These codex entries within the Controls section deal with game mechanics. Many are obtained when first opening a tab or using a command, or when viewing a new tutorial.


Main article: Codex entry: Tactics
See also: Tactics (Origins)

The tactics screen (\) is a tool used to customize your party's actions and reactions based on current situations in combat.

AI: General Behavior

A party member's general behavior can be configured using the drop-down menu at the top of the right side of the screen. For example, should he or she charge at enemies, or be more cautious? Does this party member prefer ranged or melee weapons?

Tactics slots let you set up automatic actions that the party member will take in specific situations, like casting Heal whenever a party member drops below 50% health. Tactics are displayed in a numbered list. Each tactic requires a condition and an action.

The condition determines when to execute the tactic. The action determines what happens when the tactic fires.

Tactic slots at the top of the list are the highest priority; they will activate before ones further down in the list. You can reorganize tactics slots by left-clicking on a number and dragging.

Tactics slots can also be temporarily disabled by left-clicking on the + symbol in front of the slot. To re-enable the tactic, click the + again.

AI: Tactics Presets

You can save a set of tactics at any time. Click the Save Preset button to store the current settings. Use the Presets pull-down to switch between different sets of conditions and actions.

Party Approval

Main article: Codex entry: Party Approval
See also: approval

One of your party members has begun to genuinely like you and respect your leadership. As you improve your relationships with party members, head back to camp to speak with them. They'll be much more willing to open up when they don't have to worry about death around every corner--and you'll need to talk to them more if you want to continue to improve your relationship. You can track your party members' approval ratings using the orange bar at the bottom of their character records.

Area Map

Main article: Codex entry: Area Map

The area map (M) displays a top-down view of your current area. Some regions will only be revealed when you explore them. By default, plot helpers are not shown in unexplored regions, but you can change this in the options menu (Esc).

Heavy Armor

Main article: Codex entry: Heavy Armor
See also: Fatigue

You have equipped heavy or massive armor. While these grades of armor offer excellent protection, be aware that they reduce the character's attack speed with bows and crossbows, although the Master Archer talent eliminates this penalty for the heavy class of armors. Weighty armor also tends to cause more fatigue, which is a percentage increase in the mana or stamina cost to activate a spell or talent. Finally, be aware that enemies will judge characters wearing heavy armor as a greater threat, making them more likely to select that character as their target.

Army Picker

Main article: Codex entry: Army Picker

This allows you to select armies to be deployed in specific areas. Each army is represented by an icon and a number that shows how many combatants comprise the army. Each army can be deployed only once, and only a single army can be active in one area. Once an army has been defeated in an area, you will be able to deploy another army.

Retrieve your Equipment

Main article: Codex entry: Retrieve your Equipment

Because you were asleep, your equipment is in your chest. You need to get it quickly!

The Job Board

Main article: Codex entry: The Job Board
See also: Quest Board

Several organizations in Ferelden maintain job boards like this one. Once you have completed a task, speak to the organization's representative to receive your reward.

Codex Entries

Main article: Codex entry: Codex Entries
See also: Codex

Some items, when picked up or examined, will add information to the codex in your journal (<JournalKey/>) rather than appear in your inventory. The information can be read at any time.

Combat Basics

Main article: Codex entry: Combat Basics
See also: Combat

You are in a combat situation. Mastery of the battlefield is important. Zoom out (Scroll backward) in combat to gain a better view of your situation. You can also pause for tactical preparation by pressing Space.

To attack an enemy, simply right-click on them. To use a talent, left-click on it in your quickbar to use it against your current target.

Combat Basics - Mage

Main article: Codex entry: Combat Basics - Mage
See also: Combat

You are in a combat situation. Mastery of the battlefield is important. Zoom out (<ZoomOutMouse/>) in combat to gain a better view of your situation. You can also pause for tactical preparation by pressing <PauseKey/>.

Mages can use spells to attack enemies. Simply <LeftClickDefault/> on the spell in your quickbar and then <LeftClickDefault/> on your target. When you run out of mana, you cannot cast any more spells.

Ranked Creatures

Main article: Codex entry: Ranked Creatures
See also: Rank

The names of particularly challenging opponents are displayed in different colors to draw attention to the significant threat they represent. Opponents with yellow names are more challenging and aggressive than average. Orange names represent extremely powerful enemies capable of threatening a full party of adventurers by themselves.


