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Old 05-21-2009, 03:17 PM   #1
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Lightbulb Dark Side Transitions. Possible Explanation?

As you can tell by the title, this is for discussion about the Dark Side transitions in the KotOR games. Many people have argued over what they should really be like. I myself have pondered this and I have come to this conclusion:

The Dark Side transitions of the KotOR era reflect the times and the state of the Galaxy. Think about it.
The Mandalorian Wars caused the death of thousands of innocents and the extinction of entire races. And Malak and Revan's war on the Galaxy only increased the death toll. Perhaps these deaths and wounds sent echos through the force, echos that presented themselves on those that walked the path of the Dark Side and opened themselves up to it. This could attribute to the diseased look of Dark-siders in K1.

In K2, when the Galaxy is still healing from the aforementioned wars, entire planets of Force sensitives are being devoured and left void. Jedi are being murdered across the Galaxy and the Dark Side reigns supreme. Imagine the echos that these events could have caused. Not only could the echos in the force manifest on those who walked the Dark Path, but the pure corruption of the Dark Side could also show itself. As seen in the rotten zombie like transitions on K2.

During the Clone Wars and the Galactic Civil War, there weren't nearly as many deaths, and the Force was pretty evened out (due to the presence of Jedi and Sith in both eras), which is probably why Palpatine/Sidious was able to hide his presence for so long.

That's what I think, tell me... What do you think?

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Old 05-21-2009, 03:51 PM   #2
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I agree with you, but there weren't nearly as many deaths during the Clone Wars? How many clones and jedi died at Geonosis. Before the clones there weren't too much deaths you're right about that, but then..............

There were perhaps far more innocents in the Mandalorian War, and perhaps that is why the Exile looks so bad. (Because of that when I played on the Dark Side I always used KSE to give myself some Allignment points)



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Old 05-21-2009, 04:01 PM   #3
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Over a hundred Jedi died at Geonosis, and possibly somewhere close to a million clones. But the Mandalorians wiped out entire planets. And Nihilus and Sion drove the Jedi to near extinction. So there were more deaths overall (especially if we are counting the deaths of Force sensitives) during the events of KotOR and TSL

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Old 05-26-2009, 03:02 PM   #4
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Quote:
During the Clone Wars and the Galactic Civil War, there weren't nearly as many deaths
Quote:
But the Mandalorians wiped out entire planets.
...planets weren't wiped out during the movies era?

During the Clone Wars, we've got the Destruction of Pammant, where a Republic Star Battlecruiser crashed into a planet and killed off the entire population. Then there's the Battle of Kromus, where the destruction of a Confederate superweapon there caused the depopulation of the planet. We've also got the Battle of Humbarine, where Confederate forces led by General Grievous spent one hour bombarding the planet in an attack that melted the planet's crust. Did I mention that Humbarine is a city-planet like Coruscant?

During the Imperial Period, a planet called Caamas was devastated by Imperial bombardment. Later, Callos was attacked by Imperial forces, and its own population wiped out. After its construction was finished, the first Death Star blew up Despayre, a moon full of Imperial prisoners and slaves. I don't think I need to mention the Alderaan incident. After the Battle of Endor, the insane Dark Jedi Kyp Durron used an Imperial superweapon to annihilate all life in the Carida system. During Operation Shadow Hand later on, the Empire's Galaxy Gun destroyed at least two planets, Da Soocha V and Byss.

Quote:
And Nihilus and Sion drove the Jedi to near extinction.
...Palpatine didn't drive the Jedi to near extinction? Ever hear of Order 66 or the Great Jedi Purge?


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Old 05-26-2009, 03:10 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by TKA-001 View Post
...planets weren't wiped out during the movies era?

During the Clone Wars, we've got the Destruction of Pammant, where a Republic Star Battlecruiser crashed into a planet and killed off the entire population. Then there's the Battle of Kromus, where the destruction of a Confederate superweapon there caused the depopulation of the planet. We've also got the Battle of Humbarine, where Confederate forces led by General Grievous spent one hour bombarding the planet in an attack that melted the planet's crust. Did I mention that Humbarine is a city-planet like Coruscant?

