Forums » Elder Scrolls

A Guild Well Done: The Dawnguard

    • 1438 posts
    January 19, 2016 2:11 PM EST

    True, I mean, he's probably more paranoid than Batman, but I can see his point. Though, how does he feel about werewolves? I mean, there are a lot of asshole vampires you find in Skyrim and Cyrodill, but I can see his poibt

    • 1 posts
    January 19, 2016 4:20 PM EST
    You bring up an interesting point about how the only vampires we're sent to kill are violent, and this got me thinking. The dawguard has to have spies, they find these violent vampires after all. They also have to be pretty good spies, because they can spot a vampire where others see a normal being, like among a Jarl's court.

    So why then do we not kill Sybille? Surely if we show proof she is a vampire we would be forgiven for killing a court Mage, so why aren't we sent to kill her? Because she wants to live in peace. She even has a distaste for her kind somewhat, evidence by the quest she gives you, and there aren't very many tell tale signs of a rampant vampire in solitude.

    At the same time though, she does help the leader or red water den get into skyrim, but does little else to help him. But that aside, I do believe that the dawnguard do sort through vampires, killing those that are a threat, and leaving the "Serana's" alone.
    • 96 posts
    January 19, 2016 4:42 PM EST
    I really like the dawnguard because they fit in almost all builds I'm planning :D.

    Edit: I like the entire Dawnguard-questline, because (with a bit imagination) it can tell a huge variety of different storys.
    • 1463 posts
    January 19, 2016 6:20 PM EST

    Regardless of whether the Vampires are evil (We can definitely agree that 80% of them are, at least the ones we see) but the Dawnguard definitely are fanatics, here's the google definition

    a person filled with excessive and single-minded zeal

    The Dawnguard definitely fit there, they're zeal is indeed single-minded towards killing all the (evil) Vampires, and it can be seen as excessive (the Vampires are a threat, but if most people of Skyrim don't notice it, can it really be as dire as Isran describes it) 

    But I do agree, it's justified paranoia, not paranoia to the extent of murdering all of Skyrim in case they ever turn into Vampires

    • 1463 posts
    January 19, 2016 6:26 PM EST

    Really? I've always thought it was one of the most linear paths, join the Evil Vampires or the Good Vampire Hunters, I've never really felt there was a huge amount of story-telling potential. It could just be me, but I find even the College or Thieve's Guild (The two most linear guilds around) to be even more complex than The Dawnguard ones. 

  • January 19, 2016 6:34 PM EST
    I disagree. I don't think the Dawnguard is any more fanatical than any other organization that is dedicated to a specific purpose. Is the Thieves Guild a bunch of fanatics because they never practice magic? Are the hold guards fanatics because they always uphold the law?

    The Silver Hand are fanatics. The Dawnguard are not.
    • 641 posts
    January 19, 2016 6:56 PM EST

    I agree with Asks, Isran isn't this crazy fanatic vampire killer. Isran is Whistler. 

    • 1463 posts
    January 19, 2016 6:57 PM EST

    By definition they are fanatics, as are the Volkihar, both have a goal they're aiming for an they both excessively pursue it, to the point where they'd do just about anything.

    For instance, during Bloodline you can return to the Dawnguard before dropping Serana off, he'll have this to say

    I won't lie - if this were any other situation, I'd put her down just on the chance she might be a vampire

    I want to emphasise the chance she might be a Vampire. So, he'd kill someone on the chance they're a vampire, not because they are but because they might be.

    To me, that's fairly fanatical and excessive. Whether that's bad is an argument I don't really care to get into. And I suppose, the Dawnguard as a whole might not be fanatical, just Isran but he is their leader and his actions reflect on them. 

  • January 19, 2016 8:06 PM EST
    Eh, I think you're diluting the term too much.
    • 697 posts
    January 19, 2016 9:25 PM EST

    The Dawnguard has the right idea, to my mind. Interestingly, Isran is considered extreme by the Vigilant's standards, but I never got that impression at all! Maybe his means were brutal and excessive, but I never once thought that he was as single-minded and radical as the Vigilants. I think the very fact that he was willing to work with Serana shows that he understood the bigger picture. That's something I would never expect from the Vigilants. 

