When we last met our Quest for Glory characters before our Christmas detour, I'd asked for assistance.
I had help from Ilmari who told me that, as I had feared, I was dead-ended! Of the games I've played for the blog so far, I've hit a dead end in King's Quest V (which I got out of on my own after wasting an hour or so) and I've hit a dead end in Martian Memorandum (where I didn't pick up a newspaper buried in a jungle before going to Mars.) The only game I haven't been dead-ended in was the game with very few puzzles at all – Leather Goddesses of Phobos 2.
Corey Cole mentioned in the comments of my introduction post that there should be very few if any walking-dead situations. I should have known then that if there was a single dead-end situation, I'd find it and I'd be annoyed by it! It's kind of my thing - I'm the one who's bad at adventure games!
Anyway, with the bad news sinking in, I went back to the saved game that took place before I was dead-ended after finding out to my dismay that that saved game was in fact no longer on my save game list! The game allows only 20 saved games and all 20 of them were from after that point.
|This is the moment the game becomes unfinishable. Seems innocuous enough.|
Not wanting to mindlessly practice my skills for hours again, I at first followed a suggestion that I shouldn't need to grind skills much in this game. Unfortunately that turned out to be not quite the case as I definitely need high stats to pass certain parts of the game.
I came up with another solution. In order to practice my sneaking I could simply go into sneak mode in town and walk away from the computer for a time.
This wouldn't work with throwing or lockpicking though so I needed to come up with an alternate solution. I found a screen I could simply click on the same spot and could mindlessly keep clicking the mouse button to get multiple practices in, but this was still too boring for me, particularly considering this was the second time I'd done so. So I once again found assistance, this time not from the adventure gamer community, but from normal household objects.
I discovered that pressing the ENTER key instead of the mouse button achieves the same thing but keeping it pressed counts as multiple presses. Now all I needed was something that can keep the ENTER key pressed while I watch TV. This has my character do the practice as well as clicking out of the dialogue screen telling me what my character's done.
|Thank you, empty coffee cup and six-sided die!|
To put it simply, I got back to a similar position I was in last time both puzzle-wise and statistic-wise but without the two stolen healing potions (which I didn't need anyway) and was ready to continue.
To recap, Trevor the Thief had not yet found his way into the bandit camp, Martak the Magic-user had gotten to the gate of the bandit camp, and Frodo the Fighter had gotten inside the bandit camp, solved a few puzzles and made his way to the Wizard's Maze to meet Yorick the wizard.
Now, let's see if we can get the thief and magic-user to the Wizard's Maze so they're all on the same page.
Martak the Magic-user Journal Entry #5: After improving my magic skills last time, I went back to the bandit camp and realised I didn't need to improve my magic skills at all. Anyway, being better at magic is kind of my thing so the time wasn't all wasted.
When we were last with Martak, he'd been unable to enter the gate because walking towards the gate after casting the 'Calm' spell on the minotaur woke the minotaur up and resulted in a fight.
After increasing many of my magic skills, I returned to the gate with a new idea, instead of attempting to open the gate which involved my character moving all the way to the gate and into the eyeline of the minotaur, I moved just a little bit out of the bushes instead. The rustling of the bushes still woke the minotaur, but his peripheral vision must be even worse than I thought.
|The bandits would have won if their health-care plan included optometry!|
I passed the next two areas the same way I did with my fighter. I'll give you a short visual reminder seeing as that was almost a month ago.
Now let's get our thief to the same position...
WIth my coffee cup having gotten me back to where I was last time, I went to the healer's and got her to make me a Dispel potion.
|This is the thing I couldn't get by stealing from the healer earlier.|
But before I can use the potion, I have to find an alternate entrance into the bandit hideout. My fighting skills aren't good enough to either pass the troll at the back entrance or fight the squad of bandits at the front entrance. Even before my request for assistance, where I asked if I needed to increase my fighting skills as a thief (I was told I wouldn't, which was good) I had an idea. I had a basic idea of where the bandit hideout was, and I had a high climbing skill. Perhaps I could climb the rocks to the north of the bandit camp instead of one of the other entrances.
So what was the solution? Well, I already knew because of something I'd accidentally done as the fighter. After finishing the bandit section with the fighter, I miscounted the number of screens I'd traversed and accidentally appeared to the west of the archery target on my way to the castle. Two thieves were having a conversation. The conversation was of no use to the fighter, as he'd already finished with the bandit camp, but it was vital for my thief, so I attempted to get the same information as a thief.
