Written by Morpheus Kitami
You know, its been a while since something killed me and I never did find out what was in the second basement.
|I didn't anticipate the deadliest enemy being a slug with too many eyes|
The answer. Sheer terror. I'm so afraid. This thing's guarding the way past the staircase. He doesn't seem to take any damage and he does dish it out. Who is this, Agatha? Wait a minute...This is Alberoth. Old Nosey. Even the game acknowledges that this guy looks like a joke. Is the final boss going to look like a brown, lumpy sausage then? I can't get past him, I think this is a puzzle. Remember those? After all, this is supposed to be an adventure game I'm playing. Rock salt? Eh, I hope not. Flamethrower? Hmm...this could be interesting, but chances are the answer is incredibly boring.
|Judging by the standards set by Alberoth, he should have the consistency of a pancake|
Reloading from back upstairs, I reenter the asylum. Ah...I really don't want to wander around this place. I wonder if Mr. Teeth-thing will let me through. Unlike a bland looking Outer God, this guy lets me go. Ah, sweet freedom. Eh, knowing my luck, I come back, nearly dead and he rips my face off.
|That looks non-threatening and very threatening. I'm not going to chance it|
The new floor starts off nice enough, but I'm sure I'll be sick of it when I'm done here, nine hours later. Nothing funny going on, then this guy. Does he hurt me? Is he even hostile? Do I care? I run away. He's slowly chasing after me and most of the doors I pass are locked, no time to unlock them. The one that isn't unlocked contains a Lurker. He's not upset that I hurt his friend, ergo, I see no reason to screw with him. I'm safe...for now. I've got no way back to the asylum without getting a footful of slime.
|...I don't know if he's in the running for stupidest character yet|
Another person, just wandering around. Not even going out of his way to approach me. Just casually pacing in the room as if it was an ordinary day. This is going to be interesting.
|I still don't know the answer to that question|
The man quickly exposes himself as a liar. Why? If you recall back to the third entry, we saw a family tree. There is no Carl Winthrop. Now, it could be he's just another distant relative, and named himself after the patriarch of the family. But that seems like too big a coincidence to casually mention. Further, I've read enough in this house to not want to deal with the Karcist. But since this is Legacy - Realm of Inaccuracy, I'm not going to attack him just yet. Plus, he actually tells me some useful information, although he seems to be eager to end the conversation, probably because his human form will end soon. You noticing that all these human characters look like they're going to kill you the second you turn around? I wonder if that trait is shared by characters in previous Magnetic Scrolls games.
To parse it down a bit:
|After the dropping weapons bit|
- The anchor runes are dimensional doors, I need a spell to access them. I can disrupt the dimensional barrier and set back Belthegor's plan by 200 years.
- The forces of evil are gathering forth the last of the Winthrop blood to...grow more powerful? He says I should throw down my weapons because they win if you kill them. Insert your own jokes here.
- We should split up. He has plans he needs to investigate. They're drawing nearer, we have to split up. He doesn't move, monsters don't show up.
Gee, I wonder if I should trust this non-committal fellow who I've never heard of before in the slightest sense. What do you think, dear reader? Should I look for the Chinese coins? After all this man's just so trustworthy I'm going to follow his advice regarding destroying the dimensional barrier and ruining anchors.
|Joke's on you, I ran down to the basement and got bit. Try explaining that when I'm eating a cop's face off|
Anyway, there's a couple of notes here. One's an advertisement for Fields of Glory by Microprose, pretty sure every Microprose game has an ad for that game, for some reason. Another's this. "Suicide suspected". Probably because I ran out of ammo blowing my head off and had to go the the basement. Did the game just really want to slap me in the face with how obviously evil this guy is? Whoever he is? Carl...Karcist...He's the Karcist, isn't he? Come to think of it, calling yourself the Karcist is a bit like calling yourself the Sorcerer.
|Enemy difficulty rating of reverse spookiness not going as planned|
After I'm done futzing around here, I go through another door in the Lurker's room. It leads me to this thing. I think I can take him. I'm wrong. I don't even get a full blast of ammo off. He just straight-up kills me. So, that's another enemy I can't really kill and presumably will have difficulty dodging. And I didn't save yet. I might as well commit to this full-hog. When I return, the slime on the floor seems to be neutral, but I must admit, I think that's just because he has no way to sense me.
|Is that on the painting or am I just assuming that?|
While I wait for the giant slime to mosey on out of my path, I examine a nearby niche with a painting. I'm not sure if I was supposed to have seen the guy in the flesh before. And "triumvirate"? There's three Outer Gods? Maybe I should kill all the Lurkers, that sounds easier. Much easier. There's also a note here, explaining how to kill the ones who creep and bite. What are we talking about here? We got ghouls, eldritch squirrels and that thing that killed me in the last screenshot. I have to find three statues made by the demonically-inspired mage De l'Ancre, his name possibly being a joke. "Pedestals in room of power", cast "fire of the forsaken" and "vile ones no more". That helps me even less as to what this is going to remove. I'm sure I just have to find the other statue, put them in a room with three pedestals, and then cast Flames of Desolation.
That's back down the stairs to the 1st floor, then back here to the 3rd. The lurker on the 1st floor seems to have forgiven me for accidentally hitting him, but I'm not about to get close and personal to find out. Also, I have to say that whenever you start up this floor, the music track starts off with a held high-pitched flute of some kind before transitioning into a tuba. I stand by my statement that anyone could make this soundtrack. I get as far as where I was before I died, roughly. Everything is blocked off, either by the...things, slimes or by locked doors. I lack the skill to deal with the doors and them. I sense this playthrough will end in disaster if I don't get enough experience to raise mechanical to acceptable levels. That's not even getting into the fact that I've been ignoring magic this entire game. Anyway, back in the 2nd floor, the asylum...
