Getting Grim in Grimrock ( 2-3 hours in)

Posted by HotSauceMagik (264 posts) -

So I caught a glimpse of this game a few weeks ago and though it looked interesting. Being 28, I sort of just missed the original run of dungeon crawlers as I was a bit too young to understand what was happening (or too impatient to really dig in). I've always been a fan of these types of games in theory so I figured this was a great way to get started.

As an aside, I did give The Dark Tower on DS a shot and while I could definitely see the appeal, that one was just a bit too minimalistic (not to mention obscenely difficult) for me to push past the third or fourth floor.

Fast forward to about 3 hours ago and I take the plunge into the Legend of Grimrock.

I started out with a Human fighter specced for damage, Minitaur Fighter specced to tank, a lizard rogue and a bug wizard. My first mistake was not putting enough points into one of the spell categories so for most of the first floor, I had a nearly useless mage in my party. Don't do that.

My party is tossed into the top of the mountain and away I go. The first thing I noticed was just how good the graphics are. I honestly just sat in one spot looking at the four walls around me for a few minutes. I think one of the issues with the older dungeon crawlers is that almost every plain wall looked exactly the same. Now I don't know if the textures change at all the deeper you descend, but if they didn't, it would be ok.

The first few halls and rooms are filled with small puzzles and signs that do a somewhat decent job of explaining the rules. There are pressure plates that can be activated with rocks, levers, switches, keys and secret walls activated by loose stones on walls. Sound plays a big part with all of this as well. So far, most of the doors and gates have been pretty close, but we'll see if that persists. Nothing was worse in Doom than hitting a switch and having to walk the whole level a million times to figure out just which wall opened up.

Next comes the combat. Initially it seems like you just stand there and right click the weapons in each characters hand to attack (or the rune system for spells). Theres a bit more to it as the combat system is actually more like Chrono Trigger with an active battle system. Each character has a speed rating that modifies the time between attacks. This goes for the enemies as well as your party so If a giant snail winds up to attack and you move, he'll whiff. You can kind of game the system in open rooms with this and take little to no damage.

The puzzles so far have been pretty clever. I got stuck once because I didn't realize I could reach through the bars to grab some stuff, but the other few that I encountered were pretty good. I don't want to spoil any more so I won't go in to the details but the best advice I can give is to pay close attention to the hints they give, and look out for hidden switches/torches etc...

All in all, I've had a pretty good time so far. There have been some moments of sheer terror as I get locked in a room with several enemies, and moment of total joy as I realize the (admittedly easy) solution to a puzzle that had me stumped for a few minutes. If thing continue as they have, Legend of Grimlock could turn out to be a surprise hit.

ADDENDUM: Just past floor three and...SHIT JUST GOT REAL. The battles are getting really tough. Those effing spiders are coming out of nowhere and I just met up with some slimes that can attack you though grates. Awesome. I think I need to go back through a few floors and try to find some new weapons. My human fighter is rocking a decent sword, but the minotaur fighters hand axe just ain't cutting it. More to come.

#1 Edited by HotSauceMagik (264 posts) -

So I caught a glimpse of this game a few weeks ago and though it looked interesting. Being 28, I sort of just missed the original run of dungeon crawlers as I was a bit too young to understand what was happening (or too impatient to really dig in). I've always been a fan of these types of games in theory so I figured this was a great way to get started.

As an aside, I did give The Dark Tower on DS a shot and while I could definitely see the appeal, that one was just a bit too minimalistic (not to mention obscenely difficult) for me to push past the third or fourth floor.

Fast forward to about 3 hours ago and I take the plunge into the Legend of Grimrock.

I started out with a Human fighter specced for damage, Minitaur Fighter specced to tank, a lizard rogue and a bug wizard. My first mistake was not putting enough points into one of the spell categories so for most of the first floor, I had a nearly useless mage in my party. Don't do that.

My party is tossed into the top of the mountain and away I go. The first thing I noticed was just how good the graphics are. I honestly just sat in one spot looking at the four walls around me for a few minutes. I think one of the issues with the older dungeon crawlers is that almost every plain wall looked exactly the same. Now I don't know if the textures change at all the deeper you descend, but if they didn't, it would be ok.

The first few halls and rooms are filled with small puzzles and signs that do a somewhat decent job of explaining the rules. There are pressure plates that can be activated with rocks, levers, switches, keys and secret walls activated by loose stones on walls. Sound plays a big part with all of this as well. So far, most of the doors and gates have been pretty close, but we'll see if that persists. Nothing was worse in Doom than hitting a switch and having to walk the whole level a million times to figure out just which wall opened up.

