If I remember correctly the Dwarfs being "closed" to the Fade are the only one who can mine Lyrium without risking spiritual "damages". Anybody can mine Lyrium, just nobody want to sacrifice their own body and mind doing it. You could argue that Tevinter would be able to do it using slaves, however slaves are valuable, and the practice of blood magic makes it a waste to sacrifice slaves in order to get Lyrium. I take the events of Tresspasser as the Qunari determined that the sacrifice of the worker are necessary to achieve their goal, and that's how they got Lyrium. About the Elluvian, there two things to take into account: anybody can convert to the Qun, and the Qunari are accepting anybody willing to convert. It's totally probable that some Elves converted and talked about the legends of the Elluvians. The second is that Viddasala is one of the head of the Ben-Haasratt who are the group of spies the Qunari have in the outside word. Knowing things about the outside word is her job, especially if she can use it as a tactical advantage, and the wiki says that she specialize in finding, studying and stopping magic. So I guess using the Elluvian to blow up her enemy would be something she could do.


Also worth mentioning because it doesn't get brought up often, but the Qunari have an impressive spy network despite how they are often perceived. There's been a lot of events surrounding the Eluvian in the last ten years (especially if you have a Dalish Warden), it stands to reason they would've had agents in place to hear the rumors and act upon them.


Agreed. Also, to add on to this, Viddasala is a very high rank among the Qunari priesthood. It’s quite likely that the priesthood is much more knowledgeable about magic than their citizenry or military.


> About the Elluvian, there two things to take into account: anybody can convert to the Qun, and the Qunari are accepting anybody willing to convert. It's totally probable that some Elves converted and talked about the legends of the Elluvians. This checks out because a large amount of local elves converted to the Qun during the Arishok’s stay in Kirkwall (plus Tevinter elves), many that would be well versed in elven lore before conversion. Consequences…so on and so on


I just finished a replay of Trespasser yesterday. It was mentioned that they were using gaatlok to mine the lyrium so they didn't have to have direct contact with it.


I'm impressed no one else mentioned that. As far as we know, only dwarves and Qunari have efficient explosives, so that'd explain why only they are able to somewhat safely mine lyrium.


Yeah pretty sure that human tells you many died to start with until they found a workable way. Trial, error and deaths led to something working. Probably more wasteful than the dwarves but the Qunari aren't there for profit.


Oh good catch. This method does still require retrieval/dealing with the dust and junk rock, though. I am very interested in the implied qunari PPE. And how they dispose of the mining tailings without contaminating the local area.


Well, when everyone involved is willing to die for the cause, I imagine a lot of the problems with lyrium mining go away. Theoretically everyone could do it, but where are you going to find that many hardworking yet suicidal people for such a venture? It's also worth remembering that the Viddasala is one of the few people in the Qun that has the job of actually studying magic. This includes the magic of Tevinter, who they've been at war with for years. Tevinter, which is built on the bones of ancient elven magic. Really, all they'd need to find is one ancient book (like the one that's just chilling in Kinloch hold in Witch Hunt, or the one Morrigan stole from the Dalish) on a bunch of magical shortcuts all over the world, find one eluvian, and boom, they've got it. They've also clearly been doing it for a while, with no one paying attention because who's going to pay attention to a bunch of mirrors being moved? As for the hostility of each Eluvian... That was never a thing in the first place. Some had been corrupted by the Blight, but we only see two Eluvians before Inquisition, and the one in Witch Hunt worked perfectly fine.


Qunari are known for their great physical strength and survivability. So, maybe, they can survive the contact with lyrium for some time. And I think they were dropping dead and went mad just as anyone else would, just through determination and dedication to the Qun they somehow pulled this operation through to an extent, with no regards for casualties. Very *Soviet* style, so to speak.


>Qun they somehow pulled this operation through to an extent, with no regards for casualties When you don't value individual life it's amazing the amount of shit you can get done, for example, see most of human history.


