Trials are a gameplay feature in Dragon Age: Inquisition, available with the Trespasser DLC. They allow the player to modify some game behaviour by either limiting/weakening the party or strengthening enemies. Having one or more trials enabled will increase your chance of receiving special shipment rewards, which can be collected from the special shipments chest in your home base.

Active trials can be configured under "Options" in the Hero menu at any point during the game. They can also be activated with the "Custom" difficulty option during hero creation for a new game.

Even Ground Edit

Enemies always scale to be at least the same level as the Inquisitor. Significantly increases the chance of receiving special shipment rewards in your stronghold.

Achievement - Trial of the Empress

  • Wait until your Inquisitor reaches level 16, then turn the trial on and travel to the Hinterlands to fight the Fereldan Frostback high dragon. See the Frostback's page for a strategy guide.

Hints and tips Edit

  • Turning this trial on affects all targetable items or creatures of any level in the game, including non-hostile creatures and magical barriers.

Walk Softly Edit


Tactical camera view of a promoted enemy

The enemies of the Inquisitor may have new traits and abilities in combat. Significantly increases the chance of receiving special shipment rewards in your stronghold.

Achievement - Trial of the Emperor

  • Turn the trial on at any point and kill any 20 creatures, including non-hostile creatures, with "Promoted" listed in their traits in the tactical camera.

Hints and tips Edit

  • A good way to farm this achievement is to seek out a wilderness region that frequently spawns several non-hostile creatures, such as the Level 12-15 range nugs in Emerald Graves - Great Bear Cove, and use the Tactical Camera to seek out the one(s) with the "Promoted" status.
  • Promoted enemies may gain one or more of the following abilities:
    • "Elite" status (enemies that are normally always elite, e.g. bears, may be promoted to "Boss" instead)
    • New attacks and abilities, e.g. archers may gain Leaping Shot and mages may gain Fade Cloak
    • Additional health
    • Additional traits:
      • Perceptive - allows enemies to flush rogues out of stealth
      • Barrier Breaker - destroys allies' barriers
      • Guard - enemies begin combat with a full guard bar
    • Random elemental resistance(s), in addition to any elemental resistances already in place
    • Random immunity to any status effect, in addition to any immunities already in place
    • Mages and Spellbinders' barriers may regenerate over time; dispel will reduce the barrier, but never completely eradicate it
  • Enemies that have been given additional traits but do not specifically carry the "Promoted" status effect will not count towards the achievement.
  • Not every enemy in a group will be given "Promoted" status with this trial enabled. On average, one enemy per group will be given the "Promoted" status, and even then the promotion is only done on an occasional basis, with no guarantee that every group of enemies will have a "Promoted" unit. However, enemies can still be given an additional trait as listed above without otherwise being labeled as "Promoted."

Rest Easy Edit

You lose all focus if you rest or travel to a camp. Slightly increases the chance of receiving special shipment rewards in your stronghold.

Achievement - Trial of Temperance

  • Turn this trial on before travelling to Emprise du Lion for the first time. Continue down the quest chain until you capture Suledin Keep.

Hints and tips Edit

  • Establishing new Inquisition camps has the same effect as resting or quick travelling to a camp.

Rub Some Dirt on It Edit

All healing potions heal only 1 health. Significantly increases the chance of receiving special shipment rewards in your stronghold.

Achievement - Trial of the Tower

Hints and tips Edit

  • The trial does not have to be active at all times, only prior to the Hivernal's health bar showing up in the display. See the Hivernal's page for a strategy guide.
  • If the Hivernal has already been slain, it must be done in a new game or from a save file prior to the dragon's demise.
  • This trial affects not only regular Healing Potions, but also adversely affects the healing effects of Regeneration Potions and Healing Mist grenades, restoring 1 HP per second and restoring 1 HP in an area-of-effect respectively.
  • Due to complications with the quests They Shall Not Pass and Breeding Grounds, it is highly recommended that the player capture Suledin Keep and speak to Baron Desjardins before repairing the bridge, and before fighting any of the dragons in the Emprise. Otherwise the quests may not trigger and therefore can never be completed. Neither of these quests prevents unlocking "Trial of the Tower," in case they have already been compromised.

