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Old September 25, 2012, 12:33   #11
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Originally Posted by Mikko Lehtinen View Post
I have the same question for you as for the HallucinationMushroom in the character dump. Who's that Worm Man? What is he doing in the Halls of Mist? What's his real name? (Wormtongue is Tolkienian and will have to go.)
Sleazy Pete. Conman, knows enough magic to be irritating, tough in a pinch, probably deals in dangerous substances.

I should actually play your game
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Old September 26, 2012, 01:58   #12
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I find my way back to town, weak and poisoned but optimistic and glad to be back. The predictable skirmishes that plague my time here in the village are more perilous than usual due to my weakened condition. I've only 106 GP to spend. The general store provides a cloak and two torches. The weaponsmith, 10 flight arrows. A freshly bloodied spy supplies a wooden shield. The temple, a single CSW. The book shop, four scrolls of phase door. With my last 24 gold, I return to the general store and get 18 tough arrows since there don't seem to be any ordinary arrows in stock. Despite my time in town, I'm still weak. I rest for a moment before I descend once again into the Halls of Mist.

Level seven greets me with greenery. At least this room is lit. To the south, in a separate room, I can make out the silhouette of at least two orcs. I proceed east as quietly as I can. I reach the south east corner of my room and find the door, my egress, to be locked, but no matter. It seems I have a way with locks and easily master it's mechanism. This may come in handy. I lock the door behind me. That's one less way for the orcs to reach me. Just a few steps beyond the door I discover a portal. Sensing movement in the vicinity, I occupy the portal and rest.

After a time, I'm feeling very well and not a moment too soon. A black orc emerges from the mist to the south. I have but a second to focus on my combat abilities before it's upon me. My choice to focus proved effective, for though I won, I was seriously injured. Defeating the beast raised my status to level 11. There's not a moment to rest before another appears. I try to blind it with a powder vial, but miss. It's not that I didn't fight well, In my weakened state I was simply unable to beat the second orc. Such were my ailments that my memory lapsed and I forgot I was upon a portal and instead read a scroll of phase door. I must quaff a CSW, just to be safe. The orc is still nearby.

Another locked door and perhaps a chance at salvation, but alas my attempt to open it fails. I'm fleeing to east through a jagged corridor. The orc now only about 40' behind me. I manage to sling an arrows in his direction a time or two but without mush effect. A second powder vial misses, I have but one left and now it's upon me. I continue to flee headlong down the corridor, not knowing where it leads. We're evenly paced. Neither gaining or losing ground. Suddenly, the passage ends, and my torchlight falls upon a staircase leading deeper, but I am not a coward, not at this moment.

I hurl my last vial of blinding flash. It hits squarely, blinding and causing extreme pain to the it. A moment later, I strike it down. Like his twin, he has nothing of value. Weak, I proceed back through the passage collecting my spent arrows as I go. I pause to study the locked door that so befuddled me earlier, but it's clearly beyond my ability. I reach the portal where I rested earlier and do so again, briefly. I proceed further, nearing the room that housed the now deceased orcs. A black mamba greets me.

Though it in and of itself wouldn't seem very threatening to a mighty dwarf, this dwarf despises snakes. Just the way they move fills me with unease. Summing my remaining courage, I stand and fight. I am bit, and again, and maybe even a third time, but soon it's nothing more than a smear on the floor. I hear nearby sounds and once again retreat to the portal to rest. I sincerely hope that there are no more black orcs. Shortly, an ogre appears. I have no desire to die without first killing at least one ogre, so I use my last vial of confusion on it. I was pleasantly surprised when the vial hit it's target. My aim has been poor of late. The blows then fell tremendously in my favor. The ogre never had a chance.

I finally manage to enter and secure the orc's cavern. A few silver pieces my only reward. With east and west being my only convenient options, I head east, trying to stay in the vicinity of the stairs. I can see a lighted room about 100' distant. A formerly locked door in the wall of the passage reveals only an empty closet. When I reach the room, I see that it's very large. Nothing here but some copper, and exits in every direction.

