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Flaws of Arkain

Discussion in 'The Legends of Arkain Series' started by Championfighter25, Sep 20, 2018.

  1. Championfighter25

    Championfighter25

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    We needed a ''hate'' thread sooner or later anyway, didn't we? :p
    Anyway, the point of this thread is to post what you find as bad, flawed, unfitting and stupid with the Arkain series and post it here.
    Also, though you may get this idea, this really isn't a hate thread. So it is adviced if you have something on your mind that you think as flawed to give good reasons why.
    A few important things to note before posting:
    1. Whining will not be taken seriously.
    2. This isn't the Bug Report thread, so gameplay issues should be posted there.
    3. This goes without saying, but don't post about any personal problems you have with Shar Dundred. Leave them for a PM.

    Anyway, here are some things I find as flawed:

    - The main demonic bad guys don't really have much of a personality, and they are just there so the demons have a leader. I know we see things from their POV for a very brief amount of time, but even if we combine it with their characters bios, Ornassion comes out as just a brute, and Kersidar as a person who seems smart, but actually isn't and likes to make bad apologies for his mistakes.
    A short story about future demonic leaders would help flesh them out more and actually even make us be either more satisfied or actually be sad for us killing them.
    Lord Margazar is far more interesting than all High Ranking Dreadlords combined and that should change.

    - I don't understand why mortal races don't burn corpses. For the first book, it was forgivable, since no one really knew the Undead existed. But by the time of the Second Book everyone pretty much knows they could be anywhere at any time, it just seems baffling. The entire thing just serves as a way for the Undead to get new characters when the time is convenient.

    - Most human characters die very easily and underwhelmingly, which is a big punch in the to people who think the characters of the race are partly strong or very strong. If we really put the entire human cast against one of the average undead characters it's pretty apparent who will win. Only Brian will probably win his battle and the irony is that he isn't even a human anymore. If they die they shouldn't die abruptly and just like that. ( People like Merlon especially deserved better)

    - The Forest trolls should have their representative hero in the Dominion. They were one of the first races to ally with the orcs, so not seeing a forest troll hero even mentioned is weird.

    - I like the strength the Tribal Dominion is gaining, the victories they are scoring and what they are doing, but there is a very serious flaw in my opinion with their characters.
    At this point, no matter what happens, you just can't kill any of them off, without causing a massive collapse in the dominion structure.
    And I know Amani is the empress of them all, but I'm sure that every individual race likes to have their own leader, who also serves as their representative. But if they die who is going to succeed them?
    Without any backups to take the role, the characters under no matter how impossible odds have to survive, else the faction either loses a race or disbands completely.

    Please share your opinion!
     
  2. LISBOAH

    LISBOAH

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    The demons mostly serve as foes to be defeated and obstacles to be removed, instead of actual characters. Their main purpose is to be the main threat that threatens everyone and forces different factions to unite against a common foe.

    Mortals have very short lifespans, especially compared to undead that are immortal. Krom, for example, must have fought on a number of wars far larger than Gardon's years of life. Undead have more battle experience.

    Plus, as seen with Rahandir and Cora, many powerful individuals among mortals will eventually surpass those around them and seek more power, which Aridon can provide and the others can't.

    True.

    That is the greatest weakness of the Dominion. Most of the time, the leaders only become leaders by brute strength (remember how Rangul became leader of the Orcs?", so when they die, most of the time, many may claim their right simply for being strong.

    One day, a human may appear and claim the right to rule the Dominion by simply defeating all champions.
     
  3. Shar Dundred

    Shar Dundred

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    I'd like to let you know that I am supporting this thread and am actually reading everything and take it serious.
    I want to see what issues people have with Arkain - if at all that is. Honesty is important.
    I trust things won't get toxic here.

    Looking forward to it.
     
  4. LickMyEyeBall

    LickMyEyeBall

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    Im a simple man, I hate only one thing - unfinished plotlines.
    While as simple as it is worded, let me elaborate.
    When I say "unfinished" Im referring to how rushed Second Human Book(SHB from now on) was. From that point of view I liked Jayborino's statement about undead being sort of "behind the scenes controlling everything", while in truth not only they manipulate the events, they also serve as the ending point of all plotlines, because in the end "it was Aridon's plan all along".
    I do get it, he's a god. Sort of. But my issue with the undead being the masterminds behind all events is that sometimes I dont feel like I understand the "it was Aridon's plan all along" concept. Or maybe something slips of my sight, but the further we moved through the main plot of SHB, the more it felt like undead are used to make up for...And Im lost right here. To make up for some plotholes, to make up for plot twists, which were scrapped.
    Now with the release of official timeline I think Shar should polish the ruggedness left by the rushed release of SHB. Additiional short stories perhaps?
    All in all, I think main focus should be applied to making the undead look natural in reaching their goals ( while not unveiling them completely).

