Thanks to streaming and post-production laziness, we're now in a place where crossing the finish line is no longer an impossible task.
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While I am disappointed that we weren't able to goad Marburg into a fatal duel, anaphysik is right in that we were able to do so in the original Disclosure Alert recordings. You may wish to check out those old videos if you want to see that, though I must issue a Content Warning as some of our jokes and comments are very insensitive in a way we didn't realize they were back in late 2013.
A lot of people will tell you that having a coincidence, especially one of this magnitude, in a plot is bad storytelling. Those people are wrong, especially when coincidences like the ones that pile up around Madison Saint James create very interesting dynamics between important characters. Admittedly, it sucks that she gets killed and/or kidnapped, and later disregarded by the story in order to this work, but there the relationships we get through her provide some excellent setup for the final mission.
- Marburg has been working with Parker and Leland to destabilized global politics and establish a new cold war. To that end, he kidnaps Madison Saint James, who has formed a connection to Thorton, in order to use her as leverage against him so that their operation in Rome goes on successfully.
- As Madison's father, Alan Parker genuinely cares about her. However, he has no way of knowing that she is working for the VCI/Deus Vult, and isn't aware that she is being put in danger (and possibly killed, as it happens in our run) as a direct result of the plans he has set in motion. Furthermore, though we didn't get into it, Parker is the reason why Deus Vult was originally shut down, cutting Marburg loose.
This leaves us, as Thorton, in caught between two people who are supposedly on the same side, but don't realize that they have justifications to hold very real and personal grudges against each other. Depending on what the player uncovers over the course of the game, they can take advantage of this to make one or both of them betray the master plan and turn on both Leland and the other.
And going into the endgame, this is just one of the potential dynamics that can unfold. There's also the one with Scarlet, that we talked about during the Taipei section, and a few other plots points that we'll elaborated on later. It's in the endgame that Alpha Protocol truly begins to shine, because all of the interconnected pieces start to align and misalign in ways that the player can active manipulate to their advantage.