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"Maybe this time" [NO-RELOAD THREAD]: "The Tale of TEN THOUSAND Trials"



  • Corey_RussellCorey_Russell Member Posts: 866

    Thrasher the human cleric - FINAL BG 1 Update!
    Traveling with: Minsc, (Kagain), Ajantis, Kivan, Imoen, Dynaheir

    I made some great progress with Thrasher. The party is a very solid team. I made a mistake and got my reputation too high and lost Kagain, so recruited Ajantis to replace him. I searched high and low for a magical bastard sword, but couldn't find one. Sashanstar refused to give us our reward even though all the dopplegangers were dead, but didn't want to lose rep killing him. I tried charming him to have his captain kill him for no rep loss, but that didn't work he has really high magic resistance.

    You don't lose reputation for killing him. ???
    Probably. But the plan was for his own captain to kill him, not me. E.g., if I can charm Sashenstar and tell Sashentar to attack, then the captain would have killed him, not me. But his magic resistance foiled that idea.
  • Grond0Grond0 Member Posts: 7,090

    I was doing really good, I dualed to thief at level 9 cleric, and even unlocked my cleric abilities. I even defeated Mencar Pebblecrusher's gang. However, when I went to de-trap a chest, my character failed and instead triggered the petrification trap.

    Doesn't it give you a warm, fuzzy feeling though to die to a trap for a change :p. Best of luck with the druid onslaught.
  • semiticgoddesssemiticgoddess Member Posts: 14,829

    semi: No-Reload Dragon Warrior Monsters Run

    Part 2

    This is where the run starts to get more challenging. Next up is the Gate of Villager, where we can catch some very useful creatures for later on.

    Gibi the GoHopper isn't one of them, however; I just got him by chance. GoHoppers belong to the Bug family, and Bugs grow incredibly quickly and have pretty decent defense stats. However, their base stat growth is actually pretty lousy, and there are other fast-growing critters with better stats.

    Case in point: the Picky, a member of the Bird family. We give it a piece of BeefJerky (notice that many names in DWM have no spaces between them) to make it more tame.

    However, the Picky doesn't join us. Again, DWM is very much luck-based, and if we don't get a Picky while we're wandering around the Gate of Villager, the no-grinding rule means we can't go back and try again.

    Why is a Picky so useful? Well, the creature itself has some decent attack stats for the early game, but the important thing is that it's a member of the Bird family.

    Why are Birds so important? As it happens, they grow remarkably fast, and several of the absolute most useful monsters in the game happen to be birds. Dirk the Dracky, one of our current party members, is also a Bird type, but we want more--birds have fantastic potential, especially in a low-grinding or no-grinding run.

    Not getting that Picky is a bit of a setback. While it's possible to get more BeefJerkys just by picking them off the ground...

    ...we only have so many chances to get a Picky. I have better luck with a Stubsuck, however.

    Saly the Stubsuck takes Slib's place in the party and Slib heads back to the farm.

    Saly knows the Sleep spell, and we could really use that spell for the boss fight. More importantly, it's good for us to level up Saly because she's a member of the Plant family. One of the best monsters in the game is a Floraman, a fast-growing mage type monster that you can get simply by breeding a Plant with a Beast.

    The Plant family has good growth rates and lots of MP, which makes them rather lovely healers. And healing is very important in DWM because the strongest healing spell, HealAll, heals the target's HP to 100% for only 7 MP. Any monster that learns Heal can eventually upgrade it to HealAll.

    If all of your party members know HealAll, you have massive recovery abilities across the board. It's a must-have skill for all monsters in the party; it's by far the best skill in the game.

    Speaking of the Heal spell, one of the monsters in this gate just so happens to know Heal. We only have a narrow opportunity for getting it...

    ...but the Gremlin joins our team! Hale, our previous healer, heads to the farm; Grin the Gremlin can provide our healing from now on.

    Anyway, Gremlins belong to the Devil family.

    Devils are terrible.

    They have nice resistances, but their stats are uniformly poor (except for intelligence, but intelligence is easy to grow and maxes out very early) and they grow extremely slowly. With almost no exceptions, Devils require lots of investment in experience and give very little in return. The only reason Grin is useful at all is because he knows Heal and because Devils have some limited use in breeding combinations.

    We keep marching through DWM's low-quality (by modern standards) randomly-generated maps and run into one of the least useful items in this run.

