- “When the Venatori rise, when a new god burns the Imperium’s corruption to dust...”
The Venatori are an armed cult of Tevinter nationalist supremacists working to sow chaos in other nations across Thedas to further the machinations of their mysterious deity, the Elder One, whom they believe will restore the glory of Tevinter.
They are not officially sanctioned in any capacity by the Tevinter Imperium.
The Venatori revere Corypheus; the ancient Tevinter Magister turned Darkspawn Emissary whom they believe will make the Venatori into god-kings who will rule over Thedas in his stead when the Elder One conquers the Black City and becomes a god. To this end, they dedicate themselves to destroy the southern nations until a new Tevinter Imperium under the leadership of the Elder One emerges.The Venatori, by and large, do not represent the views of the Tevinter Imperium; Dorian insists that the Imperium will disavow any suggestion of involvement with these "dangerous cultists" (though he does note that many magisters will privately think the Venatori have got the right idea). In a discussion of the Venatori's motives at Skyhold, Cullen expresses his views that the Venatori are a seperate sect of fanatics rather than the vanguard of a Tevinter invasion, while Josephine derides their ambitions as folly, given that the present day Imperium doesn't wield anything like the power it did during Corypheus's time; the ideal of Tevinter that the Elder One and the Venatori wish to restore no longer exists.
Dragon Age: Magekiller
Dragon Age: Inquisition
A group of Venatori, led by Magister Gereon Alexius, travel south in the hopes of seizing control of the rebellious southern Mages by offering them Tevinter citizenship, thus allowing them to escape their Templar pursuers. However in the wake of the Breach into the Fade at the Temple of Sacred Ashes which destroyed the Divine's conclave, Grand Enchanter Fiona offers an alliance with the newly reformed Inquisition. Realizing the southern mages are on the brink of joining forces with the Inquisition and slipping beyond the Venatori's grasp, Alexius uses time warping magic to go back in time and arrive in Redcliffe Village during a supposedly imminent templar attack. Alexius persuades the rebel mages that fleeing to Tevinter is their only hope of survival and offers them his protection in exchange for their indentured servitude. When the rebel mages agree to his terms, Alexius takes things further by seizing control of Redcliffe Castle and driving out Arl Teagan Guerrin. When the Herald of Andraste and a party of Inquisition operatives arrive to speak with the mages, Alexius announces that the mages have already agreed to become his indentured servants, in exchange for eventual Tevinter citizenship. Alexius invites the Inquisitor to Redcliffe Castle to 'negotiate'; intending to ambush the Herald for his master. However his son Felix Alexius and his apprentice Dorian Pavus, reveal his plot to the Inquisition.
If the Inquisition recruits the Mages:
Magister Alexius meets with the Herald of Andraste at Redcliffe Castle, ostensibly to negotiate for the aid of the newly indentured southern mages to assist in closing the breach. Unbeknownst to Alexius, Inquisition troops had already infiltrated the Castle and during the negotiation, the other Venatori present are killed. Surrounded with no hope of escape, Alexius attempts to use his time-distorting magic to prevent the Herald from ever having been at the Temple during the conclave. However Dorian interferes and both he and the Herald are drawn through a vortex to find themselves sent a year into the future. In the future, Redcliffe Castle remains a major Venatori stronghold, despite Ferelden's best efforts to remove them. Alexius has continued to attempt to find a way to perfect his time distorting magic to allow him to prevent the Herald from being present at the conclave but concludes that it is impossible and now only awaits the Elder One's retribution for his failure. Reuniting with Leliana and their other companions, the Herald and Dorian break into Alexius' sealed throne room and slay him, using the same magic he used to send them into the future to return to Redcliffe Castle during the negotiations.
The southern mages reach an agreement with the Inquisition and travel to Haven where they assist in sealing the breach while Alexius is taken prisoner. Without the rebel Circle mages to bolster the Venatori's numbers, in addition to the heavy losses taken during the Inquisition's excursion to Redcliffe, Corypheus instead elects to use the Red Templars to assault Haven and the Venatori contribute only a small vanguard.
