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I find it a little strange that you don't get the option to pro-actively ask "so what were you doing when the squids kidnapped you?" It seems like an obvious topic of conversation at camp, akin to prisoners asking their cellmates "what're you in for?" Given the companions we have so far, I don't necessarily expect an honest answer in most cases (my personal guess would be Shadowheart says "none of your business", Astarion lies, Wyll deflects, not sure about Gale (my suspicion is not answer but less bluntly), and Lae'zel gives a straightforward and honest answer (probably "training"). Even the dishonest and evasive answers would reveal something (and maybe give you a chance to do a mind probe for a bit more information), and it would also give an opportunity for your MC to say what they were doing (making them a little less of a cypher).

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Originally Posted by Masakado
<snip> and it would also give an opportunity for your MC to say what they were doing (making them a little less of a cypher).
This alone would make it a good dialogue option.

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It's definitely a thing that's been going through my head. Comparing notes about our respective kidnappings would seem like an obvious thing to do for anyone at all curious about what the mindflayers have been up to. Especially when it comes to folks like Lae'zel - where the heck was she when the squids got her? How did they get her? Was Gale in Waterdeep - did the squid raid go that far? How long has it been since everyone was kidnapped? It must have been a good amount of time since

Cazador has had time to recruit hunters to comb the countryside far and wide for Astarion.

I don't understand why no one's asking these questions.

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You do get to ask Shadowheart that question, but only when you first meet her. And yes, she says it's none of your business.

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Originally Posted by Tarlonniel
It's definitely a thing that's been going through my head. Comparing notes about our respective kidnappings would seem like an obvious thing to do for anyone at all curious about what the mindflayers have been up to. Especially when it comes to folks like Lae'zel - where the heck was she when the squids got her? How did they get her? Was Gale in Waterdeep - did the squid raid go that far? How long has it been since everyone was kidnapped? It must have been a good amount of time since

Cazador has had time to recruit hunters to comb the countryside far and wide for Astarion.

I don't understand why no one's asking these questions.
I think everyone who was stuck in the pod was not aware of the passage of time, so it is very possible. Lae'zel seems to be fresh out of creche, which apparently is not that far off from where the EA happens?

As for Astarion,

when you use speak with the dead on the monster hunter he tells you it wasn't Cazador, but Maiden Fel, who sent him. It might be that they have been tracking him for longer (likely using magical means).

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Now this is really a relevant subject. I for some reason thought that the squiddie-raids had not been taken much further out of Balder's Gate at all since the game forces the player to be Baldurian...

Originally Posted by ash elemental
Originally Posted by Tarlonniel
It's definitely a thing that's been going through my head. Comparing notes about our respective kidnappings would seem like an obvious thing to do for anyone at all curious about what the mindflayers have been up to. Especially when it comes to folks like Lae'zel - where the heck was she when the squids got her? How did they get her? Was Gale in Waterdeep - did the squid raid go that far? How long has it been since everyone was kidnapped? It must have been a good amount of time since

Cazador has had time to recruit hunters to comb the countryside far and wide for Astarion.

I don't understand why no one's asking these questions.
I think everyone who was stuck in the pod was not aware of the passage of time, so it is very possible. Lae'zel seems to be fresh out of creche, which apparently is not that far off from where the EA happens?

As for Astarion,

when you use speak with the dead on the monster hunter he tells you it wasn't Cazador, but Maiden Fel, who sent him. It might be that they have been tracking him for longer (likely using magical means).

Now that is intriguing... Truly.

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Originally Posted by Masakado
and it would also give an opportunity for your MC to say what they were doing (making them a little less of a cypher).
Thatks, I think, one of things I really miss in Larian writing. All the best RPGs I can think of, might not always be the most reactive, but give player more space to express and define their characters. If we don’t have a complete amnesiac/haven’t seen the world blank hero, being able to add a little bit definition goes such a long way to create an link with our hero.

PoE1 had such a delightful opening. On top of our country of origin and background during the character creation, you get a nice conversation going with your tutorial companion, where you can further define your background, and some of those choices can even pay off with unique flavour lines to pick.

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Originally Posted by ash elemental
Lae'zel seems to be fresh out of creche, which apparently is not that far off from where the EA happens?

Lae'zel's creche is

in orbit around the planet. She's not from the one we're trying to find in EA.

