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So I just finished Siege of Dragonspear... (Spoilers)

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Comments

  • IakusIakus Member Posts: 27
    Rawgrim said:

    brunardo said:

    was a happy with the overall game and thought beamdog did a great job, the intro with wrapping up with sarevok cronies and ending was pleased with and having "hooded" man throughout was well thought of.

    You mean the hooded man that frames you for murder that almost ends with you getting killed? Despite the hooded man actually needs you alive so he can have your soul? Not well thought out, no. Kind of like trying to blow someone's head off with a shotgun because you need the person alive in a year.
    My assumption is that if Charname couldn't escape Baldur's Gate, Irenicus would ensure that an opportunity opened up, even if he had to take matters into his own hands.

    ThacoBell

  • My PC is a mage, and this seems to be acknowledged a lot more in SoD. Being a magic user seems to provide alternative ways to solve problems which I found pretty cool.
    Examples:
    - Pretending to cast an 'anti-ageing spell' on the noblewoman in the Three Old Kegs so she'd give you her necklace.

    I never finish this one side quest in the Three Old Kegs with that noblawoman 'cause I dunno how look the
    anti-ageing spell/scroll and maybe the problem was that Dynaheir can't cast this spell. :sweat_smile:


    I disliked the journal system, which I found confusing. Why include the quests from the base game? It's not like they are going to be used again in this game. Also, the way the journal updates for the tiniest little thing, and basically spoon-feeds you what to do, feels condescending.

    The eight million quick save slots make no sense either. Confusing?! If you want more than one save slot just do it the long way, otherwise what is the point of having a quick save slot to begin with?

    I finish this game today and I agree about with journal system and lost of quick saves. I was accustomed with old journal system from original game. When you click on journal or press "J" you have on whole display journal with big fonts and easier is read. On newest version you press "J" and it was open really small journal. About quick saves I was annoying when I started play from BG:EE and I had some more quick saves. So I download mod with one quick save and now is better.


    Hephernann's portrait. He looks every inch the evil, arrogant, slimy bad guy. Pretty cool.

    Yep I like Hephernann's portrait too with full of black eyes. Now he became my favourite villain. :smiley:

    MagpieRandoms
  • UnderstandMouseMagicUnderstandMouseMagic Member Posts: 2,141
    Agree with OP.

    Some of the writing was laughably bad.
    And the worst of the writing was unecessary anyway.

    You are the hero of BG and a year later you get captured by Irenicus.
    Has anyone ever had a problem with this considering that since leaving Candlekeep you have become an "adventurer/dungeon crawler/mercenary ect." with a motley crew of random companions?

    Caelar wanted to save her UNCLE??????
    Are you kidding me?

    Irenicus wandered around with a leather mask on and nobody ever saw him?
    Where was Bodhi (if you are going to go down that road)

    You apparently kill Skie, you know that Skie who was going to run off with Eldoth. And in fact you can facilitate that by taking her into your party, but hang on, she's now so desperate to get away from her father she joins the FF incognito.
    After hanging out with Eldoth, chances are her father would have sent her to a nunnery or disowned her himself, or she was pregnant, and definitely disgraced, no noble family would have allowed her over the threashold. So the idea that the city, or any of the nobles, would give two hoots was ridiculous. Good riddance to bad rubbish.

    The dungeons were good, as the OP said in particular the meeting with the priestess in the Bhaal temple . If they were going to shoehorn Irenicus into this game, that should have been the springboard.

    And one thing at the end, wasn't the Soultaker Dagger the one the cult destroys in Ulgoth's Beard after you have retrieved it from Dulag's Tower?

    DanitheangeldevilRavenslightMagpieRandomsBaptor
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 9,697
    Does that make me the minority if I never saw Caelar as sympathetic at all?

