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

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

  • 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


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

  • 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

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

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

Rub Some Dirt on It

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

Achievement - Trial of the Tower

Complete the war table operation Restore Judicael's Crossing, then activate the trial prior to battling the Hivernal high dragon, and keep it active until the dragon is slain.

Hints and tips

  • 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.

Travel Light

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

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

  • 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.
  • 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

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

  • 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.
    • 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 him 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

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

Achievement - Trial of the Hermit

Turn this trial on and kill 10 great bears.

Hints and tips

  • 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.


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

Schematic rewards

  • Inquisition-Shield-Schematic-icon2 The Knight's Second Schematic
  • Inquisition-Dagger-Schematic-icon1 Armada Captain's Knife Schematic

Unique equipment rewards

The following items are possible until you reach level 13:

  • The best defense icon The Best Defense
  • Dancer's axe icon raw The Dancer's Axe
  • Perseverance icon Elgar'nan Enaste
  • Agony icon Leeches
  • Staff of Statis icon Tempest's Center

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

  • Bolt sword icon Bolt
  • Bane of Red Crossing icon Bow of Artifice
  • Edgewise icon Edgewise
  • Staff of Statis icon Heart of Despair
  • Soulkisser icon Truncheon of the Master


  • The game states that in rare cases the "the trials may cause enemies or followers to behave unpredictably." It's recommended to keep multiple save files in case of problems.

    While it is always recommended to keep multiple saves, the primary 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.
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