During the Imperial Period, a planet called Caamas was devastated by Imperial bombardment. Later, Callos was attacked by Imperial forces, and its own population wiped out. After its construction was finished, the first Death Star blew up Despayre, a moon full of Imperial prisoners and slaves. I don't think I need to mention the Alderaan incident. After the Battle of Endor, the insane Dark Jedi Kyp Durron used an Imperial superweapon to annihilate all life in the Carida system. During Operation Shadow Hand later on, the Empire's Galaxy Gun destroyed at least two planets, Da Soocha V and Byss.


...Palpatine didn't drive the Jedi to near extinction? Ever hear of Order 66 or the Great Jedi Purge?
Wow so many deaths.............o_O
but now that you're saying I remember something(not order 66)



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"I've barely eaten anything for many decades now. It feels like my stomach shriveled into my back........though i don't have a stomach or back because i'm a skeleton! Yohohohoho! SKULL JOKE!"

"My eyes have never seen such a pretty woman! But i'm a skeleton so my eyes don't see much."
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Old 05-26-2009, 05:15 PM   #6
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I know what you are saying, but when the Mandalorians attacked the galaxy, they (if memory serves) swept across half the outer rim. Conquering, killing, and enslaving as they went. Also, many of the deaths during big wars are made up of infantry and other army units. I believe I remember reading in one of the Republic Commando novels that clones have a fainter force imprint than normal beings. And on the CIS side, they had only a handful of deaths, as most of their armies (about 98%) were made up of droids.
So I stand by what I said before, there were more deaths overall during the Mandalorian Wars.


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Old 05-27-2009, 02:58 AM   #7
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The theory I ran with is that the midichlorines in a Force user are a double-edged sword. You use the Force, but the Force uses you back. Sometimes, it's benefitial, sometimes not.

Dark Siders, as a general notion, tend to obtain obscene amounts of power rather quickly. The midichlorines in that case, start acting as an autoimmune disease, attacking the body or ravaging it in order to sustain the power levels. As it's fueled by emotions like rage, hatred, and fear, and requires one to be on guard at all times, those stress hormones only add to the physical decay. They also recruit at a later age, possibly when the body is less able to handle the additional strain.

Lightsiders, since they grow their abilities much more slowly, give their bodies time to adjust to the added load. As they adjust, it benefits them in the form of slower aging and longer lifespan. Since the physical changes can be quite marked, it possibly presents another (though still ethically reprehensible) argument in favor of their tactic of recruiting in infancy. An infant or young child is better able to grow into the adjustments.


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Old 05-27-2009, 03:12 PM   #8
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I agree with Allronix to a certain extent. As for the difference between movie DS transitions and KOTOR-era DS transitions, I'd say that it's more likely the fact that when players play DS, they really play DS (as in max out their DS points for the Mastery bonus and full on demonic-look). DS Exile is far more darkside than say Anakin before he gets his limbs chopped off and his body totally burned, but probably just as much as Palpatine (see: Mask Theory). Dooku...I'd say he's actually not "fallen" all the way, he has certain convictions and justifications, whereas DS Exile and Palpatine don't lie to themselves (they go all out). Bastilla in K1 doesn't look like a zombie yet because she's just started on the DS road so she's probably closer to pre-Vader suit Anakin. It's all about degrees.

Also, note that the "Dark Side" and "Light Side" feature different applications of the Force. The "Light" promotes healing, increased strength, better vitality, etc.. The "Dark" is used for offensive applications such as Lightning, Force Fear, and most dangerous of all Force Vampiricy. I disagree that the powers associated with this "Dark Side" are evil (except for Force Vampiricy since it is actually an abomination that goes beyond the "Dark Side") but they are more likely to have damaging affects on the body. When using Force Lightning one is actually sending electricity through one's body (which is why Vader couldn't use it with his suit). Force Fear is probably stressful to the mind of both the caster and the affected. Force Vampiricy is...an abomination as said (I know because have studied Force Vampires and Force Vampiricy more than anything else in Star Wars). Note also that "Dark Side" powers have damaging affects on the victims but are more likely to have a steady, overall affect on the caster as the caster will have used it more than the victims have been affected.


