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Update #78: The Leaders of the Band: Chanters and Priests

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Lephys, I suggest that you view the priest as an Olympic athlete. If the priest of Deity X talks the talk but fails to walk the walk, then their conviction/faith is lacking and their ability to perform miracles (spells) suffers as would the performance of an Olympic athlete who gives lip service to their training regimen but fails to take seriously the need to train, eat, and sleep in the appropriate manner.

 

Good vs. evil isn't relevant, but proper/improper relative to the tenets of faith belonging to Deity X is most critical. True faith requires conviction and faith is the dynamo for the priest, so lack of conviction results in lack of priestly performance.

Edited by Tsuga C
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http://cbrrescue.org/

 

Go afield with a good attitude, with respect for the wildlife you hunt and for the forests and fields in which you walk. Immerse yourself in the outdoors experience. It will cleanse your soul and make you a better person.----Fred Bear

 

http://michigansaf.org/

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The faith of priests is more philosophical, open to criticism (both their own and from others), and malleable from individual to individual.

 

 

 

The power of both Holy Radiance and the paladin's Faith and Conviction abilities can be modified by their behavior and the reputations they develop from the choices they make...Reinforcing their deity's or order's preferred behavior will gradually increase their power, while playing against type will cause a small diminishment in their power. These changes are not dramatic, but reflect a measure of dissonance between the character's stated faith and how they choose to conduct themselves.

 

Not very malleable at all, if you ask me. I thought Planescape: Torment did this a lot better when it came to the factions, just because you were a deader didn't mean the same thing to everyone. Similarly, I would suggest that the developers move away from this idea of limiting player's choice in this way. I would rather that players choose the path they wish and that consistency be rewarded and inconsistency not rewarded. This means that instead of bonuses/maluses as described to priest power, i would rather there be an adjustment to area/duration/power instead. Instead of +/-, it should be a blue/red/white choice, all equally viable, but different. I don't know the specific mechanics used in the priest class, but this should be seriously reconsidered.

 

If anything, the paladins should have this sort of mechanic instead of the philosophical priests. Your lore just doesn't match your mechanics at this point, and I think that's poor form.

 

My other criticism has to do with the animations. While I know that your animations are only alpha, from my understanding, Unity has great tools to allow transitions between animations. I don't know why it was the case with the second animation, but the transition from standing, facing south, to casting, facing north, was abrupt and jarring. 3D technology should be utilized to its maximum potential when possible, and this should have a relatively easy fix, from my understanding of Unity and basic animation software.

 

Everything else looks fine. great job.

 

well the thing is that the best choice in terms of game mechanics may not be the best choice to deal with your current situation.

you are a paladin of the wayfarers and you are presented with a choice by someone that took a traveler hostage. give us that companion whom we have a grudge against and we release the hostage. your ranger can snipe the leader of the bandits while the exchange is made, your mage can cast a delayed teleport to get him/her back as soon as they let go of the hostage and you could use any number of deceptive tactics to resolve the situation without having to sacrifice your companion, but if you do, it goes against the rules of the order. so will you give up on your companion for the sake of the rules or will you bend the rules for your companion? and what if the companion is your love interest? giving her up, would be as much against the beliefs of the order as it would be to save her through deception or to let them kill the hostage


The words freedom and liberty, are diminishing the true meaning of the abstract concept they try to explain. The true nature of freedom is such, that the human mind is unable to comprehend it, so we make a cage and name it freedom in order to give a tangible meaning to what we dont understand, just as our ancestors made gods like Thor or Zeus to explain thunder.

 

-Teknoman2-

What? You thought it was a quote from some well known wise guy from the past?

 

Stupidity leads to willful ignorance - willful ignorance leads to hope - hope leads to sex - and that is how a new generation of fools is born!


We are hardcore role players... When we go to bed with a girl, we roll a D20 to see if we hit the target and a D6 to see how much penetration damage we did.

 

Modern democracy is: the sheep voting for which dog will be the shepherd's right hand.

