SS: The Ending Was The Beginning


“I am exhausted.  The events of the last day have been…wearing, I should say.  Our conflict against the Eternal Empire has reached a tipping point, but I’m not sure where things stand.

Arcann is defeated, but free.  I’ve been betrayed twice-neither time was really a surprise.  I’m Sith-at this point, I expect betrayal.  At the moment, there are few whose loyalties I consider solid, two of whom I’ve known for a long time, and one who I’ve met only recently.  All others?  More dubious.  I should start making plans to deal with betrayals as they happen, but I want to believe otherwise.  I think that is why I feel each one keenly.  The journey has been a strange one.  I’ve aligned with Republic officers, Jedi, Sith, Imperial officers, smugglers and bounty hunters.  I’ve gained the trust of many on both sides of the fence, and even some from Zakuul have begun to follow me.  Once, I felt that I could best rip out the rot in the Empire by ruling it.  But now, it seems that destiny has something greater in mind:  the Eternal Throne of Zakuul, from which I can rule the Eternal Empire, the Sith Empire, and the Galactic Republic.

It’s a breathtaking thought.  I can tear out the rot from the Empire, the corruption of the Republic, and the threat of Zakuul, in one fell stroke.

It won’t be that simple.  I know this.  But from the Throne, I can at least make a start.  From the Throne, I can at least try to change the galaxy for the better.  And the irony is, I will be cheered on by the Jedi, the Sith, the Republic, the Empire-even by Zakuul itself, for I cannot imagine it will thrive with Vaylin’s influence-or her ally.  Enemies become allies-but for how long?  The Empire and the Republic will react when the time comes for me to declare victory.  And it may be that my Alliance is held together by only the thin thread of the outside threat.

And there remains one factor I cannot account for, one factor that I fear.  Valkorion still exists, and remains tied to me in some way.  The time will come when he will attempt to destroy me as Zash once tried, and his power is vast.  I will only be able to resist him by using the Force as he boasted his Knights did:  knowing that it is more than just Light and Dark.  Even if it takes my death, I will not let Valkorion win.

The Force shall free me.”

-from Sorshan’s Story

And done!

I’ve wrapped up the Knights of the Fallen Empire arc in Star Wars: The Old Republic, in time for the very-soon-to-be-released Knights of the Eternal Throne.

Sorshan managed to get through the game with making only a single Dark Side choice, which happened during the KotFE back half-and it wasn’t exactly a significant one, honestly (hell, I can’t even recall the details now, only the selection), so between her and Anthrandos, I think I contributed reasonably well to the Light vs Dark event (Light still seems to be winning).  Her final choice which wasn’t a Light/Dark one was, of course, how to deal with Arcann and his rescuer; despite her talk about betrayal, she ultimately did let them go without a kill attempt.  Arcann’s nothing without his power-base, and that’s gone now.  (This may or may not prove to be an error-we’ll see!)

My run through the Jedi Knight and Sith Inquisitor storylines have been pretty fun, going through it all with these blog posts in mind, and I wouldn’t be at all surprised if I choose to do this sort of thing again with some of the other classes.  I’m an avowed altoholic, after all-I’m bound to do another run through at some point.  But for now, I’ve got holidays coming up, and if I have time before the expansion hits, I need to wrap up a few more characters in the list who still haven’t finished KotFE and are hanging on the last chapter or two.

Plus, of course, I still have my STO captain to get through.  I wanted to push through Sorshan’s story first, with the expansion literally a week away (if you’ve been subbed for the early access, anyway).  Plus, I’ve got a couple other irons in the fire that are beginning to call for attention; I expect to make comments about them both before the end of the year.


SS: On The Run


“Five years.

You don’t really think about everything that can change in five years until you have spent those years effectively in stasis. You don’t think of it as a period of time where the galaxy can change so completely. But it has.

The good news: I finally killed the Sith Emperor, in a manner of speaking. He took a body again and I killed him. The bad news? He was incarnate in the form of an emperor of a neighboring area of space, hailed as the Immortal Emperor of the Eternal Empire of Zakuul. The worse news? His physical death seems to have bound his spirit to mine-so now I have a passenger in my mind who keeps offering me power, but whose plans are highly suspect.

Oh, and the last bit of news. His son stuffed me into a carbonite slab and went on a conquering spree where he more or less took over the Empire and the Republic.

