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stoneneedle

Alternate Ending: The Adra Nexus of Od Nua (SPOILERS)

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I think I sympathize with the creators' decision not to include an ending where your character achieves the power of the Engwithan entities (which, while not really Gods, are still pretty frickin' powerful in this setting).

 

The game only goes to level 12, and they're setting it up for a sequel. Even if you are evil, you can't just usurp the soul power immediately for yourself.

 

I think I've figured out a way to spice up the ending a bit, without ruining the continuity of the RPG experience. The reason I've been thinking so much about the setting is I've started using it with our Pathfinder group, and I've even ported a few races and classes (like Aumaua, Godlike, Cipher) to PF.

 

Anyways, for those of you who completed the game, you'll remember the giant adra statue in the Endless Paths of Od Nua. Now we well know that adra conducts soul energy in this universe, and that the spirit world largely interacts with the physical world through this organic substance.

 

So it's one of the biggest adra structures in the game, and is largely underground, which is believed to be the "realm of the gods."

 

I'm thinking it could be used as an adra nexus, and one of the options for your character at the end after you kill Thaos and get control of the machine is (assuming you killed the adra dragon) to funnel the soul taken from the Hollowborn during Waidwen's Legacy and shunt them into the statue. Think about it: it's your own personal keep. What better place for a power-monger like my character to start his ascension to godhood?

 

I played an evil wizard, and was kind of disappointed that the only evil things to do really were to release the souls to "entropy" or send them to Woedica.

 

So yeah, it's definitely something to consider, and in a D&D-style campaign I'd really throw the doors open, and let the players be creative in what they'll do with the souls. By the time I reached Sun in Shadow, I hadn't really committed to any of the gods' demands, and could've done anything at the end.

 

So yeah, really interesting stuff to think about, because then the campaign becomes about other Nexus of power, possibly deeper in the earth than even Od Nua. And if you get control over enough of them, maybe you attain the power to break the Cycle of the Wheel. Or if you're more of a do-gooder you could do what you think is right, like empowering Hylea or some other do-gooder god.

 

One thing I like about this setting is the lack of alignment, so what actually constitutes good and evil is entirely subjective. So much creative potential. I'm gonna save my pennies for the next Eternity Kickstarter, if that's what they do!

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I suppose the lack of empowering amoral options would seem off putting to some. Our priority as the Watcher was to attempt to cure ourselves of the affliction that most Watchers fall to, which is to say going mad from so many of our past lives awakening within our current frame. Eventually we ourselves solved this apparently unsolvable problem by putting our past self to rest by destroying Thaos. 

 

A seemingly unsolvable problem that is then quickly solved through violence... that is pretty much the story of Mortal Kombat in a nutshell. 

 

The biggest reason I could imagine for refusing the player the chance to become some kind of god-king on Eora at the end of POE would be, as you said, they need all players largely equal for the expansion packs. As for your scheme, I don't think adra quite works that way. Even if you had managed to funnel all of the souls into that statue (which already has quite a few souls left in it) there is no evidence to say you could properly harness it. 

 

Fampyr's basically eat souls and the one in the Paths was almost perfectly intact (with all the negatives of undeath), and the adradragon partook of the statue's bounty (becoming adra encrusted). But we have no idea how the Engiwthans made living gods - any knowledge of such would have been destroyed by Thaos completely. So at most you have a giant statue that acts as one hell of a battery for whatever it is you want. A battery, by the way, that is already filled with souls and yet still useless to you.

 

Honestly, it would not seem to me worth the risk of the "god's" wrath or the destabilization of the Dyrewood. 

Edited by Venatio

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Totally worth it. Because what players want is 

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POWER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

That's what made the Bhaalspawn plot of the BG series so epic win. You're not just some level 7 or 8 adventurer by the end of BG1, you're a godling duking it out with another godling. People want to Highlander it up--there can be only one!

 

Of course now how I'm describing it sounds really cheesy. I guess what made BG so awesome was that it did all this stuff gradually. It wasn't just the overall plot of becoming (or eliminating) Bhaal, it was everything. Candlekeep, Imoen, Minsc, Sarevok, confronting the evil inside yourself, coming of age--everything was so well done.

 

Eternity was really well done too, but I'm not sure anything can live up to the legacy of BG/BG2. It has kind of a nostalgia glow.

 

I agree with you though that it would be a huge hurtle to find that lost Engwithan knowledge. It would make one epic quest line.

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