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Joined: Oct 2020
enthusiast
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Let's have a discussion on our views on each companions. I see that our companions have a mixed fanbase, one more than others. So, let's discuss each one. Be warned that there are SPOILERS for those that may not have gone that far.

SPOILERS down below




The first party member we meet is Lae'zel who is the only warrior of the group. Lae'zel is a character that is NOT afraid of speaking her mind and has a very strong personality. She knows what she wants. Some may not like that and other have no problem. I personally like Lae'zel because she a B**ch but more because she seems to be the most honest, even if she does keep certain things for herself. Also, Lae'zel seems to be doing things for her Queen's approval. She wants to be the best for her Queen. I think Lae'zel could end up being a loyal companion.

The second party member is Shadowheart , a cleric. I also like Shadowheart as there is a level of mystery surrounding her and her devotion of the Goddess Shar. I see Shadowheart being the MC's best friend as long as you have her approval and you don't romance her. She tells you from the very beginning if you save her that she owes you and will repay you when the time comes for saving her. She also gives you advice and is always telling you to be careful. That tells me she sees you as friend and care about you. As for her mystery, her artifact plays a big role. Such as, what is it? Where did it come from? Why was she sent to steal it? Why does it protect you when you go to the Goblin camp? Why does the Githyanki want it? Her character and her backstory is very interesting.

The third party member is Astarion, the only rogue of the group. The BIGGEST love and hate relationship the players have with him. I personally love Astarion and feel he is the most misunderstood of the group and the most emotionally damaged. Which is why I feel for him because a lot of the things he went through were not his choice. He's a slave who has been tortured by a Vampire Lord named Cazador. If people choose to keep Astarion in the group and often talk to him, you will learn a lot from him. Approval has to be high. If you have Astarion's approval he will tell you that he doesn't mind staying with you when everything with the tadpole is over. He likes you. I also feel that Larian Studios favors Astarion as he is the only one that requires you to do more for his approval and he has his own romance song.
I know some people here in this forum, don't like Astarion's personality but if you know anything about vampire, that's exactly how they are. Extremely sassy but if you gain a vampire's approval or even love, they will do anything for you at least in vampire lore. Dracula being the most famous.

The fourth party memeber is Gale, a wizard. I have mixed feelings on Gale especially when I first met him. When he says that he saw you lying on a puddle of blood with a tadpole nibbling on you ear. I was like, "Wait a minute, if you saw me, why didn't you try to help me?" I found that weird. There is something off about him. He does seem to be a good friend but he does have selfish motivations. You learn that he wants to be the most powerful wizard. He has a magical, ticking time bomb in his chest all for the love of a Goddess. That's a selfish motivation. It could be possible that Gale would end up doing things for power so that he can be the best wizard. He seems to be power hungry.

The last party member is Wyll, a warlock. I'm not to keen on Wyll, just like Gale, he has a selfish motivation. He wants popularity and fame. He's a glory hound. The only reason why he is a warlock is because of his pact with a demon. He basically signed his soul to the devil just for fortune and glory. Although he seems to regret it, doesn't seem that way sometimes. He wants the "Blade of Frontiers" to have a fan base.

To me Gale and Wyll are the least likely to be loyal because they have the most selfish desires. Whereas; Lae'zel, Shadowheart and even Astarion are more loyal because they have the least selfish desires.

What are your feelings on each character and why?

Joined: Oct 2020
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I don't dislike any of the companions. They each have been given some distinct personalities, which is the low bar I have for these things. I think a lot of the hatred around them seems to stem from either two things; everyone is very special, they all have very dramatic backstories with histories that kind of clash with how they're introduced; they resemble so many overwrought D&D characters first timers make.
Or people just don't like the character, and conflate that with them being a badly made character, Astarion is a flamboyant narcissist with some tropey affectations ergo he must be a bad character. On that note, I have to say Astarion's primary directive seems to be survival at all costs, so I wouldn't count on him being very loyal without a lot of work on the MC's part.

Joined: Jun 2020
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sure, I'll play!


Lae'zel is loyal to her queen, not to anyone else. She has killed her own family members for no greater reason than because her queen... or, at least, a superior to her in rank who spoke with the queen's authority, ordered it, and she takes pride in her ruthlessness. Her queen, it may be worth mentioning, is an ancient Lich who literally devours the souls of her people to continue her own existence, denying them any kind of afterlife, and in service to their queen, that is the ultimate fate of all Githyanki who survive long enough to meet it. Lae'zel would attack and kill you in a heartbeat and have no regrets or remorse about it, and does not do so only because she currently views you as the most valuable tool she has at her disposal for progressing her quest for a cure. She is the most lawful stupid that has ever lawful stupid-ed, and is blinded so badly by her unreciprocated devotion to her queen that she cannot see that her own people's 'cleansing' ritual is just a quick death - even when confronted with the fact of it. Lae'zel is honest because she's too thick-witted to be otherwise. Like most of her people, she views material plane denizens as slaves and fodder, and believes herself to be absolutely superior to them in all ways - and makes no bones about telling you so. If you want someone hungry for power and bearing a deep superiority complex, who is only on the look out for number one and no-one else, look no further than Lae'zel.

Shadowheart is the kind of person who believes that it is her divine right to pry into other people's business and know everything about them, but believes with equal absolute certainty that no-one has any right whatsoever to ask any of those questions of her. Her attitude is almost always condescending towards you, even when you try to say the right things; she always acts like she knows everything you might say before you say it, and like she knows better than you at every turn, whether it's true or not (it usually isn't). She is the super-star of the game and Larian love her with the burning passion of a thousand suns, so expect that a game without Shadowheart will be a much more empty and dull one, because you'll miss out on the overbalanced legion of extra content written specifically for her. She's the only character that is repeatedly forced into your party whether you want her or not. Amongst all that content, she has a lot more 'reasonable person' lines now than she once did, and it's quite possible for someone to play through the game, (maybe) without really bumping into any of her unreasonable bitchiness at all, now... though you've got to avoid asking her about anything more or less ever, so... it's a character that 'rewards(?)' you for not engaging with her, and letting her limelight on you whenever she wants. Shadowheart is, naturally, the brainwashed present day avatar of Selune, and will play a pivotal part in saving the day when she ascends temporarily to godhood towards the end of the game - she'll probably want to be with you by the end of the game, whether you're really interested or not, though it will be phrased as you being desperate to stay with her.

