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Resolution 2020: Tainted Grail The Fall of Avalon play through

Resolution 2020: Tainted Grail The Fall of Avalon play through

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Project Blog by danlee Cult of Games Member

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About the Project

I will be playing through the full campaign of Tainted Grail The Fall of Avalon. I will aim to do a chapter a week, writing each one up and reporting it on this blog. Warning: spoilers (probably)!

This Project is Completed

Reading the rules

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First step – read the rules. Done.

 

I hope to play the introduction chapter later this week.

Prologue

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Prologue

Beor, the smith’s apprentice, is sent to the nearby settlement of Whitening to purchase a fallen star ingot in the possession of the local tanner. Upon arrival Beor learns that the tanner left the village several months ago. Frustrated, tired, and wounded, Beor returns to Caumacht to find the whole errand was a trick. While he was away his master and the other heroes of the village left on a quest to Kamelot. Beor was deliberately left behind.

 

The tutorial prologue plays out in about one hour and is completely scripted. A pre-built deck is used to ensure cards are drawn in the correct order to match the tutorial instructions. I found it to be a good way of teaching the game sequence as well as the combat and diplomacy mechanics.

 

Although the tutorial is short I have already got the feeling that the world of Avalon is cursed. Beor’s cold treatment by the people of the neighbouring village shows how untrusting everyone must be and the crucial dependence on the Menhirs is clear.

Chapter One

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Chapter One

Caumacht’s menhir is failing and it falls to Beor to find a way to renew it. The completion of this quest is paramount so Beor had no qualms about spending the first day asking the villagers for help. He is given food supplies and a hunters spear – a useful weapon.

The next day a wave of refugees arrive and Beor uses much of his food helping them. Beor didn’t particularly care for their plight, but he expected to be rewarded for his generosity. Now running low on food, Beor decided it would be best to head North to the Hunter’s Grove. Upon arrival he found a wounded bowmaiden. As uncaring as Beor is he couldn’t leave someone to die, so after hunting for food he began the long journey south to bring the injured bowmaiden to the Island Asylum where he believed she could be healed.

Alas, the bowmaiden bled out at the Charred Conclave. To have arrived in time Beor would have had to push himself to exhaustion, or perhaps not taken the time to hunt for food and risked starvation. Beor just didn’t care enough about this stranger to take those risks. Since he was here, he took the time to pillage the remains of the burned druids, finding a Wych’s brew amongst the burned corpses. With the bowmaiden dead, Beor found no reason to continue south to the Island Asylum where he would risk catching the Red Death.

Beor travelled west to the Warrior Fair. There he asked around about the adventuring party that had left Caumacht before him. He learned that they had travelled west in search of an artefact. He found someone that he suspected knew more, but Beor lacked the wealth to bribe him or the conversation skills to tease the knowledge out of him. He would have to return later when he had more money. Beor spent a day doing combat training, then decided to head south.

In the Grubwood Beor was disgusted to find how haunted the place was. But surely such a haunting might indicate the presence of some power that could relight a menhir? Beor ploughed into the wood, sure the rewards would be worth the risk. He was assailed by a magical creature and was forced to use the Wych’s brew to defeat it. Undaunted, Beor tried to penetrate the wood again and succeeded in reaching its core. Beor knew he had found something significant, but he lacked the wits to understand it. Disappointed that he had wasted so much effort and gained nothing, he decided to head east to the Forlorn Swords. A blacksmith’s apprentice would surely understand any hidden meaning in giant metal swords.

At the swords Beor found an old friend of his master at work on a forge. Beor observed for a while and the old man told him how special his hammer was. Intrigued, Beor tried and failed to steal it. He came to blows with the old smith, and ended up beating him senseless.  Beor decided to get away from people for a while, and so climbed one of the giant swords. It was difficult, and Beor injured himself during the climb, but worth it. At the top Beor could see for miles and found gold in the sword hilt that he was able to prise loose. Beor was now rich and reasonably well travelled, but to the north he could see Caunacht and its fading menhir. Beor was frustrated that he was still no closer to finding the rites to relight a menhir. Perhaps the Fore-Dweller mounds, visible from the top of the sword far to the north-west, would hold the answer.

The next day Beor headed north, all the way back to the Hunter’s Grove, then went west to the Fore-Dweller mounds. With time against him, he ploughed straight into the mounds well off the safe path. His bravery paid off as he soon found himself in front of the gates of the central mound. Directness seemed to be working so Beor battered on the gates until he broke in. Within he found ancient artefacts and secrets that confused him, but by the time he stumbled back out he knew how to relight a menhir. Unfortunately Beor also knew that Caunacht’s menhir was beyond saving.

A dormant menhir stood near the Fore-Dweller mounds, so Beor strode over to it and performed the rites. Caunacht was close enough to this menhir that the Wyrdness could still be held at bay and the village saved.

 

Chapter one took two hours and five minutes to play through, which included set up and pack up time. That’s great as it means I should have no problem fitting games in the evenings once the kids are in bed.

The world and story continues to be interesting, and the timed element of the story kept the session tense.

Even in this one chapter I can see lots of replayability. I could roleplay as one of the other characters and go about everything differently. For now I will stick to soloing with Beor. Perhaps when I get more proficient with the game I’ll start using two characters to balance out Beor’s lack of diplomatic skills. In this scenario I was lucky that diplomacy was never required, but I was cut off from several avenues by his lack of mental attributes.

 

Chapter 2

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This chapter did not end well...This chapter did not end well...

With the menhir lit Beor had to decide what to do next. Either head west to follow the first band of adventurer’s, head east to Kamelot, or explore the island. Since Beor had already found a lead as to the previous adventuring party’s fate, he chose to follow that up. He just had to gather enough wealth to bribe the old man in the Warrior’s Fair.

Beor travelled west to Farshire and was immediately confronted by a  swindler out to trick Beor out of his wealth. Luckily Beor came out on top. Exploring Farshire’s market Beor stocked up on food and then an old hag offered to sell him useful trinkets. Intrigued, Beor followed her to her hovel where he found she had hammer and chisels made of the same mysterious substance that the smith at the Forlorn Swords had had. Beor had to buy them, but was now broke.

Beor wasn’t too concerned, he could just search the Fore-dweller Mounds again to amass more wealth, so back to the East he travelled. With enough wealth to bribe the old man in hand, Beor thought it best to relight Caumacht’s menhir while he passed by. But when Beor tried, he found he required yet more wealth.

So Beor back-tracked again, doing some hunting in the Hunter’s Grove and raiding the Fore-dweller Mounds for yet more wealth. The hunt didn’t go too well and Beor was slightly injured. After relighting Caumacht’s menhir he had to spend a day their recuperating. 

Finally Beor reached the Warrior’s Fair and bribed the old man. Disappointingly all Beor learned was that one of the adventurer’s had died and that the others could be found to the west, being pursued by the spirit of a Fore-dweller. Beor travelled west, but was attacked by a wild animal that severely injured him and broke his hunter’s spear to boot.

