Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Might and Magic III: Main Quest and Methuselahs

I don't even have a theory as to why a skull impaled on a stick is helping me out.
      
I ended the last session saying that I had no idea what was going on with the main quest. That resolved in a hurry. Following the Tomb of Terror, the rest of Map F2 was basically a bunch of speaking skulls stuck on poles who outlined the steps of the main quest somewhat literally, in Van Caneghem's usual no-attention-paid-to-meter verse:

Seek the castles on the Isles of Illusion
And right the curse that was cast in confusion
Before the mages slip into eternal slumber
They will each give half the magic number

In the heart of Minotaur Marsh you'll find
The dungeon of a thousand halls that wind
Enter the halls with the golden key
And an Ultimate Adventurer you're likely to be.

Deliver eleven orbs to your King of choice
And give his followers cause for rejoice
Take the reward you will then acquire
Tot he ancient pyramid on the Isle of Fire

Enter the pyramid on the fiery isle
To face the final test and trial
The Hologram Cards of six will gain
Access to the computer's brain.

Okay, so I have to give 11 orbs to one of the three kings, become an Ultimate Adventurer in the Maze from Hell, then descend into the central pyramid and use the Hologram Cards I've been collecting. I still don't know why, but at least I have a blueprint. Of course, in the tradition of the previous games, by the time you get all of these messages, that's probably what you would have done anyway.
     
The final map of the surface of Terra.
    
F2 also had a pyramid, which again I saved for later. I would note here that Column F basically abandoned the "lair" system used during most of the game, by which you find and destroy enemy "spawn points." Those didn't exist in any of the column's maps. I think there were a couple areas of Column E that lacked them, too.

Before continuing, I made 4 or 5 rounds in the Arachnoid Cavern and sacrificed gems to increase attributes. You'll recall that the caverns have a set of about 12 crystals that increase a single character's luck, accuracy, intelligence, or personality when you touch them. Paying 5,000 gems to an NPC in the caverns "resets" the crystals so you can do it again. Based on the fact that I continued to collect copious gems throughout this session, I really should have made more like 10 rounds.

Moving on to F3, representing the southeast corner of the large swampy island, I found it crawling with trolls. There were a bunch of statues that said they would "remember me" for vast amounts of money; I didn't know what that meant, but I had plenty of money and said "sure" to all of them. One statue said he would "make the others forget me." I assume that being remembered by the statues confers some benefit, and then having the other one make them forget allows me to pay them and get the benefit again.
       
          
The most important feature of F3 was the Maze from Hell, a large dungeon that really wasn't all that bad. Its major combats were with minotaurs and medusas. Minotaurs are extremely hard to hit, but not so much for fountain-enhanced party members. Keeping a "Lloyd's Beacon" set next to that 100-point fountain and another one set to wherever I needed it meant that I could zip out of the dungeon and back every time I needed a boost.
     
      
Medusas were more annoying since they have a ranged attack that turns one or two party members to stone. A couple of characters have "Stone to Flesh," so it wasn't a huge deal, but I learned to "Teleport" or "Jump" to melee range the moment I saw them so I could avoid the ranged attack.
        
I rather prefer my medusas with long red hair.
    
There were "whirlpool traps" at many intersections, but I just "Jumped" these when I could. The corridors held chests that usually caused instant death for the character opening them (unavoidable, not dependent on thieving skill), but I still had to open every damned one because one of them had the final Hologram Sequencing Card. I also got a few more Ultimate Power Orbs.
      
      
The center of the dungeon had a fountain of "Water Mane, fabled ruler of the Great Sea." Drinking from the fountain bestowed us with the Ultimate Adventurer title.
      
     
After I finished with the Maze from Hell, I almost immediately returned to the Tomb of Terror. The vampire king's chamber held four thrones which had rejected me because I wasn't an "Ultimate Adventurer" yet. It turns out that each of these thrones offers a permanent +30 increase in character level, but at the expense of decreasing all attributes to 3.

