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Mercy?
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Mad Mage




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PostPosted: Sat Dec 25, 2004 11:48 pm    Post subject: Mercy? Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I think your option to execute or not execute commander Kraze in Suikoden 1 can say something about who you are. Seeing as most of us have probably played Suikoden 1 more than once we all probably have a favored choice when we are given the option (at least after the first two playthroughs in which we try it each way). Unlike when we are given the choice to kill Kwanda Rosman or Millitch, Kraze's fate has literarily no effect on your game. I would imagine there isn't even a switch that says if you killed him, as it would serve no purpose (because he never appears again regardless).

So having already seen both outcomes, what has influenced you to pick one way or the other? For me, it's who I am as a person. I strongly believe that vengeance is a futile life philosophy. I'm a pacifist. My favorite quote is "An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind", by Mahatma Gandhi. I realize my beliefs do not need to influence how I play video games, but in Kraze's case I have nothing else to base my decision on.

I'm very interested in hearing what others have to say about this. Where I live (U.S.) our culture is overwhelmingly in favor of vengeance. The U.S. moto is "if someone screws with you, screw with them back". Kill Bill was immensely popular here, but after finishing it I felt ripped off that all the senseless killing (while cool to watch) paid off in the end with seemingly no consequence. I had hoped the ending would be a tragic one, as one would be more realistic and dramatic.

Our U.S. (and perhaps many other) culture's trend towards revenge is even more apparent on normal video game message boards, seeing as many games have revenge themes (or at least combat theme) and thus attract a liken crowd. I think if there were to be a gaming board with members who believe in forgiveness and compassion even towards people like Kraze, it would be a Suikoden board as the Suikoden series has always been the most intelligent and deep and does not trend toward "black and white" or good vs evil situations (such situations often go hand-in-hand with the concept of revenge).

So, to sum things up, I'd love to hear what people choose when deciding Kraze's fate, and what their thoughts are on mercy/vengeance.

Btw, I'm new here so since I just made a huge post I might as well take this time to say hi to everyone. I've been a huge Suikoden fan ever since the first, and I love the series with a passion that some would say borders on insanity.


Last edited by Mad Mage on Sun Dec 26, 2004 2:38 am; edited 1 time in total
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Daniel Blackhand

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 12:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Just look at the motto of U.S. origin, being "Don't tread on me". I like to put characters like Kraze to a slow and painful death.
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 1:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I totaly agree with America or what seems most of the US, it'd be serverly wrong to catagorize everyone but anywho, most of the US seem to have a very black and white simple mind, and demand closure to whatever wrong doing has become. Was it not said "Woken the sleeping Giant" or somthing to that effect after pearl harbor was attacked, it through everyone into a frenzy to finally enter the war? Which was a good thing, but its pretty sad to do it for revenge if that was their "ends justifying the means" yes I'm probally blabbering and most of you are now thinking.. what in gods name is he talking about lol. Well think about kazae sure he was a BAD dirty and naughty man but revenge couldn't take back everythings he's done.. and entering the war didn't rebuild pearl harbor. now perhaps if kazea rejoined the enemy after setting him free, let him die in battle for a means other than revenge eh?
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 2:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Revenge is interesting because it's a natural tendency, yet we recognize it as a negative thing. It's not just a American thing, but universal. Look at stuff like Kill Bill- which revolves around revenge. Ultimately the path of the Bride is destructive, but it's easily arguable that she was justified.

It's a popular theme in any country. But generally most works involving revenge portray it as negative. It destroys everyone involved, even when it is arguably justifiable. Revenge is not always evil itself, but revenge without considering the consequences is.

In the game I usually just select the top answer with Kraze. I think that's the execution order. I just don't care enough to waste the extra effort. In reality I'd just let him live, and keep him in the jail of my castle. Then I'd throw rocks at him when I'd be bored. Or not.

Kanaan would definitely get a smack to the head though. Stupid Kanaan and his money stealing hands.
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 2:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Kraze intended to rape Eileen, and for that he should be thrown in jail. I wouldn't kill him unless he personally did some monstrous act that left little room for debate to what his punishment should be. I usually let him live, because McDohl I think is a very understanding person who hates killing (from what can be gathered from the story).

Whenever I play an RPG, I try to make the choices that fit the character rather than the choices that I would make in that situation.
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Cedric

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 5:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

That's one way to go at it, Nutflush, but sometimes, others would rather pick the choices that they would do, since typical RPG heroes are supposed to be some type of extension of the player, whether or not you are male, female, rich, poor, etc.

