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Some spoilers for story in AC: Odyssey

Butch:

Now that was a motherfucking dress ball.

Hiding playwrights! Drunken singing contests! Bisexual orgies with goats!

I mean, no sorceresses in stunning, I mean STUNNING green dresses but hey, no dress ball is perfect.

I feel, though, that I may have missed something. I always get nervy when someone is all “are you SURE you don’t want to leave?”

I also feel that, while that was fun, that it didn’t serve much of a purpose except historic name dropping and saying “OK! Athens time over! Off you go to other places! Here’s a trophy for completing chapter four!” There wasn’t a whole lot of plot, per se unless….

………and here’s what makes me nervous…….

……..they’re setting us up to know all of these folks so that, when they come back later, we understand all their dynamics and interactions and all that shit.

Femmy, I cannot tell all these dudes with beards and hairy chests and names I can’t spell apart when I’m actually AT the party! I’m not going to remember who was arguing with who about what six weeks from now! I’m not going to remember who supported who or who was jealous of who! If this was the game all “OK! This will all be important later! Do you understand?” then my answer is an emphatic “NO! No, game! I do not! And, if I do, I won’t remember!” I’ll remember the orgy dude cuz he was named Allie and didn’t have a beard or a hairy chest so he stands out, but other than that, I’m doomed.

One always remembers the orgy dude.

T SHIRT!!!!!!

I’m so doomed.

Feminina:

Right? The Greeks KNOW how to do a fancy dress ball! (You accepted the fancy dress, I take it? I did. I mean, I considered insisting on keeping my armor and weapons, but I didn’t want to miss the chance to get dressed up, so I figured even if I did get attacked, I’d make do with a cheese knife I grabbed from the buffet table or something.)

I don’t really remember any of those guys either, except Alkibiades (who as you say was hard to miss) and Sokrates (whom I already knew). I think if they come up later, we’ll get some kind of refresher course. I felt like it was really more about the general confusing, drunken atmosphere for Kassandra, as well as uncovering clues about the next places we need to go, than it was about laying out specific important plot points we’ll need to know later.

So and so prefers dry wine! NEVER FORGET THIS.

It’s gonna be great. We’re gonna love it.

I went and killed some people for Kleon, and now he wants me to look for some guy whose name starts with H who was last seen in a quarry. Is that the guy you looked for already? I’m on it.

Butch:

Oh I SO got dressed up! And I accidentally lit myself on fire by walking into a brazier, but, luckily, this did not really affect the look. Hey, orgies AND someone on fire! That’s a Par-TAY!

Sweet wine! He wanted the sweet wine! I think. Whatever. That’s what he got. And the singing competition that followed was great. I take it you sang?

I take it you joined in the orgy?

Man….shit. I GUESS that was who I was looking for. There’s this masked cultist who has a quarry and slaves in Attika. I was looking for his clue. Maybe I had to do the Kleon shit first.

Shit.

Feminina:

Oh man! I gave him dry wine! He liked it, said it was the nectar of the gods, but there was no singing contest, so maybe he would have gotten even drunker if I’d picked the sweet. I thought the guy hiding in the kitchen said the other guy “couldn’t abide” sweet wine, but maybe he said he “couldn’t handle” it…meaning it would have hit him even harder.

Sigh. Can’t believe I missed a singing contest! At least I got the orgy. Going back to the kitchen for oil was a nice touch.

Oh! Oh! And what did Phoibe say when you left? She told me “I heard there was a plague on Kephallonia! You don’t suppose my friend…”

And Kassandra said something like “no, no, this isn’t anyone’s fault! But I’ll go check on Kephallonia.” Which is either lazy game writing, or Kassandra flat-out lying, because I’ve BEEN back to Kephallonia and I know there IS a plague and it’s actually totally my fault. Anyway, props to the game once again for having this choice continue to reverberate through the story.

As for the quarry, I don’t know, this wasn’t anything to do with a cultist, it’s just some messenger Kleon wants me to find me. Maybe a totally different guy.

Butch:

It was a nice touch, but DUDE the singing contest! How on EARTH did you miss the singing contest? They both got drunk, and they challenge each other and Kassandra to a singing verse contest where you have to make up verses on the spot, complete with timed dialog choices. Kassandra is belting it out, man. Girl can hit the back of the room with the best of them. She was totally into it, too, with dance moves and gestures and over emoting. It was great.

Dude! No, Phoibe just said that she can’t wait to see me again, and knows she will this time, because this is Athens and not Kephallonia, and no one ever goes back to Kephallonia!”

Games all “Hey, Femmy, go back and see what you did! But Butch? Yeah, you’re good. Keep on trucking.”

Probably a different H guy. I’ll never find this dude. Probably won’t be able to finish the game.

Feminina:

OH MAN! Sadness. Yeah, he must have preferred the sweet wine. I got none of that. The one guy just told me his tip about the mountain sanctuary or wherever and the other one said “well, this is dull” and staggered off. End of conversation.

Siiiiiigh.

This plague on Kephallonia is going to haunt me forever.

As is the dude you can’t find in the quarry. But nah, he’ll turn up. Bound to. Go kill a dude for Kleon and maybe when he sends you back, somehow the clue will magically be there. Maybe it’s on the messenger I need to look for!

It’ll work out.

I haven’t killed any cultists lately. Need to step up that game, man.

Butch:

Dude, you would have loved it. Cuz we love songs, too! Remember Leliana’s song? We loved that. And drunken song duels pretty much need to be added to our list of things games must have.

Feminina:

I am so grieved and disheartened right now. It hardly even seems worth it to murder more dudes in the face of this terrible setback.

This will surely stand as the single most important thing we did differently in this game. Or perhaps any game.

Butch:

It really will. It really, really will.