Up to now, my allies have been few. Lana Beniko rescued me from my imprisonment and saved my life. Koth Vortena is the captain of my flagship (he doesn’t really agree with the “my flagship” part, but I don’t make an issue of it). And Senya Tirall is…well, she’s complicated. Plus, a droid that worked for Cipher Nine of the old Imperial Intelligence, and a droid that had associated with the Jedi Battlemaster who had supposedly killed the Sith Emperor (and is thus, in a way, responsible for everything that has happened since). There was also an HK unit, but…well, there isn’t now, although the shell may be salvageable.

I have spent weeks running from Zakuul since my freedom. I’ve attempted to learn more about this warship we found and how it can fight the Eternal Fleet. Only now, on a world which we hope a force can be forged to defeat Zakuul, have I had time to process everything that has happened.

Darth Marr is gone. It says something when the one Sith I was beginning to trust gets killed in a stand against the Emperor. I shouldn’t mock him; I, too, was defiant to the end. But his son, Arcann, saved me-so I could do his dirty work, allowing him to bring us to the place we stand now. Khem, Ashara, Andronikos-missing. Thanks to this alliance I seem to have taken control of, I’ve at least recovered my ship-and reconnected with Xalek and Talos. Other allies are forthcoming, I am told.

So now I control a Rebel Alliance composed of both Imperial and Republic forces-both willing to follow a former Dark Council member (the Council is, for all intents and purposes, gone, the Empire controlled by a self-proclaimed Empress) to war to free their worlds from the Eternal Empire. It seems not so long ago where I was a significant factor in a similar alliance, against Revan-but now, I am in command. That Republic forces are willing to follow me-that speaks to their fear.

I am done running. From here on out, I will take the offensive. I will not rest until Zakuul is defeated. Only then can I hope to retake the Sith Empire and realize my dreams.

But even in all of this, I can see a chance. I may have been dreaming too small.”

-from Sorshan’s Story

Halfway through the Knights of the Fallen Empire for Star Wars: The Old Republic, and I’ve been cruising along with Sorshan to the end of the line!

What can I say that hasn’t already been said?  Fortunately, this particular Inquisitor won’t have the problems my other one did with Koth-quite the opposite, in fact.  There are benefits to doing only Light Side choices.

Obviously, I picked back up Talos and Xalek, as Inquisitor companions, and I also took a little time to pick up HK-55 again and Nico (who I’d used early on in Sorshan’s career, and it made sense to bring him back on board).  That’s about as far as I plan to go with her Alert companions; I’m challenging myself to wrap up Sorshan’s Story before Thanksgiving, and I plan to succeed!  That’ll put me in the right position to set her aside to begin Knights of the Eternal Throne after the Turkey Weekend.

Almost at the finish line-which may or may not include the HK solo mission; I don’t really need to do that to wrap things up in my mind, and if I pick Sorshan and Anthrandos back up afterward, I can always do it at that point.

Depending on the length of the KotET chapters, I may or may not put up individual posts for each.  A lot will depend on the length of the chapters.  I’m also still undecided as to if I’ll be looking at it from a particular character’s point of view, such as I’ve done with the Epic of Anthrandos and Sorshan’s Story, or if I’ll just stick with the facts.  I’m leaning towards the latter, though, because while I have no qualms about being semi-spoilery with the KotFE stuff, as it’s been out for a year now, the KotET stuff will be brand spanking new, and I’d hate to spoil things for people who haven’t done it yet-at least not right off the bat.  (By the time I pick up with Anthrandos/Sorshan again, though, all bets are off.)

Declaration: I Am Now In Control Of This Blog

Statement: My Master's command parameters often cause this strange glitch in my programming. It happens quite often.

Statement: My Master’s command parameters often cause this strange glitch in my programming. It happens quite often.

Salutation:  Greetings!  I am HK-55, and I have taken over this blog to tell you about the latest chapter in Star Wars: The Old Republic.  Remark:  This chapter was only made available to subscribers who were consistently subscribed from January to August of this year as a loyalty reward.

Reassurance:  Do not be concerned about the meatbag who operates this blog under usual circumstances.  He is quite safe!  This is merely a demonstration of what happens when you possess a weak wi-fi password.  Do not be like that meatbag!  Use strong passwords!

