What's inside?! Oh the suspense!
Having figured out the key to opening the door to the Forbidden City (which was to reflect the moonlight onto the door with my mirror), Ad Avis finally let me in on what was left of the prophecy.
“And at last the Hero ‘He who Waits Behind’ shall see,
While Iblis rises by the Dark One and the light shall flee.
By the name of Suleiman, so shall this be!”
If I wasn't under your command, I swear I'd...I'd...yes sir! Be right back, sir!
Ad Avis demanded I head inside and get Iblis, and in my hypnotised state, I had no choice but to do so. It was very hard to see anything within, so I typed “use lamp” to brighten things up. It was a cavern, and there seemed to be a strong wind blowing through it from another entrance a level up. The only way I could go was left, and doing so brought me to a green-tinged river, with waterfalls at either end. There were some stairs on the other side, so it seemed very likely that I needed to get across somehow. Using the magic rope didn’t work, so I saved my game and simply typed “jump”. The parser told me to “try jumping from the mossy bank by the falls”. It was at this point that I paid attention to the logs that sporadically flowed through the water. Could it be that I needed to hop onto one of the logs and then jump the remaining distance? I walked up to the mossy section, waited for a log to come, and then typed “jump”. Tricky jumped onto it and started surfing down the river towards the waterfall at the bottom! Lucky I had my wits about me, as I just managed to jump off before it plunged downwards.
Oh come on! Where are the realistic light and shadow effects? This is the year...oh...never mind!
Is there anything that Tricky can't do? (don't answer this)
I walked in the direction of the stairs on the other side of the water, only to be sucked towards a small opening in the wall! Tricky managed to overcome the pressure, but I wondered what the purpose of it was. For now, I scaled the stairs and walked along the pathway. It wound back to the first screen, although this time I was on the level above, where the wind was strongest. (7 points) I tried to walk towards the entrance, but was overcome, falling back down to where I started. I restored a couple of times back up to the top level, but couldn’t seem to find a way to either block the wind or force my way through it. Eventually it dawned on me that the wind might be caused by the opening that had caused me trouble earlier. I made my way back to it and typed “block hole” to see what would happen. “That’s a great idea...but how?” Clearly I was onto something, so I began looking through my inventory to see what might help. I tried stacks of things, despite being certain none of them were going to work. They didn’t. It was only when I spent some time exploring the environment a bit closer that I found typing “look at rock” gave me some useful information. “Careful examination of the airhole and the rocks above reveals that there are some loose stones that hold the structure together. There are small fissures running between its base and the rocks above.” Shortly afterwards I discovered I could hit the rocks, causing them to collapse and block the opening. “(7 points)
This part of the game really sucked!
This isn't just any ordinary rope I'll have you know. It's magic!
Take that you pesky pile of rocks!
With the opening blocked up, I was able to walk along the pathway and through the entrance. I emerged into a hellish nightmare, with bubbling lava making things very uncomfortable for me. I was tasked with moving Tricky through a maze, presumably attempting to dodge any fiery geysers on the way. I made it through unscathed, finding myself on the top level of a cavern section where a door was carved into one wall. (7 points) It looked to me like I needed to find a way to get down to the door, so I typed “use rope” once again. This time it actually worked, and I was able to climb down the rope and investigate the door. A deep voice suddenly spoke, giving me a riddle to solve: “None shall enter, None shall pass, but he who speaks the name of Power.” The name of Power? What could it be?! I didn’t think it could be Ad Avis. I tried “iblis”, and was informed that I could hear “a roar of rocks collapsing in the distance”. Hmmm, that mustn’t be it! I looked through the screenshots of the prophecy, hoping to find something that would fit the riddle. “While Iblis rises by the Dark One and the light shall flee. By the name of Suleiman, so shall this be!” Could the answer be Suleiman? It was, and the door opened. (7 points)
Could have been worse I guess. They could have been unpredictable.
I take it I could have just climbed down here if I didn't have the magic rope?
Alright already! Don't get your nickers in a knot!
