Written by Morpheus Kitami
However screwed it may look like I am, I have options. I have some points, I can put them into dimensional rift and disappear. Maybe Alberoth's afraid of his own reflection. Maybe I can put a squid on my head and pretend to be a cultist of Melchior.
|Plot went wrong...cultists suspect everything|
I can't do a dimensional rift because I didn't bring the rune stone with me...because I was planning on finding the other person on the Ethereal Realm...and Alberoth is not afraid of his own reflection. I don't know why I'd think that. That must be for the beam of light in the 1st basement. I just have The Last Man on Earth (1964) on the brain, and that trick worked there. Look, that's related to the gothic horror films I assume this game takes inspiration from.
|Free fire zone with my M-16|
So I'm screwing around, and briefly considering putting in a request for assistance. Because there's no obvious way to advance. The tentacle wizards are invulnerable, Alberoth is invulnerable, and I'm very vulnerable. I'm bobbing around on the gong in the third basement, because I'm dead certain there's another one. The gong summons enemies, but I was hoping it opened a door. It did, but not the actual doors, a secret door. See, what I didn't notice last time was that two wizards appeared when the gong was rung. I see one and think, I'm getting out of here. This is only a good idea because I have no other choice. Its tricky running around here, because there's three more wizards, and its a tad inconvenient to grab the notes I'm seeing.
But then, like the heavens opening up, the M-16, on the ground, next to a mag. Even if for a brief moment, I could consider my problems over. If I can keep cool, and don't run out of ammo, and actually hit them, then just like in Dawn of the Dead (1978), I've got free reign in the candy store.
|It doesn't actually hurt me, it just creeps me out|
And just like Dawn, I hear the cries of the damned at the gates. Time to give 'em what's coming to them! Eat hot leaden death. Reload, reload...empty. Come on, can't I get something? Three magazines of out of an M-16 in such close quarters should kill something. The RPG aspect of this game is really hurting this game, which is ironic, considering that the adventure aspect has been non-existent. So I rush out, grab any notes I can find, then come back in. I could have sworn there were two notes out here, but its probably not important. But the note I found is telling me that the shrunken head is a key down here. Oh, this could screw me over.
|Finally, some good news, haven't had that in an hour|
There are three doors out of my one safe-ish room. North, there's a room that removes the door as you enter and a switch that summons three wizards. Later, I find out that switch opens the door out, but there's no point anyway. South, is nothing except flesh-covered furniture. Everything's skin-covered here. West is some stuff I can actually interact with, and also another wizard. He's not really wandering around so it isn't bad, but he will be a pain. Especially if I want that M-16 mag lying around. There's another note here, the first one from some kind of law enforcement.
Sgt. Frank Steadman - Boston Central Police Department - 2 August 1920
I hope somebody will find this note one day - people have just got to know the truth about this place. My investigation into the missing inmates led to the discovery of these secret tunnels. I came down here with ten officers, but it didn't do us much good. Those green creatures are all around us, and they're doing horrible things to my men. I think that...
So...the police knew about this, but when 10 cops mysteriously disappear they don't do anything? I know that the police can be apathetic, but on their own? Eleven of them? Holy crap. Also, note the date is written in the European way, not the American way. There's another set of stairs up, but that's only a decision of desperation for now. I have no idea where that leads.
There's a key down here, belonging to one N. Prentiss. Like the others, I put it on the keychain. Thinking myself a fool, I use it on a locked door. It opens. And on another. There's some good stuff in here, like another medikit and a dagger, but more importantly. Servitor Robes, I guess the tentacle wizards are the Servitors. I guess takoyaki was never on the menu. I think this combined with the squid will make them think I'm one of them. Getting back to the squid turns out to be not very difficult. A room north seemingly only contains snacks also teleports me to the other stairwell. Will this work?
Yes, but its of little use at the moment. Those doors I opened were all the doors I could open. So, what's up those stairs?
When I reach up, I'm attacked by another one of these winged dudes. The M-16 takes care of them. Nice to see it isn't a toy gun. But a problem forms. This, even if it were open, would just take me back to the northern half of the floor. I literally have no way of going south. I have no way of defeating Alberoth. So, it's clear I only have one chance...that the rune stone isn't needed. The thing I had to cheat max last time in order to get results? Pointless.
|You could say it isn't nothing|
What kind of logic is it that someone with less skill and without the necessary item can cast a spell successfully, but with both of those they can't? Before I leave this place, I'm going to want that mirror. When I go upstairs I pay attention to the places I couldn't reach before. I notice some switches that I didn't activate before. One, directly north of the western stairs up, opens up the passage that seemed useless earlier this entry. I had to kill the winged demon again, probably reloaded at some point or another. The more central area I noticed had a door on the map but none in reality, could be walked into, revealing a room that teleports you around with no real way of knowing how. It had some leaves that protected against sea demons, providing illumination about what the incense burner was for. What made this tricky was a worm, without a shield the worm did massive damage. Half my health bar in one hit.
