The Dales are a vast area of Thedas located southeastern of Orlais to the west of Ferelden and it used to be the homeland of the elven race. BioWare has recently confirmed this territory as an integrant part of the Inquisition’s main maps. However, it’s not known yet if the whole land will be featured in the upcoming game, since only one zone has been unveiled so far – the Exalted Planes. This zone is particularly rich in history and it has been a ceaseless battlefield over the centuries. Blood is yet to be shed once again as the Orlesian Civil War spreads across the land.
1History: A Land Forever Shaped by War
The Exalted Plains of the Dales are characterized by equal measures of beauty and strife. It was here, centuries ago, that the elven nation met its bitter end. On these fields, the holdouts of the elven army faced the forces of the human Chantry and died, defending their promised land to the last breath. This legacy of conflict has endured, and battle once again rages in the Dales. (BioWare, 7th April, 2014)
The elves have a long history of slavery under the supremacy of the Tevinter Imperium but everything changed when they sided with Andraste and Maferath against the slavers. As a reward for their great service, the elves received an extensive land, the Dales, where they could revive their ancient civilization. Elven individuals all over Thedas tried to reach the Dales with just one goal in mind – freedom. United, the race founded Halamshiral, which means “the end of the journey” in Elvish and restored most of their ancient culture. However, peace didn’t last long and with the arrival of the Second Blight, the elves decided to cut off all the bounds with their human neighbours, more specifically Orlais. They remained neutral and watched from far away, while millions of humans perished to the darkspawn. Due to this, the hostility levels between the two races went out of control and war became inevitable. It’s not known what evidently triggered the war since each race has its own version of the events. Nonetheless, Orlais declared holy war against the elves and they’ve successfully taken over the land by force. Furthermore, the elves were forbidden to worship their gods or follow their culture. Those who embraced the Maker were sent to human cities to live in the slums known as alienages. Those who refused the Chantry’s offerings were either killed or exiled into small Dalish clans. Now, the Dales are an Orlesian colony and the Exalted Planes are the main stage of civil war, where human soldiers fight and die in the name of a future free of injustice and oppression.