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Antagonising Companions: An Interesting and Admirable Spin

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Story and Lore
Antagonising Companions: An Interesting and Admirable Spin

Ystig's Avatar


Ystig
01.11.2013 , 09:34 AM | #1
When I undertook playing my light side Sith Warrior, I couldn't help appreciating (though I did not use, as my character was going in the opposite direction) the various options for actively antagonising Vette as a companion.

I'm curious: are there other companions which are interesting not just as "best friend forever" life partners, but as unfriendly allies in a problematic world which sometimes brings together the wrong people for the wrong reasons? It's something one seldom sees in RPGs.

The idea that the PC should always be kowtowing to those who fall in with him/her - that all characters will always seek the affection/friendship of every crewmate that happens to end up on their ship - it clearly doesn't jive with an even slightly realistic approach to characterisation.

So if we aren't just saying what our companions want us to say, all the time, it's great to have antagonisms and unpleasantries which are actually developed. From the bits of Dark Side I saw along my light side path, I get the impression the Sith Warrior storyline gave that approach some attention. Do other storylines?

Bastila-chan's Avatar


Bastila-chan
01.11.2013 , 10:26 AM | #2
Playing my light side Jedi knight, there wasn't a lot of controversy among my companions (as expected), except for Lord scourge, which clearly despised my light side actions during crew gatherings on the ship, before important class story fights. I was suprised that once I got something like -760 affection with just one convestation option. You have given me motivation to build his affection, I'm interested where his companion story will go.

Surinen's Avatar


Surinen
01.11.2013 , 10:32 AM | #3
Quote: Originally Posted by Bastila-chan View Post
Playing my light side Jedi knight, there wasn't a lot of controversy among my companions (as expected), except for Lord scourge, which clearly despised my light side actions during crew gatherings on the ship, before important class story fights. I was suprised that once I got something like -760 affection with just one convestation option. You have given me motivation to build his affection, I'm interested where his companion story will go.
Lord Scourge is a scum that deserved to die for his actions - althou I do not mind it to be a fanservice death type so girls gonna enjoy their over emotional disturbances, for example Scourge protecting Knight and dying. Of course I would like to see him trying to kill that rot of tython but chances are rather slim.

for a Sith Warrior I do not exactly see a future painted with conflicts, Vette will sometimes say something about me obliterating kindergardens and Quinn gonna frown upon my dirty actions, but nothing big coming there - unless they gonna allow me to execute Quinn then its gonna be all tasty and wonderful
Aperture Science. We do what we must, because we can. For the good of all of us- Except the ones who are dead.

iamthehoyden's Avatar


iamthehoyden
01.11.2013 , 10:56 AM | #4
Quote: Originally Posted by Ystig View Post
I'm curious: are there other companions which are interesting not just as "best friend forever" life partners, but as unfriendly allies in a problematic world which sometimes brings together the wrong people for the wrong reasons? It's something one seldom sees in RPGs.
I had a mostly LS JK and the conversations with Scourge were just interesting. It was possible to gain respect, but he would challenge your ideas on things, point out hypocrisy, it was fun.

Kaliyo for the IA likes being contrary just for being contrary's sake, so you can expect conflict there, especially if you're at all LS or lawful.

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Spoiler


Zenith, in the JC crew, does things pretty much his own way and trust is very very slow to build up. He has a very ruthless mindset, which, depending on your character, can be in conflict. I found him very interesting.
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OldVengeance's Avatar


OldVengeance
01.12.2013 , 03:05 AM | #5
Lord Scourge and LS Jedi conversations are quite interesting, especially if your Jedi happens to hold any attitudes he'd respect. It's potentially an interesting mixture of mutual contempt and respect.

Roodbot's Avatar


Roodbot
01.12.2013 , 06:09 PM | #6
There's a series of YouTube videos out there of a (female) smuggler who kept flirting with Corso but absolutely refused any sort of relationship. It's... interesting. Video maker calls him stalker-like, and I can see her point, but I'm a Corso-lover so I just feel sorry for him getting turned down again and again.

Personally I like happy endings. But I just might do this with my Guss Tuno, Skadge, Gault, etc. (My least favorites.)
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bright_ephemera's Avatar


bright_ephemera
01.13.2013 , 07:00 AM | #7
I should really post a movie series: Kaliyo, or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Just Dis Companions. Complete with nuclear annihilation at the end

Kidding, I liked her half the time. But our romance was incredibly antagonistic as she tried to get a rise out of me and I refused to tolerate her games. Laughed in her face when she brought up love. Stuff like that. It was way more fun than playing a straightforward romance would've been.

I've enjoyed my second Warrior playthrough, treating Quinn as a tool of questionable worth. He gets so sad when I question his backstory claims and tell him he'd better pull his weight.

Lord Scourge, I was respectful while disagreeing on every possible philosophical point. I got a lot of -768s with him when decisions came up and I loved every minute of it.

Tanno Vik taught me that "That goes against everything we stand for, Vik" is actually a Trooper stock line that can come up multiple times.

