Review and Discussion: Knights of the Eternal Throne Story

Knights of the Eternal Throne was a wonderfully paced, intense, heartbreaking masterpiece! It has succeeded where Knights of the Fallen Empire failed. There were no drawn out, wasted diversions, such as companion recruiting. The story came together faster and a lot of loose ends were tied up satisfactorily.

The pacing between dramatic intense fighting (or otherwise) sequences and calm, slow, more relaxed ‘exploration’ sequences was spot on. Pacing in an ‘RPG’ is critical. The right balance between fighting and exploring allows for greater appreciation of the overall story. This was done especially well with the new planets Iokath and Nathema. We had the chance to soak in and explore both planets without being too distracted by combat.

In that same vein, the voice acting, art and writing for the story was superbly done. A special mention to Darin De Paul, Erik Todd Dellums and Natasha Loring whose voice acting brought the story to new heights. The writing team did a fantastic job with the dialogue! They superbly integrated previously established lore and resolved newer revelations. The art for the new planets and area’s visited in KOTFE was breathtaking.

Romantic interactions throughout KOTET were much better than they were in KOTFE. Almost every time you interact with your LI, especially after getting separated, they always say something acknowledging your relationship. Although a fade to black scene would have been a nice addition at the end.

However, KOTET suffers from the same glaring issue KOTFE had. It is completely unsuitable for non-force user classes but even more so then KOTFE was. It is inconceivable, considering greater lore (the big picture), that a non-force user would ever end up in the position of ‘The Outlander’. Darth Marr would have never summoned a non-force user to his ship when the Sith Warrior and Jedi Knight, given their history of being involved with the Emperor, are far more qualified to be in his presence. Both the KOTFE and KOTET stories are far more enriching for Sith Warriors and Jedi Knights than on all the other classes. There’s no way around it.


KOTET Story Discussion

Before we proceed, I would HIGHLY RECOMMEND not reading any further until you have COMPLETED KOTET!

**MAJOR SPOILERS AFTER IMAGE**

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In this section, I’m going to be talking specifics about the KOTET story.

There is a lot to take in. Most notably concerning Valkorion. It is very gratifying to know that I was 100% right about him. That he would betray us. He never really stopped being the vicious child Tenebrae. Through his Valkorion face, he was able to experience new things but deep down he was still the sadistic, barbaric being he has always been. He lied about ascension to true immortality. He still needed a host body and he chooses the Outlander. When we kill him in Chapter 1 of KOTFE, we resist his attempt to take over our bodies so he bides his time waiting for an opportunity to take over. (This is why the story is not suited for non-force users. There is no way that they could resist Valkorions mind). He then uses Vaylin’s spirit to overpower and take over our minds. But, we find a way to defeat him.

Now Valkorion is dead. Gone. Disappeared. I find this very disappointing. He’s been the big bad looming over everything from the beginning of even KOTOR and now he’s just gone? Maybe I’m just in denial but I would’ve preferred that he had been still alive hiding in a severely weakened form unable to do anything. It was, however, fantastic to come across the Holocron with Vitiate’s father, Lord Dramath in it. I suppose it’s fitting that Valkorion’s father would provide the key to his own son’s destruction. Chapter 9 was very well done indeed.

Speaking of Valkorion’s death, another major disappointment with KOTET was Lord Scourge’s absence. He really should have been a part of the story. His vision, as shared with the Jedi Knight, about Vitiate’s demise seems to contradict what happened in KOTET.

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I guess the vision served it’s basic purpose at least which was to get Lord Scourge to team up with the Jedi Knight. But perhaps this offers a small glimmer of hope that Valkorion is still out there?

Thanks to Master Ranos, we find out what Lord Scourge is rumoured to be up to.

The Emperor’s Wrath? Never met him, but I’ve heard stories. Legends say the Emperor made him immortal, but at a terrible cost.
He lives in constant pain, wondering the dark corners of the galaxy, searching for ancient Sith rituals to end his suffering.