Astarion has a lot of personal trauma and damage, for certain, but it doesn't really change the fact that his entire characterisation is bloodthirsty murder-hobo for the giggles of it. For all the depth they have so far attempted to inject into his character he remains woefully two-dimensional and predictable as a person. Vampires, and vampire spawn by extension, aren't really capable of things like loyalty and love. They imitate them, and some develop obsessions about facets of them, but they don't really have those experiences any more. If you want to talk about lore, talk about FR lore, not other sources to which this doesn't apply. Astarion is likely to want to stay with you as long as your fun and interesting and provide him with stable availability of blood. He will even probably pretend towards emulations of care and affection as best he can manage.

Gale didn't help you on the ship for the same reason that Astarion didn't (recall that he mentions seeing you on the ship as well), despite also seeing you on the ship as well - they were both just as incapacitated as you were at the time. Gale never says anything about wanting to be the most powerful wizard; I'm not sure where you're getting that. He's not power hungry either - again, not sure where you're getting that from. He was, formerly, an archmage - an exceptionally powerful and experienced wizard, and on top of that was once the favoured of Mystra, and even her lover for a time (once again, blame Larian's overblown npc backstories for this ridiculousness). He sought to impress her and did something very stupid, and now, as well as losing her favour over it, is attempting to deal with the problem it's left him with - this is not a selfish motive, and I'm not sure why you see it as one. He has contingencies set up to warn people if he dies unexpectedly, and has supplied the means of preventing disaster on his person. He lets you know that it is his intention, if he ever reaches a point where he cannot stave off his nuke any more, that he intends to remove himself out to the depths of some far ocean so that his detonation won't pose a risk of harm to anyone else. Gale needs powerful relics to keep himself alive, but that doesn't make him power-hungry. Gale believes that he is generally more knowledgeable and more experienced in matters of magic than anyone else present - it does come off as condescending at times, definitely, but you are generally given a chance to 'keep up' with him, and have him acknowledge you for doing so, unlike the better-than-you writing of most of the other companions. It also stems from the fact that, at least in gale's case, his certainty is based on fact - he generally is more knowledgeable than 99% of people he meets (archmage?), and even though he has been brutally depowered now, the knowledge and experience hasn't gone away. His introduction dialogue is his worst one, now, as it's still pitched to treat the player like a moron, but Gale isn't alone in being written that way towards the PC much of the time. Gale is the character who gets the most genuinely emotionally invested and attached to you, if you are friendly to him -some might suggest a little too quickly, perhaps, but it's still a legitimate feeling of affection and care that he develops and expresses - one of the few cases where this is genuinely confirmed outside of tadpole tricks, since it was a weave-wrought emotional link instead. Of all of the characters, he is easily the most likely to remain loyal to you after all the dangers are taken care of, and he will do so because of the sort of person you are, and because he likes you, not for any other reason.

Wyll wants to be a good person, but more than that he wants to be seen to be a good person - as you say, he wants fame and glory. There is a genuine desire to do good there, but it takes a back seat, very firmly, to his personal vendetta, at least in chapter 1. Wyll is a liar. This is his defining character trait. He lies to you about more or less everything, and when you confront him about it, he lies to you again, and when you catch him out on that lie, he lies to you again, and back-handed calls you an idiot for good measure, even when you both know that he's lying, and he knows that you know, and there's no question of doubt at all. He didn't make his pact for fame and glory - he made it for revenge, but the fame and glory is a fun perk that he craves. right now, he says he's looking for a way to properly break his pact in a way that means no-one loses their soul and no-one suffers... and he says his pact-holder is even amenable to it, because they have some kind of relationship that's more than just patron and warlock. He says. He also lies. About Everything. So who knows? We're not allowed to insight check his lies, so he's allowed to lie to us with impunity about anything, apparently.

Last edited by Niara; 02/11/21 07:06 AM.
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Laezel is badass and seems to know the most about mindflayers and tadpoles, so i always play that my PC would want to have her in the party, at least in the beginning. Her story arc kind of stagnates in EA once you find out that the tadpole is not an immediate threat but I enjoy the squabbling with Shadowheart.

I did not like Shadowheart at all before Patch 5. Now I take her every time. I can now see that there is more to her story and I am intrigued to learn more. Plus, I like the banter between her and Laezel.

I really like Gale’s stories. He is a character that i’d like to have a beer with. He seems the most practical to me. Generally leans good, but not constrained by it.

Wyll is irritating. He talks big, but can’t really back it up. I appreciate what they are trying to do with his arc, it’s just not for me.

Astarion is the most interesting. I really like his character, backstory, writing, acting, and character arc. I just can not for the life of me figure out how to wrap my head around a roleplaying way that my character would want to keep him in the party once I find out what he is. I’ve tried. But what could my background and motivation possibly be to want to keep him around? I need help with this. Anyone?

Joined: Oct 2020
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Originally Posted by Niara
sure, I'll play!


Lae'zel is loyal to her queen, not to anyone else. She has killed her own family members for no greater reason than because her queen... or, at least, a superior to her in rank who spoke with the queen's authority, ordered it, and she takes pride in her ruthlessness. Her queen, it may be worth mentioning, is an ancient Lich who literally devours the souls of her people to continue her own existence, denying them any kind of afterlife, and in service to their queen, that is the ultimate fate of all Githyanki who survive long enough to meet it. Lae'zel would attack and kill you in a heartbeat and have no regrets or remorse about it, and does not do so only because she currently views you as the most valuable tool she has at her disposal for progressing her quest for a cure. She is the most lawful stupid that has ever lawful stupid-ed, and is blinded so badly by her unreciprocated devotion to her queen that she cannot see that her own people's 'cleansing' ritual is just a quick death - even when confronted with the fact of it. Lae'zel is honest because she's too thick-witted to be otherwise. Like most of her people, she views material plane denizens as slaves and fodder, and believes herself to be absolutely superior to them in all ways - and makes no bones about telling you so. If you want someone hungry for power and bearing a deep superiority complex, who is only on the look out for number one and no-one else, look no further than Lae'zel.