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Lephys, I suggest that you view the priest as an Olympic athlete. If the priest of Deity X talks the talk but fails to walk the walk, then their conviction/faith is lacking and their ability to perform miracles (spells) suffers as would the performance of an Olympic athlete who gives lip service to their training regimen but fails to take seriously the need to train, eat, and sleep in the appropriate manner. Good vs. evil isn't relevant, but proper/improper relative to the tenets of faith belonging to Deity X is most critical.

That's all fine and dandy in a purely-lore state. And, I'm all for significant reputation effects and consequences for your behavior. But, this is a game, and, mechanically, I'd rather see it encourage you to follow your "creed" with the incentives you get from doing so, rather than with the penalties you'll suffer if you walk out of line.

 

It's not that I don't think it make sense. I just think there's a better way to do it, than with sheer penalties when you place a foot wrong. I'd rather there be some interesting twist that occurs when I choose to follow the god of destruction, and I decide to mend and heal stuff. Maybe my healing abilities start gaining destructive qualities, as "punishment" or something; I take some damage whenever I heal someone, or I have to choose a target for some minor damage that's near the target I want to heal, or I can't cast the heal, etc. I don't just get my abstracted mechanical numbers dialed down on a numerical potency scale for being a Priest wrongly. I suffer an apt "punishment" that affects my decision-making, rather than my overall character effectiveness.

 

As someone else pointed out about the lore, if anything, Paladins would be the ones to suffer straight-up potency by going against their core path. Priests' beliefs are (from the update) "more philosophical, open to criticism (both their own and from others), and malleable from individual to individual."

 

Seems like you'd have a lot more interpretations of the same path, there. "If these people are dying of sickness we cannot cure, is it not benevolent to end their misery?" As opposed to "Oh no, I've chosen the non-benevolent choice... now my benevolent healing powers are diminished!"

 

Again, mechanically, apply that to ANYTHING else, and it just reads so negatively. "Fighter, if you use a weapon you're not specialized in, your fighting abilities will start to diminish!" "Wizard, don't go studying spells of some other school, or you'll start to suck at spell-casting!"

 

Hell, just by choosing this path instead of that one, and being able to bolster your abilities by following your chosen path, you've already got a mutual exclusion of bonuses going on. What you've chosen versus what you didn't choose, and following it to gain effectiveness versus failing to follow it and missing out on that additional effectiveness. Not to mention the reputation/dialogue/lore effects of your decisions. "Hey, I thought you were a priest of such-and-such! HOW CAN YOU DO SUCH A THING?!", etc. Throwing an extra penalty in there just seems like folly. And, though it's neat in the lore, mechanically, it just reads as "never, ever do anything that's even the slightest bit against your specific faith." There is no "Hmmm, it might be interesting to go against my faith a bit," which should really be a positively interesting option, just like class builds that don't necessarily play to the classes' strengths -- they're already worse, comparatively, for missing out on the utmost strengths of that class's abilities and style, so why would you tack on more penalties? "Oh, you're going to wield a weapon instead of a want, mister Wizard? Well, you don't get Blast, AND I'M GOING TO REDUCE THE POTENCY OF ALL YOUR SPELLS, BECAUSE YOU SHOULDN'T USE WEAPONS, but I'll let you use weapons, and just punish you for it, on top of the existing difference between the sheer effects of wielding that weapon versus wielding something else, u_u"

Edited by Lephys

Should we not start with some Ipelagos, or at least some Greater Ipelagos, before tackling a named Arch Ipelago? 6_u

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The Priest class is fairly uninspiring by comparison.  I had thought that the class was going to be a bit more Paladin-esque, but I guess Obsidian decided to go in a different direction; re-cycling a 2E feel.  Still, besides the reinforcing of faith based behavior, there is little about the class that seems fresh.

 

I thought that was the whole point of the Kickstarter effort: to bring back some of the feel of the IE games. Remember, BG was based on AD&D.

