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Dragon Age: Origins was one of the best RPG releases of 2009. Reviving the almost lost art of real-time tactics or pause-stratagem into a genre slowly reclining into a more action oriented zeitgeist. This old school throwback was not limited to gameplay however, as the spiritual successor to Baldur’s Gate also had a disc expansion, chronicling the events after the main story ends.
This article looks at the different Dragon Age: Origins - Awakening(s) characters the player will recruit throughout the game, with some analysis on their written personalities. There is one returning Dragon Age: Awakening companions and five entirely new ones, adding some new group dynamics to the game’s already superlative character based storylines. Read on for the list of six characters, with special mention to another Dragon Age: Origins - Awakening(s) character, joining the party for the early game.
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Anders - The Pick of The Dragon Age Awakening Companions
Anders is an apostate mage who repeatedly tried to escape the Circle of Magi until the player character finds him in Vigil’s Keep near the beginning of the game. He sports a blond ponytail and shares his care-free personality with Alistair, the Templar who could become king in the original game, also indulging in witty banter with his Dragon Age - Awakening companions. After finding him around a dead pile of both Darkspawn & Templars, Anders can be recruited, surviving the joining practice and becoming a Grey Warden. When recruited, he begins as a Spirit Healer, with spells focused on area effect and healing.
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Justice - A Dazed and Confused Spirit
First encountered in the fade - a magical realm for spirits and the like - Justice is a paragon of this moral philosophy. Trying to free a village of spirits, trapped against their will in the fade, both Justice and the player are thrown back into the real world. His spirit is fused with the body of a dead Grey Warden known as Kristoff and he is subsequently trapped within the decomposing vessel. Justice is a Spirit Warrior who encounters Kristoff’s wife Aura after the player returns to Vigil’s Keep. This meeting sets up the companion quest and end game for the character.
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Sigrun - One of Two Dwarven Dragon Age Awakening Companions
Sigrun is a Legionnaire Scout who runs from the death of her Legion of The Dead comrades during an excursion into the Deep Roads. After being found by the player, she expresses regret for leaving them behind and a desire to return to the underground passages, in order to die honorably against the Darkspawn. There are several different paths she can take after the defence of either Vigil’s Keep or Amaranthine, although they will often entail the fulfilment of her wish to fight the Darkspawn to her death in the Deep Roads.
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Nathaniel - A Confused Young Rogue
Son of the late Rendon Howe, who the player kills in the original Dragon Age: Origins, Nathaniel has been stripped of his dignitary status and land because of the deeds of his father. Away during the events of the original game, he decides to find the Grey Warden who killed his father, trying to exact revenge in an attack on Vigil’s Keep. He is found trying to break in however and imprisoned. Players can choose to execute him or conscript Nathaniel into the Wardens, granted he completed the joining ceremony first.
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Valenna - The Elven Choice of Dragon Age: Origins - Awakening Characters
Starting with the Dwarven Keeper specialization, Valenna is tantamount to a blood mage by the time the player encounters her, in the depths of the Wending Woods. Believing that her sister had been kidnapped by them, she systematically terrorises and murders a bounty of humans, unaware of the Darkspawn’s involvement in the kidnapping. After the player is privy to this information, they can share it with Valenna, allowing her to join the Grey Wardens and become a Dragon Age - Awakening companion.
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Oghren - Same Old Oghren, Always Drinking
The brash, loud & flatulent Dwarf Oghren is the only returning member of the original game to be one of the Dragon Age: Origins - Awakening(s) characters. True to form, he continues his drunken cavorting, often becoming an incomprehensible conversationalist. It is revealed he has sired a child but cannot accept the monotony of daily life, so instead decides to join the Grey Wardens, continuing to take the fight to the Darkspawn. His crass and rude nature make a return and provide a solid link to the original Dragon Age release.
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Mhairi - One of The Fleeting Dragon Age: Origins - Awakening Characters
Only partially considered a companion in Awakening, Mhairi is a human Champion who escorts the player character to his new home at the beginning of the game, Vigil’s Keep. Once there, she helps the player fend off the onslaught of Darkspawn that have attacked, proving herself able in combat. Unfortunately, after the conflict is resolved, she does not survive the fatal joining ritual and never becomes a Grey Warden.
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Cameos By Dragon Age: Origins Characters
Furthermore, there are a couple of returning party members, making cameos appearances as opposed to becoming full-fledged Dragon Age: Origins - Awakening characters. These include the wise-cracking Alistair, who could be king following the events of the original story, the aging mage Wynne, found in the city of Amaranthine, the redeemed Loghain Mac Tir, if the player decided to spare him, and Queen Anora, if she remains a monarch and Alistair’s wife. Although fan-favourites such as Morrigan or Leliana may be absent, there are available DLC campaigns dealing specifically with these characters.