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What Lies Within Discussion: Do We Feel Appreciated Now? [Merged]


mandala.8507

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Just a follow-up discussion to all the talk about the Commander and their friends in Cantha in the post-EoD patches:

Are we feeling seen and properly consoled by our allies now?

Did the patch put to rest our concerns of being underrecognized for our mental anguish?

Was this an appropriately toned and themed resolution to our inner turmoil?

Basically just curious what our thoughts are about our friends and the attention the Commander was given now that we've actually played the patch.

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I thought the choices of trauma to revisit were bizarre. And I don't think the NPCs cared too much about our "trauma" Vs our attention to theirs. Not that we had any major options to address any trauma because the options weren't especially relevant.

To be honest, whilst I don't think the NPCs reciprocated that much, it wasn't anything I was concenred about either. There were far bigger issues in this episode than that.

 

Edited by Randulf.7614
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4 hours ago, Randulf.7614 said:

I thought the choices of trauma to revisit were bizarre.

If we get a little meta in our analysis of the Gyala Delve patches, it's clear they deliberately allocated very few resources to them, and one of the biggest cuts they made was to new voiced dialogue. They only used dialogue already in the game for the memories we were interacting with from outside of Cantha (to my knowledge; I'm 99% sure), which is why the trauma choices might seem odd. They only used characters they had good lines for, and so the choices were a bit all over the place.

I do think the sentiments they chose for each were good though.

We had a real tragic moment with Blish due to his relation to 2 of our now longtime allies, Gorrik and Taimi, who were directly impacted forever by our inability to get the job done and make sure he came back alive. He was a great choice.

Cinder was interesting. I think her dialogue wasn't that compelling imo, but her being an unnecessary casualty in our failed peace talks was a good beat to lean into from the story. We made a lot of stupid mistakes in IBS and failed countless times, and so having a moment from that era of the game to focus on when it came to our trauma was also a poignant selection.

It wasn't really about her so much as it was about how we failed all the Charr by letting the situation get so out of hand after we got hurt and by not recognizing some of our allies were not to be fully trusted.

Vlast was a no-brainer choice because he had so much sentimental dialogue from his crystals in PoF. And it was also very cool to see his model again and be asked to travel back to the desert to deal with our emotions from having failed in our fight with Balthazar there, forcing him to sacrifice himself for us because we weren't aware how outmatched we were.

I haven't seen the Aurene choice yet, but again, it was probably chosen just because they had appropriate dialogue for it; good enough sentiments to make due with.

Tbh, using all old dialogue plays really well with how the Haze magic affects people, too. The demon can only target real memories and distort them, which I think is fun and probably was a challenge for the writers to pull off. Even if it wasn't perfect, I acknowledge the constraints at play for them here and admire the effort.

definitely don't think they can get away with follow-up expansion patches being this cheaply implemented in the future, but I realize they had a choice to either put time and money into the expansion everyone already paid for or into the next expac they wanted to push out, and I respect their desire to put their best foot forward for the first mini-expansion instead.

4 hours ago, Randulf.7614 said:

And I don't think the NPCs cared too much about our "trauma" Vs our attention to theirs.

In my opinion, we were absolutely the center of all attention in this patch. Our allies even traveled across the world to help us address our past. I would almost say they cared too much. I would not expect this level of compassion from others in a situation like this.

But talking to some people about it, you'd think being an on-call mental health professional for them was a minimum requirement for acquaintanceship, haha.

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7 hours ago, mandala.8507 said:

Just a follow-up discussion to all the talk about the Commander and their friends in Cantha in the post-EoD patches:

Are we feeling seen and properly consoled by our allies now?

Did the patch put to rest our concerns of being underrecognized for our mental anguish?

Was this an appropriately toned and themed resolution to our inner turmoil?

Basically just curious what our thoughts are about our friends and the attention the Commander was given now that we've actually played the patch.

My commander is feeling pretty bad about Demotionlist Tonn

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7 hours ago, mandala.8507 said:

Just a follow-up discussion to all the talk about the Commander and their friends in Cantha in the post-EoD patches:

Are we feeling seen and properly consoled by our allies now?

Did the patch put to rest our concerns of being underrecognized for our mental anguish?

Was this an appropriately toned and themed resolution to our inner turmoil?

Basically just curious what our thoughts are about our friends and the attention the Commander was given now that we've actually played the patch.

