"Swooping is bad."
Upon his birth, his mother Fiona, an elven Grey Warden mage, convinced King Maric to have Arl Eamon Guerrin raise Alistair away from the royal court and tell him his mother was a human servant maid, and Duncan agreed to keep watch over him. In time, when he was old enough, Eamon told Alistair of his father’s identity.
Six months prior to the Fifth Blight, he was trained as a templar in the Chantry but was conscripted into the Grey Wardens by Warden-Commander Duncan before he took his final vows. Throughout the course of the Blight, Alistair became good friends with Aedan Cousland, a nobleman from Highever. Although he was the more experienced Grey Warden, Alistair willingly gave leadership to Aedan. When his paternal lineage was revealed at the Landsmeet, he was crowned king and ascended to the throne upon the defeat of the Archdemon Urthemiel, taking the name of Alistair of the Royal House of Theirin, the First of His Name, Sovereign Monarch of Ferelden and Protector of the Realm.
Despite his reign as King of Ferelden, Alistair is still considered a hero among his countrymen for having fought against the darkspawn. Few Wardens have ever left the secretive Order, and he is the only of those who went on to rule a nation.
- "I want him to be fully human and not in line for your throne, not competing with your other son and tied to this royal blood that has brought you nothing but grief."
—Fiona to King Maric Theirin, about their son
Alistair was born in 26 Wintermarch 9:10 Dragon, possibly in Redcliffe Village or nearby. As an infant, he was presented to his father King Maric by his mother, the elven Grey Warden mage Fiona. As an elf, a mage and a Grey Warden, Fiona is unable to raise Alistair and asks Maric to see him raised away from court and ignorant of his elf-blooded heritage. Duncan vows to watch over Alistair and to bring news to Maric of Alistair’s life.
He was raised by Arl Eamon Guerrin of Redcliffe and due to his upbringing, believed that he is the bastard son of King Maric and his mother was a serving maid who died giving birth to him as well as believing Goldanna was his half-sister. As a child, he worked as a stableboy. The arl’s wife, Arlessa Isolde, suspected the reason her husband took an interest in the welfare of a servant’s child was that Alistair was Eamon’s son. Though her suspicions were unfounded, Eamon acquiesced when she demanded that Alistair be sent away to the Chantry. In 9:20, Alistair was sent to the monastery at Bournshire at the young age of 10. Despite Isolde’s apparent speculation on his parentage, Alistair was not Eamon’s son. In order to protect the honor of his sister, Queen Rowan, Arl Eamon had agreed to Teyrn Loghain Mac Tir’s suggestion that Alistair should be sheltered in Redcliffe. His illegitimate status notwithstanding, his parentage makes him a possible heir to the throne.
Education and Templar trainingEdit
He was then trained to become a templar for many years by the Chantry, this being how he learned most of his skills. However, Alistair was found to be ill-suited to a life of religious devotion. When Duncan, the Warden-Commander of Ferelden and a friend to King Maric and Fiona, found him in 9:29, Alistair had not yet taken his vows and was desperately unhappy at the monastery. He competed in a tourney held to honor the Grey Wardens, being bested by acclaimed templars such as Ser Eryhn, a woman who wielded a sword and shield of unequaled grace, Ser Talrew, leader of many victories against the Chasind, and Ser Kalvin, one of the finest blades in Ferelden. Despite this, Duncan sensed that Alistair had a good and loyal heart, and so recruited Alistair into the Wardens. His recruitment was met with considerable resistance from the Grand Cleric, but was forced to relent when Duncan invoked the Right of Conscription compelling the Chantry to hand Alistair over before he took the sacramental vows. The Grand Cleric did not wish to let him go, but could not supersede the Right of Conscription.