Beor once again retreated to Caumacht to try and recuperate, but once there found he was running low on food. As he travelled north to the Hunter’s Grove the menhir at the Fore-dweller’s mound went out, and the lands to the west were cut off from Beor once more.

Misfortune left Beor trapped in the Hunter’s Grove gravely wounded, without the food to recover his health from resting and without the energy to go hunting. Beor laid there for two days slowly starving, until the menhir in Caumacht also went out.

Beor was consumed by the wyrdness…

 

Yikes that proved a lot harder than I was expecting for chapter two!

I got off to a good start early on coming out on top with my first blue encounter (not Beor’s strong point) and then finding the magic hammer and chisels that allows me to relight Caumacht’s menhir.

I soon started to get a sinking feeling though when I realised I was caught in a loop of seeking wealth and hunting for food, all the while slowly loosing health due to combats, violent storms, and Beor’s special rule where he loses one health if he exhausts himself. I also seemed to suffer from bad weather hampering movement whenever I needed to travel far in a turn.

The game has a mechanic whereby if you fail a chapter the All-mother bends time to allow you to restart the chapter with pre-defined resources, but at the cost of any unspent xp and that events already passed in the chapter remain in effect (so the time wasted running in circles will still count against me when I try again).

For attempt two I will start with the menhir in Whitening lit and try to head East to Kamelot. I also noticed the Whitening is an easier place to gain wealth than the Fore-dweller Mounds (hunt for food in the Hunter’s Grove then exchange on a 1:1 basis for wealth in Whitening).

Even with the game going so badly I really enjoyed it. The depth of the game is immense.

This is how chapter two take two will start.This is how chapter two take two will start.

Chapter Two, Take Two

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Chapter Two, Take Two

Beor woke suddenly and grasped his stomach. He was so hungry… No wait, it was a just a dream. But why was his nose bleeding?

Beor exited the hut that the people of Whitening had permitted to sleep in. He may have relit their menhir, but they were an unfriendly bunch regardless. Many had been willing to kick him out of town despite his help.

Beor couldn’t help but feel the need to prepare well for his journey to Kamelot, and there was a bitter cold outside that would surely bring him to harm if he strayed from the vilage. So Beor spent the day crafting in the settlements forge and made himself a Battle Horn. No doubt it would prove useful.

The next day Beor travelled west to hunt for food. He encountered a squire who he bested and also had a successful hunt. With Whiteneings menhir lit it was now safe for Beor to travel north to the Mirror Lake. He did so and rested there in the evening to recuperate from his fights.

The following day Beor rested a little more before deciding to swim to the island in the middle of the lake. The swim was difficult, and something in the water seemed to follow him. But on the island Beor found the shadow-soaked scroll which could allow him to teleport anywhere on the island in the future – a very powerful item indeed. Returning to the shore Beor tried to converse with the Lady of the Lake, but she ignored him. Shunned, Beor headed east while the weather was so good.

In Tangleroot Beor decided bravery served him well so he dove headlong into the gorge. There he found and followed some very large footprints which lead to the dead body of one of the original adventurers, Tracker Fael. Scribbled on the wall of the gorge in Fael’s blood were directions to a hiding place in a nearby log. Within Beor found the Tainted Grail! A note within the grail from Fael explained how the party had split up to try end evade their pursuer. It also asked Beor to return to Whiteneing and inform Feal’s wife of his death.

Beor looked at the Tainted Grail in his hand. He had never even dreamt that he would see such a thing.

 

This play through of chapter two went much better. Through blind luck (and roleplaying Beor being brave and reckless in the wilds) I was able to complete the chapter in less than three days. I had been intending to travel to Kamelot but got distracted by the Mirror Lake and ended up finding the Tainted Grail while travelling east to Kamelot.

The chapter played out in only 40 minutes which in a way disappointed me a little as I love the exploration and discovering the story. But I will try and play chapter 3A this weekend.

Chapter Two, Take Two

Chapter 3A

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Chapter 3A

Beor knew that there were only two people who could tell him what to do with the Tainted Grail. The closest was the Lady of the Lake, who was only a short journey west from his current location. Travelling to the lake and calling for the Lady to show herself, Beor was shocked by her alien appearance when she surfaced. She had two pairs of arms, each with two elbows and her skin had a sickly blue tint. The Lady was sad to see the Grail, as it meant her favoured Knight must be dead. The Tainted Grail dissolved into seaweed and moss in Beor’s hand as the Lade explained it was one of two decoys she created. As she sank back beneath the water the Lady suggested that Beor’s former master had travelled to the First Farmhold with either the decoy or the real Tainted Grail.

Beor knew he had to head back to the First Farmhold, and conveniently Whitening was on the way so he could deliver Fael’s letter to his widow on the way. Fael’s widow was understandably upset at the news Beor delivered. So much so that she led Beor into a secret room in her hut which was hidden the Knightly gear of Galahad! For some unknown reason he had abandoned the life of a Knight and taken up residence with his wife in Whitening under the alias of Fael. Beor considered his options. The law stated that on a Knights death his posessions be returned to Kamelot along with an explanation of his death, but this equipment would prove useful in Beor’s quest. Eventually Beor decided to obey the law, primarily because he felt it would cause too many awkward situations having to explain wearing Galahad’s armour and weapons.

Beor travelled east to the First Farmhold. First he combed through the remains of the farmhold, but found only a vagabond looking for handouts. Then he visited a nearby watermill, but found nothing more than an odd mill keeper. Now Beor’s food supplies were dwindling so he had to journey back to the west to find hunting grounds and re-supply.

Returning the the First Farmhold a few days later Beor tried to climb the wall of the fort. Reaching the summit Beor could see within many damaged tents, one tent still in good condition, a slimy pile and a large hole in the centre of the fort. Assuming the tent to be his masters, Beor checked that first. However it was in fact from an expedition of masons who had come here to try and put the fort back into use. Obviously something evil had befell them. This led Beor to believe he should check the hole. Finding a blood trail leading down the hole, Beor was saddened to find his master’s knife discarded on the floor. Beor knew Erfyr would not have been parted from his knife, so he must be dead. Seeing boot prints from after the massacre gave Beor hope that his master might be alive after all, so he cautiously followed the tunnel further.

Within the tunnel Beor found a Wyrm, but thankfully it was still sleeping. He turned to leave and then saw the pile of bodies, among them was Erfyr’s corpse. Sneaking over Beor found a note. Erfyr had one of the decoys, but had given it to Morgaine as a trick. Neante and Lancelot had the true Grail. Beor needed to get to Kamelot.

Beor travelled north to the Titan’s Steps where he found a besieged temple. Seeing the besiegers were a rabble showing signs of the Red Death Beor tried to keep his distance and talk them down. That didn’t work so Beor lost patience and fought them off. Only a few hours later Beor had to cover up the red lesions starting to form on his forearms. Within the shrine Beor found an injured Sir Gawain. He tasked Beor with bearing Excalibur’s Scabbard to the Tombs of the Order, as he was too injured to make the journey. Beor solemnly accepted the quest. Beor lit the Menhir here, then continued on his way.

