#51 Posted by Oni (2098 posts) -

That wider sense of scale is something I really appreciate about Dark Souls 2, personally. Looking back on 1, it feels really tiny. I've said it a few times already, but yeah, chalk me up for Dark Souls 2 in that regard. They fudge it with the distance, like looking from Heide's to Majula, but it does work. And I'm not wild about the dream world/purgatory idea, I don't actually believe it, just threw it out there. Again, it's one of those things that makes no sense, but it does make the world feel grand and epic, precisely because I never expected to go from Earthen Peak to a place like Iron Keep. I'm willing to cut From some slack there.

Honestly, at this point I'm wondering if the lore will even make as much sense as Dark Souls did in the end. I know it's early days, but while I love the overall tone and story of the game, there are things I just can't figure out for the life of me, like some of the timeline stuff, what all Vendrick did - like there are so many references to him "peering inside the essence of the Soul", what does that even mean? What is the Giant's Kinship? I assumed that's what Vendrick took from the Giants, but if that's true, we wouldn't get it from the Giant Lord. What role does the Ancient Dragon play in this? Is he even a real Ancient or a construct of Aldia using a Giant Soul, which we get from it?

Ugh I'm gonna stop thinking about it for a while because it's making my head hurt.

#52 Edited by Fredchuckdave (5452 posts) -

It seems implied that the Ironclad soldiers are minions of the Queen based on their item description; I thought that was interesting.

#53 Edited by Karkarov (3102 posts) -

@fredchuckdave said:

It seems implied that the Ironclad soldiers are minions of the Queen based on their item description; I thought that was interesting.

Not so sure. The Mastodon item descriptions said it was the King who made them so he was plenty whacko before the end himself. Also all the Ironclads in good shape are in the Iron Fortress which seems sort of outside the Queens realm of caring. But then again there are grave keepers inside the Windmill. *shrugs*

Also it still seems obvious that the Throne of Want is what Vendrick stole. I mean come on.... the Giant King has the key that opens the path to the Throne, the throne is also Giant size with a spot cut for humans. Seems pretty obvious.

#54 Posted by Oldirtybearon (4798 posts) -

I think Seath is alive in Dark Souls 2.

I know, I know, sounds fucking nuts, but hear me out.

So the Lord's Chamber, the alcove of books and desks after the Dear Freja boss room, right? I'm assuming you all know that the dirty, skeevy Duke who allowed the spiders to destroy Tseldora is the man you kill in there. I'm basing this idea on Manscorpion TARK's dialogue. He mentions that his master is old. Very old. And makes a few overt references that could be interpreted as an albino dragon. His master's motivations are also in line with Seath's. Then you have an amazing tidbit; Tark mentions something to the effect of his master not being truly dead. Or that he has resurfaced many times over the ages (something to that effect). He thanks you for killing his master anyhow and gives you a sweet ring.

Now I know you're like "but ODB, that's dumb! How could a giant albino dragon older than the Eldritch horrors that created our universe possibly be one measly little man that dies in one hit!" and I'm like, "yeah I know, it sounds crazy, but here's the thing": Seath possessed someone else in Dark Souls before. His name was Logan.

Big Hat Logan's death came at a time where he was lost in his studies of Seath's archives. All of the lore, all of the spells, all of the knowledge Seath had gained in his years as an immortal undead albino dragon. He's okay at first, but over time he degrades. The more he learns, the more he reads from Seath's texts, the closer and closer he becomes to, well, becoming Seath. Consider how he looked when you first met him, and consider the end. Crazy, naked, and about the same shade of white as Seath. I also remember him busting out a few Seath-y spells during that fight as well. My point is, I think Seath managed to imprint his... personality? His spirit? His conscience? onto the texts left in his archive. Over time said conscience would slowly usurp the meat suit of whoever read too much of his lore. It's not a stretch to think that his lore (that is the texts he wrote) managed to survive into the Drangleic Cycle. I think, somehow, some way, the Duke of Tseldora managed to get his grubby mits on some of it, or enough of it, to allow the Seath implantation to begin. Of course it's not long after that he starts experiments of his own, building strange temples of spiders and creating one giant, two-headed, nasty thing called Freja. After all, Seath was just as capable and just as sadistic in creating life that should not be.

I know it's shaky, but I can't think of a reason why Tark would mention any of this (especially after killing the Duke in the Lord's Chamber) if it wasn't relevant in some way.

#55 Posted by Bocam (3742 posts) -

@oldirtybearon: Considering you get the "Old Paledrake Soul" after beating Freja in NG+ and above. You might be on to something

#56 Posted by ThunderSlash (1720 posts) -

I'm just gonna assume that the Earthen Peak to Iron Keep thing was a small mistake on From's part. If you look at Earthen Peak from where you originally met the Ore Lady at Harvest Valley, you can see that there is a big volcano right next to it. That is where I assume Iron Keep was at.

#57 Posted by Oni (2098 posts) -

Seath is "alive" in the same way that all the other Lord Soul bosses from DS1 are: in spirit, or Soul if you will, rather than actually still being alive. Their souls continued to exist and exert influence over certain beings, just like the Lost Sinner emulated the Witch of Izalith and so on. In that sense, the Lord of Tseldora is kind of a reincarnation of Seath, like the other bosses are of their progenitors, like Shalquoir is of Alvina. This fits with what Tark says, this his master never truly dies, but takes another form. I don't think that's meant to be taken 100% literally, though certainly the parallels between the Lord and Seath are compelling, right down to their apparent hatred of ancient dragons.

Also, I'm pretty sure Logan just hollowed in the Archives after learning some of the crystal magic found there. Similar to Crestbro in Dark Souls, Lucatiel in Dark Soul 2, and even Vendrick. That seems more likely to me than him being imprinted by Seath, which relies on more conjecture - we know people Hollow, we don't know that Seath can do that.

#58 Edited by SunBroZak (1114 posts) -

@karkarov:

Come to think of it, doesn't the game mention that Vendrick was never able to claim the Throne of Want? Or sit upon it? (the queen says something along the lines of Vendrick never taking the true throne)

Perhaps with your character going into the past and taking the Giant's Kinship: the key to the throne, Vendrick was unable to unlock it's power. Maybe that is what Nashandra wanted from you, and why she waits for you at the Throne of Want. Though that doesn't explain how Vendrick could command the Golems.

I think Seath is alive in Dark Souls 2.

I know, I know, sounds fucking nuts, but hear me out.

So the Lord's Chamber, the alcove of books and desks after the Dear Freja boss room, right? I'm assuming you all know that the dirty, skeevy Duke who allowed the spiders to destroy Tseldora is the man you kill in there. I'm basing this idea on Manscorpion TARK's dialogue. He mentions that his master is old. Very old. And makes a few overt references that could be interpreted as an albino dragon. His master's motivations are also in line with Seath's. Then you have an amazing tidbit; Tark mentions something to the effect of his master not being truly dead. Or that he has resurfaced many times over the ages (something to that effect). He thanks you for killing his master anyhow and gives you a sweet ring.

Now I know you're like "but ODB, that's dumb! How could a giant albino dragon older than the Eldritch horrors that created our universe possibly be one measly little man that dies in one hit!" and I'm like, "yeah I know, it sounds crazy, but here's the thing": Seath possessed someone else in Dark Souls before. His name was Logan.