Statement:  Despite the fact that it is not required of me, I will maintain the meatbag’s habit of saving story spoilers after a break, so that those who do not wish to ruin the surprises ahead will not have to endure such a trauma.  Trauma is best delivered by precision blaster fire, after all.  Addenda:  You may expect much blaster fire in this chapter.

Aside:  The new chapter, entitled “Shroud of Memory”, is not the only content released with the latest patch.  A new Alliance Alert is made available where players may contact the former Sergeant Rusk, formerly a companion of the Jedi Knight.  In the process, you will have the opportunity to recruit not merely one companion, but potentially two!  Observation:  Given the statements made by a number of forum users, it is quite possible that you may decide that one companion is enough.  The second companion has developed quite a following who would like to see him dead.  Proposition:  If you do wish to exterminate that meatbag, please give me the opportunity to do so.  I would enjoy nothing more!

Notation:  “Shroud of Memory” does not have an official chapter number; it is simply referred to as an interlude.  Nonetheless, it is easily the equal of other chapters in the Knights of the Fallen Empire expansion.  Unlike most chapters, it must be started upon your personal starship, and you must have recruited me in an Alliance Alert, and completed Chapter IX.  [Update:  When Knights of the Eternal Throne was released, this chapter got a helpful “Play” button in the mission display.  Now you can begin this mission almost immediately after recruiting me in the Alert!]

Exhortation:  Now it is time to look beyond the break and hear about an adventure that features the most important character in this saga!

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EoA: Epic’s End?


“The battle is over.  But the war goes on.  Sometimes, I feel like it will never end.

Valkorion, Master Shan, Darth Marr, and very likely Lana, all believe it is my destiny to sit upon the Eternal Throne.  I disagree, but the point is moot-the Throne has changed hands again, and not for the better.  Arcann no longer rules, but remains a danger.  Betrayal has stalked our ranks, and I am at a loss as to how we can deal with that.

But Odessen remains intact.  And beings that want for freedom from the Eternal Empire are flocking to the Alliance.  Lana and Theron seem convinced that this increase in numbers and ships, along with the defeat at Odessen will keep Zakuul from striking at us again.  I am not convinced.  The Eternal Fleet has proven a match for the forces of both the Sith Empire and the Galactic Republic, and all we have is a single world with a ragtag fleet-headed, of course, by the Gravestone.  But one ship is a slender thread upon which to hang our defense.

I feel that we must leave Odessen soon.  I don’t know if the others will agree, but remaining puts everything at risk.

Regardless of my destiny, I remain a Jedi Knight.  I may be the Commander of this Alliance, but I am not one to sit back and order others to take risks that I will not.  It didn’t work for me when I was a Padawan on Tython, learning lessons from Master Din; it didn’t work for me when I went with my companions-who mostly remain missing-to assault Dromund Kaas in search of the Sith Emperor.  It doesn’t work for me now.

I am told that I must give up my preconceptions of the Force, to stop thinking in terms of Light and Dark.  That will not happen.  That will never happen.  I’ve seen the Light, and I’ve seen the Dark; they exist, and I will always stand in the one and stand against the other.  This is not my weakness.  It is my strength.  The Force will be with me.


-from the Epic of Anthrandos

At last, we come to the end of the Epic.  With this post, I’ve completed the Light vs. Dark requirements in Star Wars: The Old Republic for a character to complete all the chapters in Knights of the Fallen Empire.  All of the Republic-side Flashpoints have been completed, the fifth round of the Eternal Championship has been completed, the Alliance Alerts accounted for-and of course, the character is at level 65.

I figure this gives me roughly a month to get to 65 with the Sith.  I think that’s imminently doable, particularly if I make ruthless use of those xp boosters I tend to usually ignore.

What will become of Anthrandos now?  After all, he was created for the sole purpose of doing this event, and even after all of this, he’s not my “main” Jedi Knight.  So the question is, will he go through the “Knights of the Eternal Throne” expansion?  That’s actually a good question.  And the answer is…”maybe”.  Not a satisfying one, admittedly, but a true one.  It’s rough enough getting eight other characters through everything (and I still have five to get through the finale of KotFE) without adding two more (because what I decide for Anthrandos is likely to hold true for his opposite number).

But I still had a blast putting this together, and I can’t see myself wanting to step away from this.  While Anthrandos will be a lower priority (nine of ten), I think I’ll still want to run him through the upcoming content.  After all…he’s come this far, hasn’t he?