Unlike on the other floors, the doors here are unlocked with the electronic toolkit. I'm rewarded for figuring this out by getting a speedloader of small calibre ammunition. This is the second one I've found past the ground floor. I still don't know where I put the M10, I still don't care.
|Nothing screams good time like a secret door to half the map|
Even on this floor, I'm struggling with unlocking doors. But at least I can unlock them. Sure, half the doors I've opened so far have eldritch squirrels in them, but hey, being horrifically scarred is in...I think. At some point I find a safe. Its unlocked, but I can't open it. I figure I can use the mechanical tool kit on it. Then when I do a door opens up behind me.
|I think my difficulty scale is borked, these are the easiest things to kill|
Inside are the fire things. I forget what they were called. Now they're going to die, easy. I have a fire extinguisher, and what happens next is purely a chemical reaction. I have to get two shots off fast though. But not too fast or I miss the followup shot. Sigh, why do even the easy enemies have to be a pain to kill? I'm purely savescumming these enemies, thank god this doesn't have a limited number of saves. I manage to find the spell of Dimensional Rift, right where the Karcist...I mean Carl, said it would be. Unfortunately, the game dropped a book nearby telling me to avoid going into the vile dimension without a Mayan jade idol. Very nice, that means I only have to clear out this floor and the next before I can get started on magic.
I continue my search. I hear the hum of power as I approach one room. Aha! I think, the fuse box. I may not need the flashlight, but I sure could use some light. I approach something that looks like a fusebox...and I'm teleported across the floor. That's not completely bad though, I find another note from Ellen.
The Book of Gates is everything. It tells how to reach the Ethereal Plane and, beyond that, the Astral Plane, where writhes the Bloated Beast, Belthegor. I've hidden the book in a secret place near my room.
So, greatest grandfather, I now have your book, but I still can't find your damned heart! I dare not summon you until I have your heart.
I draw two conclusions from this, one, I need to dispose of this Belthegor somehow. Two, the Karcist is the patriarch, Elias Winthrop. Because I have assumed that Carl's interest in summoning the Karcist is due to him being the Karcist. Carl is possibly just an illusion or just a willing idiot. I need to find that damned heart. The mausoleum? Hmm...maybe behind Alberoth? Hmm...hmm...hmm...
Inventory: Medikit (x3), Axe, bullet-proof vest, spellbook, keyring, briefcase, Colt .38, .38 ammo (x4) electronic tool kit, mechanical tool kit, matches, fire extinguisher
Spellbook: Shroud of the Shadow Walker, Agatha's Iron Fist, Belgor's Mental Violation, Elixir of Health, Aura of Mystic Defense, Flames of Desolation, Dimensional Rift
This Session: 2 hours 00 minutes
Total Time: 11 hours 30 minutes
Note Regarding Spoilers and Companion Assist Points: There’s a set of rules regarding spoilers and companion assist points. Please read it here before making any comments that could be considered a spoiler in any way. The short of it is that no points will be given for hints or spoilers given in advance of me requiring one. Please...try not to spoil any part of the game for me...unless I really obviously need the help...or I specifically request assistance. In this instance, I've not made any requests for assistance. Thanks!
Morpheus, I must say that the more blog posts you write about it and the more this game seems awful.ReplyDelete
I do not envy you having to finish this game at all.
I suspect that's why there hasn't been many comments on these posts -- I hate to say it, but as much as I generally enjoy your entries, I can't wait for this awful game to be over so we can get on to something else...Delete
I'm sort of tempted to play it with a walkthrough and a bottle of whiskey at hand, honestly.ReplyDelete
I think the only way I would be tempted to play through is with some sort of cheat codes to improve the character stats!Delete
Following a walkthrough doesn't necessarily make the game that easy. You'd still need to fight some of the monsters and some min-maxing would definitely be needed. Strength, for instance, seems to be unnecessary, stamina governs health and every stat it increases is unnecessary. Force by keys and lockpicks, the combat skills by Dexterity's combat skills. Dunno what lift does, but it hasn't come up yet. Dex's combat skills are immensely useful, especially dodge. All of Intelligence's skills too. Willpower even moreso, since I think that governs spell ability, and I don't have anymore than the default Olson has.Delete
And on the subject of cheating, while there aren't any actual cheat codes in the game, its ridiculously easy to hex edit both the save files and the character creation. I think the whole game's unencrypted like that.
Most games are that unencrypted. I remember back in my BBS days, pre-internet, I used hex editors on games like King's Quest 3, editing the time while exploring the countryside so Mananan wouldn't catch me, and in Leisure Suit Larry 3, before I learned about the SCI debug mode, to edit the number of exercises I had done, when I had gotten a newer computer with a higher clock speed. I was a kid with no training, but I figured out that I should convert the number I was looking for into hex, search for the number, and then change it.Delete
Soon later I would write up a database of game cheats. I found the Computer Gaming World review of my program. I do plan to write a whole entry on my blog at some point about it as well.
I started paging through that issue you linked to and... wow. What a pastenblasten. Blizzard's email address is "firstname.lastname@example.org"! 6x speed CD-ROM drives! A $3000 (= over $5000 in 2020 dollars) gaming PC build with a 133 MHz Pentium, 8 MB RAM, and a 14" monitor! ImagiNation Network! 28.8k modems! Unironically using the term "information super highway"!!Delete
Leafing through gave me other flashbacks. The number of games I mail-ordered from this company, I think they were my favorite when I didn't go to computer shows...Delete
The only game I routinely hex-edited was UFO: Enemy Unknown (X-COM: UFO Defense in the US), which was relatively simple (although I can't remember who told me about it in the first place). More recent games like Xenonauts (an indie X-COM) and FTL had XML files I think that could be easily edited, but that's about my limit.Delete