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Mistress Elysia

Member Since 01 Nov 2003
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Topics I've Started

Mistress Elysia's Miscellany

30 May 2009 - 01:32 AM

I've got lots of rubbish - loads of pictures, ranging from full on paintings to silly little sketches; here;s some of them ^_^

First up - HALF DRAGONS. I am pretty much obsessed with half dragons from a design point of view - I love hybrids in general, and half dragons are my absolute favourite.

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Next, I'll dig out my demons and tieflings (although I'll spare you my plethora of Valen Shadowbreath fanart - there's already enough of that on my other art thread! :lol:)

WDR Artwork

29 May 2009 - 12:37 PM

:D Some drawings I have indulged in whilst writing my HotU fic, Where Darkness Resides.

(Warning - gratuitous fangirling ahead. Like any of you would expect any less of me... :lol:)

First attempt at drawing the 4 'main characters' - Nathyrra, Deekin, Jen and Valen:
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Xen'shai and Valen:
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Jen's character sheet (with added Valen and Xen'shai) - Link because this won't fullview in Photobucket.
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New respect for Anomen?

21 May 2009 - 12:30 PM

This might not be the right forum for this - if it isn't, just move it and give me a slap on the leg :D

After coming back to BG after a while away from it, I have decided to run a vanilla game before fiddling around with mods again. It is largely a pleasant experience - even Irenicus' hellish first dungeon isn't as unpleasant as once it was, and whilst it isn't like playing for the first time, it is nice to come back after a protracted break to discover that BG is indeed as awesome as I remembered it, and not due to a horrible case of rose-tinted glasses.

One thing that really has struck me, however, is how much more respect I have for Anomen as a character. Whilst I still find him arrogant and boastful, whereas once I thought these flaws were irritating, I now find them interesting and inspired.

Over the last couple of years, I have really gotten into writing in a big way, and due to this, I have gained a love for truly flawed characters; ones that have real flaws as opposed to 'cosmetic' flaws (like being an arrogant wanker compared to being 'a bit clumsy' or having a bit of a temper... you know, annoying, real life flaws as opposed to 'these are *technically* flaws which would make me a total idiot in real life, but in the realms of fantasy, they make me look cool'). Due to this, I have been able to look at Anomen and at last see this much maligned, often ridiculed character for what I think he really is - a character with 'proper' flaws that make him incredibly real in ways other NPCs (canon and mod - and I include my own mod in this!) aren't. Of course, this means he isn't totally appealing in terms of being compatible with most female fantasies of their own personal 'knight in shining armour', but that doesn't mean he's a bad character - quite the opposite, in fact...

I was once one of those people who called Anomen 'Annoyman', but this is no longer the case. I am not saying he doesn't irritate me - sheesh, if I met him down the pub in real life, I'd be making my excuses to leave pretty damn sharpish! - but I have to admit that after ridiculing him for so long, I now feel a trifle silly and sheepish, because in reality, he is actually, I feel, a triumph of character creation.

TL;DR? Anomen FTW. Never thought I'd say that, but hey, you live and learn... :D

Anyone else had any revelations about any NPCs over the years? Ones the initially hated but have over time discovered respect for? Or how about vice versa? Maybe there was once a character you liked, but over time they have been revealed for the frauds they truly are... :P

(For purposes of keeping this topic unbiased, it pribably is best to stick to canon NPCs... although let me be the first to say that I am acutely aware that I definitely need to put a few more genuine flaws into my next NPC! :lol:)

Some ideas I've been toying with...

21 May 2009 - 12:31 AM

Okay. *Deep breath*. I know I've only just returned to modding after a protracted absence (some of it not entirely intentional... *gazes adoringly at Lucy* ^_^), but that doesn't mean I've not continued to think up ideas for different mods.

My first question for all of you fine people is something that has been bugging me for a while now - although I see plenty of mods in the making, is there still a demand for them? BG2 is, afterall, coming up for 10 years old... Is it just the hardcore few that like new mods - considering many of us in the modding community have been here for donkey's years, are we all just creating mods for ourselves now rather than a wider audience (or has that indeed always been the case?) - or is the appeal of new mod NPCs still as widespread as it was 5 years ago?

Still, saying that; here are a few ideas I have had over the years for mods (some of these characters may be familiar to some people - I tend to incorporate many of my potential mod characters into either my stories or my roleplaying characters, mainly to test out their personalities and see if they 'work' as characters).

First up: Ghost and Jek

People who used to rp at Narbondel years ago (Kellen, I'm looking at you!) might remember Ghost. She is a mixture of an RP character I designed for the Midnight D20 system and then tweaked for Narbondel - I thought she might make an interesting mod NPC (although she *might* be a bit much, I don't know).