 

 

As a core class, I'd rather have priest be old-school than replaced by some of the shiz that all "modern" rpgs seems to be spawning. 2E might as well be my favorite edition as flawed as it is... So I guess I am biased.


Derpdragon of the Obsidian Order

Derpdragons everywhere. I like spears.

 

No sleep for the Watcher... because he was busy playing Pillars of Eternity instead.

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Priests in this game sound really boring lorewise and gameplay wise.  I really don't like the idea of turning them into pure support.  I pray that their some alternate builds for them, at least something like a battle cleric build that I usually play in the D&D pen and paper.

Edited by Bill Gates' Son
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Any army/general may surrender after Bleak Walkers are unleashed, but the paladins explicitly do not ask for nor give mercy/surrender.  If a warlord said, "Hey, Bleak Walkers, take out this town," and then halfway through the attack, the ruler of the city tried to surrender, the warlord would have a problem on his hands if he wanted to accept.  Bleak Walkers won't call off an attack even if their "employer" asks them to or turns forces on them.  The Bleak Walkers believe this behavior is necessary to make it clear what is going to happen when they get involved.

 

That is really interesting, hope that gets explored more in game.

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The Priest class is fairly uninspiring by comparison.  I had thought that the class was going to be a bit more Paladin-esque, but I guess Obsidian decided to go in a different direction; re-cycling a 2E feel.  Still, besides the reinforcing of faith based behavior, there is little about the class that seems fresh.

 

I thought that was the whole point of the Kickstarter effort: to bring back some of the feel of the IE games. Remember, BG was based on AD&D.

 

 

I understand the decision...I was pointing out that it seems like backtracking at this point, but that is Obsidian's prerogative, and yes, I agree they have the right to do so.  The problem I have is that there is little in this update that seems like an update or fresh take. If you add into this, the fact that PoE has no multi-classing or kits/prestige classes, so some of the customization available in BG 2 won't be present, it makes the class seem fairly dull compared to many of the other classes we've read about.

 

Btw, Support  /=  Dull.  I wouldn't mind Priests being support characters if the mechanics and character abilities were as engaging as Chanters.  That's not the case as of right now.

Edited by curryinahurry

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With the voices in the videos. Does this mean Obsidian has now hired the voice over talent and a lot of the voice over work is done? Be interested know how the VO work has gone and how much is completed.

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Bleak Walkers definitely win for most interesting paladin order yet revealed. Yet I have to wonder how their mercilessness is defined, given their stated purpose is "to bring a swift end to conflicts". When the Bleak Walkers are unleashed, are their terms "surrender [under these harsh and non-negotiable terms] or die", or is it too late to even surrender if they are finally called to battle, with the mere threat of their presence used to coerce?

 

Any army/general may surrender after Bleak Walkers are unleashed, but the paladins explicitly do not ask for nor give mercy/surrender.  If a warlord said, "Hey, Bleak Walkers, take out this town," and then halfway through the attack, the ruler of the city tried to surrender, the warlord would have a problem on his hands if he wanted to accept.  Bleak Walkers won't call off an attack even if their "employer" asks them to or turns forces on them.  The Bleak Walkers believe this behavior is necessary to make it clear what is going to happen when they get involved.

 

 

Shock troops. One supposes that the dread that they engender is a two edged sword in a campaign, it may shake the soundest moral and yet due to the inevitability of their actions it may also steel a faltering defenders metal. We cannot surrender to these individuals, let us make an end worth fighting for etcetera.

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Quite an experience to live in misery isn't it? That's what it is to be married with children.

I've seen things you people can't even imagine. Pearly Kings glittering on the Elephant and Castle, Morris Men dancing 'til the last light of midsummer. I watched Druid fires burning in the ruins of Stonehenge, and Yorkshiremen gurning for prizes. All these things will be lost in time, like alopecia on a skinhead. Time for tiffin.

 

Tea for the teapot!

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With the voices in the videos. Does this mean Obsidian has now hired the voice over talent and a lot of the voice over work is done? Be interested know how the VO work has gone and how much is completed.

