Thursday, July 29, 2021

Dungeon Master: Terror

It sure is nice to look forward to playing a game again. Dungeon Master, if not the most ideal title to play on a blog relating to FPS games, is certainly the most fun I've had in a while. I've definitely curious as to how this is going to go on the ol' rating system. This level starts off in an unfortunate position. Behind a door I just opened is a pit, closed by a pressure plate. Unfortunately I've been operating under my standard principle in games without money and limited inventory space, dump crap I don't need. Turns out I should have been keeping the useless swords and armors I've been finding around, just for pressure plates. I don't know precisely how I'm going to handle this, but I'm definitely going to keep something.

Water and food continues to be abundant. Its more reasonable to say the hunger meters function more as a soft time limit than anything else as of now. I might have to start putting items down if this keeps up. I would like more than one water skin though. I have to refill at fountains, and while there are plenty of them around, it is annoying not being able to drink straight from the source. What's potentially more pressing is potions. I can regenerate health via resting, but I'm sitting on some untapped magic potential. I don't know what it takes to cast a healing spell, but I think I've figured out how to make a healing potion...but I didn't get a vial until later. This is funny, usually that's not a problem.
Mapping continues to be fun. I haven't actually had to use it to recall the location of an item yet, but its cut back on backtracking significantly. It either isn't helping with secret doors or the game just hasn't had any yet. I can only see buttons and switches if I face the wall directly, at least that's the theory. In practice I haven't seen anything. Just puzzles. They're all fairly simple on the face of it, but they're effective. One puzzle, though they tell you, has you drop an item in order to turn off a pit. I think they give you the item back too, but its cool.

I had my first real combat experience in this session. A quartet of mummies. The bastards surprised me. I had the space and I had the time to throw all my rear row's weapons at them. To little effect. Thus began a terrifying few minutes. I tried combat waltzing, that is attacking, sidestepping, turning, repeat until dead. I don't know if that's the correct order, but if it was I failed to perform even those sometimes. I missed a lot. I think this nearly killed Zed Duke of Banville and Sonja She-Devil...and my reward is nothing but progression forward.

Stat and skill progression is slow, it took me quite a while to get anything. You don't really have any way of figuring out how much progress is between the current level and the next level. That means you don't really know when you should get another level. Equipment seems to be stalling, but I'm still on level 1, so its not that big a deal. I've got a maximum dealt of 20 points of damage which isn't a good time with the monsters I've been encountering. Their stats have gone sharply from a joke to every encounter being dangerous.

I've found a few interesting items though. First, was a chest, which I couldn't figure out how to get the contents of. Nah, just put it in your hand. This gives me a little more room, for now anyway. By the same token, I also figured out how to get stacked ranged attacks, as there's a slot for those. Next, were cubes, which cast "frozen life", which seems like it could be interesting in combat. I'll have to see if it does anything of value on the next floor, since I found the stairs down. I have no idea if I've missed some secret walls, but I know two paths are blocked to me for some reason, and I have no way of getting past them. Perhaps its just a puzzle I missed, they have been clever.

Level 2 starts off with a really long hallway. The first feature here is a freaking secret button. Eight whole blocks of nothing. I'm lucky I found that, otherwise it would have been even longer. The secret area this opens up is interesting. There's a timed barrier that teleports you away if you touch it. Behind it is a [item]. I don't think it was that impressive, but whatever. The main hallway continues into a locked door, this time with a gold plated lock, and a side hallway leading to many others. Its one of those rooms where there are lots of little challenges, best exemplified by the Greece section in Tomb Raider. Wait, Tomb Raider, is this a British thing? Huh.

I open up my first door, and am greeted by the actual hardest enemies yet. By the time I think to do the combat waltz, Zed is nearly dead again, and I have to retreat. Its interesting how despite not intending to do so, each fight is as pulse-pounding as one I'd get in a survival horror game. So much for my early jokes about combat. Its not even the only combat in this section, there's a second one with a single shell monster, who can poison me. Good thing I know how to cure poison, because that could be disastrous otherwise. What were they guarding? Well, a treasure chest, also hidden behind a puzzle, which has a mirror in it. That means one of two things, this is a puzzle item, or this is useless. Remember, I have no way of knowing what items actually do without looking it up. I used these cube things I had, and I don't know what they did.

This Session: 1 hour 20 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours 20 minutes

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