Quick Navigation:Part 0: Introduction to ADOM; Meet Slade Part 1: Starting again; Meet Lorna (You are here)Part 2: Hey, we're really adventuring now!Part 3: The plot (such as it is) revealed; Miracles all aroundPart 4: Exorcist, Holy Champion, FirebrandPart 5: Yo, dawg- I heard you like summoners...Part 6: T,T,T,T,T,T... reload, repeat, profit?Part 7: Heaven or Hell!Part 8: Over... it's finally over...
Well. After the intense let-down of our previous character, Slade, I have decided to start again... but this time with a character who's got her feet on the ground a bit to start. Meet Lorna, another Dark Elven Paladin, sharing her journey with HLP starting at level 10:
THE EPIC OF LORNA, PART 1: EARLY GAME
This time around we've already got the waterproof blanket, some decent equipment, some experience, and a hint of ever-handy intrinsic fire resistance from munching a fire beetle corpse.
Welcome to Terinyo. We're here because a couple handy quests originate here: the Healer quest, the Druid quest, and the puppy quest. The Healer and Druid quests are mutually exclusive: you can only choose 1. I decided to do the Druid quest, because the reward from the Healer (the Healing skill) Lorna already has. Our druid friend here wants us to go kill a fallen druid who's posted up in a cave, corrupting the local wildlife. We'll do that later. Even with our relative headstart, the dark druid eats unprepared PCs for breakfast.
I also decided to take on the Puppy quest- all we have to do is find a little girl's puppy lost in a cave, and bring it back to her. Simple right? Of course, nobody tells you that the cave is a practical deathtrap for lov-level PCs, so we're gonna postpone that one too.
First stop is the ****hole bandit town of Laweni-who-cares-about-the-spelling.
One big reason to stop by is to visit the shop (second building from the left), and the master thief's home (big building, leftmost room). There's a lot of stuff to do early on, but I'm already past it. Dumped a lot of useless gear, and grabbed a couple useful things. Onward!
This is as good a time as any to fill y'all in on the story here. The continent of Ancardia is under siege by the forces of Chaos (not entirely unlike the WH40k variety)- they just don't quite realize it yet. This dungeon, the Caverns of Chaos, is the primary locus of the Chaotic incursions. Progress in the game is mostly marked by descent through this dungeon's 50 levels. There's a bit more, but I can address that as we go along.
Ah! Our first checkpoint, the Arena. Just like the name suggests, we can fight **** for gold here- in fact, we'll be doing that later for a quest. A little more importantly, this level is a great source for light, nutritious food. Ratling merchants (light blue "r"s) near the arena proper (area to the right) sell, among other things, fried bats and cooked lizards, both of which are great.
AAARGH. This situation isn't nearly as bad as it appears- I'm surrounded by jackals, most of whom will never even land a hit on me. Those asshole dogs were summoned by a jackalwere (orange "d" up and to my right). The fight is only the least bit dangerous, but very annoying as I wade through all the pages of combat messages. Also, this is another landmark room- the big room. It's a room with basically no walls, and a very high rate of monster spawning. Enemies that summon more monsters can easily fill up the screen with their petty, annoying spawn, so I need to kill as many creatures as possible to avoid a long-term problem.
Here's something special that I felt should be pointed out: a magic pool, directly to my right. Drinking from these pools can cause a variety of magical effects, in any combination of powerful, petty, helpful, and harmful. I point this out because pools are a pretty good source for a WISH, which is exactly what it sounds like. I don't want to dick around with something that could totally ruin a young character yet, so we'll simply remember this.
Welcome to Dwarftown, the main "town" in ADOM. It actually has quite a few amenities, going clockwise from the top-left: a shop with occasionally helpful stuff (and an owner who rips off Dark Elves), a village elder who assigns several quests, a training hall where I can turn (a lot) of gold into attribute improvements, a smithy (that can teach smithing and allows you to do work, both at very high prices), a tavern with a grizzled old gladiator and cheap ale, a small secret room with a mysterious mystic, and a temple with an altar I cannot use do to Lorna's Chaotic alignment. We'll be fixing that soon.
I feel now that this isn't a bad time to work on the quests we picked up earlier, but first I want to ask the dwarven elder if there's anything HE wants us to do. Asking him about "quests" reveals that he wants Lorna to prove herself by slaying a swordsman. (Thank God- it's a common creature). And I know just the place to find such a swordy asshole.
Bawhawhaw. Knock, knock Mr. Druid. We're here to kill your ass!
Now, before we go and ruin our Dark Druid's day, I want Lorna to change alignment. We can do this via the altar (a white _ right and down from Lorna). Changing alignment can be tricky, since you risk pissing off one of a couple deities, so, as a precaution, I've dropped almost my entire inventory in the corner, save for a cursed cloak that I won't miss anyways, and some gold.
