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***[COMPLETE]*** Zuzhul Plaguebringer Returns! - Icewind Dale edition

GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372

The IWD Spell Restricted Specialist Mage Challenge


Foreword

I recently set myself the task of attempting to solo through the Baldur's Gate series with a truly specialist mage (i.e restricted to only using spells from my chosen school of magic). I chose to run a Necromancer, and the restrictions added a unique challenge to the playthrough, and helped breath new life into a game that I had previously played to death.

Despite having to take a few liberties by exploiting poor enemy A.I with cheesy tactics. I thoroughly enjoyed the playthrough and have decided to run the same challenge, this time through the Icewind Dale games.

Here is the original Baldurs Gate playthrough log: Pure Necromancer Solo Challenge

NOTE: This thread will contain spoilers not just for Icewind Dale, but also the Baldurs Gate series. Read on at your own risk.

Challenge Rules

Here are my chosen rules, feel free to alter and adjust them to suit your own playthroughs.

* Difficulty: Core Rules (This may seem low for all the insane difficulty addicts, but with the imposed restrictions, things quickly become difficult).
* You may only memorize scrolls and cast spells that belong to your chosen school of magic, in my case this is Necromancy.
* The use of wands is allowed, though I try to restrict my usage as I level up.
* Special items that allow you to cast a specific spell X amount of timers per day are allowed.
* Casting from scrolls is allowed, but only if the spell aligns with your chosen magic school.
NOTE: The exceptions to this rule are 'green scrolls' protection from fire, magic etc, and the 'knock' spell. During my BG playthrough I quickly discovered that lack of lock picking cut me off from many cool areas I wanted to visit. As such knock is allowed, but only from scrolls which will limit the number of times I can cast it and force me to ration my usage.

NOTE: Character creation requires you to pick 3 spells to add to your spell book, if there are not 3 level 1 spells belonging to your chosen school, then the excess spell must be erased from your spellbook when you start your playthrough.

Character Generation

As mentioned in my previous playthrough, I dont typically like to min/max my stats, however with the imposed restrictions I will need all the advantage I can get. I rolled a 93 in character generation and tried to match my stats as closely to what I ended up rolling in my original BG playthrough.

I had considered dual classing to a cleric, for a wider selection of necromancy spells, turn undead, and a little more melee efficiency. However I figure I'd have a hard time if I dropped all the way down to a solo level 1 cleric mid game.

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Post edited by Genryu on
Vallmyrmoody_mageJuliusBorisovlolienRodrian
«134

Comments

  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited May 2015
    Introduction

    Curse the gods, curse them all to hell! I am the great Zuzhul Plaguebringer, spawn of Bhaal, the terror of the Sword Coast, conquerer of Melissan and the Five, I am... I was... a god.

    Cyric has been trying to usurp and reclaim my throne ever since I ascended. One measly retaliation and I'm the one that's punished! This is insufferable! Yes I'll admit I may have tried poisoning Cyric's wine at this years annual Faerûnian pantheon ball, but it's not my fault that Cryic thought it would be funny to try and get Lord Ao's prized and beloved pet goat drunk. I swear, the b*****d planned this from the start, he set me up!

    For my crimes against Billy the goat, Lord Ao has stripped me of my godly essence, and banished me to the arse end of Faerun, the cold, wet and miserable Spine of the World mountains. What's more, to add insult to injury, my glorious legend is no more, Lord Ao (on the advice of Cyric!), thought it would be fitting to send me back some 80 years into the past, where no one knows or fears the name Zuzhul Plaguebringer, no one is familiar with my awe inspiring deeds, because they haven't happened yet!

    I am weak and mortal again, stranded in one of the most dangerous and uninhabitable lands in the world, if I ever cross paths with Cryric again, I swear....

    I have found my way to some small fishing hamlet, a village named Easthaven. Despite it's small size, there is a lot of activity going on, a caravan is being prepared and adventurers are preparing for some kind of expedition. I have decided to speak to the leader about tagging along, at least until I can plan my next move.

    Post edited by Genryu on
    moody_mageJuliusBorisovlolienAedan
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited June 2015

    PROLOGUE - Easthaven




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    1 Mirtul 1281

    Easthaven's Winter's Cradle Tavern offered a welcome reprieve from the bitter cold outside. The bar was run by a portly woman named Grisella, and was inhabited by a number of colorful characters, mainly adventuring types, including a bearded dwarven lady, whom I initially mistook for a male, and the towns mayor Hrothgar.

    Hrothgar was an old, battle scared adventurer, long since retired. He is also the one organizing the expedition, apparently trouble is brewing in nearby Kuldahar. Detail's were scarce, but the old warrior has promised riches for those brave enough to sign up. If I am to claw my way from the destitution I now find my self in, and back to the heights of my former glory, then I am going to need coin. I will pay Hrothgar a visit in his home later on, to discuss this expedition further.

    But first it was time to relax and recuperate for a while, after trekking through the deep snows of the dale for the past several days, a nice belly warming brandy was just what the doctor ordered. Unfortunately Grisella informed me that the taps were dry, and that until someone cleared out a bug infestation in the basement, dry they would remain. I find it hard to believe that such a, shall we say 'hefty' lady is afraid of a few insects.

    Knowing I wouldn't get my drink otherwise, I reluctantly made my way down to the cellar. I noticed a few empty wine bottles on my way down the steps, and couldn't help but think of my failed assassination attempt, Cyric would be laughing if he could see me now, the once great Zuzhul Plaguebringer, now the bug exterminator in some back water village in the middle of nowhere, oh how the mighty have fallen *sigh*

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    Grisella wasn't kidding, these beetles are the size of cats! I began to cast a spell, one of the few remnants of my lost powers, my hands began to glow as I finished the incantation for my chill touch spell. I made my way around the small room, and squashed the bugs one by one "Oh how the mighty have fallen..."

    2 Mirtul 1281

    After clearing the basement and drowning my sorrows I made my way over to Hrothgar's place. The house was adorned with countless trophies, reminders of his adventuring days. On the floor I noticed a rug, crafted from the skin of some exotic creature, red scaly skin, four arms and a long tail. Wait! No, it cant be... IS.. IS THAT THE SLAYER!?!

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    Is this Cyric's doing? Is he sending me signs, constant reminders of my fall? Or is it just a coincidence? A similar looking creature? Am I just being paranoid?

    I shook the thought's from my head, I needed to focus on the here and now, revenge will come later. Hrothgar was pleased to see me, and explained more of his expedition. Several days ago, a messenger arrived from the town of Kuldahar, he was half dead and delirious with pain. The village healer's were unable to cure him, but they did get a little information before he died. Kuldahar has been attacked, and they are in desperate need of assistance. Hrothgar, friends with Kuldahar's Arch druid Arundel is organizing the expedition to save the people of Kuldahar from whoever plagues them.

    I care not for the plight of the druids or the towns citizens, but Hrothgar had promised me riches, and it is also my understanding that Kuldahar's climate is warm and inviting, unlike the bitter cold here in Easthaven. With no better options available to me, I have decided to help out.

    Before we embark to Kuldahar, I have been asked to look into a missing supply caravan. I cannot believe I have been reduced to gruntwork.

    Post edited by Genryu on
    moody_mageJuliusBorisovlolien
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited May 2015
    2 Mirtul 1281

    Before heading off to track the Caravan, I explored the village a little more. I took a few odd jobs from the local villagers, to earn a little money for supplies. I slayed a wolf for a storekeep, and bought a bottle of wine for a drunk, more grunt work.

    The highlight of my day came when assisting the village idiot Jhonen. His dream's have been haunted recently by a sea spirit, he was superstitious and obviously shook up, though I suspected the creature meant him no harm. I tracked down the sea spirit Elisia who revealed she was once the lover of Jhonen's ancestor, a hero of reknown and a bonafide dragonslayer. Elisia had promised her lover that she would one day pass on his ancient sword to one of his descendant's and that was exactly what she was trying to do.

    I offered to 'return' the sword to Jhonan for her. The sword was old and beat up, it would be of no use in combat, however with its rich history, I am sure I could find a collector who would pay handsomely for the blade. I returned to Jhonan and informed him that Elisia was an evil spirit after his soul, and that his only chance at escape would be to relinquish all his worldly possessions and flee far away. The superstitious fool believed every word and I am now slightly richer for my deception. The most delicious part, was that when I returned to Elisia I told her that I had done as she had requested, she was so overjoyed that she decided to reward me with a valuable pearl. Haha, fools the both of them! I had forgotten how much fun toying with mortals on the prime material plane could be.