Beor knew Kamelot lay further to the east, but it was beyond the range of the Menhir at the Titan’s Steps. Unable to see any other Menhir to light, Beor headed east regardless. Perhaps there was a way to reach Kamelot via the plagued borough.

Beor continued east towards Kamelot. In the suburbs outside Kamelot Beor found the settlement in chaos, with bands of rabble and Knights with men-at-arms in open warfare. Needing to press on to the east, Beor entered the settlement and helped the Knights for a while as he passed through. Beor was forced to stop as the Wyrdness blocked his path further east.

Beor was forced to travel all the way back to the First Farmhold and then travel east again. In the Dark Morass he know found another Menhir that he could activate, banishing the wyrdness from Kamelot. But the extra travelling had drained Beor’s food reserves, and as he had passed the First Farmhold he had been forced to battle a Wyrdchild. Badly beaten and with his wits shredded, Beor travelled to Tangleroot to hunt for food. While there he was woken from his sleep by non other than a Fore-Dweller! Beor’s quest had attracted some terrible attention. Beor was too poorly to travel fast, so he used his magic scroll to teleport to the Plagued Borough.

Beor stumbled further east to the gates of Kamelot, only to be turned back. The gates would not be opened until the troubles in the Borough were resolved. Dejected, Beor returned to the Knights there to aid them once more, helping them to gain the strength to quell all the rabble.

Now able to enter Kamelot, Beor requested an audience with Sir Lancelot to ask about Neante. Lancelot was reluctant to help, but eventually Beor was able to persuade him to talk. Lancelot has sent Neante with the true Grail north to the Tombs of the Order with a retinue of Knights. There she is to perform a ceremony with the Grail, but Lancelot has not heard from them in some time.

 

This chapter turned into a marathon session, running for nearly four hours. It was great fun but towards the end got frustrating. I encountered a couple of situations (wyrdness blocking my path to Kamelot, then not being allowed in because of the riots) that forced me to backtrack. The gates being closed I understood, but the map design and menhir locations seems to be deliberately designed to frustrate your journey to Kamelot. You are forced to travel through several locations that trigger encounters repeatedly, slowing down the story and wearing down your character.

 

Managing food supply seems to be an important element of this game and this repeated travel back and forth almost finished me off.

 

Also I have noticed that you may win a fight but if you are too badly injured your ability to do anything with your character is significantly impaired as your action points are capped by your current health. You suddenly require two or three days to perform actions you could do in one day when at full health, and that is when you start to burn through your food supplies.

 

In the end, given it was now 12:30 at night and I wanted to finish the chapter, I had to cheat for my last few days to push on to Kamelot and assume I passed the diplomacy check with Lancelot. By that point I only had one health, so could only perform one action per day. I was insane, so had a 50% chance of not doing anything when I tried to use that single action point, and the Fore-Dweller was chasing me across the map!

 

There is an optional rule where your action points are not capped by your health and you do not panic if you insanity exceeds your health. I think I will use these rules from now on, just so I can continue to control what I do in combat and diplomacy and so I don’t get into this situations where I’m alive but effectively crippled.

 

The other change I’m going to make is that I will always start new chapters on full health, action points and with no insanity. Otherwise I would have to start the next chapter on one health with only one unit of food and no means of hunting for more. In other words I will simply die in a matter of days when the menhirs all run out and there’s nothing I can do about it.

 

To end on a positive, I spotted my first Easter Egg. When I visited the water mill the exchange with the mill keeper was exactly what happens in the Heroes of Might and Magic games. In those turn-based strategy games you heroes can wonder the map and when they visit water mills the mill keeper gives you 1000 gold pieces once per week, but if the gold has already been taken they ask you to come back later.

Chapter 3A

Chapter 4A

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Chapter 4A

Beor took the opportunity while in Kamelot to prepare a smoke bomb. As he was running low on food he then travelled west to some hunting grounds, using the smoke bomb to avoid his first encounter with the Fore-Dweller.

In the hunting grounds he encountered a hammerbeak which he was proud to defeat in combat.

Beor then travelled east, up the coast to Broch Cruach where he searched the Brochs for treasure.

Beor was then able to travel west and activate Bundorca’s menhir. The elder of the village asked him to help resolve a dispute with neighbouring Falfuar over their shared menhir, but Beor could not afford to linger with the Fore-Dweller chasing him.

The next day Beor reached the Tombs of the Order where he handed Excalibur’s Scabbard over to the Knights that were camped there. They were ungrateful as it seemed had the scabbard arrived earlier recent events at the Tombs might have played out differently. Still, they rewarded Beor handsomely for his trouble.

Beor looked around, but could find no information regarding Neante…

 

If this weeks write up appears brief it is for two reasons which are interlinked. The addition of the Fore-Dweller mechanic, which chases you every day and triggers a very hard combat encounter when it reaches you, left me frustrated by the end of the game session and also meant that I could never afford the time to explore and therefore stripped most of the story out of the game.

 

After reviewing the game rules I realised Beor can escape the encounters with the Fore-Dweller at the cost of an action point and by suffering an opportunity attack (which is an insanity point for the Fore-Dweller). This meant Beor lost an extra action point and gained an insanity almost every day. This very quickly became debilitating.

 

I actually attempted this scenario twice – in the first attempt I engaged the Fore-Dweller in an attempt to kill it early, but I lost the fight and realised the Beor was not strong enough yet to stand a chance of winning. I therefore reset the chapter back to the beginning and tried again, this time avoiding the Fore-Dweller as best I could. This is virtually impossible given how small the revealed areas of the map are at any given time.

 

Gathering the resources to activate the menhir was a challenge but I was able to do so by deliberately seeking purple encounters to get magic rewards and searching the Broch’s for wealth.

 

Arriving at the Tomb’s added a final nail in the coffin for tonight’s game. In order to progress with my main plot and find Neante I must have 2+ caution. Beor currently only has 1, which means I am locked out from progressing until I find and then spend more experience to boost that stat.

 

The day after I arrived at the tomb the Fore-Dweller caught up with me again. I was now insane, dieing, had only one day’s food left and a bad weather event caused another point of damage. I lost the dial toss and Beor died.

 

I’m not sure how to restart the mission next week. I am tempted to restart from my current location at full health, no insanity and go from there. The Fore-Dweller I will change to move like a normal guardian – it will be a threat but not constantly harassing me so I can take the time to explore more. The game is challenging enough without being attacked almost every day.

Beor died... again.Beor died... again.

Chapter 4A, Take Two

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Chapter 4A, Take Two

Beor took the opportunity while in Bundorca to craft himself a shield. Since the trail of Neante had gone cold in the Tombs of the Order Beor had decided to try and help Bundorca and Falfuar resolve their dispute over their shared Menhir. Before Beor could investigate in Bundorca though the Fore-Dweller arrived, forcing Beor to flee to Falfuar.

In Falfuar Beor conducted a thorough investigation for a couple of days until he could no longer afford to buy more food. He felt that he almost understood what was going on in both villages enough to help them resolve his differences, but first he would have to go hunting for food.

