First thing’s first: Dragon Age: Inquisition never happened. The entire plot that should have happened? All in their DLC Trespasser, and I will do a post about that another time. So anyway:
In DLC Trespasser, the Inquisitor gets to marry Cullen Rutherford (or Sera) if he’s been a successful romance option in the “main game.” Not only is it boring and over in literally 30 seconds, but the secrecy was pointless and the whole set-up the worst wedding ever.
Okay, maybe not EVER. But the creative development given to marrying Cullen was weaker than a fart in the breeze. I’m not even a big Cullen fan, I don’t get why people are obsessed with him, but since fans have been making mods to marry the guy since Origins release date in 2009, it’s not like the devs didn’t have anywhere to take inspiration. Although, for some reason, a lot of those pages on Nexus have since disappeared or been taken down.
I’m targeting the Cullen wedding because it’s the one I played.
The Inquisitor says that getting married to her commanding officer in the heat of greater political drama would be pretty bad taste. Since tensions are high, I think, cool. No problem. It’ll happen at the end of the DLC, we can build up to it – yipee! Suspense.
No. Cullen says he knows someone who can keep it quiet. I’m assuming he means our engagement, since it only happened five seconds ago, and not The Wedding. Okay, I think: Josephine! She’ll be happy, but also agree about the shush-shush. Or maybe Leliana? She’s the boss of secrets. Sure. I’d like some friends to know. Makes sense it would be the other two Inquisition advisors.
TOO LOGICAL. Nope. Instead of a cutscene where we confide to Josie or Leliana, the Inquisitor rips a wedding dress out her ass, moves over to the gazebo in the corner of the courtyard where every courtier can see us – you can hear generic crowd chatter in the background (so secret) – and we’re married in two sentences by Mother Giselle. Our witness? A mabari hound Cullen found five minutes ago. BOOM CONGRATS GET BACK TO THE DLC, WE’VE APPEASED YOU, SHEESH.
When I go and visit Cassandra immediately after, she already knows we’re married. As does everyone else. So. Secret. So. Effective. What. Was. The. Point?
I kind of get it
I know the devs (or at least David Gaider) have said that romance is a “side show” and not part of the main game, they have to focus on the “plot” (if only they’d found one for DA:I that was as engaging as the characters, maybe they shouldn’t have focused on sprawling endless maps with nothing in them). But Cullen’s wedding really struck no emotional quiver for me.
What should have happened
Cullen: Sure, we need to keep this quiet for now, but I know a few people who can keep a secret. How soon, BY THE WAY, do you want to get married?
Inquisitor: A) Tonight. B) After the Exalted Council. [You chose option A.]
Cullen: R-really? So soon? No, I mean, I’m excited. We’ll have to prepare somehow. Perhaps Vivienne will help us. She’s been loyal to you, and I’m sure she owes you a favour.
Inquisitor: You’re right. If anyone can find me a dress in nine hours, it’s Madame de Fer. Also: RINGS.
Now, in the DLC and unrelated to the wedding, you run around the Winter Palace picking up random objects. A crumpled napkin. A cracked mask. And these things seem important, like there’ll be some kind of Easter egg reward if you find all the items. Except nothing happens. There is no reward, no purpose, no reason to think I should sell them. Perhaps the items were a forgotten part of the DLC. Whatever the case, d’you know what else I could have been collecting? Objects for my imminent wedding.
Send me on a quest for a dress-train I can find in a random wardrobe. See the palace jeweller for a ring, or significant sash, or a rope to bind our hands – whatever. Get Krem to hunt down some nice shoes. Stuff that doesn’t require a ton of time. You click the object, or get a one-liner from Krem, and voosh. You have it. Have one cutscene asking Viv for a favour: please find me a dress. That’s it. Off you go to carry on the plot of Trespasser, which is still the plot that should have been DA:I, gosh I’m bitter.
You return from flooding the Deep Roads, successful but stressed because your life could end at any moment. Amidst all this exciting angst (which was genuinely exciting), you sneak off in the small hours of the night to marry Cullen. Vivienne is there as your witness because she found you the dress, thanks babe. And Josie can be there as Cullen’s witness because she’s a softie really, no matter how badly timed everything is.
END WEDDING STUFF.
I just. I came up with all of this as I was playing the game. It required such little imagination to BE imaginative. Promise. Action. Suspense. Reward.
How did you feel about the wedding? Were you disappointed? Did you not really care? Or did you like it? Tell me what and why!