jaebility: (ffx // j&defeated!a)
School and internships have been keeping me busy, but yesterday I had some time to catch up with what really matters: Dragon Age. Dragon Age FOREVER.

On the 360, I'm getting my Hawkes ready for the DLC exploding into the marketplace this Tuesday. Finished second playthrough of f!rogue!Hawke a while ago and am starting her up for the third time, this time as diplomatic. The voice actor for male!Hawke has dibs on the sarcastic lines. Sassy Gay Hawke is probably the best thing in existence. My m!mage!Hawke sauces is up all over the place, even when its inappropriate or downright mean.

I thought I'd be playing the Hawkes the same way, since I tend to stick to the same decisions each time I play the game, but it's interesting (to me, anyway), how differently the Hawkes developed in my head!canon. Larissa Hawke has become wiser and more jaded, turning her concern inward to her family and her lover as she realizes that she can't save Kirkwall. Tristan Hawke isn't as obsessed with freedom as Anders, but he does support it, if only to piss off their opponents. Both Hawkes latched onto their resident Ser Pouts-A-Lot because it is just impossible to resist his scruffy sadness. At the end of the game, Larissa stands by Anders because he's the only thing she has left, and she'll be damned if anyone takes him away from her. Tristan is more like MAGE BROFIST FOREVER.

But yeah, stoked for the DLC. Twenty hours of companion conversation. Twenty hours. How do they I don't even. One of our wedding presents from a gamer friend was XBox Live points, so I am all set to download the hell out the DLC.

Aaaaand I also got DA:O for the PC. I had an Amazon gift certificate and as much as I love DA:O, there are some annoying bugs and quirks in the 360 version. Playing as my Cousland again so I can romance Alistair. Modded the bejeezus out of it; the best one was probably the Skip the Fade mod, but the mod to give Wardens the sexy blue armor from DA2 may be my favorite.
jaebility: (arch // lighthouse)
[community profile] fannish5: Name five characters whose religious beliefs are important to them.

Dragon Age only!

1) Leliana - Her beliefs in the Maker diverge from those expounded by the Chantry, but her faith is strong enough to support her through the criticism she receives, as well as to encourage her to leave the safety of the cloistered life to join the Warden on his/her march toward death.
2) Sebastian - The man defines himself by his position in the Chantry. All of his decisions are filtered through his interpretation of the Maker. He lives and kills by it.
3) Anders - Oooh, Anders. Fandom's full of discussion about Anders' faith and his view of Andraste. He compares himself and his mission - not unjustly, I think - to the Divine's bride and her exalted genocide.
4) Merrill - The Dalish's religion is as shattered as their culture. Merrill keeps the old ways as alive as she's able, a bittersweet task that causes her to lose as much, if not more, than what she was trying to save.
5) The Qunari - I read somewhere that the Qun is sort of like militaristic Confucianism, which is fascinating. Sten, in the first game, bored me to tears, but the Arishok and his unyielding dependence on the Qun was creepily awesome. It's not that his beliefs are important, they are the absolute definitions of the entire world.
jaebility: (da // hawkward)
They were almost the same age - or at least looked almost the same age, since no one could get the Anders boy to divulge any of his personal information - so even though the apprentices and the recruits were instructed to remain in their separate quarters of the tower, he ran into him on occasion, both drawn to the few activities and places in the Circle that promised some modicum of fun.

Cullen was in the kitchen the first time, standing over a platter of cooling rolls and feeling the weight of guilt on his shoulders even though he hadn't even touched one yet. There was a snort at his side and before Cullen could grab the wooden sword strapped to his back, the Anders boy had his hands all over the bread, stuffing the rolls into pockets and pouches.

"They're for dinner," Cullen said in an astonished sort of voice that was too high to be impressive. "You can't do that."

"Course I can!" The Anders boy shoved another one down his boot, of all places. "I'm hungry now. Dinner's not for ages."

"If the cooks catch you-"

"They won't, not if you don't tell."

Cullen knew that he should. There were a whole lot of shoulds that he'd been memorizing. Duty was a list of shoulds and honor was a list of should nots. But for some reason, he couldn't think of any of them. The Anders boy's initial look of wariness was replaced with amusement as he waited for Cullen's delayed response, until finally he took of a bite of the last roll and said through a mouthful, "Bread magic is almost as bad as blood magic, you know. Ooh arrgg I'm turning into a pastry abomination."

