Trust and Betrayal

Since the “Crisis on Umbara” update, trust and betrayal are the major topics in the swtor community. Charles Boyd himself twittered that trust is one of the main themes of this particular story. I’d rather say that betrayal is a main theme of Bioware’s swtor branch in general. You can’t go five meters in this game without getting betrayed in some way. Let’s have a closer look at it and start with the class stories. But first, a warning.

I know, Sith shouldn’t be surprised by the betrayal of someone more or less close to them. It’s the Sith way, after all. The Warrior meets betrayal twice. First in form of the her/his master, Darth Baras, who tries to kill his most powerful apprentice on the planet Quesh by dropping a cave on her/him. Then, almost at the end of the story, by the Warrior’s trusted Captain, Malavai Quinn. This one stings even more, if Quinn is romanced by a female warrior (especially since he’s the only romance option for female warriors).

The Sith Inquisitor has also to deal with betrayal twice. First by the her/his master, Darth Zash (déjà vu anyone?), because Zash wants the Inquisitor’s body to prolong her life. After the Inquisitor defeats her/his former master, the next betrayal is waiting right around the corner. This time by the Dark Council member Darth Thanaton, who sends the Inquisitor on a suicidal errand. Yay.

The Imperial Agent is truly a poor sod. After defeating the traitor Darth Jadus, instead of being celebrated, she/he gets brainwashed. And if this isn’t bad enough already, the oh-so-honourable Republic – namely Ardun Kothe and his special SIS team – use the codes on her/him to control the Agent. Hunter especially loves to use the code. At least you can count on Watcher X to help you. And in the end, the whole Galaxy is betrayed by a secret order, the Star Cabal.

The Bounty hunter gets actually off pretty well. Minor deceptions during the class story, but nothing out of the ordinary. Next stop: Republic class stories.

The Smuggler, my baby, runs into two betrayals. The first one by the scoundrel Slovak right at the beginning on Ord Mantell, stealing her/his ship and cargo. Inside the story arc of Ord Mantell is the betrayal of Syreena, Vido’s girlfriend and actually one of Skavak’s many conquests. Poor Vido. Since it’s part of the whole Skavak story, I don’t count it extra. The second is by the sleazy Darmas Pollaran, who uses the Smuggler for his own scheme and turns out as an agent of Imperial Intelligence. Well played. Damn those Imps.

Trooper story starts with a betrayal as well. The Republics most decorated elite unit Havok Squad sells out to the Empire. But after dealing with the defectors, the story goes on without another one.

The Jedi Consular doesn’t have a “The Betrayal” story, but due to the nature of the Children of the Emperor and the First Son, the second chapter is infused with deception around every corner. “Can I trust this person?” or “Who is this?” ending in “Oh no, not him.”

While reading through the Knight’s story to refresh my memory, I stumbled across the words “deception” and “deceived” quite often. But as with the Consular, it’s not a major point in the story. And the one big betrayal, if you want to count it, is Lord Scourge, the Wrath of the Emperor, turning on his master and not on the Knight. But a betrayal nontheless, so I’ve decided to mention it.

That makes five out of eight class stories that deal with betrayal as a major plot twist at least once. But it doesn’t end here. Oh now. We’re just getting started.

Right after finishing your class story, you are called to Ilum, where Darth Malgus betrays the Empire. In Shadow of Revan you are – or your faction is – betrayed by Darth Arkous or Colonel Darok. Want more?

Knights of the Fallen Empire. It starts with chapter six and the foolish Scion Heskal who tells Arcann about the location of the Asylum, killing hundreds, if not thousands, in the process, because it was foreseen. If you were a bad girl/boy, Koth will steal the Gravestone after you blew up the spire in chapter ten. Valkorion luring you into the Odessen wilderness, cutting you off from your Alliance to face “death alone” in chapter twelve. And who would’ve thought that SCORPIO would betray us? (Yes, that was sarcasm, thanks for noticing.) At the end of Knights of the Fallen Empire, Senya betrays us (temporarily) by saving Arcann and fleeing.

Have enough already? Nah, we’re not finished yet. In Knights of the Eternal Throne, we get betrayed my MINISTER *cough* Lorman, who tries to get you and Empress Acina killed, with the former Chancellor Saresh pulling his strings, because she wants your job as Commander of the Alliance. I wasn’t surprised that she would betray us, but rather that she appeared again at all. But at least I could punch/kill her. That was so worth it. I believe, the only characters not at least punching her are my LS Jedi. But I digress. In the end, there’s the “OH NO! I DIDN’T SEE THAT COMING!” betrayal of Valkorion. Some small part of me was hoping, they wouldn’t pull of something better, but… well… too obvious.

And now we’re stuck with this Theron nonsense. As I’ve written before, I think it’s a ruse. But that doesn’t diminish the nagging feeling in my stomach, that isn’t as convinced as I am. To be honest… I’m sick of it. It’s like betrayal is the only story twists the writers can think of. And it’s becoming annoying and utterly boring. But here we are, sitting on this bomb until early next year. Seriously?

When I voice my concerns about Theron being gone for good, I hear “Trust them” or “They will do it right”. I know you guys only mean well and I appreciate it. But I don’t have much faith left. The way they throw betrayal around as if it’s candy is not very reassuring. I really hope all will be good. Theron is a character I deeply care about (maybe too much) and I don’t want to see his character destroyed.

In the end: I only have two requests: Don’t kill him/make him killable. And please find something else than betrayal for the following story. It’s worn out and boring.

Thanks for reading. 😉

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  1. 16th October 2017

    I think that SWTOR uses betrayal because it cuts so deep that, if they have done their jobs right, we really feel it. I can see your point about how frequently they are relying on it but I have noticed that in film, books, everywhere. It seems to be the thing we fear the most but do to one another the most often…

    • Mel
      16th October 2017

      You have a point there. Still. When you go into every new story piece with the thought of “Who’s gonna betray me this time” it loses strength and becomes annoying. I think that it hits so hard this time is that a lot of people (well, the ones I know at least) care deeply about Theron. SCORPIO and Valkorion weren’t really surprises. It was just “Oh, what a shock… not.”

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