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Ryland Can't Lead

Spoilers ahead for those that haven't played Jormag Rising.

When Imperator Smodur kills Ryland's bandmate in front of him, Ryland charges at him, but stops when he sees Cercia cast a "Fire shield" on Smodur.

I know all she casted was Fire Aura, but with the old animations from launch. That wouldn't of stopped him from testing how much Smodur flinches. Ryland really needs to learn what the different skills do... Such a shame, he had potential, but he's clearly not experienced enough to lead...

😑

Comments

  • Azure The Heartless.3261Azure The Heartless.3261 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited February 7, 2021

    [Spoilers below]

    I think the whole angle that Ryland is immature as a leader/has parental issues is part of the driving force for that part of the story. If it was Bangar the story would be open and shut; nobody from the main char cast really likes him to begin with, and the charr that -did- like him defected very quickly.

    There is a lot of nuance and a lot of room left for Ryland to grow as either a villain or with a heel-face. Not as properly suited as Bangar but I think the betrayal aspect lends itself to that.

    The "Balance" is a fantasy -- another mortal superstition.

  • Ashantara.8731Ashantara.8731 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Loboling.5293 said:
    I know all she casted was Fire Aura, but with the old animations from launch. That wouldn't of stopped him from testing how much Smodur flinches. Ryland really needs to learn what the different skills do... Such a shame, he had potential, but he's clearly not experienced enough to lead...

    😑

    You are aware that the spells the story NPCs cast in movie sequences rarely have anything to do with the skills that we as player characters can use? It's for story-telling purposes. See Queen Jennah casting her super-poweful protective dome around Divinity's Reach.

  • Loboling.5293Loboling.5293 Member ✭✭✭

    @Ashantara.8731 said:

    @Loboling.5293 said:
    I know all she casted was Fire Aura, but with the old animations from launch. That wouldn't of stopped him from testing how much Smodur flinches. Ryland really needs to learn what the different skills do... Such a shame, he had potential, but he's clearly not experienced enough to lead...

    😑

    You are aware that the spells the story NPCs cast in movie sequences rarely have anything to do with the skills that we as player characters can use? It's for story-telling purposes. See Queen Jennah casting her super-poweful protective dome around Divinity's Reach.

    I mean the whole premise for my thread is a joke, but welp.

    TBH on the topic of Ryland, I don't believe he has much agency anymore, regardless of what he believes. It's the same as all Svanir, convinced Jormag is helping them, and that they are still "free to serve Jormag".

    The whole idea of killing Primordus is just to remove a clear obstacle for Jormag. There is nothing noble about protecting Tyria, or living in peace. Jormag knows that her and Primordus are two opposing forces, and would wipe eachother out if they oppose. So she wants the commander and Aurene to take out Primordus and remove that potential threat. Then she can continue to feast on magic, and grow her army to ensure she can safely do what she wants.

    I don't believe Ryland is leading anything anymore, no matter what any of the in game characters say. He's serving Jormag, and that's all that's left of him.

  • Ryland is that kind of teenager searching for a father who will tell him nice things like "you're doing great, I'm proud of you". First Bangar, now Jormag.

    Master of garbage builds and being useless.

  • Touchme.1097Touchme.1097 Member ✭✭✭

    I think I have seen enough characters behaving like rebellious teenagers. Obedience and discipline are more noble and positive qualities. Before learning how to lead someone has to learn how to obey. Ryland doesn't even care for his parents, what a joke of an NPC, totally despicable.

  • Yasai.3549Yasai.3549 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited February 8, 2021

    The problem with the writing team is their desperation with trying to introduce new characters while trying to kill off the old guard.
    And they subsequently ignore the new characters people actually care about.

    And just when Braham was starting to be an actually interesting staple, they turned him into a confused teenager which is starting to go back into angst mode again.

    • Where is Canach?
    • Is Zojja still afk?
    • Majory and Kasmeer barely have any screentime.

    What happened to Ryland's Steel warband after giving them so much character in Forging Steel?
    Did they just all go "yeaaaa we now frozen Charr now heheheh"

    @Touchme.1097 said:
    I think I have seen enough characters behaving like rebellious teenagers. Obedience and discipline are more noble and positive qualities. Before learning how to lead someone has to learn how to obey. Ryland doesn't even care for his parents, what a joke of an NPC, totally despicable.

