New year, new me, new trip with Darkest Dungeon. Where we last left off, we did a bunch of champion missions, including getting a rematch with the Shrieker. Though the Shrieker wasn’t defeated, nobody died, which is a big accomplishment to me. Going back into the game, I set out with one important goal: defeat at least one Champion boss.
To do that, a simple basic mission into the Warrens would do the trick at luring out a champion boss there. While the experts rested for the future, a gang of rookies set out. Ponty the Man-At-Arms was leading a gang again, with Mal the Arbalest shooting from the back next to Tree the Occultist. And well, since I was hurting for money, I figured I should bring Poignant the Antiquarian around. Now, Mal and Poignant were both still kinda fucked up from when I first brought them out because I kinda forgot to stress heal them, but I was sure things wound be fine.
They set out. Poignant teetered on the brink of becoming the Joker because spiders combo’d and criticaled her, but she came out alright. Unfortunately! The mission was very boring. Poignant didn’t even get to find cool stuff for all her troubles because most of the things she came across were empty crates, so the team didn’t even bring back a bunch of loot. An additional reward for doing the mission was that the medical ward became free, and I wish I looked at the rewards properly before doing the mission because I gave some of the senior adventurers expensive health care beforehand. Whatever.
But the good (?) news was that a champion boss had wandered into the Warrens. The ultimate form of swine royalty, the Swine God (and his liege Wilbur) had arrived. It was time to fight a champion level boss!
…Is what I would say if the current roster of champions was up for the task. Part of the money problem was that I did not want to spend money stress healing people right away. Unfortunately, some of the people I wanted to bring on would be a liability if I brought them along unless I lucked into a virtue. Most of the fighting capable characters worked best in the front two slots; everyone else was suffering from bad stress,
So whatever, time for another basic bitch mission. Ponty came out of the mission alright, so I threw him back in the ring. Pipin the Shieldbreaker accompanied him this time. I brought along Vats the Jeser; not for his bleed, but for his Battle Ballad buff and Grand Finale since I was going on an outing to the Cove to bring that closer to summoning a new boss. And well, just to keep my healer stores replenished, I pulled a Vestal named Touchet off the carriage. She had dacnomania, an obsession with killing, which probably sucks to have if you’re just going to spend all your time healing.
The crew ventured out. I really got to hand it to Ponty, because despite going in with high stress, he really kept his cool throughout the whole thing. Which was good, because I completely forgot that camping was an option and that it would lead to Pipin’s trauma demons attacking everybody.
With that in mind, I avoided taking a rest. Unfortunately, Touchet was having a rough first day and she somehow ended up getting stressed out into becoming Irrational. However, it only happened during the last fight, so it didn’t have too much of an effect besides her calling Vats’ music playing shit.
Really, the biggest threat to me was the fucking hunger check RNG. I got two checks within two hallways, it was fucking obscene. Sincerely the worst aspect of this game. It was probably a good thing I didn’t camp, because Ponty would have starved his way to having a meltdown too
The Beguiling Siren appeared, but I had my eye on the prize: I wanted to kill that Swine God.
Peis the Bounty Hunter led from the front with Gary the Abomination set behind him to go beast mode. For the third slot, Aubert the Hellion was finally ready to take up the role with some bleeding action. Taillebois the Occultist was chosen as the designated healer to compliment Peis’ killing abilities and to debuff the Swine God, because if I remembered right, those guys go kinda apeshit.
Things unfortunately went to shit within two fights. Part of it was because I mixed up whether the enemies of the Warrens were good at blight or bleed and I wound up picking wrong. Part of it was that enemies got three critical hits in a row. Part of it was that Taillebois was doing a shit job at healing.
I was forced to take a camping trip, but thankfully, the Swine God wasn’t too far behind.
As expected, the Swine God hit hard and furiously while Wilbur marked and stunned people. Peis and Gary took the full brunt of the attacks, with Gary teetering on Death’s Door multiple times; he also became Selfish and dropped his beast mode form because I guess he wasn’t feeling it. However, they both managed to get some good hits in, with Peis’ bounty collecting doing most of the work. Aubert also supported from the back, dealing some good bleed to it.
Thankfully, the AI finally decided to have mercy on me, because Wilbur wound up targeting other people for its king when Gary was such an easy mark. Aubert wound up getting a pretty satisfying killing blow on the Swine God, with its servant not following long after.
The mission was harrowing, but nobody died. This proved one important thing to me: I think I can finally take on the Darkest Dungeon itself.
