Let’s go through Darkest Dungeon together! – 13

My life has felt really unstructured lately for a variety of reasons, some of which a bit personal to share on here, but I return to the Darkest Dungeon to maintain some semblance of regularity. Last time I killed some eldritch pig beast, which went fine except for Durandal the Antiquarian dying. Well, anyway, back to it.

Opening the game back up, I saw that there were two mid-level bosses available: the Sunken Crew of the Cove and the Fulminating Prophet from the Ruins. I flipped a coin to decide what to challenge and it landed on the Crew.

For once, I decided to do background research on a boss instead of letting myself be surprised. I fought the easy version of the Crew back in the fifth installment, and things went so easy that I completely missed out on the gimmick of the fight. So as it turns out, All Hands on Deck has the boss summon a Drowned Anchorman to drown a character until it’s killed or when its victim gets too stressed out.

I was originally going to bring Riebou, our resident Abomination, since the Cove is usually bad against blight. However, he had a bad Fear of the Unholy which would make him suck fighting the Sunken Crew. Boteler the Vestal’s inclusion was a given, since she was the only mid-level healer available to work. Cleri the Grave Robber was chosen for the pack, because besides her blight skills, her pickaxe could chew through the Anchorman. Baujot the Plague Doctor, on the cusp on graduating, just had to come along; while her Cove Phobe (more stress in the Coves) quirk would be a problem, I decided it wouldn’t be as bad as Riebou’s Fear of the Unholy, which makes him more inaccurate. And uhhh… Aubert the Hellion had to be invited by default since she’s the only mid-level guy I have left. I’m not sure if she had anything specifically good for the Cove, but good to have her around.

But you know what? Adding her rounded this out to be a girlboss team, so it’s perfect in my eyes.

Since supplies were going to be free because of the event the last installment gave, I just went ham upgrading everybody. Unlike the Ancestor – who implies that he killed the Drowned Crew for asking for more payment in his opening narration – I take care of my people. And so, the girls went out, tearing the shit out of everything in the Cove.

Eventually, they finally reached the Sunken Crew. This time, the Anchorman managed to survive long enough to actually start drowning people, which stresses them for every move you take. In doing so, it converts to a Sunken Ropeman, which annoyingly heals all the damage done to it. What surprised me though is that its victim can still get to act when I assumed that it would be a stun. While its victim can’t move from their position, it was really a blessing for Aubert, since I used the campfire skill that made her stronger from the front.

The battle went nice and smoothly, with Baujot doing her thing of poisoning the shit out of the Sunken Crew while Aubert and Cleri took shots at them in between fighting the Ropemen. The only real hiccup was when it dragged Boteler to the front, since she doesn’t really have a good counter for that, but otherwise, it was a nice and easy boss slay.

The crew went home, with Aubert learning Ruins Tactician on top of everything else, which makes her stronger there. I definitely know who gets to come along to kill that Prophet.

For now though, I’m running into the good ol’ problem of lack of resources. Funds were hurting and I didn’t get a lot of treasure on the boss run. I also realized that I was once again facing the possibility of the only available healer leveling out of mid-level quests, so I need to train up some new healers eventually to fill the space Tree would have when he eventually takes Boteler’s place and aw shit I forgot to take care of the rookies.

But you know what, we can kill two birds with one stone. There was some room left on the roster, so I got two people off the stage coach. Malvallet (or Mal) the Arbalest got added on, because though my time with Cely the Arbalest was short, she was nice to have around. Alongside her, Poignant the Antiquarian was introduced, all for the sake of making Money.

Those two were added to a crew heading off back to the Cove. Tree unfortunately had to come despite his stress, since he was the only low-level healer available; the only other character available to come anyway was Vats the Jester. who wouldn’t be good in the Cove and Ruins (the only other place available). Despite also being slightly fucked up, Pipin the Shieldbreaker had to come to grant some of her blight expertise.

The quest really kinda sucked, actually. As it turned out, the squad was really fucking bad at killing. Pipin pretty much carried all the fighting, because Mal unfortunately missed a whole bunch; she probably would have been better if Tree had the skill to mark things for her, but alas, he did not have it. I probably would be nicer to Mal if it weren’t for the fact that she turned out to be a Kleptomaniac, denying Poignant from getting some quality artifacts.

Well, whatever. They survived and I got some upgrading money to finance the fight against the Fulminating Prophet.