Heading north I reach another room. It's a dead end and a few pieces of copper littered about. It's home to the opposite side of the door that I earlier couldn't unlock. It seems I can't unlock it from this side either. The southern exits lead nowhere. I move east. The corridor is long with several others branching off at various points. I keep moving east and find an empty room. I slowly explore an small complex of rather uninteresting rooms. I'm occasionally accosted by undead things. They are no more than nuisances, but I follow their breadcrumbs to an old armoury.

A sleeping salamander resides among the dust and debris. I pelt it with arrows until it's dead. I lose nothing of consequence to it's paltry flames. I've already discovered a trap here, and there will no doubt be more. I must stay vigilant. I find many items on the bookcase, a staff, and amulet and some arrows, and also many more traps. I've already used my lore, so I can identify nothing. Throwing caution to the wind, I slip the amulet around my neck. Hmmm, it appears to be cursed. I move on, examining the rack of armour but find nothing useful. I manage to trigger a trap and a dart hits me, draining my strength further.

More exploration to the far east turns up a clay golem and a red harpy. I run from them both. The lumbering golem holds back the harpy while we traverse corridors, myself in the lead, but once in a room the harpy proves fast and formidable. I tried, but melee wasn't the ticket. I ran. I barely made it to the portal, but the resulting shift is not what I expected. I soon find myself back in the armoury, south instead of west. Though safe for the moment, I'm scared. I at long last use my long held potion to restore my strength. I'll need every advantage should I encounter the harpy again. I need to rest so I retreat deep into the armoury. It's well lit and I already discovered many, hopefully all, of the traps and from here I have a good view of the entrance. I'll rest here. If she finds me, at least I'll get off a few arrows.

A headless found me first. It didn't take very long. I was still weak. Half a dozen arrows and the headless dies before ever reaching me, but a warping fiend, a creature I've never seem the likes of before now seemingly surrounds me. Then something completely unexpected happens. I nail the damn thing with an arrow, stuck it right in it's neck, and it in return sends me halfway across the dungeon. I'm far from the harpy now, but know nothing of the area I now occupy.

I rush to the east, eager to find familiar ground and do so without incident. I'd feel so much better about this place if only the staircase wasn't so far removed from everyplace else. What to do now? Feeling weak, I decide to mull over the places I've already been, exploring dark corners interesting bits of 'tation. I find a pink frog and a torch in the process. Ho-hum.

The eastern half of the dungeon is dead to me, occupied by the golem, harpy and fiend. The eastern stairs are still accessible, so remote is their location. I decide to head west and explore, but change my mind upon seeing a sleeping stegocentipede in the distance. I have a hunch I could probably kill it, but who knows what else the darkness bears, and I just hate fighting an unknown quantity that's twice as fast as me. I return to the stairs, unsure of the decision. Although I feel that I was somehow beaten by the level, I did manage to explore a great deal of it, and I am still alive. I activate my unknown staff. It's a staff of light. It'll be useful, but I'll no doubt burn the charges far too quickly. I descend.


My current GP shortage makes me long for the days of creeping coins encounters.
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Old September 26, 2012, 20:04   #13
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Your account makes me glad to know that it's not just inexperience that is making this game hard for me. (I'm assuming you've played lots more Angband than I have.) I also echo your cries about the gear dropping. It's tough stuff, especially when you get locked out of the only treasure room on the level, with a really nice level feeling....
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Old September 26, 2012, 22:45   #14
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I arrive at level 8. For the first time, my descent isn't aided by a map. I have no happy place. I find myself surrounded by darkness, so I draw and activate my staff of light. I now clearly see a table and a stegocentipede just steps away. I can't help but think, given it's proximity, that I would have seen it, despite the darkness, if not for this damn cursed amulet around my neck. The room is otherwise empty. I only take one step before it's upon me, but that step places me near enough to the table to attempt a jump. My stubby legs, as if spring loaded, propel me upward onto the wooden surface. My adversary, confined to the floor, can't seem to reach me, at first. Just for a moment, I think it'll be easy. Then everything changes. I take a swing at the beast and it responds with a series of vicious attacks. A moment later it is upon the table with me. I must phase away, and do, but fail to escape the confines of this room. From my fresh vantage point, I hit it with several arrow but it's only half dead. Another round of melee and it is now much better off than I. I need more space than phase door will bestow, so I portal away to the west. A moment later I summon my reserves and feel slightly better.

