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The Empire and your personal Morality

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Story and Lore
The Empire and your personal Morality

Qarran's Avatar

09.06.2012 , 01:35 PM | #21
Well... great post OP. A very pertinent question. And... I could write multiple walls of text on the matter, but rather then bore you guys, I'd like to add the following general observation.

Some are dissatisfied with the branching and choices you can make and maybe justifiably so. However, if you set aside the story line consequences for a moment, I really like the moral dilemmas and how they are treated in this game. In short, the message seems to be that there are shades of grey. Light and dark side choices don't always make sense. They seem to not fit a realistic choice, and I think that is intended to emphasize that everything isn't always black or white.

For example. I really enjoyed the trooper story and most especially the end. The first pass is confusing, frustrating and unsatisfying. But, without adding any spoilers, I think it really brings home the confusing and frustrating life of a soldier facing moral choices in both extremes and the futility of dealing with a ruling faction whose self interest is amoral at best. Consequently, you are left shaking your head and rightly so.

And for me this captures it. It shows me the real evil in the galaxy stems from the corruption of the ruling politic. And... as good as the Jedi want to be and as bad as the Sith claim to be the failure of both is due to an unfortunate and corrupting element which is quite simply that both sides can't accept the grey areas.

Of course, I realize that this interpretation says more about me in general. But I appreciate those moments in these stories that highlight inconsistencies. I like that you can choose to go against the grain no matter what side you choose. And the futility of it when facing the larger politics of the KOTOR day. Seems more than relevant.

DrRon's Avatar

09.06.2012 , 02:17 PM | #22
My job requires "Light Sided" life altering decision throughout the day.

I enjoy getting online in a virtual world and being evil. Sue me.
Why do we never have time to do it right, but always seem to have time to do it twice.

Hessen's Avatar

09.07.2012 , 09:58 AM | #23
I've got 3 imperial agents, 2 dark and 1 light. But with none of them can I find myself being mean to Watcher Two. I love her.
EU - Tomb of Freedon Nadd
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CephalicRex's Avatar

09.07.2012 , 01:57 PM | #24
When I start an RPG of any kind, I always make a point to lay out in my head how I'm going to play if the game offers a Good/Bad system like most Star Wars games and Fallout does, before I even begin. So before I even start the prologue, I am aware if I am going to be making only good decisions or bad ones though the course of the game. I find however that this does lead to a detached gaming experience because everything has already been decided (in my mind).

So a lot of the big moral dilemmas in the game are often grossed over and swept under the rug for the sake of this playing style.

I think I developed it when I played my first RPG, KOTOR II (I know I'm a newb). I, being a perfectionist at heart, would always want the most optimized character possible. This would mean rolling a Jedi Consular, prestiging to Sith Lord, then rolling through the rest of the game with force storm as a level 50 (after exploiting the Hsseiss spawn glitch). The result would be me intentionally choosing the darker paths merely because they got the best out of the game mechanics. The same thing with Fallout 3. I would always want every special weapon, regular weapon, suit of armor, and bobblehead in the game. This would only be possible by cracking a few eggs to make your omlet.

I think it may have a lot to do with the way these kinds of games are designed. They tend to reward players (extravagantly, mind you) for being an exploitive, ladder-climbing son of a ****.

Uluain's Avatar

09.09.2012 , 04:01 AM | #25
Interesting question.

Certainly, many of the dark side choices run counter to my personal ethics, but when I play I am playing from the point of view of my character. Because the situations are fictional, however much I personally would be appalled by a decision or act, I find that the fact that it is a game is an effective emotional buffer.

On my first couple of Imperial characters, I consistently chose the dark side options solely because they were dark side. I was curious to explore the game mechanics of progressing levels of dark side attunement, special item access and dark side corruption.

On my current characters, I am taking much more of a situation by situational approach. Playing my Sith Inquisitor on Hoth, for instance,

But I don't make these decisions because I, personally, feel the alternative is wrong. A few times even on my Republic toons, even neutral decisions have been eye-openers from a moral perspective making me go, Seriously?. For example,

But again, I am able to look at the situation and choose as my charcater would, or to explore the option that makes me personally curious as to the outcome.

