My point isn't about good vs evil, my point is that Lord of the Rings and the Silmarillion must be inferior to the Hobbit, for not sticking to it's children's story roots, which is what Middle Earth originally was, about a Hobbit and some dwarves that did silly things with a funny creature called Gollum who hid in a cave, until Tolkien decided to write the Lord of the Rings when asked for a short story.
That's still not a great analogy. In terms of significance to their respective franchises, Kotor 2: The Sith Lords is most certainly not the Lord of the Rings to the Hobbit of the entire rest of Star Wars.
It can work though. Seeing as Revan was always evil and the mandalorians wars only begun his slide, we can assume something gave him the final push. I mean don't you think its a bit strange that he ran off into the unknown regions then came back a sith lord bent of conquering the republic, without the TOR arc it makes no sense. Basically be combine KOTOR 2 motives and TOR motives. He found the Emperor, fell to the dark side, broke away from his control then went on a campaign to reforge the Republic so he could defeat the Emperor. The fact he had fell to the dark side and was corrupted by it, made him make this decision.
Yeah I know it kind of
works, but there's still some stretching that needs to be done, IMO. Revan and Malak's interactions don't quite make sense in the first game now because Malak's whole goal is to overthrow Revan and become Dark Lord of the Sith. Yet in all their conversations, "that other guy" they met in the Unknown Regions who sent them back to attack the Republic in the first place never gets mentioned once. It also makes a huge bit of a difference (to me at least) whether the choice to attack the Republic in the first place came from his plans or was forced on him by someone else. Plus, this now raises the questions of why Malak didn't have Revan's foresight about preparing for a future war when the TOR backstory shows how they confronted the Emperor together.
Sometimes its nice to have a change, things aren't always black and white. I agree it felt different from normal Star Wars, but I didn't resent it, I enjoyed its originality.
Of course things aren't always black and white. And believe it or not I often enjoy a good story with shades of gray, but I don't believe it's appropriate to apply to every story or franchise. Or not in equal measure at least. I don't want to be too down on all of Kotor 2's originality, because I think TOR sometimes has the opposite problem.
And the thing is, Kotor 2 and it's theme had implications beyond it's own story. It almost tried to paint the Jedi Order as an institution, it's basic doctrine and even belief in the Force itself as a fundamental problem for the galaxy. Both in the present conflict and previous ones. Isn't that why everybody supposedly hates EU author Karen Traviss? For purportedly nonsensically trying to twist the stories to makes the Jedi into the bad guys and the clones and Mandalorians into the good guys?
Getting back to the Lord of the Rings analogy from before, it would be one thing to make a story where the Free People of Middle weren't exactly the good guys in whatever conflict it was about. But Kotor 2 was almost like it tried to make the good guys of the previous stories into the real problem and all history's wars were somehow their fault. Plus add in a few hints about how Sauron's atrocities somehow might not be so bad because he was trying to save the world from Morgoth or something. I didn't have a problem with that new revelation of Revan's actions, but I did have a problem with Kreia seemingly trying to get me to respect him for turning to the darkside. Turning to the darkside = bad, has always been a stable of the franchise to me.
Of course some of the things she said are highly controversial and arguably wrong. But I think her main message was important. That Jedi and Sith should try not to be so dependant on the Force, and that if you have become so dependant on it that you can't live without it, you don't deserve to live. Its sad that you found her annoying and useless.
But that's just it, that is wrong. You can't live without the Force. Star Wars established the Force is created by and connected to all living things. Everyone is dependent on the Force, whether they are force sensitive or not. it's like hating the fact that everyone is dependent on air. The game tries to hammer home the theme of living without the Force from Kreia to your other companions to the Mandalorians and it was a premise I firmly rejected from start to finish because I didn't think it made sense for a Star Wars story. The dialogue and story however, seem to try to imply she was right though, and I don't remember being given the option to even say you think she isn't.
EDIT: Kreia is in fact, an anti-hero. She realises she has fallen to far and done to much to do any good in the galaxy. And that she can never become a Jedi or Sith. But she sees that you can - she puts her faith in you, faith that you can be her last and greatest pupil who will defeat the threats of the galaxy (Sion and Nihilus) and make the galaxy 'see'.
I suppose that would meet a definition of an anti hero, yes, but Kreia still had a very twisted view of what is "good" and she seemed to expect you to carry on her philosophy. I think that might be what bothered me the most. I found most of her views on morality to be as despicable as the other Sith or Mandalorians' (in fact in some cases they were identical), but the game seemed to insist I regard her ideas with more weight than I thought they deserved. Plus her inane anti-force philosophies did not survive into any later Jedi or Sith orders so, I don't see why the game tried to paint her as the victor. The Jedi didn't change a whole lot afterward, even before TOR came out.
But again, thats your opinion. But I will correct you on a few things. She wasn't the main villain, far far from it. Nihilus was the main villain, hence his blown up face being the cover of the box art where the villain always is in star wars posters. She wasn't working against you, her motives were to understand you and get you to understand yourself. She never wanted to kill you, that was a test. You or rather Meetra was proof of her beliefs, that you can live without the Force. Thats why she won in the end, because you realised what you were, and she believed you would help future Jedi yo try and be less dependant on the Force. Maybe her companions learned from Meetra, and maybe thats why the Order of the Prequels is not as arrogant and fanatic as the OR council.
Well, I suppose part of that comes down to perspective on whether the final boss should be considered the main villain and what the player thought of her reasons for doing what she did.
But yeah I got that she wanted to test the Exile and saw them as proof of her beliefs. But I also thought her beliefs were absurd in the first place, and her reasons for thinking that the Exile was proof of them silly. The desire to kill the Force is insane. If destiny exists then, somehow killing it strikes me as a wholly preposterous notion. And her reason for thinking the the Exile was proof of living without the Force was because she saw her as "a place where the Force's will might be denied" after what happened to her in the Mandalorian Wars. There's no way she could possibly
know if that was true.
Kriea wanted to understand why the Exile was able to survive the destructive echos in the force at Malachor V, while the others perished. She learned that the Exile was able to somehow unconciously deafen her own connection to the Force instead of dying, but clearly the Exile was still connected to the Force on some level otherwise she couldn't have learned to use it again. The Exile was not the first or only person to have their connection to the force severed. Ulic Quel Droma for instance, but in the end he still became one with the Force when he died. Kriea seemed to believe that the Exile was different from all these cases but I saw no reason to think that. All I saw was a desperate crazy old woman who seemed to insist she was right when she wasn't. After the final duel, I was ready to just ignore everything she tried to teach me, but maybe that's a moment where the game has player and the player character diverge because the point of the story seemed to be that she was right all along.
But then it comes back to my opinion of Kotor 2, it's like it was trying to change the basic cosmology of the franchise.