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Vernon Roche

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Vernon Roche
Tw3 journal roche.png
Vernon in The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
Module
Details
Alias(es)
"Whoreson"
Rank
Commander of the Blue Stripes
Profession
Commando
Gender
Male
Race
Human
Culture
Northern Realms
Nationality
Flag Temeria Cedric.svg
Affiliation
Blue Stripes
Eye color
Brown
Special abilities
Leadership skills, swordmanship
Location
Several places in The Witcher 2
Temerian Partisan hideout, Kaer Morhen (The Witcher 3)
Appearance(s)

Vernon Roche is the commander of the Blue Stripes, a special forces unit of the Temerian military, who aids Geralt in The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings. A capable fighter and being Temerian, he holds King Foltest in high regard. He is voiced by Mark Healy.

Early life[edit | edit source]

Vernon's youth - fanart by Maria Belova

Vernon Roche never met his father. He spent his childhood living in poverty. Having no money to live on, his mother was forced to work as a prostitute on the streets. As a consequence, other children used to fling insults at him, often calling him "Whoreson". Since, Roche has always reacted aggressively to this particular insult.

Vernon admits that if not for Foltest, he would have ended up on the streets either as a drunkard or a vagabond.

In the Temerian service[edit | edit source]

Roche has served for four years with the Blue Stripes unit. For his devotion and efficiency he was decorated twice with Order of Bravery.

According to Scoia'tael leader Iorveth, he is responsible for the mass annihilation of elves, with many women and children among the victims. Roche also led the "pacification" of the Mahakam foothills.

Because of his capabilities, he became Foltest's right hand and holds a lot of respect in Vizima.

In The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings[edit | edit source]

Spoiler warning: Significant plot details follow.

In the prologue, Roche interrogates Geralt about Foltest's killer, and begins to believe that Geralt had nothing to do with the assassination of Foltest. An unnamed 'contact' later revealed as Dandelion provides information about the real Kingslayer's whereabouts.

At the start of Chapter I, Roche, Geralt and Triss encounter Iorveth, who attacks them, because the Scoia'tael and the Blue Stripes are very hostile towards each other. After saving Zoltan and Dandelion, Roche and his men occupy a building next to the inn. While Geralt is off performing tasks, Roche continues his hunt for Iorveth and the Kingslayer, culminating in a three-way battle between the Scoia'tael, the Blue Stripes, and Letho. During this battle Geralt has the option of freeing Iorveth and returning his sword or siding with Vernon and the Blue Stripes. Failing to help him leads to Iorveth's capture by Roche. If you choose to side with Roche in Chapter I, you will lead an infiltration attempt to kill Flotsam's corrupt and treacherous Commandant.

In Chapter II, Roche is revealed to be behind a conspiracy against King Henselt. After the conspiracy is discovered, King Henselt on the advice of mage, Dethmold, orders the execution of the entire Blue Stripes, except for Ves, whom Henselt rapes. Geralt and Roche escape the Kaedweni camp to intercept Síle in Vergen, which is under siege by Henselt's Army. The Sorceress manages to escape the city but Henselt and his Royal Guard, who were also looking for her, are defeated by Geralt. Roche is then either convinced that killing Henselt would only aid the Kingslayers and make him just as much a murderer as they are or allowed by Geralt to kill Henselt in revenge for the execution of the Blue Stripes .

In Chapter III, Roche is one of the few remaining men still able to act in the interests of Temeria, and seeks to prevent the dissolution of his country at Loc Muinne. Vouching for Geralt he manages to get the witcher access to the city, past the Order of the Flaming Rose even if Geralt sided against them.

Meeting with Radovid, Roche discovers that Anaïs La Valette was captured by Dethmold and agrees to rescue her and deliver her to Radovid. If Geralt decides to aid him, Roche will either keep his word to Radovid and deliver Foltest's bastard child to him, in which case he dons the Redanian colors and declares he will serve Radovid as the latter turns Temeria into a protectorate believing it the best way to protect Foltest's legacy, or he will be persuaded by Geralt to send Anaïs to John Natalis, in which case he will do his best to protect her and Temeria will remain independent. Either way Dethmold is brutally murdered by Roche.