    EDIT: Completely forgot to mention, that Cora leaving in such a dull way was a big disappointment for me.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2018
  5. Championfighter25

    Championfighter25

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    Here are a few other things I consider as flaws, number 3 especially, though it sort of has an easy solution:

    -The biggest advantage of the Orcs is supposedly their immunity to manipulation.
    It may sound counterproductive, but I think this is one of their biggest disadvantages and one of the first time I have seen a positive racial ability, actually be harmful.
    Not only due to not being able to be manipulated did they make the demons have an extremely easier time at invading the continent, they also managed to lose a large amount of their forces.
    If the first one wasn't embarrasing they also repeated the same mistake later, during book 2. The supposed attack by the 3 Bonelords on Salria was an obvious way to inflict heavy casualties on the Dominion just so they can be manipulated into not attacking the Purificator. And yet they did, which could have ended with their faction getting disbanded and crushed, if only it wasn't for the demons being a bigger threat, and then the undead betrayal happening.
    The Orcs' immunity to manipulation seems like an excellent trait, but it has caused them way too much harm and the story hasn't gives us any direct and positive examples of it actually being something that seems like a reason for boasting. Instead we get something more akin to a curse.

    - Sasrogarn could have always been so much more. His attempts at intimidation have always failed, and his friend Grofzag being the only reason he didn't die way earlier were the final nails in the coffin for his character.
    He deserves a short story or two, because, although he was supposed to be one of the main characters, he always felt like filler, his only reason for existing being that we needed a hero in chapter 6 of the first orc book, and to give the "we can coexist with humans" just a tiny bit of credability, so we wouldn't have instantly forgotten it.
    His death at the hands of Amari, because of all this lacks any impact. He was just a guy and he died. That would be ok for a regular unit, but not a main character that got this far.

    - The Gate of Hell is said to be the only way for the demons to attack the kingdoms, but if you think about it, this really isn't the case.
    This gets to our problem - The Void. Is it just a bottomless rift, or is it a bottomless rift, that if passed by Air will suck you in like a black hole? Because if it's the former and not the latter, then the Void becomes just a harder to get past river, and the Gate of Hell becomes a bridge.
    There is literally nothing preventing Gardon to send a large wave of dragons, pegasi and destructors to clear a way, then send a lot of airships with troops to begin the invasion. The same can be said about the demons. Both don't need to limit themselves to 1 bridge, even if strategically important.
    And if going by air will prove difficult because the demons or humans on the other side will expect it, that doesn't prevent either of the races to build their own Gate of Hell type bridge, even if they need a long time to get it finished and reinforced properly.
    This definitely needs some clarification and a possible world map update to reflect it.
     
  6. LISBOAH

    LISBOAH

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    Yeah. Orcs are too chaotic to be considered 'part of the balance'. They have been a nuisance to the Kingdoms and a threat to Aridon's plans. Their actions led to the fall of two kingdoms, if they hadn't been also been responsible for the fall of others.

    For now they seem satisfied with their current holdouts, but I guess their love for war and pillage will soon make them act and most likely in the worst time ever, like when the Empire decides to invade.

    If I was Aridon, I would seriously consider either restraining their moves, reduce their numbers or downright commit genocide on them. I am usually opposed to genocide, but the orcs have clearly proven to be too dangerous to be allowed to do what they want.
     
  7. Championfighter25

    Championfighter25

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    - The extremely fast rate of integration and acceptance of races in the Tribal Dominion is unrealistic. The races being hated by everyone and probably having low populations may be some of the reasons, but pulling it off in less than a year, without any problems between them in the meantime, except Amari and Sas fighting for who will take Rangul's place, is silly.

    - Brian completely keeping his sanity intact after consuming even a small part of the Master of Shadows' power is questionable. If Shadow Magic is banned, that means it's either highly corruptible or something bad can happen if you study it extensively, so saying it's not as bad as, let's say demonic magic, is not really a good answer. Him studying it beforehand, thus making him less susceptible to it's effects, also doesn't work, since Aedale studied and practiced demonology before consuming something a demonic artifact containing great power, and it didn't exactly help her, it made her even easier to corrupt.
     
