RETRO PASTICHE EVENT SCRATCHPAD
At this point Water World is +1 Water, -1 Fire, 0 other.
- You are Kyle. Wake up outside Frigid Bastion. Wander back out through Ice Forest (minor dungeon).
- Encounter Jens & crew hiding purloined goods (what kind?). Jens is on way to Rook's Town; offers ride.
- Leave Ice Forest & return to Jens' ship (the Adder). Jens explains monster radar thing. MotW boss battle.
LAYOVER AT ROOK'S TOWN
- Dropped off at Rook's Town. Adder crew does maintenance.
- Jens trades for info on Grotto. Offers to take Kyle along for "big score" when the Adder departs.
- Jens departs. Free wandering phase with Kyle alone. Outside town, monsters are very strong (near Dark World?).
- Talk to people, get foreshadowing. Meeting Noor and Cort tips a plot flag to make Jens finished.
- BRANCH #1: Jens is leaving for a "big score." You can (A) rejoin his crew or (B) stay in Rook's Town.
BRANCH 1A: ADDER CREW ADVENTURES
- Rejoin Jens' crew. Jens gives location of Grotto.
- The ship is now controllable. Free exploration is possible. Doors to Nowhere first become available here.
- Grotto is a major dungeon, and tough enough to reward levelling/exploration beforehand.
- Arrive at $GROTTO_TEMPLE. Adder crew ransacks temple. Possibly fight Ezra, Alf, or Beth?
- Jens takes Lesser Crystal of Water. Kyle moralfags. Fight Jens (W/A type. Minor boss; might be hard anyway though).
- Non-branching choice on how to deal with Jens (kill, let go, turn over, whatever).
BRANCH 1B: (NOOR AND CORT)
CALIBRATING FRIGID BASTION
- Reconcile with Ezra, Alf, Beth. They explain about the crystals & Dark Lord.
- Ezra, Alf, and Beth join to help Kyle calibrate the Greater Crystal of Water.
- Leave the Grotto (should this be in the commandeered Adder, or something else?). Free wandering phase.
- Go back through Ice Forest. Fight an ice golem guy (minor boss. can be fought earlier but too hard).
- Frigid Bastion: major dungeon. Split party into two groups to do the two paths.
- Come back together at the end, fight Water Guardian (W/L type). Major boss battle.
- Calibrate Greater Crystal of Water to Light.
After recalibration Water World is +1 Water, +2 Light, -1 Fire, -2 Dark, 0 other.
LEAVING WATER WORLD
- Cutscene-railroaded back to the Grotto.
- Alf and Beth are staying at the Temple. Ezra will continue on to calibrate the other Crystals. Kyle joins Ezra.
- Lose Lesser Crystal of Water; can't return to Frigid Bastion anymore.
- Ezra wants Kyle to visit Esperanza first to meet Elim. Ezra & Kyle depart; free wandering phase.
At this point Light World is +3 Light, -3 Dark, 0 other. However, it has no overworld encounters (or dungeons? maybe). Esperanza is inaccessible by Doors to Nowhere since it's also a bastion, but it's easily reached from any part of Light World since there are no monsters.
- Go to Esperanza. With Ezra it is possible to enter the Lighthouse.
- Meet Elim. Exposition about the Dark Lord, backstory (Deva/Elim/Lee), crystals.
- Elim lays out the plan: Earth bastion is the hardest to get to, so do that last. Enemies stirring in Fire World (need a better reason?), so do that bastion next, then Air, then Earth.
- Free wandering phase, but you pretty much just walk in a straight line to the Fire World border. Light World is boring.
At this point Fire World is +1 Fire, -1 Water, 0 other.
ENCOUNTER AT THE BORDER
- Only current path from the accessible world to Fire World leads through a border checkpoint. Hebbex is policing the border carefully due to desertions & rebel activity. Travellers are still allowed but customs is harsh.
- Problem! Border guards are watching for Kyle (actually looking for Dark Kyle, who stole from the Academy). Kyle and Ezra are separated for interrogation. Game follows Kyle.
- Get interrogated. Some dialogue options here. Cryptic hints. Maybe to the point of being jailed.
- Explosions! Everything goes to hell. Escape.
- Dark Ruth confronts Kyle. Dialogue re: blowing things up, why trying to kill one another, amnesia, etc. Probably some options, but can't avoid battle.
- Mirror fight against Dark Ruth. Probably pretty easy.
ESCAPE FROM HEBBEX
- Official reinforcements arrive. Kyle & Dark Ruth have to run; everyone is scattered. Can't find Ezra.
- Hide someplace. $SMUGGLER is also there. A few guards find you; fight them.
- $SMUGGLER is grateful, introduces self, advises you to escape to $APPEASEMENT_NATION.
- Free wandering phase, but fairly constrained. Most fights too hard for Kyle alone; steer toward $PLAGUETOWN.