Sounds like he needs a Voss healing ritual too. It’s an adequate explanation for why we haven’t seen him. But it really is a shame the Jedi Knight was never given the opportunity to help him. Hopefully, someday we’ll see him again.

Being on the planet Nathema was an incredibly morbid, intriguing experience. The feel of the planet was perfect. I had my doubts initially because as described in the Revan Novel there shouldn’t have been any weather on Nathema (it was raining in the Betrayed Trailer). However, Charles Boyd’s explanation that the effects of Vitiate’s ritual were slowly wearing off and the force was starting to seep in again was somewhat satisfactory. I guess nothing is the same forever. Things can change.

Then there’s Arcann. My admiration for Senya increased tenfold during KOTET. She was right about her son, Arcann. He was redeemed! It was wonderful to see the new person he became. Arcann was in his own way corrupted by Valkorion and the Voss healing ritual cleansed him of his father’s corruption. I half expected to not like it if Arcann was redeemed but I feel it worked really well. Arcann in some ways parallels Revan’s own redemption in a sense. He falls to his father’s corruption (the dark side) and is then redeemed. It really is a shame that we didn’t get to see any scenes with Arcann and Senya interacting together. Ideally, it would’ve been great to see Arcann watching over his mother and then seeing them talk after she wakes up.

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It was fascinating to watch Vaylin evolve. Especially when she gains full independence (SCORPIO’s betrayal) and when she overcomes her conditioning. Learning more about what Valkorion did to her was truly heartbreaking. Her life was a sad, doomed existence. All of her life she had been controlled, treated like an animal and betrayed countless times. Her death, while necessary, was very sad. If only she could have had a Voss Healing ritual (yes, the Voss Healing ritual is really turning into a convenient plot device) performed on her instead of the savagery her father had inflicted on her. In the end, Vaylin was just another one of Valkorion’s tools just like the Outlander was.

The Iokath sequence, while interesting, felt more Sci-fi than ‘Star Wars’ (although I concede the overall KOTFE and KOTET stories have never really felt like ‘Star Wars’). At least it solved the riddle of the origin of the Gravestone, the Eternal Fleet and the GEMINI Droids. But it felt quite dystopian and more of a visual essay on the human condition than anything else. SCORPIO intentions weren’t all that surprising, in the end, she just wanted to know where she came from and she found it.

It was quite strange to see the Alliance evolve into a full-blown political entity separate from the Republic and Empire.  It will be interesting to see how the Eternal Alliance takes part in the Galaxy going forward and how all the factions react. As long as Zakuul is in the picture, I don’t see the Alliance dissolving. Even if you gave Zakuul it’s independence, the Alliance still needs to be around to ensure neither faction retaliates. I don’t really see our characters going back and being part of the old Republic versus Empire dynamic anytime soon. I’ll talk more about the future in a second.

The battle on Odessen was well done. It was nice to traverse Odessen again cutting through Vaylin’s forces and helping your allies along the way. It was heartbreaking to have to choose which one of your allies would survive and which would die. One thing I noticed on Odessen was after completing the story, the cracks in the walls outside made by Vaylin, are still there. I thought this was nice attention to detail and appreciated this.

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Future Story Speculation and Ideas

Our characters, while involved in the Alliance, are still tied to their faction even if they are somewhat now rejected by their faction (especially the Republic). The Alliance isn’t going to last forever. It will be interesting to see how political the story gets going forward. Maybe the story could open up the opportunity for us to switch faction when the Alliance falls? After all, both factions see your worth even if they don’t necessarily like what you’ve done/become.

As for the future of the story, there’s going to have to be two paths. One where Arcann and Senya are alive and the other where they are not. I kind of feel realistically that the Republic and the Empire will want Arcann to atone for his crimes in a way that they want. The story didn’t really get the chance to explore the dynamics of what it meant for Arcann to now be a part of the Alliance. I’m sure a lot of people in the Alliance would feel conflicted by his presence and it will inevitably cause tension. I’m surprised there wasn’t any mail from Theron perhaps detailing some of the things people were saying about Arcann’s presence.