  • cbarker15cbarker15 Member Posts: 38
    @ThacoBell I would say so.. All she wanted to do was save her uncle who sacrificed himself for her if I'm not mistaken.. She kinda used religion to get a bunch of people to follow her that she wasn't sure she could help but I kinda wanted to help her.. not enough to actually side with her but the first encounter on the bridge made me think about it.

    ThacoBellDapifer
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 9,697
    I see and understand that thinking, but her actions to fulfill her goal are not justified. She technically is responsible for more deaths and destruction than Sarevok. Her actions alone are enough to condemn her, regardless of intent.

    Vbibbi
  • Mush_MushMush_Mush Member Posts: 476
    On my first playthrough I was constantly on the lookout for the opportunity to join her. Alas, it never came :(

    semiticgodCalemyr
  • Abi_DalzimAbi_Dalzim Member Posts: 1,410
    You can interpret Caelar as sympathetically or not as you want, but it's pretty clear from the writing that she's intended to be viewed as such. Beamdog can make some pretty detailed writing when they want to, but I wouldn't call them subtle. I swear, just one dialog line about how if she wanted Charname's assistance, she could have just sent a summons instead of assassins. Oh, and your advisor looks and sounds like a parody of a Zhent, maybe pay closer attention to him.

    VbibbiGallowglassArctodus
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 9,697
    When confronted about the price on your head, she seems surprised by it and Hephernan deflects her question about it. I wouldn't be surprised if she intended to ask and her subverted her wishes for his master's gain.

    cbarker15
  • filcat88filcat88 Member Posts: 115
    edited November 2016
    I think we should mention that Caelar is a celestial, not a mortal (if I am not mistaken).
    So, she considers mortals expendable as much as many humans consider rabbits expendable.

    Her quest of doing a crusade to save "just" an uncle, seems reasonable writing.

    P.s.: don't get me wrong, I love rabbits, It was just for sake of example.

  • Mush_MushMush_Mush Member Posts: 476
    filcat88 said:

    I think we should mention that Caelar is a celestial, not a mortal (if I am not mistaken).

    She's an Aasimar so descended from celestials but very much mortal.

    GallowglassThacoBellsemiticgod
  • GallengerGallenger Member Posts: 403
    edited November 2016
    Aasimar's are *usually* just extra-goody goodies, but virtually every edition of D&D that has included Aasimars have noted that *sometimes* grandpa/ma celestial's blood causes weird things to happen and then they end up being decidedly *not* goody-goodies lol.

    I just finished SoD finally myself - restarting constantly hung me up for the longest time.

    I liked it. In a cruel way, I'd say that SoD was harder for me than BG1 or BG2 presently is - maybe that's just a feature of it being a new game I haven't played hundreds of times. But it could also be the sheer number of extraordinary abilities your enemies have. It felt good to really struggle again and took me back to when I was playing BG1 as a clueless 12 year old lol.

    The story was fine. The central antagonist was well written, and her *belief* that she was doing the right thing, and manipulation of thousands of people to fall in line, was great.

    I also enjoy the really nit-picky types who get upset the introduction of the soul-taker dagger. There's no rule that only one soul-taker dagger was ever made. In fact, if it was created to deal with a Alec'tec, you would assume there's actually quite a number of such daggers scattered around.

    I was happy with the writing, and ultimately the narrative space that SoD occupied was too constricted to be anything, but linear on the macro scale - micro scale you *do* get some choices of course - which is basically how BG always was. You kill Saervok regardless to complete the game no matter your motivation, and your having flooded or not flooded some mines somewhere really doesn't influence that at all.

    The game also looked glorious very nice art direction on the level design and I liked the new NPCs and banters. Some of the visual moments in SoD are really remarkable. That's what *really* stuck with me.