Big Hat Logan's death came at a time where he was lost in his studies of Seath's archives. All of the lore, all of the spells, all of the knowledge Seath had gained in his years as an immortal undead albino dragon. He's okay at first, but over time he degrades. The more he learns, the more he reads from Seath's texts, the closer and closer he becomes to, well, becoming Seath. Consider how he looked when you first met him, and consider the end. Crazy, naked, and about the same shade of white as Seath. I also remember him busting out a few Seath-y spells during that fight as well. My point is, I think Seath managed to imprint his... personality? His spirit? His conscience? onto the texts left in his archive. Over time said conscience would slowly usurp the meat suit of whoever read too much of his lore. It's not a stretch to think that his lore (that is the texts he wrote) managed to survive into the Drangleic Cycle. I think, somehow, some way, the Duke of Tseldora managed to get his grubby mits on some of it, or enough of it, to allow the Seath implantation to begin. Of course it's not long after that he starts experiments of his own, building strange temples of spiders and creating one giant, two-headed, nasty thing called Freja. After all, Seath was just as capable and just as sadistic in creating life that should not be.

I know it's shaky, but I can't think of a reason why Tark would mention any of this (especially after killing the Duke in the Lord's Chamber) if it wasn't relevant in some way.

My interpretation was that the Duke was influenced by the soul of Seath, and eventually combined it with the spider. Hence the two heads. (I think you get the Old Paledrake soul from the spider, though I'm not 100% sure)

Similar to how I think the Lost Sinner was influenced by the soul of Izalith, and was manipulated into rekindling the flame (which didn't work).

#59 Edited by Fredchuckdave (5452 posts) -

@oldirtybearon: Seath, future DLC boss but not super easy this time?

Does anyone know who/what the drake/dragon in the Lost Bastille is?

#60 Posted by jclane (337 posts) -

It's weird how Nashandra's human guise bears a few resemblances to Dusk, considering that Manus kidnapped her and we never found out why or what he did with her. What if he somehow "impregnated" her and that is why he was allowed to reincarnate. Remember Vinny's insane ramblings about Dusk being Manus? What if our Dark Lord is correct? What if Dark Souls is real life? WHAT THEN, I TELLS YA!

#61 Edited by Karkarov (3102 posts) -

@sunbrozak said:

@karkarov:

Come to think of it, doesn't the game mention that Vendrick was never able to claim the Throne of Want? Or sit upon it? (the queen says something along the lines of Vendrick never taking the true throne)

Perhaps with your character going into the past and taking the Giant's Kinship: the key to the throne, Vendrick was unable to unlock it's power. Maybe that is what Nashandra wanted from you, and why she waits for you at the Throne of Want. Though that doesn't explain how Vendrick could command the Golems.

Well he stole the throne, and stole the "mechanics" of how to make the golems.... but the King of Giants still had the key to making the throne work. So there are two likely possibilities as I see it.

1: Vendrick stole the throne but could not "use it" because he did not have the key that the King of the Giant's possessed. After all it is called the Forest of Giants and the memories make it pretty clear the giants were winning for the most part. At least Drummond sure thinks they were. So he was never able to "take the throne" itself because either the Giant King won and left, or died in some manner that prevented Vendrick from getting the key. I think this theory is reasonable but I feel #2 is more likely.

2: Nashandra is lying her ass off, it isn't like she tells you the whole truth about anything else. The King of the Giants is actually the Last Giant you fight at the end of the Forest of Giants. By this point he is obviously just much reduced due to all the ages passing and being imprisoned. After all... he has the Soldiers Key to the fort... a Key you would think Drummond would have. Drummond was clear he wanted one last hurrah so odds are he had it and got killed for his troubles and the Giant King ended up with that key. Even so the Giants still "lost" long term and the Giant King got imprisoned at which point Vendrick could have stolen the key to the Throne so he could activate it. Remember, some believe Drangleic castle was built AFTER the Giant's attacked. I don't know if that is the case but it makes sense in this theory what with the Castle literally being built around and on top of the Throne and the Throne being able to "remake the world to your desires". Also note the only place you find golems the King controlled is inside the castle itself. Meaning maybe he couldn't control them until AFTER he took the throne officially.

Theory 2 is given particular credence because Drummond wants to kill the King of the Giants and if you look at the area where you fight the King it does resemble what the area you fight the pursuer "could" look like if you approached from the opposite direction and assumed most of the place was torn up and destroyed. Also this is where you find Drummond's gear, meaning the spot of his ultimate death. I am not saying it is an exact match, but it is similar is all.

#62 Posted by Oni (2098 posts) -

@karkarov: Compelling. I posted earlier how it's possible that the Last Giant is actually the Giant Lord, just as an idea, but now it seems more likely. I already assumed the area you fight him is the same as the Pursuer's, hadn't thought about Drummond and the Soldier's Key, though.

Speaking of, I still find it super odd that the giant at the Soldier's Rest bonfire does nothing. It's like that bonfire is just a dead end, even at the endgame. I was very surprised that nothing happened there. Anyone been there on NG+ yet to check it out? Working my way through it but a ways off from the endgame still.

#63 Edited by ThunderSlash (1720 posts) -

I just want to know what's up with the CG cutscene at the beginning of the game. It implies that the player character came from another land and was drawn to the whirlpool thing that eventually brings them to Things Betwixt. I guess that's what happens to the ones cursed with the Dark Sign? They get the urge to go to Drangleic? It would explain all the people with amnesia around Majula. Perhaps Drangleic is already a fallen kingdom steeped within the Dark and the whirlpool is a time travel portal a la Dark Souls 1 DLC portal? There is also a weird scene in which a maiden's face turns to ash but I'll brush that off as added in to look cool for now.

Edit: Well, I just saw a "Behind the scenes" promo vid for DS2 and the Director says that the player character came to Drangleic to cure his curse. I guess that clears up that bit. I wonder if people getting amnesia is the result of going through the whirlpool or is it because the curse on Drangleic itself affects the memories of people.

#64 Edited by Karkarov (3102 posts) -

@oni said:

@karkarov: Compelling. I posted earlier how it's possible that the Last Giant is actually the Giant Lord, just as an idea, but now it seems more likely. I already assumed the area you fight him is the same as the Pursuer's, hadn't thought about Drummond and the Soldier's Key, though.

Speaking of, I still find it super odd that the giant at the Soldier's Rest bonfire does nothing. It's like that bonfire is just a dead end, even at the endgame. I was very surprised that nothing happened there. Anyone been there on NG+ yet to check it out? Working my way through it but a ways off from the endgame still.

I think it is there purely as a source for seeds of a giants tree. It is the only place you can get them in the entire game and they seem to reappear on a timer. That said your initial post about the Giant King is what got me thinking about that and I believe your theory was correct. They even do the same foot stomp and the Giant wants a weapon so bad he tears off his own arm. One thing I do find strange is the similarities between the giant King and Vendrick. Their swords look very similar, when you get the King's Armor his Crown looks like the Crown the Giant King is wearing and the cape on the armor looks like the Giant King's cape.

#65 Edited by SunBroZak (1114 posts) -

Well I got the guide today. Having looked through various item descriptions, I'd like to quote this one.

Giant Stone Axe:

Greataxe forged from the Last Giant's soul.

This weapon resembles a primitive stone tool, but is quite powerful owing to its immense size.

The Giants were eventually defeated by an unnamed hero, but alas, victory came all too late.

I also found the description of Things Betwixt particularly interesting.

A small dimensional rift that exists between Drangleic and the outside world, this seemingly peaceful limbo serves as a gateway between two realms.