So the Epic reaches its…well, not conclusion, but perhaps a significant pause.  A new story is about to begin-which will admittedly have some similarities (particularly once we get out of the class missions) and will have some significant differences.  Stay tuned!

EoA: Wakey Wakey


“So much has changed.  Five years ago, I confronted Emperor Valkorion of the Eternal Empire.  I struck him down, but in doing so, I was rendered helpless and frozen.  If not for Lana, I would have been a decoration for as long as the Eternal Empire endured.  I return to a galaxy changed by Zakuul; a Sith Empire in chaos, a Galactic Republic cowed.  And I…I am not alone in my head.  Valkorion’s final act was not to simply fade into the Force, but to relocate into my own mind.

I can hear him even now.  ‘Why write this story?  Historians will do so after you have taken your place upon the Throne.’

Valkorion doesn’t get it.  Neither do the others:  Lana, Senya, Koth, Theron.  I have no interest in rule.  I am a Jedi Knight.  My duty is to serve, not to rule.  I may command in times of extremity, but it is not my place to control the galaxy.  No single being should.  This is why the Republic is strong-the voice of many charting a course that will go on for centuries to come.

Provided Emperor Arcann and High Justice Vaylin don’t destroy everything first.  They seem aware of Valkorion’s presence in my mind, and seem to be willing to stop at nothing to destroy me-and through me, their father.  I don’t know what Arcann’s been doing in the interim-I don’t understand why he attacked the Core Worlds, or the Empire; I don’t know why he’s demanding tributes from these worlds.  But someone has to take a stand against them, and thanks to Lana’s maneuvering, that someone must be me.

The Sith Empire and the Galactic Republic are in chaos.  The Dark Council has been silenced, and the Jedi Order is scattered.  My responsibility-my duty-is clear.  I will lead this alliance.  I will defeat Arcann.  I can do no less as a Jedi Knight.”

-from the Epic of Anthrandos

The end is coming up fast now.  I’ve wrapped the first nine chapters of the Knights of the Fallen Empire story in Star Wars: The Old Republic, and things are falling into place for the Light vs. Dark event tiers.

A new tier was completed with the finish of these chapters, which-shocker!-had a bunch of duplicates of armor parts I wasn’t fond of.  (Damn you, Darth Sion!)  I did manage to get a different Ceremonial armor part, so it’s always possible the next set of packs might actually allow me to complete a collection.  It could happen!  Also had an assortment of weapons-mostly assault cannons, which most of my characters can’t use (and for that matter, most of the companions-particularly since the devs changed Jorgan’s weapon with KotFE).  Thankfully, I didn’t get duplicate color crystals this time around.  So, nothing to write home about, but I’ll figure out who gets what gear at some point.

I did get the experience of the new interface for opening packs now, and for the most part, I’m not impressed.  There is an aspect, though, that I’m a big fan of:  the idea of the items opened going into an “item stash”, which is Legacy wide.  That means I can open with, for example, Anthrandos, but claim the items on Coreth.  Once the item is claimed, it’ll be bound to that character; this may be different for regular Cartel Packs, since they allow sale of their items, but the Light Vs. Dark packs are supposed to be bound on pickup, so this item stash redeems a helluva lot for this event.

Looking at the next tier, I’ve got my Alliance Alerts taken care of-although I think a bug may be involved, because I only have four new companions from the Alerts:  Nico, Blizz, Yuun (who technically wasn’t an Alert), and Bowdarr (who I don’t actually have, because I haven’t gotten his Influence to 10 yet).  But somehow, the achievement was unlocked.  So, shrug.  I did, however, manage to complete Round Five of the Eternal Championship to get that requirement nailed down.  Things are looking good to reach my target goals, if I don’t fall down on the job when my Sith Inquisitor starts up in earnest.  As it’s not unreasonable to assume that I may be completing the Epic by Tuesday, it won’t be long before a new set of posts start coming up.

For Anthrandos, the end is nigh!

The Final Battle…or IS IT?!

And to all things…an ending.  Maybe.

Nobody is ever happy to see us. They're always shooting at us.

Nobody is ever happy to see us. They’re always shooting at us.

