ossobuco: Legion from Mass Effect 2 (lyna sun)
[personal profile] ossobuco

We went back in time!

That is to say, I realized that I'd missed a lot of stuff in Howe's dungeons—see, I had the assumption that the whole thing was intended to be more of quick in-and-out rescue mission, what the fuck I was thinking and where my exploration instincts went we shall never know—so I thought a little about all of the other things that I wanted to retry for various reasons and time-traveled back to arriving in Denerim. Why can't I do this in real life?

I took notes this time, and I'm not going to go through the full extent of everything, because I already did that. Most of the changes were minor. Cutscenes taken in slightly different ways. More people rescued from Howe. Standing up to Ser Cauthrien but still getting the snot beat out of me (so much for a delicious piece of cake) and ending up in Fort Drakon anyway. That sort of thing. So, I present to you, some loose and disjointed reflections on the changes that I made, and stuff.

I think I must have been trying to be unassuming last time, but during this iteration of the cutscene between us and Loghain's douchebag trio, I was more aggressive. Makes sense, I think, because the mere thought of Loghain ignites fiery rage in my feisty elvish heart. He tried to start things on a falsely nice note, I believe with something to the effect of, oh, I'm so sorry that the Grey Wardens turned around and betrayed Ferelden. Oh, Loghain, you are not even trying. I called him on deserting the battle and murdering his king, and then he gets snippy, half-accusing me of treason. Somewhere in here, Cauthrien calls me a churl, and oh, when I bring Wynne with me to Howe's, you are going to regret this, you smelly human. Anyway. I argue with Loghain a lot more, pointing out an inherent flaw in outlawing the people best suited to not getting the nation crushed by the Blight, and he says, “Cailan depended on the Grey Wardens, and look where it got him,” and fuck you, Loghain, GUESS WHO ELSE HE WAS DEPENDING ON, AND COULD YOU PLEASE BE MORE OF A DOUCHE? I DON'T THINK I WANT TO MURDER YOU AND THEN DANCE ON YOUR LIFELESS CORPSE ENOUGH YET.

But seriously. I don't understand why you are such a terrible person. I know you disagreed with Cailan's decisions regarding an alliance with Orlais. I know that you still feel that Orlais is your sworn enemy of enemies. But I don't understand how somebody like you, who people seem to believe used to be a noble, upright, intelligent guy devoted wholeheartedly to the well-being of his nation and people, could leave his best friend's son to be slaughtered on the field of a battle that could potentially have turned the tide of this Blight (or at least bought us a little more time), and also fully knowingly lie to everyone and blame said best friend's son's death on the only organization that is equipped to combat the Blight (and this is an Old God we are talking about, here, it's not like you can make up the deficit with numbers alone)? Not to mention getting your daughter imprisoned (and at huge risk to her life, I mean, would you just look at Howe for ten seconds and tell me he wouldn't kill her if he thought it would serve his purpose) and trying to assassinate the remaining Wardens (terrible decision, by the way). No person can be this deliberately terrible. Has he convinced himself so thoroughly that his actions were just that he is literally delusional? Does he honest-to-the-Maker believe that the Grey Wardens were the ones who let Cailan die, to the point of having fully forgotten his involvement in the battle? I have a similar mindset about him—obviously on a vastly different scale, but the basic feeling is there—to my mindset towards some extreme right-wing politicians, namely that I can't bring myself to believe that they believe in the things that they do and say, that it has to be false somehow, because people can't be that awful. They just can't be. Can they?

Blah blah, go rescue Anora, blah. Howe's guards are idiots. No, seriously, these people are fucking stupid. Who falls for “oh, help, there's a darkspawn in the garden!”? How utterly imbecilic do you have to be?

I don't know how I missed it last time, but I found the Grey Warden documents before going into the prison this time and gave them to Riordan, whom I want to get to know more, by the way. I've already gone through all his dialogues and I want to talk to him more. His accent is also vastly attractive, which I'm sure plays no small part in this. Anyway, during our brief talk in the prison, he explained something about Loghain taking the Archdemon blood that is apparently also necessary for the Joining—effectively destroying the Wardens' ability to induct new members. Asdjklfdjkldsfk, Loghain!

So, we find more prisoners. One stuck up noble who basically calls elves lazy and easily-upset, and if I weren't relying on your rich father to speak out against Loghain as thanks for rescuing you, I would leave you to rot in that cell. I also find some slightly less awful noble son being tortured (he is significantly more grateful to be rescued), and a Templar who is going mad from lyrium withdrawal, and then we go and fight Howe. I guess there isn't a peaceful solution. This time, though, I talk to him a lot longer, and he gets quite nasty with me. He says I should have slunk back to the Anderfels to hide with the rest of my kind, and is basically a bag of dicks. Well, Howe, here is what I think of you and your sass.

