Knights of the Old Republic EP14: Taris Trap

By Shamus Posted Thursday Oct 1, 2015

Filed under: Spoiler Warning 78 comments

Link (YouTube)

So now Carth is wearing assless chaps and an Oculus Rift on his face. So is this the work of developers who wanted to grief the player with clown gear, or are we all victims or artists with no taste? Also, what BioWare game has the stupidest outfits? My money is on this one, but you could make the case that Jack and Samara could take the gold medal away from Carth’s chaps in the No-Dignity Olympics.


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78 thoughts on “Knights of the Old Republic EP14: Taris Trap

  1. Sabrdance (MatthewH) says:

    Jack’s tattoos work on a certain level as a character development. And Samara is just fan-servicey. No, KOTOR’s armor -from the chaps to the purple armor Davik wears -it’s like Andy Warhol’s brains were splattered all over a fashion show, and they made the results the costume design for this game…

    1. Gruhunchously says:

      ..though it would be nice if we could tell what any of Jack’s tattoos actually meant.

      1. Daemian Lucifer says:

        If the rest of the game is any indication,then they spell out “Daddy issues”.

      2. Thomas says:

        Apparently they do all mean something, some of the art team spent an afternoon working it all out.

        I was surprised that I was no longer bothered by Jack’s outfit on my most recent playthrough. I guess the stupidness of Quiet in MGSV has numbed me to these things and at least Jack’s actually totally fits her personality.

        I still rate Samara’s as up there with the awful, because not only is it meant to be pure fanservice, it totally fails and just looks really goofy. Latex always looks more silly than it should. And it looks stupider in motion, but I always thought this armour for Wrex was trollishly bad taste

        But you can’t get past the headvisors and crazy colours of KotoR. They even manage to make the Jedi robes look like the taylor killed a whole Wampa to make one.

        1. Mersadeon says:

          But hey, we’ll really regret making fun of Quiet when we find out why she dresses that way, right? Kojima will make us eat our words!

          Spoiler: He doesn’t. It’s even sillier than “she’s just an exhibitionist”, which was my first guess.

          1. guy says:

            *goes to check the wiki*

            No, no, that makes perfect sense. Or at least as much sense as everything else in the setting.

            She breathes and photosynthesizes through her skin, which naturally requires it to be largely exposed to air and sunlight.

            1. Mersadeon says:

              Oh I know, it’s not the weirdest thing in the franchise. But in a series where pretty much any female character is sexualised, no matter if it makes sense or not, to suddenly get defensive specifically about ONE and act like it has a good explanation is just silly.

              1. Thomas says:

                It’s that it’s very clear that it was all designed for sex appeal first (hence long cutscenes of her playing around in the rain), and the reason was just invented afterwards because he was getting defensive about people suggesting it’s embarrassing to play the game and have people walk in on bits like that.

                The easiest way to prove it’s just a super flimsy justification, is that she’s not the first person in the series to have that ability. It’s actually consciously referencing The End from MGS3 – an old man who wore a full body gillysuit, which is about as far away from Quiet as you can get.

            2. swenson says:

              What really got me is when I saw some fanart somebody had done that was made up of actually practical clothing–Lara-Croft-style shorts and a comfortable-looking sports bra. And she actually looked… well, kind of reasonable. Same body, same amount of skin exposed (actually more, because she was wearing shorts instead of those weird ripped up legging/pants things), presumably still attractive to men (idk I’m a straight woman so I can’t always judge), just actually making sense.

              The point was, if they really had started with the premise of “what if this character has this weird power”, then went “wait that means they’d have to have a lot of skin exposed”, you’d end up with a totally different character design than when you start with “let’s make this character mostly naked” and only afterwards go “wait, why is she mostly naked? Uh… she has magic powers that require her skin to be exposed”.

              1. houiostesmoiras says:

                Where on Earth is this fanart of Quiet in a sensible outfit? After reading your post, I tried googling things like “mgs quiet sensible outfit,” and, no matter what variations I try, I get nothing butt ass shots (sic, pun intended) and cleavage shots, as if all I’d searched for was images of “mgs quiet.”

                EDIT: Forgot an “and.”

            3. Taellosse says:

              Except isn’t there a male character from a previous game in the series that has basically the same condition, and he’s fully clothed?

              It’s totally just an excuse to have a sniper chick in a string bikini. Especially given the cat-in-heat manner of her idle animations.

