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[Lets Play] Wizardry 8: Part 7: There and Back Again

GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
edited August 2014 in Games and Technology
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The last chapter of a three game story Wizardry 8 is quite possibly the best computer RPG ever made. With Wizardry 8, Sirtech upped the ante and was the first, and last to offer a full three 3D environment with more or less modern 3d controls. It is easily the best old school computer RPG ever made despite Might and Magic X making a strong play. All three of the most recent trilogy are on steam and have been up to 85% off as a bundle. If they go on sale again, they're all worth picking up. This is one of my favorite games of all times and i have beaten it with many different party types in many different ways

Permalink to Individual posts
Part 1: The Lower Monastery
Part 2: The Upper Monastery
Part 3: Cormac McCarthy's Road to Arnika
Part 4: Arnika: City of Bomb Towers, City of Knife Bombs
Interlude: Why we don't play Ironman
Part 5: Revenge of the Squirrel People
Part 6: The Ratfather
Part 7: There and Back Again

Before we get into the plot and mechanics of the game there are two things you will need if you want to play this

The Things you Need to Play the Game

1) Wizfast. Made by this guy. This is a simple utility that lets you change the combat speed to speeds above those supported by the base game. This is very important because enemies move very slowly even if everything is sped up as fast as possible. Combat legitimately takes forever without this mod

2) Another combat speed mod. Remember how i said that combat was terribly slow even if you sped things up. Well even if you speed things up fast fast as they will possibly go, animations are still super slow. So some guy took every combat animation in the game and removed half the frames. It will crash every once and a while but its worth it

3) Flamestryke's(RIP) Wizardry 8 page. This is the definitive resource for more or less everything Wizardry 8. Its super useful and just about all Wizardry 8 information can be had from there or from links from there. Additionally you can look at some of the info here for what is known about skills

The Meat

Skills

Before we get to classes and races, skills are the heart of Wizardry 8. Every action is governed by three things. Skills/Attribute score, your character level, the enemy character level. Sometimes we know the effect of increasing a skill by one point (we know what "sword" does for instance) and sometimes we don't (We don't know what critical strike does for instance). Skills which are locked cannot increase in anyway but can still be used. Skills which are unlocked increase by use and can be increased when you level up. As is the case in all skill based systems. More use is required to level up higher skills than lower skills.

Each skill has one to two "governing attributes". As far as we know these don't modify the strength of the skill but rather determine how fast the skill levels up by use. A few points of attribute can go a long way to making a character stronger simply because it might mean 5-10 points of extra skillup over the course of the game.

When you hit 100 in any attribute you also unlock a special skill which relates to that attribute. Strength unlocks Power Strike, Intelligence unlocks Power Cast, Piety unlocks Iron Will, Vitality Unlocks Iron Skin, Dexterity unlocks Reflection, and Senses unlock Eagle Eye

Classes

There are four types of classes in Wizardry 8. Specialists, Specialist Spellcasters, Hybrids, and Elite. Specialists are composed of fighters, rogues, bards, and gadgeteers. Specialist Casters are composed of Alchemists, Mages, Priests, and Psionics. Hybrids are are composed of Monks, Samurai, Lords, Valkyrie, and Rangers. The Elite are Bishops and Ninja. So long as a character meets the statistics requirements for the class they can freely change classes on their next level up. Elites take more XP to level up than Hybrids, which take more XP to level up than Specialist Casters, which take more XP to level up than Specialists.

Each class has its own set of skills which are unlocked, a single skill which gets a 25% bonus, and some sort of bonus ability. All of these are only unlocked while that characters last levelup was in that class however. This means that you can turn your Monk into a fighter and still cast Psion spells and still punch people super hard but you cannot get better at casting Psion spells and you lose access to the Monk damage reduction.

The Specialists:
Fighter: Fighters are your standard spank and tank front liner. They get a lot of HP and Stamina per level. They get no unique skills but have access to all weapon types. Their 25% Bonus skill is Close Combat. They have a bonus attack option called "Berserk". For an attack penalty, defense penalty, and extra stamina use fighters do double damage. Many people don't use this early because their fighters aren't hitting, and then forget to turn it on once their fighters get a bunch of bonus to-hit equipment and skills (or are attacking disabled enemies) and lose out on the second highest single target damage dealer in the game.

Rogue: Rogues are the highest single target damage dealer in the game. Their bonus skill is "Locks and Traps" which is almost useless (unless you don't have a mage then its simply handy). Any time a rogue is using a melee weapon which has a "thrust" attack they backstab. Depending on the rogue level this will do between 1 to 4 times normal damage. This is why rogues are the king of damage. Many people build rogues to dual wield, but this is unnecessary. They gain access to pickpocket as well as "locks and traps". Rogues have access to stealth.

Bard: Bards play instruments which cast spells. Their bonus skill is "Communication" which is entirely useless. Like rogues they have access to "Locks and Traps" and "Pickpocket" as well as being the only class that has access to music. Music, in conjunction with bard levels, lets you play instruments which have magical effects. Magical effects like "putting enemies to sleep" or "casting haste" or "nuclear blast". Bards ability is "fast resting" which saves you some real world time when you're using the rest feature and is quite nice. While bards peak early in order to use the best instruments late in the game, both a high level (up to about 26) and high music are necessary. This generally leaves two ways to build a bard, as a pure bard, not deviating. Or as a hybrid, changing to fighter or rogue as soon as the bard has enough levels to accomplish the primary instruments they want to play well enough. Even as a pure bard, bards are no slouches when it comes to combat, so long as you decide to actually spend time swinging that sword that they should be swinging since bards should almost invariably max Strength first.

Gadgeteer: The Gadgeteer makes gadgets which are basically bard instruments that you have to construct yourself though they tend to have slightly better effects. The Gadgets bonus skill is "Modern Weapon" which is nice because as they level up they start making their "Omnigun" better. It starts out shooting rocks and by the end of the game it will shoot any type of ammuntion including entire throwing weapons or arrows while having the longest list of potential status effect inflictions in the game. The only thing it won't shoot is throwing stars. Gadgeteer's are the only class that can create double and triple-shot crossbows... which are as awesome as they sound. Unfortunately gadgeteers get a late start due to the weakness of the Omnigun early, the dearth of other modern weapons, and the knowledge requirement for finding components.

The Specialist Casters
All of the specialist casters are very similar, mainly differing based on what school of magic they have access to. Specialist casters bonus skill is always the core casting skill which ensures they're always better casters than Bishops and Hybrids.

Mage: Mages blow shit up. They have few CC spells but lots of single target and AoE damage and a few key buff spells. They gain 5% resistance to all types. Notable wizardry only spells include Enchanted Blade, X-ray, Missile Shield, Firestorm, and Concussion. Notable shared spells include Element Shield, Summon Elemental, Remove Curse. Interestingly Mages are not the highest damage casters in the game. However, they are the first that can access Power Cast, and they have an easy time leveling up the individual magic schools due to large selections of spells in each as well as strong and important buffs which makes them very easy to develop.

Alchemist: Alchemists blow ship up and make potions. They have a worse selection of single target damage skills compared to Mages, but a more potent selection of AoE Damage skills. Notable Alchemist only spells include Death Cloud, Draining Cloud, Acid Bomb, and Boiling Blood. Notable shared spells include Element Shield, Summon Elemental, Resurrection, Chameleon, Purify Air, and Knock. Alchemists can mix potions (two light potions ->Med potion) which makes their primary skill extremely easy to level up while also providing as much gold as you could ever possibly use.

Psionic: Psions are masters of the mental realm. They have a few good spells in other areas but they can be hard to make use of. They have a wide selection of important buffs and debuffs. Notable Psionic only spells include Haste, eye for an Eye, Prismatic Chaos, Prismatic Ray, Might to Magic, and Hypnotic Lure. Notable shared spells include Soul Shield and Chameleon. Psions are immune to fear and other mental conditions like insanity.

Priests: Priests buff and heal. Don't let that fool you though they have a couple of really good AoE and Single target nukes. Notable Priest only spells are Resoration, Magic Screen, Armor Plate, and Guardian Angel. Notable shared spells include purify air, remove curse, resurrection and Sould Shield. Priests can turn undead (which is very powerful and scales on the priests level) as well as pray for a miracle which gives a more powerful random effect as the priest levels up. Priests have slightly better offensive and defensive equipment options compared to the rest of the specialist mages.

The Hybrids

Hybrids aren't really a "mix" of two classes but are something a bit different. Once they're level 5 they get access to a single type of magic school and progress as if they were a specialist caster that is 4 levels lower. This means that they can be build as casters primarily and martial second, or martial first and casting second. Both methods are fraught with peril and its easy to mess things up.

Samurai: Samurai's bonus skill is swords. They have access to some armor and some swords (katana type) and have the potential to get the weapon with the highest kill % in the game on it (random drop). At level 5, Samurai gain access to spells from the mage book with all of the unique and shared spell advantages. The special ability of the samurai is "Lightning Strike" randomly Samurai will attack a whole bunch of times against a single enemy. No one is sure what precisely causes this to trigger, but its suspected it has to do with speed and the level of the samurai. Samurai as swordsmen rely heavily on the critical strike skill.

Monk: The Monks skill bonus is martial arts. They are the only class to have access to this skill besides ninja, which increases the to-hit, damage, and number of unarmed strikes significantly. Monks will attack far more than any other class and effectively dual wield without having to use to dual wield skill. At level 5 Monks gain access to spells from the psionic book, and all of the unique and shared spell advantages. The special advantage of the Monk is damage reduction. Monks as fighters rely heavily on the critical strike skill. Monks have access to stealth.

Ranger: The Ranger's skill bonus is Ranged Combat. At level 5 they gain access to alchemist spell with all of the unique and shared spell advantages. Additionally they gain access to the ability to mix potions. This makes rangers the easiest hybrid class to develop spellcasting for. The special ability of the Ranger is ranged criticals. Instead of using the critical strike skill this procs from the Ranged Combat skill. Ranger's as damage dealers are heavily dependent on these critical strike proc's. They will not do more damage than a fighter who has an equivalent amount of points in bow/ranged/eagle eye.

Lord: The Lord's skill bonus is Dual Wield. At level 5 they gain access to Priest spells with all of the unique and shared spell advantages that confers. Their special ability is health regeneration, which is not very valuable except if you're resting though it is half decent. Lords do not get access to critical strike and fall behind in effectiveness compared to fighters or the other hybrids which do. If you build a lord it should be primarily as a caster. This is perfectly fine due to the fact that many priests will have little to do in many situations. Lords can only be male

Valkyrie: The Valkyrie's skill bonus is Polearms. At level 5 they gain access to Priest spells with all of the unique and shared spell advantages that confers. Their special ability is Cheat Motherfucking Death. Its as awesome as it sounds. Sometimes when a Valk takes lethal damage or an instant death spell they just don't die. Like Lords they do not get access to critical strike and so fall behind in effectiveness compared to other hybrids or fighters and so should be primarily built as a caster. Valkyrie are pretty much strictly better than Lord's. Valkyrie can only be female

The Elite
There are only two Elite Classes and they're both pretty unique

Ninja: The bonus skill of a Ninja is Critical Strike. The special ability is "auto penetrate" for thrown weapons and critical strike skill applying to thrown weapons. They're very limited in equipment and become alchemists at level 5 just like ranger does, they also get access to martial arts, lock picking, and pick pocketing. Playing a ninja is very difficult because they have the slowest XP progression in the game and because of their limited equipment. Strangely they're best suited for a solo play through because of the confluence of their skills and their reliance on critical strikes

Bishops: The bonus skill of bishops is Artifacts. The special ability of Bishops is that they're every caster type in the game at once starting from level 1. Bishops require a lot of planning to get right. If you cast a spell which could be from two different books of magic (say a mage and alchemist spell) only the skill which is highest is credited the use. This means that its very easy to leave one or two of the casting types behind which negates the very large advantage of a Bishop(that is, being able to let the bishop be the sole buffing / offensive spellcaster for a large group).

The Races
There are 11 different races that you can play. They're all more or less interchangeable bundles of stats and resistance bonuses which only make certain class/race combinations slightly better (get to bonus skills faster/multi-class easier/get race specific equipment)

Notable Races with regards to Mechanics

Dwarves: Get bonus DR

Elves: If you import with the Elven bow, only Elves can use it and its pretty decent

Fairy: 1/4 weight limit compared to normal. Bonus Mana Regen. Heavily restricted equipment. Best weapon in the game is Ninja Fairy only and also a random drop. They also get +2 AC and a limited on equipped weight.

Lizardman: Slower Magic power recovery

Dracon: Breathes Acid (on demand low damage AoE attack, good early, but quickly useless)

Mook: Get access to the best guaranteed drop in the game. An extended range sword with 30% KO and good damage. One is guaranteed on plot, a total of 3 are guaranteed in the game. Makes Mook Fighters easily the best fighters in the game.(they're good without it too). In fact the wookies are just freaking great at a lot of stuff

Party Creation

Generally there are three types of parties in Wizardry, small parties, medium parties, and large parties. These stem from the need to meet three special considerations which effect the entire party

Stealth: At high levels of stealth some enemies will not be able to target the character who has stealth. This is not a preference setting so that they will choose between two characters with stealth but an actual removal from their ability to target. If everyone in the party has stealth many enemies will simply be unable to do anything. If everyone has stealth this negates the need to have certain buffs active

Critical Strike: Critical Strike is the most hard to understand aspect of this game. Besides the raw value the most important controlling factor in critical strikes is the relative level of the character to the enemy. What most people don't realize is that enemies spawn based on the level of the highest character in a party. So parties which have specialists and hybrids significantly reduce the power of their hybrids if they do not intentionally slow the progress of their specialists and casters.

Buffs: Wizardry 8 is filled with AoE disables and instant kills. A disabled party is more or less a dead party and that cannot be allowed to happen. There are two key combat buffs which prevent this. Soul Shield and Element Shield. Each gives 10 resistance/level to the relevant areas capping out at 70 resistance. Additionally there are non-combat buffs which are helpful but not entirely necessary. Magic Screen gives up to 35 resist/all. Enchanted Blade makes it much easier to hit enemies. Missile Shield and Armorplate make your party much more resilient. You will absolutely need access to Soul Shield and Element Shield on high speed characters if you don't have everyone have stealth

So we can see how the parties build out of that. We have the 1-2 person parties which are combinations of Ninja and Monk's as well as the specific option of Samurai/Valkyrie. Ninja and monk have stealth and crit, if combined in the same team the monk should hold back his levels to equal that of the ninja. Together they get access to both buffs but only the utility buffs of Chameleon. Solo ninja and solo monk are totally viable. Solo Samurai is possible but hard. Samurai/Valk get access to most of the utility buffs as well as Soul Shield/Element Shield

As soon as we start adding characters we will notice that we want/need to balance the damage dealing/critical strike aspect of our parties with magic. Generally this means that a party of Hybrids is optimal for a medium sized party.

Once we start adding more characters we run into the critical strike problem. With 6 people its probably faster to just kill things than to rely on critical strikes. So you start trading hybrids for specialists and should end up with, roughly, only Bisops and Rangers as the non-specialist classes. Optimal parties include Psion/Mage/Priest+3 Fighters/Rogues. Bard/Gadgeteer/Bishop + 3 Fighters/Rogues and similar compositions.


This LP will be a screenshot LP. The game will be played on Expert with the possible exception of Gregor(because fuck Gregor). I will be importing characters to show off the unique import items but will be remaking an entire new party from scratch. I won't be keeping any of the import items unless the party has a ranger (can you guess what I will be keeping? Hint, its not the Elven Bow).

