The Let's Play Archive

Realms of Arkania III: Shadows over Riva

by Bobbin Threadbare

Part 10: Session 8: Totally Not Ripping Off Moria: Floor #2

Session 8: Totally Not Ripping Off Moria: Floor #2

“I can’t remember the name, but the main villain was all, “I’m your father,” and there was this empire killing everybody with this fucking awesome death machine, but then the main characters ran in and killed the empire.”

That’s still not very descriptive.

“No kidding. I think you just described Star Wars.”

“What, really? …Oh hey, you’re right! Weird.”

Shall we get started?

“I’ve been waiting for a while now, yes.”

So, last time you guys explored everywhere except in the cave-in, and we did all the running-around-town stuff already.

We go through.

One after another, with a bit of distance between each of you, you crawl through the opening.

Well, that was fast.

Oh yes, there’s going to be quite a bit of combat on the second level.

Nothing particularly exciting about this one. However, I would like to note that those extra-light bows are really paying for themselves in orc corpses.

Nothing past the orcs except the next floor down.

Then what are we waiting for?


You’re being helpful. Now shut up and listen, all of you. Obviously, an orc patrol is approaching, as you hear steps and the orcs’ grunting. You immediately press your backs against the wall as tight as possible.

No we don’t.
Seriously, can’t I get off a Paralyze on them when they poke their heads into the hallway?

Just wait and listen, you’ll see why I’m doing it like this. So anyway,

One of the orcs turns and sees you. In alarm, he totters backwards on the slope. As he falls, he tries to grab onto his friend. The result is that both fall over the edge with a loud cry. Lewis, vVorpax heard them talking, and they said that there wouldn’t be anything left of the dwarf but skin and bones soon. And when they dumped him down the hole, they talked about monsters.

So you had us wait in order to see a couple orcs dump a body, then fall down the chute?

I figured it was at least more interesting than killing yet another two orcs.

He has a point.
Fine, fine. So can we see down the slope?

Not really, no.

Can we chuck something down?

What do you have to chuck? I remember that you made Thorgrim sell his lantern.

Let’s just slide down.
What about the monsters?
Too late, sliding down.

You might as well go after him. It’s not that bad, really.

I’ll go. Belle isn’t afraid of monsters.
Fine, we all slide down the garbage chute, apparently.

Do not.

There isn’t an “arachnophobia” stat, so I decided to go with Curiosity.

That makes no sense.

Oh look, the spiders are coming!

Seriously, you couldn’t have used Claustrophobia instead? Paul would have been fine with pretending to scream like a little girl.

Hey, William?


Spider butt.

It’s funny, looking back. I sucked so bad at this combat back in the day, I was honestly despairing when I finally won and found out my reward was even more spiders. But as you can see here, I’m now good enough to get by with only one significant injury.

How come she gets to level up first?

She fought the skeleton warrior all by herself, remember?

Oh yeah…

Once again, leveling up lets you improve a positive stat, get a chance to decrease a negative stat, plus 20 skill points for non-magic characters. In this case, I increased Belle’s Strength to 19, lowered her Superstition to get that bonus to magic resistance, and tried (and failed) to make her Sword skill move up at all. Two-handed weapons are up to 9, though.

I could use some attention, here.
Don’t you have, like, a ton of herbs you can use?
Yes, but poison doesn’t always need herbs to cure it. Paul, if you please?

Looks like that worked fine.
And note that you can use this opportunity to heal LP as with Treat Wounds.
Fine, have another twelve hit points.
So what’s down here?

A humongous pile of bodies.

We search it.
Do we have to?
You make it sound like we’d actually have to dig through them ourselves. Come on, Bob, what’s inside?

Amulet? What’s it do?

I might as well tell you. Whoever holds it gets their Superstition reduced by 2.

Is that all?
Is that all?” Every point of Superstition reduction boosts magic resistance by 2! I think I should hold onto this.
My MR is the lowest, though. Shouldn’t we spread it out?
All the frontliners have magic items already. Let me show you this:

This brings current Superstition to 0.

13 on a scale of 20. How is that not awesome? Maybe I should start raising Courage after I get my Wisdom maxed…
Fine, but I’d like to get then next thing. Is there anything else down here?

Just extra space to justify the giant battle map.

Then how do we get up?

My wand turns into rope. I should go.

You know you’ll have to get up the hard way to secure the rope, right?

…Oh. Still, I said I’d go, so let’s roll the dice.

Fine. You survive the first slippery spot on the chute, climb up the easier, crack-filled portion, cross the pool of blood, but when your eyes finally get even with the passage ahead, your hand gets cut by a piece of glass and you fall aaaallllll the way back down.

Damn. I was close, wasn’t I?

Not quite close enough, it seems.

Make Thorgrim and his obscenely high 15 Climb skill go.

Ah, there we go.

Can we pick up everything not nailed down?

If you wanted to start your own mine somewhere, sure. None of the tools are all that valuable.

Can we at least make Thorgrim carry around a pickaxe?



Ah, this combat. I have such memories of this combat. This is the one where I gave up on the game the first time I played it. All the other tough combats were optional up to this point: the fights in the crypt were all optional if you knew which one had the priest’s body in it, and I gave up on the last fight with the demons until I found out how “compute combat” works. The magician would end up pretty beaten up, but it would get the job done; it wasn’t until later that I figured out how “magic weapon needed to hit” worked. The other hard fights, like the ones in the barracks and the dining room, could be avoided completely if you knew they were there, but the one you get from opening this door can never be circumvented. It wasn’t until much later, when I did things like “read the freaking manual,” discover which spells are more useful than the others, and buy armor ahead of time that I finally fed this combat its own ass, such as what happens in the above video.