    My only real criticism is that I felt a lot of the levels were *too* big. A lot of the "dungeon" excursions could've easily been broken up into smaller more manageable chunks and the game would've been slightly more easy as a result. As it stands several of the levels are just so big it's virtually impossible to get through them without resting - and if you choose not to you're going to expend quite an amount of GP on potions to get through - I was flat broke at the end of SoD lol. Granted, we have more PC power now, so perhaps part of the smaller level design in BG1-2 was space/hardware limitations, but SoD's levels are some of the biggest/longest in both games and that results in a party of the 8-11 power level really getting worn down.

    filcat88
  • Mush_MushMush_Mush Member Posts: 476
    Gallenger said:


    I was happy with the writing, and ultimately the narrative space that SoD occupied was too constricted to be anything, but linear on the macro scale - micro scale you *do* get some choices of course - which is basically how BG always was. You kill Saervok regardless to complete the game no matter your motivation, and your having flooded or not flooded some mines somewhere really doesn't influence that at all.

    The difference being there was never an option to join Sarevok dangled in front of you and even if there was you know he would never accept so the path was clear and made sense. In SoD not only are there clear hints in the writing that joining her could be possible but there is also no reason why you couldn't have joined Caelar, the end result is the same whether you help her or not. In fact joining Caelar and preventing the fighting between her forces and that of the aliiance' would actually have potentially saved many more lives.

  • GallengerGallenger Member Posts: 403
    Well Caelar is hell bent on opening the portal regardless which would put everybody at risk anyhow (and she would still need your blood to do it) - although interestingly enough apparently in 4th edition they forgot about the demon portal and went purely with undead for Dragonspear, and I guess they're now back to demons for 5th ed? You do however get some dialogue to try to get Sarevok to join with you to murder everybody, but he says no :( At least for a little while lol.

    Most of the potentially friendly dialogue I recall with Caelar also comes before you really understand what she's trying to do - when everybody thinks it's just a crusade led by a paladin of Lothander sure maybe you could join. Once you figure out what it's really all about it's hard to come up with a consistent motivation for joining - you'd still have to open the portal for her with no way to seal it. Pretty big risk just to do somebody a favor - and most of the armies would probably die in hell anyways - since a child of a God had enough trouble as it was lol.


    ThacoBell
  • UnderstandMouseMagicUnderstandMouseMagic Member Posts: 2,141
    @Enuhal

    Good review.

    Particularly agree about the combat.
    Playing through for a third time at the moment, frankly it's boring. Now I suppose I could drop the wands and casters but that would simply force me to ensure I had at least two heavy hitters which is just another restriction.

  • FanagaardFanagaard Member Posts: 5
    Overall i liked the game, but i do have a lot of things i did not like.
    First and foremost the Railroadedness and the inability to go back and explore is an absolutely horrible decision from Beamdog, even BG2 with its railroaded underdark chapter would let you have a chance to go back and clear whatever sidequests and exploring you missed before.

    I absolutely loathe the part when the camp is under attack at you are given a choice of what troops to send where. I mean seriously??... uh if i have a bunch of wizard slayers should i maybe send them against wizards?!?... That part reminded me of the toy you give babies, the box with the different chaped holes, and then bricks that have those shapes.. We are not babies or new to the game at that point in the game! Stop treating us as imbeciles!

    It is not really possible to make an all evil party, why the ....... would you put a cool (and evil) NPC as Tiax in the game and then pull the possibility to have him join your party from under our noses. That is just another finger in the players face!

    This has been a very negative post, wich wassent the point, from the start. Im just a very passionate fan (ans as you all know passionate fans are the most annoying!)

  • megamike15megamike15 Member Posts: 1,888
    well the thing is why would you want to go back? there are not that many side quests in each area and you'll everything done by the time you move on anyways.

    this may be why the railroading does not bother me as much as it did my first run.

    atlest it's better then tob which barely had any side content unless you had an ee npc or a mods.

  • WarChiefZekeWarChiefZeke Member Posts: 1,675
    Yeah I had no sympathy for Caelar. No excuse for mass human sacrifice which is pretty much what it was

    ThacoBell
  • BigfishBigfish Member Posts: 368

    well the thing is why would you want to go back? there are not that many side quests in each area and you'll everything done by the time you move on anyways.

