Future Research Outside the Continuum of Established In-Game Reality

| Tuesday, November 22, 2011
Let's all pretend this is about Skyrim and not Oblivion so I can feel hip and with it. 'K? Good.

Yesterday I wrote that when we get information later in game can matter earlier, turning what would normally be "additional research" into "outside research". This specific subset might be classified well as "future research". It's not that our characters cannot do it, they just need time travel.

Enter Klepsacovic, the destruction, restoration, alteration mage who wears heavy armor and specializes in punching people. He had a great idea: Use the sign of the Atronach (no normal regen, but absorbs spells). This would give him some great ways to solve problems. For example, if his problem involved casters, he could absorb their spells and have tons of magicka, which could then be used to burn, freeze, and/or zap their faces in/off/inside-out. Against melee he would fall back on his heavy armor and skills at punching people in the face.

Unfortunately, Klepsacovic failed to know a few key future facts. The first was that he would not be an invincible punching wall of death against melee. Instead, he would get hurt sometimes, and need to heal. Heal with magicka which he could not regenerate. The second was that there are a lot more physical attackers than magical. Third, the casters he does fight tend to summon... more melee.

He was essentially dead on arrival at the first real fight. He did, just barely, manage to fight off the enemies near the closest Ayleid ruins and headed inside. At which point he found himself struggling mob by mob, grateful for the places he could sleep as he crawled through a maze of melee.

Then God swooped in and changed his birthsign from one that crippled him to one that helped him regenerate mana faster. Sadly, God could not easily change his specialized skills, and so he remained cursed by a predilection for hand-to-hand combat in the false belief that the use of weapons would hinder his spell-casting, a myth learned from an old story about an age of dragons, but in which only a few dragons get slain, rather than a more recent story in which dragons have replaced rats for the job of being killed in sets of ten.

Thankfully, Klepsacovic was blessed with the Prophecy of Levels which foretold a Great Doom in which too many levels were had and marginal attributes were increased, to the Great Doom of All, and with this knowledge of the future to come, he did avoid the Temptation of the Bed, by which I mean the other Temptation of the Bed, not the one you're thinking of, since there is none of that going on, but in his single-minded zeal he did find himself with great skills of Destruction and Restoration but without sufficient magicka to use his greatest abilities, and thus did he succumb to the Sleep and when he awoke found that he had murdered a man and would find himself on a Dark Path, his soul at risk of too heavy a burden of infamy and only by the timely intervention of a Guild of Fighters did he save his soul and avoid the cruel words of angry city guards.

In other words, because I didn't know what enemies I'd be fighting later on, I picked a birth sign which made my character very weak, and resorted to the use of the game console to pick a new birth sign. Then I killed a guy for what I'm sure was a totally legitimate reason not at all related to a vampire hiding his identity and found myself in a secret society of murderers who were all really nice and helpful. Later on I think I will rob some monks.


Ephemeron said...

In Skyrim, birth signs are replaced with Guardian Stones, which confer the exact same bonuses, except that (a) you pick them later in the game, not at character creation and (b) you can always "respec" by traveling to another Guardian Stone.

Klepsacovic said...

Flexible, but not too flexible, and fits with the world. I like it.

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