hils: (Anarlise Trevelyan)
So I'm replaying DA2 at the moment and I've just completed the Legacy DLC. It has given me feelings and opinions.

The first time I played DAI I hadn't played Legacy so when I went into the Fade with Hawke and Stroud all I cared about was that the game wanted me to choose between Hawke and a dude I barely knew. It was no choice at all really.

But now I've played Legacy a couple of times I do wonder whether the game intends for you to leave Hawke in the fade. I notice you get the sad music when you talk to Varric after you get out of the Fade and it always struck me as odd if you leave Stroud behind given we've had no real emotional attachment to him and neither does Varric.

But when you play Legacy and understand that Corypheus is free because Hawke used his blood to release him (even if the intention was to kill him) then the line s/he says about Corypheus being his/her responsibility makes a lot more sense.

What do you guys think? I think I've only left Hawke in the fade once (and that was so I could save Alistair) but I'm wondering if doing so is actually the right thing to do.

And on a slight tangent I also feel that in DA2 the game intends for Hawke's sibling to die in the Deep Roads. Usually I let Carver die because I am a terrible person and don't like him. But Bethany is too precious so I generally make her into a Grey Warden.

Thoughts? Opinions? I just had a lot of feelings.

Date: 2015-12-08 10:04 pm (UTC)From: [personal profile] jenna_thorn
jenna_thorn: Varric with text "Scoundrel" (Scoundrel)
I haven't played Legacy so no opinion there, but for the twins, I played Kirkwall right after Origins and Awakenings, so to me, the Grey Wardens are a better option than death, and better (for Bethany) than the Circle. So I tend to drop Carver into the Templars and drag Bethany into the Deep Roads and Warden-ize her.

Date: 2015-12-08 10:51 pm (UTC)From: [personal profile] fereldanwench
fereldanwench: (Default)
I know there was a lot of speculation that just the title alone of "Here Lies the Abyss" was supposed to suggest Hawke should remain (per Flemeth's guidance about not being afraid to leap into the abyss in DA2). I had Stroud and Hawke in my first game, and I did feel like there was intended to be some kind of emotional ramification for the decision that was definitely absent. So I really considered why would Hawke make the most sense to remain.

Although my personal opinions of course seep into this sometimes, I also try to make choices based on the character I'm playing, not just my own perspective. For the Inquisitor I was playing, it just didn't work for me. She would not have seen someone who was lied to and coerced into reanimating Corypheus as responsible for what happened, particularly given that they had no way of knowing he wasn't dead. Stroud wasn't personally responsible either, but he represented the Wardens, and darkspawn, the Blight, and Corypheus were his field of responsibility, not Hawke's.

I'm very attached to my Hawkes, though, so the idea of leaving them is a tough one. I'd like to play an Inquisitor who holds Hawke responsible, but it might be a while before I'm up for it.

I don't think the game really pushes the player one way or another, though. I actually really like this quest, but I find this particular choice kind of puzzling. How it moves the player emotionally seems to be really inconsistent across the different setups for it--I know most people who had Stroud either found it a no brainer to leave him or felt like there "had to be more" (something Trespasser seems to shoot down) to spur them to leave Hawke. Alistair and Hawke seemed to generate the most feels because it was hard a personal level.

There were some good points made too that it wasn't really a meaningful decision for the Inquisitor, who barely knew either the Warden or Hawke, and something more for the player to feel. But there was certainly an emotional absence because of that, I think.

As for Bethany and Carver... Gaider said that the Wardens are supposed to be the best choice for Carver if you'd like to see him grow and develop into his own person. I think he said that the Circle was Bethany's best option, as she becomes extremely bitter in the Wardens and finds a greater sense of belonging and purpose in the Circle. As far as story goes, I'm kind of partial to Carver as a templar and like Bethany as either a Warden or Circle mage.

But I generally don't think there's a right or wrong decision for any of these. I think it's all about what you want to see in the game. Sometimes the "wrong" options are more interesting.
Edited Date: 2015-12-08 10:54 pm (UTC)

Date: 2015-12-12 03:13 pm (UTC)From: [personal profile] theharlotofferelden
theharlotofferelden: majestic (Cullen - Pornstache Cullen/Grumpy)
Alistair and Hawke seemed to generate the most feels because it was hard a personal level.

I actually thought this was particularly cruel to players that romanced Alistair, and Hawke. Because some people chose to keep Alistair as a warden to avoid becoming his mistress while he was king. Presenting yet another choice between two shit options was kinda harsh imo.

But then again, if past Bioware games are anything to go by, they aren't exactly sensitive to player choice when it comes to romances.....

There were some good points made too that it wasn't really a meaningful decision for the Inquisitor, who barely knew either the Warden or Hawke, and something more for the player to feel. But there was certainly an emotional absence because of that, I think.

