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Thread: What other ways could the xel'naga been drawn like?

  1. #31

    Default Re: What other ways could the xel'naga been drawn like?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    In SC1, Raynor knowingly assists in genocide halfway through the first campaign. He wasnít a diehard member of the SoK, he was a wanted criminal (unjustly so) serving vigilante justice up to that point. The sudden genocide should have been a deal breaker if he was intended to be the hero, but he accepts it with only meager claims to the contrary. He only rebels when fellow war criminal Kerry is left to die with along with her billions of victims. This makes him look callous and petty, heavily contrasting when he was first introduced as a helpful vigilante rescuing civilians from hostile aliens.
    This criticism is something I've mentioned before but I've used it mainly to counter the notion that others think Raynor should be seen as the good guy/hero. In part, this little tid-bit is what contributes to how brilliantly grey Starcraft was/is and is not exactly a problem in regard to character consistency/development. It is actually consistent with the general Terran mentality and theme of humans doing things under the veil of some greater good/morality when they're only really doing it for personal or selfish reasons.
    Yes, that's right! That is indeed ME on the right.


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  2. #32

    Default Re: What other ways could the xel'naga been drawn like?

    Quote Originally Posted by Turalyon View Post
    This criticism is something I've mentioned before but I've used it mainly to counter the notion that others think Raynor should be seen as the good guy/hero. In part, this little tid-bit is what contributes to how brilliantly grey Starcraft was/is and is not exactly a problem in regard to character consistency/development. It is actually consistent with the general Terran mentality and theme of humans doing things under the veil of some greater good/morality when they're only really doing it for personal or selfish reasons.
    It is not consistent with Raynorís previous characterization. He was introduced as a compassionate marshal rescuing civilians, so it makes no sense he would willfully condemn an entire planet. That is a 180 degree change.

  3. #33

    Default Re: What other ways could the xel'naga been drawn like?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    It is not consistent with Raynorís previous characterization. He was introduced as a compassionate marshal rescuing civilians, so it makes no sense he would willfully condemn an entire planet. That is a 180 degree change.
    Kerrigan is also introduced as being a kind, compassionate person (even though she's an assassin) and is more vocal in her resistance than Raynor in the use of the Psi emitter but she acquiesces to their use, too. We explain away the incredulity of that by saying she has unerring faith in Mengsk. Raynor is no different in this respect since he explains away his reservations by putting his faith in Kerrigan's decision to continue with Mengsk's plan (ie: the convo just before the New Gettysburg mission starts).

    You also have to consider that Raynor already made a partial moral concession earlier at Antiga, where a Psi Emitter was used to effectively "condemn the entire planet" as well. Mengsk masks the dubiousness of its use at Antiga as a way to teach the Confeds a lesson, as an act of revenge for the loss of Mar-Sara (which was consumed by Zerg that was supposedly lured there by the Confeds) and a means to escape from the clutches of the Confeds. Yet Raynor doesn't bat any eyelid at all there nor scream "think of the children!!!" at the time, does he?
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  4. #34

    Default Re: What other ways could the xel'naga been drawn like?

    Quote Originally Posted by Turalyon View Post
    Kerrigan is also introduced as being a kind, compassionate person (even though she's an assassin) and is more vocal in her resistance than Raynor in the use of the Psi emitter but she acquiesces to their use, too. We explain away the incredulity of that by saying she has unerring faith in Mengsk. Raynor is no different in this respect since he explains away his reservations by putting his faith in Kerrigan's decision to continue with Mengsk's plan (ie: the convo just before the New Gettysburg mission starts).