I agonized over this for a while. 120 levels is a pretty massive boost (my characters all hit Level 100 after this session). They wouldn't be worth much if I couldn't hit or damage anything, but I could conceivably solve the attribute problem with fountains, barrels, the crystals in the Arachnoid Cavern, and the slot machines in Slithercult Stronghold, if I ever found any more Quatloo Coins. It would be particularly simple if I had a single character sit in all the thrones. On the other hand, the thought of doing all that exhausted me a bit and the extra levels felt terribly unbalanced. It's not like the game was giving me much grief as it was. In the end, I made what was probably a dumb decision and reloaded, leaving the thrones behind.

I had a handful of Ultimate Power Orbs, which I gave to the evil king for 1 million experience each. When I was done, I think the good king had 6, the neutral king 4, and the evil king 8. I'm walking a fine line here. I ultimately want to favor the neutral king, I think, but I don't want him to get to 11 too soon, because I'll lose the ability to give excess orbs to the other kings. On the other hand, I don't want to get to a point where I haven't given anyone 11 yet and I don't know where to find anymore.
     
The "awards" section keeps track of how any orbs you've handed off.
   
I hadn't leveled up in a while, so back in town, everyone gained about 10 levels, costing millions of gold pieces. When I was done, the NPCs valued themselves at $150,000 per day. This was the turning point. Although I still had about 15 million back in the bank, I could see it disappearing awfully fast.

I was just on the cusp of booting the two NPCs when I hit on a realization: if you don't have enough money to pay them at 05:00, they leave the party and return to the inn where you enlisted them. But they don't maintain the debt, and they don't ask for money up-front when they join the party. They also don't shed their items or even forget their default spells. So if you just "Town Portal" directly to the inn and enlist them again, they happily join as if there's no problem. Basically, once you have "Town Portal" and "Lloyd's Beacon," there's no reason to ever pay another NPC. You just warp to the inn when they leave, pick them up again, and warp back.
    
Sure, I'll pay. Welcome aboard.
    
Thus keeping the archer and druid in the party, I moved on to F4. It was a fairly useless map--just a continuation of E4 with the same desert island, same oases, and the same "vulture rocs" (now easy for my over-leveled party) that appear every time you find buried treasure. There were a couple of new wells. One of them gave me a bunch of high-level items for no reason. The other two wanted $10,000 each, one for a minor increase in temporary spell points, the other for a temporary +50 increase in levels. The latter stacks, I should mention, so you could get a character to absurd heights. I'll return to this one if I ever encounter a very difficult enemy again.
     
A good buffing point if I need it later.
     
The map also had a pyramid, making one pyramid in Column A, one in Column C, and three in Column F.
     
Whatever that means.
    
Day 99 was coming around by this point, so I went to Rainbow Isle and collected the seashell when it arrived on the beach.
     
This is so you can't get more than one per year.
      
I returned to the nymph Athea in Map A4 and gave her the shell. She gave us 250,000 experience points and gold and again made my male characters fall in love with her. Not bad, but that was it? I'd been following clues about Athea for the entire game. I think the minotaurs offered as much experience.

 
Reflecting that Princess Trueberry wanted me to bring her "true love" or something, I wondered if my male characters' status would do. I returned to her hut and "presented" each character to her. Clearly, that's what I was supposed to do because she had a reaction to them but concluded that "there is not enough love left in the land to release me from my sorrow." She did "cure" the characters at the same time, but otherwise I don't know what to do with her. The whole alicorn horn thing may go unsolved.
      
Clearly, this was the right thing to do, but it had no ultimate effect.
     
At this point, I had nothing left but the pyramids. I explored all but the central one. They took me down a shaft into what was clearly a space ship, and the sections had names like "Forward Storage Sector" and "Main Control Room." The walls offered clearly futuristic technology, and as I explored I was attacked by robots called "iron wizards" and, for whatever reason, "ED-409."
         
That's a disconcerting enemy type.
      