      3. wswordsmen says:

        She uses sex as a weapon. The fact she is naked from the waist up is because she wants the people who look at her and say boobs to do so, so she can do what she wants with them. If they look at her and see sexy means they don’t see the fact she could kill them as easily as breathing. This isn’t just head-canon it actually gets mentioned in game.

        1. Thomas says:

          Normally in something, that kind of reason would often just be a BS excuse (in the same way MGSV tried to ‘justify’ Quiet’s outfit), but it does really fit in with Jack’s hostile distrust-the-world character.

        2. Nidokoenig says:

          That’s a nonsense excuse and I’ve far more respect for someone who says “Boobs are nice, look at these happy boobs” than someone trying to pass it off as tacticool psy-ops.

          1. guy says:

            Yeah, being scantily clad is not an effective distraction in a fight. It’s not even effective on the player in a video game when it’s fight music time. The only legitimate tactical reason for being that scantily clad is sorcerous defenses powered by nudity.

            And if she’s trying to look harmless and sexy outside a fight, she has completely missed the mark with the shaved head and full-body tattoos. They make her look aggressive and dangerous, not harmless.

            1. Sleeping Dragon says:

              Yeah, it’s very much an excuse, personally the aggressive look is what I like about her.

              I do wonder what the reaction would be if the default model was clothed and the one obtained through the loyalty mission was showing off the tattoos.

          2. Supahewok says:

            Think you meant *tittycal psy-ops.

    2. Taellosse says:

      I never had any problem with Jack’s tattoos – they’re totally in keeping with her character. I don’t even mind that she walks around largely topless – as I understand it a lot of people that have that much skin-art get very comfortable showing it off. My problem was always that those weird leather belts just wouldn’t stay in place on a woman’s chest. If they’d just given her a different kind of highly-revealing top, I’d have had no problem with it at all.

      Samara, though, was just cheap fan-service. yeah. I could see her wearing a bodysuit without it being too out of character, but she wouldn’t leave it unzipped to her navel, especially given that she’s basically sworn off sex.

  2. el_b says:

    zalbaar has way less dignity, his costume is so skimpy you can see his pubes.

    1. Felblood says:

      Considering how readily TOR players seem to pony up IRL cash for a “Hide Helmet” option, one could argue that those hats are actually worse than nudity.

  3. Viktor says:

    Davik’s VA is a nobody, but I agree, he sounds like a name. I can still quote his “Sorry, but that ain’t gonna happen” speech from memory. That’s purely due to his timing.

    1. Sabrdance (MatthewH) says:

      I wouldn’t say “nobody.” Charles Dennis has worked pretty regularly, and played several notably characters. Including Rear Admiral Mikhailovich from Mass Effect.

      I’d say he’s sort of the Paul Giamatti of VA.

      1. Orillion says:

        He’s the guy you get when you want someone talented, but even people who generally pick up on who voices what without needing to be told can’t tell who he is because his voice is so nondescript.

        1. AdamS says:

          It’s actually really jarring, because he plays the Citadel security chief in Kotor 2, but they just recycled Davik’s face minus the tattoo. I recognized him immediately.

          1. Supahewok says:

            And he’s also Zheron, from Dantooine. I always thought they sounded and even looked like they could be brothers…

  4. djw says:

    In ME2 the characters dress themselves, so Jack and Samara at least have the dignity of choosing their own style. You put the assless chaps on Carth, while he stoically wiped a tear from the corner of his eye.

    1. Ledel says:

      A tear of joy, for he now felt that his life was complete.

  5. Spammy says:

    Is… Is the male Twi’lek masseuse also voiced by Lloyd Sherr?

  6. General Karthos says:

    The “hats” in particular in this game were so ridiculous that the future of RP gaming allowed you to make head gear invisible during conversational scenes. I don’t know if that was an option in other, earlier games, but I first saw it in Dragon Age, and it’s been in ALMOST every game since. I actually intentionally took off my headgear when I knew a major conversation was coming up because it was so distracting, even if it cost me a few seconds when combat inevitably burst out to put it back on.

    I’m the kind of person who likes to look right in his or her gear. That’s why I was really glad that Dragon Age gave you pairing bonuses for your gear that made your armor significantly better if it was all from one set. Instead of choosing the “best” outfit in a random configuration, you usually picked the best armor of which you had a full set.

    For ridiculous outfits… you could look pretty ridiculous in most Bioware games if you tried hard enough, but I think that KOTOR takes the cake. But the game is so good and so enjoyable that I can forgive it.

    1. Peter H. Coffin says:

      That’s probably why GW2 *automatically* removes headgear in cut scenes.

