Bard Rock Cafe Episode 8: Faerun Prison Blues
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Embark on a journey to a realm overrun by demons in a new epic RPG from the creators of the critically acclaimed Pathfinder: Kingmaker. Explore the nature of good and evil, learn the true cost of power, and rise as a Mythic Hero capable of deeds beyond mortal expectations.
Hello, and welcome to a new series chronicling my adventures in Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous! I have been lucky enough to have been granted access by Starrock, the community manager, and I want to thank him for this. Here, I chronicle my adventures of the early access version that I have gotten access to. There are hundreds of hours of content, and plenty of players familiar with the tabletop genre have been playtesting it for thousands of hours. Again, I find myself lucky to have been granted such access. I am not a tabletop player, but occasionally I’ve dabbled here and there. However, I am playing in the story mode, thus having combat easier as I do not understand the complexities of tabletop gaming. This is my honest opinion, and I cannot wait to get started on this journey! So hop on, and enjoy the ride. You’ll be getting these articles right up to the day of the release, where I release a full review.
Chapter 1: The Festival!
There I was, Chandragupta (My named character), being escorted into the city of Kenabres by two soldiers that held me on a stretcher. My memories had vanished, and I was unsure of where I was. Looking from the joyful mood of the city, they sloshed beer into the air, children played, and musicians held the crowd like snake-charmers. I really wished more festivals were like this in real life! It was the music that I enjoyed the most in this game, especially in the opening prologue. The composer for this game has done an outstanding job. Soon I was approached by some very important big-wigs all dressed in fine military armor, parading themselves while holding onto their mighty swords and magic staff. I meet Hulrun, an elderly man who handles most of the city’s defenses, and I meet Terendelev, the city’s protector who has magic powers that can do amazing things. That’s all I can say here for now!
I am presented with varying dialogue choices, including many options to become a liar or someone else. I choose the path of the righteous, because after all, what game wouldn’t this be if I weren’t slaughtering demons here and there? I declared myself a Crusader to finish the demons. Hulrun groaned like old men do and stated that too many people didn’t even know how to fight demons (well, that was the tone I got from his voice) and mumbled and grumbled. Next, I met Terendelev, who was charming and warm at the same time. She introduced me to the world and told me many things, being the city’s protector, of course. She’s very humble in this sense. After that, I went around drinking, throwing knives, and having fun, listening to music.
The festival erupted into a storm of chaos as demons spawned from the city undergroves. People screamed, and the whole scene seemed like something straight out of Castlevania. Mothers taking their children in their arms, fathers fleeing with their families. Knights and soldiers unsheathing their swords, ready to meet this threat, while some soldiers are quaking in fear at the same time. The ground shakes and grumbles. Terendelev transforms into a mighty Ice Dragon and confronts the demon-lord Deskari. The foul-looking corrupted perverse creature of nature breaks the ground part with his scythe, his foul breath permeating the air. I stand there, shaken, as I’ve fought off two or three demons. Now comes the chance. Deskari growls and rumbles in his voice. And at the last moment, I think it might knock me off my feet. Deskari comes forward faster, and I grab hold of my crossbow, and I fire!
At that very moment, it was a failure as the earth opened before me, and I fell into the cracks. Still, I suspect Deskari was impressed that a mere mortal like me could fire a small thing at him. Deskari, after all, doesn’t see humans as equals, and when have they ever seen them? The city burned, and I fell into the dark caves, and I can tell you, it was dark alright. It took me quite a while to figure out how to make my way out of the caves, and I met Seelah, a boisterous knight who was brash but proud and prideful. She was good, and I really wanted more character interactions with her. On the way, I met many characters as we were under the caverns as we tried to make our way all the way to the surface.
On our way, we came to a village and found two Mongrels. Creatures that were once part of the first crusade. It is a rather complex story to be told. So let me summarise it in a way: There’s a tribe of mongrels. One mixing wants to go to the surface, but his other ‘friend’ Wenduag, tells him not to. She’s dominating in her opinion of humans, and she has darker purposes. Secrets and mysteries were uncovered as I explored forgotten ruins with my merry gang of adventurers and travelers as my focus. Soon, we uncovered a good quest.
Quest: Devoured by Darkness
Whoever named this quest when writing did a brilliant job of illustrating just how ironic the quest is. At the same time, we encountered the Mongrels, who humans hate, which illustrates just how bad human insecurity can sometimes be. Two mongrel companions, Lann and Wenduag, led us through the caves, and we met with Chief Sull. I actually liked Chief Sull and how he was written, but it’s a shame there wasn’t a voice actor. In a nutshell, we had to get out of there and go to the surface, but not before Chief Sull allowed us to rest in his comfy underground village.
We awoke, not knowing whether it was dawn or night. Previously I had revealed myself as an angel of light, which Wenduag had warned me not to reveal myself. However, I didn’t trust her motives, and so I did. Chief Sull became convinced that I was going to guide them. And well, isn’t that a good thing? This world may be moral and grey, but there needs to be good that counters the balance of evil, should it not? Moving onwards, I particularly liked Lann. I think he was enjoyable to hang out with, often giving his opinions and detailing to my companions and me the history of the Mongrels.
Soon, we made our way to storm the Shield Maze, where children of the Mongrels had been kidnapped. Often, I went out to find doors that opened up to a lot of loot, mysteries, and intrigue. There was even a puzzle to solve, which was frustrating, but I managed to get it in the end, but the puzzles in these games require a lot of thinking. So bear that in mind. It’s not for casuals, even though I’m one myself. You have to search every room, every nook, every cranny to find the keys to the missing puzzle, which I believe some quests in this game will require you often to do. But there’s an easy way to understand this for the casual player. Most triple AAA games like Assassin Creed require you to solve complex puzzles. You search again, as usual, in every nook, crook, or crevice that you can find, and you will figure it out. For the experienced player, they will have their own strategy. I’m writing this article from the perspective of a casual but interested and committed player for this wonderful game, to guide others so they can ease into the journey of playing this game when it launches.
All I can think is that we helped the Mongrels uncover the fact that Wenduag served a demoness mistress. She had effectively disguised herself to become friendly with Lann and the Mongrels while using Mongrel children as wicked experiments. Of course, we did kick her out, not after we came across a demoness who was admittedly beautiful but wicked. We made our way, chamber after chamber, corridor after corridor until finally, I found myself in the tavern of the city, and I soon began drinking, gulping, and resting. My journey would once more take me to new areas of the world of Kenabres. So basically, I was back where I belonged. I hope this goes to show you you will have marvelous adventures in this amazing game. It has amazing music, amazing views, and an amazing story. The story and the voice acting are the best part.
Join me next time as we start our next quest: The Wardstone Legacy!