Appreciating this game

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ppd
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Appreciating this game

Post by ppd »

Wow I really love this game! I have been playing the demo game for a few days now. My character was exploring an old crypt. It is a healer who is pretty good with Fleshboil, but terrible at fighting. I was outmatched because I needed to rest (out of magic) but kept being surrounded by Thugs in the middle of resting. I was able to use my Hide in Shadows ability to stay hidden from the thugs and restore my mana bit by bit. If it wasn't for Hide in Shadows I wouldn't have made it.

I just really appreciate that sneaky options are available. Most games the monsters would just get me! : D
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Re: Appreciating this game

Post by Dragonlady »

Glad you like, we do too! :D

Playing a magic user can be hard in the beginning. I would camp, watch clock and when a couple of hours had gone by. click and then save, continue nap, click & save..etc. until I'd gotten back enough points to survive. That was if I wanted to avoid bad guys of any type showing up before I was rested. If I was full up and wanted to pick a fight to get needed cash or items, I'd rest until they showed up. :lol:
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Re: Appreciating this game

Post by Evnissyen »

Even by end-game, mana management can be challenging for a pure mage... as I've noticed in my last play-through.
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Re: Appreciating this game

Post by ppd »

After the beginning stages, I've had to rely on my Hide in Shadows ability all the time for fighting monsters (or it's just much easier). The mana runs out quickly for Fleshboiling monsters, but I've found that the best strategy is to hide in shadows, bless level 6, and cats eyes, and then hack away at the monsters until they die.

The worst is if I'm caught by a group of monsters in broad daylight. : ) I usually get slaughtered and have to reload and wait until nighttime.

Yes, so really appreciating Hide in Shadows, as I don't know if I could make it through the game without it!
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Re: Appreciating this game

Post by Painted Lady »

You have hit on one of the things that makes Eschalon so special. It's not just hack away time after time (unless you want to play it that way).

You can be all sorts of different characters and still play the game successfully. BTW, you will eventually want to get the Elemental skill. Fire Dart is a whole lot more effective than Fleshboil......
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Re: Appreciating this game

Post by King_ov_Death »

Painted Lady wrote:BTW, you will eventually want to get the Elemental skill. Fire Dart is a whole lot more effective than Fleshboil......
And just wait until you get the other fire spell... :twisted: :twisted: :twisted:
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Re: Appreciating this game

Post by IJBall »

ppd wrote:After the beginning stages, I've had to rely on my Hide in Shadows ability all the time for fighting monsters (or it's just much easier). The mana runs out quickly for Fleshboiling monsters, but I've found that the best strategy is to hide in shadows, bless level 6, and cats eyes, and then hack away at the monsters until they die.

The worst is if I'm caught by a group of monsters in broad daylight. : ) I usually get slaughtered and have to reload and wait until nighttime.

Yes, so really appreciating Hide in Shadows, as I don't know if I could make it through the game without it!
I think you have discovered what I also discovered to be the case about Healers - you pretty much have to play them as mostly defensive spellcasters, and offensive melee fighters, certainly later on in the gameplay.

You can get away with using just Fleshboil as your primary attack early on as a Healer. (The mana issue can be somewhat ameliorated if you can start your character out with PER=31, and get it up to PER=40 by your character's Level 3.) But by probably the time you starting going up against Wasps, etc., you pretty much need to have a good back-up melee attack.

There's a couple of ways to accomplish this. One way is to put 5 Levels into one of the melee skills, along with 6 Levels into Divination, at character creation (5 Levels in a melee + a 3-6 Lvl. Bless spell, and you can usually take on most monsters with a pretty effective melee attack). The other way would be to start putting points into a melee skill when you get your character up to around Level 5 or so. But, either way, you pretty much need a melee skill by the second half of the game. (And a backup-backup ranged attack like Bows is also advisable.)

And, yes - Hide in Shadows is a great back-up plan... :)
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Re: Appreciating this game

Post by ppd »

Thanks for your comments. I have considered getting some Elemental skill, but I have more fun with the roleplaying as a total healer.

