Monthly Archives: October 2013

Gnarshm’s Book of Cartography – RoQIV

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Back at the inn, the party rested and prepared to make another descent to the second level of the dungeon to attempt to find another of the time lords. Ruby was busy studying and memorizing her spells, while Twiggy had finally successfully worked out her Fireball spell and was yearning to test it out and prove that her power had increased significantly and therefore also her value to the party.  Her eyes peered over across the room where the brute Crumm was seated at a table chowing down a plate full of mutton, while Iscreem paced the floor, clutching his sword in his hand and ancy to return to the bloodshed of slaughtering monsters. Twiggy thought it would be fun to send a small ball of flames towards Iscreem but didn’t want to risk setting ablaze the nice fancy lodge they had paid so much to stay at so she decided to save her magic for some wretched monster fiend instead. Elvira practiced her knife throwing skills repeatedly whizzing her knives through the air onto a target board which hung on the eastern wall. Greenhat was busy applying a bandage onto Sammy’s wound.

Iscreem could wait no longer. “What is taking Haggrinna so long? I wants to get going now!” he grumbled.

Crumm was unfazed and continued stuffing his face with food.

Ruby looked up from her spellbook for a moment to glance at the impatient kobold warrior, who was now poking and jabbing his sword into a padded chair and proceeding to pull out the chairs fluffy innards piece by piece.

The room’s old wooden door swung open and in came Haggrinna, looking a bit weary eyed. She took a seat at the table and cleared her throat and began to speak. “By now you are all probably ready to take on another time lord, however I won’t be accompanying you any further in your quest. I have decided to retire from adventuring, but I wish you all the best in fighting the good fight against the evil time lords.”

“WHAT!?” Iscreem screamed.

Twiggy and Ruby glanced at each other with a worried look on their faces.

Crumm nearly choked on his mutton. “You can’t leave. Not now. We’ve only just begun and we need your sword-arm.”

Haggrinna replied. “Now now, you will all be fine. Pull yourselves together and work as a team. I’m getting too old for this sort of thing, and I have other matters that I need to attend to. A friend of mine will accompany you throughout the remainder of your quest. His name is Gnarshm and he is waiting outside in the lobby. I think he will fit in nicely with you all.”

Haggrinna hugged each of the party and bid everyone farewell.  The aged warrior left the inn closing the wooden door behind her. An awkward silence permeated the room.

Greenhat pierced the silence. “Well I think it’s time that we go meet this Gnarshm fellow.”

Iscreem agreed. “Yeah let’s get going!”

The party gathered their belongings and made their way from their accommodating room to the main lobby, which appeared to be deserted.

Crumm looked around. “Um. Where is he?”

Iscreem swung his sword around in the air. “I bet this Gnarshm guy is a great swordsman like Haggrinna was.”

“No way. The real power is in magic. I bet Gnarshm can cast the most powerful spells.” Twiggy retorted.

Greenhat chimed in, “You wouldn’t get too far in the dungeons without having someone that can tend to wounds and repel the undead. I bet this Gnarshm fellow can do all of that.”

Sammy pointed to a slim figure that appeared across the room.

As the figure drew near, he stepped forward into the center of the room revealing himself to be a meekly looking Gnoll holding a book and a flimsy shield with a club that looked more like part of a broken tree branch attached to his belt.  His crackly voice let out a few words. “Hello, I’m Gnarshm. You must be the party that Haggrinna told me about. This will be fun. OK, I’m ready to go now.” Gnarshm put his book in a bag and slung it over his back. He proceeded to take his club and swing it about in the air clumsily.

Iscreem gave Crumm an awkward glance and the rest of the group didn’t quite know what to say about Haggrinna’s friend.

Iscreem interrupted Gnarshm to ask whether he’d seen any real battle and whether he had skills in armed combat.

Gnarshm hesitated for a moment then said “Er. well no, not really. But I brought along my trusty club and shield and I’ll whack those monsters back. Take that! you evil time lord!” Gnarshm swung his club in the air at an imaginary foe.

Iscreem looked a bit dismayed and slightly puzzled.

Twiggy approached Gnarshm. “I saw you had a book with you. I bet you have lots of magic spells in your book don’t you? Can you cast Fireball or Lightning Bolt?

“No. None of those.” Gnarshm muttered.

Twiggy again tried. “How about Magic Missile. You must know at least Magic Missile, right?”