I went there a few times hoping to hear the conversation, but it never happened. Each time I tried I made sure to leave and come back multiple times in case it was a random occurrence. That didn't work. I made sure to do all other quests first in case it was triggered by quest-solving, but still didn't see them. I wondered if perhaps it was related to time of day.
|Yes! It happens at midday.|
|Translation: 'as soon as possible' clearly means every day at midday.|
I listen to their conversation. They're worried about their leader, and their leader is concerned about the 'hero' that's been solving people's problems around town.
|She has a golden hat???|
|I'll ignore the fact that I've seen the entire cave and it's just a “U” shape leading to the bandit camp gate.|
|My coffee cup only got my climbing skill up to 81 by constantly climbing up and down a tree.|
Frodo the Fighter, Martak the Magic user and Trevor the Thief final journal entry: I solved the wizard's maze and rescued the Baron's daughter, saving the day and becoming 'Hero of Spielburg' . And now that I'm a hero and demand you address me as such!
THE WIZARD'S MAZE
The bandit wizard, or Yorick, or ME! As he likes to be called, makes me navigate through his maze.
Just like in an episode of Scooby Doo, the doors lead to other doors. After a bit of trial and error, the solution is fairly simple. First, attempt to walk to the right-hand door...
|For some reason the game refers to her as a 'he' even though I know it's the Baron's daughter by now.|
Yorick enters, having gotten lost on the way, and Elsa and Yorick leave me alone in a hostile fortress because... reasons, I guess?
|How about you take me and let Yorick make his own way there?|
|But first, I see an item that's a reference for a future game.|
|What is the average airspeed of an unladen hut?|
There's a party, and everyone's invited.
|Good to see they invited Commander Riker. And... ummmm.... am I the only one who's noticed that some guy's hung himself at the top right? That's dark, Sierra. REALLY DARK!|
|Why am I just seeing this magic carpet now? I could have flown into the bandit camp at the start of the game, Abdulla!|
|Already ahead of you, game. Consider it done!|
With one of my other characters, I went to the Baron's castle before taking on Baba Yaga, hoping to have a conversation with Elsa and the Baron, like I was able to do when I rescued the Baronet. But I just go straight to the party, then the game tells me off.
|I was planning to go to her hut right after the party, game. I didn't have time to both get rid of the witch, AND catch my magic carpet ride! I had to prioritize!!!|
- Martak the Magic-user: 454 of 500
- Frodo the Fighter: 373 of 500
- Trevor the Thief: 433 of 500
The fighter was the character who didn't drive Baba Yaga out, which explains his particularly low score. As for the others, I noticed I got some points for giving the healer cheetaur claws. I also probably would get points for giving the healer a troll beard, but I don't know if any of my characters did that, as getting past the troll leads me to the endgame. If anyone knows where other points are scored, let me know.
MARTAK: So, now that we've finished our story, do you think we can concentrate on getting out of here.
TREVOR: Oh. Yeah, I opened the door days ago. I just wanted you all to hear the end of my story while you thought you couldn't leave.
FRODO: But, I have things to do...
MARTAK: No, you don't.
FRODO: Okay, I don't. But still...
TREVOR: Anyway, now that we're done, we'd better go. I've broken the mechanism so if the door ever closes again we're stuck here for good.
FRODO. Okay then. Let's leave. We've been stuck in here too long already.
TREVOR: Let's go.
Suddenly, the door crashes shut with a loud crash as an armored giant of a man enters their cave.
MAN: I'm Peter.
TREVOR: What have you done!?!?
MARTAK: Now we're stuck here. Again!
PETER: Well, as long as we're stuck, let me tell you the story of how I became the Hero of Shapeir, AND a Paladin!
MARTAK: Why did you close the door?
PETER: It was getting cold outside and it's been a long...
TREVOR: How did you not notice the lock was broken?
PETER: So that's why it was so hard to close the door. A mere fighter wouldn't have been able...
FRODO: What's a Paladin?!?
PETER: Let me tell you all about it. We seem to have time. It's a loooong story... … ...
And so I've finished the game. I had somewhat equal parts fun and frustration with the game. As for how it will fare in the Final Rating, as usual I'm not sure. I don't think it will score as high as people's guesses suggested, but we'll all find out next week. Thanks for reading.
Session time TBD: 4 hours
Session time Coffee Cup and D6: 2 hours 5 minutes
Total time: 33 hours 15 minutes