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Old 05-27-2009, 03:32 PM   #9
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Didn't we already cover this discussion on dark side transitions before it was deleted by RedHawke? The dark side of the Force does not change your physical appearance directly. Your actions, caused by the dark side's influence, do. Palpatine (Darth Sidious) was completely normal until he zapped himself with his own Force lightning trying to kill Mace Windu who wisely used his lightsaber to deflect the energy. Darth Vader was so similar in appearance to the "deceased" Anakin Skywalker (read the novel) that everyone, including the Jedi at the Temple, thought they were talking to a misled Anakin. We all know how his body changed form. Obi-wan severs his remaining limbs and then Vader is burned alive by being too close to the lava. Darth Maul apparently always had his tattoos according to GL, and Count Dooku (Darth Tyranus) never even gained Sith eyes, but because of his shear mastery of the Force in general. (A former Jedi master, personally trained by Yoda, secretly learned Sith Lore after achieving master, and leaving the order after his former Padwan's death [Qui-Gon Jinn]. Yes, Obi-wan and Anakin are like his grandchildren, and he even admits this in the ROTS novel) He became a full-fledged Sith apprentice who even had plans to properly dispose of his master Sidious. He tried to recruit his elder "grandson" for this task, but Obi-wan was too well trained as a Jedi to become a Sith apprentice.

Count Dooku, aka Darth Tyranus, looked exactly the way he did when he left the Jedi Order. They never even gave him sith eyes, yet we know from the Clone Wars TV series produced by GL that he was very much a Sith Lord through, and through.

Oh, and despite what you guys might think, Luke Skywalker does briefly turn to the dark side at the climax scene in Return of the Jedi. It wasn't until after Sidious offered him apprenticeship, officially, that he changed his mind. But, up until that point he was headed down that path ever since his Step-parents were ruthlessly murdered by Imperial Sandtroopers at the order of Darth Vader. (Read the novel) He wanted to become a Jedi to avenge his family's death. Not to protect innocents. Everyone knew he was a step away from the dark side, even Luke. (That was why he wore black as a reminder.) It didn't help when Sidious turned his slipping into a fall, though, if you get my metaphorical meaning.

So I ask you, fellow Lucasforum members, why do we prefer the comic book style dark side transitions over the movie style ones? My answer is because we like to see that a person is evil. It makes it easier to kill a person that looks ugly and deformed than to realize that his actions alone make him evil. Do you agree with my logic? Or do you think I am completely insane? Or both?



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Old 05-27-2009, 04:10 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by DarthJacen View Post
So I ask you, fellow Lucasforum members, why do we prefer the comic book style dark side transitions over the movie style ones? My answer is because we like to see that a person is evil. It makes it easier to kill a person that looks ugly and deformed than to realize that his actions alone make him evil. Do you agree with my logic? Or do you think I am completely insane? Or both?
Personally I don't really like to see a person "evil" I mean ugly. And now that you're saying there are a lot more Sith who looked normal like Assajj Ventress(alright I know she's not a 100% sith), Desann, Tavion, Uthar, Yuthura(they had only tattoes like Maul) and don't forget Revan Wow that was a random collection of Sith.



Bink's Sake

"I've barely eaten anything for many decades now. It feels like my stomach shriveled into my back........though i don't have a stomach or back because i'm a skeleton! Yohohohoho! SKULL JOKE!"

"My eyes have never seen such a pretty woman! But i'm a skeleton so my eyes don't see much."
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Old 05-27-2009, 04:27 PM   #11
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I created this thread so people who are constantly complaining about dark side transitions might read a logical explanation.
DarthJacen: I direct you to the top page. I tried to explain why people look different. What do you think of my explanation?

Hmmm... I think next I'll start a thread about sith tattoos...

