general

Neverwinter Nights 2: murder, she wrote....

Playing Neverwinter Nights 2 again but this time, as a female character.

I find, oddly enough, playing a girl character gets me the moral freedom to be a complete dick at times and to toss Sir Nevalle the finger, which is very satisfying. Is this odd? As a male character I am nearly always lawful good, but as a girl I am definitely more chaotic and more neutral than good.

Anyhoo, I played it the first time and managed to chat up Bishop to the point where he was significantly confused. I really enjoyed the subtleties of the language he used when he betrayed you at the end. It's never said specifically that he likes you, although he does drop alot of hints: 'you weren't the only reason, you just became the most important one' 'I'm not one to be tied down to a place... or even a feeling for a person.'

It's kind of sweet but then you realise he betrayed you BECAUSE HE LIKED YOU TOO MUCH.

This guy is fucked up in the head.

I did end up sleeping with Casavir though because
1)I could
2)well, that's about it really

I did kind of wish you could just sleep with the guy without telling him you loved him, because frankly he's pretty bloody boring as a character. So flat. Then I found out this was because the developers ran out of time and never put in the significant character growth that would have changed NWN2 from a merely decent game into a fucking awesome one.

So to satisfy my curiosity, I wondered if some enterprising person had plucked out these files and modded them in for play. I couldn't find this but I found some other mod for what was termed as the Bishop romance which was never implemented in game (I was mildly surprised at this, since I thought he was better done than Casavir who 'technically' was)

Against my better judgement and phobia of fanfiction romance, I installed it to see what it would be like.

Firstly, it's not badly written. Sometimes. I'll get into that. There is, of course, the marks of sub-quality proof-readers, ie too many italics, asterisks and sometimes missing vital punctuation. No consistency in grammar.

I think perhaps you need a community of people* to write the character responses because I found them rather queer and... well... queer. There's usually only one 'real' response, unless you think of your character as a hyperactive, over-talkative birdbrain. So that was a let down.

More importantly, they did sort of butcher Bishop mercilessly with an axe. Sometimes. Sometimes he's the right proper womanising dick. Other times, he's got the rogue-with-the-heart-of-gold syndrome.

Bishop does not have a fucking heart of gold. He's a destructive, vicious son of a bitch. If he wasn't so proud, I believe he would also be suicidal.

I do not believe Bishop would ever give a woman a compliment UNLESS it was about her ruthless manslaying skills and even then it would be more approval then compliment. He wouldn't even give her an underhanded compliment. He might think she was beautiful but that would only mean he wants to fuck her, not... have a relationship with her. Think Malin in Port Llast. He fucked her, but he still hates her.

Even if he was to compliment the physique of a woman, it would likely be delivered in a way that also turns it into a sly insult ie. she might be beautiful but she spreads her legs more often than Paris Hilton. I am thinking of that inserted scene with Shandra and the gnome painter. Bishop sure as hell would not have said that. He might have /thought/ it, or snickered and then pointedly wonder out loud if the PC wasn't insulted by the gnome.

In other words, Bishop (funnily enough) isn't shallow. He would never fall in love with someone because they were simply beautiful. It would be a grudging thing, from respect -> admiration -> love. He would only respect you if you were better at being a dick than he was. Think about all the choices you have to make if you want to build influence with him. He wants you to be rude, to spit on Nasher, to snap someone's neck simply because they pissed you off. He wants you to be /chaotic evil/.

Bishop is the kind of man who would fight every step of the way if he was falling in love with someone. This should mean he would be prickly, rude and arrogant, something that would only increase as the feelings grow, because he's trying to push them away. I imagine his wit should become more barbed as he falls for you, oddly punctuated with moments of passive tolerance.

I also feel Bishop would respect you more if you answer him word for word and fight back. After all, he hates himself so he would have absolutely no respect for you if you actually loved him. See the quote at the end, something like 'For every one like you, there's a hundred like me.' Bishop thinks you deserve better (but not Casavir though, gods no. Even he's better than Mr. Hypocrite.)

Which is why (Gann is the best! Oh, Mr Freeman, your voice is so sexy) I felt bile at the back of my throat after beating the shit out of Lorne and came back to the Drunken Flagon, only to be 'mugged' by Bishop. The character assassination done there was... truly murder.

What should have been done? Nothing. Go talk to him and he should offer the comment that he was impressed. Did you cut Lorne's throat as he was on his knees? Bishop would approve. At some point the PC should sneer that she doesn't /need/ anyone to fight for her. Little love hearts float above his head. He only met you, at this stage if you were diligent, you only have max of 19 points with him (that's provided you were a utter bitch every step of the way). He wouldn't give a rat's arse if you upped and carked it. He'd only regret never getting the chance to fuck you proper.

And when he does give a rat's arse, it's at this stage Bishop realises he's getting tied down and starts entertaining the idea of ditching you. But he can't, which is why he dragged it out for so long and it took an army of undead to push him over the edge.

The way I see it, two chaotic evil beings should fight like cats in a bag and claw each other to shreds but with the underlying knowledge that they are more alike than different. And that's what should bring them together at the end not any... bloody heart-of-gold.

So in other words, I saw a shitload of potential but the actual delivery was somewhat lacking. I didn't actually think Obsidian's Bishop was too bad, (certainly not as dreadful as Casavir) except for the missing er, wall scene. If they slipped that in, would have been great. Love hearts. Starry eyes. Etc.

(Also, voice acting is dreadful. Kudos for the effort, but seriously... better without it. Either perfect it or ignore it but for god's sake, don't release a half-arsed effort done by a guy reading off a sheet of paper into a two dollar microphone. It's awful. I have to keep taking off my headset.)


* I am fairly certain this is how Obsidian writes the dialogue. Get one guy to be the 'voice' of the character and get a max of four other guys to be the PC responses. There shouldn't be more than 4 responses. You want Lawful, Good, Chaotic, Evil. Easy enough and it maintains a wonderful consistency. Shit, I do great chaotic responses. Then the voice guy only has to think how would he react, as that character. The challenge is getting the character right and then putting that feeling into words.