And yet, when you do, you can do even better and greater things, which is why it's commonly accepted that democracy and individual freedom are good things. I don't think the Qunari can even conceptualize that, unless they're someone like Bull who has had significant experience with the outside world. And even Bull's fate is determined by a single decision, showing how difficult it is to extract your thinking from that mindset.


Better long term, but worse short term and mortals very seldomly look to the long term sadly.


That’s my take on it. Just plain throwing people they consider disposable at it. They do have a very stringent remove and “rehab” a social deviant policy. Maybe they used the “failures” here. (Or prisoners of war, etc)


They consider everyone disposable in service of the Qun as far as I can tell. That’s what makes them great warriors. There’s nothing scarier than a person who isn’t afraid to die. It’s not just physical strength.


Right, they just don’t give a shit about people dying as long as the Qun (or whoever is interpreting the Qun) wills it. If that persons purpose is to die mining lyrium for the greater good, then so be it.


They're also using explosives and special carts, so contact could be fairly minimal. They fucked around and found out.


Yup, I could see the Qunari being a Soviet style state.


I understood their "perseverance and dedication" as willingness to throw as many lives on that problem as it requires. They're not immune to lyrium, like the dwarves, but they're strong enough to get some of the mining done before they collapse and are replaced by new workers. But I agree that the writers went overboard with those eluvians.


When the game talked about how qunaris managed to mine lyrium through perseverance they are saying they found a way to do it safely after persevering. There is one guy you find in the mines that states how they discovered and came up with a safe way to do it. And as for the Eluvians, right before facing dragons breath you can find a room full of magic relics, either they learned to use them by spying or simply by studying, or a combination of the two. Morrigan learned to use them that way too. The qunaris persevere and persevere until they found a way and they seem to be pretty scientific. Sure they think magic is bad, but they still study it, which only makes sense if you want to combat it.


First of all, in regards to the Qunari and lyrium- what isn't shown but is meant to be implied is that mining lyrium did kill the Qunari at first- probably scores of them given how large the operation was implied to be. Many Qunari probably died in that process, even if you don't see it in the game. And inherently, lyrium is dangerous, even to dwarves. Bianca says that while dwarves have a resistance, it still can kill them if they're not careful, due to things like lyirum being able to just explode randomly. And dwarves also have negative physical effects from generations of handling lyrium, like infertility issues among their population. So, while dwarves are the best suited, they're certainly not immune to lyriums effects, and neither would the Qun, even if the game doesn't show directly the negative effects of mining/handling lyrium. Being able to mine lyirum is more about how many safety features you have in place to help limit the danger, so it isn't inconceivable that the Qun managed to find a way if they came across the inevitable dangers and then worked around them to the best of their ability. As for the eluvians- the Viddasala had 2 years, probably closer to 3 to find and study elven artifacts, or any important magical artifacts. She says that the day the Breach happened, "the Qun decided its action.". That implies to me that from the day they got word of what happened, the Viddasala began her work and gathering of information on *anything* that could've had ties to creating the Breach (hence all the various artifacts that we see in the tower at the Darvaraad, some of which are not strictly elven in nature). Also, remember that there were actual Qunari spies within the Inquisition during the main game, even if we never knew until the DLC. It's not out of the realm of possibility that Qunari spies informed the Qun itself of the Inquisition investigating elven ruins and artifacts, which then would lead to the Vidasalla doing the same and learning of the eluvians. That to me would make a certain sort of sense, even if they don't outright say it in the DLC.


I think they mined lyrium by not really caring about their workers and just throwing bodies at it. They may have a higher threshold than Humans or Elves, and they are quite durable, but in the end, I think it's just a matter of, "well, 652 just died, send in 738..., 571 is starting to lose it, kill him and have 921 take over" kind of thing. Same brute force approach to getting the magic stuff, send enough people, and they acquire what they need, use whoever they have to study and learn from it, body count be darned. And I think they were being built up, to be a bigger part of the lore for DaD.