Bugs Edit

  • This trial will not only affect the Inquisitor or even just their party, it will cause all NPCs to only heal one health per potion. As such, friendly NPCs such as Hawke and your Warden ally will - whenever they are low on health - keep chugging their infinite supply of health potions to almost no effect.

Travel Light Edit

All supply caches are removed from the game. Slightly increases the chance of receiving special shipment rewards in your stronghold.

Achievement - Trial of the Magician

  • Turn the trial on before starting the main quest In Hushed Whispers. That is, before going to Redcliffe to meet with the mages. Complete the quest.

Take It Slow Edit

You gain XP at half the normal rate. Slightly increases the chance of receiving special shipment rewards in your stronghold.

Achievement - Trial of the Fool

  • Start a new game and select this trial. It must be kept on until the Inquisition reaches Skyhold at level 5 or below.

Hints and tips Edit

  • This can be achieved by avoiding combat as much as possible. Side quests, companion recruitment quests and fade rifts should also be avoided as they give XP.
  • Avoid picking up any codex entries as they give XP. Any entries found in places that become locked off after completing certain main quests (such as Haven and Therinfal Redoubt) can be purchased later from Willvan in Val Royeaux.
  • Complete requisitions and establish camps to gain enough power to advance the main quest chain; good requisitions in the Hinterlands are Hinterlands Drakestone Survey and Hinterlands Iron Survey as they do not require combat. You can save and reload to get the requisition you want.
  • During main quests, have a rogue enter stealth and run through as many combat encounters as possible (e.g. the two fade rifts outside during In Hushed Whispers, which do not need to be closed and can be ignored completely). If you begin In Your Heart Shall Burn at level 4, you should unlock this achievement at the end of the quest.
  • For obvious reasons, it is recommended that you try this on casual difficulty.

Fair-Weather Friends Edit

Negative approval changes for followers are doubled. Slightly increases the chance of receiving special shipment rewards in your stronghold.

Achievement - Trial of the Lovers

  • Start a new game and turn this trial on. It must be kept on until the Inquisitor begins the quest Wicked Eyes and Wicked Hearts with all companions.

Hints and tips Edit

  • To prevent Sera, Cole, Dorian or Blackwall from leaving the Inquisition, their approval must be kept above -35. All other companions will never leave the Inquisition once they have joined. However, the doubled negative approval means that
    DAIApproval Greatly Disapproves
    gives -40 points to companions' approval score. This is particularly a problem for Cole and Dorian, who will join the Inquisition with a hidden approval score based on the outcome of either In Hushed Whispers or Champions of the Just, which means that they may join with -40 approval, thus leading them to leave the Inquisition the very moment they are spoken to, with no opportunity to offset the -40.
    • The only option that avoids putting at least one of Cole or Dorian in danger of leaving is allying with the rebel mages during In Hushed Whispers (giving approval for Cole and Dorian). Any other option (conscription of the mages, or completion of Champions of the Just) causes at least one of them to leave immediately upon reaching Skyhold. (Note: Dorian Greatly Approves of promising to stop Corypheus in your Inquisitor speech, which can raise approval enough to prevent leaving)
Note: Dorian does not appear to either approve or disapprove of either option at the end of Champions of the Just if the Herald does not meet Dorian at all before beginning Champions of the Just (i.e. does not enter the Chantry in Redcliffe). If so, disbanding the templars will keep Dorian or Cole from leaving the Inquisition. Additionally, if Dorian was not spoken to, as long as there are enough "helping" side quests in the Hinterland left to complete after Champions of the Just but before beginning In Your Heart Shall Burn, the approval gained can be enough to offset Cole's potential disapproval in choosing to ally with Templars.
  • Sera
    DAIApproval Greatly Disapproves
    of allying with the rebel mages. However, you can either leave her recruitment quest until after In Hushed Whispers to avoid the approval hit, or recruit her beforehand and raise her approval as high as possible to offset the doubled Great Disapproval. If recruited after, she must be spoken to in Haven at least once, or she will receive a lesser
    DAIApproval Sera Disapproves
    at Skyhold when she brings it up in conversation. If she is recruited after In Your Heart Shall Burn, the approval hit is unavoidable. It is still valued at -10 approval with the Trial enabled, so it should be avoided. Otherwise, Sera/Approval contains various methods of raising her approval.
  • During the quest The Forgotten Boy at Skyhold, be sure to discourage Cole from killing the suffering patient. This will yield
    DAIApproval Cole Greatly Approves
    . Beyond this, consult Cole/Approval for advice on keeping his approval up.
  • Speak with Dorian at Skyhold to unlock Dorian's Request, a war table operation that leads to the quest One Less Venatori.
    DAIApproval Dorian Greatly Approves
    of killing the Venatori targets with him in the party. Consult Dorian Pavus/Approval for further advice on keeping his approval up.
  • Blackwall has fewer restrictions on his approval. The mage/templar decision does not affect him as strongly as it does Cole and Dorian (showing slightly more approval for allying with the mages), but callous Inquisitors can inadvertently send him away. Finding Memories of the Grey out in the field with Blackwall in the party is the easiest way to raise his approval. Consult Blackwall/Approval for more tips.
  • Once at Skyhold, focus on completing side quests to gain 30 Power and begin Wicked Eyes and Wicked Hearts. Some quests that provide decent amounts of Power, without complicating companions' approval, include establishing Inquisition camps, fulfilling Requisitions, and closing Fade rifts. Avoid Here Lies the Abyss, as the decisions made there will complicate the companions' approval more than is necessary.