"That's not funny," Cullen began but then the Anders boy shoved the roll into Cullen's hand and spun on his heel fast as a rogue.

"Arrgg," he said cheerfully, waving over his shoulder.

The roll was still warm enough to be appetizing, even with the bite mark and missing chunk. Cullen frowned at it, at the empty platter, and the door that Anders boy had already slid through. When voices from the back of the kitchen grew louder, Cullen backed away from the table and hurried out the way he'd came. It'd be silly to put it back and wasteful to throw it away, so he stuffed it in his mouth as he jumped down the stairs. He hadn't stolen it - that had been the Anders boy - so he didn't have to feel guilty.

It was possible that mages weren't all bad. But they weren't all good either.
jaebility: (da // characters)
Anders: So you were a templar?
Alistair: Not really; I never took the vows.
Anders: It's not just the vows that make a templar.
Alistair: Skipped out on the lyrium addiction, too.
Anders: Mages don't have that advantage. We can never simply walk away.
Alistair: Would you, if you were able?
Anders: Never.

Alistair: Were you at the Tower when... you know. Abominations and demons and grrr.
Anders: Uldred's rebellion, you mean? Yes, I was. To a degree - I was in solitary confinement.
Alistair: That was lucky.
Anders: Was it? Seemed more like cruelty to me.

Cousland: You love her/him. Hawke.
Anders: I do. Why?
Cousland: I'm glad for you. And proud.
Anders: Thanks, Mother.

Hawke: Traveling with the King and Queen of Ferelden. Varric will never believe me.
Alistair: I don't believe it, half the time.
Anders: I don't know if that's endearing or horrifying.

Anders: Alistair isn't what I expected, for a templar or for a king.
Cousland: Choose your next words carefully, Anders.
Anders: I meant that in a good way!
Cousland: Well?
Anders: He's sort of adorable, isn't he?

Hawke: You aren't a Warden anymore - Why do are you doing this?
Alistair: For the fresh air?
Hawke: I can't imagine you prefer sleeping on the ground in the rain, eating burnt frogs, picking bugs out of your hair.
Alistair: It isn't easy...
Hawke: You can say that again.
Alistair: ...But Ferelden doesn't need me to do what is easy. It needs me to do what is right.

gay!anders

Sep. 7th, 2011 11:16 pm
jaebility: (da // annnnders)
One of the many things I love about Dragon Age 2 is that the four main love interests are bisexual. Or Hawke-sexual. Point being that regardless of Hawke's gender, s/he can romance any and all of the four LI characters.

Playing as dude!mage!Hawke now. Labor Day weekend was full of much DA, and I burnt through the first act and am making my merry way through the second. Anders. Oh Maker, Anders. I romanced him as f!Hawke my first and second play-throughs, and was considering branching out to Fenris as m!Hawke, since between The Boyfriend and me, we've loved up all the other characters but him.

But there's a whole other side, a whole other history of Anders when you pursue him as m!Hawke.

It might also be because Hawke is a mage this time around; Anders, who was already a dedicated and incredibly devoted lover to my f!Hawke, is even more desperate to win mage!m!Hawke's approval. There was one scene in particular in which my Hawke defended the constantly victimized mages, and Anders beside him smiled with such surprised joy and pride.

Or maybe it's a combination of the two. Rogue!f!Hawke is two steps away from him - she doesn't understand what it's like to be a mage, nor what it's like to be attracted to other men. She's an outsider who can sympathize, but never really understand; she watches from a safe distance. Sure, she comes from a family with magic, but that fear, that hatred has never been directed at her personally.

This game. So awesome.
jaebility: (da // cool story anders)
Carver does not want to hear about it, for Andraste's sake, but that doesn't mean that Tristan doesn't want to talk about it, and when his brother wants to talk, that means that Carver has to hear. Plugging his ears, ordering him to shut his blighted mouth, making an escape out the back door while his brother is distracted, Carver's tried everything to conquer his brother's determination. But at the end of the day, Tristan is older and bigger and Mother likes him best, which means that at two in the morning when Tristan wants to speculate about the blighted Fereldan Warden apostate's love life, Carver's pulled into the conversation as an unwilling participate.