    After having my fun hustling the locals, I decided to try and track down the caravan. Over the bridge on the way out of town I was ambushed by a small group of goblins. I had the high ground, and used that to my advantage, pelting the diminutive creatures with darts as they worked their way up to me. Once they had almost reached me, I quickly ran passed them and back down the hill, stopping periodically to cast Larloch's Minor Drain on their leader, a chubby goblin, with a half eaten fish casually dangling out of his mouth.

    Without my Bhaalspawn essence, I was having a hard time. Once whole armies fell at the click of my fingers, now a handful of scrawny goblins were working me to my limit. As I got to the bottom of the hill, I expended my final drain spell, but the goblin leader was still coming. I turned and ran, following the coastline of the lake to where the goblins were originally camped.

    I turned again, launching one final dart and striking the goblin leader square in the eye. Already weakened from my life force draining magics, the loss of an eye was simply too much for the pitiful creature who fell down to the ground quite dead.

    image

    With the leader dead, I turned tail and began to run once again, trying to put distance between myself and the greenskined creatures. As I ran around the side of the cliff face I came to a dead end, nothing but the icy water in front of me. Trapped I had no choice but to stand my ground, I managed to get one final dart off before the enemy closed in.

    The fight was grueling, and I was outnumbered. However my Larloch's Minor drain spells had invigorated me with the goblin chieftain's lifeforce, helping me shrug off the brunt of the goblins onslaught. One by one I beat the goblins down, until eventually I was the last one standing.

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    That was tougher than I had expected, if I am to survive out here in the Dale on my own, then I need to rebuild my spell book quickly. Injured, and with my spells exhausted I returned to the local Inn. The caravan would have to wait until morning.

    moody_mageJuliusBorisovlolien
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited May 2015
    10 Mirtul 1281

    I tracked the caravan to an old hidden cave. As I got closer, I noticed the breeze was carrying a smell, like wet dog. I approached the cave slowly, cautiously, and soon I could make out a small pack of wolves in the distance, three of them.

    Very carefully, one by one I caught their attention, and lured them to me. The wolves were savage, the harsh winter obviously leaving them hungry and desperate. Again my Larloch's minor drain spells augmented my fortitude giving me the strength to survive their most vicious attacks.

    Still after fighting off all three I was left in a pretty bad shape, nearly dead from my wounds. I set up camp and began to tend to my injuries.

    image

    moody_mageJuliusBorisovlolien
  • moody_magemoody_mage Member Posts: 2,052
    Go on the Plaguebringer!

    FYI, once you upload a picture and have inserted it into the post if you then mouseover the thumbnail and click delete it will remove the thumbnail whilst keeping the embedded picture (in case you didn't know :))

    JuliusBorisovGenryulolien
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited May 2015
    So far the prologue has been significantly harder than my initial start in Baldur's Gate. It seem's that my old strategy of luring away enemies one at a time will no longer work, the A.I has improved and enemies will now shout for help luring all nearby enemies with them. I have dropped the difficulty down one pip to easy (not story mode as that would defeat the purpose of the run), just until I can get to Kuldahar and invest in some level 2+ spells for my spell book, at which point I'll bump things back up to core.

    14 Mirtul 1281

    After taking the time to recover from my injuries, I descended into the caves. Wet dog was replaced by the spell of orc filth, I had barely set foot in the cave when I was set upon by 3 large burly orcs.

    I was not going to defeat these brutes, surrounded in the tight confines of the cave network, I quickly backed off, making my way back to the open area outside. The first orc charged out of the caves maw and I released a barrage of Larloch's drain spells on the pungent creature. Still he kept coming and his two allies were now closing ground.

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    The orcs were big, but they were slow and I knew I could out pace them. I pulled out my darts and started to run, stopping only momentarily to launch a projectile upon my pursuers, before retreating once again. It was a slow process, the orcs had me under pressure and my accuracy was suffering as a result. A couple of successful hits and the first orc, already weakened by my magics fell down face first into the snow.

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    I repeated my tactic, keeping my distance and pelting the creatures with darts. The orcs too stupid to adapt, or take cover. It took a long while, my weak projectiles were little more than a stinging annoyance to the hulking humanoids, but the small wounds added up and eventually the second orc succumbed to his injuries.

    With the odds evened, and just one orc remaining, I cluthed my heavy oak staff and engaged the orc in close combat. He was tough, and despite having had my arcane powers stripped from me during my banishment, my proficiency with a staff remained. I quickly gained the advantage in the battle and put the dim witted orc on the back foot, and just like his allies he too fell to the snow.

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    Much like my battle with the wolves, the three orcs had left be severely injured. My situation is getting desperate, things cannot go on like this, I need to recover my lost powers soon.

    Knowing full well I wouldn't last another round with the orcs I retreated back to Easthaven to recover and resupply.

    17 Mirtul 1281

    I recovered for a few nights at the Snowdrift Inn, and then set about preparing for my assault on the cave, I didn't know how many orcs remained, but I knew I couldn't keep retreating back to town after each small victory. I had accumulated almost 600 gold during my stay in the village, so I visited the Temple of Tempus and used it to buy a selection of healing potions. With my remaining gold, I had the priest of the battle god bless me.

    The priest's bless spell wore off before I had even left Easthaven, has Ao forbidden the other gods from offering me assistance? No matter I have my potions now, the caves inhabitants will fall.

    18 Mirtul 1281

    Once again I was nauseated by the smell as I approached the cave, I could hear chanting and some kind of guttural singing, echoing out from the caves maw, maybe an orcish shaman is home? The chanting got louder as I descended deeper into the cave, I wonder what kind of ritual the creature was performing?

    I was attacked by several orcish sentries as I made my way through the cave network, however by adopting the same hit and run tactics that had served me so well earlier, I was able to eliminate them without too much fuss.

    The shaman was close now, probabally around the next corner. I crept tentatively towards the noise coming from the next room. One of the orcs spotted me, good! The stupid creature will probabally rush me, allowing me to quietly take care of him away from the pack.

    I was wrong, the creature screamed some unintelligible gibberish and pointed in my direction. Within moments, the entire room, the shaman included were baring down on me. I was now in some serious trouble, so much for the stealthy approach...

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    Surrounded, and desperate I ran, surely there is somewhere to hide in this cave? Orcish arrows whistled past my head, the occasional one grazing me, I chugged down a healing potion and kept running. Slowly I gained ground and a small reprieve from my pursuers, I stumbled into a room with a small chest. With little time to waste I grabbed one of its items, some kind of enchanted belt, I'd have to wait to examine it more closely however as my pursuers were again gaining ground. I quickly made off in the direction of the southern tunnels, surely I'd lose the orcs around this next corner?

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    I ran around the corner and found my self face to face with another large orcish warband, led by an enormous ogre. Are they planning an invasion? There is a small army in these caves! I could hear the Shaman's group catching up behind me, with no where to run I circled around the room, frantically searching for some advantage.

    The Shaman's group burst into the room, and I was cornered, my back against the wall, I glanced around desperately, near my feet lay a small and open chest. I didn't take much notice of all the contents as one item caught my eye, a piece of old dusty parchment with familiar runes, it was the Horror spell!

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    I grabbed the scroll, and stuffed it clumsily into my belt, the group were closing in menacingly. Behind them the Shaman's group had now entered the room, leaving the tunnel behind them clear, I sprinted at full speed around the large group, somehow evading capture, but taking a couple of arrows to the back for my trouble. I consumed a few more healing potions, and kept running, making my way to the caves exit.

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    Weak and exhausted I made it out of the cave, but knowing the orcs would soon be out looking for me I kept running, and didn't stop until I knew I was finally safe. The cave had been a deathtrap, and I was down to my last potion, however I now possessed a staple of the necromancers arsenal, the horror spell. With a method of more efficient crowd control at my finger tips, I would return in the morning and finish what I started.