Each section had a couple of teleporters to other sections, but you don't find out the passwords until you enter those sections via the pyramids. I could see parts of other sections from my "Wizard's Eye" spell, making me think that the various sections are supposed to be a different scale than the normal dungeon, and in fact the space ship spans the entire continent. More on the implications of this next time.
    
The party samples absinthe.
    
As commenters have noted, crystals and heads throughout the ship offered explicit spoilers to the game's various riddles.
      
      
The Forward Storage Sector in A2 asked me for a password to "raise the sunken island in Piranha Bay." I knew from some dungeon ages ago that it was YOUTH. The island occupied about 6 squares that were formerly water, and it held a fountain that reversed magical aging. Some of my characters were in their 50s because of undead attacks and other aging effects, so it was useful for them.
    
      
A lot of the crystals in the ship magically aged my characters by 200 years, reducing their attributes to single digits accordingly. I could have used the Fountain of Youth to reverse this, but it was an annoying process and mostly I just reloaded, causing me to double my previous reload count.
     
That almost makes it sound like a good thing.
      
There were a ton of Ultimate Power Orbs in the sectors, and I think it's time to head to the neutral king and solve that part of the quest.

But as I ended the session, I ran into a huge problem. I noticed that my characters were performing poorly in combat, and when I took a look at their attributes, I saw that their might, accuracy, and endurance had fallen into the single digits. Then I realized that their ages had advanced to 216 years old--naturally, not magically. When I checked the current date, the game told me that it was year 698. It had been 506 just a few hours ago.

I have no idea what would have caused actual time to pass so fast during any of what I've described above. Does anyone have any ideas?
    
My real attributes are what you see here minus 100, minus some attribute-boosting items.
      
Figuring that if time had really passed that much, I'd have more than doubled my bank account, I visited the bank in Fountain Head and discovered that I had just as much gold in my account as my previous visit. So clearly I didn't earn interest for those 192 years. I wonder if I should take this as a sign that it's a game bug rather than a real passage of time.

My last alternate save game is from before I entered the pyramids. It wouldn't be torture to replay the pyramids, but I'd like to avoid it if possible. To see what happened, I hex-edited the year in my save game file back to 506, and the game restored my ages and attributes appropriately. I figure if the passage of years was a bug, I'm justified in keeping that hex edit. If it was intentional, I should roll with the punches or (more likely) reload and go through the ship sectors again. Opinions?

Other than visiting the central pyramid, the only things left on my list are side-quests, most of which I don't understand. For the record--and not because I want spoilers--these are:
     
  • What was I supposed to wish for at the Wishing Well in E4?
  • What was going on with those heads who said they'd remember me in F3?
  • How do I cure Princess Trueberry and get the alicorn horn from her?
  • Of what use is the Fountain of Kartera in D1?
  • No mystery here, but if I waited another few years, I could get all the benefits from the thrones in Greywind and Blackwind castles.
     
No matter what, I suspect the next entry will be the last. We'll see if we can puzzle through what's really happening on Terra and how it relates to the VARNs and CRONs of the previous titles.

Time so far: 61 hours
Reload count: 41 

*****

A couple notes on upcoming games:

1. I need opinions and perhaps help with Die Drachen von Laas. First, I can't get the DOS version to work at all. Running the executable brings up a screen with a header showing the game's title, but nothing happens after that. I have an Amiga version that works. I haven't been able to find a manual.

How would you go about translating the German text from the game? I don't want to type it all into a translator, but my second solution--take screenshots, paste them into Word, PDF the Word document, run OCR on the PDF, and copy and paste the results into Google Translate--isn't exactly more elegant. I can't figure out a way to extract it from the original files. How would you do it?

If we can't come up with a workable system, I might have to ditch this one. It would be too bad, because it's the first RPG from some important developers, and it looks pretty. On the other hand, when I expanded my list to include non-English titles, I was thinking of having to translate things like "intelligence," "hit points," and "attacked and missed," not the full narration of a text adventure.

