You really don't want to contract the Rakghoul Virus.
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- On Ord Mantell, the Seperatists kidnap children and drug them into a killing frenzy. One of these children the player meets has spent years in a drugged haze and will rant about how he and the other kids will and eat the player before the drugs finally wear off. He's so horrified and ashamed by the atrocities he was made to commit that he asks the player to tell his parents he's dead. The Seperatists also rob refugees or simply snipe them as they try to escape the encroaching war. Meanwhile, the Republic routinely abducts random civilians for torture on the mere suggestion they might have been working for the Seperatists. The Republic soldiers also force refugees to run through minefields for their amusement in the hopes of being given basic supplies such as food and medicine. It's no wonder the Ethics Officer is drinking himself to death in a cantina - he even calls the Republic Army an "army of degenerates."
- The fact that the sons and daughters born of the prisoners of Belsavis will be just as incarcerated as their parents. This gives a whole new view on the Republic.
- Lord Grathan's experiments on Dromund Kaas. More specifically, capturing loyal Imperial soldiers and putting their brains into battle droids. They gradually become more robotic in behavior and the one you learn of this from is aware (and horrified) of the process happening to him. It's saying something when the Light Side option for that particular sidequest is to Mercy Kill them, and not tell the quest-giver what was done to them. For those curious, the Dark Side option is to have them continue their existence as mindless servants of the Empire. Brr...
- Remember the Rakghouls? For those who don't, they are mutants that once dwelled in Taris's Undercity, spreading a disease that can turn other people into them when bitten. Unfortunately, the bombing of Taris didn't cause their extinction. In fact, thanks to the bombing, they are almost everywhere on the planet, and their disease has mutated over the past 300 years, rendering the original cure null. Oh, and to make things better, there's a new subspecies of Force-sensitive Rakghouls you have to deal with: Nekghouls.
- For those who follow the Star Wars Legends continuity, which The Old Republic is classified under due to being a semi-sequel to the KOTOR series, the Rakghouls are even more horrifying due to their origins. They're the fault of the Sith Lord Karness Muur, created through Sith Alchemy for the purpose of helping Muur cheat death and forge an unstoppable army. To do this he channeled Dark Side energies into an Artifact of Doom called the Muur Talisman that cases non-force sensitive beings in its proximity to be changed to Rakghouls instantly so that they may start to spread the plague. Its presence in Taris' undercity is the cause of the "original" Rakghoul plague due to some poor fool, likely seeing the ornate golden talisman and hoping it could be their ticket out of the undercity, getting too close to the lost Sith artifact and becoming the first victim of the new plague. To make matters even worse, the Talisman won't be destroyed, ending the Rakghoul plague forever, until 137 ABY.* The Old Republic roughly takes place in the year 3653 BBY * , which means the Rakghoul plague will still scourge the galaxy for another 3790 years. And given the nature of MMOs it wouldn't be unrealistic to think that a Flashpoint or even an entire expansion could be based around the Muur Talisman. It is still out there in the galaxy somewhere after all.
- Better still; some of the things infesting the Selonian tunnels on Corellia are classified as rakghouls. If you take it at face value, then the wretched things have spread from a relative backwater planet, to one of the most important Core worlds. That can't end well.
- At one point during the game's first year, there was a one-time event where the disease spread to Tatooine. Then in 2014, the same event repeated on Alderaan, meaning the disease has actually made it to the Core Worlds. Then there's the decontamination procedures taken by each faction if anyone's infected. If Republic, you'll most likely be quarantined and hope the guys from THORN get you cure. If Imperial? Well, off to the incinerator with you! And the epidemic alert in the Imperial space port on Alderaan specifically tells the infected to arrange for their incinerations.
- The Kaon Under Siege Flashpoint: A Rakghoul outbreak mutated, causing a Zombie Apocalypse on the planet Kaon. The whole thing is dark and darker, much of it lit by the equivalent of the party's flashlights. You get a desperate cry for help from some mercenaries that are Killed Mid-Sentence, and you go into their camp to find several flavors of zombies, like the Screamer (who is Exactly What It Says on the Tin), the Bloated (who detonate into gobs of oozing green goo) and the Fiend. In the next flashpoint called Lost Island, you learn that a man named Doctor Lorrick is planning to weaponize the virus and spread it to the galaxy, turning everyone into mindless monsters under his control. He even infects his own assistants when they tried to rebel against him. When you finally reach his Laboratory, he injects himself with the virus and you get to watch him slowly transform into a Rakghoul. His eyes turn glowing red and spikes protrude from his now pale skin. And it doesn't stop there...