    20 Mirtul 1281

    The orcs had been preparing, they were smarter than I gave them credit for. Whilst I was away they had gathered in numbers at the foot of the cave, waiting to ambush me. Their 'trap' would be their undoing, with so many of them packed so tightly in the narrow valley, the group proved highly vulnerable to my newly acquired horror spell. I took an arrow to the gut as I began my incantation, but managed to keep my concentration, within moments pure chaos had erupted, with orcs running around knocking each other over, as they tried to flee the area.

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    Their leader the ogre was also affected, standing several feet higher than his allies, he made an easy target in the panicked crowd. I threw everything I had at the enormous beast, drain spells and darts, but he was immensely tough, shrugging off most of my attacks. Before long, my induced horror began to wear. I quickly fired off another horror spell before I could be swarmed, and maintained my assault on the ogre, I needed to take down the leader. Without the ogre in charge I was sure the orcish warband would fall into chaos.

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    With the ogre stuck with countless darts and bleeding heavily, I resorted to my dark magics, Larloch's minor drain sucked the remaining life essence from the powerful brute, the ground shook as he collapsed. With the chaos and panic caused by my horror spell, I could safely search his corpse.

    I found a letter addressed to the caravan leader. They were obviously ambushed by these orcs, I had seen the crates of supplies inside the cave. However with their leader dead I am confident the remaining orcs will scatter to the winds. My job is done, I'll not waste any more energy chasing down and finishing off these lesser orcs.

    lolienJuliusBorisovmoody_mage
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited May 2015
    3 Kythorn 1281

    The expedition was a complete and utter disaster. We were ambushed by frost giants in the Kuldahar Pass, cornered in the valley and with no escape, they brought an avalanche down upon our heads, sealing off the valley and cutting off Easthaven. I am the sole survivor, I guess my only option is to press on to Kuldahar.

    8 Kythorn 1281

    My progress has been slow and treacherous, goblin's infest the mountain pass. The creatures have all been complaining of intense head aches, and voices. After speaking to one of the goblin leaders, as well as a crazed ogre, I believe that the goblin forces are being lured to the valley by some kind of mind control spell, by whom and for what purpose I know not.

    12 Kythorn 1281

    I am ambushed at every turn, goblin vermin are everywhere. My horror magics grant me some reprieve, allowing me to pick the green skinned folk off at range with my darts, but for every one that I kill, two more seem to return to take their place. I have spotted an old house to the west, maybe I can barricade myself in for the night to recover my strength?

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    17 Kythorn 1281

    The house was also teaming with greenskins. Upon entering I was accosted by a small group of orcs demanding that I relinquish my possesions, there were a couple of human corpses on the floor, more than likely the houses original occupants.

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    Not taking any chances, I released a horror spell into the room, and then proceeded to pick off the orcs one at a time. Unfotunately, a couple of the creatures, rather than flee flew into a berserk rage charging me with reckless abandon. I drained their lifeforce with my Larloch's minor drain, and then used my staff to mop up the stragglers.

    image

    On the leader's corpse I found an enchanted cloak which helps shield me from harm. Down in the basement I was set upon by more goblins, but my horror magics made the swarm of creatures more than manageable. With the battle over, I began to set up camp for the night until I was disturbed by a bumping noise coming from a nearby cupboard. Another goblin no doubt.

    I grasped my staff and sneaked up to the cupboard, ready to strike who ever hid inside.

    One...

    Two...

    THREE!

    I swung the door open, my weapon poised ready to strike. Huddled in the corner of the cupboard was a young boy. He informed me his mother and father, the two corpses I discovered upstairs were killed by the orcs and that he had been hiding in the cupboard for days. I am no babysitter, and I am not going to needlessly endanger myself by escorting the whiny runt to safety. I have told him that it is time for him to grow up, and take charge of his own destiny if he wishes to live.

    The young boy has decided to try and make his way to Kuldahar on his own, maybe I'll see him again, maybe I wont, but for now I must rest, I need to recover my strength.

    image

    lolienJuliusBorisovmoody_mage
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited June 2015

    CHAPTER 1 - Kuldahar & The Vale of Shadows




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    18 Kythorn 1281

    Kuldahar's great tree was immense, almost as big as Suldanessalar's Tree of Life. An entire settlement had formed in and around the roots of the ancient oak, and it wasn't surprising. Unlike the rest of the Icewind Dale, Kuldahar was warm, pleasantly so.

    To the north I could make out a small stone tower, my arcane senses keenly attuned to magical energy, I knew that a wizard resided there. He would make a perfect first stop in this strange but intriguing town.

    image

    The tower was inhabited by Orrick, a mage devoted to the study of ancient elvan mythal's, and his *goblin* apprentice. My visit to Orrick's place had been a complete waste! Whilst he is willing to sell me scrolls and arcane equipment, he fears his more advanced stock would be too dangerous to one of my limited power.... If only he knew who I was, who I had been.

    His stock consisted of various low level spells, but nothing relating to the school of necromancy. I did find a magnificent robe however, it is no Robe of Vecna, but is still powerful. Unfortunately it is way out of my price range right now, I'll have to come back in the future.

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    I found the Arch Druid Arundel in a structure formed from one of the great trees very roots. Kuldahar is being plagued by an invisible foe, there are signs pointing to this everywhere, but no clues as to who or why. Citizens have been abducted from their beds at night, vanishing without a trace, unnatural snowstorms are cutting off all passages in and out of the dale, and goblinoid forces have been gathering in great numbers.

    Arundel has suggested that I begin my investigation in the Vale of Shadows, an ancient network of tombs and crypts. Apparently there have been sightings of the dead rising from their graves, an particular expertise of mine. I'll visit the vale, if the dead are walking then I may be able to rekindle some of my forgotten knowledge, I may be able to uncover the secrets of undead animation once again.

    Before setting off to the vale, I took the time to explore the rest of Kuldahar. To the west I encountered an exhausted looking fellow, wide eyed with terror, before I could react a pair of tundra yetis were upon me. My Horror spells were useless, the stupid beasts continued to attack regardless. I released my entire arsenal of drain spells upon one yeti, and then drew my sling.

    I lured the beasts through the town, until I could find better tactical terrain. I found it near Arundel's, a series of stone pillars rising from the ground. I could use this as cover to break their line of sight and sneak round behind them to unload a stone from my sling. The dimwitted creatures walked right into my trap, and it didn't take too long to bring the beast's down. I skinned the creatures, certain that the fur would sell well in the cold climate of the northlands.

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    The man who was being chased by the Yeti was Mirek. He and his brother were set upon by the Yeti whilst visiting the family tomb in the Vale of Shadows. His brother didn't make it, but Mirek has offered me a reward to recover the family heirloom that his brother was carrying.

    Post edited by Genryu on
    lolienJuliusBorisovmoody_mage
  • moody_magemoody_mage Member Posts: 2,052
    Bet you can't wait to pick up Animate Dead...

    GenryulolienJuliusBorisov
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited May 2015
    decado said:

    Bet you can't wait to pick up Animate Dead...

    Your not wrong!

    I'll be thankful just to get my first level 3 spell! I'm close to hitting level 6, and so far I still only have Larlochs, Chill Touch and Horror, and I'm pretty sure the undead at the Vale are going to be immune to all three of those! Time to stock up on darts and bullets, and prepare for a massive grind....

    Post edited by Genryu on
    lolienJuliusBorisovmoody_mage
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited May 2015
    Progress and updates are probably going to be very slow compared to the Baldur's Run, with no serious firepower in my spell book yet, terrible THACO and no armour what so ever, every single enemy is a grind, even the lowly skeletons!

    To put it into perspective, I'm running my solo game simultaneously with a traditional party. It took my party around 2 hours (and 6 game days) to reach Kresselack's tomb, it has taken me 2 whole days to get there with Zuzhul (and 66 game days!).

    Hopefully things will speed up once I can find my self a skulltrap scroll, and start laying down some pain.

    image

    Haha the funny thing is, in one tomb I had been luring skeletons away one by one trying to clear the area. I'd drag them outside and kite them around whilst hitting them with my sling. It took me a long time before I realised that this particular group of skeletons respawns every time you leave and reenter the tomb.....

    lolienJuliusBorisovmoody_mageSkatan
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited May 2015
    20 Kythorn 1281

    The reports were not exaggerated, if anything they were understated. The Vale of Shadow is teeming with undead, hundreds upon hundreds of skeletons, zombies and worse stalk through the crypts. I feel like a giddy child when I think of the possibilities, what ancient secrets of necromancy will I discover here?