Oh, and make a note, folks: don’t walk up to the elf. It’s just a bad idea.

So, now that everyone in it is dead, what’s in this room?

It’s another dining room, this one for the dwarves who are actively mining. The orcs were eating before they heard you coming.

Free meal? Sounds good to me.

Incidentally, you’re all now drunk.

Woohoo! Even better! “Aye, this soor whisky be hittin’ just th’ spoot!”
Ah, drunkenness. Lovely.

I goddamn hate being drunk. Not for the stat changes, which are about even overall, but because it forces you to wander left and right instead of going straight forward. Realistic? Yes. Annoying as all hell? Also yes.

This is a storage room, with several shelves full of looted containers and a few barrels of water.

Anything worth taking?

Some extra rations, licorice sticks, candy, and some dried loneberry.

We should take that last one.
So what’s loneberry good for?
In a pinch, it makes a pretty good health potion substitute. Whirlweed’s better, but it’s also more expensive. You also need loneberry flowers to make most health potions.
DAMN. And we haven’t been using these why?
Saving for a rainy day, same as all the potions we’ve gathered.
Can we deal with being drunk by drinking from the water barrels?

Not really. However…

So how do you deal with it? You could, say, climb in and take it out, or fish it out with a string or something.

Or we could just bust the thing open and take it from the pieces.


Yeah, make Thorgrim break it open near the bottom and let the water drain out.

That…sounds like it could work. Sure, Thorgrim busts open the barrel from the bottom and the water runs out. Your feet get soaked, but then the water finds some crack in the floor and runs off. Without any further problems, you take the box out.

There’s one option with a guaranteed success, and two that can fail horribly and/or cause damage to the one who tries. Which do you think I pick? And hell, if you’re thirsty, there’s another water barrel to use.

What’s in it?

Well, Thorgrim turns the box in both hands. By mistake, it slips and falls. Hitting the ground, the lid pops open, and a ring, a gold chain, and a gold armband fall out.

Kara tries them all on. Are any of them magical?

Er, nothing happens, at least.

We should get these identified the next time we’re outside.

I didn’t want to show this until after the gold loot was found. As you can see, being drunk has quite the effect on basic stats. Belle here had unaltered numbers before getting wasted, so it shouldn’t be too hard to figure out what liquor changes.

So it’s a target board? We should try using it.

…You’re going to throw axes at a target in the middle of a hostile mine?

Yeah, sure! Does anyone else want to? We could turn it into a contest.
Kara is better with missile weapons, but she refuses to get beaten in any throwing contest.
I’m game.
I’ll do it.
Since everyone else is…

Oy. Fine, everyone roll two throwing attempts. William, you first?

Me what?

Roll two throwing attempts.


I don’t really know, but everyone decided to hold an impromptu throwing contest.


Great, so everyone else, roll your attempts…alright, looks like Suzie and Lewis got last by only getting one axe to even stick on the board, while Alex, Hal, William, and Paul all got one in the circle and one outside.

Is that it? So who won?

Actually, Thorgrim decided to participate too. He got both axes inside the circle, and since he won the contest, I’m giving him an extra skill point in throwing and both axes.


You saw me roll the dice. Thorgrim won fair and square. Besides, he’s the only one of you who even bothered putting points into Throwing Weapons.

Can we—

The tools are still as useless as the last storage room, Hal.


The air smells funny and you noticed.

I thought most dangerous gasses were unscented. Carbon monoxide’s odorless, methane isn’t the scent component of farts, and even natural gas has additives that give it the strange smell.

Yeah, well…William’s an elf. So he can smell one of those gasses you mentioned. Probably. I’ll need you all to roll Strength checks, by the way.

Uh oh, that’s pretty high. So what happens?

You think the game will be nice and just make Kurzmann fall asleep in close combat? If you do, you’re fucking wrong. “Unconscious” in The Dark Eye means five or fewer hit points, and by god that’s what you’re going to get.

Son of a bitch! Why are we even down here?!
It’s the old adage: the best stuff is always in the hardest to find spots. So what’s on the pile of bones, aside from the inevitable skeleton?

…Oh, screw it. I’ll tell you after you kill it.

This one is pretty short, and also pretty kickass. Why? Because this combat justifies why I spent so many points on Paralyze. In fact, if I’m not mistaken, this is the very combat where I first discovered just how great it is to turn your opponents to stone those many years ago.

Also, I forgot to make screenshots of it, but the skeleton was carrying a magic sword (+1 to parry) and another set of scale mail.

So who gets it? Sounds like it’s probably magic.
I think I’m the only one who took points in Sword skill.

William did, but then he’s always in the back.


Never mind, William.

But if you get the sword, then you’ll have that and the magic shield, while I still won’t have anything.
Go ahead, then. I’d rather have the sword anyway.

If you guys are done, I need everyone still awake to make another couple Strength rolls.

Oh my.

I think we’re done for today, don’t you agree?
What about all those magic healing plants you’ve got?
They’re not that efficient. We should save our resources and go rest outside again.

No problem. Nothing blocks your way as you leave the mine.

Wait. What about…

Actually, since Belle is dragging all your sorry asses across the scree, nothing happens.

Thank goodness. Saved by incapacitation.