Dragon Age 2 is more tactical than a lot of RPGs. The combat can be fast and frenzied, and to get by on a Hard or even Nightmare setting, or even just the later stages of the game, you can’t get lost in one-on-one combat. You have to think instead about how best to manage your entire party all at once, on a split-second timeframe. In particular, that means setting up attack combos amongst your party members (Anders and Fenris, for example, or Aveline and Isabela, etc.)
That’s why, of the three classes, I find that the mage class is probably the easiest to play as a beginner, because many of your spells are a) really freaking powerful, and b) target multiple enemies at once.
I hate to disappoint, but probably not. Like drinking and sex, I prefer to meta out of love, not anger :)
Beside, I decided to step away from the SPN meta writing scene—I plan to finish up the GS7R and then move on for good.
I hear that. Like you, I have a terribly weak stomach, and I can’t really handle body horror. I hate torture porn or gross-out horror too, not just because it’s lazy but because really? Gruesome is not the same thing as scary. Totally different bodily reaction.
That said, body horror done right can be deliciously terrifying; the secret, imo, is in implying more than you show. Take Jaws. That movie is scary not because you see the shark eat people, but because you don’t see it eat people, except in little glimpses: An arm here. A splash of blood there. etc. Your imagination is so much more terrible than anything Speilberg and co. would have shown.
So it goes for Dragon Age. I’ve played a lot of survival horror games in my day, but Origins’s Deep Roads quest is by FAR one of the most terrifying sequences I’ve ever played—mostly because so much is implied but not shown. And while waiting at the end of your road is something fairly gruesome, it pales in comparison to what you never got to see.
(There’s a similarly-structured quest in DA2 that uses body horror to great effect, but as great as it was, IMO nothing tops that Deep Roads sequence *shudder*)
I don’t want to scare you off from playing the games, because they’re so, so, so good. (And I’m of the opinion that it’s okay to be scared once in awhile, as long as it’s worth it; and the Deep Roads sequence is just brilliant, really, some of the best games writing of all time.) Besides, you may not react as strongly as I did, either. Still, the body horror is there, and if you’re sensitive to that sort of thing, I don’t think it hurts anything to have fair warning of its presence.
Oh, I hear that. But:
So anyway, this is a very long way of saying that I hear what the original askee was saying, but after some careful thought, I’ve decided to keep using the term “nonny”. Askers, if you’d like me to call you something different, then please come off anonymous before pushing “send”.
2. For those reasons, Megstiel, and the fact that the writers openly support it, really disturb me because it seems like they want us to forget that she is a rapist and a murderer (I don’t think her last vessel was an empty one like Ruby’s either) It seems wrong to me that Meg is the one to get a hero’s death when Bella and Ruby, who were with us for much longer and didn’t do as much damage to the winchesters, were never redeemed, just because they didn’t put all their faith in the winchesters.
3. Also, I find most of megstiel extremely dubcony at best considering that Cas was either comatose or in a very fragile and unstable mental state for most of their time together. It reminds me more of the Florence Nightebgale effect than true mutual respect and love. Yeah, so that is my barrel of Meg issues, and I was wondering if you had any thoughts on Meg’s end that you could share that would perhaps give me some clarity Thank you! Sorry for the long ask!!
Hmm. There’s a lot here. Let me take it point by point.
1 How do you feel about the resolution of Meg’s charachter?
While I really love what Thompson did with Meg and Megstiel in “Goodbye, Stranger”, I’m not particularly overjoyed that Meg is dead. Like, I get it, I get what Carver wanted to accomplish, and I think Thompson did as good a job as he could with her death, but ultimately it was a) yet another case of Supernatural bringing back a female character just to kill her, and b) kind of the cheap way out for the narrative. By that I mean, sometimes it’s easier to kill off your characters than have them face the consequences of their decisions. What kinds of new choices would Meg have had to make if she’d survived, now that she’d admitted she thought of Cas as her “unicorn” and made her last stand for two men who’d never thank her? I would have liked to know.
I’m upset that her autonomy was taken away and that was the way to make her “good.”
I don’t know what you mean by her autonomy being taken away, unless you mean that she was taken captive by Crowley? Because until that point, Meg had had 100% agency over her own life, from what I could see.
Now, yeah, she had sort of switched sides – SORT OF, Meg makes it very clear that she’s only ever working with the Winchesters for her own gain – but that’s the thing about life; the stances we hold and the causes we order our lives by shift throughout our lives. As Meg says, “we learn, we grow”.
I also associate Meg with sexualized violence and lack of consent, and think it made her a truly horrifying villain, so it seems wrong to me that she became good and suddenly in love with her “unicorn.”
Yes, I hear that. But I guess it just comes back to “we learn, we grow”. I’ve written before about how Meg tries to use her same old M.O. on Cas, but it doesn’t work – which is part of the reason I think she’s becomes so fascinated with him. I won’t repeat the argument here.
2. For those reasons, Megstiel, and the fact that the writers openly support it, really disturb me because it seems like they want us to forget that she is a rapist and a murderer (I don’t think her last vessel was an empty one like Ruby’s either)
Do they want us to forget it? I don’t think that’s the case – else, Thompson wouldn’t have brought up in Meg’s final scenes the fact that she mind-raped Sam all those years ago. I think he (and all the writers) have really loved exploring the complicated relationship that developed between Meg and Cas, and maybe it’s not something that their friends (or we as audience) always support, but it’s something that does, at least to me, feel organic to the characters. Personally, I have terribly conflicting emotions over Meg and Cas’s relationship, and I like that, because I think that’s one of the signs of good writing, that I can’t easily label my feelings on something, that there are layers to what I feel.