    The fact that Isran seems to recognize that vampires are the most immediate threat rather than all Daedra all the time is what really sets him apart for me. To my mind, the current Dawnguard are doing the right thing. I don't know if I would call them champions of justice, but I can say that their cause is, at least noble. So as far as the concept of the faction goes, I'm behind it 100%! 

    As for the actual quest line...eh. I enjoyed it last time I played it, but that was after ignoring it for roughly six playthroughs. It always felt a little empty to me. Too much space that wasn't filled with enough content. Maybe I'm still just annoyed at the map design of Forgotten Vale. 

    As for the characters, I can sum that up succinctly.

    Isran: Hunky voice, always angry
    Serana: Irritating child
    That Priest of Arkay that you recruit: Best character in the DG. Can't remember his name. 
    Dwemer Woman, Bear-Fighting-Man, Pawzax, Random Nobodies. 

    • 1589 posts
    January 19, 2016 10:16 PM EST

    Interestingly, Isran is considered extreme by the Vigilant's standards, but I never got that impression at all! Maybe his means were brutal and excessive, but I never once thought that he was as single-minded and radical as the Vigilants. I think the very fact that he was willing to work with Serana shows that he understood the bigger picture. That's something I would never expect from the Vigilants. 

    Yeah, what's up with that? The Vigilants seem to get a free pass in the collective unconscious. Is it because Stendarr is seen as fluffy, cuddly god of tickles? Or because the acts of his devotees are believed to be ordained from on high and thus absolves them of accountability? Isran dares to be honest and for that he is condemned as often as not.

    That Priest of Arkay that you recruit: Best character in the DG. Can't remember his name. 

    Ditto. Florentius was cool and raises the question: was Arkay actually speaking to him?

  • January 19, 2016 11:17 PM EST

    Fanatics do not make room for exceptions, and whilst some people like to use dictionary definitions to argue their point, I will assert a vampire hunter cannot be a fanatic on the grounds of context.

    We distinguish fanatics because of their aberrant behavior and views, going  beyond the mere irrational. Isran is not an aberration nor are his views irrational.

    Unlike beasts, vampires can reason and blend in society, which can lead to plots like Movarth's and Harkon's. That makes vampire hunters essential for those who value living, thus vampire hunters are not an irrational asset.

    Because of vampires' ability to blend in society and their magical prowess that allows them to charm people, vampire hunters have to be vigilant. Anyone considering a vampire a good would rightfully be considered beguiled, or foolish, as a vampire's base existence relies upon using mortals as food.

    But what of good vampires? What good vampires?

    Valerica did not oppose Harkon because she was concerned with the well being of mortals. She opposed him because she knew his plans would make mortals more alert, make it difficult for her to feed off them, and Serana's status as good is selfish, not considerable, that is a vampire player is playing with a boner and not a mind questioning the cattle near the dining hall; and depending on the choices made, she cures herself, making any status of a good vampire questionable at best.

    The count in Cyrodiil? What about him redresses the nature of vampires? Nothing.

  • January 19, 2016 11:27 PM EST
    I think it's just because they're lower profile. You don't really do much with them, while the Dawnguard is central to an entire storyline.
  • January 19, 2016 11:39 PM EST

    So why then do we not kill Sybille? Surely if we show proof she is a vampire we would be forgiven for killing a court Mage, so why aren't we sent to kill her?

    Because the quests aren't designed that way, the easy answer; and how many players knew Sybille was a vampire before the Dawnguard DLC? There is nothing unusual about skilled mages being well preserved, and nothing unusual about a human being as skilled as she. That is a testament to Melaran's ignorance and Altmer arrogance.

    She even has a distaste for her kind somewhat, evidence by the quest she gives you,

    Dead vampires, fewer competitors.

