Part 65: The Assassination of GarzahdUpdate 060 The Assassination of Garzahd
Ugh, no more waiting, I suppose.
Are you sure? I feel like there's so many things we've missed! Random corners we haven't bumped our heads into yet!
Don't get too carried away, the longer this mission waits, the more entrenched he becomes.
There are ssstill zome preparationssss we need to do.
Gain Sssmokey Crystalz for the Mind Duel, az well as Mana Potions for uz. There can be no hope of retreat oncsse we are committed.
To the end.
Besides, we have help. We're not going in alone, even if it's likely he's expecting us.
No, thank you. We know what you're going to be doing, so please, be careful.
Not shown is me running over to the encounter in the Waterfall Warrens that gives all my casters 150SP, then running back to the Tower of the Magi without a single combat encounter!
Vag Obb Tor.
Where are we?
There iz something to the sssouth.
This entity is supposed to be an 'angel' when compared to the Demons we encounter so much. It is also in this location back in Exile 1, but I forgot about it, and never got the encounter. If you enter the Portal, you are teleported back to the Tower of the Magi, but we are here to stay.
Funny, I feel like I should know who or what that is, but it's not coming to me.
We still don't know where we are.
It's warm, but cold at the same time.
This is Grah-Hoth's fortress.
Are you sssertain?
Yes. This is the place.
I don't think we should try that.
Indeed. Let me show you what happens when you try to cross this chasm, or the ones in front of Garzahd's pad.
You go splat. Time to reload!
Come on then, there's only one way forward.
This seems like a really bad idea.
But it's so audacious that it has to work! Right?
No, it will because we are who we are.
I still don't understand what it is you're talking about.
That's easy.... Wait. What is that?
I knew I should have exterminated them first.
If you haven't rescued Caffren-Bok, and asked for Rentar-ihrno's help in the assault, you will be stopped here, and forced to head back into Exile to do so.
I don't get it, why didn't he attack us here?
Bravado to hide panic.
He never expected anyone to get this close, so he's scrambling.
She's right. There's no real defensive line here.
Well then, for one last time, shall we kick down the door and loot the place?
Why not? It's not like we can do more or less now.
This first room actually has semi-randomized enemies. There is a Doomguard in the back for sure, but the other four can be chosen from Haakai, Mung Demons, normal Demons, Imperial Dervishes and Empire Archers.
The Haakai taking damage is something I will figure out where and why later.
You would think they would wait for us to come in before charging to their dooms.
Hey! A Lich!
And them as well.
I think we let the Doom Guard problem get out of hand.
At least this Chain Mail will be useful.
Yeah, some people *cough*Marianna*cough* are still using non-magic armor.
We have the Athame still?
If we attempt to Cross the Rune, with or without the Athame, we will take about 100 points of damage to each PC. Not acceptable for the final dungeon.
However, Cutting the rune only deals about 10 damage to each person in the party, and breaks the rune so that if/when you cross that point again, you don't have to worry about the damage involved ever agin.
Interezting teleporter. I wonder where it goess?
Well, no way to find out. The gate is shut, and there are no secret passages in.
Quick! Cover your eyes!
I save-scum my way north through this room, which will come back to annoy me later.
Lots of storage here. But not enough for large amounts of people.
This is a private headquarters, I don't think Garzahd would like to share.
Well, in that case, there has to be something here worth taking.
Why would he have cursed items here? What's the point? They're traps for the unwary, not something to be used!
That is certainly an idea. Stuff made here to punish those who have failed now that Exile isn't an option, and death is too much?
Oh, hey, Kai-lyss? Found these. Figure you could use them.
Neat Library. Wonder what's in it?
Not much. Mostly base magical research on this side.
Nothing behind the barrier here.
A Lich for a Librarian.
Should dessstroy on way out.
Perhapsss. We zhall see.
Well, there's a solid wall blocking us off from the east side of the fortress. Might as well.
You never get tired of walking through portals, do you?
For the uneducated?
Gehenna is a cursed place, full of fire and evilness.
What, you mean like the four demons we killed while walking over here?
I wizh to conssserve my energies, and will not Ssshockwave our way through here.