The dwarves can mine lyrium without sacrificing the people who mine. The qunari can mine lyrium.


Not all Qunari are the horned people, there might be dwarfs too


You missed the explanation for the mining. After people died, they started using gaatlok to break open the veins without touching the raw ore.


DAI does a really good job of exposing how DAO & DA2's protagonists and assorted cast get things wrong about a whole lot of history. In DA2 we learn that the Qunari are both a race and a faction/society, and that you can be one or the other rather than needing to be both at once. In DAI we learn that the Qunari are not only a highly structured society, but they also have internal secret police, have 're-education' camps, view gender/gender-roles differently, and a bunch of other things. They also have very strict ways of presenting themselves to the rest of the world. Qunari are the strongest. They win through determination that others lack. The Qun is the *only* way to live correctly. etc etc. They don't actually manage to mine Lyrium by being dedicated and persevering. That's just what their PR tells everyone. Like late 90s / early 00s PRC in the news.


I think lore wise there is a change in qunari leadership post blight. Sten takes over if alive or his stand in replacement if he dies. In origin sten gets a lot of information that could explain some of the qunari intelligence. If he dies he could’ve been sending them information throughout journey. Post origin the qunari seem more worldly aware and while staying true to culture adapt it to better convert world to qun.


I think the original concept on qunari was a bit too limited by the writers. They now have backed themselves into a corner where they have to have bland qunari Qun followers or those that left Qun and those that left Qun to have personalities. Sten was and still is my favorite qunari character. He was so strange and foreign in how he thought and his beliefs and while representing the Qun he still seemed like an individual. I remember some dialogue about warriors and gender and his lack of understanding cause in the Qun a warrior is a warrior and gender dosnt matter or something. And also he and my warden rarely agreed but still managed to not kill each other.


I don't remember Viddasala being an Eluvian expert? I do remember that the Qunari favor perfection though, that's why most of the random Qunari around DA2 never speak. Because they don't know the trade tongue well enough and anything less than perfection is considered shameful and embarrassing. So she could easily just be flat out lying about knowing so much because it makes her look and sound like she understands.


Lyrium exposure isn't instant death, but it's very toxic and will eventually kill you. The Qunari just don't give a shit about worker safety. It's like if you saw someone removing asbestos with their bare hands and said "but I thought only people with special equipment could do that!" The restriction isn't because it's physically impossible to do, the restriction is because it will otherwise make you sick and you'll die.


*I'm missing something and oversimplifying, the qunari just seemed extremely OP in this DLC for plot reasons.* This seems to be the case. Especially when you find their base, and see that they have 20+ eluvian mirrors around for testing. I mean, sure, Morrigan had the resources of a monarch and the skill to find and fix one. And the qunari secret service has 20+. The connections are also mapped out, and one of them conveniently leads to the Winter Palace. Sure. ​ This was also the case in the base game. Corypheus opens a breach and so makes himself known at the Conclave. (where the orb is wrestled from his hand by a 100+ year old lady...) But afterwards it turns out he could have used other places, which are deserted. As I understand, he created the breach to go physically into the Fade, and to reach the Black City again. But he could do it with an Eluvian, in secret... I also don't understand why he keeps Inky alive, or at least tears her left arm off when he has the chance at HAven. Sure, he cannot take the ancor, but not allowing someone else to use seems like a good idea?


> I also don't understand why he keeps Inky alive, or at least tears her left arm off when he has the chance at HAven. Sure, he cannot take the ancor, but not allowing someone else to use seems like a good idea? He was pretty clearly about to kill them, but an avalanche got in his way.


>the orb is wrestled from his hand by a 100+ year old lady... In the books Justinia is specifically described as a quite young and sharp Divine, compared to Beatrix before her, who, by the end, was so old and frail that she could barely sit upright on her throne. Justinia isn't a teenager, of course, but she'd be around 60, perhaps, not 100+. That still doesn't make the scene super realistic, but... well, Cory got distracted and Justinia lashed out in desperation, which have her strength... I guess?