“No. I don’t know about any magic missiles.” Gnarshm replied.

Greenhat interrupted. “Well maybe his book has healing spells and herbal remedies or maybe he knows spells that can banish the undead. Do you know about such things?”

Again Gnarshm responded. “No. I don’t know anything about healing spells or banishing the undead.”

Elvira made an attempt. “Gnarshm, do you know about finding and disarming traps and lurking in the shadows only to spring into an enemy at the last moment and backstab!”

Gnarshm stopped swinging his club and hooked it back onto his belt. “Er. No. I guess I don’t know any of that.”

Iscreem’s patience was growing thin. “Well what do you know then? We’re wasting time.”

Gnarshm paused and thought for a moment. “Well I really don’t know all that much about hand to hand combat or magic, or anything about disarming traps. I’m just a peasant. I can read and I like to draw, and I promise not to get in the way and I’ll be as useful as I can in any way possible.”

Iscreem’s face was red with frustration. “Useful!? Is this some kind of joke? What was Haggrinna thinking! I can’t believe this! This, this, this, this is preposterous!”

“Hush you!” Ruby shouted, clearly agitated by Iscreem. “Gnarshm, you said you like to draw. Does your book contain your drawings? Can I see your book?

Gnarshm pulled out his book and opened it for Ruby to see. “I like to draw maps of places that I visit. Do you like them?”

Iscreem grabbed at the book. “Let me see that!” Iscreem’s eyes widened and he paused for a moment. “Hey this is a map of the dungeon! You drew this? This IS useful.”

The party all gathered around Gnarshm and his book of cartography.  Everyone was impressed.

Ruby commented. “Well I think it is settled then. Gnarshm’s place in our party will be that of our resident map maker.

Realms of Quest IV: Time Lord #1

I had apparently been playing an older version of the IV demo and also since I was using some of the sample characters, the in game events had already been triggered by the sample party, so Ghislain was kind to reset my save, and send me the newest version of the game which now features an awesome spash screen…

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along with in game music, a larger/wider area view of the dungeon and 10 dungeon levels.

The party descends the depths of the 1st dungeon…

We climb down the ladder and make our way through the eerie dark dungeon. King Lanthorn greets us near the dungeons entrance and presents us with a magical sword to aid us in our quest to slay the time lords.

lanthorn

On each level we need to find a key to unlock the door to the Time Lord’s chambers.  There are also areas of darkness, teleporters and spinners to watch out for.

dark

teleporter

After finding the yellow key, the party made their way through the darkness and fought their way through the long corridors and pathways when Elvira stopped and pointed to a strange yellow door. Ruby pulls out the yellow key from her robes. “Perhaps this yellow key will unlock the yellow door?”

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As the key turns there is small click and the strangely colored yellow door slowly opens as its hinges creek eerily. Crumm mutters something about the door needing some oil. One by one the party proceeds into the inner chambers. A few feet into the chamber, Haggrinna leading the pack, comes face to face with an angry looking Gnoll. As she draws her sword, more Gnolls appear from the darkness along with a large group of Ogres led by a dreaded Time Lord!

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Iscreem and Sammy pull their weapons and charge into battle slicing and dicing their way through the hoardes as Twiggy and Ruby chant and prepare their magic spells. The Gnolls and Ogres are fierce and ruthless but eventually fall to the party’s valiant swordsmanship and magic spells. We are now face to face with the last remaining enemy. The evil Time Lord.

timelord

He reminds me greatly of the emperor in Return of the Jedi when Luke says “I am a Jedi, like my father before me.” to which the Emperor replies “So be it, Jedi!”

The Time Lord lets out a wail and a flash of light and energy zapps the party in an enormous wave of power. Ruby and Twiggy are both decimated by the Time Lord’s great power and fall to the floor lifelessly.

Elvira sneakily jumps at the Time Lord from behind slashing at the evil lord, but the Time Lord halts time leaving Elvira hanging in mid air where he cruelly knocks her to the floor with a powerful zzapp of energy.

Iscreem lets out a shout of anger and races towards the powerful foe, but the Time Lord is quick and whacks Iscreem with another wave of powerful energy knocking the kobold fighter off the ground, flinging him through the air and crashing into the stone cold wall. As Iscreem lay stunned on the ground, Crumm attacks the Time Lord with the sword given to him by King Lanthorn piercing the Time Lord who in turn gives out a moan and a look of total shock as he collapses onto the floor clutching at his heart as the blood oozes from his body. The party watches as the Time Lord takes his last breath and his eyes go dark as death takes over his aged decrepit body.

