The Let's Play Archive

Beyond Divinity

by Stabbey_the_Clown

Part 30: City of Chaos

Music - "A Forest Dark and Deep"
Download (Thanks to Grawl)

Chapter 26 - City of Chaos

Getting past the gate guards was the easiest part.

Halt! Do you walk the Path of Chaos?
You're with a Death Knight. He should really do his homework!
Would I have a Death Knight with me if I didn't?
Oh, eh… yes, I guess so! You'll have to forgive my mistrust, but we've had recent attacks by Raanaar rebels… so move along now!

And just like that, the gates to the temple opened. It became clear immediately, that it was not just a temple, but a walled city, with streets and other buildings, although the temple proper was straight down the road from the gate. Finding anything else however, could take a little longer.

Hey there, how's it going? You look lost, do you need directions?
You can give me directions?
Well, you'll have to pay a few coins… 10 gold for the ink and such… do we have a deal?
There are lots of useful places around here. Let me mark them on your map…

The man wrote on Mort's map.

Let's head to the temple right away. Samuel probably wouldn't expect us to seek out another sanctuary of Chaos, but I'd rather not take any chances, human.
I agree.

A pair of indistinguishable guards blocked Mort from entering the church.

Halt! You are not allowed to enter the church…
Why is that? What if we want to praise the Lord?
Don't waste your breath on these idiots. Simply send them to the Keeper of Ranks…
You have to excuse him… he has a bad time right now… bad tooth, you know, and afraid to see the doctor… But he's right, if you want to enter, you have to become the number one if you want to enter the church…
What happens behind these doors?
Don't ask me… [whispers] I only know the Bishop isn't in his best mood… Sometimes you can hear him shout in anger…
[shudders] I doubt all these sounds come from the Bishop…

Mort checked his map. The keeper of ranks was in the building to the left of the entrance gate.

New faces are always welcome here. At least, human ones, hahahaha… have you come to enter the contest?
What contest?
All humans are allowed to participate… We have a strict hierarchy here in the temple. The better you are doing, the more quests from the Lord of Chaos that you solve and the more opponents you defeat, the higher your rank will be… What's your name?
Why'd you give your real name, stupid human? Samuel might not be here, but he could easily have sent word to keep an eye out for us!
Sorry, it just slipped out.
If your idiocy gets us caught, I'm sure your apology will be of *great* comfort to us in the torture chamber!

I'll put your name on the list. From now on, all your deeds will have an influence on your rank.
Tell him we just want to talk to the head of the temple and gain access to the sanctuary to lift the curse on this wretched dolly!
I need to speak to the head of the temple.
You want to talk to our Bishop only the highest ranking member is allowed to do so… I've told you, your rank is in this book… See for yourself… are you the highest ranking member? I think not! In fact, the opposite seems to be true… so run along now and get busy!
Jumped-up little pen-pusher!
Who are you?
I'm the Keeper of Ranks, this is all you need to know.
What do you do?
I keep record of our rankings here…
How does the ranking work?
We have a strict hierarchy here in the temple. The better you are doing, the more quests from the Lord of Chaos that you solve and the more opponents you defeat, the higher your rank will be… only the highest ranking member will be allowed to speak to the Bishop.
What do you know about the Church?
Only the highest-ranked member of our community can enter the church and see our Bishop.
Tell me about the Bishop.
The Bishop is a wise man, head of our temple and the first servant of the Lord of Chaos.
Can I see the book of ranks please?
You wish to see your rank? Very well…

"About the Game" posted:

Yes, the game has just told us that we need to go do a bunch of side-quests before we can proceed with the main quest. This is frankly rather poorly-disguised padding. At least in Act 2, you could skip to the end pretty much right away if you wanted to.

Thankfully, though, moving up the ranks is a lot less daunting than it appears. Doing a typical quest will give you 1500 or 2500 rank points, so just one quest will jump us from 13th to 8th place, and if we choose well, we will only need to do 4 or 5 quests to advance the main plot.

Some quests are more interesting than others, and to save on boredom and speed things along, I've chosen the four most interesting and involved quests.

Many of these names are those of quest-givers and other important people in the temple, so they will come up again.

VIDEO: Temple Billboard (The 'Game Show Announcer' voice acting makes this video worth watching.)

Important notice for all temple members! As most of you have heard by now, an expedition party that was sent out to look for signs of the Damned One has bee missing for a few weeks. The temple is looking for adventurers to find them, in exchange for a rank increase. Don't forget to regularly check your rank with the Keeper of the Ranks. You might be number one without even knowing it…
Sounds tedious.
And I'm not really that keen on increasing the number of evil monks anyway.

Attention! The temple is looking for someone to retrieve a missing holy relic of the Damned One. During its transportation to the temple, one of the monks dropped the relic whilst running from ghosts in the haunted ruins. Those who are capable of retrieving the artifact from the ruins are encouraged to go talk to Brother Raze. Don't forget to regularly check your rank with the Keeper of the Ranks. You might be number one without even knowing it…
Fetching some item? Bleh. Boring!
Important notice to any mercenaries available. A warlock in the outside territories has asked for assistance in finding out about some strange happenings in his vicinity. His house is south-east of the Temple of Raan. Don't forget to regularly check your rank with the Keeper of the Ranks. You might be number one without even knowing it…
Hmmm… now THIS sounds interesting.
Yeah, I guess. … Come on, let's take a tour of the city. Maybe we can find some other work.

