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After replaying BG2 with "fresh eyes".


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I like BG2 the only things that borrowed me about the game was.

 

A. Irenicus used railroading magic a bit to much for me. I prefer a villain that has follow the same rules as I do. Make me feel like I am more in control of the story.

 

B. The best time to do subquests should not be when your ally has been kidnapped by the villain or the villain's plan to about to come together.

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I like BG2 the only things that borrowed me about the game was.

 

A. Irenicus used railroading magic a bit to much for me. I prefer a villain that has follow the same rules as I do. Make me feel like I am more in control of the story.

 

B. The best time to do subquests should not be when your ally has been kidnapped by the villain or the villain's plan to about to come together.

 

Only a metagamer would know Imoen was kidnapped by Irenicus.. the story shows you the cowled wizards taking her and Irenicus away.. any other information is not 'seen' with your protagonists eyes.

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I've said this in some other thread, but Irenicus was the promise of a great villain squandered. The entire first dungeon, where he talks about your 'potential', followed by the dreams where he is seemingly 'instructing' you in embracing your destiny as a Child of Bhaal, give off the impression that he has some deeper motive which may not necessarily be at odds with your own. He almost seems to want to help you, in his own twisted way. Assuming you're playing a nasty, evil character, of course.

 

Then you reach Spellhold, he steals your soul with much evil gloating, and you're put solidly on the railroad tracks towards saving Elf City, hacking him into bloody bits and getting your soul back.

 

That's the kind of thing that shows, even in the golden age of Bioware, they were still never the equals of BIS or Obsidian in regards to writing villains.

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Squandered? Irencius is one of the best villains ever. BIS and Obsidian don't have too many great villains. They have many okayish to good villains. The Master was okay. TTO was very good for what he was but wasn't exactly complex (nor did he need to be considering what he was). Kreia had her strengths but she also flopped in her obviousness - I called her as a villain the moment I saw her despite her joining the party. And, her motivastion was rather weak.

 

Sorry, but this tyalk about BIS./Obsidian being so aweesome at vikllains comapred to BIO is silly. Not to mention, Master Lin from JE who was pure awesome as well. Then again, BIO does have some failures - I'm looking at you Ms. medusa and Ms. Marrisan. *puke*

DWARVES IN PROJECT ETERNITY = VOLOURN HAS PLEDGED $250.

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Master Lin was even more obvious than Kreia though. Loved the "secret flaw in your technique that has no gameplay consequence or identifiable symptoms but is purely there so I can KO-you later when I turn BAD". Kreia was obvious but I was still interested in what she had to say. Choosing 'good' and 'evil' path actually became a very difficult proposition in K2.

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i liked BG2 but it's not my best rpg experience. For those who didn't played it please beware , here be spoilers!

 

I especially not get the part with " Irenicus is the best written villain ever!" vibe. He is just an elf who lost his immortality and in order to get it back and take revenge wants to destroy the tree of life. The only parts i liked with Irenicus are the dream sequences when he talks about life and power but thats it. I think while terrible named the king of shadows from NWN2 was a far more complex villain but since he did not offered us his insight or thoughts like Irenicus he feels very dull. For someone who doesn't explore his background he comes certainly short compared to the chatty Irenicus. In all the games about FR i think MoTB offered the best villain with the betrayer.

 

So i hope P:E takes this lesson and finds some clever way for us to understand the mind of our "villain" or whatever is behind all of this stuff that's happening to us. At least they should give him/her/it the oppurtunity to explain him/herself. So back to BG2...

 

The NPC's their variety and interactions are the best part about BG2. Battling mages was very challenging but not because that the encounters were thoughtful or the enemy was smart or something. It was challenging because those mages had all their defense up the moment combat initiated. I always found it silly that an enemy mage could rise his defenses instantly while your petty lvl18 mage needed at least two turns for it. Deep combat looks different folks, that's not it. Melee or ranged combat was nothing special.

 

I agree. The thing about Irenicus, and this holds true somewhat for many of the characters in BG2, is that they had some great lines. Cool soundbites, in essence, because that was often the few things that you could get across well in the IE games. In fact, I'm not entirely sure that the Irenicus in your dreams was the real Irenicus at all, I'm pretty sure it got revealed after you lose your soul that it was actually the essence of Bhaal within you trying to 're-educate' you, as it then starts to be represented by Imoen instead. Irenicus, when you think about him, was actually a whiney character who basically let his sister talk him into doing a bad thing and then cries about his punishment and tries to do the exact same thing all over again! I mean, I actually have more questions about the sanity and capability of that Elf Queen who banished him: she stripped him of his soul, then cast him loose in the world to do even more damage, does that sound like a smart thing to do? Really? Facepalm moment.

