Dragon Age: Dark Fortress #1 is a tense start to a new series. It's richly detailed, full of backstory and foreshadowing. Throw in the dramatic artwork, and it is a memorable issue that fans of the franchise will enjoy.


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Dark Horse’s DRAGON AGE: DARK FORTRESS #1, available Wednesday, March 31, is the start of a new Dragon Age adventure. Written by Nunzio DeFilippis and Christina Weir, with artwork by Fernando Heinz Furukawa, Sebastian Heinz, and Michael Atiyeh, this series is ideal for fans of the BioWare game.

A flashback to set the scene, and start the series off right.

While Dragon Age: Dark Fortress #1 is the start of a new series, it does bring back many familiar faces. The games introduced characters like Blue Wraith into the mix, while the comics carried their stories onward.

Dark Fortress may be the most recent Dragon Age comic series – but it is not the first. It’s not even the first one including the same characters. Fans could pick up the story here, but the story will make more sense if they have read Dragon Age: Blue Wraith at the very least.

This is the first issue in a three-part miniseries, so buckle up and get ready for a whirlwind adventure. There won’t be a lot of time for hand-holding, but there will be plenty of action – we can safely assume that much based on the previous series.

That would be nightmare-inducing – literally.

The Writing

Dragon Age: Dark Fortress #1 is the start of yet another venture to save Thedas. It’s a plot that Dragon Age fans are familiar with. But probably not a plot we’ll grow tired of anytime soon. Written by Nunzio DeFilippis and Christina Weir, Dark Fortress #1 wastes no time, throwing readers right into the thick of things.

For that reason, I feel like readers would do better having read some of the previous series beforehand. Many of the characters, their history, and their motivations might not make as much sense without that context. Though gamers will naturally recognize certain characters, so that is a plus. Everything else in the book can be inferred – it just takes more work.

Interestingly, while the series does kick off with a point of action, it is also an emotionally charged scene. One that provides a stronger connection to Ser Aaron. Does that imply that his role (or history) will be pivotal in what is to come? Only time will tell.

The issue also works to get readers caught up in some of the motivations for the other characters. Though naturally, there isn’t all that much time to do so. Some characters get left by the wayside, while the more relevant (and intense) emotions take center stage.

Meanwhile, other characters are struggling to deal with more recent events.

The Art

Dragon Age: Dark Fortress #1 is a stunning piece of work. Fernando Heinz Furukawa, Sebastian Heinz, Michael Atiyeh, and Nate Piekos of Blambot did a fantastic job of capturing that iconic Dragon Age look.

Granted, there are some changes – there always are when changing from one medium to another. The characters all match the style—especially those that made an appearance in any of the games (for obvious reasons).

In this instance, they all seem to look especially tired, worn out, or in some cases, emotionally compromised. The artistic team did an excellent job of portraying all of that, despite the variety of causes.

The colors and backgrounds found within Dark Fortress #1 are breathtaking. They are always in bold contrast with the characters. There are many shifts in perspectives and scenes within this issue. And the backgrounds are one of the easiest ways to tell when that has occurred.

What new revelations await?


Dragon Age: Dark Fortress #1 is a tense and thrilling start to a new adventure. It’s perfect for fans of both the games and the comics. It has been fascinating to see how the story progresses with each series, and this time will be no exception.

Cat Wyatt
Cat Wyatt is an avid comic book fan. She loves comics - possibly too much, and will happily talk your ear off about everything she's reading. Though picking a favorite is a bit harder. She reads a little bit of everything and is always open to trying a new series.