#66 Edited by Oni (2098 posts) -

@karkarov: I suppose it isn't inconceivable that Vendrick simply took his shit and flaunted it as a trophy, but the parallels between Vendrick in the crypt and the Giant Lord are interesting. I've been wondering if the reason he grew so big is that he tampered with the Giant Lord's soul or something. There are numerous references to the King having "peered straight into the essence of the Soul, but what ever came of it". That's the Maiden. From the King's Ring: "A powerful soul is like a curse. And Vendrick, King of Drangleic used a powerful soul to keep the curse at bay. King Vendrick sought greater souls, and made the giants' strength his own, but even still, the curse overcame him." So yeah, pretty sure he used the Giant Lord's Soul on himself. But that makes me wonder why we don't get said soul from Vendrick on killing him.

Giant Lord Soul: "Soul of the Giant Lord, who once conquered Drangleic. The Giants landed on the Northern shores, and set siege to King Vendrick's castle to claim an invaluable prize." Uh, what? That isn't the version of events we get from Chancellor Wellager. This is what makes me thing one of two things: Either going into the memories alters history (not a fan of this one), OR the Throne of Want actually has the power to alter reality. To bring about the monarch's wishes. Giant's Kinship, from the Giant Lord: "Each King has his rightful throne. And when he sits upon it, he sees what he chooses to see. Or perhaps, it is the throne,

which shows the king only what he wants."

Shalquoir, if you talk to her right before the end, or in the post-game, says something like "Take your throne, and do great things, if it please you." The Maiden in the outro also suggests the Throne has great power: "All this will play out again, unless you denounce it." Paraphrased. I believe it's both a meta-commentary on the player going into NG+ or whatever, and the nature of the Souls series, with all the parallels between them. There's always an Undead Curse, there's always a King, and always a Chosen Undead. Whether the fire is linked or not.

One last thing to support the Last Giant=Giant Lord theory:

Soul of the surviving giant, who was bound below the Forest of Giants.

Many seasons had come and gone, and the giant prepared for his final rest. But his soul remained magnificent, testimony to his former strength.

"His former strength", as in when he was the Giant Lord, before Vendrick took that from him. All the ages spent locked up down there, robbed of his soul, and he still remained somewhat strong. The more I think about it, the more I am convinced about this theory. Pieces are somewhat starting to come together in my mind, at last.

#67 Posted by Oni (2098 posts) -

Well I got the guide today. Having looked through various item descriptions, I'd like to quote this one.

Giant Stone Axe:

Greataxe forged from the Last Giant's soul.

This weapon resembles a primitive stone tool, but is quite powerful owing to its immense size.

The Giants were eventually defeated by an unnamed hero, but alas, victory came all too late.

I also found the description of Things Betwixt particularly interesting.

A small dimensional rift that exists between Drangleic and the outside world, this seemingly peaceful limbo serves as a gateway between two realms.

I was just going to post the Giant Stone Axe description, god damn. It seems to quite strongly support the memories=time travel theory, which I hate. Because if that's true, then how did Vendrick get the Giant Lord's Soul? Or the Kinship to access the Throne of Want and create Golems. Unless Nashandra wasn't lying when she said Vendrick never took the true Throne. Also, victory came too late? For what?

If it's time travel, everything is fucked and I don't know anything anymore, because it's either all a massive paradox or lazy storytelling.

#68 Posted by SunBroZak (1114 posts) -

@oni said:

@sunbrozak said:

Well I got the guide today. Having looked through various item descriptions, I'd like to quote this one.

Giant Stone Axe:

Greataxe forged from the Last Giant's soul.

This weapon resembles a primitive stone tool, but is quite powerful owing to its immense size.

The Giants were eventually defeated by an unnamed hero, but alas, victory came all too late.

I also found the description of Things Betwixt particularly interesting.

A small dimensional rift that exists between Drangleic and the outside world, this seemingly peaceful limbo serves as a gateway between two realms.

I was just going to post the Giant Stone Axe description, god damn. It seems to quite strongly support the memories=time travel theory, which I hate. Because if that's true, then how did Vendrick get the Giant Lord's Soul? Or the Kinship to access the Throne of Want and create Golems. Unless Nashandra wasn't lying when she said Vendrick never took the true Throne. Also, victory came too late? For what?

If it's time travel, everything is fucked and I don't know anything anymore, because it's either all a massive paradox or lazy storytelling.

There's precedent for it to be time travel, considering the Chosen Undead's actions in Oolacile carried through.

Personally I believe we are responsible for killing the King Giant, which ultimately brought an end to their attack. Be it a loss of moral, order or whatever. I'm not so sure that the Last Giant is the king, because the giants turned to trees upon death. Perhaps just one that remembers us from that time, as it definitely seemed angry to see us.

Now what I find incredibly confusing, is that the desc. of the Ancient Dragon Soul (the one acquired from the dragon memory) mentions that it was created by those who peered into the essence of the soul. As far as I'm aware, that would be Vendrick. How the heck did Vendrick create a dragon soul, in what I assumed to be a time during the dragon war?

#69 Edited by Fredchuckdave (5452 posts) -

These games have a lot of multiverse type things going on in them so time travel being a justification for events is far from unheard of. Also one could assume there were rulers akin to Vendrick before Vendrick just as for each kingdom falling there is another kindler/throne taker.

#70 Edited by Oni (2098 posts) -

@sunbrozak: I am assuming, and I know this is dangerous, that the way that description is worded is slightly off. I think what it means is that it's not that soul that was created by those who peered into the essence of the soul (Aldia/Vendrick), but rather the Ancient Dragon that we see in the Dragon Shrine. As you say, unless Vendrick and/or Aldia travelled back in time or something to create the Ancient Dragons (lolnope), it would be impossible. That dragon memory is clearly before the Age of Fire, the time we see in the opening cut scene of Dark Souls. The unformed land, the craggy spires, everything. But yeah I'm like 99% certain that the Ancient Dragon was created by Aldia using a Giant Soul. Shanalotte is probably the result of similar experiments. I find it most curious that we never learn what happened to Aldia.

I still think the Last Giant is the Giant Lord because other than those two, there's not a single giant who looks like that. And as it's stated almost outright that Vendrick used a Giant Soul on himself, and as @karkarov pointed out, seems to be wearing some of the Giant Lord's shit, and he's grown to pretty much his size, and the description of the Last Giant's soul makes mention of his former strength, and he fights in a very similar manner... yeah. Unless someone has some other really compelling explanation, I'm sticking with this theory for now.

#71 Edited by Yummylee (21615 posts) -

So whatever happened to @cptbedlam? This is the sort of thread I would have expected he'd be all over like locust... in a less than favourable comparison, I admit :P

#72 Edited by CptBedlam (4451 posts) -

@yummylee said:

So whatever happened to @cptbedlam? This is the sort of thread I would have expected he'd be all over like locust... in a less than favourable comparison, I admit :P

What do you mean, I'm playing the game and I try my best to no let the internet spoil anything for me. ;)

I'm almost done with my first playthrough and I have mixed feelings regarding the world-design and lore in this game. For me it's not nearly as intriguing as in the previous Souls games. Still a very good game though.

#73 Posted by SunBroZak (1114 posts) -

@oni said:

@sunbrozak: I am assuming, and I know this is dangerous, that the way that description is worded is slightly off. I think what it means is that it's not that soul that was created by those who peered into the essence of the soul (Aldia/Vendrick), but rather the Ancient Dragon that we see in the Dragon Shrine. As you say, unless Vendrick and/or Aldia travelled back in time or something to create the Ancient Dragons (lolnope), it would be impossible. That dragon memory is clearly before the Age of Fire, the time we see in the opening cut scene of Dark Souls. The unformed land, the craggy spires, everything. But yeah I'm like 99% certain that the Ancient Dragon was created by Aldia using a Giant Soul. Shanalotte is probably the result of similar experiments. I find it most curious that we never learn what happened to Aldia.