 

The thing with BG2 was that it really was the side quests that made that game. I rush through to rescue Imoen first before doing most of the side quests but that's purely to avoid letting her get too far behind in experience, once I get out of the underdark it's all side quest baby! In fact, the last time I had a playthrough I stopped playing at the beginning of the Spellhold dungeon, simply because I could not maintain the interest any more. Part of it might be because I have done it so much, but also because I just find the side quests more interesting and are in better bite-sized pieces than the main questline. I find that, fully modded up, I enjoy BG1 more for the replayability factor since it did feel more like you were adventurers travelling the land exploring and coming across adventure.

 

Now, I know that technically The Elder Scrolls games are pretty much all about the side quests too, but they lack the writing and dialogue found in the IE games. The creepiness of the serial killer skinning people for their skins for instance, travelling to Trademeet and doing all the quests there that, while having nothing to do with the main questline still felt like they were major plot points and having their own questlines that led to you becoming the heroes of the town!

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Master Lin was even more obvious than Kreia though. Loved the "secret flaw in your technique that has no gameplay consequence or identifiable symptoms but is purely there so I can KO-you later when I turn BAD".

 

Bioware has this really irritating tendency to telegraph upcoming 'plot twists' as loudly and obviously as possible. Just how many times does Ms. Water Dragon need to show up with a vaguely worded 'The guy who has sent you out to kill the Emperor is actually just manipulating you' before it sinks in and the later 'surprise' is ruined?

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I agree. The thing about Irenicus, and this holds true somewhat for many of the characters in BG2, is that they had some great lines. Cool soundbites, in essence, because that was often the few things that you could get across well in the IE games.

 

That was really the 'selling point' that made Irenicus a good rather than great villain. He had some great lines and a great VA, even if his motivation was really lame.

 

In fact, I'm not entirely sure that the Irenicus in your dreams was the real Irenicus at all, I'm pretty sure it got revealed after you lose your soul that it was actually the essence of Bhaal within you trying to 're-educate' you, as it then starts to be represented by Imoen instead. Irenicus, when you think about him, was actually a whiney character who basically let his sister talk him into doing a bad thing and then cries about his punishment and tries to do the exact same thing all over again! I mean, I actually have more questions about the sanity and capability of that Elf Queen who banished him: she stripped him of his soul, then cast him loose in the world to do even more damage, does that sound like a smart thing to do? Really? Facepalm moment.

 

Yep, it turned out later it was just the essence of Bhaal trying to goad you into 'accepting your heritage.' Would have been much cooler if it had actually been Irenicus, with his own motivations for wanting to see you embrace that heritage...

 

But anyway, yes, I really wish you could have called the Elf Queen out, loudly and vigorously, for thinking that the best way to rehabilitate a man who tried to murder everyone in your city so he could be a god is to leave him his power but take away his soul, then kick him out for the rest of the world to deal with. Brilliant plan, lady, can't imagine how it might go wrong.

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"Choosing 'good' and 'evil' path actually became a very difficult proposition in K2. "

 

No, it wasn't. It was really easy. Kreia made it an even easier choice. No wodner people like ehr though since she is plainly a Codexian - random contrariness just for the sake of random contrariness.

 

Don't get me wrong. She is a good villainess but she is overrated.

 

Master Lin was only 'obvious' because people were expecting some sort of 'twist'. Thats' the problem with twists espciailly in modern times sicne people expect games to have twists (same with movies) .

 

Obvious or not, I loved Lin's characterization, personality, motivation, and voice acting. Plus, the fact there is na ctual ending where he suckers morans into letting him win for such a screwed up reason. L0L I loved the butthurt over that on the forums. :D

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DWARVES IN PROJECT ETERNITY = VOLOURN HAS PLEDGED $250.