Two Rakshasa's and a few demons. Let me put up Firewalk again, and we'll be good to go.
I cannot imagine how bad this place would be without Firewalk!
And with all them dead, there's only one portal out of here.
Right. Sure. There's only two of you.
At a long-ignored suggestion from the thread, I try a certain spell I have never cast because Art is so much better at dealing damage with her weapons. Wound!
For some reason, this spell bypasses the normal immunity to magic that Rakshasas have, so it's a nice way for Art to keep dealing damage while Marianna runs around to stab them with Demonslayer.
And she kills both of them in one turn once she gets to them, thanks to Art and Dmurr pelting them at range with spells and arrows.
Well, this explains why Demons and Haakai were dying earlier.
This room, and the one above it are filled with random Wall of Blade tiles that appear and evaporate with time. That's whats been harming/killing enemies off screen.
As long as it doesn't open up on us, I think we're good.
This teleporter leads us back to Gehenna.
And more demons that are dead before we got here to do malfunctioning defensive systems.
And that's the library. So, how do we get to the other side?
There iz one more location we have yet to check for a portal or access point. Perhapss to ungate the portal in the ssecond room.
Oh, where would that be?
.... you bastard.
And stay dead!
Yeah, I see the place where it's hidden.
Well, this is new.
At least they're being honest about what's coming up.
Well, time to go to work.
This teleporter leads back to Gehenna.
This one does not.
It's quiet here.
Rooms on all sides, meant for humans.
One last treasure chest, for the road.
What doez that mean?
It means giving up a life of stealing from locked chests owned by other people.
I don't see a problem with that.
Anyone for lunch?
No thanks. No way I would trust any of that.
Someone's private room?
Can't be Garzahd's. We went through there back in the Ziggurat.
It iz an infirmary actually.
I'm sorry, but seeing this place, full of evil and vile creations have an infirmary of all things?
The faster sick people recover, the sooner they can go to work. Besides, I don't think people who worked and ate here are on punishment detail.
Speaking of, where are they? We went through the rooms, and not a single person.
Probably sent out to deal with problems like the Teleporter and Akhronath.
Well, here's the only possible way out.
I have a ssssuspission about szomething.
The lever opened the gate.
Let's do it.
There is a hidden tile in front of us that spawns in Blade Walls everywhere, and we have to fight through them. However, thanks to being in combat mode at the time, I get one free turn before they all spawn in.
Oh, come on! Why don't you come out here and fight?
Or we could go to them...?
Alright, let's take a few moments, rest ourselves, then do this.
Click the next image for a Video of the Final Battle! Warning! It is 22 Minutes long!
First thing is first, make sure you have Major Blessing cast a couple times.
And thiz iz how I win.
Mind Duel is a contest between two mages. They compare their Intelligence, their level and if one has a Ring of Will or not (Kai-Lyss has two of them). They then start draining SP from each other, and as you saw in the video, Kai-Lyss won more often than not. Usually between 4 and 8 times per casting, this contest takes place.
By itself, this is little more than an annoyance. What really kicks in is when one party runs out of Spell Points, and is Mind Duelled again. They become Dumbfounded. And when they are sufficiently dumbfounded, they die as their brain explodes.
Please note that it took me 23 castings of Mind Duel to pull that off, and Garzahd was casting spells every turn to help drive his SP down. I came into the fight with 46 crystals. And now, on with the end!
Come on! Let's get out of here so Rentar-Ihrno's portal doesn't close on us!
The six fall in a heap in the Portal room of the Tower of Magi. Around them are dozens of mages and warriors. Human, Vahantai, Slithzerikai, even a couple Nephil. One of the Vahnatai mages steps forward and makes an incantation with her hands. The portal behind them shimmers, then realigns itself away from Garzahd's fortress.
There is silence in the room as the six pull themselves together, battered, bloodied and bruised from their attack.
You know? Art asked as she leaned on her knees, twin blades strapped to her hips.
Yes, Art-Iktah. Rentar-Ihrno says as she examines the portal with the faintest measure of respect. Garzahd is dead.
At the proclamation, every Exile in the room exploded into cheers. It was infectious, and the celebratory mood got into even the Vahnatai contingent.