2. This is a long shot, but if anyone has won, or has the hint sheet for, The Kingdom of Krell (1987), I'd like to hear from you.


64 comments:

  1. You were doing exactly the right thing with Trueberry, you just didn't do it enough.

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    1. Also, note that conditions, such as poisoned, cursed, etc. AND "in love" are not on/off but have numeric values of "how much". Do some tests.

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    2. Well, I suppose if I let another year go by, I can do Greywind/Blackwind again.

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    3. Can't Althea make you in love without a shell? I think she did a while back in one of your first posts...

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    4. The solution to trueberry is
      lbh unir gb oevat ure gra punenpgref jub ner va ybir whfg hfr n ornpba naq gbja cbegny gb gryrcbeg orgjrra ure naq gur alzcu (gur znyr punenpgref nyjnlf orpbzr ranzbeqrq jura lbh ivfvg ure ertneqyrff vs lbh unir n furyy be abg)

      Decrypt or not as you see fit

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    5. Thanks, guys. I had totally forgotten that you could visit Athea without the shell.

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  2. Have you tried the Google Translate app? It has automatic OCR from your phone camera for German. Just point it at the screen and it is supposed to translate in-line.

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    1. Yeah, it didn't work out very well. The game has a funky font. I could limp by with it if I have to, I suppose.

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    2. I'll be able to extract the text from the Amiga version, it will just take some time. It's in plain text, but common words/syllables are encoded to single characters, as a form of compression I guess? Should be done later this day.

      The DOS version is also about 1/4 the size of the Amiga's, so it's either missing the images or the copy found on abandonware sites is damaged.

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    3. OK figured it out, here's the complete text dump (Story_out.txt): https://drive.google.com/open?id=0BwlM6LUXUzHMaVJSQkgzUU8yRTA

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    4. Great. We can start a translation effort as we did with Antares...

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    5. This is more than I dared hope for. Thanks a million, Zardas. Can you give a quick tutorial on how you did this? Is it something I could replicate with common tools, or had I better continue to rely on readers like you in the future?

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    6. Well, for old and obscure games like this, you'll likely have to rely on readers. These days, games usually use pre-programmed game engines or middleware packages that have well-documented data formats, or even common ones like ZIP, to save development time, but back then everyone invented their own little methods that you had to figure out on your own. Explaining how to do that is beyond the scope of a comment, so I'll offer this excellent book instead: http://wiki.xentax.com/index.php/DGTEFF

      For this game, it was fairly easy. There were only a few files, and one of them was called "Story". Though mostly gibberish, parts of it appeared human-readable. It had words like "EnêrtainmÊt", or likely "Entertainment", where it was easy to figure out that "te" was probably replaced with "ê" and "en" with "Ê". So, I thought the developers simply replaced common syllables or words with unused characters. To do this, they had to keep a "dictionary" somewhere in the program that told it which characters to substitute and with what. Sure enough, I found it in a file called "Items". Now all I had to do is write a simple script that read the story file, replaced characters with the substitutions from the dictionary, and wrote it back to disk.

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    7. I translated the beginning paragraphs for fun. Not sure how feasible (or necessary) translating the entire game is, but I'd certaily contribute to a community effort à la Antares. For now I'll just post the text here, for anyone who might be interested:

      ---
      The first sunbeams reaching past Hyllok's flat, tiled roofs begin lighting up the village square's pavement. Loudly clanking the heavy, wooden bucket hanging above the well on a finger-thick rope swings back and forth between the poles. The large wooden stockade enclosing the village casts long, menacing shadows on the ground and the houses of Hyllok.
      Slowly now the thick mist swirling upon the meadows outside the village begins to rise, shining in the morning's first sunlight, and finally dissolves. Morning dew glints silvery in a tuft of grass next to us, and I watch a spider, just now weaving a new web between the long, swaying blades. The sun is rising now, its rays forming a bright cone of light at our feet.
      Smirga is poking in the cracks between the cobblestones with a stick as he slowly begins to speak.
      'So now the time has come. Sure is a strange feeling, leaving home, not knowing what's to come.'
      'Yeah', I mutter and give him an asserting nod. 'You really think we're ready to undertake such a journey?'
      'Please, not again!', Smirga moans, rising. Hands on his hips, he now stands before me and says, blinking at the sun, 'We had agreed on this! Let's finally head out, before this day passes as well. It will surely take some time to convince our parents and prepare our backpacks. I also need to pay Foroll the smith a visit to pick up my new dagger and the sword.'
      'That's right', I answer, jumping to my feet as well. 'I have to quickly go see Mygra.'
      'What do you want with that charlatan?', Smirga asks me gruffly, eyes narrowing, his hands still on his hips.
      'Magic!', I answer and give Smirga a light poke. 'Come on, let's go.'
      ---

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    8. The DOS version might just have images that are smaller, have less colours, or are better compressed.

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  3. Some small note about Ultimate Power Orbs - as one reader have already remarked under your previous post, when you will give 11 Orbs to some king, he will not stop to accept them.

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    1. I didn't think we had consensus on that, so I figured I'd better not risk it.

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  4. "There were a couple of new wells. One of them gave me a bunch of high-level items for no reason."

    Heh... if you recall that well's name, it might answer one of your questions above.

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    1. Ah. I didn't note it in the first place. Thanks.

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  5. The non-magical aging is not a bug, it's a feature of visiting crystals in one pyramid sector. It's a deadly trap that essentially kills off your characters once you don't notice it. Better reload to a point before the pyramids (or hex edit).

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    1. All right. I'll just play them again. It didn't take THAT long.

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    2. Although it's kind of lame from the game to give you a means to cure magical aging then in the same 10 minutes comes up with a new non-curable "magical" aging.

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    3. There was an identical trap in MM2 in the castle where the time machine was to gain access to the battle of King Talon vs. the Mega Dragon, if I remember correctly.

      In the MM2 trap you just had to walk over that square, not even needing to touch something.

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    4. BTW, I remember this because I fell into the same trap in MM3 when I played the game roughly 20 years ago. It was so frustrating. I think I hex-edited my way back to youthfulness.

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    5. The MM2 trap at least told you something had happened.

      I replayed the areas, and I couldn't even identify where the time skip actually happened. I kept obsessively checking the calendar, and it didn't happen again.

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    6. You touched the crystal arrays in the beta engine sector. I warned you not to do that!

      Some of the crystals in the arrays of the other engine sectors will teleport you to orbs. But the rest either age you with warning, or advance time without warning. Beta engine sector's crystals have the strongest effect.

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    7. I guess what confused me is that some of them DO give you warning, and I reloaded after those.

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  6. The skull looks like Morte from Planescape: Torment.

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    1. Or the Brooklyn-accented skull from Baba Yaga's camp in Quest for Glory IV. Impaled, talking skulls had a good run in the 90's, work has dried up a bit since then.

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    2. Wait'll you see The Summoning (the 1992 sequel to DarkSpyre). It's practically "Impaled Talking Skulls: the game."

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  7. The Drachen von Laas DOS version that you find on many sites is kaputt, it is missing the game files. Here's a DOS version that works and includes the manual:

    http://monkeygames.uz/game/drachen-von-laas (Download Link is the "1" next to "Uploaded"

    The manual is in German, I could translate the most important parts for you if you like.

    The Amiga version looks slightly better, but otherwise I don't think you miss anything by playing the DOS version.

