We’ve been having a smooth ride for the past two weeks, so it’s finally time that I pay for my hubris.
First things first, I needed to take advantage of the free health care. Where I last left off, I was hit by choice paralysis. Like, I could send Heuze in since she had a lot of problems… but she also has so many that I couldn’t decide which one to fix, so I’ll just leave her as is.
After a few minutes, I made my decisions. Mantel had a lot of things going on, but I chose to reinforce Steady on him, since it enables him to get less stress and it’s good to not have your team healer completely lose it during a fight. Gary had Armor Tinker as a positive quirk which lets me upgrade his armor for less, and seeing as reinforcing this was free, this was a general net positive for my money situation.
Also, Durandal had rabies. She rarely fights in battles but she was also the only one on the roster with a disease so I figured that I get her fixed up while I was at it.
There’s a new boss in the Cove: the Sodden Crew, a bunch of undead sailors that I’m guessing the Ancestor screwed over, since that’s kinda how it’s been for everyone. Now, it was a low-level mission, which immediately limited who I could and could not send out, The fact that most of the low-level heroes were bleed dependent lessened the potential pool of victims further, since the Cove enemies were resistant to bleeding and I guessed that the Sodden Crew would be the same.
Cairon the Leper and Tinel the Hellion led the front. Ros the Occultist was today’s resident healer, especially since he has that mark that’d help out Cely the Arbalest, who really needs some friends to mark enemies to make her more effective.
I bought everyone some stuff, which also led to the revelation that in spite of all my upgrading, all the stuff I could buy was still low-level stuff. I’m still clearly falling behind in the meta game, which is kinda troubling.
But that’s a later problem. The crew set out to the Cove. While I was confident in this team, it felt uneasy without the DOT I usually relied on – I gotta truck through with pure DPS, which is tougher to do with the tankier enemies.
That said, good fortune smiled on me. I got this really rare trinket with no downsides, and it seems pretty sick. Plus, I got a piece of coral to heal Tinel of her Weak Grip On Life (lowers the chance of surviving death blows on Death’s Door). I mean, that’s cool, but I refuse to let my guys get on Death’s Door again (copium).
They soon found the Sodden Crew, who was a gang of jerks that could act multiple times per turn. The Sodden Crew also used a move called All Hands on Deck to summon a crewmate, as well as inflict… something on a party member? See, the thing is, I don’t know what All Hands On Deck is supposed to do because Cairon was targeted both times it was used and he resisted what was supposed to happen.
So yeah, I don’t know what this battle was supposed to be because not only did I resist its gimmick, but I burst it down more easily than the other bosses. I’m starting to think I’m actually overprepared and that I’m worrying about keeping up with the game for nothing.
I went to explore a bit more to get more money and was punished for my hubris by Cairon getting infected with Red Plague because he wanted to eat from a rotting fish corpse so badly. Tinel also independently got Wasting Sickness from the “rewards” at the end and Ros also somehow became Catholic from this experience. Alright.
An additional problem became apparent afterward: Ros has also graduated to the mid-level tier, so now there’s no longer any healers available to help lower rank heroes. Unfortunately, I did not have the building resources to buy space for another healer and I kinda don’t want to throw anyone out, either. Hm.
Well, I had no choice but to take a veteran mission. I chose to take one into the ruins because it’d give me a good Occultist trinket and, oh boy. This is the first “long” mission I’ve taken, which means having two campfires along with different expectations for resource management. Well, Reynauld, Gary, Couci and Cambrai are some of my hardiest guys, so I decided that they get the first honor of going out on this excursion.
Problems started cropping up very fast. Because of the additional resources that a long mission needed (or at least, thought I needed), there was less space for pick-ups. Usually I’d be like, “sure, I’ll just toss out this extra key for some busts,” but now I was regularly making decisions to toss out things that I also want.
