Thursday, March 1, 2012

The Companions Guild: You don't get to be a member without making a few enemies.

Its that time again!

Today's edition is the start of a two-parter, because I want to spread out this content and be a total tease.  Joining the Companions!  They're the Elder Scrolls 4: Oblivion's somewhat equivalent of the Fighter's guild.

Unlike in Oblivion, they tell you that the Companions don't have as strict a hierarchy as the guild does; members are members, and if you're allowed into the companions, then that's it.  There's a 'circle of true companions', above regular members that is, but these are simply the people who've earned their place enough that newer/younger recruits can look up to them for guidance and training.  They also make any big decisions that what need decidin' on.

Warning: there might be potential spoilers to the game in this post.  And by potential I mean definitely.  You've been warned.  Sucker.

Joining the Companions pt. 1

I set out to Whiterun, and entered Jorvaskkr, home of the Companions, intent on being the very first no-weapons-guy in the guild filled with weapons-guys.  Y'know, stick it to the establishment.  Show'em what bein' a Dragonpuncher is all about.  They're cool with that actually!

They even go as far to say that their leader Kodlak had a dream about me, so he's super into me being in the Companions!  Sweet! (Creepy, seeing as he's an older fellow, and I don't fancy the gentlemen, but ok.)  So they send me on about a few quests; nothing interesting really.  The first one involved me beating up (But not killing!) a lady so she'd stop being a bully.  Counter-intuitive, but I guess sometimes you can only solve violence with more violence.  (A solution I wholeheartedly subscribe to.)

Perks though; while doing an errand, I remembered that legally, the deceased no longer retain ownership on their loot:

You hungry have a sandwich, got my wallet cheese & lettuce
Was about time I found some decent food; and with the Companions giving me paying work for once (Damn Jarl won't even PAY me for ridding him of his little oh, y'know, DRAGON PROBLEM.  Cheapskate.)  I could afford new steel plate armor!  I GOTS SWAG HONEY-BOO-BOO-CHILD.  So I immediately put it to good use.

Chicks dig a dude in a full suit.
Cooking that is.  I made SO MUCH STEW.  All the stews.  I made them.  Eventually, after enough errands for the Companions, they made me a full on member; and even invited me to their swanky elite grouping, the Circle of True Companions!  First, they held a formal ceremony for me atop the Skyforge, and told me if I wanted some cake afterwards, to meet them in the Underforge for some cake and...

If Thriller and Twin Peaks had a baby, it'd be this.
... werewolf's blood.  Ooookaay, uh sure.  Its the secret which binds the circle of true Companions, it seems, what with them bein' all werewolf-y.  What the hell, when in Rome, right?  Ok give me your blood to drink, I've eaten millennium-old cheese last time, proving that I'll put anything in my mouth, really.

So I'm a werewolf now?  Cool.  Cool cool cool.  Oh wait, Kodlak wants me to cure him from his werewolfism before he dies, so he can go to Sovngarde with all the other Vikings Nords, instead of Hircine's infinite hunting ground, acting like the Daedric Lord's hunting hell-hounds for all eternity?  Y'know, that sounds kinda nice too, being a dead spirit in an infinite mead-hall waiting for the end of the world to fight one last glorious time, rather than being some Daedric prince's bloodhound forever.
Kodlak, challenge accepted.

No-one told me bears would be involved.
Kodlak's pro-tip: Go to the witches' coven (half-way across the wold, kthx) and bring me him a witches' head as that is the 'seat of their power'; to break the curse.  Also it can't be ANY old witches' head, it has to be one from the clan that cursed the Companions 500 years or so ago.  Ok.  Sure.  OH LOOK, nature is out to get me, now that I am a nightmarish magical amalgamation of Man, Wolf, and Punch.  I don't blame the bear either; I'd want to eat me too, because I'm DELICIOUS.

Kind of like this guy, but meaner. A lot meaner.
Ok bear, you don't like me, I don't like you.  I still have no food on me, so we're gonna have to rely on the stupid low level healing spell I got at level 1 because magic.  I am still going to repeatedly ram my fists into your face until you run away, or die.  I'd prefer the you dying part.  Good?  good.

So it died because I killed it.  Impressive?  Maybe.  Scary?  Not compared to where I'm going.  Glenmoril Coven.

Wonder if they'll have any Witches' Brew.  I'm parched.
Great.  See what I mean?  A scary hole in the ground, filled with witches.  And I have to go in there and punch their heads off.  Literally.  Like that's what Kodlak wants me to do.  "Go knock some heads" he said.  HA HA OLD MAN YOU ARE THE JOKE-MAKING.  But really, I've delved into dungeons.  I've fist-fought dragons!  Surely, there's nothing in here that can possibly be worse than all that.



I forgot my regular common fantasy tropes; witches can cast magic.  While a bit on the frail side of things physically, they can cast pretty much all the spells.  That one there?  Casting regenerative magics on itself, after it launched a good pair of fireballs at me, because it thought that would be cute.

Normally, I'd never punch a lady.  But she ain't no lady.
This is more what she looks like when not tossing eldritch fire at me, or healing herself.  Note: there's like 5 witches in the entire coven, and Kodlak suggested I bring back a single head for himself, or y'know, all the heads.  Presumably so they can't make any further deals with anyone who wants to become a werewolf.  They're quite tough!  But I found the secret to my success.  (And their imminent demise.)

Honey Dragonpuncher Don't Give A Damn!
Ok so those raptor-like talons hurt too.  These gals mean business.  Thankfully I made all that stew earlier!  Also: they are vertically challenged.  I stoop on this 4ft ledge and dangled off just enough so that while she was mauling my shins (my poor poor shins.) I was scoring straight-smacks to her cabesa.  Which now that I think about it, was the one part of the witch I was supposed to bring back intact.  Albeit not attached to the rest of her.  Maybe wailing on it with my steel-shod hands in an attempt to cause so much brain trauma that she dies from it was a bad idea.

Oh well, its for Kodlak, and he can get his own damn witches' head next time if he doesn't approve.

Speaking of Kodlak, We'll find out more on the next Geeking out in Skyrim entry: The Companions pt. 2!

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