Grizzly End Edit

You thought bears were tough? Think again. Significantly increases the chance of receiving special shipment rewards in your stronghold.

Achievement - Trial of the Hermit

Hints and tips Edit

  • The bears are vulnerable to fire and resistant to cold, so it is a good idea to give mages fire staves and add fire or corrupting runes to your party's weapons.
  • This trial can affect both great bears and the common bears found in the Hinterlands, Storm Coast or Emerald Graves. The great bears required for the achievement are only found in the Emerald Graves or Emprise du Lion.

Rewards Edit

You are notified in game whenever a reward is available. The notification also appears again when entering Skyhold. You can get the rewards from the special shipment chest in:

  • your house on the north side of Haven,
  • the Undercroft in Skyhold, or
  • the north-west house (by your wardrobe) in the Winter Palace (second visit only).
Note: All rewards are randomly-issued upon opening the Special Shipments chest. Therefore, you can shuffle them by simply saving in front of the chest and reloading the game until it yields the reward you desire. You can have multiple rewards at once, they are kept until you open the chest.

Common rewards Edit

Schematic rewards Edit

  • Inquisition-Shield-Schematic-icon2 The Knight's Second SchematicThe Knight's Second Schematic
    Shield Schematic

    Armor: 33–41–51–56
    Armor: 7 Metal
    Defense: 11 Metal
    Defense: 4 Leather
    Masterwork: 1 Masterwork
    Guardian Spirit: blocks one melee attack every 30 seconds
  • Inquisition-Dagger-Schematic-icon1 Armada Captain's Knife SchematicArmada Captain's Knife Schematic
    Dagger Schematic

    Damage: 82-95-106-112 AoE
    Damage: 9 Metal
    Utility: 4 Leather
    Offense: 3 Metal
    Masterwork: 1 Masterwork
    Enhanced basic attacks: the end of the attack chain now hits all enemies in the area
    (Only before level 13)

Unique equipment rewards Edit

The following items are possible until you reach level 13:

  • The best defense icon The Best DefenseThe Best Defense
    Unique Shield
    Stamped on the inside of the shield: "Property of Xenon the Antiquarian. Absolutely not for resale! If found, return to Urchin immediately."
    Requires: Level 20

    Armor: 37
    +5 constitution
    +30% Front Defense
    +8% heal bonus
    +9% ranged defense
    Enhanced Shield Wall: Every fifth block with Shield Wall deals massive damage to enemies in the area
  • Dancer's axe icon raw The Dancer's AxeThe Dancer's Axe
    Unique Greataxe
    One little-known type of Avvar trial requires both accuser and accused to dance while twirling heavy axes. The thane of their hold judges the technical skill, emotional expression, and general excellence of their performance. The dance-trial is reserved for settling the most difficult of complaints, and no outsider has ever determined what god the trial honors, not why the dance requires axes. The Avvar are a complex people steeped in mystery.