Main article: Codex entry: Injuries
See also: Injuries

One of your party members has fallen in combat! He or she has now sustained a serious injury. These injuries cause penalties that can only be cured with an injury kit or certain high-level spells. The injury is indicated by the small red icon that you can see above the quickbar (when you have the injured character selected) or in the character record (C).

Injuries (Severe)

Main article: Codex entry: Injuries (Severe)
See also: Injuries

A character in your party is severely injured, reducing his or her effectiveness in combat. Keeping your characters healthy is the best way to prevent further injuries. Remember that you can use an injury kit or certain high level spells to treat injuries.

Health Poultices

Main article: Codex entry: Health Poultices

You have acquired a health poultice. These instantly restore some of your health. To use the poultice, drag it from your inventory into your quickbar, double-click it directly from the inventory, or right-click on it in the inventory and select Use. Stores sell more poultices, and characters who have learned Herbalism can create their own.

Controlling Party Members

Main article: Codex entry: Controlling Party Members

A new party member has joined you. You can take control of this character directly by left-clicking on his or her portrait or body. Alternately, you can use the tactics menu (\) to adjust how the AI controls them.


Main article: Codex entry: Crafting
See also: Recipes

The Herbalism, Poison-Making, and Trap-Making skills allow you to mix potions, concoct poisons, or assemble traps. Left-clicking on the icon for the first rank of any of these skills will open a crafting window that displays your current recipes and ingredients. You can buy new recipes and ingredients in stores or find them by exploring the lands.


Main article: Codex entry: Recipes
See also: Recipes

You have just received your first crafting recipe. These recipes are automatically added to the recipe lists in your crafting window.

Defending the Gates

Main article: Codex entry: Defending the Gates

Reinforcements from the darkspawn horde are coming. If your defenders are not properly equipped or leveled up, get them ready quickly, before the attackers launch their assault.


Main article: Codex entry: Disguised!

Disguises will allow you to pass by most guards without being attacked. However, many actions that draw attention (such as talking to ranking officers or attacking someone) will blow your cover.

Your disguise will be removed if you enter combat. You can also choose to remove it by speaking to whoever gave you the costume.


Main article: Codex entry: Exploration

Use the W, A, S, and D keys to explore the world. Alternately, right-click on the ground to select a destination.

Use your mouse wheel to zoom in (Scroll forward) for exploration and out (Scroll backward) for tactical combat. In exploration mode, moving the mouse while clicking in the right button rotates your view. In tactical mode, clicking in the mouse wheel lets you pan across the screen. You can only pan until your party members are at the edge of the screen.

Xbox 360...
Use LS to control your character's movement. RS changes where the camera is looking.


Main article: Codex entry: Fatigue
See also: Fatigue

Although armor provides great protection, safety comes at a price: Anything heavier than regular clothing causes fatigue, which increases the mana or stamina cost of spells and talents by a percentage. Sturdy armors like plate carry more of a penalty than lightweight leathers, but some talents, like the warriors Powerful, can reduce the effects of fatigue.


Main article: Codex entry: Gifts
See also: Gifts

You have found a gift. You can give it to one of your party members by opening the inventory screen (I), switching to the party member, then right-clicking on the item and selecting Gift from the radial menu. Each party member has a favorite type of gift, and certain items are so precious to a particular character that others will refuse the gift outright. Your camp is a great place to give gifts, because party members are sometimes reluctant to talk about themselves on the open road.

Friendly Fire

Main article: Codex entry: Friendly Fire
See also: Difficulty settings (Origins)

The powers of magic are significant, but can be uncontrollable. Mages have access to spells like Fireball that affect a whole area rather than just a single target. While these spells are useful against groups of enemies, they are also indiscriminate, and will harm friend and foe alike.


Main article: Codex entry: Inventory

Inventory (I) is divided into two sections: Equipped items for the selected character on the left, and shared party inventory on the right. You can drag and drop items between the two sides or down to the quickbar, double-click to use or equip them automatically, or right-click and hold to open the radial menu to interact with items.

Runes and Enchantments

Main article: Codex entry: Runes and Enchantments
See also: Runes

A skilled enchanter can inscribe lyrium runes on a weapon to add new properties. With multiple runes, the weapon will gain the cumulative benefit of all the runes, even if the runes are the same type, and enchantments can be removed when better runes are discovered. Enchanters, however, are quite rare.

xbox360Icon xbox360 All enchantable items in the party inventory--including those currently equipped--can be upgraded by an enchanter, so long as you also have runes available. Select the item you with to enchant using LS, then select the rune spot you wish to inscribe. Press X to inspect or compare, Y to remove a rune, or A to inscribe the rune on your weapon.


