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In the beginning of Dragon Age 2,

your brother dies in one of the first fights.

Is there any way to save him or is this a scripted event that can't be avoided?

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Actually for me, Hawke's sister Bethany died. Not Carver. I didn't know until now that who dies depends on Hawke's class. I was a mage. – Uday Kanth Aug 15 '11 at 18:29
up vote 8 down vote accepted

According to the Dragon Age Wiki, it sounds like the character that dies is based on Hawke's class. This is probably to aid in giving the player a balanced party without too many redundant classes.

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To be precise, Carver dies if Hawke is a rogue or a warrior. If Hawke is a mage, Bethany will die instead. – hammar Aug 15 '11 at 20:22

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