Here we get to decide on the party I will be using. I am partial one of four parties none of which i have run before. I will not be playing with a bard, gadgeteer, or bishop since i almost always play with those

Fighter/Rogue/Rogue/Psion/Mage/Priest: Probably the strongest party you could build so long as you don't mind resting to regain MP. The Fighter and two rogues dump out massive melee and ranged DPR while the Psion/Mage/Priest have every buff you need and enough AoE to level a city block. In this set the Mage and the Priest max out their speed in order to get Element Shield/Soul shield up. Everyone else will stay at 55 speed so the psion can cast haste to knock them up to the max of 125. The downside is that this has no crits, and crits are fun. Since all of the casters are specialist there will be almost no skill grinding on this, which is super nice.

Samurai/Monk/Valkyrie/Ranger: Lots of crits. All made as true hybrids though focusing on buffs instead of damage (not that i won't use damage spells, but it will take a while). This is probably the hardest party to develop and will require some grinding skills which if i do will be done off screen.

Ninja/Monk: Full stealth, full protection, lots of crits. Almost assuredly the strongest duo party so long as you remember to never level up the Monk before the Ninja. This require some skill grinding but the grinding is less than half of the amount of the 4 party due to how fast Alchemy goes up.

Samurai/Valkyrie: No Stealth, Full protection. Half crits. Probably the hardest run i would be willing to playthrough. This requires a good amount of skill grinding. A little more than half of the full four hybrid.

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Posts

  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    edited August 2014
    Meet The Cast: All Ready

    Name: Bilbo Baggins
    Occupation: Rogue
    Nickname: The Hobbit

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    Bilbo Baggin's is a Rogue. Unlike Rogues in most other games Rogues in Wizardry 8 are just fighters with a smaller defensive and offensive selection. They can't wield maces/hammers, polearms, and a whole bunch of swords. A Rogue in Wizardry 8 will do bonus damage depending on his rogue level (but only while he is a rogue) with any melee weapon that has a thrust attack.

    When leveling him up i am prioritizing Strength and Dexterity. These are the core "hit things harder and hit things more often stats". I am not prioritizing speed, which is a core "hit thing more often stat" because I will eventually get access to haste at rank 7, which will take his 55 speed to 125. Superman at rank 7 will do the same. After dexterity and strength are at 100 i will add to senses, which is half as good as dexterity for hitting things but still good. Eventually (but potentially very late in the game) that will open up the eagle eye skill which will shore up his long range ability to hit things.

    I am putting points into sword, dual wield, and stealth right now but will start switching to melee combat and ranged combat because melee combat is a senses/intelligence check and my senses/intelligence are much lower than my strength/dexterity.

    Because of the need to have ranged weapons, cursed equipment is right out. So no thieves dagger for me, Bilbo and Lizzie will be looking for Stilettos for their off hand. We are guaranteed to get Fang and will potentially get the Light Sword

    New as of update 4: Currently our hobbit is now using the Diamond Epee which is a pretty good "last you until the end game" its damage is low-ish but its init and to-hit are very high

    Inventory/Combat Guide/Skills

    Name: Lizzie MacGuire
    Occupation: Rogue
    Nickname: The Lizzard

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    Mr MacGuire is also a Rogue. The choice of a lizardman is meant to highlight the difference in skill level progressions. He has lower intelligence and senses than the Hobbit and so will go up slower in core combat abilities. But since his strength is slightly better his individual combat skills will go up a bit faster until str/dex are maxed.

    There is a potential that Mr MacGuire will be turned into fighter at a later point. This is because the total amount of high quality rogue weapons is low. If you don't find some of the better ones your second rogue will be doing a lot of nothing. Fighters don't have this problem. On the other hand. If you turn your rogue into a fighter late in the game your rogue will be missing roughly 100 points into the "Mace and Flail" weapon category. And mace and flail are where the best dual wield weapons are. Also, they're guaranteed drop. For the main hand the weapon you want is the mauler. Its got a nice bonus to the skill and does a bunch of damage. On the off hand you want Diamond Eyes which is just; Damn look at the thing. That is a good primary weapon, let alone an off hand.

    Lizzie will follow the same skill progression that Bilbo does. If i happen to get the Light Sword then Lizzie will probably stay a rogue. Otherwise i will turn him into a fighter for the potential Excalibur drop or the guaranteed Ivory Blade forge and decide whether or not to pursue the off hand diamond eyes later.

    Inventory/Combat Guide/Skills

    Name: Chewbacca
    Occupation: Fighter
    Nickname: The Mook

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    Chewy is a fighter. They fight things. The fighter is actually a more complicated class than the Rogue. They get better equipment but have an actual choice in determining what kind of weapons they use and whether or not to dual wield, and whether or not to berserk in combat. Rogues just sit their and watch their stats go up while putting points into sword/stealth and melee combat. They have an easier time with skill because once you know what you're putting things into there are fewer to upgrade. But hey, actual choices as to what to do.

    This fighter will be maximizing swords, ranged combat, and melee combat. Because he will be maximizing strength and dexterity, bows will raise naturally pretty fast. No need to put points into it until the others are filled out. He doesn't need points in dual weilding because he is aiming for the Giant Sword. Which, with that massive KO% and extended range is as better than it looks. In terms of single target damage, the best path is swords/hammers dual wield, Hammers dual wield, or getting Excalibur. But the Giant's sword is more useful than all of those thanks to its massive range and massive KO%.


    Inventory/Combat Guide/Skills


    Name: Uri Geller
    Occupation: Psionic
    Nickname: The Psion

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    Fresh from bending Spoons Uri Geller is off to prove he is a real thing by becoming a God and writing mean things about Carl Sagan. You might notice that Uri is actually a mook even though he looks like a cat. That he because he is so good everyone just perceives him as a Felpur and he is a Mook for the better stats.

    The thing about specialist casters is that their equipment doesn't matter all that much. Most of the time they aren't attacked if you've spaced well and most of their offensive options aren't much modified by items. They will get a few stat boosting things here and there but mainly you shore up resistances and you're done.

    What does matter is spell choice. And what matters most there is making sure you have enough free spell picks later in the game in order to get all the spells you want. Some spells in the game are available by reading a spellbook. But not all of them are. More importantly each spellcaster gets 19-23 spell picks over the course of the game and there are about 36 spells in each book. So you have to get some of them from reading spellbooks if you want to be full (being full gives you more spell points so its doubly nice). For Bishops this is super important since there are 101 total spellbooks in the game, and they don't get any more spell picks than the rest of the cast.

    The second thing about spell casters is the requirements for leaning a spell. In order to learn a spell you must be the requite level (1/3/5/8/11/14/18) and have the requisite effective skill level (the main spellcasting area + 10% of the realm skill) greater than (15* [spell level -1]). So in order to learn a level 7 psionic spell you have to be level 18 and have 90 Psionics. For a psion this is pretty easy. Every spell they cast will increase their psionic level and because they get a 25% bonus to that spell they hit 90 before they're stopped from putting skill points in a skill (which happens at 75 or 93 effective skill). For a Bishop or Monk this is really hard without grinding

    Anyway, because levels still matter in terms of spell penetration. None of the spellcasters will change classes. They will max their specific area of skill and whichever realm skill is highest and then move to the next.

    Uri will be maxing intelligence and piety (for spell points) and then training up power cast when he gets it and then moving on to speed and vitality.


    Inventory/Combat Guide/Skills/Spells

    Note that Uri's spell list for the mental realm is now larger than the list. He also knows Charm which is not listed due to a lack of space and me not providing two images just to show you that he knows charm.

    Name: Gozer the Gozerian
    Occupation: Mage
    Nickname: The Mage

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    Gozer is our mage. She has always been a God but would be a powerful one if it wasn't for those darn kids ghostbusters. She has teamed up with Vigo to enact some good old fashioned revenge by using the Cosmic Forge to rewrite all of Bill Murray's movies as not funny. She is a monster.

    Because she is the only one of the party who can cast Element Shield she will be maxing speed and intelligence instead of intelligence and piety. Int and Piety would give her better late game resistances as well as better better spell points with which to nuke everything. All the stuff above about spells applies just as equally to Gozer but it goes into Uri's space because he needs to look important and have a big ol' text dump.

    Inventory/Combat Guide/Skills/Spells



    Name: Vigo the Carpathian
    Occupation: Priest
    Nickname: The Priest

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    Fresh off the New York art scene Vigo has decided to become a priest of Gozer. It will lead him to power, riches, and all of the babies he can reincarnate himself into that he could ever need.

    Because Vigo is going to be the primary caster for Soul Shield he will need to boost his speed up nice and high. He has good piety in the mean time and will be leveling up intelligence. Normally you might think to level up piety on a priest. This isn't bad. Piety gives you more spell points and unlocks iron will. But if you don't get power cast you will have no offensive options. And if you don't have speed you won't get element shield off in time. Its worth gaining points into divinity slower in order to get power cast sooner.

    I actually dinked up Vigo's spells in the first part. He got light from a spellbook, but notice how he has stamina? Yea he choose that when there is a perfectly good book of stamina he could have read. He should have chosen paralyze if he wanted to have points into water. Losing a single spell choice isn't a huge deal though, because the game is a lot more forgiving on specialist casters than it is on Bishops

    [url=http://i.imgur.com/BzzGaop.pngInventory[/url]/Combat Guide/Skills/Spells

    Goumindong on
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  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    edited August 2014

    Last time on Wizardry 6/7 our heros were just an ordinary group of intrepid fantasy heroes. They heard about this thing called the "Cosmic Forge". The pen the gods used to write the script of the Universe. Naturally, being the ordinary group of intrepid fantasy heroes they had to have it for themselves. The Mook wanted to write himself a crime boss so that he could mook for him. The Psion wanted to to know everything. Well until they met a wizard who did just that and split himself in two.

    They realized that the cosmic forge, unless used within the cosmic circle would turn on the person writing and twist their words. Nevertheless they were getting that pen anyway. And to do it they would have to go through a Vampire, the Vampire's demon lover, the Vampire's Wife who he had scorned for the demon lover. But that apparently wasn't enough, because this dude called Aletheides who is a "cyborg" steals the forge and absconds to Guardia. After meeting the half brother of the demon lover who is also a dragon our intrepid fantasy cliches because intrepid cyber fantasy punk pirates as they got on the spaceship of the dragon and flew after the cyborg who had their prize.

    Unfortunately for them they ran into "The Dark Savant". Like anyone else who has "The Dark" our pirates were pretty sure he was evil. After he forced them to do his bidding to capture this thing called the "Astral Dominae" so that he could overthrow the Cosmic Lords and rule the universe as a benevolent dictator they were quite certain he was evil. A lot was going on on Guardia, but the main gig was this fight between the Savant, these Spider-Slugs called T'rang and bipedal Rhino's called Umpani. Our heroes were much more interested in the damsel in distress though and they should have been, she had a bitchn eyepatch.

    Well long story short TDS makes off with the Astral Dominae to Dominus to enact his plan and we follow on our spaceship with Vi Domina, the Damsel no longer in distress because we saved her. We recon that the cosmic forge is on Dominus and that TDS needs this to overthrow the Cosmic Lords. We however have different plans, namely, we're going to overthrow the cosmic lords instead. Why? Because god damnit we've been through two planets already and don't have a single thing to show for it except this spaceship!

    This is us

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    This is also us

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    No no no, not that one, the explosion. We're the explosion. That ship is The Dark Savant.

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    Now we don't even have the spaceship! Well at least we survived and we've landed on a nice beach which holy phoonzang in heaven has crabs the size of a large dog

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    That's Vi, she is heading to the city to take care of things and wait a second that isn't right. That's not us!

    Note: Importing Characters
    Importing characters gives you a bunch of bonuses. You can start the game in the monastary, at the Umpani base, or at the T'rang base depending on how you ended the last game. You start at level 5 and get +9-10 bonus attribute points. Most importantly you get a couple of really good items to start out with and a few unique ones. The really important items are the Mystery Ray, Diamond Ring, Elven Bow, and the Cornu of Demonspawn. In total you get a bunch of nice armor, some good weapons, a few great weapons, and a bunch of amulets of life (so like 16 resurrect charges).

    Only the Mystery Ray, Diamond Ring, Elven Bow, and Stun Rod are worth talking about.

    The Mystery Ray is a modern weapon. It does 4-14 damage and inflicts no status effects which is kind of bad, modern weapons don't get a strength bonus (bow/CBs do) and 4-14 is pretty low compared to a bow. Its alltogether an otherwise unremarkable weapon except for one fact. It is one of three weapons in the game which has infinite ammo. Of the other two, one is a rare random drop in the middle of the game and is basically the Msytery Ray that does more damage (there are also some limited ammo for it which gives it a kill %). The other one is a throwing weapon which does low damage and has 1% kill. Its in a set location which is nice, but if you don't have a ninja for it its not really that great because otherwise thrown weapons which aren't deathstars or throwing stilleto's are kinda bad. This is nice because in the mid game a ranger will shoot about 4 times a round. In the end game he can shoot up to (iirc) 12-15 times a round. Which is a LOT of ammo. Which means you will run out. The only way to get the mystery ray is to import

    Next is the Diamond Ring, it has +2 Hp regen and +30 divine resist but can only be worn by chicks. It belongs to the Dragon we left the first place with and you can give it to her in this game for an XP boost. Its a really good item even if you don't.

    Then there is the Elven Bow, the second or third best bow in the game, and its a very close third best. It has +20% damage, 5% kill, +15 speed, +1 HP/Round and is elf only. The best bow is +40% damage, +6% kill and requires 85 strength. The next is ranger only, +40% damage, +10 eagle eye(makes it easy to hit with). If you make an elf keeping the Elven bow isn't a bad idea. Its bad on precisely no one who can use it. It has +2 to-hit over the best bow, +1 over the second best, and +2 initiative over both of them... not including the speed bonus. The only reason the Elven Bow doesn't win out is because bows are best utilized by rangers and rogues, characters who don't care about being elves (Mooks are better rangers than Elves too) and who care more about the damage bonus than they do the kill %.

    Last and Least is the Stun Rod. Its least because you can buy it from the T'rang. On the other hand its also the best polearm in the game. It has reasonable damage (11-20), no to hit bonus and terrible initiative. But it also has 20% paralyze and 75% drain stamina. When you run out of stamina in this game you go unconcious. If you're incapacitated (webbed, paralyzed, KO) you take double damage. So the Stun rod doesn't do a lot of damage but it makes up for it by making things go KO all the time and fast. Even then its not bad, against a KO'd target a lategame fighter will do 88-160 damage/swing. The only reason its not that great is because he will do more with a sword and there exists a 30% KO extended range sword which does 9-33 damage with a set drop. That being said if you started a polearm fighter and gave him this he or she would wreck face the entire game.

    I imported because its the only way to start with Vi knowing you and used the Monastary Start because its the most common start that people will see. Even if starting with the T'rang or Umpani is easier (access to shops which sell spellbooks you will want)

    guThP6g.jpg

    That's better. That is us now. Not sure who those other guys were or what they were doing here.

    At any time, wizardry 8 lets you replace a character with another. To do this you have to fish for it since its not in the place you would expect. In the inventory screen click on a characters name. This will let you change their name/avatar/voice (everything but gender). If you look in the bottom left corner there is a little recycle button. This lets you replace the character with someone new. I did that 6 times, it took about 20 minutes.

    For now we skip the crabs and head inside for the first combat. The crabs outside look pretty mean and we want to give Vi some space since she was yelling at us to get going while just standing there.

