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Neverwinter Nights Minimal Reload, (or just report your run for fun), Thread (spoilers)

BelgarathMTHBelgarathMTH Member Posts: 5,351
edited June 27 in General Discussions NWN:EE
Hi, I decided I like reporting my runs in this forum, for better or worse, so I thought I'd make a thread for NWN. Over the past week, I've played a Cleric of Lathander up through the first floor of Moira's hostage's house, and needed no reloads. I might start reporting on that run if I don't stick with this one.

Tonight, just for kicks and fun, I decided to start a druid. Sometimes, I like to play a druid in D&D, for a couple of reasons. One, I love cats. I really, really, love cats. I kind of love my cats better than people, and I've had deeper bonds with my cats, and grieved more when they passed away, than with any of the people I've ever known in my life, including my beloved and dearly departed grandparents. If I hadn't felt the grief of my first three cats passing (I was ages 30-42), I'm not sure if I'd even truly understand what grief feels like. Sometimes, I like to immortalize my cats in my games.

Secondly, I have a post oak tree right outside my living room window. I have nicknamed my tree "Silvanus". Sometimes, I like to pretend my tree is "my god" watching over me as I play games as a druid. I know, it's silly. But it makes me happy.

So, here's my new druid, with his panther animal companion. The stat screens are to the left. I've taken Luck of Heroes (+1 AC), heavy armor, and extend spell for my first feats. I like to build the tankiest character possible. I will probably be taking tower shield feat. I know I could get that for free for taking a level of fighter, but I don't like to penalize my animal companion's progression (or my Turn Undead and spell progression for my Sun domain cleric). One of the things I really like about NWN is that you can build your character for roleplay. The game doesn't punish you for not min-maxing, being a munchkin, or not having the perfectly optimized build.

One of the cool things about NWN2 is that, in one of the first scenarios of the game, you can talk to animals, like these dogs who help in the combat. I'm not sure if the NWN2 devs ever followed through with this idea in any of the rest of the game, but it's really cool to see here. I kind of wish they had made more use of it.

More to come, over the next week or two, or more.

Party Level: 3
Reloads: 0

EDIT: Just to make the dog talk clearer, non-druids and non-rangers just see "Woof, woof, arf, grrrwl, bark" in those screens.

Post edited by BelgarathMTH on


  • BelgarathMTHBelgarathMTH Member Posts: 5,351
    Here's a slideshow of meeting Khelgar and helping him fight off some bullies. Screen caps can't do justice to the roleplay cutscenes and movies in this game, so I don't think I'll try to capture any more of the cutscenes unless I think one of them is plot-critical. To really get what this game does for roleplay via cutscenes, you really have to find and watch a good Let's Play on YouTube.

    Now my fledgling party of myself, Khelgar, and my cat are ready to go upstairs and save the first inn outside the starting area of the game from bladelings and duergar.

    Party Level: 4
    Reloads: 0

  • sarevok57sarevok57 Member Posts: 4,353
    hmm... might have to start a SoZ run soon :)

  • ArviaArvia Member Posts: 638
    Nothing silly about naming a tree 🙂.

    Now this looks like a game I might like (I have watched a short video, too), and the screenshots look good. I have seen other screenshots with beautiful scenery. I think I have to try playing a bit faster in BG. But NWN would be wasted on a 10' tablet screen, I think.

    I'm looking forward to reading more and seeing some more postcards. Do take care of "your cat" (that's a huge black panther, in case you haven't noticed 😉)

  • JuliusBorisovJuliusBorisov Member, Administrator, Moderator, Developer Posts: 18,478
    @Arvia To clarify, @BelgarathMTH is playing NWN2, which is not available on mobile. NWN1 is (well, NWN:EE).

  • ArviaArvia Member Posts: 638
    edited May 6
    @JuliusBorisov , thank you for the information. It looks like a game that should be played on a bigger screen, anyway. Less flexibilty where and when to play, but it certainly looks better.

    Edited: It probably wouldn't make sense anyway to start with NWN2.

  • sarevok57sarevok57 Member Posts: 4,353
    @BelgarathMTH how do you make screenshots in NWN 2?

    it says that the key binding it set to "printscreen" but every time i press it, there is no "mini lag" to show that a screen shot is being taken place ( unless perhaps my PC hardware is SO amazing that it just doesnt lag at all )

    so if the above scenario is true, where do the screen shots save to?

  • BelgarathMTHBelgarathMTH Member Posts: 5,351
    edited May 9
    @sarevok57, I'm using a utility called "Snapper".

    It lets you take a screenshot from almost any game with PrntScrn (or any other customized key), and download it to any folder you want. I have a folder on my desktop named "Screenshots", and I just use Snapper to use PrntScrn to take my screenshots and put them there. I don't know how it works in NWN2 without the utility.