Next comes the combat. Initially it seems like you just stand there and right click the weapons in each characters hand to attack (or the rune system for spells). Theres a bit more to it as the combat system is actually more like Chrono Trigger with an active battle system. Each character has a speed rating that modifies the time between attacks. This goes for the enemies as well as your party so If a giant snail winds up to attack and you move, he'll whiff. You can kind of game the system in open rooms with this and take little to no damage.

The puzzles so far have been pretty clever. I got stuck once because I didn't realize I could reach through the bars to grab some stuff, but the other few that I encountered were pretty good. I don't want to spoil any more so I won't go in to the details but the best advice I can give is to pay close attention to the hints they give, and look out for hidden switches/torches etc...

All in all, I've had a pretty good time so far. There have been some moments of sheer terror as I get locked in a room with several enemies, and moment of total joy as I realize the (admittedly easy) solution to a puzzle that had me stumped for a few minutes. If thing continue as they have, Legend of Grimlock could turn out to be a surprise hit.

ADDENDUM: Just past floor three and...SHIT JUST GOT REAL. The battles are getting really tough. Those effing spiders are coming out of nowhere and I just met up with some slimes that can attack you though grates. Awesome. I think I need to go back through a few floors and try to find some new weapons. My human fighter is rocking a decent sword, but the minotaur fighters hand axe just ain't cutting it. More to come.

#2 Posted by NickTheZombie (53 posts) -

Nice rundown. I have exactly the same party makeup, and indeed I ran into the same problem with a useless mage. Next time I roll a party, I'll be sure to dump enough points into one school of magic so that I can at least cast some damn spells. This game is superb so far, though.

#3 Posted by StealthRaptor (526 posts) -

I've also got the same setup and just reached floor 4. Man those spiders suck.

#4 Posted by yoshimitz707 (2450 posts) -

Fuck those spiders!

#5 Posted by Brodehouse (9654 posts) -

I went human fighter specced to tank, Minotaur specced for damage, lizard rogue specced for bows and human Mage specced for ice.

Minotaur fighter is taking too much damage, everytime I stop it's just for him. Going to have to put points into armor. Mage is more useful now that I have an ice spell. Still haven't found a fucking bow though.

#6 Edited by WilltheMagicAsian (1544 posts) -

Those slimes were a pain. I had to bait them out one at a time, save, then rest until the disease went away. It was worth it though. I specced a Minotaur in hand to hand combat and it's working out pretty well.

#7 Edited by Canteu (2821 posts) -

I'm Minotaur fighter mace and armour tank, Human rogue daggers and dodge (her evasion is crazy), Lizard rogue throwing weapons (he does the most damage of anybody, not as much as the minotaur but he has 100% chance to hit so DPS is greater) and an Air/Earth (some spellcraft) Insectoid mage.

I'm having a blast but I'm a little bit stuck. On the floor with 4 puzzle room teleporters.

The puzzles in this game are great, though none of them have stumped me until now I'm sure I'll figure it out, or find a secret door or something.

I don't go to the next floor until I've cleared the entire map, which involves a lot of falling in pits, and strafing along walls looking for hidden switches, but it's totally worth it for the great loot you get.

#8 Posted by Gravier251 (217 posts) -

I have a human fighter (Tank) and a Minotaur fighter specced for damage. Then behind them I have a Human Rogue specced for daggers (Mostly threw rocks till she got the assassination skill that allows her to melee from the back row) and a human mage specced for fire. Seems like a decent starting magic type. First spell at 2 points in, just uses the top left rune only. Moving on to the ice stuff now though as the stat bonuses in fire are more strength than willpower.

I am likewise having problems with the minotaur surviving, especially when dealing with the spiders and their poison, keep having to rest for him.

#9 Edited by HotSauceMagik (264 posts) -

My though for the minotaur tank was that his dex sucks, which means he misses a lot. so why not pump his armor and have him soak up the damage. The only problem is that both dudes in the front row seem to get hit pretty evenly which means the dude who has the good sword, and does the most damage, also dies fastest because he has less protection. I'm dumping all my points in to his armor trait now to at least get him to wear light armor without penalty.

Also, I started trying to take out those slimes. They don't hit all that hard but being diseased sucks. Might go back and attempt to kill all those spiders on the 3rd floor (the giant room with like 7 of them).

