Sunday, April 14, 2013

Quest For Glory 1: So You Want to be a Hero - So You Want to be a Thief

Thief type characters have always held an attraction that I can't deny. I like collecting everything not nailed down. Sneaking around always seemed like the better option compared to the direct approach.
Sneaking gives me a hunchback.
However, even I have to admit there's a logical flaw in a game where the goal is to become a hero, but the main activities are sneaking around in the middle of the night stealing everyone's belongings. Especially when the victims are an innocent old lady and the town's sheriff.
I wonder if Silmaria is a future destination.
Well, first things first. I need to visit the local thieves guild and register myself so I don't get in trouble for encroaching on their turf. The manual makes mention of a thief sign to make myself known to my fellow thieves, but in the the VGA version I'm not sure how that will work at first.

Every action is mapped to a generic icon. The best candidate is the 'hand' icon, which is usually 'take' or 'use', but in this case it doubles as 'show thief sign' to the thieves in the alley. After learning the password I entered the guild located under a trap door in the tavern. I wonder if it's possible to guess the password.
Are there dues? What about benefits? Who's Jon B?
Joining the guild costs 25 gold. I receive an official license. As part of the thieves guild I now have a place to fence my pilfered goods, play a friendly throwing game, and get additional lock picks. There's also a thief's tool kit, which offers additional benefits to lock picking.
I beat "The Chief" with barely any throwing skill
Playing the throwing game requires setting the angle and force of each throw. These numbers in combination with the randomly set position on the screen you throw from (plus I'm sure throwing skill in some form) determines where the dagger will land. It's a very easy game, and you can pull in all the money you can imagine.

The Chief mentioned that there's a spy in our midst feeding information to the brigands. Since they're not union members he has quite the animosity towards them. There's a missed opportunity here, as we never get a chance to resolve who the spy is. I believe it's Bruno.
Found you!
As a thief, I have the option to sneak everywhere and for the first day I did just that. This advanced the skill to a very high level, and I started avoiding monsters. It's a nice feature and I enjoyed saving time and health.
No option to ambush them.
I was eager to sneak everywhere I went just to see how much combat I could avoid. I wasn't able to get by the ogre guarding the bear cave, but I did get the key from the kobold without rousing him.
You just stay asleep.
Well, let's get to the stealing already! The bread and butter of any thief. The whole town is ripe for the picking and I scouted out the possible locations. The butcher, the baker, the barber, the magic shop, the guild hall, the fruit stand, the healer, and the general store must offer such treasures beyond their locked doors... doors that are also barred from the inside; except for the magic shop, which is always under a watchful eye.
I tried Erasums' too. I only found a box that kept closing itself.
The only two remaining houses are the sheriff's home and the house of an innocent old lady who sleeps all day. Like I said before, I didn't feel very heroic ransacking these locations, but maybe we can convince ourselves otherwise.
Nice kitty... jaguar?
The old lady's house offered up a few bits of gold, a pair of candle sticks, and a string of pearls. Creaky stairs kept me from exploring further and the noisy bird wasn't much better. I pet the cat a bit too much and it turns into a large black jungle cat. It pounced and I found myself pinned to the floor, so I avoided that upon my reload. This left me short a few points in the end. A magic guard cat, this must be an evil witch in league with Baba Yaga. How else can she keep watch on the happenings of the town?
The only other thieving spot offers up a few treasures.
The bright blue vase is the first obvious item to take. A candelabra and music box are the next two trinkets I add to my pack; the latter gives a bit of a scary as it wakes Otto, but he fails to acknowledge my presence. The sheriff's house also has a hidden vault and I'm able to crack it without any effort from myself, just click.
Continuing my nefarious ways I attack the fox (-10 points).
What I've learned from this small stint in thieving is it's best to stay downstairs, don't go into any doors, and leave animals alone. I wish there were more locations to break into, but at least I have some treasure now. The barber's shop and jail are the most curious though. Both only say they're locked, not barred, yet trying to pick them only suggests "it doesn't work."
My collection is turned into raw gold when imported to QfG2.
I was now rather rich having won a number games against The Chief already, so I only cashed in a vase and candlesticks (I held on to the music box, candelabra, and pearls). I only got points for the first fenced find, and I thought these were nice keepsakes. I bought 9 more daggers, 2 healing potions, and 4 potions of vigor.
I practiced throwing with my new daggers.
Well stocked, I forged on without worry about grinding out my skills. I had some time to kill though so I trained up my throwing and climbing before heading to free Elsa. I spoke aloud the password and sneaked past the Minotaur with ease. It took a few minutes of failing to climb the structure before I made it over.
Apparently I didn't train enough.
I found myself in front of the Brigand Leader and used the dispel potion without giving it another thought. Elsa was free, and so was I to stare longingly at all the treasure that laid before me. I couldn't take a single item though, except for the mirror and potions on the table. All this treasure and nothing to do with it.
Ominous black bird what is your purpose?
My memory of the fourth game once again mixed me up and I anticipated being able to train my skills in the abandoned warehouse. I thought I remembered a climbing rope, throwing target, and practice locks inside. I'm also a little disappointed by only two spots for thieving, so I hope future games offer a bit more.
There's Jon B!
This game is a great start to the series, and I'm glad to finally overcome this childhood favorite. I enjoyed getting through this game each time, but all the same I'm ready to move on to the next. Having multiple avenues to travel towards solutions were appreciated (e.g. I found I could climb the mountain next to the spitting sprouts and grab the seed), and I hope the games continue in that vein. Getting through the next game will be a much greater accomplishment as I remember it not resonating with me.
Near the end, the night shows specular detail.

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