Sir Roderick is an adventurer who washed up on the shores of the Jade Empire. His cultural values are in dissonance with the people of the Jade Empire and thus has taken it upon himself to "educate" the scholars of Imperial City in the hopes that his cultural values will be assimilated by the people.
Sir Roderick was an adventurer for his unnamed country (equivalent of England). When he was crossing the “Glass sea” his ship was thrown off course by storm and he (and possibly his crew though they are never seen) washed up on the shores of the Jade Empire. Sir Roderick made his way through the Jade Empire; having difficulties trying to understand the new land and its customs. One Example of this would be when he was passing through a small village and removed an Essence Gem from its shrine. The villagers were mortified, but Sir Roderick had no idea what he had done to earn their distaste. “They acted like I relieved myself on a statue to all bloody creation!“ During his travels through the Empire he found several problems with the culture and customs of the foreign land and how “backwards” it was, he had found a new mission to “educate” the Jade Empire.
After traveling the Jade Empire for sometime, Sir Roderick finally made his way to the Imperial City, where he made his way to the Scholar's Garden, Sir Roderick thought if he could “educate” the brightest of the Jade Empire the rest of its citizens would fall in line. He went to the Scholar’s Garden and was welcomed but with that welcoming he began to “teach” the Scholars of the Empire. After a few more days, the novelty of someone from across the Glass Sea had worn off; Sir Roderick’s constant lecturing and Social Darwinist-esque attitude towards the Scholars and all those in the Jade Empire (even Emperor Sun Hai) had angered the Minister of Culture. When the Player first visited the “Golden Way” Sir Roderick’s constant criticism of the Jade Empire had even the peasants becoming enraged. So, the Minister of Culture had one of his servants continually insult people on the street until someone responds. Once the player walks by the servant he will insult the Player; the Player has two reactions both are what the Minister is looking for, If the Player chooses the way of the Open Palm, He or She will rationally ask why the servant is insulting him the Minster will be glad to that someone was able to rationally debate without being distracted by mere insults. With the way of the Closed fist options the player will attempt to physically confront the servant and the Minster will be glad to see that someone is willing to stand up for themselves. (Your alignment does not change for either set of responses. But they more or less can be interpreted as Open Palm and Closed Fist perspectives).
If the Player chooses to help the Minster, they will make their way to the Scholars Garden and be greeted by Sir Roderick beating (or killing) someone in combat by using his over-powered musket dubbed "Mirabelle". The Player will then engage him; in the subsequent dialogue the Player will challenge Sir Roderick to a debate and after a round of Combat. Sir Roderick, thinking he is truly superior in both combat and debate (and all other aspects), accepts. In the debate the Outlander attacks the Jade Empires lack of territorial expansion, lack of industrialization, use of silver over gold for currency, choice of personal combat over the use of firearms, belief in ghosts and other “irrational beliefs”, and even clothes. Whether the Player beats Sir Roderick in the debate or not, they are forced to battle the Outlander. In combat, Sir Roderick’s only means of attack, his musket, is quite lethal. Mirabelle is the only ranged weapon style in the game and though you cannot “jump” like you can with all other weapon styles and you move much slower than normal, its strength and range more than make up for the lack of mobility. And its power-attack does significant damage if it connects on a target. If the Player loses to Sir Roderick, then he will be killed, saying that you need to “finish a dog when he is down”. If you win however, Sir Roderick will honor the traditions of his country and give the Player one gift the choices being:
- “Fitness for the Upright Gentleman” - A physical technique.
- “Duchess of Ulmsbottom's Rules of Engagement”- A mental technique.
- “Manual of Trepanation”- A spiritual technique.
- “The Silver Tongue”- An Essence Gem (The very same one he took form the shrine in his travels).
- “Mirabelle” - A weapon style. (The only ranged weapon style in the game. Very high damage, but with low mobility.)
After his defeat, Sir Roderick had been significantly humbled and chooses to leave the Scholars Garden for good.
(Shown if you are victorious in debate and duel in the Scholar's Garden with the distinctly occidental man from the Mysterious East.)
Sir Roderick Ponce Von Fontlebottom the Magnificent Bastard left the Jade Empire a broken man. His skills had failed him at the moment of greatest import, and he found it difficult to stomach his defeat, despite his grand capacity. Surely he had not lost as badly as he thought. Surely there was some explanation. Surely he had something to teach this barbaric land. After much soul searching, he traded his last pair of pantaloons for passage to the Prosperous East, where he began his journey home. It is said that he discovered the Fountain of Couth (Yes Couth. Don't ask...) and is now virtually unflappable. That or he was accidentally killed by the Black Whirlwind. It is hard to say; people seemed to lose interest. As for Percival, he tired of being called 'Shirley' and returned to his village.
- If the Player “sweeps” Sir Roderick in the debate (Getting all the judges on the Player side at once) the Player will find that at the end of the game through the text scroll saying that Sir Roderick may have sold his prized pantaloons for silver in order to get home and that he have may or may not have been killed by the Black Whirlwind. Or he may have found the Fountain of Couth, making him completely "unflappable" and returned home a hero.
- Sir Roderick is voiced by none other than John Cleese, actor and comedian behind and starring in a number of classic British comedies such as Monty Python and Fawlty Towers.
- In Dragon Age II, Varric has a side-conversation with Fenris, mentioning that his crossbow is named Bianca, as Mirabelle was taken. Paying homage to Bioware's earlier game, Jade Empire, where Sir Roderick wields the muskette, Mirabelle.