Yes, I was really bad with my weapon and then I had some good luck and found an amulet that gave me three points skill in it! So now I am simply bad with my weapon : )
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Re: Appreciating this game

Post by Palog »

I'm playing a mage (so Elemental skilled) and the point is blast blast... run run run... rest rest... blast blast.. rest rest :D

It seems tedious quoted like that but in fact it's very fun, probably even more than a stealthy based character (that has to be played anyway because it's quite fun and original).

But such mage character have plenty plus:
  • Stealth fighting is very very fun but push you live during night, a mage isn't worry to fight under the sun.
  • A mage character can kill much faster than a stealthy character.
  • Area attacks, that's a huge plus.
  • A specialized mage have much more mana so have quite more magic options like invisible and many more.
  • A mage can face sooner much more easily stronger opponents because of his long range firepower.
The key points are:
  • Rest is a key, look short rests like a handy mana manual regeneration.
  • Run (not the spell) is a key during fights, there's many reason to use it, regroup enemies, isolate some enemies, escape from a close contact, and more.
  • Flee is an art to develop for a mage because too low mana can happen at any time. See it more like a tactical retreat, an art of fight tool. :D
  • Area attacks, that's the fighting tool to learn use better with a mage character.
  • For character management:
    • Invest character points asap to get more mana. INT level influences how much mana you get each level, but it isn't retroactive so the sooner you improve your INT the higher your mana will be. A nice goal is to aim INT 31 asap, and after it depends of your choices.
    • Mana restore speed is important too. It makes rest shorter, makes more fluid the exploration, even during a fight it can make a difference that some run let you restore enough mana to finish a fight. Perception is the key to increase mana regen rate but raised it will also bring great bonus by improving a lot trap detection and secret detection, even if you don't spend much or any point in the skill.
    • Light Armor is a good secondary skill target. A mage is a long distance fighter but there will always be some close range situations, often for finishing a fight or for some troubles.
    • Take care to not have a too low speed, but 11 to 15 speed should be fine enough. More is an option but probably not a significant goal for a mage.
    • Choose one weapon skill at creation is a good idea to manage more easily first levels but don't spend much here, soon this will be a useless skill for a mage. 2 points in bludgeoning weapons is a good choice at creation, it will also give you a good tool to break lock until you get the spell to do it.
    • Focus first on mage skills is the goal for a mage character but for later level and with a so high mana pool it would be a shame to not spend some points to develop a bit Divination magic.
Some more tips related to a pure mage character:
  • Look for items that increase mana. At beginning even +5 mana is nice, but later look for +20 mana items, I saw ring and necklace that each give this bonus.
  • Always have some mana potions with you for some extreme situations. In later game you could perhaps use mana potions on a regular base. But that's not the point here, it's just to manage a few extreme situations you can't solve with run.
  • The Druidic trait improving mana regeneration in outdoor and lower it in dungeons is an interesting option in Book 1. It will make the first levels easier, there's overall more outdoor fights and exploration than indoor, many dungeons will offer some close outdoor issue that you can use if an extreme situation occurs.
  • When your mana is too low rest is your next goal, never forget that.
  • Too low mana means not enough mana to make next fight so sometimes even mana at 50% involves a quick rest.
  • Some monsters have a too high magic or elemental protection, then some spells can be a waste against them. For the Elemental mage Compress Atmosphere can be the spell to use even against some single target.
  • Be aware of situations where you can use an area attack, that's the mage major power. Eventually try regroup some enemies with some movements, circle is often working well.
  • Temper well between killing fast and spare Mana, best choice depends of the opponents and the situation. That's why two spells like Fire Dart and Deep Freeze are both handy despite they seem similar.
  • Think of all tools to manage your fights, traps, gates or even some attack potions.
  • When you discover a trap don't disarm it if you can, later you could use use it as a savvy element for a fight or a retreat.
  • Even when you didn't develop some stealth skills some dungeons with light sources can be a good opportunity to use a torch as your light source so you can easily shut off your light source. With no light source you can position in a dark area during a fight. Your spell aiming won't be hurt but opponents attacks will.
  • Cat's Eyes or Predator Sight can be good tools for a mage too but not as necessary and spare the mana to sustain them is a good option for mages.
  • Some tips about running during a fight (movements not the spell):
    • To avoid be at close range and gain some distance, circle run is often the trick.
    • To group monsters for an area attack.
    • To isolate one or few monsters from a larger pack.
    • To regen a little mana, this can be enough to finish a fight.
  • Some tips about fleeing, ... I mean art of retreat:
    • If you feel you have to flee, make a pause and think first before to make a blind run.
    • Clicking fast to move your character will not make him run faster unlike your years of action games playing will urge you.
    • Think every step and plan your escape path, have a clear path planned.
    • Your best flee path isn't necessary to try be as far than possible to as many monsters at any step. Sometimes a rush through some monsters can be the best way to initiate the best flee path.
    • Use obstacles, doors, straight corridor.
    • Sometimes circle before to start the flee can be handy to gain some distance or to free a path.
    • Always have flee in mind and learn to evaluate the situations to anticipate a little a flee.
    • Try spare some mana for a possible flee, many spells can totally change the result of a flee. For example, Sonic Blast, Dancing Lights, Invisibility, Run, Turn Undead.
    • Look at your map if in game obstacles aren't clear enough to plan the best path.
    • If your light source shut off during a flee, stop your reflex that urge you to light on, this could be one action lost at wrong time.
    • Dark could be your friend during a flee, if your map skill isn't too low you can even flee by using only the map.
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Re: Appreciating this game