As the most recent recruit of Ferelden’s Grey Wardens, Alistair helps Lord Aedan Cousland prepare for his Joining at the fortress of Ostagar. He accompanies him, Ser Jory and Daveth into the Korcari Wilds as part of their pre-Joining trials, encountering the apostate, Morrigan there along with her mother, Flemeth, both of whom Alistair distrusts. Following the latter’s successful Joining, after the deaths of Jory and Daveth, Alistair and Aedan tasked by Warden-Commander Duncan of lighting the beacon atop the Tower of Ishal. However, the tower is crawling with darkspawn by the time the pair reaches it, and though they successfully fight their way to the top and light the beacon, Loghain Mac Tir, the Teyrn of Gwaren and leader of King Cailan Theirin’s armies, abandons his king and retreats. Alistair and Aedan are overwhelmed by darkspawn and would have perished, but were saved by the intervention of Flemeth.
Alistair was nursed back to health by Flemeth and Morrigan and was utterly devastated to hear of the defeat at Ostagar and Duncan’s death, laying the seeds for a passionate hatred of Teyrn Loghain. Following his recovery, Alistair and Aedan set out to rebuild the army lost at Ostagar and defeat the Blight. Upon their approach to Redcliffe, Alistair revealed the truth concerning his parentage: with the downfall of King Cailan at Ostagar, Alistair’s bloodline meant that he was the last of the Theirin bloodline, and a claimant to the throne, shocking Aedan.
Family is important to Alistair. Despite sleeping in the stables when under Eamon’s care, and Isolde being responsible for his being sent to the Chantry, helping save them all is very important to him. Alistair also longs to be reunited with Goldanna, the woman he believes to be his half-sister. With Aedan’s aid, Alistair eventually tracked Goldanna down, discovering that she was living as an impoverished washerwoman in the capital. However, their reunion does not go well. Alistair’s familial affection for his half-sister was not mutual, with Goldanna harboring a deep resentment toward what she perceived as Alistair’s privileged upbringing and her belief that he had killed their mother.
Following his disastrous encounter with Goldanna, Alistair is chastised by Aedan for being too passive in his interactions with others. This leads to Alistair to become much more assertive, taking a considerably more pragmatic approach to problems, in contrast with his formerly idealistic outlook.
After finally reaching the Landsmeet, Alistair participated in laying the cause against Teyrn Loghain before the nobility of Ferelden. With a great deal of assistance, Alistair was recognized by the Landsmeet as Maric’s son and granted his father’s throne. Refusing to accept this outcome, Loghain attempted a coup but was finally defeated by Aedan by force of arms and was about to be executed, but was saved by the intervention of the senior Grey Warden Riordan, who suggested that instead of wasting his life, Loghain should undergo the Joining ritual and join the ranks of the Wardens. Both Aedan and Alistair refused, however, and Alistair’s wish was fulfilled as Loghain’s execution was carried out in the Landsmeet. Alistair and Queen Anora, Cailan’s widow and Loghain’s daughter, had reluctantly agreed to marry and so were declared co-monarchs of Ferelden by the Landsmeet.
Ascension and coronationEdit
In the months that followed their wedding after the archdemon Urthemiel was slain, Alistair and Anora proved themselves a surprisingly effective pair. Alistair spent a great deal of time at court, showing willingness to learn the art of governing from Anora and often deferring to her judgment—and no one was more surprised by this than Anora herself. The two of them made numerous outings into Denerim and the other settlements in Ferelden, supervising the reconstruction process and greeting their subjects personally, much to the commoners’ enthusiastic approval. Many said the chaos of the civil war and Landsmeet were worth it for delivering such beloved monarchs. Alistair would also appoint Aedan as Lord High Chancellor of the Realm, serving as one of his chief advisors.
He is one of the few known Grey Wardens to have ever left the secretive order, and he is the only one of those who went on to rule a nation; Queen Anora rules at his side. Although Ferelden has prospered under their reign, it was greatly weakened by the Blight. Tensions with neighboring Orlais have been high, and many believe a renewal of their long-standing conflict is inevitable.
