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About Tarsus

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  1. Hahaha. Just going to reply to Smoo like he is always here? It's been over three years since his last appearance. It's kind of exciting seeing all these people just a bit engaged in old BoA again.
  2. Haha. Fair enough. Play in the way you that makes you comfortable. It is funny to me though. Your thinking in this really does seem to live up to your namesake. Sticking rigidly to only straight lines.
  3. I would strongly disagree with that. It sounds like you are considering the encounters in isolation, but think about the experience as a whole. The player just came through an intense slog in the catacombs, it is good to have a more gentle experience for a while to rest up. It's a big mistake to make every single combat a struggle. And consider the setting here. You are basically fighting animals in the wilderness, it shouldn't be that organized or difficult. It fits the atmosphere of this muddy river area to be quieter. To Chessrook, I was also suprised by some of your tactical decisions in this last episode. I'm sure you have had an earful about your tactics by now, but I have a few more suggestions. First, the nimble ring. I was confused when you didn't immediately put it on, but I was stunned when you went and sold it! Maybe others would disagree, but I say bonus action points are far and away the best boost you can get from an item. It is less powerful in BoA than in previous Avernums, because it only gives a chance of bonus points, but it still makes a massive difference. Being able to make 2 attacks in a round without a haste spell is way more useful than a slight buff to your weapon damage. Or the freedom to move more before attacking. These boosts stack across multiple sources too. You could have given it to your mage since they already get bonus points sometimes. You could be casting 2 spells in a round without a haste. An endgame singleton with multiple boosting items could be getting as high as 10 or more action points without haste in a round if they got lucky. Add haste and divine warrior to that, and it can be in the high 20s or maybe in to the 30s. Speaking of spells, you never once cast repel spirit in the catacombs even though you were up to your eyeballs in undead spirits. Repel spirit is both cheap and effective, yet I saw you charge your priest into melee rather than use it. You should try using it more. It is effective against demons too. You might want to use divine restoration once in a while as well. It may be expensive, but it is a full heal. There were quite a few situations where that would have been useful. If you have two people about to go down, you could bring them both up to full health and maybe save the combat. You should also consider some cross-training for your spellcasters. If I were you, I would give the priest enough mage skill to cast haste, and more importantly give the mage some priest skills up through at least war blessing, or better, through repel spirit. Even putting one point into priest skills will them cast healing. Having a second healer would have saved your bacon a lot of times in the catacomb, even better if they could have been casting repel spirit. Being able to cast war blessing on multiple people in a pinch is useful. I think war blessings stack a bit too. I can't remember how much it helps, but you might experiment with multiple castings on one character. There is also managing action points in a tight combat situation. If your fighters have 4 action points but are only going to attack an enemy right next to them, they could drink a healing elixir for 3 action points then still be able to attack. Also, try managing your enemies a little more. You keep just charging in and fighting big mobs. Use missile weapons and draw them towards you, fight less at a time. And finally the most important thing you are ignoring, the wait/delay action command, which is not to be confused with the defend command.This can make things so much easier for you. I haven't watched your other Avernum lets plays, so I don't know if you know about it or not. But if you use this command, the character will delay their actions until the end of the turn, but the combat won't progress to next turn until they go. So all enemies and allies will make their moves, then you do. If you are drawing enemies towards you, after they approach you can attack them before the next round, which can have the effect of giving you 2 turns in a row. But it is useful if you are charging in too! For example if the enemies are just out of range, or behind a closed door. You would enter combat mode, then use the wait command on all your characters. Since you used wait, the enemy will have "used" their turn even though they did nothing, then you are free to open to door or move in and attack with impunity. You could even cast simulacrum and have it ready to go in the next turn without the delayed summon turn.
  4. Took me a while to figure this out. Didn't quite get the joke. I remember using your tutorial some years ago, but being disappointed it was unfinished. Happy to see you polished it off! As for the scenario, it's nice, but a bit short. Needs some sidequests or something.