Ah, Ser Cauthrien. As it turns out, it was not bad luck or Zevran's fault that I couldn't take her the first time—she's just FREAKISHLY OVERPOWERED. Ffffffuuuuck. We put up a good fight, I'd say, though I will have you know that we'd have had a much better shot if Alistair had not gotten STUCK BEHIND A DOOR. I spent much of the battle wondering where the hell he was, and when Cauthrien had succeeded in killing me, Leliana, and Wynne, I finally found him. Stuck behind a door. For some reason the AI could not navigate him THREE FEET TO THE LEFT, OH MY GOD.

And after that, we ended up at Fort Drakon again, but we all know how easy it is to break out of that place. Nothing different happened this time, since I figure I had a pretty workable formula.

I'm thinking more about Eamon's reluctance with regard to Anora taking power, and in general his reactions to her. He calls her “spirited” with a hesitant note in his voice as she leaves, and hints at her being duplicitous or using us for her own ends. I mean, these things are all valid risks. I get the distinct feeling, though, that part of his reluctance stems from his perception of her as a woman—I think if a male with as good a claim to the throne as hers were as enthusiastic about it, he'd be in full support of it. He wouldn't call a man with Anora's traits “spirited” with practically audible quotation marks. He might like and respect her—maybe even fears her intelligence—but he clearly doesn't see her as capable, as legitimate in the same way that he would see a man in her position. He seems instead to see her as trivial—useful, yes, but in the end, trivial.

So, Eamon, take note: we have enough bags of dicks in this stupid world. Could you please endeavor not to be one of them? Thank you.

Tangent. Lyna really does not understand this whole dynasty business. Positions of power among the Dalish elves—Keeper most notably—are passed on by merit, not by blood, so Lyna's entire background of assumptions here is in conflict with what Eamon (and probably most of Ferelden) expects and she's mostly baffled by this whole “Alistair is the best choice to make king!” thing, because obviously he is not. People will say, well, Alistair is Maric's son and his family has ruled Ferelden for 400 years! But, why? Why is that so important? Were they all good kings? Why does that guarantee that Alistair will be, too? In my head, she has had conversations with various third parties on the subject and has been very stubborn about her viewpoint that rule by heredity is a pretty foolish thing and human politics are as terrible as pretty much every other human thing.

I talk a little Grey Warden history with Riordan. His description of Weisshaupt is kind of awesome, and it makes Lyna curious to see it.

Got Duncan's shield from that mysterious warehouse in that alley in Denerim, gave it to Alistair, it was totally adorable as expected. OF COURSE I PAY ATTENTION AND REMEMBER THINGS, YOU MORON, why is this such a surprise to you, it's not like we are IN LOVE OR SOMETHING.

Pop over to the Gnawed Noble. I don't bring Alistair (this is literally the first time in my eighty-plus hours of gameplay [not counting the origin, obviously] that I have not had Alistair in my party) because it just seems tacky to go curry favor with the nobles with a potential heir to the throne following me around. Just a little. Well, we make an OK impression, mostly having to released several people's children and/or acquaintances from Howe's dungeon. You know, maybe murdering Howe will not be as serious a blow to our odds as I thought.

Time for the Alienage again. Nothing really goes differently. At one point, Zevran says, “ridiculously awesome!” during a battle. Well, yes, we are, but really?

We also find and kill some sort of demon-type thing that's been luring people to their deaths in the back streets of Denerim. It was not terribly interesting, but it was sitting in my quest journal and I had no good reason not to, because obviously poking around shady houses without invitation has never gone bad for anybody.

I wrote in my notes, “Goddamnit Zevran, can I please be your friend D:” and I'm trying to remember to what this was in relation, and I can't think of it at all.

I went to chat with Morrigan sometime after finishing the last of the errands and basically telling Arl Eamon that he can call the Landsmeet now, and I had a dialogue option to say, “you're a heartless shrew, you know that?” WHAT, WHY. D: Okay, okay, Morrigan's not nice, fine, but like, what possible benefit could that have? Answer: none. None at all. I know. I saved my game and tried it out, went through all of the possible options, NO BENEFIT. Just cruelty, or the opportunity to lose between 10 and 20 approval points depending on just how nasty you decide to be.

I don't understand.

This game is mean. D:

Anyway, I suppose it's time to announce my hiatus from this project. Hours at work are picking up, and I don't have time to play, let alone to blog, so we will be taking a little break. I expect to come back in full force around mid-October. Thanks to those of you who have been reading and commenting; it makes me happy that people enjoy this silliness. <3 Cheers, everyone. Until October!


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December 2016

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