In retrospect, choosing to leave the previous level when I did probably saved my life.

I'm in another dark room. I move west through the darkness unwilling to risk lighting this room while unsure of it's occupancy. I soon find another table. I hop upon it. It's better to hold the high ground. No sooner do I turn my head than I see a stone golem staring me in the eyes. It's disorienting being up so high, for a little person. I shuffle myself a little further down the table but slow motion Stoney doesn't follow. I've lost sight of him in the darkness. If only I had a better torch. I use my staff to light the room so that I may take better advantage of my superior position. As a bonus, if Stego is still tracking me down, I'll see him coming. I fail at first, but then the staff swells with light.

It must be my lucky day. I can clearly see now that this room has but one door, and it leads west. That takes Stego off my radar. Ole Stoney is just where I left him. Though it's hard to decipher his awkward movements, I firmly believe that he is, in a most unusual manner, trying to mount the table. There an orc shaman also. She was awakened by the light. No a big deal, just an ugly girl with nasty robes and a bad attitude.

I riddle the orc with arrows as she approaches. I find it's almost mesmerizing the way her body pitches and sways in response to each hit. She never does reach me. The fool died running for the door. Stoney... He's is more of a novelty than a threat at this point. Unafraid, I hop down and collect my arrows and the bitch's gold. A moment later, I resume my table-toppery. I'm too weak to engage the golem in melee, so instead, I fire all my arrows at it. Stoney just stands there, like a statue. I guess that's his nature, but really? That was fun, but it didn't quite get the job done. With no arrows left and Stoney refusing to budge (as if made of stone), I had no choice but to climb down. I let it chase me around the table while I recovered my ammo. Up top again, I let fly another barrage of arrows and almost fall over backward when it finally managed to climb up onto the table with me. I stepped down of course, once again grabbed my arrows from the floor and carefully beat the brute to death. It was no easy task.

That finally finished, I head off in search of greater treasures and soon find myself in a room just to the northwest. It's lighted and occupied, but not by anything too fearsome. I first gather the silver pieces. The clay golem awakes first, just out of the range of my bow. I seek cover behind a table. This would seem to me to be a defensive tactic, but perhaps it will somehow aid my archery even though I can't imagine how. I do distinctly notice however, that that crafty Clay got much harder to hit when he took up a position at the opposite end of the table from me. Luckily, I have lots of arrows. Clay is much more nimble than Stoney was, and managed to heave himself onto the table in fairly short order. Why he didn't just walk around the table I'll never know.

I was just finishing off a worm mass (aren't masses supposed to multiply, must be something in the mist) when a brassclaw orc enters from the north. The peasant swordsman is now awake also, but I consider him the secondary threat. I'm not sure what this breed of orc has in store for me so I head for the stairs. By the time I reach them, the orc is just a step behind. That's gives me just enough time to channel my full focus on my blade. I sent the orc fleeing without much fuss. I was bleeding, but that would take care of itself. I chased it into the corridor and encountered the swordsman. He didn't look very menacing, but looks can be deceiving. He first blow was precise, cleaving into my flesh and heavily into my hit point reserve. I ran, once again to the stairs. I quaffed my last CSW. I struck back. He never again did land a blow the equivalent of his first. His lifeless corpse is now slumped in corner, waiting for the worms.

Though injured, I scurried back to the other room, anxious to retrieve my scattered arrows. The orc whom fled was nowhere to be seen. Once complete, I tried to climb atop the table. it seemed like a nice place to rest for a bit. Before I could complete this simple task, a another orc entered. He took the table top, so I was content to hurl missiles at him, but soon we were back on the cold earthen floor, and soon after that I was bleeding badly. I took the fight to the stairs once again. I hate myself for doing so, but have no choice. There the battle turns to my favor, at least slightly. In the end I'm victorious, but very near death by the time my wounds finally stop bleeding.

