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The tragedy of Hexxat.

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Comments

  • DisgruntlerDisgruntler Member Posts: 100
    edited December 2013
    @shawne
    If you think having the highest INT in the game or being the only bard is somehow as immersion breaking as vampirism without traditional weaknesses, then I can't convince you.
    Anyway, in my opinion Hexxat is a badly written character. Because she is too special to the point of immersion breaking and because the whole mysterious and distanced stick of her produces a boring, limited character.
    Hexxat is solely defined by a few buzzwords and never leaves the constraints of her character sheet. I played with her in my party through SoA and large parts of ToB until she bugged out of the game. At numerous points her dialogue or rather lack thereof left me wondering if my game bugged out and I missed large chunks of character development. She does not have realistic character conflicts with several characters that should hate her and those interactions she has are often cringeworthy. She threatens Bodhi if you join up with her and have Hexxat in your party, for example.
    Compared with characters like Edwin or Viconia who actually do something with their backgrounds and have memorable dialogue, Hexxat is very lacking.

    But sure, I'm biased and opposing NPCs for their non-heteronormativity if I so much as mention her sexuality in a long list of reasons for why I dislike Hexxats writing.

    Mortianna
  • CrevsDaakCrevsDaak Member Posts: 7,142
    @nano Hexxat has now a place in my next evil run with party of BG2:EE.

    nanojackjack
  • kamuizinkamuizin Member Posts: 3,680
    CrevsDaak said:

    @nano Hexxat has now a place in my next evil run with party of BG2:EE.

    I'm going to w8 Valen mod be compatible with BG2:EE again to give try to vampires as joinable NPCs.

    booinyoureyesstormy35CrevsDaak
  • AyiekieAyiekie Member Posts: 792
    stormy35 said:


    There's no point bringing in the old characters into your arguments. They don't add any weight to it. The writing for old characters like Korgan, Edwin and Minsc has been some of the best I have ever seen in RPG games.

    Are you serious? I can't even decide whether I'm more bemused that you think BG has some of the best writing you've ever seen in RPG games, or that you use Edwin and Minsc as examples of this best writing.

    I mean, hey, subjective tastes are subjective tastes, I suppose. But to be honest, even the very best writing in BG is pretty amateur hour. Doesn't mean you can't enjoy it, of course. I enjoy fighting game storylines too, which tend to around the same level.
    stormy35 said:


    The fact that she is both a vampire and a lesbian pretty much indicate writing borderlines fan fiction.

    Could you and yours please stop referring to "lesbian" as if it is something other than a complete normal part of the human condition that anybody would expect to be represented in a random cross-section of a couple dozen people?

    Tarnfara
  • AyiekieAyiekie Member Posts: 792


    Any NPC in BG is first of all a NPC in BG. This means that the quality of that NPC is dependant to a large part on how natural the NPC feels as a part of the game world of BG. Whether or not notions of political correctness play into the specifics of the NPC isn't important for its quality.

    Having a lesbian in a game with many characters is not political correctness. It is representing reality. Faerun is not a magical hetero-safe NO GAY ZONE. This is actually canonical, BTW. So there is no reason that it is even worthy of comment that someone is a lesbian. Period.


    I consider her to be badly written because she is a vampire AND from Chult AND a lesbian AND has a cloak covering her vampire weakness AND has a bag of holding covering another of her vampire weaknesses.

    Whereas I decide whether characters are well or badly written based upon whether they're well or badly written, not upon an arbitrary list of criteria that I decide automatically make someone "too exotic".

    BTW, vampires are a hell of a lot more common and unnoteworthy in-setting than tieflings are. Or, for that matter, "miniature giant space hamsters".


    Plus her further dialogue makes no attempt to alleviate any of that. She was written to be mysterious and distanced, only giving short answers. Which only serves to make her shallow, because she gives no real answer to any question. The player learns nothing about her past or her character through her dialogue.

    Yes you do. I assume the dialogues in question are linked to her romance, since I learned a fair bit about her past and character.