Ghost is a human female with pale, almost albino-esque skin, silvery hair and pale, silvery blue eyes. She is called Ghost not just due to her ethereal appearance, but also because she has no idea who she is nor where she came from; her anmesia with regards to her past (and sometimes even day to day things) is total and complete. She is, however, and accomplished sorcereress, but has no idea how she wields such power. Her only link to her possible past (and the 'person' who reminds her of day to day things) is her familiar, Jek - an abrasive and over-protective pseudodragon. She joins your party  for two main reasons: to continue her seemingly neverending search to discover exactly who she is and why she dreams so consistently of flying, and simply so she has meaning to her life, a cause she can subscribe her life to and a place where she feels she 'belongs'.

Ghost is Lawful Good (which in itself is unusual for usually chaotic sorcerers). She believes in honour and helping others, and has an almost visceral response to evildoers. Although Ghost's life is very complicated, her morals are not - when it comes to them, Ghost sees the world in a very black and white way, which can sometimes come off as arrogance. Her amnesia, however, also makes her quite naive, and she can be manipulated quite easily. She finds it hard to connect with other people, and frequently has the nagging feeling that she simply 'doesn't belong' amongst other humanoid races. Surprisingly, she can also be quite covetuous and materialistic - she is seemingly drawn to gems and gold, favouring star sapphires and flawless diamonds over anything else.

Jek is Chaotic Good and serves as Ghost's friend, protector and personal journal. He regards his mistress highly, and reacts in an alomst jealous way if he deems other people's interest in her as 'too friendly'. He is also hiding a big secret that may or may not have something to do with Ghost's past.

Obviously, at first, the PC (and therefore the player) have no idea who or what Ghost really is, and obviously part of the fun is discovering this, but for the purposes of a mod pitch, I can't keep the twist a total secret! This is also where the 'Jeez, this is a bit much...' feelings might come in. Ghost is actually a polymorphed Silver Dragon, cursed to walk Faerun as an amnesiac human by a powerful Lich. This leads to the simple fact that as soon as she discovers who she is and regains her true form, she will leave the party, possibly making Ghost a rather bitter-sweet addition to BG2, especially if I do decide to include a romance (she would obviously have to leave once she re-discovered her heritage; I don't think anyone could excuse you carting a Silver Dragon around in your party!!!).

You would find Ghost in the Copper Coronet (or maybe another Athkatlan Tavern), and the culmination of her over-arcing quest would be iin Watcher's Keep (facing the Lich to break the spell, whereupon she would leave you - I figured WK was a good place for this, since it is the one place available for the duration of SoA and ToB).

Obviously, you could avoid losing Ghost as a party member by not allowing her to discover her true form (once she discovers her draconic heritage (the final realisation would be in WK), she will insist upon facing the Lich to break the spell to restore herself to her former glory (dragons are nothing if not self-centred and arrogant, afterall!) - if you refuse or leave it too long, she'll leave your party anyway), that's it, but that would just be mean...

Suggested Stats (subject to change): STR: 11 (although she is a dragon, as a human she is not too strong), DEX: 14, CON: 16 (her draconic heritage does make her pretty hardy), INT: 12 (average intelligence - the Lich doesn't want her to work out who she is too easily!), WIS: 15 (she's pretty sensible, hence the reason why she's survived regardless of her anmesia), CHA: 16 (she is a sorceress and a dragon to boot - this does lead to her having a strangely compelling aura about her).

Romance? Possibly. I do like writing romances, and this would be, for me, an interesting exercise in a doom-fated romance. However, romances are time consuming and might be a little passe now? I don't know...

Secondly: Xen'shai Aleanath

Xen'shai Aleanath is a NE drow bard with a complicated history. I first came up with Xen'shai years ago as a minor player in an RP (the member Xen'Shail (dunno if he is still around!) based his user name on the character many moons ago), and more recently, he is a major player in my Hordes of the Underdark fanfic, Where Darkness Resides.

Xen'shai is a Deathsinger, a drow bard dedicated to the service of Vhaeraun. He is charming (bordering upon almost sleazy), confident, and utterly self-centred, but is accomplished enough in manipulation that he can come across as caring and genuine. His reasons for joining your party seem innocent enough - as a drow upon the surface, he has little in the way of allies and is keen to 'make friends' (read: 'ally myself with someone hugely powerful who can protect me'), but underneath there seems to be another, slightly more sinister motive...

Xen'shai will target female PCs over male ones, simply because he finds females easier to manipulate than males (unless they are interested in the contents of his breeches; they're fair game as well). He likes to worm his way into people's affections as a way to get his own way - he enjoys the company of surfacer females because, in his experience, they are eager to please and easily satisfied (compared to the drow females he used to consort with, it's no surprise, really!). He is drawn to power, which goes some way as to why he is drawn to a Bhaalspawn... there is also the simple fact that as a Bhaalspawn, you have contained within yourself a divine spark, something that he rather covets himself (which makes his interest in the PC rather similar to Irenicus).

