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A6 - Poll: What is your favored ending? [Spoilers]


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In A6, the actions you take can result in different endings (whether you realize it when you are playing or not). Some of us feel that the game creator's preference was apparent in some editorializing in the descriptions and conversations, but the question is, what do the players choose?

 

This poll contains a list of the major endings. If you have only played to one ending, pick that. If you have played to multiple endings, pick the one you favor (e.g., the one you would play to if you were doing it "for real" in your role as citizen/soldier/adventurer/unholy killing machine.)

 

(Note, the '#' symbols in some of the options don't mean anything -- they are just a result of my incompetence.)

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Other ending: Complete Gladwell's quests, waste him, do Melanchion's quests, backstabbing him in the end, decimate the Slith hordes and kill their leadership, and then return to Avernum as a hero. Execute a coup and replace Starrus with myself, and then expand Avernum down to the Slith homelands where the invasion came from to secure sufficient land to hold Avernums' population steady and insure security and prosperity for Avernum, and also power for me.

 

I've been playing too much Geneforge, haven't I?

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LOL@Dantius

 

Yeah you've played GF too much.

 

I voted kill Mel and Gladwell after doing all their quests.

 

If for real then I would go with Dantius ending except not attacking Sliths but I would make mages etc work to find cure for blight and maybe ask Vahnatai's help to improve relations after slaughtering their outpost.

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Originally Posted By: Dantius
Other ending: Complete Gladwell's quests, waste him, do Melanchion's quests, backstabbing him in the end, decimate the Slith hordes and kill their leadership, and then return to Avernum as a hero. Execute a coup and replace Starrus with myself, and then expand Avernum down to the Slith homelands where the invasion came from to secure sufficient land to hold Avernums' population steady and insure security and prosperity for Avernum, and also power for me.

Sounds good, but you forgot one tiny detail: how are you going to feed everyone?

Dikiyoba doesn't really like any ending and would have prefered the A2 ending.
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Originally Posted By: Dikiyoba
Sounds good, but you forgot one tiny detail: how are you going to feed everyone?

Dikiyoba doesn't really like any ending and would have prefered the A2 ending.



Conquest. I'll take the food source of the Slith Horde and use that to feed Avernum. Plus, having reconquered the Occupied Lands, I'll have plenty of farmland left to use to grow orchards.

And if Starrus pulls a Banquo and returns as a ghost, I'll have one advantage Macbeth didn't: Repel Spirit.
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Okay, but by "other ending" I didn't mean one you make up. I meant one that is actually possible within the context of the game as it is written, but that I had missed in the options I gave.

 

For instance, my favored ending is that Megan Fox is so impressed with my brilliant gameplay that she wants to be my girlfriend and then I don't have time to finish the game. But that doesn't really help to answer the central question of this thread.

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Originally Posted By: So Much Killing
Okay, but by "other ending" I didn't mean one you make up. I meant one that is actually possible within the context of the game as it is written, but that I had missed in the options I gave.

For instance, my favored ending is that Megan Fox is so impressed with my brilliant gameplay that she wants to be my girlfriend and then I don't have time to finish the game. But that doesn't really help to answer the central question of this thread.


Yes, but my ending is feasible both in the game and in the context of other games Jeff had made. If you don't like it, just throw out the bit from "execute a coup" onwards and you'll have my ending.
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Originally Posted By: Dantius

Yes, but my ending is feasible both in the game and in the context of other games Jeff had made. If you don't like it, just throw out the bit from "execute a coup" onwards and you'll have my ending.


Okay, so you're pretty much Option #6, but with an eye toward making yourself king. I would have included killing the king, but I believe it results in an instant "Go to jail" ending.

A good avenue for a coup would be to somehow delay the delivery of Mel's pylon to the great portal. Then you could whip up the mobs of people waiting to get out, and storm the castle. Then you'd deliver the pylon and be Savior of Avernum. But that's another game...
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Originally Posted By: The Turtle Moves
Complete all of Gladwell's quests then kill him.

Complete 2 the two of Mel's quests that align with the interests of Avernum: scourge and darkside loyalists. Leave Melanchion alive.

Outcome the same as option #1.




Ah, yes, I missed that one. But you're right -- it's basically the same as option 1, so let's call it that. I can't seem to edit the poll, so we'll have to live with it.

I was going to post a separate poll of which Melanchion quests people do, but it appears that most people (so far) do all of them. I wonder, for instance, if anyone ever finishes the game without killing the Scourge.
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  • 2 weeks later...

At this point we have a fairly small sample, so I'm not sure how much we can glean from the results. The people responding are likely the dedicated types who are repeat players or still check the forum months after they finish playing the game, and a few new players who come along.

 

Still, it looks like the majority favor the monarchy ruling Avernum without challenge from power-hungry dragons and wizards. If you add in the people who do the minimum (also favorable to the monarchy, though desiring some checks and balances in the form of a brainwashing dragon), you're around two-thirds of the votes. The anti-monarchy group comes in around one-quarter of the votes, fairly evenly split between favoring Gladwell, Melanchion, or both.

 

Looking at the original thesis, it would seem that most people side with the expressed sentiments of the game's creator, though a significant minority resist that guidance.

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Just the qualifier "bothers to register a message board account" already restricts you to an extremely narrow slice of Avernum players.

 

I think my problem with how much these "player choices" are hyped up, is that they have become extremely formulaic. Picking a side was new in A Small Rebellion, and it affected most of the scenario -- that was cool. In Nethergate, it was woven into the game mechanics and having it run for an entire game, that was new too. In Geneforge 1 the moral ambiguities and factions were new, and in Geneforge 2 there were yet more represented. But since then it has kind of been old hat: minor, uninspired variations on "faction 1 vs. faction 2" with most of the game identical, a series of uninvolved* quests particular to each faction, and then one or two endgame zones that are totally different depending on what you chose.