Should Geralt decide to save Triss then Roche will successfully rescue Anaïs on his own but will be unable to kill Dethmold, in which case Temeria will either be divided between Redania and Kaedwen, if Henselt remains alive, or fall into civil war.

Significant plot details end here.

Journal entry[edit | edit source]

Vernon Roche
There is a man like Vernon Roche in every monarch's retinue. Brave and determined, ready to execute any command, and thoroughly hated at court, he knows that only allegiance and service to the king keep him in his position. Roche was the leader of the Blue Stripes - King's Foltest's special forces - renowned, among other things, for battling the Scoia'tael and quelling many a rebellious nonhuman community. It was under his command that the unit rose to fame. Vernon earned Foltest's favor and trust through his deeds. One word from the King and he would jump headlong into fire, asking only how long he was to stay there and hold his ground. That's the kind of man Vernon Roche was at the time.
Spoiler warning: Significant plot details follow.
Vernon proved to be perceptive when he refused to flatly believe Geralt's guilt. Too many things needed to be explained, and the Blue Stripes' commander decided risking cooperation with the suspect to get his hands on Foltest's real killer. Thus he remained loyal to his king even after his death.
Continuing his private investigation, Vernon headed for the Temerian-Aedernian border, where he expected to find clues the kingslayer's whereabouts. Thanks to his very best informant, Roche knew that the man could have been hiding among the Scoia'tael located in the vicinity of Flotsam, a trading post. Thus way the royal hound, Vernon Roche, was on the hunt once more…
The list of Vernon Roche's achievements and heroic deeds was almost as long as the list of the atrocities and depravities he had allegedly committed along the way. It is a fact that, as the scrawlings on the wall of the University of Oxenfurt say:"Pacifying nonhumans is like wallowing in mud – everyone gets dirty, generally with blood."
If Geralt chooses to help Roche in Ruined elven baths :
It is hard to please men such as Roche. However, capturing Iorveth had the Blue Stripes' commander practically beaming with joy.
If Geralt chooses to help Iorveth in elven ruins:
To put it mildly, Roche was irritated with Geralt's decision and his trust in the witcher did not grow.
If Geralt chooses Roche's path during the end of chapter I:
Vernon was a man of action. When he learned of Loredo's treason, he crafted a bold plan to remove him from office.
Roche achieved his goal, getting rid of the blackguard Bernard Loredo. The Blue Stripes' captain did not forget the witcher's help. From that moment on Geralt and Vernon became allies through thick and thin.
Roche was behind the conspiracy against Henselt. The plan to weaken the Kaedweni ruler's position had been formed back when Foltest was still alive, and Vernon was one of its architects. It placed him in a very risky position, but the captain of Temeria's Special Forces kept his cool.
After the conspiracy was revealed and his men massacred by Henselt, there was no turning back for Vernon – he had become a wanted criminal in Kaedwen. He decided to settle the score with Dethmold and Henselt no matter the cost – yet he did not forget his primary goal.
If Geralt chooses to let Roche kill Henselt during the end of Chapter II:
When Fate placed the king of Kaedwen in his hands, Vernon used them to kill Henselt. Thus he demonstrated the weight of his threats and the distance he would go in order to settle his scores.
If Geralt chooses to stop Roche from killing Henselt during the end of chapter II:
Fate placed the king of Kaedwen at his mercy, yet Vernon chose not to stoop to using the same tactics as the kingslayers. Though his hand itched, this cold professional knew how to keep his emotions at bay.
The Blue Stripes' captain wanted to settle scores with the kingslayer and Dethmold. Thus he left with Geralt for Loc Muinne to close the final chapter of this story.
If Geralt chooses to rescue Triss Merigold during Chapter III:
There they split up – Vernon left to square things with Dethmold. Taking into account the determination previously displayed by the commander of Foltest's Special Forces, I wouldn't have bet a wooden nickel on the magician. As it turned out, my instincts were right.
If Geralt chooses to rescue Anaïs La Valette during Chapter III:
Vernon Roche always settled his accounts – the Kaedweni king's pet sorcerer learned that the hard way. The Temerian captain made good on his promise and avenged the deaths of his men – now only the question of the kingslayer remained unanswered.
If Anaïs is handed over to Radovid:
Vernon felt the burden of great responsibility when he freed Anaïs La Valette, the heir to the Temerian throne. He acknowledged Radovid's arguments and decided to serve his country's interests by supporting the Redanian king and placing the girl under his care.
If Geralt convinces Roche to hand Anaïs over to John Natalis:
Vernon felt the burden of great responsibility when he freed Anaïs La Valette, the heir to the Temerian throne. He felt, however, that the kingdom's interests required him to support John Natalis, so he placed the girl under his care. Thus he remained loyal to the Temerian crown.
If Geralt chooses Iorveth's path during the end of chapter I:
Because of his contacts with the Scoia'tael, Geralt lost the chance to work with Vernon Roche. Their ways parted.
Vernon's help was as unexpected as it was invaluable. Even though Geralt stood with his opponents, Roche helped the witcher, saving him from certain death. Furthermore, he did so out of kindness, thus proving that tales of his callousness are somewhat exaggerated.
Roche not only provided him with valuable information, but also risked his neck, helping him to acquire royal blood. Though Geralt had not sided with him fully earlier, Vernon trusted that the witcher would be able to get to Foltest's murderer. Though that meeting was to be their last, at least in this story, Geralt never forgot the debt he owed the Blue Stripes' captain.