As an aside; I downloaded the game on my work PC as well and attempted to play a game on Hard with an all bug mage party. Its difficult, but do-able. The only problem is remembering which mage knows what spell. I basically pre-load all my spells so all I have to do is hit fire. They do a ton of damage and can usually take out the snails within 2 "rounds". Its a little chaotic, but pretty fun. Had some trouble with the knight at the end of floor one because he's a bit faster than the rest of the enemies.

#10 Posted by James_Giant_Peach (751 posts) -

This game continues to tempt me... it's $15 right? Think I'll just buy it.

#11 Posted by Ravenlight (8040 posts) -

Those spiders, man. Do not want.

I'm rolling with four fighters and it's working pretty well so far as everyone can soak a ton of damage and I can switch the front and back rows if things get hairy up front.

The only thing that's given me much trouble is enemies that poison. Spiders go down fairly quickly but that one room on floor 4 with the poison cloud mushroom enemies dropped everyone except one of my party even with potions.

#12 Posted by HotSauceMagik (264 posts) -

4 fighters just seems boring. Are they all specced differently?

#13 Posted by whyareyoucrouchingspock (975 posts) -

This is fantastic game imo. I'v been stuck a couple of times. But thats cool, you just don't get that in gaming these days.

#14 Posted by ectoplasma (966 posts) -

Funny, I kinda build the exact same party you did. I made an insect mage with 1 point in spells. A Tauren tank with rel. low dex, which i specced on axes, as well as a Human Fighter with more dex, which I specced on Swords. And yes the Spiders are a pain and the Slimes are just not really killable. Did you already try dropping down holes? (It's a reference to Might & Magic 4). Game's alot of fun tho.

#15 Posted by ectoplasma (966 posts) -

@Brodehouse said:

I went human fighter specced to tank, Minotaur specced for damage, lizard rogue specced for bows and human Mage specced for ice. Minotaur fighter is taking too much damage, everytime I stop it's just for him. Going to have to put points into armor. Mage is more useful now that I have an ice spell. Still haven't found a fucking bow though.

There's a bow on level 3!

#16 Edited by jakob187 (21645 posts) -

@HotSauceMagik said:

...Legend of Grimlock...

I could only hope for a CRPG with robotic dinosaur madness!!!

I'm on the 8th floor, and if you think the spiders and the slimes are something, wait until you get to all the pitfalls and fire elementals. Those guys are ASSHOLES! What's worse is that falling down the pitfalls and then coming back through the teleporter on the bottom...respawns all the enemies on that floor. *UGH* SO MEAN!

Have you fought the ogre yet? Man...dat ogre and his one-shots...

As for the spiders, my guys have become powerful enough now that spiders don't really matter. My main fighter is running axes (has Chop) and has a nice 25AP axe equipped right now. My minotaur fighter has a sick fire sword with a good speed and AP attached to it, spec'd down to Slice (or whatever it's called, the first ability in Swords). My mage is specializing in fire and air magic, as they seem to be the two most effective against the majority of enemies I've seen. Hopefully, that doesn't change much.

What I'm loving the most is that there is almost no indication of how many floors this thing has in it. It's a completely new adventure on every floor, and the enemies can generally be deadly enough that you get the same potential for danger that you find in something like Dark Souls. The ambushes that enemies will set up are vicious. Every piece of food you pick up is almost a wish come true!

They did such a good fucking job on this game.

@James_Giant_Peach said:

This game continues to tempt me... it's $15 right? Think I'll just buy it.

It's, like, $13.49 or something. It's definitely worth every penny and then some. So far, it's my best purchase of the year.

#17 Posted by BigChickenDinner (766 posts) -

I'm also 2 hours in now, started with the default crew. Everyone is lvl 4 save my minny which is 3 (my min died during a fight with a spider the first time) I've found 10 secrets so far, I'm only mid way through lvl 3 of the game. I feel like I'm doing everything wrong, but, I've played D&D before, I mean, I know what 3,4,5,6,7,8,10,12,14,16,18 and 20 sided dice are for and have personally used them all before!! This game still feels daunting, somehow. I am playing through with my map turned on the first time though, it is a huge help. I'm also creating multiple saves for the first time in a game, like branching story arcs, if I chose to fight those 4 skeletons instead of drop them down a hole, or do I want to boost a class other than a fighter with the tome of health.

I really enjoy how hardcore this game can get. I haven't gone that route yet, but I can see it really adding to the replay ability. Also I'm only on normal difficulty.

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