There's power in stories, though. That's all history is: the best tales. The ones that last. Might as well be mine.

Varric is a dwarf in Dragon Age II. He narrates the story of Hawke the champion of Kirkwall, such as how Hawke escaped from Lothering, while being interrogated by Cassandra, who is trying to find out how the world came to the brink of war. [1]


His family was part of the noble caste before they left for the surface and Varric was born in Kirkwall. He is a merchant prince among the surface dwarves.[2]

Varric comes from House Tethras and is a rogue. He is the youngest son of the Tethras family while his older brother is the head and runs the family business. On the outside, he is seen as the idle younger brother who spends his time in taverns telling wild stories while people buy him drinks. His real job is to maintain a "spy network" with contacts to deal with various troubles that come along with being in a family that is part of the Dwarven Merchant Guild.[3]

Signature weapon

Varric has a signature crossbow named Bianca. Bianca has a carved wood stock and brass embellishments, as well as a retractable bayonet that slides out of a slot in the front.[4] As such, Varric is the only companion who cannot equip different weapons. When asked about the story behind how Bianca got her name, he replies that it involves a girl and a promise, and that it is the one story that he can never tell. He has put the story to song, but will not sing it, instead humming the tune during battle.

If Hawke lets Varric keep the lyrium shard during the latter's companion quest, Haunted, Varric will use the shard to upgrade Bianca with three more rune slots. However, his armor will change its name to "Varric's Armored Leather Duster" and lose all of its rune slots (removing Varric from the party and adding him again may return the rune slots, but any placed runes will be gone). On the other hand, if Hawke gives the shard to Sandal, not only will Varric feel a little dizzy, showing that he can not master the shard, but also the boy will turn the shard into a Primeval Lyrium Rune, which increases attack speed.


This section contains spoilers for:
Dragon Age II.

Varric first meets Hawke a year after they arrive in Kirkwall, in the streets of Hightown, after the former's brother, Bartrand, rejected Hawke's request to join his expedition into the Deep Roads. The future Champion is pick-pocketed by a thief whom Varric shoots and pins to a wall using Bianca. Returning Hawke's money, Varric, having heard of Hawke's reputation for skill, competence and reliability, offers them a place on the excavation as an investor. Tagging along to help Hawke gain the necessary money, Varric requests that Hawke speak to him privately in The Hanged Man in Lowtown later. At the Hanged Man, Varric tells Hawke the excavation doesn't have a suitable route to the Deep Roads and requests Hawke get one from a Grey Warden Varric has found in the city

Varric refers to most of the companions by a nickname. Anders is "Blondie," Bethany "Sunshine," Merrill "Daisy," etc. He does not have a nickname for Hawke or Aveline, much to the latter's dismay.

Right from the start he will criticize his brother, mentioning that describing Bartrand as "hard to take" by Worthy after Hawke's diplomatic choice is an understatement.

In the quest Night Terrors of Act 2 after you saved Feynriel in Act 1 from the Circle, he will ultimately give in to his pride over Hawke, even if they are friends, when Hawke steals Feynriel from the demon of pride - unless Merrill or Fenris is in the party, in which case the pride demon will tempt one of them instead. Afterward he will make amends in the quest Varric's Apology.

In the mission All That Remains, Varric will personally take care of DuPuis after his betrayal and Hawke's threat to kill him, shooting a bolt through his throat.

If Hawke sides with the mages, Varric offers that he doesn't like helping dangerous people run amok. It is obvious he only joins Hawke's fight due to supporting Hawke and that he would have preferred to remain neutral.

At the end of the game Varric states that he along with Hawke and the companions disappeared into the wilderness, saying that by chance all of the companions, including Bethany and Carver, were forced to leave Hawke, all of them taking off for their own quests. The exception to this, as told by Varric, is Hawke's love interest who is implied to still be with him/her at present.


This section contains spoilers for:
Dragon Age II.

Varric left Kirkwall with the Champion at the end of the game, however he later returned. Cassandra Pentaghast, a Seeker of the Chantry, travels there to interrogate him on the Chantry's behalf, believing that Hawke is the only hope of stopping a potential war between the mages and the Chantry. He tells her the Champion's story in full, though he exaggerates on some details. At the end of the interrogation, Varric informs Cassandra that he does not know where Hawke is, though he very much doubts that the Champion is dead. Cassandra thanks him and allows him to leave.


Varric likes to talk and likes Hawkes who do too. Solving problems and gaining advantage through diplomacy, outright lies, and even blackmail will impress him, while straightforward violence and thuggery leaves him cold. He also responds well to joking, flirting and sarcasm and to mild greed. Beneath his silver tongue, however, he's a goodhearted person and will appreciate Hawkes who look out for their families and are kind to dwarves. Below are some specific ways to earn Varric's friendship.

