Don’t let this post fool you, I’m still on hiatus.

What I want to discuss briefly, is a quest from Dragon’s Dogma called “Arousing Suspicion.” Specifically, my reaction to the quest and its twists and turns.

Uh, spoilers or whatever.

Once you’ve garnered enough attention as a mighty adventurer, the duke grants you an audience. As you meander around the castle grounds, you’ll meet the duchess’s handmaiden. Or lady-in-waiting. Whatever you call them.

She tells you the duchess wants to meet you. In private. At night.

She makes it sound all scandalous and says it’s totally unprecedented, but me? I was like, “lol, video games. What a tease. It’s just going to be some quest.”

One of the remarkable things about Dragon’s Dogma is in how it plays tropes straight. I mean like, basically all of them — all the fantasy tropes.

Seriously, the duchess wants to meet with you in private at night because she wants to get in your pants. I really didn’t know what to make of it.

I mean, part of me knew that was a possibility — the game’s rated M after all — but when does that ever meaning anything? The game’s really gory and I guess there’s the occasional swear. But games are kind of boring.

Even the infamous-at-least-from-its-marketing Catherine.

Whether games admit the existence of adults, they aren’t written to actually appeal to adults — and that may have caught me by surprise. Like, totally.

There’s actually a dark and violent “twist” to the scene that isn’t really as important as the duchess’s sudden betrayal — or quick thinking. I mean, it’s ambiguous enough that you can decide yourself. Her dialogue immediately following the scene (and likely before, as well) indicates she’s unhappy.

A significant portion of the fanbase seems to dislike her enough to complain about receiving her as a love interest in the story’s conclusion. Maybe they actually felt betrayed or, I don’t know. Something else. Other reasons.

My own resolution of that particular quest involved accidentally wandering into the (unguarded) treasury during the escape from the dungeon, getting thrown right back in, only to successfully escape on my second attempt.

Kinda anticlimactic. Also cost me like, 50,000 gold pieces or something. I didn’t notice the money enough to care. What interested me was how and why I was taken in so easily by the quest. Was it really so titillating?

I seem to remember dropping almost everything to follow up on the quest.

Almost everything.

I remember completing something else — maybe shopping or something first. I had to stop by the inn to advance the time to “evening,” and sneaking into the castle was the first time some of the loading screen text made sense to me.

By the way, the text on the loading screens? Don’t take it too seriously. Ever. When it’s helpful — which is rare enough — it only raises more questions.