    Just because you managed to exhaust your side quests before clicking the point of no return doesn't mean everyone else did. It's the exact type of thing that leaves a bad taste in your mouth on your first playthrough.

    Baptor
  • rapsam2003rapsam2003 Member Posts: 1,623
    filcat88 said:

    I think we should mention that Caelar is a celestial, not a mortal (if I am not mistaken).

    Aasimar are mortals with celestial blood, which most likely means a very distant ancestor.

  • megamike15megamike15 Member Posts: 1,888
    Bigfish said:

    well the thing is why would you want to go back? there are not that many side quests in each area and you'll everything done by the time you move on anyways.

    Just because you managed to exhaust your side quests before clicking the point of no return doesn't mean everyone else did. It's the exact type of thing that leaves a bad taste in your mouth on your first playthrough.
    your never gonna do all the side quests in your first run anyways. heck there are alot of side quests in bg1 and 2 i still have not done.

  • Abi_DalzimAbi_Dalzim Member Posts: 1,410


    your never gonna do all the side quests in your first run anyways. heck there are alot of side quests in bg1 and 2 i still have not done.

    You might want the opportunity, though. I know I felt gypped when I realized there were more sidequests in Baldur's Gate than just the break-in at Sorcerous Sundries on my first run.

  • evzhyevzhy Member Posts: 6
    edited March 25
    After couple of runs through SoD, I'm full of contradicting and disturbing emotions about the writing, mostly things that stir inside me making me painfully uncomfortable after playing SoD, revolve around 3 things - Bhaalspawn in campaign, Caelar Argent behaviour and Hooded Man. I need to write my frustration down to get rid of it, so bear with me (spoilers ahead).

    1. Bhaalspawn in campaign

    Why the hell is my Bhaalspawn serving the Dukes and serving in the military? Saving one duke and making sushi from Sarevok doesn't oblige the Bhaalspawn to serve Baldurs Gate on official level.

    You had one job, Beamdog, for Bhaal's sake. There are evil parties, normal parties and good parties. There are lawful parties, neutral parties and chaotic parties. That's the foundation of the setting you were working with. Serving the Dukes and serving the military is only lawful, and either neutral or good. I felt pushed into the situation my character would not be in for this game setting. There are so many roleplay patterns that would have absolutely nothing to do with BG government or military that the moment you decided to make those dialogue lines with choice between serving the Dukes in an affermative way and serving the Dukes in a grumpy or smartass way, you've bothered about half of players who would play your campaign, at minimum. How hard was it to make an option to follow the coalition in our own independent way? It would be more work, but it wouldn't feel so damn limiting and alien to many players. It's clear as day that any - any! - chaotic or evil party would not tolerate Dukes or military command giving them orders and bossing them around.
    Completing the SoD campaingn two times I also can't see if it was required. The story is about covert operations against Crusade and breaching into Avernus, messing with devils and demons, and getting framed of something in the end. What part of this requires serving anyone in the process?
    For any non-lawful charactes there is zero reason to go against Crusade and Caelar Argent at all. I suspect that asassination attempt should have been that reason, but my character gets asassination attempts on any random encounter when travelling between locations of Sword Coast by bandit bowmen, wolves, wyverns, ghouls etc. Also, an asassination from a Lawful Good Aasimar that needs cooperation from Bhaalspawn, WHAT???
    A good writing would be giving some Bhaal-related reason to set on adventure. Something to learn about the prophecy, to meet another powerful Bhaalspawn, to meet someone who might know what to do with this, etc. - that would interweave with the Crusade vs Coalition buisness. What I feel like playing SoD and meeting Caelar Argent on the bridge - "I have no buisness with you, I have no buisness with Crusade or Coalition, or Avernus and its devils, so let's be done with it so I can collect useful spells and begin SoA campaign asap". Fail.