Shadowheart is the kind of person who believes that it is her divine right to pry into other people's business and know everything about them, but believes with equal absolute certainty that no-one has any right whatsoever to ask any of those questions of her. Her attitude is almost always condescending towards you, even when you try to say the right things; she always acts like she knows everything you might say before you say it, and like she knows better than you at every turn, whether it's true or not (it usually isn't). She is the super-star of the game and Larian love her with the burning passion of a thousand suns, so expect that a game without Shadowheart will be a much more empty and dull one, because you'll miss out on the overbalanced legion of extra content written specifically for her. She's the only character that is repeatedly forced into your party whether you want her or not. Amongst all that content, she has a lot more 'reasonable person' lines now than she once did, and it's quite possible for someone to play through the game, (maybe) without really bumping into any of her unreasonable bitchiness at all, now... though you've got to avoid asking her about anything more or less ever, so... it's a character that 'rewards(?)' you for not engaging with her, and letting her limelight on you whenever she wants. Shadowheart is, naturally, the brainwashed present day avatar of Selune, and will play a pivotal part in saving the day when she ascends temporarily to godhood towards the end of the game - she'll probably want to be with you by the end of the game, whether you're really interested or not, though it will be phrased as you being desperate to stay with her.

Astarion has a lot of personal trauma and damage, for certain, but it doesn't really change the fact that his entire characterisation is bloodthirsty murder-hobo for the giggles of it. For all the depth they have so far attempted to inject into his character he remains woefully two-dimensional and predictable as a person. Vampires, and vampire spawn by extension, aren't really capable of things like loyalty and love. They imitate them, and some develop obsessions about facets of them, but they don't really have those experiences any more. If you want to talk about lore, talk about FR lore, not other sources to which this doesn't apply. Astarion is likely to want to stay with you as long as your fun and interesting and provide him with stable availability of blood. He will even probably pretend towards emulations of care and affection as best he can manage.

Gale didn't help you on the ship for the same reason that Astarion didn't (recall that he mentions seeing you on the ship as well), despite also seeing you on the ship as well - they were both just as incapacitated as you were at the time. Gale never says anything about wanting to be the most powerful wizard; I'm not sure where you're getting that. He's not power hungry either - again, not sure where you're getting that from. He was, formerly, an archmage - an exceptionally powerful and experienced wizard, and on top of that was once the favoured of Mystra, and even her lover for a time (once again, blame Larian's overblown npc backstories for this ridiculousness). He sought to impress her and did something very stupid, and now, as well as losing her favour over it, is attempting to deal with the problem it's left him with - this is not a selfish motive, and I'm not sure why you see it as one. He has contingencies set up to warn people if he dies unexpectedly, and has supplied the means of preventing disaster on his person. He lets you know that it is his intention, if he ever reaches a point where he cannot stave off his nuke any more, that he intends to remove himself out to the depths of some far ocean so that his detonation won't pose a risk of harm to anyone else. Gale needs powerful relics to keep himself alive, but that doesn't make him power-hungry. Gale believes that he is generally more knowledgeable and more experienced in matters of magic than anyone else present - it does come off as condescending at times, definitely, but you are generally given a chance to 'keep up' with him, and have him acknowledge you for doing so, unlike the better-than-you writing of most of the other companions. It also stems from the fact that, at least in gale's case, his certainty is based on fact - he generally is more knowledgeable than 99% of people he meets (archmage?), and even though he has been brutally depowered now, the knowledge and experience hasn't gone away. His introduction dialogue is his worst one, now, as it's still pitched to treat the player like a moron, but Gale isn't alone in being written that way towards the PC much of the time. Gale is the character who gets the most genuinely emotionally invested and attached to you, if you are friendly to him -some might suggest a little too quickly, perhaps, but it's still a legitimate feeling of affection and care that he develops and expresses - one of the few cases where this is genuinely confirmed outside of tadpole tricks, since it was a weave-wrought emotional link instead. Of all of the characters, he is easily the most likely to remain loyal to you after all the dangers are taken care of, and he will do so because of the sort of person you are, and because he likes you, not for any other reason.

Wyll wants to be a good person, but more than that he wants to be seen to be a good person - as you say, he wants fame and glory. There is a genuine desire to do good there, but it takes a back seat, very firmly, to his personal vendetta, at least in chapter 1. Wyll is a liar. This is his defining character trait. He lies to you about more or less everything, and when you confront him about it, he lies to you again, and when you catch him out on that lie, he lies to you again, and back-handed calls you an idiot for good measure, even when you both know that he's lying, and he knows that you know, and there's no question of doubt at all. He didn't make his pact for fame and glory - he made it for revenge, but the fame and glory is a fun perk that he craves. right now, he says he's looking for a way to properly break his pact in a way that means no-one loses their soul and no-one suffers... and he says his pact-holder is even amenable to it, because they have some kind of relationship that's more than just patron and warlock. He says. He also lies. About Everything. So who knows? We're not allowed to insight check his lies, so he's allowed to lie to us with impunity about anything, apparently.

That's all very interesting but you didn't say why you like or do not like the characters. You just made a huge response to everything I wrote and rebutted most of my experiences. In some instances it almost sounded like you are questioning my reasons. You spoke in general terms. This wasn't meant to be a debate but how YOU feel about those characters.

Last edited by Lady Avyna; 02/11/21 08:21 AM.
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Originally Posted by Sozz
I don't dislike any of the companions. They each have been given some distinct personalities, which is the low bar I have for these things. I think a lot of the hatred around them seems to stem from either two things; everyone is very special, they all have very dramatic backstories with histories that kind of clash with how they're introduced; they resemble so many overwrought D&D characters first timers make.
Or people just don't like the character, and conflate that with them being a badly made character, Astarion is a flamboyant narcissist with some tropey affectations ergo he must be a bad character. On that note, I have to say Astarion's primary directive seems to be survival at all costs, so I wouldn't count on him being very loyal without a lot of work on the MC's part.


I agree on Astarion, he seems to be more closer to you if your approval is high with him. Which seems to happen with the other companions as well.

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Originally Posted by smberg
Laezel is badass and seems to know the most about mindflayers and tadpoles, so i always play that my PC would want to have her in the party, at least in the beginning. Her story arc kind of stagnates in EA once you find out that the tadpole is not an immediate threat but I enjoy the squabbling with Shadowheart.