    WarpWings instantly send you back to GreatTree. They're a spectacular rescue option, but since our rules prevent us from re-entering a gate, using one could actually cripple the run--or even make it impossible to beat the game, if we used it in a plot-critical gate that needs to be completed.

    Grin's MP is best reserved for healing spells because even Heal and HealMore give lots of HP for a very low cost. But Grin also knows Firebal, an area-effect attack spell, and while it looks modestly cool...

    ...and does decent damage that's sometimes harder to resist than physical attacks, Grin has very little MP due to being a crummy Devil monster, and he really can't afford to waste MP on attack spells.

    Dirk hits level 7 and learns the Sleep spell shortly before we finally run out of maps to explore. The final boss of the Gate of Villager is quietly snoozing in the corner. While we're around, we offer to rescue a princess who's trapped there.

    But we're not quite strong enough to lift her off her feet, so she'd rather wait for a stronger hero to come rescue her.

    The boss is a Dragon, a monster with very high stats and an area-effect breath weapon, FireAir.

    We deploy Sleep to try to knock him out, as he's highly vulnerable to it, but he resists both Dirk's and Saly's Sleep spells, and he does heavy damage when he retaliates.

    He can kill any of our party members in two hits! I make sure to use our ample supply of Herbs to make sure everyone is healthy; we have no means of raising dead monsters right now. After multiple attempts, we finally disable the Dragon.

    But he wakes up right afterward, and Saly is down to 1 MP; she can't cast any more Sleep spells. Saly can do nothing but attack, and as a plant--and literally just a tree stump--she's not exactly a melee bruiser.

    I keep everyone alive with Herbs, but Dirk runs out of MP without putting the Dragon to sleep even once more. We're not doing nearly as well as we normally would.

    But we have lots of Herbs, and eventually, we grind the Dragon down. Better still, he joins the party!

    Our new Dragon, Dran, belongs to the... Dragon family. Dragons have excellent stats, especially attack and HP, but they grow extremely slowly, which means they have very little use in this run except as breeding fodder. Speaking of which, we can get the egg of a SkyDragon by standing under a SkyDragon flying over the farm until it plops an egg on our head.

    Only one gate left before we have to win another match at the arena: the Gate of Talisman. We sell off our useless WarpWing and buy some more BeefJerkys before heading over to the gate. Our team is Grin the Gremlin, Dran the Dragon, and Dirky the Dracky.

    We're still a ways short of level 10, but the closer we get these monsters to level 10, the better off we'll be.

    One of the first enemies we run into in the Gate of Talisman is a Spooky, which we saw in the previous arena match. By sheer luck, we get it with a single BeefJerky. It's not very strong, so we won't be taking it with us through this gate.

    A Spooky is a Zombie monster. Zombies have lots of nice resistances, high HP, and surprisingly high attack. Not all of them are that great, but Shadows and Reapers are very powerful monsters indeed, and it's not too hard to breed for them.

    We also attempt to get a MiniDrak...

    ...but our bribe is ineffective. MiniDraks aren't great monsters, but they do know SandStorm, which can dramatically reduce enemy hit chances if it works.

    While wandering around, we run into an extremely valuable find this early in the game.

    There are four types of meat treats in the game: BeefJerky, PorkChop, Rib, and Sirloin, and each one is exponentially more effective and expensive than the last. This Rib is best saved for a special monster.

    These early-game gates only have a few levels (the Gate of Talisman has 5), so it's not long before we arrive at the hole to the boss. Here's our party before the fight.

    Notice how much stronger Dirk is than Grin. Birds gain levels so fast that their stat growth is much stronger than you'd think. In fact, Dirk is about as strong as Dran, even though Dran has far more experience.

    The boss here is a Golem.

    The Golem is slow, but has very high defense and hits pretty hard. Fortunately, we manage to land a Sleep spell and get in some free hits.

    With all the Sleep spells, the Golem can't touch us. He joins us our newest party member, Golm, replacing Grin.

    Grin's healing is very valuable, but Golm just has spectacular stats, and we could really use a sturdy character in this next arena match.

    The first fight is a trio of SpotSlimes. Normally, they're nothing special, but they can use Imitate despite being very low-level, which means they can mirror our own attacks!

    The second fight is an Almiraj flanked by two MudDolls. Offensively, they're not too dangerous, but the MudDolls' OddDance skill can do terrible things to our MP.

    Fortunately, we bring them down quickly and don't lose too much MP in the process.