    You also have to consider that Raynor already made a partial moral concession earlier at Antiga, where a Psi Emitter was used to effectively "condemn the entire planet" as well. Mengsk masks the dubiousness of its use at Antiga as a way to teach the Confeds a lesson, as an act of revenge for the loss of Mar-Sara (which was consumed by Zerg that was supposedly lured there by the Confeds) and a means to escape from the clutches of the Confeds. Yet Raynor doesn't bat any eyelid at all there nor scream "think of the children!!!" at the time, does he?
    That is precisely my point. Raynor should be complaining about all the innocents that will die since the only reason he even joined the SoK was because he was falsely imprisoned after doing what he thought was in the best interests of protecting civilians. It makes no sense he would suddenly compromise those same principles for the sake of revenge that he is not emotionally invested in. Remember that his family is dead (or presumed dead) at this point due to sheer bad luck, so the only joy in his life comes from saving people. He is not pathologically obsessed with tearing down the Confederacy like Kerry and Mengsk are.

  5. #35

    Default Re: What other ways could the xel'naga been drawn like?

    Actually, I made a mistake. Raynor was seeming not informed of the psi-emitter planted on Antiga Prime, which was framed as a private mission between Mengsk and Kerry. When he is informed of the psi-emitters on Tarsonis, he calls Mengsk out for it. Despite this, Raynor seemingly harbors hope that disaster can be averted (which is the only way I can imagine he would stay on rather than rebel immediately). When his hopes evaporate, then he rebels against Mengsk. His characterization is consistent.

  6. #36
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    Default Re: What other ways could the xel'naga been drawn like?

    Yeah Antiga was shady but still seemed like a military target. I think they were hoping Tarsonis would have been the same. Like maybe they'd have used the emitters to lure the zerg away or something.

  7. #37

    Default Re: What other ways could the xel'naga been drawn like?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gradius View Post
    Yeah Antiga was shady but still seemed like a military target. I think they were hoping Tarsonis would have been the same. Like maybe they'd have used the emitters to lure the zerg away or something.
    It's possible Raynor didn't understand just how much Zerg would be lured in via an emitter. Sure he disliked using the zerg this way, but perhaps he felt this was considered acceptable if it's only against a small military outpost, hence why he let it go in the aftermath of Antiga (but before the events of Tarsonis)

  8. #38

    Default Re: What other ways could the xel'naga been drawn like?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    That is precisely my point. Raynor should be complaining about all the innocents that will die since the only reason he even joined the SoK was because he was falsely imprisoned after doing what he thought was in the best interests of protecting civilians. It makes no sense he would suddenly compromise those same principles for the sake of revenge that he is not emotionally invested in.
    But Raynor is emotionally invested in it at some level. He still believed that Mengsk was out for the greater good then and buys into his reasoning that the Confeds were the ones responsible for destroying his world of Mar-Sara. In that moment on Antiga, he can't and doesn't fathom the consequence of the psi-emitter being used because he's in immediate danger and that it's more important that the cause survives to resist the Confeds and their more morally bankrupt actions. You think Raynor is a guy with such strong moral conviction that he would rather die himself/leave in a huff (not that he's got anywhere else to go whilst being assaulted by the Confeds) just because the only option left is to use something that could kill other people? You think Raynor is some incorruptible paragon of virtue forevermore just because we saw him protecting some people the first time we see him, which he was assigned/responsible to do anyway because he's an officer of the law?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    Raynor was seeming not informed of the psi-emitter planted on Antiga Prime, which was framed as a private mission between Mengsk and Kerry.
    Incorrect, I'm afraid. Look at the briefing for The Trump Card again. Mengsk advises Raynor of the Confeds using psi-emitters to lure Zerg into isolated containment areas like Mar-Sara, condemns the evil that the Confeds committed and proposes to justly use the same tactic against them in order to escape their clutches.
    Yes, that's right! That is indeed ME on the right.


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  9. #39

    Default Re: What other ways could the xel'naga been drawn like?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gradius View Post
    Yeah Antiga was shady but still seemed like a military target. I think they were hoping Tarsonis would have been the same. Like maybe they'd have used the emitters to lure the zerg away or something.
    Quote Originally Posted by ragnarok View Post
    It's possible Raynor didn't understand just how much Zerg would be lured in via an emitter. Sure he disliked using the zerg this way, but perhaps he felt this was considered acceptable if it's only against a small military outpost, hence why he let it go in the aftermath of Antiga (but before the events of Tarsonis)
    Yes, I suspect that Raynor simply did not know that the zerg would overrun Antiga Prime. The deleted missions further mitigate the damages by having the protoss aid in evacuation efforts. According to the Revelations short story, Tass helped evacuate Mar Sara too.