    I quickly ran into problems however, the undead are completely immune to my limited arsenal of spells, and in this weak mortal body I am barely a match for a single skeleton, never mind an army, if only I could still call upon the Slayer, I'd have cleared out these tombs within a day, but alas.

    25 Kythorn 1281

    I'm fighting a war of attrition, but the undead without a superior intellect to guide them, are stupid unthinking creatures. With an enchanted sling I stole from the house of the Barbarian Shaman Hjollder, I have been able to pick the creatures off safely from a distance. Progress was slow, but as my experience has grown, so too has my proficiency with the sling.

    I have managed to clear out the first of a number of crypts. There were no clues as to the source of the undead, but I did find a rusty of gate key in one of the coffins.

    10 Flamerule 1281

    I think I am getting warmer. After weeks of clearing out small insignificant crypts, I have found one slightly larger, and unlike all the others, this one was inhabited by a sentient being, Therik, a long dead barbarian hero.

    image

    Therik was very cryptic and offered very little insightful information. But he was adamant that I both left the crypt, and handed over the rusty key that I had secured several weeks before. He was obviously hiding some secret, but what? Knowing that our discussion was pointless, I took the initiative and launched a pre-emptive strike on one of Therik's zombies, bouncing a well placed stone off its head with my sling.

    Before the skeleton warrior and his undead minions could retaliate, I spun about and quickly made my way to the less confined area outside, a more fitting battlefield for my ranged assault. The zombies were weak, and fell quickly, but Therik was experienced and no push over. I kept my distance, his old bones slow with age, and maintained my ranged attacks.

    One of my stones forcefully struck the side of the old warriors skull, a very noticeable crack forming down the ancient bone. I back tracked again, Therik relentless in his pursuit, one more well placed stone and his skull imploaded in a shower of dust and bone.

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    It was time to explore Therik's tomb, what was he hiding? What did he not want me to discover? Deeper inside I came across another large group of undead, using the tactics that had so far served me well I began to lure them outside into the open, one at a time, but to no avail. The corpses were piling up outside, yet inside the undead hoard seemed unending, for every skeleton I struck down, I would return to find another had taken its place...

    I couldn't fight my way through, and I obviously couldn't thin their numbers, but I had to discover what the undead warrior had been hiding. Thinking back to my time in Easthaven, when I had been pinned down in the Orc cave a plan began to formulate in my mind. The undead were brainless, slow, shambling creatures, so long as I didn't get myself surrounded or cornered then surely I could just run past them? Heck I even had a potion of invisibility on me that would get me out of any tight spot and allow me to escape if needed.

    I entered the crypt one more time, and I just ran. I bypassed countless undead, but soon ran into another group, down a flight of stairs I spotted an old stone tomb, maybe that held the secrets I sought? I ran down the steps, avoiding the undead as best I could, but taking a few grazing blows for my efforts. I reached the tomb and quickly flipped the lid, the undead were quickly closing in, I rummaged through the chest quickly and found a large ornate key. I stuffed it into my pouch quickly and then spun around, the undead had caught up, I was surrounded.

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    With no possible escape in sight, I hastily uncorked the potion I had found earlier, taking a large swig of the thick purple liquid. Suddenly the undead stopped in their tracks, the invisibility potion had worked. I carefully made my way back up the stairs, avoiding the large number of undead.

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    Cloaked with the invisibility enchantment, I made my way to the final tomb without incident, avoiding several shadows. The tomb was large, ornate and very well maintained, something told me this is where I would find my answers.

    A little way into the tomb I found my way blocked by a large iron gate, using the rusty key I had discovered earlier, the old gate creaked open.

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    The inner sanctum was immense, and also heavily defended, I breathed a sigh of relief when I realised that I was still invisible, if I had walked into this room unprepared I'd have been butchered for sure. Taking advantage of the fact that I could not be seen, I scouted out the room, taking note of enemy numbers, armaments and positions, and then I retreated back to the entrance hall.

    If I was to stand a chance at purging the undead from the inner sanctum, then I would have to lure them here one at a time, using the large stone pillars for cover. It took the better part of the day, but one small step at a time, I cleared out the room.

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    There were a number of chest's in the crypt, several I learnt the hard way were booby trapped, most of my finds were junk that I would sell off at Kuldahar, however I did find a pair of old enchanted gauntlets that make my strikes more accurate in combat.

    This inner sanctum looked like just the tip of the iceberg, this crypt was obviously immense. Before heading descending deeper, I decided to return to Kuldahar, to recuperate and resupply, both my ammo and potions were beginning to run low.

    12 Flamerule 1281

    Back in Kuldahar, I sold off the majority of the loot I had acquired in the vale, and then set about resupplying. I filled my ammo case with bullets, and I suspected I would need every one. Then I visited the Gnome Oswald Fiddlebender, the brain addled fool reminds me of another Gnome I met in Athkatla once, what was his name? Jansen?

    Oswald despite his eccentricities, is a mighty fine alchemist, I purchased a number of potions off him, two more potions of invisibility taking my total to three, and five flaming oils, these should both come in useful the next time I find my self cornered by undead.

    JuliusBorisovlolienmoody_mage
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited May 2015
    15 Flamerule 1281

    My decimation of the inner sanctums forces had not gone unnoticed. When I returned to the crypt I found an ancient bone dancer waiting for me in the next area.

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    The bone dancers are servant's of Myrkul, they are often called upon to serve as guardians, and watch over important places of Myrkulian faith. This bone dancer Mytos is responsible for the vales current undead infestation, though he won't share any details of what it is he is actually guarding.

    Much like the skeleton warrior Therik, Mytos has demanded that I leave this crypt, and relinquish the keys that I have secured so far. The foolish sack of bones, who does he think he is dealing with? I refuse to bow to the whims of lesser undead beings that should be under *my* control!

    Knowing this could only end in violence, Mytos ordered one of his four large skeleton warriors to attack and distract me, and then he retreated further down the corridor to prepare for the battle ahead. As I backed away from the pursuing skeleton, I could hear Mytos preparing a bless spell, he was augmenting his skeletons!

    I ran back to the glowing vats of mysterious liquid, and used them to cut off the skeletons pursuit. With no direct path to me, I could easily stay out of the skeletons range and pelt it with rocks from a distance.

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    With the first skeleton taken care off, I returned to the Mytos's location. Mytos had retreated even further away, and I was instead met by his three remaining skeleton warriors. Again I lured them down to the glowing vats. With the skeletons advancing in a tight formation, I lit one of Oswalds burning oils and threw it into the middle of the pack.

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    The blast was devastating, two of them clearly crippled and badly damaged. However, even engulfed in flame, the skeletons advanced, immune to pain, immune to fear they carried on their pursuit relentlessly. I started circling around the vats again, I equipped my sling and then started to target the two severely damaged skeletons. A couple of missiles and they soon crumpled to the ground.

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    With two down, I had little trouble finishing the remaining skeleton off. With his guardians destroyed I turned my attention back to Mytos. He had taken advantage of his distraction and prepared for me, as soon as I got within range he released a spell, I believe it was a hold person spell.

    I shrugged off the spell, and then readied my sling. He released another spell, this time a silence spell, hahaha the fool! My spells were of no danger to the undead bone dancer, and I certainly don't need my vocal cords to shatter this ones skull. Mytos began a third incantation, just as I released another stone from my sling. The missile sailed through the air striking the creature hard on the jaw, and interrupting his spell.

    With his repertoire of spells exhausted, the bone dancer advanced, intent on tearing my heart out with his boney fingers. However like most undead, Mytos was slow, I retreated back to the vats once more and proceeded to give him the run around, when will these dimwitted creatures learn? Unable to catch me, and with no arcane fire power remaining the bone dancer didn't stand a chance.

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    lolienJuliusBorisovmoody_mage
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    16 Flamerule 1281

    Mopping up the rest of the levels undead was a relatively simple affair, but nothing could have prepared me for what I encountered on the second level, there were hundreds of undead warriors lined up in a large open hall, not just skeletons and zombies, but ghouls, wights and even a skeletal mage.

    There wasn't a cat in hells chance of me fighting through that impressive army, and luring the troops away and defeating them individually would take days. I checked my pack, I had three invisibility potions, I chugged one down, and then explored the area a little more fully. It was amazing, I had never witnessed such a hoard, not just the main hall, but all the alcoves and side rooms, were packed with the walking dead too.