The choice is even less meaningful if you're playing with the default world state, because it's basically a choice between Epic Beard and Epic Mustache. Decisions, decisions. Which do I hope 2 see again.

I wonder how people felt about Hawke vs. Loghain. Because I feel that if you have Loghain in your world state, you either hate Alistair or you were willing to make some difficult choices (poor drunk Alibear).

So it's like did those people stick to their guns, or did they tell Loghain to fuck off.

There was a button. It got pressed :D !

Date: 2015-12-09 04:45 am (UTC)From: [personal profile] maramcreates
maramcreates: Leliana (Dragon Age; DAI; playful) (Default)
There's something in the internet waters, I think, because I was just thinking about this earlier today. I was writing for a prompt that would never have happened with my playthroughs, and in the process of writing, it all clicked for me.
Basically, if you look at the default Hawke they give you with the default worldstate, then that m!Hawke is a mage. Interesting? Possibly, but not on its own. Then you take Trespasser into account (which I'll try not to spoil too much, but honestly, read at your own risk), then you have to assume that the Veil will have to come down (at least briefly) in DA4. Together these events do two things: (a) give you someone on the other side to work with that has a lot of experience dealing with the Fade (and likely to have more power at their disposal to boot);and (b) give Hawke (or whomever is left behind) an out.
The other thing of interest is that all of your possible choices leave you with non-mage Wardens (Stroud, Alistair, Loghain) or a Hawke to leave behind (with Hawke being the only constant). From a narrative perspective, that's an interesting setup (in my eyes). On the one hand, if you spare Hawke, then Hawke will go off with the Wardens and get up to all sorts of shenanigans, which is weird right? I mean, why the Wardens? Why not Kirkwall? Add to all of this that the writers could have simply killed off one of the two (Warden/Hawke), rather than leave them behind alive, right? All these possibilities are moving towards something, I can *feel* it.

The Twins:
I don't even play a mage Hawke because I like Bethany too much (and Carver is meh in my book). I never take her to the Deep Roads because: (a) I'm not a fan of taking Anders around more than I have to (I like Merril too much to pick him over her, and I love Isabela so she's a given - not to mention that Varric has to come along too...and I'm full of excuses, but the fact of the matter is that Anders is just not worth it for me); (b) I'm not up for Bethany dying either (nope. not going to happen.). Those things said, I feel that from a character growth standpoint, all of the Hawkes need to have that moment when the jig is up and they're caught in their lie (both Bethany's and the family's story arcs build up the whole 'hiding in plain sight' angle, and considering that you will *always* have a mage in the family, you can't really avoid it - via Bethany or Hawke). Also, while the Circle in Kirkwall is the *worst,* Bethany does actually feel more relief for no longer needing to hide *all the time,* which has got to be an even more stressful experience.
It probably doesn't help that I've taken on some of my Elissa Cousland's opinions of the Wardens, and don't have much love for the order itself (she was pretty convincing, what can I say?). My Elissa's viewpoint totally explains to me why Bethany would be bitter about becoming a Grey Warden, and honestly, I don't blame Bethany (I can expand on this if anyone's interested...or I can point you to my fanfic in progress once it's completed).
Edited (not enough words...^_^;;) Date: 2015-12-09 04:52 am (UTC)

Date: 2015-12-16 07:52 am (UTC)From: [personal profile] vegafalling
vegafalling: (Kate Katie Kate)
Let's see on one side of the equation you have your own character and the other side of the equation you have a) a long term companion/love interest Alistair b) major antagonist turned companion Logain or c) a warden you met twice for a collective three and a half minutes. one of these things is not like the other.

My brother bought the game before I did, and when he told me about Here Lies the Abyss, I thought he was joking because there's no way they could be trying to make you choose between your pc and that Grey Warden you met twice for two minutes. It's such an unbalanced choice and even if you are roleplaying hardcore, it's still ridiculous.

I felt like the choice was super asspull-y and clumsy anyway. Justinia sacrifices herself, and in the end it means nothing, you still have to send one of your companions to their likely death because we couldn't fight and kill a giant spider despite killing hordes of demons at this point and Maker only knows how many giant spiders. Sure, it's a particularly large giant spider but still.

Anyway, where was I going with this? Right! I do think that leaving Hawke in the Fade does fit really well thematically with the rest of DA2 and therefore Hawke, which is all about the limitations and failure. Hawke can't save their home. Hawke can't save their siblings. Hawke can't save their mother. Hawke can't stop the Qunari invasion. Hawke can't save Kirkwall. Hawke can't stop Meredith. Nearly every one of the major questlines end in a failure for Hawke. Now, Hawke is making a final sacrifice so someone else can save the world. It's thematically appropriate, but I didn't feel like it was something that the game was necessarily pushing you towards one option over the other.

Now, the well of Sorrows, i felt like the game really wanted me to have Morrigan drink.


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