A really good piece by the ever amazing Katherine Cross on the complicated relationship between Briala and Celene.

Cross With You

Briala and Celene - Wicked_Eyes_and_Wicked_Hearts From left to right, Grand Duke Gaspard, Ambassador Briala, and Empress Celene.

I’ve said it until I’m blue in the face, but writing women characters well in videogames does not mean making them pure paragons of perfect morality. Indeed, it often means the very opposite, as the case of Dragon Age’s Empress Celene Valmont and Ambassador Briala illustrates in deeply sanguine colours.

Dragon Age: Inquisition’s aptly named main quest, “Wicked Eyes, Wicked Hearts,” sees your character visit the Orlesian Imperial Winter Palace in a bid to stop an assassination attempt on Empress Celene I, to thwart the plans of the game’s antagonist and prevent Thedas’ most powerful nation from sliding into chaos.

Here you dive into a well-designed thicket of political intrigue at a masquerade ball-cum-peace conference between Celene and her antagonist in the Orlesian Civil War, Grand Duke Gaspard, who seeks the throne for himself. A third party…

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