Main article: Codex entry: Journal

Your journal (J) tracks updates to your current objectives and records the results of prior exploits. This includes quests completed as well as codex entries that describe the world around you. At the bottom of the journal screen, the Make Active button lets you designate the quest you're currently working on, which activates arrows on the map and in the game world that direct you to the next point in the plot.

Level Up

Main article: Codex entry: Level Up
See also: Level

You have acquired enough experience to gain a level! Gaining levels gives you many options to customize your character to fit your style of play.

Sustained Abilities

Main article: Codex entry: Sustained Abilities

Sustained abilities reserve mana or stamina when they're activated, and remain on until deactivated or the character runs out of mana or stamina. Most sustained abilities include a fatigue penalty, increasing the cost to activate a subsequent spell or talent, which makes it difficult to maintain several sustained abilities at once. To manually deactivate a sustained ability, simply left-click it again in the quickbar. Note that some of these abilities, such as Defensive Fire and Rapid Shot, cannot be used simultaneously.

Inventory Overload

Main article: Codex entry: Inventory Overload
See also: Backpack

The current number of items in your inventory (I) exceeds its limit. You have two options: Clear space in your inventory by destroying, selling, or equipping items, or purchase a backpack to increase your inventory capacity. Until you do one of these, you will not be able to pick up additional items.

Party Members

Main article: Codex entry: Party Members
See also: Companions (Origins)

Party members will follow you throughout the world and assist you in battle. Be warned, however, that party members are not servants. They each have goals and personalities that may conflict with your choices.

By default, anyone who joins you will follow tactics of their own devising, but you can adjust their behavior in the tactics screen (<TacticsKey/>). When you take control of characters directly, however, they will not follow their tactics.

Party Camp

Main article: Codex entry: Party Camp
See also: Party Camp

All of your party's injuries are healed when you return to camp. Each party member can be found somewhere in the camp, making it an ideal location to hand out new equipment, give gifts, or talk.

Locked Item

Main article: Codex entry: Locked Item
See also: Deft Hands

You just encountered a locked object. You might be able to pick the lock if your skill is high enough, or you might need to locate a key through adventure or negotiation.

Plot Helpers

Main article: Codex entry: Plot Helpers

Plot helpers are markers on your current area map that indicate where you need to go to progress in your active quest.

Shapeshifting: Burning Man Form

Main article: Codex entry: Shapeshifting: Burning Man Form
See also: Fade: Shapeshifting

The burning man is immune to fire and can pass through fires unharmed. However, this form is physically weak and vulnerable to cold damage. It is the fastest of the forms.

Shapeshifting: Golem Form

Main article: Codex entry: Shapeshifting: Golem Form
See also: Fade: Shapeshifting

The Golem form has enormous strength and can smash doors that you would not normally be able to budge. It is also highly resistant to physical attacks, but vulnerable to magical damage.

Fade Shapeshifting

Main article: Codex entry: Fade Shapeshifting
See also: Fade: Shapeshifting

The Fade shapeshifting menu lets you select different forms while in the Fade. Each form has its own strengths and weaknesses.

You can now shapeshift into a mouse. The mouse form is weak and cannot engage enemies in combat, but it is particularly stealthy and allows you to move through small mouse holes.

Shapeshifting: Spirit Form

Main article: Codex entry: Shapeshifting: Spirit Form
See also: Fade: Shapeshifting

The spirit form is attuned to all things unseen. It allows you to interact with ethereal objects that would normally be hidden from you.


Main article: Codex entry: Specializations
See also: Specializations

You have just qualified for a specialization, a customized form of a character's basic class. Each offers a unique set of advanced talents and benefits. Characters may have up to two specializations, with the first becoming available at level 7 and the second at level 14... but first, you'll need to find a trainer.


Main article: Codex entry: Stealth
See also: Stealth

Stealth makes it possible for you to deal devastating surprise attacks, lay traps, or to avoid immediate confrontation with your enemies.


Main article: Codex entry: Merchants
See also: Merchants

You have just gained access to your first store. Here, you can buy or sell items. Various stores are scattered throughout the world.

While a transaction is open, you may use the buyback function to reverse any accidental sales or purchases at no loss of money. Once the deal is closed, however, the items become the full property of the shopkeeper and are thus only available at full prices.

World Map

Main article: Codex entry: World Map
See also: World map

You have just opened the world map. It details major locations of interest around the kingdom of Ferelden. You can use the world map to travel to various locations, although some are not available until you meet certain criteria.

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