EVERYONE HAS AIDS
- Wander into $PLAGUETOWN. $PLAGUETOWN is plagued with a disease (evil, or just bad luck?). Immediately implied that Ezra came to town recently & fell ill. Oh no!
- Go to clinic. Healers are all "you can't go because disease" but Kyle is like "nyuh huh." Inside, Ezra is laid up from illness. (Why is he there and how did he get there so fast?)
- Kyle knows/figures out how to make potion to cure disease, but needs theanthracite. Exposition: he can get that from the crystal farm in $RUTHTOWN.
- Free wandering phase. On to $RUTHTOWN.
BAD LUCK AT $RUTH_HOME
- Arrive at $RUTHTOWN, go to the crystal farm. Encounter Ruth. Some drama (why you try kill me). Explanation: Ruth has amnesia, has been recovering in $RUTHTOWN for a while. Can't have been in Hebbex. Parents passive-aggressive, unhappy. Kyle is all "OK whatever;" not in position to criticize implausible amnesia backstories. (This part can happen earlier if visiting the crystal farm before $PLAGUETOWN.)
- Request theanthracite, but it's all been bought up to make weapons. Only way to get more is to get it directly from $OLD_MINE. Kyle sez: OK, will go.
- Leaving, Kyle falls. Early symptoms of the disease. He needs to stay away from people and get the rare junk before he is too sick.
- Ruth is concerned; wants to go too, even if she gets the disease. Parents not keen.
- A minor branch. Ruth wants to come; choose yes, or no for her sake, or no because you don't trust her. If yes, she joins immediately; otherwise not.
Once Kyle collapses at the crystal farm he's suffering from the illness. This causes constant incurable Poison and Wound, even if immune.
CURING THE PLAGUE
- Go to $OLD_MINE (minor dungeon). Partway through the path is blocked.
- Ruth clears the path somehow (magic, explosions, etc). If Kyle left her behind, she shows up here and joins.
- MotW boss battle (not too mean, Kyle is gimped). Collect theanthracite.
- Railroaded back to $PLAGUETOWN. Make the cure, save everyone. Kyle's status fixed also.
- Ezra rejoins, explains how he got here. Maybe hints where to go next?
- Railroaded back to $RUTHTOWN. Drop off Ruth, apologize for trouble. Ruth's father takes Kyle aside, explains they don't want Ruth getting back into risky business, asks him to stay away from her with this kind of business. She might express an interest in coming along here but Kyle says no.
SEARCHING FOR LEADS
- Need to find Lesser Crystal of Fire. Free wandering phase.
- Not too many towns accessible here. Hints seeded with townspeople: something big was stolen from the Academy in Hebbex, lots of controversy, Mafia suspected. Badly timed; diplomatic summit coming soon. Hints point back to Hebbex.
- Cross border using $SMUGGLER's path. A town or two is open now, but not the Light World border.
- Visit Academy, meet Lucretia. Get recognized. Drama (people think Kyle took the treasure). Run, run from the drama.
- Meet Loa. Loa hides Kyle. Exposition: Kyle was a student under Lucrezia, went away for a bit then came back and stole Lesser Crystal of Fire from the Academy.
- Many rumours. Loa questions Kyle. Various options here but regardless she believes he's innocent (has mindreading anyhow).
- Police search the Academy. Loa uses a Door to Nowhere; the three of them end up someplace far away, safe.
- More talky. You both have amnesia? Yes. Suspicious!
- BRANCH #2: Loa asks: you don't remember her at all? You do: either (A) You were colleagues. or (B) You were friends. or (C) You were very close. Mostly influences the past; whatever you say is the truth. No immediate difference beyond dialogue.
- Loa wants to work with Kyle again; he's like "no, must save world," so she comes along.
FIRST ENCOUNTER WITH DOUBLE
- Somehow(?) figure out that Dark Lord's agents have the Lesser Crystal of Fire, are planning to calibrate the Blazing Bastion. Must intercept.
- Free wandering phase. Cross desert to Blazing Bastion.
- Meet Dark Kyle and Dark Ruth; mirror fight. They're much higher-level, but outnumbered - fair difficulty. Get crystal.
- Both Kyles like "OH that explains a lot." Exposition re: Dark Lord's motivations. Dark Kyle & Dark Ruth escape with Door to Nowhere.
CALIBRATING BLAZING BASTION
- Can't get through flames even with Lesser Crystal of Fire. Loa exposits: need a stronger fire elementalist, like Ruth.
- Back to $RUTHTOWN. Explain. Parents are all >: | but Ruth still joins.
- Back in the desert, Ruth clears the flames and opens the way.
- Blazing Blastion: major dungeon. Split party into two groups to do the two paths.
- Groups rejoin, fight Fire Guardian (F/E). Major boss.