Notes[edit | edit source]

  • Roche's head gear is known as a "chaperon"
  • The sword at Roche's side is usable in-game. It is an additional weapon, a Falchion.
  • Iorveth believes that no successor could ever equal Roche.
  • Vernon Roche's rivalry with Iorveth dates back to Roche's first mission as a commander of the Blue Stripes. Back then Roche ambushed and destroyed a unit of Scoia'Tael under Iorveth's command, and since then Iorveth has been more cautious.
  • There are many sayings about Vernon:
    • If each of his enemies gave him an oren, he could buy Temeria together with nearby lands, and if each of his friends came to bury him, Roche would have to do it himself. Apparently, it's enough to put a knife into his coffin and he'll succeed.

In The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt[edit | edit source]

In the immediate aftermath of the events at Loc Muinne, Vernon Roche joined the 2nd Temerian Army under Natalis' command. It held defensive positions on the Dol Blathanna - Mount Carbon line in preparation for the coming Nilfgaardian invasion. The defenders lasted three days before Nilfgaard's legions smashed through their lines. Upon hearing of King Radovid's call to arms near Novigrad, Roche took the remaining remnants and fought through to the west, breaking into the Pontar Delta in the hope of attracting Redanian support. Alas, and much to his despair, Radovid was no different from Emperor Emhyr.

Roche returns in The Witcher 3, now waging a guerrilla campaign against Nilfgaard from a hideout position in Redanian territory. The bid to secure Temeria's freedom will entangle the former special forces commando in yet another assassination plot.

Journal entry[edit | edit source]

As commander of Temerian special forces - an elite squadron known as the "Blue Stripes" - Vernon Roche had been one of King Foltest's most trusted subordinates. Time and time again Roche proved himself loyal, effective and a thoroughgoing professional. Few could match his skill at putting down rebellions, fighting off Nilfgaardians or snuffing out bands of Scoia'tael.
At our story's start, however, he had been deprived of his king, his men and his homeland, and so had resorted to conducting guerilla warfare against the overwhelmingly more powerful occupying forces.
In his war of assassinations, ambushes and night raids, Roche depended on Redanian help, though it was clear he took no pleasure from working with Radovid.
Some time later it was revealed that Roche had took part in a conspiracy to assassinate Radovid. He had realized that once the war was over this mad king would offer no prospect of a free Temeria, making Roche himself a liability and a potential foe.

If Vernon takes part in the assassination:

Vernon took personal part in the assassination. The king of Redania's death was to be a guarantee of Temerian independence. In order to achieve this, Roche was not afraid to strike a deal with the Nilfgaardians. This move played right into Dijkstra's hand.
Geralt, refusing to get involved in their conflict, left them to work it out for themselves. As a result, Roche died at Dijkstra's orders.

If Geralt asks Vernon for help fighting the Wild Hunt:

When asked to help defend Kaer Morhen Roche kept his word and went to the keep, lending his considerable martial prowess in the fight against the Wild Hunt.

Associated quests[edit | edit source]

Video[edit | edit source]

Gallery[edit | edit source]