    Before you complain about that, I'll point out you learn jack about Aerie if you don't at least start her romance. It's not an ideal situation, I will freely grant, but it again isn't unique to Hexxat (or to Baldur's Gate).

    Tarnfara
  • AyiekieAyiekie Member Posts: 792
    stormy35 said:


    No doubt people have requested for Xzar to be saved but not at the expense of Jaheira.

    Probably because Xzar and Jaheira have nothing to do with each other? Xzar's quest and death is the same whether you have Jaheira in your party as a romance or whether you left her missile-ridden corpse in Irenicus's dungeon.


    I disagree with the notion that they are different characters. The developer obviously intended for them to be mutually exclusive because they have the same class/alignment/stats. In that sense, Clara is just the identical half of the same character for the purpose of story transition.

    They are different characters because they are literally different characters. They are different people with a different face, voice, name, and stats. I'm not even sure what you're arguing here.


    From what I can gather in the forum posts is that a good proportion of players would rather prefer Clara in her current state than Hexxat.

    Your first mistake is assuming that several people in a forum represent anything other than several people in a forum.

    Your second mistake is in somehow missing that people who hate the idea of a Clara DLC are about equal in numbers to people who want a Clara DLC, which is why every thread on the topic keeps getting closed due to flamewars.

    Your third mistake is in assuming that wanting Clara to be a character (as I do) means you think that Hexxat is poor quality or otherwise deficient (as I do not).


    If you actually stop being so defensive about Hexxat in a obsessive-compulsive way, you would understand that most of the issues brought up by numerous people are valid arguments.

    Your fourth mistake is in assuming that because you agree with an argument, it is self-evidently true and therefore the only possible reason somebody could have for disagreeing is because they're stupid, malicious, or not paying attention. I know these arguments; I reject them. To illustrate:


    The superficial implementation of vamprism,

    Different types of vampires are canonical for D&D; Hexxat lacks both some of the weaknesses but also some of the strengths of the local vampires, and has a few unique abilities. I reject this argument.


    the background development (as you mentioned it yourself that she spent all of her vampiric life in isolation in a coffin implicating that she is just a vampire fledgling yet she dealt with someone like L - it just does not make any sense),

    Her background development is considerably more than most of the BG NPCs, it just doesn't include her time as a vampire. I reject this argument.


    the short no longer than 5-6 word writing style

    She has lots of dialogue longer than that. This argument is objectively wrong, and also pretty silly since writing quality is not dependent on the length of a character's sentences.


    all pretty much contributed to the failure to engage the players.

    Plenty of people like Hexxat. I reject this unsupported claim that is based primarily on what you want to believe is true and not even on the "forum posts" you wanted to use to support it earlier - the primary reason all Clara threads end in flames is that overzealous Hexxat-lovers perceive them as an attack on Hexxat.

    CrevsDaakUltraFennecArtonaTarnfara
  • AlcopopStarAlcopopStar Member Posts: 28
    edited January 2014
    I have issues with Hexxat, but they tend to stem purely from the writing.

    Like it or not, in the wests current cultural political climate Hexxat is exotic. Now i'm not saying that is a good thing, it's not, but it is a fact due to the incredible under representation of women, poc and gay characters in all media.

    Unfortunately poring all three things into one character on top of vampirism means that character has a lot to deliver in terms of writing, and will inevitably be put under a bigger microscope because of it. Once again, not ideal, but reality.

    Hexxats issue is that she fails to do any one thing justice. Pushing aside her gender, as gender representation isn't too much of an issue among companions, we never learn anything about her culture that isn't incidental and her lesbianism is only explored in a very shallow sense. The same goes for her vampirism. And even if you feel that these things should be incidental within a modern narrative, i don't feel we get enough character that is divorced from these concepts beyond the vague talks about her mother.

    I don't agree with the argument that Hexxat is a problem because of her "exotic nature" because I just don't believe there is anything inherently narrative destroying about any of her component parts, even in combination. I do however think that she suffers from a general lack of focus that a less thematically cluttered character wouldn't have had. Of course, good writing could of made up for this.