Originally Posted by ash elemental
As for Astarion,

when you use speak with the dead on the monster hunter he tells you it wasn't Cazador, but Maiden Fel, who sent him. It might be that they have been tracking him for longer (likely using magical means).

Well, yes, Astarion himself tells you that

Cazador wouldn't have hired the hunter directly, but through an intermediary via his network of intrigue. I'm not surprised that the order came from the hunter's superior, in fact it seems perfectly logical.

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Originally Posted by Tarlonniel
Well, yes, Astarion himself tells you that

Cazador wouldn't have hired the hunter directly, but through an intermediary via his network of intrigue. I'm not surprised that the order came from the hunter's superior, in fact it seems perfectly logical.
Not necessarily.
When you ask the hunter who this Maiden Fel is, he says she is the reason even monsters have nightmares. This doesn't sound like someone who a vampire lord would hire, even through intermediates. I'd expect him hire someone like the Zhents, who'd deal with a vampire willingly, no need for masquarade.

Astarion is implying the Gur was acting indirectly on Cazador's orders, but he could be trying to misdirect the PC here. He is not willing to confess what exactly he did to the Gur in the past. Maybe he realizes at this point that the Gur could also be after him because of that past, and he doesn't trust the PC with this.

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Originally Posted by ash elemental
When you ask the hunter who this Maiden Fel is, he says she is the reason even monsters have nightmares. This doesn't sound like someone who a vampire lord would hire, even through intermediates. I'd expect him hire someone like the Zhents, who'd deal with a vampire willingly, no need for masquarade.

Astarion is implying the Gur was acting indirectly on Cazador's orders, but he could be trying to misdirect the PC here. He is not willing to confess what exactly he did to the Gur in the past. Maybe he realizes at this point that the Gur could also be after him because of that past, and he doesn't trust the PC with this.

There's a lot of speculation here that I don't see a need for. Astarion's explanations make sense; there's no reason for him to be evasive and no indication that he's trying to be.

Astarion speculates that Cazador hired the Gur for this job because he wanted to send a specific message, which seems reasonable enough. Maiden Fel is no doubt very good at her job - as anyone running a group of monster hunters should be - but that doesn't mean Cazador is afraid of her, or isn't capable of outmaneuvering her, being a centuries-old vampire lord and all. Also, it seems pretty far fetched that the Gur would spend two hundred years magically monitoring a guy who did them wrong once upon a time just on the off-chance they could eventually catch him while away from his master's protection. That's a lot of generations to hold a grudge, and a lot of resource investment for a small and uncertain payoff. Astarion isn't even a particular threat to them now, no more than any other vampire spawn.

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Originally Posted by Tarlonniel
There's a lot of speculation here that I don't see a need for. Astarion's explanations make sense; there's no reason for him to be evasive and no indication that he's trying to be.

Astarion speculates that Cazador hired the Gur for this job because he wanted to send a specific message, which seems reasonable enough. Maiden Fel is no doubt very good at her job - as anyone running a group of monster hunters should be - but that doesn't mean Cazador is afraid of her, or isn't capable of outmaneuvering her, being a centuries-old vampire lord and all. Also, it seems pretty far fetched that the Gur would spend two hundred years magically monitoring a guy who did them wrong once upon a time just on the off-chance they could eventually catch him while away from his master's protection. That's a lot of generations to hold a grudge, and a lot of resource investment for a small and uncertain payoff. Astarion isn't even a particular threat to them now, no more than any other vampire spawn.
What Astarion tells you is speculation on his side, though.
We know the Gur is hunting him, and that his boss is Maiden Fel, but that is it at this point. It could be that the reason they hunt him is something else entirely.

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Concerning the vamps

A theory I stumbled on back before a chunk of datamine was taken out that talked about the markings on Astarions back is actually a devil contract/ritual. Maybe the gur leader wants Astarion as leverage against Cazador. I heard Cazador can't actually move around much for some magical reason, but keeps quite the deadly army. Maybe Astarion is the solution in some way that Cazador needs.

I imagine by now a lot of that has changed though.

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Originally Posted by ash elemental
What Astarion tells you is speculation on his side, though.

Astarion's speculation is based on his knowledge of the parties involved, which is pretty extensive, and everything he's told us about them is consistent with his explanation. Note that he's not surprised

to find Cazador sending hunters after him, or that Cazador would choose to send the Gur as an extra twist of the knife. He's only surprised that the orders are to bring him back alive - which, more than likely, is because Cazador put a Very Important Thing on Astarion's back (which we're gradually learning more information about) and Cazador wants it returned intact. There's no reason for the Gur to want him alive if all they're after is revenge on Astarion. Have their hunter finish the job they started two hundred years ago and move on. Simple.

