[SPOILERS] I have mixed feelings about Kralkatorrik. — Guild Wars 2 Forums
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[SPOILERS] I have mixed feelings about Kralkatorrik.

Hypnowulf.7403Hypnowulf.7403 Member ✭✭

This is going to have spoilers. If you're going to read any of this then I'd like for you to keep that in mind, past this point caveat lector applies.

This is something that's been bucketing around in my noggin ever since I returned his blood to his heart. I feel that the execution of Kralk's torment was fairly eloquent despite being so on the nose. I think that such a physical representation of inner torment might help some who suffer with inner pain to realise that what haunts them isn't necessarily them, per se. It's also cathartic for those of us who suffer with any degree of invasive thoughts or self-loathing because who doesn't want to take another's torment down? That's a grand kindness in and of itself. Therein lies the rub though as it makes the conclusion less than satisfying for me.

What we've learned is that at some point Kralk was afflicted with physical suffering and mental torment, a pain so great that it allowed the insidious parasitic infection—his torment—to gain control over his mind. Whomever lies beyond the veiled curtain is our true villain as they afflicted Kralk with this, I don't think that in his case his torment just came about. It is relateable though as many of us—especially the more introspective of us—are going to have similar inner demons. The way in which his tormenet was narratively executed though suggests a writer who's got or has had some familiarity with mentally disquieting conditions.

I really am excited about the concept of Kralk's torment as a whole because it's going to offer a lot of catharsis, as I said, but then it leads to something that does much to rob the power away of such a powerful achievement. You have to kill Kralkatorrik. It seems like after defeating his torment his pain and the mind control of the parasitic infection have left him, I would've wanted to try to convince him to join us. It's sad that he had to go. I can understand if the pain was still there and the torment not then he would've wanted to go to escape the pain, and even though that's still a problematic message I can get why he'd just want it to end after being alive so long..

I can also understand why having a dragon quite as powerful as Kralkatorrik around would've been problematic narratively as he would've presented a greater power than the rest of the Elder Dragons. That would've been a good point to create an ending for the Guild Wars 2 storyline on though, to be sure. I know the story isn't done yet so I suppose having a set of guns as big as Kralk's around would pose some narrative difficulties. Though they might be fun narrative difficulties? It'd be interesting to see the other Elder Dragons fashion an uneasy alliance to confront so much power. The repetition of New Area, New Dragon might've given way to a more varied story.

That would be a bold, brave choice however and perhaps one that isn't the best suited to an MMORPG which needs to be formulaic.

This all brings me to my final point. I think we're going to end up killing every other dragon, aren't we? I mean, if the other dragons are afflicted in the same way as Kralkatorrik then they're effectively innocent of their actions. With Kralk it felt like putting an innocent person to death but the reasons why were more evident there. I mean, with Kralk it could've been a mercy killing if he was indeed still in pain. I really hope we didn't kill him just because of his guilt because that's not a great message. That's a problematic message.

So I think that some clarity there could help. It'd also be nice if we could save more of these Elder Dragons. I can imagine again that it's unlikely due to an MMORPG needing a more formulaic plot but that's just how I am. I'm more of a healer than a murderer, I'm not all that excited by the prospect of murdering more dragons but I would be so invested in healing them. I would be so happy if the culmination of Jormag's arc resulted in us freeing them from their torment to give them a second chance.

That's about all I wanted to say.

Comments

  • Trise.2865Trise.2865 Member ✭✭✭✭

    Isn't the fact that you're having these complex thoughts and emotions about your "formulaic" character's actions indicative that there was more going on than meets the eye? that it was, in fact, good storytelling and not some monkeys on typewriters?

    If we want ANet to step up their game, then we must step up ours.

  • Randulf.7614Randulf.7614 Member ✭✭✭✭

    I was going to write a whole post on how Ive hated all this stuff on Dragons being tormented etc and all this attempts to heal, cure or humanise vastly ancient, almost alien creatures, but the point is no longer valid. Anet already - for me- ruined the mystique of the Dragons and the time for further recriminations on the point is now past.

    Bear in mind, we do not know if the torment drove them to be aggressive, but merely enhanced it to insatiable levels. Torment is the accumulation of magics over millennia which turned - at least Kralk - even madder and aggressive as time went on. The Forgotten tried to cure Kralk of its corruption, but the accumulated rage from the torment was too much defence against such an attempt - if any was possible anyway. We could never heal or turn an Elder Dragon. I doubt they began life as pacifists.

    Aurene is the only unique case and that is believed to be because of her interactions with the races from birth and how she was raised. And since GW2 is stated to be her story, the focus seems to be not on curing the Dragons, but on her being the replacement for them all (as ridiculous as that seems). We do not know if she is at risk of this torment and whether it could in fact turn her into what she replaced (which makes the whole preceeding story line redundant)

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  • Stephen.6312Stephen.6312 Member ✭✭✭

    @Randulf.7614 said:
    I was going to write a whole post on how Ive hated all this stuff on Dragons being tormented etc and all this attempts to heal, cure or humanise vastly ancient, almost alien creatures, but the point is no longer valid. Anet already - for me- ruined the mystique of the Dragons and the time for further recriminations on the point is now past.