The party makes their way back to the castle to the castle to heal and recover.

Realms of Quest IV: The Beginning

After assembling my party, I descended into the dungeon. Using the map contained in the last page of the manual I guided the party towards the nearest marking which I believe is the key, I soon stumbled into my first battle. 9 Gnomes and 6 Skeletons.

1st_battle

My fighter class characters swung their weapons.

One thing I noticed when Twiggy fired off a Magic Missle is that in IV, you can now decide which group of enemies you want to target with your spell. Whereas in III, your spell targeted the nearest enemy. I really like being able to decide which group to target as that will come in handy when the second group may be perhaps a more difficult enemy.

There are also fake walls (or invisible doors in the wall) as I found one approximately 5 spaces South and 9 spaces East of the stairs (to the entrance of the south of the key).

fake_door

I love low level monsters. There is just something classic about fighting wererats and other such creatures.

wererat

Since gaining levels is no longer immediate as it was in III, you will know your character is ready to train when a + appears to the left of your characters name. Additionally, if a * appears before your character, then that character is ready to train 2 levels. You’ll need to rest at the inn in order to train. Characters with a + will gain 1 level after resting. Characters with a * will need to rest twice in order to gain two levels. And the more you rest the more you age so its best to gather as much gold as you can so that you can stay at the finer accommodations.  If you want to only age 1 month per resting you’ll have to chalk up 9000 GP!

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Also Cure Poison is now a 4th level Priest spell rather than a 2nd level spell as it was in III.

Realms of Quest IV dabbling…

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I took a short break from playing Realms of Quest III to try out Realms of Quest IV.  There are some definite improvements in the new game. More races and classes to choose from. More spells, more items, more monsters, and also incorporates age, however this one only has the town and dungeon. No overhead/world map. The dungeon are black and white framed like the early Wizardry games instead of the color dungeons of the previous Realms of Quest game. Also the leveling up system is no longer instantaneous and the party will have to rest at the inn to gain levels, however too much resting at the inn will age the party, so this might make for a really tough game. Even more so than the previous.

While it was possible to transfer characters from the freeware version of Realms of Quest III to the full version of Realms of Quest III, there does not seem to be a way to transfer characters from III to IV. I could be wrong but I have not found out how to do so as of this point.

Being that I could not transfer characters, I took it upon myself re-purpose “some” of the pre-generated characters that were available in the Save +1 slot. The remaining characters that I decided not to use, I ended up taking their items and gave them to my newly created characters.

This time, Ruby is also re-incarnated, (while remaining a Hobbit, is now a Sage [Wizard/Priest], rather than a Thief, and features an incredible 25 INT, 21 WIS, 19 DEX, and 23 CHA.)

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And Crumm is also re-incarnated here, again as an Ogre Fighter, and now features a whopping 28 STR, 23 DEX, and 39 CON.

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Here the new IV party is lead by veteran fighter, Haggrinna.

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Also some new and re-purposed characters are shown also. Will be back to III soon.

Water Fountains of Healing

Drink from thy cup and heal thy soul.

fountain

I hadn’t realized this until now but Fountains in the dungeons can heal HP’s of your party members. However, sometimes…fountains can disperse poisonous water.

I thought that since the fountains could regenerate HP, that perhaps Thrones could possible regenerate SP? but even upon getting a positive energy absorption, that it would regenerate SP, but No. It apparently does not. At least, not to my knowledge. I’m not sure what it does at the moment. I do know that many thrones give ZZAPP’S! (HP damage) to many that dare to sit on the throne.  I’m sure I’ll find out eventually.

Edit: OK I’ve figured it out now. If you sit on a throne and it doesn’t ZZAPP you, you will get one of your stats (STR, INT, WIS, DEX, CON, CHA etc) modified randomly by either adding +1 or subtracting -1.  Ruby now has 21 for INT instead of 20, but upon sitting atop the throne another time, STR has decreased to 14 from 15, so I guess if you want different stats for your character you can take your chances on the throne. It might help or hurt you. Roll the dice.