You know what? As someone who whined a kitten lot about this and that and was very sceptical due to the audio logs, I must say I'm happy now. There were sure things and choices (yay, we got choices!) I found a bit weird, but overall the story FELT GOOD to play through. So yeah, worked for me and no need for comfort cookies anymore. And I really liked the Commander's happy memory (can't pass a chance to gush over Trahearne) 😊

Now, if @Bobby Stein.3612 comes over, I want to say thanks for how it turned out. Can we get a story chapter with main focus on the Commander crashing social events with Canach, pretty please, puppy eyes?

And a friendly reminder that we still don't know if Laranthir has found love 😉

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3 hours ago, mandala.8507 said:

If we get a little meta in our analysis of the Gyala Delve patches, it's clear they deliberately allocated very few resources to them, and one of the biggest cuts they made was to new voiced dialogue. They only used dialogue already in the game for the memories we were interacting with from outside of Cantha (to my knowledge; I'm 99% sure), which is why the trauma choices might seem odd. They only used characters they had good lines for, and so the choices were a bit all over the place.

I do think the sentiments they chose for each were good though.

We had a real tragic moment with Blish due to his relation to 2 of our now longtime allies, Gorrik and Taimi, who were directly impacted forever by our inability to get the job done and make sure he came back alive. He was a great choice.

Cinder was interesting. I think her dialogue wasn't that compelling imo, but her being an unnecessary casualty in our failed peace talks was a good beat to lean into from the story. We made a lot of stupid mistakes in IBS and failed countless times, and so having a moment from that era of the game to focus on when it came to our trauma was also a poignant selection.

It wasn't really about her so much as it was about how we failed all the Charr by letting the situation get so out of hand after we got hurt and by not recognizing some of our allies were not to be fully trusted.

Vlast was a no-brainer choice because he had so much sentimental dialogue from his crystals in PoF. And it was also very cool to see his model again and be asked to travel back to the desert to deal with our emotions from having failed in our fight with Balthazar there, forcing him to sacrifice himself for us because we weren't aware how outmatched we were.

I haven't seen the Aurene choice yet, but again, it was probably chosen just because they had appropriate dialogue for it; good enough sentiments to make due with.

Tbh, using all old dialogue plays really well with how the Haze magic affects people, too. The demon can only target real memories and distort them, which I think is fun and probably was a challenge for the writers to pull off. Even if it wasn't perfect, I acknowledge the constraints at play for them here and admire the effort.

definitely don't think they can get away with follow-up expansion patches being this cheaply implemented in the future, but I realize they had a choice to either put time and money into the expansion everyone already paid for or into the next expac they wanted to push out, and I respect their desire to put their best foot forward for the first mini-expansion instead.

In my opinion, we were absolutely the center of all attention in this patch. Our allies even traveled across the world to help us address our past. I would almost say they cared too much. I would not expect this level of compassion from others in a situation like this.

But talking to some people about it, you'd think being an on-call mental health professional for them was a minimum requirement for acquaintanceship, haha.

Fair enough. I can't say I agree though. Cinder should never have been an option. There is no connection here for many as we are seeing from the feedback.

If constraints cause issues for dialogue use then that is very worrying. Cutting corners like that is not a good sign for the future at all. They should have chosen a different direction if they couldn’t utilise better options like Trahearne, Eir, our mentor, Almorra. Or other characters more attached to our story. There was simply no sense in including Cinder as an option here. Or even just not focused on our trauma at all. It didn’t add to anything or lead anywhere anyway. 

If we have to get meta to explain the failings and find a positive and justify this, I’m not reassured. 

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Am I the only one who read these names and thought. 

" Who the **** is this?" 

I looked up Cinder on the Wiki. 

Atleast for her I remembered who that was. The charr stabbed by Smudor. But why this character? 

Blish, Aurene? Makes perfect sense. 

But this random unimportant character? 

Am I missing something?

 

When it comes for Ayumi, even with the Wiki I have no idea who this is. 

I played alot of EoD but I can't remember ever encountering this character before. 

Canach and Yao are good choices. 

Edited by DanAlcedo.3281
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My answer to this would be: "sort of."

It's there, but the way it's executed is less than ideal in my opinion. The choices given to reflect on people are kinda...weird, Chul-Moo appearing in Ascalon out of all places are also weird. It feels less like emotional reflection and more like a pat on the back where NPCs are like "it's okay bro," and not really something that's...deep or emotional.