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    I spent several minutes poking around the area, I found a key and several other interesting enchanted items. However I had to be careful, taking any of the treasures would dispel my invisibility, and my potions were limited, I would need at least one to escape this place.

    I stood by the desk that contained the key, and pulled out an oil of speed, I didn't want to waste another invisibility potion if I didn't need too. I took the key, and as expected my invisibility was dispelled. A nearby zombie spotted me, and shambled towards me I took a large mouthful of the enchanted oil, and started running.

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    There were a number of items I had identified as enchanted, and I quickly made a beeline to each of them, a couple of wands, a handful of scrolls and a strange stone talisman. The undead sprang to life as soon as I stepped back into the main hall. The mage released a stinking cloud, I felt nauseated but managed to stay conscious, A pair of wights surprised me however, enchanted with some kind of contingency spell they both released a barrage of magic missiles at me, there was no way I could avoid the blasts and I was nearly knocked unconscious, I kept moving however, knowing to falter was to die.

    I made my way to the wolf stone talisman first, I felt immediately more durable as I put it around me neck. I ran back to the exit, but I was too late, even with my superior speed I hadn't been fast enough, and now countless undead were spilling into the room. I was trapped...

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    A plan formulated in my mind, I could potentially cripple the bulk of this undead hoard right now, simply by locking them in the room! I backed myself into a corner, and waited for the enemy to close in, allowing the room to fill up with more undead. Then *poof* I vanished into thin air, my second invisibility potion consumed.

    I carefully crept out of the room and then sealed the door behind me. With only one invisibility potion remaining, I decided against looting the rest of the chests for now. I didn't want to lose my current enchantment until I'd had time to explore the next level of the crypt.

    The third level of the crypt was much like the second, there was a large concentration of undead down here, however still invisible from the stunt I pulled upstairs I was able to creep past unscathed. At the end of the crypt I came to a pair of large double doors, some kind of insignia marked the floor at the foot of the doorway, a wolfs paw, just like the talisman I found. I crept inside and then closed the doors behind me.

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    I had entered the final resting place of Kresselack the Black Wolf, a legendary warrior and conqueror of old. Kresselack, fearing his own mortality had built this crypt in tribute to his god Myrkul, and then performed a ritual suicide in the hopes of ascending and serving as Myrkul's right hand in the afterlife. Instead he awoke in this crypt, forever bound to it.

    Kresselack cannot leave the Vale of Shadows, and has no interest in Kuldahar. He cant be the one plaguing the town and its people, however he has suggested that he may know who is, but he wont relinquish the information unless I offer him a service. A Priestess of Auril has set up camp in the Vale, the fires and torches that burn within the warm crypts are an affront to her goddess, and she plans to extinguish them. Kresselack wishes for me to assassinate the priestess. If the information is good, then I have no problems with such a task.

    Once our conversation was over I consumed my final invisibility potion an made my way back out of the crypt. Once I reached the second level I looted the remaining chests and sarcophagi, with the bulk of the undead locked in a side room, I encountered little resistance.

    JuliusBorisovmoody_mage
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited May 2015
    24 Flamerule 1281

    I tracked the priestess to a cave in the southernmost area of the Vale. I recognised her immediately, it was Lysan the bar maid from Kuldahar, she must have been plotting the downfall of the great tree, an Aurilite would never set up house in such a climate willingly.

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    Before I could strike she released her pets upon me, a number of large and very hungry tundra yeti. I pulled out my trusty sling, and back peddled out of the cave, landing a few solid strikes on the hulking beasts.

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    There was an area high up above the mouth of the cave that would make an ideal ambush spot. I lured the yeti up the narrow winding pathway, only stopping long enough to unload my sling in the beasts direction. There was an ancient statue at the top of the cliff, I used it to place some cover between myself and my pursuers, ensuring they could never fully reach me. I played a game of cat and mouse for a good five minutes, thinning their numbers one by one, eventually only myself and the priestess remained.

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    I don't know whether it was some divine protection, or a natural resistance but my sling was ineffective against Lysan, she was completely immune to my projectiles. I began to call on my dark magics, if felt good to finally have an opponent who was vulnerable to my arcane might.

    One by one I fired off Larloch's Minor Drain spells, individually they are nothing more than a nuisance, but five of them back to back can leave a person seriously weakened, and Lysan was now slightly worse for wear. I tried a few horror spell's but the priestess shrugged them off.

    With my offensive spells exhausted, and my sling all but useless against the Aurilite I went in toe to toe with the priestess. Lysan was a skilled combatant, she wielded an enchanted flail that could easily have taken the head off, and she soon had me on the back foot. She was stronger, faster and more skillful than I was, I managed to land a few minor blows on the priestess but within moments I was forced to break away.

    I retreated back down the slope, Lysan giving chase. She must have a weakness that I can exploit, everyone does! Think Zuzhul!

    That's it! She's an Aurilite, a frost maiden! I still have several of Oswald's burning oils in my pack! The priestess was barely several feet away when I finally managed to light the wick. I quickly tossed the exploding vial at the priestess and she was engulfed in flame. I stepped back, Lysan had dropped to the floor desperately trying to roll out the flames, I lit my remaining vial and dropped it onto the burning priestess. No amount of rolling or thrashing around would extinguish those flames now, the Aurilite was done for...

    After looting the priestesses camp, I made my way back through Kresselack's Crypt. I was fresh out of invisibility potions, but with half of Kresselacks forces now locked away, I was able to use my last remaining oil of speed to run through the crypt and safely avoid the remaining undead.

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    Kresselack had lied to me, he had no information regarding the plight of Kuldahar, he had manipulated me into solving one of his own problems. If I wasn't so drained from my battle with the Aurilite, I would teach him what happens to those who abuse me. But that lesson would have to wait, I *will* return ...one day.

    28 Flamerule 1281

    I spent the next few days relaxing, and recovering from my ordeals in the Vale. I sold off my plunder, and had the local priests identify a few of the magical trinkets I had picked up. One item was of particular interest, a wand of armory, this wand allows me to cast both the shield, and ghost armor spells, a very useful item that will improve my survivability significantly. Other loot included a wand of missiles, a robe of cold protection, and the Blackwolf Talisman, an amulet that confers a number of defensive enchantments. Finally I had found a scroll of Ghoul Touch, a lowly spell, but better than nothing.

    With the gold I had managed to raise, I bought a bag of holding, I'll be able to haul back a lot more loot the next time I go dungeon crawling.

    JuliusBorisovmoody_mage
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited May 2015
    Its been a long time since I last played IWD and I hadn't anticipated the lack spells available early on, which is making things infinitely harder than they were in BG1. I'm currently level 8, and still only have level 1 and 2 necromancy spells at my disposal. Does anyone one know when Orrick updates his stock? Chapter 2? (Please be chapter 2!)

    I'm walking around with sooOOOooo many blank spell slots at the moment, and I am just about to unlock my first level five spell slot too! Grinding through enemies with a sling is no fun at all lol

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    lolienJuliusBorisovmoody_mage
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited May 2015
    Never mind, look what I just found on a shelf in the next area! Mwahahaha!

    Now the fun starts!

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    Post edited by Genryu on
    lolienJuliusBorisovmoody_mage
  • moody_magemoody_mage Member Posts: 2,052
    edited May 2015
    I bet you must of jumped out of your chair and punched the air in delight when that turned up.

    Don't forget to talk to the barman in Kuldahar about Lysan. You haven't mentioned it so assumed you didn't do it.

    lolienJuliusBorisovGenryu
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    Air guitared all around the room!

    And no, I had totally forgot all about the barman, I'll get on to that when I get back to the game.

    lolien
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    1 Elisias 1281

    My investigation at the Vale of Shadows has proven fruitless. Arundel has recommended a new strategy, the great tree of Kuldahar once housed a powerful scrying device called the Heartstone Gem. The gem was stolen by a renegade druid many decades ago, but Arundel believes he has discovered where the gem has come to rest.

    Many years ago a temple was erected far to the East, Arundel has reason to believe that the temple was founded by the Kuldahar deserter long ago, and that it is there where I will be able to reclaim the gem, and uncover the secrets we seek.

