Yes, noble codexers, it's that time of the year again - we are getting another book of statboosting. This time it's going to be Charisma, located in a cave beneath Gnoll Stronghold.
Aren't You giving away too much?
People aren't here for the plot, but to see You die in funny ways.
Oh yeah? I bet you then, that I will not die in this update!
Yes. Gnoll Stronghold is piss easy for someone as awesome, talented and experienced as me. I shall cut through it, like a warm knife through butter! Of course, you are obliged to use optimal tactics.
Ok. And if You lose the bet?
I will agree to do something terribly stupid that you tell me to, without any bitching. But, if I win...
You'll get me invisibilty spell and we will avoid any combat that doesn't net me good XP and loot. :twisted:
Ok. You're on.
We are amb... waylaid by gnolls on the way.
Nice reflexes on speech check there.
Critical hits suffered...
No! No more of that shit!
Ok, ok, only joking.
Gnolls die quite easily, but...
What is with all these double ambushes? Is the winter wolf gnolls' pet, or what?
Or they were his pets... no, wait, that makes even less sense.
Uh... it seems that I have won our bet.
Death count: 40
NOT. A. WORD.
You do realize...
YES. Let's move.
This time the ambush is set by a pack of dogs. Poor, innocent...
No matter what you say, they die.
Some kobolds appear after a second or two.
What do you think? Two deaths before even...?
Criti... joking, joking.
You're so funny I almost shit my liver out from laughing.
You know, that critical hit counter might actually be useful in this update...
Fuck you! Just... fuck you.
The Codex bravely defeats some poor dogs and shitty kobolds, suffering only moderate wounds in the process.
I think I would like you to stop narrating for now.
We are waylaid once again on the way, but this time by a non-hostile bear, which we ignore.
What? My free XP!
Don't get all whiny, you've almost reached level cap anyway, and we haven't even started doing the plot yet...
And another ambush. Ghast this time.
What the fuck is going on today? Did a black cat fall into a waterfall and hexed me, or what?
It's not alone, of course.
Ghast cooperates with gnolls? Now, that's just fucking stupid.
We get surrounded by gnolls on purpose, to stay out of ghast's reach, and kill it, thanks to superior attack range.
Good job, sword!
Killing the gnolls gives us our long-due level up.
Finally at the stronghold.
Area entry stats are also level up stats this time.
Level 3 spell? Sweet!
Too bad, we haven't found any so far...
Over 51 000 in kill-XP out of total 60 000 XP gained. Somebody try to tell me this game is quest-based...
As said, we don't have any 3rd level spells yet.
We try to rest, but are interrupted by a gnoll.
Well, it is
Fuck. Another one! I just want to rest a bit, ok?
This is what you get for lack of respect for The Codex.
We manage to rest at third attempt.
Geezfuck! Is everybody set on making reaching the stronghold difficult for me?
Ow! You shit! Now I have to rest again! DIE!
And you too!
One of the bridgekeepers had magical gloves.
Cool! What do they do?
They set dexterity to 18.
What? They decrease
dexterity? What a useless item!
The other one dropped some potions. Never hurts to have these, even if for sale.
And one of them might actually prove useful.
A quick 112-hour rest.
We finally enter gnoll stronghold island and meet... xvarts.
You've got to be fucking kidding me.
I KNOW THERE ARE MORE OF YOU FUCKERS THERE!
Dreaming sweet? I sure hope so!
'Cos you'll never wake up again!
Is this the cave?
Not sure. Haven't played this game in quite a while, you know. Probably wouldn't touch it again if not for this LP.
Yeah, yeah, spare me the details. 'I don't know' would've sufficed.
NO MORE FARTS! I'M SERIOUS!
Of course, there's nothing more here. This cave exists only to provide us with yet another encounter with our beloved
GEEZUS FUCK! NO!
Yeah, yeah, boom-headshot.
NAAAAAAW! THATZ NOT TROOOOE! THATZ IMPUSSIBAAAAAAALL!
I'm betting there are xvarts inside.
Don't even say that!
Dear audience. After a small offscreen brainstorm, our hero and I have decided, that we will leave all further images of xvart-fighting without any written comment, just with a random emoticon underneath.
Here's the first one:
Wow. There's actually something else here but xvarts.
I hate carrion crawlers, but anything other than those blue abominations is welcome!
Not wanting to be stunned and devoured alive, The Codex treats the crawler with it's own medicine.
Here's wand of paralyzation for you! Like it?
Crawler is easily killed afterwards.
Three guesess as to what we'll find inside.
I don't even want to think about it.
I think we've hit the jackpot.
I hope you're right!
This should make You a little less repulsive.
Go on. No amount of your trash-talk can spoil this moment for me.
The tome is used immediately.
Charisma is raised to 9, which increases NPC reaction modifier from -2 to -1.
I knew this chick once. There was sort of mutual atraction between us, if you catch my drift?
I'm not sure I want to, but go on...
Well, to make long story short, she decided to blind herself to make it work, you know, physically, between us, but the spell misfired a bit. I wonder where she is now, and if she has regained her sight.
Thank you for sparing me the details.
A quick 80-hour rest before we continue.
Luckily, we have a spare this time.