Beor travelled East (re-igniting the Menhir in Bundorca as he travelled past), intending to loop round to the south to hunt in Tangleroot, but as he reached the Broch Cruach he realised the Forest of Whispers was closer. After a couple of hunts Beor was once again well stocked with food. While here Beor decided to explore the woods further. Several hikes into the wood later Beor stumbled across a small hut inhabited by none-other than Neante!

Neante has retreated into isolation here because she is disgusted with something that she saw in the Tombs of the Order. Before coming here she threw the Grail over the cliffs, into the Sea of Ferns.

Beor wondered what could have driven Neante to such an act, but at least he now knew where he needed to go.

 

Much like chapter 2 I managed to stumble on the end of the chapter while thinking I was exploring somewhere completely unrelated to the quest – I only went to the Forest of Whispers for some food!

The game played much better using the Fore-Dweller as a normal guardian creature. It still got in my way and forced me to avoid it for the first three or four days, then it mysteriously disappeared. Despite it frustrating Beor’s plans I was still able to explore the villages of Bundorca and Falfuar, and the Forest of Whispers. I shall be continuing to play the Fore-Dweller in this way for the time being.

Overall this was a nice one-and-a-half hour game session. I wasn’t challenged too much, but I was very lucky with most of my encounters (calm before the storm and merchants). In fact I only had one combat and with my new shield and the armour I crafted previously raw damage isn’t that big a threat anymore.

 

 

Chapter 4A, Take Two

Chapter 5 - Side quest to Farpoint

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Chapter 5 - Side quest to Farpoint

Beor now knew where the Grail was, and he was confident that no-one else would find it before he did. Given that he was in the Forest of Whispers and activating the Menhir here was the only way to reach Farpoint, Beor decided he could afford a diversion. Beor lit the Menhir and then travelled to the most Northern part of the island, Farpoint.

Beor spent a couple of days exploring the ruins of Farpoint. The old settlement was a mystery – who built it, why had the Fore-Dwellers not attacked them?

Over the course of the next two weeks Beor travelled back and forth between Farpoint, where he investigated its mysteries, and the Forest of Whispers where he hunted for food, recuperated his wounds and mental health, and reactivated the Menhir as needed.

Eventually Beor realised that the red plants growing throughout the ruins were anathema to wyrdness. They kept the old settlement safe, and if he were to seek them out in the rest of the island he could rest better in their vicinity.

Satisfied he had learned all that he could, Beor decided to head south to finally resolve the dispute between Bundorca and Falfuar. He would then be able to travel further west to find the Grail.

 

This session lasted about 3 hours and was purely focused on exploring a single location (all be it one with a lot of exploration options). It took quite a while because from Chapter 5 onward the encounter decks no longer have the level 1 encounters in them. Every fight was a challenge and I had to spend many days in the Forest of Whispers recovering. This is a good place to do so as there is an explore option that heals one wound, and another that removes one insanity. Given it also has a Menhir and can be used to hunt food, it is a very useful location.

 

Chapter 5 - Side quest to Farpoint

Chapter 5 - Fernsea

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Chapter 5 - Fernsea

Beor returned to Bundorca so that he might finally settle the dispute that they had with Falfuar. He did a little more investigation in each town but quickly concluded that he was going to learn nothing more, so he might as well call a meeting with each town’s representatives and back Bundorca. A part of Beor wished he could understand their arguments better so that he could help them reach a solution that worked for both towns. But it wasn’t to be so he might as well back Bundorca simply because it was the town he visited first.

The residents of Falfuar agreed to abandon their town and leave the Menhir with Bundorca. At Beor’s suggestion they travelled north in search of somewhere new to settle.

With the local crisis resolved Beor travelled northwest to the Fernsea. It proved to be a dangerous labyrinth of suffocating underground tunnels. Like Farpoint, Beor was forced to spend over a fortnight trying to explore it. He would spend a day in the Fernsea, then be forced to return to the Forest of Whispers to hunt for food and recuperate.

In the end Beor found what he sought – the Grail. Climbing out of the tunnels triumphant, Beor was shocked to find himself in the middle of a battle. Confused, he ran for cover. A tall stranger shouted at him to flee but was shot in the back as he did so. Beor ran to their aid to discover it was the Lady of the Lake. Badly wounded she told him that others had learned of the Grails location and had come to seek it out. It was too powerful an artefact and must be returned to Tuathan, the land of the Fore-Dwellers.

The Lady begged Beor to leave, but he refused to do so without first using the Grail to try and heal her. Using the last of his water rations to let her drink from the Grail her strength started to recover, but Beor was beset by a warband for his tardiness in escaping. Beor drove them off, giving the Lady of the Lake time to give him more help in his quest.

Now Beor must find a way in to Tuathan. To do so he has three options – seek out Neante in the Forest of Whispers, find Orrin in the south of the island, or find the Burrial Mask from the Shimmering Flats.

 

This session took four hours, primarily because I had to go back and forth so much to keep recovering health, sanity, and food. The chapter was still fun though. I would have finished it earlier but I was miss-reading one of the entries in the Fernsea which gave me the Grail. I thought I was not entitled to take the final option so kept wondering in circles.

The Fernsea is a true labyrinth and I’m impressed the game designers were able to implement it using the Exploration Journal. If I ever return here in later chapters I will have to draw a map to help me explore it better.

Chapter Six - Part 1

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Chapter Six - Part 1

Beor set out immediately for the Forest of Whispers to meet with Neante. She was horrified to learn that he wanted to travel to Tuathan, but once she realised Beor could not be dissuaded she relented and offered help. Neante knew of three ways to get into Tuathan. The first was so dangerous it had cost the first expedition one of their members. The second was the entrance that the first expedition succeeded in using and would certainly be guarded now. The third, and hopefully safest route, was to find Orrin who knew of another secret entrance.

Beor then travelled south to the Shimmerin Flats where the Lady of the Lake had told him he could find a powerful artefact. On his way there Beor overhoud the sounds of a distant battle while he camped for the night. In the morning Beor investigated to find signs the his Fore-Dweller pursuer had battles with some other powerful titan. Beor was disturbed to see that the Fore-Dweller had been beaten and forced to retreat into the woods injured. The fact that he would be spared pursuit for a time while the Fore-Dweller recovered was welcome, but the thought of there being some other unknown entity out there that could best the Fore-Dweller filled Beor with dread. 

It took two attempts, but at the Shimmering Flats Beor was able to search the underwater ruins and find the Fore-Dweller burial mask. Beor was certain this would be useful in Wyrdness infested Tuathan.

Beor continued to travel south until he returned once more to Cuanacht. By now he was weary and looked forward to one more night in his own home. However as he entered the village some people noticed the tell tale signs of the Red Death on Beor’s skin and tried to drive him off. Beor bested the crowd that formed, but it was evident Beor would not be welcome in the settlement.

Beor decided to travel to the Island Asylum to see if the healers could cure him of the Red Death. It turns out the only cure available is life imprisonment. It took Beor two days to escape. Beor added the Island Asylum to the list of places he could not safely visit in the future.

It was time to head west in search of Orrin…

 

This was another epic three and a half hour session with lots of fun exploration, combat, and side quests. I can see though that quests that involve traversing vast distances of the island can take a long time to play out. Awaken Realms said that they had received a lot of feedback about this being a problem in later chapters. I’ll have to see if it develops into a problem for me.