- In "Rise of the Hutt Cartel", the player is tasked with finding sites where the Seeds of Rage have been buried as part of the GIS quests. These places, and the creatures that inhabit them, do a better job than practically anything else in the game at conveying exactly what Dark Side corruption does to the land. The Seeds aren't doing anything; they're just there, and they still twist their surroundings into a Lovecraftian nightmare.
- Oricon. Just when you thought the Dread Masters couldn't possibly be any more horrifying, let's just say what they have planned for three heavily-populated planets - and the excruciating detail they go into to describe it - can induce chills. "Mothers will kill daughters as soldiers weep in terror"
- The Czerka Core Meltdown Flashpoint tends to run on a nice, big tank of Nightmare Fuel. The party goes into what was once a busy research facility. There are some corpses, a lot of gigantic, nasty droids that shoot everything living on sight, two highly realistic habitat zones with apex predators on the rampage...And when you finally get to the core, you see a handful of surviving scientists imprisoned in the core. To try and shut down the security, you overload the conduits and hear a build-up of energy a split second before there's a busting noise and the scientists scream as they are burned to death by the discharge. Oh, and then you see Vigilant himself, which looks like a cross of a cyborg Rakata and Khem Val, babbling incoherently about blood and death.
- The planet of Alderaan. Ignore the breathtaking landscape and rich cultural heritage for a second. Throw them out the window, and just look at the Alderaanian society for what it is: A feudal serfdom state, ruled by noble houses that holds deep seeded hatred for one another, who will eagerly sink their teeth into each other by open warfare and exterminating entire bloodlines at a time. Treaties are negotiated by arranged marriages, and the two superpowers backing their client houses with military support in an attempt to take control of the planet via their respective proxies. Resulting in the conflict escalating, while the normal citizens get caught between the crossfire. The entire planet can be summarized as basically Game of Thrones IN SPACE, mixed in with a Cold War era political thriller
- And let's not forget about the Killiks and their habits of assimilating other humans into their Hive Mind.
- And while the Killiks are hardly the most pleasant creatures, let's not forget it's their planet and the humans are invaders who have taken over the planet and consider the Killiks to be animals. That also puts canon SW characters like Bail Organa and his daughter Leia in a new perspective. Was this still going on by the time the Death Star blew up Alderaan?
- Breathe a little easier: According to Star Wars Legends, the Killiks had died out on Alderaan long before the Death Star showed up. The bad news? They finally reappeared in modern galactic times during the Dark Nest Trilogy, and pull in several Jedi to their hive, among them Jaina Solo, the daughter of Han and Leia (in that continuity). No word yet of Killiks in the current Star Wars Expanded Universe, though...
- Just as the entry for Video Game Cruelty Potential on the main page pointed out, while the dark sided options for Republic players tends to be the temptation of putting pragmatism ahead of their ideals, Imperial dark sided options can at times be so vicious and downright sadistic that they can be quite unsettling. For example, at the end of the Nar Shaddaa bonus series for the Imperials, characters were actually given the option to order the massacre of the wives and children of Republic diplomats as they were trying to leave the planet.
- Similarly, on the Taris bonus series, not only does your character destroy all the work and effort that Republic characters put into their own bonus series, at the end, you will once again be given the opportunity to massacre a group of fleeing Republic settlers, who just lost everything they have thanks to you. It really serves to remind you that while it is possible to play as a light-sided Imperial, the Empire as a whole are still the 'bad guys'.
- One of the worst example was the 'Malevolent Malpractice' bonus objective for Imperial characters on a quest from Alderaan. In which in addition to raiding an Organa medical camp for medkits, you destroy the kolto tanks there, killing the injured soldiers inside them. Making the entire quest basically a T rated version of the hospital scene in City of Life and Death. Another example would be in the Imperial Alderaan Bonus Series where players test out a serum on the Killiks that can literally make their blood boil and make their bodies explode.
