Spoiler Warning: if you have not played KotFE Chapter 16 The Battle of Odessen, please turn back to The GEMINI Deception. I don’t want to spoil the game for anyone but as I have a poor memory I need to get these thoughts down now. Thanks! If you’re happy with this continue reading. As always this isn’t a walk-through, though I have a couple of pointers along the way!
Battle of Odessen – Introductory Thoughts
Before this Chapter kicks off, we’ve had Arcann decide he has spent too long on the Throne and wants revenge on the Outlander. In his place, SCORPIO sits commanding most, but not all of the Eternal Fleet. The stage is set for a three-way set of interactions: SCORPIO, Arcann & Vaylin and the Alliance Forces. A complicated mix if ever there was one but the perfect mix to kick-off The Battle of Odessen.
The Ultimate Betrayal
The question I had before this chapter launched was – who told Arcann about the Alliance Base on Odessen? I could only come up with two answers, Koth or SCORPIO. Failing that, Arcann mentioned bombing some worlds to dust until someone spoke up – so it could have been anyone encountered to this point. In the end, the one who knew the most about the Alliance – and the one who could do the most damage – SCORPIO informs the Alliance Commander that she told Arcann.
Why? To see what he would do – a perfect machine-learning approach. Would he try to re-take the Eternal Throne, or destroy the Outlander first? As players we knew the answer – a the end of the GEMINI Deception, he said he would address the issue of the non-responding Eternal Fleet Ships after dealing with “Father”.
So as the ships arrive at Odessen, the Gravestone is sent into action.
Decisions, Decisions…There are a number of decisions you have to take in this chapter. I haven’t seen anyone say that they make a particular difference, but you still need to make them:
- Who do you leave with Major Jorgan to defend the base – Torian, Vette or Gault?
- Of the two you take with you, who disables the shields and who deals with the Flagship’s Defences?
- Do you steal weapons and shields during your assault, or reprogramme the turrets? (I have had good success with the Turrets, personally)
- And ultimately: do you proactively kill Arcann, or do you let him take matters into his own hands?
- Finally: do you try to shoot Arcann’s Shuttle down as he makes his escape, or do you let him go?
Dealing with the Sub-Bosses
Aside from the usual flurry of Skytroopers and large Shockbots, Chapter 16 takes more of a Flashpoint approach in that you have sub-bosses, sometimes combined with traps. I would offer the following advice:
- Use Your Weapons/Turrets: if you don’t want the fights to last forever use whatever is in your temporary abilities bar after choosing either Weapons/Shields or Turrets.
- Watch for the Circles: both the sub-bosses and the rooms they’re in create warning ‘circles’. This does mean you have to keep moving, which I found particularly annoying on my ranged sniper where most abilities are channelled.
- Get Lana’s Influence Up: I noticed a huge difference between having Lana at influence 21 and having her at 6. This might mean putting off doing The Battle of Odessen until you have acquired more companion gifts (Alliance Crates from Weekly Heroics are good for these).
I took a snap poll on Twitter over weapons or turrets and it seems a pretty even split over the 29 people that responded:
— Fibro Jedi (@FibroJedi) August 11, 2016
The Fight with Arcann
Once you make it through to the Bridge of the Ship you get to finally face Arcann. At the same time, the Eternal Fleet is poised to fire on the Flagship in a move by SCORPIO to potentially eliminate btoh you and Arcann – her main threats.
Interestingly Arcann starts by saying that none of this – none of anything you’ve gone through was about you personally, but about him destroying his Father (again). He also doesn’t listen when you tell him that Arcann isn’t in your head any more, which confuses him further. So in true Arcann style, and very similar to the Scion Trials, he decides he’ll force his Father to speak (even if he has to tear you open to see it as Heskel said).
Valkorion: Gone or Not?
In a scene reminiscent of the opening chapter of Fallen Empire, you stop Arcann’s Lightsaber with your hand. So, Arcann isn’t inhabiting you, but you still have some of his power? Most interesting…
Watch for Yellow Circles, and Arrows
During the battle, which is multi-stage there are a lot of things to look for. Firstly Arcann himself has the usual suspects AOE (area of effect) abilities which you need to avoid. That is not always possible as some track your movements. But those you can avoid, please try to.