      1. djw says:

        I accidentally picked a really stupid looking head for my Sylvari. As a consequence Guild Wars 2 is the only game I’ve played where I wanted to cover my head with a helmet.

  7. Naota says:

    Also, what BioWare game has the stupidest outfits?

    This one, even with the walking offenses to all sensory input of Dragon Age and NWN’s armour designs. There isn’t a piece of equipment in KOTOR that doesn’t make me recoil in incredulity and disgust. Definitely this one.

    1. John says:

      In NWN 1.69 they finally introduced an armor set that actually looks like a plausible suit of plate mail. It had almost no stupid fantasy Gubbins, and you even got your choice of surcoats. I nearly cried, it was so beautiful.

    2. That does not make me recoil in horror, though I do wonder what a Jedi’s doing with a shirt obviously stolen from a disco cowboy.
      Pair it with brown pants though, and yeah, that’s a fashion disaster. I’m much more tolerant of bad outfits if they at least match.

  8. Lachlan the Mad says:

    I’d like to give a special honourable mention to leather armour as worn by female characters in Dragon Age: Origins, especially female dwarves. There is always a vast swathe of chest exposed (which would make it dead easy for an opponent to get you in the heart), and every piece of armour has to have a stupid-looking choker because the game models heads and bodies separately so you need the choker to cover the seam between them (it’s like a 3D-modelling equivalent of Yogi Bear’s collar, and looks about as dumb). I’m not suggesting that it’s anywhere near as bad as Carth and his arseless chaps, but it did make playing through Origins as a female dwarven rogue a visually painful experience.

    1. Christopher says:

      Oh what, I thought that armor looked so cool!

      The dumb ones are the weird-fitting pajamas that the Inquisitor or Liara(ME1) wear. The costumes in this game look dumb in a different way that I can get behind.

      1. Lachlan the Mad says:

        The pyjamas that the Inquisitor wears around their base are awful, if those are the ones that you mean, yes.

        1. Christopher says:

          Yep, that’s what I meant. I don’t mind impractical or hot armor as long as I think they look good, but straight up ugly suits like that bother me. Thanks for the explanation of how character animation works in DAO, by the way. I never noticed, except in a “these aren’t great animations” kind of sense.

          1. Thomas says:

            I have to admit, I did not think the leather female armour in DA:O looked cool. RenFair Cheerleader On Crack was my general impression.

        2. Sleeping Dragon says:

          I cannot begin to express how awful that thing is. On top of that it’s not just something that you wear around your chambers, you hold the bloody court in it!

    2. Naota says:

      What about the endless number of helmets in the first two DA games, particularly worn by the dwarves, that would look pretty stern and imposing if not for the huge illuminated baby-blue eyes floating in absolute blackness somewhere behind the visor? In a game perhaps too photorealistic for its own good, seeing a visual metaphor literally lifted from cartoons looks goofy beyond words.

  9. Nidokoenig says:

    I guess the chaps are kinda going for a space cowboy look, which makes sense given the sci-fi/pulp aesthetic, but damn they’re ugly.

    I don’t know how it translates to Old Republic times, but Wookieepedia says that film era credits, for the Republic, Empire and Separatists, were each backed by one mineral rich planet that cared very little for galactic politics and would plunge the galaxy into recession if it was messed with:

    Male Twi’leks, don’t particularly do anything for me(male, bisexual), don’t have much of a thing for lumpy heads, and the baggy clothing makes ogling the bod difficult. The deep voices are nice, though, and I think there might be some attempt to pander there. I do have the issue that I generally can’t get off to 3D models, though. It may just be that it’s easier to pander to the typically visual masculine sexuality by showing more skin than it is to pander to feminine sexuality with its more rounded, tactile and emotional components. I mean, the straight guys in the crew are already creeped out by the voice here, which is about equivalent to a nice bit of sideboob that might get an eyeroll if it’s noticed at all.

  10. Warclam says:

    Yeah, I have to give the nod to ME2. This game has astoundingly stupid clothes, yes, but at least they’re clothes. What Jack… wears does not meet that qualification. And Samara’s vinyl taco shell is so boneheaded it beggars belief.

  11. Daemian Lucifer says:

    While its true that this game has some ridiculous outfit,mass effect 3 has a robot wearing clothing that reveals its cameltoe.

    1. 4th Dimension says:

      And somebody had to go down there deep to model that.

      1. Chances are, every model had that and they just didn’t bother to change it.

        In-universe reason: It was made by (for?) the Illusive Man, so…

        1. Daemian Lucifer says:

          Chances are, every model had that and they just didn't bother to change it.