Post by IJBall »

Some points here...
Palog wrote:The [Mage] key points are:
  • For character management:
    • Invest character points asap to get more mana. INT level influences how much mana you get each level, but it isn't retroactive so the sooner you improve your INT the higher your mana will be. A nice goal is to aim INT 31 asap, and after it depends of your choices.
In fact, what you say is true for *PERception* - INT also helps with Mana, but not nearly as much as PER.

My advice is always this: for every character where spellcasting is the focus, either Mage or Healer, a player should roll until they get PER=14 during character creation - you should also roll until your INT=14 as well for Mage - then take the Origin that gives the PER+2 bonus, and then pour all 15 Attribute points into PER - you will start out with PER=31 if you do this, and you will begin the game with 75 Mana Points if you have PER=31 and INT=14. If you put your next three level-ups' Attribute points into PER, you will be at PER=40 and by Level 4 your character should be gaining 10 Mana Points on each level-up; you also will have already maximized your Mana Regeneration (which happens when PER=38).

Long story short - PER is much more important than either INT or WIS for spellcasters. You will need to get INT (or WIS, for Healers) up to INT=20 (or WIS=20), so that you can read Tier Three spell scrolls. (Also, INT=20 will gain Mages another Mana point on level-up...) But, esp. early on, the focus needs to be on PER.

Some of the details about this can be found in these threads here and here.
Palog wrote:The [Mage] key points are:
  • For character management:
    • Choose one weapon skill at creation is a good idea to manage more easily first levels but don't spend much here, soon this will be a useless skill for a mage. 2 points in bludgeoning weapons is a good choice at creation, it will also give you a good tool to break lock until you get the spell to do it.
    • Focus first on mage skills is the goal for a mage character but for later level and with a so high mana pool it would be a shame to not spend some points to develop a bit Divination magic.
The first point here really depends on whether you want a spellcasting-only character, or a melee-fighting spellcaster.

I've played both. The first time I played Mage, he was all spellcasting - with that character, I really needed no melee skill. (Note: This is not true for Healer characters, but can be true of Mages...)

However, I am currently playing a melee-fighting Mage character, and at character creation I maxed out this character's melee skills - at the start, I still put the 6 Levels into Elemental Magic, but I also put 5 levels into Bludgeoning.

I guess my point is, 2 Levels into a melee skills is likely not enough to be useful, even at the game's start - either go for it and put 5 Levels into a melee skill at character creation, or possibly don't bother with a melee skill at all (or, at most, put just one level into a melee for later use in the game...).