    We meet and recruit the delightful tiefling rogue Neeshka, after saving her from bullies outside Fort Locke. We have our desperately needed party rogue. She's a bit on the chaotic side, though, so I'll have to keep an eye on her. I think Bioware must really have a thing for red-haired female rogues. Neeshka is pretty much Imoen with horns and a tail. I don't know if it's the same voice actress, but she's pretty much doing exactly the same voice and personality as Imoen.

    We have a photo taken in front of the Fort Locke Temple of Ilmater. Notice the beautiful large holy symbols of Ilmater that flank the doors.

    Neeshka disarms a trap. There will be lots and lots of these, and locks to open, too. Neeshka will be one of my most valued party members throughout the game. I hope I can keep my influence with her high enough to keep her in my party long term, while trying to talk her out of robbing wealthy estates in Neverwinter!

    Yikes! Big spider!

    Really big spider! Kill it with fire! *Barkskin*! *Flame Weapon*!

    The lizardfolk chieftain, supported by a dangerous spell-casting shaman. I went for the shaman first, while Neeshka, Khelgar, and my cat attacked the chieftain.

    Khelgar poses with his flaming new Bone Phoenix, taken as his spoils from battle with the Lizardman Chieftain. He is going to wreck the zombies, skeletons, and ghouls in the Graveyard with this thing! We have to go to the Graveyard to search for the missing commander of Fort Locke. He was not here in the Lizardman caves. We need to rescue some hostages from a bandit base near Fort Locke first, though. We can't risk letting them kill the hostages.

    The bandit chief goes down. My Flame Weapon spell on my Club +1, combined with Khelgar's flaming Bone Phoenix, insure that the poor guy really has no chance. He should have surrendered. Neeshka and my Blue Cat give nice support with Sneak Attacks.

    Party Level: 5
    Reloads: 0

    Post edited by BelgarathMTH on
  • BelgarathMTHBelgarathMTH Member Posts: 5,351
    We have dealt with the lizardfolk crisis at Highcliff, and so were able to catch a ship to Neverwinter without attracting the attention of the enemies who attacked West Harbor.

    While en route, I am tormented by nightmares, but I believe them to be true visions sent by Silvanus. Silvanus has an interest in helping his druids and rangers find this evil and defeat it, because it is corrupting druid circles and druid powers throughout Faerun. I hope he doesn't get in trouble with Ao for sending me these visions.

    We already met one of our enemies in Highcliff, when we accidentally were able to spy on him giving a Sending to one of his shadow priests who was in charge of raising undead troops there. There was no vision from Silvanus needed to hear his name, and part of what he was up to. His name is Garius, and he is in cahoots with the shadow priests. Apparently, they all serve the Shadow King. I suspect that the Shadow King is trying to mount a rebirth of some kind.

    I have a vision of the Gith. They are led by a female, and I hear her name. Zeeaire. She was behind the attack on West Harbor, and she has sent wave after wave of her Githyanki assassins to kill me ever since I left West Harbor. What is a "Kalach Cha"? Could the Shadow King Reborn be this female, Zeeaire? What is the significance of the silver shard I carry?

    The next night I have another vision nightmare of someone being killed in Neverwinter. He is killed by a very frightening looking bearded man with a glowing tattoo of a spider web covering his face and head. The terrified nobleman exclaims before he dies that he saw the bearded man die! Could this mysterious assassin be the Shadow King Reborn?

    One of the things I love about the story in this game, and that keeps me replaying it over and over through the years along with NWN1, and Baldur's Gate, is that very early in the story, it throws three major antagonists at you, along with their respective minions, and you have no idea which of the three is the biggest threat, or how any of them relate to the threat of the Shadow King's return, the corruption of the druid circles and powers, or the silver shards.

    "Will the real Shadow King Reborn, please stand up?" LOL, I love it.

    This game's story is filled with plot twists and reveals. If anyone reading would prefer that I just post screen shots of notable combats, and not risk spoiling the story any further for anyone, please let me know. :)

    Party Level: 6
    Reloads: 0

  • ArviaArvia Member Posts: 638
    I wonder if I should avoid reading spoilers, because I'm certainly going to play this game, too.
    But I really like reading your reports. I can't speak for anybody else, of course, but I'd like you to continue writing. I have a bad memory for names, anyway 🙂.

  • BelgarathMTHBelgarathMTH Member Posts: 5,351
    edited May 10
    After arriving in Neverwinter, we went to work for the Guard, and wound up provoking the leader of the Neverwinter underworld to burn down the Guard headquarters. I think Moira has to go, eventually, as she seems violent and greedy, and certainly not one to care about Nature or Balance. But for now, Marshall Cormick has moved to the Merchant Quarter where he is assisting the Neverwinter military's Captain Brelaina.