This section contains spoilers for:
Dragon Age II.

Act 1

Bait and Switch: Accepting the quest with the answer "Make it worth your time" Friendship small : friendship (+5)

A Business Discussion: Depending on the final dialogue choice, either Friendship small : friendship (+5) for a cautious approach or Friendship small : friendship (+15) for a charming response can be earned.

The Deep Roads Expedition: Friendship small : friendship (+5) if you agree to find Sandal.
The Deep Roads Expedition: Agree to find the Warden's for Carver or Bethany Friendship small : friendship (+5)

An Errant Letter: Tell Thrask you will keep his secret Friendship small : friendship (+5)

Magistrate's Orders: Killing Kelder Friendship small : friendship (+5)

Questions and Answers: Friendship small : friendship (+15) if you choose the following dialog options:

  • "Maker, that's big!"
  • "So does insomnia." or "You're looking for excitement?"

Tranquility: Promise not to harm Anders while talking to Lirene Friendship small : friendship (+5)

The Way It Should Be: Friendship small : friendship (+5) if after you rescue rescuing Donnic you use a witty response during.

Wayward Son: Let Varric deal with the Slaver leader Friendship small : friendship (+5)

Act 2

Family Matter: Friendship small : friendship (+15) if you kill Bartrand without healing or allow Anders to heal Bartrand and he then allow him to leave.

Repentance: Friendship small : friendship (+5) if the player chooses the dialogue option, "That's a good point." or "Don't listen to her..."

An Update: Friendship small : friendship (+25) if the player agrees to go visit Bartrand


To earn rivalry with Varric, choose aggressive responses that glorify violence and combat, and show a lack of interest in his stories, his friendship, and your place in Kirkwall. Below are some specific ways to earn Varric's rivalry.

This section contains spoilers for:
Dragon Age II.

Act 1

Bait and Switch: Rivalry small Varric: rivalry (+15) if you choose the aggressive option when he tells you about the Grey Warden with a map.

A Business Discussion: Suggest making the warden talk (aggressive option) Rivalry small : rivalry (+15).

The Deep Roads Expedition: Rivalry small Varric: rivalry (+5) if you tell Bohdan that you won't look for Sandal.

Questions and Answers: Rivalry small Varric: rivalry (+15) if you choose the following dialog options:

  • "Bloodlust."
  • "Have you any war stories?"

Shepherding Wolves: Agree to help Ketojan Rivalry small : rivalry (+5)

Tranquility: Threaten Lirene for the information Rivalry small : rivalry (+5)

The Way It Should Be: Rivalry small Varric: rivalry (+5) if you choose the aggressive option to answer insult with blood after discovering the satchel.

Act 2

Plans for the Future: Rivalry small Varric: rivalry (+10) if you choose the aggressive option (indicating you may leave Kirkwall).


See Companions Armor(Dragon Age II) for a list of all Companion Armor upgrades.

In Dragon Age II, You cannot change what armor your Companions wear, but you can upgrade them. Varric's armor may be upgraded by using the gift mechanics in Dragon Age II. You will find companion armor upgrades that can be purchased at shops in the tab designated by the Gem Icon. Varric's armor has four slots available for upgrades. These upgrades may be purchased or found at various locations in the the game. Upgrading a companion's armor once unlocks the "A Friend In Need" achievement and fully upgrading a companion's armor unlocks the "I Got Your Back" achievement.

Varric's armor upgrades can be found in the following locations:

  • Act 1: Inscribed Leather Harness (Apparel Shop, Lowtown) (Gives Varric an extra rune slot.)
  • Act 2: Coat Lining with Concealed Pockets (Shady Merchandise, Docks. After you have been on the expedition to the deep roads) (+72 Attack)
  • Act 2: Silverite-Reinforced Buckles (Personal quest Family Matter)
  • Act 3: Drakeskin Leg Straps (Import bonus quest Finding Nathaniel)