- This is still mild compared to one of the quests on Taris, which gives you the option of poisoning kolto tanks with the Rakghoul virus.
- The Sith Emperor. full stop. Immortal, completely immoral. Curb-stomped the protagonists of the last two games. His end game is to destroy all life in the universe except himself and become a god. Hell, the Empire pretty much reveres him as a god already (though they're in the dark about the omnicidal mania), making them little more than a fanatical, militaristic, death-worshiping cult with galactic-spanning power.
- In the new Rise of the Emperor content, his goals seem to have shifted? Maybe? It's arguable whether it's more terrifying or less that he seems to have decided godhood is pointless without mortal worshipers he can possess on a whim.
- What he does to Ziost is pure nightmare fuel. First, he possesses half the population and sets them on the other half in a blood-fueled frenzy (which is what the freaking Dread Masters tried to do), growing stronger with every death. But when the Player Character successfully pisses him off and makes him lose control of his Slave Mooks, he waits until they are on the orbital station and makes them watch while he drains every scrap of life from that world, and promises that he won't kill the Player Character until he has forced them to watch him destroy all other life in the galaxy. Only then, will they be killed.
- Exploring Ziost after the Emperor kills every living thing on the planet is no walk in the park either. What plant life there was before is now withered and you can find petrified corpses similar to Pompeii victims (and in a different continuity, the Ancient Sith superweapon on Malachor did something similar) all over the landscape. And to show how truly desolate the planet is now, there are very few NPCs that can be interacted with, both friendly and hostile. Those few are some leftover droids and a Monolith (which according to Lana "are next to impossible to kill") larger and more powerful than the one you fought prior to the devastation wandering around seeking to kill any remaining life.
- It gets worse considering the new secrets revealed in later expansions. Vitiate used the Iokath supercomputer/superweapon Zildrog as part of the ritual that killed practically everything on Nathema and make himself immortal. He can possess multiple bodies (the Voices/Valkorian/the Outlander), and even act without a physical body as proven on Yavin in the Revan expansion, as well as destroy an entire world like Ziost in this same disembodied state. The implications become even more disturbing with these new revelations. What did he become? A more evolved Force Ghost? A Force Ghost Parasite? After his final defeat, Nathema got the Force restored to it and life grew back rather quickly, which means he was leeching off of the entire planet and the Force that was linked to it to maintain his immortality. Are there more Iokath weapons like Zildrog on other hidden worlds? Scourge knew some of the Emperor's secrets about this immortality, what would happen if those secrets got out again? Word of God may have claimed that he is gone for good, but that could change anytime just for gaming reasons alone, plus there is also Ziost, is he really gone or does he have a new anchor(s) and is hiding so deep in the galaxy that no one can sense him even in the Force?
- The possession itself is implied to be not just mere possession, but an absolutely horrible version of Mind Rape. Everyone you free from it talks about it being an utter nightmare in a choked voice, and Master Surro actually breaks down in tears after the experience. The Knight and Kira didn't seem too bothered by it, but it raises the question of whether they're just as traumatized inside and merely hiding it.
- The Knight and Kira might have an alternative available to them when dealing with the Emperor's possession. Kira might not have been as deeply possessed like so many others, given that she fled at an early age, and she also could have possibly channeled the Light-side's energy to purge herself at the end of Chapter 1. The Knight might have had the ghost of Master Orgus to help heal and purify them later on, and given that the Knight, can secretly violate certain rules about romantic attachments in their story line, Doc might be there for a female Knight, while Kira and the Male Knight could turn to each other.
- Exploring the Theoretika as part of the questline to gather HK-51 components. It's a derelict ship in the middle of nowhere, the lighting is dim at best, and corpses can be seen quite frequently, indicating SOMETHING must have happened here. You can feel like you're being watched as you progress and expect something to jump out at you. Nothing is Scarier indeed. And there is one room that suddenly locks you in once you step inside. The lights go out and there is very little oxygen within the room. If you are unable to find a way to escape when the time limit exceeds, your character will suffocate to death.