The next cavern I explored seemed to contain numerous treasures hidden in the shadows. Moving close to them created enough light to reveal what they were, but unsurprisingly, attempting to pick any of them up resulted in humorous and often brutal death scenes. After suffering such atrocities as having a stalactite fall on my head and being completely vaporised, I left everything alone and walked through to doorway at the other end of the cavern. (7 points) On the next screen I found what I was after! “A glow illuminates this chamber. It flows from an object atop the strange structure before you. At the sight of the glowing object you feel irresistibly drawn forward. Your feet seem to move with a will of their own. As you draw near, you see that the object is a statue made of crystal. A dark, shapeless form stirs within it. The crystal’s cool glow is numbing. You feel compelled to pick it up, but as you reach out...you are suddenly unable to move.” Ad Avis appeared out of nowhere, grabbing Iblis from atop the pedestal. “Fool! Some hero you are! A pawn of the very man you sought to destroy. Thanks to your help, I now have that through which I can summon the greatest destructive power ever known – Iblis himself! Tonight, as the moon arises between the Scorpion’s Claws and the Dragon’s Teeth, I shall begin the ritual that shall make me the Master! I will control Iblis, and thus control the world. While you, pawn of Prophecy, shall remain behind in this tomb. You shall be, ‘He Who Waits Behind.’”
Ooohhhh, what have we got here? Don't mind if I *zap*
Yeah, good story. Have you thought about what you might do once you've unleashed the "greatest destructive power ever known"?
None of this sounded good of course, and it got a whole lot worse when Ad Avis cast a spell that brought a pile of rubble down in front of the door. He vanished, leaving me to ponder how I might ever escape. I tried shifting the rubble, but even my great strength was not enough. As I walked towards the bottom of the screen, something flashed in the darkness. It was some sort of ring, and when I picked it up I found it had the inscription “He Who Waits Behind” on it. (7 points) I put it on my finger, and a large pink Djinni popped into existence! “I may grant you three wishes, Oh Master of the Ring. What is your first wish?” Three wishes was awesome, but there was only one thing I could think of that I needed. I typed “escape”, and got the following response from the friendly Djinni: “Well, I can kind of grant you that wish, but it has two problems. First, I can only teleport you to where Iblis is now, and second, it’s the last wish I can grant. You’ll have to make all of your other wishes first.” What else did I really need? The aim of the game was to save Arus, so perhaps the Djinni could transform him back into the Emir? I typed “wish for arus free”, but it didn’t achieve anything. In the end the only thing I could think to do was to wish for “strength”, since a fighter can never have too much of that! I gained 50 Strength points in the process, and after being told Honor points were the one thing the Djinni couldn’t grant me, got 50 Vitality points for good measure.
I wish to know whether or not you are related to the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man.
I may have needed a helping hand, but at least I got one of my stats to over 200.
With my stats now being at a completely stupid level, I once again asked the Djinni to help me escape. The big pink thing spoke the following words: “In the name of Suleiman bin Daoud, the Binder, and by my Power as He Who Waits Behind: Take us to Iblis!” The Djinni rather humorously seemed stunned when his magic worked, but even then I was transported to outside the Sultan’s Palace rather than to Ad Avis’ exact location. Before I could take a step towards the Palace, there was a soft whisper from one the alleyways off the plaza. It was Sharaf, and he approached me to inform me of the Underground’s intentions: “The UnderGround is prepared to attack the Palace. If you need to enter there, we will provide some distraction for you. However, we are almost ready, so you must hurry before you are caught in our battle.” He snuck away at this point, leaving me to find my own way into the Palace. There were two guards at the main gate, and there was also a Eunuch walking back and forth along the parapet. What really caught my attention though was the blue veil that was hanging there, as I was immediately reminded of Mayzun’s (the servant to the Emir’s daughter) suggestion that she would “tie a veil from the battlements at night to guide you”. The Harem must be close by, but how to get there?
Given it's your one purpose for existing,...well, good on you!
Because all Eunuchs walk around pretty much naked.
I decided to see what would happen if I tried a more direct approach, so walked up to the guards. They immediately called for help, and I was quickly swarmed by five other guards that stormed through the gates. Without any chance of fighting my way out of trouble, I was informed that I was overwhelmed, and then shown an end game animation of a gigantic Iblis destroying Raseir and presumably the world. It seemed to me that I was going to have to take a more stealthy approach, despite my fighter class, so tried climbing up to the top level instead. “The pillars are too slick to climb.” Was this another opportunity to use my magic rope? It sure was, and after a failed attempt where I got the timing wrong and was caught by the Eunuch, I managed to climb up and then through a window to the left of screen.
Clearly this is not the way through. Right? Right?!