 

Chapter Six - Part 1

Chapter Six - Part 2

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Chapter Six - Part 2

Beor recalled that at the start of his journey he had found something in the Grubwood that needed further investigation. As he was so close he took a detour to revisit the area. Delving into the wood once more, Beor came across a strange figure that seemed to want him to climb a tree and retrieve something from a dangling chain. Beor did so. Dangling from the chain was a skeletal arm and Beor was well travelled enough to recognise it as a Fore-Dweller limb. This probably meant the figure below was a Fore-Dweller. But the figure had not seemed hostile, so Beor returned the limb to him. In gratitude Beor was given a relic which protects him against magic.

Travelling west to Stampede, Beor knew he must now be in the general area where he would find Orrin. Searching the planes he came across a fresh grave. Upon investigation he found it to contain Lord Yvain. Beor already knew he had died and that the party had been driven north-east of here by their Fore-Dweller pursuer. Still, a thorough investigation of the grave could yield more investigation so Beor spent some time doing so – finding a useful trinket clenched in Yvain’s fist.

Next Beor travelled south to the Horns of the South. The lighthouse keepers proved to be good hosts, providing food and some money in exchange for a good story. As he left though the youngest of the three keepers asked Beor to investigate the neighbouring ruined lighthouse. He had heard strange noises and feared the place to be inhabited by a beast. The ruined lighthouse no longer had any floors, so the door opened up to a deep pit. Beor climbed down and was immediately assaulted. Beor restrained his attacker to find she was a woman, badly deformed from poorly healed bones, who must have been trapped down here for some time. Beor hauled her out, at which point she escaped and fled. Returning to the keepers in the main lighthouse Beor learned the truth – the woman had followed the youngest keeper here so that she might be with him. The two older keepers had cast her down the ruin as links to their past lives were forbidden. The ensuing revelation led to the youngest keeper killing one of his colleagues and the third throwing the youngest off the cliff, leaving him to be the sole keeper for the rest of his life. Beor left in shock.

Searching the nearby beaches Beor found a small camp where Sir Lamarok sat. He had been on a quest to the west but could no longer complete it as the Wyrdness had blocked his path. Beor rekindled Sir Lamarok’s sense of duty and told him to return to Kamelot where he might be useful to the people once more.

Beor then travelled north-west to Wyrdedge. There he found a single building, surrounded by Wyrdness with only a single rope bridge leading to it. Crossing the bridge Beor found Orrin within, but he did not get the welcome he expected. Upon first requesting entry Beor was rudely rejected, but on a second, more humble, attempt Orrin let him in. Orrin was prepared to help…

 

It took another two hours to finish this chapter, bringing the total play time up to about five and half hours. However I was taking my time to explore most of the side locations as I passed them, so Beor has now explored most of the north, east, and south of Avalon.

The end of the chapter hints that I may need to return to Kamelot, which is on the far side of the island again (Orrin was about as far from the start of Chapter 5 as you can get) so it looks like I’m in for another long journey next week.

Chapter 7

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Chapter 7

So Orrin would not help Beor unless Beor proved himself by helping to restore the Order, or by becoming a hero of the people. Beor had already helped several of the Knights of the Round table, so he decided he would travel to Kamelot and continue to aid them.

But first the Menhir in Orrins home was the only one that would grant access to the rest of the southern coast of Avlaon, so Beor decided to light it and explore the region before starting the long trek back East. Beor travelled north to Farshire, then west to Devestation and then Riverfall. He could travel no further along the coast as Wyrdness had engulfed the west of Avalon.

In Riverfall there was an abandoned toll house with a hidden cellar beneath. In it Beor found supplies and a disturbing locked chest which he chose to take with him. Then Beor scaled down the cliffs to reach one of the three faces that were carved in there. Entering the mouth of the face Beor advanced down a tunnel through trickling water until he reached a rock slide that blocked the tunnel. Undeterred, Beor started to clear the rocks until suddenly the water burst through – perhaps this had not been a good idea. Grasping the walls with all his strength to stop him from being flushed away, Beor struggled on against the current. Soon he could see light ahead, and then he emerged from the tunnel.

Beor had found the hidden way into Tuathan! His eyes burned to look upon the Wyrdness infested landscape. Buildings of impossible complexity protruded at impossible angles. This was not going to be easy…

 

That was an unexpectedly quick chapter. One hour for me to stumble across the entrance to Tuathan by accident. Still the exploration was fun. I’ll have to finish exploring the other areas in the south of the island when I return here in later chapters.

Chapter 7

Chapter 8

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Chapter 8

The first thing Beor noticed as he ploughed into the Wyrdness was that he felt his limbs were bursting with energy. So much so that he felt if he did not use up all the energy his body might start to tear itself apart. On his first day he found a strange throne. Sitting upon it he felt magic surging into his mind, although at the same time his body was wracked with pain.

Going further into Tuathan, Beor found that food no longer noursihed him, though he had cravings to eat gold and jewels. From then on Beor subsisted on his wealth alone, which fortunately Beor had in abundance. In one confrontation Beor was brought to the brink of death and forced to abandon much of the equipment he had amassed so far in his adventures. Tuathan was costing Beor dearly yet he had no choice but to continue.

Just as Beor started to loose hope, he came across a human built cottage on a platform raised above the Wyrdness. This safe refuge must have been built by a previous expedition into Tuathan and allowed Beor the time to recover from the ordeals he had been through so far.

Pressing on into Tuathan Beor now found that if killed his body entered a restorative state, and the nightmares around him caused him to keep having epiphanies on the meaning of existence itself. Seemingly now unable to die or go insane, Beor took the time for more thorough exploration. In one giant building he found a large collection of Fore-Dweller art. Contemplating the art made Beor’s head hurt and his eyes bled. Perhaps it was best not to puch the exploration too much.

Soon after Beor found that his chest wound caused him great pain and his could no longer recover from the wounds he sustained in combat. Not even the restorative power of the Grail helped. This proved dangerous as he found  field of life-size clay statues. On closer inspection they were all copies of Beor himself and he was forced to fight his way clear of them.

Now nearing the heart of Tuathan, Beor found that physical injury caused his delusions to worsen, while witnessing horrors caused wounds to manifest on his body. Beor found a mad Knight working a forge. Beor defeated him and then used his own blood to forge a powerful relic in the forge. As twisted as Tuathan was Beor now found himself in essentially and immortal state, as long as his wealth lasted for him to feed on. Rather than push on to the centre of Tuathan Beor continued exploring. However as time passed Beor found that his very essence had started to dissolve away into the Wyrdness. Realising he had been foolish to linger, he pressed on to the centre of Tuathan.

In the centre of Tuathan Beorfound a perfect replica of Kamelot, built upside down and suspended from a rock outcropping. This must surely be his destination. Approaching the gate Beor found many dead Fore-Dwellers. They had been killed recently. As he attempted to access the throne room one of the Fore-Dwellers rose up, not dead but badly wounded. Even so it proved a tough fight but Beor narrowly triumphed. The throne had a Grail shaped alcove above it, so Beor placed the Grail there – completing the Lady’s quest. Exploring the castle further Beor found a grate library. Intrigued by what he might learn, Beor was surprised to find all the books were in fact fake. Beor chided himself for being shocked – by now he should expect anything in Tuathan.

