Another lesson learned: don't blog when you've been awake for more than 24 hours, because you come off grumpy and it riles up the readers. I apologize for that. I'm feeling a little better about Dungeon Master tonight. When you're tired, even the most rote of games can feel like an effort, and nothing is very fun.
Though I'm not as annoyed with the game as on Monday, I didn't make much progress tonight despite playing for several hours. Still on Level 5, I first got caught up in a series of teleportation fields and had to find my way through them through trial and error. I did notice one neat thing: I don't actually have to "look" at the compass in my inventory to see the direction; instead, the icon actually changes to point towards north. That's pretty nifty.
After finishing the level, I decided to head back up to Level 4, return to the room with the constantly-respawning mushroom creatures, and camp out there to build up my characters' levels. Reader Georges left a good comment a few days ago about the importance of training all characters in all levels. Leyla had no spellcasting levels; Hawk had no ninja level; and Nabi had no fighter level. All of the characters, whether they had levels or not, were imbalanced in some way.
The game deserves more credit than I've been giving it when it comes to its skill-based leveling system. It is fairly rewarding, and in many ways, it anticipates the more complex systems in The Elder Scrolls games. To increase levels in a class, you have to use its associated skills a certain number of times. The higher the level, the more experience you need to advance.
I'm not completely sure what all the skills and actions are that contribute to each level, but from what I can tell so far:
- You improve your ninja score when you fight without weapons and throw things
- You improve your fighter score when you fight with weapons, get hit, and use a skill called "war cry" that, as far as I can tell, does nothing but make your character yell "yah!"
- Priest levels advance by mixing potions
- Wizard levels advance by casting spells
Rear characters can't attack directly or get hit, so I'm learning the importance of occasionally rotating the characters to give everyone some experience in melee. Reader John helped me realize belatedly how I could improve spellcasting skills even in a character with hardly any spell points.
Unfortunately, my plan backfired a bit, and I managed to get myself stuck in a corridor/stairs area with two giant worms at one end and a flying lizard thing at the other. Neither shows any desire to just go away, and all my characters are low on spell points and health. If I stand still, they come and get me. If I engage them, I die. Regrettably, I saved in this location, so I keep reloading, trying to defeat one or the other, dying, and reloading. I'm sure I'll get past them sooner or later.
Thus, sorry for the short posting, but I didn't want to go three days, and I don't have anything else to report after two. I might take a detour into Faery Tale Adventure tomorrow, or I might stick with this, depending on my mood and whether I can get past the worms (suggestions welcome). Thanks for hanging in there with me.