    UhJfMdJ.jpg

    combat in this game can be done in two ways. Continuous or phased. Phased is how i prefer things though some people like continuous fights. Each character has three stats: HP, Stamina, and Mana. Mana is split into mana for the 6 realms of magic. So having your magic users know spells from each realm will make them progress faster in their main casting stat (since they can burn more mana). These slime are no match for our might so we smoke em and then rest because we're out of MP.

    Deeper in we find a barred door with a really big crab behind it. Must be 6 foot wide. Looks mean. We also find a guys journal. Its guarded by a quite nasty slime, but we took care of that handily.

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    We also level up. For now i am going to hold off on level up information unless someone asks. Later I will give updates on how the team is progressing, usually at the end of an update. Overall leveling is only interesting if you're making decisions. Saying "I got more powerful" doesn't mean much otherwise.

    However this level is important because it means the crabs outside aren't so difficult anymore. If you take on this bunch at level 1 you're liable to wipe or at least lose a character. The reason for this is mainly randomness. If you have a bard you can do OK by constantly putting them to sleep with the starting instrument. But if you don't and only have a few spells which do piddly damage then you're relying on the RNG.

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    All in all the crabs go well. I got really lucky this run through of the lower monastary. We park ourselves next to a neat little gazebo to hunker down for the night.

    MYtu017.jpg

    Hmm, that is interesting. Looks like there is someone camping up there. I bet he saw the whole thing. I wonder why he hasn't come down to help? Also interesting is this. It seems that the horizon is a hard fact of life on dominus. I wonder how they cope

    D0fgDOJ.jpg

    The party heads back inside to see if they can make it up to that place. Along the way we encounter more enemies and level up to 3. This is imporatant because i burn two mage spell picks here, one for Missile Shield, and one for Enchanted Blade. Both are super handy all the time. I now have a single target fire nuke, a single target frost nuke, and two buffs. My psion has a healing spell, mind bullets, an AoE air spell he can't cast well, and paralyze. My priest has web(aoe disable), make wounds, stamina, and light(which is almost useless but also free). This means that everyone has things to do in every combat which have effects. If something has an effect, even if it fails) you get progress. This is super good for training. The downside is that I am losing spell picks here. There are only so many spell picks and only so many spellbooks which you can find. Saving picks is super important for getting the most out of bishops. Saving picks is less important for specialty mages (essentially my three specialty casters have over three times the spell picks that a Bishop does) but still important.

    We continue on into a bunch of murky hallways filled with monsters. This place sure got overun fast. We find a shelf with payroll records for something called "The Brotherhood of the Ascension". I am starting to think that these monks know about how to become gods. We should relieve them of this knowledge.


    bcL21cZ.jpg

    I think i know what it was the good friar forgot. The sign outside read "Don't Feed the Rapax". I don't know what a Rapax is but they don't seem to like the Brotherhood. He had a note on him. I should probably bring that to someone trustworth. I dont know what Al-sedexus is but it could be bad if specific weapons are an issue.

    BfMGORD.jpg

    We found the way out. Unfortunately its locked.

    Note: its entirely possible to not have a character with lockpick here and this door must be opened to progress. Fortunately there is a "poseurs hat" which gives people the requistie skill if you don't have a character with it. Other than this, locks are a minor annoyance in the game. Mages get ways to open them and the traps are never all that dangerous(well a few are). Nor are there areny other locked plot doors (IIRC)

    I hear chittering behind the door. Fuuuck its that crab we saw earlier. The Crab fight is normally the first "boss" type character you find. Its not the first monster with a set location but it is the first unique monster. You won't find King Crabs until much later in the game and they'll be much different/more powerful.

    n9JOYLk.jpg

    This dude still has more HP than the 5 softshells we fought at the gazebo combined. Being a crab he should be (not sure) strong against water and weak against earth. Since my Psion, after shooting all his mind bullets, doesn't have any earth spells he casts paralyze while my priests casts web once his harm is down. Naturally the web missing and the paralyze hits. Its only for one round but the one round reprieve is super nice

    GLllaWl.jpg

    He goes down the next round. We head upstairs and dodge Gregor. We find outselves across from a door with a lock which we cannot open. Looks like it needs some sort of round key. I bet the weapons that the Rapax was talking about are behind the door. If we find that key we're probably going to come back. I like weapons and the ones we had in our spaceship are all broke.

    bhhn3T0.jpg

    Moving on we find ourselves outside, looking over the beech and the gazebo. There is a little squirrel dude with a staff standing next to a locked chest and an open journal on a table. It reads "HAMMERDAY the 21st. Strange Objects in the night sky. Very odd. No landings scheduled at Arnika this week. MOONDAy the 24th. More strange lights in the sky. LORDSDAY the 25th. Anselm made the announcement--We are to leave the monastary. I have been ordered to take the Key to Lord Braffit in Arnika. Alas, this means the end of my star-gazing...". Sweet, now we know the sucker to get that key off of. Lets chat have a chat with rocky.

    3c0ghYy.jpg

    wNcX7n0.png: Say you've been to Arnika Yet?

    H81FpnB.png: No

    wNcX7n0.png: Well if you haven't got plans, that's a whood place to go. There's all kinds of stuff happening there right now. Its just south of here

    YxmtN1N.png: heard any rumors

    wNcX7n0.png: Well, there's a rumor that you might be the third messenger

    YnY7ZIO.png: What?

    wNcX7n0.png: That information's worth a little something...

    YnY7ZIO.png: Fine. Mook, pay the man (paid 74 gold)

    wNcX7n0.png: "Well, see, you probably haven't heard a whole lot about it yet, but this guy named Marten? Pretty much everyone on this planet is looking for him. I don't know where he is but i Know the path to find him. You have to go through Trynton. Just look for the biggest tree in the forest south of Anirka, and you're there. You'll love it. It's a great place."

    YxmtN1N.png: If everyone is after Marten he has the Astral Dominae.

    YnY7ZIO.png: Or they think he does

    aERLoAN.png: or he has better

    FFOOrrn.png: No use jabbering about it, lets rest up and head on. We need to get out of here after all and that means we have to go through that roach.

    Note: Ahhh Gregor. Probably the hardest fight in the game. He does a lot of damage, has tough skin, and can one shot squishies in the back line. We are pretty prepared with Missile Shield, Enchanted Blade(both of which I forgot to cast), and three casters (guaranteed damage!) but even then the expectation is that Gregor
    kills 1-6 people in your party. The game gives you 3 resurrection powders right after this with a fourth semi-hidden. This screenshot basically sums up Gregor

    Qouayii.jpg

    The Priest prays, The prayer goes unheard. Welcome to round 2.

    aERLoAN.png: I think i know what ate the Rapax

    H81FpnB.png: I guess it can lock doors behind it too

    This was actually super good for me. My psion is using mind bullets, my mage casting ice nukes, and ditto for my priest. I started the combat far enough away that Gregor could not close the whole distance in the first turn which gave me a second turn of spells. In order for this to happen, Gregor needs to start combat outside of the range of your magic spells which means you have to rely on auto-targeting once gregor (who will be faster than your party) move into range. I had my fighter use a found scroll of haste so everyone has an extra 30 speed. I cannot believe that my attacks actually hit him either.

    1jO0I4H.jpg

    Gregor almost kills the mage. I set the psion to heal and the rest to continue nuking. Note that Gregor missed an attack. Otherwise he would have killed my mage from full in one round which included a move action since he moved into melee.

    sYGGgvR.jpg

    Oh did i mention he paralyzes every once and a while too. Fortunately this was on the last attack of his sequence (one of which missed) otherwise he would have killed the hobbit from full in one round. I hit him a lot the last round surprisingly. But the hobbit will 100% die the next round if Gregor decides to attack him. I heal him with the psion anyway and set everyone else to nuke.

    Q9dR8uc.jpg

    What? 4 rounds? Really? Gregor down in only 4 rounds with level 3 characters? On expert? No reloads? This is madness. The RNG gods must love me this game. Everyone levels up. I don't use them. Holding them until i make it to the upper monastery. You see the levels of monsters are set when you enter an area. So if you're level 3 when you enter the upper monastery its much easier and less populated than if you're level 4. If you're level 4 when you enter the road, its much easier and less populated than if you enter at level 5. If you enter the road at level 5-6 you can read all about it in the Cormac McCarthy novel of the same name. But not in this LP

    Ahead of us after the fight is the exit. We will have to kill some random spiders to open it though. Off to the right is this fine room

    hTZdfn8.jpg

    Which houses this fine gentlemen. There is some loot in those coffin's and a trap in one. The fountain is a 1 time full heal.

    XkpWslM.jpg

    Who nearly killed one of my guys (though no one died, thanks to a timely 30 damage attack by my blind rogue). You will notice how everyone is blind? 2 people were KO the next round. Not one of my dudes was unimpeded. This fight is the first one where lots of stacking and overlapping status effects can bone you. Fortunately these fights are few and far between in the early levels.

    Uo0AL9P.jpg

    This room is a trap. Touch the skull and you get a key. Touch the body and you get dropped to the floor below you. The key gets you 3 resurrection powder with "for emergency use only" as a tip as to what it is in case you can't identify it (i could not). The expectation is that it fixes the deaths you had to the roach.


    And with that i kill some spiders off screen at head to the exit

    zMOb3vJ.jpg

    Lower Monastery Complete: To give you a sense of the combat you didn't see i will be keeping a kill counter. On screen there were 5 fights consisting of 11 kills.

    Total Kills: 57
    Total Deaths: 0

    The Current Status/Inventory of the Party as an album

    Goumindong on
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    DockenHandgimpBasilElvenshaePLAAxenDarmakYerMumGriswold
  • HandgimpHandgimp R+L=J Family PhotoRegistered User regular
    Hey man just wanted to say thanks for doing this; Wizardry 8 is one of those games I bought when it came out, but never got around to playing. Keep up the good work!

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  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    I should have the upper monastery up tomorrow. It was a lot faster than the lower monastery(for various reasons). Only problem right now is that I want to play more instead of formatting screenshots and typing. Game too good.

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  • A-PuckA-Puck Registered User regular
    Man, I remember transferring characters back and forth between Wizardry and Bard's Tale many MANY years ago. I tried plying the old Bard's Tale games a while ago and found them brutally difficult. Sounds like Wizardry kept that brutally difficult part.

    Soon... soon I will install you, my precious.
  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    edited August 2014
    Part 2: The Upper Monastery
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    An erie music hangs in the air. This place is beautiful but very empty. I know the monks have abandoned it but aside from the dust and the monsters is very well kept. There are stairs to the left which lead up to an area where we hear some movement.

    PQzjRwH.png

    A few rats later we find outselves in the library. A sign tells us to be quiet but there are like 8 rats in here and we’re going to have to slaughter them.

    ZM2Ibxw.png

    The Library is an interesting place. Its one of, iirc, two locations which have magic restrictions. If I take another step no magic works, period. For a magic heavy party like mine this would make this fight pretty tough. So I don’t take the step forward and knock them out in 3-4 rounds.
    Inside the Library there are books on philosophy and metaphysics which make our head hurt. Even Uri; and he loves that shit. We read some more about Phoonzang and other scholarly world building texts but its nothing very interesting. Not nearly as interesting as the kitchen. Just outside the kitchen you can find a magnifying glass, the first engineering gadget item you can get. No clue what it makes
    In what will be a recurring theme, this sign says “do not overcook”

    Y1JR1jb.png

    And so we overcook it. This is the second engineering gadget that you can run across. I forget what it makes (just use the reference). Anyway that big door you saw earlier is locked and we can’t do anything about it, so lets head up the other way. There we find the main entrance

    C0T0V1U.png

    (note this picture is taken out of sequence). At the main entrance there is a group of bandits clearly intent on looting the place. Now this is where I don’t precisely show off but simply tell you about a trick. If you start combat you can select the run option. Then you can run from place to place and, if at the end of your turn, you would not be in combat, regardless of the fact that you moved through enemy vision combat does not start.
    Yes. I avoided the group of bandits in the main hall and walked entirely around them. I will have to take care of them eventually but this trick will be really useful later in the road and it’s a great place to practice because the jumps are easy. Here is me behind the bandits, heading up to the office

    BO8jvbQ.png

    I use the same trick to get the jump on these bats. Also to peek around the corner and ID monsters but not fight (by peeking right back around the corner)

    c0Nftxc.png
    IydDB6n.png

    More boring books, a locked corner office with a sweet window, a note and a shillelagh behind it. In the corner there is a chest. The chest has something that I am guessing lets us into those big double doors in the library

    v5ttqwq.png

    It also contains a lightning rod. The first and one of the only engineering items you don’t build. Using it uses a lot of stamina and casts a single target fire nuke (energy blast) at a level depending on how good your gadgeteer is. This item is stronger than shooting your base weapon until much later in the game and boosts your engineering so is pretty great if you have a gadgeteer.
    Anyway, we head down to take care of the bandits. As you can see by this picture at the end of round 2 they do not last very long

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    We head back down and have a nice look at the strange overhead room we passed under at the start. These monks sure do like their glass. We get to the double doors and open it up… it’s a belfry… it has bats. Of course it fucking has bats.

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    The bats aren’t that much of a problem, but we are standing in the “no cast zone” which is not particularly good for the fact that we have 3 casters who can’t do shit otherwise. In order to combat this we run all the way to the kitchen in a single move then get set up to funnel them into our murder turnnel. Uri has an AoE spell “Shrill Sound” now which is appropriate for the library and pretty handily destroys them

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    Inside is a machine that has no labels. The symbols are pretty clearly marked 1,2 and 3. But that last 3 looks a little like 11 \m/. So I set it there and press the button. The ground shakes, glass shatters. This lets you get into three areas which would otherwise be inaccessible to you. The first of which is this little area surrounded by boxes

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    You get there by dropping out of the window above but before you can do that you have to kill some seekers. Which are like little lizard things which spit bile at you, things which I failed to get a screen shot of for some reason, not even in the next fight against them.
    There is supposed to be loot in those boxes but I don’t know what it is since I don’t have detect secrets yet and no search skill because I have no ranger and because my guys just don’t want to find it with the search active.

    5XAaIp8.png

    The next thing you get is this super good armor for Samurai. Samurai have limited armor they can equip (until the very end game) but get access to some really nice pieces early. This is one of them and is about as strong as armor gets until you start finding “enchanted” stuff. The instrument on the ground I believe casts bless when a bard toots it

    qk63CHK.png

    Back to the office and we get a note after busting that guys really nice window down. For some reason I don’t think anyone is going to trust this note given where it was left and how it was acquired. His journal reads “LORDSDAY the 25th. The time has come at last. Yet something is terribly wrong. This ‘Dark Savant’ is not mentioned in any of the prophecies. Could it be that not even the Cosmic Lords foresaw his arrival? We must investigate further. I have sent the Brotherhood off to gather what news they can. I will join them shortly…”
    In the back of the main hallway is the last area to visit. An interesting thing about this game is that almost the entirety of the upper monastery is skippable. You can just walk straight to the exit. If you do, you actually miss the key plot dump which explains to people who skipped the intro or didn’t play the last two games. After killing some more Seekers which again, I failed to get a screenshot of for some reason even though I came close to losing a member of the party, we come across someone familiar

    PRRoxEl.png

    Its that motherfucking cyborg who took our pen!

