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The Wheel.. did I miss something? (Ending spoilers)


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#21
thelee

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I could be wrong, but the "natural process" that existed before the wheel was what rymrgand wanted, which was life to slowly snuff as nothing got replenished. At least, rymrgand was the one god who seemed pretty-OK with eothas's plan in one of your council-of-the-gods meeting.

 

EDIT: oops got ninja'd by KaineParker. this is what I get for leaving a tab open for more than an hour before looking at it.


Edited by thelee, 13 June 2018 - 09:52 AM.


#22
AndreaColombo

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It kind of bears the question of why it is Eothas, rather than Rymrgand, who goes out of his way to destroy the Wheel—and why Rymrgand doesn't lend a hand to be a tag along. Eothas is placing a risky bet on kith (and from what we see in both games when we meet animancers, they don't really seem to be close to a Wheel-grade breakthrough; in fact, they strike me as quite far from the level of advancement Engwith had reached); Rymrgand could have simply gone on a rampage and destroyed the Wheel at any time, possibly before kith could gather any noticeable expertise in the field of post-Engwith animancy.


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#23
KaineParker

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I could be wrong, but the "natural process" that existed before the wheel was what rymrgand wanted, which was life to slowly snuff as nothing got replenished. At least, rymrgand was the one god who seemed pretty-OK with eothas's plan in one of your council-of-the-gods meeting.
 
EDIT: oops got ninja'd by KaineParker. this is what I get for leaving a tab open for more than an hour before looking at it.

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The reincarnation cycle existed before, the alteration to it allowed gods to feed off of soul fragments from the cycle or even caused them or something. Rymrgand hopes the cycle will eventually result in the death of everything due to souls being broken down to nothing, and later hopes that Eothas will inadvertently speed the process up by smashing the wheel or go ahead and outright destroy the wheel.

It kind of bears the question of why it is Eothas, rather than Rymrgand, who goes out of his way to destroy the Wheel—and why Rymrgand doesn't lend a hand to be a tag along. Eothas is placing a risky bet on kith (and from what we see in both games when we meet animancers, they don't really seem to be close to a Wheel-grade breakthrough; in fact, they strike me as quite far from the level of advancement Engwith had reached); Rymrgand could have simply gone on a rampage and destroyed the Wheel at any time, possibly before kith could gather any noticeable expertise in the field of post-Engwith animancy.

The gods no longer have their bodies and Eothas had to hijack the giant statue to smash the wheel, I assume that Rymrgard either couldn't take over the statue without the other gods noticing and stopping him(iirc they thought Eothas was dead) or wanted **** to slowly decompose instead of end rapidly. It makes sense that Eothas would be the one to destroy the gods work, given that he's the god of redemption and rebirth and that the breaking of the wheel allows that.

#24
MaxQuest

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Guys, I'd like to make a minor recap in order to check that I understood the whole stuff about "The Wheel" right.
(!) So please correct me if something's wrong:

1. [The Wheel] - at the most basic level is the process of reincarnation.
2. [The Wheel] - existed before Engwithans. Sources are:
- Iovara who told about their animancers discovering no gods only the wheel in perpetual motion
- Thaos: "a world where there was only the Wheel, grinding without end and without mercy, slowly turning souls to dust"
- Common sense? Engwithans were not immortal but raised as a civilization, so perhaps healthy people were actually being born.
3. Engwithans created gods.
4. Engwithans altered [The Wheel]. I.e. they added a few [modifications] over the base functionality. We can refer to this modified version as [Engwithan Wheel]
5. [The Wheel] can be [destroyed]. This *ucks-up the process of reincarnation completely. And it cannot be rebuilt. The *uck-up can manifest in two ways:
a). according to Berath: souls can no longer go from [IN BETWEEN] to [THE BEYOND]. This means that after awhile, once there are no souls left in [THE BEYOND] all newborns will be hollowborns. Insects, birds, animals, kith, everyone will eventually die, without new blood coming to the world of Eora.
b). alongside with previous point, the process of soul going from [THE BEYOND] to a newborn in Eora, could be defective as well, because [The Wheel] - the reincarnation is destroyed. In this case hollowborn effect would become apparent immediately.

6. [The Wheel] can be [broken]. This removes all [modifications]. It also makes [The Wheel] inoperative.
- inoperative, because otherwise it would be referred in ingame dialogues as "to fix / to restore the wheel" but not "to break the wheel".
- while [The Wheel] is [broken], souls do not move from [IN BETWEEN] to [THE BEYOND]. But hollowborn effect won't be immediate, at least not until there are no souls left in [THE BEYOND]

The good news are: it can be fixed/rebuilt to the original pre-engwithan state.
7. Having [The Wheel] restored to it's initial state, and with enough knowledge [kith+gods] technically can modify it again, be it in the same way as engwithans did, or some other, new way.