I did not like Shadowheart at all before Patch 5. Now I take her every time. I can now see that there is more to her story and I am intrigued to learn more. Plus, I like the banter between her and Laezel.

I really like Gale’s stories. He is a character that i’d like to have a beer with. He seems the most practical to me. Generally leans good, but not constrained by it.

Wyll is irritating. He talks big, but can’t really back it up. I appreciate what they are trying to do with his arc, it’s just not for me.

Astarion is the most interesting. I really like his character, backstory, writing, acting, and character arc. I just can not for the life of me figure out how to wrap my head around a roleplaying way that my character would want to keep him in the party once I find out what he is. I’ve tried. But what could my background and motivation possibly be to want to keep him around? I need help with this. Anyone?

With Astarion, it would depend how you are playing and who are you playing. For example if you are a spell caster, you might want to keep him because he is a rogue and he has high dexterity. If you don't like vampires, it might be kind of hard to keep him depending how strong your dislike for vampires is. If you do decide to keep Astarion and allow him to drink you blood, he gets a new vampire ability which is a 100% hit every time. I think it needs to be recharged after a fight but it's a pretty useful ability. Astarion is also pretty useful if you use his sneak abilities, he gets good hits.

Joined: Aug 2021
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Originally Posted by Niara
sure, I'll play!


Lae'zel is loyal to her queen, not to anyone else. She has killed her own family members for no greater reason than because her queen... or, at least, a superior to her in rank who spoke with the queen's authority, ordered it, and she takes pride in her ruthlessness. Her queen, it may be worth mentioning, is an ancient Lich who literally devours the souls of her people to continue her own existence, denying them any kind of afterlife, and in service to their queen, that is the ultimate fate of all Githyanki who survive long enough to meet it. Lae'zel would attack and kill you in a heartbeat and have no regrets or remorse about it, and does not do so only because she currently views you as the most valuable tool she has at her disposal for progressing her quest for a cure. She is the most lawful stupid that has ever lawful stupid-ed, and is blinded so badly by her unreciprocated devotion to her queen that she cannot see that her own people's 'cleansing' ritual is just a quick death - even when confronted with the fact of it. Lae'zel is honest because she's too thick-witted to be otherwise. Like most of her people, she views material plane denizens as slaves and fodder, and believes herself to be absolutely superior to them in all ways - and makes no bones about telling you so. If you want someone hungry for power and bearing a deep superiority complex, who is only on the look out for number one and no-one else, look no further than Lae'zel.

Shadowheart is the kind of person who believes that it is her divine right to pry into other people's business and know everything about them, but believes with equal absolute certainty that no-one has any right whatsoever to ask any of those questions of her. Her attitude is almost always condescending towards you, even when you try to say the right things; she always acts like she knows everything you might say before you say it, and like she knows better than you at every turn, whether it's true or not (it usually isn't). She is the super-star of the game and Larian love her with the burning passion of a thousand suns, so expect that a game without Shadowheart will be a much more empty and dull one, because you'll miss out on the overbalanced legion of extra content written specifically for her. She's the only character that is repeatedly forced into your party whether you want her or not. Amongst all that content, she has a lot more 'reasonable person' lines now than she once did, and it's quite possible for someone to play through the game, (maybe) without really bumping into any of her unreasonable bitchiness at all, now... though you've got to avoid asking her about anything more or less ever, so... it's a character that 'rewards(?)' you for not engaging with her, and letting her limelight on you whenever she wants. Shadowheart is, naturally, the brainwashed present day avatar of Selune, and will play a pivotal part in saving the day when she ascends temporarily to godhood towards the end of the game - she'll probably want to be with you by the end of the game, whether you're really interested or not, though it will be phrased as you being desperate to stay with her.

Astarion has a lot of personal trauma and damage, for certain, but it doesn't really change the fact that his entire characterisation is bloodthirsty murder-hobo for the giggles of it. For all the depth they have so far attempted to inject into his character he remains woefully two-dimensional and predictable as a person. Vampires, and vampire spawn by extension, aren't really capable of things like loyalty and love. They imitate them, and some develop obsessions about facets of them, but they don't really have those experiences any more. If you want to talk about lore, talk about FR lore, not other sources to which this doesn't apply. Astarion is likely to want to stay with you as long as your fun and interesting and provide him with stable availability of blood. He will even probably pretend towards emulations of care and affection as best he can manage.

Gale didn't help you on the ship for the same reason that Astarion didn't (recall that he mentions seeing you on the ship as well), despite also seeing you on the ship as well - they were both just as incapacitated as you were at the time. Gale never says anything about wanting to be the most powerful wizard; I'm not sure where you're getting that. He's not power hungry either - again, not sure where you're getting that from. He was, formerly, an archmage - an exceptionally powerful and experienced wizard, and on top of that was once the favoured of Mystra, and even her lover for a time (once again, blame Larian's overblown npc backstories for this ridiculousness). He sought to impress her and did something very stupid, and now, as well as losing her favour over it, is attempting to deal with the problem it's left him with - this is not a selfish motive, and I'm not sure why you see it as one. He has contingencies set up to warn people if he dies unexpectedly, and has supplied the means of preventing disaster on his person. He lets you know that it is his intention, if he ever reaches a point where he cannot stave off his nuke any more, that he intends to remove himself out to the depths of some far ocean so that his detonation won't pose a risk of harm to anyone else. Gale needs powerful relics to keep himself alive, but that doesn't make him power-hungry. Gale believes that he is generally more knowledgeable and more experienced in matters of magic than anyone else present - it does come off as condescending at times, definitely, but you are generally given a chance to 'keep up' with him, and have him acknowledge you for doing so, unlike the better-than-you writing of most of the other companions. It also stems from the fact that, at least in gale's case, his certainty is based on fact - he generally is more knowledgeable than 99% of people he meets (archmage?), and even though he has been brutally depowered now, the knowledge and experience hasn't gone away. His introduction dialogue is his worst one, now, as it's still pitched to treat the player like a moron, but Gale isn't alone in being written that way towards the PC much of the time. Gale is the character who gets the most genuinely emotionally invested and attached to you, if you are friendly to him -some might suggest a little too quickly, perhaps, but it's still a legitimate feeling of affection and care that he develops and expresses - one of the few cases where this is genuinely confirmed outside of tadpole tricks, since it was a weave-wrought emotional link instead. Of all of the characters, he is easily the most likely to remain loyal to you after all the dangers are taken care of, and he will do so because of the sort of person you are, and because he likes you, not for any other reason.