    Damage: 135-142 AoE
    +3% Attack
    +10 Strength
    Enhanced basic attacks: you now whirlwind, all the time.
  • Perseverance icon Elgar'nan EnasteElgar'nan Enaste
    Unique Bow
    Elgar'nan, Sun's-death
    Burn the ground under your gaze
    Grant the fire blessing.

    Your people call out
    For all things to end in flame
    Ashes sing Your Praise.

    Requires: Level 7

    Damage: 86–90
    +8 Cunning
    +21 Dexterity
    Explosive Arrows
  • Agony icon LeechesLeeches
    Unique Dagger
    At first glance, this dagger resembles a standard surgeon's knife, designed for bloodletting and the excision of rotten flesh. A closer look reveals nearly invisible engraving: leeches, thousands upon thousands of them, twisted in knots all along the blade.

    Damage: 77-80
    +13% Attack
    +3% Critical Damage Bonus
    On hit: chance to place a stack of Hemorrhage on the target, causing damage over time
  • Staff of Statis icon Tempest's CenterTempest's Center
    Unique Staff
    Pressing an ear to this staff reveals the sound of wind howling inside.
    Requires: Level 4

    Damage: 33 Electricity
    +3% Critical Chance
    +8 Magic
    Enhanced basic attacks: the end of the attack chain now drops 3 electricity glyphs around you

Once you have reached level 13 the unique rewards change to:

  • Bolt sword icon Bolt (sword)Bolt (sword)
    Unique Sword
    Etched into this blade: "The spark of inspiration is with you. Use it to restore what was lost."
    Requires: Level 19

    Damage: 151-157 Electricity
    +45% Electrical Resistance
    +8 Willpower
    10% chance to inflict Chain Lightning damage at 75% weapon damage
    Electricity enhanced: all weapon attacks deal electricity damage
  • Bane of Red Crossing icon Bow of ArtificeBow of Artifice
    Unique Bow
    This bow has several odd modifications. The upper limb is covered in little switches that make sounds like irritated birds. The risers are full of compartments containing different kinds of sand. The sight window has been carved with an exploded diagram of an animal trap, and the grip contains four buttons that make the bow change colors. Whoever did all this clearly had a lot of spare time.
    Requires: Level 18

    Damage: 162-168
    +42% Critical Chance
    +6% Stagger on Hit
    On hit: chance that Elemental Mines spawn around your target
  • Edgewise icon EdgewiseEdgewise
    Unique Greatsword
    Countess Helmine of Sundarin in the Anderfels had flayed scores of opponents verbally (and one or two physically) before Baroness Liese of Kassel made her debut at King Johann the Great's court. Instantly jealous, Liese spent wagonloads of coin to train in elocution, rhetoric and satire - and still fell to the countess's figurative sword. So she poured her fortune into crafting a weapon that could get a word in where wit had failed. After a second meeting where first verbal and then metal ripostes flew before the astonished court, Helmine was impressed with the Baroness's tenacity. They became fast friends, although they never did talk much.
    Requires: Level 19

    Damage: 284-295 AoE
    +50 Armor Rating
    +14 Constitution
    Chance on hit: taunt all enemies within 8 meters for 4 seconds
  • Staff of Statis icon Heart of DespairHeart of Despair
    Unique Staff
    From all around this staff comes a sound like sobbing, and touching it brings to mind the loneliest moments of one's life. Energy from the Fade ripples away as it moves, like fingers stirring still water.
    Requires: Level 19

    Damage: 79-81 Cold
    +7% Attack
    +48 Magic
    Permafrost: all nearby enemies are constantly chilled; grants 50% bonus resistance to cold and physical damage
  • Soulkisser icon Truncheon of the MasterTruncheon of the Master
    Unique Mace
    The greatest lesson is the one for which the student sits still.
    Requires: Level 19

    Damage: 155-161
    +31% Stagger on Hit
    Enhanced basic attacks: the end of the attack chain now briefly stuns enemies

Notes Edit

  • The game states that in rare cases "trials may cause enemies or followers to behave unpredictably." It's recommended to keep multiple save files in case of problems.
    • One issue is that the friendly AI ceases to use abilities. This can be resolved by simply saving and restarting the game; upon loading back in, the AI should function normally.
    • A possibly related issue is that a companion may cease to move or fight at all in the middle of combat. This can be solved by switching to the companion, having them jump in place, then switching back to the previously-controlled character. The AI should then function normally.