  8. deepstrasz

    deepstrasz

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    Arkain's lethal flaw.....................................................................................................Blizzard EULA!
     
  9. LISBOAH

    LISBOAH

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    Who knows how things truly are whenever they are not focused on killing others.

    Losing insanity doesn't turn someone into a lunatic walking around burning and destroying everything. Some people might be completely insane but act always composed (ex: Sephiroth from Final Fantasy VII).

    And people react differently to these stuff. Aedale was weak-minded and after receiving all that power became like a spoiled brat that thinks she knows better than most and that is going after the children that bullied her in pre-school. We have no idea if Brian had a phase like Adeale before becoming like he is today.
     
  10. Shar Dundred

    Shar Dundred

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    I will just throw in that the incident that turned Brian into what he is today occured many years prior
    to the events of the Second Human Book.
     
  11. Shar Dundred

    Shar Dundred

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    I had originally not planned to address the points brought up in this thread, but I have decided to do it nontheless.
    I believe I can make things more understandable for you that way.

    This is a valid point, the "main villains" haven't gotten too much personality.
    Ornasion would of course have been built up as a character in the Second Undead Book, being one of the main characters featured in it.
    I think a reason for this is that they haven't been on screen much. I didn't give them enough time on the stage to be built up.
    They have begun burning more corpses (I mean look at the Golden Guard in 11/12) but yeah.
    You can see this two ways:
    a) Shar was too lazy to terrain this properly because he doesn't care about terrain or simply forgot to terrain this as he prefers to be done with the terraining part ASAP.
    b) The corpses were burned AFTER everyone stopped killing each other as during battle they had other things to do.
    Both has its merit, I will let everyone choose their own. Combine the two I would say.
    I discussed this matter with @Kasrkin and we cannot come up with any character but Merlon (and possibly Salomar) who had an abrupt and underwhelming death. Yes, both had a rather underwhelming death, I can admit that. Merlon's was rushed and Salomar.... Well, be honest: How many of you had him survive the first book? Yes, it does not make this any better, but I don't think this is about him.
    If you are about undead being more powerful than humans, at least the named characters, I would disagree. Yes, there are many powerful Undead of course, but there also powerful Humans like Gardon, Vail, Merlon, van Durce, Cora, Duke Redfist or Sir Praxeus.
    The forest trolls have not only served in the assault groups of the Orcs, they have also served as the reserve during the battle against Selior (RIP you poor unfortunate manipulated soul), meaning that they were in the "background" of the battle. When the Demons attacked from behind, they were slaughtered and their race is mostly gone at the beginning of the Second Books.
    There was of course no way for you knowing that as the Second Orc Book would have started with that explanation.
    The Humans don't really care if it is trolls or orcs throwing spears or axes at them, so they never bothered to question this and instead try to defeat the attacker.
    It is true that only one character per race (except the Orcs) has been introduced so far.
    I do no know if I am going to change that as I would rather not drown you with too many characters at once. Whether or not there are/would be characters to step up or not would be something to take a look at if it happens.
    Would you mind letting me know if the short stories that have been released or the other info posted since your post have helped in that regard?
    This being a disadvantage is a flawed assumption (no pun intended).
    Yes, the Orcs have made mistakes and COULD have been manipulated into not doing them - but the question is: Would they have been?
    The Demons would try to manipulate them into weakening their enemies, the Humans, so they wouldn't really have done much.
    And Aridon? The Watcher of Arkain didn't even consider the possibility that the Orcs could have become part of Arkain, part of its "balance", during the entire time. If anything, he would have manipulated them into destroying themselves even more.
    The attack in Salria was no attempt to manipulate them into "staying away"; it was an honest attempt to utterly destroy their entire race, as I am sure you know by now as you had written this quite a while ago.
    He could have been so much more, yes, that is part of his character ark. He is supposed to be the son who tries to live up to the father, but failing horribly.
    Not every hero can be heroic or skilled, I mean look at Lerrig. A decent warrior and leader, but outclassed by most others in the end.
    The Void is a bottomless rift that can, theoretically, be passed on air. The problem with it is, however, that the Demons of course know this and heavily guard it.
    In addition, our beloved nether dragons are somehow multiplying like rabbits around and above the Void, so there are an awful lot of them there.
    And remember how volnerable those air transports can be. Would you like Gardon to die by falling into a bottomless rift?
    :)
    Like several other points brought up here, it is not without merit, but it is simply the lack of a Second Orc Book
    As I have pointed out before, this had happened a long time ago. There was no way for you or anyone really knowing this, but Brian did spend some time in a near-insane lunatic state, ravaging through the temple for many years before he regained his sanity during this incident.
    Believe it or not, this matter would be touched on in one of the other Second Books - I will not tell you which one, though. ;)
     
  12. LickMyEyeBall

    LickMyEyeBall

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    Ignoring some minor stuff, I'd say mostly yes.
     
