Dragon Age: Deception #1

Writers: Nunzio DeFilippis, Christina Weir
Artist: Fernando Heinz Furukawa
Colorist: Michael Atiyeh
Letterer: Nate Piekos
Cover Artist: Sachin Teng
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics

Review by Stacy Dooks

With a few exceptions, as a reader I tend to find high fantasy (epic tales where the fate of all rests in the hands of a plucky band of noble and stalwart heroes) to be a bit stale. My personal preference leans more toward sword and sorcery tales of formidable but flawed characters doing their best to get rich whilst simultaneously trying to stay alive and keep one step ahead of their competition. A bit less Aragorn and Legolas and a lot more Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser, if you will.  Still, it’s nice to have a choice of options and that’s what makes BioWare’s Dragon Age setting such an enticing place. You can go for the epic high fantasy (Dragon Age, Dragon Age: Inquisition) or the small scale sword and sorcery (Dragon Age II) and it all hangs together reasonably well. Which brings us to Dragon Age: Deception #1.

A seasoned con artist has a plan to obtain a big score in the city of Ventus. All she has to do is impersonate a mage, fleece a reclusive family of  wealth and privilege out of some of their hard-earned gold, and be on her merry way. But upon approaching the heir apparent to the noble house, our shady operator finds herself quickly getting in over her head in an increasingly risky series of cons that threaten to expose her as a fraud. Can she stay one step ahead? Or will she end up too deep for her own good?

I’m not going to spoil the plot any further, but I will say that the beauty of the Dragon Age setting lies in its versatility. From epic battles for the fate of the world to a drifter trying to make her next big score, the world of Thedas is rife with storytelling possibilities. The series is set after the events of Dragon Age: Inquisition, so if you’ve played that game, the Tevinter Imperium and the impending invasion by the Qunari might ring familiar bells for you but knowledge of Dragon Age isn’t required to enjoy Dragon Age: Deception #1. The writing by DeFilippis and Weir is witty and fun, and the art by Furakawa really brings out the best in the characters and their environment. From cover to cover, it’s clear that hard work went into this book, and it shows.

The Verdict: Buy It.

If you’re a fan of the source material, it’s likely this is already on your to-read list, but even if you’re just a fan of fantasy in general, Dragon Age: Deception #1 has got plenty for you to work with. Delectably wicked but fun protagonists, genuine moments of comedy, and a light-hearted feel that comes as a much-needed break from the intensity of other fare out on the stands. Recommended.

Stacy Dooks
Stacy Dooks is a writer and assorted pop culture fanatic whose childhood fixations on the works of Jim Henson, George Lucas, and DC Comics laid the groundwork for his current status as a pop culture junkie chatterbox. He currently resides in Calgary, Alberta while he waits for his TARDIS coral to finish growing. For more of his observations on popular culture, check out The Fanboy Power Hour: http://tfph.libsyn.com/

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