 
[Engwithan Wheel] (aka [The Wheel] plus engwithan modifications) works as follows:
- mortal X dies
- his soul gets to [IN BETWEEN] and (usually) passes the judgment of the gods
- soul loses (usually) a small part of it, for the gods to feast
- the remaining part is passing to [THE BEYOND]
- soul gets into a newborn being Y.
- unless awaken, Y doesn't have the memories of X, but it's almost the same soul

Important notes:
- souls can get weaker or fracture. Be it from soul-twin phenomena; or if gods have taken too much 'tribute'; or if their soul essence was drawn by shadows, pwgras and alike.
- when beings with heavily fractured souls die and their remaining soul cannot re-enter the circle of rebirth: their souls are left in this world and are manifested as shadows. They crave for more essence and try to draw it from the people when they are asleep, or try to get it from souls that are no longer tied to a physical body but haven't yet left for [IN BETWEEN]. That's why there is the need for shepherds/reapers like Xoti.
- beings can consume other souls, adding their essence to their own. Judging by Maerwald and Gift from the Machine it looks like efficiency of such consumption is pretty low though; unless it is your soul-twin.
- not confirmed by lore but souls seem to be able to grow stronger during their mortal lives. They are defined as "essence of individual's consciousness, memory, and personality". And memories, challenges and hardships it had to endure seem to add to it's essence. This also seems to be in line with Zahua and Galawain view. Character level is also tied to the gain of [experience], although it's a game mechanic not lore thing.
- because gods chip a bit of the soul on every reincarnation, the whole process is subject to entropy. And unless souls grow stronger, the collective soul essence is going to diminish over time.

Eothas dislikes that:
- gods chip from souls of the mortals
- gods keep their true nature in secret
- gods don't do anything really worthy for kith and Eora

Eothas by default wants:
- to break [The Wheel]. I.e. strip it from modifications made by engwithans; or in other words change it from [Engwithan Wheel] to [Default Wheel]. But unfortunately it will get broken in the process.
- broken [The Wheel] will require an effort to fix. And he was hoping that gods will reveal their true nature to the kith, and they will all cooperate. Because the alternative is death to all living, gods included.
- ideally kith should decide by themselves if they want to worship the gods, and if they want (while waiting for rebirth) to give a part of their soul essence to their patron deity. And deities would have to behave worthy of such sacrifices.


[Default Wheel] (aka [The Wheel] before engwithan modifications):
- we know little about how reincarnation worked before.
- what we know is that gods didn't chip/fed on souls in the [IN BETWEEN].

 
And lastly there is a hypothesis about adra pillars:
- after engwithan modifications: when mortals die their souls go into the closest adra pillar which is connected to the machine at Ukaizo which serves as a single entry point to [IN BETWEEN]. Having all souls to pass through this "gate" make it easier for gods to inspect/judge/chip on them.
- before engwithan modifications: without the Ukaizo Machine, every adra pillar is the entry into [IN BETWEEN].

Edited by MaxQuest, 14 June 2018 - 05:41 AM.

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#25
Daggerknight

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Just finished the game. I'm not a huge fan of the ending forcing you to either way allow the wheel to be broken, given that that was the impetus for the whole campaign. 

What I do like, however, is the clearly cyclical state of the world the plot implies.

 

Back in Pillars 1, we learn that the Engwithans, at the height of their power, were master animancers, among other things. They got so powerful in just about every imaginable walk of life that one day, when they said "Hey, lets look for god!", it was  a perfectly viable thing to do. 

 

Only, they didn't find god. We're told that they found either god(s) was dead, or left a long while ago, which drew their attention to the need to "fix" the cycle of life. 

 

Interestingly, fast forward several millennium later, we are in a world where animancy is on the rise. Perhaps not super advanced, but definitely catching up.  The gods notice this. Somme are afraid of where it might go, some shrug indifferently, and some want to encourage it. Eothas in particularly wants to see it thrive and see Kith arise to the responsability of running their own world without the current cast of gods, up to and including destroying the current machines of soul control. Which is going to lead to  a dark age in which the gods weaken, possibly die or simply go away, not being needed any longer. Which might lead to a time when Animancy is at its zenith, but so far removed from these events that the mere memory of the gods or what transpired in Deadfire is long forgotten. In turn, Kith ask the same question the Engwithins did, and learn that the gods are gone. And so the cycle repeats itself. 


