New Autosaves

Jade Empire has a great story and it tells it well. But that strength becomes a weakness, if you play the game more than two or three times. There are only so many times, that you can find a cutscene interesting. And there are so many of them! And hardly any of them is skippable. You will have to sit for minutes and twiddle your thumbs, if you want to re-play a certain combat scene. Each. And. Every. Time. Loading a savegame doesn't help either since saving in combat is impossible and there's no gap between the introductory cutscene and the combat that would allow you to save. The autosaves that Jade Empire makes are always before the cutscene, so they aren't much help. That's why I started to "move" the autosaves in my mod. I deleted the ones before the cutscene and created new ones right between the cutscene and the combat. That way you can jump right into the fray.

Everything below this sentence should be considered a spoiler!

Take the finale in the Lotus Assassin Fortress as an example. This sequence of two difficult combat scenes would have a high replay value, were it not for all the dialog and cutscenes you would have to endure after loading one of the old Autosaves.

After you've settled the differences between Master Shin and Master Gang permanently, Sagacious Zu stops you to make a surprising revelation about his own past and Master Li's child. At this point vanilla Jade Empire makes an Autosave. This Autosave has been kept.

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A few meters and a few seconds further you will see a door opening and the assassin who oversees the last step of the Jade Golem construction comes out. When you talk to him, Vanilla Jade Empire makes another Autosave. This one has been deleted. You will be lead into the construction room where - after a bit of dialog - your spirit shard is inserted into the Jade Golem. Things go horribly wrong from there - not for you, but certainly for the Lotus Assassins.

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After the cutscene Grandinquisitor Jia will appear to find out what in the blazes is destroying her precious fortress. She immediately sees that this was not an accident and that you are the cause. After a bit of dialog another cutscene will play. Jia explains to you now in gory detail how their little golem scheme works and how it will make them invincible and blah. When the cutscene is over there's another bit of dialog - which you might want to read carefully. She spots your amulet and realizes how dangerous you actually are and sicks the other two Jade Golems on you. This is where I added a new Autosave to my mod - right before the combat starts.

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This fight is tough, but it will give you the chance to learn the Jade Golem Transformation. In vanilla Jade Empire you will be given this style for free. Not so in my mod. You will have to win it in combat, or you won't get it at all. When the fight is over vanilla Jade Empire made another Autosave. This one has been removed as well.

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It is time to face Jia now. But first you will have watch her sloooowly walking down a loooong staircase holding a mooonooolooog. This may not be the longest cutscene in Jade Empire, but it certainly is one of the two most painful ones. (The other is Emperor Sun Hai's monolog in the palace.) And so I interjected an Autosave between her monolog and the fight.

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Once you have defeated Jia, Death's Hand will appear out of nothing and attempt to kill you. But this is Zu's great moment. He gives you a chance to escape, by sacrificing himself to stop Death's Hand - if only for a time.

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When all of this is over the game makes another Autosave. This one has been kept.