I must rest. Afterward, I head out in search of more orcs. I follow the trail of blood and it leads me to a happy place . Nearby a room containing treasures and and just one more orc. He's already advancing, but I've no desire to wait. He's thoroughly shafted by the time he reaches me and dies a split second later by my sword. I'm quite surprised to find an exquisite hunting bow among his belongings. It feels right in my hands, very right indeed. Nearby I find dozens of iron tipped arrows, convenient.

I search and secure the area immediately surrounding my happy place. I should leave, content with what I have found, but there's just one more thing I need to check on. It yields a few GP, and also just one more thing I need to investigate. That yields a few more GP some 'tation and a few dead snakes, no mambas thankfully. I can't help but feel that 'I've missed something' in there with the greenery. I search for a reason to stay here, but can find none. I've expanded my secure zone to the point where an unfortunate encounter with a fast enemy could easily be deadly, and yet no feature beckons me to explore further. I return to my happy place, content to return to town.
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Old September 27, 2012, 16:34   #15
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I seek cover behind a table. This would seem to me to be a defensive tactic, but perhaps it will somehow aid my archery even though I can't imagine how. I do distinctly notice however, that that crafty Clay got much harder to hit when he took up a position at the opposite end of the table from me.
If you stand next to the table, your ranged attacks will have no chance of hitting it. That's the only benefit. Normally if someone makes a ranged attack over a table the attack has a 3/5 chance of hitting the table.

The cover chance started at 2/5. (That's equal to the dodge chance when someone makes a melee attack from lower ground.) I raised it to 3/5 when I realized that it's kinda hard to use cover to your benefit. When it happens, I want it to be worthwhile.
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Old September 27, 2012, 16:44   #16
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I'm slowly coming to the conclusion that Templar is a harder class than Warrior. It's hard to balance because it plays so differently.

I'm considering adding a new special ability, Scroll Mastery: "When Templar reads a scroll and makes a Magic Device skill check, the scroll is not used up."

Or perhaps a flat 50% chance in place of the skill check? (I can't use an Alchemy skill check because it's possible for a Templar to raise it to 100%, and that would break the game.)
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Old September 28, 2012, 01:49   #17
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The return trip to Toune is uneventful, as always. I make my usual rounds and knock off the usual suspects. I end up purchasing 50 arrows, a potion of CSW, 4 scrolls of phase door and a hatchet. A hatchet I didn't even want. Apparently, the shopkeeps literally don't take no for an answer. I horde my non-useful gear at home, in my little trophy room. I shine it up and place it carefully upon the shelves that I made of the crates that I found discarded behind the black market. I'm planning on a phase and shoot strategy this time down, but mostly we'll just play it by ear.

A Rattikin map from the staircase kiosk shows me the layout of level nine, at least in part. I'm in a large brightly lit room, no enemies in sight. To the north a passage leads to a similar room. South of me, another passage leads to another room. There's a huge table in there. There's also an eastern exit that eventually leads to greenery and a fountain. Of course, I go to check out the table first. The room has been long abandoned, but a ghostly presence remains. A single arrow dissipates the harmless little guy, to my great surprise, it drops a wad of gold and a wand. I've no idea what the wand does but am happy to have it.

From here, south is the easy choice. It's the only other exit, but instead I back up and go trekking toward the fountain. Along the way I find a functional leather shield just lying on the floor. That's never happened before. Neither has this. There's a tree blocking the entrance to the fountain area. There may be another way in, but it will take considerable effort to find it. I attempt to Topple the tree with my sword, but nothing happens. I could try to phase into the room, but that seems kinda risky not knowing whats in there and all. I'll call that Plan B, and save it for later.

I was just beginning to wonder where the inhabitants of the place were when a pack of white wolves burst into the room. Without a doubt this was the most down and dirty, intense battle of my exploration of the Hall of Mist thus far. I was doing decent damage with my bow, but the wolves were too fast. In no time I was surrounded, fighting two or three at a time. Retreating into the corridor (my plan A) became non-viable when I realized it was a double wide. Who designed this dungeon, Louie Anderson? Then, as quickly as I was mobbed, the pack broke and fled in all directions. I picked off a few, but some got away. I continue on, battered but at the same time eager for more.

