Wednesday, December 10, 2014

I killed a dragon!

Progress in Dragon Age continues to progress at a pace that makes every victory feel earned. Case in point: two night ago I ran into my second dragon. The first killed me as soon as I walked into her area, first by sicking her children on me and then by toasting the lot of us over a rather warm fire. This dragon was sitting on top of a decimated keep, not paying much attention, so I was able to get a look at it before approaching.

Yes, it's a dragon.

My first attempted was a total failure as I was low on potions and had no plan. I did just enough damage to convince myself that it was possible at my current level so I retreated to the closest camp and prepared. Regen potions for the rogue and mage, area of effect healing potions for the fighters because they are usually close to one another. Fighters tank, mage and rogue plink from afar, everyone runes the fuck away when the dragon takes to the air.

Success was imminent. Then a giant buffalo wandered into the melee, aggro'd on me for some reason, and the plan was ruined. That buffalo was pissed and did not care that after my party's death he was next. Seeing my poor mage get rutted to death in the distance while my fighters struggles to stay alive was much to funny to be mad at.

Third time was the charm. That buffalo was still in the area so I killed him first. The dragon was engaged from a distance, potions were used, there was a close call that saw my rogue get literally stepped on, but I killed her and got some nice armor to boot. It was difficult but possible and the victory was earned. It was quite satisfying.

Later, still high from that victory, I turned the corner in a tight canyon and ran headlong into a giant. I killed him, too, but it was time to call it a day. My luck could only hold out for so long. It reminds me of the text MUDs I used to play in college. Specifically the first time I solo killed Tiamat...

There is a story here. I and about half a dozen other slackers played in a text MUD called 'Hidden Worlds' when we should have been studying (and weren't playing pen and paper D&D or Magic). For the uninitiated (read that as young) MUD stands for Multiple User Dungeon. Think World of Warcraft but only text.

I don't know if I would call it popular. Out MUD had at most 500 people on at a time, usually much fewer. It was small enough that people knew each other and knew what they were good at. My character, Leven, was all about the damage roll. He didn't hit as often as other characters but when he did it hurt. I would often be dragged along in groups doing Hell runs for just that reason. The leader would enter a room, back stab the target and then tank while I beat on the demon until it died.

Trust me, it was fun.

As I grew more confidant and learned my way around I started to do solo runs to the outskirts of hell. Right past the entrance was Tiamat, a dragon that took around three or four people to kill. I was foolish and feeling lucky so I gave it a shot. To this day I can remember the commands.

rem sword (The sword a kings, a high damage level 30 sword)
wield lightbringer (The lightbringer dagger, stolen from the south side of heaven. The standard max level dagger)
N
bs tiamat

Your backstab ***DEMOLISHES*** tiamat!
Your backstab ***DEMOLISHES*** tiamat!
Your backstab ***DEMOLISHES*** tiamat!

(Triple back stabs were rare, but not unheard of)

rem lightbringer
wield sword
c demonfire (the best offensive spell I knew)

From there on it was a battle of attrition. Tiamat and I traded ***DEMOLISHES*** until I was just about out of mana. No more heals, no more demon fire. And then she died. I was so surprised that I recalled home and logged out. It felt like I had broken something, like I had cheated. Then I got excited but there was no one in the computer lab who cared. It was the middle of the day and everyone who would was in class. All hyped up and no one to tell about it.

Edit: My god, it still exists. My character is long gone, but the MUD is still there...


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