Part 24: Dantooine - Jump the Shark
We pick up where we left off. The town of Khoonda was under siege from a band of marauding mercenaries.
Outside the former Matale estate, the mercenaries formed ranks.
Their purpose was clear: to wipe out the resilient band of settlers once and for all.
The air was thick with anticipation.
In response, the settlers repaired a squad of battle droids to help fend off the attack.
Their numbers were few, but their metallic resolve was certain.
Undaunted, the mercenaries charged into battle, their footsteps thundering across the faded grasslands of Dantooine.
The fight was quickly joined, and the mechanical shrieks of fallen droids and the screams of dying men soon filled the air.
One thing was for certain: the very future of Dantooine was at stake.
AND THAT'S WHEN THE DINOSAUR SHOWED UP. RAWWRRR!
Okay, so that wasn't really what happened.
The actual siege of Khoonda sucked and consisted of a non-interactive, low-res Bink movie. All like, 30 seconds of it. But we can pretend it was awesome.
I think someone asked about what happens when you side with the mercenaries, what happens to Vrook, etc. Well, let's just check it out.
"She means nothing to me. Go ahead and kill her."
He reminds of Dennis Hopper in Waterworld. I don't know why I remember that movie.
By siding with Azkul, everyone in the militia apparently just gives up and there's no end fight here. He just walks into the main lobby without resistence.
The door shuts, the Azkul kills the Administrator. It's a little harsh.
Now normally, if you sided with the mercenaries back at the cave, Vrook would be very pissed at you, and would attack you. However, remember how Vrook ran off at the beginning of the battle? Well, he wasn't around to witness us selling out to the mercenaries, so he doesn't know what happened.
And that's how you fuck over Khoonda and let Vrook live at the same time. The weird thing about this ending is that you don't fight the mercenaries and you don't fight Vrook, so you finish the planet without (directly) killing anybody at all. It's a little weird.
You could also do the opposite of that. Threaten to kill Vrook back at the caves, then side with the settlers during the siege. If you do that, you'll save Khoonda, but after you get your reward, Vrook is still pissed and will fight you out in the foyer.
But anyway, screwing over Khoonda isn't what we want to do, because it's a little unsatisfying in the emotional sense, and completely unrewarding in the gameplay sense. So let's do a quick rewind....
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[Force Persuade] "You don't want to fight. Throw down your weapons."
This time Vrook arrives back in time.
The fight begins, and we have to deal with Azkul plus 7 or 8 mercenaries. On our side we've got Vrook, a couple of militia guys, and whoever we managed to recruit during last update.
I just wanted to show off a new Force Power here, called Force Confusion. It's basically the same as the D&D spell 'Charm'; it'll mind control one enemy to fight for you. The prerequisite for it is Mind Trick, which is the equivalent of a stun or a mez.
For all his training at Malak's academy, Azkul still fails the first save against Force Confusion, and gets mind controlled to fight for us.
And that's the end of that.
Vrook still has that lightsaber lit like he's going take a run at Jesus if he says the wrong word.
"I'm sorry to offend you. You are, of course, our savior and I am very grateful to you."
See, this is why we side with the settlers. You don't get a, "Forget about the money, just build a big statue of me" option when you go Dark Side.
Smile and nod. Just smile and nod.
Vrook admits he might have, quite possibly, maybe, been actually wrong about something. It's a start.
Time to get some answers.
"We have been forced to divide our forces and retreat to places which will be difficult for our enemies to detect - and attack. We have chosen to hide our presences from each other, so that the discovery of one will not endanger the others."
"But how can you contact each other?"
"But even as our numbers thin, there is still no trace of them."
"Then, all of us who remained vowed to meet here on Dantooine. From here, we can plan a course of action and carry the battle to them. But so far, they remain in hiding. And Jedi continue to vanish - and die."
"I have already met with Zez-Kai Ell upon Nar Shaddaa."
"Nar Shaddaa? Why would he go there?"
"He believed that the life on Nar Shaddaa could conceal him."
"It is good that you bring word of him - but you must not speak of it to others. It will only put him and any other Jedi who remain in danger."
"What happened to the Jedi?"
"We are at war, but it is unlike any war we have fought before - we have yet to even meet our attackers in battle. Somehow, our enemy is targeting us through the Force, striking, then retreating to the shadows."
"But yes, Katarr was one such place."
The Master Zhar and Master Dorak he mentions are nods to the previous game; both were members of the Jedi council here on Dantooine. Zhar was the Twi'lek who trained Revan, and Dorak was the old historian dude. We still don't know what happened to Master Vandar, the Yoda dude who was the fourth member of the council.