Six months later, Alistair arrives at Vigil’s Keep with a regiment of troops and the templar, Rylock, to inspect the newly established Grey Warden stronghold in Amaranthine. He wishes his old friend Aedan, who has since been promoted as the new Warden-Commander, luck in being charged with rebuilding Vigil’s Keep and restoring and administrating Amaranthine. He also approves of the conscription of the apostate, Anders, into the Wardens’ ranks despite Rylock’s protestations.
In 9:31 Dragon, a royal inquest was held to determine Alistair’s true parentage, but it proved inconclusive.
Due to the immense volume of Ferelden refugees who settled in Kirkwall in 9:37, Alistair makes a personal visit to the city, accompanied by his uncle, Bann Teagan Guerrin. He invited Garret Hawke, the Champion of Kirkwall to an audience in the Viscount’s Keep, but was in the midst of a dispute with Knight-Commander Meredith Stannard regarding the freedoms afforded to mages. Following the Knight-Commander’s exit, Guard-Captain Aveline Vallen kneels before Alistair saying she served at Ostagar and mentions Loghain’s betrayal, which Alistair acknowledges. Anders and Isabela recognize Alistair and vice versa.
Alistair then discusses Hawke’s thoughts on returning to Ferelden and also mentions that many Orlesian nobles are hoping to seize upon Ferelden’s weakened state in the wake of the Fifth Blight to reconquer lost territory. When Hawke asks Alistair about the situation in Orlais, Teagan mentions that the Orlesians are starting to swoop upon Ferelden, and that many Fereldans believe it is bad, to which Alistair replies: "Yes. Swooping is bad." After the meeting with Hawke, Bann Teagan informs Alistair that the "Hero of Ferelden" will be returning to Denerim soon, to which Alistair will comment that Teagan is always so formal and that Aedan has a name.
Search for King MaricEdit
In 9:38, Alistair arrives in Antiva City where he enters the headquarters of the Antivan Crows along with the pirate Isabela and Varric Tethras. They are ambushed by Prince Claudio Valisti, though Claudio realizes who Alistair is. Retiring to the Perfumed Spring they plan their next step. Isabela, and Varric then offer aid in helping Alistair in his new plan of breaking into the Velabanchel prison. A small mistake by Varric sets multiple guards on to them. Isabela and Varric hold the guards off long enough for Alistair to locate and speak to an inmate. Alistair seeking more important information, he sets a course for the trio to head to Tellari swamps, where they encounter a high dragon. The conflict ceases when a witch of the wilds Yavana emerges and soothes the dangerous creature.
He discusses his father with Claudio in the Crows’ camp and Claudio prepares to reveal who his patron is – the one who ordered Alistair’s kidnap – though Isabela and Varric attack the camp before he continues. As Isabela prepares to kill Claudio, Alistair orders her to stop, but she does so anyway. He then explains that Claudio had information about Maric that is now lost. However, Yavana mentions that Claudio’s spirit is still lingering in the Fade, so she casts a spell which brings his spirit back to his body. Claudio’s spirit mentions that his master is Aurelian Titus before Yavana destroys Claudio’s lifeless body. She then invites Alistair to follow her under the Silent Grove. Alistair follows her into a large breeding lair of dragons and Yavana reveals to him that her quest was to preserve the existence of dragons from those who couldn’t understand and were just killing them and despite her efforts she never managed to awaken a great one.
However, Alistair’s father, King Maric, was able to because in his veins the blood of Calenhad the Great was running but before he could awaken all the great ones and fulfill his oath, Aurelian Titus took him from her. Yavana then asks from Alistair to help her fulfill his father’s oath and in exchange she will help him find his father. However, Alistair refuses while he drives his sword through Yavana’s stomach. The high dragon approaches Yavana’s dead body but doesn’t attack Alistair for killing her. Soon afterwards Alistair returns to the surface and informs Isabela and Varric of what happened and he says that he will find this Aurelian Titus, kill him, then find his father and return to Ferelden to be king.