    Bear in mind, we do not know if the torment drove them to be aggressive, but merely enhanced it to insatiable levels. Torment is the accumulation of magics over millennia which turned - at least Kralk - even madder and aggressive as time went on. The Forgotten tried to cure Kralk of its corruption, but the accumulated rage from the torment was too much defence against such an attempt - if any was possible anyway. We could never heal or turn an Elder Dragon. I doubt they began life as pacifists.

    Aurene is the only unique case and that is believed to be because of her interactions with the races from birth and how she was raised. And since GW2 is stated to be her story, the focus seems to be not on curing the Dragons, but on her being the replacement for them all (as ridiculous as that seems). We do not know if she is at risk of this torment and whether it could in fact turn her into what she replaced (which makes the whole preceeding story line redundant)

    I wouldn't be so sure about Aurene being an exception. Kralkatorrik may have started out as a pacifist too, only to become more aggressive as he consumed different kinds of magic. We really have no idea how the Elders became so domineering.

  • Yasai.3549Yasai.3549 Member ✭✭✭✭

    I've said it once I've said it a dozen times :

    I feel like they have used Kralkatorik too soon.
    They should have used Jormag and Primordius after Balthazar, then finish off with Kralkatorik for a big ending.

    The growth of Aurene in PoF and Season 4 was TOO FAST.
    I didn't even get to grasp her character before that either because she never talked, just chirped and roared.

    They should have done Rip Joko > Jormag > Aurene grows a little > Primordius > Aurene grows a little + some Kralk confrontation > First confrontation of Kralkatorik + Aurene Death > Aurene revives + Dragonfall > Races resume petty conflicts now that there is one big Elder Dragon and that Elder Dragons are seemingly controlled by "one party"(briefly touched on in Icebrood episode 1)

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  • Konig Des Todes.2086Konig Des Todes.2086 Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited March 9, 2020

    @Randulf.7614 said:
    Bear in mind, we do not know if the torment drove them to be aggressive, but merely enhanced it to insatiable levels.

    We actually were indeed told that Kralkatorrik was evil before being afflicted by Torment. Not wholly evil as he still loved his family, but on the darker shade of the spectrum all the same.

    We aren't sure if this is so for the other Elder Dragons - and we're still not fully sure if they are/were afflicted by Torment (though it seems they are and, like Kralk, have been for eons).

    @Yasai.3549 said:
    I've said it once I've said it a dozen times :

    I feel like they have used Kralkatorik too soon.
    They should have used Jormag and Primordius after Balthazar, then finish off with Kralkatorik for a big ending.

    The growth of Aurene in PoF and Season 4 was TOO FAST.
    I didn't even get to grasp her character before that either because she never talked, just chirped and roared.

    They should have done Rip Joko > Jormag > Aurene grows a little > Primordius > Aurene grows a little + some Kralk confrontation > First confrontation of Kralkatorik + Aurene Death > Aurene revives + Dragonfall > Races resume petty conflicts now that there is one big Elder Dragon and that Elder Dragons are seemingly controlled by "one party"(briefly touched on in Icebrood episode 1)

    I HEAVILY disagree. First off, your suggestion blatantly ignores the entire setup establishment of Season 3 and Path of Fire - it ignores the entire reason for Balthazar being an actual antagonist: the death of another Elder Dragon without replacement will result in the world's destruction. To ignore a plot point built up for an entire year is horrible storytelling. Far worse than what Season 4 was. There simply cannot be "one big Elder Dragon".

    Secondly, while Season 4's pacing wasn't that great - especially Aurene's resurrection which was on par to GoT's last three episodes imo - but to completely ignore Kralkatorrik after the events of Path of Fire and, moreso, after the first two episodes of Season 4 would feel extremely jarring and out of place. Jormag and Primordus had been established as non-threats due to the events of Season 3, while Kralkatorrik had been established as a greater-than-ever threat as of the end of PoF and S4E1.

    Besides which, thanks to Jormag's and Primordus' state of being, we end up in the same exact placement as you say, but without the compelling narrative of someone trying to control an Elder Dragon now that they "see it can be done" (technically not true, but true from a certain point of view).

    I will restate that Season 4's pacing was too fast - as was Season 3's - but I think this would have been solved by adding three episodes (one per team). Not by completely ignoring established and critical plot points and utterly and jarringly 180'ing on an established threat to focus on a non-threat.

    I also feel like they used Kralkatorrik too late. Or rather, I feel like the use of Kralkatorrik was unfuflfilling for its original confrontations - the members of Destiny's Edge all needed bigger roles (especially the non-existent Zojja) in both Thunderhead Keep and Dragonfall. Too late, because of the state of Eir and Zojja, leading their story that was split by Kralkatorrik ultimately left without proper resolve because the two influenced the greatest by Kralkatorrik's victory were not present.

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