  5. Oh, nothing but. Who doesn't love Shipwrecked? That's the real question here.
  6. I've made a general database for the length of each scenario. It was made from memory, so some if it may be off, but it will give you a general idea. I was surprised to find there were also a fair number I haven't played. I made a guess about about how long they would be. I also added some levels to the ones you had missing. I'm not sure about Shipwrecked though. It claims to be for level 1, but I'm not sure that I believe that. I should also add if you don't know, that some scenarios are infamously bad. I have never heard a good thing said about Nephilim Mystery, Foul Hordes or Undead Valley. I'm sure there are others I'm forgetting too. Just forewarning.
  7. That was a pretty funny episode for me. I will be looking forward to the laser puzzle in A Perfect Forest. I guess it doesn't really matter if you front load the scenarios or not. It will all be recorded at some point. I would like to see a list of the 10 or so scenarios you added to the earlier list though. I might want to add them to my own. I can try to make a list to give a general idea of each scenarios length if that would help. Though I haven't played every single scenario, I would have to guess at some.
  8. I've just been catching up on these latest Bahssikava episodes. It's funny hearing how people pronounce names so differently with stresses on different parts of the word. I'm surprised how much trouble you have been having though. I vaguely remember having some frustration in a few areas my first time playing too, but nothing like what you are having. I don't think I have ever taken a new party straight from Diplomacy to Bahssikava though. I would always play some other scenarios first. I haven't played Bahss at the recommended level in a long time. Kelandon is right about your tactics. The completely straight-forward and simple approach that got you through the early scenarios isn't going to work very well in the player made scenarios. Player mods for games are almost always harder than the original, and BoA is no exception. There are more difficult combats ahead in just this scenario, and much harder in other scenarios. I remember having an incredibly difficult time with the combat in Frostbite. If you are having this much trouble already, consider making some changes. Use the character editor to raise yourself 5 or more extra levels. Or try lowering the game difficulty. I would think no less of you if you did. And I wouldn't even think of taking your party straight from Bahssikava into Exodus as it is. Depending on how far you have already recorded, there will be a laser puzzle in your future. It will be far more pleasant to deal with if you turn off the sound in the options of BoA. As for your complaints about the design other than the combat, you are partly right, but also partly exaggerating here. Like the altar fight, yes it is true that you weren't explicitly told you had a ritual of stinkification, but as someone who played the other Avernum games, when you see an evil altar you should automatically think of the ritual. That was my experience anyway. And the tunnel you had trouble finding. Yes, it probably should have been made more obvious, but if you look at the map, that area does stick out kind of conspicuously. Or finding out you could rest there. No, the player isn't told, but when I played I wasn't expecting to be able to rest deep into the caves, and when I did find out, it was a welcome relief not a point of frustration. You are moving into the player made scenarios now and you need to adjust your expectations. You probably know this already, but I still feel the need to say it. Most designers were very young when they made these, and had never done anything like it before. They weren't seasoned, professional game designers. It's just like Kel said, it was his first scenario and he didn't know what he was doing. You are going to find a lot of rough edges the more scenarios you play, and in more than one area of design. Just wait till you see the writing in TM's scenarios. I don't know how much you know about the history of BoA, but it suffered a lot of negativity in it's prime. People flippantly trashing something an author put hundreds or thousands of hours of work into making. Bahssikava and Exodus in particular received more than their fair share of that negativity already. In these late days, the BoA community is on life support (I refuse to call it dead yet). The last thing it needs is a fresh dose of vitriol. Sorry if this sounds like a lecture. Also, about your lets play, you might consider changing the order of the scenarios you are planning to play. If you want to play all the ones that are directly related to each other first, you will be front-loading your lets play with some of the biggest, meatiest, and best (I think) scenarios. You should definitely follow their order, but you don't have to play them back-to-back. You might want to play some fluffier and smaller scenarios in between. If I remember right, Bahssikava and Exodus are the two longest player made scenarios. Smaller but still meaty are Canopy, Echoes, Magus, Backwater, Where the Rivers Meet, Tales and Frostbite. I'm pretty sure Of Good and Evil is long too, but I still haven't played through it myself (sorry Bain). Actually, let me contradict myself a little, HIM and HIM Wolf should probably be back-to-back. One last thing. Just chill out squire. If you are already this pissed off so early into your first scenario, you are going to give yourself a hernia by the end of the lets play.
