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 to Cassandra, 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]


The Tethras family was once part of the noble caste in Orzammar, until Varric's father was caught fixing Provings. Such was the disgrace and danger to the family that the household had no choice but to leave for the surface. Unlike his brother, Varric was born in Kirkwall and has no feeling of loyalty and love to Orzammar, his knowledge of which is largely second-hand. 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. On the other hand, if Hawke gives the shard to Sandal, not only will Varric feel a little dizzy, showing that he cannot 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, commenting that Hawke would have killed him anyway.

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.

Friendship and Rivalry

See the approval page for more information.

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.

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.


See Companion armor 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:

Varric specific gear

Amulet green DA2 Eye of the Bearded Dragon
Ring green DA2 Turquoise Ring of the Archon
Belt green DA2 The Refined Gentleman's Sash

Talent Trees


Main article: Varric/Dialogue
  • "Bianca you Minx! That was Beautiful!" (After 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'".
  • "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".
  • "That's all history is; the best tales. The ones that last. Might as well be mine."
  • "You know, this outdoors thing is growing on me. Like a tumor." (When in an outdoor zone)
  • "Hawke, I'm a businessman. On occasion, I shoot people."
  • "You should know by now that I love the sound of my own voice, Hawke."
  • "Shows what you know. I would definitely bring this up just to gossip. I didn't. But I would."
  • " I'm going to draw a picture of where she wants to touch you."
  • "Did somebody order a shot to the face?" (in combat)


  • Varric's excessive chest hair has become something of a running joke with developers and fans on the BioWare social forum.[5] It is also something of a running gag in-game, especially with Isabela.
  • 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", 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.
  • The party banter between Aveline and Varric where she discusses nicknames is bugged. Aveline will mention "Sunshine" even though Bethany was killed in a mage Hawke playthrough.
  • Though he is not a romance option, he can be flirted with by both female and male Hawkes.
  • Regarding romance, according to David Gaider, they almost did "slip something in there". They talked about having the interrogation end with Varric meeting back up with Hawke and explaining that he’d told them everything, in which case Hawke would say "Everything?" and Varric would respond "Don’t worry. I skipped the part about us..." [6]
  • 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; he also pays the gardeners in Hightown to keep quiet about Merrill picking flowers from the nobles' gardens.
  • 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.'"
• Lethal Weapon - "Fine. I'll start his big finish. Three chapters until Donnen Brennicovick retires and opens a tavern on the coast. I sure hope he makes it. He is getting too old for this shit."
  • The name of his signature weapon may be a reference to the 2-handed sword used by Bartolomeo d'alviano of the same name.
  • Brian Bloom also did voice acting for Dwyn, the dwarf at Redcliffe, Leske in Dwarf Commoner Origin in Origins and Jerrik Dace in The Golems of Amgarrak DLC.
  • Varric is the only Dragon Age II party member not to be voiced by somebody British. Both the male and female Hawke and all other companions are voiced by British people.



  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
  6. [1]

External links

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