Yess, Kai-lyss said as he rose to his fullest height. I did it myself.
So we scryed, Solberg emerged from the crowd and offered a hand to the massive Slithzerikai wizard. I'm glad my advice helped.
Kai-lyss gingerly removed the two rings from his clawed hands, and dropped them into Solberg's own. They were of much help.
So I see, Solberg had trouble hearing over the roar that was expanding into the Tower, messengers already being sent to the Castle and everywhere else. What are you going to do now, General?
Return to my people, Mage. Kai-lyss looked around, and saw those who recognized him. They will need a... proven leader to lead them in reclaiming our homesss.
Solberg nodded. I understand. For what it's worth, General Karmas is willing to lead an expedition to aid you in that regard. You can find him in the Castle.
Thank you, Mage.
For Art, she winced as another person embraced her, her fresh wounds not even covered with a layer of protective skin made by magic. Every time she tried to cast the spell to heal her, she was interrupted again, until one person made a clear circle around her.
Hey, she looked up and saw Peregrine the Fourth trying very hard not to smile. So, uh, sorry you missed that.
I'm not. I was busy helping Rentar-Ihrno align the portal from where you got dropped off to pick you up. She is quite intelligent, and I have some ideas regarding how to start constructing a proper portal network across Exile, and down into the Olgai-Vahnatai lands.
You are not as crude as I thought you were, human, Rentar-Ihrno said as she gracefully strode over to the two humans. We are in your debt, Art-Iktah. Our revenge on the Empire will be long and complete. They will rue the day they stole our elders from us, of this you have my solemn word.
Art shook her head. Really? You know that phrase 'rue the day' is usually said by the villain of the story, right?
Peregrine gave a barking laugh. To the Empire, we are all villains! Yes! Let them rue the day! Let them know that we are a people that cannot be cowed! FOR EXILE! FOR THE VAHNATAI! FOR EVERYONE! WE! WILL! BE! FREE!
FREE! The cheer was taken up, Peregrine's lapse in self control would later be attributed to Art herself, another piece of her story given to her by the ones who knew the truth.
Aarth-Tss heard this and sighed, a calm center in the storm. She was right, from the beginning. Legends are. They are not created or made, they simply exist in of themselves. Soon, she would return to Gnass with her skills and new found wisdom. She would guard the borders with pride.
And when it was time, she would carve a statue of the ones who slew the Great Evils. In that manner, they would be remembered forever.
At the entrance to the Tower, three others breathed in the still air. I don't know about you guys, but I really think its time to retire. Dmurr shook her body to work out some kinks in her muscles. Bow and arrows strapped to her back, she looked north. Maybe go to Mertis, get a drink.
You haven't had a drink in weeks, Marianna chided the Nephil archer. To think you were drunk when we first arrived in Fort Ganrick!
You were, Chester agreed with Marianna. Besides, I think you can leave the service, but there will still be need of us in the future. We have cut the head off the snake, but the Empire still remains, here and on the surface.
Marianna looked to him in worry. You're staying in the army?
Chester nodded. I thought I would make a good soldier, but I was wrong. I'm not there yet. I think I still have more to offer unspecified services.
Shaking her head sadly, Marianna could do nothing else. I suppose I will have to go with you then, to keep your dunderheadedness out of trouble.
Well, I suppose I could go to Almaria instead for that drink, Dmurr mused aloud. And someone should be there to watch your back now that we're leaving our mighty leader behind.
Glad to have you! Chester offered his hand, and the two females took it. Let's go be our own heroes, shall we?
Thank you all for enjoying this Let's Play of Exile 2: Crystal Souls. I want to thank everyone who posted in my thread. There's a lot more of you this time than there was for my first game, but that doesn't make any of you less important.
Still, thanks to TooMuchAbstraction and MagusOfStars, both for being guys who would point out what I missed in the game. And to TMA again for starting to play through Avernum for us.
To Gullwhacker, for being a sounding board for some of my ideas, stupid ones didn't get by him.
To my dad, for letting me play this game when I was younger, and for reminding me to go to bed on time. And my mom as well, because I'm a good son. Right?
And thank you all for reading. I will see you next time, for the conclusion of the Exile Trilogy Exile 3: Ruined World.