  9. It's been pretty entertaining so far. I'm not too crazy about trying to put on a voice for each character, but you have to do it the way you think is best. Your fighting tactics are amusing to me. Very straight forward. I don't think I have ever sent my mages into melee like you do. If that sounds rude, I really don't mean it to be. Carrying around some missile weapons wouldn't go amiss though. At least for situations like in this last video with the spell casting imps out of range. I would also like to hear more of your reactions or thoughts about characters, situations, and what is happening generally. Especially when you get into the user made stuff. To me, that is what makes a Let's Play worth watching. Without that, I don't really get much more out of watching you play than I could get just playing it myself. If you plan to keep doing these types of videos into the future (beyond Spiderweb games) and want to improve them, consider what you in particular can bring to make it unique. That might be as simple as expressing more of your own personal viewpoint. Or perhaps you already have a philosophy about your videos? I can't say I have watched enough of your other stuff to know. As for your question about losing AP in combat, your suspicions are correct. You are over-encumbered. If you check the training screen, in the bottom left it will show your encumbrance and AP penalty. Putting points into defense will lower your encumbrance and eventually remove the penalty. In the meantime, wear lighter equipment. The large shields are probably the worst offender. I can't remember if encumbrance has any effect before the AP penalty though. Possibly making you act slower in combat? Someone else might know.
  10. Actually, I've changed my thinking about Kill Prize, Win Ogre. You should play it for yourself, make up your own mind. It will only take 30 seconds. You might even find it funny. I would also agree that Nine Variations is worth a look.
  11. Hey this is pretty cool. I had seen you doing all the other games, but didn't think you would BoA since it is mostly player made material. I'm curious to hear what you will say. I had actually been slowly working on something very similar myself, though it was more of a written review series. I've only gotten 8 done so far, and wanted to to finish more before releasing anything. I'm always procrastinated though. Maybe I should just post it as a companion piece to your let's play, and just add stuff when I get around to it. As far as recommended order, I have to ask whether you have played BoA before? From the way you talk, I don't get the impression you have. If you don't know, every scenario is meant to fit a certain range of levels for your characters. You will need to keep several different saves if you want to play each scenario at its intended level. There are also a good number of scenarios that can be played at any level. For my own project I decided there were two ways to pick an order. Either following release date order, or following a general level order adding in scenarios that don't need a specific level wherever I felt like it. I made a list based on level you might find useful. Buf if you haven't played them before, following a strict level based order wouldn't be good for some scenarios. Specifically Kelandon's scenarios. There are also some scenarios that you won't find on the Scenario Database. You might skim through the old forum posts looking for them. You might want to look through the Shadowvale archives too. For example you might ask Enraged Slith to send you a copy of The Dead are Revolting. It was removed because of one joke in bad taste, but it was his best work. For scenarios that should be played in a specific order, there aren't many direct sequels. To get the most out of Kelandon's stuff I would say you should play Small Rebellion before any of them. Then Bahssikava, Exodus, Nobody's Heroes, and end with the Magic. HIM Wolf at the Door is a sequel to HIM. There was going to be a third that never happened. Play Mad Ambition before Echoes: Renegade. You should play Frostbite before Tales from the Tabard to understand a little cameo. I can't remember anything else right now. When it comes to skipping scenarios it's kind of hard to say. I myself was going to go over the utility scenarios just to talk about what people had done with them, but there is nothing wrong with skipping them either. The only one I can remember you should really skip is Kill Prize, Win Ogre. That is just a super short, stupid in-joke about a BoE joke. I would also strongly recommend you read a scenario's Read Me before playing it. Good luck!