This isn't even the season for it. It is quite disconcerting, I tell you.
Yes, I know. The cook even saw one in the temple. He started chasing it, with a couple of other guys. Eventually they managed to scare it out of there, but they were never quite able to catch it, or kill it for that matter.
They certainly are very hard to get rid of. I just hope our hope is clean. My wife certainly couldn't stand having those pests running around.
What in the name of Chaos are these guys talking about?
Tibar really are the scourge of this area. Rats have nothing on them. As far as I'm concerned, they should all be killed on sight!
We have a saying around here: they breed like tibar. So you can imagine people get very nervous when they discover one of those buggers in their house!

Near the entrance to one of the cemeteries surrounding the temple, Mort and D.K. acquired a hanger-on.

'ello there! Do you know where little children come from? No-one wants to tell me…
Neither do I.

Mort and D.K. quickly tried to walk away, but the child continued to follow.

"About the Game" posted:

Once you pick her up near the east graveyard, the little girl will follow you everywhere aboveground within the Citadel walls. But no, she won't actually talk to you unless you click on her.

Greetings, in the name of Chaos… Come in, come in!
Do you have any work going?
As a matter of fact, I might have a job for you, if it pleases the Chaos Lord… There's something in the tomb pf a crypt, that I would very much like to get my hands on. … I've read about it in that book on the table, which I found here in the temple. It's all about a family tragedy… so sad. … A father, a jealous sister, a loving daughter, a kidnap… that kind of thing… But the fact is, the father was an important magician of a race who lived in this world, and he was buried in the crypt of this temple… I want to have his amulet, if it pleases the Chaos Lord… I will offer you some very special merchandise, if you do this favour for me. …if it pleases the Chaos Lord, of course!
What's your name?
I am Daniel, the merchant.
What do you know about the crypts?
The creatures who lived here in this world buried their important people in the crypt… some of them were mages… quite powerful, if I read the texts correctly.
I wanna know why the sky is blue… You got any idea?

The crypt was easy enough to find, but the door was locked.

"About the Game" posted:

We can't actually complete this quest yet, and it doesn't contribute to rank points anyway, but we'll get to it in due time.

You can't enter here… leave this area!
I wonder who the important prisoner is that they're keeping in here.

Well hellooo to you! You shouldn't hang around here, you know. Us witches have a bad reputation. You might catch it too, if you hang around too much.
So, you're a witch?
That was a hint, human, in case you didn't understand!
Yes, I'm Cassandra the witch, and if you bother me long enough, I'll give you more than just a bad reputation. Now toddle off, stranger!
Where do dead people go to? I wonder where grandpa is now… is he with my goldfish?

When will this gruesome challenge between these two assassins end?
Don't know man, they have been at it for quite a while, and I still don't see a clear winner. … They're both extremely professional, and they won't be easily caught off-guard.
That's for sure! Makes it all the more exciting, though!

The two men walked into a building which claimed to be the local tavern. Mort and D.K. followed them in.

What's on your mind?
What do you know about the rankings?
That's one of my favorite subjects. Did you know you can even place bets on them? … Or so I've heard. At any rate, big changes are coming, I can feel it in my bones, and my bones never lie!

Welcome to my bar, stranger. Do you need something?
Maybe, what do you have?
Well, I know nearly everything that's going on in this temple, so ask away…

Mort slipped him some coins, and the Bartender poured him a glass of ale. It wasn't very good.

Can you tell me a bit about the church and bishop?
That Black Bishop is the most terrifying member of this temple. He is feared by all and seemingly never leaves his church. He has countless demons there, and undead who protect him, and every night he performs unspeakable acts of evil.
He performs evil acts in a church?
Can you try to forget for one minute that you're NOT supposed to be a Paladin anymore, human?
Aye, a church! But not the kind you're used to, I'll wager. This one is the home of sacrifices, death, and rituals of the most vile kind. I'd rather not talk of it any more, if you know what I mean…

Mort took a sip of his ale and made a face.

What do you know about the ranking system?
Aaah, well, I don't know who's on top, but I can tell you this much. Ever since the Black Ring took over this temple, they've been at it. Fighting, power-mongering, back-stabbing deals, you name it! Every trick in the book… And this ranking thing… well, it's what they use to see who's the biggest evil-doer of them all! But they're all customers to me, no ranking will change that!

Another sip.

What about thieving?
If you're looking for that sort of thing, I know just the person.
As a matter of fact, he happens to be sitting in that dark shadowy corner over there.
But keep your business between the two of you. I don't want no trouble in my tavern!
Thanks for your time.