I can live with antagonists making errors. Not everyone is a super planner like, dunno, the assassin from The Day of the Jackal. (he is such an unrealisticly good planner, that the reader often wishes he should suceed, despite being an antagonist) ​ However, I still don't understand why he makes himself known. His backup plan is actually better than his original one.


It's no fun being a god if no one sees your power. Coryphaeus is all about the symbolism and drama of killing The Maker's representative while usurping his place. It's the difference between showing up to the first day of school in a limo vs station wagon. Yeah, you'll get there either way, but the statement is as much the point as the destination.


Because he’s a grandstanding narcissist who wants to be a god.


A lot can undermine what characters went through when things are dumbed down for story telling purposes. I kinda agree with you on the Eluvian stuff but put it down to just "they were open so they used them." Similar to how Inky and their party are able to use so many. Morrigan goes into detail explaining how her's worked and why others are locked but in Tresspasser, nah, all are free game. However, the Qunari seem more of a 'more minds more solutions' kind of people too. Sometimes forcing a solution works too. Of course, maybe I'm wrong.


I imagine Solas was creating a pathway to lead us against the whole plot and to him. He does say as much after all.


I've only completed Trespasser twice and one of the options I had was "Shut up Solas." So... I do not remember that line. Although I don't see what purpose it serves him doing those things, considering he seems more than capable of not only defeating the Qunari but doing what he plans to do anyway. they are going to have to nerf him next game.


He doesn't want people to live under the Qun before he does his plan so he had you stop them.


He doesn't even see you as people. Why does he care?


"In stopping the dragon's breath, you have prevented an invasion by Qunari forces.... That should give you a few years of relative peace." He really hates the Qunari and their way of life that enslaves them to a philosophy. In terms of why he cares about the people. "We aren't even people to you?" "Not at first. You showed me that I was wrong... again." He does see people as people now but his elvhen people are still worth bringing back despite the cost.


That dialogue depends on the playthrough. What elven people? They are gone and the people closest to them he thinks aren't worth saving. He can go throw a tantrum of his own mistakes all he likes, will never make him right, just deluded.


Whether he is right or wrong isn’t relevant, it is his intention to bring them back and remake the world regardless if anyone else agrees with him.


You can ask him that and he says that he's not a monster and that he wants everyone to live their last few years in comfort.


"They were open so they just used them." This got me thinking. Total conjecture here, but -- the majority of the Eluvians we see, especially in Trespasser, are in the Fade. To OP's point re: Tabris and the Eluvian in DA:O, they found that Eluvian in a tunnel during a Blight. Is it possible the Eluvians in the Fade are less susceptible to corruption? Like the Fade protects them somehow? Think about all those Eluvians at the crossroads just chilling there. We see a handful of deactivated Eluvians while wandering around, but we know bc of the disruption from the Veil, the subsequent wavering connection with the Fade, and now the overall resulting deterioration of the elven Fade cities/libraries that over time, some of the Eluvians just kinda stop working. All it would take the Viddhisala is getting one Eluvian on the surface to work, walk through it, and be like, "oh shit, look at all these other Eluvians." Which, through her study of magic and the sheer power of the Sarabaas (sp?), and the Qunari's proximity to/relationship with Tevinter, doesn't seem like a stretch. All to say--what if what Tabris went through was the exception, not the rule? That origin introduced *us* to Eluvians, and Merril/the clan to Eluvians, but Eluvians were already a feature of wider Thedas, if a more arcane/buried one (literally and figuratively). I'd be willing to bet we and our PC's know *way* more about Eluvians than basically any Fereldan/Orlesian in the world we've seen so far. We just happen to hang out with a bunch of super powerful, knowledgeable mages and y'know an old god, NBD. Who's to say Eluvians aren't a super common topic among Qunari in the know? I wouldn't be surprised if Tevinter magisters just had Eluvians around, even if it was only to collect them as magical antiquities and show them off to their friends like, "oh look what I have, I'm better than you" XD I could totally see an Eluvian just in someones house they keep by the door to check their accessories and their mustache before they go out bc they know enough to know it's ancient and magicky, but not enough/don't care to know enough about the history behind it. It's just a cool status thing to have in their house. Like, who's to say? I will say for myself at least, that is both a satisfying and plausible enough answer to tie in DA:O. As the games progress, so does our/the world we get exposed to's knowledge of Eluvians. That said, I'm *hopeful*/cautiously optimistic we hear more about the Qunari process around this in DA:D, and Trespasser was just whetting our appetites on the topic, getting us to ask ourselves the precise questions OP is raising here. But in the meantime, we get to speculate :) ETA: I just realized I totally confused my origins (I'm still learning all the surnames, not as familiar with them) XD XD but I stand by what I said!