The last place to search was the chamber of the Order. As he approached Beor could hear that something was in there, wailing in frustration. In the room stood a giant. As it turned to face Beor he recognised the giant as none other than King Arthur – somehow re-animated. Behind him was Excalibur, buried to the hilt in a rock. Evidently Arthur could not retrieve it. He gestured for Beor to release the sword. Before Beor could do so two figures joined them in the room – Morgaine and Sir Gaheris. Morgaine mocks Arthur, but Beor knew his duty was to his King so he lunged for Excalibur. Morgaine cries out that to retrieve the sword will plunge Kamelot into Wyrdness and undo all humanity – but Beor trusted his King.

Gaheris interceded before the sword could be fully drawn, and Beor cut Gaheris down. Morgaine was unperturbed and used Wyrdness to resurrect Gaheris. Beor bested Gaheris for a second time. Morgaine used a spell to retreat, so Beor returned to Excalibur and finished drawing it. Kamelot immediately began to melt into the Wyrdness. Arthur gestured to the door – it was time for Beor to leave. As Beor left, Arthur remained behind to be claimed by the Wyrdness.

Chapter 8

Chapter 9

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Chapter 9

Beor fled Tuathan as fast as he could. He quickly came to a place that he knew to be close to Orrin’s refuge so he sought the building out once more. He was distraught to find its former location, but evidently the building had walked away. Putting on the Fore-dweller burial mask Beor was able to track it down and get a good nights rest.

After about a week’s travel Beor came within sight of the valley of guardians and escape, but blocking his path was his Fore-Dweller pursuer. As a confrontation was unavoidable, Beor tried to reason with the Fore-Dweller and convince him that Beor was no threat. It took all Beor’s skills but evidently it worked.

Beor awoke in a tent some time later, with Orrin tending to his wounds. He had no recollection of how his confrontation with the Fore-Dweller had ended, but if hat resulted in violence surely Beor would have been killed. Orrin informed Beor that he had been in Tuathan for about a month. In that time the war in the west had resulted in several settlements being destroyed. Canaught had sent a scroll asking for help, as had Kamelot and one of the western towns.

For now though, Beor was content to rest a little while…

 

As I knew how Tuathan was going to affect Beor this time I knew I just had to explore enough to get the effect where I could not die or go insane and then I would be safe. Unluckily for me it ended up being the last card I encountered. I tried exploring Tuathan for as long as I could be I never came across any more significant locations (I know from the save sheet that I missed two).

It seems that there is a whole element of the story where there was an on-going war in the west of Tuathan which I barely experienced as I only explored the North, East and South regions of the map. Now some of those areas are permanently changed and I will have to play another play through and explore them earlier in order to know their story. The depth of this game is amazing.

Chapter 9

Chapter 10

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Chapter 10

Orrin knew the secret of creating new Menhir’s and he wanted Beor’s help to make one. Beor had come to suspect that the accepted story of Arthur making the Menhir’s to protect the people couldn’t be true. He had seen too much evidence to the contrary – so he was inclined to believe Orrin. Orrin required two things, a set of special tools that could work on wyrdstone, and a piece of wyrdstone to carve into the Menhir. The first task was easy. Beor had had such tools in his possession since buying them from that old women. The second would require a trek across the island to the Devastation.

First, Beor wanted to explore the Valley of the Guardians as he was so close. He ventured in and found a small settlement of stragglers living within a cave. They had all attempted to venture into Tuathan but their fear prevented them from going further, their shame from turning back. An old scholar was able to open Beor’s disturbing chest and within it found an idol that depicted Arthur. The scholar threw it down a pit in disgust. With nothing else to learn in the cave Beor pushed on to Tuathan. It became harder and harder to progress until Beor finally realised that entry to Tuathan via this route was impossible. All who travelled this way eventually died. Beor turned back.

Next Beor explored around Longbarrow. He had heard Sir Agravain was in the area so he sought him out. Sir Agravain believed there was a Fore-Dweller in the area and he wanted to capture it and learn of the Fore-Dweller’s plans for Avalon. Beor agreed to help. That night they set and ambush and were able to corner a Reclaimer. Beor and Agravain were victorious, but the Fore-Dweller dies without uttering a word. Sir Agravain was disappointed, but Beor convinced him now was the time to return to Kamelot where he was needed.

 

Chapter 10

Continuing south, Beor visited the Serene Visage – a giant Fore-Dweller statue head half buried beneath the island. Wyrdness was clearly repelled from the place, yet no Menhir was in the area. Investigating further Beor found that there were tunnels within the statue’s ear. Within the labyrinth Beor found that someone had used chalk and ropes to navigate to the centre of the maze. In there Beor found inscriptions and a sacrificial altar that proved the statue was in fact a giant Menhir. Knowing this, Beor realised he could reactive the Menhir as needed.

Beor travelled west to Timberwall, only to find the city had been conquered and raised to the ground. This must be the aftermath of the war Orrin had talked of. Beor walked through the broken gates and up to the King’s Hall which was similarly destroyed. Beor searched the hall and surrounding city and found much riches, but little else.

Heading south to Underwall Beor was tempted to find a way to scale the great wall the separated Tuathan from the rest of the island, just so he could piss off it. So motivated and determined, Beor entered the tunnels that penetrated the wall and after some hours found his way to the top. Walking up to the edge, he relieved himself while taking in the view.

Beor made a quick stop at Farshire before heading west to Devastation. There he found a person growing out of the wall of a wyrdness infested house. His eyes were flowers and he spoke of the wonders he could experience through the wyrdness. Beor listened to the man’s ramblings for some time, stopping only when Beor felt his mind on the cusp of insanity. Beor then entered the mines beneath Devestation and used his tools to carve a man sized slab of raw wyrdstone.

Chapter 10

Even with the mule Orrin had given him, it took Beor several days to drag the Wyrdstone back to Orrin in Longbarrow. Once he delivered it to Orrin the two of them begand to carve into a crude human shape, with Orrin explaining the dark arts of creating a Menhir to Beor as best he could. Once it was finished Orrin explained that to finish the ritual required the sacrifice of a soul to power the Menhir. Beor offered his life to do so, but Orrin said Beor’s spirit was too wilfull and would eventually leave the Menhir. Orrin took his own life. As his blood spilled into the Menhir the Menhir absorbed it in.

Now Beor had his own Menhir with which he could drive back the Wyrdness as he travelled.

 

Did anybody else spot the Game of Thrones Easter egg? Another fun chapter where I got to explore the North West of the island that I had previously not visited. The chapter would have been twice as long had Beor not already found the special tools in one of the first few chapters. I have started spending my experience on new combat cards and have now realised if I had done that sooner Beor’s combat potential would have been much better. I had only bought skills so far. They are very useful but at only 2 XP per combat card I should have been buying them too to get a bit more combat oomph.