    I don't share the same vitriol that some on the forum have for her. But I do wish she was a more satisfying romance option and character in general.

    stormy35QuartzNybCR
  • stormy35stormy35 Member Posts: 39
    Ayiekie said:

    stormy35 said:


    There's no point bringing in the old characters into your arguments. They don't add any weight to it. The writing for old characters like Korgan, Edwin and Minsc has been some of the best I have ever seen in RPG games.

    Are you serious? I can't even decide whether I'm more bemused that you think BG has some of the best writing you've ever seen in RPG games, or that you use Edwin and Minsc as examples of this best writing.

    I mean, hey, subjective tastes are subjective tastes, I suppose. But to be honest, even the very best writing in BG is pretty amateur hour. Doesn't mean you can't enjoy it, of course. I enjoy fighting game storylines too, which tend to around the same level.
    stormy35 said:


    The fact that she is both a vampire and a lesbian pretty much indicate writing borderlines fan fiction.

    Could you and yours please stop referring to "lesbian" as if it is something other than a complete normal part of the human condition that anybody would expect to be represented in a random cross-section of a couple dozen people?

    In no way did I mention that being a lesbian is out of norm. What I said was that defining Hexxat as both vampire and lesbian did not work for me. Since neither aspects of Hexxat were adequately written and shaped in the game. As a consequence of that, I felt like the material written was bordering fan fiction.


    One of the main reason why people kept coming back to BG2 is the writing. Good writing holds up for as long as the game exists. Vivid and intriguing characters require good writing. It's also the little bit of random banters that make the overall experience engaging.

    If you think that the writing of this game is 'amateur' and is on par with fighting game story lines then obviously you play it for different reasons, which is fine. Although it's popularity and the amount of awards it has won over the years is inconsistent with your claim.

  • stormy35stormy35 Member Posts: 39
    Ayiekie said:

    stormy35 said:


    No doubt people have requested for Xzar to be saved but not at the expense of Jaheira.

    Probably because Xzar and Jaheira have nothing to do with each other? Xzar's quest and death is the same whether you have Jaheira in your party as a romance or whether you left her missile-ridden corpse in Irenicus's dungeon.


    I disagree with the notion that they are different characters. The developer obviously intended for them to be mutually exclusive because they have the same class/alignment/stats. In that sense, Clara is just the identical half of the same character for the purpose of story transition.

    They are different characters because they are literally different characters. They are different people with a different face, voice, name, and stats. I'm not even sure what you're arguing here.


    From what I can gather in the forum posts is that a good proportion of players would rather prefer Clara in her current state than Hexxat.

    Your first mistake is assuming that several people in a forum represent anything other than several people in a forum.

    Your second mistake is in somehow missing that people who hate the idea of a Clara DLC are about equal in numbers to people who want a Clara DLC, which is why every thread on the topic keeps getting closed due to flamewars.

    Your third mistake is in assuming that wanting Clara to be a character (as I do) means you think that Hexxat is poor quality or otherwise deficient (as I do not).


    If you actually stop being so defensive about Hexxat in a obsessive-compulsive way, you would understand that most of the issues brought up by numerous people are valid arguments.

    Your fourth mistake is in assuming that because you agree with an argument, it is self-evidently true and therefore the only possible reason somebody could have for disagreeing is because they're stupid, malicious, or not paying attention. I know these arguments; I reject them. To illustrate:


    The superficial implementation of vamprism,

    Different types of vampires are canonical for D&D; Hexxat lacks both some of the weaknesses but also some of the strengths of the local vampires, and has a few unique abilities. I reject this argument.


    the background development (as you mentioned it yourself that she spent all of her vampiric life in isolation in a coffin implicating that she is just a vampire fledgling yet she dealt with someone like L - it just does not make any sense),

    Her background development is considerably more than most of the BG NPCs, it just doesn't include her time as a vampire. I reject this argument.


    the short no longer than 5-6 word writing style

    She has lots of dialogue longer than that. This argument is objectively wrong, and also pretty silly since writing quality is not dependent on the length of a character's sentences.


    all pretty much contributed to the failure to engage the players.