Aubert led the team. Besides her learning Ruins Tactician, her Iron Swan would be useful since the prophet hung out in the back, from what I remembered. Boteler accompanied because, well, there was no other healing option, and Cleri and Riebou were up to bring some blighting action to the Ruins. And hey, turns out that Riebou also has Ruins Tactician, that’s just perfect.

Anyway, they went off to go fight the Prophet, whose only crime is just making well-deserved call-out posts for the Ancestor. The Ancestor tried to have him killed a whole bunch, but evidently he did a bad fucking job. Or maybe he succeeded but he got necromancied back to life. Same thing at this point.

The gang had a few easy fights before, oh big surprise, it’s the Collector. I didn’t even bother taking a screenshot, because the guy’s an absolute jobber for an alright team, especially if they can reliably hit them in the back line. After another easy breezy fight, the team settled in to camp. Cleri used a snuff box on Aubert to cure her of some tapeworm I left unaddressed and Boteler cured herself of Egomania from checking out a confessional box, so on top of the easily fighting enemies, they were also easily beating back their personal problems.

The Prophet? He was also a jobber, to me. Aubert stuck to the front Iron Swanning him while Cleri flung poison darts and knives at him. I was not sure what to do with Riebou, especially since I wasn’t planning on destroying the Prophet’s barricades to move him up, so I just had Riebou swapping around to tank hits of rubble for people. There was a brief scare where the Prophet showed him pain-causing eyes to him while he was on Death’s Door, but the man effortlessly tanked that too. And so, the Fulminating Prophet went down, nice and easy.

With that, Aubert graduated to high-tier quests… and speaking of which…

I decided that it was time to get over my fears. It was time to go on a proper champion quest again.

Reynauld, the Crusader and the original fighter, was chosen to go back in action for a mission into the Weald, which would give a nice Bounty Hunter helmet. Beans the Flagellant joined, since I found the Weald’s denizens to be susceptible to bleed. Baujot the Plague Doctor, recent high-tier graduate, was chosen as an accompanying friend; while I’ve come to realize that blight isn’t that effective in the Weald, the Weald itself was full of blight inflicting guys, which Baujot could effortlessly cure. Taillebois the Occultist was chosen as the resident healer, since he had Robust, making him less susceptible to the diseases that run rampant in the Weald.

To improve survivability, I bought everyone their highest tier armor and… aw jeez, the money problem really is forever, huh?

The first few fights went okay, but then we ran into a new enemy, the Hateful Virago. Alright, it debuffs people, they seem painful to be around with the hag. Okay, killed the hag, now –

Oh! The Virago can transform corpses into new enemies? The fungused corpse blocks healing moves when it’s in battle?? What the fuck???

So, I forgot to take a picture of the actual thing happening in battle. Thing was, I was in such powerful disbelief and was too busy fighting for my damn life that I forgot to take a screenshot. The Hateful Virago somehow managed to be more challenging than any of the bosses I fought this session. If there were any bosses that blocked my ability to heal, it’d be all over for me.

The Virago was so challenging that I completely forgot that there was another enemy I hated, the Corrupted Giant. Beans… Beans got unlucky. The fight had a rabid dog that gave him bleed, and the giant blighted him for further DOT nonsense. The giant whacked him with the tree, sending him on Death’s Door. I hoped that Baujot’s turn was next to heal him off and remove those DOTs, and if not that, for Beans’ Death’s Door equipment to keep him together.

Both wishes did not come true.

Thankfully, this was the last fight the quest required, but it came at the cost of good ol’ Beans. I also got an achievement for the, uh, honor of losing a level 6 hero, so that’s cool, I guess. We will remember you, guy that loves to whip and be whipped.

That said? The quest honestly went better than expected. It wasn’t as bad as my past forays into the hard missions. I definitely could have been more pro-active; maybe if I got Reynauld to mark and guard himself at the time, Beans could have survived.

But overall, good session! What’s the plan for next time? Well, in outfitting this crew, it seems that the endgame problem that I’ll be facing is making Money. All the upgrade facilities are nearly complete, but what good is that if I can’t afford the stuff they got? Next time, I’ll probably do some easy questing to make some cash to finance practice for the higher-ups.

And when I feel experienced enough? It’d be finally time to step into the Darkest Dungeon itself.

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