I follow the wolves paw prints back to their origin to the east, filling in the blanks spots on my map as I go. Their den is a greenish room. I find a old parchment here but don't know what ability it holds. There's a shimmering portal not far to the south from here so I head that way. Following the advice a wise man once gave me, I read the scroll from upon the portal. Several enemies suddenly blink into existence all about me. They don't look happy to be here, nor am I. Had I been healthier I might have survived, oh wait, I did survive. I portaled the heck out of there. I landed safely in the dining hall, still unoccupied.

I head back to the portal. Though it rubs my beard the wrong way, I rested for a few moments along the way. I don't anticipate much of a fight, none the less, at the last moment I change my mind. I don't want to fight in a dark corridor. I want a lit room. I try to pass close enough to the portal area to get their attention and continue on hoping they'll pick up my trail, and hoping that this bit of 'too clever for my own good' doesn't backfire on me. A few seconds later and I have my answer. The white dragon bat pops into the wolves's den and pops off into the afterlife just as quickly. I move south into a large lit room, some trees to the east but otherwise empty. No one else seems to be following, or so I thought.

As I move east toward the trees, I hear rustling coming from the den. A heavy footed troglodyte soon tries to enter my room, but I have been waiting. My first arrows pierces his body before he even knows what happened. He stumbles forward, but never reaches his destination as more arrows occupy his flesh at non-linear angles. It's now that I realize that I've forgotten my primary mission. I turn and trek a long path back across the dungeon and try once again to establish a path to the fountain. So far, two different paths have been blocked. Yeah, I forgot to mention, the corridor south of the portal was blocked with rubble, else it seems to connect too.

South of the dining hall I light a previously unlit room. It contains nothing more than a cursed cleaver and some silver. There are no exits and I'm beginning to wonder if the fountain is accessible at all. I circumnavigate half the dungeon once again, this time heading further east that ever before. Ahead of me I see a room densely packed with inhabitants. This is where everybody has been hiding. I notch an arrow and take aim at the yeti. He fades into the darkness of the corridor as he approaches, so I test fire my wand in his direction. A magic missile shoots forth. Neato. If there's one thing I have, it's arrows, so I let 'em fly into the darkness. With each release of the bow string, I hear a cry of anguish report back. Soon, the scream is followed by a heavy thud coupled with the cracking sound of skull on granite. The yeti is dead, and quite quickly. My new bow is really sweet.

I dispose of a zombie, an icky thing and a duergar as I fight my way into the room. All that remains is a motionless jelly and a more troubling mirkwood spider, but it's way over there in the back. I destroy the jelly and pick up the mushrooms nearby. A cave painting on the south wall appears to be just that, a painting. I rest until the spider wakes. My first arrows missed, but the next three made up for it, my sword dealing the fatal blow. I snatched a scroll of unknown properties from near it's webs. I move back to the west to explore an earlier ignored southern passage, but it dead ends in a pile of rubble.

Now, east of the painted room another southern passage ends in rubble. What the heck? I'm now well east of the fountain so even if I do find a traversable route south, I'll have to come back west quite a bit to even come close. Further east are the stairs leading deeper. Just past the stairs is a troglodyte (soon dead), then another. I assemble their corpses in a loving embrace and tuck them into a corner under a blanket. Hopefully their friends get a good laugh out of it, ya know, to ease their grieving. They appear to have been guarding a room just to the south. In short order I dispose of a tick, a beetle and a dark hound. The battle leaves me weak, so I retreat to the stairs for a quickie.

I return to the scene of the crime, gathering my spent arrows as I go. As soon as I enter, I see Ulfast. Our eyes lock onto one another. I've a boatload of arrows and 6 scrolls of phase door in my pack. I think I might be able to take him, but I not sure of his abilities, his casting abilities in particular. I retreat, certain he will follow. This is planned. Hmmm, if he knows any spells, he's not using them. I reach the stairs and let the first arrow fly. I soon find that Ulfast is hard to hit. On the other hand, I am very easy to hit. Will I ever find any substantial armour? I phase away, farther than I anticipated, back into Ulfast's male-easterling cave. A green naga awaits my arrival, point blank. We clash and then a zombified orc appears also. Ulfast has some funky friends. I need to get away. I opt for phase door.