With that said, the whole dialouge, and the way the event played out, I've always had no qualms about killing him. Basically, from that whole exchange, despite Konami's horrid translations, it appeared to me that Kraze wouldn't ever change his ways. Taking it a step further, I know that if I ever let someone like that go in real life, he'd only have another chance to hurt someoe else. Kwanda and Milich at least offered remorse and some type of justifications with the Conquerer Runes, but Kraze never gave me a reason to show mercy. In fact, I'd blast that fool, Kanaan, as well. :D
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Mad Mage




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PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 7:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

You make a solid argument, Ced the Lad. And I agree that in some cases retribution is necessary (perhaps if you're dealing with a lost cause, like in your example). But I'd like to flesh out why I think killing Kraze is morally wrong.

Part of my inherent beef with revenge is (forgive my cliche) how it is little different than the actions of whom you're exacting it upon. You say Kraze is evil and will only create more misery if left to his own devices, but who are you to make such a judgement. If we for arguments sake ignore that the game itself might be trying to portray Kraze as a purely rotten person, and actually judge him ourselves what can we be certain about?

We know he was a jerk to you when he was your commander. This obviously can not warrant penalty of death. We know Kraze held Eileen hostage and threatened her life if Lepant would not join the empire. Nutflush claims Kraze intended to rape Eileen, though since the scene doesn't contain the least bit of innuendo implying such intentions, I'm not going to factor that. Perhaps it was in the Japanese version? Can someone clarify that?

So based on what we know, are we worthy to decree such an ultimate judgement on Kraze? Perhaps he was ordered to recruit Lepant under any means necessary (the ends justify the means). There's also a good chance he never intended to kill Eileen and was just using such a threat to convince Lepant to join. Is that any worse than breaking into Lepant's house and stealing his most treasured item? From Krazes perspective Tir is a back stabbing traitor who wishes to overthrow and destroy his home, life, and dreams. Tir killed Krazes guards who were perhaps his friends. Could Kraze not just as easily deem Tir worthy of death ? The point I'm making is that depending on from what angle you look at the situation two vastly different judgements can be made (many more actually).

A reason our real world is filled with so much pain and suffering is because most people feel themselves worthy of making harsh judgements even though they are only looking at matters from the reality they deem true. But we are not worthy. No matter how strong you believe in something, there's someone out there who believes the opposite just as strong. You can make a solid argument for your beliefs, but that will not change you opposer's mind. We as a society literally kill people everyday because we strongly disagree with them. Tir and Kraze are just two soldiers in a war who are fighting for different things. You can condemn Kraze's lowlife actions, but you can not say you are worthy to determine if he may go on living, just as Kraze has no right to kill Eileen.

Masaya: you make good points. I agree that the U.S. involment in WW2 was completely nessisary and that it is a shame that the U.S. would only enter it after things became personal. Also, you call Kraze: "Kazea" . Is that his Japanese name or something?
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Vextor




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PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 9:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Japan has traditionally beautified revenge. Revenge killing was legal until the Maiji era, which is not that long ago. The act of revenge is not portrayed negatively in Japan very often; in fact, it seems to be praised quite often--even if it is illegal.
Considering the fact that this game was made in Japan would mean the "thick morality" presented is influenced by the thick morality of Japan.

Even today, in Japan's current criminal justice system, people who kill someone out of revenge are typically given a significant reduction in the sentencing phase. For example, an old woman who lost all of her money and her ill husband after a conman took everything from her ended up killing him. It was premeditated murder, which automatically should get 15 years in the slammer in Japan. However, she got off with 2 years in prison. In actuality, she was released after 6 months for good behavior.

With that said, I was exhilarated when killing Kraze.

I am personally hell-bent on revenge. Revenge is pretty much the driving force of a lot of things in my life. In that regard, it has been incredibly beneficial because the emotion fuels my enthusiasm and inspires me to take on obstacles that I may not take otherwise. For me, revenge is not a violent act--one can be vengeful and also be a pacifist. For example, I did well in school because I wanted to "get back" at people who told me I won't succeed. I can not recall how many times I fell back on that emotion while I labored on papers/dissertations or prepared for exams--"I have to go on to show them what I can do"--it was an extremely powerful motivator.

Revenge becomes destructive when you become so focused on it that you start to neglect anything else, such as your family, friends, your own health, etc. Then, you end up losing more even if you are able to exact your revenge.

