Shining in the Darkness: Progress Log #8

[Click here to start from the first progress log]

The Cave of Wisdom lies ahead, and I have a single goal for this one: try to finish it off in one go instead of leaving crucial items behind that’ll force me to backtrack through it like the previous two. It would be helpful if anyone bothered to mention what these crucial items are ahead of time, but since that isn’t a realistic expectation, I’m going to have to do my best to be thorough and find as much as possible.

I enter the Labyrinth and head to the evil wall, which has respawned. Realizing that fate has arranged for the two of us to have a Zeus/Prometheus dynamic, I promptly murder it all over again. Rather than going forward, I swing a left and find that this is a shortcut back to the red wall and locked door that the Dwarf’s Key previously refused to open. Starting with the red wall that’s been tormenting me since the beginning of the game, I try the Rune Key. No dice. Then I try the Orb of Truth since it worked on the identical red wall that was in the Cave of Truth, and this too refuses to open the way. This stupid wall will be the death of me.

Luckily, the Rune Key opens the nearby locked door.

Wooden walls! How unexpected!

The Cave of Wisdom brings back the pits that you can fall into, which kind of sucks, but this shouldn’t be a problem so long as I keep my eyes open for where th—

Oh. It turns out that you can’t see where most of the pits in this cave actually are. You have to rely on maps that show you where they’re hidden, and they’re otherwise entirely invisible. You don’t know that you’ve stepped on one until you’re already falling. This is a huuuuuuuuuuge waste of time, and I abuse the emulator’s save states without a hint of remorse. After all, if the game isn’t going to respect my time, I’m not going to respect its artificial difficulty. I don’t even see what this has to do with wisdom; this would more accurately be called the Cave of Finding Maps and Engaging in Pointless Repetition and Annoying Random Battles.

There was this girl in the town’s tavern who was rambling about how her brother went into the Labyrinth and hadn’t come back, but she was talking about how he was probably just bones by now and it was bumming me out, so I didn’t include any screenshots of it. This is her brother, and he randomly joins the party. Like, without even asking. Even lizard guy had the decency to pretend like I had a choice in the matter, and what this really comes down to is poor dungeon etiquette.

Like lizard guy, he occasionally jumps into combat to lend a hand, but he’s nowhere near as good since the enemies have become quite a bit tougher than the early game’s pushovers. I suppose I could warp out and take him home, but that’d mean having to weave through all of these trap doors again to get back to the same point, and I really don’t want to prolong any of these awful dungeons.

I keep finding Mithril Ore and Dark Blocks. When Meat Shield Milo uses his item vision spell thing that tells you what things do, all he says is that they can be used for crafting. No one in town does crafting, though, nor does anyone in the castle do crafting. I don’t have a lot of free space to lug these things around, but they seem too potentially valuable to throw away. This game really needs some kind of storage container that you can safely leave random, potentially useless items like this in.

Huh. I didn’t come across any fake princesses or giant turtle bosses to murder, so I’m going to assume that I did everything that needed to be done by saving tavern girl’s brother. I hate this dungeon so much that I’ll seriously consider quitting the game outright if going back in is ever necessary.

I visit the tavern to sleep and heal up, then check back in with Eyebrows and the king. They all bend over backwards to flatter me, but someone mentions that the young guy who used to be on the left and have nothing interesting to say rushed out of the room. That’s kind of convenient since I just finished the fourth and final trial and can now presumably start with the actual Labyrinth (which Eyebrows tells me has five floors—hurray for padding). My money is on him secretly being Dark Souls.

After talking to the stooges inside the castle, a new shop opens up in the pinkish-purple tent next to the tavern, and one of the things this guy can do is craft. Finally. I try to craft a weapon using my Mithril Ore, but the cost is 38,000 gold, well out of my price range. I fail to see how this is remotely reasonable since I’m also providing the material, but okay. I settle on some Mithril Armor for JERK that “only” costs 18,000 gold, burning through all of my money in the process. It’s decent enough.

No one really tells me what to do now except to mention that I can now go up to the Labyrinth’s second floor. There’s only one mystery left, though: that red wall that hasn’t been used yet. Sure enough, I walk up to it and it randomly disappears, opening the way to a portal. The Labyrinth’s second floor awaits! I’m overusing exclamation points because I’m seriously burned out on this repetitive grindfest!

[Click here to go to Shining in the Darkness log #7]
[Click here to go to Shining in the Darkness log #9]

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