    If the gem is as powerful as Arundel says, then he was a fool to tell me of its location. I'll claim the gem for myself, with such divination I'll be nigh unstoppable!

    5 Elisias 1281

    I found the temple neatly hidden away in a long forgotten canyon, several days march from Kuldahar. I encounted Redtoe a fleeing giantkin as I approached, one of the lesser breeds, a Verbeeg I believe they are called. The temple had recently been attacked by unknown assailants, and many of the temples acolytes and their Verbeeg guardians had been slain during the assault. Redtoe was clearly terrified, and planned to lescape before the invaders returned.

    I let the giant go, and prepared to infiltrate the temple. Inside I was apprehended by one of the acolytes, after losing so many of their numbers, they were very untrusting of strangers, fearing me as one of their attackers. He was only half wrong, I was not one of the invaders, though I did plan to assault the facility and claim the gem for my own.

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    The acolyte hit me with a silence spell before I could even act. No matter, I raised my newly acquired wand of missiles, and released a blast of energy, the acolyte was knocked backwards slightly, his second spell casting interrupted. I pulled out my sling and started to pelt the acolyte, interrupting him with my wand whenever he attempted to cast a spell. The acolyte was not particularly strong and fell pretty easily.

    Before I could get my bearings straight, a verbeeg came rushing around the corner, attracted to the noise my little duel had caused. This one was not such a push over, I readied my sling and backed off luring the giant outside, and out of earshot of the other temple inhabitants. The clearing outside was not very large, and unlike the vale, I didn't have enough room to keep sufficient distance between my self and the giant.

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    I dodged and back peddled as best I could, hitting the giant with sling and spell, but in the tightly confined area I took more than a few scathing blows before the giant fell. Another giant greeted me as I reentered the temple, grasping my wand of armory in my hand, I coated myself in the protective energy of a ghost armor spell. This time the giant didn't have such an easy time landing his attacks, slowly but surely I wore the brute down.

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    I looked at my sling and then to the pile of dead giants forming at the entrance, after this they are going to have to start calling me David. I reentered the temple one final time, carefully making my way through the snaking, winding passageways. With a little more room to maneuver now, I began to take down my opponents as and when I found them. Eventually I found my way to the temples library, a large pile of verbeeg bodies almost blocked the entrance, there must have been a mighty struggle in this room during the invasion.

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    Inside a few stragglers remained, I with my wand of missiles and trusty sling, I quietly took care of the giant and then returned for the two acolytes. Compared to the giants the priests were relatively easy to handle, my wand of missiles interrupting their most dangerous spells. They quickly expended their few memorized spells and were forced to engage in combat.

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    Normally I'd find myself hard pressed going toe to toe with two adversaries, however thanks to the wand of armory I had secured from Kresselacks tomb I might as well have been wearing full plate armour, the temple initiates barely able to land a scratch. One by one I gutted the men with my enchanted dagger.

    The library proved to be a dead end, however upon one of the shelves I found a dusty old scroll, the secret to an ancient necromantic power, the skull trap! Slowly, step by step and was clawing my way back to my former glory, bit by bit I was regaining my stolen powers. Now I would teach these priests and their verbeeg allies what a real assault is, this temple is doomed!

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    I barricaded myself into one of the side rooms, and began to scribe and memorise the spell. With my new found power, clearing the upper level of the temple proved little challenge, enemies fell in droves as my traps blew them limb from limb! Once the upper level was secured, I made my way down a flight of stairs to some kind of treasury.

    The treasury consisted of a massive corridor, with several small alcoves along each side. The alcoves all contained a lone treasure chest, and occasionally a hidden adversary, lurking ready to ambush any invaders such as myself. I turned their own trap against them, by planting several skull traps in the doorway of each alcove. The unsuspecting defenders blew them selves to pieces as they tried to ambush me, and those that survived were badly wounded and easily picked off with my sling.

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    I found several enchanted weapons and suits of armour in the chests which I packed into my bag of holding. At the far end of the dark corridor I could make out a large set of double doors, no doubt a vault of some kind, and I suspect the home of the heart stone gem. I could also make out the silhouettes of several defenders, preparing to make a final stand.

    I ducked into one of the small dark alcoves, and began rememorizing my spells. There were three verbeeg and two priests camped out in front of the vault. The corridor was dark and I hadn't been spotted yet, carefully I planted three of my skull traps, and then revealed myself.

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    My own trap almost proved my undoing, I waited until the last possible moment to flee, trying to ensure all the brutes gave chase, unfortunately this gave one of the alcolytes enough time to release an entangle spell. I managed to fight my way out of the grasping thorny vines just in time, the traps exploading and taking down all three giants.

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    I backed away, fearful of getting entangled and becoming a sitting duck for the acolytes spells. The acolytes were not so fearful however, giving chase and getting caught in their own spell, trapped and with nowhere to run, they made great target practice for my remaining spells. After the battle I discarded my now expended wand of missiles, and proceeded towards the vault.

    DISASTER! After the shocking year I have had, I was a fool to believe recovering the Heartstone Gem would be so easy. The vault was a bloodbath, countless dead bodies littered the floor and a large pedestal towards the back of the room, now stood empty, the gem was gone!

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    I searched the corpses for clues, one of the bodies stood out, she was wearing robes reminiscent of a priestess of Talona, the goddess of poison and disease. I prized a vial from the priestesses could dead hands, some kind of green liquid, maybe Arundel can shed a little more light on this?

    lolienJuliusBorisovmoody_mage
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited May 2015
    28 Elisias 1281

    Arundel has identified the green liquid that I discovered as an undiluted snake venom unique to the Yuan-ti. He believes there is a Yuan-Ti settlement located at Dragon's Eye. It makes sense that I should continue my investigation there. On another note, I have finally raised enough coin to purchase the Robe of Enfusing from Orrick the wizard.

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    3 Eleint 1281

    I decided to hold off my investigation of the Dragon's Eye, the Vale of Shadows still holds many treasures that I was unable to secure on my first visit. Now armed with both a bag of holding, and the skull trap spell, I plan to pick the crypts clean.

    7 Eleint 1281

    The undead I had previously trapped in one of the rooms, on the second level of Kresselack's crypt were still locked safely away. I used my wand of armory to cast a shield spell, which would protect me from the wights magic missile attacks, then I unbolted the great iron gate, and cautiously backed off. A moment later the gates burst open and the undead hoard shambled out. I retreated to a safe distance and then began casting my first spell. I summoned a skull cackling with magical energies, and tossed it into the middle of the undead pack. A huge explosion blew pieces of bone, and rotting limbs in every direction, when the dust had settled, half of the undead were destroyed.

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    I circled around the room, keeping my distance from the remaining undead, slowly they shambled towards me, again converging on my position. Once they were packed tightly together again I released my second skull trap, ancient body parts were once again blown around the room under the force of the blast. With only a handful of undead still standing, I eased up on my assault and picked them off at my leisure.

    15 Eleint 1281

    I set up camp and spent a couple of days recovering my magical energies, whilst exploring and looting the crypts of their treasures. Once I had picked the area clean, I descended down to the third level. Again the unthinking creatures allowed me to herd them together, making the group extremely vulnerable to my explosive skulls.

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    Once again the undead mass fell swiftly to the explosive power of my traps, once the final enemy fell, I once again began to pick the area clean of its valuables. My tomb raiding had been productive, I made a large amount of coin selling off my plunder back at Kuldahar. I would soon have enough to purchase an enchanted weapon from Conlan the Blacksmith.

    lolienJuliusBorisov
  • moody_magemoody_mage Member Posts: 2,052
    I bet that was immensely satisfying.

    GenryulolienJuliusBorisov
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    Aye things are finally picking up!

    lolienJuliusBorisovmoody_mage
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited June 2015

    CHAPTER 2 - Dragon's Eye



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    30 Eleint 1281

    I could smell sulphur and brimstone as I neared the ancient volcano known as Dragon's Eye, aptly named because the only accessible entrance into the volcanoes large network of caverns was through the eye of dragons skull shaped cave. Thick smoke bellowed out through the caves dragon like mouth.

    Distracted by the magnificent natural wonder, I was ambushed by a number of ice trolls. I protected my self with a ghostly suit of armour courtesy of my wand and then began to retreat, the frozen trolls were slow, extremely so, I was able to land several skull traps before they could even close the gap.

