Part 1: Welcome to (Fort) ExileChapter 000: Welcome to (Fort) Exile
Where am I?
"OW! FWCK! My Nowse!"
"Sorry about that. The first step is a doozy."
"Huh? And who are yow suppowsed to be?"
And this is the chat screen. On the upper left, you can see the picture of the person you are talking too, then what you want to ask them, then below that you get what they're saying in response to the question. (When you start a conversation, it defaults to the answer to 'Look'.) The bottom right is the buttons to ask a question, and finish the conversation (or you can just hit the enter button and type "bye" respectively).
The lower left has the buy/sell buttons to shortcut merchants. Help should be obvious, but "Save"?
Save is a lifesaver.
Save dumps the current response and amends it to a file called 'talksave.txt'.
That's right, the game comes with its own transcription service!
At the suggestion of one of you nice Goons, I'm going to be Bolding the relevant keywords in a discussion. You can assume that in all conversations the first thing I'll ask is 'Name' and 'Job'.
"I am Andrew. On behalf of King Micah, not to mention your thousands of fellow inmates, I would like to welcome you to Exile."
"Ow. Gimme a second, please. Nose hurts."
"Take your time."
"Thanks. So, um, I'm Art. You said your name's Andrew? What do you do around here?"
"I wait for new arrivals, such as yourselves, and welcome them. I suppose you could say that I'm more to ease the considerable shock of being cast into the Underwold of course. So. Welcome to the underworld." He pauses to think. "Also, I'm here to say where you can get information about Exile, and supplies."
"Yes, Exile. That's what we call this place. We're all exiles here, after all. Sort of makes sense." He smiles sadly.
"Alright then, change of tack here. Supplies? Cause they didn't exactly toss me through the Portal with a pocket full of coin."
"Oh, weren't we all? You see, to prevent certain problems, new arrivals are sent to Tor to get modest supplies to support themselves until they find work. He's in the building to the south. We've found doing otherwise results in desperate, dangerous, and violent new citizens."He paused to take a breath. "This way, you'll have a fair chance. What you do with it when you leave here is your business.
"To the south then?"
"Yep, that building over there."
Well, walking back through the Portal won't get me out of here. Maybe I should see this Tor person.
This is the mini-map. It's a separate window from the main screen, and shows the current known map of your location, be it indoors or outdoors. I'll avoid showing this in the future unless it's the complete version of the area. The clear section is what I've explored, the purple dot is the party. Enemies show up as red.
"Alright, here I am. I think this is the spot. Check the sign first. Always read signs."
"Good. Hello? Mister Tor?"
Sitting behind the counter is a tall man, wearing bronze armor. Behind him is a large rack of crude stone weapons. He says, in a deep voice, "I am Tor, weapons handler of Fort Exile."
"Wait. Andrew back there," she tossed a thumb over her shoulder, "said you were in charge of the supplies."
"Well, sometimes I maintain the weapons of the guards, sometimes I guard travellers going to Silvar, but mostly I give supplies to newcomers."
"Uh, what supplies?"
"These." He tossed a bag of stuff at Art, who caught it deftly. Inside was some food, some money, and some crude weapons.
He looked at the items in har hands with distain. "Pretty crude work, huh? Sure, we give supplies to new people. But it's not enough to cause bandits to go after you, nor is it enough to take up banditry yourself. Metal is rare down here, and the tools to work them rarer still. And magic?" He snorts. "Good luck with that. Now go."
"Alright, I don't think I should be leaving just yet. Need to get my bearings first." She looked to the north and saw someone kneeling over by what looked like a pool of water up against the wall.
"Hello! I'm Art, and I'm new here. You are?"
"Hello Dunbar. What do you do around here?"
"I'm the groundskeeper. And gardener. And fix-it man. I like gardening best, but I do what they need."
"You're a gardener? That's so cool!"
"Yeah. We've bred some pretty weird plants down here. All sorts of mushrooms for food and fodder. Those weird twisted trees for what little wood we have. And so on. Mages make the plants, I grow 'em."
Her face dropped. "Mages?"
"Yeah. They live in a tower to the south or something. All the wizards go there. They do all the standard weird stuff with demons and such, but they make plants too. Without them, we'd all be dead."
"Thank you." She left Dunbar abruptly.
"Right. Mages. Fuck 'em all."
No, I am not go and watch my language! I have enough problems as it is without you commenting about that!