Whilst Xen'shai would probably come under the umbrella of a romance mod, the fact that he is utterly selfish and that he is incredibly unlikely to genuinely devote himself to the PC (although I am sure there are PC's with huge CHA scores out there that could do this!) will mean that any 'romance' pursued by a PC (although it will be Shai doing most of the pursuing, if that makes sense!) is effectively false - there is only one person Shai loves, and that is himself! Although he is evil, however, he does favour 'good' PCs (not that that excludes evil PCs - in fact, and evil PC is more likely to be the one whom he devote himself to), but that is simply because he sees them as easier targets... but in the long run, he would respect an 'evil' PC more.

Suggested Stats (subject to change): STR: 12, DEX: 17, CON: 10, INT:16, WIS: 12, CHA: 18. Xen'shai is not much of a fighter when compared to other characters, and prefers to talk his way out of things if possible, but he can hold his own when necessary.

The third and last proposal is probably going to be my most contraversial and least likely to be accepted, so I'm bracing myself for a bit of a flaming for even suggesting this, but here goes anyway...

Solaufein

Yes, THAT Solaufein.

I would like to make is clear from the very start that this is in no way an affront or condemnation of Weimer's fine work. His Sola was the first mod I played, and was the mod that started my modding career (I wrote a whole bunch or pretty crap flirts for him back in '03...), and for this reason, I do hold his Sola in high regard.

However, the more I read around the subject, the more I realise that a lot of people are not particularly satisfied with Weimerfein, stating specifically that he is just a little too different from Bioware's original character. Now, I am in no way whatsoever saying that I think I could do a better job in characterising Sola than Weimer (sheesh, I think that could actually be considered modding blasphemy!), and any tentative project undertaken to bring an alternative Sola into the game would MOST DEFINITELY be undertaken by a team (in this instance, I do think a team of people could pin down Bioware Sola's personality, simply because it's not just one person's interpretation), but I do think it might be an interesting project to undertake... *dons large iron helm and hunkers down into the foetal position, awaiting the many and varied beatings she may receive for even thinking this, let alone suggesting it...*

Before commenting upon the Solaufein suggestion, please remember that it is literally just an idea and nothing else!!  :unsure:

I do have other ideas, but these were the main three I wanted to toss out. Obviously, when it comes to modding, Fade is my main concern right now, but it is fun to think of other projects, too  :)

Opinions on possible future additions

20 May 2009 - 12:20 AM

Okay - the time to work on this mod is definitely nigh, considering how much it kept me up last night, bombarding me with ideas for possible new material. However, some of them I'm a bit torn on... whilst I do try to go with my gut on these things, sometimes my gut has a metaphorical brainfart (a bit like how, when you've had one too many, that egg, onion and curry sauce sandwich seems like such a good and tasty option, riiight up until that moment when you take your first big bite...) and so it is nice to get outside opinions.

It was always my intention to make Fade more than 'just a romance mod' and add in equivalent material for non-romancing males and female PCs. With regards to this, I have had two ideas floating around for a while:

For non-romancing male PCs: If you let Fade down nicely / gently early on in her romance path (via a player initiated dialogue), that will kick off the male 'friendship' track. I figured, however, that just because you don't want to romance Fade, she wiil automatically not find you attractive - so I figured for non-romancing males, I might write an 'unrequited love' subplot, with a possible chance to requite it in ToB (if the player so wishes). She won't try to steal you away from your current love interest per se, but unless you are absolutely foul to her (and even then, she can't deny her heart completely), she will still initiate dialogues that might be mildly flirtatious in nature - I thought this might also give the current romance (Bioware ones only initially) a good chance to show some reaction / get jealous / be a bit insecure themselves. You know, just like in real life...  :P Good idea? Bad idea? Indifferent idea?

For female PCs: there will be a friendship track (already started on this), but in lieu of a Bhaalspawn to fancy, I thought Fade might turn her affections to another victim: namedly Valygar. There has already been ground laid that she quite likes Valygar (yes, this is author bias too; I am just a complete sucker for that whole 'stoic warrior' thing), but again, should it be unrequited, or should Valygar eventually reciprocate? I have to admit, I am erring on the side of it being unrequited (but then again, I like torturing my own creations   :devil: ), but I could be easily swayed if people want it requited.

For female PCs romancing Anomen: Yes, I am guilty as charged with regards to ridiculing this much maligned character, and so I am rather keen to set the record straight a bit and allow female PC's to discuss why they are with Anomen... again - good idea / bad idea / indifferent idea?

Any input is very much welcome!