I couldn't have picked a better spot to land. I'm about 60' from where the naga will be when she turns the corner into my field of vision, and theres a staircase at my back. I summon my health reserves (I'm still weak, but better) and wait. Two shots and the naga dies, the zombie just coming into range, Ulfast just behind it. I concentrate my fire on Rob Z, but he's not taking a dive. Soon they are both nearly upon me and I must make a decision, bail or not. I take a step back on the stairs mulling over my options. I can't kill Ulfast (95% sure). The zombie is just going to complicate things (+4%). Before I descend, I read the unknown scroll from my pack. Darkness suddenly surrounds me (and Ulfast, thought he doesn't seem to mind). I call upon my powers of lore and surmise that my mushrooms are likely to cause blindness. I flip Ulfast the bird as I descend. I'm sure we'll meet again. I want him to remember me.


Here's a little bug for ya. Pressing 'n' is response to the to buying dialog still results in a sale.
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Old September 28, 2012, 10:25   #18
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I attempt to Topple the tree with my sword, but nothing happens.
Ctrl + direction works in 1.2.0. I'd recommend updating to 1.2.2, you just need to move your save file and maybe scores. Tunnel/Topple is a good description for the command, thanks for that.

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Though it rubs my beard the wrong way, I rested for a few moments along the way.
Did you know that Resting recovers HP at double speed? I'm thinking of removing that rule based on your comments on resting.

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Here's a little bug for ya. Pressing 'n' is response to the to buying dialog still results in a sale.
Noted.
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Old September 28, 2012, 23:57   #19
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Level 10. I descend into a room lush with growth. I can't help but notice Wormy, slumped against the side of the stairs, napping. There's also a mold so hideous it actually seems to be growing its own hair. Wormy's head lies so close to it that he almost appears to be using the mold as a pillow. I wonder how long it's been there. Perhaps it's his pet.

I move south, abandoning my happy place in search of treasure. I'm nearly across the room by the time Wormy awakes. A few more steps and I'm safely in a corridor and standing upon a faery portal. There's an energy hound nearby, so I fire arrows at it until both enemies are upon me. I was hoping to kill the hound just for the sake of having one less nuisance about, but it didn't work out. I portal away to the east, hoping that I'll be able to work my way back to my happy place from there.

Hmmm, not what I was expecting. I find myself in the corner of a room surrounded by trees and bushes. A moment's exploration indicates that I am indeed trapped here, fully surrounded by trees and solid granite. A scroll of phase door trades my second predicament for a third. Outside the confines of the trees, but still in the same room. I see a four-pack of lemure and a night lizard, unmoving. There's only one exit, to the north, back to my initial problem. Still, north seems to be the better bet.

I take out the weakened energy hound with more arrows, those same arrows I now see Wormy collecting as he moves toward me. I hit the Worm with two arrows without much effect. I step toward him as a lemure stirs awake behind me. I need to get past Worm and I'm hoping a phase will do the trick, but instead fate steps in. Wormy feints some martial arts and steals some coins from me in the process. Now he's gone in a puff of smoke. While the loss of gold is regrettable, I'm satisfied with the trade off.

I head back to my happy room, the lemure in pursuit. I riddle a pink ant with arrows until it lies dead. My iron tipped arrows make short work of the first lemure and weaken the second before Wormy reappears. I phase to gain distance to aid my bow. Now, I concentrate fire at the lemure. It dies. By this time, Wormy has already hit me with two frost bolts and I've used my lore of recovery. With my resources running thin, I make a run for the stairs. Wormy's pet mold perplexes me as I place my foot upon the first step, but no matter, I'm already gone.

Without much gold to spend, my time in town was short. Kill all of the Duke's agents in town, check. Buy lots of arrows, check. Return to stairs and rest. Descend. Double check.


Minor bug, mushrooms of CLW are vulnerable to cold according to their description.