    2. Caelar Argent

    Oh where do I even start. Is she lawful good or chaotic neutral? Her true reasoning, methods chosen and actions are NOT lawful. Her treating of people as expendables and means to her end are NOT good. Her motive to serve the devil after being beaten is absolutely chaotic (and ridiculous for an Aasimar). Does she want Bhaalspawn to join her in her assault on Nine Hells or does she want to kill them, sending asassins in BG and attacking coalition camp? I would join her 10/10 immediately and happily spend all SoD campaign battling in Avernus, sending all Dukes, Crusade, Coalition and friggin poisoning and mass murder of innocent people on both sides up the SoD writer's arse.

    3. Hooded Man

    The letter in random encounter's cave and dialogues pretty much tell that this is Jon Irenicus trying to figure out if he will use Bhaalspawn or an Aasimar for... something. Never ever did I feel that the Hooded Man is Irenicus by what he is telling, doing and for whose sake, so only more or less direct hint from developer told me that this is SoA Joneleth, which is really inconsistent with his character from SoA.

    Let's recollect the Jon Irenicus we know:
    - he's an egoist seeking godhood, not valueing anyone else' interests, life or souls for his own goals
    - he's suffering memory loss and face issues from godly curse, made by Ellesime
    - because of love-hate to her, he's torturing her clones with absolute sadism
    - preferes torture and forceful magical experiments on Bhaalspawn to figure out how to use his divinity to avert his own curse, to achieve his own goals of seeking his own godhood by sapping power from Suldanessar tree.

    Ok now let's talk about the Hooded Man:
    - he is interested in progress of Bhaalspawn's powers in a natural free way
    - isn't in any kind of a hurry
    - is chilled and in good memory
    - hints to the future struggles of Bhaalspawn in Throne of Bhaal campaign
    - is in COMPLETE CONTROL of Bhaalspawn, playing him like a puppet at times needed, having ZERO NEED in sending Shadow thieves to subdue Bhaalspawn, easily getting into bedchambers and cells, psy-shocking, dominating, inducing hallucinations etc.

    Do those two characters seem completely different to me alone? The first time I saw Hooded Man, he was looking like someone from the Bhaalspawn meeting in ToB intro movie. The only other powerful creature who was interested in Bhaalspawn's own progress and fate was Firkraag, may his fireproof Carsomyr-holding arse Rest In Pepperonies.

    4. Ashatiel
    Yes I said there were 3 points, but this one was unexpectedly painful and off-putting. NI says she's a F/M/C 9/10/9 lawful good and has no dialogue except the duel to death. I'm checking because I could not believe that my Bhaalspawn neutral good priest of Lathander one-shotted her with Slay Living vs a failed saving throw, and that was the only content for her. How bad is it? She's an angelic being with prejudice for Bhaalspawn, SoD campaign is for lawful and/or good parties and it would be fitting to have a way to change her mind, for an obvious example, best her in a duel and capture, make her see what kind of psychopatic treacherous idiot Caelar Argent is, and release her unconditionally, making her see that it's not blood that makes good or bad choices. That's the good way, for a good PC. That would be, if there was good writing and fitting choices for main alignments. As I sat back in shock and disbelief after slaying her, not being able to resurrect her, and as the plot moved forwards, casting her corpse away into oblivion, I felt like my character would never do that, given any freedom not to, and that I don't want to replay this encounter ever again.

    What I liked in SoD:
    - M'Khiin
    - Keyring container
    - two lich battles, timestop + abi-dalzims vs a PC party of noobs
    - Breach, Spell Immunity and Lower Resistance to be memorized for SoA
    Rest is very very questionable to the point that I'd prefer to skip SoD in EET playthrough.

    p.s. I've completed my first playthrough with World's Edge from Durlag Tower and in Tamoko's Full Plate +1. Yay great loot thanks game.

    RaduzielJuliusBorisovMush_MushBaptor
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