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Old 05-28-2009, 12:08 AM   #12
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I think, your theory has merit, but I think, the KotOR games try to use a lot more symbolism than GL intended them to use.



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Old 05-30-2009, 11:27 AM   #13
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GL decides canon with popular sentiment, it completely changes to suit the next target market.
Originally when ESB was made GL said about the Emperor's appearance that he was once human but had been twisted and mutated by his use of the Dark Side of the Force. This was carried through with even more emphasis in RotJ and was originally intended to mean by exploring the Dark Side over an extended period of time had turned Palpatine into a mutated near-human visually representative of daemonic possession in superstition.

During the making of the prequels it is a younger, newer target audience and classical ideas about religion are not as popular today as they were then, the Exorcist and Amityville Horror are pretty lame by today's standards, no matter how terrifying they were then. People like to see mechanical systems at work now. If somebody has superpowers they want to see the biochemical reason for it. If they look possessed they want to see the medical event which caused it. You just won't get any suspension of disbelief otherwise, where most of my contemporaries still claim they see ghosts and genuinely believe in the supernatural.

So canon for the dark side transition changed since the Star Wars saga began.


For the OP I like the thinking of having reasons for dark side transitions. I do rather like the original ESB era thinking of a daemonically possessed human being simulated by falling to the dark side of the Force, kinda suggesting that's where less advanced civilisations come up with that superstition without understanding the Force.

Some hint of why the Dark Side works that way is still canonical. The Jedi Knights do not let themselves be controlled by the Force as a power per se, as this would be to let their base desires have free reign. They use the Force only for knowledge and defence, as a tool (excellent example is the lightsabre, a proxy for the Force rather than say using it to shoot lightning from their fingertips). Dark Siders attempt gather as much of the Force as possible into themselves, regarding it as a means to personal power.
I think this kind of use of the Force is why dark siders are visibly transformed. It is the maxim that absolute power corrupts absolutely. The Jedi purposely keep a distance, using the Jedi Code and the Lightsabre.

It was a mistake for GL to explain Palpy's appearance the way he chose to in Ep3. But then there's a number of things about the ending of that movie which scream comical pase and almost manage to undo a lot of previously intriguing work. I think he listened too much to the marketing analysts who told him today's cinema going youth prefer to see karma than daemonic possession, and he altered the theme of the Dark Side accordingly.
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Old 05-31-2009, 02:23 AM   #14
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I agree with you. By the way you quoted the late Lord Acton of Parliament of the Whig party and a Rebel sympathizer during the Revolution. In fact, he may have been America's only friend, then. Anyway, that doesn't explain why the sith use lightsabers, too, and don't tell me that was changed over time. I still think, that we like to make sure that the villains are ugly, demonic looking because it's easier to root against, them. Now, I'm going to state a name for rhetorical perposed. Adolf Hitler is my example. He was young and handsome and socially acceptable at parties. He turned his own trial into a political rally. He wrote a book while in prison called Mein Kampf. And, he led all of Germany and the world into it's darkest hour. But, if you watch his campaign speeches that are still on YouTube. All you see is a politician in his thirties running for election.

If you met the real Adolf Hilter (the charming Adolf Hitler) at a social event, would you be so quick to kill him? I'm telling you even I would hesitate because when you talk to him at a party he doesn't look like a mad man with a messiah complex, and he certainly, doesn't act that way, either.

So, anyway, that's gives you an idea why I don't like the idea of dark side transitions from any perspective.



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Old 05-31-2009, 02:38 AM   #15
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Quote:
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If you met the real Adolf Hilter (the charming Adolf Hitler) at a social event, would you be so quick to kill him?
If I knew what he would do? Yeah. Trying to change him probably wouldn't be very effective.

Back on-topic: I repeat my "Force echo" theory. The ripples in the force from the KotOR/TSL era, heavily corrupted the Dark-siders. The Trayus Academy on Malachor VI could have been an especially large influence in this theory. This is my reasoning for the zombie like appearance in the games.