There are also power sources in the corners which you’ll need to watch for. When they begin to activate you’ll notice arrows on the floor pointing to you. If you’re not defended, these will inflict damage, at least from what I’ve seen. Which leads me to my next point:
Use the Shield
I finally managed to be brave enough to grab a screenshot of this! But lying to one side on the floor is a shield. This grants you two temporary abilities: Use the Shield, and knock Arcann back with the shield. You can use the shield to both defend and deflect lightening-esque abilities. In fact you’ll find the shield does more damage quicker than you can.
When Arcann’s health is really low he unleashes a non-stop lightening strike which you’ll need to push away with the shield as you walk towards him for the killing blow. Make sure your health is a good level before this – I pushed my Sniper too low down before this final stage and only just survived!
Use Your Attunements from Visions in the Dark
The Visions in the Dark Chapter gave you a new weapon with attunements depending on your choices when you constructed it. This adds different temporary abilities: Resilience seemed to grant a small healing bonus, while transcendance gave a running speed boost (very handy for avoiding Arcann’s AOE attacks). I’m not sure I would have managed without these abilities but a couple of people on Twitter at least said they accidentally forgot to equip these weapons and still managed okay.
— Quinnette (@GulJarol) August 11, 2016
— Cpt. Saskaia ? (@Yiveldda) August 11, 2016
To my detriment, I didn’t take medpacs along with my Sniper. This fight is a Solo one, no healing companions. So please go more prepared than I did!
Once you’ve defeated Arcann (which isn’t a quick fight) you’re free to escape and see other events as they unfold.
The Senya Tirall Story
Behind the scenes during all of this Senya has gone to face her other child – Vaylin. We don’t actually know if they found each other before the closing scene. In short she never wanted to see Arcann killed. This had already been intimated during the Scion Trials when Senya said “Arcann will not escape justice for the lives he’s taken”. She wants to redeem her son, who turns out to still be alive.
In a very tender scene you can finally glimpse the tenderness of Senya for her son even after the atrocities he’s committed. So in a plot twist, your former ally rescues her son and takes him…somewhere to redeem him.
To Shoot or Not To Shoot?
Sadly, I have to say, none of the decisions taken in this chapter seem to matter. And that’s the only downside of The Battle of Odessan. Whether or not you choose to shoot at Senya’s escaping ship, they escape. However, if you choose to let them go, Senya says: “Your mercy will not be forgotten”. So maybe there is a futher knock-on effect?
For more about this see my post on Let Arcan and Senya Go or Shoot Them Down?
So we come to the final puzzle pieces of the last 10 months of Knights of the Fallen Empire (not that we know what it was ‘fallen’ of course).
Vaylin Held Back
Remember way back when Arcann says that “Father held us all back. You (Vaylin) more than any”? In the closing dialogue between SCORPIO and Vaylin we learn that she was still held back, even under Arcann. Tempted by power by the master manipulator SCORPIO, she takes the Eternal Throne, and control of her own destiny. All those times Arcann ignored Vaylin’s warnings with her response so often being “You’re the Emperor” can be put behind her.
And we finally have a female main enemy lead. Long overdue in my opinion.
Why SCORPIO Wanted to Control the Eternal Fleet
If you’ve made it this far – well done! The last question, which Vaylin asks SCORPIO herself – why did she want the Throne for herself? In short – to give the GEMINI Captains free will. The same thing she offered Vaylin. SCORPIO has seen the GEMINI Captains as her daughters (which is reciprcated by one captain who called her “Mother”). She never wanted to rule, or even control. But to free her fellow ‘droids’ from tyannical rule.
If you read your mail after this chapter you learn that one Captain, uses her free will to visit Hoth, just to take a look and then move on!
TL;DR The Battle of Odessan – My Assessment
This chapter requires a fair amount of tactics but nothing insurmountable. I found Chapter 16 less intense than The GEMINI Deception so it was far more enjoyable. I intend to do a round-up of the series as a whole, as I have few issues surrounding your free will and your choices matter messages, but this chapter is pretty much all positive from my perspective. And it sets the scene for Knights of the Eternal Throne with Vaylin being the main foe. And out there somewhere, Senya and Arcann.