He continues his quest by going to Qarinus in order to find Claudio’s master, magister Aurelian Titus. They attend a ball that the magister is also expected to attend. There, they also meet a friend of Varic; the magister Maevaris Tilani and also Lord Devon who seems to know Isabela from the past. When Titus finally arrives at the ball, Alistair asks him if he knows who he is, to which Titus says no. When Alistair reveals to him who he really is, he demands to know where his father is. Titus then tries to use blood magic in order to control him but Alistair uses his Templar skills in order to resist. As soon as Titus realizes that Alistair is a Templar, he orders his minions to seize him while he escapes.
When the brawl finally ends, Isabela captures one of Titus’ men alive whom they bring back to her ship. Varric interrogates him and tricks him into revealing the location of the Magister’s stronghold in Seheron. However, before they reach Seheron, two Qunari dreadnoughts attack Isabela’s pirate ship and after a brief fight, Alistair and his companions along with Isabela’s crew are captured by the Qunari and are kept as prisoners in a Qunari war camp named Akhaaz.
After three weeks, a Qunari guard enters the locked room of Alistair and Varric and tells them that the Arishok is waiting for them and orders them to follow him. Alistair quickly realizes that the new Arishok is in fact former companion Sten who addresses Alistair as kadan, showing unprecedented respect for him, not apparent from their past conversations. Sten informs him that Titus seeks him because of his blood and he says that it is foolish to follow him into his lair and for that reason he will be held prisoner until Sten deals with that threat. When Alistair demands more answers from Sten, the latter responds aggressively and tells him not to seek him again. In the meantime, Isabela manages to escape while the Qunari were trying to convert her into the Qun. She reaches the cell of Alistair and Varric, releases them and tells them to get away from the prison while she goes to free her crew as well. Alistair and Varric fight their way out of the prison but in the end the Arishok was waiting for them. Alistair tries to stop the upcoming fight but Sten attacks immediately. Since Varric is unable to assist effectively without his Bianca, the fight becomes a duel.
In the end Alistair manages to defeat Sten but he refuses to give the final blow and instead he invites Sten again to help him against their mutual enemy: Titus. Steven agrees to it so Isabela takes back her crew and ship and along with Alistair, Varric and Sten and starts sailing again to Titus’ lair while accompanied by two Qunari dreadnoughts. In the final scenes, Sten reveals to Alistair that Titus seeks him because the blood of dragons runs in his veins and Isabela reaffirms her determination to complete Alistair’s quest.
Qunari dreadnoughts attack Aurelian Titus’ fortress and Varric infiltrates the building while Isabela and Alistair assault the fortress directly with the Qunari. Prior to this, Sten/the Arishok tells Alistair and Isabela the Qunari version of the myth of King Calenhad the Great, and how he made a deal with a mysterious witch to drink dragon blood, become a Reaver and create Ferelden.
Varric’s attempt to free King Maric from the Magrallen causes everyone to be pulled into the Fade. Varric, Isabela, and Maevaris were able to reunite and tracked Alistair and King Maric in a fantasy where Alistair was Maric’s acknowledged son, and Cailan still lived and was the heir apparent to the throne of Ferelden. Varric reminds Alistair of his mission to kill Titus, find Maric, and then become a proper king in order to convince Alistair to not live a lie. Varrick asks King Maric if he agrees, to which he concurs with Varric that Alistair must face the reality of the situation and turn away from this fantasy. Alistair then concedes and is briefed of their predicament: Titus was pulled into the Fade with them and is hunting them with demons. Alistair desires to take the fight to him. Alistair and his band tracks Titus to his own dream fantasy in the Fade and launches an ambush on him. Eventually Titus is slain in the ensuing battle by King Maric and his schemes to take over Thedas for Tevinter was foiled.