Gary and Aubert settled down to gamble the night away while their other seniors geared up for the expedition we’ve all been waiting for. As he’s been here since the beginning, Reynauld the Crusader was the go-to. Wished that Dismas could come with him on this mission, but alas. Heuze the Grave Robber was designated as second in command, with Baujot the Plague Doctor coming along; I have no idea if blight would be any good in the Darkest Dungeon, but it’s nice to experiment, y’know.
For designated healer, I gladly chose the healer that died and spit death in the face, Cambrai the Vestal. Who better to have on a mission that may confront death itself?
The Darkest Dungeon carries a unique stipulation: if I were to abandon the quest, one person would stay behind to sacrifice themselves so the others get away, much like the brigand raid on the hamlet. That’s fine. I’m committed. I figured that gathering treasure wouldn’t matter for this mission, so I splurged on supplies going in.
This particular quest has the gang hunting down something called the Shambling Horror. It probably wouldn’t be the first boss to fight from the Darkest Dungeon, but I’m surprised that it’s starting rough out of the gate.
The Ancestor sets a great tone as the heroes go in, proclaiming that the estate’s cultists are all gathering to beat the asses of the heroes.
The Rapturous Cultists are the first new enemy type I ran into. They don’t seem to fight, but they guard and self-heal, which gives me the impression that they’ll show up to tank for the tougher guys going forward.
Next, the gang ran into the Cultist Priest, who is a normal guy and oh god 6 points of bleed damage? Thank god I got Battlefield Healing on Baujot.
“Ascended” versions of the familiar human cultist enemies started showing up, though they clearly aren’t fully human anymore, sporting some cool new mutations to accompany their stronger attacks.
Reynauld was hard focused on by enemies, especially by a gang of cultist witches. As if the gang couldn’t have more problems, Reynauld became Abusive..
See, I could have used a campfire to fight back Reynauld’s stress a bit, but the Darkest Dungeon shares another caveat with the brigand raid quest: the map of the dungeon is constructed as you go on, so you can’t even guess where the boss is and can’t have a good idea on when to rest. So, well, we’re just going to have to deal with it.
As it turned out, those new witches are some real bastards. Their new stress move, Fate’s Reveal, not only stresses characters out, but marks them for the rest of battle. Unfortunately, I did not have anything that could clear marks, so everybody dogpiled on Reynauld. His stress went up and up until…
Congratulations to Reynauld, for being the first person to suffer from a heart attack!
He survived the battle, but needless to say, everybody needed to finally camp after that. He was given everything that reduces the rate at which he gains stress so that he hopefully won’t have another heart attack again.
New freak just dropped, it’s the Malignant Growth, part of that weird sentient stuff that’s growing on enemies now. It bleeds, it stuns, fun for the whole family.
What was not fun was that Reynauld insulted Baujot for having the nerve to let herself get hit. This was the final straw for her because she also cracked and ruh-roh, she’s also Abusive now.
Another fight later. It was one of those cultists and a bunch of witches, and with the way things were going, I decided that they were kill on sight. Unfortunately, they managed to hone in on Heuze, who –
Oh, cool! Unfortunately, Heuze didn’t get to start rallying everyone because Reynauld fucking hit and stunned her like an asshole, so I guess you can add woman-beater to traits abusive characters have.
Then, the gang finally found it: the Shambling Horror. It has a variety of moves, but the most concerning parts of it is that it can continually generate priests and it has an ability that shuffles the entire party.
Unfortunately! I also did not have movement in mind when I made this party. The only character that could conceivably operate from any position was Heuze. Reynauld was pretty much a sitting duck when pushed to the back and Baujot and Cambrai weren’t very useful at front.
The stresses of battle led to Reynauld suffering another heart attack. A few blows against him soon wound up killing him; but he also stunned Baujot on his way out, so thanks, asshole. As for Baujot, she picked up the abuse slack while she was getting worn down by enemies. Her rude words led to Cambrai to spiral, but she wound up becoming Courageous.
Baujot also wound up falling.
I wanted to believe so hard that we could pull this off. I wanted to believe. The last two standing party members were virtuous. It’d be a perfect story if they made it out alright.
But whoops, Cambrai’s useless in the first two positions.
You can probably guess how things turned out.
To Heuze’s credit, she lasted a bit because being Vigorous gave her some self-heal. I hoped that the healing could carry me and I had her hacking away at the Shambling Horror with her pick-axe in desperation.
Unfortunately, it was not enough.
Well anyway that’s it for this installment of Darkest Dungeon, I’m just going to go to sleep now. Uhhh, next main post for the site will be on Evoland 2, so look forward to that, thanks.