    U0Vy5pv.png

    WBk9yfB.png: You are not the first to come here, to the planet of Dominus, but you are the last. The T’rang, the Umpani, the Mook and the dread Dark Savant have already arrived. All of you are here for a single purpose, to Ascend to the Cosmic Circle. To Ascend, you must learn all that a Cosmic Lord knows. These tasks will not be easy. You must learn of life, of knowledge and of change. Who will learn these things first? Who will we then see at Ascension Peak? Will it be you? The Savant? Or perhaps none at all? I cannot say

    FEtcvmo.png?1: Then the son of a bitch fades away
    FFOOrrn.png?1: I wonder how I could ever learn all the things that a cosmic lord knows
    YnY7ZIO.png?1: I wonder why you’re talking out the narration
    IQgn8eN.png: I wonder why you’re all dumb dumb heads
    YnY7ZIO.png?1 H81FpnB.png?1 YxmtN1N.png?1 FEtcvmo.png?1 aERLoAN.png?1 FFOOrrn.png?1What?
    t1Lp0WY.png

    IQgn8eN.png: Go to arnica and see the tower built there –it contains a device powerful enough to destroy this planet –and you along with it! So consider that as you go out from here, -friends-, and know that we watch your every move

    YxmtN1N.png?1: He presses something on his staff and as quietly and suddenly as he came, he is gone
    YnY7ZIO.png?1: Again I wonder why you’re talking out the narration

    We pick up some potions and take note of our surroundings. I don’t think this is going to be relevant at all
    xuUVuAG.png

    Nope, never going to see that thing again ever.
    Outside is the road. The terrible terrible road.
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    The Current Status/Inventory of the Party as an album

    Total Kills: 104
    Total Deaths: 0

    Note: I've edited the first post with the intro video

    Goumindong on
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    Elvenshae
  • Maledict66Maledict66 Registered User regular
    Really interested to follow this, thanks for posting. I have Wizardry 6 through 8 from goG but never played any, and I have to be honest the number of choices at the start is quite overwhelming. I like playing the more interesting and specialist heroes rather than just fighters & rogues, but it seems that would be counter productive?

  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    Maledict66 wrote: »
    Really interested to follow this, thanks for posting. I have Wizardry 6 through 8 from goG but never played any, and I have to be honest the number of choices at the start is quite overwhelming. I like playing the more interesting and specialist heroes rather than just fighters & rogues, but it seems that would be counter productive?
    Absolutely not. Its just slightly harder.

    There are two reasons for this

    1) Mixing specialists and non-specialists is counter productive: If you mix specialists and non-specialists the overall party level will be higher than your hybrids. This will make all of their level based actions will be a lot weaker. Most importantly, the hybrids (with the exception of the Valkyrie) are reliant on level based actions in order to be strong combat fighters.

    Basically it comes down to a single metric. For any combat action, a fighter does twice the damage compared to a hybrid in the lategame because of Berserk. Everything else depends on skill levels and stats and the fighter's skill levels will be just as high and his strength attribute will be higher for most of the game. In order for a Samurai to catch up the Samurai has to get instant kills, which are governed by the "critical strike stat" and the relative character level between the attacker and the defender(basically defenders have a chance to resist an instant kill based on relative character level). The best guaranteed sword that the Samurai gets is Fang. It has 10% kill on it. Combined with the critical strike skill, against even level folks this might mean 10%-20% instant kill(precisely how much I am unsure). Given that the Samurai attacks on average 4-6 times per round this will mean that you will instant kill an enemy roughly every 1-2 rounds. The effective damage spike that this is could be considered pretty high.

    But if a fighter takes 1000 XP to get a level, a Samurai takes 1400. If they're in the same party then the fighter is level 20 and the samurai is level 18 and the monsters are pegged to the fighter level. The Samurai's critical strike drops to 5% and all of a sudden he gets an instant kill every 4 rounds or so. Combat can be over in four rounds. The Samurai never has a chance to spike damage to be as effective as the Fighter who plugs away every round doing double damage.

    But its entirely possible to get the Muramasa blade to drop(13% chance) and that will peak the Samurai's kill% up to like 25% so long as he is against even level monsters. And then, if you spent time putting points into magic you've got a mage in medium armor which, when he attacks, kills people 25% of the time. On average instant killing one dude per round. Fuck he could do zero damage and he would out-effectiveness a fighter at that point.

    But not if he is in a party with a fighter or a rogue.

    2) Non-specialists can tend to need grinding and grinding isn't fun/feels like cheating. This one is pretty simple and follows what I said about bishops in the character description post. Skills go up with use and there are only so many non-combat uses of spells (that aren't sitting at your screen grinding away at a lock for "effect" each time). Even if your spells were just as effective as your attacks you're still faced with the fact that splitting your actions means you only get half the skill progression. Now, half the skill progression doesn't mean "half the points total" because it takes more to get to higher skill levels. But it still means that it takes a long time to develop your spells naturally.

    Additionally hybrids start 4 levels behind they basically get 1-2 uses of frost 1 when they're just starting the Arnika Road. On the margin they're better off attacking in combat (which raises their combat skills) but this leaves them no time to raise their magic. Even if they choose all the non-combat spells they're going to have a hard time hitting the spell breakpoints to get the spells they want and if they don't grind magic they won't ever be particularly good at even buffing.

    Good use of consumables makes this largely not a problem, and with a ranger you will never run out of money anyway (you can buy light heals to mix into medium heals at a profit. You can but medium heals to mix into heavy heals at a profit. cure light condition and heavy heal makes cure disease at a profit... cure diesase and heavy heal makes renewal potions... at a profit... when you get to 95 alchemy you can turn ice bombs and fire bombs into canned elementals). But you're still faced with a more challenging and strategic character development process, which relies on a lot of things going right in order to get right.

    That is why the second party i suggested was only 4 characters. It keeps their levels up by only having four, and because 3 of them will be critting, the lower damage of 4 characters matters less. Its also why the Ninja runs were only 1-2 characters. Because if you start adding more characters they either A: need to be more ninja's to maintain the level differences or B: Bisihops. But bishops won't have stealth and will get rocked by every enemy in the game thinking they're the only target. So you might as well just have a ninja being his badass self.

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    Elvenshae
  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    edited August 2014
    Part 3: Cormac McCarthy’s The Road to Arnika

    This update is dedicated to all my homies who didn’t make it; You know them Stakes is High
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    The party looked out upon the barren expanse. It was cold, sandy, and covered in things that only a cruel God could have made. Crabs, only a foot across, but dripping with venom, scuttled about, no ocean in sight.

    sV4Djx2.png

    The party sneaks up on them, swiftly running between rocks. The crabs look their way only when they’re obscured. Finally they get the jump on them and swiftly despatches the crabs.

    YxmtN1N.png?1: Why did we do that?
    FEtcvmo.png?1: They would have eaten us if we didn’t do it first
    YxmtN1N.png?1: If only my heart were stone

    iSwMBFy.png

    The road stretches out in front of them closed in on each side by mountains. There would be no avoiding anything which was there. The group hoped it was friendly. When they came to a corner they deftly peeked their heads around to ensure they weren’t running into bandits, or venom crabs, or wasps the size of small children, obscured by large text boxes describing their stats.

    epfWrHG.png

    They ducked back around the corner and took refuge behind a rock. There were only two wasps but they didn’t want to make a rucus and draw in these vicious plant like things which skittered about

    The wasps rounded the corner. There was no such luck that they would go the otherway. Fortunately the bloodvides decided to not join the party and the two wasps were swiftly dispatched.

    aERLoAN.png?1: Bilbo, what is the bravest thing you ever did?
    Bilbo spat in the road a bloody phlem
    H81FpnB.png?1: Getting up this morning

    The party peeked their head back around the rock. The vines were gone and they continued on

    Vg788Cs.png

    YnY7ZIO.png?1: If trouble comes when you least expect it then maybe the thing to do is to always expect it
    FEtcvmo.png?1: Good idea, we peak over the edge of this rise

    mFvmVjW.png

    Men. That could not be good, no good men would be out on this road. And worse, the party found those bloodvines again. Quickly they hid behind a tree

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    Fortunately the vines and the men didn’t see them. They hid behind another tree, skittering from place to place like Buggs Bunny and Company sneaking past Elmer Fudd in a Warner Brother’s cartoon

    d32Ce16.png
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    They rounded the next bend, just out of sight of the first bloodvines. But there was another group of vines waiting for them and battle was joined. Fortunately the first group did not hear the sounds of battle and the party retreated into a crevasse to put their best face forward and protect the tired mages.

    FFOOrrn.png?1: I’m losing faith; I don’t think we’re going to make it
    FEtcvmo.png?1: Listen to me, when your dreams are of some world that never was or some world that never will be, and you're happy again, then you'll have given up. Do you understand? And you can't give up, I won't let you!.
    aERLoAN.png?1: Fuck they’re ranged

    iql3kqm.png

    YnY7ZIO.png?1 H81FpnB.png?1 YxmtN1N.png?1 FEtcvmo.png?1 aERLoAN.png?1 FFOOrrn.png?1: Fuck
    YnY7ZIO.png?1: I have mind fire
    FFOOrrn.png?1: Can you do it, when the time comes?
    YnY7ZIO.png?1: When the time comes there will be no time. Now is the time. Curse god and DIE!

    Zr3z0Tt.png

    The psionic fire burned through the vines like…well life fire on vines; that shit burns. Swords flashed. The party was exhausted, tired, out of mana. Resting seemed a good option but they would not. They must press on. To rest was death, to invite the vines to cawl out of the mountains strangle them in their sleep

    n0DQ1CR.png

    YxmtN1N.png?1: That was terrible Uri; Just remember that the things you put into your head are there forever. You might want to think about that.
    YnY7ZIO.png?1: You forget some things, don’t you?
    YxmtN1N.png?1: Yes. You forget what you want to remember and you remember what you want to forget.”

    Note:
    ]There is actual a level transition to the Arnika-Trynton road I am leaving out here. Once you get to the transition you’re pretty much safe this is just for drama

    YChGpng.png

    aERLoAN.png?1: Is, is that the city? My god it is. It’s the city we’re there. We are safe

    Kf1Qwr5.png

    FEtcvmo.png?1: It is the city, but there is no god
    aERLoAN.png?1: and we are his prophets.

    The city stretched out before them, an ominous tower just on the outside. Smoke rose from the center and an almost imperceptible layer of ashe covered the wide and inviting streets. They set out along the blacktop in the gunmetal light, shuffling through the ash, each the other's world entire.

    Party Status is basically unchanged. Its not worth showing.

    Total Kills: 115
    Total Deaths: 0


    OK real talk now. The Road is not the hardest section of the game. It’s not even the most annoying section of the game. The Road is just the most remembered section of the game. The playthrough you just witnessed included descriptions of every fight I got into and my path was pretty easy. You can jaunt off to the side and open a chest at the first intersection. You can go and investigate the house (but can’t get in) and you can go north towards the wilderness and the Umpani (where there is a fight you will almost have to avoid/run from). here is a map

    Like most areas in the game the Road has a level scaling on it. At level 4-5 the level scaling means that enemies are pretty weak. The enemies I fought were legitimately not an issue. At level 6 however enemies start to form large groups, they’re more powerful, and there are more of them. The geography of the road means that there are many intersections where enemies can bunch up. And if you sleep with enemies in vision but not aggressive (I.E. coming towards you) then enemies may remain even after resting. What this meant is that many players would back themselves into a corner and get surrounded my multiple large groups of enemies and they would have no way to get away. Combat running was always a possibility but that could backfire if you ran into more enemies.

    The developers mainly intended that people enter the road around level 6 and that it was supposed to be challenging. The idea was the teach people to run from fights and to avoid what they didn’t want to fight. The reality was that it was more like teaching people how to stop, drop, and roll by lighting them on fire. Everyone who survives either knows how to stop, drop, and roll or is fireproof but you sure as shit didn’t teach anyone those things. So it was with the road.

    My trip was easy. I knew the road, I was prepared, I had a super party of god-kings who knew the rules of the universe and manipulated them for their benefit. But this is not how things have always been.

    Edit: Tune in (ideally) tomorrow for part 4: Arnika (Oh my god! JC1 A bomb!)

    Goumindong on
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    DarmakYerMumBasilElvenshae
  • BasilBasil Registered User regular
    Mind fire is best fire.

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  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    edited August 2014
    We’re going SHOPPING

    Before we begin, this will be a fairly large and text heavy update. I do roughly everything in Arnika except get the wheel key (there is no reason to do that until I am on my way to Mt Gigas. There is a fight to get it; it’s not particularly tough, but any XP I get is XP which makes it harder to cheese myself some free intelligence). There are a total of three combats and the rest is talking to people and doing stuff. Arnika is also the first real chance you get to grind, so I will be describing that. I ended up doing a little grinding but it was ancillary to what my goal was at the time.

    We enter Arnika a level lower than I should have. I forgot to level up my dudes to 6. The reason you want to do this is because chest level scaling is per 5 levels and sticks based on when you first enter the area. This isn’t a huge deal since all of the really good weapons aren’t on random drops/chests which have a level sensor, but it probably cuts in half the total gold value we can wrest out of all the chests were going to be looting.
    uQyJXZn.png

    The main and only entrance to Arnika. There is a port full of broken down ships and a spaceport which I also didn’t visit (I will have to return later so no biggie). We are here for really one reason, to get some equipment upgrades. Ok ok, ostensibly we are here because Vi said we would meet us here but we already know the plot and that takes us to Trynton. So if we really wanted we could skip it.
    But then we wouldn’t get to meet Myles

    CxZ1eke.png

    Myles’ voice acting is amazing by the way. In fact most of the voice work in this game is really good, one of the highlights.

    a3H2bS4s.png: He and his Troopers have terrorized this place, but hey, it’s made my business easier, no one being home and all. Speaking of business, I got a line on a little rescue-for-profit mission and could use some help. You look perfect for the job. You up for it?
    aERLoANs.png?1: Profit?
    a3H2bS4s.png: Perfect! Like I said, these troopers have done a number on Arnika. I just saw ‘em kidnap someone! Good looking woman, too… not that I wouldn’t rescue an ugly woman if there wer money in it. I’m not biased. Anyway, these Troopers took her over by the crash site. From there I lost track. I figure she must be somewhere nearby. I would have rescued her myself, but there’s not enough of me to go around that many Troopers. The crash site’s straight north of here. When you’re ready to go, we’ll go together. Course, you probably have some questions first
    FEtcvmos.png?1: Who are these Higardi folks?
    a3H2bS4s.png: The Higardi? You’ve got one right in front of you, one of the remaining ones, that is. Dark Savant scared off most of us
    FEtcvmos.png?1: You look like someone with their ear to the ground, know anything about him?
    a3H2bS4s.png: You might say he’s the worst thing that ever happened to Arnika. I mean, he comes out of nowhere, creates this giant tower in the middle of town, and then sends these Troopers to ransack what’s left. And that’s not all. Here? We used to get all kinds of visitors, you know? Now he’s shooting ships right out of the sky like it’s a shooting gallery or something. Tell you what. Lord Braffit probably knows a lot more than me, and he’s right in town here
    YxmtN1Ns.png?1: What about Marten?
    a3H2bS4s.png: Practically a legend around here. He stole the Destinae Dominus right out of the Monastery! Guy’s a master.
    FFOOrrns.png?1: Tell us about the bauble
    a3H2bS4s.png: Now that would be a price catch! Of course, you’ll never find it. It was stolen a long, long time ago. And if I haven’t found it –no one—will!
    H81FpnBs.png?1: what is the skinny on the city?
    a3H2bS4s.png: I’ll be honest with you. Arnika’s a mess right now. Then again, you picked a heck of a time to visit. A year ago? Beautiful city with wonderful people. Then the Dark Savant arrived and wrecked the place. Still, I can give you a few recommendations. If you want to know what’s happening on a street-like level there’s He’Li’s, a great bar. You can get a room there, too. There’s a couple of ships that are still open, and the bank, of course. Oh, and the temple, if you go in for that sort of thing.
    YnY7ZIOs.png?1: The temples leader, that is Braffit right?
    a3H2bS4s.png: He’s sort of the Higardi spiritual leader, you might say. In normal people terms, that just means he’s lived long enough to know most everything that’s worth knowing.
    aERLoANs.png?1: And who are you myles?
    a3H2bS4s.png: That’s my name. Not too much to say about me. Oh, there’s rumors, but I suggest you just ignore them.
    aERLoANs.png?1: Rumors?
    a3H2bS4s.png: I ignore ‘em

    From here we can explore the town. There are usually roving bands of bandits and Savant Troopers and individually the groups won’t be too much trouble but its easy to get surrounded and easy to land a fight with multiple groups. For the most part I do not combat peek in Anika I just make sure to have my psion cast Chameleon and not be in search mode so that enemies can’t see me well.

