Scions of the Seventh Dawn: Ranked

A couple of disclaimers before we start:

1. First, the list itself is a spoiler for Endwalker MSQ, so approach with care if you haven’t played it.

2. Second, like all ranking lists, the post is quite a personal opinion and based on personal likes/dislikes. I am not trying to be objective at the very least, so you’re free to disagree and cobble up your own ranking list!

Ok, let’s roll! From bottom to top, if you please.

10. Estinien – yes, he’s the lowest on my list. A valuable asset to the crew as a link to dragon theme and bonding with dragon characters, capable and inclined to carry on vital tasks on his own, and probably one of the most powerful fighters of the team. Why so low? He’s a very brooding character, reluctant to play in a team, and even by the end of Endwalker he tends to loom in the background during meetings. I still don’t think of him as being both feet into the crew, and his gloom is depressing. In the story, he shines most when his gloom is played around by quirky and fun characters.

9. Thancred – a type that younger girls like, a fierce, loyal protector, yet with a devil-may-care, rogueish personality, not the one fit to ruffle his feathers. He shares the same features with Estinien: he’d rather do things on his own, and he’s very much inclined for gloom and irritation. Being that edgy, your constant worry while dealing with him is how not to insult or push him, and that’s far from a relaxing experience. I don’t think I ever saw him actually happy or content even once, from ARR to Endwalker.

8. Warrior of Light – hah, yes :) Even though it’s a player character, he/she is low on the list. The reason? Lack of agency. The warrior of Light is always on the receiving end of the story, and all the agenda is defined by others, friends or foes. Also, which bugs me, there’s no voice for the very few lines… I mean, they could find actors for both genders and all races? I constantly feel like I’m mute. But of course I understand that voice of player character is no small feat in its identity and player’s bonds with it, so replacement of even one actor for this or that reason would make thousands of players unhappy, so I guess… it is what it is, though.

7. G’raha Tia – is a more complex example. I’m absolutely thrilled by this character in Shadowbringers, everything and how he says and does, yet his transition to Scions by Endwalker seems totally unnecessary (except for filling a tank slot for Trust trials, lol). His expertise as a scholar and a casting fighter is nothing that others coudln’t cope with, he’s just a sweet boy of the team, so not it.

6. Urianger – his experience in knowledge, insights (and scheming) is invaluable, and being an academic to the bone, he also proves capable of having fun, doing jokes and having strong feelings, not to mention his prowess in combat. Quite an interesting character I’d eagerly deal with IRL, yet: verbose! If this word did not exist, it was worth inventing specially for him. His dialogues are what makes non-native speakers desperately cry curled in the corner, and I suspect, even the native speakers too.

5. Krile – is an absolute dearest. She’s deep, calm and super sweet. Not exactly a combat type, but her expertise in arcane, healing, knowledge and building bridges buys her a rightful place in the team. She’s deeply caring and ready to take charge when needed. Not to forget about voice acting which is a part of the charm – while all voice casting is so well across the game, Gemma Lawrence’s performance really stands out and bears no little ASMR value.

4. Alisaie – well, we all know Alisaie :) She could be upper on the list if not her short, almost non-existent fuse. Apart from that, she’s a complex yet very likeable, lively character, a very capable fighter, a deeply caring person and a very valuable asset in the team dynamics and interaction, often spicing the dialogue up. Hell, spice is her second name, especially with the twins.

3. Tataru – we’d all die and perish without Tataru. An office manager like that – every office and company should fight for her skills. Always cheery, ready to support, yet nothing short of managing and merchant prowess which makes the whole team’s operation even possible.

2. Y’shtola – it’s a sort of quintessence of the game to me, that’s why when I needed a merch decoration for my home from the game, it’s her action figurine I went for. A mi’qote – is a token race for the game in the first place. She’s badass in learning and in combat, provides ultimate expertise in turnpoints sooner than later, she’s always level-headed and ready to take charge, she’s capable of negotiating in narrow places, she’s capable of sacrifice without a second thought, and feels at home in lighter, respite moments. What’s not to like? Well, personally I feel like she tends to be a mother figure, and while she’s quite natural, justified and cool at being that, I can’t help feeling like a child around her rather than an equal.