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#26
the streaker

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- broken [The Wheel] will require an effort to fix. And he was hoping that gods will reveal their true nature to the kith, and they will all cooperate. Because the alternative is death to all living, gods included.

 

Eothas keeps talking about revealing the gods' true nature, but he hasn't really done any of that, has he? Destroying the wheel won't prove to anyone what the gods really are, nor will the gods be compelled to reveal their true nature in order to get kith to cooperate. If anything, the gods will most likely continue being themselves and steer kith towards rebuilding the wheel the way the Engwithans wanted it. The only way this would have made sense would be if Eothas personally marched to every part of Eora and shouted out "the gods aren't real!"



#27
Tarlonniel

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And the Watcher coming along to bear witness and open Ukaizo was Berath's (and the Watcher's) doing, not Eothas's. Without it, all anyone would've known was that a big statue stomped across the Deadfire, killing people and making the Readcerans a little more crazy than usual, then vanished into Ondra's Mortar and was never seen again. Any more information than that would have to come from the other gods - and who knows what they would say.


Edited by Tarlonniel, 20 June 2018 - 08:04 PM.

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#28
MaxQuest

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Eothas keeps talking about revealing the gods' true nature, but he hasn't really done any of that, has he?

His first plan involved avataring the Waidwen and telling people the truth.
After it didn't prove itself as effective strategy, he switched to plan B and marched to Ukaizo.
 

Destroying the wheel won't prove to anyone what the gods really are, nor will the gods be compelled to reveal their true nature in order to get kith to cooperate.

Destroying the Wheel makes it unfixable. That's what Rymrgand wanted.
Souls no longer can go from In Between to The Beyond and get reborn.
 

If anything, the gods will most likely continue being themselves and steer kith towards rebuilding the wheel the way the Engwithans wanted it. The only way this would have made sense would be if Eothas personally marched to every part of Eora and shouted out "the gods aren't real!"

If the Wheel was broken (not destroyed), it can be fixed. But in order to restore it to the state how Engwithans made it, would require gods to provide a fine blueprint to kith animancers. I suppose those soon would notice that the scheme involves a soul-tax for the gods to feed on, and that will rise questions.

On the other hand through, do agree, that if the gods find a way to incorporate their agents into the rebuilders-team, or simply intimidate the builders, there is a decent chance that they will rebuild the Wheel and restore things to work just as Engwithans did, without revealing any sensitive info about themselves.

P.S. I have a feeling that Eothas's plan was quite idealistic, rather than well-thought.

Edited by MaxQuest, 21 June 2018 - 05:16 AM.

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#29
Tarlonniel

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Or the gods can just kill off the people who rebuilt the Wheel for them. It's not like there's no precedent for that.


Edited by Tarlonniel, 21 June 2018 - 05:20 AM.

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#30
house2fly

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I don't like the reveal that Eothas invaded the Dyrwood to expose the Engwithan machines and the truth about the gods. It makes it just a dumb coincidence that he did that right as Thaos was planning to use those same machines to empower Woedica. I much preferred Durance's speculation that he invaded to stop the Hollowborn from happening. That would also neatly answer what Waidwen said to Eder's brother to convince him to switch sides. But whatever
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#31
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I don't like the reveal that Eothas invaded the Dyrwood to expose the Engwithan machines and the truth about the gods. It makes it just a dumb coincidence that he did that right as Thaos was planning to use those same machines to empower Woedica. I much preferred Durance's speculation that he invaded to stop the Hollowborn from happening. That would also neatly answer what Waidwen said to Eder's brother to convince him to switch sides. But whatever

 

It may well be part of it though. It's entirely possible that Woedica's schemes (via Thaos) were the last straw that convinced Eothas to put an end to the entire charade. I mean, seeing one of his fellow gods do such awful things in the name of power could certainly have made him feel incredibly disillusioned with the status-quo, resulting in both his attempt to thwart her, as well as ensure that something of the like never happens again. 


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#32
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Alright, so big man Eothas destroys the machine that keeps the reincarnation process going. Why is this such a big deal? If the Wheel was constructed by Kith at one time, there must be a "natural" process that predates it. The Wheels only function seems to be to siphon off  a bit of soul energy for every cycle, keeping the gods alive.

 

However, the game multiple times avoids this rather obvious solution to the problem, so what gives? Did I miss something? Is the Wheel truly ancient, predating the Engwithans? In the quest where you grab Bekarna's research there are hints to the stars being a source of arcane energy, and the Circle seem to see some great significance in this.

 

No you haven't missed something - just that every single NPC and companion in the game missed something. Namely, the exact same question you have asked. Which is a major problem with the Deadfire narrative IMO. It also creates the disconnection between the Eothsas quest line and Nekaetaka/faction quest lines.