As with any other emotion, you have to control your desire for revenge. People who can't control love can become possessive or obsessed--people who can not control their joy may become annoying or lose their sense of compassion. Similarly, those who can not control their compassion may end up becoming depressed and suicidal.
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 9:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I think it's safe to say I haven't given it as much thought as SARS, but I to am for killing Kraze. For one, this isn't modern times; you can't blackball someone and expect them to be unable to get a position again somewhere. Kraze wouldn't have felon or criminal or anything posted on his record; he doesn't -have- a record. Let him go, and I don't care if we know that he doesn't show up again, -Tir- doesn't know that he won't be around to cause more trouble. How many more people would suffer if he blithely let the man live? Kill him, and protect the innocent. He had two chances and blew them both; mercy would be wasted on a man such as that.
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 10:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Mercy?

Quote:
So having already seen both outcomes, what has influenced you to pick one way or the other? For me, it's who I am as a person. I strongly believe that vengeance is a futile life philosophy. I'm a pacifist. My favorite quote is "An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind", by Mahatma Gandhi. I realize my beliefs do not need to influence how I play video games, but in Kraze's case I have nothing else to base my decision on.

That's beautiful, Mad Mage!
I wouldn't disagree with anyone who thinks that Kraze should be killed. But out of the many times I played the game, I, myself, had never tried killing him; even though I've never really thought about it the way you do. Perhaps letting him off, had been my style of revenge. There are times when forgiveness can, in fact, be the most unforgiving penalty. While I believe that no one has the right to kill anyone else, there are so many people who really deserve this kind of revenge.......
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Beecham

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 10:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I think Mage Mage's sentiment is wonderful, I just think the Suikoden world is not ready for that yet. You keep your own conscience clean by letting him off, but if you were Tir, honestly, actually Tir, could you sleep at night wondering what else Kraze might be doing, who else might suffer, under his reign? He's small time, but even if he gets just one more town under his jurisdiction again, that's another town full of people who suffer because you let him go. Why? Why take that chance?

Sometimes it has to be the choice of one human to take the life of another human.

Do what you must, and pay for it. Pay for it in your own personal hell of your tortured conscience, pay for it before God, pay for it before society. But sometimes the cost, however high, is still lower than the cost of allowing more attrocities to continue when you have the power to stop them.
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St. Ajora

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 11:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Quote:
I think your option to execute or not execute commander Kraze in Suikoden 1 can say something about who you are.


I can understand that, and I think that that applies to me personally, but not everyone takes video games as seriously as others, and therefore, abandons all sense of morality and reality when they game, since it is escape, and just pure fun. I know I would be offended if someone judged me just because I chose to execute a character in a video game :P

Quote:
So having already seen both outcomes, what has influenced you to pick one way or the other?


I usually can't decide for myself, sadly. I rush to a guide and see what the conquences are. Well, it's not like I want to replay the whole game again if I make the wrong choice and mess up on some mission that I made for myself for the game.

Quote:
I strongly believe that vengeance is a futile life philosophy. I'm a pacifist.


I believe that too, but then I also try to think outside of the box. Take, for example, if I had a child and someone took that child away from me using whatever means, I'd be inclined to kill that someone, just because I was a mother. Maybe it sounds gruesome and just crazy talk, and I wouldn't have the guts to do that at all, but it's just something to think about. That maybe sometimes it's sort of justified, even if it lands you on the same level of the person you want to have revenge against.

Quote:
I'm very interested in hearing what others have to say about this. Where I live (U.S.) our culture is overwhelmingly in favor of vengeance. The U.S. moto is "if someone screws with you, screw with them back".


I know someone else mentioned this, but I'll still comment. That's like saying all Americans are in favour of Bush, or support the war in Iraq, etc. the US is 300 million people strong I believe, and I'm sure not all of them agree with each other, nor that statement.

Quote:
Kill Bill was immensely popular here, but after finishing it I felt ripped off that all the senseless killing (while cool to watch) paid off in the end with seemingly no consequence.


I agree. Kick ass movie, but I don't think that the Bride was any more of a bad guy in the end than she was before the whole incident started. The only difference was that she was saved by the innocence of a child, but then again, one could argue that Vernita had been, as well, but we don't know her background, thus, we are inclined to think that the Bride had a right to kill them all. It saddens me that people may think that, because, although I love the character and the movies, she had just as much right to be killed, as well. I guess. I'm no judge of life.

