The Let's Play Archive

Wizardry: Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord

by Chokes McGee

Part 6: What Do You Mean, "Take the Lift"?!

Chapter 6: What Do You Mean, "Take the Lift"?!

Welcome back! As if by magic, the game knows it has an audience and has decided to show off. Thus, my fears about this being the deadest spot in the game are someWHAT alieviated.

At any rate, when we last left our merry band of hucksters, they were running up steps to disco and shouting for women named Adrian.

That's still Rocky 2.
Who are you talking to?
Never mind. Anyway, we've been training for two solid weeks now. Surely we can stand up to anything the lower levels can throw at us.
Hey, I'll try anything once!

I just know this is gonna go pear-shaped.
I'm not too worried about it. We got magical doodads and a big armor spell out in front of us, we should be fine.
Will we, Hanover? Will we?


So from here on out, the monster list has more or less stabilized. We'll be seeing the same faces over the next three floors or so—ninja, samurai, various beasts (were and otherwise), high level thieves (lol), and high level spellcasters (less lol, watch out for Badi and Mahalito).

Oh, and welcome to the worst part of Wizardry.

These guys don't seem too tough. They're like the Spirits we bumped into earlier!
I still don't know how Hanover manages to kill ghosts. I mean, they're already dead.
That was you?! You killed Murph? YOU BASTARDS!

I feel so empty inside.
More so than usual?
That... that can't be good.

Thought I was joking about level drain being common? These fuckers dropped Justine two levels in just as many hits. That's a 100% success rate on an ability that wipes out 15 minutes of grinding with every hit. I wasn't about to wait around and see if it was an aberation, so I restarted. Moral of this story: Never ever ever EVER fight a level drain monster unless you have to. Run. If it doesn't work, reset. It's just not worth the risk.

And yet another restart later...

Seriously, it's like time is randomly reversing itself for some unknown reason. The very fabric of reality could be eroding as we speak!

The rest of the exploration goes fairly smooth...

Justine? Are you turning purple?

...okay, maybe not smooth, per se...

...okay, it's pretty disasterous, actually. But they make it out in one piece, so the party decides to rest and, more importantly, and level up.

Some more so than others.

At level 10, Hanover has become as beastly in the game as he is in the comics. Also, our fighters are starting to get Plate Mail+1 as drops. Slowly but surely, our formerly ragtag bunch is honing themselves into a runaway freight train of pain.

Not only that, but Aldo's discovered the secret of Latumofis. And what does that do, you might ask?

Hey, guys! I can cure poison now!

It's still a fairly high level spell, so you won't get many uses before having to exit the dungeon again. It's still nice not having to run a marathon against death every time a werecreature tags you, though.

Speaking of poison, high level ninjas carry it. Isn't that cute? They get all the abilities of an elite class fighter, and then some special effects on top of it.

As our party gains the necessary confidence to deal with floor 6, they also come across a curious landmark:

Hey, what's this thingy do?

It's... not really doing much of anything.
No kidding.
Oh well. Enough standing around, let's get back to work!

I have no idea what this thing does. Literally none. It's a lock panel of some sort, but I threw out all my key items, and I still couldn't get a message from it. Oh well.

Wandering onwards, the party comes across a new face...

Oh crap.
Quick, Hanover! Make with the punchy hit!
Doumo sumimasen! Genki desu ka?

Aa, genki desu! Arigatou.
Dou itashimashita!
What in the blue hell just happened?
Foreign relations.
Do I still get to punch something?
Ss, chotto muzukashi.
Oh boy! I bet that means yes!

A few fights later...

Sorry, Beez. You've been saying it's a Mage Blaster since floor 1, and you're still not right.
Actually, according to Calfo... this time he is!
Well, whaddya know!
Unfortunately, he also triggered it.
Oh. Well, no harm done!
I'll get the Dialko.

I've always wondered what Mage and Priest Blasters did. Apparently, they paralyze anyone of the aforementiond class.

Yet even more fights later...

Why is there a can of beer just sitting out in the middle of the dungeon?
Hey, free beer!

I have no idea how we're going to explain this to the Temple of Cant.

Some healing and a staircase later...

Y'know... I think I'm starting to get the hang of this, boss.
Yeah, me too. I gotta admit, it's a lot more fun when you can hit back as hard as they do.
Hey! Hey, sis! I just froze a bunch of samurai to death!
He makes me so proud sometimes.

Alright! The next staircase down!
Let's go!

Yes, Justine?
Sternn, I can't help but notice there's not a staircase in this area.
Why, you appear to be correct.
In fact, I can't help but notice there's not really anything in this area.
Right yet again.
Which leads me to the rather unsettling conclusion that we are not, in fact, anywhere near the original staircase we came down on.
So. Can I panic yet?
Are you kidding? I never stop!

Yup, level 8 is where you run out of stairs. (Yes, I know there's 10 levels. You'll see why shortly.) Taking the stairs down from level 7 unceremoniously dumps you into this room. Doesn't seem so bad, eh? Well, get a load of this:

Okay, no prob. We got Lomilwa going, we'll just look for a door ou—

I have motion sickness!
Everybody stop moving before we puke!
Before any more of us puke!
Okay! Okay, it's stopped. I got the map out, let's see what's going on.