What does that have to do with anything, huh? Smartass.
"Thank goodness for small favours. Well, seeing as how I'm on a self-guided tour, let's keep going."
"Huh. Barracks. Let's see what's up with that.
You see a powerfully built woman, wearing chain mail with a strange insignia on it. Her reddish cheeks contrast strongly with the paleness of the rest of her skin.
I can see that! Hello! I'm Art, and I'm new here.
Sooo... what do you do around here? I heard from Tor about there being bandits?
"I'm the guard captain for the barracks here at Fort Exile. We got a bunch of good men here, and when the Nephilim come for us, we'll give 'em a good run. We work best on defense."
Wait! Wait! What about the Nephilim?
"Yeah. It's a tough job, but important. If the Nephilim take this fort, newly arriving humans fall into their hands. And then..." She draws her thumb across her neck, and makes a charming noise. "I have little hope for peace, I'm afraid."
But I thought they went extinct, or had been civilized!
You'd best talk to Thairl about that.
I think I'd better. Where is he?
Along the west wall of the fort, small building right across from Tor's storage shed.
Let's see here West wall... Well, there's a sign over there. What does it say?
Excellent! Right place!
Holy Shit! Books!
Hello? Thairl? My name is Art, and apparently I'm supposed to talk to you?
You see a slender, worried looking man, wearing impeccably pressed wizards robes. He sits behind a book-laden desk.
Are you really going to keep doing that?
"Allow me to introduce myself. I am Thairl. I am the sage for Fort Exile." The corner of his mouth twitches slightly.
So, what does that mean? Your job, I mean.
He grimaces. "I'm here to help you."
And Help means...?
"Well, every day or so, our benevolent overlords above hurl a few more souls into the hellish cesspit. Then they come to me, and I tell them just how bad things are here." he chuckles dryly. "Normally, I'd be cheery, but today I'm just not in the mood."
Someone needs a vacation.
"Anyway, I'm here to give information."
Oh! Yes! I was looking for that. What do you know?
For example, on our lovely neighbours, the Nephilim and the Slithzerikai. Or on nearby towns. Or on your chances for escape. Or on how you get supplies. Or on the local politics."
I know about the Kitties. But what are the Slithzerikai?
He smiles. Nice pronounciation. Most people trip up and call them Slitherizaki, or just the Slith. Anyways they're lizards. Only live below ground. Intelligent, powerful fighters, very magically talented. We've been at war with them for years, and lately things have been at a stalemate. They live to the west."
Well, I already picked up Supplies from Tor, so that makes the next question about towns and politics.
"Each town has a mayor. The mayors form a council. The council co-rules with King Micah, lord of our homey little pit. Micah lives in The Great Cave. To get there, go a ways south, and a ways west." He stopped to look Art up and down. "By the way, the Council meets in the Castle. It's a place you should know about."
"It's our pride and joy. We built a real castle, of rocks, crude magic, and spit. King Micah lives there, orchestrating our desperate defenses. You should see it. It's reasonably impressive. It's in the Great Cave, to the southwest."
So that just leaves esca....
Thairl cuts her off. "No chance. None whatsoever. We all stay down here until monsters hunt us down like dogs."
For once, I agree. Thank you for your time, sir. I'll be going now!
Don't come back soon!
Like I have anything better to do. Did you see this junk Tor gave me? Is this obsidian?
And what are these? Throwing Darts?
Well, at least the armour is semi-decent, and has actual metal on the shield and head.
Oh, there's that sign you told me about. Let's see what it says.
But Exile has only been used for, like, less than 20 years.
That's... that's sick! Children? They're innocent!
Oh, that's it! I'm going to get out of here, I'm going to give the Emperor and piece of my mind, and then...! Then....! I'm going on vacation! To a beach somewhere!
What do you mean, wait?
Now what? Who am I waiting for?
- - - - -
Art needs help if she's going to get out of here. And that's where you Goons come in. Exile has room for 6 people in the party, and I'd like for the rest of you to submit characters to fill out our band of heroes.
Check out the post on Character Creation and design a PC. Remember that you have 60 skill points and unlimited funds. Write up a backstory or character description and post it in the thread. Try not to come up with too many similar characters if you please, although collaboration between you guys is quite acceptable.
I'll pick one of the submissions straight out to join the party, and then I'll leave the other four slots open to voting.