I still think the Last Giant is the Giant Lord because other than those two, there's not a single giant who looks like that. And as it's stated almost outright that Vendrick used a Giant Soul on himself, and as @karkarov pointed out, seems to be wearing some of the Giant Lord's shit, and he's grown to pretty much his size, and the description of the Last Giant's soul makes mention of his former strength, and he fights in a very similar manner... yeah. Unless someone has some other really compelling explanation, I'm sticking with this theory for now.

Yeah, I think you're right. The soul definitely describes the dragon in the shire, so unless they're suggesting that the dragons were originally born from experiments in the future that are based off the same dragons and that it's all a time paradox..
I'm just going to go with the notion that it is a mistake.

The bone shield in Aldia's Keep confirms that Aldia attempted to recreate dragons from the giants he kept. Navlaan and the Emerald Herald were both born from these experiments. I'd just hazard a guess and say Aldia was killed by the dragon he created. It did state after all that he was using spells to control them, and I don't know if a spell could control a monster that size.

Where do you find the info that states he used the Giant King's soul? The crown and clothing that belongs to the giant king are not similar to that what Vendrick wears. The crowns are very different. The swords are quite different as well. If you're right in that Vendrick used the soul of the king giant, then my theory of the protagnoist having the soul instead is way off, and you may be right.

#74 Edited by Seikenfreak (410 posts) -

Hmm more I see little tidbits about this time travel theory the more it seems likely to me.

I never saw that Giant Axe item description and I think that's a very important detail. Somewhere in the game I believe it was said that the Giants were winning basically. But then you show up and wreck face and essentially steal the "key to the throne" (Throne of Want)

It makes no sense to me that the Throne of Want itself would or could be stolen. It just doesn't make sense and I don't know how to argue that point other than to say it clearly is some chunk of land/structure lol. But then I still don't know what this invaluable thing is that was stolen from the Giants. Or perhaps it was the Four Lord souls he stole? Since the throne is like a building and the Giant still has the Kinship when you kill him? So when the King attacked the Giants, stole the Lord Souls, and then came back but it was not enough to access the Throne?

So my next thought is that Vendrick was supposed to get the Giant's Kinship so that he could access the Throne of Want but then you show up and swipe it first. This locks him out (I don't understand this since the Golems in front of it appear to be the man-made ones?) which then pisses Nashandra and she deems him a failure? And he runs and hides but with the King's Ring which acts as an earlier lock to the Throne of Want?

I don't know. Sooooooo many confusing things here. I feel like this game has less specific info than DS1 did. I remember when DS1 first came out and there was a huge super busy thread on GameFAQs and I read it for hours and so much stuff made sense. About the timeline and the actions of specific characters.

#75 Posted by Oni (2098 posts) -

@sunbrozak: I posted this earlier: From the King's Ring: "A powerful soul is like a curse. And Vendrick, King of Drangleic used a powerful soul to keep the curse at bay. King Vendrick sought greater souls, and made the giants' strength his own, but even still, the curse overcame him."

Given Vendrick's size, it seems likely he used the Giant Lord's Soul. But if our time traveling means we took it instead... ALRIGHT HERE WE GO. Seat-of-my-pants bullshit, coming up.

Timeline 1: Without our interference. Vendrick invades Giants, steals shit (the Throne, the Kinship, the Lord Souls, unknown). The giants invade Drangleic, steal said shit back. Eventually, Vendrick's forces win the fight, Vendrick acquires the Giant Lord Soul. Vendrick uses the Soul to make himself more powerful. The victor writes the histories, they say, so the version we get from Wellager, which inflates Vendrick's accomplishments, is just some good old fashioned propaganda.

Timeline 2 (the game): The same things happen, only now we defeat the Giant Lord before Vendrick's forces win by themselves. We take his Soul and create... Schrödinger's Vendrick. Vendrick, locked up in the Undead Crypt, now exists in two states: He is both alive, and hollowed (Because he doesn't have the Giant Lord's Soul). The reason he hollowed is because we went back in time and took that Giant Lord's Soul. This is why we don't get any Soul from killing Vendrick. Until we open the door and walk in on him, he exists in a quantum state. It would be extra great if Vendrick drops the Giant Lord soul when you kill him before going into the memories to kill the Giant Lord, but I'm pretty sure he doesn't. I will try on my NG+ playthrough because I still have the 5 Giant Souls.

Yeah, it's a time paradox, because if we went back and altered things, we'd have overwritten the previous events, but hey. That's why I said seat-of-my-pants bullshit. I'm not convinced by any of this, just throwing it out there.

#76 Posted by Oldirtybearon (4798 posts) -

@sunbrozak: You're probably right about it being an "influence" of the soul as opposed to Seath imprinting his conscience onto his lore. That being said, I'm going to hold onto my patchwork idea of what happened until someone can utterly disprove it. Nobody else has to believe it, but to me it makes the game that much cooler.

Does anyone know who/what the drake/dragon in the Lost Bastille is?

See I thought I was hallucinating that. This is the first I've heard that someone else saw/heard that thing.

I tried to follow it back, going in the same general direction it flew off to. Nothing came of it, sadly.

#77 Posted by SunBroZak (1114 posts) -

@sunbrozak: You're probably right about it being an "influence" of the soul as opposed to Seath imprinting his conscience onto his lore. That being said, I'm going to hold onto my patchwork idea of what happened until someone can utterly disprove it. Nobody else has to believe it, but to me it makes the game that much cooler.

@fredchuckdave said:

Does anyone know who/what the drake/dragon in the Lost Bastille is?

See I thought I was hallucinating that. This is the first I've heard that someone else saw/heard that thing.

I tried to follow it back, going in the same general direction it flew off to. Nothing came of it, sadly.

It was a gargoyle, I think. I wonder if it still appears if you defeat the gargoyles first..

#78 Posted by EuanDewar (4908 posts) -

@oldirtybearon said:

@sunbrozak: You're probably right about it being an "influence" of the soul as opposed to Seath imprinting his conscience onto his lore. That being said, I'm going to hold onto my patchwork idea of what happened until someone can utterly disprove it. Nobody else has to believe it, but to me it makes the game that much cooler.

@fredchuckdave said:

Does anyone know who/what the drake/dragon in the Lost Bastille is?

See I thought I was hallucinating that. This is the first I've heard that someone else saw/heard that thing.

I tried to follow it back, going in the same general direction it flew off to. Nothing came of it, sadly.

It was a gargoyle, I think. I wonder if it still appears if you defeat the gargoyles first..

Nope, it doesn't. Neat little thing.

#79 Edited by development (2310 posts) -

Jeez... it seems either there's something we're all missing, or there are a ton of plot holes and it'd be better off if the community agreed on a solid lore. The "create the story as we go" is showing pretty strongly in this game, compared to DS1. Yes, I know King's Field etc. had awful stories, but that doesn't excuse it.