I’d urge you to go look at some videos of it online, but that might make the pain all the worse.

Feminina:

Yeah, I thought about that, and then thought “no, it would only rub salt in the wound.”

Knowing you missed a great party isn’t less painful if you can see video of other people having fun at that party.

My Kassandra has made many grave errors in her life, but this is perhaps the gravest. Plague? Enh. Causing a guy to gouge out his own eyes because he couldn’t handle the truth? Being mean to children? Whatever.

Failing to liven up a party? TRAGEDY.

Butch:

Yeah, man. I sang (very well, if I don’t say so myself) AND accidentally lit myself on fire.

I blame the goat.

Feminina:

I didn’t set myself on fire, but I did very warily keep on eye on a torch someone had dropped on the carpet. “That can’t be good,” I thought, and tried to pick it up, but was unable to move it. Probably because my fancy dress hampered my freedom of movement. Ha!

I kept watching other people wandering around almost on top of it, but it never set anything on fire, so everything turned out OK. After watching that random person burn to death in the marketplace that time, not to mention setting myself on fire a few times (not at parties), I have a healthy respect for flames.

Which when you think about it is probably the most practical thing this game could teach us.

Butch:

Second only to “Make sure you get the good wine, cuz otherwise you’ll miss the singing.”

Feminina:

Lesson bitterly learned, game.

Butch:

I do kinda like it as a game mechanic. Like, if you remember/forget the wine choice you get a reward/punishment, but it’s just kinda fun. Had it been “quest failed” or “now you don’t get the information this way so you have to spend two more hours getting it some other way,” that would’ve sucked. So it all stays in character, sure, but in such a way that doesn’t go overboard in punishing the player.

Feminina:

Yeah, I’m into it. No real game impact, but fun stuff you could miss. Like Geralt staying up drinking with the other witchers and dressing up in Yen’s clothes and accidentally calling some other sorceress on the magic sorceress communication device!

Good times, but not a big deal from a game standpoint if you don’t do it.

Butch:

HA! Yeah, that was kinda the best. Yen being pissed about it was the icing on the cake.

Ah, good times. More parties, more drinking, more singing, games.

Feminina:

Yes! All of those things. Plus group hug endings.

Man, someday someone is finally going to make the Best Game Ever by incorporating all of those things.

We’re waiting, game industry. We’re waiting.

Butch:

And nudity. Need more of that.

Feminina:

Oh yes, that goes without saying. Always.

Butch:

Man, how did we get here before noon? I played! I did a big story mission!

But it’s hot. There’s kids. It seems so long until school……

Feminina:

You’re right. We need to get back on track. At least for a while.

So…uh…after Attika, which of the leads are you going to follow up on? I think I’m going to go to Keos, because I have an ainigmata ostraka clue that leads me there and I actually haven’t already been. Might as well multitask, right?

Also, do you think we’re actually going to get different information at each location, or do we just have to follow up on all three leads to learn the same thing, like with the Dagger and the identity of the Kingfisher?

Here’s hoping it’s the former.

Butch:

Man, I hope so, too. Maybe it’ll be we only have to do one….

…nah.

I dunno, man. See, you’re level, what, 97 or so, and I just hit level 20 (yet another way to liven up a party: start emitting flashes of golden light while strings play), so I was going to pick whatever was easiest. That said, as things level up with you, you have no way of knowing which that is. I have no objection to Keos so long as I don’t meet some, what, level 95 llamas on the beach who make the boars look wimpy.

Feminina:

I just hit level 30 last night! It was magnificent. The music, the golden light…and yeah, last time I leveled was at the party! That was where I swear these two guys talking in the background looked startled and threw up their hands to block the sudden radiance. Although they were having an animated conversation anyway, so it could have been a coincidence.

If you were just in Korinth and it was overpowered for you, maybe Keos is the place to go! Although maybe not, because I haven’t been there yet. What was the other place? Logically, one of them must be around level 20, because it would be kind of odd of the game to say “the main story leads here!–to these several places you can’t go yet.”

If the main story only led to one place, sure. We have many times had the experience of needing to go do sidequests and level up until we were tough enough to follow the main story. But when they give you not one but three options, thus guaranteeing you’re going to be busy for a while following up on them all (because like you, I find the idea that maybe we only have to do one of them and then we’ll be done to be implausible), you’d think at least one of them ought to be one you could follow up on right then.

Of course, that’s human logic, not game logic, so what do I know?

Butch:

Well, I think, but I’m not sure, that Korinth’s helpful level guide was like 18-23 or something. Maybe I just landed in the hardest part of Korinth. Maybe. Maybe there are parts of Korinth I can handle. If I can get past the llamas.

I’ll check tonight. But I’m sure as hell not ready for any of those 24-28 parts.

Feminina:

Come with me to Keos! Minimum recommended level 17, according to the internet.

It’s gonna be great.

Butch:

Keos ahoy!

Now watch: for the next three weeks I’ll be all “uh, you in keos yet?” And you’ll be all “how should I know? Oooooo! Cave!!!!”

Feminina:

Too true. After all, I have to go find this guy in a quarry for Kleon, and who knows where I’ll end up from there.

Butch:

Plans femmy. You know how they go.

Feminina:

How well I know. Just watch, neither one of us is going to set foot on Keos for months.

Did I mention I went back to the volcano island? Killed some bandits or cult members or whoever was there. Got some loot. Good times.

Butch:

No! Did you magpie there or did you have a reason?

We probably won’t even find Keos on the map for months.

Feminina:

Pure magpie. I was thinking “you know where I haven’t finished a question mark? That volcano!” Went in, murdered and looted, got out. There wasn’t a lot of story there.

Although there probably will be later, and I’ll have to go back. Meh.

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