His brother hangs over the edge of their bunk bed like he's twelve and not twice that. "He couldn't have been much older than fifteen, if I'm doing my math right. Seven escapes, one year with the Wardens."

Carver opens his mouth to say that all apostates know how to do is lie, but his brother keeps forging on.

"Seven attempts, Carver. Seven. Maker knows why they didn't just make him tranquil. He should have come to Lothering."

Carver wants to say that the apostate should have drowned himself and saved them all a lot of trouble, and if his brother doesn't mind, it's practically dawn and he'd like to get some sleep before they're yanked back out into the streets for their daily scramble for coin, but his brother's discussion is only meant for one voice.

"Judging by all that grey, Thekla had to be at least forty. You don't think Anders has some sort of older man fetish, do you? Unresolved father issues? How do you think I'd look with a beard?"

Carver doesn't even try to think of a reply to that query. Instead he kicks the underside of his brother's bed so hard that Tristan nearly topples out of it.
jaebility: (digimon // daiken squint)
11. Favorite song from the soundtracks

Easy: "I Am the One," written by Inon Zur and sung by Aubrey Ashburn. It's so hauntingly beautiful - the wailing rise and fall of her voice sends shivers over my skin. The first time I heard it, I'd just beaten the game. The sad triumph of the Warden is captured perfectly.

The rest of the questions )
jaebility: (ffx // y&r&p)
I am in obsessed crush-mode over my f!Hawke. My first play-through I used default!Hawke, but this time with the help of The Boy, I designed an absolutely gorgeous character. Total girl crush.

She's Larissa Hawke again, rogue extraordinaire with a soft spot for scruffy mages. I am playing her a bit differently, though. First time I went with snark all the way to the end; this time she's more focused on her family, and uses gentler tones with her mother and sister, and the friends she adopts. And she takes no shit from people threatening her loved ones. No fucking shit at all dagger to the face.

Almost done with play-through #2 of DA:O. I'm at the Landsmeet, preparing for the difficult task of conscripting secret!character. Once I've finished that, it'll be a quick run through DA:O-A, then I'll finally play as a male character in DA2. Got his name picked out: Tristan. ...Who's probably going to romance Anders again.

/dorkiness that no one other than me cares about
jaebility: (da // cool story anders)
Title: Take Away the Lonely Days
Fandom: Dragon Age 2
Rating: PGish?
Warnings: Nope
Author's note: Oh god Anders why won't you love me. Title comes from "Cats and Dogs" by the amazing band Head and the Heart.

She woke up in phases, the red cloudy world clearing slowly and that awful banging in her head like a ogre in a a room full of bells gradually quieting. "Andraste's flaming tits," she swore as she struggled up into a sitting, leaning, tilting position. She touched her head gingerly then frowned at the flakes of dried blood on her fingers.

Read more... )
jaebility: (random // key)
10. Favorite party banter
Oh god, the banter in these games are so, go good. I can't choose just one conversation.

Nathaniel: You don't always wear robes, do you?
Anders: Not when I'm naked I don't.

Alistair: Why are you smiling like that? You look suspiciously like the cat who swallowed the pigeon.
Wynne: Canary.
Alistair: What?
Wynne: I look like the cat that swallowed the canary.
Alistair: I once had a very large cat, but that's not my point. My point is why are you smirking?
Wynne: (Chuckles) You were watching her. With great interest, I might add. In fact, I believe you were...enraptured.
Alistair: She's our leader. I look to her for guidance.
Wynne: Oh, I see. So what guidance did you find in those swaying hips, hmm?
Alistair: No no no, I wasn't looking at...you know her...hind-quarters
Wynne: Certainly.
Alistair: I gazed...glanced, in that direction, maybe, but I wasn't staring...or really seeing anything even.
Wynne: Of course.
Alistair: I hate you. You're a bad person.

Isabela: I'm sorry, I don't speak never-gets-sex-again.

Anders: You're quite the dirty little dwarf, aren't you?
Oghren: And you're quite the dirty little mage.
Anders: I do my best. Still, I'm no ale-swilling mountain of belches like you!
Oghren: And I'm no winking, slack-jawed coward like you.
Anders: True! We should form a club!

Finn: Do you ever wish you had the freedom to piss anywhere and not have people stare at you?
Ariane: No. Do you?
Finn: Er... no! Of course not...