- Calibrate the Greater Crystal of Fire to Light.
After recalibration Fire World is +1 Fire, +2 Light, -1 Water, -2 Dark, 0 other.
- Need to go back to see Elim, ask about doubles. Fire/Light border is completely shut down; need to cross into Air World, then from there back to Light World. (for some reason this wasn't possible before?)
At this point Air World is +1 Air, -1 Earth, 0 other.
JUST PASSING THROUGH
- Most of Air World is immediately accessible, as well as virtually all of Water World. Free wandering; nothing much to do.
- Loa has access to virtually all towns if a Door to Nowhere is used, but Air World towns are inaccessible by warp.
Light World (second visit)
- Back to Esperanza. Meet Elim. Loa is like õ_6.
- Exposition re: Ruth/Finn, Kyle/Ezra being enemies, battle in ex-space, crazy bullshit, doubles must be working for Dark Lord.
- Drama! Doubt!
- Everything's OK though
- Bottom line: go to Air World next. Loa has friends there, in Arabala.
HEY WE'RE BACK
- Visit Arabala. $SMUGGLER is there; recognizes Loa. Go to the Mafia club.
- Loa introduces party to Sir Artis (godfather type). Tight-lipped about relationship.
- Artis explains what's up in Air World and gives a bunch of leads.
- Lead 1: There will be a showing of the holy treasures at $VATICAN soon. One might be LCoA.
- Lead 2: Mafia informants reported skulky types in Valley of Ghosts. The doubles?
- Loa "needs" to visit the Valley of Ghosts anyhow, so she will go there. But treasure showing is soon too. Split up!
- BRANCH #3: Two PCs will case $VATICAN while one goes with Loa. Does (A) Kyle, (B) Ezra, or (C) Ruth go with Loa?
- If in Branch 2C ("very close" to Loa), she wants Kyle to come. If he doesn't (3B/3C), you fall back to Branch 2B ("friends" with Loa).
- You get a bonus scene later with whomever Kyle goes with. Dialogue varies a bit by branch also. Otherwise, no difference.
THE RUINS OF KAMARR
- $VATICAN group departs immediately (got to hurry).
- Free wandering phase with Team Loa (restricted some?). Can warp to VoG with a door, or walk.
- Valley of Ghosts. Minor dungeon.
BRANCH 3A: LOA IN THE VALLEY OF GHOSTS
- If VoG team is Kyle + Loa, scene happens outside the factory.
- BRANCH 2C: He's an amnesiac alchemist missing half his soul. She's a paradox with a hankering for world destruction! When they meet: romance!
BRANCH 2A/2B: Less personal, more cryptic. Tone varies some depending on 2A/2B, but basically the same scene.
- hey what if they're like about to make out but then a robot attacks them and so they beat the robot but then they don't make out after all. everyone would like that, right?
EVERYONE LOVES CRATE PUZZLES
- Explore factory. Minor dungeon: Few if any trash mobs, mostly Sokoban bullshit and a couple mandatory robot fights.
- Meet Lily. Introductions. Explain: Kamarr exploded, everyone died. Lily takes you to director to explain (previously blocked by impossible crate puzzle). Lily joins.
- Director (ghost, maybe ghost in robot?) flips out, attacks. Minor boss, not easy but shouldn't take multiple tries.
- Enter storehouse. No crystal; find theanthracite, but storehouse is largely cleaned out. Loa looks around, is troubled.
- Loa needs to return to Academy. She takes the LCoF, offers to explain on your behalf & smooth things over.
- Loa teleports away. Remaining person makes to leave, but Lily wants to come. Okay, whatever.
- At $VATICAN, the Clamour (monster season festival) has begun. Team $VATICAN arrive after it starts, but before the treasure showing.
- Wandering around $VATICAN. Big city with stores open, but can't leave town.
- Gather information from NPCs. Some festival minigames or something. Noor and Cort are in town for some reason and Dark Finn (whom you don't know) is around. Maybe meet the Flamen?
- Dark Finn recognizes Kyle or Ruth (or both) as Dark Kyle/Dark Ruth, chats them up. Exposition: he just sold them info on how to get into the place where the treasures are stored.
- Pay Finn to show you the secret passage. About to go in when: commotion from city centre! Make sure to allow a save here.
- BRANCH #4: The doubles may already be in there, but something bad is happening in town. You can (A) Hurry to the treasure room, (B) Find the source of the commotion, or (C) Split up.
BRANCH 4A: SAVE THE TREASURE
- Dark Finn ditches you. Follow secret passage (not a dungeon, but maybe a fight or two in case grinding is needed).
- Dark Kyle and Dark Ruth are lurking at end of tunnel, waiting for treasure guards to be distracted. A little dialogue, then fight.
- Mirror battle vs. Dark Kyle and Dark Ruth. Not as hard as last time (maybe the same stats as before).