#80 Posted by Oni (2098 posts) -

It's still early days, but I feel like I've combed over every aspect of the game and finding few satisfying answers to anything. Like, even basic plot elements are still very murky, like the actual purpose of the Emerald Maiden and her creator(s), or what exactly Vendrick did, or what the Throne of Want is. A lot of it is on purpose, no doubt, but some aspects I don't know, which makes it even harder to discern what the deal is. It's funny, because in the lead up to release, there was a lot of talk about the game being more direct, and the new director being more straightforward than Miyazaki, but it feels like the exact opposite. The majority of the actual story and backstory of Dark Souls is just right there if you look, with the more obscure elements being tied to things like the Painted World. Here, I don't even know what really happens in the ending.

#81 Edited by VeggiesBro (131 posts) -

So, I just got to Wellager (NG+) and he mentions that Vendrick vanquished the four great ones and built the kingdom using their souls. He also mentions that Vendrick has watched over the kingdom since ages long, long ago. On the surface, it seems to further support the fact that Vendrick is/was the chosen undead from Dark Souls.

#82 Posted by Phoenix778m (247 posts) -

Never beat or delved to far into DS. but from a clean slate, Could DS2 stand alone lore-wise? Or does it fall flat without the intrigue of the original? If I accept the no connection theory? So far Im a man who lost his family to the curse and I was guided by a firekeeper to a limbo of sorts that will destroy my humanity evenutually unless I figure out something...get souls ,yada yada. Lost of people here in limbo but dont remember shit. Does most lore only come from item descriptions?

#83 Posted by DrMechano (43 posts) -

@veggiesbro:

Actually he probably isn't THE chosen undead from the original but A Chosen Undead. Keep in mind there have been quite a few cycles of Age of Fire to Age of Dark since the original game. The Four Old ones are just the latest reincarnation of the four Lord Souls (well three and Seathe) which seem to now be in effect a kind of cursed soul that offers great power but in the end succumbs the victim to the fates of the original Lord Souls.

#84 Posted by Crembaw (409 posts) -

What the hell was Ornstein doing in the Cathedral of Blue?

#85 Posted by SunBroZak (1114 posts) -

@crembaw said:

What the hell was Ornstein doing in the Cathedral of Blue?

The way I see it, there's 3 possiblities.

1. The one we fight in the Cathedral of Blue was a fake, imitating the real deal from eons ago. Possibly without even knowing who he was.

2. The one we fight in the first game was an illusion created by Gwyndolin, meaning we fight the real guy in Dark Souls 2.

3. Something something convoluted time, we fight an Ornstein that went into the Abyss instead of Artorias, who was corrupted all the same and somehow ended up here.

I'm leaning towards the first one, personally.

#86 Edited by Turambar (6781 posts) -

@karkarov: Drangleic castle was built before the second war with the Giants. Wellagar makes it explicitly clear that the chronology was:

1. Nashandra visits Vendrick, convinces him to go overseas and war against giants.

2. Vendrick wins, comes back with some sort of booty from the giants, uses the power to create golems.

3. Golems are used to build the castle, Vendrick and Nashandra wed, peaceful Dark falls over Drangleic until the giants invade / undead curse breaks out.

It's at this point that the chronology becomes muddled. Were the giants defeated before the undead curse started breaking out, or did the two things happen at the same time? Did Drangleic actually win or lose the war? (The giant's axe says the giants were defeated by an unnamed hero, but it was too late, which is about as ambiguous as ever.)

Also, while I think the theory that the Last Giant is the Giant King is probable, it's not certain by any means. There's no reason to believe Drummond was the only man to have such a key. Other named characters such as Raulmond who had the three dragon rings (so probably kind of a big deal) also died at the fort. The really big giants also dual wielded clubs, so no reason to believe the last giant tearing off his arm so as to have a weapon is a sign of anything really.

@phoenix778m said:

Never beat or delved to far into DS. but from a clean slate, Could DS2 stand alone lore-wise? Or does it fall flat without the intrigue of the original? If I accept the no connection theory? So far Im a man who lost his family to the curse and I was guided by a firekeeper to a limbo of sorts that will destroy my humanity evenutually unless I figure out something...get souls ,yada yada. Lost of people here in limbo but dont remember shit. Does most lore only come from item descriptions?

The lore comes from a combination of item descriptions, item placement, and NPC dialogue, just as it were in the previous games. I think DkS2 lore could stand on its own for the majority of the game, albeit weakly, until you get to the end where talk of relighting the flame gets brought up. Unless you've played DkS1, that won't make a lick of sense to you.

@veggiesbro said:

So, I just got to Wellager (NG+) and he mentions that Vendrick vanquished the four great ones and built the kingdom using their souls. He also mentions that Vendrick has watched over the kingdom since ages long, long ago. On the surface, it seems to further support the fact that Vendrick is/was the chosen undead from Dark Souls.

It's worth remembering however, that Straid said that the mother of pyromancy (so Quelanna) and her daughters went to war against the 4 old ones. Obviously, she never did any such thing in DkS1, nor did she have daughters of her own that we knew of, so there have probably been multiple cycles, or this is taking place in a completely different timeline from the line of DkS1. Remember, time in Lordran was distorted. Maybe this is coming from a line where Quelanna, Solaire, and the Chosen Undead all teamed up. Chosen Undead kindled the flame, and Solaire founded a new kingdom, and revealed his full name was Solaire Vendrick. (We could only wish this was the case.)

It's also interesting how the game uses "Old Ones" at times and "Great Ones" at others. There is no complete certainty one way or the other that the are the same thing / different things.

#87 Posted by Turambar (6781 posts) -
@oni said:

It's still early days, but I feel like I've combed over every aspect of the game and finding few satisfying answers to anything. Like, even basic plot elements are still very murky, like the actual purpose of the Emerald Maiden and her creator(s), or what exactly Vendrick did, or what the Throne of Want is. A lot of it is on purpose, no doubt, but some aspects I don't know, which makes it even harder to discern what the deal is. It's funny, because in the lead up to release, there was a lot of talk about the game being more direct, and the new director being more straightforward than Miyazaki, but it feels like the exact opposite. The majority of the actual story and backstory of Dark Souls is just right there if you look, with the more obscure elements being tied to things like the Painted World. Here, I don't even know what really happens in the ending.

I think as far as the core storyline goes, it's pretty straight forward. Get the souls from the 4 great ones to open the path to the castle. Meet with King Vendrick to simultaneously get the Symbol of the King, but also realize that he is in no position to continue to be a monarch of the realm. Finally, gain access to the Throne of Want and become the next true ruler of Drangleic after killing the previous queen that simply used you to open up the path and want to take the Throne of Want for herself. There isn't ever a Dark Seeker Kaathe moment that throws your motivations for doing what you're doing on its head.

The ambiguity and puzzle solving comes up when you try to figure out what exactly happened in the time before the events of this game, and how exactly the first game ties into it.

#88 Posted by Oldirtybearon (4798 posts) -

@turambar said:

@veggiesbro said:

So, I just got to Wellager (NG+) and he mentions that Vendrick vanquished the four great ones and built the kingdom using their souls. He also mentions that Vendrick has watched over the kingdom since ages long, long ago. On the surface, it seems to further support the fact that Vendrick is/was the chosen undead from Dark Souls.

It's worth remembering however, that Straid said that the mother of pyromancy (so Quelanna) and her daughters went to war against the 4 old ones. Obviously, she never did any such thing in DkS1, nor did she have daughters of her own that we knew of, so there have probably been multiple cycles.

It's also interesting how the game uses "Old Ones" at times and "Great Ones" at others. There is no complete certainty one way or the other that the are the same thing / different things.

