Avowed May Be Repeating an Old Trope, But it Makes Perfect Sense

avowed may be repeating an old trope, but it makes perfect sense

Avowed May Be Repeating an Old Trope, But it Makes Perfect Sense

  • Avowed will place fans in the role of a "Chosen One" character, a narrative setup seen often in fantasy and RPG games.
  • Players will control an envoy for a powerful organization sent to investigate a mysterious region suffering from a plague, possibly becoming its savior or protector in the process.
  • Avowed is aiming for quality over quantity, offering a narrower experience with deeper choices and consequences for the Chosen One protagonist.

Obsidian Entertainment's upcoming dark fantasy first-person RPG, Avowed, has been in the works since 2020. Having set the stage for Avowed with the preceding two Pillars of Eternity titles, the studio will be sending fans to its world of Eora, specifically an area called the Living Lands that was mentioned in PoE previously but has not been depicted in-universe until now. Avowed will focus on this region and the strange situation occurring within it, as a bizarre disease is overtaking the Lands and its citizens, and the mystery of uncovering the source and resolving it forms the baseline of the plot.

As seen in Avowed's latest story trailer, players will be embarking on a quest with a main character who has been "chosen as an envoy" by one of Eora's powerful factions to investigate the Lands. The trailer additionally promises that they have the potential to "become what the Living Lands truly need– a protector." On the surface, this all seems like quite standard material, as the protagonist being chosen or singled out by some greater force is a narrative framework that has been used in countless tales throughout history across every medium. And though it might be said to be rather commonplace, in Avowed's case it seems more naturally fitting and less of a crutch, given Obsidian's strengths and stated intentions of its vision for it.

Avowed's release date was possibly leaked accidentally. It is officially confirmed as a day one Game Pass title currently with a Fall window, with many signs pointing to it being sometime this November.

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Avowed Not Fully Embracing The Pacifist Route May Be a Blessing in Disguise

Though Avowed apparently won't allow for a full-on pacifist playstyle, this could end up showing off its core combat aspects even more.

Avowed Employing the Chosen One Trope is a Better Fit for its Vision Than Most

The Chosen One Figure Has Long Been a Genre Component

Going back to the earliest days of gaming, and especially within fantasy titles and RPGs, the Chosen One angle is probably one of the most recognizable and ubiquitous devices. It is usually played pretty straightforward, but has also been subverted in other versions as the medium matured and audience awareness of storytelling conventions evolved. Oftentimes, the hero of any given work discovers or is told they are the Chosen One after an initial encounter, leading to the adventure at large. Avowed's similarities to Skyrim and other sweeping fantasy titles in the same vein have made it appear as if it will be treading down the same path. And while that may be true, it also has good reasons to invoke it, based on the preceding games and what has been shown so far.

Avowed's Use of the Chosen One Trope Could be One of its Greatest Strengths

Avowed's parent IP, Pillars of Eternity, also played with the Chosen One chestnut, with the protagonist there being inadvertently "awakened" as a Watcher; someone with special mystical abilities and connections. The sequel, Pillars of Eternity: Deadfire, continued this, with the same Watcher returning, singled out by Eora's gods to track down one of their own who has gone rogue and threatens to destabilize the world. Avowed makes it clear right out of the gate that players will be starting from a position of power and prestige as a favored agent in the employ of the influential Aedyr Empire, entrusted by it to explore the Living Lands and the source of the plague affecting them.

Avowed's scope, though, has been described as a quality over quantity affair by the developer, aiming to offer a narrower experience compared to more massive open-world fantasy games, and emphasizing deeper choices and consequences within a more limited design. Whether this will entail any twists on the Chosen One element, perhaps via rejecting it completely, is unclear at this point. But given Obsidian's track record, it wouldn't necessarily be outside the realm of possibility. Either way, Avowed looks ready to allow fans to role-play their Chosen One in a multitude of interesting ways that fit well within the established tone and setting.

Avowed

Franchise Pillars of EternityPlatform(s) Windows, Xbox Series S, Xbox Series XReleased 2024-00-00Developer(s) Obsidian EntertainmentPublisher(s) Xbox Game StudiosGenre(s) Action RPG See at Official SiteSee at Xbox Games Store

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