    Plenty of people like Hexxat. I reject this unsupported claim that is based primarily on what you want to believe is true and not even on the "forum posts" you wanted to use to support it earlier - the primary reason all Clara threads end in flames is that overzealous Hexxat-lovers perceive them as an attack on Hexxat.
    Clara and Hexxat are one and the same as far as the plot goes. Their stats are 100% identical (Nerfed Hexxat). Their profession and alignment are single class thieves and evil, respectively. Despite Clara having a different portrait and voice, she was only meant to serve as a interlude character who paved the way for the real NPC of this quest - Hexxat. So plot-wise, they are the same, split personality if you prefer.

    It goes without saying that there are people who are happy with Hexxat and with or without an alternative option to keep Clara. However, there is a significant proportion of people that feel that Hexxat, despite being evil, does not fit well into an evil party as a vampire. This is likely due to the lack of depth and believability of Hexxat as a Vampire NPC.

  • AlcopopStarAlcopopStar Member Posts: 28
    ^ great breakdown 100% agree ^

    I am still happy that they tried. And some degree of representation is better then total erasure (as it can be critiqued at very least). But yes, there certainly are many pitfalls in creating a character like this and unfortunately Hexxat doesn't manage to break the mold.

  • AyiekieAyiekie Member Posts: 792
    stormy35 said:


    In no way did I mention that being a lesbian is out of norm. What I said was that defining Hexxat as both vampire and lesbian did not work for me. Since neither aspects of Hexxat were adequately written and shaped in the game. As a consequence of that, I felt like the material written was bordering fan fiction.

    Why is being lesbian have anything to do with "fan fiction"?
    stormy35 said:


    If you think that the writing of this game is 'amateur' and is on par with fighting game story lines then obviously you play it for different reasons, which is fine. Although it's popularity and the amount of awards it has won over the years is inconsistent with your claim.

    For 15 years ago, the writing was great, if you put aside Planescape Torment and a vanishingly few other examples. It's not 15 years ago.

    Video game writing is very amateur. That doesn't mean I don't enjoy it, because schlocky writing can be enjoyable. But by the metrics I use to define good writing, and the metrics most people use to define "good writing", it's not very good. Of course, those metrics are subjective, as all critique of art is subjective. But by the same token that I can say American Beauty is a "better" movie than Street Fighter, even though I enjoyed both, Baldur's Gate simply isn't that well written. It's full of cliches, the characters rarely rise beyond archetypes, there's numerous plot holes (and even more places where you're railroaded through things that logically the characters could and even should have handled differently), and so on and so forth.

    And yeah, it is about on par with many fighting game storylines. Note I said I enjoyed them. I enjoy Baldur's Gate, too. But in neither case do I think it's a great miscarriage of justice that traditional awards aren't recognising their brilliance. And in neither case would I count them among the best storylines I've ever read, in video games or elsewhere.

    If you do, that's fine! As I said, writing is subjective. I admittedly can't think much of your taste for thinking THAT highly of Baldur's Gate's writing, but I also don't think much of the taste of people who think Game of Thrones is the greatest tv show ever. I enjoy both of them, however (well, except when GoT pisses me off, which is admittedly kind of often).

  • Edwin_OdesseironEdwin_Odesseiron Member Posts: 226
    @Ayiekie
    Ayiekie said:



    I could argue about the points brought up about Hexxat, but why bother? It's mostly subjective. I was only registering that not everyone agrees with you, so that you can stop doing this kind of self-congratulatory BS:

    "But because she is official content, people are defending - Wait.. No. They're not. Finally. You know an NPC is truly horrible when no one likes her and notices the writing/character development simply sucks. And when the other half are calling for Clara over Hexxat. "

    Lots of people like Hexxat, as most people in this thread ought to be perfectly well aware. I assume most of them are avoiding the thread because of the holidays, or because this thread is a morass of awful opinions like: "As a man, I can safely say that I don't really understand women. And I certainly don't understand women who want nothing to do with either my or anyone's else's cock."