    Could argue that Charr was never born with care for their parents, rather they have more loyalty to their warband which is both their family and their solider in arms.
    The joke part about Ryland is that he was built up to be ambitious, but does nothing with his ambition, even when following Bangar.

    He could have killed Bangar anytime, and decide to continue with the Jormag plan while keeping Almorra as a bargaining chip with the Commander, but he helped Bangar kill Almorra despite having all the pieces laid out infront of him.

    Now where does all his ambition and potential bring him?
    Ending up as a slave to Jormag, pretending he agrees with them.

    If I play a stupid build, I deserve to die.
    If I beat people on a stupid build, I deserve to get away with it.

  • Fueki.4753Fueki.4753 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited February 8, 2021

    @Azure The Heartless.3261 said:
    There is a lot of nuance and a lot of room left for Ryland to grow as either a villain or with a heel-face.

    Ryland is Icebrood now. There is no room left for growth, other than him getting more power from Jormag or Jormag removing his illusion of free will.

    @Yasai.3549 said:

    • Where is Canach?

    Canach is most likely still gambling back in Amnoon.

    • Is Zojja still afk?

    There probably still are problems with her voice actress being unavailable and Arenanet doesn't seem to want to replace her.

    • Majory and Kasmeer barely have any screentime.

    Marjory is still recovering from her mental breakdown and Kasmeer is busy doing things for Queen Jenna.

    What happened to Ryland's Steel warband after giving them so much character in Forging Steel?

    We've killed them all in Drizzlewood.

  • Azure The Heartless.3261Azure The Heartless.3261 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited February 8, 2021

    @Fueki.4753 said:

    @Azure The Heartless.3261 said:
    There is a lot of nuance and a lot of room left for Ryland to grow as either a villain or with a heel-face.

    Ryland is Icebrood now. There is no room left for growth, other than:

    him getting more power from Jormag or Jormag removing his illusion of free will.

    Yes. This counts as growth.

    Also people have purged dragon champions of corruption before in the story. Aurene and the commander got out of a canon death, the writers can do whatever they want at this point.

    The "Balance" is a fantasy -- another mortal superstition.

  • Fenella.2634Fenella.2634 Member ✭✭✭

    @Fueki.4753 said:

    @Yasai.3549 said:

    • Is Zojja still afk?

    There probably still are problems with her voice actress being unavailable and Arenanet doesn't seem to want to replace her.

    Not the case. And even if it was the case, they'd just have replaced her after all those years.
    In LS4 there was a dev talk mentioning how they'd considered bringing Zojja back, but didn't include her after all, because it would have been too similar to Taimi's hostage situation. If they wanted her in the story, they'd have her in the story, no matter what issues there may or may not be with the actress.

    • Majory and Kasmeer barely have any screentime.

    Marjory is still recovering from her mental breakdown and Kasmeer is busy doing things for Queen Jenna.

    Isn't that just funny? At the beginning of IBS there was this huge point made about how Kas and Jory were going to have their character arcs now, how they would finally be developed outside of just being a couple... Well - they have half a chapter left. Let's see how those character arcs will go.

  • Fueki.4753Fueki.4753 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited February 9, 2021

    @Fenella.2634 said:
    they'd just have replaced her after all those years.

    As I wrote, they seem not to want to do that.

    At the beginning of IBS there was this huge point made about how Kas and Jory were going to have their character arcs now, how they would finally be developed outside of just being a couple... Well - they have half a chapter left. Let's see how those character arcs will go.

    Just like other things Arenanet planned for the Icebrood Saga:
    The Saga system was supposed to be a replacement for expansions - It didn't work out (which should have been obvious from the very moment this idea popped up).
    Expansion-level features - Outside of giving us another colour of mastery points and making more variants of easily abandonable instanced content, nothing expansion-like happened.

    I just wish Arenanet hadn't abandoned the Saga halfway through and instead pulled through to the end. And then properly transitioning into an expansion. It might have become something decent instead of ending up as garbage.

