Part 32: Destard & Despise
Destard & Despise
Time to abandon the ol' ship and fly on our magical carpet into the depths of the Spiritwood to the east. See, Lord British's ill-fated expedition traveled into the Underworld through a hole exposed by a waterfall.
Perhaps this waterfall? As we fall down it, we find ourselves...
In the underworld. You need a skiff or the carpet to get down here safely, but the carpet is better since you can take it out with you.
This marker commemorates where British's expedition started exploring the area. There's a journal that came with the game that tells you where to go.
Like from here, we need to go west...
...and east across this big lake...
...south, then east again over a huge swamp...
...and through this pass, to the site of the battle between British's forces and the Shadowlords.
Ouch. Those bodies are remarkably well-preserved considering it's been over two years since anyone came down here. British's Amulet is just lying there in the middle of everything. We need it, so I'll take it. Unfortunately, unlike the scepter and crown, it isn't crucially useful to us.
These graves mark the deaths of British's men. There is, however, a grave missing: Lord British's! Of course we already know he's still alive (even if you never played this game or read this LP you'd know he lives through this).
Now there's just the small problem of getting out of here.
Sure, I could just kill myself, but there is another way. Although the waterfall drop is one way to enter this segment of the underworld, it isn't the only one. Dungeon Destard connects to here, but of course it's sealed up. Fortunately, it can be unsealed on either end, as so:
Awesome, let's get the hell out of here!
Destard is a "cave" style dungeon. They look like this. Slightly less impressive than the ones made of stone or mine shafts.
Aahahahah, oh my goodness. We're going to be using Uus Por. No amount of treasure is worth fighting five dragons.
This is what Gremlins look like on the dungeon map. While they are slightly more intimidating than
Alright, we got out! And only Shamino died! And Iolo I guess, but you know what?
: This is not a morgue, sir! I'm not taking a corpse.
: Look, it's Iolo. There would be no point bringing him to Doom with us. He'd just wind up dead anyway. Just throw him in a back room until we get Lord British back, he'll bring Iolo back in ten, twenty seconds tops.
: I'm not really sure if...
: Man, I'll pay you to take Iolo off my hands.
: Very well, Avatar.
: You've done Britannia a great service.
With Iolo out of our hair, we need to head for Despise, which is located here. The word of power is VILIS, so I'll just...
...hmm, that didn't work. This must not be Despise. I think it's Wrong. That word is MALUM...
...oh. Well, this isn't Wrong either. Maybe it's Shame?
INFAMA! Aha! It is Shame! Well shit, which one is Despise? I thought I knew my Ultima dungeons.
Oh there it is, up in the mountains north of Britain. I always forget that.
Despise is a mercifully gentle dungeon. There are more wandering monsters than normal, but there are no rooms of any kind in it this time around.
Instead, it's just a maze. Usually only one ladder on a floor (of up to 3) leads to the next floor down; the others are just dead ends.
It barely takes any effort to reach the Underworld from here. Even Iolo would have survived this!
So, knowing that Despise is not necessary to win the game, why come down here?
Because of this. The keep of Ararat! What is that, you may ask?
Well, it turns out it's not really a keep at all, so much as a beached ship trapped down here in the underworld. But what is it, and what does it have to do with the game? More than you might imagine.
Inside the captain's cabin, all is revealed.
You see an unkempty mage in tattered robes.
: At long last, another living soul!
: Who are you again?
: My name is Johne, Captain Johne.
: So what are you doing down here?
: I fear the Shadowlords!
: Really, well I don't. Just hypothetically, say I-
: Years ago, my ship was swallowed by a massive whirlpool. The remains of my ship washed up on this isle with myself and three others.
: I don't like where this is going.
: When I recovered, I explored my surroundings, and found a great gem broken into three shards.
: Oh snap.
: Oh snap.
: Oh snap... Julia?
: She hasn't said anything all game, she's not going to start now.
: The Shards, full of evil, drove me to kill my three companions, and from their blood sprang the three Shadowlords. Taking their shards deep into this underworld, they entrapped Lord British, and hold Blackthorn in their power.
: Not so much anymore, but go on.
: They spare me only to taunt me with such news until my dying day.
: That's some story, what with this whole thing being your fault and all.
: Wilt thou save Britannia?
: That's my job.
: Might I join thee?
: How convenient! We just happen to have free space!
: Let me avenge my wrongdoing.
Johne is actually probably the most powerful NPC. He starts at a good level and has high stats, and he's a Mage on top of that. Plus, as people in the thread already have noted, he deserves a shot at redemption.
Although it's a little late to avenge, I suppose, with the Shadowlords already dead and all.
It's even easier to get out of Despise than to get into it. That's good, because it gives me the chance to go back to Britain, stock up and heal, and then head for Shame.
I think this dungeon is Shame. I'm pretty sure.
Yep, this is definitely Shame. Game's almost over, folks!