The rest of the questions )
jaebility: (digimon // daiken tree)
The Commander blew out a lazy breath of smoke and stubbed the cigarette into an already over-flowing tray. "All right boys, you know the deal. We're in, we're out, and nobody's the wiser." She tilted back her hat and observed the gang with a cool gaze. "Anders and Nate, you're with me. Sigrun, I want you at the back - Anyone tries to get in, you let 'em know we don't take kindly to interruptions."
jaebility: (da // hawkward)
9. Favorite class (ie, mage, warrior, rogue, assassin, healer…)
Ooh, tough one. I like all the classes I've played: bow!rogue, dual-wielding warrior, and daggers!rogue. Looking forward to trying out elemental mage in DA2, which'll be my next game. It's hard to say, since the fighting is so different between the games.


The rest of the questions )
jaebility: (random // rebel without a cause)
Got the two Dragon Age books. Read them. Bout one of the limited edition DA prints from Bioware. Just now bought jakface" amazing calendar. I love love love her art and this calendar looks hilariously sexily awesome.

I've been doing cool things, too, I swear!


...Played a good 15 hours in my f!Brosca DA game this weekend. She's incredibly awkward, telling jokes that know one gets, not getting the jokes everyone else tells. Cousland was a sweet-talker, Brosca has no persuasion skills. I was joking with The Boy about it - I had to pry Leliana off Cousland during my first play-through; now that I'm wooing her, she doesn't give my poor lonely character the time of day. Half-way through the game and Brosca only just got her first kiss, one that she had to initiate herself after stumbling through one of the most awkward conversations ever. Apparently DA characters only like you when you're hard to get.

Edit: New DA2 DLC announcement tomorrow! Sorry work, sorry school, I have important matters to attend.
jaebility: (pw // winnar)
In a surprising turn for the sensible, the Supreme Court ruled that video games are protected by free speech in the same way that literature is. Through the ESRB rating system, the video game industry has been policing itself and despite what some crazy parents think, I consider that effective.

I'm still on the fence if video games are art. But I certainly think that they can tell good stories, and by protecting the industry from censorship, they can continue to do so. There's certainly gratuitous violence and sex - god knows some games make me want to destroy the TV and crawl up in my bed and weep for humanity - but sometimes you need those things to craft the world and its tale.

Dragon Age. DA and all its parts have M ratings for blood and gore, sex, and language. They're games for adult players featuring adult characters. Though the arguments focused on violence, I think the inclusion of sex in M games, and in Bioware titles in particular, also plays a part. Fox News had a field day after Mass Effect was released... Something about graphic lesbianism or something, if I recall correctly. Taking out the sex from the romance does a disservice - I mean, damn, we're adults We have sex. Shocking! People who fall in love tend to search for ways to display that feeling physically. Relationships have passion, sometimes bad decisions, sometimes end well and sometimes don't. The culmination of a romance is satisfying because the characters and their relationships are so well developed. Excluding sex doesn't just make the relationship incomplete, it makes it unrealistic.
jaebility: (da // hawkward)


"Right," said Garrett, and his merry gang of miscreants turned as one to look at their fearless leader, breaths inhaled expectantly. On the run for four days already, it was beginning to become obvious even to Merril that a new plan for survival was necessary. "Right," he said again and some of his merry gang of miscreants exhaled sighs, "Anders, let's get married."

The collective stares turned toward Anders, who stopped shoveling stew into his mouth and gawked back. In the few moments it took him to not choke to death and swallow half-chewed dinner, his mind came up with the ingenious response of, "What?"

"And that allows us to escape the army from Starkhaven how exactly?" Aveline rolled up the map of the Free Marches and tucked it into her armor. "But, well, I suppose congratulations are in order."

"What?" said Anders.

Varric pounded the Warden on the back. "Make an honest man out of him, Anders. If that's possible. Not sure where you'll find a Chantry willing to let you in the door, let along hitch you, but we can worry about that later."

"What?" said Anders.

"Ooh, think about how handsome you'll be in marriage robes." Merril squeaked happily. "And clean! I've always though that you look much better when you're not covered in mud."

Anders pondered that observation and nodded in serious agreement, adding to the conversation his own ideas on the subject, "What?"