Oh, sorry, that's a gnoll.
Gnoll? Where? Wow! A real gnoll! I missed you guys so much!
You die so much better than those fart-things!
Nothing, I just felt a sudden urge to play Drakensang.
The Codex got wounded somewhere somehow, so we stay for a short 16-hour rest.
As long as it's something other than farts, I'm happy.
NO! SWORD! NOT YOU TOO!
Broken Sword 2: The Smoking Mirror.
Forget I said anything.
It's not much of a problem to kill one gnoll with the short sword, but we can't go on like this.
Sure. We have the option to travel to Friendly Arm Inn, and buy new... I mean, rebuy the same swords, but repaired. It counts as backtracking.
Great! Let's go!
We are waylaid by gnolls on the way.
I wonder what else appears in one second.
I'm betting wild dogs.
We both lost. Lame.
Will you make it with the short sword?
Sure, but it will take a while...
Indeed, The Codex wins, although not without being hurt.
It's just a scratch.
The non-hostile bear is ignored.
No chance for a second level up in this update, so yeah, let it live.
The swords are again ours. More excess stuff is sold.
Wow, these gauntlets are quite expensive for such a useless item.
Not everyone has 19 dexterity, You know.
I know. I just wanted you to admit my awesomeness in this regard.
We are waylaid on the way back too, of course.
Who's the boss?
They are quickly defeated.
Back in stronghold, we explore the northern part of it now.
Come to daddy, little doggies!
Bad hyena-dog-man... thing. Die!
Finally, we enter the stronghold itself.
I'm guessing it's all gnolls from here?
Something wrong with all gnolls from here?
Well, I am
a little bored with fighting them too.
I might have an idea for that.
We find another shield spell scroll. This time The Codex manages to scribe it successfully.
A quick rest.
What about that idea you mentioned?
Let's stealth the shit out of this place!
Don't mind me guys. Just passing through.
Let me just slip past here... thanks.
They won't even see... SHIT!
It was bound to happen, sooner or later.
I will just fuck them all up instead then!
All of you suddenly feel very sleepy
Oh yeah, I am so awesome!
Two gnolls manage to wake up before killed, but they're not a problem
Not letting ourselves be discouraged by some bad luck, we continue the stealth-exploring.
This is the main mob. Orange one is gnoll chieftain - the closest thing to a boss here.
The Codex reason-defying stealth skills allow him to sneak into the pit...
...just in time before hide in shadows fails.
Who's the chick?
Oh, it's Dynaheir. There's a quest to free her from here.
Sweet! How much XP do we get?
No XP, I'm afraid. She's a companion.
I'm not freeing her for nothing!
Yeah, lady, better have something to give me for all the effort.
I'm afraid that's not the kind of companionship You'd like it to be. She also doesn't have any equipment.
Fuck her, then.
The remnants of Dynaheir's dialogue, sorry for not catching it with the portrait, but I'm not reloading for that here.
We continue the stealth-explore, encountering more gnolls.
Another luckily-timed failure.
It was all planned.
There's a gnoll on top here, and Your stealth failed again.
I have an idea.
Let's kill it!
Your creativity is simply smashing.
More like slashing and stabbing, amirite?
Ok, seriously now. It would be kind of lame, if we explored whole fortress without killing gnolls inside.
I've just killed one. And even more earlier, when hide in shadows failed.
You know, that's not what I mean.
What do you mean then?
Something like that.
If I survive this, I'm going to fucking kill you!
Didn't You say that gnolls aren't any kind of challenge anymore? Prove it!
Ok. Watch this!
Stay in line, boys. No pushing from behind! There's plenty for everyone!
For all of you that survived, I have a bonus!
Not feeling sleepy? THEN DIE!
Oh, yeah! I am so cool right now!
One of the gnolls dropped something usable.
Damn, these swords break like crazy today.
Gnoll chieftain wasn't among that slaughtered mob. The Codex lures him and hides in shadows.
I could so backstab him right now...
...but I prefer to prove that's unnecessary.
Good job. Not a scratch, too.
He's not a real boss and only drops one 2nd level spell and some gold - not even a magical weapon. Actually, to think of it, probably only Sarevok can be called 'a boss' in vanilla BG. Maybe Daveorn too.
There are still some leftover gnolls here.
Let's kill them so they don't feel omitted!
Moving into backstab position. Notice the glitched Dynaheir to the right (I tried talking to her - no reaction, just stands there).
Only 19 damage? Lame.
Now that's more like it!
And the second one is down.
We move on.
Wait, let me look for an emote.
Don't bother, I'm not fighting these.
A nice hiding spot to wait out failing stealth.
Screw you, guys. You can stand here 'till you die of starvation.
Reached this place right in time to 'recharge' hide in shadows again.
Fuck. They're blocking the log-stairs and I have to get down there to fully explore the area.
Do You want me to bring out the emoticons?
We find nothing more remotely interesting here.
I'll be going now, guys. See you later. Or, on second thought, let's not!
Area completed - sort of. If someone knows how to non-magically (and non-cheatingly) reveal the rest of the map here, please let me know.
Next time: On the way to Nashkel mines, The Codex becomes a mountain bandit in order to fulfill one of his lifetime goals.