To actually pull of our alignment change, we first check to make sure the room is locked off (already addressed). If the room isn't locked off, a speaking monster could wander in and sacrifice us to their gods while we're standing on the altar. Bad, but hilarious; and it works the other way around. So, we just offer (shift+o) one gold piece at a time until our alignment changes and our new deity welcomes us in. Then, we offer most of our remaining gold to build up some piety.
All done. Check the alignment- it's gone from Chaotic to Neutral. Also, now that my new goddess likes me, I can do some cool stuff. Dropping potions of water on an aligned altar results in Holy Water, an immensely useful item. I dip one of my Scrolls of Identify into some of this Holy Water to bless it, then read the scroll to instantly identify all of my items. Fun. Also, I can drop unidentified items onto an altar to find out whether those items are Blessed, Uncursed, or Cursed.
Hey, what'd I tell ya! Lorna was certainly prepared for Keethrax's brand of bull**** (largely via an amulet of light to counter his Darkness spells), but again, I'd leik to stress that he can easily pillage young characters. So, to the victor go the spoils- the Black Torc (which I still don't quite know what it is- it's an artifact amulet that can also be thrown like a boomerang) and Keethrax's corpse, which we can trade to the good druid for a Potion of Cure Corruption- extremely valuable later on. Oh, and I wrecked a Swordsman earlier in the dungeon. 2 for 3, shall we make it 3/3?
This cave only appears after accepting the puppy quest. Let's do it! Let's save a little girl's puppy! FOR GREAT JUSTICE!
We were too late. Oh, well. We can still return the corpse and tell the little girl for an alignment boost. (Which is what I really wanted out of this quest).
Living within this little clearing is an old retired barbarian. He gives us a quest to kill 20 more of our first kill. In exchange, he'll teach us about Courage. I wisely chose a Goblin Rockthrower to be Lorna's first victim. I'm not gonna go out an hunt 20 more specifically- I'll rack them up soon enough.
After turning in our initial quest from the dwarven elder, he gives us another quest- to go become Champion of the Arena. Really, not all that hard. In addition to my gold winnings, I also earn the Golden Gladius, an artifact shortsword. It's pretty good, but far more valuable to me traded in for some training from the grizzled old gladiator.
At this time, I take on most of the dwarven elder's remaining quests: first is to venture beyond the Animated Forest. It's mostly a patience game, sliding between mostly apathetic wandering walking trees and dodging the hostiles until I find the down stair. Having played several games of ADOM, I say "**** that". Seriously, sneaking around in the Animated Forest sucks a lot. There is an alternative, but it could easily get me killed- the overrun and conquered Dwarven Halls, a 2-floor gauntlet of out-of-depth danger. On the first floor of the Halls, I'm alerted to the presence of a Tension Room (a locked room filled to the brim with monsters). In older games, I've seen a level 12-ish PC massacred by Ancient Dragons on this level of the Halls, so when the down stair doesn't appear without me popping open any doors, I wisely use a scroll of monster detection. What it reveals makes me glad for my discretion: a tension room full of a variety of Giants, fortunately well out of my way. I cautiously locate the downstair and move on. The next floor has the stair located mercifully close; I pass through and finish up. My reward? A well-charged blessed Wand of Fireball. Sweet.
The last quest I do for the elder for the time being is to wipe out a tribe of Ogres making their home just beneath Dwarftown. By and large, the fight was very simple, and the quest nets me a nice set of gear. Some of it I hold on to, the rest I sell.
After slinking through the very hostile Dwarven Halls and pummeling a Stone Golem, I locate the Ancient Scythe "Moon Sickle", a powerful weapon of Chaos. Most Chaotic artifacts simply corrupt the wielder over time, but Moon Sickle only corrupts you when it scores a hit on an opponent. Oh, yeah. Moon Sickle can also corrupt any potion into a volatile Potion of Raw Chaos. The Sickle is sweet, but I won't really be using it much for now.
At some point during all this adventuring, I manage to decipher a few of my spellbooks and learn a little magic. All the spells you see there are useful. Divine Key lets me unlock locked doors, bypassing any traps; Lesser Divine Touch is a Stun Ray spell; Minor Punishment is basically Magic Missile (that spell royally saved my ass once. Perhaps I'll have occasion to share how someday); and Slow Monster is actually one of the most potent spells in the game- if I can successfully slow a monster, I basically get extra turns relative to the poor sod.
My character just chilling out. The room around me is a temporary item cache. Here you can see all the physical stats I ended this session on.
All my currently equipped items. I'll field any questions on gear later.
That'll be it for today, folks. This time around, we have a half-decent character going. Perhaps you'll be witness to some really cool stuff.
[Edit: eye-catching stuff]
[Edit2: navigational overhaul]