Doctor Lokin liked it when I gave him a hard time. I hated recruiting him, I don't trust him, I called him on his BS at every opportunity, and...he lapped it up, actually. That was an interesting dynamic.

The antagonistic relationship very slightly slows conversation progression...Scourge in particular is tough because his conversation losses are so huge...but I find it's worth it. So worth it.
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Quething's Avatar


Quething
01.13.2013 , 12:21 PM | #8
It would be a lot more worth it if they'd imported the KotOR II or DA2 system instead. As it stands now, disapproval is absolutely negative period. You never want it, it's actively detrimental to anything you could ever possibly do. It hurts your crafting, it prevents you from picking up the +10 presence perks, and, most importantly, it chokes roleplaying. Piss off a companion and you don't get to talk to them. This is the absolute opposite of good game design; it punishes you for playing a relationship in-character by removing the ability to continue to explore that relationship.

If conversations unlocked at negative approval intervals as they do in KotOR II or DA2, perhaps even with a few lines changed here and there to reflect the difference in affection vs antagonistic respect, it would be a much richer system, and I wouldn't have completely abandoned any sense of immersion or RP honesty by repeatedly selecting douchebaggy lines on Belsavis and Ilum dalies just to get Scourge to talk to me or have to choose between Elara being a mute puppet for fifty levels or else inexplicably adoring my verbally abusive darkside Trooper as an exemplar of the Republic and loyal friend because I smothered her in gifts.

bright_ephemera's Avatar


bright_ephemera
01.15.2013 , 04:45 PM | #9
Quote: Originally Posted by Quething View Post
It would be a lot more worth it if they'd imported the KotOR II or DA2 system instead. As it stands now, disapproval is absolutely negative period. You never want it, it's actively detrimental to anything you could ever possibly do. It hurts your crafting, it prevents you from picking up the +10 presence perks, and, most importantly, it chokes roleplaying. Piss off a companion and you don't get to talk to them. This is the absolute opposite of good game design; it punishes you for playing a relationship in-character by removing the ability to continue to explore that relationship.

If conversations unlocked at negative approval intervals as they do in KotOR II or DA2, perhaps even with a few lines changed here and there to reflect the difference in affection vs antagonistic respect, it would be a much richer system, and I wouldn't have completely abandoned any sense of immersion or RP honesty by repeatedly selecting douchebaggy lines on Belsavis and Ilum dalies just to get Scourge to talk to me or have to choose between Elara being a mute puppet for fifty levels or else inexplicably adoring my verbally abusive darkside Trooper as an exemplar of the Republic and loyal friend because I smothered her in gifts.
Agreed, a viable positive/negative influence path would be interesting and rewarding.

On the other hand, some of these companion recruitments are forced enough already; shoving Ashara onto my ship and then giving me a maximum antagonism meter would just be miserable. With the current one-directional scale, at least one of us (i.e. her) thinks that we have some kind of relationship/reason to stick around by the end of the conversation line. DA2 suffered badly from this effect: I loved its affection/rivalry scale but hated that there was no reason whatsoever for most companions to not just stab you in the face and walk away at max rivalry.

There are ways around this: In a world-saving scenario you can justify either positive or "I hate you but we have to work together" companion relationships, and I would love to see both developed as viable paths. Likewise if there's blackmail/usefulness. Doctor Lokin is with me because he blackmailed his way onto the ship for his own reasons; in-character I hate that he's there but out of character I love, love, love that they wrote it. It makes it make sense for him to stay even though my character dislikes him.

As it is I'm reduced to RPing the hell out of conversations because that's what I want my character to do, then pumping companion gifts to cancel the fact that by any rational measure my companions should hate me. Don't get me wrong, it's good that the gifts are there from a mechanics perspective, but it is there in part to compensate for the disappointing fact that there is only one conversation line.
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LordGarmaZabi
02.06.2014 , 05:06 AM | #10
Quote: Originally Posted by Quething View Post
It would be a lot more worth it if they'd imported the KotOR II or DA2 system instead. As it stands now, disapproval is absolutely negative period. You never want it, it's actively detrimental to anything you could ever possibly do. It hurts your crafting, it prevents you from picking up the +10 presence perks, and, most importantly, it chokes roleplaying. Piss off a companion and you don't get to talk to them. This is the absolute opposite of good game design; it punishes you for playing a relationship in-character by removing the ability to continue to explore that relationship.

If conversations unlocked at negative approval intervals as they do in KotOR II or DA2, perhaps even with a few lines changed here and there to reflect the difference in affection vs antagonistic respect, it would be a much richer system, and I wouldn't have completely abandoned any sense of immersion or RP honesty by repeatedly selecting douchebaggy lines on Belsavis and Ilum dalies just to get Scourge to talk to me or have to choose between Elara being a mute puppet for fifty levels or else inexplicably adoring my verbally abusive darkside Trooper as an exemplar of the Republic and loyal friend because I smothered her in gifts.
If memory serves, KOTOR II did punish you for playing your character a certain way. If you got significantly more influence with Visas then the Handmaiden, the Handmaiden would refuse to talk to you for the rest of the game, which makes her impossible to train as a Jedi.
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