    There seems to be great tension in this city between the police and the military, with the two factions at odds with each other as much as with the criminals of the city. Silvanus requires that I maintain my neutrality, however, so I can't take any sides. I have to be very careful to maintain my connection to Nature, and that sadly means that sometimes I cannot invoke Duty or Honor, and I cannot make oaths or promises, and sometimes, if the Balance requires it, I must even attempt to deceive or lie. Doing so bothers me, but Silvanus has blessed me with a spirit animal, my beloved Blue Cat, so I must obey Silvanus' teachings, and my primary concern at all times is to continue to evolve my connection to Nature, the Balance, Silvanus, and my spirit animal. I became committed long ago to the idea that ultimate Peace could be had by obeying Silvanus and by accepting the inevitability of Life, Nature, and the Balance.

    Khelgar wanted to visit the Temple of Tyr to speak to the monks there. They want him to pass several trials before they will agree to train him as a monk. I think I see what the monks want him to learn, and I could help him please the monks and receive his monk training by my gift of Wisdom from Silvanus. However, he is a very powerful fighter, and I think he would be severely weakened in his ability to serve the Balance if he became a monk. I may need to subtly steer him away from his idea to do that.

    While we were in the Temple of Tyr, their resident merchant and business manager, Judge Oleff, asked us to save a priest they had sent into the Tomb of Betrayers as part of a routine maintenance. He had disappeared, and not come out of there. Something was wrong, and when something goes wrong in a tomb, undead are usually the source. I despise undead as unnatural abominations and an affront to Silvanus. We will of course investigate and destroy any undead there.

    The tomb is heavily trapped. Neeshka yet again proves an invaluable and indispensable party member, with her expertise at finding and disarming these very deadly traps.

    After burning and destroying several dozen zombies, ghouls, and shadows, we find the very powerful and strong ghost of a traitor who identifies himself as "Fenthick". I have heard of him. He blindly helped a false cleric of Helm named Desther bring the Neverwinter Plague upon this city, and was executed for it. If the stories I've heard are accurate, I actually feel sorry for him. I think we are serving the Balance and performing an act of mercy by putting poor Fenthick's shade to rest.

    We return to Judge Oleff to report that we have rescued the priest, and put the Traitor's soul to rest.

    @Arvia , this entire dungeon had references to several Neverwinter Nights 1 characters, although it wouldn't be necessary to have played NWN1 to still enjoy the dungeon. Fenthick and Judge Oleff are both characters from Chapter One of NWN1. In NWN1, your main quest giver through Chapters One and Two is Aribeth of Tyr, a female paladin of Tyr. She and Fenthick are committed lovers, more or less married, or the equivalent of that. I tell you that to suggest that I think you might very much enjoy playing NWN:EE as a paladin of Tyr. Arvia could be a fellow paladin of Tyr who tries to guide Aribeth through her crisis of faith that results from what Fenthick and Desther do, and what happens to them. Aribeth is central to the story, all the way through Hordes of the Underdark, which is the epic level expansion for the base campaign for that game.

  • sarevok57sarevok57 Member Posts: 4,353
    how many years after is NWN 2 from NWN 1?

  • ArviaArvia Member Posts: 638
    @BelgarathMTH , thank you (LOL my phone already suggests "thank you" after typing your name, I seem to be saying that a lot), I'll try to remember that. Paladin of Tyr sounds good, anyway.
    (Must not get distracted from BG now... grrr)

    I can understand why someone would want to play a druid, but I imagine really roleplaying True Neutral to be very difficult.

  • JuliusBorisovJuliusBorisov Member, Administrator, Moderator, Developer Posts: 18,478
    Thanks for doing this, @BelgarathMTH ! Your reports are fun to read, and you're showing why the game from 2006 can still be interesting in 2019.

  • BelgarathMTHBelgarathMTH Member Posts: 5,351
    sarevok57 wrote: »
    how many years after is NWN 2 from NWN 1?

    Googling shows NWN1 as June 18, 2002. NWN2 comes up October 31, 2006. So, they're a little more than four years apart.

  • sarevok57sarevok57 Member Posts: 4,353
    sarevok57 wrote: »
    how many years after is NWN 2 from NWN 1?

    Googling shows NWN1 as June 18, 2002. NWN2 comes up October 31, 2006. So, they're a little more than four years apart.

    hahahahaha, i meant as in game years :) but i guess i could just google that myself :) and wow, it looks like NWN 2 only takes place 2 years after NWN 1, for some reason i thought the gap was bigger

    BelgarathMTH[Deleted User]
  • BelgarathMTHBelgarathMTH Member Posts: 5,351
    edited May 11
    Run update May 10, 2019. Since I often prefer shorthand summaries for runs that I post while being in character, I am often tempted to post "Captain's Log, Selune Date 0510.19: We have stopped the nefarious criminal Moira from receiving a weapons shipment into Neverwinter that would have given her military superiority to control the city at her whims...."

    Before following Captain Brelaina's "orders", (I will follow her demands only as long as her agenda serves Silvanus' Balance), I decided that I should keep my promise to my fellow druid Elanee to take her to the Skymirror as soon as possible, so she can consult her superior about what has happened to us, and tell him about Elder Khaleil, who had been trapped in bear form and whom we were forced to kill, and the druid we met in Neverwinter, who had been trapped in wolf form and almost killed. Elanee was hoping to contact the druids of the Neverwinter Wood to share information, but her own Elder Naevan from her own Circle of the Mere appeared instead and informed us that both the Neverwinter Wood Circle and the Circle of the Mere had apparently been corrupted and had lost communication.