 

The problem is not that nobody has the answer. The problem is they don't ask the question. At all.

 

If a bunch of aliens landed in the Sahara desert, for example, several things would happen with almost 100% certainty:

 

1. People would be freaking out right, left and centre

2. The only thing people would be talking about is whether they were friendly or not

3. Normal day-to-day life and concerns would be forgotten

4. All political leaders would be busy pretending they were in the process of establishing whether they were friendly or not and that they had a matters fully in hand if they weren't.

 

Eothas arrival in the Deadfire, once his purpose becomes suspected, is exactly analagous to this situation, and would have the same results. It is simply not credible that not one person in the game asks this question, including the Watcher, as it is the first and most obvious question to ask. And once it is asked by anyone everyone else is going to be like "OMG, good point. How do we find out?". Becasue everything, life itself no less, is dependant on the answer.

 

I mean even the bloody pirates are going twig that the extinction of the kith is going to mean a significant economic downturn, bad for buisiness and all. Even they are going to want an answer to it before taking any sort of position on what to do. Plundering Ukaizo is not going to be uppermost in their, or anybody else's, mind.

 

IMO this is a massive hole in the Deadfire narrative. Almost a fatal one. One wonders what Obsidian were thinking.


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#33
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Alright, so big man Eothas destroys the machine that keeps the reincarnation process going. Why is this such a big deal? If the Wheel was constructed by Kith at one time, there must be a "natural" process that predates it. The Wheels only function seems to be to siphon off  a bit of soul energy for every cycle, keeping the gods alive.

 

However, the game multiple times avoids this rather obvious solution to the problem, so what gives? Did I miss something? Is the Wheel truly ancient, predating the Engwithans? In the quest where you grab Bekarna's research there are hints to the stars being a source of arcane energy, and the Circle seem to see some great significance in this.

 

No you haven't missed something - just that every single NPC and companion in the game missed something. Namely, the exact same question you have asked. Which is a major problem with the Deadfire narrative IMO. It also creates the disconnection between the Eothsas quest line and Nekaetaka/faction quest lines.

 

The problem is not that nobody has the answer. The problem is they don't ask the question. At all.

 

If a bunch of aliens landed in the Sahara desert, for example, several things would happen with almost 100% certainty:

 

1. People would be freaking out right, left and centre

2. The only thing people would be talking about is whether they were friendly or not

3. Normal day-to-day life and concerns would be forgotten

4. All political leaders would be busy pretending they were in the process of establishing whether they were friendly or not and that they had a matters fully in hand if they weren't.

 

Eothas arrival in the Deadfire, once his purpose becomes suspected, is exactly analagous to this situation, and would have the same results. It is simply not credible that not one person in the game asks this question, including the Watcher, as it is the first and most obvious question to ask. And once it is asked by anyone everyone else is going to be like "OMG, good point. How do we find out?". Becasue everything, life itself no less, is dependant on the answer.

 

I mean even the bloody pirates are going twig that the extinction of the kith is going to mean a significant economic downturn, bad for buisiness and all. Even they are going to want an answer to it before taking any sort of position on what to do. Plundering Ukaizo is not going to be uppermost in their, or anybody else's, mind.

 

IMO this is a massive hole in the Deadfire narrative. Almost a fatal one. One wonders what Obsidian were thinking.

 

 

This jumped out at me too. Even when everyone in the factions finally accepted that there was a giant god made of Adra stomping around, possibly to destroy the cycle of life itself, they STILL wanted to talk about conquest, economics and rivalries. I sort of expected that at least SOME of them would put aside their problems and just band together. Hell, even if they were planning to back stab one another later, it would have made sense. In fact, I'd have been totally down for the final faction decision boiling down to who you'd help pull the rug from everyone else's feet AFTER THE END OF DAYS OF AVERTED. 

 

Now, I suppose there is an argument to made for the fact that the factions are not briefed on exactly -what- Eothas intends to do once he reaches Ukaizu, but it's pretty clear that;

 

A) Whatever it is, it's bad

B) Even if he's just going there to have a nap, he's bashing up the entire archipelago on the way, and probably going to break all the shiny things in the ancient city while he's at it. 

 

Principi pirates thinking "MONEY!" is fair enough, being pirates and all. The nations of the Huana, Valian Republics and Rauitie (spelling?) ? Not so much. I wouldn't say it ruined an otherwise great game for me, but yeah, this was definitely more along the lines of an Elder Scrolls plot than what I was expecting after POE 1. (End result wise, not writing quality, which was excellent).  






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