seems.
Without giving away spoilers, Anders' storyline is complicated and heartbreaking. Definitely one not to be forgotten.
Requirement: male, any race
You first meet Morrigan early on in Origins, and later again when her mother, the powerful witch Flemeth, rescues you from atop the tower during a devastating battle with the Darkspawn. She also makes an appearance in Inquisition.
A young apostate witch, Flemeth insists she accompanies you on your quest. Sarcastic and impatient with other companions, Morrigan first seems unapproachable. However, you can unlock her softer side and find the real Morrigan after helping her with some personal matters.
The reason this romance made the list is that although Morrigan may only seem to want to have fun, her offer to save you towards the end of the game shows just how much she cares about you... maybe. Morrigan is the favorite romance of many players of Origins and an adored character we were delighted to see return in Inquisition.
Requirements: male, any race
Dorian is a mage from Tevinter, a recipe for disaster to the Inquisition. After rejecting his former mentor's thirst for power, Dorian joins you in your quest against Corypheus. His wit and charm make him one of the most lovable characters in the game.
Dorian's personal quest is a tear-jerker whether you romance him or not. His romance is definitely one of the more passionate, yet with cheek and cuteness, too.
Game: Dragon Age II
Requirements: male or female
Those who played the elf playthrough in Origins would recognize Merrill, the naive elven mage who dabbles in blood magic now and then, much to many other characters' dismay. For those who love shy girls, Merrill is right up their alley whether you're playing as a male or female Hawke.
Merrill is first reluctant to pursue her feelings for Hawke since they are from different cultures and backgrounds, making it somehow more exciting to romance her! As long as you're empathetic about her interest in blood magic and give her enough gifts, she'll be all yours.
Requirements: female human or female elf
Cullen is another familiar face from Origins and is now war ambassador to the Inquisition. His shyness, dashing good looks, and the way he gets flustered if you flirt with him charmed many players of this game.
Upon building trust with Cullen (something you can get a nice boost to if you side with the Templar when prompted), he will confess that he stopped taking lyrium, the drug that is used to reign in Templars. This storyline will tug at your heartstrings, and upon helping him through it, Cullen will fall for you. It makes for some very sweet scenes and remains one of the most popular Inquisition romance pursuits.
Requirements: male or female, any race
Leliana is one of the most memorable and well-loved characters in the entire Dragon Age series. A bard and a runaway, she first comes across as slightly crazy since she believes the Maker sent her to aid you in your quest against the Blight. She is a sweet and innocent character, responsive to your flirtations and a delight to woo.
People love Leliana for her passion and her beautiful singing voice. Upon completing her personal quest, you can unlock the heart-wrenching Leliana's Song, which is one of the best soundtracks from this series.
Requirements: female elf
The intellectual apostate Solas seems to be simply a polite and intelligent elf willing to help the Inquisition upon first glance, but that doesn't even scratch the surface to what he really is, as many heartbroken players will tell you!
Solas' treatment of you should you pursue him as a lover will capture your heart. If you download the Trespasser DLC after romancing him then, well... you have been warned!
Requirements: female, any race
I still remember falling in love with Alistair at the tender age of 16. This former Templar and Grey Warden sticks by you throughout your journey after the battle with the Darkspawn wipes out the rest of the Wardens. Upon pursuing a romantic relationship with him, he is shy, passionate, and when he has decided he wants to be with you, unshakable in his commitment.
Alistair is a special character because so many of your actions can change how he sees you. If you decide to forgive Loghain upon confronting him at the Landsmeet, Alistair will leave your party forever. This is a terrible idea if you're romancing him!
If your character is a human and you follow all of the correct steps, there is also the chance to marry him and become Queen of Fereldan with him as king at your side! If you're not human, you can still continue the romance with him, either as his side-lover if he becomes king, or his partner if he rejects his royal heritage.
Many women, and probably some men too, absolutely adored Alistair in Dragon Age: Origins and he still remains my favorite video game character to this day. His completely lovable personality and his dashing good looks made him the favorite romance of many.
Though there is much more to the Dragon Age series than finding romance, it is nevertheless a fun aspect that adds depth and emotion that can really suck you into the world and the story. Whoever you decide to go for, you're bound to feel your heart flutter and maybe even shed some tears along the way.
With future installments of Dragon Age reportedly on the way, we look forward to even more romance options with their own new heartbreaking, funny, and shocking storylines to enjoy.
Questions & Answers
Question: Are Morrigan and the Warden married by the events of Dragon Age Inquisition?
Answer: No, they’re not. Even if you commit to a full relationship with her as the Warden in Origins, she and he are not together by DAI.
Question: Do you think Morrigan will return for the 4th game in the Dragon Age series? And her Warden?
Answer: I sure hope she does! The Warden might be difficult since there are so many backstories and possible endings of previous games. We might see a letter or something like we did in DAI.
© 2018 Poppy
Poppy (author) from Enoshima, Japan on May 27, 2019:
Not really. There are times when you can flirt and times when you can take steps to enter a relationship. For example, if you're dating Blackwall and you ask Sera if she's with anyone, she'll disapprove and comment that Blackwall won't be happy. There are story "checkpoints" where you're either romancing a character or not, and once you're committed you can't commit to anyone else.
Eugene on May 27, 2019:
Hey I haven’t play DAI yet, does the game have a love triangle thing like similar to Origins?