In spite of their victory, Maric elects to remain in the Fade, commenting that everyone dear to him has seemingly passed on now. Alistair however persuades Maric that he should return with them. Upon returning to their physical bodies, the party finds Maric still connected to the Magrallen in the Ath Velanis laboratory. Unfortunately, King Maric’s health has deteriorated and it is speculated that the Magrallen is all that’s keeping him alive. Realizing that there is no other way to end his father’s suffering after all, Alistair destroys the Magrallen, finally ending Maric’s life. With their adventure over, Alistair returns to Ferelden to be a good and proper king.
War against the Elder OneEdit
When the conclave at the Temple of Sacred Ashes failed, King Alistair and Queen Anora allowed the rebel mages to take refuge in Redcliffe Castle. However, after the rebel mages are aggressively taken over by the Tevinter magister Gereon Alexius, Alexius begins to have rebel mages displace the people of Redcliffe. Having enough of the mages’ abuse, Alistair and Anora arrive in Redcliffe with a contingent of soldiers shortly after the Inquisition’s ousting of Alexius to inform the rebel mages that they have outstayed their welcome and recommends that they take whatever deal that Maxwell Trevelyan offers, informing them that he has no intention of offering a better deal.
Alistair later requests the Inquisition’s aid with foiling a Venatori plot against his and Anora’s lives. He also asks the Inquisitor to serve as a mediator in the peace talks with the ruler of Orlais, following the resolution of the War of the Lions.
Personality and traitsEdit
- "Ignorance is bliss, isn’t it? That’s what the Chantry kept telling me, anyhow."
Alistair responds well when talking about himself. Typically, he tries to deflect questions with a joke. He is, in a sense, shy and speaks often of Duncan and the Grey Wardens. In many ways, he views Duncan as a surrogate father. When speaking of post-Joining experiences, Alistair admits to nightmares, increased appetite, etc. He admires answers which suggest both strength and experience, but doesn’t appreciate it when he is mocked for his own softness and relative inexperience. He has a hard time coming to terms with problems and lacks the problem-solving skills needed to handle them. He is very indecisive, and will often let others take the lead and make decisions for him. It is likely that responsibility is one of his greatest fears. He confides in his comrade Aedan Cousland that he is actually heir to the throne, but does not want it because he is convinced that he is a terrible leader- which because he believes it so, is true. He asks him his opinions on things often, as if he is unable to form his own.
This, however, does not mean Alistair doesn't have his own opinions at all. He feels very strongly for what is right and wrong, and his conscience weighs heavily on everything he does. He admits to feeling to blame for everything that has happened, for the death of the Wardens, and for the destruction of Lothering because he could not take all of its inhabitants with him. He is willing to do whatever it takes to help the people of Ferelden and does not show anger often, but when he does it is out of passion.
That all changed following his disastrous encounter with Goldanna. After being chastised by Aedan for being too passive in his interactions with others, Alistair became much more assertive, taking a considerably more pragmatic approach to problems, in contrast with his formerly idealistic outlook. It is further revealed that Alistair has gained more confidence and puts his sense of duty above his personal feelings. As king, Alistair has learned the arts of governance from Anora and is learning to balance idealism with the occasionally harsh realities of politics, but he remains committed to the goal of equal justice to all Fereldans, be they human, elf or dwarf. Likewise, he sympathizes with the plight of the mages, but his templar background, as well as his experiences during the Blight, has made him wary of supporting total independence.
Titles, styles, honors and armsEdit
Titles and stylesEdit
- Since 9:31 Dragon: His Majesty The King of Ferelden
Following his ascension to the throne, Alistair took on his father’s family name: “Alistair Theirin, by the blessings of the Maker, King of Ferelden.”
As a member of Ferelden’s royal House Theirin through his father, he is descended from Calenhad the Great, who united the Alamari tribes into a single nation and became the first King of Ferelden.
Alistair stands an average height with a highly sturdy build and lightly tanned skin. He also possesses dark brown eyes and straight dirty blonde hair which is typically kept short to his head, save for a little more length in front which sticks up slightly, only a few small bangs trailing down. He usually has something of a clean-shaven, but nicely trimmed goatee on his chin to keep up a rather manly appearance.