    He thought that the corruption of the druid circles must be tied to the silver shards I carry - My uncle Duncan and his "friend" Sand had given me a second one. I feel enormous magical power radiating from them. And, I feel much stronger and tougher while I carry them, almost as though they are making me invulnerable and super powerful. But, I am very worried that this source of my new found magical power, the shards, may be evil in nature, and are corrupting the Balance and the Lands I serve. Silvanus, help me to know what I should do!

    On the way out of the Skymirror area, we were attacked by a shadow priest! What were he and his minions doing here, in one of our most holy druid lands?

    The shadow priest fought with a very powerful magical scimitar, more radiant than the one I was using. (Scimitar +1 upgraded to Scimitar +2) OOC: I really like the scimitar for my druids, because it has a critical range of 18-20. That already expanded critical range, combined with a feat, will give me critical range 15-20. That's a 25% chance for a critical hit. Yes, please.

    Back in Neverwinter, we followed our mission for Captain Brelaina. The weapons shipment was intercepted, stopped, and re-routed back to her. My gift from Silvanus to "Persuade" the weak-minded allowed me to complete the quest while avoiding a lot of unnecessary bloodshed of both rogues and guardsmen. I always prefer to serve the Balance without violence or loss of life wherever possible, even if I have to lie or "nudge" someone's mind using the power of the Balance. Better Balance-persuaded than dead, surely. Sadly, the Guardsmen and rogues who were actually managing the weapons shipment could not be persuaded at the end, and we were forced to kill them.

    I am having a crisis of conscience about my use of the Flame Weapon spell on my scimitar. Silvanus commands that His druids must put out fires wherever they find them, and to oppose to the point of violence and killing, any who would use fire to destroy trees, plants, and animals.

    Here is our catechism:
    "Silvanus sees and balances all, meting out wild water and drought, fire and ice, life and death. Hold your distance and take in the total situation, rather than latching on to the popular idea of what is best. All is in cycle, deftly and beautifully balanced. It is the duty of the devout to see this cycle and the sacred Balance as clearly as possible. Make others see the Balance and work against those that would disturb it. Watch, anticipate, and quietly manipulate. Resort to violence and open confrontation only when pressured by time or hostile action. Fight against the felling of forests, banish disease wherever you find it, defend the trees, and plant new flora wherever possible. Seek out, serve, and befriend the dryads and learn their names. Kill only when needful, destroy fire and its employers, and beware orcs and others who bring axes into the forest."

    If Silvanus disapproves of my Flame Weapon, then why would He grant me the spell in the first place? The catechism not only commands us to "destroy fire and its employers", it also says that Silvanus "sees and and ice."

    For the time being, I suppose I will take the spell of Flame Weapon as a sign that Silvanus approves my stewardship of the hated element, which does after all have appropriate use - such as destroying undead.

    Party Level: 8
    Reloads: 0

    Post edited by BelgarathMTH on
  • ArviaArvia Member Posts: 638
    edited May 11
    Captain, set your scimitar to stun 🙂

    Your last post makes me think I have misunderstood True Neutral until now. Very insightful explication of keeping the balance.

    Fire is also part of nature. It can be destructive, but a natural wildfire also makes room for new growth.
    And you're not setting buildings or forests on fire, you're using an ability that your god gave you, in very limited circumstances, to destroy those who endanger the balance, and you will choose wisely when it's appropriate and won't abuse it.
    If I were a druid, I think I'd be okay with that.
    But you wrote in another post that you feel very bad about using fire on anybody at all. Is that the issue, or Silvanus' statement about those who employ fire for destruction?

    Post edited by Arvia on
  • BelgarathMTHBelgarathMTH Member Posts: 5,351
    @Arvia, It's a little of both of those things. Mostly I was just having some fun roleplaying a druid of Silvanus and thinking about what that would be like.

    I like to think of my flaming scimitar as working like a light saber. The heat makes it cut cleanly and cauterize as it cuts, reducing bloodshed. Sort of. You can't really overthink the violence in these games or they stop being fun. It's all cartoon fighting. :)

  • ArviaArvia Member Posts: 638
    I'm not going to tell you how badly cauterized wounds will heal 😉.

    You're right, it's best to remember it's just a game. If I learned to switch off my imagination, I could use blunt weapons, for example. So useful, if you don't imagine what the result would look like. I think I'm going to put the next point into a blunt weapon and try to face my fears.

  • BelgarathMTHBelgarathMTH Member Posts: 5,351
    edited May 11
    Log of Silvanus' servant, Selune date 0511.19:

    We have rescued a double agent for the Neverwinter Guard, Fihelis, from the nefarious criminal smuggler Moira. His cover had been blown by someone. He thinks it was likely a turncoat guardsman.