  • voltaicbore.8012voltaicbore.8012 Member ✭✭✭✭

    Maybe I'm missing something, but this thought

    @Fueki.4753 said:

    The Saga system was supposed to be a replacement for expansions - It didn't work out (which should have been obvious from the very moment this idea popped up).

    seems inconsistent with

    I just wish Arenanet hadn't abandoned the Saga halfway through and instead pulled through to the end. And then properly transitioning into an expansion. It might have become something decent instead of ending up as garbage.

    this thought. I happen to agree with your first statement - I believed it was obvious from the start (as much as I loved Grothmar) that the Saga wouldn't match an expansion when it comes to new combat, new stories, and map quality. Whoever thought that could happen... yeah. I wouldn't hire them for any job that requires forwar-looking insights.

    But you also say that if ANet just "pulled through to the end" with the Saga, it might not have been garbage. As stated above I think the Saga was doomed to fail from the start, and while certain things like the story could have ended up less botched than they are now, I still think the overall result would be some form of garbage. What should they have "pulled through" on, precisely?

  • Ashantara.8731Ashantara.8731 Member ✭✭✭✭

    @Yasai.3549 said:
    What happened to Ryland's Steel warband after giving them so much character in Forging Steel?

    We killed them at the end of the Drizzlewood meta and their deaths are mentioned during a story mission by Smodur - the whole story there is built around that fact and holding Ryland's last surviving warbandmate prisoner to blackmail him into rethinking his position (but then Smodur kills her, too, in front of Ryland).

  • Fueki.4753Fueki.4753 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited February 9, 2021

    @voltaicbore.8012 said:
    Maybe I'm missing something, but this thought

    @Fueki.4753 said:

    The Saga system was supposed to be a replacement for expansions - It didn't work out (which should have been obvious from the very moment this idea popped up).

    seems inconsistent with

    I just wish Arenanet hadn't abandoned the Saga halfway through and instead pulled through to the end. And then properly transitioning into an expansion. It might have become something decent instead of ending up as garbage.

    this thought.

    How is there any inconsistency?
    The first statement is about how Arenanet's plan to replace expansions with Sagas failed.
    The second one is my wish Arenanet hadn't just given up on the story and instead continued to develop it properly to the end.
    Arenanet properly completed every other living world season before. They should have done so with Season 5.
    And in the last episode of the season, they'd incorporate a small snipped on were we go, like with the other two expansions.
    I don't know what inconsistency you thought to have seen, but there is none.

    But you also say that if ANet just "pulled through to the end" with the Saga, it might not have been garbage.
    As stated above I think the Saga was doomed to fail from the start, and while certain things like the story could have ended up less botched than they are now, I still think the overall result would be some form of garbage. What should they have "pulled through" on, precisely?

    They should at least have continued to give us proper episodes to end the story half-way decent, like with other Living World Seasons.
    To me, champions is the main reason the Grindflood Saga went from below average to upright garbage.

  • voltaicbore.8012voltaicbore.8012 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited February 9, 2021

    @Fueki.4753 said:

    How is there any inconsistency?
    The first statement is about how Arenanet's plan to replace expansions with Sagas failed.
    The second one is my wish Arenanet hadn't just given up on the story and instead continued to develop it properly to the end.

    You answered your own question - initially, you just talked about the Saga in general terms for both the first and second statements, without any real distinction. Now it's much clearer, and I still agree with you on both counts. The expansion-like content was destined to fail from the very beginning, while the story had decent potential (that ended up wasted).

    As for the original topic of the thread, I have to say I agree there too. Ryland isn't really demonstrating leadership as much as he simply capitalized (or rather, let Bangar, then Jormag exploit) his popularity with a certain sector of Charr. I don't find him compelling at all, and would welcome either his permanent exit from the story, or a Braham-like redemption.

    Ultimately pulling off the joint Charr/Norn story in one season was going to be a steep challenge to begin with. At best, we would have seen two pretty large storylines competing for space within one narrative arc. At worst, we have what we do now, which is just... something that feels like abandonment or a rush to get things to a point where we can transition to EoD. Now, if this was exactly the way they planned the narrative to work from the start, perhaps ANet really has some deeply embedded writing problems.

  • Poormany.4507Poormany.4507 Member ✭✭✭
    edited February 10, 2021

    @voltaicbore.8012 said:

    @Fueki.4753 said:

    How is there any inconsistency?
    The first statement is about how Arenanet's plan to replace expansions with Sagas failed.
    The second one is my wish Arenanet hadn't just given up on the story and instead continued to develop it properly to the end.