    We can check out the HLL, but can’t get in. The town center, with He’Li’s on the left. A statue of Phoonzang in the center and the bank on the right.

    Antones; Bank ; Tower; He’Li’s and the town center ; HLL ; Jail
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    From the town center, we can see the Jail, the Bank, the Temple, He’Li’s and the blacksmith’s.

    Images

    We pop into the bank to avoid those rogues and some Savant troopers who were behind us but they follow us. Fortunately for us they are going to wander in one by one and make this otherwise very difficult combat very easy

    fQmPSLa.png

    Sweet. Finally caught some spell effects in action. I mean it would be easier but I would have to just jam down my screenshot key all the time. This is Energy Blast, cast at rank 1 because everyone is out of mana for real. The psion is healing the fighter and the priest is making sure the rogue is topped off on stamina. He should be using paralyze but grumble grumble grumble someone didn’t take that spell. Savant Guards are androids and naturally robotic enemies are weak to the water domain

    gw6JGJH.png

    Slowly but surely I make my way outside. The casters entirely drained of mana and finish off the last guard. Enemies won’t respawn until you rest so the town is pretty much clear for me to wander around in. Also everyone levels

    3dozskX.png

    Someone hid stuff in the Phoonzang statute. I don’t understand why or good god why but they did. Like the fountain at the entrance to the city this fountain heals you a few HP when you click on it. The fountain at the entrance eventually runs out and I think this does but I am not sure

    We head down into the temple and don’t talk to Braffit but marvel at the second best spot in the game. Most fountains in the game do things. Braffits cures all hexes, diseases, drains (I think). Shit it probably revives you from the dead. All places indoors are more or less safe so we rest up before going to rescue the woman.

    In the middle of town is a crashed spaceship that the Dark Savant shot down. Its got a black box in it and a broken children’s toy (jack in the box box) with which the engineer can make some monstrous devise of destruction

    Two images here for the next fight. I start combat before clicking on the door. Starting combat puts me in “select your action mode”. Clicking on the door guarantees a surprise round on the enemies, they don’t get to select actions. So I get a free full round of actions to beat on enemies

    F3cxh90.png


    Which is good because they’re nasty. Nastier than the guards. Here you’re seeing the Mage cast an AoE skill at rank 1 (the highest she can reliably cast) since she has already hit the entire party in the face with her own whipping rocks before I definitely like the fact that she has it guaranteed even if androids resist air spells (given how they don’t breathe)

    M4yMqVys.png QCFFmcjs.png

    Web however works really well and we end up locking them down and beating them up.

    ty91KDgs.png: Where on this planet have you been?! I thought you’d never find me! How long have I been locked In here? Days?! Weeks?! I should have known. Remember when I said I was going back to Anirka to Check things out? Well guess who I ran into – The Dark Savant! Of all people! He had his troopers lock me up in here. Who knows what he was going to do? C’mon. let’s get out of here before the comes looking for me

    You actually have to press the recruit button for these characters to join you which is why Myles didn’t automatically join us at the start. Yes, its entirely possible to just leave Vi there and she will, as far as I know, never leave until you come back and recruit her. We duck out and head to He’Li’s.

    rslTNvU.png

    ty91KDgs.png: He’Li! I could hardly wait to see you. It has been a long time

    Ps4bnBSs.png: Long? I should say so! You said you were leaving for a week! What’s it been?

    ty91KDgs.png: Seven Years, He’Li. Seven *long* years

    Ps4bnBSs.png: What the hell happened, Vi? I mean, there’s a lot of difference between seven *days* and sever *years*

    ty91KDgs.png: It’s a long story. I’ve been from one end of the universe to the other. I got a bit more than I bargained for

    Ps4bnBSs.png: Did it have to do with… you know

    ty91KDgs.png: Him? The Dark Savant? Yea. Yea it did. I made some foolish choices when I was young, He’Li. I never should have left Dominus with him in the first place, but I can’t take it back

    Ps4bnBSs.png: He’s here, Vi, on Dominus. At least that’s the word I’m getting in here. Did you know that?

    ty91KDgs.png: it’s why we came bac. Hell, I wasn’t here two days before his troopers already had me! These guys came to my rescues. I can tell you all about it when things settle down. But first, let’s get some drinks for me and my friends

    He’Li give the party ale

    Ps4bnBSs.png: On the house, Vi. Where are my manners? In all the excitement, I forgot. Allow me the pleasure of wealcoming you to He’Li’s! We got all the three R’s under one roof – Rumors, Rooms, and Rum! Try saying that when you’re drunk. What can I get for you folks?

    YxmtN1Ns.png?1: room

    Ps4bnBSs.png: Tell you what, I’ll rent you a room for *free* if you get rid of those hoodlums upstairs! They haven’t paid their bills in at least a month. You take ‘em out, and the room’s yours

    YxmtN1Ns.png?1: Murder for hire, sounds reasonable. What is the word on the grape vine?

    Ps4bnBSs.png; Oh, I hear lots of stuff. This is a bar, after all, and when people get drinking? Why, they sal all kinds of things. I haven’t heard anything worth passing along right now, but you come back often, and I’ll have some rumor for you, I’m sure

    aERLoANs.png?1: Know anything about Marten?

    Ps4bnBSs.png: I know the name, but not the history. You might try Tramain in the HLL

    She also gives us the down low on the T’rang moving into Marten’s Bluff and the Umpani at Mount Gigas. Both of these are plot critical locations and both of them have spell books we want. The bluff hits after Trynton mainly because you might as well go through Trynton on the way.

    We also meet Braffit

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    qSCbi9ts.png: Vitalia Domina, it is you. I am the most surprised to see you. It has been a very long time…

    ty91KDgs.png: Oh, it’s good to see you, Lord Braffit! You have no idea how happy I am to be home at last

    qSCbi9ts.png I’m certain you are, girl. You risked your life going with him, you know. Leaving the safe confines of Dominus, travelling through space with a mad man.. and your eye. What happened to your eye?

    ty91KDgs.png: He took it. I don’t know why. I, I tried to fight, but I mean, I’m no match for him. Look, I was young and foolish. I only thought I was adventurous.

    qSCbi9ts.png: He’s here on dominus you know

    ty91KDgs.png. Believe me, I know. His henchmen nabbed me before I even made it past the city walls. They locked me up! If it hadn’t been for these guys I wouldn’t have made it home in the first place! They brought me back from Guardia and rescued me as soon as they heard I was in trouble. I wish I knew what he wanted with me in the first place. I figured once I got home, I was free of him…

    qSCbi9ts.png: None of us are, Vitalia. He has built a tower here and claims it contains enough explosives to destroy all of Arnika. I suggest you be careful. It seems he needs you for some reason

    ty91KDgs.png: Trust me, hell never take me for granted –or for anything else -- again

    qSCbi9ts.png: And you fellows? You have the thanks of all Arnika for bringing her safely here. And you, too, should stay clear of the Savant.

    FEtcvmos.png?1: So you were at that monastery we landed at?

    qSCbi9ts.png: Yes. It is just outside town. Before the Savant arrived, it was a most peaceful place to be. Now, well, it’s abandoned! Anselm has taken all the brothers with him in search of the Destinae Dominus

    H81FpnBs.png?1: Whoselm?

    qSCbi9ts.png: Anselm is my leader, well, apart from Phoonzang, of course. I pray for him now as he searched for the Destinate Dominus. Without it, the Ascension itself is lost. I only hope he finds it before the Dark Savant

    YnY7ZIOs.png?1: What do you know about him?

    qSCbi9ts.png: I know too much about him, and too little all the same. I have never met him, but I have heard and seen more than enough. He comes to Dominus to claim our Ascension as his own – to rise to the Cosmic Circle! And he has threatened to kill anyone who gets in his way. He built that monstrous tower in a single night, destroying a part of my city in the process! His troopers have claimed dozens of lives. And still we are powerless over him. I cannot help but believe that the Lords have somehow planned it to go this way, that perhaps it will work out in the end. But my faith is being tried

    H81FpnBs.png?1: Destinaie Dominuwhoozle?
    qSCbi9ts.png: The gift of the Father to those here on Dominus. It was said to contain all knowledge. Now only the Father knows where it is… all because of Marten. Without the Destinae Dominus, there will be no Ascension. I can only hope we find it before the Dark Savant

    Then we ditch Vi and she says she will return to He’Li’s

    qSCbi9ts.png: I’m glad you returned alone. There’s something you should know about Vitalia. I am grateful that you’ve protected her as you have. For many years, we did the same. When Vitalia was still quite young, the rest of her family died in a freak accident. It is perhaps no coincidence that the Dark Savant was spotted here shortly thereafter. We took her in and raised her as our own, but she became increasingly rebellious, as all children do. In her 18th year we lost her. She left Dominus with the dark Savant. Perhaps he charmed her. We will never know. Her family have always been known as Guardians of the Key. The meaning of this was forgotten long ago – but, perhaps, the Dark Savant knows something we don’t. So, please, continue to watch over her. I worry he will claim her still. Perhaps this will help.

    We give Braffit the note

    qSCbi9ts.png: Keep these items safe with you. They were dpecially forged by Cierdan to destroy the Rapax

    We give Braffit the fellowship note

    qSCbi9ts.png: Anselm must have sent you! You’re here for the wheel key, no doubt. You’ll find it hidden safely in our Temple Crypt. So, Anselm feels the time has come to open Cierdan’s tomb and use his weapons? Then these are dark days indeed.

    He gives us some cash and XP. Not bad.

    IYAABuEr.pngMG]

    Anyway we head out and meet the blacksmith, who is a rapax. He has a couple of interesting things to say but nothing plot related. If you ask him about plot he will rebuke you and tell you to get back to the business of buying his stuff.

    We return to He’Li and she tells us that the T’Rang and Umpani are looking for hired guns. Which is kind of strange since the only people who use guns are the Umpani, and they also use swords. So it would make more sense to say “hired swords”

    We say hello to the United Mook Alliance

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    WHAT! So if you have a Mook in your party you lose one of them when you talk to the Mook. They will return after the next time you rest, so its not a huge deal. But it is annoying if you run into enemies and are OCD about everyone having the same experience points. If you ask about the Chaos Molari they’re like “Yup, we got that”

    We head to the temple and rest

    Error: post is 836 characters too long!

    Goumindong on
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  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    edited August 2014
    aERLoANs.png?1: Well, good day. Good to see everyone again. So, I think there’s money in this consulting thing, for Mooks anyway. I know there’s money in what I saw inside those walls… they got something we’re looking for!

    Note: each voice has its own specific response to being taken inside. This game has a lot of recorded dialogue

    Step the next is murdering those people for He’Li. Which we do using the same combat trick we used for the Troopers guarding Vi. Except these ones are much easier to kill. We also rob the entire town blind. I am not going to show you all the chests. You can find them and the loot on your own. Most of it is pretty non-exceptional. There is a violin of something or other that I am pretty sure casts a spell that you get from the base instrument and that is about it.

    Now. Each of Anna, He’Li, and Antone have a key card. If you have one you can be let into the bank safety deposit vaults…. And clean them all out without anyone caring a lick

    Anyway, screw that we’re breaking into the prison now. Why? Because why not. Also because its integral to getting to a few places but no one ever hints that it might be useful

    RSwPcSY.png

    Inside we find a nice little wanted poster for Marten (Treason and Sacrilege apparently. Damn their penal code needs updating). We also find Marten’s ID tag from his HLL days

    rZrUH9h.png

    Then we head on over, unlock the middle cell (in the left cell there are two brigands you can fight, but I leave them locked up) and read the former cell mates note that says “Knowledge hidden is Knowledge forgotten. Know that I know”. Cryptic.

    Also he seemed to have dug an escape tunnel. Wonder where it leads? Oh, to a slime

    hh8tvyW.png
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    Ohhhhh to the main bank vault. Score. We get a Diamond Epee, and amulet of stillness, and an unidentified cloak, which is pretty decent and then we get to the grinding. OK so its not really grinding. I just have a tonne of stuff in my inventory which is not identified. Identifying stuff takes either the spell (which I have) or high artifacts skill (which I don’t have). High artifacts skill has other uses but mainly you can just ID stuff.

    The reason I waited to do it here is that in order to ID everything I will need to rest a lot. It takes a LOT of spellpoints to ID the amount of stuff I have, which means a lot of resting. I actually did this once before at the start of the game and it cost me 3 days of ingame time. Now however, I have buffs I can cast on myself, and there is this door with a pretty hefty lock

    tilqlUW.png

    Which I can cast knock at all day and not have a chance in hell of unlocking. Some people will sit here for hours doing this just to boost the wizardry skill but I will only do it so long as I have stuff left to identify. Basically I am making the most of the fact that I don’t want to sit around with a bunch of unidentified items that I could sell. I don’t consider this grinding since I have to ID them anyway. As you will see by my stats at the end of the update I still had lots of stuff to ID.

    d221iyC.png

    This button teleports you out to the middle of the road and thankfully there were no enemies there but they are around. We sneak on over to the HLL and can finally get in because they think we’re marten

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    They have a starmap; It is useless

    S5BqgQos.png

    We find the Tramain character and ask him about Marten

    aZCyTaX.png

    FrOf7mts.png: We pinned it on Marten, and traced him to Trynton, but by the time we got there, he was gone. Eventually we, tracked him to an old HLL fort high up on the ridge. Must have known we were coming though. He set enough traps to keep us out for a good while – enough time for him to escape again. And we never did find him… or the Destinaie Dominus

    YxmtN1Ns.png?1: Ok, now we know where we need to go, time to book it

    H81FpnBs.png?1: orrrr we could rob the bank first… again. We head to the bank and hand a keycard to the teller who doesn’t check that the keycard if for someone she knows and for someone who isn’t any one of us

    n5g5n7P.png

    Each of the vaults besides the last one aren’t too interesting. Antones vault has “Bloodlust” in it, which is a decent sword that I won’t be using and won’t be selling (if you sell it to him he goes hostile knowing its his weapon)

    The last vault however has this guy in it

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    He is roughly the size of a truck and hits like it. Though fortunately for us he focuses the guy with the most HP and we can whittle him down before he kills anyone. The fact that we have Enchanted Blade, and Armor plate really help with this fight.

    Even then it takes 6 rounds and he nearly kills the fighter

    D4jvW1E.png

    Alright now that we’ve robbed the bank and everyone thinks we’re heroes its off to head to Trynton.