Quote:
If we for arguments sake ignore that the game itself might be trying to portray Kraze as a purely rotten person, and actually judge him ourselves what can we be certain about?


Well that's kind of difficult since you are only given a slanted view of what he is like. You can't take into consideration all of his life's deeds, because they are stated, they are there. All you can do, is decide with the knowledge that you have.

Quote:
A reason our real world is filled with so much pain and suffering is because most people feel themselves worthy of making harsh judgements even though they are only looking at matters from the reality they deem true. But we are not worthy.


You tell that to a rapist, or a murderer and they'll laugh. You forget that many people walk around with a lack of morals and appreciation for life, despite if they commit crimes or not. You can't expect everyone to behave saintly, or angelic, and make the "right" choices, since nobody can agree on what's right. That's humanity.

Quote:
You can make a solid argument for your beliefs, but that will not change you opposer's mind.


You don't have to change someone's mind to allow them to sympathize and understand. See, you're basically missing the point, that that's humanity. We are humanity. We have faults. We don't agree. You can't expect things to be so linear and easy to accomplish. Some people may never agree and hate each other for it. Some people may never agree, but will learn to understand where each other is coming from.

Quote:
Tir and Kraze are just two soldiers in a war who are fighting for different things


No, Tir is a leader of an army who is fighting for justice (and dozens of other things) so that one day, the right people will come to power so that many can end their suffering. Take into account, their positions. Their authority. You can ignore all of the implications and connotations regarding Kraze, during the game, and then expect to believe that there's more to him that he havem't seen; maybe some remorse, and goodness. We never saw any of that. Therefore, we must make a decision based off of what we know. Why aren't you questioning Barbossa and those who choose to continue the war, even though it will claim the lives of many un-named soldiers? Does that make that character right, just because he not sending soldiers to their death in the name of revenge?


I think that you are contradicting yourself in your arguement...you say that it's wrong to condemn someone for their wrong doings, and give them many chances, as it is wrong to judge someone's life. But you're judging the nation of America and saying that they all live by the code of revenge, and you're also implying that those who kill Kraze do it because they are okay with it, and that may reflect their nature as a person. Well, it's not alright to judge someone's life, but it's okay to assume and apply a western, negative image to millions of people? And therefore judge everyone's beliefs and character? It may not weigh up, but it's still wrong. Think about it.
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Elc

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 1:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I, personally, never think about real world morality or issues when playing a game. Not only does it have nothing to do with the game itself, in role-playing games you're essentially taking the role of the character you're playing as, hence "RPG."

I agree with Harukaze's viewpoint, Kraze did absolutely nothing to redeem himself as a human being, particularly when the last time you meet him he was getting ready to violate Eileen. He may whimper for his life while in your presence, but once you're gone, there's no telling the amount of damage he could do elsewhere. Yes, it's just a game and he doesn't show up again regardless of which choice you make, but it's also a game and the choices you make don't necessarily reflect your own personal beliefs.

It reminds me of all those arguments of how violence in videogames causes violence in children, and I always end up shaking my head at the absurdity of the comments. If a child cannot separate fantasy from reality, it's the fault of the parent, not the videogame.

The real kicker is Kraze's actions aren't even the worst that happen to Tir, whereas Milich is directly responsible for Gremio's sacrifice but, even though you are given the option to kill him, you have to save him if you want to revive Gremio. The only difference being each of the Generals were being controlled, so they weren't entirely responsible for their actions. What's Kraze's excuse?
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Beecham

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 3:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Precisely; you're able to identify that each of the Generals [barring Teo and Sonya] is being controlled before you get the opportunity to kill them; you realize their actions were not their own. Sonya committed no attrocities, so you're fine with keeping her; Teo, well, you don't get a choice. I could go into that in depth but that's beside the point here.

As far as arguments about video games and violent children, I think parents should look up a word in the dictionary. Which word, you ask? Catharsis. I rest my case with that.
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 26, 2004 5:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Personally, I chose to kill Kraze during every playthrough, even before I knew he wasn't a SoD. I probably would have killed Milich too, but by then, I learned of the 108 stars ending, so I spared him. In my opinion, I don't believe revenge to be a bad thing, conversely, I am a very vengeful person, and I like the idea of revenge. If somebody hurt someone dear to me, I would do all I could to ruin said person's life, just because he would've deserved it in my mind, however, if I did something awful to a person, and one of their loved ones came to punish me, I'd take it, because I would've known that I was in the wrong.
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