08 November, 2009

Keepalive: Borderlands, Titan Quest, DnD

written by Blain Newport on Sunday, November 8, 2009

This post was 14 hours late. I got my days confused.

Our friendly fire playthrough of Borderlands continues. We shoot guys. We get loot. I was pretty frustrated near the end of our last playthrough, though. I was fighting some guys and some of my companions drove over them in a car. That means no XP and my fun was over. They didn't care. So I didn't care about them dying. There's really nothing they can do about that, either. Since they usually go down when they've overextended themselves and put themselves in a situation that would be very difficult to rescue them from even if I wanted to. But using my special power I could usually get to them. I just don't because I'm a petty child. :P

I'm kind of the same in Titan Quest. I pick up almost nothing. My companions will pick up everything. They're not bad guys. They've just got much worse cases of loot lust than I do. If there's something that's painfully obviously for my character they'll drop it for me. I don't really care. They also kill everything way faster, so it doesn't really matter how I'm geared. I'm just along for the ride in both games.

I'm expressing myself more in D&D. I wrote up a little background for my character.

There's a lot about Devas (the race I'm playing) that's left very nebulous. Knowing almost nothing of the game world also makes it impossible to add a lot of detail. So I left his origins simple, mythic, and with some room for expansion.

I've included it below, but don't don't feel obligated to read it. I enjoyed writing it and felt like sharing, but that doesn't mean it's the type of thing anyone wants to read.

Deva are minor Hindu gods. My favorite Hindu god (and god of any kind) is Ganesha, the lord of obstacles. (appropriate for a controller wizard, no?) I have named my character as a reference to Ganesha.

A plain of dry grass. A tree in the distance. A blue sky with a few white clouds.

These were the first things Esha ever saw.

As was customary, he knelt and gave thanks to the gods for his new life, his new chance to serve against darkness. He then gave a prayer for guidance.

No sign came.

He sat beneath the tree and waited, with the stillness only Deva and holy men can know.

He breathed. He felt the grass and his silk robes. The light from between the leaves danced across his eyes. He watched the grass and clouds move with the wind which blew directly into him. He did this for a time before realizing that his prayer had been answered.

Without thought, he took to his feet and walked forward. It was his path. To stay beneath the tree was to serve Moradin, the stoic god of lasting legacy. To turn and follow the wind was to serve Pelor, for where the clouds went would be the fertile grounds of the god of agriculture. To cross the wind to either side was to follow Avandra, goddess of exploration. But his way was into the wind, to seek opposition. He would follow Bahamut.

Pava was an older human woman who had led a difficult life. Her sex and dark skin had made her an outsider where she grew up, and it took much time and perseverance to overcome prejudice and become a wizard. She eventually retired from the order to raise her daughter in a remote location, and not on the best of terms. When the mystified villagers brought Esha to her tower, unsure if he was man or monster, she recognized her own plight in his, and took him in.

This was not an easy decision for a bitter recluse, set in her ways, and her relationship with the Deva was never an easy one. He was too literal. He was always in the way. His appetite for training wearied her. He never did chores as she wanted them done. And his calmness in all situations only made things worse. But she grew accustomed to the aggravation, possibly even thriving on it as she had been fighting one battle or another for most of her life. And since her daughter Saura had gone into the world to seek her fortune, Pava secretly valued the company.

The Adventure Begins
When Saura returned to visit, things changed. Saura had become a bard and had many stories to tell and songs to sing. Esha was taken with her charm and free spirit. And Saura was taken with his gentleness and grace. Pava felt her daughter had chosen a frivolous profession, and when she realized a bond was forming between Saura and Esha, felt somehow betrayed and afraid that both would leave her. In her anger, she estranged her daughter and evicted Esha, making sure they went separate ways.

Esha went into the world to join an adventuring company and serve Bahamut to the best of his ability, never forgetting his debt to Pava or his nascent bond with Saura.

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