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Old 05-31-2009, 06:17 PM   #16
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I agree to an extent



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Old 06-01-2009, 12:25 PM   #17
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My only problem with your theory Te Mirdala Mand'alor is why only "Dark Siders" are affect that way by Malachor. The sheer strain of resisting the "Dark Side" on Malachor is bound to have a draining affect that results in outward corruption of appearance.

I also would like to note that there have been plenty of heroes in Star Wars like Luke and Cade Skywalker who use passion to overcome the Sith without corrupting themselves. I disagree that Luke was falling, he utilized passion but with a degree of control that most Sith lack. Cade easily employs anger and hatred against the Sith, but is not affected by it all since he still tends to do the right thing. Revan used the emotion of love to redeem Bastila and drive him against Malak. Thus Passion cannot be considered the corrupting element.

Also, there is a different between seeking power and the means that you obtain it. The former is not necessarily evil, in fact it is the later that can be good or evil. Just because one has power or wants it does not mean one is evil. Otherwise we'd have Darth Washington, Darth Lincoln, and Darth Teddy as presidents. Power is the capacity to enact change.


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Old 06-01-2009, 02:59 PM   #18
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I mentioned passion? Where? Anyway, I repeat my theory (once again): The greater amount of Dark Side influences during the KotOR era. I am talking about that era, and all the things that happened in it. Comparing it to other era's defeats the purpose of this thread. The people who are commenting here keep leaving out my point about the echo's and comparing the DS transitions here to other era's. Era's where these echo's have long since ceased. Please, if anyone else wishes to comment here, remember the Force Echo point I made.


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Old 06-01-2009, 07:09 PM   #19
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Well, if you liken the battle of Malachor V as a Nuclear blast to the Force itself, then his idea makes more sense. A nuclear blast, no matter how small (Hiroshima) or large (NV testing), all have a similar problem, they don't affect a single area. If improperly detonated, the nuclear fallout can have consequences around the entire world, but not directly in comparison to the people at ground zero. With Malachor V, the only people directly affected by the blast were the Jedi that were in orbit or on the planet. I should remind you that these were not Revan's sith supporters, either. By causing so much slaughter and destruction on such a large scale, similar to a nuclear blast, the Jedi within rage died, turned into sith, or cut themselves off from the Force to shield themselves from the shock wave. Unfortunately, just like with nuclear blasts, they are not the only ones affected. All of the non-fighting Jedi still in the known regions would have felt the tremors from the Malachor blast, just like with an earthquake that can also be triggered by a nuclear blast. The tremors would not immediately hurt them until they tried to look into the Force as Vrook was explaining and then get attacked through the Force. As a result, Jedi started to shut themselves down to the Force except during battle. So, this is my best way of helping Lord of Hunger understand Te Mirdala Mand'alor's theory better.

The other Jedi would not have been directly effected, but they were wounded.



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Old 06-05-2009, 02:22 AM   #20
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I've always seen the game's transitions as the obvious, a show of corruption. Though they do look ugly in some respects, it likely was meant to show a decay of the body, the veins more noticeable and the skin losing the natural color. But when you compare it to the bodily appearance of the movie-era Sith, the difference is vast. I'd think the idea between them was the fact that most of the Sith shown in the movies where likely either of a species where their look was definite, or a fallen Jedi, who, because of his(obviously because it seems that the movies lack in females aligned with the Sith, aside from Ventress) previous tenure as a Jedi, keeps the same hair color, skin tone and eyes that they had as a Jedi.

But I think the idea of the showing veins might be something inspired by "Interview With The Vampire". While it wasn't present on all Vampires in the film, it is most notably on Louie, even if it is just one. It may have been better if BioWare had resorted to tattoos rather than decay, even making the player fit in with Uthar and Yuthura. But that would have meant that Darth Revan would have tattoos, something that is a little redundant to design, as its seems they are unwilling to given Revan his canon appearance(s).