- Guards leave. DK/DR flee into treasure room. Follow, stop them. Noise resummons guards. Explain briefly.
- Guards take everyone into custody while investigating commotion in town. Monsters got loose, but Noor and Dark Finn beat them.
- Sort out your innocence (Noor is hero now; she vouches for you). Guards arrest doubles & let you go.
BRANCH 4B: THE CLAMOUR STARTS EARLY
- Rush back to festival grounds. Dark Finn is curious & follows.
- Festival monsters are free! Minor battle or two on the way.
- Everyone is running or fighting in the city centre. Cort finds you and brings you to help Noor, who is fighting some group of big monsters.
- Sort-of-boss: several strong monsters. Party is Team $VATICAN, Dark Finn, and Noor, but no time to config latter two. Fair difficulty.
- Monsters beaten/recaged. People all "yay!" Warn about impending theft: everyone rushes off to storehouse except Dark Finn.
- Catch doubles leaving secret passage. They're outnumbered & can't teleport here; guards arrest them and put treasures back.
BRANCH 4C: YOU CAN HAVE YOUR CAKE AND EAT IT TOO, BUT IT'S NEEDLESSLY DIFFICULT
- Choose one person to go each way. Dark Finn follows whoever goes to the city centre.
- Tunnel person runs into doubles alone. Chance to fight or get past them.
- Mirror fight is same as in Branch 4A, so probably too hard for one character, but can be done.
- Alternatively, run past doubles into treasure room & alert guards. Easier, but no loot.
- Either way, progresses as in Branch 4A from here, but a little shorter.
- Cut to Dark Finn & other person. From here, progresses as in Branch 4B until monsters are all defeated.
- Only 3 people for the escaped monster battles; should be significantly harder, but entirely doable.
- Short scene where the PCs meet up again.
REUNION AT THE FESTIVAL
- Clamour proceeds as normal. Noor leads the crowd. The treasures are shown: one, the Levity Bead, is the Lesser Crystal of Air.
- BRANCH 3B: Kyle and Ruth reflect on how things have gone: about doubles, how they began as enemies, what is up with $EMPIRE, etc.
- BRANCH 3C: Kyle and Ezra enjoy the festival, but can't help but worry about the future.
- Whoever went to the Valley of Ghosts arrives with Lily. Explanations exchanged. Noor departs, since the holy sword wasn't here either.
- Short scene: Lily, Dark Finn, and Ezra. DF buys Lily a ribbon.
MEETING THE FLAMEN
- Whatever happened in Branch 4, PCs are heroes now. Granted an audience with the Flamen.
- Meet the Flamen, attempt to explain all this bullshit a little.
- One of the lesser treasures, the Levity Bead, is the Lesser Crystal of Air. Flamen is thankful, but doesn't want to give it up.
- Compromise: Flamen will give LCoA in exchange for fetch quest. Go to Well of Life in Dark World and bring back water of eternal life.
- Dark Finn comes too because it sounds cool. I've run out of contrivances to keep the party at four people or fewer. Let's just say you pick four to fight with and the fifth tags along.
At this point Dark World is +3 Dark, -3 Light, 0 other. Trufet Offerings don't work here, and the enemies are very strong. The party only needs to visit a tiny nub of Dark World, though, and the enemies there are a little more manageable than elsewhere.
THE FOREST OF CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT
- Well of Life is in Forest of Despair in Dark World, guarded by dragon. Go there.
- Forest is a foggy maze. After some dungeoneering the party is separated, gets lost.
- I guess this is where we do the thing where illusions torment the heroes. You have to do that thing.
- Kyle alone. Do illusion nonsense, then advance.
- Ezra alone. Illusion nonsense, then meet Kyle. Advance a bit together.
- Same deal with Ruth and Lily: do chardev stuff alone, then meet others and advance a bit together before cutting away to next person.
- Dark Finn succumbs to illusions, is sad. Meets Dark Lord (whom we haven't seen previously), but then fade out without a scene.
- Kyle, Ezra, Rose, and Lily advance, reach well. (Light) Finn is there, fighting dragon. Defeated easily.
- Boss battle vs. Vritra (D/F). Kyle, Ezra, Ruth, and Lily fight. Fairly tough.
- "Finn, are you all right?" "Who are you?" "What?" "What?" Etc.
- A little exposition about Finn, putting two and two together. Don't spell out his motivation yet.
- Ezra draws water from well. MP fully restored, impairments cured. Kyle explains: it's not "water of life," but just a lesser potion. Still valuable, though.
- Dark Finn appears. Brief drama clusterfuck. Upshot: he will work for the Dark Lord now, everyone else is sad and/or angry.
recalibrate Deep Bastion
Alchemical stuff: alembic, carmot, alkahest, azoth, coincidentia oppositorum, 72
"So. It begins."
"Why is it turning red like that?"