The difference between "Old Ones" and "Great Ones" it's a little muddled but I think the distinction is that Old Ones refer to Everlasting Dragons and Great Ones refer to the Lord Soul holders. The only time the Lords have been referenced as "old __" is as the title of their soul drop in NG+. Of course time is relative, and Straid and many others could be referring to anything.

As an aside this is kind of why I dislike that Drangleic seems to encompass many kingdoms from many time periods; it makes shit far too confusing and much harder to cut through the abstract to get to the facts. If From really wanted to be this obtuse with its lore why not give the game a codex to keep track of all of this shit? Your inventory worked as a kind of codex in the first game as all the important stuff was in the item descriptions and usually not at all gained through talking to NPCs. This time around, the item descriptions are pretty sparse and the NPCs talk in fucking riddles.

It's kind of frustrating.

#89 Posted by Yummylee (21615 posts) -

So what the Fuck is the cat supposed to be. After reaching the end with my second character, I decided I might as well kill everyone before I move on, only the cat is bleedin' invulnerable, and is well aware of that fact given how she goades you on to try attacking her again.

I figure she's apart of the same talking cat race as the one from the first Dark Souls that was buddies with Artorias, though you could at least kill her... right? Actually doesn't she vanish after you've attacked her? In any case the cat in DkS2 is clearly wise and all knowing and all that, so she's undoubtedly been around for some time. Probably just a mystery for a mystery's sake?

#90 Edited by Oldirtybearon (4798 posts) -

@yummylee said:

So what the Fuck is the cat supposed to be. After reaching the end with my second character, I decided I might as well kill everyone before I move on, only the cat is bleedin' invulnerable, and is well aware of that fact given how she goades you on to try attacking her again.

I figure she's apart of the same talking cat race as the one from the first Dark Souls that was buddies with Artorias, though you could at least kill her... right? Actually doesn't she vanish after you've attacked her? In any case the cat in DkS2 is clearly wise and all knowing and all that, so she's undoubtedly been around for some time. Probably just a mystery for a mystery's sake?

There's some pretty convincing speculation that she's Alvina. There are some item descriptions linked to Shalquoir (Enchante) that indicate cats like her are reborn into new lives and cannot truly "die."

And you're right, she does know a lot more than she's letting on; or seems like it anyhow. She has some interesting dialogue for you after you beat certain bosses and she is the only character (aside from the Emerald Herald) to actively discuss you becoming the new Monarch and taking the true throne.

And no, Alvina couldn't be killed in Dark Souls 1.

#91 Posted by Oni (2098 posts) -

@turambar said:
@oni said:

It's still early days, but I feel like I've combed over every aspect of the game and finding few satisfying answers to anything. Like, even basic plot elements are still very murky, like the actual purpose of the Emerald Maiden and her creator(s), or what exactly Vendrick did, or what the Throne of Want is. A lot of it is on purpose, no doubt, but some aspects I don't know, which makes it even harder to discern what the deal is. It's funny, because in the lead up to release, there was a lot of talk about the game being more direct, and the new director being more straightforward than Miyazaki, but it feels like the exact opposite. The majority of the actual story and backstory of Dark Souls is just right there if you look, with the more obscure elements being tied to things like the Painted World. Here, I don't even know what really happens in the ending.

I think as far as the core storyline goes, it's pretty straight forward. Get the souls from the 4 great ones to open the path to the castle. Meet with King Vendrick to simultaneously get the Symbol of the King, but also realize that he is in no position to continue to be a monarch of the realm. Finally, gain access to the Throne of Want and become the next true ruler of Drangleic after killing the previous queen that simply used you to open up the path and want to take the Throne of Want for herself. There isn't ever a Dark Seeker Kaathe moment that throws your motivations for doing what you're doing on its head.

The ambiguity and puzzle solving comes up when you try to figure out what exactly happened in the time before the events of this game, and how exactly the first game ties into it.

That's not story though, that's plot. That's the things you do. The why of any of it continues to elude me. Why does the Emerald Herald want you to do those things? Okay, Nashandra's motivations are pretty cut-and-dry, it seems, which is refreshing, but for everything else, I just don't know why, or what, for that matter. You take the Throne of Want - then what? You talk about motivations, but very few characters in the game seem to have any. Which the game alludes to, with lines like "without even really knowing why." But the story, like in Dark Souls 1, is pretty much all the stuff that happened before you came along, and in that sense it's so vague. What did Vendrick take from the Giants? What is the deal with the Ancient Dragon (other than I'm sure he's a creation of Aldia, and wtf even happened to him)? What is the Herald's stake in all this?

I've given up on it for the time being. I'm waiting for some insightful people to bring something new to the table, I guess, because nothing I've heard so far goes far beyond "OMG DRANGLEIC IS LORDRAN" which is just a huge red herring that, while interesting, prevents people talking about the stuff that actually is relevant to the story of this game specifically. I guess because it's one of the few things people can easily latch on to and find support for. Once people move on from that and accept that yes, Drangleic probably is Lordran - now what? Then hopefully we can all put our heads together and come up with some timelines and plausible stories. I'm kind of burned out for now, I've posted lots in this thread and have actually had good back and forths, better than I see in most lore threads in other places that are stuck on IS IT LORDRAN? And I'm starting to feel like it's wasted energy because I'm halfway convinced From is being extra obtuse because "that's what Souls fans love", so it seems like they cut lots of corners. Makes it impossible to know what is just a Dark Souls reference, what's storyline relevant, what's a meta commentary and what isn't etc.

#92 Posted by Turambar (6781 posts) -

@oni said:

@turambar said:
@oni said:

It's still early days, but I feel like I've combed over every aspect of the game and finding few satisfying answers to anything. Like, even basic plot elements are still very murky, like the actual purpose of the Emerald Maiden and her creator(s), or what exactly Vendrick did, or what the Throne of Want is. A lot of it is on purpose, no doubt, but some aspects I don't know, which makes it even harder to discern what the deal is. It's funny, because in the lead up to release, there was a lot of talk about the game being more direct, and the new director being more straightforward than Miyazaki, but it feels like the exact opposite. The majority of the actual story and backstory of Dark Souls is just right there if you look, with the more obscure elements being tied to things like the Painted World. Here, I don't even know what really happens in the ending.

I think as far as the core storyline goes, it's pretty straight forward. Get the souls from the 4 great ones to open the path to the castle. Meet with King Vendrick to simultaneously get the Symbol of the King, but also realize that he is in no position to continue to be a monarch of the realm. Finally, gain access to the Throne of Want and become the next true ruler of Drangleic after killing the previous queen that simply used you to open up the path and want to take the Throne of Want for herself. There isn't ever a Dark Seeker Kaathe moment that throws your motivations for doing what you're doing on its head.

The ambiguity and puzzle solving comes up when you try to figure out what exactly happened in the time before the events of this game, and how exactly the first game ties into it.

That's not story though, that's plot. That's the things you do. The why of any of it continues to elude me. Why does the Emerald Herald want you to do those things? Okay, Nashandra's motivations are pretty cut-and-dry, it seems, which is refreshing, but for everything else, I just don't know why, or what, for that matter. You take the Throne of Want - then what? You talk about motivations, but very few characters in the game seem to have any. Which the game alludes to, with lines like "without even really knowing why." But the story, like in Dark Souls 1, is pretty much all the stuff that happened before you came along, and in that sense it's so vague. What did Vendrick take from the Giants? What is the deal with the Ancient Dragon (other than I'm sure he's a creation of Aldia, and wtf even happened to him)? What is the Herald's stake in all this?