I will say that the moral and philosophical principals on which the Sith Empire are built -- that power in the Force is a mandate to rule over those not so gifted, that warfare is a necessary source of cultural strength, that the weak should be enslaved etc. -- are starkly different from my own beliefs. But I am a roleplayer. I am pretending to be people who are different from me, with their own beliefs. And as they aren't actually torturing or blackmailing or murdering actual live people, I am okay with that.

Kaisernick's Avatar

09.09.2012 , 02:37 PM | #26
my warrior is a evil man he will kill but not simply for the sake of it, he hates the Jedi who from his perspective tried to wipe out his ancestors and will kill them but he find it more delightful turning them, however imperial military and certain aliens he treats with respect.
the best example is yudress on hoth, on my agent i chose him simply cause he was a fellow chiss but my human warrior chose him due to his sound tactics his understanding of our enemy where as the human was stupid and incompetent and would have gladly kill him.

My chiss was also evil, he would kill his targets and follow orders but he was a man who looked out for other agents.

my inquisitator was simply evil to the bitter end.


Evgen's Avatar

09.10.2012 , 07:22 PM | #27
I was actually surprised how easy it is to play light side for empire characters.

I tend to play light side for most of my characters in any game, but I do RP, so I can have dark side characters if there is a reason.

I often get interested in characters and factions in a game, and make an alt based on that.

Betrayed, tortured, sold into slavery, her connection to the force discovered, she gladly accepted the chance to train as a Sith, full of hate she made an excellent acolyte. Thinking of this background, I can play her hating all the republic, all the empire, only finding mercy for those she can relate too, slaves, those betrayed, innocents. I have never had a problem with the results of her decisions, unless it's those times where the text doesn't match the actions.

The end of the Black Talon has one of those questionable light side dark side choices.

I know those aren't spoilers for 99% of us, but just for those 1%

None of my characters are 100% light side though, I can't play basing my decisions on the points, romance just doesn't figure as dark side in my books for one

theUndead's Avatar

09.10.2012 , 07:40 PM | #28
I have often questioned the choices we are given in the game in particular with playing a imperial character. See for me all of my toons both Republic and Imperial are either dark side for Imperial or light side for Republic with one exception. My dark side trooper.

But something very interesting happened to me last night when I was doing a quest on Hoth. See I was sent to rescue someone who was being tortured for information in if I recall correctly a factory, the person in question was responsible for bomb making and because he spoke it allowed the Empire to target the Republic main base and if it was successful it would kill everyone. Now here is the interesting bit, see after the cut scene I was presented with a choice. Either kill him for speaking or let him go. Now my trooper is incredibly evil likes killing things, yet in this case killing this person for the life of me just did not seem right to do, I mean I tried to justify it in my head, but murdering him just did not feel right this time yet previous times I would have given it a second thought. So yeah morality comes into question in a variety of ways regardless of you trying to be completely evil or completely good.
Sorry for the long post.
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As theUndead mentioned, I can't exactly spell out all of our policies in depth, but that should hopefully cover your concerns.

MasterSobi's Avatar

09.14.2012 , 06:07 AM | #29
For my republic characters I went with all LS points.. on the other hand with my empire character SW, I chose to be ruthless and picked LS if i think it'll benefit the empire in some way like on Nar Shaddaa with the meeting between the hutts and lord rajavai's apprentice I didnt kill the hutts but rather formed an alliance

BenjaminminU's Avatar

09.14.2012 , 08:23 AM | #30
I've gone full lightside on my Jedi Knight, and mostly light on my BH, Punching that guy in the face on Alderaan was too funny to not do but seriously, he tried to get me to do the errands of a child? no chance.

But since he doesn't care about the empire at all, he'll undermine them at every oppertunity, whether its letting republic soldiers leave alive, making decisions to lose the empire's money (on hutta i deliberately sabotaged a deal to get more money) and at the end of the story
"Declaration: Assassination protocols active. Greetings, master" - HK-51