    Fihelis was a very rich merchant with a mansion in the Merchant District of Neverwinter, and Moira had taken over his mansion as the headquarters of her mob. We were attacked as soon as we walked in the door. All of the Nine Hells broke loose. They didn't even bother to ask us why we were there; they just immediately attacked, in huge numbers. Most of them tried to sneak up on us and use sneak attacks, but Neeshka's and Elanee's Spot and Listen skills thwarted the rogue tactics most of the time.

    They really should have surrendered. I don't know why sometimes those who fight against the Balance fail to see that they are badly overpowered, throwing themselves to their deaths without even trying to talk. Can't the fools see we're only fighting back when they swing and stab at us first?

    Elanee and I are both able to use our form shifting ability to harden our skin to be as tough as an Elephant's. (Elephant Hide feat). Both of our armor classes are well above 30 after using that magical ability. I have learned from Khelgar how to use a tower shield and still fight effectively, without freezing under the massive weight of the thing like a withdrawn turtle. With the tower shield, full plate, and Elephant Hide, along with a Ring of Protection +2, my armor class sits at factor 37. These thugs might as well have been trying to stab and slash a boulder.

    I am inscribing several magical images in this log of the attack on the smuggler's hideout:

    We finally confronted Moira. She was not interested in parlay or negotiation, and she attacked us. Such hubris and overconfidence! Could she not see the stoneskinned spirit cat, the flaming swords, the men and women armed and armored to the teeth, the elf woman sparking with electricity and clearly about to throw lightning around the room? The child in me wants to say "That's the last mistake you'll ever make, Moira." But the wise grown druid in me says, "Such childish impulses are inappropriate." I have to work on some of these feelings of pleasure I get from trouncing opponents who underestimate the power of the Balance, because those feelings can lead to the Dark Side.

    During the fight, Moira could do little to hurt Khelgar, Elanee, an Awakened, Barkskinned, and Stoneskinned Blue Cat, or me, but she used some kind of rogue trick to stun Neeshka. I was a bit worried for Neeshka at that point, but Moira was not able to perform a coup de grace with flaming scimitar swinging at her face, and a Lightning Storm striking at her out of her own ceiling. I wish I could have spared her and her men. It didn't have to end like this. But they are all dead, and it is their own foolishness that has killed them.

    Moira was wearing an interesting magical "cat burglar" mask. Neeshka wanted it, and also Moira's Rapier +3. I gave it to her without hesitation. The magic rapier will increase her skill in melee significantly, and the magical mask will make her even better at spotting or hearing hiding or sneaking opponents like the rogues of Moira's gang.

    I have playfully nicknamed Neeska "Catwoman", because her new magical mask is deliberately sewn to artistically resemble a cat's face and ears. Neeska knows how much I love my spirit animal, my beloved Blue Cat, so I think she embraces the nickname as the sign of my ever increasing affection for her that it is. "It's you and me against the world, Catwoman." Sorry, that was a childish fantasy being expressed. But I don't think Silvanus disapproves if we occasionally indulge in frivolity and play, just like the nymphs that he loves and protects.

    Fihelis has told us what he knows, and has requested the protection of the Guard, now that he is exposed as a double agent. We will of course safely escort him to Captain Brelaina.

    Captain Brelaina is beginning to irritate me. The only reason we're performing missions for her is because we need her approval to get into Blacklake to question this mage, Aldanon, about the shards I'm carrying, which should lead me to answers about why the Githyanki attacked West Harbor, and why the druid circles are being corrupted. She has *still* refused to help us, and will not allow us to enter Blacklake. Now, she wants us to go all the way out to Old Owl Well and rescue one of her diplomatic emissaries from orcs. Sigh. Well, it feels like the right thing to do, and maybe we can solve yet *another* crisis for this city-state, and save some more lives. Silvanus give me patience.

    Oh, yes, Silvanus has gifted me with the ability to Awaken my beloved Blue Cat. (He gains +4 Strength, +10 Wisdom, and +2 to attacks.) I have been delighted at what he tells me now that he can "talk" to me telepathically. I am overjoyed, and not really surprised, by what I hear in a cat's mind. "I'm hungry. I'm hungry again. Feed me." "I'm bored." "Scratch me behind my ears." "No, not like that." "I meant do it now. *nudges my hand with his forehead*" "I'm sleepy, can we please stop fighting so I can take a nap?" "I don't like this human. Can I please kill him and eat him?" "You sleep too much at night, and you want us to do a bunch of stuff during the day. This is unnatural. We should be sleeping all day." I'm sorry, Blue Cat. I promise I will try to get up at least an hour earlier each morning to give you your breakfast, and I will scratch your ears and your fur the way you want me to when you ask.

    Party Level: 9
    Reloads: 0

    Post edited by BelgarathMTH on
  • ArviaArvia Member Posts: 638
    I can't say "Bravo, well done, good progress!" because I don't know the game. Still, consider it said.
    I can only say that I really like the roleplaying stories that you write, and that I'm very sure that I'll be playing that game next. Keep writing like this, it's nice to read.