Skills and abilitiesEdit
- "I trained for many years to become a templar, in fact. That’s where I learned most of my skills."
- Darkspawn sensing: Alistair is granted this ability due to the darkspawn taint in his blood. After undertaking the Joining ritual, he is able to sense the presence of darkspawn and other Grey Wardens by sensing the taint in their blood, helping them to detect hidden darkspawn. Thus, he has the ability to hear the thoughts and words of the Old Gods and those controlling the darkspawn, such as Archdemons. While the taint does give the Grey Wardens the ability to better hunt darkspawn and their leadership, it also gives them wild and horrifying dreams at times and, eventually, will kill them by driving them mad.
- Peak Human Conditioning: Through intense training, specialized diet, and determination, Alistair reached the pinnacle of human physical prowess. His physical attributes exceeded that of any man twice his age that has ever fought. His strength, speed, stamina, agility, reflexes and coordination are at the peak of human potential.
- Superhuman Agility: Due to the Joining ritual and training under Duncan, Alistair’s agility, balance, and bodily coordination are enhanced to levels that are beyond the natural physical limits of even the elite soldier or any other kind of darkspawn.
- Superhuman Durability: Due to the Joining ritual and training under Duncan, the tissues of Alistair’s body are considerably harder and more resistant to physical injury. Aedan is capable withstanding great physical pain and trauma.
- Superhuman Reflexes: Due to the Joining ritual and training under Duncan, Alistair’s reflexes were enhanced to the point that he was capable of dodging most incoming attacks and counter almost instantaneously without injury.
- Superhuman Stamina: Due to the Joining ritual and training under Duncan, Alistair’s musculature produces considerably less fatigue toxins during physical activity than the musculature of an ordinary combatant, allowing him to be physically active for longer periods of time without tiring.
- Superhuman Strength: Due to the Joining ritual and training under Duncan, Alistair’s physical strength is indeed very high as he was able to easily decimate or destroy objects nearly twice his size with powerful punches or kicks.
- Superhuman Speed: Due to the Joining ritual and training under Duncan, Alistair is capable of running and accelerating to high speeds which a human and many other races could not achieve.
- Templar training: While with the Chantry before becoming a Grey Warden, Alistair learned all of the talents common to the Templar Order. He is skilled as a warrior, able to haul heavy armor on his shoulders quite easily and fight more than capably with a sword and shield, especially in defensive postures. Though not the same level of combat as Aedan Cousland, he’s still quite a potent force. He’s also skilled in the use of counter-magics that allow him to dispel, disable, and disrupt the magic of true mages.
- Alistair seems to have a persistent fear of mages turning him into a toad.
- His surname after becoming king has been confirmed as Theirin. It can be presumed that he assumed the surname upon his coronation as his paternity was then legally recognized.
- Based on party banter between Wynne and Oghren, Alistair possesses a pike and often playfully swings it about, earning him the nickname "little pike-twirler" from Oghren. Alistair is never able to use a pike in combat. During his duel with the Arishok in Dragon Age: Those Who Speak, however, Alistair demonstrably knows how to fight using polearms.
- Contrary to the dialogue in Dragon Age: Origins, Alistair took lyrium while a templar recruit. Even though he stopped taking it he is still able to use templar abilities for a long time afterwards. He doesn’t suffer from lyrium withdrawal. Alistair resumed practicing templar abilities after the events of Dragon Age: The Silent Grove. It is not known whether this means that he started taking lyrium again.
- He is left-handed.
- The dragon blood within the bloodline of Calenhad Theirin the Great is that of a Great dragon, which allows his descendants to be able to awaken Great dragons. Those of Calenhad’s line are the only ones able to awaken these ancient dragons, with Alistair being the only known living Theirin left to do so.
- In Dragon Age: Inquisition, Alistair signs his correspondence with the Inquisition as "Alistair Theirin", showing that he took on his father’s family name.