I don't care what they say! I know the score. The goods didn't come in because the bloody supply train got ambushed again!
Don't get so worked up. The Ring will take care of these rebels soon enough. And then you can stock up on those parsley plants as much as you want…
I bet you they didn't even try to salvage anything when they found the site, or they just took it all for themselves.
Yeah, I know, it's a damn shame. Someone should have a word with these mercenaries…
I miss my parsley, fish never tastes the same without it…
Where the hell do they even grow anything on this forsaken planet anyway?
Don't ask me, human. Death Knights do not tend gardens.

Mort and D.K. left the bar and walked until they saw a clearly agitated man pacing back and forth.

What are you looking at, huh? Do you like staring at cripples?
You don't look like a cripple!
I've been cursed! Those foul imps, they'll stop at nothing to thwart us humans. … I know it sounds strange, but I feel like I'm turning into a crystal, my limbs are all stiff… my skin is getting more and more rigid by the hour, and my wife has told me I feel like an ice block, so she keeps kicking me out of bed! But, I guess you don't care anyway… can you help me?
This sounds interesting.
Yes, I'll help.
You're kidding, right? No? Well then, if you could pay the Black Imp a visit, maybe he'll listen to you. Whatever it takes, do it… so I can get back to my natural life. If he lifts the curse, I'll reward you any way I can!
If that includes recommending me for a rank increase, then consider it done.
I've had enough walking around the city.
Yeah, let's go see that imp first.

Ah, you again… have 'nother question for you. Strange sounds at night coming from bedroom of mummy and daddy. Do you know what they're doing?
Of course not! He's a Paladin!

They headed towards the Imp's lair which had been marked on the map, but the sounds of combat drew their attention.

Hey you! Come here! …uhm, I mean could you please approach me. Yes, over here… the tibar. Don't be shy now…
A talking tibar?
I'm no tibar you moron! Hehe, sorry… I'm just a victim of circumstances. You see, that blasted witch Cassandra turned me into a tibar. … I'm normally a powerful warlock. She couldn't compete with my powers… no one can in this region of Nemesis… so she tricked me with her feminine charms and put this curse on me.
What feminine charms?!
I'll have her blood crawl out of her skin for this!!! Uhm, never mind that. Maybe you could convince her to undo this curse and help me out. I will be most generous with you afterwards…
Could you recommend me for a rank increase at the temple?

Okay, I'll try.
You'd better try real good or else! Aaaah… don't mind me. This curse is making me very temperamental. … That's jolly good of you then. I should warn you, however, she won't be very co-operative. If you cannot convince her with words, then I have something else for her. [Chuckles] This here scroll contains a curse which all women loathe, be they witch or not.
What curse?
This is more like it!
IT'S A VERMIN CURSE YOU IDIOT! Oooh sorry, sorry, I got carried away again… You'll just need a couple of extra ingredients: a bad dose of smelly cheese and some bat guano.

Mort and D.K. reached the edge of the island in the lava, and they checked their map again.

We're going the wrong way. The imp cave is across the lava, we need to head the other direction.

We should be careful now… we're entering a dangerous part of this world. There are stories about Raanaar rebels attacking humans on sight… We must try to avoid them.
Sounds like a good idea. I'm not sure it would be healthy for us to be caught by the Raan… OH CRAP!

If you want to avoid us, human, I suggest you don't wear armor that creaks like a rusty door…
We're in trouble!

The Map

Other Things

There are a couple of free resistance crystals for the taking.

There's also a well-hidden Battlefield key.

Good luck finding that without a walkthrough.

This is where you start to see a lot of Raanaar books. Various buildings in the compound have Raanaar books. They're readable, but I wish the final alphabet book was findable before  the point of no return in this act. 

They just didn't care

Other Quests available:

I will NOT be doing these as part of the narrative, and probably not even at all until I reach Rank 1 in the temple hierarchy. At that time, I might show off some of these BRIEFLY if there's interest.

The Two Assassins - One assassin wishes to hire us to kill his rival. (multiple outcomes)
The Missing Book - A blind priest of Chaos has misplaced a book and wishes us to retrieve it.
The Book of Twilight - A witch wishes to study a book from an old Raanaar library on Ruins Island (multiple outcomes)
The Lost Artifact - Brother Raze wants an artifact retrieved from a site on Ruins Island
The Missing Monks - A party of monks went missing in the Crystal Forest
Ball in the well - A child lost a ball in a well and wants us to retrieve it from the monster below
The caravan attack - Mutants attacked a caravan of goods. The merchant wants some or all of the shipment back. (multiple outcomes)

Optional Reader Participation

1) A Black Ring general thinks a merchant is making money illegitimately. The merchant is, but he says that he has 6 cats to feed. Turn the merchant in, or let him go?
Turn Him In = 2
Let Him Go = 3

2) In the current quest area, there's a man who claims Imps are trying to kill him. This is because he massacred a village of them. This quest does NOT give any rank points either way.
2a) Do this completely offscreen, Do this in summary, or part of the narrative?
2b) Side with the Imps, Side with the Human, or whatever gives the most XP

(Default is leave it offscreen.)