I eventually escape the Ethereal Realm by reaching the 3rd floor. Ah, I never thought I'd see this place again for some reason. I wander around a bit, not really concerned about grabbing the Hand of Glory. Most of the slimes aren't that annoying to walk around. I try my hand at opening a door with magic. Before I do so, I want to talk about an element in magic that hasn't come up, spell levels. The game offers three levels, each with a gradually higher amount of power. For Key of the Shadow Lord, lower levels say successfully cast, but do nothing here. Doors on this floor require full power, which has a pretty good chance of failure. The first door I chose was a bad choice, having a Zulu Spear. (or whatever it's actually called). Which is of extremely limited utility to me right now. Even if I hadn't dropped the wakizashi down on the 2nd basement, beyond Alberoth's grasp, I have an M-16, which is more than enough gun to take down anything above there. Although it can hit from one space away, which is nice. So I reload.
|Gee, I wonder what I'm going to have to do here...|
It's at this point I come across two problems. Two new problems. Okay, I can unlock most of the doors up here by magic, but I still have a safe I can't open, and there's still one room I can't unlock. That locked room has to lead upstairs, or there's more missing than I thought. The other, downstairs in the basement, the mirror works...but it creates a new different puzzle. Puzzle is a strong word, I just need to find a jewel of some kind. Also, doing the adventure game strategy of trying everything on everything doesn't seem to work well here, since I used the sacrificial dagger I picked up down below here and threw it behind the rock. Amazing. I'm finding out a lot, but I'm having to reload after everything. I wonder if I'm just missing some way to remove the gem on the upper left...
|I missed this because it isn't visible beyond standing right next to it|
Now, intentionally doing something across the Ethereal Realm or Plane is a pain in the ass. You have no map. This is troublesome for me because I'm not the kind of gamer who sits down and draws out a map. If the game I'm playing really needs that I absolutely will look that up. Probably why I've never bothered playing a Wizardry game or the very early Might and Magic games. Further, there's a loading time each time I move floors, and you have to memorize what the cubes are. This is a problem, because you can't see beyond like two spaces here. Meanwhile, Melchior is firing balls of light and poison clouds at me like he actually needs to do that. During this troublesome period, I discover that I missed some open portals on other floors, including one that leads right into the last living fire fiend in the asylum. I can always get right out, but it takes fifteen seconds. I switched between floors like 15 times before landing on the one I wanted.
While I'm walking around the 3rd basement, using the head on a door, it doesn't open it, but I notice it refers to it as a key. Thinking myself amusing, I try putting it on the keyring. It works. Then I try using it on some of the doors that summon lightning. It doesn't open it. It doesn't open any of them. All the doors are locked. Everything is the same as it was before. Although at least I know to use the head on my keychain. Life hacks, am I right? Of course, I can't replicate this, so I don't know if it actually happened or not. Maybe I'm just going insane.
|I don't know if this is the worst human attack animation yet or not|
Clearly, I've missed something. I'm changing between saves on the 3rd floor and the 3rd basement. I try talking to Carl again, but he doesn't want to. So I stab him, he goes down easy but doesn't drop anything. Anyway, I find out that the Key of Abhomet is some kind of unlocking tool, but it isn't working. Nothing I'm doing on either of these floors is useful. So it comes down to Alberoth's floor again. I try a couple of things on the room that teleports you away, but no dice. I do find out that one of the stairs down from the 1st basement leads to a new area, that isn't guarded by Alberoth...but it just has a .44 speedloader and a book about how Alberoth is so evil.
|If you think its bad to cheat to get to this point, imagine actually doing this legitimately|
So...that leaves nothing I can try...except returning to the usage of Cheat Engine. On the 3rd floor, there's no way up, but I know what to do with both the wakizashi and the urn...not that that was ever in question. The half of a crescent is also going to be useful here. Both the doors I thought were unbreakable and the safe prove merely resistant to defeat, not invulnerable. Even a successful casting of Key of the Shadow Lord at max level isn't necessarily enough to open a door. Yay. The safe has nothing, which is even better.
Downstairs its a different question. Its just one WHAT after another. The door that doesn't shoot lightning? Empty. The ones that do shoot lightning? Another set of robes and squid. The other room, a spell and a book. Spell doesn't matter, not getting it yet. The book says to "Take the Sacrificial Dagger, picture the sound of nothing, and plunge the weapon through my spine" to release Melchoir.
Took me a moment, but then I realized it wanted me to use the dagger on the book, not find a spine lying around. Its supposed to be a poem, hence the confusion. Doing that summons Melchoir, whom I believe is invulnerable to physical damage even in the physical realm, and I can't run. Which means lovely things for my magic-weak character. Even though I'm cheating, I still die. I wasn't really expecting to win, but its still a shock I didn't seem to do any damage. I don't think killing him will help anyway, not unless that opens a wall somewhere.
REQUEST FOR ASSISTANCE
At this point, I'm well and truly out of ideas. Despite cheating, I haven't really used that to gain an advantage I couldn't get by a well-placed roll of the dice. Outside of returning to the forechamber to the Lair of the Beast to find access to another floor I have nothing. Other, less pressing problems:
- The chalice/statue room on the 3rd floor must lead to the 4rd floor. I guess I need to fill the chalice with something?
- Something must be done in that room with the dismembered zombie. Nothing springs to mind.
- There are two rooms that teleport me away when I try to enter. They're on the 1st and 2nd basements respectively.
The next step, in my mind at least, is opening up another floor. By as straightforward means as possible. Either the one Alberoth is on (I.E., to kill him) or one I haven't seen yet. Keep in mind I'm missing half of the 3rd basement, so that counts. If that's not directly possible, lean me in a direction that will lead to that. I would prefer not having to return to the forechamber, but if I have an idea of what I'm looking for that's...fine...I guess.
Items I have not identified the use of yet: Fungi, Astrolabe, Red Potion, Oil Lantern, Remote Control, Mortar & Pestle, Chainsaw
Spellbook: Shroud of the Shadow Walker, Agatta's Iron Fist, Belgor's Mental Violation, Elixir of Health, Aura of Mystic Defense, Flames of Desolation, Dimensional Rift, Key of the Shadow Lord, Crimson Mysts of Myamoto, Xython's Guiding Eye, Wind of Destruction, Sight of the Dark Walker, Arcane Tower of Reason
This Session: 4 hours 30 minutes
Total Time: 29 hours 00 minutes