Demon’s, Demon Bride’s, and Orb Numero Uno

Greenhat had trained and had obtained level 4 Priest spells which includes Excommunication. So I was determined to descend to the depths of the 15th level of the western dungeon to seek out the Demon Brides and their orb. My first attempt was a failure. Although, I was able to cast off 2 Excommunication spells before the the gnome priest died, the spell failed to banish any demons.  Twiggy tossed off a few meteor swarms which took out a couple of the demons before she perished.  Brute KO’d a demon with his fists. Demons give out 20,000+ XP, which in turn had leveled up both Twiggy and Brute during combat, but it was not meant to be. The demons laugh at my feeble attempt.

dead

Restart the last saved game………

The dungeons are hard to map as the 1st person point of view in dungeons shows walls or columns to the left or right which make the view deceiving until you turn to the left or to the right to verify whether a wall is there or whether it is just a column that was in view and there is actually a hallway in that direction.

I find that it is best to not map it, and to just run as fast as you can aimlessly until you reach each next ladder descending further into the dungeon only stopping once for a drink of water from the fountains, until you have finally reached level 15. You will stumble into the Demon Brides and the Demons guarding them.

demon_bride_battle

Twiggy again conjures up some meteor swarms, and this time Greenhat’s Excommunication banishes demons; 3 of them in his first casting.  I manage to eliminate the Demons but at the cost of my front line. The demon brides don’t hit as often as their Demon counterparts so I luckily managed to eliminate all but 2 of the brides.

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Twiggy had spent her remaining Meteor Swarms and Fireballs and was down to only Magic Missiles and eventually ran out of those as well and fell to the claws of a Demon Bride. Greenhat had used up his Excom’s and cast his last Exorcism and Invocation. His HP’s had increased significantly from banishing the monsters that he had the highest HP’s of the party. He swung his mace with all his might and defeated the last of the Demon Brides!

With the evil creatures gone, Greenhat looked around at all the blood and the bodies strewn across the dungeon floor. His eyes caught a small wooden box that was calling out to him. The box had to have been trapped he thought to himself. But Ruby had not survived the onslaught of demons. Greenhat had to open the box himself and his stubby fingers accidentally flipped the trigger and noxious fumes enveloped the area. After a bit of coughing the stench and fumes cleared the area. He found what he had seeked inside of the old wooden box along with a slew of gold goins that he would need in order to resurrect his friends at the temple.

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orb

The orb must have given the gnome priest superlative strength to carry all the loot and his perished friends back to the castle. It was a long and weary trek to the temple where he made a generous donation of 500GP per adventurer so the healers at the temple could do God’s work and resurrect his companions.

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The party recovered, thanked the gnome for dragging their asses out of the dungeons and celebrated their victory at the castle’s inn and ate and drank their share, eagerly planning their next descent to recover a second orb.

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Molten Lava Burns! + Vice emulator issues

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I saw this little alcove leading to purple water so I thought I’d take a swim. My mistake. It’s molten lava! I should have read the no swimming in the lava sign before diving in.

I encountered some issues with saving the game and the Vice emulator was frequently freezing up. I had realized that my last saved game, Greenhat had 40 HP and when I loaded the game up he was back to 30 something. Also my recently found Ring Mail +5 was not equipped and nowhere in sight. I then battled some monsters to a point where I trained one of my characters and saved the game. I then quit the game and restarted but saved game did not reflect the newly trained character but instead my old previous save. The Vice emulator had previously been freezing up quite frequently and now I couldn’t save so I started to really worry.  I started the game again but this time in the terminal so I could see any error messages.

type xvic into the terminal to start

I saw the following…

Sound: Warning – Buffer drained
Warning – Your machine is too slow for current settings!

So I disabled sound.

Exiting…
Sound: Closing device `alsa’

I transfered my save game from the full version to the freeware version. I tried transferring the save game back to the full version but it just wasn’t saving so I deleted my full version and re-downloaded the full version and transfered my save from the freeware version to full version and it is saving OK now. Also since disabling sound I have not had any issues with saving or it freezing up.

So I recommend having a clean backup copy of the game in case your save goes on the fritz, you can then transfer the save to the new copy.

I also had some success with going into VICE settings>sound settings>sample rate>and changing the sample rate from the default 44100Hz to the low 8000Hz. It doesn’t sound as crisp but it at least gives you the music. And so far it hasn’t crashed but will have to keep an eye out on that.

I’m focusing now on trying to train my Priest up enough levels so that he can use Excommunication against the Demons and Demon Brides, although ideally it would be best to have Word of Recall available so i can teleport from the dungeon back to the castle.

Additionally, I found my first Potion. (Giant Strength)

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