I'd bet those are placeholder voices just so they can get the VO code in.

 

I think it's less that you're not allowed an opinion and more that saying things like "Women who are not attractive to me personally should be murdered" (which in turn suggests that you believe being attractive to you personally is the only function of a woman) is a really creepy and regressive thing to say!

Stop making me want to reply to posts I can't see!  :devil:

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Lephys, I suggest that you view the priest as an Olympic athlete. If the priest of Deity X talks the talk but fails to walk the walk, then their conviction/faith is lacking and their ability to perform miracles (spells) suffers as would the performance of an Olympic athlete who gives lip service to their training regimen but fails to take seriously the need to train, eat, and sleep in the appropriate manner. Good vs. evil isn't relevant, but proper/improper relative to the tenets of faith belonging to Deity X is most critical.

That's all fine and dandy in a purely-lore state. And, I'm all for significant reputation effects and consequences for your behavior. But, this is a game, and, mechanically, I'd rather see it encourage you to follow your "creed" with the incentives you get from doing so, rather than with the penalties you'll suffer if you walk out of line.

 

It's not that I don't think it make sense. I just think there's a better way to do it, than with sheer penalties when you place a foot wrong. I'd rather there be some interesting twist that occurs when I choose to follow the god of destruction, and I decide to mend and heal stuff. Maybe my healing abilities start gaining destructive qualities, as "punishment" or something; I take some damage whenever I heal someone, or I have to choose a target for some minor damage that's near the target I want to heal, or I can't cast the heal, etc. I don't just get my abstracted mechanical numbers dialed down on a numerical potency scale for being a Priest wrongly. I suffer an apt "punishment" that affects my decision-making, rather than my overall character effectiveness.

 

As someone else pointed out about the lore, if anything, Paladins would be the ones to suffer straight-up potency by going against their core path. Priests' beliefs are (from the update) "more philosophical, open to criticism (both their own and from others), and malleable from individual to individual."

 

Seems like you'd have a lot more interpretations of the same path, there. "If these people are dying of sickness we cannot cure, is it not benevolent to end their misery?" As opposed to "Oh no, I've chosen the non-benevolent choice... now my benevolent healing powers are diminished!"

 

Again, mechanically, apply that to ANYTHING else, and it just reads so negatively. "Fighter, if you use a weapon you're not specialized in, your fighting abilities will start to diminish!" "Wizard, don't go studying spells of some other school, or you'll start to suck at spell-casting!"

 

Hell, just by choosing this path instead of that one, and being able to bolster your abilities by following your chosen path, you've already got a mutual exclusion of bonuses going on. What you've chosen versus what you didn't choose, and following it to gain effectiveness versus failing to follow it and missing out on that additional effectiveness. Not to mention the reputation/dialogue/lore effects of your decisions. "Hey, I thought you were a priest of such-and-such! HOW CAN YOU DO SUCH A THING?!", etc. Throwing an extra penalty in there just seems like folly. And, though it's neat in the lore, mechanically, it just reads as "never, ever do anything that's even the slightest bit against your specific faith." There is no "Hmmm, it might be interesting to go against my faith a bit," which should really be a positively interesting option, just like class builds that don't necessarily play to the classes' strengths -- they're already worse, comparatively, for missing out on the utmost strengths of that class's abilities and style, so why would you tack on more penalties? "Oh, you're going to wield a weapon instead of a want, mister Wizard? Well, you don't get Blast, AND I'M GOING TO REDUCE THE POTENCY OF ALL YOUR SPELLS, BECAUSE YOU SHOULDN'T USE WEAPONS, but I'll let you use weapons, and just punish you for it, on top of the existing difference between the sheer effects of wielding that weapon versus wielding something else, u_u"

 

Except it's not all your spells.  It's one specific ability (priest passive AoE stamina regen, paladin passive defense boost) that is effected by your following of your chosen path.  I'm doubting it's absolutely vital to have those running at max efficiency, and if you're unwilling to take a minor hit to those abilities in order to make an in-character choice, well...sorry?