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    1. Here's the most important stuff from the manual

      Keys:
      F1 Look around (Description of the Area)
      F2 Show Exits
      F3 Condition
      F4 Inventory
      F5 Spells (Spells which can be used by Aszhanti)
      F6 Print
      F7 Credits
      F8 Graphics on/off (Had no effect for me in the DOS version)
      F9 Save
      F10 Load
      HELP Switch between your two Characters (that's INSERT on a modern keyboard)
      ESCAPE Delete what you have typed
      TAB Bring up last command
      DEL Show image of current scene (DOS version at least)

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    2. Special Commands (without those already mapped to keys):
      FUNKEY - Lets you enter a number and a text. SHIFT-F lets you recall that text (useful for saving common commands)
      NEUSTART - Restarts the game
      QUIT - Ends the game
      WARTE - Lets time pass (e.g. WARTE BIS MITTERNACHT - wait until midnight)

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    3. Spells: This is important as the game only gives you a number, but you have to type the four letter code to cast it (very simple copy protection)
      Spell I - LEVI - Levitate small items. Can have different effects depending on the experience of the caster
      Spell II - FEBR - Fire bringer, lets a small flame appear. Can be used in fights and to set things on fire.
      Spell III - KUBL - Ball lightning - injures a monster
      Spell IV - UNSI - Makes an item or something similar invisible for a moment
      Spell V - TOPA - Can confuse an enemy that much that he'll hardly hit in combat

      The monster descriptions in the manual seem to be mostly fluff, not sure if they are helpful for completing the game.

      The commands for the parser are only given by example, and by some shortcuts you can use. I could summarize the most important ones, but that'll take a bit longer.

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    4. Brilliant, Buck. Thanks so much for this. Between you and Zardas, I'm starting out in great shape.

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  8. 2. This is a long shot, but if anyone has won, or has the hint sheet for, The Kingdom of Krell (1987), I'd like to hear from you.

    Not sure if this is helpful or not, but I found a page (http://www.worldofspectrum.org/infoseekid.cgi?id=0006537) about kindom of krell, which claims:

    Came with a 30 minutes soundtrack containing ambient noises and spoken text that could be used as hints on the B-side.

    There is also a link to a working mp3 of the audio, which is wonderfully... odd, and does indeed seem to contain hints.

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    1. Thanks, but I had that. What I'm looking for doesn't seem to be available online, so someone would have to have a personal copy.

      Yes, the audio is definitely original. There are some light "hints" in it, but nothing explicit enough for what I was looking for.

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  9. I can't promise it as being any less work, but there are programs that can directly OCR screenshots. I've used one called GOCR, which has the benefit of being able to handle weird fonts by asking you to identify a character it doesn't recognize, and then remembering when it comes across that later. You would still have to crop images down to just the textbox, so it's still less than ideal if you have any better method available.

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  10. FYI, just in case you now avoid all crystals, a small number of the crystals are teleporters that lead to more orbs.

    You are on the right track with the princess, it just requires a certain number of such characters to be shown to her.

    I think interest is bugged if the week does not change while you are on the map. Thus you may even be ripped off from interest while training (usually 7 days if you level all characters).

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  11. You might try this:

    https://translate.yandex.com/ocr

    Pretty sure it's a Russian site, but it can do German > English with OK results. I tried a screenshot from Antares and it got just about all of it.

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  12. for whatever reason, "ED-409."

    Not a Robocop fan? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A9l9wxGFl4k

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    1. Not really, but I guess I could have Googled that.

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    2. ED-209 is one of my favorite characters in all of stage and film. "You are illegally parked on private property. You have twenty seconds to move your vehicle." That's gold, Jerry.

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  13. I thought it was the fountains in Fountain Head that basically gave you the main plot. Or maybe they were just quest ideas? It's reminiscent of the statues in Sorpigal in M&M1 who give you a bunch of hints.

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    1. They're more about the side-quests. They talk about Princess Trueberry, the alicorn horn, the pirate queen and so forth.

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    2. 3 of them specifically hint to the main quest (but it's true it's not clear at the time):

      - Below the canopy of the vaulting sea lies the mystery of the Ancient's dream. An Ultimate Adventurer must ye be to unravel their tangled scheme.

      - Powerful orbs hold the key for ultimate rule of the land. Deliver them to the kings of three to strengthen their command.