    You answered your own question - initially, you just talked about the Saga in general terms for both the first and second statements, without any real distinction. Now it's much clearer, and I still agree with you on both counts. The expansion-like content was destined to fail from the very beginning, while the story had decent potential (that ended up wasted).

    As for the original topic of the thread, I have to say I agree there too. Ryland isn't really demonstrating leadership as much as he simply capitalized (or rather, let Bangar, then Jormag exploit) his popularity with a certain sector of Charr. I don't find him compelling at all, and would welcome either his permanent exit from the story, or a Braham-like redemption.

    Ultimately pulling off the joint Charr/Norn story in one season was going to be a steep challenge to begin with. At best, we would have seen two pretty large storylines competing for space within one narrative arc. At worst, we have what we do now, which is just... something that feels like abandonment or a rush to get things to a point where we can transition to EoD. Now, if this was exactly the way they planned the narrative to work from the start, perhaps ANet really has some deeply embedded writing problems.

    To me it feels like the Saga had at least half of its initial plans scrapped around halfway through when EoD development was started in full scale. Going by the season trailer and earlier stuff in the Saga, it seems like there were going to be more Visions of the Past, more Season 1 scrying pool episodes, more maps, and more larger-scale storylines (Centaurs, DsD or other water content, etc.) that would have been more expansion-like and had potential to be good content. The moment they suddenly started to imply Primordus was the "big threat" and began the Champions episodes it seems like the entire development of the Saga was given up in favor of getting to EoD as fast as possible with the Saga running on maintenance mode as filler until then.

  • Oxstar.7643Oxstar.7643 Member ✭✭✭

    Ryland is dumb. As is Bangar. People who are so damaged by war that they cannot fathom bonds between others to be based on mutual trust and love, to the point where he thinks being the champion of an elder dragon means bending one to your will are utterly unfit to lead. The real battle to be a leader is in how you lead your people OFF the battlefield and into a better age, doing what you have to do but never going too far. Jormag is using Ryland and him, and the moment their role is played, they will be discarded. Jormag only cares about Jormag, and anyone with half a brain can tell this. But not these two overgrown doormats.

  • rrusse.7058rrusse.7058 Member ✭✭✭
    edited February 13, 2021

    Unfortunately, the most interesting aspects of Ryland, as much as his character would hate to admit it, are all variables that he had no control over. He is related to Rytlock and he was useful enough to be manipulated by Jormag while maintaining enough autonomy to think he plays an important role.> @Azure The Heartless.3261 said:

    [Spoilers below]

    I think the whole angle that Ryland is immature as a leader/has parental issues is part of the driving force for that part of the story. If it was Bangar the story would be open and shut; nobody from the main char cast really likes him to begin with, and the charr that -did- like him defected very quickly.

    There is a lot of nuance and a lot of room left for Ryland to grow as either a villain or with a heel-face. Not as properly suited as Bangar but I think the betrayal aspect lends itself to that.

    This is a pretty interesting point. Just about any character and story can be made interesting, it just depends on how you tell it. In an alternative telling of IBS, it is Bangar leading the Icebrood and Jormag's forces through a perceived arms race against the Charr. With the current story we have Ryland instead leading the Icebrood to stop Primordus instead and the free people of Tyria are nothing more than a resource for his/Jormag's end. Obvious corruption of Jormag there, twisting his mind to make Jormag's ideals seem like your own.

    What's the more interesting story to tell here? One of a young, budding yet immature leader and their fall from grace or a story of veteran that loses sight of their path out of fear of the boogey man in his closet?

    I just like Ryland a little less because much of his character is made up of things that he had little say or control over. Being the son of a hero and now the champion of dragon because he is useful.

    Zommoros giveth and Zommoros taketh away.

  • Dawdler.8521Dawdler.8521 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited February 13, 2021

    It would be hilarious if Ryland is actually the set up for GW3 in a post-apokalyptic Tyria. Think about it...