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...I'd rather see it encourage you to follow your "creed" with the incentives you get from doing so, rather than with the penalties you'll suffer if you walk out of line.

Looks like we're getting both, and that's a positive inclusion on the part of Obsidian.

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http://cbrrescue.org/

 

Go afield with a good attitude, with respect for the wildlife you hunt and for the forests and fields in which you walk. Immerse yourself in the outdoors experience. It will cleanse your soul and make you a better person.----Fred Bear

 

http://michigansaf.org/

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Priests in this game sound really boring lorewise and gameplay wise.  I really don't like the idea of turning them into pure support.  I pray that their some alternate builds for them, at least something like a battle cleric build that I usually play in the D&D pen and paper.

Eh? It sounds just about right to me. The exo-combat concepts sound good to me, enough that I'm actually really interested in trying a priest PC first.

 

The fact that they're brandishing guns and bombs is not an influence at all.

 

Nope.

 

Not in any way.

 

It's all about the philosophical debates. And not bombs.

Edited by AGX-17
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Priests in this game sound really boring lorewise and gameplay wise.  I really don't like the idea of turning them into pure support.  I pray that their some alternate builds for them, at least something like a battle cleric build that I usually play in the D&D pen and paper.

 

The problem is that the "Battle Cleric" concept inevitably leads to "I can fight better than the front liners because I hyper focus all my 'support'...on myself".

 

Clear delineation of roles is a necessity to avoid shenanigans like the 3.5 Cleric rendering pure front liner classes utterly pointless. Poor Fighter.

 

To put it another way, RPG gameplay tends to reward specialization and penalize Jack of All Trades, Master of None approaches. Making one who feels effective usually means you've made a Jack of All Trades, Master of All of Them Too.

Edited by Fiaryn
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Great update. Love the portrait (Nice work Polina). Love the classes. Love the video (only thing missing IMO are a "ready stance" and a casting FX - like the blue/red/purple/etc etc colors the casting animations the IE games had).

 

Can't wait for the next update, really looking forward to some more technical details on the game. Glad to see that Adam said yes. Looks like he's already solved the blending issue?

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First up - another great update.  Just when I think I can safely dismiss a class as uninteresting to me, you come up with those chanters.  The way the character works sounds like it'd be great fun to play.

Those chant and invocation names sound cool lore-wise too.

I like how the priests' abilities might be affected by in-game decisions to follow or not the tenets of their order/deity.

New portrait looks great (as do they all) :thumbsup:

 

Slightly off-topic, but has it been confirmed whether or not we will be able to use custom portraits for ourselves and NPCs?

Definitely for PCs, probably for NPCs


This reply from Sawyer is a little old so Im not sure if its still valid:

"We want to support custom portraits and make it very easy for players to drop in whatever they want. We're still playing around with portrait sizes but right now they're around 660x850 on the character/inventory screen and get downsampled for use on other parts of the GUI."

 

The size is (last I heard) changed to 330x210 for the character sheet with a separate (not auto-downsized) but smaller portrait for the main game screen portraits.  No confirmation yet on whether it's bmp,png,jpg or whatever format.

 

Definitely custom portraits for your own characters and I think (but am not positive) that we have UI support for switching companion portraits.  Not 100% sure on that.

But if no UI support for it, we'll be able to drop things into an override folder, right?

(and also for non-companion NPCs?)


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*Casts Nature's Terror* :aiee: , *Casts Firebug* :fdevil: , *Casts Rot-Skulls* :skull: , *Casts Garden of Life* :luck: *Spirit-shifts to cat form* :cat:

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The chanter phrase "Darmok and Jalad at Tenagra" wards off questionable science fiction premises.

 

"Shaka, when the walls fell".

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GOOOOOODcelllennnnttttt! *fingersteeple*

 

Two quick tidbits:

 

1) The Chanter ability names are AWESOME!