          Apparently this is true for the banshee model as well(nsfw).Oddly enough,thats probably the only place where such a thing is justified.With the clothed models,not so much.

    2. Warclam says:

      I… I didn’t… Is it too late to change my vote? I vote for ME3 now (which STILL HAS Jack and Samara in the bargain!)

  12. David’s armour is actually pretty average as heavy armours go. You can pick up at least three suits from the guy at Yavin that are better, not to mention both Calo Nord’s armour, and Darth Bandon’s suit.

    1. John says:

      Davik’s suit is a medium armor. I agree that it’s not the best armor in the game (or even the best medium armor) but it is really, really good in the early game. I generally give it to Carth or Canderous for Dantooine and whatever planet I tackle after that. By the time I’ve done a couple of planets, though, I’ve got Calo Nord’s armor and usually also a set of Mandalorian heavy armor, both of which are superior.

      The best armor in the game is either the Heavy Exoskeleton sold by Suvam Tan on the Yavin space station or Cassus Fett’s heavy armor sold by a random Rodian on Dantooine. They are both very, very expensive.

  13. Steve C says:

    For planet order, I personally skipped around between planets. First I went planet hopping to shop, then I grabbed a couple of new party members. I don’t remember the order I did them I just remember getting bored on planet X, Y, Z and wanted to do something else. I tried all the planets out before completing any particular one of them. Just saying you could hop around too especially to change up the visuals. It’s an option.

    1. Bubble181 says:

      But that increases the amount of times you have to do the stupid turret minigame.

      1. Steve C says:

        Not really. Kinda. Well it depends. Each chapter had a space battle between planets. Just one space battle. It would reset all battles everywhere at the start of the next chapter. I don’t remember if it was triggered by going to a planet or going away from a planet. Either way it just one of those, and only once per chapter. You could go back and forth between 2 planets as much as you wanted without being harassed each time once that battle was done.

  14. Blovsk says:

    In Dragon Age all the armour was *boring* as hell, so that takes the nod over this. Mass Effect 2 had plenty of silly stuff. KOTOR equipment was frequently dumb-looking but at least it was entertaining (especially Davik’s pink armour, which he apparently just wears around ALL THE TIME according to his first appearance).

    Christ, Once Upon A Time… I want that show to be good, mainly because Robert Carlyle is acting everyone else off the screen all the time.

    Other notes:

    Josh is painfully bad at this game for how dedicated he is to cheesing Taris with a level 1 character.

    This game is painfully lacking on autosaves, especially when you have amusing instadeath options come up straight after where one should be.

    1. Thomas says:

      ‘I want this show to be good’ sums up my thoughts about Once Upon a Time perfectly.

      1. Ringwraith says:

        Also their costume department is ridiculous. I think it’s where all the money went.
        Every flashback has a different outfit for Regina.

        1. Thomas says:

          Because we know the money definitely didn’t go to their special effects budget :)

          (Although, seriously, some of the dresses are amazing. Which is absolutely what you want in anything fairytale)

    2. Once Upon a Time has sadly become one of those shows, like Reign, that I can’t even watch for the costume porn anymore. Reign, I can’t stand Mary being lawful stupid. Once, well, Rumple (as awesome as he is) can no longer compensate for most everyone else.
      (Note, Reign is not historically accurate clothing-wise, in case you care. But man, they have some awesome dresses)

  15. Alex says:

    There was a lot of debate about chaps surrounding a game called Maelstrom’s Edge that was Kickstarted by a forum I’m a member of, but I’m on the side that doesn’t have a problem with it. I even made a bit of fan concept art for that faction. If you’ve got a material that is too rigid to be worn as conventional clothing but not rigid enough that it can only be worn as plates, using it to protect the broad surfaces of the body but using lighter cloth to cover the joints is a reasonable way to do things.

  16. Thomas says:

    Hey Josh, how are you getting the BINK videos to show up? Are you pasting them in afterwards? It sounds like there’s some crazy technical hackery either way

    1. 4th Dimension says:

      Yes, I think he converts them to normal video and adds them in later. Probably alignign them using sounds I guess. Or not even bothering with alignment too much, and simply setting them to run until the in-game graphics return.

  17. Mersadeon says:

    I think this one is the worst. The Mass Effect costumes at least fit the body they were designed for and were designed together, in KOTOR it looks like five artists threw together whatever they thought was cool and didn’t care how it looked together or on every character.

  18. RCN says:

    Obviously the bioware game with the worst gear is Dragon Age.

