The Let's Play Archive

Realms of Arkania III: Shadows over Riva

by Bobbin Threadbare

Part 30: Session 20.5: The Futility of Railroads

Session 20.5: The Futility of Railroads

You see a gigantic breach in the hull of the ship. It would have been more than sufficient to make the vessel go under, but you don’t believe it was the cause of the sinking, because the ship has turned upside-down. A pair of eyes is staring at you unblinkingly from the opening. What do you do?

Hang on, what about the music? Wouldn’t the underwater area have its own music?

It should, actually, but its track was also scratched, and I don’t think you’d want a bunch of popping and skipping coming from the speakers.

Oh? Well, that’s alright. I’ve got my own music to play here.

I really don’t think Pirates of the Caribbean is appropriate for the bottom of the sea.

Au contraire.

Now, what about the thing in the ship? Let’s throw something at it.
Good idea. We shouldn’t be wandering into a random hole if there’s a shark or some such hiding inside.

…Or it could be a tiny fish.
Laugh if you want, but it could have been anything.
Let’s go in.

What? I attack it with my sword!

You decapitate your unknown opponent with a single blow.

The others stare at you quite flabbergasted, after seeing you decapitate a rotting wooden statue.

…Well, it could have been anything. Right, Lewis?
No, that was pretty much just hilarious.

What’s it doing up there?
Ship’s upside-down, remember?
Oh yeah. So, let’s swim up to it.

You can’t. You’re wearing lead shoes.

And we need them to stay down here at all. Wait, I just got an idea.

I think that will actually work. So, in the door on the back wall of the cabinet, there is a blueish metal cylinder instead of a lock.

Is this what the glow rod was for? I’ll put it in.

It is indeed. When you put the luminescent wand into the opening, the door swings open, stays that way briefly, then swings back.

Damn, so we might get locked in?

You might.

It’s the only way to go. We’ll have to risk it. Besides we could always just bash our way through the rotting hull.
We go in, then.

Anything worth taking in here?

What’s it do?

You notice that the next lock is green, but your blue glowstick won’t work in it.

What if we stick it in the prism?

Oh, good! So will the green glowstick work?

Yes it does. Do you go in? This one locks behind you just like the last.

I think we know how to get out if we have to now.

Roll Necrophobia.

Aw crap.

When you see the remarkably well preserved remains of an Even Star deckhand in your arms, your face turns the color of grits and you hurriedly scramble away.

I was showing him how to make some the other day. It’s corn-colored.

Great, now you’ve got her cuddling me.
I wouldn’t mind some cuddling…
Dude, just get a girlfriend. I’m getting kind of tired of all the complaining.
Now, now, you know he’d just wind up complaining about her if he did.
So what’s worth taking in this room?

This is a pile of stat buffs and a sleeping poison.

We never end up using the things, though.
Money’s money. So what else?

Just a bunch of permanently dead skeletons.

Are you sure they’re permanently dead?

Yes. You break a few of them just to be a sure, but nothing happens.

I’ll use the prism again.

This time, the two objects turn orange, and you use them on the lock.

More and more like figures join it. Not enough with that [sic], one of them speaks with you: “You have come to take the wand. Go ahead and try.” Now the water elementals enclose the chest in walls of ice! Then they move towards you.

Oh fuck, it’s this combat. Before you click play, there are a few things you ought to know. First, remember how I mentioned that single combat between warriors is incredibly boring? Well, imagine having to do that five times in a row. In order to beat this combat, someone has to reach the chest in the center of the maze, and in order to do that, he or she has to bypass the five water elementals between him/her and the chest. Further complicating matters, the elementals do not die, but instead respawn somewhere else on the screen when dealt enough damage. Oh, and they’re immune to non-magic weapons, naturally.