    The last fight is a Putrepup, a MadRaven, and a Skullroo. All of them are very sturdy, the MadRaven can use HighJump to evade attacks, and the Skullroo can use the PaniDance, a dance skill that can confuse our party members. We spend the first round trading disablers.

    By the end of the next round, our entire party is confused! Mercifully, Dran and Golm recover, but the enemy has made substantial progress in the meantime.

    We're taking heavy damage, but so are the enemies. We lose Dran, but take down the Skullroo and prevent further confusion effects.

    Dirk puts the MadRaven to sleep, and soon it goes down.

    The last remaining enemy, the Putrepup, chews up Dirk, leaving only Golm standing.

    But Golm holds strong, and we just barely manage to win the fight. The lack of grinding makes these early-game area fights rather dicey.

    We now have access to the Starry Night Chamber, which means we can finally breed monsters. We don't have any level 10 critters yet, but we can finally hatch that SkyDragon egg.

    First, though, we want to make sure it's the right gender so it's more useful for breeding when it grows up. As it happens, there's a goofy lady who can tell the gender of monsters (and other, more vague information) just by holding the egg. She can even change the gender by singing. Her prices can be very high depending on the strength of the egg, but she's quite fun to listen to.

    We hatch the egg and Sky the SkyDragon takes Dran's place as our party dragon. SkyDragons aren't particularly special, but monsters gain experience and therefore levels much faster if they join us on trips through the gates (they only gain a little experience if you leave them on the farm). For the same reasons, we trade out Golm and Dirk for Saly and Grin--we want these critters to hit level 10 fast.

    Next up: the Gates of Memories and Bewilder.

  • Grond0Grond0 Member Posts: 7,090
    edited August 2018
    King's Bounty undead run
    Previous updates

    Playing on impossible difficulty and with the requirement that I take no losses in battles means I need to work on a couple of things:
    - being as strong as possible prior to fighting
    - finding a way to revive creatures that die in battle as, at least in the early game, it's impossible to avoid some casualties.

    Gaining strength can be done by exploring, looting and completing quests before undertaking battles. As you progress around the adventure map most creatures can be lured into chasing you - providing the opportunity to drag them out of position while you grab the treasure they are guarding. This approach can greatly increase your strength without doing any significant fighting.

    I've got into the habit of doing one particular quest - to rescue a cage of frogs - very early. That's because when I first tried to do it without fighting it was extremely difficult, so I didn't want to get too far into a run before taking the risk. With so much practice it's now pretty routine, but I still do it early. Initially Earl Argus asks you to find a frog princess for him. When you find a frog in Marshan Swamp though she complains that the Earl has already taken lots of her sisters and asks you to rescue them. Going back to the Earl he suggests that you get him a love potion instead - and some pulling of stacks around later you can get into a nearby cave to get such a potion from a friendly witch. The Earl then allows you into his dungeons, where there's an obstacle in the way of getting to the cage of frogs.
    That can be overcome by:
    1) Pulling one of the necromancer stacks back to the dungeon entrance.
    2) Dodging round it and running back to the second stack. It can be pulled back just a little way until there's room to run round it and proceed onwards to the cage.
    3) Running back to the second stack, it needs to be pulled back to where the cage was (as there's not enough space anywhere else to dodge round it - one of the problems of the game is that some visible terrain is actually impassable, so care is needed when planning movement).
    4) That gets you back to where the 2 stacks were originally, just in time to dodge round the first stack as it arrives back from the entrance.

    The frog princess is so glad to see her sisters she offers to become your wife. She's not the ideal partner for my purposes, but is the best choice for now. A quick conversation with her about family means that she will have a child after 10 battles (though that will take a while).

    In the meantime there's more looting to be done in Marshan Swamp. That includes diving into a series of tombs for Furious Paladin. There are 5 of those, of which 4 can be fully looted by running the enemies inside around - although the Paladin advises activating altars in each tomb that will destroy them. For a long time I used to dodge the enemies, with the idea of saving the XP from them for the time when I could kill them safely. However, by that time the enemies being faced are so much stronger that the XP gain from these ones is insignificant - so more recently I've just been destroying them using the altars.

    In one of the tombs there's a really important find to help with the problem of needing to revive lost creatures. That's a few ancient vampires, who have significantly higher HPs than standard vampires and, like the standard ones, can drain life from enemies to restore their losses.
    The biggest reason for sticking with the same starting position for so long is the presence of these relatively rare creatures.