  • BelgarathMTHBelgarathMTH Member Posts: 5,351
    edited May 13
    Log of Silvanus' Servant, Selune Date 0512.19

    We have reported to Old Owl Well as Captain Brelaina insisted that we do. The emissary to Neverwinter has been kidnapped by orcs. We have stepped into a war. The orcs need this water source, the only one for many miles around the area, and so do the Neverwinter humans, in order to establish an expanded trade route. I don't like this. Why do the Neverwinter humans have any greater claim to the water than the orcs? The orcs are proud, honorable warriors here, who are only warring to protect their own culture and needs from the humans. Frankly, the humans are striking me as the bad guys here. But we have to have Brelaina's approval to continue our investigation of the corruption of the druid circles. I am starting to dislike the leaders of Neverwinter more and more. Working for them is leaving an increasingly bitter bad taste in my mouth.

    While en route to find the Bonegnasher orc lair in search of the kidnapped emissary, we encountered a group of Ironfist clan dwarves searching for a way into their ancestral clan home, that had fallen in their own orc wars, and been blocked off by avalanches. While we were not able to find a route into Ironfist proper, we did find our way into one of the first and most ancient Ironfist strongholds.

    There was a small army of bugbears in there, who are no threat to us at this point. I wouldn't kill them if they'd just talk to us and negotiate, but they are greedy creatures who hate all humans, dwarves, and elves, and they attacked us on sight, forcing us to defend ourselves.

    The bugbears were led by a trio of ogres. It seems goblins, orcs, bugbears, and ogres tend to ally together just as humans, dwarves, elves, and gnomes. "Humanoids" vs. "Goblinoids" it seems. I have a lot of sympathy for both sides, and they should be able to make peace and work together for their own mutual good. But they don't, and I guess they never will.

    The three ogre leaders are brothers. The third and last surviving one expressed that he was happy we had "gotten his two stupid brothers" out of his way for him. I'm afraid we had to get him out of his own way, by killing him and sending his spirit back into Nature. Ogres are also no threat to us. Neither are the many trolls we later encountered, as Elanee's and my Flame Weapons make short work of trolls. I wish some of these clearly sentient creatures that I hate to kill would have the wisdom and/or intelligence to see when they are badly outmatched, and surrender. But they never do.

    We found a long lost Ironfist artifact, a pair of gauntlets that would magically increase the user's strength significantly. I gave it to Khelgar without hesitation. An Ironfist artifact belongs with an Ironfist dwarf. Khelgar says that if we are ever able to find the Ironfist Hammer to go with the gauntlets, they will be a matched set that can exponentially increase the power of any Ironfist warrior who wields them. Now I have even more incentive to steer Khelgar away from becoming a robe-wearing monk. I'd rather have him armored and wielding his clan's very powerful magical artifacts. If he becomes a monk, the Ironfist Hammer will be unuseable by him because of the oaths monks take. I have a strong feeling we're going to find that hammer.

    Some of the orcs protecting Yaisog Bonegnasher were orc shamans. They summoned skeleton warriors, and they provided the closest thing to any challenge in combat we've had in a very long time.

    Yaisog proved to be reasonable. He is old and experienced, and he had the sense to surrender before we had to kill him. He turned over the kidnapped emissary, and told us where to find his superior's clan cave, the Eyegougers. As I promised him for his cooperation, I let him go and retreat to the Eyegouger cave, where he will surely inform his bosses that we are coming. So, they will be ready for us. Letting him go might not have been the wisest course of action, but so far, we have encountered no effective resistance whatsoever from these poor orcs.

    We rescued the emissary, who assured us he could make it back to Neverwinter just fine on his own, and that he would "tell the proper people" that we had rescued him. I get a bad feeling about him. Something is very off with him. He was not locked up or restrained in any way, and if anything, he appeared to have been sharing living quarters with Yaisog.

    But, all I really care about at this point is getting the very irritating Captain Brelaina of Neverwinter to *finally* give us access to the mage Aldanon in Blacklake, whom Sand believes can give us answers about the corruption of the druid circles and the silver shards. As powerful as we are, I don't think we could successfully defeat the entire Neverwinter Guard and Army. Maybe I should have looked into whether Moira could have helped me any more effectively without trying to make me jump through all these hoops.

    On the way to the Eyegouger Lair, we encountered a paladin, Casavir. He has fought orcs so long and so effectively, they have given him a title - "Katalmach - Orc Slayer." He insisted that the Eyegouger lair was very well-hidden, and that we would never find it without his coming with us. I had no choice but to bring him. I reluctantly sent Elanee back to Neverwinter to sell some things and to give Captain Brelaina an update. Since both Elanee and I are equally powerful druids, we don't really have to have the both of us to make an effective combat party. But Neeshka is absolutely indispensible, and Khelgar is just too strong to send back. Casavir has surprisingly bad gear. I guess he's been out in the wilderness too long fighting orcs. I gave him what magic items I could to increase his pitiful armor class.