    The reason I no longer wish to discuss anything with you is because you evidently have a lack of even the most basic of comprehension skills.

    What part of: "But because she is official content, people are defending - Wait.. No. They're not. Finally. You know an NPC is truly horrible when no one likes her and notices the writing/character development simply sucks. And when the other half are calling for Clara over Hexxat. "

    Has ANYTHING to do with: "As a man, I can safely say that I don't really understand women. And I certainly don't understand women who want nothing to do with either my or anyone's else's cock."

    I see you are berating other posters for saying things about her being a lesbian but you are the one bringing it up even where it wasn't present. I never once mentioned her sexuality. I mentioned the poor quality of the romance. So why bring it up? Making a straw man argument is not any way to approach a discussion, and it just pisses people off. Like me for example, where I am no longer willing to discuss anything with your type of ilk ever again.

    Now, a lesbian vampire IS borderline fanfiction. There's so many examples in pop culture about this, and the idea is extremely popular among young teenage girls. If you haven't noticed it you must be living under a rock, your mum's basement, or somewhere far removed from western society. Regardless, whether you agree with it or not is irrelevant because this particular thing does not need your approval to be true. It is very true. Moreover, being a lesbian is normal, yes. But being a lesbian also puts her into a niche character (because being a lesbian isn't a 50/50 split between women. It is not that common.) Thus, as well as being from Chult, a vampire and a lesbian puts her in three separate niches. It's overboard.

    As for the quality of writing is subjective, yes, it is. But any monkey can see that the writing from the old Bioware was far, far superior to the writing of what Beamdog has produced. Furthermore, I think the writing of the BG series is of a very good standard and high quality. I don't know what you're comparing it to in order to call it "schlocky" or write it off as "video game writing, amateur" etc.

    Oh, and this has got to be the latest in the list of the stupidest things I've read from you:


    "For 15 years ago, the writing was great, if you put aside Planescape Torment and a vanishingly few other examples. It's not 15 years ago."

    Shakespeare must be crying. His 15 years are long over.

    Mortianna
  • AyiekieAyiekie Member Posts: 792
    edited January 2014
    Speaking of reading comprehension, Edwin, you are clearly completely desperate to get banned. I don't really want to be the cause of you getting banned, so I'll decline to respond to you further, at least in this thread. I really recommend for your own good that you cool off a bit.

  • Edwin_OdesseironEdwin_Odesseiron Member Posts: 226
    Banned or not, I'm going out saying what I want. I'm not going to be silenced by the one-way justice system that these forums are rife with. You and Cyteen deserve a warning as much as I do, yet I am the only one being pulled up on it? Disgusting.

    Thanks to @booinyoureyes for doing what no one else seems to and standing up for the truth.

    The rules should be changed on these boards to complaint-based. If someone has a problem, they report it, and the mods then investigate. As it stands now, the mods peruse these boards picking who they want to ban/warn, and I happen to be the most obvious scapegoat. I remember another thread where myself and another user were heatedly debating a topic. No one was being rude or name-calling, and a mod stepped in and warned us to "calm down." When I prompted the mod, asking them when did a heated debate require a warning, the mod didn't reply. This is censorship, babysitting, not moderating.

    And I am being personally targeted, it seems. I'm sick of it.

    As for not "answering" me, I suspect it is because you have absolutely nothing to say to my arguments that completely destroyed you and your viewpoint.

    Thanks for stopping by.

    Quartz
  • DisgruntlerDisgruntler Member Posts: 100
    @Mordeus and @booinyoureyes
    Well said. It's a shame that honest discussion about a character gets swamped down in political correctness just because that character is of an earthly minority.

    stormy35kamuizin
This discussion has been closed.