But it does seems odd that the eyes of the transitions, no matter if you refer to the textures done by BioWare or Obsidian, aren't the same as the movies. Some times the yellow used isn't even noticeable, mainly on the Xbox version(thought it may just be the way I saw them), as in K2 it seemed that the eyes were just plain white with black edges. Likely, this is because the Sith of the KOTOR-era used the force almost like one would a car, using it for some purpose every day. The movie-era Sith, however, would have used the power of the force in large doses, so when they displayed their anger, their more aggressive emotions, their body's only visual display was their eyes changing color. This also brings the idea, something that I think was said before in another thread, that the movie era Sith(namely Anakin in Ep3), didn't always have their "Sith-Eyes", unlike the Sith of the KOTOR era, that keeps them. While it is possible that the reason for the Kotor-era Sith's eyes not changing is due to limitations on the game's engine, the previous explanation seems a bit more interesting.

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Old 07-18-2009, 05:44 AM   #21
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Yes, I can perfectly imagine how this came about.


A person at BioWare who calls himself a game designer was play-testing an early build of the game. He was pleased with the unstoppable might of his Dark Jedi. He razed cities and worlds alike without repercussion. In only one week, he had killed enough people that the Galactic Senate passed an emergency measure to investigate the mysterious and sudden failure of the economy. "So this is what it was like being Hannibal," he thought.

After coming to work at twelve o'clock the following day, he began to start the game up once more. Grandiose visions of conquests waged flashed through his mind: cities up in smoke, citizens fleeing in a panic away from the dark blight at the center of the destruction; capital warships sent falling from the sky with the awe-inspiring power of his mind; hopelessly surrounded by the enemy, only to unleash the very fury of nature against them, the thrumming air feeding back into his body in a climacteric circuit of energy. The visions were familiar to him: he had seen them every night as he slept. But he had a dilemma. As the game finished loading, the first thing he noticed was his character's appearance. He was disappointed. "This isn't what I look like in my dreams," he thought.

He was determined to do something about that. His character wasn't even distinguishable among a crowd of civilians! So he set up a meeting with the project manager. And the events that took place resulted in a decision that would eventually be remembered as a source of much argument and criticism.

"How has the testing gone so far?" asked the project manager.
"Splendid. I just have one complaint," said the game designer.
"What's that?"
"Well... don't you think the player should feel more... more awesome?"
"More awesome?"
"Well, he looks so normal. I mean, he's fought many wars and killed thousands. Shouldn't he look somehow remarkable?"
"Hmm." The project manager paused for thought. "What do you propose we do?"
"I think we should give him some identifying mark. Like battle scars that accumulate as he gains levels or something."
"Battle scars? Aren't Jedi supposed to be invincible? They wouldn't be a Jedi if they ever got hit."
"Good point. Maybe he can grow taller?"
"Impossible," said the project manager.
"OK. What about... what about a darkness, or something. The player becomes shrouded in it as he becomes more evil."
"That's a good idea, but it leaves out the good players. No one wants to run around as a brightly-glowing faerie."
"Bah!" The game designer whines petulantly to himself for a few moments. Suddenly his face perks up, and he throws his arms out wide in a ridiculous pose.
"I know! We can have his face turn dark. The good players can become more saturated. Like the way someone looks after a sunburn... more healthy!" exclaimed the game designer.
"That won't work for the black faces. Al Sharpton might complain that our game is racist," said the project manager.
"Al Sh--really? Um, OK. What about gray instead of black?" offered the game designer.
"Perfect." They both pause for a minute to consider the implications.
"Say, won't this contradict existing Star Wars material?" asked the project manager.
"Ha!" the game designer snorts in genuine mirth. "Why would any player care about that? Besides, they already have yellow eyes. What's the difference?"
"Very well. I'll inform the artists immediately." The project manager left the room, leaving the game designer smiling contentedly in the office. He could already envision the future triumphs of his Jedi's malevolent career. This time, his victims were filled with terror before he killed them.


I'll stop now and save everyone the pain of reading fan-fiction quality writing. On a more serious note, I would suggest that everyone here read the following article: Lawful Stupid/Stupid Evil. I'm always reminded of it whenever I play BioWare's games.
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