But the Crossroads is not the Fade "but it is very close to it" to paraphrase Morrigan. Of course our understanding of it is only based on what Morrigan, a modern human, seems to think they are. Morrigan thinks it's one thing and I don't remember this ever being explored in Tresspasser beyond us having to accept her understanding of it. We don't know what it really is. It is however definitely within reason to think Viddhisala fully knows and understands Eluvians and no doubt has access to many. Considering where the Qunari are meant to be based and depending on how many of these things there were. ​ I do like the idea of Tevinter Magisters just having them as pretty prizes in their houses just as useless ornaments. Then one day, BAM, a bald elven god pops out!


Mm, that's a good point re: Morrigan's understanding of the crossroads. I'd forgotten about that. AHAHAHAHA omg I want an encounter to start that way XD Or just a stream of Qunari pouring into some unsuspecting Magister's estate. Would be hilarious.


I dont think they are immune, even dwarves aren't completely immune. They are just very... dedicated? Same thing with understanding magic use


As far as the Qunari handling lyrium goes, several people have mentioned the gaatlok for the sake of getting to the lyrium veins directly without *too* much mining - but for the people that do get exposed to the stuff, that's a non-issue. They already *have* mindless workers that will just keep doing menial labor until they keel over. Specifically: those they expose to Qamek. People they could not get to agree to convert, or stepped too far out of line from the demands of the Qun and don't respond to re-education, have their memories erased and their minds irreparably damaged. The work becomes all they know. It stands to reason those "viddath-bas" would be acceptable sacrifices towards a larger goal, especially since it's *just* hard labor to get the lyrium out. And wrt their knowledge of the eluvians, it's specifically stated that they have spies of their own in the Inquisition, even apart from Iron Bull; their spies conflicting with Solas' spies is what gets Solas throwing breadcrumbs of what's going on in the Inquisitor's way to begin with. It stands to reason that with how much the Inquisition *really* pushed eluvian usage towards the end of DA:I, the Qunari would have taken note and done more outside exploration of their own. ETA: I was just listening to some character talk from DA:I; when you're asking Varric about red lyrium in the beginning of the game, he actually says: "Regular lyrium can mess you up pretty badly, but you have to __ingest__ it for that to happen." So there's that for explanation!


It is also worth noting Qunari are magic resistant. It's not spoken verbatim, but you can see notes of it in character creation, the DARPG, and I think in one of the comics it's also discussed. Sareebas are a rare and powerful outlier in the Qun. They're often described as terrifyingly unstable mages, which could be part of the reason the Qun seems necessity in restraining them so harshly. The Qun has hands everywhere. If they wanted to, they could get spies to steal mining information from the dwarves. Not saying qunari didn't die while trying to figure out how to mine lyrium, and that there was probably mane failed attempts.


It is of course possible that they're unstable because the Qunari shackle them and take away their humanity rather than giving them any kind of proper training, so they might perpetually be stuck in the same state as a child just awakening to their powers.


Are we all..