Wyll wants to be a good person, but more than that he wants to be seen to be a good person - as you say, he wants fame and glory. There is a genuine desire to do good there, but it takes a back seat, very firmly, to his personal vendetta, at least in chapter 1. Wyll is a liar. This is his defining character trait. He lies to you about more or less everything, and when you confront him about it, he lies to you again, and when you catch him out on that lie, he lies to you again, and back-handed calls you an idiot for good measure, even when you both know that he's lying, and he knows that you know, and there's no question of doubt at all. He didn't make his pact for fame and glory - he made it for revenge, but the fame and glory is a fun perk that he craves. right now, he says he's looking for a way to properly break his pact in a way that means no-one loses their soul and no-one suffers... and he says his pact-holder is even amenable to it, because they have some kind of relationship that's more than just patron and warlock. He says. He also lies. About Everything. So who knows? We're not allowed to insight check his lies, so he's allowed to lie to us with impunity about anything, apparently.

you basically said what I wanted to say about all these characters, especially to justify Gale and Wyll. I'll just add a few notes to each character.

Lae'zel: What you have described is what Lae''zel is. Which makes me think about what's gonna happen in her personal story in the future. The rest of the companions have a direction of what will they up to except Lae'zel. Apparently, if you defeat the githyanki raiders with Lae'zel, she will feel very pissed for being treated like shit. I think this would be a hint about what's coming to her. Probably after meeting with other Githyanki, her view about other races and the world could be shaken.

Shadowheart: As you said, she's definitely a popular character. And there is enough datamined content to support the theory that she's a Seluner, rather than a Sharran. But I don't think she could be Avatar of Selune, maybe a Chosen is more possible. Sharrans kidnapping and brainwashing a Selune chosen is something that happened before. And there is definitely a reason why she's so important to the game. She even tells you that she's a part of a big plan of this whole thing. It's definitely not a coincidence that she and Lae'zel are the two companions you meet on the nautiloid.
PS: speaking of avatar and chosen
huge spoiler read at your own risk
the Nightsong we still haven't met is ver likely to be Shar's avatar. And some voice lines point out that Shar could come back and reclaim the Nightsong if we don't plan our cards right. and Ketheric Throm, the former Shar's chosen, has been the chosen of the Absolute now.

Astarian: He's one that actually shows power-hungry and selfish traits among the companions. and I'm pretty sure part of his personality comes from his life before becoming a vampire spawn. Also, he's the only one who wound use tadpole's power willingly rather than denies it. he's quite sensitive about your altitude towards him and others, like being uncomfortable about you show sympathy toward his experience and get jealous about you should affection about the others at the celebration.

Gale: my little precious petal(speaking in Autie Ethel's voice). He's a talented wizard from a young age. We can tell he's very proud of his talent and very fond of studying magic. Probably even kinda arrogant, which Shadowheart points out that he barely be a humble species. This probably led to his backstory. His talent and power won the attention of Mystra and Mystra probably sees his potential being a chosen. However, his arrogant altitude turns Mystra off and leaves him. For a spoiled man like Gale, it's hard to be rejected like that. Then what he did next makes him understand the price of not humbling himself. Speaking of his relationship with Tav, he indeed cares about you a lot. he enjoys your company as long as you join him by your side. When you meet with Nettie, if you let Nettie poison you and convince her to give you the antidote, you will get a unique dialogue with Gale if you have him in your party. And surprisingly he's raging and yelling about what you have been treated like "how could she do this to you!", which is quite opposite to what he usually looks like in a conversation.

Wyll: Wyll is the good buddy in my opinion. He did lie a lot before we finally discover what's his past like. Partially I think it's because he's kinda naive to believe that he can get this all done secretly, also he's kinda ashamed of what actually made him today. He gets deceived by his patron and was forced to make the pack at the lowest point of his life with only revenge in his heart. His "glory& fame" seeking behaviours are just self-redemption he made to comfort himself. he probably feels like "as long as I can use this new power to do good things, this deal with the devil will not sound too bad as it seems". He realized that it's not true at all later. And after you confront him about everything we have witnessed, he starts to be honest. He would tell you that there is something I still have not told you yet, but I will when I feel I'm ready to do so.

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Originally Posted by ALexws
Originally Posted by Niara
sure, I'll play!


Lae'zel is loyal to her queen, not to anyone else. She has killed her own family members for no greater reason than because her queen... or, at least, a superior to her in rank who spoke with the queen's authority, ordered it, and she takes pride in her ruthlessness. Her queen, it may be worth mentioning, is an ancient Lich who literally devours the souls of her people to continue her own existence, denying them any kind of afterlife, and in service to their queen, that is the ultimate fate of all Githyanki who survive long enough to meet it. Lae'zel would attack and kill you in a heartbeat and have no regrets or remorse about it, and does not do so only because she currently views you as the most valuable tool she has at her disposal for progressing her quest for a cure. She is the most lawful stupid that has ever lawful stupid-ed, and is blinded so badly by her unreciprocated devotion to her queen that she cannot see that her own people's 'cleansing' ritual is just a quick death - even when confronted with the fact of it. Lae'zel is honest because she's too thick-witted to be otherwise. Like most of her people, she views material plane denizens as slaves and fodder, and believes herself to be absolutely superior to them in all ways - and makes no bones about telling you so. If you want someone hungry for power and bearing a deep superiority complex, who is only on the look out for number one and no-one else, look no further than Lae'zel.