2) I once again must praise the tactical design of such abilities as Salvation of Time, which lead to very reactive/emergent decision-making and results in combat.

 

Oh, and lastly, some feedback on Priests:

 

I really think the better way to go with the whole "you're going against your faith" thing is to slightly alter the potency of various effects/factors in their abilities. The idea of going with the current making you "better" and going against it making you "diminished" is just really rigid and simply reads as good choices versus bad choices, rather than this choice versus that choice.

 

I would say just have how a priest behaves affect whatever aspect of his abilities is affiliated with that behavior -- the more benevolent you are (to go with a simplistic example), the more your helpful/healing abilities get a boost, while the more aggressive you are, the more your offensive abilities get a boost, etc. But, that seems weird when applied to paths that have been specifically chosen by the player. I'd figure that if we get to choose these "paths," the ones we choose should offer up some mutually exclusive bonus, kind of like school-of-magic specialization in DnD (or, I think, the deity selection for Priests in some of the versions?).

 

But, anywho... at the very least, I'd make it a trade-off, rather than just "You didn't do what you were supposed to, so have a minor penalty." Say I choose the path of benevolence, but I make some kind of non-benevolent choice. If it's going to decrease my powers affiliated with benevolence, it should probably somehow benefit my powers of something else-ness. Maybe it's cast time, etc. *shrug*.

 

If your choices are going to mechanically affect your Priest, I think both outcomes should be interesting in their own way. And "my stuff gets worse" isn't really very interesting. That's pure deterrent. Then it starts feeling like the whole good-vs-evil morality thing in lots of games (only now you get to choose your own custom-tailored morality bar -- choose the god of Smashing Stuff, and destruction is "good" while non-destruction is "bad," etc.); do good and people like you and you get free stuff, etc. Do bad and you sometimes get to take things you wouldn't have gotten had you been good, but you pretty much get gipped in the long run.

 

Just my thoughts.

 

Lephys - with puns unfurled!

 

Anyways, I was thinking maybe as opposed to effect changes, mechanical boni and mali could be assigned.* For instance, if you have been consistently acting in ways that you believe to be counter to your deity's wishes, some spells require greater effort to cast (i.e. more of a resource, get an extra round cool down, so on). This could be taken even further, if you o something you KNOW is going to be problematic (like attacking the high priest who has done nothing wrong) then casting spells would still be possible, but cause minor stamina damage each cast. Just an idea (there was something like this in the fantasy series the Blacksmith's Son).

 

The thing is, the priest's abilities come from his or her faith and belief in the deity, not the deity itself. This causes some complications since if you can rationalize your behaviour enough, there is little dissonance (at least consciously, the dissonance can of course be a manifestation of the unresolved conflict in the unconscious; I recently taught my students Jung's Psychology of the Archetype of the Trickster Figure [which they hated, I feed in their hate] and there is a lot of fascinating conceptual overlap between the use souls [for both the priest and the chanter] and Jung's ideas). 

 

* A slight pet peeve, but since it has been absorbed into English (and we are the heathen bastardizers of better languages) I have bowed to convention, technically it should be bona and mala (unless our conception of pluses and minuses are masculine)

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After a few watches, those spell animations need a bit of work (combined with spell FX for the cast animation), but that's why it's Alpha, right ;)

 

Can't tell whether the delay of the spell appearing is intended delay or lag, might just be a mismatch with the animation though.

Edited by Sensuki

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The chanter phrase "Darmok and Jalad at Tenagra" wards off questionable science fiction premises.

 

"Shaka, when the walls fell".

 

 

Wait, so we can write our own chants in-game? SOKATH HIS EYES UNCOVERED 

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All Stop. On Screen.

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The chanter phrase "Darmok and Jalad at Tenagra" wards off questionable science fiction premises.

 

"Shaka, when the walls fell".

 

 

Wait, so we can write our own chants in-game? SOKATH HIS EYES UNCOVERED 

 

MAMA

JUST KILLED A MAN

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