- A bug introduced in update 5.5 makes some NPCs have eyes that have skin-like◊ texture, upon a closer look, it is revealed that their eyeballs use their face texture.◊
Jedi Knight Storyline
- The power guard project on Nar Shaddaa in which people are transformed into cybernetically enhanced soldiers. When the Empire got their hands on the project they stripped the guards of their free will. After they captured Agent Galen, they transformed him into a cyborg yet left some of his mind intact. When he refuses to attack the Jedi, the Empire would program his mind and body to obey.
- Uphrades. A vast agricultural world that supplies Coruscant with food exports until Imperials used a superweapon on it. And it's not like the destruction of Alderaan it is worse. The planet's very atmosphere is set on fire, and large chunks of land are torn out of it due to sheer pressure, so that all survivors who survive the initial strike will slowly and painfully die out, and Republic will be able to save only several hundred civilians out of sixteen millions.
- Here's some nightmare fuel from the point of view of Kira Carsen, one of the Jedi Knight's companions. In her past, she ran away from a Sith past and joined the Jedi Order. And what happens to her later on in the Jedi Knight's class quest? She turns out to be a Child of the Emperor and is forcibly possessed by the Emperor himself! She manages to throw the Emperor out of her head later, but still, the experience can't have been much fun.
- In the Belsavis story arc, the knight looks for a scientist who will provide a lead on the whereabouts on the cultists who will destroy the planet. The Jedi uses the tracking chips to find the scientists, however when he/she arrives to the scene. It is discovered that the poor scientist had the tracking chip carved out of his head. One of the fellow scientists mentioned that he had screamed all the way throughout.
Jedi Consular Storyline
- The Children of the Emperor. As infants, they are abducted in their sleep and brought to the Emperor to be corrupted and are then brought back to their cradles. Afterwards, they typically lead regular lives - whether it be as senators, soldiers, or even Jedi - unaware of the fact that the Emperor is using them as spies, until he decides for them to take action. What makes this even more unsettling is that these sleeper agents are sometimes truly loyal Republic citizens their whole lives and have formed what they would think are genuine personalities, especially in the case of the First Son AKA Jedi Master Syo Bakarn.
- And to make it better, this even extends outside the Jedi Consular storyline. Case in point, Jedi Knight companion character, Kira Carsen.
- The sheer number of people who the consular worked and interacted with who later turned out to have a hidden agenda was surprisingly high. To start with, Master Syo, Representative Blaesus, and Ambassador Sophia Farash were all children of the Emperor. Thankfully, at the end of chapter 3, they have all been dealt with, so all is fine, right? Until you play the Imperial Agent's storyline, and discover that Twi'lek Pilgrim Matriarch Kolovish (who was a side quest giver back when you were still a padawan on Tython) and Shuuru, the Selkath representative in the Rift Alliance, were both members of the Star Cabal. The most troubling part was that the consular was said to be one of the most talented Force user in the entire Order. Yet even he/she was unable to notice any signs of things being wrong at all.
- In the case of Shuuru, you might even unknowingly give him your endorsement for him to become the Rift Alliance's official representative in the Senate! Which completely undo all the work you have done without ever even realizing it!
- Fridge Brilliance: In Knights of the Old Republic, most of the Selkath judges and officials appeared to be actively Force resistant. Revan couldn't even get a read on these guys, much less sway them.
- While Kolovish is confirmed to be a major Star Cabal insider, as she is in both conferences witnessed by the Agent, Shuuru is only mentioned once by Yem Lekesende as being "predictable as usual". Hardly the description of a fellow Star Cabal member. Nevertheless, Kolovish being able to hide her true colors from even the most powerful Jedi is very frightening indeed.
- In Shadow of Revan, the fate of Eclipse Squad. What happened was that several troopers volunteered to be upgraded with cybernetics but their upgrades begin to take over their minds which eventually leads them to massacre 200 soldiers
- The mission "In a Pickle". A trip to Tatooine to find a Twi'lek slicer sees you venture into a cave, where you first encounter a woman named Labine, who has been driven into a deranged state by a band of cannibals, and the cannibals themselves, with their gaunt, almost skeletal, faces.