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I'm guessing Cinder was there because that was probably the most messed-up moment from Icebrood Saga you had a front-row seat to. Almorra's death was offscreen and there wasn't much of an "I could have stopped this" feel to it.

I suspect Trahearne or Eir would probably resonate more for more people, but they were further back, maybe that's why they weren't in the list. That, and Eir already got that send-off in LWS3; Trahearne is more debatable but did have that Caladbolg quest.

Ayumi is, I guess, easy to forget if you just blasted through Echovald and don't really remember any of it. Her most prominent moments are her appearance during the Echovald Gang War meta, and being the one Zuru won't stop complaining about by the Antique Summoning Stone vendor.

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SPOILERS FOR HEART OF THORNS, ICEBROOD SAGA AND END OF DRAGONS

I think they were trying to avoid overlap between the choices you get and the ones that already appeared. You need to keep in mind, this is still part of End of Dragons. We had Almora during the Battle of the Jade Sea, we had Eir and a few others after that, then we had this list where they wanted to include some villains too.

 

This time they weren't trying to just address our sorrow but also our hatred. If you pick the villains this becomes very evident as your character basically says they were trash but tries to empathise.

 

You straight up call Mai Trin horrible and unsalvageable (even after her sacrifice), for example.


We also need to remember that newer players go through this in a matter of months. Its only a short time after seeing their mentor in Hearts and Minds that they end up in End of Dragons (like maybe a few weeks). It just seems strange to us because its happened over a decade. Trahearne also already appeared several times, and his story was completely finished with the Caladbolg mini-story anyway.

Edited by SoftFootpaws.9134
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5 hours ago, DanAlcedo.3281 said:

The Story was ok.

The only problem i had with is was some of the character options we could choose.

Like. who the F is Cinder and Ayumi?

I have no idea why such random characters would be options. I had to wiki both.

 

SPOILERS FOR ICEBROOD SAGA

Cinder was a major character in IceBrood Saga, who the story revolves around due to being Ryland's girlfriend and her death sets off a very bad chain of events that threatens the world.

 

I don't know how someone couldn't remember that, or consider her insignificant, especially since in the original silent release during COVID the only voiced line in the entire chapter was Ryland's "I trusted you" afterwards which had players hanging onto the edge of their seats.

 

You also get to know her fairly personally in the Forging Steel strike mission (though not as the Commander).

Edited by SoftFootpaws.9134
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27 minutes ago, SoftFootpaws.9134 said:

SPOILERS FOR ICEBROOD SAGA

Cinder was a major character in IceBrood Saga, who the story revolves around due to being Ryland's girlfriend and her death sets off a very bad chain of events that threatens the world.

 

I don't know how someone couldn't remember that, or consider her insignificant, especially since in the original silent release during COVID the only voiced line in the entire chapter was Ryland's "I trusted you" afterwards which had players hanging onto the edge of their seats.

 

You also get to know her fairly personally in the Forging Steel strike mission (though not as the Commander).

By the time she died, Ryland was off the rails already for ages. 

The story instance plays after the first part of the drizzle wood meta was over. Which means all of his Warband is already dead. 

And he knows it. He knew that sending them against us was suicide. He's not THIS kitten.  He knew and didn't care.

Her death meant nothing.  Her even being there meant nothing. 

Her death did not send of a bad chain of events.  If we didn't had her there she would be dead already anyway. 

There is no way he gave a kitten at this moment. 

 

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1 hour ago, Sirius.4510 said:

I'm guessing Cinder was there because that was probably the most messed-up moment from Icebrood Saga you had a front-row seat to. Almorra's death was offscreen and there wasn't much of an "I could have stopped this" feel to it.

I suspect Trahearne or Eir would probably resonate more for more people, but they were further back, maybe that's why they weren't in the list. That, and Eir already got that send-off in LWS3; Trahearne is more debatable but did have that Caladbolg quest.

Ayumi is, I guess, easy to forget if you just blasted through Echovald and don't really remember any of it. Her most prominent moments are her appearance during the Echovald Gang War meta, and being the one Zuru won't stop complaining about by the Antique Summoning Stone vendor.

Messed up how? 