Shadowheart is the kind of person who believes that it is her divine right to pry into other people's business and know everything about them, but believes with equal absolute certainty that no-one has any right whatsoever to ask any of those questions of her. Her attitude is almost always condescending towards you, even when you try to say the right things; she always acts like she knows everything you might say before you say it, and like she knows better than you at every turn, whether it's true or not (it usually isn't). She is the super-star of the game and Larian love her with the burning passion of a thousand suns, so expect that a game without Shadowheart will be a much more empty and dull one, because you'll miss out on the overbalanced legion of extra content written specifically for her. She's the only character that is repeatedly forced into your party whether you want her or not. Amongst all that content, she has a lot more 'reasonable person' lines now than she once did, and it's quite possible for someone to play through the game, (maybe) without really bumping into any of her unreasonable bitchiness at all, now... though you've got to avoid asking her about anything more or less ever, so... it's a character that 'rewards(?)' you for not engaging with her, and letting her limelight on you whenever she wants. Shadowheart is, naturally, the brainwashed present day avatar of Selune, and will play a pivotal part in saving the day when she ascends temporarily to godhood towards the end of the game - she'll probably want to be with you by the end of the game, whether you're really interested or not, though it will be phrased as you being desperate to stay with her.

Astarion has a lot of personal trauma and damage, for certain, but it doesn't really change the fact that his entire characterisation is bloodthirsty murder-hobo for the giggles of it. For all the depth they have so far attempted to inject into his character he remains woefully two-dimensional and predictable as a person. Vampires, and vampire spawn by extension, aren't really capable of things like loyalty and love. They imitate them, and some develop obsessions about facets of them, but they don't really have those experiences any more. If you want to talk about lore, talk about FR lore, not other sources to which this doesn't apply. Astarion is likely to want to stay with you as long as your fun and interesting and provide him with stable availability of blood. He will even probably pretend towards emulations of care and affection as best he can manage.

Gale didn't help you on the ship for the same reason that Astarion didn't (recall that he mentions seeing you on the ship as well), despite also seeing you on the ship as well - they were both just as incapacitated as you were at the time. Gale never says anything about wanting to be the most powerful wizard; I'm not sure where you're getting that. He's not power hungry either - again, not sure where you're getting that from. He was, formerly, an archmage - an exceptionally powerful and experienced wizard, and on top of that was once the favoured of Mystra, and even her lover for a time (once again, blame Larian's overblown npc backstories for this ridiculousness). He sought to impress her and did something very stupid, and now, as well as losing her favour over it, is attempting to deal with the problem it's left him with - this is not a selfish motive, and I'm not sure why you see it as one. He has contingencies set up to warn people if he dies unexpectedly, and has supplied the means of preventing disaster on his person. He lets you know that it is his intention, if he ever reaches a point where he cannot stave off his nuke any more, that he intends to remove himself out to the depths of some far ocean so that his detonation won't pose a risk of harm to anyone else. Gale needs powerful relics to keep himself alive, but that doesn't make him power-hungry. Gale believes that he is generally more knowledgeable and more experienced in matters of magic than anyone else present - it does come off as condescending at times, definitely, but you are generally given a chance to 'keep up' with him, and have him acknowledge you for doing so, unlike the better-than-you writing of most of the other companions. It also stems from the fact that, at least in gale's case, his certainty is based on fact - he generally is more knowledgeable than 99% of people he meets (archmage?), and even though he has been brutally depowered now, the knowledge and experience hasn't gone away. His introduction dialogue is his worst one, now, as it's still pitched to treat the player like a moron, but Gale isn't alone in being written that way towards the PC much of the time. Gale is the character who gets the most genuinely emotionally invested and attached to you, if you are friendly to him -some might suggest a little too quickly, perhaps, but it's still a legitimate feeling of affection and care that he develops and expresses - one of the few cases where this is genuinely confirmed outside of tadpole tricks, since it was a weave-wrought emotional link instead. Of all of the characters, he is easily the most likely to remain loyal to you after all the dangers are taken care of, and he will do so because of the sort of person you are, and because he likes you, not for any other reason.

Wyll wants to be a good person, but more than that he wants to be seen to be a good person - as you say, he wants fame and glory. There is a genuine desire to do good there, but it takes a back seat, very firmly, to his personal vendetta, at least in chapter 1. Wyll is a liar. This is his defining character trait. He lies to you about more or less everything, and when you confront him about it, he lies to you again, and when you catch him out on that lie, he lies to you again, and back-handed calls you an idiot for good measure, even when you both know that he's lying, and he knows that you know, and there's no question of doubt at all. He didn't make his pact for fame and glory - he made it for revenge, but the fame and glory is a fun perk that he craves. right now, he says he's looking for a way to properly break his pact in a way that means no-one loses their soul and no-one suffers... and he says his pact-holder is even amenable to it, because they have some kind of relationship that's more than just patron and warlock. He says. He also lies. About Everything. So who knows? We're not allowed to insight check his lies, so he's allowed to lie to us with impunity about anything, apparently.

you basically said what I wanted to say about all these characters, especially to justify Gale and Wyll. I'll just add a few notes to each character.

Lae'zel: What you have described is what Lae''zel is. Which makes me think about what's gonna happen in her personal story in the future. The rest of the companions have a direction of what will they up to except Lae'zel. Apparently, if you defeat the githyanki raiders with Lae'zel, she will feel very pissed for being treated like shit. I think this would be a hint about what's coming to her. Probably after meeting with other Githyanki, her view about other races and the world could be shaken.

Shadowheart: As you said, she's definitely a popular character. And there is enough datamined content to support the theory that she's a Seluner, rather than a Sharran. But I don't think she could be Avatar of Selune, maybe a Chosen is more possible. Sharrans kidnapping and brainwashing a Selune chosen is something that happened before. And there is definitely a reason why she's so important to the game. She even tells you that she's a part of a big plan of this whole thing. It's definitely not a coincidence that she and Lae'zel are the two companions you meet on the nautiloid.
PS: speaking of avatar and chosen
huge spoiler read at your own risk
the Nightsong we still haven't met is ver likely to be Shar's avatar. And some voice lines point out that Shar could come back and reclaim the Nightsong if we don't plan our cards right. and Ketheric Throm, the former Shar's chosen, has been the chosen of the Absolute now.

Astarian: He's one that actually shows power-hungry and selfish traits among the companions. and I'm pretty sure part of his personality comes from his life before becoming a vampire spawn. Also, he's the only one who wound use tadpole's power willingly rather than denies it. he's quite sensitive about your altitude towards him and others, like being uncomfortable about you show sympathy toward his experience and get jealous about you should affection about the others at the celebration.