  13. The_Messenger

    The_Messenger

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    Hmm. If I were to mention a flaw of Arkain that bothers me the most is the dialogues and the way characters speak/talk throughout the story.

    For example, the first time you meet Gardon Bloodclaw you are told that he is unpredictable, cruel and ruthless. Each time he spoke I didn't feel that side of his character, all I felt like was him just talking like a normal person; I had nothing to fear from him and he didn't seem that unpredictable. All I could feel for Bloodclaw throughout the story was that he likes to shout scary sounding things, has a strong ultimate and likes to mind control people; in the end I didn't get attached to him by almost any means since he was so cut and dry. To top things off you are just told to believe he is kind of a bad guy by other characters that keep saying that Bloodclaw is bad though from the way he talks and acts it's like believing the sky is green and not blue.
     
  14. Shar Dundred

    Shar Dundred

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    Have you played the Second Human Book yet?
     
  15. The_Messenger

    The_Messenger

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    Yes, I've played the Second Human Book and that's where Gardon starts to resemble the character he was supposed to be from the very get-go when you meet him in the First Human Book. Some of his lines are still cheesy and not very intimidating or frightening; they closely resemble the lines spoken by comic book villains. He makes me chuckle every now and then when he says things like "rip you apart alive" or "ready the spikes I want <name> impaled". The lines he speaks needed that last touch to give Gardon that perfect anti-hero luster that he gains when he's better fleshed out in the Second Book. Please do not take this as an insult or poisonous, I am not saying these things because I hate Gardon or want to rip on him for no reason because this thread is made to point out the flaws of Arkain. There are other flaws in the other characters as well but Gardon got my attention the most (like many others) simply because he is one of the main characters in the Human Books, has a screen time and what he says must leave a good impression on the players that read his lines and witness his actions.
    As another example the scene where Duke Redfist shows up to visit Aedale looses some of its atmosphere when Redfist starts to repeat the word "spit" making his line somewhat comedic and I've only understood that he must have some awesome saliva producing glands and one of his abilities might be to projectile spit at enemies. That part where he stops over his daughter could have maintained the intensity if it wasn't for that part and it was much closely watched. He also says "worthless piece of nothing" which is a very clumsy set of words that can hardly be called an insult, the moment I heard him say that I frowned a bit thinking "that could have been so much better".

    All and all, Gardon in the end is just someone that doesn't mind getting his hands dirty if it serves his end goal; he's literally a nudge away from being the anti-hero the Empire deserves and the scattered kingdoms need.
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2018
  16. The_Messenger

    The_Messenger

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    Another thing in the Arkain Lore that bothers me is the lack of protection againts certain clases of magic, such as shadow magic and demon magic. Personally I thought that through the study of a certain type of magic that is considered highly dangerous or is outright banned from use.
    Of course there might not be enough knowledge on the subject to allow you (as a mage or someone with magical experience/tallent/skill) to use the more advanced and destructive spells, but there should at least be ways to guard yourself againts this kind of magic developed by truly powerful mages. Such as mental barriers, magical wards to prevent the erosion of the soul/mind, etc. but there's nothing to be found. Even the one known "poweful" mage you know (Harmos of the Flame) doesn't say anything else besides "are you mad?!" or something down those lines.

    From what I understood, just by learning about the existence of the dark arts you are already lulled into learning more about them by some unseen hand/force. In Aedele's case you are already forfeit by studying, becoming a potential target for demonic influence or manipulation. Presumably the dark arts ware out anyone that's not a demon or an undead, either driving you mad, turns you into a lunatic or (in rare cases) a portion of you survives the influences and you gain the power you desired.
     
  17. Jayborino

    Jayborino

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    Demonlords behind trees
     
  18. The_Messenger

    The_Messenger

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    Advanced stealth tactics no doubt.
     
  19. Shar Dundred

    Shar Dundred

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    You mean it is a flaw I am not doing that more often? Hmm. Maybe you are right!