In this quiet period between chapters in Star Wars: The Old Republic, I found myself considering the conclusion of the Knights of the Fallen Empire. There are, after all, three more chapters to go in the storyline as originally posted, and two of them will release in June (although not simultaneously…to my knowledge). Now, it’s possible-even likely-that it will lead into what some folks are calling “Season Two” of the KotFE, but I view as the “Empire Strikes Back” to KotFE’s “Star Wars”. And it’s possible that the conclusion will simply be a new phase in the conflict between the
Galactic Eternal Empire and the Rebel Alliance. But it’s also possible that it will conclude with what the late Emperor Valkorion has predicted: the player’s character seated upon the Eternal Throne.
And that got me to thinking: how would my various characters handle this event. Certainly, a bunch of the principles involved in the struggle believe that it’s inevitable that the PC will take the throne-in fact, some have likely been positioning the character to do just that (I’m looking at you, Lana-don’t think I forgot how you maneuvered me into being the head of the Alliance in the first place!). Sure seems probably that at some point, one of those conversation trees upcoming will include an option of “Take the Throne”. Feels like an interesting little thought experiment.
So let’s play “Take the Throne” with the eight classes, as I’ve played them. (I almost called this post “A Game of Thrones”, but I didn’t want to confuse folks in the search engines.)
The Smuggler: if there’s one guy who wants nothing to do with being chained down to a throne room, this guy is it. For a guy who likes to live out on the edge and make a fast credit, this has to be the worst possible thing that can happen to him. I’ve played him with a conscience-what can I say, Han Solo has always been a favorite of mine since the first movie hit the theaters-so he might do it if he felt it would minimize suffering. I look for him to look for a way out of it practically from day one, though.
The Imperial Agent: imagine a life lived in the shadows. Now imagine that you’ve got a bloody spotlight following you everywhere you go. That’s the Agent’s life right now as the Alliance Commander. Now brighten that light and widen the radius dramatically, and you can see why I imagine the Agent would rather be anywhere else. The key factor for him: his life has been spent in the service of the Sith Empire-not the Sith themselves (they did, after all, have much to do with certain traumatic events in the Agent class story). With a life defined by service, he could conceivably guide the Eternal Empire based on his conception of what the Sith Empire should have been. He’d do it. But he wouldn’t like it.
The Jedi Knight: yet another character who might be reluctant to take the throne. He’d probably do his best to encourage the people of the Eternal Empire to make their own choices as to how to proceed. Seeing the Republic as an ideal, the Jedi might be likely to encourage that the people of the Eternal Empire join their destinies to that of the Republic. That said, all indications are that the Republic’s going through a bout of serious corruption right now. The Knight will have a struggle trying to determine the correct path to choose; the Force may not be enough to help him on this one.
The Sith Warrior: formerly the Emperor’s Wrath, formerly the Empire’s Wrath, and now in a position to be Emperor himself. Given the chaos that has taken over the Sith Empire in the wake of Arcann’s attacks, this character may see the Eternal Empire as a useful weapon to restore order to the Sith Empire, and afterwards, move on to conquering the Republic as well. He may not sit easily upon the throne, though: he’s a man of action, who has made a lot of light-side choices but could never be a Jedi because he is moved to act upon his feelings-and enjoys the battle. He may find himself leading from the front.
The Trooper: a hardcore Republic soldier, and a True Believer in its cause, it’s hard to imagine any route other than trying to integrate the Eternal Empire with the Republic. He wouldn’t be on the throne for long-he believes in the democracy inherent in the Republic system too much to be something so antithetical to it. He’d definitely be okay with being the military commander in charge of the Eternal Fleet, though; command is his thing, after all, having been promoted on up the ladder in Havoc Squad. Politics aren’t his thing, though, and that would likely force him to hand off the throne as soon as possible. As he would tell you, he’s a soldier, not a politician, and that’s something he would never change. He might have to, though.
The Bounty Hunter: he’d be all for it. For about a week. Before he learns about how tedious it is to be in that sort of position. Then he’d be looking for a way out. Unlike the guys above, he doesn’t feel any personal responsibility to the people of the Eternal Empire. He’d prefer to get back to being the best Hunter in the galaxy. The riches available as the leader of the Eternal Empire is great and all, but he’d be bored to death. That said, he’d also see benefits in the new position: among other things, he’d have an easier time locating the missing members of his crew (which would effectively be just Mako and Skadge, since Torian will be back with the next Chapter, and both Blizz and Gault are already back. He might we willing to ditch Skadge, though…). The idea of making Mako an Empress might have him stick around, though-she’s had so many “break the cutie” moments in the SWTOR storyline that she deserves a big break.
The Jedi Consular: once upon a time, he might’ve seen it as an opportunity to bring the people of the Eternal Empire into an alliance with the Republic. But since KotFE, I’ve been having him undergo a hard slide to the Dark Side. Of course, since he had so many Light Side points going in, it’ll be unlikely that he’ll actually be considered a Dark Side user…but it’s getting there. (I keep toying with dropping one of his crew skills for Diplomacy so I can accelerate the Fall.) He’s been arrogant for a long time now, too, so all of this adds up to a man who may take the throne simply because he believes anyone else would screw it up. He may or may not be a benevolent ruler, but he surely can’t be worse than Arcann or Valkorion (or heaven forbid, Vaylin)…right? (A fast aside here: I keep wanting to call the Consular the Counselor. I have no idea why. I had to have seen that somewhere, I’d think, but hell if I know where.)
The Sith Inquisitor: if there’s one guy who will take to ruling the Eternal Empire like a fish to water, it’s this guy. And that probably isn’t great for the people of the Eternal Empire, because he’s as Sith as Sith can be. He’d consolidate his hold on the Empire, and then send its forces to forcibly conquer both the Sith Empire (which is obviously ripe for conquest) and the Republic. With his occasional research in the idea of Eternal Life himself, he could well wind up being more terrible than Vakorion or Arcann ever were-because while Valkorion and his teachings involve the Force being “more than Light or Dark”, the Inquisitor is all-in with the Dark Side of the Force. A new Alliance might be needed to save all three of these factions from him.
Of course, given the Bioware/EA devs, it’s impossible to see what may happen as we barrel towards the end of this expansion’s story, and the Throne may still be far in the future still. But it’s a fun thought experiment to consider what may lie ahead. How might your characters deal with the future?