"It was after Katarr that the few of us left realized that wherever we gathered, we were placing others in danger - not just Jedi."
For such a secretive place, Katarr was quite common knowledge amongst our little circle of movers and shakers. Darth Nihilus as we know, was the one who destroyed Katarr, and he was drawn to it by the concentration of Force users there. The Exile on the other hand was led to it through Atris.
Dantooine was bombed during the Jedi Civil War, but the planet wasn't particularly densely populated to begin with. It was just sparse farmland, and there couldn't have been more than 30 NPCs around Jedi Enclave back then. Jedi Jesus killed twice that many in the Jekk'Jekk Tarr alone. At least enough people seemed to have survived to recover nicely.
"Why are you in hiding?"
"We were not in hiding, despite what you believe."
Hmm. Remember that Kreia says much the same thing.
"But I do not believe that such techniques alone would be capable of hiding the enemies we face - it does not seem possible."
"So why are you here?"
"Jedi sanctuaries, places of learning, conclaves - many of them secret, have been attacked. That requires that our enemy knew of our whereabouts - or had access to records and holocrons from the Enclave here on Dantooine."
This is fast being a trend - it sounds like whoever's working against us has a deep knowledge of Jedi tricks and secrets. It can't simply be Darth Sion and Darth Nihilus. Whoever it is seems to know where exactly where to strike and who to kill.
"In the hands of our enemies, such knowledge could be used to track and kill Jedi, find other Enclaves, gathering places. And so much has been plundered from here, that now many secrets of the Jedi have been spread throughout the galaxy. So I did what I could, attempting to let myself be captured. I hoped that it would lead me to the Sith, and the stolen artifacts."
For the first time, Vrook gets sentimental. Remember, he was a teacher here (though not a very good one). It might not have been the easiest thing to watch your school get torched and your students killed.
He's back to being an ass again. He and the Jedi Council decided to stand by while the Mandalorians pillaged world after world, and he still won't accept any of the blame for a bunch of his more idealistic Jedi running off to join the war.
It was either that or let them be conquered by Mandalorians.
"We did nothing to you. Accuse us if you will, but it will not change the truth."
Again, he says the Council didn't cut the Exile off from the Force. This is what Zez says as well.
Who should we believe, them or Kreia?
"Then what happened to me?"
"Perhaps that is a question you should ask yourself. It is not something I could help you with, even if I wanted to."
"But I have reestablished my connection to the Force."
He must be one lousy Jedi.
After all, Jedi Jesus is running around mind controlling people and shooting massive fuck-off lightning from his fingertips; and yet Vrook says he can't feel the Force from the Exile. That can't be right.
"Still, you and your... connections were often a subject of debate in the Council."
"At the end of my trial, you and the other Masters said something had happened to me. What was it?"
"You have seen the end of your trial? Perhaps you would like to explain how you came to this knowledge."
"I heard it in a holo-transcription of my trial."
"That was intended only for the Jedi Council. If what remains of the Council chooses to tell you, then I will abide by their decision... and its consequences."
[Persuade] "Don't you think I have a right to know?"
[Success] "There is little I can tell you. Master Kavar felt something had happened to you in the war, but all he had were suspicions, not truths. And Kavar was too close to you in any event - he, too, felt the call of war and took to battle more than a Jedi should. His speculations would not help you now. But enough of this - it is knowledge for the Council alone until they choose to reveal it."
"Yes, and the connection is lethal."
"Such bonds normally grant strength to both - but not to such a degree. Are you certain? Perhaps it is merely what you believe."
Well, Kreia certainly told us something different at the beginning of the game.
Again, not sure who to believe here.
"The Sith have revealed themselves."
"Have they? I have seen no evidence of them upon Dantooine - only murderers and raiders."
"They exist. They have already attacked me."
Ugh. Again, if Jesus is empty of the Force, how is he using all these fancy Force powers?
"I do not know - they believe me to be a Jedi."
"If you can find others - or find some trace of this Sith threat, then we shall gather here on Dantooine. And from there, we may decide what can be done."
As per customary, we learn a new saber style from a Jedi Master at the end of each planet.
If you're wondering about the stats of Shien, I don't think it ever says in-game, so here it is:
- Attack Modifier +2
- Defense vs. Current Target -5
- Blaster Bolt Deflection +4
- Critical Multiplier +1
It's a good all around stance for everything except 1v1 fights.
Bonus Video - Vrook Must Die
I promised to kill Vrook in a parallel universe, so here it is. An uninterrupted 7 minutes of Ed Asner's excellent voice acting and some pathfinding exploitation. Also, Atton stands around being extremely not helpful. Again.
And no, I don't talk during videos. It's unnecessary for this game. Plus I hate my voice.