    Another tomb in the Swamp is the Chronicles Crypt. Sprinkled in different places across areas are enemy heroes, who add spells and stats to the armies they control. One of those in the form of a bat (which moves quickly) is patrolling outside that crypt and is far too tough to even think about fighting - but it is just possible to sneak up behind him at one end of his patrol and get into the crypt.
    Inside that you can find the Chronicles of the Lost Town, which is needed for a quest. I only recently discovered (on about my 260th attempt at this :*), that this scroll has a Necro Call spell scroll tucked inside it.
    Given there is a resurrection spell for live units in the game, you would have thought this would provide a way to revive dead units. Unfortunately though, it doesn't. It can bring units killed in combat back as undead, but they don't persist after the battle - so the spell is of limited use to me as I'm not allowed to take any losses in battle. However, a bit more dodging round enemies allows me to find places to buy ghosts and their more powerful cousins, cursed ghosts. Both of those have the ability to create new versions of themselves from enemies they kill. Unlike vampires though they can create more than they started with - which can be a real problem. The amount of creatures you can control depends on your leadership and, once a stack increases beyond the size you can control with your leadership, it turns hostile (at least it does on impossible difficulty). That means it's necessary to pay really close attention to initiative and placement in battles where you are using ghosts, to avoid the situation where they go out of your control by retaliating against an attacker and immediately attack your other units.

    There are also 4 vampires in one of the tombs. In other starts it's possible to find standard vampires for sale, but there are none in this case. However, every start always has a few cursed coffins lying around which will provide a minimum of 3 vampires anyway.
    That's not enough to fight with, but I will eventually find a means to produce new ones during battles ...

    With the ancient vampires in the army I'm now ready for my first combat ...
  • semiticgoddesssemiticgoddess Member Posts: 14,829

    semi: No-Reload Dragon Warrior Monsters Run

    Part 3

    Monsters in DWM have personalities that impact their behavior in combat. Basically, they're a sum of four traits: their motivation, their bravery, their intelligence, and their compassion. Motivated monsters use more skills and are more likely to land critical hits, brave monsters are more likely to land critical hits as well, intelligence monsters are more effective at using disablers, and compassionate monsters can sometimes save MP when using healing spells.

    The only way to change a monster's personality is to give it orders in combat. "Charge" makes them braver but less smart, "Mixed" makes them smarter but less compassionate, and "Cautious" makes them more compassionate but less brave. Encouraging our monsters to use skills will cost us precious MP when traveling through the wilderness, but it's important to improve their personalities for big fights.

    Sky might be a dragon, but dragons do get strong attack growth, so even at low levels, Sky is improving quickly from all the new experience.

    I repeatedly fail to catch the monsters I want--PillowRats, Catapilas, DragonKids, and Pickies--but eventually I manage to nab a FairyRat by giving it our precious Rib.

    The FairyRat is also a female, which means we can breed it with a certain FangSlime later to get a Unicorn--a very precious find.

    I also grab a SpotSlime, but Slimes aren't very useful, either as party members or even breeding fodder.

    We make a little progress in strengthening our party before the boss of the Gate of Memories, but Grin and Saly are still just shy of the ever-important level 10 mark.

    Notice Sky's incredible 70 attack. High attack is very important in DWM because it scales so well and attacks cost no MP--which saves MP for disablers and healing spells.

    The boss here is a MadCat, a fast-moving, high-impact bruiser.

    But the MadCat is highly vulnerable to Sleep, and we keep it disabled for most of the fight.

    The MadCat, Gig, is already level 12 and ready to breed. But unless I'm willing to sacrifice Dran, our Dragon, to open up a new gate (and I'm not), we don't have any more opportunities to breed monsters or grind for experience.

    It's time to take on the next arena fight. And this one is very, very difficult.

    Since we'll need elemental resistances to survive this fight, I bring Golm the Golem back into the party. We have a healer and two solid damage dealers on hand.

    The first fight is against a Crestpent, a TreeSlime, and a PoisonGon, a very poison-heavy team that we'll want to take out fast.

    We make it out okay, but at the cost of a lot of MP. Unfortunately, the next fight is also very dangerous: a DrakSlime, a Dragon, and a FairyDrak. The first one is the most dangerous, as it knows a skill called SuckAir.

    This means it will do double damage with breath weapons on the second round. We can't take it out in time, though we manage to beat the FairyDrak, but Grin can heal himself up, Golm is pretty resistant to fire, and Sky is flat-out immune to the DrakSlime's FireAir breath weapon.

    Here's where things get really ugly. The final fight is against Teto. Teto has an Armorpede and two Snailys.