    Who can forget this crime against decency and common sense:

    And Morrigan is the queen of the No-Dignity Olympics:

    At least Jack has tons of tattoos that sort of count like body-paint.

  19. Andy says:

    “Assless chaps” is an annoyingly redundant phrase in this context. There’s no such thing as “assful” chaps. All chaps are assless.

    1. Ringwraith says:

      Probably because it’s a fun word to say.

      1. Andy says:

        Strapped on my chaps, they were assless;
        Hopped on my Harley – trà¨s classless.
        Went fishing all day
        But what can I say
        When I made it home I was bassless.

    2. But I’m guessing most people don’t know that. They know chaps are something cowboys wear, if they know what they are at all. And assless is a pretty important part of explaining them to someone who doesn’t know what they are. Thinking about it, I’d describe chaps as “sorta like pants, but no ass and only the inside of your legs are covered”.

      Alternatively, think of it like ATM machine. Yes, machine is redundant. Yes, most people still say that (or at least the ones I know do). It’s stupid, yup, but sometimes languages are (see German adjective endings).

      1. Andy says:

        Well, his tone of voice seemed to indicate he knew what “assless chaps” are in the “this is your mental image of assless chaps” sense. But these are not those, because this ain’t that context. So technically I guess he’s wrong, not redundant. Because Carth has pants.

        But calling him out as wrong – that would just be classless.

      2. Blackbird71 says:

        Regarding “ATM machine”:

        Word for the day: tautology.

  20. John says:

    Josh made some interesting choices for the Sith base and Davik’s estate. And by “interesting” I mean “different than mine”.

    I usually go with Bastila and T3-M4 for the Sith base. T3 isn’t all that great at combat, but he does have a couple advantages over Carth. First, he is very, very good at Computers. I use him to hack all of the Sith droids, deactivate all the blaster turrets, electrocute as many Sith troopers as possible, etc. T3 can clear out at least a third of the enemies in the base from the terminal in the first room without ever entering combat. T3’s other advantage is that he comes equipped with a stun ray and a shield disruptor. The stun ray is for the Sith boss and the shield disruptor works on the big droid in the elevator.

    I also like to use T3-M4 in Davik’s estate; again, for the hacking. I think I may just like hacking.

    1. Supahewok says:

      Yeah, the Sith base is really designed with the idea in mind that you’ve got a guy with high ranks in Computers, ie T3-M4.

      But Josh seems pretty dedicated to not using many computer spikes or repair parts, even though they give extra XP over and above the XP from killing enemies. I can’t really guess why, there is literally no other use for repair parts that I can recall in this game, and if he’s trying to save up the 100 spikes needed for the “blackout” option in Manaan… well, spoilers, but it doesn’t work. The computer just says its impossible. I’ve tried it.

      1. John says:

        Don’t you hate that? They never let me reprogram the Leviathan’s destination either.

  21. BeamSplashX says:

    the thing with jack and samara’s outfits is that they can arguably own their sexuality

    carth… i mean i guess you could

  22. Ledel says:

    So are we just going to talk about silly outfits here? I kinda wanted to touch on how they all skimmed over the world/universe building and character building conversation that happened between Bastila and Carth. It’s one I haven’t seen yet (partly because I stopped using Carth as soon as I got Zalibaar). It actually gives a good look as to how the Sith Wars got started.

  23. noahpocalypse says:

    So by the 15th episode, we’ll be off the tutorial planet?

    Finally. I love this game, but geez is it poorly paced. Not that it’s ever particularly boring, it’s just the whole Jedi levels thing.

  24. For my money the clothes in Dragon Age: Origins are the worst, from the heavy armor “I will squish my own head if I raise my arms” pauldrons to the “I’m wearing a napkin on my head!” mage hats to the “we forgot to put in more than one appearance for light armor, so you get to wear the same tacky outfit for the WHOLE GAME!!! Plus later in the game everything would probably be made out of dragon bits so it was all godawful purple and brownish-maroon.

  25. NC_Schrijver says:

    T3-M4 can still be pretty useful in the Sith Base, aside from opening the plot door. Equipped with a stun ray, it can stun the Sith while Bastila and Regina wale on him. It makes that fight surprisingly easy. Also, I think it is pretty funny that players have to buy T3-M4 from the shopkeeper (if they don’t threaten her), when Canderous mentions Davik paid for the droid in the cantina.

    For the Calo Nord and Davik fight: The focus has to be on Calo Nord, since the cutscene will trigger when he gets to half health.

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