Yes, I know I can tunnel (now).
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Old September 29, 2012, 19:47   #20
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In this and future installments I'm going to use the scale of 1 grid = 4 ft (rather than 10 ft), or 1 grid = 1 meter if you're into that kind of thing. It makes the tables and the room sizes more reasonable. Though they are still large, they are not ridiculously so.

Since my last attempt was abbreviated, I choose to return to the tenth level of the Halls of Mist. I manage to correctly map myself a way the hell out of here. Given that I have a happy place, I throw caution to the wind and dispel the blackness of the room I find myself in. It's empty with one exit. Cautiously, I head south.

I take no more than a step or two when a screeching harpy, her skin blood red, rushes forth from the mists just ahead of me. My fingers release an arrow with lightening speed and it strikes her squarely. A moment later she's upon me, biting and clawing, moving at a speed I find hard to fathom. I phase door away to avoid getting pecked to pieces. I land just east of my previous position, a north-south granite wall acting as a divider between the two. I suspect it won't take long for Her Harpiness to find me, so I head north in search of a lit area.

I see a door. I pick the lock. I step onto the threshold. I hear the beast behind me. I don't have time to close the door, so instead I let loose another arrow. Another hit. She's weak now, but that doesn't deter her. I quickly finish the fight, with a tremendous blow from my long sword. I enter the room and lock the door behind me, not that it will make much of a difference since theres another exit about 20' down. There's mural upon the opposite wall, wrapping the corner of the room. Carefully embedded within it I find two runes, one of slumber which I master and one of terror which I can't quite figure out. The artwork also concealed a secret door, conveniently open from within by an icky thing, leading to an unguarded, abandoned vault.


I wish I could recall terrain info by looking at. I have no idea, other than suppositions based on their titles, what the runes do.

This whole area is a dead end, so I head back toward my happy place. I discover an empty room with exits in all directions (and then some) along the way. This room will serve as my new jumping off point, my base of operations. I shoot down a cold hound who dares to enter my lair. The second cold hound was more effective than the first, but not a serious threat. The next encounter is with a swordsman, who's genre I have learned to respect. I have time to focus on my blade before the battle ensues. It turns out to be a bloodbath for both of us, but only I walk away from it. I head to the stairs to rest, taking note of the scarry black orc in pursuit.

My archery proved to be both on target and at the same time ineffective. The orc was upon me and in much too good of health... and he brought a friend. I was weak going in, and even weaker now. I can't abandon this level. The town folk will laugh at me, or worse. I concentrate on another place, a unknown place to the west of here, I shift through the faery realm and back again. I find myself in the mural room. It's safe. It's large. If the orcs do manage to find me here, they will probably regret it. I curl up in a corner a close one eye. Next thing I know, much time has passed and I feel grrrreat.

My only path leads my back to the orcs. Even with my fully renewed stamina, the battle, once I found them, was hairy. In the end the orcs both lie dead.

I fear my time here in the Halls might be coming to an end, so lets review. I have achieved status level 14 and hold ten times that many hit points. Though I've upgraded my bow, my other equipment is very much the same as when I started my quest. My pack holds but a few unknown mushrooms, a single scroll of phase door, a single potion of CSW, a wand of magic missiles which I can't seem to find a use for, my staff of light and a plethora of arrows. I must remember to test those mushrooms and learn of their effect.

I follow a western passage from my lair and when it branches I head north. It eventually dead ends in an empty room. Breadcrumbs, fork in the road, west. What the heck is that? It's a hippogriff. My arrow bounced off of it. I'm not even sure if it noticed them or not. I ran for the stairs with it on my heels. Every once in a while it would get close enough to land a blow. It was a long run and as we passed through my lair saw that there was also a skeleton chasing after the both of us. I reach my happy place. I turn to fight but this thing is way tougher than most of the things I choose not to fight. I run back to town, unsure of what the future holds.

Once again, with only 25 gold to spend, shopping is short and sweet. A silly spy aid my cause with an additional 15 gold. I was looking to buy a scroll of phase door, but none are available, so instead a get a pair of leather gloves, boosting my armour class to 10, and a CSW.


That makes two short dives back to back. I don't like where this is leading.
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