Sith Warrior Storyline
- It may be funny watching Darth Baras rage as he fails to interrogate a Republic agent, but according to Vette, he's doing things to him that the ESRB wouldn't let the game show in more detail, like bending parts of his body in ways the human body isn't supposed to. Then, once you get a certain ancient Sith artifact from the Dark Temple for forcefully extracting information from people's minds, it's implied that the agent becomes a mindless vegetable once the artifact does its job.
- The Emperor's Hands. It's bad enough that they closely serve the guy that wants to kill everyone in the galaxy for true immortality, but are willing to sacrifice their sanity and identity just to serve him. Oh, and the Emperor is feeding on their strength, while they grow frail. Equally as disturbing, the Voice. They are various people who have sacrificed all consciousness to be a public avatar for the Emperor.
- The conversation between Pierce and Tanido in this video strongly implies that the Imperial military perform live firing exercises on slaves as part of their training. And worst part is that the two men were joking about it, not seeming to think that there is anything wrong about that!
- During the Warrior's battle with Lord Draahg, the Warrior dumps him into a fiery pit and leaves him there. His screams of agony from down below is quite chilling. The Warrior would comment about it being a suitably awful way for him to die. Except he stays alive even as his eyes are burned out.
- In Shadow of Revan, the Warrior finally learns the truth about the Emperor. But before they learn that, they learn that the Emperor has been spying on them with perfectly-cloaked droids who might be partly biological and even, in some disturbing way, alive, and as devoted to the Emperor as the Hand themselves.
Sith Inquisitor Storyline
- Khem Val, the Inquisitor's first companion, is very frightening. A Dashade Jedi killer who's lived for thousands of years, his specialty is cutting down Force users and eating them. One of his reminders to the PC is that "[He is] always hungry, little Sith."
- When you switch companions, the one leaving usually responds with something along the lines of "I needed a break" or "Call me if you need me". Swap Khem out, and you get this:
- The Dark-side Inquisitor. While being Dark side in general offers these moments, it is the Inquisitor who is the most terrifying, simply because they're so odd and funny, even mildly pleasant at times. Underneath that demeanor, though, is a broken, insane individual who gets a kick out of torture and can be set off by the smallest of perceived insults. And unlike the typical power-hungry Sith, the Inquisitor is scarily intelligent and manipulative enough to cut their way to the top of the food chain. At their worst, the Dark-side Inquisitor can even be compared to a Force-sensitive Joker.
Bounty Hunter Storyline
Imperial Agent Storyline
- Darth Jadus's servants. Not only do they all have a Creepy Monotone, they all look the exact same, and not just because of some character model recycling. Jadus was molding them to his own designs, and they are just as emotionless as he is.
- Darth Jadus himself may qualify. He's very inhuman, even more so than most Sith Lords, as he doesn't show ''any'' emotion, not even the rage-filled hamminess typical of most Sith Lords. And let's not get started on how he raised Darth Zhorrid and the results of said upbringing. When we learn that he faked his death, he also tortured several Imperial civilians, soldiers and slaves into becoming his mindless servants, some of which you have to kill when you board his dreadnought. The optional ship logs you can come across also give you an idea of what some of the people who got brainwashed were going through before they got broken. We also now know where those creepy servants came from.
- The entire concept of Castellan restraints. A secret Imperial project that implants a person with a code word that may be invoked to compel them to obey commands. Imperial Intelligence did this to you, without your knowledge, and a rogue Star Cabal element uses it on you, several times. You have dialogue options to disobey these orders — but they don't work, and you are forced to obey anyway. Far worse, from a visceral standpoint, is the cutscene that occurs when you realize you have been controlled, and the mental backlash causes you to hallucinate. It begins with your SIS handler morphing into a vision of Darth Jadus on fire and rapid goes into "bad trip" territory before ending in a hallucination (or a recording from those implants you got back when, or a Force ghost or something) of Watcher X, who explains, coldly, what's going on and how utterly helpless you are to prevent it.
- The Very Definitely Final Dungeon starts off completely empty, but you soon encounter some relatively simple droid enemies... and then you open another door, and there is a ten feet tall Assimilator droid of a model you've never seen before walking directly towards you in utter silence along a completely empty hallway. Even though the fight itself is a usual SWTOR fare, the first encounter itself is enough to give you a mini-panic attack.