    Ryland Steelcatcher: They're not dead. One day, long after you've lived and died, they'll thaw. And I'll be there to lead them.
    Ryland Steelcatcher: Until then, their sacrifice will help unchain Jormag. Welcome to the new world.

    gaggle - /ˈɡaɡ(ə)l/ - noun
    A disorderly group of Asura.
    "The gaggle of Asura tried to agree on whether a phase-shifted thermonuclear energy matrix was sufficiently powerful for a device capable of heating bread"

  • Orack.9756Orack.9756 Member ✭✭✭

    @Tazer.2157 said:
    I would think Ryland is cool if I was 8. Sadly I’m not 8 and Ryland to me is a kid with daddy issues. Bangar was a better antagonist. Bangar had a genuine reason for wanting a dragon. I still don’t know why Ryland became Jormag’s champion and I don’t think the game knows why either. It skirts around the issue in the DRM with Caithe but it doesn’t tell us much. All Ryland does is make some angry noises and snarky comments.

    Just end the story and I really agree.
    Bangar was imho a very good character, like an old patriotic guy stuck on the past, all his doing his (in his head) for the best of his people and I really loved this side of him.
    The face design, actor voice and so are very good for him.
    That because of this char, for the 1st time I was in the story and wanted to know more. Until now, all story of this game was pretty meh to me (don't judge me, I played teso for a long term and I'm now used to more when it come to story in mmorpg).

    And tbh, the middle/end of this story-arc was extremely disapointing so far..
    I mean, I see what they've tryed to do, but it was so badly introduce that it killed all the good about this story for me.

    (Hope everything is readable, my english is not that good so dunno if I've succed to explain how I feel about it)

  • Ashantara.8731Ashantara.8731 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited February 13, 2021

    @Poormany.4507 said:
    To me it feels like the Saga had at least half of its initial plans scrapped around halfway through when EoD development was started in full scale. Going by the season trailer and earlier stuff in the Saga, it seems like there were going to be more Visions of the Past, more Season 1 scrying pool episodes, more maps, and more larger-scale storylines (Centaurs, DsD or other water content, etc.) that would have been more expansion-like and had potential to be good content. The moment they suddenly started to imply Primordus was the "big threat" and began the Champions episodes it seems like the entire development of the Saga was given up in favor of getting to EoD as fast as possible with the Saga running on maintenance mode as filler until then.

    That seems to be the actual status quo, and I am rather sad about it, because I hate it when content gets scrapped (I was especially looking forward to the rest of the LWS1 story missions being released). Don't get me wrong, I am eager to play EoD - but I really wanted to see where they were going to go with the whole Norn/Jormag theme. This is beyond disappointing.

    @Orack.9756 said:
    Bangar was imho a very good character, like an old patriotic guy stuck on the past, all his doing his (in his head) for the best of his people and I really loved this side of him.
    The face design, actor voice and so are very good for him.

    I agree, and I had hopes for that part of the storyline as well. But then:

    @Oxstar.7643 said:
    Ryland is dumb. As is Bangar.

    That actually sums up my current "excitement" about the story.

  • Westenev.5289Westenev.5289 Member ✭✭✭✭

    People complain about characters like Braham or Ryland without realising this story has given them a chance for genuine growth. If Anet could pull that off, I think that'd be much better than killing them off.

  • Loboling.5293Loboling.5293 Member ✭✭✭

    @Westenev.5289 said:
    People complain about characters like Braham or Ryland without realising this story has given them a chance for genuine growth. If Anet could pull that off, I think that'd be much better than killing them off.

    I think a lot of us have realized that Braham has finally found a solid place in the story. I found his unjustified blaming of the commander for everything really annoying, but not as much as having the commander accept it. Either way, with everything else in the story these days. Braham seems like something good... I mean, I did facepalm a lot when he came to the prologue and wouldn't stop drinking and embarrassing dragon's watch. But it's not so bad, nothing like being insulted and forced to stay quiet. Which was a lot of players problems with Braham. Him apologizing and admitting he was a big kitten is enough for me to move on.

    Ryland doesn't really have room to grow. I mean, maybe if he survives the death of jormag, but until he's freed, he can't redeem himself. And frankly, getting Almora killed and knowingly betraying his people to gain power makes him a villain through and through. Caudecause had more of a chance at redemption.

    I also miss Bangar, as he had a much more interesting character arc. Putting him in a cage, while symbolic, is not great if we're left with boring Ryland.

  • Touchme.1097Touchme.1097 Member ✭✭✭

    @Westenev.5289 said:
    People complain about characters like Braham or Ryland without realising this story has given them a chance for genuine growth. If Anet could pull that off, I think that'd be much better than killing them off.

    Sometime scrapping off a character entirely is the wiser thing to do, especially if that character was badly designed since the start.