Hey, Iblis is awesome! I wanna see him rampage across the world!
This magic rope lets me get into lots of places...and trouble I might add.
Through the window was the Harem, with stacks of scantily clothed women sitting around waiting to be called upon. Mayzun recognised me and informed the others that I was the Hero that had aided Zayishah. The next few minutes were split between being told valuable information by Mayzun, being complimented and rather aggressively checked out by the other women, and hiding behind the curtains to avoid being found by the Eunuch. The women’s comments were pretty funny really, with one in particular, Nawar, turning everything to sex. The crux of the matter was that Ad Avis could be seen from the balcony off the next room, and that I would need to sneak through without distracting any of the Eunuchs. Thankfully it was the seductive Nawar that offered to help me avoid detection, by drawing the attention of one of the Eunuchs. Then it was just a matter of hiding behind pieces of furniture whenever another Eunuch was close by. The Djinni, who was still hanging around apparently, informed me if I tried to move at the wrong time, so it was only a matter of time before I reached the room’s exit.
Nawar is a completely awesome character that I hope turns up in the sequels.
I wish this part had actually involved skill rather than just being scripted.
Through that door I found Ad Avis, conducting some sort of ritual! Iblis was in the centre of a pentagram, with candles set out at each point. The Djinni warned me that when all the candles were lit, Iblis would be let loose, yet there was a large gap between the platform I was standing on and the one on which the ritual was taking place. I did the only thing I could think of and typed “use rope” again. Once again it worked, and I was then able to tightrope across without Ad Avis noticing I was there. By the time I’d walked across, the majority of the candles were lit, so I was going to have the act fast. That wasn’t going to be easy though, as the Djinni had some bad news for me: “There is some sort of spell between the pillars. It won’t let any magic or anything alive get through from outside.” I tried using the Bellows to blow out the candles, only to find that the Air Elemental was no longer in it. I tried throwing water at the candles, only to be told that wetting them wouldn’t stop the magic at work. I tried throwing some dirt at the candles, and... it worked! The last candle was bumped away from the pentagram, ruining the ritual!
Well it sure is climactic!
Um, yes. I have to admit that I'm feeling a bit vulnerable right now.
Ad Avis was understandably quite cross that I ruined his plans: “NO!! After 70 years, No!” He began casting fireballs at me, which I was able to evade by typing “duck” at the right times. I figured out that I could shimmy across the ledge I was on to get closer to my target, but I still had no idea what I would do when I got there. Once I was standing right in front of him but still blocked by the magic wall, I tried throwing pretty much everything I had at Ad Avis. The only thing that worked was the dirt, but he simply laughed off that attempt at doing damage: “Ha! You think to win this campaign by slinging mud?!” I admit to being stuck here for a long time, trying to figure out what the hell I was supposed to be doing. Surely I wasn’t dead ended was I? I didn’t think there were any dead ends in Quest for Glory games, yet it seemed to me that I really needed a dagger or something else pointy to throw. There’s no way I could be expected to restore back to Shapeir to buy a few daggers?! After trying everything imaginable (and after restoring back to the Djinni and unsuccessfully wishing for daggers), I decided to restore back to the Palace entrance before taking any drastic action. Perhaps there was another way to approach the game’s climax.
Alright, no need to make fun of me. Can't you see I'm desperate!
It took me approximately ten seconds to find an alternate way into the Palace, and it was one that I was put off trying earlier due to being surrounded by guards. Instead of walking up to the guards and having them draw the attention of more, I simply typed “fight guards”. This somehow allowed me to take the two guards on without them hollering for help. They were easy meat for me of course, but the Eunuch above wasn’t all that impressed. He began calling for more help, but I quickly ran up to the gates and forced them open. (5 points) The Djinni apparently led me through the Palace to a room where Khaveen stood guard. A closed door would take me to where Ad Avis was working his dark magic, but first I would need to deal with Khaveen. I climbed down the curtains and confronted him. The battle that followed was over in a flash, so I raced to the door to go stop Ad Avis. (15 points)
In this case words were required before actions.
Another impressive looking warrior goes down in a heap.
The first time I tried to open the door I received some sort of magical shock, but after that I was able to break through to witness Ad Avis’ ritual from a completely different angle. One new thing I could see was a statue containing four arms and wings on its back. As I walked towards the pentagram, I triggered a spell that caused the statue to attack me. Strangely, despite all my ability, none of my swings or thrusts seemed to hit the statue, yet the candles were being lit one by one. I tried something I’d only done on one other occasion in the game, being way back when I was out in the desert and out of stamina. I typed “escape”, and managed to escape the clutches of the statue in time to go and knock the unlit candle over.