Yup, every square in this room is a turntable! Which isn't so bad if you know where you're going, but you're gonna be confused as all hell for the first thirty seconds down here. There's a couple of ways out, but we're going to take the door. It's faster in the long run.

Random trivia: "RJW" (squint to see the "W") are the initials of Robert J. Woodhead, one of the creators of Wizardry. And what's Robert spelled backwards? That's right, "self insertion."

Anyway, back to the party.

And so I was thinking, if two turntables are good...
I don't know who you are or what you're doing here, but if you don't get out of the way of that door, I'm going to crush you like a tin can.
Harsh, yo.

I am so done with being underground after this. I don't even want to go into someone's basement.
I hear you there.
Um, there's no staircase marked on this thing.
It's probably a mistake. They wouldn't put an entire floor in the dungeon with no way to get out.
...They wouldn't?
Don't crush my hopes, Nico. It's the only thing I have left.

Hey, there's something up ahead!
See? I told you guys. We'll just waltz over there and...


Surprise! This is what I've been hiding since we started, because you need to get the full effect of its discovery. Any dungeon crawler worth their salt probably would've stumbled across it by now, but it's entirely conceivable to get this far into the game and never know that there's an express elevator to the bottom floors.

Well, hey, at least it's a way ou—
No! No, fuck you! We walked eight goddamn floors down those godforsaken steps, and the entire time, there was a fucking service elevator just waiting here!
Look, Justine... just... Just calm down, okay?
Goddamn... stupid... motherfucking... ARGH
Meh, just shove her on the elevator and let's go. Places to go, people to see!
Where to, boss?
Let's try "A", that sounds good.

Well geez, if you're gonna be that way about it... "B" it is, then.

10 East, 0 North, 5 Down.

Fantastic! We should have a straight shot out from here. Also, your sister may be foaming at the mouth.
...moronic, drooling retard of a...
She does that from time to time. You get used to it.

Some climbing and cursing later...

...stupid goddamn sack of shitsucking dumb that got us into this mess in the first place!
Yeah, I think I'm good now.

Glad to hear it. Now, we just head through this door and—

The party slowly comes to...

Oh. Oh, my head...
Eh? Wh—I can't move!
Me either! Hanover?
Nope. I got nothin'.
Of course you can't move. We've paralyzed you.
Oh, God. Not you again.
God? God can't help you down here. Welcome to your doom!
Do you remember this, fools?


I have no idea what this thing does. Literally none. It's a lock panel of some sort, but I threw out all my key items, and I still couldn't get a message from it. Oh well.

Nnnnno, and furthermore, I have no idea who said that.
And for that matter, why doesn't Aldo just cast Dialko and get us out of here?
Because we're not idiots and we cast Montino on him first.
Mmf pffm pfm pft.
You see, Sternn, without access to the service elevator or an idol to disarm my traps, you and your friends will never leave this room. We will rain your blood down upon its stone floors, painting them red once again!
Ohhh, right. And then you can take physical form above ground and wreak havoc amongst mortals.
Actually, we've just needed to touch up the paint for a while. But I like your moxie!
I try!

Enough! Let the ceremony begin!

Wokka. Wokka.
In the name of the Dread Lord Fotzh'Hi.
And his companion, the Rubber Chicken of Uluthc.
Why did that chicken cross the road?
To get to the other side.
I can't believe this. We come all this way, and we're going to get knifed in the heart five stories underground with stale jokes in our ears.
God, what now?
Justine, there's... there's something I've been meaning to tell you.
I've waited this long, and I should have told you sooner. I'm so, so sorry.
Lincoln, you're kind of freaking me out right now.
No, I mean it. You see, I've always loved and respected...
Oh, Lincoln...
...the way you deal with having a huge jaw like that. It's not easy. I should know.
You go to hell, Sternn. You go to hell and die.
Shall we spill the blood of the infidels now, my lord?
But of course.

OK, Fotzh'Hi. Don't move!
The Bishop!

So, what the fuck just happened?

In a nutshell, I screwed up big time. While trying to get the panel back on floor 6 to activate, I tossed out all my keys. When I got back to floor 4, I had neither the Bear Statue to get through the panel nor the key required to exit the elevator. And this time, I had no one to blame but myself.

Fortunately, I had two secret weapons—the restart exploit for escaping fights, and The Bishop. Abandoning my party (for the time being), I sent my level one throwaway character on a one-man rescue mission to the fourth floor. Whenever he got in over his head, I'd just restart. After that, I just walk over to where I left my other party, hit 'I' to inspect, and...

...and I knew yous mugs was in trouble, so I just followed your trail. Got a silver key, the icon o' the God of Madness, and there I wuz.
Can I talk again? Hello? Is this thing on?
Anyhoo, you're all safe now. Try ta be a bit more careful from now on.
We certainly will, Father.
Hey, aren't we missing someone?
Not that I'm aware of, no.


The Irishman shall walk out of the bar.
And all shall be surprised.
I hate you guys so much.

Next Time: "...Is That You, God?"