I've given up on it for the time being. I'm waiting for some insightful people to bring something new to the table, I guess, because nothing I've heard so far goes far beyond "OMG DRANGLEIC IS LORDRAN" which is just a huge red herring that, while interesting, prevents people talking about the stuff that actually is relevant to the story of this game specifically. I guess because it's one of the few things people can easily latch on to and find support for. Once people move on from that and accept that yes, Drangleic probably is Lordran - now what? Then hopefully we can all put our heads together and come up with some timelines and plausible stories. I'm kind of burned out for now, I've posted lots in this thread and have actually had good back and forths, better than I see in most lore threads in other places that are stuck on IS IT LORDRAN? And I'm starting to feel like it's wasted energy because I'm halfway convinced From is being extra obtuse because "that's what Souls fans love", so it seems like they cut lots of corners. Makes it impossible to know what is just a Dark Souls reference, what's storyline relevant, what's a meta commentary and what isn't etc.

Like I said, core story line, in other words, the things you do and the things immediately surrounding that. The Emerald Herald says at the entrance of the Throne of Want to light the First Flame, and it's at that point that anyone who played DkS1 will know exactly what it is and what she wants you to do and why. It's dependent on previous knowledge, but it's placed on the table pretty blatantly at that point. However, the things that came before, such as just what Vendrick took from the giants, etc, is as vague as ever, like I said. We're not really in much disagreement.

I also don't think it's all that hard to tell apart what is just there for fan service and what has a bit more meaning behind it.

#93 Posted by Oldirtybearon (4798 posts) -

@oni: Just off the top of my head:

  • The Ancient Dragon is a creation of Aldia's. He drops a giant soul and not a dragon soul because he was a giant, originally (that's speculation on my part, admittedly). Talking to Nashandra after getting the Ashen Mist Heart will provoke her to spout off about how the Ancient Dragon is a "false deity," referring to it being a creation of Aldia and not a "true" dragon.
  • Emerald Herlad/Shanalotte was created by men (most likely Aldia as well) in order to do... something. Speculation suggests she was Vendrick's plan to break the curse/do something and things broke bad. She's tied to the first flame in some capacity given the fact that only she can upgrade your Estus flask, only she can manipulate Estus shards, and only she can help you strengthen your soul (level up). That last big in particular is a pretty big point considering that she serves a function all bonfires used to be able to do in the first place. That she's the only one left that can and that she's not a Fire Keeper tells me she's unnatural. She was raised by the dragons, and what she wants from you is for to you to break the cycle.
  • Vendrick likely took the First Flame from the Giants. It was only after retrieving it that he started fiddling around with soul power, his brother started experimenting on dragons/creating dragons, and things eventually went to shit. I haven't dug that deep into this end of the lore as I'm drawn to certain stories in the lore far more than others.
  • The Throne of Want is what allows someone to become the Monarch. From what Shanalotte tells us, the Monarch can reshape the land in any way that they desire, or in the way that they desire most (not sure on this). Shanalotte wants you to do all of this stuff, to become the next Monarch, because she believes that a Cursed Undead would choose to create a world where no curse exists, thus freeing her of her obligation.

I should also mention that I believe Shanalotte was created as a measure against the curse. She's tied to it explicitly, although I can't quite remember the exact dialogue (I should really pay greater attention). Whether she was created to combat the curse, or the curse was a result of her creation, I'm not sure. I do know that she wants a world without the curse, and that she believes the Throne of Want will allow you to break it. This isn't a Frampt/Kaathe situation where both dudes were dicks and trying to manipulate you. Shanalotte is very earnest when she tells you what she knows, and she ultimately wants what you want; an end to this bullshit cycle.

As far as everything else goes, people are stuck on the "IS IT LORDRAN?" bit because everything else is obtuse as fuck. The item descriptions this time around are nowhere near as in depth as in Dark Souls 1, and to complicate that matter even more a lot of the juicy stuff is hidden behind NG+ and boss item descriptions. You know, for weapons and shit. I don't think it's particularly fair to claim all the speculation so far is shit when the game has only been out for two weeks and people are still chewing through NG and NG+. Not to mention we're discovering new stuff even now; such as the stone map fires turning blue.

#94 Edited by Turambar (6781 posts) -

@oldirtybearon said:

@oni: Just off the top of my head:

  • The Ancient Dragon is a creation of Aldia's. He drops a giant soul and not a dragon soul because he was a giant, originally (that's speculation on my part, admittedly). Talking to Nashandra after getting the Ashen Mist Heart will provoke her to spout off about how the Ancient Dragon is a "false deity," referring to it being a creation of Aldia and not a "true" dragon.
  • Emerald Herlad/Shanalotte was created by men (most likely Aldia as well) in order to do... something. Speculation suggests she was Vendrick's plan to break the curse/do something and things broke bad. She's tied to the first flame in some capacity given the fact that only she can upgrade your Estus flask, only she can manipulate Estus shards, and only she can help you strengthen your soul (level up). That last big in particular is a pretty big point considering that she serves a function all bonfires used to be able to do in the first place. That she's the only one left that can and that she's not a Fire Keeper tells me she's unnatural. She was raised by the dragons, and what she wants from you is for to you to break the cycle.
  • Vendrick likely took the First Flame from the Giants. It was only after retrieving it that he started fiddling around with soul power, his brother started experimenting on dragons/creating dragons, and things eventually went to shit. I haven't dug that deep into this end of the lore as I'm drawn to certain stories in the lore far more than others.
  • The Throne of Want is what allows someone to become the Monarch. From what Shanalotte tells us, the Monarch can reshape the land in any way that they desire, or in the way that they desire most (not sure on this). Shanalotte wants you to do all of this stuff, to become the next Monarch, because she believes that a Cursed Undead would choose to create a world where no curse exists, thus freeing her of her obligation.

I should also mention that I believe Shanalotte was created as a measure against the curse. She's tied to it explicitly, although I can't quite remember the exact dialogue (I should really pay greater attention). Whether she was created to combat the curse, or the curse was a result of her creation, I'm not sure. I do know that she wants a world without the curse, and that she believes the Throne of Want will allow you to break it. This isn't a Frampt/Kaathe situation where both dudes were dicks and trying to manipulate you. Shanalotte is very earnest when she tells you what she knows, and she ultimately wants what you want; an end to this bullshit cycle.

As far as everything else goes, people are stuck on the "IS IT LORDRAN?" bit because everything else is obtuse as fuck. The item descriptions this time around are nowhere near as in depth as in Dark Souls 1, and to complicate that matter even more a lot of the juicy stuff is hidden behind NG+ and boss item descriptions. You know, for weapons and shit. I don't think it's particularly fair to claim all the speculation so far is shit when the game has only been out for two weeks and people are still chewing through NG and NG+. Not to mention we're discovering new stuff even now; such as the stone map fires turning blue.

If you talk to Navlaan, when he asks you to kill the Emerald Herald, he does say "They call her the last fire keeper" or something like that.

It's also worth noting just what the Throne of Want looks like. It's an oven. As opposed to the Kiln of the First flame, which was a giant open air fire, I suspect the Throne of Want was an improvement, a way to make the flame both hotter, and last longer.

#95 Posted by Oldirtybearon (4798 posts) -

@turambar: I had heard that (didn't hear it for myself since I was an idiot and pulled the lever), but didn't he follow it up with something like "lol stupid people she's no fire keeper"?

As far as your comment about the Throne being an oven, that's actually pretty spot on. If you notice, in the Demon Ruins there's what looks to be a giant fuck-off sized oven that many people have theorized is where the actual first flame is (it clearly isn't a bloody bonfire).