The Eternal Empire is in the middle of a little leadership crisis right now.  Due to events outside of Emperor Arcann’s control, most of the Eternal Fleet isn’t listening to him anymore.  But the good news is, he’s received intelligence on where he can find the man he hates the most:  his father.  Or more accurately, his father’s presumed avatar, the Outlander.  (That’s you, by the way.)  This sets the stage for the dramatic conclusion of the Knights of the Fallen Empire storyline for Star Wars: The Old Republic.

Need I say there will be spoilers after the break?

But first, as always, some notes to mention before getting into the meat.  The Heroics nerf that came in with the last chapter has been reversed, to the payout values they had prior to the change.  There’s apparently been a nerf to Treasure Hunting boxes, however, which was apparently giving out credits like candy.  I don’t know this as a fact-I so rarely do crafting things anymore, or really most crew skill stuff.  Options have been added to the terminal in the Odessen base where you get your old companions, where now you can also get back companions who have been lost in the storyline-although it may not be working right for the most significant loss recently.

The reward for the month has already been acquired earlier, with the HK poster.  I haven’t heard when the HK chapter for folks who have stayed subbed all this time will land, but I expect sometime by the end of the month.

And the big news as far as I’m concerned:  Guss has returned!  And the guy’s trying to be what he couldn’t be when he met the Smuggler.  In the process, you’ll meet a Force user who’s…not what you’d expect.  And I can’t help but feel that perhaps there’s more to this guy than meets the eye-I kind of wonder if he’ll be showing up again in the future.  The actual recruitment isn’t all that hard, and is more about atmosphere than battle or treasure hunting.  (It does give you a good opportunity to snag a number of light/dark side points, though, if you need some by now.)  Note that you do have to have completed recruiting Blizz, though; he’s sort of essential here.

Also of note:  the Dark Vs Light event apparently will be ending a couple weeks prior to the Knights of the Eternal Throne expansion release; that’s in the Fall, and looking like October or early November, so I may have to do some serious acceleration on my work there if I want to hit my goals.  The “Building Character” posts may start slamming in multiple planets at once, because I need to up my game a lot here.

Okay, that’s the big stuff.  It’s time to take a peek at just what to expect in the mission and going forward.

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Well, it’s time for the next chapter of Knights of the Fallen Empire for Star Wars: The Old Republic.  As usual, there will be spoilers after the break (although I do try to gloss over some stuff), but first, my commentary on non-chapter related stuff.

The biggest (from my own biased point of view) is that Guss is not returning after all with this chapter.  The devs put up an amusing post indicating that Guss “carried out an overly-elaborate con job to convince the galaxy that his recruitment mission would go live with Chapter XV […].  But as with most of Guss’s con jobs, this caper has failed spectacularly.”  (And I immediately pictured my Smuggler saying, “Dammit, Guss!”), so it looks like we won’t see him until the final chapter.  Maybe.  Is it just me, or is it that none of the other classes have had any trouble having their alerts work okay, but Heaven Forbid that the Smuggler companions get released on schedule.  Of course, that’s probably the issue right there-they’ve probably learned from the Smuggler to never cooperate with authority….

The next biggest detail is something that has not gone over well with the forum population, at least.  There’s been a hard nerfing of Heroic missions as far as payouts go.  I’m glad I managed to finish up my “Alliance Commander” achievement, because from what I’m reading, the payouts got slashed by up to half of what they were.  Guess most of the interesting stuff on GTN just went out of reach of most people again; not to mention returning a painful grind for anyone hoping to unlock rooms for strongholds or flagships.  I’m not thrilled with the change, myself.  But I’ll live-I just won’t worry about doing the Heroics anymore.  The whole point was to get payouts commensurate with the effort, and while not all content in the game does do that, that content often makes up for it in other ways (like, say, being a compelling story).

Light versus Dark began as well; I’ve already put up my thoughts on that in the last post, and I won’t regurgitate here.  I’ll likely have a series of “Building Character” posts chronicling my two representatives to the event at some point, similar to how I’m planning the “Rick Masters” posts for the Star Trek Online expansion in July.  I’m actually looking forward to taking a new look at the content I’ve done, and I haven’t really put effort into leveling characters since KotFE rolled out.  My expectation is to do as much as possible, including side quests that I no longer have to do; way I see it, it’s more opportunities to get Light/Dark Side choices and weigh into the event goals.  Still no decision on Light or Dark Side for me.  Stay tuned.