We the commander killed probably hundreds of Charr before the instance even happens. (Meta) 

We killed all of the steel Warband. (Meta) 

Her dying was like "add one more to the list" 

And we didn't even do it. 

Why is this specific scenario where A kills B so much more important then the million others? 

 

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2 hours ago, SoftFootpaws.9134 said:

SPOILERS FOR ICEBROOD SAGA

Cinder was a major character in IceBrood Saga, who the story revolves around due to being Ryland's girlfriend and her death sets off a very bad chain of events that threatens the world.

 

I don't know how someone couldn't remember that, or consider her insignificant, especially since in the original silent release during COVID the only voiced line in the entire chapter was Ryland's "I trusted you" afterwards which had players hanging onto the edge of their seats.

 

You also get to know her fairly personally in the Forging Steel strike mission (though not as the Commander).

Not really anything to give us trauma over though. Especially compared to our mentor, Eir, Trahearne, Almorra. She was always going to die since we killed all the other warband members. It just wasn’t in battle.

Her death was a moment, but even if she hadn’t been killed then, overarching events were not going run a diff way apart from Smodurs death. Jormag was manipulating everything and almost everyone.

 

 

Edited by Randulf.7614
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17 minutes ago, Ashantara.8731 said:

I haven't played through the whole story of "What Lies Within" yet, but:

Ayumi is alive and well. Why would you list her here? (Also, she is the most important Tengu in the EoD story, so I am surprised one wouldn't remember her.)

I don't remember a single Tengu character being in the EoD story.  If someone would tell me we never encountered one, I would believe them. 

All I know that there is that one tiny village in Echowald that has a heart.  

I remember seeing more Tengu in HoT.

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Same. I had to pick Cinder to be reminded about her and yes, it's an odd choice. Sure Almorra's death was offscreen, but we could have remembered her nonetheless. Ayumi, I figured, had to be one of the Tengu, but then again, I couldn't remember wat exactly we did with or for her and why she was important. I guess the choices reflect the preferences of the writing team more than what actually matters to the story.

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Not sure if an hour of  non stop "You're Ok with this? I can help if you want. I'm there for you." makes up for a decade of neglect.
Now sure, I don't care that much about it. I see this as an action RPG with an ok'ish story and I never got that invested in the character of the Commander. For me it always was a rather hollow vessel to self insert and I was fine with it. But obviously the writing team had a different vision than me, some rando kitten-hat who knows nothing about writing. The writers wanted to make this big and emotional. To make things matter kitten kitten it! But it feels forced. After being captain bad-kitten for ten years, the sudden interest in the commanders mental health feels shallow.

I have my own 30 years ongoing battle with mental health issues and I can tell, when someone is actually invested in my well being or is just obliged to come across as interested, even if it comes from an honest spot, it just doesn't matter or help. I know, this is my problem and if you don't share it, congrats to you, let's hope it stays that way. But hearing "just ask for help if you need it" from characters who didn't care for the last ten years or who we basically met last week reminds of my co-workers or distant relatives offering help. I know it comes from an honest spot, but neither do they know me enough to help, nor do they actually want to help. They just know that it's appropriate to offer the gesture, but are just as happy, if I never actually ask for it.

Edited by Omega.6801
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RE: Cinder. The issue there isn't so much about her but the perceived failure in The Commander's leadership. Had that interaction not happened then Ryland may have abandoned Bangar. This would have turned the tide of the Charr civil war sooner as others would have defected with Ryland leading to a stronger possibility of keeping Jormag from waking. The Com blames their self for that as it led to lots of death that did not need to happen.

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40 minutes ago, Lan Deathrider.5910 said:

RE: Cinder. The issue there isn't so much about her but the perceived failure in The Commander's leadership. Had that interaction not happened then Ryland may have abandoned Bangar. This would have turned the tide of the Charr civil war sooner as others would have defected with Ryland leading to a stronger possibility of keeping Jormag from waking. The Com blames their self for that as it led to lots of death that did not need to happen.

Commander also mentions the researchers who die from the searing crystal bomb that they get tricked into using (or Rytlock uses it IIRC).

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2 minutes ago, Kalavier.1097 said:

Commander also mentions the researchers who die from the searing crystal bomb that they get tricked into using (or Rytlock uses it IIRC).

That's right. The Cinder path is all about their failure in leadership. That and humanizing (Charrizing?) people on the otherside of a conflict from them.

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