 

Chapter 10

Chapter 11 - Part 1

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Chapter 11 - Part 1

Beor knew that his only course now was to return to Kamelot and help bring stability to Avalon. He knew very little of the war in the west, and the lat time he had gone to Caumaght they had driven him away because of his infection. This thought made Beor pause – he had not inspected the infection under his bandages is some time. Carefully removing the bandage on his arm Beor saw that the infection had spread badly. Perhaps now as the time to search for a cure.

Beor travelled south to the Drained Lake. Surely the Lady of the Lake would know of a cure for the Read Death. The waters of the lake had drained away, revealing a tower beneath the old water line where the Lady lived. Sure enough the Lady did know of a cure. She had once met a man who had recovered and she now believed he lived in the Fernsea. Beor also learned of how The Lady had taught Arthur how to use the Wyrdness. He had used it first to make himself into a powerful warrior, then he had led his army into the heart of Tuathan to use its magic to make Kamelot. But the spell had goen wrong, and he had been forced to retreat and build Kamelot the old fashioned way on the East coast. The fact Beor had removed Excalibur and caused the Kamelot in Tuathan to dissolve away meant the Fore-Dwellers would be less hostile towards humans. Beor also learned the final piece of the puzzle regarding the first expedition. The Lady had sponsored many champions over the years, giving each a trinket to help them in their journeys. Beor had now collected them all.

Beor travelled north to the Fernsea once more, crossed it with ease, and found the plague survivor living in the tower across the sea. There was indeed a cure – one must bathe in a magical cauldron that can be found in a monastery hidden in the Dark Morass. The cauldron had been filled with holes when the survivor first found it, so he had plugged the holes with gold. The cauldron had to be filled with a special potion made from the magical crystals found in Whitening.

While Beor was in the north of the island once again he decided to explore the few parts of the island that he had so far not visited. Moonring contained a small band of druids, but little else of interest. There were two applicants vieing for a place in the round table, and Beor decided to investigate their past lives in the Brochs and Whiteneing, to determine who was most worthy. In Halfway Beor was disturbed to find that each night the Wyrdness soaked into the great monument and re-wrote the runes carved there. Was it just the rock that was changed, or was the history that the runes recorded also being changed? To the north Beor visited Crows Nest. It was an unwelcoming settlement. Mordred tasked Beor with stealing Morgaine’s spell book from Kamelot, but Beor thought that he was unlikely to do that. Morgaine may have tried to kill him, but her magic helped to keep Kamelot safe.

Beor now had two reasons to visit Whitening and the Brochs were on the way, so he travelled south east. In the Brochs he learned that there was some magical beast contained here that wanted to be released. Also, the applicant for the round table had not spent his time here freeing slaves, but rather he had been a blacksmith who crafted chains for the slave masters.

Beor travelled south west to Whitening and retrieved the crystals that he needed for the cure. He also investigated the second applicant for the round table. He had been so lazy that the settlement had banished him – so both applicants were liars and not fit to sit at the round table. Then Beor travelled east to the Dark Morass. The monastery took some time to find, but Beor did so and within sat the cauldron. The golden plugs had been taken so Beor had to craft more by melting down his own wealth. After his bath his wounds stopped bleeding and they began to heal. Beor was cured. By now his long journey had taken his toll so he stayed with the locals for several days, joining in their feasts as he regained his energy.

Revitalised and heading west once more to collect more crystals from Whitening (Beor needed them to free the magical creature from the Broch) Beor recalled the sleeping Wyrm he had discovered in First Farmhold. Perhaps now Beor was strong enough to defeat it? Returning to the tunnel, intent on sneaking up to the sleeping Wyrm once more, Beor instead found an awake Wyrm that burst from the tunnel and flew off into the sky. Perhaps this was for the best – the Wyrm looked much bigger and fierce when awake.

Beor collected yet more crystals from Whitening and then returned to the Broch and freed the magical creature. It proved to be some terrible beast from Tuathan, imprisoned here by the Fore-Dwellers before humans came to Avalon. In exchange for its release it taught Beor secrets of the Fore-Dwellers, although by now Beor knew most of them.

Finally it was time to travel to Kamelot. As he approached Beor saw many camps outside the city. Some were refugees, but other seemed to be armed groups. Was Kamelot under siege? Beor had to bribe his way into the castle. Inside Lancelot tasked him with bringing brigands based in Caumaght to justice. Beor did not want to cause for trouble for his old hometown, but if they had resorted to banditry then it was his duty to punish them. Beor also sought an audience with Morgaine, hoping to ask her why she had attacked him in Tuathan. Beor instantly regretted the decision though and Morgaine turned up with a retinue of cross bow armed guards who surrounded him. It took all of Beor’s diplomatic skills to talk everyone down, but he managed it. Morgaine offered him a secret in exchange for her life. Beor was in fact the reincarnated soul of one of Arthur’s first companions who had travelled with him into Tuathan. How this was so, no one knew. Beor realised he had been tricked. This secret only brought more questions, but he was honour bound to set Morgaine free now, so he did so.

Tomorrow, Beor would set off for Caumacht once more…

 

This was another massive four hour gamin session. Mainly because I chose to take an early detour to explore the north of the island, then I had to search for a cure which involved a lot of zig-zagging about the map. I also got distracted exploring the Brochs and wanting to free the magical creature. I was very lucky in that I had put all the experience from today’s session into diplomatic encounter cards. The encounter with Morgaine was a level 4 diplomatic encounter and I only just got through it with a couple of cards left in my deck.

Chapter 11 - Part 1

Chapter 11 - Part 2, Chapter 12, Chapter 13

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Chapter 11 - Part 2, Chapter 12, Chapter 13

Beor considered avoiding going to Caumaght straight away. He could seek out the few remaining members of the Round Table first. But Beor’s duty was clear so he decided to head to Caumaght and get it other with.

The journey to Caumaght was uneventful. On his arrival he was greeted warmly – the villagers thought he had come in response to their request for aid. Beor grimly replied that this was not the case. He was here to investigate banditry. The people refused to talk, but Beor knew them well enough to see they were hiding the truth. Many of them were carrying items that he knew they should not possess. It took a little torture, but soon the people confessed. Beor knew the penalty for such a crime and executed the ring leaders. Distraught, the remaining villagers abandoned the settlement.

Chapter 11 - Part 2, Chapter 12, Chapter 13

Beor had done his duty and now needed to return to Kamelot. The land was becoming more and more dangerous, so Beor decided to use his magic scroll to teleport directly there.

Lancelot was glad to see that Beor had done his duty. Beor was welcome to remain in Kamelot, but Beor felt there was still more he should do for Avalon…

Chapter 11 - Part 2, Chapter 12, Chapter 13

Avalon may be lost, but there were still people who might be saved. Beor had already established that Farpoint was immune to the Wyrdness. If he could establish at least one more refuge the remaining settlements could be evacuated.

Kamelot was an obvious second choice, but the guards informed him that would be impossible unless they had much greater food supplies, or the wealth to buy more food. Time for Beor to go hunting.