  • January 20, 2016 12:04 AM EST

    Champions of justice. They are the only faction set on protecting those who lack the means to do so.

    The Companions are glorified mercenaries, the College of Winterhold is/was lead by someone who doesn't understand community outreach, the Empire lets the Dominion imprison people with impunity, the Stormcloaks are named after Ulfric, and the Thieves Guild are thieves; sorry, the Dunmer with purple eyes and form fitting armor does not make their involvement in corruption an act of decency.

    • 96 posts
    January 20, 2016 2:25 AM EST
    It's not about complexity, it's about interpretation.
    • 3 posts
    January 20, 2016 5:14 AM EST
    I think the Vigilants get a pass because they are always getting killed. Between House of Horrors, The Dawnguard questline and the random encounters with vampires dressed up as Vigilants, it's hard to take them too seriously.
    • 3 posts
    January 20, 2016 5:27 AM EST
    The Dawnguard is my favorite faction. Their cause is just as the vampires are attacking and killing civilians throughout Skyrim. I love the questline, even though it is probably too long (or rather as someone else wrote, has too much empty space). I love the gear, Fort Dawnguard and the NPC's (Isran is a badass, Florentius is hilarious). I also like that you don't end up as the leader at the end of the questline. I do hate walking to and from Fort Dawnguard if I am playing a no fast travel playthrough. Also, I would like to recruit the Dawnguard followers during the questline, not afterward. Why do some questlines do this?
    • 288 posts
    January 20, 2016 6:40 AM EST

    They could have used more sidequests, or at least to have some requirements to do some of the sidequests in order to proceed into the main storyline. As it is now, you can go through the whole main story without even finding out about Florentius Baenius, for example. But that's a global Bethesda flaw in most of their factions in all their games.

    • 697 posts
    January 20, 2016 2:13 PM EST

    I know I've seen the opinion expressed here a few times that Stendarr isn't a god people want to associate with because of the radical ideology of the Vigilants. I have no idea if the Vigilants behaviors are actually in line with Stendarr's philosophy of mercy, but the Vigilants talk about protecting the weak, right? In which case I suppose it would be a loose interpretation of Stendarr's philosophy to eliminate everything from the world that threatens mortals almost as a rule. 

    Right, Florentius was his name, thanks. Part of me really hopes that he was talking to Arkay though he seems like an eccentric person anyway. Maybe speaking directly with a god for so long comes with the consequence of general weirdness. I'm happy to have him around either way, he's just really amusing. 

    • 1438 posts
    January 20, 2016 3:11 PM EST

    Maybe it slowly drove him crazy

    • 697 posts
    January 20, 2016 3:16 PM EST

    Sounds like there's room for a humorous story there. 

    • 8 posts
    January 20, 2016 4:13 PM EST
    I wasn't a huge fan of any quests or at least none felt special to me, but in terms of the faction itself, I like the mystery about their past. Kind of seems like Bethesda just put them in as an excuse to add crossbows, which could explain why they were somewhat underdeveloped. I just think there should be more quests like the last one involving all the members. Though perhaps that would have made the final quest, the only big standout IMO, less special.
  • January 20, 2016 4:16 PM EST

    I have no idea if the Vigilants behaviors are actually in line with Stendarr's philosophy of mercy, but the Vigilants talk about protecting the weak, right? In which case I suppose it would be a loose interpretation of Stendarr's philosophy to eliminate everything from the world that threatens mortals almost as a rule.

    More like the Vigil of Stendarr just taking a name and running with it.

    1. Stendarr says: Be kind and generous to the people of Tamriel. Protect the weak, heal the sick, and give to the needy.

    Ten Commands: Nine/Eight Divines

    There is no asterisk in the former sentence.

    • 8 posts
    January 20, 2016 4:18 PM EST
    Agree, but most side quests in skyrim are those annoying radiant ones which could have ruined an already lackluster questline. Florentius was a pretty decent character compared to some others so I agree he should have been more central.