Talent Trees


  • "I've had gentler invitations". (After some Seekers bring him to be questioned by Cassandra)
  • "So, you want to know about the champion, what makes you think I know the truth?"(To Cassandra)
  • "Let me guess - your precious Chantry is in ruins and put the entire world on the brink of war, and you need the one person who can help you put it back together".(After Cassandra talks back from his previous statement)
  • "I know everyone in this city. Well, everyone worth knowing". (To Hawke)
  • "There's a lesson to be learned here: messing with us is suicidal." (After a fight)
  • "Remind me never to get on our bad side. Seems to be... unhealthy." (After a fight)
  • "Bianca you Minx! That was Beautiful!" (After a fight)
  • "Grab something sharp and pointy, we've got company!" (Beginning of a fight)
  • "Dear Varric, please learn to parry. Love, your innards." (After falling in battle)
  • "'I don't like this'? That's right up there with 'What could possibly go wrong'".
  • "We dwarves are attracted to shiny objects. Kind of like magpies, just with business sense".(To Anders)
  • "You really need to see the look on someone's face when I tell them you ripped the arms of an ogre. Just once." (To Hawke)
  • "There's a recipe to a good hero, Hawke, it's like alchemy. Take one part down to earth, one part selfless nobility, two parts crazy fool, and season liberally with wild falsehoods. Let that percolate through a good audience for a while, and when you're done, you've got your hero".(To Hawke)
  • "You're beautiful, deadly and hang out with fantastic dwarves. It would be a crime if people didn't talk about you." (To Hawke)
  • "Opinions are like testicles. You kick them hard enough, it doesn't matter how many you've got".(To Fenris)
  • "Problems, Brother?" (To Bartrand)
  • "I swear, I will find that son of a bitch - sorry mother - and I will kill him!" (about Bartrand)
  • "I had a friend who disappeared once. Turned out he was under my bed, drunk..." (Everyone stares) "What?"
  • "That's all History is; the best tales. The ones that last. Might as well be mine." (when asked why he loves telling stories.)
  • "Andraste's sanctified ass! Why would anyone make the ground vertical?" (When climbing Sundermount)
  • *Clears throat* "That's a set-up." (After chatting to the newly ordained (Mother) Petrice)
  • "You're a mage. You must know something about...weird shit." (To a mage Hawke)
  • "You know, this outdoors thing is growing on me. Like a tumor." (When in an outdoor zone)
  • "You know who I don't want to meet in a Lowtown alley at night? Pretty much anyone." (When in Lowtown at night)
  • "Andraste's ass, dwarves actually live down here? On purpose? What in blazes for?"
  • "Well, Mirabelle was taken." (when asked about the name "Bianca")
  • "Oh, right, the rusty metal Spike District, my favorite part of Town... can we leave now?"(Upon entering the Foundry District in Lowtown at night)
  • "I am getting truly sick of looking at stalagmites. Or are they stalactites? Shit, I don't know."
  • "Andraste's dimpled buttcheeks!"(If brought to the final battle)
  • "20 silver says he'll say 'It wasn't me! It was the one-armed man!'" (after catching Gascard over a tortured woman)
  • "For all we know, he's asking for a chamber pot." (Refering to Ketojan's grunt)
  • "I think I'm sick of mages and templars." (When Hawke Asks for Opinions on what to do with Anders after he Blew up the Chantry)
  • "It's the Divine Herself, come all the way from Orlais to tell you how much of a jackass you are." (to Ser Alrik during Dissent)
  • "Okay, I'm going to draw a picture of where she wants to touch you." (to Guardsman Donnic during The Long Road)
  • "Hawke, I'm a businessman. On occasion, I shoot people."


Main article: Varric/Dialogue


  • Varric's excessive chest hair has become something of a running joke with devs and fans on the BioWare social forum.[5] It is also something of a running gag in-game.
  • Varric's home base is in the inn known as The Hanged Man.
  • Varric is always calling companions by nicknames, calling Merrill "Daisy", Isabela "Rivaini", Bethany "Sunshine", Fenris "Elf/Broody", Carver "Junior", Anders "Blondie", and Sebastian "Choir-Boy". He never comes up with one for Aveline, however - a fact she comments on if they are both in the party together.
  • Though he is not a romance option, he can be flirted with by both female and male Hawkes.
  • Due to Varric's role in the game's storyline, he is the only companion who cannot have crisis points and leave the group.
  • It is subtly revealed that Varric uses his spy network to keep watch and help out the other party members. An early companion quest in Act 2 reveals that he keeps the Darktown thugs from attacking Anders's clinic (Anders will question this in a party banter), and inter-party banter with Merrill shows that he pays off the Lowtown gangs to leave her alone if she walks around Lowtown at night.
  • When asked about the origin of the name of his crossbow, Bianca, Varric will reply, "Well, Mirabelle was taken." This is a reference to the black powder firearm Mirabelle from BioWare's Jade Empire.
  • During the midst of battle, Varric will often ask "How many you got, Hawke?", which may be a reference to Lord of the Rings, where the dwarf Gimli and the elf Legolas keep score on how many enemies they have killed during a large battle.
  • He makes many references to television shows:

• Cheers - "I like this bar, everyone here knows your name."

• The Fugitive - "Twenty silvers if he says "It wasn't me! The one armed man did it.""



  1. Game FAQ forums
  2. Mary Kirby BioWare forums
  3. Mary Kirby - BioWare Forums Though he can be flirted with, he is not a romancable companion.
  4. Mary Kirby
  5. Varric Tethras: Chest Hair & Dwarven Goodness 3.0

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