      - With the presentation of one past ten, two shall be forever vanquished. Their strongholds felled and kingdoms barren, your title of Champion is established.

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  14. the spambot above are suprisingly forthright
    "Online casino is a new opportunity to make fun of you."

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    1. Whatever idiot is posting those is surprisingly persistent even though I delete them within an hour. If he doesn't stop, I'm going to have to start moderating all comments until he goes away.

      Google could put and end to this immediately by just disallowing links in comments (or giving me the option to do that). I have no idea why they don't.

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  15. Have you gotten the "strings" program from the net and tried it on the files of that german game?

    MM3 is such a treasure in plot and graphics. I´m sure many agree. It´s a great justice you´ve spent more time on it. Thank you.

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  16. That map...reminds me a bit to the Enterprise, seen from above. To the east, the bridge. SE and NE, warp engines. And do on.
    Coincidence, of course.

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    1. This is the map of the pyramid dungeons: https://www.gamefaqs.com/pc/564551-might-and-magic-iii-isles-of-terra/faqs/42546

      One part of it looks like a spaceship.

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  17. A discomfort that I have with this game, is that the game world seems to know it's a game. It's almost as if the party is playing Knightmare.

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  18. I've never seen Medusa portrayed as just a giant head before - I wonder if that's where the concept of the Beholder came from, some DnD artist struggling for inspiration, looks at a portrait of Medusa and is al "hmm, a huge gorgon head would be a pretty cool monster on it's own.. need to change it a bit though... what if I give it one big eye..."

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    1. It´s not that uncommon in arthistory but I guess contemporary gamedesign has focused more on the talking skull motif

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    2. A lot of the monsters in the game are weird like that. They float or hover even when there's no mechanism for them to fly, or the game just emphasizes one part of them, like the head. I think perhaps we're supposed to regard it as an artistic abstraction rather than a real depiction of the monster.

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    3. Never played Castlevania, I take it?

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  19. I've never played the game, but hmmm, I wonder...

    "A lot of the crystals in the ship magically aged my characters by 200 years, reducing their attributes to single digits accordingly."

    "It turns out that each of these thrones offers a permanent +30 increase in character level, but at the expense of decreasing all attributes to 3."

    "...it held a fountain that reversed magical aging."

    Could anybody make good use of these three simple facts?

    Anybody?

    Buehler? Ferris Buehler?

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    1. It's a nice idea, but it doesn't work. The game knows what your "Real" attribute is regardless of modifiers. When you magically age, and your attributes get reduced to 3, that's just a modifier on the real attribute. It goes away when you reverse the magical aging. But the thrones in the Tomb of Terror reduce the real attribute.

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  20. Drachen von Laas for DOS is a text mode game, so you can use a custom build of DOSBox to copy screen text directly to the clipboard as plain text:

    http://www.columbia.edu/~em36/wpdos/dosbox-vdos-lfn.html

    With this build of DOSBox simply right-click and drag over the screen to copy the text within that area to the clipboard.

    If the game has captured the mouse you'll need to press Ctrl+F10 first to release it (you may want to disable automatic capture for this game by changing autolock=true to autolock=false in the DOSBox configuration file).

    This should work for any text mode DOS game.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks! I didn't know about that version. This could come in handy for a number of titles.

      Delete
  21. So it wasn't long awaited post about might and magic...

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    1. You know, I completely forgot to do that. I have a lot of thoughts about magic and combat in the final, though.

      Delete
  22. It's kind of telling the difference between knowing the game and not. I have a playthrough up on my you tube channel that is less than 10 hours in length, though I used teleport and jump more liberally in the Maze.

    I basically remember the entire game though by heart; so it's no comparison. You also seem to be hitting every square and nailing every chest that kills you, as well as making use of Arachnoid Cavern, far more than I bothered to.

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    Replies
    1. There is a speedrun on youtube that beats the whole game in 5 minutes.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JqOA-SQW7RM

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