For those looking for info on the next HK-related toy…it’s not July yet.  It’s a July reward-so it didn’t come in yet.  So don’t panic when you can’t find the new poster in your mail.

So, without too much to comment upon aside from the main event, spoilers await ahead!  Last chance!  Turn back if you don’t want to see the details on the GEMINI Deception!

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The GEMINI Sanctions

Last week, Star Wars: The Old Republic cranked out the latest chapter in its Knights of the Fallen Empire expansion-and it features a significant warrior faction that has been missing since the Outlander got stuffed into the carbonite block.  The Mandalorians are back, and they’re looking for trouble!

As usual with these new chapters, there will be limited spoilage below the break.  But first, as usual, some remarks that don’t count for story.

First off, because I honestly put far more importance on this than it really should have:  the next chapter’s companion alert is going to be Guss!  Yes, Smuggler fans, you’re getting another of your people back.  I’d suspected his return might be sooner than later, after the Blizz alert, so that much is right with the world.  (I am, naturally, aware that the Jedi players now need to get a companion back to bring balance to the Force-or at least to the companion count.)  It’ll be good to see what kind of trouble he’s gotten into…and how to get him out of it!

The subscriber reward this month was a speeder; amazingly, it wasn’t HK-inspired, but rather, Zakuul-inspired.  At least it has some of the Eternal Empire aesthetic to it.  Next month is going to be a poster decoration for strongholds, and it returns to the HK theme.  It occurs to me while writing this that we’re exactly two months before the grand finale of this set of rewards-and the anticipated HK-centric chapter for those who have stuck with the game for the long haul.  (I’m pretty sure that was for the long haul; there might’ve been a deadline thing instead, but I was pretty sure it was for continuous subscription.)

It’s no shock to see some folks complaining on the forums about the poster.  On the other hand, it’s getting easier and easier for me to filter them out.  I’m getting closer to the point where I’m just gonna read dev posts and stop there.  My faith in humanity takes a beating every time I go to a game’s forums anymore.

With all that out of the way, spoilage awaits those who dare continue!

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Who Will Rule?

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 honestly, I can’t imagine that seat is all that comfortable.

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?

Rob ‘Em Blind!

Last week, the players of Star Wars: The Old Republic got to play the next chapter in their “Knights of the Fallen Empire” storyline.  If you were feeling that recent chapters felt more Jedi/Sith oriented, that the “regular folks” of the Trooper, Agent, Smuggler, and Bounty Hunter were more or less ignored…well, this chapter is for you!  Named “Profit and Plunder”, the players get served up a heist of galactic proportions!  Well, maybe not galactic, but….

But first, a couple of notes unrelated to the actual story.  The Smuggler FINALLY gets a companion back in an Alliance Alert, where a certain Wookiee has been gravitating back to an old game with a new perspective.  It’s tied in heavily with the Eternal Championship content released with this chapter:  as with most Alliance Alerts, if you’re anyone but someone who had good old Bowdaar before (in other words, a Smuggler), you need to gain influence rating with him, and you do it by participating in the Eternal Championship gladiatorial matches.  The EC is basically a primer in some ways for Operations; each opponent-or set of opponents, as the main opposition usually has some help-has a gimmick that you need to figure out how to counter, or at least survive, in order to beat down the opponent and advance.  Needless to say, each opponent becomes progressively tougher; you need to be good in the game and have good equipment-and possibly have a fairly high Influence companions backing you up-to make it through all ten rounds and become named an Eternal Champion!

I’ve not done much of it thus far, but my Agent has completed four rounds; I cheerfully acknowledge that I’m unlikely to get to round 10, much less beat it.  But that’s okay.  First, you don’t have to win the Championship to get Bowdaar; each time you officially end your participation, you gain Influence with him, so if you keep trying and only get so far, it’s still tacking on Influence.  And second, Smugglers get the shortcut to pass all of that mess to just go to the next phase of recruiting Bowdaar, as he has a favor he needs from you before he can commit to the Alliance-and that’s loads easier than fighting the tournament.

With Bowdaar, we now have officially gotten back at least one companion for each class.  Some have been more represented than others, but at least everyone’s got someone.  There’s one more incoming next month (more on that below), but first, it’s time to delve into the grit.  Spoilers be lurking past this break, so stay back if you don’t want to see them!

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