1. Alphinaud – well yes, I couldn’t ever think so during his ARR representation as a self-important brat, and yet by Endwalker he made it to top of the list. He’s the strongest character of them all – maybe not in terms of combat, but in terms of leading and setting a direction. He is a natural in defining agenda for everything that’s going on around him and making the wheels turn, totally fearless, yet calm and level-headed person in any circumstances. He’s the only person of them all to come up with a valid solution in any given time, so he’s the one I’d get in any trouble with, totally sure that he’ll find and show a way out in most desperate times. And he’s a treat to deal with outside of crisis, being so well educated and classy, quite capable of lightening the mood and pleasant to deal with. If there is a beacon of Light among Scions, he’s the one.

Well, that would be my list :)

3 thoughts on “Scions of the Seventh Dawn: Ranked

  1. While my ordering would be pretty close, there are a couple outliers and one comment regarding Thancred.

    Getting Thancred comment dealt with first. When Ryne fully embraced her destiny, but made it a point to be Ryne rather than simply Minfilia version 2689134.0, there was a sense of fatherly pride that swept over him. Also, even though there was sadness during the final goodbyes, he was beaming with pride at how much she’d grown up and became a force to be reckoned with. I personally tend to be fairly expressionless, even with my family (my own internal issues), but subtle gestures tend to get the point across. I’m not trying to argue that he wasn’t a brooding ball of depression 99.999% of the time. I’m simply reminding you of the 2 times I remember him being happy/proud, since you said you couldn’t remember.

    Estinian would be a bit higher on my list, simply because I’m also the hang back in the dark corners type of person. I understand not wanting to be in the spot light, but still being fully engaged and preferring to work alone. I can relate to his character’s social awkwardness. The way he bonds with Vrtra shows how his core was reshaped by his possession from Nidhogg, and he no longer feels exactly “human.” He feels more like some kind of dragon-kin now. Some of the jabs he makes at Alphinaud to get him to loosen up is straight out of my family’s playbook of ways to get new people (boyfriends, girlfriends, spouses, friends, step-family members that haven’t interacted with the family gatherings before) to relax. He’d definitely be closer to the middle of the pack for me.

    Regarding Y’shtola, she’d be the number 1 spot in my list for all the reasons you listed off. I didn’t get mommy vibes from her though. She reminded me more of an older sister or cousin. Yes, she’s looking out for you, but equally is very dependent on you to look out for her too. She’s definitely the family member I would introduce to my inner circle of awesome friends.

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    • Y’shtola – the replayed arc of Shadowbringers is still fresh with me. Compare her and Alisaie, both forming bonds with local communities of the First. Alisaie is more like a buddy to Amh Araeng infirmary, while Y’shtola took over the whole tribe, an outsider, for a very reclusive people. She sacrificed herself without a second thought, grabbing an antidote, and it was not Thancred-like sacrifice.

      Then, her relationship with master Matoya is mother/rogue daughter compared to Matoya/Krile, Matoya/Leveilleur, it’s more than just a mentor/apprentice. So she did not accept this name as a Blessed alter ego just as a homage to her mentor – no, she’s going to be a matriarch to these people and so she picked the mother figure of her own.

      And she was nursing the WoL when we shut down from Light abundance – it was more than just a worrying buddy. There was even a “Yes, mother” joke in our response choice :) I think more than once.

      Thancred – why yes, I’m exaggerating, of course. I could point to a moment when he was happily chatting with random girls during Teledji Adeledji’s regicide and coup when the guards came after him. But as you said, it’s less than 1% of the screentime :)

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  2. Aww how you gonna do my boy Estinien like that! Lol

    I really like character growth, and I like his. Yeah, he’s broody but he’s kinda earned it? I really like his relationship with Alphi and he’s unexpectedly funny sometimes. And he’s a hot elf which doesn’t hurt.

    I loathe, loathe, loathe graha. Some random guy I met 3 expansions ago in a side quest I skipped the cutscenes for, and he’s suddenly my best friend???!! What!!?? He’s awful and he’s just always with me. Go home and stay there. Plus how do you make a miqote not cute??? That’s a feat.

    Oddly I get more attached to side characters than scions generally. I do like how the twins grow in EW but I still don’t really care about any of them a ton. I do like urianger I guess but … Maybe that’s just because he heals me and likes bunnies.

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