- Vector's story is terrifying, especially in how it's not even framed as such. An Imperial Intelligence project arranged his Joining to the Killiks for the purpose of studying them further. Go back up and read about what the Killiks do under the "General" folder. He claims to not regret the result of this act, and when romanced is apparently able to suppress his connection to the Hive for a time, but... We have a character who has become a member of a group who are not just Mind Raped, but anyone who read the Dark Nest Trilogy (their first major appearance and source of their presentation at the time of the publication of the game) knows that the more time that one spends as a Joiner, the harder it is to accept not being a Joiner. The Imperial Agent spends an entire Act devoted to breaking free of mind control. Vector does not even believe he's been subjected to it. And no one really acts as though it is.
Knights of the Fallen Empire
Knights of the Eternal Throne
- In the "Betrayed" trailer we see Senya discovering dozens of mutilated bodies of the Zakuul Knights in complete darkness with the only illumination being her saber-staff. Vaylin then approaches, ignites the ground on fire, and engages Senya. In the duel, we get a close up of Vaylin's face as we see her fiery red eyes and expression of pure hatred. This is also horrifying for Senya as she witnesses what kind of monster her daughter has become.
- Vaylin's torture during the Knights of the Eternal Throne trailer watching a bubbly young girl turn into a tool of the dark side as her mother is powerless to help her especially the way it happens she's locked in a room for days while hooded men silently contuine the ritual
- Valkorion's origin is revealed in chapter 2: a human warrior of ancient Zakuul, who had been stripped of will Vitiate and had his identity stolen. This is a foreshadowing of what Valkorion plans to do with the Outlander.
- The facility on Nathema - This is where Vaylin was made into what she is, conditioned by Valkorion's scientists. Walking through it is evocative of the Pragia facility in Mass Effect where Jack was made into a self-described 'all powerful bitch.' If you weren't already convinced Valkorion considered crossing the Moral Event Horizon his daily cardio...
- Watching the holo-logs within the facility add to the creep-factor. Vaylin was forced to witness people getting torn apart by abominations and was shown mutilated bodies of the failed experiments. When Vaylin was being tortured, she started to laugh instead of scream, the scientist called it the glorious sound of her spirit breaking.
- An additional one if your Outlander is a Consular: That sick spawn of a Hutt who tortured Vaylin into a crazed Psychopathic Manchild got his mitts on Felix! In retrospect, it's probably a good thing said sick bastard doesn't survive the chapter. Even the lightest of Consulars would likely remove his head.
- The mysterious figures that Senya fights in the "Betrayed" trailer are elaborated on in this chapter. They are called Nathema Zealots, who have been stripped of their free will by Nathema's environment.
- Nathema in general: a dead husk of a planet. It isn't just devoid of life, it's devoid of the force itself. The effects are so strong that even Theron, who isn't even Force-sensitive, (at least, not enough to be a Jedi) can feel the void in the force.
- The icing on the cake is that the planet's environment is actually portrayed as much, much better than in <Revan>.
- The Sith Emperor is freaked out by this place. So that should be reason enough.
War For Iokath
- In the "War For Iokath" story, the discovery that the entire population of, functionally, a Dyson sphere, was wiped out, seemingly in an instant, by a mysterious superweapon that left the sphere itself intact.
Jedi Under Siege
- In "Jedi Under Siege", the implications are strong that the revived Darth Malgus is in one hell of an And I Must Scream situation.
- At the end, Scourge and Kira finally make their return, coming to ask for the Alliance Commander's help with Tenebrae's last weapon, a ritual that cut power into his very flesh. So long as his original body remained intact, he couldn't be killed—so they destryoed it shortly before the Outlander killed Valkorion in Eternal Throne. Doing so, however, released a sort of dark-side disease that rendered them comatose for over a year before they were rescued. But they were lucky—having already hosted part of his power, they're somewhat resistant to it, with Scourge explicitly comparing it to a vaccine. Satele Shan and those who came with her to rescue the, however, are not so fortunate: they're infected by a disease that seems to be linkingthem into a horrible dark side entity hive mind, perhaps even yet another failsafe by the Emperor to cheat death and bring himself back.