Gale: my little precious petal(speaking in Autie Ethel's voice). He's a talented wizard from a young age. We can tell he's very proud of his talent and very fond of studying magic. Probably even kinda arrogant, which Shadowheart points out that he barely be a humble species. This probably led to his backstory. His talent and power won the attention of Mystra and Mystra probably sees his potential being a chosen. However, his arrogant altitude turns Mystra off and leaves him. For a spoiled man like Gale, it's hard to be rejected like that. Then what he did next makes him understand the price of not humbling himself. Speaking of his relationship with Tav, he indeed cares about you a lot. he enjoys your company as long as you join him by your side. When you meet with Nettie, if you let Nettie poison you and convince her to give you the antidote, you will get a unique dialogue with Gale if you have him in your party. And surprisingly he's raging and yelling about what you have been treated like "how could she do this to you!", which is quite opposite to what he usually looks like in a conversation.

Wyll: Wyll is the good buddy in my opinion. He did lie a lot before we finally discover what's his past like. Partially I think it's because he's kinda naive to believe that he can get this all done secretly, also he's kinda ashamed of what actually made him today. He gets deceived by his patron and was forced to make the pack at the lowest point of his life with only revenge in his heart. His "glory& fame" seeking behaviours are just self-redemption he made to comfort himself. he probably feels like "as long as I can use this new power to do good things, this deal with the devil will not sound too bad as it seems". He realized that it's not true at all later. And after you confront him about everything we have witnessed, he starts to be honest. He would tell you that there is something I still have not told you yet, but I will when I feel I'm ready to do so.

Like I told Niara, that's all interesting information on these characters but the point of this thread to to discuss why we like or do not like each companion. What you two have done is discuss the personalities and background of a character, not why you like or do not like each character. For example, I said that I feel that Lae'zel, Shadowheart and Astarion are better companions or more loyal based on MY observation after having spoken to each companion and getting all their backstory. There is no right or wrong answer here just how do you feel about each character.

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Originally Posted by Lady Avyna
That's all very interesting but you didn't say why you like or do not like the characters. You just made a huge response to everything I wrote and rebutted most of my experiences. In some instances it almost sounded like you are questioning my reasons. You spoke in general terms. This wasn't meant to be a debate but how YOU feel about those characters.

Sorry, I was just giving my own take on the characters in response to yours - I keyed the flow of what I was saying off the things you said, so if it felt like I was arguing or attacking, I'm sorry - that wasn't the intention. some of your impressions did confuse me and I am genuinely curious about how you came to them, but I didn't mean to come off as though I was attacking your views.

Originally Posted by Lady Avyna
For example, I said that I feel that Lae'zel, Shadowheart and Astarion are better companions or more loyal based on MY observation after having spoken to each companion and getting all their backstory.

Er, is that not also what others have done? I feel as though I offered the view that some characters were likely to be loyal and others were likely not to be based on my views and impressions of them... isn't that exactly what you're doing and asked others to do?

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Originally Posted by Niara
Originally Posted by Lady Avyna
That's all very interesting but you didn't say why you like or do not like the characters. You just made a huge response to everything I wrote and rebutted most of my experiences. In some instances it almost sounded like you are questioning my reasons. You spoke in general terms. This wasn't meant to be a debate but how YOU feel about those characters.

Sorry, I was just giving my own take on the characters in response to yours - I keyed the flow of what I was saying off the things you said, so if it felt like I was arguing or attacking, I'm sorry - that wasn't the intention. some of your impressions did confuse me and I am genuinely curious about how you came to them, but I didn't mean to come off as though I was attacking your views.

Originally Posted by Lady Avyna
For example, I said that I feel that Lae'zel, Shadowheart and Astarion are better companions or more loyal based on MY observation after having spoken to each companion and getting all their backstory.

Er, is that not also what others have done? I feel as though I offered the view that some characters were likely to be loyal and others were likely not to be based on my views and impressions of them... isn't that exactly what you're doing and asked others to do?

I understand your impression on each character but what I meant was a discussion as to why we like or do not like each character, regardless of what our point of view is. It wasn't meant to come off a a debate. For example, I find Astarion to be my favorite character because I like how sassy he is and I have a thing for vampires. I don't like Wyll because he comes off as a person that wants to be some famous hero and have a following, that's why I said he seems selfish. Things like that.

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Fair enough,

I don't care for Lae'zel because she's haughty, condescending in the extreme, has a superiority complex a mile high, but primarily because she never treats the player character with anything even approaching basic decency or respect, and though it makes a certain amount of racially understood sense for her, a raving racist as well - in short, she's a nasty piece of work and a product of her cultural upbringing, and the nuances of her supposed insecurities that they're trying to suggest don't even make a dent on that negative for me. She is not the kind of person I'd ever choose to spend time around willingly.

I don't care for Shadowheart because she's haughty, condescending in the extreme, has a superiority complex a mile high, but primarily because she's an entitled brat who thinks the deserves the world from everyone but owes no-one anything. I'm put off her further becasue of her obvious golden-child favoured status at Larian HQ. She has more balanced characterisation now, but all of the old stuff still exists, which give her a sort of split personality issue that Larian haven't smoothed over yet. If someone insisted on knowing things about me and claimed it was their right, after refusing absolutely to tell me anything at all about herself, and condescended to me about it being none of my business, but also found the space to condescend further at me about how she could read me like a book and knew exactly the sort of person I was, I'd walk away, and I'd refuse to associate with that person any further - they are not worth it.

I don't care for Astarion because he's haughty, frequently condescending, but primarily because he's a walking, talking two-dimensional vampire romance fiction garbage fire that is hitting all of those predictable, worn out cliches in perfect iambic pentameter, and received the dubious honour of being Larian's "let's just murder everyone" character - because Larian feels compelled to always HAVE one, and he's it in this game. He's also their token undead character, which they also feel compelled to have one of in each game... not for any reason, but just because it's what Larian do... rather than giving us some actually decent racial diversity in the character line-up. I would never willingly spend my time in the company of someone who just thinks that killing people is fun and funny, and an appropriate course of action tog et what you want, as Astarion clearly does.