    Party Level: 10
    Reloads: 0 (That's really not any big deal on Core Rules for this game. It's a story and roleplaying D&D adventure, and there's not very much tactical challenge at all, at least not this early on.)

  • BelgarathMTHBelgarathMTH Member Posts: 5,351
    Log of Silvanus' Servant, Selune Date 0513.19:

    The Eyegouger orc clan has somehow gotten sword spiders to protect the path and entrance to their lair. The one right outside the lair was the hugest sword spider I've ever seen. Silvanus forgive me, but I can't *stand* spiders. I know they're natural creatures and part of the Balance, but they're just so monstrous. Especially ones as big as elephants. Surely *that's* not natural!

    The Eyegouger lair was defended by a small army of orcs. These seemed much tougher and meaner than the Bonegnasher orcs. For the first time, we started to encounter dangerous resistance to our incursion, mostly because of their sheer numbers. We're only mounting this attack because we need Neverwinter and Captain Brelaina to find out what is wrong with the druid circles and the Balance. I still have a bad feeling about it. But I think I need to do what I must to find out what is wrong with the Balance.

    Imprisoned in a cell on the first floor of this sprawling orc stronghold, we found a beautiful pack of rare, giant, white wolves. I was able to use my druid abilities to speak to them. They have been tortured and abused by these orcs, and forced to fight. I now feel much less guilty about slaughtering every last member of this orc tribe, including their leader, who is surely hiding behind his army on the bottom floor of the stronghold. Nothing enrages me into a violent almost berserk-like rage more than animal cruelty! These orcs will pay, I swear by Silvanus!

    The wolves gave us a lot of information about the stronghold, and told us about the orc positions, deployment, and tactics. They also informed us that a mysterious human came through here into the stronghold not long ago, possibly a prisoner of the orcs. I could have asked them to help us fight, but these poor magnificent creatures had suffered enough. I freed them, and told them to get out of that awful place immediately through the route back to the outdoors we had just cleared. Go back out into Nature where you should be, beautiful creatures, and hunt and bear many puppies. May your pack always be strong, and your bellies always full, and may you never be bothered by humanoids or goblinoids again!

    Party Level: 10
    Reloads: 0

  • ArviaArvia Member Posts: 638
    And I thought the BG spiders were disgusting. Sometimes the better graphics and other camera perspective are not such an advantage.

    Why do they look like robots? Are they wearing armor?

  • BelgarathMTHBelgarathMTH Member Posts: 5,351
    Arvia wrote: »
    And I thought the BG spiders were disgusting. Sometimes the better graphics and other camera perspective are not such an advantage.

    Why do they look like robots? Are they wearing armor?

    I think the artistic team for the game took the "sword" in "sword spiders" a little too literally.

  • BelgarathMTHBelgarathMTH Member Posts: 5,351
    edited May 15
    Log of Silvanus' Servant, Selune Date 0515.19:

    We have made our way deeper into the Eyegouger orc caves. We encountered a party of humans, and overheard them talking about a prisoner they had brought there and given over to the orcs. As soon as they saw us, they attacked. We had no choice but to kill them in self-defense. One of them was a very dangerous spell-caster.

    At last, we fought our way all the way to the orc leader and general, Logram Eyegouger. The chieftain of the Bonegnasher tribe, Yaisog, whom we had earlier spared, had made his way straight here, and agreed to fight us again with Logram's help in an attempt to redeem himself among the orcs. I guess he wasn't so wise in his old age, after all.

    Casavir went straight for Logram, and was badly outmatched. I had to resurrect him after this fight, and heal his massive injuries. Logram had delivered a mortal neck wound with his huge axe, and had nearly beheaded Casavir. I don't think even my magic from Silvanus could have brought him back from that. I am tempted to dismiss Casavir once we are back to safety, for his own protection. But maybe, he is only so vulnerable in combat because of his bad gear. He has not been trained to use a tower shield, and the pitiful medium shield he has doesn't even have a magical enchantment. We have found nothing in this dungeon that he can use to better defend himself. I really do like him. He seems like the rare kind of paladin who can uphold his honor and his oaths and loyalties, without upsetting the Balance. Paladins like that are very rare. Perhaps we can find him better gear back in Neverwinter. If he stays in my party, at the very first opportunity, Khelgar and I will be training him to use a tower shield!

    After we stripped this place bare of all valuables and took Logram's treasure room valuables as spoils of war, we were beginning to get really weighted down in our packs with "loot". We needed to return to Old Owl Well as soon as possible to sell off all the heavy but valuable junk, but there was a gate leading down to another level of this orc stronghold. And, we still had not found the human prisoner, who might be important.