As for your point about Divination - absolutely correct. Mages will need Divination. For either spellcasting-only or melee-fighting spellcasters, you must have Divine Heal, as the odds are your HPs are going to be crappy and low if you're a Mage (or Healer). And if you're a melee-fighting spellcaster, you're going to need Bless ASAP as well. (In fact, if you're playing a melee-fighting spellcaster, you probably want to start out as Virtuous axiom so you get the "free" Bless spell at the game's start...)
Palog wrote:Some more tips related to a pure mage character:
  • Cat's Eyes or Predator Sight can be good tools for a mage too but not as necessary and spare the mana to sustain them is a good option for mages.
This will depend on whether you're a melee-fighter or not. In general, though, I highly advise getting Gravedigger's Flame and Predator Sight spells for Mages, and Cat Eyes for Healers - you pretty much can't go wrong having any of those three spells.

Anyway, I agree with most everything else you said. I just wanted to comment on these points. :)
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Re: Appreciating this game

Post by AK_Marty »

Don't forget your Air Shield spell. A must have for dealing with Fungal Slimes and Goblin Archers.
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Re: Appreciating this game

Post by Dragonlady »

AK_Marty wrote:Don't forget your Air Shield spell. A must have for dealing with Fungal Slimes and Goblin Archers.
Aman to that statement. Dang slimes anyway! That spell is my second favorite spell. :D
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Re: Appreciating this game

Post by Palog »

IJBall wrote:Some points here...
...
Long story short - PER is much more important than either INT or WIS for spellcasters.
...
Lol yes I wonder why I mix INT and PER, I targeted PER 30 (or 31) ASAP. My character had more than 220 MP at end (with some items).
IJBall wrote: You will need to get INT (or WIS, for Healers) up to INT=20 (or WIS=20), so that you can read Tier Three spell scrolls.
At end of game I could not max level of last spells but that's not so important. I think it's INT 41 the highest requirement.
IJBall wrote: The first point here really depends on whether you want a spellcasting-only character, or a melee-fighting spellcaster.
It's clear you can mix Mage with some other skills, my post was about a (pure) mage, I only get Divination spells at late levels.
IJBall wrote: I guess my point is, 2 Levels into a melee skills is likely not enough to be useful, even at the game's start
I think you are wrong on this, it helps bash locks significantly, what are the numbers here? Did you really bash locks with zero on axes or masses?
I just started a ranger with no melee skill and after few time stop the madness for bashing locks to get one level in masses.

Well you could use casting but at low level it requires too much rests just to bash one lock.
IJBall wrote: As for your point about Divination - absolutely correct. Mages will need Divination. For either spellcasting-only or melee-fighting spellcasters, you must have Divine Heal, as the odds are your HPs are going to be crappy and low if you're a Mage (or Healer).
That's no what I wrote and I think you are wrong for mage not melee. If during a fight you start spend mana for healing with a mage then there's something wrong.

I take Divination spells only very late and heal wasn't the point, I used more Lore in fact and Haste as much than Heal. I also tried use Entangle more than I use Heal but didn't get much success.
The Divination part is a comfort thing but not a requirement.
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Re: Appreciating this game

Post by Palog »

AK_Marty wrote:Don't forget your Air Shield spell. A must have for dealing with Fungal Slimes and Goblin Archers.
Clearly, many parts would be rather rude for a mage too without this spell. No class can really do without this spell I think, that's why I didn't quote it.
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Re: Appreciating this game

Post by CrazyBernie »

Palog wrote:
AK_Marty wrote:Don't forget your Air Shield spell. A must have for dealing with Fungal Slimes and Goblin Archers.
Clearly, many parts would be rather rude for a mage too without this spell. No class can really do without this spell I think, that's why I didn't quote it.
Pshaw! You mages and your reliance on puny spells. My fighter can catch arrows with his teeth! :mrgreen:

I will say that Fungal Slime poo doesn't taste very good though. >.<
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