As Beor left Kamelot he came across a giant in the distance. Fearing it to be another fearsome Fore-Dweller, Beor approached but soon realised that the silhouette only had the usual two arms. As he drew closer he realised it was Arthur! His armour was twisted by Wyrdness and he looked battered and injured, but he still lived. Beor knelt and offered Excalibur up to his King. But Arthur just shook his head slowly. Without saying a word, he strode off to the North East. Beor felt he must follow him and learn the King’s ultimate fate.

Chapter 11 - Part 2, Chapter 12, Chapter 13

Beor had a hunch Arthur had gone to the white castle that he had glimpsed in the Forest of Whispers so many weeks ago. It was also a good hunting ground so visiting it would serve a dual purpose. Beor travelled north, activated the Menhir, and journeyed into the forest. He soon found himself in a magical place. A brilliant white castle stood in the middle of a moat. Beor tried to return to the woods, but soon found himself lost and unable to return to the normal woods. Then he tried circling the castle and found a middle-aged man fishing in the moat. He was heavily scarred and had a strange scar on his forehead. Beor realised this man was none other than Arthur. Beor tried to speak, but in this magical place his voice came across as loud and harsh. Arthur frowned and turned away. So Beor tried to enter the castle but found that some magical force prevented him from entering. Lost for options, Beor returned to Arthur and simply sat next to him. After some time, Arthur spoke to Beor. Arthur was content here. It seemed Arthur had learned some ultimate secret, but whatever Beor asked Arthur seemed disappointed in the question. Beor simply could not relate to the being that Arthur had become.

Out of options to try and leave, Beor lied down to rest. When he awoke, he found himself back in the Forest of Whispers.

Beor stayed in the forest for several days hunting for food to stock Kamelot with enough food that they could take in more refugees. Once he had more than enough supplies, he travelled west. First he went to the Tombs of the Order. There he finally confronted Bedivere and Palamedes on what they had done. They confessed to trying to use the Grail to resurrect Arthur – a feat the circle had done many times in the past during times of need. But this time it had gone wrong and Arthur had come back wrong. Beor convince them to return to Kamelot and continue with their duties.

Beor travelled further west to Moonring where he informed the council that both applicants for the title of Gerraint were unfit for the role. Beor nominated Gerraint’s cousin. She may be a woman nut she had showed bravery and conviction in protesting against the other applicants. The council agreed. Beor had now found all members of the Round Table and put them back onto the path of duty.

Upon his return to Kamelot Lancelot greeted Beor and thanked him for reuniting the members of the Round Table. Delivering the food to the castle now meant that Beor had established two refuges for the people.

Now it was a race against time to get as many people to the refuges as possible.

Chapter 11 - Part 2, Chapter 12, Chapter 13

So it turned out I had almost finished chapter 11 when I stopped playing the other day. Chapter 12 was also very short in this play through because I only had a short journey to return to my patron (Lancelot) and I used a teleport scroll to do it quickly.

Chapter 13 was a more normal length but still relatively quick because I had already spent a lot of time exploring Farpoint earlier in the campaign and because I was allied with Kamelot. Kamelot only required 15 food to become a possible refuge. I am sure other locations require more work.

Again, a great gaming session and with only two chapters left I can see the end is in sight.

Chapter 14

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Chapter 14

Beor’s first destination was the quiet borough outside Kamelot. He gathered up as many people as could fit in Kamelot, and led them to the gates. One of the two safe haven’s he had established was now full.

Beor had put a lot of effort into helping the people of Bundorca, so now he wanted to lead them to safety in Farpoint. Beor was disappointed to find that on his arrival at Bundorca there was no-one willing to travel with him. He knew that when the people of Falfuar had abandoned their village they had gone north. Perhaps they had taken up residence in Farpoint? So Beor travelled there anyway but found the old settlement still empty.

It would be a terrible wast if no-one were to take up residence in Farpoint. Beor had got on well with the people of the Dark Morass, so he travelled south to visit them. Yet again though, Beor was disappointed to find none of them were willing to relocate.

Beor’s last hope was Whitening. Beor had visited them many times in his travels. Surely they would accept his offer of a safe haven? Beor travelled west to Whitening but once again there was no-one there willing to migrate to safety.

Demoralised, Beor decided to accept fate and give up. All the people he cared about had been offered sanctuary and those who wanted it had accepted.

Now the only choice left before Beor was to determine his own fate…

Chapter 15 was another one that I could have resolved very quickly. I started in Kamelot and getting the people of Quiet Borough to it was only an journey of one step. I know from the save sheet that it is possible to establish up to five safe havens in chapter 13, but I only established two as they were the only two Beor was aware from his travels. I also know from the save sheet that there are nine settlements that can be saved. I was surprised how difficult I found it to locate another settlement after the Quiet Borough though! I know I had wiped out Caumaght in chapter 12, but all the other settlements in the East did not appear to have the option of being saved.

When I got the people of Quiet Borough to Kamelot I was given the option of settling with them and ending the campaign. I wanted to find more people for Farpoint, so chose not to do so. I also know that I have the option of meeting Lancelot in Chapter 15 for what I assume is the “restoring the round table” ending to the game.

Chapter 14

Chapter 15

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Chapter 15

Beor only had one last duty to perform. He had promised Sir Lancelot that he would meet him at Lonbarrow. Beor had a feeling Lancelot was planning something foolish, but Beor also had a feeling that he would go along with it. Over the past weeks Beor had gone from supporting the Round Table purely out of fear of breaking the law, to having sought out and recovered every member and practically becoming a member himself. Duty was all…

A Fore-Dweller attempted to bar Beor’s path. He could have easily picked another route North, but Beor was no longer afraid of the Fore-Dwellers as he once had been. Beor charged in and dispatched his terrible foe swiftly. Beor did not come out of the battle unscathed though, so he spent a few days in the Hunter’s Grove recuperating.

The rest of the journey North was uneventful. Beor arrived at Lonbarrow to find that the Knights had just set off before him. It did not take long for Beor to catch up with them. The combined arms of every Knight of the Round Table, along with some men-at-arms, were preparing to charge into the Valley of the Guardians and assault Tuathan. None of them would survive, but it could buy the people a few more days to retreat from the Wyrdness and find safety. Beor drew Excalibur, mounted his horse, and led the charge alongside Sir Lancelot.

Beor’s legacy faded into legend…

 

This chapter played out in only 30 minutes but it was a very satisfying end to the campaign none the less. I really want to dive right in with a new character at chapter one, but I’ve going to give Arena the Contest a go first. Hopefully I will still have time to get another campaign of Tainted Grail in before the first expansion lands.

I think I missed about half the content of the game despite being thorough and exploring every where. There was a war in the West of the Island that I missed, there is an option to work against the Round Table rather than for them, and the ability to interact more with Morgaine and Mordred. And those are just the differences that I know of.

I’ll be writing a review of the game soon so keep an eye out for that in the Games section of OTT.

Beor's status at the end of the campaign.Beor's status at the end of the campaign.
The Knights of the Round Table and Beor charge into Tuathan.The Knights of the Round Table and Beor charge into Tuathan.

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