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.