Additionally, Reynauld, in spite of me giving him that box that makes him less stressed out, got extremely stressed out, especially from those madmen that gave him DOT stress. So, for the sake of freeing up an inventory space and saving Reynauld from his growing stress, I decided to camp.
Things immediately went wrong with a night time ambush. Unfortunately, my team was not flexible with their skills, so when they got reshuffled, they were kinda sitting ducks until I got them back into their ideal positions. The bad news was that this fight completely negated the stress work I tried doing for Reynauld. Cool.
Despite everything, work must be done, so they set back out. They got into another fight, where a dang cultist sorceress immediately started bullying Reynauld. He was brought to his breaking point, but…
There is power in misery, as Reynauld became virtuous and became Powerful. The game doesn’t actually explain what virtues do, so I opened up the Darkest Dungeon wiki (where I accidentally clicked on an ad that spawned on top of the search bar, thanks) and found that Powerful just straight up makes attacks stronger. Combined with Warrior of Light, Reynauld was now a fucking beast. Surely, nothing will go wro-
Are you fucking kidding me?? Well, Reynauld and Gary (who I forced to transform) spent the battle tearing through these stupid skulls and sometimes got a few hits in on the Collector while Couci poisoned the shit out of it. I didn’t even get a cool head in a sack from the experience, fuck off.
Things seemed okay from there. Reynauld was getting stressed out again so I had the gang sit down for another campfire sleep (this time with no ambush) before pressing on.
Then we got to the last battle. A lucky critical took Cambrai to Death’s Door.
Before she could heal, she got taken off of Death’s Door. And also off this mortal coil.
I’m disappointed for multiple reasons. For one thing, yeah, somebody died, but I’ve also continued my streak of only my women heroes dying. I’m sorry women. But also, you can see that I have a trinket in my inventory. Early on in the quest, I got a lucky drop that gave me the Martyr’s Seal, which… raises resistance to death blows. Everyone was full up on trinkets so I didn’t equip anyone with it, but also: there’s a good chance that Cambrai would have survived if I swapped out one of her things for that. Fuck man.
All in all, it was a humbling experience that told me that I’m not overprepared.
Well, the heroes returned home, with Cambrai the martyr to my cause. But, a notable thing was that Couci actually advanced to the master level ranks, which means that she can now only do the hardest missions and is currently the only candidate that can go into the Darkest Dungeon itself.
Also, I guess we’re being haunted by some bird. I don’t know if I should do anything about that, seeing as it’s a champion level quest and I only have one actual champion. I wasn’t prepared to lose more people, so I’ll just let it hang around, I guess.
I decided to do a short mission to destress a bit, because man that long quest do be long. I decided to take a short scouting mission into the Weald since it’d give me deeds, which was a resource I was severely lacking. Gregory, the Man-At-War who is most easily my least used and least favorite guy, led the expedition, followed by Malleville and his dog. Cely would attack from the back and Durandal tagged along for the sake of grabbing easy loot. This particular team gave the name “Protective Howl,” which is nice but doesn’t go as hard as a lot of the other team names I’ve seen. To make up for the unavoidable lack of healing, I bought a whole bunch of food to use between battles.
It was pretty uneventful. There was one last room that didn’t have a battle in it and there was only one battle in-between, so as soon as I get to the room I’m in the clea-
GO TO HELL! EAT A DICK! WHAT THE FUCK!!!
Well, I certainly have space for more rookie healers now. A new healer will certainly appreciate the new head I got from killing this motherfucker, which would boost their healing.
But my time and patience was running short, so I’m cutting this part of the saga off here.
Let us remember our fallen, who both literally died at the finish lines of their quests under cruel circumstances. Cely, I was actually getting a hang of Arbalests, I wish that Gregory died instead because to be honest, I don’t jive with the Man-At-War. Cambrai, you were a valuable member of the team and you will be missed. And once again, I’ll say: I’m sorry, women.
If you have any tips that aren’t spoilers, please leave a comment, for I have been cruelly humbled by this game.