Exploring the Empire of Isles: What We Want in Dishonored 2
3. Hey, How Come These Overseers Play Magical, Awful-Sounding Music
The Overseers constitute some of the most dangerous enemies in Dishonored, and there are a few levels in which these enemies of the Outsider and his followers really shine. They have masks that make them hard to kill with guns (leaving the laws of physics aside), they are more competent swordsmen than their soldier counterparts, and they often carry music boxes that shut down your magic powers. All in all, they’re a pretty tough group of bastards.
But the students of The Abbey are also as enigmatic as those who have been touched by The Void. How can that crappy music they spew negate the powers of the Outsider? Why do they work to flush out the dark influence with so much zealotry, especially when by comparison, the Outsider is less influential than they are? Why do so many folks devote themselves so wholly to following the Seven Scriptures, and why would the empire mandate such a hard-line philosophy as its state religion?
We’ve seen the Outsider’s side of the Dishonored story. A Dishonored 2 from the perspective of a would-be Overseer would greatly enhance and expand the world of Dishonored, while giving players a whole mess of new conventions (and potentially, powers) to play with. Moreover, The Abbey is an awful place where children are forced to go in order to brainwash/conscript them. Sounds like an interesting setting for a game!
2. Let’s Travel to (and Go Insane in) Pandyssia
We’ve talked about Pandyssia before, the first time we speculated about where Dishonored content could go next. The DLC may be finished, but we still want to visit the continent. In comparison to the Isles, Pandyssia dominates the (known) world of Dishonored. It’s absolutely huge, and it’s also the original source, it seems, of worship of the Outsider, the runes and bone charms, and a whole lot of other stuff.
It’s clearly The Place to Be, but that’s not all. First off, there are ancient ruins there that seem to have belonged to a people who are no more. Second, the empire has mounted several attempts to colonize the continent, all of which have met with dismal failure. Third, even drawing close to Pandyssia seems to result in massive casualties among sailors and expeditionary crews, and very few people have set foot on the continent or spent significant time there. Fourth, on more than one occasion, visiting the continent has resulted not only in the person falling under the Outsider’s spell, but in going insane — that’s what happened to Vera “Granny Rags” Moray.
Pandyssia is vast, dangerous, mysterious and apparently overflowing with supernatural energy. It’s a black hole on Dishonored’s landcape, which makes it an awesome place to explore, especially with an ill-fated crew of red shirts for the continent to gobble up. I desperately want to know what the hell is up with that place.
1. Tell Us More About the F–king Outsider
This is pretty much a foregone conclusion: Arkane, please explain what the f–k is up with the Outsider. That doesn’t necessarily mean stripping away all the mystery there, because he’s obviously more charismatic as a mysterious figure than as fully fleshed out one. But not only is there a lot about the Outsider that we don’t know, there’s a lot about him as a character that’s implied in only the vaguest of terms.
For example, we’ve seen now that the Outsider has meddled extensively in the Empire’s affairs, but we still have no idea why. One thing that seems clear is that he purposely puts people in challenging positions and waits to see how they’ll react. His interactions with Corvo and Daud both give those characters such opportunities — not only to settle personal vendettas, but also to affect the lives and fortunes of the entire city of Dunwall. The Outsider might give people the tools to dig themselves into dark graves, like in the cases of Daud, Delilah and Granny Rags, but he definitely also gives them the means to seek redemption.
We see this in stark relief in Daud’s story in the Dishonored DLC. The Outsider presents Daud with a mystery by giving him the name “Delilah.” In fact, the supernatural being is actually setting Daud on the path to saving Dunwall from Delilah’s supernatural takeover. The Outsider presents a similar scenario to Corvo, although with less of a mandate to save folks than Daud, since Corvo has a bit more latitude in how he shapes the Empire through his influence on Emily.
Overall, we get the distinct impression that the Outsider is largely a cosmic clock-maker, who likes to set events in motion and see how the natures of the people involved will cause those events to play out. We also think he’s fundamentally a “good” guy, insofar as he gives a crap about anybody or anything (which he doesn’t seem to, especially). But what are his true motivations? And who is he, anyway? Was he once human? It sure seems like he could have been. What does he get out of all this meddling, and what’s his stake in having followers and, it seems, their worship?
The Outsider is a pivotal figure in not one, but two potentially catastrophic power-plays in the Empire of Isles. Depending on player choice, he’s also instrumental in saving that empire on both occasions. So what’s the deal with this guy? Finding out would make quite a mystery to play through.
Got your own desires for the next Dishonored? Drop your ideas in the comments.