“Betrayed” – KOTET Trailer Thoughts!
Potential Spoiler Warning for the following:
Betrayed trailer (obvs)
KOTFE all chapters
All SWTOR class stories
So yesterday the first trailer for Knights of the Eternal Throne dropped and it was really something. Like really something. So here are my thoughts/opinions on it. It’s visually stunning and offers insight into Senya and Vaylin, two major characters that I personally really like. However, that’s not to say I don’t have questions and/or concerns about the upcoming expansion…
Similarly to when the first full trailer for KOTFE dropped, I was immediately pulled in; the dark, dramatic opening of Senya, a character we know as being fierce and fearless, running and looking actually terrified, gave me chills from the get-go. The tonal shift to a sunny, happier time spent with a blonde child (quickly established to be a young Vaylin) was so jarring and it was at this point I realised we were going to discover that elusive puzzle piece that is the backstory for Senya and Vaylin’s now incredibly complex, antagonistic relationship. The use of pathetic fallacy in this trailer was very effective in illustrating the divisions between past and present, light and dark, loyalty and betrayal. The intertwining of themes helps underpin the relationship between the characters as we’ve witnessed them in-game thus far and certainly answers some questions whilst opening up several more.
We witness Vaylin’s interest in her brother’s training and her force powers unleashing themselves fully for the first time – and the terrible consequences of her lack of control over them. I’ve seen conflicting opinions on this and I think it’s deliberately ambiguous. On the one hand, Vaylin could have an innate, inner darkness but on the other, it could be purely because no one taught her to control her amazing abilities. Either way, her dangerous potential is realised, prompting Valkorion and Senya to act drastically – the ritual shown in the trailer is likely to be the one that Senya mentions to the Outlander wherein Vaylin’s powers (and part of herself) are locked away. And it’s horrifying to watch. From what I can intuit, it seems as though Senya was under the impression that the ritual would simply help Vaylin control her abilities but Valkorion had other plans, perhaps wanting to turn his daughter into a weapon he could control, turning her against her mother in the process. Vaylin has mentioned that both her mother and father have wanted to cage her throughout her life. Of course, there’s something even more horrifying about Senya knowing exactly what the ritual could do to her daughter, but her being in the dark about it fits Valkorion’s MO much better. Despite him not having anything to say in the trailer, we learn something about Valkorion here through his reaction to Vaylin’s power – he seems to be every bit the villain we’ve seen destroy Ziost and more.
Senya’s attempt to rescue Vaylin is all but too late, although highly action packed – the fight scene with her and the elite guard is brilliantly executed. Then, when Senya is forcibly removed, it dawned on me that this was a very different story to the one she’s told my Outlander. Both Senya and Valkorion have some ‘splaining to do for sure. The interesting thing here is that we as players know this story now, but our characters have only the knowledge Valkorion and Senya selectively share – at least for now. It’ll be interesting to see if this affects decision making in-game, if at all. What was fantastic about this trailer is that I came away wanting to hug Vaylin and Senya both. If I were to choose one word to describe it, I think I’d go with powerful; the power of the characters, the bonds between them, the emotions evoked by it all really came through.
Watching this, it makes me feel as though my Outlander may be forced to strip Vaylin of her force powers or something along those lines to neutralise her, which is a horrible fate for a force user. Being bereft of the force was explored in KOTOR II and in some ways it’s worse than death. I’ll be interested to see how the Outlander and co approach “the Vaylin problem”. Several times now we’ve been told to steer clear of her, being told that we are nowhere near her match and that doesn’t appear to have changed, even with Valkorion, Satele and Marr’s help. Either way, I feel there’s not going to be an easy option for resolving this.
So the trailer was awesome and sets the stage for KOTET nicely – Vaylin in her new role as primary antagonist and Empress alongside the unfolding family drama. From this angle, however, it’s a little difficult to picture how the Outlander fits into all this as it does appear to very much be a family affair. I’ve said in previous chapter reviews that I feel more and more like it’s less about the Outlander. Call me self-centred or egotistical but I love my toons! I’m confident that everything will come together and the multiple stories will interweave to create a thoroughly enjoyable, immersive story experience, but right now I’m not entirely sure how it’ll all pan out.
On the other hand, the descriptions of the expansion focus heavily on the idea of galactic command and control and even ruling the galaxy. Several characters, including Valkorion, have stated that the Outlander’s destiny is to sit on the Eternal Throne and rule, for better or for worse. From the start of KOTFE I felt as though the story might go in that direction (and for certain character reasons, almost hoped!) but now that it looks that way, the idea of being in command becomes a lot more real and raises a lot more questions. Obviously, responses to such a thing happening will vary between characters and the differences will be interesting to see.
I’ve been playing Dragon Age: Inquisition more than SWTOR lately, but after watching the new trailer I was itching to dive back into the action and start getting everything in place ready for the upcoming expansion (even though I’ve got until December 2nd!). It really feels like they’ve upped the ante with this one, and I personally can’t wait to get started on my Knights of the Eternal Throne journey.
Hey you! You’re an awesome person who stuck with my ramblings until the end – thank you!!!:)