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    I breathed a sigh of relief as the first two trolls fell down dead. My previous encounters with trolls had taught me that they could only be killed with fire, acid or death magics, this variety must be different, not that I'm complaining.

    I quickly ran past the two remaining trolls, the creatures were so slow that I avoided then easily. One more skull trap and the remaining trolls fell. I set up camp outside the caves maw, I didn't know what awaited me inside, but I wanted to be at full strength when I found out.

    Post edited by Genryu on
    lolienJuliusBorisovmoody_mage
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited May 2015
    5 Marpenoth 1281

    I was ambushed by a number Lizardmen as I entered the cave, swiftly surrounded by my scaly adversaries and with little time to react, I released a skull trap into the middle of the ambush party, and was lucky not to blow myself up at such close range. My enemies fell easily to the resulting blast, the only survivor was left mortally wounded, and was easily finished off with a well placed slingshot.

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    Lizardmen often ally them selves with the Yuan-Ti, I must be on the right track, my quarry are in these caves ...somewhere.

    The cave system was immense, and I soon found myself wandering aimlessly around the winding and branching tunnels. As I worked my way through the subterranean maze I began to hear odd clicking sounds, they were feint at first, but grew louder the deeper I descended into the tunnels. I finally found my way into a small clearing, the clicking was loud now, coming from all directions, above and below, but there was nothing there?

    Suddenly burrowing creatures began to burst from the floor and the walls, giant beetles! Similar to the bugs I dispatched back at the tavern in Easthaven I drew my dagger, this should be easy!

    I made a terrible mistake that almost cost me my life, these were so much more than the beetles I had encountered in Easthaven. I was quickly surrounded, but I wasn't worried until the beetles began to excrete some kind of deadly gas. My vision swirled, and I felt nauseated. My muscles began to slow, the gas was obviously some kind of paralyzing agent meant to stun and immobilize their prey.

    I stumbled away, trying to escape the deadly gas, and then I ran, stopping only once I had gained enough distance to decimate the swarm with an exploding skull trap.

    12 Marpenoth 1281

    After clearing the nest, I stumbled upon the body of a dead elf, obviously he had gotten himself trapped down here in the nest. Among his possessions was an enchanted sword, I couldn't identify it, but I uspected it would fetch a fair price from Conlan the Blacksmith. He also carried a journal, it wasn't very interesting, but he did reference his cousin, an elf named Xan.

    Didn't I, or rather dont I murder an Elvan Enchanter named Xan in about 80 years time, in the Nashkel Mines if I recall correctly? Bah its a common elf name, probably just a coincidence.

    18 Marpenoth 1281

    The nest proved a dead end and a waste of my time, I backtracked to the Dragon's Eye entrance and took the second path. This time my course was true, I encountered many lizard men, though sling and spell dispatched these small groups with little trouble.

    Deeper into the cave I finally encountered a challenge. A lizardman king, and a large warband was assembling in some kind of shrine. The king was very forthcoming with his plans and recent activities, it was his men who had been kidnapping the people of Kuldahar, some for food but most were for their leader, some unpronounceable she snake whose name sounded like a Tundra Yeti clearing its throat.

    Also forthcoming from the king, were his intentions to eat me, instead I opted to feed the lizard king and his men a skull trap. Both the lizard kings Shaman, and a number of his lesser warriors fell down dead, whilst a number of other warriors were injured in the blast. I backed away slowly, as I reached the stairs I realized that the tunnel was fairly narrow here, at best one, maybe two lizardmen would be able to engage me at once, if I could bottle neck the lizardmen in the tunnel I may be able to blow the lot of them away in one fell swoop.

    I shielded myself with my wand of armory and then dug my heels into the ground, and waited at the narrowest part of the tunnel. Two low ranking lizardmen were the first to reach me, blocking off the rest of their allies behind them. Shielded from the brunt of their attacks by my Ghost Armor, I waited until the whole swarm had converged upon my position, and then tossed another skull trap, this time over and behind the crowd of enemies. The resulting blast tore through their defenseless ranks, dropping most of the pack.

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    With only the king and a lesser lizardkin remaining, I began back peddling, hitting the scaled creatures with both sling and spell. Already weakened from the previous blasts, the lizard men stood no chance against the barrage of attacks.

    After the battle I searched the area, one of the corpses held a magnificent dagger, I recognized it from ancient lore as Spinesheath, a famous weapon enchanted so that the wielders hand is unerringly accurate in battle, this will greatly make up for my poor skill at arms. On the Shrine I also found an enchanted ring, this I couldn't identify so I placed it in my pack for another day.

    24 Marpenoth 1281

    Not far south of the shrine I discovered the missing villagers, or rather the few still alive. With the path behind me clear, most of the captives have now attempted to make their way back to Kuldahar, though I suspect most will fall prey to the hungry yeti before they reach their destination, oh well! With a bit of luck the yeti will eat their fill, and then leave *me* alone when I finally return to town.

    I seem to have cleared this level of the volcano, the only path open to me now, is to descend further down.

    lolienJuliusBorisovmoody_mage
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited June 2015
    25 Marpenoth 1281

    I've hit a figurative brick wall in my descent of the Volcano. The second floor is a crawling with trolls, its a veritable breeding ground down here.

    My only effective weapon against the creatures are a number of flaming oil vials I have looted from slain lizardmen. However taking on the trolls one at a time is inefficient and my oil reserves are running dangerously low. In an attempt to conserve my precious oil, I have resorted to taking on large groups of trolls simultaneously, skull traps bring the creatures down in large piles, which I can then ignite with a single oil.

    So far whilst an effective strategy, it has also proven a very reckless and dangerous one, on more than one occasion I barely survived a troll hoard with my life.

    image

    26 Marpenoth 1281

    I cannot continue like this, there is only so long that I can push my luck, eventually my reckless strategy will get me killed. I am abandoning my descent into Dragon's Eye for now, and returning to Kuldahar to resupply, the Gnome Oswald often carries large reserves of oils, the next time I visit Dragon's Eye the fires I start will be so great that people will think the Volcano is erupting.

    29 Marpenoth 1281

    Back in Kuldahar, I visited the priests of Illmater and had my enchanted treasures identified. Of note was the ring that I found at the snake shrine, aptly named the Shield Ring, because whilst worn I am under the permanent effect of the mage spell Shield. With little use for my wand of armory now, I sold it almost 2000 gold pieces.

    Before I left I visited Oswald and refilled my oil flasks at great personal expense. I now have 12 vials of flaming oil, as well as three much more deadly oils of fiery burning, hopefully it will be enough.

    Post edited by Genryu on
    JuliusBorisovlolienmoody_mage
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    2 Uktar 1281

    My brief return to Kuldahar proved a wise decision, I have barely scratched the surface of Dragon Eye's troll infestation, and will need all of my oil to break through their numbers.

    Deeper into the vast cave network I discovered another shrine, this one devoted to Talona the lady of poison. The large room was swarming with trolls, as well as housing a large number of Talonian priests. At the far side of the shrine I could make out a bound and badly beaten woman, due to the chanting of the priests I suspected I was about to witness a ritual sacrifice.

    With the priests and trolls preoccupied with the ritual, I quietly crept back out of the cave, laying a series of skull traps behind me, down a narrow tunnel.

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    With my trap set, I summoned up one more skull trap, and lobbed it far into the room looking to hit the priests gathered at the shrine. I heard the explosion a moment later followed by cries of pain and surprise. I held my ground in the narrow tunnel, and waited for the inevitable retaliation, moments later countless trolls and their Talonian masters came barreling around the corner.

    My traps exploded in unison, tearing through a large number of my pursuers. More enemies came running around the corner, and down tunnel. Fortunately the narrow confines of the cave network bottle necked the group and prevented them surrounding me. I pulled out one of Oswalds larger exploding flasks, and tossed it into the pack.

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    The resulting explosion was intense, many times larger than my smaller vials of oil. I had to quickly flee the tunnel to escape the blast, relinquishing my strong defensive position in the tight tunnel. I needn't have worried though, most of the priests were blown to bits, and the trolls hit the ground writhing in pain, a few more vials of my lesser oil and the remaining were finished. Among the corpses I found an enchanted deck of cards, the magic is alien to me, but perhaps I can get them identified back at Kuldahar.