    Actually, what annoys me more is that the protoss did not play a bigger role in the campaign and that their contributions were cut. The manual foreshadowed a protoss schism over the terrans' fate, but this was only ever shown in the obscure Insurrection expansion. Then Rebel Yell ends with the Koprulu War over by writer fiat with the zerg easily beating the protoss off-screen (despite the manual establishing they have superior tech and should logically win every battle, with the zerg's superior numbers providing no advantage) and then leaving the terrans alone (despite the manual establishing that they don't leave survivors and strip the biospheres from planets).

    Before Tura launches into another dissertation about red herrings or whatever, I have to make it clear now that I do not like the plot that we got and no argument will sway me. It does not match the story I imagined after reading the manual. There are numerous inconsistencies compared to the manual which push the game plot on a trajectory that does not match my expectations.

    The manual left the events and outcome of the Koprulu War undefined. Based on the information in the manual (and interviews with Metzen and Samwise), events like the fall of the Confederacy or even the successful assimilation of terrans was not planned at the time. Based on the set up in the manual, the plot I expect from a first game would involve the factions we were told: the pirate militias would fight the confederacy, the protoss would suffer a schism and possibly the interference of dark templar, and the zerg would try to harvest terrans without producing any assimilated terran breeds yet. The Confederate experiments on zerg are not foreshadowed at all unless you read the old Starcraft website, but I find them to be intriguing enough to accept at face value since the manual never gave a time frame for the zerg scouts (and the decade mentioned in the novels feel fairly believable, more so than a shorter time period).

    But the final game neatly severs or ignores those plot threads by the end of the first act in favor of the foreshadowed zerg/protoss war that would have been better served in a later game with a budget for new units and such. We never see the protoss fight over the fate of the terrans, except in Insurrection. The dark templar are introduced as a convenient plot device to defeat the zerg because they easily defeat the protoss off-screen, even though in the original manual this wasn't remotely necessary since the zerg were way out of their league. The determinant is either ignored or redefined to introduce an infested terran hero unit that doesn't contribute much to the story, since the budget seemingly did not allow for assimilated terrans to be added to the zerg army despite the manual foreshadowing that.

    The final game just is not what I wanted. It does not fit my expectations from reading the manual. It tries to do too much in too small a space. It neglects many plot hooks from the manual. It contradicts key plot points from the manual. It sabotages the foundation for sequels by neatly solving all the conflicts introduced by the manual, despite those conflicts being written as long-term material that could support a long-running franchise rather than plot of the week material. The licensed expansions Insurrection and Retribution show off how much you could do with the original manual alone.

    The first game in the franchise should not have resolved any of the conflicts introduced in the manual. It should have just served as an introduction to the Koprulu War that would serve as the backdrop for the franchise. It should have showcased the plot hooks introduced in the manual, such as the three pirate militias fighting the confederacy (without overthrowing it yet), the schism between the protoss over the terrans' fate, and the interplay between the zerg broods as they sought to harvest terrans. Concepts like dark templar and assimilated terrans and so forth could be saved for future installments, since at the very least the research and development of breeds with a terran core genus (not necessarily limited to footsoldiers, could also include creep colony mutations, superweapons, other mutations and such) would mark the point at which the zerg could hope to stand against the full might of the protoss. The dark templar, IMO, work very well as allies to the terrans fighting off protoss genocide given the dark templar were subject to a pogrom themselves.

    But I digress...

  10. #40

    Default Re: What other ways could the xel'naga been drawn like?

    Again this goes all the way back to what the details about the psi emitter were. From "The Trump Card" briefing, it seemed Kerrigan only knew the emitter could lure zerg, not how many. Sure, Mengsk said it was a Confederate weapons test, but no one said if the test would spiral out of control or not.

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