If the Inquisition recruits the Templars:
With the aid of the unsuspecting Arl of West Hill; Gallagher Wulff, the Venatori are able to boost their numbers by conscripting the rebel mages. Gereon Alexius is disposed of by the Elder One for his failure to undo the events of the conclave. With the Red Templars weakened by their failure to corrupt the Templars billeted at Therinfal Redoubt, Corypheus elects to use the Venatori to assault Haven and crush the Inquisition in retaliation for sealing the breach. Led by Calpernia, the Venatori attack Haven en masse. Grand Enchanter Fiona confronts the Herald of Andraste personally in an attempt to prevent them from firing the inner trebuchets but is slain. Haven is destroyed and the Venatori score a decisive victory over the Inquisition although the Herald escapes along with many villagers and some Inquisition troops.
The Venatori continue to operate covertly throughout Thedas to weaken any who could oppose the rise of the Elder One's new Tevinter Imperium. Venatori agents infiltrate the court of King Markus Pentaghast of Nevarra, the Mortalitasi and the court of the Duke of Hunter Fell. Meanwhile the Venatori operating in the Free Marches begin using Red lyrium to poison the water supply of all Human districts in Wycome, hoping the blame would fall on the Elven Alienage while they also manipulate the city state's ruler; Duke Antoine into aiding them and help create further instability. A Venatori assassin also infiltrates the Royal Palace in Denerim, hoping to kill Ferelden's monarch(s). All these efforts are eventually foiled by the Inquisition.
Even the Tevinter Imperium begins to pursue a more active role in destroying the Venatori, with Archon Radonis personally enlisting the Inquisition's aid in assaulting a Venatori stronghold on the border with Nevarra.
The Venatori begin expanding into Western Orlais, establishing a significant presence in both the Western Approach and the Hissing Wastes, making Griffon Wing Keep their stronghold in the region. Using Giants, they attempt to excavate the ruins of Coracavus as well as the Temple of Solasan in the Forbidden Oasis, hoping their research would yield new magical artifacts which could be of use to their cause. They also attempt to unearth an ancient Dwarven artifact in the Hissing Wastes made in honor of a Paragon by his two sons after his death, who ruled a surface thaig predating the Blights in order to escape the civil war raging over the creation of Golems.
They also attempt to capture another High dragon for Corypheus to corrupt in the Western Approach by using renowned dragon expert, Professor Frederic of the University of Orlais. The Venatori begin sponsoring local bandits to discourage any attempt at pursuing them into the Western Approach however the raiders prove ineffective and are soon defeated. The Inquisition gradually expands into Western Orlais, systematically destroying Venatori operations. Macrinus, the commander of Griffon Wing Keep is slain, while Crassius Servis, the senior Venatori in the Western Approach is captured by the Inquisitor personally. Additionally, the Inquisitor ruins their attempts to recover the artifact in the Hissing Wastes by solving veilfire puzzles, slaying a dragon guarding the Paragon's tomb, and recovering a sigil forged by his two sons. They are also hindered in the Forbidden Oasis after the Inquisitor solves the shard puzzles and and gains unique resistances in the Forbidden Oasis. Weary after having their forces shattered, the Venatori become a rare sight in Western Orlais, save for those left behind or left put of touch.
The Venatori set up a red lyrium smuggling operation along the Storm Coast, planning on transporting red lyrium to Minrathous to convert the Imperium's slaves into an unstoppable army to turn the tide in the ongoing Tevinter-Qunari war for Seheron. The Inquisition and the Ben-Hassrath attempt to cooperate to sink the Venatori ship with a dreadnaught. If the alliance is continued, the Ben-Hassrath aids in operations to uncover Venatori plots, from foiling an attempt to attack Denerim with a fireship to dismantling Venatori spy-networks throughout Thedas.