    Note: I didn’t talk about Anna’s she sells stuff. Its stuff. You buy it, you sell other stuff. She has some things to say, I am too lazy from typing all of this. 8 Damned pages single spaced in word, to care about her dialogue at all. Shit I probably skipped half the dialogue of the important characters and didn’t even bother to tell you about the stuff that Antone can make for you

    Current Party Status

    Total Kills: 140
    Total Deaths: 0

    Goumindong on
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    Darmak
  • BlackjackBlackjack Registered User regular
    This looks interesting, thanks for doing this. I have started but never finished the first four or five Wizardry games but never tried this trilogy. Will be interested in seeing how it goes. Though I have a feeling you're making it look easier than it is. ;)

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    3DS: 1607-3034-6970
  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    Blackjack wrote: »
    This looks interesting, thanks for doing this. I have started but never finished the first four or five Wizardry games but never tried this trilogy. Will be interested in seeing how it goes. Though I have a feeling you're making it look easier than it is. ;)

    Partially yes. But legitimately I haven't been challenged yet. Most of that has been luck. I thought I was going to wipe (or close to wipe) on the rock monster and Gregor. The fact that I got through both fights unscathed was really surprising to me. My trip trough the road was also the most uneventful I have ever had. No really my test party took three times as long and had more monsters in a single fight than I had in total.

    On top of all of that I have a very strong party and am very good at this game. I have probably beaten it 3-4 times, have two late game parties almost ready to beat the game just laying around, and have another test party halfway through the game.

    In wizardry 8 there are three difficulty levels and you can change them whenever you want. At the end of the game the difficulty levels end up evening out if you play through on that difficulty the entire way because lower difficulty means easier fights which means less missing which means less skillup. With the exception of instant death and critical strike since there seems to be a hidden difficulty level adjustment.

    But the only real reason people play on expert is that the other difficulties quickly become too easy or they feel like they're not getting the right experience. Don't feel bad about putting the difficulty down and cruising through with whatever party you want. Though even on easy I would not tempt the road by entering at level 6.

    My expectation of the game is that when I get into the rapax castle the game is going to really slow down for me because of a limited amount of spell points compared to bards and gadgeteers (who run on stamina and so, if you have stamina pots or a guy who can cast stamina can simple cast the strongest AoE spells every round) and because the high amount of AoE I am laying down right now means less skill ups for my fighters.

    So what I am saying is that you can always play on easy. Real hard mode is playing Ironman and fuck that. Mainly because you have to turn "cutscenes lock movement" on or you might accidentally instant kill your entire party at a few spots. But also because I am not down for the grinding required in order to make some fights have a high enough success probability that it's worth doing.

    An aside: women are actually better in every way than men in this game. They get more equipment options and aren't subject to certain triggers which have negative effects. I usually have a party half men half women but I had the wrong gender selected for chewbacca and Lizzie and didn't realize it until i was too lazy to go back.

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    ElvenshaeBlackjack
  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    edited August 2014
    Since game difficulty was recently mentioned, here is a short update which is comprised of my first combat out of the gate on the Arnika-Trynton road. To start with, lets put on some appropriate music

    @Blackjack
    Welcome to the road. Truthfully this road isn't so bad. Its open and wide and while the monsters are worse than the road to Arnika you can mainly avoid them

    yC7SzoMs.png

    I see some bats and cast chameleon. My idea is to sneak past them because I am lazy and don't want to fight them

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    Then i hide behind a tree. It does not work. I am quickly surrounded. This means that the bats have an easy time getting at my squishies. Also because I am on the side there is no way to run and no way to get the enemies into a cone for AoE. My first mistake was not running for a better spot immediately.

    F7uOn7Bs.pngrXTYeQhs.png

    Quickly, things deteriorate. This is round 3 to the end of round

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    Welcome to round 4 to 6
    AGfuzWds.pngPgobFUjs.png4wwxa5Ds.png

    My first mistake was my last mistake. This post posthumously entitled "one reason why we don't play Ironman"


    Party Status

    Total Kills: 140
    Total Deaths: 6

    edit: next update will be Monday night probably. I have tonnes of material, but about zero will to see it put into page. I will probably look for an update schedule of twice weekly (up to three times) depending on how many images I have. I should have plenty to see me through next week (Arnika to Trynton will be an update, Trynton to Marten's Bluff will be an update, Mt Gigas will be an update, then i will attempt the cemetery retro dungeon.

    Goumindong on
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    BlackjackA-PuckElvenshae
  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    A question for the thread. If I wipe for any reason do you want to consider those deaths? The game keeps a death tracker, and I am doing some things i wouldn't normally do (like the Retro dungeons; trying to get to the first of which at a reasonable level wiped me twice) so I am inclined to say "no". My Death count to the end of the Retro dungeon(as in on my character's character sheets) is 3 otherwise.

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  • BasilBasil Registered User regular
    Go with your gut, it'll never steer you wrong.

    Until it does.

    Then you need to feed it hot sauce as punishment.

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    Elvenshae
  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    Part 5: Revenge of the Squirrel People
    Hey bats, how you like me now?!

    Last time on Wizardry 8 we got fucked by bats. This time we’re gonna fuck some bats!

    J7gZqy8s.png 63fXJEbs.png flztXiqs.png 9nNVL1fs.png n7ca627s.png f2NXJQNs.png GfK1VIcs.png

    This time I get myself back in a corner as they come in. This limits them to attacking my front line (except when my fighter gets blinded he no longer prevents attacks so they get a few hits through). Shrieker bats have terror on hit and can scream for more terror. Twilight have blind on hit. Overall a decently tough fight but not terrible.

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    This would be an OK time to rest on the road. We just started and are close to safety so its not like we’re losing much by topping off. On the other hand its day; on the road less enemies spawn in the day. We decide not to and pass a house. This house is like the other house on the road to Arnika, locked. It is also at this point, while typing this, that I realize I did something entirely dumb and unnecessary 3 updates from now. This house connects to the teleporter in Marten’s Bluff. Which I could have used to get to here or Mount Gigas the two times I traveled from there but instead I walked because reasons

    The road is mostly empty. It it also wide, so its easy to avoid encounters. We do run into this guy however

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    Kxku9MZ.png: Heyyy, wait a second. I remember you! The boss will get a laugh outta this. He’s been after your butts since you pulled that stunt back on Guardia. Never, ever mess with the Razuka, my friend. Buy, you can make it up to me, at least. You interested in a little job? Just between you and me, you understand.

    aERLoAN.png?1: It involves money no?

    Kxku9MZ.png: You’re interested. Good. You do this right, you get 50 percent. You screw it up… ah, but you ain’t gonna screw it up, are you? Okay, here’s the deal. I need to make a little, ah, withdrawal from the bank, but on account of some trouble I had there, it ain’t safe for me to do it myself. So, you take my check and cash it, okay? When you’re done, come and find me in Trynton, and I’ll pay you for your services. Oh, and take this gun, too. It’lll help with any hooligans you might meet on the way

    aERLoAN.png?1: Know anything about this Dark Savant character

    Kxku9MZ.png: Know anything about my wallet being a little lighter than it should be?

    Mook pays the man

    Kxku9MZ.png: My memory is improving. My suggesting to you is: stay clear of the Savant. We got a bone to pick with him. Tell you what. You want in on it? Go to Trynton and talk to my boss. Course, you’ll have to go through Milano…

    We read the note he gave us for the bank. It doesn’t look like a check to me. If you decide to rob the bank by giving the note to the teller you get to fight guards and make basically all of Anrika hate you (besides the temple, and shopkeepers). And your reward is nothing because we already robbed the bank. I also have no clue what he is talking about on Guardia since I am using someone else’s save game file. While there are some interactions like this (including Vi on the beach at the start) they don’t affect the plot at all. Not even starting at Gigas/Marten’s bluff will do that.

    We manage to avoid enemies to Trynton.

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    There are some annoying looking weeds on the other side. Weeds of various sorts aren’t too difficult to deal with but they are annoying. There are some guaranteed fights coming up so we take a dip in the river. Which is free of encounters guaranteed. If you see that waterfall to the right there is a hidden ring of protection in the furthest one. So we pick that up and then go the only way we can go. Which is off a waterfall and into the sea.

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    Those yellow dots you see are fish that we can fight, but they don’t go hostile so we ignore them. They’re also like level 2 and wouldn’t even be a challenge. We look for a very thick fishing line that we can climb up

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    And are back on solid ground. The draw distance here is making it hard to see how cool Trynton looks. Its possible to use the “Cosmic Forge Editor” which is a map editor for the game, to manually change the draw distance of every map. But I am too lazy to do that. If you did do that here though you would find some pretty cool geography. You would be able to see the tree fort in that tree. There is a hard limit of moving objects in the game (not computer dependent) for some reason and so if you increase the draw distance too much you can cause it to crash. But I have to feel like the game world was designed with a much longer draw distance in mind. The game would be almost pretty if it had that.

    After a bit of avoiding enemies we make our way to the bottom of the largest tree in the forest

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    This dude is the Chief of the Trynnie. The Trynnie are… really bad at keeping secrets.

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    fVY3VSa.png: Unless… um... you’re not actually working for the rapax, of course… hm, well, then, that could be interesting! Say… Are you willing to help us?

    Lizzard: Yesss

    fVY3VSa.png: I thought I saw something good in you! At last, the Gods have answered our prayers! The Ratts have overrun our city for too long! We will allow you to enter Trynton. Go to the fourth bough and find Madras. He will tell you what to do…

    If we turn Gari down I don’t think we can get into the tree without killing him. On the other hand there is no point since it doesn’t force you into anything. Talking to him again causes him to complain that you haven’t murdered the rats for him yet but he will still talk to you. He also has some dialogue about the Ratts but we ignore that

    FEtcvmo.png?1: We heard that Martin came this way, know what that was about

    fVY3VSa.png: He is well known to the Trynnie, and best known to the Trynnie Shaman. We are the protectors of his secret! Our pact goes back over one hundred years.

    FEtcvmo.png?1: His Secret?

    fVY3VSa.png: You must have heard of the Destinaie Dominus! That’s why our pact, our secret, with Marten began. He stole it from the Higardi and came to Trynton. We hid him from them until it was safe for him to leave. Finally, that day came. Legend has it that then he gave the Shaman a special help and hold him that a messenger would one day return to retrieve it. We promised to keep his helm safe, and so we have!

    That is right the first Trynnie you meet besides Burz just straight up blurts out the 100 year secret pact between their race and the most important person on Dominus to total strangers. Wow. Anyway so now we know that we have to talk to the Shaman and get the helm. Fortunately doing so is not as easy as just talking to the Shaman since you have to actually get to the shaman. Unless you want to sequence break which is entirely possible.

    Gari also has interesting things to say about the Dark Savant

    fVY3VSa.png: You know… of him? I do not know who he is or where he comes from. We have seen him here, you know.. he looks for the Rats! We have followed him once to Arnika… but he disappeared inside a building, and we couldn’t find a way in. We will learn mor eventually. I am sure of it.

    FFOOrrn.png?1: you mentioned Rapax earlier?

    fVY3VSa.png: The Rapax have threatened to take Trynton! I don’t know why – we have always carefully stayed out of their way. Why do they come for us no? I do not think this is their own idea. I suspected the Umpani or the T’rang were behind it but my scouts tell me different. Whoever, whatever it is, if the Rapax attack our home, we will make them pay for underestimating our courage.

    Now we just have to climb up to the upper branches. There are two guaranteed fights along the way and three optional ones. But they never respawn and each place is safe resting. In no particular order we have vile roaches defending the “snare of only going to use this once”, Crawling Creeper of “totally in the way” , wolf spiders of guarding useless loot that is out of the way, the other crawling creeper of “totally not in the way”, and then the dung beetle of “god finally done with this segment”

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    We clock on a rope to climb up to the lower branches. Specifically we are now actually above the forest with no level transition. We can see a hoist which will take us to Trynton proper via level transition.

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    There is also an interesting fountain here. Sometimes it does nothing. Sometimes it refills your MP to max. Sometimes it hexes random people. Once you have the spell restoration you can power train divinity on your priest/bishop by sitting at this fountain, resorting your MP and hexing everyone so you can cure it.

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    On the way up we pass this sign. If you walk there you will fall to the forest floor and die. You can even see the forest floor briefly if you look over the side.

    Y1419X1s.png hvrksgls.png

    We head on up and enter the most annoying portion of the game. Why? Well because the Upper Branches are full of tight corridors. And tight corridors means you a) can’t avoid fights and b) can’t avoid allys who will shove you around until you micro rest to hop past them. Its also the first location you run into spellcasters. Not difficult spell casters but spell casters none the less.

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    As you can see these asses are blocking our way. We probably won’t get into any fights before we make the most important fountain in the game but I want my free attributes and these guys are slowwww.

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    This fountain is the best fountain. It asks a riddle the answer to which is both easy and also not as encompassing as it should be.

    YnY7ZIO.png?1: History

    Fountain: No

    H81FpnB.png?1: Life or Knowledge. Also Knowledge misspelled that could work too

    Fountain: Yes have 5 intelligence for everyone

    This puts Gozer at 98 intelligence, only 2 away from Power Cast which is super necessary for spellcasters. So we get power cast at level 8. We won’t be putting points into it for a while, but the fact that it will be accruing points will be superuseful. I am not sure exactly what it does. It either reduces the enemy resistances by a % equal to your score or reduces enemy resistances by one point per point. Either way its really good

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    We head inside Fuzzfas’s Potion Palace to meet Fuzzfas. Who, like all good alchemists, is currently exploding.

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    t1iMc6M.png: Ah, wha… what happened? Oh, look at this place! Look at me! *heh* I was trying to make a new potion, and I must have missed a step or two… of five. Ooo! You’re welcome to what I have left. I am Fuzzfas, Master of Magic, mostly, and this is my shoppe. Oh, I mean’t to tell you about the Seventh bough. I believe you should try it

    FFOOrrn.png?1: Seventh Bow?

    t1iMc6M.png: Yes, the seventh bough is an illusion! It’s nt a place your body goes, but rather your mind! For as long as I can remember, Trynnie go there to see the future, to learn of their destiny. Maybe you should try it! It is very simple, but you must be prepared… You will need two things. First are the Zuzu petals. They grow wild here. You pick your own. You’ll also need a special potion, the Msyery Potion. The Shaman will not appear to everyone, but perhaps he will appear to you…

    Note: I usually sequence break this. You’re supposed to go see the Shaman first, then go find out about becoming Marten’s Messenger then come back and get told about what you’re supposed to do. I always just go and do all the rest of the stuff and come back when you’ve already done the thing that the shaman has more or less told you to do. I do this this time because I am just so used to doing it this way. Sorry, no drug induced visions in the near future.

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    Unless you go to the cemetery(and there isn’t a point to unless you know what is there), these are the first real spellcasters you will meet in the game. Their spells are pretty weak, as are their attacks. But they’re still annoying. They’re kind of the first thing you see that says “you might want some resistances or you’re going to get trucked”

    You will notice its night. I rested in the shop. I should have rested until morning but did not. Trynton at night is just as, if not more, dangerous than the roads at night. Importantly they block access to these short gooda vines, we get two and will need both later. You can always come back to them but why bother doing that?

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    I get through two more set fights at the next bough. They aren’t much to write home about so I will ignore them. This however we cannot ignore

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    Ahead of us is the zoo. The zoo houses some optional fights only one of which we will probably bother with. The fairy are nice fights if you’re looking for things they drop. The Hogar similarly. And the crocs guard an engineering component. But that is not what we are looking at. It’s the red dots we are looking at. I don’t know what they are. I can’t see them around the corner

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    Ok, giant spiders are no big deal and I have backup so the wood sprites shouldn’t be too bad. Huh, 202 Hp that seems like a lot.