    On the next lower, and I was hoping, the lowest and last level of this huge network of caves, we started to encounter large groups of undead including ghouls, zombies, and skeletons. We also found a large cave filled with dead human bodies, which Casavir the paladin said he recognized as dead members of his own band of warriors. This was very disturbing to all of us. Apparently, large numbers of undead were being raised here. Logram had mentioned serving a "Lorne" before he died. I know a Lorne Starling from West Harbor, and his mother had asked me to find out what had happened to him when I left West Harbor. This situation is getting more and more worrisome and complicated. There are so many pieces to the mystery we are investigating. Orcs were allying with evil humans, and apparently necromancers and undead. I hope Mrs. Starling's son hasn't joined evil humans and orcs.

    We were finally confronted by the Shadow Priest necromancer who raised all the undead. He taunted Casavir, and apparently he knew that he was raising his undead out of casualties that Casavir had led.

    The Shadow Priest was flanked by two other casters, and at least one of them was a mage. We immediately found ourselves nearly overwhelmed with fire, lightning, and negative energy. I really need to start protecting my party from elemental damage, but those spells are competing for space in my poor, overtaxed memory with the spells I use to keep Blue Cat safe, as well as to keep my scimitar lit up with fire energy, and to give myself strength and toughness to be competent in melee. I must pray to Silvanus to help me retain enough memory and magical strength to protect myself, my cat, and my party from elemental damage, as well as to still have spells for healing. There's a very heavy burden on the healer and buffer of an adventuring party, especially when that person is also the party leader. That's why I am tempted to dismiss Casavir for Elanee, because Elanee can better help me and share this burden with me.

    We found a journal in the Shadow Priest's quarters detailing a plan to raise more and more undead, and conducting experiments to make them stronger. I am almost sure that this somehow ties into my dreams about the Shadow King's attempts to be reborn. Or, is perhaps someone trying to steal his lost powers? Zeeaire? Garius? And what do the silver shards have to do with it all? The corrupted druid circles? The more clues to the mystery of the corruption of the Balance we find, the further I feel like we are from any useful answers, even with the prophetic dreams I am sent by Silvanus.

    We found a prison cell in the Shadow Priest's quarters as well. The human prisoner was there, and he said he was Isani of Waterdeep. Apparently, the other man we found in Yaisog's lair, who identified himself as Isani, was lying about his identity. Sigh, more mysteries. I *hate* mysteries. The man said he was sure he could make it back to Old Owl Well on his own. We almost didn't. On the way back, the imposter we had freed before attacked us, before we could cast any spells or a proper buffing ritual, and he was a very powerful mage. In the end, we prevailed, but we were badly wounded.

    (There is a somewhat serious flaw in the game design here. The player gets interrupted by a cutscene with the Shadow Priest, and is forced immediately into a very dangerous combat. After winning, the exit from the dungeon is likely right behind where the player killed the Shadow Priest, implying that the dungeon is over. It is very easy to miss the prisoner cell off to the side, and it doesn't show up on the map until you've already been in it. You cannot progress any further in the game without talking to this prisoner. So, the first time I played, I got totally lost and stumped after this, and had to consult a walkthrough to figure out what I was supposed to do.)

    Party Level: 10
    Reloads: 0

  • BelgarathMTHBelgarathMTH Member Posts: 5,351
    Log of Silvanus' Servant, supplemental,

    Upon returning to Neverwinter late this same night, Captain Brelaina thanked us for returning the Neverwinter Emissary to safety. And then, she proceeded to ask us to perform still *more* services for her and Neverwinter, with her continually implied threat that if we tried to enter Blacklake to speak with the apparently ever-receding Aldanon about the silver shards and the threat to the Balance, she would attack us with the full force of the Greycloaks of Neverwinter. I am *really* starting to dislike this woman.

    Since she informed us that an unwelcome ship from Luskan was arriving at the docks this very night, we went to the docks to deal with the threat. The Luskan "invasion" of Neverwinter was led by a mage who spoke of the "Master of the Fifth Tower". After he surrendered, he gave us information about Luskan's "invasion" that should be very useful to us, combined with more information from the prophetic dreams I've been having. It seems that "Black Garius" is indeed serving the King of Shadows, and that my West Harbor acquaintance, Lorne Starling, is working for him. This is all very worrisome, indeed.

  • DrHappyAngryDrHappyAngry Member Posts: 1,103
    Do you craft any weapons or armor? The game had one of the best crafting systems, if a bit overpowered. I loved that it made any weapon viable. You can really make some powerful weapons fairly early if you push the smithing skills and use items to boost the crafting skills and intelligence.

    [Deleted User]
  • BelgarathMTHBelgarathMTH Member Posts: 5,351
    @DrHappyAngry , I'm still thinking about whether to get into it this run. It winds up taking some time that I could use progressing in the run. I usually make Sand my "Craft Magical Arms and Armor" person, and sometimes either he or Elanee on "Craft Wondrous Item", but those take up feats that could be spent on metamagic and spell penetration.

    I forget how many ranks in Alchemy Sand comes with for the essences. I'll probably pump him up in Alchemy and start making and collecting essences for a while once I finally get him, just in case I can't resist making a keen, lightning scimitar or something.

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