Meg’s an awful person. She’s done terrible things, and to the characters we love. There’s no excusing that – but at the same time, Cas murdered thousands of his own brothers in cold blood; Sam chose drugs and a mission of revenge over his last remaining blood relation; Dean tortured souls in Hell and liked it; Bobby killed his wife (twice!) and possessed a maid – and it’s like I said last night, characters do shitty things. I’m not bringing this up to say, well, your favorite characters did crap too, but, like everybody in this universe is awful sometimes – but sometimes, they’re also kinda awesome too. The fact that they’re both is what makes these characters feel so real to me, because that’s what real people are: a mixture of heroic and horrible and hot mess.
It seems wrong to me that Meg is the one to get a hero’s death when Bella and Ruby, who were with us for much longer and didn’t do as much damage to the winchesters, were never redeemed, just because they didn’t put all their faith in the winchesters.
You won’t get any complaint from me about the unfairness of Bela and Ruby’s deaths. But take it up with Kripke. He was the one in charge back then.
3. Also, I find most of megstiel extremely dubcony at best considering that Cas was either comatose or in a very fragile and unstable mental state for most of their time together.
I don’t what you’re saying here.
Hope that answers your questions, nonny?
Nah, though obvs. I appreciate the name. Flutie’s the name of my dog. He had it when we adopted him from the rescue.
TBH, I wanted to rename him (my first pick was Anders, because he wouldn’t stop pacing about our kitchen, but Mr. F didn’t quite see the humor in that). But he already responded to Flutie, so why confuse the poor guy? He had enough problems as is.
I did give him a nice little honorific, though. So now his official title is King Flutie-Bear, Admiral of the U.S.S. Dogboat. :)
First off, glad you’re liking The Great Season 7 Rewatch! It’s a labor of love, and it always makes me happy to hear that the meta series has made someone revisit my favorite season with a fresh eye.
I think you may have misinterpreted the meaning of what I said about wanting Dean to save Cas from Perdition.
Maybe? I didn’t know there’d been any fuss over it, and I didn’t notice that the flapping was any louder than usual.
To the anon who asked me about my predictions for 8x21 (I’m not answering your ask directly because I can’t hide the spoilers from those who don’t want to see them) — sorry, but I don’t really have any thoughts on the matter. It’s still a little early out to tell what might happen and why; I say let’s just get through the next couple episodes first. :)
Maybe this is a wild guess, but I suspect it might be the Mark of Cain, laid upon him when Chuck puts his hand on Cas’s shoulder in 4x22.
The Mark of Cain was a brand that God put on Cain after he killed Abel. God took away Cain’s ability to farm, but Cain said that his punishment was too great. God reminded him he could just hit up neighbors for food, when Cain said, “But what’s to stop them from killing me?”
It was then that God then laid the Mark upon Cain, which basically said that anybody who tried to hurt Cain would earn the damage back upon him sevenfold. That’s been interpreted to mean many, many things over the years — including the idea that Cain couldn’t be killed. Thus, if Cas bears the Mark of Cain, it would explain why he keeps resurrecting. (I think there was an End!verse comic to this effect somewhere?)
(PS: the Mark of Cain has a pretty gross cultural history; people used to argue that black skin was the Mark God had given to Cain, and used that to justify all sorts of atrocities. There’s nothing about that in the actual Bible text, though. The nature of the Mark of Cain is left up to the reader’s interpretation.)
As I’ve tried to show in The Great Season 7 Rewatch, Cas mentions are everywhere in Season 7.
Compare it to previous seasons. For example, although Cas appears in 14 of 22 episodes in Season 5, when he’s NOT on screen, he is only mentioned in two episodes, and only in passing (Sam mentions to the doctors that they have a friend named Cas in 5x11, and Dean mentions needing to find Cas in 5x19). No parallels to Cas or his storyline exist.
And in Season 6, Cas may appear in 12 of 22 episodes, but again, when he’s not on screen, he’s only mentioned by name twice, again, only in passing (Azazel’s hallucination briefly mentions Cas in 6x01, and Soulless Sam mentions something Cas said in passing). Again, outside these mentions, no parallels to Cas or to his storyline exist.
Compare that to Season 7, where he might have been only on-screen for 5 episodes, but in which 17/18 of 23 episodes of which reference or parallel Cas or Cas and Dean’s relationship in some way. That’s because the story of Season 7 is, in large part, about the hole his death left in Dean’s life.
By my count, between 7x01 and 7x17, Cas is mentioned by name in:
In addition, there are several episodes where Cas is not mentioned by name, but which require an understanding of who he is, his relationship to Dean and what he did, including:
Hope this helps! And don’t ever believe anybody who tells you Cas was barely mentioned in Season 7 before he came back :)
I’ve had the same thing happen to me. The first time I watched “Party On, Garth”, for example, I despised it. Now? I’ve done a total 180. (If I ever get this Great Season 7 Rewatch installment finished, you’ll see why.)
That isn’t to say Adam Glass isn’t immune to stinkers. But generally I find his writing style very layered, with nested plots and jokes that make more sense in retrospect — meaning it takes some time and maybe a few rewatches to tease out all the various threads in his work. In that way, Glass rewards the repeat watcher, which is something I really adore about his work.
I’ve been meaning to revisit “As Time Goes By” too. I wonder how much of my initial reaction to that episode was similar to how I initially reacted to “Party on Garth”, where I was still so upset over “The Born Again Identity” that I couldn’t quite take the episode on its own merits. There were some pretty cool things in “As Time Goes By” — not the least of which: Abaddon.
It’d be kind of a contrived plot twist, but at this point, I’d take it, just so long as Amelia comes back. I miss her so damn much.
Thank you! Seems I’m amassing a bit of a collection, tbh:
I apologize for nothing :)