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    Oh shit. Oh shit oh shit oh shit oh shit oh shit. That little green thing in the upper left corner of the screen. That is because I am under the effect of Acid Bomb. Acid bomb does 3.5 average damage per level for one round per level. So it does in total 3.5 damage per level squared. To everyone in the party. All in all this spell will average 56 damage to the entire group. Fortunately I have good resistances due to Magic Screen but even then this hurts.

    It also causes me to assess the situation and wonder what level these guys are. Thirteen. I wrote it out because I am level eight that should have some more impact. I think maybe I can fight them they will focus the trynnie.

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    Nope. He crushed my fighter the next round too. The rogue died from the acid bomb. I backed around the corner, equipped some resurrection powder and eventually used it to revive the rogue. After taking some time to make sure the rest of the party didn’t die too.

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    And then I ran. And I didn’t look back. And I left those poor trynnie to their fates. Fortunately for them, as soon as combat ends NPC’s even hostile NPC’s stop fighting. So the Trynnie only had to weather the storm for three rounds of me running.

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    I rest and come back in the morning. We are going to kill the Hogar because he has a plot item behind him and because we want him to drop his hogar tusk. Hogars are weak to water so you can paralyze and beat on their hundreds of HP pretty easily. His name is bobo

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    If you’re a nice person you can also put bobo to sleep by lacing his meet with drugs and then feeding it to him. But not only does this bug out sometimes but you get less total experience than killing him, and can potentially deprive yourself of a hogar tusk (used to make the Ivory Blade)

    So we open up his cage and. What the fuck where did these guys come from. No really, I have a screen shot of a moment before this with no red anywhere. This cage doesn’t spawn anything. I have literally no clue where these guys came from

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    The willow saplings are much weaker than the Willow Elders. Much much weaker. The wasps are blinding wasps and not a big deal. I am however, surrounded. So I stick the two rogues in the back ranks with the casters in the middle and leave my fighter to fend off the saplings. You can see this in the bottom right hand corner of the screenshot. I start casting some high power defensive spells to make sure everyone stays up. The Psion casts insanity(6) on the wasps

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    Its super effective. Now I just have to beat down the saplings because the wasps are basically going to spend the next 6 rounds babbling incoherently and attacking each other while my rogues, I believe the term is “murderface” them.

    In a few rounds they die and I put my fighters back up front. But then tragedy strikes.

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    The fucking trynnie who were fighting like one wasp behind me decide that now that they’re dead they’re going to run ahead and block my path AND my arrow shots to the saplings. See this picture, notice how it’s a long ways away from where I was?

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    I had to run all the way around! It took like 5 rounds. And by the time I got there the trynnie aggro’d bobo. Jesus Christ these guys are incompetent.

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    I still can’t get to bobo, but fortunately paralyzed him so the trynnie do double damage and have an easy time hitting (I also blessed the trynnie). I swear to god I had all the other enemies down by like round 6. Its round 24.

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    Goddamn finally this is what I was looking for the whole time. We go kill some giant spiders. Pick up the Zuzu petals from here(which was thankfully clear of encounters, sometimes there are wood sprites in here) stop by the place where we would put the blue ball we found to go do the 7th bow we are totally too lazy to go back to fuzzfas for the potion (also no magic in there and there is sometimes a bitch of a fight when you open the door) and head up and talk to Madras.

    Madras is great, but unfortunately a little under leveled. For the most part, the RPC(Recruitable Player Characters) that you can get are decent if you get to them at a reasonable level. The problem is that if you start in the monastery its almost impossible to get to them at a reasonable level. If you import at Mt Gigas (or go there first right after the monastery). Saxx and Sparkle(who are both also awesome) are perfect for your party. If you start in Marten’s Bluff Tantis is pretty good for you (though placed out of the way) and Madras can be recruited easily. Myles and Vi aren’t bad if you make it to Arnika at a low level. All RPC’s have places they won’t go do (most wont go to ascension peak for example) and they bitch if you get them there by means like teleporting which makes them overall hard to plan a party around. The upside of RPC’s is that they’re all pretty well voiced, and have unique things to say about the people and places you go. They also leach XP.

    MYuHCjp.png

    FEtcvmo.png?1: Yes we like exterminating

    FO7OrVy.png: Great! These’ll get you started (he gives the party some consumables). It’s going to be tough work. They’ve infested the whole sixth bough. We’ve tried to get rid of them. Kill off 10 or 20, but they come right back. So, I used this telescope here to do some spying on them… and that’s when I saw the fattest – the ugliest – thing I ever saw in my life! Breeders! Big as a house, wide as a mountain, ugly as day old… ah, nevermind. They’re the root of the problem! Get in there and kill them, and the rest will be easy pickings.

    Note: We only have to complete this if we want Madras to be recruitable. Otherwise no effect on the game. Normally I ignore it or do it later when I want to slaughter some ratts/make the hostile because they have a good drop list. If you killed rattus they will be hostile anyway, so might as well murder the breeders. Which yes, are really ugly.

    YxmtN1N.png?1: Know about the Dessstinaie Dominusss?

    FO7OrVy.png: A lot of people want to know where it is, you know. I don’t know where it is, but I know who does kno! I think I’d remember better if I had a little money…

    YnY7ZIO.png?1: We accept your extortion and note that you are much better at this than every other Trynnie we’ve met. They didn’t even demand money before spilling the beans on their century long defining pact.

    FO7OrVy.png: I’ts Crock! You can find him in the swamp. Don’t expect he’ll just offer it up, thought. You’ll have to get on his good side first.

    Note: We don’t have to get on his good side first at all.

    Party Status

    Total Kills: 185
    Total Deaths: 1

    Next update will be up by Wednesday night.

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    Elvenshae
  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    Due to previous posts comments being too long



    One of the really interesting things about Wizardry 8, which this update in particular has reminded me of is just how little of the plot you really need to do(also how much i hate myself for not using the teleporter 2 episodes from now). There are three objects you need to acquire and you can basically murder your way to all three. Every NPC can be killed more or less without plot consequence and the game will account for that. I won't be doing that this game, but its entirely possible to just straight depopulate Dominus and the game will go right on its merry way as if nothing had happened. Because all you actually need to do to complete the game is get the three objects and bring them to the end of the road.

    I am about to spoil a bit of the main plot here(and also speculate) so be warned.
    The Destinae Dominus makes your party insane(if in general inventory). You need Marten's helm in order to not go insane. Only the person wearing the helm can hold the DD and the helm prevents them from going insane. However, as far as i know, you could, if you wanted, totally just have a member of your party be insane the rest of the game and complete it just fine(you can also the "pickup object and hold on your cursor but not put it in inventory trick, but i think that only lasts so long). You would entirely skip the plot about being Marten's messenger and so forth. You can't entirely skip Trynton as we will see in our next update but there are other core plot segments this would let you skip. Indeed, it may be possible (I will test that this game) to give the DD to a Psion. Psions are mental condition immune(which includes Insanity). I suspect that the insanity will override but it might not.

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    ElvenshaeDarmak
  • BlackjackBlackjack Registered User regular
    Goumindong wrote: »
    A question for the thread. If I wipe for any reason do you want to consider those deaths? The game keeps a death tracker, and I am doing some things i wouldn't normally do (like the Retro dungeons; trying to get to the first of which at a reasonable level wiped me twice) so I am inclined to say "no". My Death count to the end of the Retro dungeon(as in on my character's character sheets) is 3 otherwise.

    Maybe do a "Total Death" count and a "Total Wipe" count?

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    3DS: 1607-3034-6970
    Elvenshae
  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    edited August 2014
    Part 6: The Ratfather
    RATS! (caution auto-plays)
    So we ditch out on Madras and head on over to the Rattkin tree where the ratts live. We are going to ignore Madras’s request for help and basically beeline for the thing that is important. Talking to the Don.

    On the way there we run into this guy, but don’t fight him. He is a fight you can get into and can be pretty tough if you’re not prepared. Fortunately you rarely trigger him.

    Wk3k4I8.png

    More importantly our way is blocked by this bridge which just gives way as soon as you walk next to it. A lot of people get stuck here. They get one gooda vine and wonder why it doesn’t work. Well you have to have two gooda vines and make them into gooda ropes. This is 100% required to beat the game and a lot of people just straight got stuck without looking it up.

    JGKWtb2.png

    With that we head over to the Rattkin Tree. We find what can only be Marten’s treasure but I won’t be showing it off because I am lazy and didn’t want to pick the lock just to be able to see where I will eventually get the helm.

    oHSMwMj.png

    I am showing this fight because Vampire Bats have drain. Drain is permanent HP damage until you use a renewal potion. Its not a big deal really except that if you level up while drained it can become really permanent. This isn’t the only group of bats I fight. I run into some twilight and shrieker bats as well but because of how I was positioned in an unreachable area they mainly run away and I pick them off one by one. Notably one drops a vampire bat wing which we might need later for crafting

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    Tl8yyzY.png: Whatcho say! You looking for him, too, huh? You got any good leads? The Boss might be interested in talking to you. C’mon. And don’t forget to show your due respect

    That is the sole amount of talking we will be doing with Milano Calzone. If you have to say you’re looking for the Savant (as Rattus clues you in) or you have to kill him.

    iSChEIV.png

    DoRdUpy.png: Let me give you a bit a background. Several years ago, the Savant hires us to follow the T’Rang around. We keep our end of the deal, you know, but he slips town before he pays our fee. So, we’re here to collect. But, ah, he ain’t gonna pay, and that ain’t a problem. We’ll get our money. See, he’s got this device that means an awful lot to him. And rumor has it… it means an awful lot to you, too. So, what do you say WE get the Astral Dominae, and YOU pay us for it. We get our cash, and you get the prize, and the Dark Savant gets shafted. You come back in a while, and we’ll see if we can’t do the deal. We got to get our hands on it first.
    Now the Don is lying here. He won’t sell you’re the Dominae right now, but if you murder him, he definitely has it. This is to prevent you from somehow killing him before he can “get” it and so making the game uncompletable.

    We leave via another lift and head down to the forest floor.

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    We are about 5 steps from the original location we climbed the tree and we can’t get down until we lower that rope. This is why Trynton is required. You have to go that way in order to get the Astral Dominae. At the bottom we get into a big fight with some Ironweeds and Acid vines. They’re annoying normally but a pushover now because they spend their turns attacking these three trynnie off to the side.

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    On the way to the swamp we run into this guy. A Swallower. They really aren’t as tough as they seem. They can eat your dudes but its pretty much harmless and since they only have 120 or so HP they drop fast. Then comes the swamp.

    Most people really hate the swamp, but once you get chameleon its not so bad. Its wide and open and the explosive swamp gas is given away by black spots on the ground. There are a few chokepoints but they’re mainly inconsequential. If you have a bard, the haste drums are found in the swamp. In contrast to the snare of delay the haste drums you will actually use. The reason is simple. Slow makes enemies take forever to do their actions. Haste does not, but has roughly the same overall combat effect. Our pleasant stroll is interrupted

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    YnY7ZIO.png?1: There you are, you pathetic ingrates! How dare you take the Astral Dominaie from me!! Did you actually think I’d fall for this, this forgery?! Have you gone mad? Now give it to me… GIVE IT TO ME. Look at you… You don’t even know what I’m talking about, do you? HOW DID THIS HAPPEN!?! When I find out who took it, there won’t be ANYTHING left of them!

    He drops a fake Astral Dominae, which we will use to not have to murder the Mook when we steal the Chaos Molari. Though we could just murder the Mook, its not like anything but Mook are stopping us. Oh yes, by the way you have to steal the Chaos Molari. You can’t not steal it.

    By the power of Chameleon we have no encounters till crocks. Unfortunately we don’t get to stop by the fountain of everylasting cherry bombs because there were crocodiles in the way. There is this black lake thing in the southern part of the swamp. You put an empty bottle on it and get what is essentially a Molotov cocktail.

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    YnY7ZIO.png?1: Perfume?
    g8wTr1K.png: Yea, perfume. Rapax Perfume, in fact, the genuine article. Guaranteed to drive a Rapax wild, is what the bottle says. Though I don’t know what anyone would want to. They’re plenty wild already. Actually, I figure it was used once upon a time to hunt ‘m, you know, like a lure a some kind

    YnY7ZIO.png?1: Because I am psychic I am guessing we will need some of this later. Anywho Madras said you knew Marten

    g8wTr1K.png: Oh, I knew Marten, all right, but you missed ‘im by about, oh, a 100 years! He’s gone from that ol’ Bluff, and I bet you want to know where ta, huh? Well, I’ll tell yeh. The Sea Caves! The HLL was chasing him all over Hell’s half acre lookin fer that Destinaie Dominus. I told him he best git somewhere safe, and there’s nowhere safer than them old caves. If yeh want to find ‘im that’s where he is

    I do a tour of the swamp to pick up a spellbook I won’t be able to use for ages and one I wont be able to use ever because its alchemist only then head to martens bluff. I fight some fights but nothing really worth noting. There is a really mean croc here which can be a pain of a fight at this point. I don’t even really care about the steelhide plate so I ignore him rather than try to eat through his 600 hit points.

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    This fight however stands out. Swamp frogs are one of the reasons why everyone hates the swamp. Most parties are neither ranged nor AoE and Swamp Frogs are just annoying. They’re camouflaged and fast which means you cant easily avoid them. We have no problem because we have lots of AoE

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    Marten’s Bluff is a pretty cool place. Its got loads of secrets, houses the T’rang, and has a lot of space to explore and things to kill if you’re so inclined. It’s trapped but not that bad.

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    If you go in the main way you can take that blue elevator down to the T’Rang but you can’t get beyond that glass door ahead of us. Also we are going to sequence break a bit here so we go in the side.

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    Why there is a catapult next to the bluff I don’t know. Why its close enough that setting it off slams the arm into the wall I also don’t know. But we use it to climb up and are into the base proper. The most important thing inside here is this dead T’Rang

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    We take his arm and some wires and a note which reads “—0” all three of them pretty important. The wires fix the teleported that I stupidly did not use next update and the hand gets us further into the base and lets us not have run back and forth between the Umpani and Trang.

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    Now we sequence break the T’rang. We’re going to kill a rapax they want us to kill before they tell us to kill him. Naturally we use the perfume on a dummy and the rapax will come. Unfortunately he is spawed at the map edge and walks the whole way and it takes forever. We go meet him

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    It still takes forever. You can fight him but he is a tough fight and there isn’t really a reason to. He will totally talk to you and say he is going to kill you after he kills the T’rang Leader. He hangs around totally oblivious to the fact that he walked into a giant hydraulic press.