It was hinted in Theron and Lana’s final conversation in Chapter 9 that the Republic and Empire were both gearing for war. It will be interesting to see who strikes the first blow. Will they fight each other again or will they turn their efforts to the Alliance or fight on two fronts? Both factions would see the Alliance as a threat but I guess whether they do anything might depend on whether you went with peacekeeping or taking over the Zakuul Empire. It’s also worth considering that the Republic might hold it against you if you formed an Alliance with the Empire in Chapter 2 of KOTET. We know the Empire at least has spies in the Alliance so it’s too far fetched to assume the Republic does too. Perhaps Theron will catch them at some point.

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Maybe we might even get the chance to set the Alliance in a direction more poignant to our character’s class story (Yeah I know, this is a long shot). Even if it is just a side project initially. For instance, the Jedi Knight or Jedi Consular could dedicate some of the Alliances efforts in helping to rebuild and maybe even end up leading the Jedi Order. The Trooper could form an elite fighting squad. The Bounty Hunter could get more involved with the Mandalorians. There’s lot’s of different possibilities really. But hopefully, there’s at least the chance for some class specific customisation of the story even if it’s just a side thing like it was in Shadow of Revan.

Ultimately, the galaxy is completely different to how it was when our characters started out all those years ago. Will the Republic and Empire revert to its old state of war? Will the Alliance try and intervene or encourage the war? What will happen to Zakuul? Guess we’ll have to wait and see.


What did you think of the KOTET Story? Did you think it was a satisfactory conclusion? What do you think the future holds for the Alliance?

 

 

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  • Anne Rogers

    No mentions of either the clunky walker and mouse droid sequences or the Chapter 6 ‘puzzle’ that allowed hints every ten seconds making the entire time spent on it a waste with nothing to show but a lot of pointless running around?

    • Oh I knew I had forgotten something… But honestly, I had no issues with any of those things and found them all to be quite enjoyable. Chapter 6 in particular was a nice change of pace and I enjoyed trying to figure it all out myself (even though I didn’t have to).

      • Anne Rogers

        Fair enough. I thought the story was bland and railroaded and the rest of the expansion (galactic command and RNG gearing) is intolerable.

        Good luck to you and your site though.

    • SavingPrincess

      I found the walker sequences “ok” the first time, obnoxious subsequent times, especially when the mechanic was “Revisited” in the last chapters. The mouse droid and the party puzzles… it’s like, I appreciate them TRYING something new, but I think they’re (like always) pretty hamstrung with their ability to introduce new game mechanics because of the engine they’re using. Again, the “trying” part is appreciated, even if the execution was off.

  • SavingPrincess

    I’m a little disappointed with Valkorion’s “plan”

    His plan was essentially what I do every few years with my gaming PC, ditch the old one and get all new hardware. The “big reveal” of his betrayal essentially boiled down to “I AM GOING TO ASCEND TO THE ETERNAL THRONE WHICH I ALREADY HELD AT ONE POINT UNCHALLENGED BUT I MASTERMINDED THIS PLAN TO ENSURE THAT I HAVE A NEW HOT BODY TO DO IT IN!” I am all for the “It’s about the journey, not the destination thing,” but for someone who’s lived as long as Valkorion, I would think his aspirations would be bigger than “keep doing the thing I’ve been doing for a super long time.”

  • Evan Grantham-Brown

    Agreed that KotET is unsuited to non-Force users; I would add that it is even less suited to any character who doesn’t aspire to leadership. (Which tends to overlap with Force-users, of course.) My Imperial Agent wrapped up his class storyline with the “screw you both, I’m outta here” option, dropping off the grid to become a free, er, agent. The entire KotET storyline, where you’re in charge of the Alliance, would be wildly out of character for someone like him.

    It would make the whole story much, much better if you had the option to decline to be the Maximum Leader, pick someone else (Lana or Theron?) for the job, and be the Maximum Leader’s chief advisor (read: puppet master).