    The bound woman revealed herself to be a high priestess of Illmater, the god of suffering. In an attempt to discover the fates of the kidnapped Kuldahar citizens, she had marched off alone into the mountain intending to get kidnapped herself. The priestess has offered me the use of her healing magics, as well as watching over me as I rest. I took advantage of her services, regaining my full strength ready for my descent down into the third level.

    lolienJuliusBorisovmoody_mage
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited June 2015
    I had my first Necromancer class specific dialogue exchanges on this level, which were pretty cool, they also changed how the final battle played out which was quite interesting.

    3 Uktar 1281

    I could smell the dead long before I encountered them, the Spine of the World is proving to be a focusing point for the dark arts and necromantic activity. As I found my way to the third level of volcano, I was stopped by an ancient and sentient skeleton warrior, and a contingent of wights.

    Anyone else would have been fooled by the deception, but necromancy ran in my blood, and this was nothing but a cheap parlour trick designed to scare off intruders. This skeleton general wasn't sentient, he was as dead and unthinking as the rest of the undead down here, somewhere on this level a fellow necromancer was hiding, projecting her voice and will through the undead vessel.

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    The necromancer was taken aback as I exposed her little trick, she even complimented me for seeing through her ruse, though our mutual appreciation of the arts meant nothing, only one of us would leave this cave alive.

    Her minions set upon me without hesitation, the mysterious necromancer obviously wanted me taken care of quickly, perhaps she feared that I would turn her own minions against her? I didn't waste any time, releasing my first exploding skull and lobbing it at the hoard, many of the wights were ripped apart.

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    In such close quarters I was soon surrounded by the remaining undead, trapped with nowhere to run I conjured up a second skulltrap, tossing it behind the pack and praying the walking corpses would shield me from the brunt of the blast. Body parts bounced off the wall under the intense force of the explosion and I was knocked onto my rump.

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    The welcoming party was destroyed, but I was barely standing myself. I retreated back to the second level to lick my wounds and bide my time.

    4 Uktar 1281

    With the help of Mother Egenia the priestess of Illmater, it didn't take long for me to recover from my injuries, and I was soon fit enough to return to the undead lair. The Necromancer must be powerful indeed, as she has augmented a number of her skeletal guardians to explode upon impact, as soon as they are struck by any weapon they explode in a shower of sharp bone and shards of ice. This makes the skeletons deadly, but also very vulnerable to ranged attacks.

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    I encountered several more of the necromancers skeletal 'messengers' as I fought through the cave complex, she seems intent upon preventing my passage into the lower levels of the volcano. Fortunately the undead were slow shambling creatures, and with the initial group taken care off I had plenty of space to keep my distance, and destroy them from afar.

    6 Uktar 1281

    After several days of fighting I found my way to a large subterranean river, with a lone, rotting, wooden bridge as the only crossing point. On the opposite side of the river, a large building had been carved into the rock face. Before I could cross, another of the necromancers skeletal 'vessels' stepped out and walked over the bridge.

    I was fed up with all these minor encounters, we both knew I was going to reach the hidden necromancer sooner or later so why draw things out? I challenged her to a one on one arcane dual, necromancer versus necromancer, and to my surprise she accepted!

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    The undead in the area suddenly fell very still, completely silent and unmoving like statues. Out of the stone building on the opposite side of the river my quarry emerged, the necromancer Presio! There were no more words to exchange, now was the time for action.

    Before I could get close enough to act, Presio cast some kind of illusion spell, summoning several mirror images of herself, what kind of 'necromancer' is she? With no idea which was the real Presio, I decided to throw caution to the wind, and blast them all together with a skull trap. Presio was visibly shaken, unprepared for the power of my skull trap, her second spell was interupted. A brief moment later, she regained her composure and retaliated by firing off a barrage of magic missles, little did she know I was wearing a ring of shield, which absorbed each and every missile.

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    Again I struck with an exploding skull, ensuring that I hit the real Presio. By now the necromancer could barely stand, she began another incantation a last ditch effort to fell me, but she never got to finish, my final skulltrap blasting the little remaining life from her body. I had expected more from one versed in the dark arts, maybe relying on her undead minions for all these years had made her soft?

    I turned around, expecting the lifeless undead to collapse into piles of dust and bone now that their master had fallen. To my surprise, not only were they still standing, but they were once again very hostile, and coming right for me. Presio's final incantation must have been to order her remaining forces to attack.

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    I dispatched the last two undead guardians, and then breathed a sigh of relief when no more appeared to intercept me. I looted the necromancers corpse giddy at the prospect of what treasures a fellow necromancer would possess, I discovered various enchanted items, a Robe, Ioun Stone and dagger though I would have to take them to Kuldahar to be identified.

    After setting up camp for the night and recovering my strength, I decided to investigate the necromancers home, what ancient magic would lay unguarded in such a place? In my eagerness to claim Presio's secrets as my own, I walked right into a trap....

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    Presio wasn't foolish enough to leave her home unguarded, as soon as I entered I was simultaneously blasted by several barrages of magic missiles from multiple imbued wights, if I was not wearing my ring of shield, then my recklessness would have just gotten me killed.

    I quickly backtracked blasting them with spells as I retreated, desperately trying to avoid getting surrounded. The undead defenders were flimsy at best, not like the magnificent skeleton warriors I used to summon in my prime. A couple of skull traps and the room fell quiet once more

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    Inside the house I found several magic scrolls, including a couple I no longer possessed. I claimed and quickly scribed the spells of Vampiric Touch, and Hold Undead into my spell book. With the way now cleared I headed down into the deeper levels of Dragon's Eye.

    lolienJuliusBorisovmoody_mage
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    edited June 2015
    18 Uktar 1281

    The fourth level seems out of place compared to the upper areas of Dragons Eye, the caves are gone, replaced with quality masonry work. A man named Albion greeted me at the entrance of the great underground complex, he claimed to be a disciple of Eldath the god of peace and tranquility, but I quickly caught him in a lie.

    Albion claimed he knew very little about the Heartstone Gem other than it was stolen from Kuldahar decades ago, however he later slipped up when he mentioned it had recently been stolen from the temple of the forgotten god, a tidbit of information he couldn't possibly know as the temples existance was a closely guarded secret.

    With his deception ruined, he revealed himself as an agent of the snake god Sseth. A well placed skull trap dropped the now hostile priest before he could react, but many of his allies came rushing out of the complex to 'greet' me.

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    I was quickly swarmed, and worse still almost all of the priests consumed potions of invisibility. I couldn't see them, so I couldn't target them ......directly.

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    I began throwing skull traps around haphazardly, with so many priests descending upon me I was bound to hit someone. The resulting chaos was poetry to my ears, I could hear the priests tripping over themselves trying to flee, whilst screaming in terror. They may be invisible, but they are making it very easy for me to pinpoint their location.

    Deeper into the temple I walked in on a Yuan-ti banquet, the corpses of several Kuldahar villagers were laid out on the table ready for the snakes to feast on. I wasted no time, feeding them my own banquet of crackling skull traps, before they could respond.

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    Further into the temple, I found some unexpected allies, adventurers from Waterdeep who had played dead during a Yuan-Ti ambush, and had subsequently been locked away in the snakemen's 'food pantry', with the rest of the corpses. I plan to put these unfortunate souls to work, why waste my own energy when I have perfectly good cannon fodder at my disposal.

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    I began to lure any group of enemies I found back to the party of adventurers who were waiting in ambush. Eventually I fought my way to the Yuan-Ti High Summoner, holed up and making a last stand in some small, dingy room.

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    In such a confined space, my skull traps were devastating, the Yuan-ti didn't stand a chance. After the battle I began looting the corpses, chests and shelves. I found a large amount of enchanted equipment, most of which would be sold, however I did find a few items of note, including a couple of invisibility potions, and another deck of enchanted cards. But more importantly, the summoners staff was highly enchanted, allowing me to summon a wide array of creatures to my side, as well as firing flame arrow spells.

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    lolienJuliusBorisovmoody_mage
  • GenryuGenryu Member Posts: 372
    30 Uktar 1281

    After I was completely sure that the temple was fully cleared, I returned to 'thank' Marchon and his adventuring party for their assistance. I rewarded them with the most precious of my gifts, the gift of eternal rest..

    Their equipment was extremely well crafted, Conlan will pay well for this haul.

    image

    lolienJuliusBorisovmoody_mageSkatan
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