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    Fortunately you still get his head this way despite that being unlikely given the size of those pistons. Downstairs Z’Ant is waiting

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    rBUDfuK.png: I have heard of you sssince your arrival here on Dominusss. I believe we fight for the sssame thing. Tell me, would you be interesssted in working with uss? A partnership?

    aERLoAN.png?1: Sure

    rBUDfuK.png: Yesss… just as I had hoped. The T’rang will take very good care of you. Yesss. Allow me to properly introduce myself. I am Z’Ant and I shall lead the T’Rang Empire to victory here on Dominus. You will be paid in cash for your efforts, and any injuries you sustain will be freely healed. I am sssure that you are eager to behind your first mission with uss, but perhaps you wish to learn of our strategy here on Dominus first?

    aERLoAN.png?1: Sure

    rBUDfuK.png: You are wise to asssk. It iss as important to know how one shall ssucceed. We fight –you fight—for power, for conquest. Thiss does not make us monstersss, as some would have you believe. For if we did not fight, if we were not every vigilant of the Umpani and the Dark Savant, we would surely become their next victimsss. We will not allow this to happen. Our ssstrategy is simple: Firssst, we eliminate the Umpani, the lesser of the two threats. Then, we will focus on the Dark Savant… desssstroying him, too. The struggle between the T’Rang, the Umpani and the Dark Savant hasss a long history, but ssssoon, it shall be over, and we will be victorioussss! Perhaps we should discuss your mission now…

    aERLoAN.png?1: Sure

    rBUDfuK.png: Let usss behind, then. Sssimple at first… a scouting mission, but one critical to our defensesss. Hsss – the Watcherss tell me of a base north of here, and they believe it could be Umpani. They ssspotted a flag. I need you to verify this. Get that flag and bring it to me. If it *is* the Umpani, do not engage them in any way… we cannot take a chance that you will be detained and our presence revealed. You will be rewarded well upon your return
    Party Status

    Total Kills: 256
    Total Deaths: 1
    Total Wipes: 1

    edit; next update, friday night

    Goumindong on
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    ElvenshaeHefflingDirtmuncher
  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    edited August 2014
    Part 7: There and Back Again

    Lets put on some music for traveling

    Also no joke, that song is played on a gameboy lite. (there is a youtube version of them performing it poorly if you’re wondering)

    So, before we begin I want to tell you the story about a teleporter. A teleporter that I didn’t use because I am dumb. There are three ways to get to this teleporter. One of them is easy, one of them is painful, one of them makes the T’Rang angry that you murdered them.

    The easy way is that you walk up to these T’Rang

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    And combat sneak past them.

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    It takes you to this room which you cannot get out of without waiting for one of those T’Rang younger to open the door for you

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    Which takes you to the teleporter which will send you to random places.

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    One of those places is right outside the Umpani Base at Mt Gigas. Which you might recognize as “the place we need to go in order to continue this side plot”. Unless we fix it, like so, then we can simply choose to go to Mt Gigas.

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    But of course, I didn’t do that. Because I am dumb.

    Once you get “set portal” and “return to portal” you should basically always have one of them be here, because its like 4 portals, one to Arnika, one to Mt Gigas, one to the Rapax Rift and one to upper Marten’s Bluff. These locations are basically at the four corners of the map, so there is no place that you can go that isn’t relatively close to these points. The Umpani have a teleporter but its not nearly as useful. It goes to that house which is halfway between Arnika and the Monastary. Which you only ever really want to go to if you want the loot in it.

    Anyway, so we walk to Mt Gigas. We run into some flies and Rapax bowmen and finally get a chance to make us some cherry bombs (which are almost entirely useless except for selling unless you don’t have a mage)

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    Guarding the road from Arnika to the Northern Wilderness is this guy. A hogar. He can be a real pain to new parties who go north instead of south to Arnika. Fortunately he can be avoided by smart sneaking. I do that but come back to kill him anyway because I want a hogar tusk. He didn’t drop one

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    In the Northern Wilderness there is another Retro Dungeon we won’t be doing for a while and other than that some spellbooks we don’t pick up and other than that these guys

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    IF you have Myles in your party he will tell you they robbed the bank and stole a Diamond from it. So we murder them and take their Diamond and instead of giving it to the bank for a pittance of XP and gold we hock it for 5 times that much.

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    Finally we are at the point we could have been at an hour ago. We head into a fairly large and impressive complex filled with walking Rhino’s. One of them stands guard outside.

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    zYQkHqY.png: Are you carrying any flammable devices of hazardous Materials?

    H81FpnB.png?1: No

    zYQkHqY.png: Its’ important to know. Now, have you ever been convicted of a crime here on on any other planet, and particularly, any other domain of the I.U.F.?

    H81FpnB.png?1: No

    zYQkHqY.png: Interesting. Have you ever had or do you plan to have ties to the T’Rang Empire?

    H81FpnB.png?1: No

    And just like all the times you lied to customs he just lets us on through. Note I am not sure what happened on Guardia but I am pretty sure the answer to all three of those questions was yes.

    Inside we achieve our primary purpose, by going to commissary and buying a map for 1 gold. Additionally we meet Saxx(who won’t talk to you until you enlist) and Sparkle. Two RPC’s which won’t be shown. Saxx is a bard and is the only one in the game to get access to the Soulful Sax; an instrument that casts soul shield. Even if he dies you cannot take it off his corpse. Sparkle is a Trynnie ranger and is pretty cool if you like upbeat chipper people. Both of them are level 6 and are basically there to give you RPC’s if you start with the Umpani. If you start at the Monastary its possible to make it here by level 6, but if you run afoul of the Hogar you’re not going to make it

    Anyway while we’re here we might as well enlist

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    jPDOLyO.png: Good to hear! First, of course, I’ll need to put you through our intensive obstacle course, just to make sure you’ve got what it takes. Private Sparkle here has already been through the course, and is getting ready for our intensive STF traning. That’s special Tactical Forces, you know. Training specifically designed for our mission here on Dominus. So, get your butts on over to Rubble at the obstacle course and report back here when you’re done. Course, you’ll need this first.

    He hands us a level 1 IUF tag which will never be used again and never leave our inventory short of extraordinary means(I.E. putting it in a chest). From here we can rob everyone in the barracks blind and can buy more things from the commissary (like blunderbusses) but mainly we’re going to run that obstacle course.

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    zYQkHqY.png: Looks like I have you listed here after all.. All right. We’ll see if you have what it takes. The rules for the obstacle course are simple… go in one side and come out the other. No gripes, and no turning back

    Rubble lets us in and like all obstacle courses we start off with wading through some water

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    Followed by navigating instant death crushing spikes

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    Then we walk over creaky boards to a moving platform all suspended over lava

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    And fall in

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    Then go back and do it again after healing up from almost dying and get it right this time damnit. On the other side are training dummies to beat up. Training dummies which have full locomotion

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    We pick a lock, head through a corridor which is just a corridor and pick up our level 2 security clearance. Which we need to get out

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    So we go talk to Balbrak again and he is all

    jPDOLyO.png: Finished it, huh? I’m sure you’re very impressed with yourselves. WELL, get over it, pukes! It’s time for the REAL THING, not that make-believe training crap. We need to confirm Recond sightings of the T’Rang at Marten’s Bluff, way south of here. I’m going to need some proof. So, get me something, anything 100% T’Rang. Got it? Get going!

    We talk to him again and he starts his hint about reconciling the Umpani and the T’Rang

    jPDOLyO.png: Where the frig is Rodan? He’s supposed to be back here two days ago! I got a feeling he’s messed up with those Rapax somehow. I don’t know where he is. I sent him out to scout out a possible Rapax encampment… and, nothing, nothing since then. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t worried about him, but he’s tough as bone… I’m sure he’s all right

    We give him the T’Rang Arm

    jPDOLyO.png: I’m proud of you, though! Looks like you found those slime buckets! I’ll get this info right over to Recon. In the meantime, while you were off bug killing, we had some important news here. I assume you’ve been brieft on the Astral Dominae? Well, Recon’s reporting news of two similar objects. So, keep your eyes out. We’re hoping you can secure one of them for us, but first, we need to get you in tip top shape. Take this pass to the Sentry Booth, and report to Sgt. Rubble inside the compound. Oh, and you also have a credit at the Commissary, so you can get yourself stocked up. Train hard, pups. The toughest road lies ahead of you

    He gives us a level 3 security card and that lets us inside Mt Gigas proper, where we can fight enemies and get some free muskets and get training to use them (also rocket launchers, which are useless because rockets are so rare and they’re hard to use and not that good). This is also a really good place to go AFK and learn some ranged skills since there are dummies which don’t fight back and are a long way away so hard to hit.

    But we don’t do that, we head out to report back to Z’Ant about what we learned about the Umpani and totally lie to his face about signing up. On the outside we get into a “little” battle

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    The outside of the camp is a special place because its really easy to agro the entire zone, which we just did. Fortunately we have a bunch of Umpani for them to beat up on as well, but it was still a long and difficult fight. The sorceresses aren’t dangerous because they can be killed quickly. They’re low level. Next time we will run into the real ones.

    We leave and walk back to Z’Ant. Notable is what the road to Arnika usually looks like

    8ckrHcdb.pngVDHyOZ4b.pngZs7DN5cb.pngAGTZXjAb.pngv2DjnGAb.pngGUttF7xb.png6sojM8Pb.pngqeLGMw7b.png14jpM81b.png

    Note that the enemies aren't getting fewer because we're killing them but because they give up if you run far enough away. I got lucky in that these enemies were unable to surround me which let me combat run all the way until the level change. That part (combat running until the level change) is what they wanted to teach you on the Road. Raise your hand if you learned it there. No one? Well ok.

    We stop by Arnika so we can rest at the Inn

    Ps4bnBS.png: You know, I heard the most interesting thing the other day. Had a fella in here from the IUF. I can’t remember his name, but he claimed you were working for him. Then, an hour or two later, one of those T’Rang things comes oozing through the door. He said the same thing. I’ll keep it quiet but it’ll cost you

    If you don’t pay her both the T’Rang and Umpani get mad at you and you can’t complete their quests. Which isn’t a big deal since you can just murder them anyway. But its still kind of annoying since you don’t want to be in fights every other second.

    We pay her, rest then head back out. Encounter the Hogar in Trynton and murder it (again no drop) and head all the way back to Z’Ant

    rBUDfuK.png: Ssso it iss true, then. The Umpani ARE here and with a basse… I will sssend Drazic to sscout the location further. I have sssomething more challenging for you. But first, the rewards we ssspoke of… (he gives us cash and XP). Your next mission is vital! A Rapax assassin is sstalking our forst. He has already ssslain seven of my Watchers! We have set a trap for him in the room above… but the Rapax ssstill lives! We know the Rapax hunt through sssight and sssmell, sssso we tried to lure the assassin into the trap with a Rapax figure. Yet he refussses to take the bait! There must be sssomething that would lure him in… and I want YOU to find it. Then, my talented sservants, you can bring me HIS head! I know you will not disappoint me.

    We give him the head

    rBUDfuK.png: The Rapax’s Head! You were successsssful, then! Yess, you are well worth any priccce. You are very ssskilled to have lured Raven to his doom, to have saved me, whose life he wanted. From now on, you shall be my most trusted allies… and to no one else would I trussst my next mission. Perhapsss you know of the Mook, Yesss? The Watchersss bring word that they possess a device that resembles the Astral Dominae. We must obtain it at onccce, although I do not suspect they will merely let it go. So, I have prepared for you this letter. Bring it to their leader. My words will get you inside, but the deed, the deviccce, iss up to you. I hope to sssee it when you return

    rBUDfuK.png: One thing before you go… Drazic has not yet returned from sscouting the Umpani basses. I am concerned. Perhaps your eyes can see what the Watchers do not. Be careful that it does not happen to you…

    Note: Remember last update when we killed that Rapax. How could anyone be fooled by that figure?

    Anyway now we have the way to get the Chaos Molari (we could also have killed Balback or Zant for a letter, we could also have completed the Mook quest line to get his letter). Giving the Molari to either party does not remove the item from you(you get it back)

    Next time on Wizardry 8 we travel back in time, to the first Retro dungeon. We will die of our own stupidity Monday night.

    Party Status

    Total Kills: 359
    Total Deaths: 1
    Total Wipes: 1

    Goumindong on
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  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    edited August 2014
    A little teaser as to how things are going to turn out next week.

    Total Deaths to the start of Bayjin: 11

    edit: So i wanted to talk about this and this seems like as good a time/place as ever. In the next few updates I will be getting to the point where I will be forced to change how I allocate my skills (because people will be hitting 75 in skills) and that makes it harder to make the point I was setting up for

    This will cover two topics. And generally its where I confess that I did not pick my party optimally. That my Lizardman should be a Mook fighter, dual wielding Maces and that my Rogues are a bit underpowered because they should have been ranking up Close Combat and not Dual Wielding

    1) Why Intelligence and Senses are not dump stats on fighters

    2) Why Fighters do so much more damage than other classes.

    Lets start with 1. So its pretty clear that when you use skills they rank up. What isn't clear is just how fast they rank up. The speed at which they do is determined by the level of the primary and secondary skills that the character has. The higher they are the faster the skills rank up.

    Additionally, like all skill based RPG's, it takes more time to get to the later skills than it does to the first skills. I am not sure precisely how much higher, but i think its like 5 percent more per skill level. So it takes 130 times longer to get to rank 100 from 99 than it does to get from 0 to 1. (Estimated!)

    But just how much do your skill effect this. Lets compare our Lizardman to our Hobbit. Notice how the Hobbit has over twice the points in Close Combat? That means he is progressing over twice as fast as the Lizardman. The Hobbit has 67 Senses and 45 Intelligence. The Lizardman has 52 senses and 30 Intelligence.

    This means that 15 points in the primary stat and 15 points in the secondary stat more than double the skill progression rate. I know what you're thinking "Why does this matter". And "doesn't the Lizardman get power attack faster".

    Well if we go back to the original post we find this thing which charts out what varying stats do. Power strike is good, but its only as good as a point in Senses. Note that the author of that is wrong about how you should appropriate your level up points. Strength=Dexterity>Senses>Speed.

    The key skills are

    Close Combat 1 point gives .05 Attack Rating, .01 # of attacks for all Melee

    Weapon: 1 point gives .1 Attack Rating, .01 # of swings for that weapon

    Dual Weapons: Scales Weapon Bonus from 1/2 to 100% for main hand, and 1/4 to 1/2 on off hand.

    Note: Weapon/ranged combat bonuses are swapped for Ranged. Bow gives an extra attack, ranged gives an extra swing. This is because attacks>swings in general and so as to make it harder for rangers to be strong.


    So every 10 points of your weapon gives you 1 to Attack Rating. When you hit 100 You get an extra swing. Every 10 points in close combat gives .5 attack rating. When you get 100 points you get an extra attack.

    Now when you hit 75 skillpoints you can't put anymore points into it. So getting those last skillups is super important to making a strong melee character. Getting to 100 is key.

    And this is why fighters are so good. Fighters, Samurai, Rangers, and Valkyrie are the only classes which get a combat or weapon skill bonus. Fighter get close combat, which means that they get more attacks easier. Samurai and Valkyie get a weapon so they get more swings. Rangers get ranged and so swings.

    For a rogue who gets no bonuses it will be very difficult for them to ever get 100 points and their bonus swing. But for a fighter its easy. It gets better for the fighter. There are a lot of weapons which give bonuses to their primary weapons. Stun Rod's get +10 polearm, making it really easy for them to get 100+ Close combat and 100+ polearm if they specialize there. There is a dagger that gives +dagger (and one that gives +close combat), but they're not easy to find like the polearms (which can be bought).

    Most importantly is hammers. Almost every hammer gives a bonus to mace and flail(The relevant skill). The two best primary weapon hammers (The Vampire Chain which is craftable, and the Mauler which is set) both give +10 to Mace and Flail. 90 skill isn't so hard to attain, its only 15 points higher than the base. Which means that Mace and Flail people have an easy time getting to 100.

    Only one sword has a bonus to the sword skill (bloodlust, which also gets a bonus attack) but it is cursed and so you cannot use ranged with it (its a great weapon though)

    Rogues can get a Midnight Cloak (+5 close combat) but its only +5 and precludes some of the better defensive cloaks.

    What all this means is that not only do Fighters do a lot of damage because they can go Berserk for double damage. But they also have an easy time getting to the maximum number of attacks and swings, even when dual wielding. Its also another reason why Mooks and Hobbits make such good fighters. They don't have an intelligence/senses detriment. (though Mooks are slow so hobbits have better overall Str/Dex/Sen/Speed than them)

    Goumindong on
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