To be fair, though, I recognize now that I needlessly complicated matters. Earlier in the ship, you can find three bottles of Hylailian Fire, which you can throw to cause fire damage; it only does about the same damage as a decent swing from Kurzmann’s axe, but it is a guaranteed hit. Also, if you’re patient enough, you can lure the elementals to areas where there’s enough room to run around them; you can see when this idea first occurs to me in the video itself. Plus killing things with the party in the back was admittedly a bad idea since the respawning elementals caused me trouble, but seeing them be sort of useful kept me entertained while waiting for the dwarf to hit.

Finally, in an effort to make the video somewhat entertaining, I sped it up to double speed and replaced the audio with a rather underappreciated passage from Beethoven’s 7th. “Enjoy.”

Finally! I’m going to drink some of these healing potions. William, how about you?
Nah. I’m usually in the back anyway.

The fuck? What the fuck?!
Shouldn’t there be, like, a wand in there?

There should be, but there isn’t. Remarkable.

Then where the fuck is it?!

You don’t know.

What the fucking fuck?! Fuck!

You could go back and ask the nixie king about it.

I’m going to go bash some heads in, is what I’m going to do.

I think there’s a bug involved here, because I’m pretty sure I’ve never heard the why for the because. It’s probably something about ridding the area of the water elemental enchantment, but how they bypassed that to get the wand in the first place, I have no idea. Oh, and if you say yes to the “stay behind?” question, you will lose that character. Forever. Yeah, yeah, true love, now get your ass back over here.

Son of a bitch. SON OF A GODDAMN BITCH.
You know, you could have easily put the wand in the chest for us to find, and very little would have been different. Except, of course, for that sense of accomplishment we all would have had.

You know, you’re probably right. Sorry, guys, but it didn’t occur to me.

At least I don’t have to deal with that girlfriend crap. Let’s get out of here.

Notably, you don’t float up when you de-equip the lead shoes, but only when you drop them entirely.

Now Racalla of Horsen-Ravenbeak speaks up. “We have found the queen’s location. She has her hive in the cellars of the new city hall. Mind you, it is magically protected. But we have an idea of how we might reach her even so. To make it possible, the few men Lothur could spare from the war against the Sorrek pirates are even now at work digging a tunnel. Seeing as everyone else is busy, if you could see your way towards contacting Quenya…”

Will they turn out to have the runes deciphered when we get back?

No, I promise.

Then I guess we can go do it.
I’ll cast Visibili so we can get there undisturbed. Not that the guards will likely go to the Holberkian slums, but still.

“Fields of Alveran, whose wand is this?”
“That Borbaddie guy.”
Quenya flinches at hearing the name. “That explains a lot. I’ll write down a translation for you. The magicians will know how to interpret it.” Industriously, the druidess scratches at a small parchment roll with her quill, before waving it about to dry the ink and then rolling it up. “You can read it too, if you want to!” I’ve got a copy of what it would say right here.

You know what? No. After that nonsense in the ship, I really don’t feel like reading what the plot tells us happens next.

If you say so. It actually doesn’t matter much.

The mage puts aside the parchment. “The war against the pirates has reached the decisive stage. Lothur is leading his people into battle to keep our backs secure in the assault on the hive. The queen must not get a chance to send those under her command against us. My colleagues have retreated to gather their strength. We shall sorely need it.”

Why? They still haven’t done a damn thing. I mean, they cast a water breathing spell and know about the worms, but the guild’s been doing all the heavy lifting. They found the hive, they’re tunneling over to it, they’re fighting the pirates, we got the wand, and Quenya did the translating. Why aren’t the “five strongest white wizards” doing shit like flying around and blasting shit?
Magicians are a bit less like siege engines and more like scholars in DSA.
Whatever. Not like it really matters, since we’re the ones who’ll be killing the boss anyway.

It’s better that way. You roleplay to be the heroes, not the guys who helped out some then wandered off.

Whatever. Are we done for today?
Yeah, this looks like a good time to end things.

Alright, guys, let’s pack things up. We can do the final dungeon next week.

The last one? Wow. I can’t wait to find out what happens.