    The Armorpede can deal high damage with Twinslash at the cost of some damage to itself, but it's usually not too dangerous. The Snailys, however, are absolutely brutal. They both cast IceBolt, an area-effect cold spell that deals remarkable damage at low levels like ours.

    We take massive damage on the first round. Grin can recover, and Golm can resist, but Grin is running out of MP and Sky is approaching death.

    Golm is struggling to slay the Snailys, and Sky is struggling to stay alive. Grin uses his last Heal spell trying to protect Sky.

    We take down a single Snaily, but with only 1 MP left (and we need 2 MP to cast Heal), Grin is now useless, and the rest of the team is suffering.

    The enemy brings down Grin. We beat the remaining Snaily, but lose Sky in the process.

    Soon, it's down to just Golm and the Armorpede. But Golm took a lot of damage attempting to beat the Snailys, while the Armorpede has suffered little. In the end, the Armorpede wins out.

    We were so close to winning. That was one of the biggest obstacles in the game, and if we had made it, we could start breeding monsters and building up our power, instead of constantly working on a power deficit. It's very frustrating.

    Then, eventually, I realize I was wrong about the lack of gates.

    I beat the Gate of Memories, but never moved on to the Gate of Bewilder. I could have had some slightly stronger monsters if I had remembered to enter that gate, and the extra numbers would probably have let us beat Teto.

    Back to the start of the game. This time, though, I won't forget to use the Gate of Bewilder--and I might just sacrifice Dran or Sky in order to open the gate in the bazaar.

    If we manage to breed some monsters before that gate, we can take in one or two level 1 monsters and emerge with one or two very, very strong creatures that could mop the floor with Teto.
  • semiticgoddesssemiticgoddess Member Posts: 14,829

    semi: No-Reload Dragon Warrior Monsters Run

    Part 4

    The start of the game plays out much like the previous one did: get a Dracky and take Hale and Slib to win the first arena fight, catch a Stubsuck, GoHopper, and Gremlin, and beat the Dragon at the Gate of Villager with Sleep spells (much more effective this time around). We even manage to grab a Picky!

    But after just a few gates, I realize that we simply don't have the resources to survive the coming fights. We lost all of our meat treats failing to get a Spooky, and we have almost no monsters to work with. Of the monsters we do have, practically all of them are male, which means our opportunities to breed monsters are going to be severely restricted well into the future.

    In the end, I decide to start over. Early game luck in catching monsters can play a huge role in a no-grinding run, and our current set of monsters just isn't workable.
  • ArthasArthas Member Posts: 1,091
    For me it is not worth it to limit yourself because it is too much RNG
  • Grond0Grond0 Member Posts: 7,090
    edited August 2018
    RVNS said:

    My party will be:
    plain thief
    undead hunter
    conjuration specialist

    This looks like a fairly balanced party to me with a possible chance to make it through ascension/scs. Any thoughts or suggestions before I load up this party tomorrow night? Any thoughts on proficiencies or strategies that I may need for implementation?

    Of course this party could succeed, but it seems slightly unbalanced to me - you have 4 characters which can use divine magic in it and are also quite heavy on fighting skills (though in SCS I agree that can be preferable to a 'traditional' balanced party). If you haven't unlocked druid spells for the cleric/ranger then a fighter/cleric would be better, if you want the melee power. Alternatively you could put in a sorcerer in place of the ranger to give you an arcane boost or, if you want to stick with the idea of druids, you could use a totemic one.
  • RVNSRVNS Member Posts: 285
    so @Grond0 @Enuhal looking at the list (also thank you for the clarification enuhal on the bhaalspawn only qualifying) I think I will review it as such. I will keep with the theme of only using unsuccessful non reload classes as this sounds like a fun add to the challenge anyways.

    I think I will revise as such:
    Bounty hunter
    Conjuration specialist
    Undead Hunter
    priest of tyr

    Thoughts or revisions for this group?
  • Corey_RussellCorey_Russell Member Posts: 866
    edited August 2018
    @RVNS Looking at that list of classes who haven't done the Trilogy, my Lotan did a no-reload Trilogy and he was a fighter/druid, although he was by dualing to druid from fighter at level 7, he was human. Still once he unlocked his fighter skills he was fighter/druid.
    Post edited by Corey_Russell on
  • RVNSRVNS Member Posts: 285
    I will substitute that with a cleric/ranger multi then. thank you @Corey_Russell
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