In any case, my original point was that the party is about ten days' journey from Baldur's Gate, yet it's only a few days after the crash that someone from the city arrives on site. There's no time for news to have traveled so far and for someone to have followed up on it by normal means. Is it a plot hole, or did the abductions happen quite some time ago - long enough for an extensive network of agents to be deployed - or

(and this is how I'd write it, if I were writing it) has it only been a few days since the abductions, but Cazador has enough power/influence to employ a scrier to track Astarion as he's carried aboard the nautiloid, and once it crashes, to see that hunters are teleported to its vicinity.

Originally Posted by Aishaddai
Maybe the gur leader wants Astarion as leverage against Cazador. I heard Cazador can't actually move around much for some magical reason, but keeps quite the deadly army.

That would be interesting. Apparently there are factions of some sort involved in the future story,

though I've only seen mention of undead factions, not Gur. Presumably there are people who want Cazador out of the way because he's a pesky evil vampire lord preying on their city; gathering a group of them to take him out would be fun. I'm not sure how well Astarion would work as a bargaining chip. He does mention that Cazador never leaves the city, but I think that's because he needs to go back to his coffin during the day, as all proper vampires must.

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Hmm maybe. How about this

Cazador vs Thay. Cazador either wants in to take over or they keep getting in each others way. Maybe the werewolfs are kept as slave and they want revenge against all undead. Enter: Hela werewolf gnome bard. Renagade that inspires an uprising. Lol

Or how about Cazador lost already to a high thay lich and bound Cazador to Baldur's Gate or something in the city as punishment and Astarion is going to take his place as the bound victim using devil magic or a deal to bypass the spell. Cazador goes free kills and thralls the rest of the city and launches a full scale assault against Thay empire.

Damn Larian needs to release a patch. I'm fanfic'ing now. Lol

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Those explanations are as good as any! We really don't have much information at this point. Astarion says it himself in datamined content,

Why on Abeir-Toril would Cazador make an infernal pact? What could he possibly want that he doesn't already have? I'm really looking forward to the answer, I have some crazy fanfic-y theories of my own. grin

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This thread is fascinating! Now I can't wait for the next part in Astarion's story. laugh

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Originally Posted by Tarlonniel
In any case, my original point was that the party is about ten days' journey from Baldur's Gate, yet it's only a few days after the crash that someone from the city arrives on site. There's no time for news to have traveled so far and for someone to have followed up on it by normal means. Is it a plot hole, or did the abductions happen quite some time ago - long enough for an extensive network of agents to be deployed

I imagine that Cazador would have noticed immediately that Astarion was missing, and would send out someone to track him. Surely as a vampire lord of considerable power, he has plenty of influence far and wide, and magical means of sending messages. Also, by the time I ran into the monster hunter in my game, several days had passed (maybe not 10 but at least a week's worth of Long Rests) so to me the timeframe was believable.
I will however have to find my save game and re-play this bit to uncover the conversation everyone is talking about!

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Personally, I'd like a little more native language peppered throughout conversations as the main character based on character creation. The occasional curse or exclamation in battle or as a reaction in dialogue would make things feel a little more immersive.


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Originally Posted by ash elemental
When you ask the hunter who this Maiden Fel is, he says she is the reason even monsters have nightmares.

Astarion is implying the Gur was acting indirectly on Cazador's orders, but he could be trying to misdirect the PC here. He is not willing to confess what exactly he did to the Gur in the past. Maybe he realizes at this point that the Gur could also be after him because of that past, and he doesn't trust the PC with this.

Try as I might, I could not re-create this conversation where
the Gur names this Maiden Fel. I tried first with my Tiefling Druid who was romancing Astarion and had High approval with him, but was well past the point of knowing he is a vampire - so the only option was for the whole team to fight the monster hunter, whose corpse naturally wouldn't speak to any of my characters afterwards. I then tried with my Drow who is at Neutral with Astarion, and does not yet know he is a vampire, so Astarion shanked the monster hunter and I did get to speak to the corpse afterwards - but the corpse wouldn't name any names.

How did you guys even get this bit of information to reveal itself in the game? :O
Seriously can't wait for more of the story now.


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