I couldn't fit this detail into any of the other bits, but I wanted to mention that you need to get Vendrick's king ring in order for the golems to respond to you and thus open the Throne of Want. I'm not sure why that is, but I think the reason Nashandra couldn't take it for herself has to do with the ring. If that's the case though, then why not just break into the Undead Crypt and take it for herself? Vestaldt was already consumed by Dark and it's not like the Fenito Agdayne would've given a shit.

That's another interesting thing; one of Agdayne's comments mocks humans for their inability to separate truth from myth. This comment is made after explaining how a long lost Lord of Light was foolish enough to believe that humans would usher in an age of Dark. The way he says it almost makes me think that it was a direct comment by From to the lore hounds of the first game. A kind of meta "you guys are on the wrong track so back off" bit.

What do you think?

#96 Edited by Turambar (6781 posts) -

@oldirtybearon said:

@turambar: I had heard that (didn't hear it for myself since I was an idiot and pulled the lever), but didn't he follow it up with something like "lol stupid people she's no fire keeper"?

As far as your comment about the Throne being an oven, that's actually pretty spot on. If you notice, in the Demon Ruins there's what looks to be a giant fuck-off sized oven that many people have theorized is where the actual first flame is (it clearly isn't a bloody bonfire).

I couldn't fit this detail into any of the other bits, but I wanted to mention that you need to get Vendrick's king ring in order for the golems to respond to you and thus open the Throne of Want. I'm not sure why that is, but I think the reason Nashandra couldn't take it for herself has to do with the ring. If that's the case though, then why not just break into the Undead Crypt and take it for herself? Vestaldt was already consumed by Dark and it's not like the Fenito Agdayne would've given a shit.

That's another interesting thing; one of Agdayne's comments mocks humans for their inability to separate truth from myth. This comment is made after explaining how a long lost Lord of Light was foolish enough to believe that humans would usher in an age of Dark. The way he says it almost makes me think that it was a direct comment by From to the lore hounds of the first game. A kind of meta "you guys are on the wrong track so back off" bit.

What do you think?

That Giant Oven you can see in the Demon Ruins is the structure the Lost Izalith fight actually takes place in, and would be the witch's attempt at recreating the First Flame.

Navlaan follows up his statement by saying "But they say a lot of things." And as we learned from Melentia, the stuff random people say in this world often has truth to it. He does call people's opinion of her as a gentle shepard of cursed souls to be rubbish though. Also, I wouldn't say Vestaldt was consumed by dark to the point of losing sanity. His loyalty is to the king, no matter what.

I'll have to revisit Agdayne for the dialogue since I don't remember it. Just got to the castle on a second character.

Edit: found a youtube video with it. It's interesting to note that Agdayne notes it as "an age of dark", with a lack of capitalization. When you speak to Wellagar, he says the peace the queen brought was like "the Dark", with capitalization. Darkdiver Grandhal also refers to it as "the Dark", with capitalization. Are they talking about the same thing, or is Agdayne actually talking plain darkness, and thus misunderstanding the past himself while he lords his knowledge over "foolish humans."

From has definitely done this before: seemingly wise NPCs that are actually themselves flawed and foolish. Hawkeye Gough, a seemingly wise giant, who, if you examine his helmet, was actually tricked into thinking he was blind because people blocked out the eye holes in his helm with tree sap.

#97 Posted by Oni (2098 posts) -

@oldirtybearon: You don't need the King's Ring to activate the Golems, the ring just opens to door to the path that leads to the Throne of Want. You need the Giant's Kinship to make the Golems move so you can enter the Throne. Pretty much all the other stuff you said earlier I know and posted earlier, except Vendrick stealing the first flame because what? How? How does one steal a flame. Most logical guess is Giant's Kinship since that's what moves to Golems, and we know Vendrick used whatever he took to make the Golems and build the castle. Though that doesn't explain why the Giant Lord has it in the memory, so whatevs.

Also while the idea of the Throne of Want being the First flame makes sense, in the ending there's no fire at all. It's a dark little "oven" (clever btw) with a throne and then you get in and the doors close. Supremely weird. Like, it doesn't match what the Herald says about linking the fire.

#98 Posted by Turambar (6781 posts) -
@oni said:

@oldirtybearon: You don't need the King's Ring to activate the Golems, the ring just opens to door to the path that leads to the Throne of Want. You need the Giant's Kinship to make the Golems move so you can enter the Throne. Pretty much all the other stuff you said earlier I know and posted earlier, except Vendrick stealing the first flame because what? How? How does one steal a flame. Most logical guess is Giant's Kinship since that's what moves to Golems, and we know Vendrick used whatever he took to make the Golems and build the castle. Though that doesn't explain why the Giant Lord has it in the memory, so whatevs.

Also while the idea of the Throne of Want being the First flame makes sense, in the ending there's no fire at all. It's a dark little "oven" (clever btw) with a throne and then you get in and the doors close. Supremely weird. Like, it doesn't match what the Herald says about linking the fire.

You need to remember exactly what the First Flame did in the first place: took someone with a great and glorious soul, and used that person's soul and humanity as kindling to fuel a flame. In this case, you first needed to acquire a myriad of powerful souls before being allowed to attempt to sit atop the Throne of Want. It perhaps doesn't burn you in the traditional sense, but I think what it does to you: using your soul and humanity as fuel for the metaphoric fire is still the case.

Also, we can't exactly be sure what Vendrick stole because we don't actually know where Drangleic is. If it's built atop Lordran, there's no reason to steal the First Flame from across the ocean: the you already have it. If it's Vinheim like the Lingering Dragon Crest Ring potentially hints at though, then someone would have had to bring it over somehow, at some point.

#99 Posted by SunBroZak (1114 posts) -

@oni said:

Also while the idea of the Throne of Want being the First flame makes sense, in the ending there's no fire at all. It's a dark little "oven" (clever btw) with a throne and then you get in and the doors close. Supremely weird. Like, it doesn't match what the Herald says about linking the fire.

The is covered in ash, mind you. I don't know how it might work, but in some way or another it is capable of burning something. And has burned something.

#100 Posted by Oldirtybearon (4798 posts) -

@oni: Even as I typed it I thought I was forgetting something. You're totally right that it was the Giant's Kinship that opened the Throne of Want. My bad.

As for the giant memories, I think that's the heavily hinted at time travel element during the previews. From did say that time travel would play a part in Dark Souls 2, and the Giant Memories, and our ability to transport into them as a separate entity (and not, say, inhabiting the being of the creature whose memory we enter) leads me to believe that we're actually there, in that time, manipulating events. Item descriptions point to the Giant Lord being vanquished by an unknown hero, and considering whoever that was would have had ticker tape parades and endless feasts in his/her honour, it leads me to believe that it was you. Much in the same way that Artorias's legend is a coverup to hide your involvement.

As for why we need the Giant's Kinship, I don't know yet. It is interesting that whatever Vendrick stole it was important enough to the Giants that they made war (and utterly ruined a kingdom) over it. It had to be the first flame/Throne of Want/Giant's Kinship. I can't think of anything else that would be important enough to steal. From hasn't developed a habit of putting needless shit into a game yet, and I don't think they started with Dark Souls 2.

@turambar I go back and forth on whether or not Drangleic is Lordran. Some days I think it is, other days I don't. I think the biggest indicator to me is the Gutter, which is the home to all unwanted things. Which unwanted things? Things associated with Lordran. A lot of them, actually.