"I thought you were supposed to be the smart one," Isabela said as she and Varric hauled the mage to his feet. "Oh, don't give me your wounded-kitten face. Just kiss him already and we can get a move on."
jaebility: (random // art deco)
8. Least favorite quest
Going with the Fade part of DA:O. Ugh. Took so long to get through. f!Cousland's least favorite was probably The Deep Roads. That or going back to Ostegar, making her, Wynne, and Alistair re-live the trauma of their failure. DA2... Once again, going with fandom: All That Remains.

Hmm, but there's a difference between which they hated while they were on them verses which ones they hated because of the outcome. The conclusion of All That Remains of course traumatized poor Hawke, but so did the quest Justice. Read more... )

The rest of the questions )

yarr

Jun. 22nd, 2011 08:15 pm
jaebility: (mst3k // mr. b)
Watching Cutthroat Island with Geena Davis as the pirate Morgan. And yeah, it's awesome. A strong female lead who kicks more ass then her crew combined? and flirts through an amateur surgery? and in her first scene of the movie is sauntering away from a night of pleasure?

Of course now I want to read Morgan/Isabela. And/or just some Isabela fic where she slashes/sexes her way through to treasure.
jaebility: (beatles // p&j guitars)
Pete finished the Landsmeet yesterday. Rained on Saturday so we lazed in front of the TV and he played 12 hours of DA:O. From 4 in the afternoon until 4 at night, and he only stopped because I woke up, realized he wasn't in bed, and then came out to laugh at him. The addiction spreads! I accidentally spoiled the whole Secret Companion aspect with an off-hand remark about Pete's love of [the voice actor] Simon Templeton. But! I haven't ruined Morrigan's offer yet; we'll see how he copes with that curveball.

I haven't been into a fandom like this since... Damn, I don't know. 3:10 to Yuma, I guess. Maybe Coraline. But this obsession blows both of them out of the water. I am enthralled with this series. Hounded by it. I even joined [livejournal.com profile] dragonage_bang. The world's just so damn expansive, the characters so realistic and likeable, the plot so immersive. Arrggghhhh so good. The DA fandom seems awesome so far: really friendly and porn-tacular.

But instead of DA I played KotOR this weekend, partially to give the XBox 360 a break. I came really close to beating the game the year it was released. In fact, I played about 15 hours on Pete's XBox when we were in school, and then when I went home I bought the PC version and started it again. In fact I think I wrote about it on my LJ. Got to the last planet before my interest fizzled. Bah, I was pathetic. I'm about 15 hours in again, on Tantooine. Playing the same characters: female scout named Sade o'Lir who's romancing Carth. Oh Bioware, Y U so awesome.

I started it almost serendipitously right before E3. So now there's The Old Republic to get excited about. Quitting WoW was almost a relief - the thing was practically a second job - and I haven't even tried another MMO since. ...But TOR is tempting. Very, very tempting.
jaebility: (holmes // irene)
She struggled with a tent - blasted tents, only a human could conceive of such a flimsy structure - and in the end it took the patient instructions of Alistair to get the thing to stand. "Well," he said when it wobbled but didn't collapse, "not bad a first attempt."

"I'll just sleep by the fire," she grumbled. "Ancestors take the stupid thing."

Read more... )

more da:o

Jun. 12th, 2011 08:16 pm
jaebility: (random // princess)
He slid down her, his fingers scrabbling wetly as they tried to grasp hold her armor. With every curse he gurgled up more blood, smearing her chest, her arms, her legs as he fell. She stood silent, her hands in white fists around her daggers, but shuddered when his weight finally left her and he dropped wheezing at her feet.

She could have saved him then. Could have ordered Morrigan, could have found a potion. She could have made it easier, quicker, with a merciful jab at the heart or throat. Instead Mairen watched as Howe writhed in agony before her. She stood and watched and watched and watched as his blood stained her boots and seeped inside, as his skin grew ashen, as his eyes rolled and grew bleary.

Blood and ash - the Cousland estate collapsing as she fled. Duncan had to pull her, then carry her through the woods; she kept trying to turn back to get to her parents, or get their bodies. She had wept for them that night and then not again for months, though pain was a blade in her, cutting constantly.

"Mairen," said a voice a thousand miles away. "Mairen, my love."

She looked down dumbly at the hand on her arm. Alistair was touching her, pulling her away from the corpse.

"He's dead, Mairen. You've killed him. It's over."

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