Can this guy be defeated with a sword?
Ad Avis screamed at me: “You! My spell is broken! You will die!” I raced towards him, knocking a brazier over in the process. A fire raged, but I was determined to get close enough to use my sword. I ran through the fire and to my surprise, knocked Ad Avis over the edge and presumably to his death way below. (15 points) The Djinni reappeared and collected Iblis: “Thank you, Master. Now I can take Iblis back to his tomb where he will be safe for another thousand years and a year.” All this action somehow made the Djinni recall the real prophecy too:
“One thousand years and a Year, so shall Iblis be caught,
In the tombstones of the City, where he and I once faught.
Until moonlight has been captured, twixt the Scorpion and Drake,
Then comes a hero from the North, and ancient powers wake.
Led and followed by a Dark one, guide to deceit and despair,
Passing through the Trial by Fire, Trials of Water, Earth and Air;
Passing through the Door unopened, barrier that yields to none,
By my name of Suleiman, so shall this be done!
Come at last unto betrayal, and to He Who Waits Behind,
Seek ye then to capture Iblis, ‘ere he rises unconfined.
Else shall come the night eternal, darkness overshadows Light,
Unless a hero seeks the darkness, and restores the wrongs to right.”
Ain't gravity a bitch.
I find these shit-eating-grin moments extremely satisfying.
Ad Avis had been stopped, but my quest was not yet complete. After being told that Emir Ali was found cowering in his bedroom, he was coaxed into ordering all fighting to cease, and that he would restore the city to its former glory. Tricky was shown pouring the Water Elemental into the dried up fountain, and since it was now under his command, it magically restored the city entirely. At this point Abdulla, Shema and Shameen arrived on their magic carpet to take me back to Shapeir to see the Sultan. This made me wonder why I didn’t just travel to Raseir by carpet in the first place, but I can forgive that plot hole.
Yes, I know I called you a watery tart earlier on, but I was just feeling emotional at the time.
So...about that caravan you made me travel with...
A lengthy outro took place in the Palace of the Sultan, with Tricky standing before the Sultan to be judged. The Sultan asked if anyone would speak for him, and seemingly everyone wanted a turn. Firstly, Shema and Shameen spoke of Tricky’s exploits in Spielburg, announcing that he was a true hero. Secondly, Walid the warrior spoke about Tricky’s mercy, as he’d let the man live in the Eternal Order of Fighters headquarters despite being commanded to kill. Next it was Aziza, who described how Tricky had sought out the plant-woman Julanar in the desert and helped her to forget her pain and suffering. Zayishah stood up next, to let everyone know about the aid Tricky had given her in her time of need. Not to be left out, Emir Arus wanted to say something, but he still had the form of a saurus. Tricky gave him a dispel potion, and after transforming back into his normal self, the Emir talked about the Hero’s courage, kindness and honor. Speaking of honor, I was very keen to find out whether or not I’d done enough to become a Paladin. It was the Sultan himself that spoke for Tricky’s honor, and in a huge twist, it turned out that the Poet Omar was the Sultan all along! “By the words which have been spoken, by the deeds that have been done, I proclaim this man a Hero, I now call this man my son.”
Hey, even the Poet Omar came to thank me. Um...where's the Sultan?
Shema loves me.
Walid loves me.
Aziza loves me.
Zayishah loves me.
The Emir loves me.
The Poet...ahem...Sultan loves me.
So why no Paladin?! Waaaahhhhh!!!!!!
I received a screen congratulating me on my success and telling me I’d got 480 of the possible 500 Puzzle Points, and I was then given the opportunity to save my character to use in Quest for Glory III. I'll try to keep this save game this time. There was no mention of me being or not being a Paladin, so I can only think that despite all my efforts, I wasn’t found worthy. Can anyone tell me what I did wrong? Final Rating post will be up in the next few days...
It will probably be hard to pinpoint what I missed in this game. Anyone?
I can't wait to play Quest for Glory III: Shadows of... hey, hang on a second. That's not right! Corey?!
Session Time: 2 hours 00 minutes
Total Time: 16 hours 30 minutes