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I've said this in some other thread, but Irenicus was the promise of a great villain squandered. The entire first dungeon, where he talks about your 'potential', followed by the dreams where he is seemingly 'instructing' you in embracing your destiny as a Child of Bhaal, give off the impression that he has some deeper motive which may not necessarily be at odds with your own. He almost seems to want to help you, in his own twisted way. Assuming you're playing a nasty, evil character, of course.

 

Then you reach Spellhold, he steals your soul with much evil gloating, and you're put solidly on the railroad tracks towards saving Elf City, hacking him into bloody bits and getting your soul back.

I think you just managed to nail part of the twist that made him really awesome. He'd clearly benefit from the protagonist believing in that he wants to help you, but the situation then goes haywire, with the antagonist under heavy mental stress.

 

But each to their own.

"What if a mid-life crisis is just getting halfway through the game and realising you put all your points into the wrong skill tree?"
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What if we could make Viconia good, or make Keldorn evil?

 

Then they would lose their abilities since Good is not allowed for Shar worshippers and Evil is not allowed for Torm worshippers. Then I would boot them from my party for being useless.

In theory perhaps, But in Throne of Bhaal you could, in fact, change Viconia's Alignment to non-evil, and she becomes more powerful as a result. (her turn undead power actually destroys undead now, instead of just charming them)

 

In any event, I'm not sure I agree with the notion that you should gather "alignment-compatable" companions in BG2. If you do, you'll miss out on some of the best banter exchanges in the game. The Minsc vs. Edwin banters are priceless. Mazzy vs. Edwin will leave you in stiches. Keldorn vs. Korgan banters are hilarious.

 

You'll miss all that stuff if you just use an "all good" or "all evil" party.

Edited by Stun
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What if we could make Viconia good, or make Keldorn evil?

 

Then they would lose their abilities since Good is not allowed for Shar worshippers and Evil is not allowed for Torm worshippers. Then I would boot them from my party for being useless.

In theory perhaps, But in Throne of Bhaal you could, in fact, change Viconia's Alignment to non-evil, and she becomes more powerful as a result. (her turn undead power actually destroys undead now, instead of just charming them)

 

In any event, I'm not sure I agree with the notion that you should gather "alignment-compatable" companions in BG2. If you do, you'll miss out on some of the best banter exchanges in the game. The Minsc vs. Edwin banters are priceless. Mazzy vs. Edwin will leave you in stiches. Keldorn vs. Korgan banters are hilarious.

 

You'll miss all that stuff if you just use an "all good" or "all evil" party.

 

Yes, BG2 was more fun when you had to balance the tension between different minded party members. I also had the impression that you had more dialogs that way.

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Irenicus wasn't the best video game villain because of his background, but his characterization. His voice actor nailed the dialogue perfectly. If Obsidian said, tomorrow, they secured David Warner as the voice actor for P:E antagonist... Well, I'd be pretty happy.

 

So, because he's got a good voice actor?

 

That's a pretty poor justification. Yeah his VA was awesome, but i in no way call him the best written due to it. I call him average at best, honestly. I thought Loghain far outdid Irenicus in terms of characterization and his justifications.

 

 

Not just a good voice actor, but likely one of the best performances of all time. Mute his escape from Spellhold, at his lines seem pretty hokey. Yet when you listen to them - you more or less hear everything that made him; his arrogance, his contempt for everyone but himself, and his malice.

 

And personally, I felt Irenicus had better characterization, even outside of his voice acting. Irenicus' journals, scattered through Spellhold, made him - of course, Loghain might be awesome in the novels - but the world of Dragon Age in general didn't interest me enough to pick up the books.

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I like BG2 the only things that borrowed me about the game was.

 

A. Irenicus used railroading magic a bit to much for me. I prefer a villain that has follow the same rules as I do. Make me feel like I am more in control of the story.

 

B. The best time to do subquests should not be when your ally has been kidnapped by the villain or the villain's plan to about to come together.

 

Only a metagamer would know Imoen was kidnapped by Irenicus.. the story shows you the cowled wizards taking her and Irenicus away.. any other information is not 'seen' with your protagonists eyes.

 

I was making a more general point that a lot of games do this. For BG2 specifically I didn't say Irenicus had kidnapped her, but I tend want to get my party members out of prison ASAP.

 

Also personally I don't my character think that the wizards that were getting their ass kicked are really going to be able to hold Irenicus, nor do I think he would see the cowl wizards as allies.

Edited by Drakxii
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