 

There's nothing wrong with this, mind you, it's just hard to be excited about it any more, or see it as a real selling point.

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Originally Posted By: CRISIS on INFINITE SLARTIES
Just the qualifier "bothers to register a message board account" already restricts you to an extremely narrow slice of Avernum players.


Good point. I played the first five and most of the sixth Avernum before I ever came here. I'm sure there are many who never come by at all.

Quote:

I think my problem with how much these "player choices" are hyped up, is that they have become extremely formulaic. [...]

There's nothing wrong with this, mind you, it's just hard to be excited about it any more, or see it as a real selling point.


It would be nice to play a game where all of your various choices affected the way things went. But I can imagine that it would be very hard to code, especially if there was some overall plot that needed to be shepherded to a resolution. Giving the player more substantive choices could make the game exponentially harder to program and debug. I think the game designer has to confront the choice between making the game bigger, or making it deeper and richer. Since most people are probably going to play it once and judge it on that, the choice to make it bigger seems the obvious one.

I, for one, could do with a little less plot, and a little more adventuring and mystery. A6 started to seem like a bit of a slog after a while, and you ultimately had very little choice about what you did. In fact, most people probably did everything in order to level up their characters so they could fight the tougher enemies. So the choices were, as you say, nothing to get excited about.
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  • 1 month later...

I'm not entirely sure if the ending I got counts as #1 or #4. I did most of Melanchion's quests, but not all - I left the Vahnatai alone, because I hated the idea of attacking people who weren't attacking me, just on the basis they wanted somewhere to live and could conceivably pose a threat in the future. I had already killed the Darkside Loyalists before I ever met Melanchion, and Lord Farrar and the Scourge seemed like they genuinely needed killing.

 

I don't remember the exact wording of the description I got in the end, but I know Starrus remained king, and I think it said he had to cooperate in some manner with Melanchion? Not sure if that counts as "bowing down" or not...

 

In retrospect, I'm kind of wishing I hadn't killed Lord Farrar, so Melanchion couldn't have taken the Abyss. Either that or maybe that I'd killed Melanchion, but I didn't know that was an option at the time. I expect it would be hellishly difficult, but hmmm, I suppose that's what saved games are for... I can't unkill Farrar, unless I go back quite a few saves, but I could restore from my last save and have a go at killing Melanchion.

 

I was, BTW, very gratified to see that the ending I got did NOT include the Vahnatai wiping out Avernum because I'd refused to destroy Tenevra. Makes me think I made the right choice on that front. smile But I do wish it had offered a third option, apart from "leave them alone for now" and "kill them". Something like "tell them they're welcome to have a colony there if they want to, we really don't care, but let's negotiate a peace treaty and, ooh, maybe you can help us take out that dragon that apparently wants you dead!" laugh

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  • 2 weeks later...

Wizards also live a very, very long time.

 

I chose to help Gladwell, and kill the Darkside Loyalists and the Scourgeleaders for Melanchion. This resulted in the standoff, with essentially many independent nations in the caves and Avernum ruled by Gladwell. Avernum, the Abyss, Melanchion, the sliths, and the Vahnatai. Not to mention the wilderness owned by no-one.

 

I liked the long ending narrative - everything made sense, it was satisfying, and no one power has control over the caves.

 

One thing that could have been made more clear was the degree of autonomy Upper Avernum (consisting of the surface colony in Valorim as well as "old Upper Avernum" still in the caves) has from the Kingdom of Avernum now ruled by Gladwell. It would make sense to me that Avernum and Upper Avernum become two separate entities once Gladwell takes over from Starrus.

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  • 2 months later...

I'm curious if anyone did not kill the Scourge or the Darkside Loyalists? Instead they took out Lord Farrar and the Vahnatai? I know that counts as doing the two quests for Melanchion, but I think it would affect the outcome a lot. Anyone do that?

 

By the way, what happens if you kill Gladwell and Melanchion? I stopped working for Gladwell once I figured out what he was trying to do, but I didn't consider him much of a threat. And I hate killing dragons. They're an endangered species, after all. frown

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The remnants of the Darkside Loyalists get hunted down no matter what: if not by your party, then by other Avernite soldiers. Not sure about the Scourge.

 

If you kill Gladwell, he's... well, he's dead, and consequently he can't take over Avernum. Likewise with Melanchion, pretty much: killing the dragon basically means that the Abyss and Avernum will remain independent nations no matter what.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Killing both Melanchion and Gladwell seems to be best for Avernum. I doubt the people of Upper Avernum would bow to Gladwell so the treaty with the Empire will likely dissolve. Melanchion has no treaty with the Empire so there's nothing stopping the Empire from killing him. The Empire still has that fortress Dorikas left behind from which they can spy on Avernum and launch any preemptive attacks.

 

I found the whole idea of the Empire fearing Avernum pretty ridiculous since the only reason why Avernum managed to kill Hawthorne and beat the Empire in a war is because the Empire banished some of their most powerful mages to Avernum. Now that all those mages are gone and they didn't leave any worthy successors behind, the Empire has little to fear from Avernum.

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I took out Farrar and the Darkside Loyalists. As far as I'm aware, leaving the Scourge around doesn't make much of a difference. I mean, those were only part of the Scourge, and anyway the Triad were the ones who were really gung-ho about pushing further into Avernum, rather than consolidating their territorial gains.

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  • 1 month later...

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