  12. It's been a while since I played all of these, but I'm working on a project to rectify that. From what I remember these are my top 10. 1. Rats Aplenty - A humor scenario that is actually kind of funny, and pleasurable to play. I remember loving how you could have a unique conversation with every single npc. 2. Exodus - This scenario has a such a great sense of taking a journey, there are no others like it. It is a perfect cap-stone for any BoA playthrough. 3. Magus of Cattalon - I just enjoy exploring the countryside in this one. I love being able to ask the joinable npc about any location. 4. Siege of Copperpeak - The tropical setting is great, and traveling around on your boat is fun. 5. Echoes: Renegade - A scenario from TM that isn't incomprehensible garbage!? And is even fun to play? I can hardly believe it. 6. Small Rebellion - The classic BoA scenario. When I think BoA, I think Small Rebellion. 7. Bahssikava - A bit tedious in some places and too dungeon crawly, but it feels like a more meaningful adventure than most. 8. Frostbite - I remember really liking Frostbite the first time I played, but I also remember having a lousy time when I played it later. Not sure if it really belongs here. 9. Quarhag Pass - A virtuosic presentation of a pretty standard adventure setup. 10. Twilight Valley - I adore investigation scenarios. The ending kind of sucks but I just love wandering around unpeeling the onion of the mystery. My top 10 is pretty fluid, any of them could move positions, and I could easily slip in something like Embers of Rebellion. I guess I like setting and atmosphere best.
  13. There are always some people playing, even if there is no activity on the board or new scenarios. Its just a silent audience. I myself played through all the scenarios recently, but its not like I come here to announce it you know?
  14. Playing Restless Souls was an interesting experience. I found it a sort of dreamlike experience, and messy like a dream too. The ultimate plot is pretty standard meat and potatoes for a BoA scenario. Monsters are killing people you go find out what is causing it and kill them dead. The mayors daughter is missing and everything. What makes Restless Souls unique is the writing style and town/outdoor design. The writing will either make or break this scenario for the player. Its filled with metaphors and attempts to give a bit of meaning and poetry to every little description no matter how important. It reminds me of reading Something Wicked this Way Comes back in middle school. For me most of the individual metaphors fell flat, either not making sense of just not working poetically. Some of them were so nonsensical they just made me laugh. However! That said, as a whole work I actually enjoyed it. It creates an unusual atmosphere, and while I wouldn't want it in every scenario I appreciated it was going for something different. The town/outdoor contributes to the atmosphere in strange interesting ways too. The outdoor sections supposed to be set in a relatively wild area and there is crap everywhere. It's the opposite of the empty beginner outdoor syndrome. It seems like almost every single tile has some sort of terrain on it. The towns and dungeons definitely show the piecemeal eight year design. The first dungeon feels very claustrophobic with tight hallways and all the rooms practically folded on top of each other. The main town was like the outdoors, seems like you wouldn't be able to walk anywhere without tripping over five different bushes. The final dungeon begun with annoying portal puzzles and ended with big empty hallways. But like the writing, while it was clunky and messy it contributed to the atmosphere and I ended up liking it. For the actual storyline I don't have much positive to say. Like I mentioned earlier it's pretty standard issue, just with some guilt tripping about the empire wiping out a bunch American Indian stand-ins. It was nice that the villain offers a chance to help her instead of immediately killing her outright, but I didn't find her case compelling in the slightest. So there might be a bit replayability there for some players. I can't say too much about the combat. I actually played this as a level 78 singleton only wanting to experience the story, but was quite surprised to find the 1-4 level recommendation is not quite accurate. I actually died in combat once and by the end of the scenario had picked up 4 levels! There is certain demon that changes its stats based on your character's. At first it seemed like a monster out of Exodus with a gigantic health bar, and I wondered what was going on until I started remembering what a homunculus is. Pretty cool monster design there. One small nitpick I have is that there are a lot of floor tiles left over in areas the player can't access. As an over leveled character I was using far sight a lot looking for secret areas and kept seeing this leftover junk. It was confusing and ugly and should have been cleaned up. So all and all despite its flaws I enjoyed my time with Restless Souls and think it's worth experiencing. I hope Excalibur will consider taking another stab at designing. Rating: [rating]Good[/rating]
  15. Ah that's very convenient. I've already put it to use. Thanks!