I don't care for Wyll because he's show-boater hiding a bloody-minded, sadistic desire for revenge underneath the facade of being a hero, and because he refuses to treat the player with the kind of basic respect and decency that normal people do. He lies, then treats you like an idiot when you call him out on it, treats you even more disrespectfully by lying to you further, and further again; each step of his plan turns out to be another fib inside another fib, and I don't feel I can really trust a single thing he says to me, at any point, now. He tells himself he wants to be good - maybe he even believes it - and surely if he was asked to choose simply 'be good or don't, he'd choose good... but actually being a good person is many rungs down his importance ladder, underneath his personal vendettas and his revenge. He's more interested in being seen to be good than actually being so; he's selfish and shallow, despite wishing he was otherwise. If I am honest, I would have severed ties after the third direct-to-face lie; not worth it.

I quite like Gale. His introduction is still very condescending, and that's annoying, but it's the worst bit of him, now. Gale always treats the character with respect, whether he's asking for help or explaining something to them. He retains a balance of levity and gravity in his approach to the seriousness of your situation, and upholds the idea that even if things are desperate, there's always time for civility. I like gale because he is honest and upfront as a character; he's as honest as Lae'zel, and it means more from him because he has the wit and tact not to be if he chose to - while she does not. Gale is clear and forthright about his condition, most of our other companions, and I appreciate this. He also seems to very honestly want to do the right thing by people wherever possible, without being an irrational idealist. He asks for what he needs, offers what answers he can, and rather than lying about anything, simply tells you, politely, when he cannot answer something (unlike shadow, who is always rude in her refusals). He displays a willingness to protect others from his own mistakes, even when it's going to cost him his life, and has done his best to take precautions against others being harmed by his past mistakes as best as he can. It also seems that he's not trying to repeat his mistake, but actually just wants to fix it. I enjoy his academic wit and banter; he's my type, at least as far as males are concerned. I would quite willingly spend an adventure with this character.

Most of the above complaints are more attributable to Larian's writing of the characters, rather than the characters themselves, which is why I'm more inclined to discuss the actual details of their situations. Larian has been praised of many things... the writing in their games is definitely not one of them.

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I have to snatch this quote by Niara, because it fits exactly my sentiment of Astarion:
Quote
I don't care for Astarion because he's haughty, frequently condescending, but primarily because he's a walking, talking two-dimensional vampire romance fiction garbage fire that is hitting all of those predictable, worn out cliches in perfect iambic pentameter, and received the dubious honour of being Larian's "let's just murder everyone" character

Astarion for me is the worst character, because of the above - he is two dimensional, annoying and a walking cliche.

I do like Shadowheart, most of my characters get on well with her. And hers is the only romance, I'm interested in. I hate the 'Let's go bonk' approach of the other characters. I like her 'Let's go, drink some wine and get to know each otehr better' approach. She can com across as bitchy sometimes, but in her case, I might explain that away with her lost memory.

Gale is ok in my book. He is the companion, that seems to complain the least (at least the way, I'm playing normally) and is easy to get along. I suspect, that he might take a dark turn, but that is gut feeling ... maybe based a little on his devotion for Mystra (in the sense, that he might do anything to get her favor back).

Wyll is ok too. Like Niara, I don't like, that he doesn't stop lying, but he works as a deeply flawed and insecure character. His bravado is clearly jus ta show. I'm interested in seeing, where he went later on in the game.

Lae'zel makes sense in the way she is written - gith warrior, devout to her queen Vlaakith, ruthless in approaching her goals. But I do find her grating some times. Granted, she is pretty straight forward with what she wants, but sometimes, her offstandishness is just too much for me.


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To be fair, there's someone I know who likes Astarion for exactly the same reason that I don't ^.^

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Originally Posted by Niara
To be fair, there's someone I know who likes Astarion for exactly the same reason that I don't ^.^

I find it interesting that you and Fylimar find Astarion two-dimensional. Did you guys do the speak to the dead on Galandrel if you chose to not betray Astarion? There is some interesting information about who really wants Astarion. It makes me wonder how important could Astarion be? I also think Larian favors Astarion as he is so far the only who has a love song in the game which plays during camp. It’s called “I want to live.” The composer liked everyone’s comment that mentioned Astarion, that’s the conclusion that people came with about the song being for Astarion.

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I generally deal with the hunter amicably and it doesn't come to a fight, though the times when it does, SwD considers you the killer, even if you didn't participate directly; how do you see that one?

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Originally Posted by Lady Avyna
It makes me wonder how important could Astarion be?

Probably more than we think. There is one scene that he is trying to figure out the meaning of scars on his back. And it's a confirmation from Astarian that Cazador carves them on his back. And turns out it's a part of an infernal pact with the devil. Consider we actually have dealt with things from Nine Hell more than once in Act 1.

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Originally Posted by Niara
I generally deal with the hunter amicably and it doesn't come to a fight, though the times when it does, SwD considers you the killer, even if you didn't participate directly; how do you see that one?


If you choose to kill Gandrel and use the speak with dead spell, you get dialogue choices where you find new information about why he wanted to capture Astarion. You learn that it's not Cazador but someone known as Maiden Fel. The reason as to why she wants Astarion alive and unharmed remains to be seen. Some players speculate that is could have something to do with the scar that Astarion has on his back. What's the reason behind that we still don't know. Even Astarion wants to find out what was done to him.

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Originally Posted by ALexws
Originally Posted by Lady Avyna
It makes me wonder how important could Astarion be?

Probably more than we think. There is one scene that he is trying to figure out the meaning of scars on his back. And it's a confirmation from Astarian that Cazador carves them on his back. And turns out it's a part of an infernal pact with the devil. Consider we actually have dealt with things from Nine Hell more than once in Act 1.

Exactly, there is more to Astarion than meets the eye.

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Originally Posted by Lady Avyna
Originally Posted by Niara
To be fair, there's someone I know who likes Astarion for exactly the same reason that I don't ^.^

I find it interesting that you and Fylimar find Astarion two-dimensional. Did you guys do the speak to the dead on Galandrel if you chose to not betray Astarion? There is some interesting information about who really wants Astarion. It makes me wonder how important could Astarion be? I also think Larian favors Astarion as he is so far the only who has a love song in the game which plays during camp. It’s called “I want to live.” The composer liked everyone’s comment that mentioned Astarion, that’s the conclusion that people came with about the song being for Astarion.

Being important doesn't make a character interesting - those are two different things.

Last edited by fylimar; 02/11/21 12:53 PM.

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