Meanwhile thanks to Corypheus' deception, all of the Grey Wardens of Orlais begin to hear what they mistakenly believe to be the calling; the sign that a Grey Wardens death is near, at once. Another member of the Venatori, Magister Livius Erimond, convinces Warden-Commander Clarel and the Grey Wardens that their only recourse is to kill the remaining Old gods before they become Archdemons thus ensuring there are no future Blights. To this end Clarel and the wardens reluctantly agree to use blood magic to raise a demon army to invade the Deep Roads and kill the Old Gods before they wake. The demon binding rituals Erimond taught the Grey Warden mages however has the side effect of enslaving them to Corypheus, who will use them to conquer Thedas. The Grey Warden mages of Adamant Fortress are corrupted while the other Wardens are used as sacrifices. The Inquisition eventually expose Erimond's deception to the Wardens, foiling his plan and the Venatori Magister is taken prisoner by the Inquisition.
Together with the Red Templars, the Venatori attempt to manipulate the War of the Lions in Orlais to their advantage. Gordian, a senior Venatori operative, infiltrates the Imperial Army and begins to encourage desertions among the troops of both the claimants to the Orlesian throne. The Venatori's efforts are a resounding success and soon a large group of deserters from both sides form 'The Freemen of the Dales.' Aiming to claim the Dales for themselves, these deserters begin attacking troops loyal to either side in the war, as well as Inquisition troops and refugees throughout the region. Meanwhile Gordian uses Freemen troops in the Exalted Plains to gather the numerous corpses left over from the war and prevent them from being burned, allowing them to be easily possessed by the Demons pouring in from the fade rifts and unleashing a horde of Undead and trapping both Grand Duke Gaspard and Empress Celene's troops in their strongholds. With the aid of Corporal Rosselin the Inquisition are able to purge the undead from the eastern and western ramparts and cut off the supply of undead, killing Gordian in the process. They also attempt to retrieve ancient records detailing the Exalted March against the Dales in the Emerald Graves, but are once again foiled by the Inquisition.
In a final bid to leave Orlais leaderless, the Venatori secure an alliance with Grand Duchess Florianne de Chalons to assassinate Empress Celene during the peace talks at the Winter Palace in Halamshiral and frame her brother Gaspard for the deed. Florianne is successful in sneaking a large number of Venatori into the Palace, however Gaspard had invited the Inquisitor as his guest. Ambassador Briala and her operatives assist the Inquisitor in combating the Venatori and through their combined effort, the plot fails.
If the Inquisition recruits the Templars:
After these major setbacks, the Venatori launch an invasion of the Arbor Wilds at Corypheus' behest, hoping to seize the Temple of Mythal and the Well of Sorrows. The Venatori are drawn into a protracted battle against the combined forces of the Inquisition, the Templar Order, the Orlesian Army and the mysterious Elven Sentinels guarding the Temple. After taking heavy casualties, the Venatori successfully breach the Temple, but Calpernia is confronted by the Inquisitor personally. Depending on if the Inquisitor investigated the Shrine of Dumat, Calpernia and the Venatori with her may turn on Corypheus. Otherwise after a fierce battle, Calpernia is defeated and seemingly takes her own life rather than be captured by the Inquisition.
With Calpernia gone, the remaining Venatori are left broken and scattered.
- Magister Gereon Alexius
- Magister Livius Erimond
- Magister Prycis
- Crassius Servis
- Havian Sulara
- Corinnia Crallius
- Paulus Nimian
- Magister Urathus
- Stalker - (Rogue - Double Daggers)
- Brute - (Two-Handed Great Axe)
- Gladiator - (Mace and Tower Shield)
- Marksman - (Archer)
- Zealot - (Warrior - Sword)
See alsoCodex entry: The Venatori Codex entry: Draft of Letter to Venatori Magisters Codex entry: Blood-Spotted Venatori Diary
- Many of the non-mage Venatori enemies appear to be slaves, as shown by the fetters still on many of them. Mage Venatori do not appear to have these.