Book 17 The Deathlord of Ixia - What's Changed?

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Book 17 The Deathlord of Ixia - What's Changed?

Postby SnowShadow » Tue Jan 31, 2012 11:36 am

Spoiler.

I haven't read the new Mongoose version yet as I'm waiting for all the Grand Master books but here are the changes I have noticed, please feel free to add more. Basically as Mongoose stated some of the earlier/lesser foes have slight CS/EP reduction and some fights remain unchanged. Note the changes in the Starting Equipment and the Power Spike is now treated as a Magic Dagger (for Grand Weaponmastery Bonus I assume).

Special Items from Bks 1-12: Dagger of Vashna &/or Helshezag may be taken into Bk 17 if you have them (still).
Equipment: You may take FIVE (previously Four) items. Broadsword no longer available but Spear now available, seem to remember something in the text about a door or something requiring a Spear, maybe not - can't find it. 4 Meals available now (Previously 2).

"21" Ixian Gybia CS 45 EP 58 (Previously CS 50 EP60)
"23/239/242" Ixian Undead CS 46 EP 55 (Previously CS 48 EP 55)
"27/285/337" Suggaz CS 40 EP 44 (Previously CS 44 EP 44)
"35/130/281" 3 Cabalah CS 53 EP 54* (Previously CS 56 EP 54)
*Correction/clarification: Also Immune to Psi-surge.
"45/53/142/216/230/308" Correction/clarification: Tagazin immune to all pychic attacks except Kai-surge or Kai- blast.
"50" Ixian Undead CS 42 EP 50 (Previously CS 47 EP 50)
"67/137" Chaos-horde CS 46 EP 46* (Previously CS 50 EP 48)
*Additionally may not now use Broadsword, Quarterstaff or Spear unless Sun Knight with Grand Weaponmastery.
"77" Correction/clarification: 'Power Spike is a Magical Dagger' (I assume for Grand Weaponmastery bonus).
"110" Correction/clarification: Reminder to apply appropriate Sommerswerd bonus to Undead (i.e. Double Damage not Double CS).
"111" Chaos-horde CS 43 EP 46 (Previously CS 46 EP 48)
"121" Ziog CS 50 EP 44 (Previously CS 52 EP 44)
"123" Correction/clarification: Kai-blast Pick a RandomNumber & double result but 0 = 1, enemy will always lose at least -2 EP; this was not clear previously, "Enemy -2-18EP" could be mis-interpreted as a 0 = Miss/-0EP. This correction appears in the Improved Discipline section of both Books 16 & 17 too.
"131" Correction/clarification: 0 = -10EP, Previously 100(!).
"145/278" Chaos-horde CS 48 EP 50 (Previously CS 52 EP50)
"167" 3 Cabalah CS 50 EP 54* (Previously CS 52 EP54)
*Correction/clarification: Also Immune to Psi-surge, reminder to apply appropriate Sommerswerd bonus to Undead (i.e. Double Damage not Double CS).
"243/336" Drakkarim Undead CS 34 EP 42 (Previously CS 40 EP 42)
"264” Cabalah CS 47 EP 45* (Previously CS 48 EP 45)
*Correction/clarification: Also Immune to Psi-surge
“277” Ziog CS 48 EP 42 (Previously CS 49 EP 42)
“310” Ixian Undead CS 43 EP 52 (Previously CS 45 EP 52)
Lone Wolf House Rules here: viewtopic.php?f=14&t=42027

Korlinium Scabbard - think of it as Sommerswerd's Fair Usage Policy.

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Re: Book 17 The Deathlord of Ixia - What's Changed?

Postby Oiseau » Wed Feb 01, 2012 1:11 am

SnowShadow wrote:"21" Ixian Gybia CS 45 EP 58 (Previously CS 50 EP60)
"23/239/242" Ixian Undead CS 46 EP 55 (Previously CS 48 EP 55)
"27/285/337" Suggaz CS 40 EP 44 (Previously CS 44 EP 44)
"35/130/281" 3 Cabalah CS 53 EP 54* (Previously CS 56 EP 54)
*Correction/clarification: Also Immune to Psi-surge.
"45/53/142/216/230/308" Correction/clarification: Tagazin immune to all pychic attacks except Kai-surge or Kai- blast.
"50" Ixian Undead CS 42 EP 50 (Previously CS 47 EP 50)
"67/137" Chaos-horde CS 46 EP 46* (Previously CS 50 EP 48)
*Additionally may not now use Broadsword, Quarterstaff or Spear unless Sun Knight with Grand Weaponmastery.
"77" Correction/clarification: 'Power Spike is a Magical Dagger' (I assume for Grand Weaponmastery bonus).
"110" Correction/clarification: Reminder to apply appropriate Sommerswerd bonus to Undead (i.e. Double Damage not Double CS).
"111" Chaos-horde CS 43 EP 46 (Previously CS 46 EP 48)
"121" Ziog CS 50 EP 44 (Previously CS 52 EP 44)
"123" Correction/clarification: Kai-blast Pick a RandomNumber & double result but 0 = 1, enemy will always lose at least -2 EP; this was not clear previously, "Enemy -2-18EP" could be mis-interpreted as a 0 = Miss/-0EP. This correction appears in the Improved Discipline section of both Books 16 & 17 too.
"131" Correction/clarification: 0 = -10EP, Previously 100(!).
"145/278" Chaos-horde CS 48 EP 50 (Previously CS 52 EP50)
"167" 3 Cabalah CS 50 EP 54* (Previously CS 52 EP54)
*Correction/clarification: Also Immune to Psi-surge, reminder to apply appropriate Sommerswerd bonus to Undead (i.e. Double Damage not Double CS).
"243/336" Drakkarim Undead CS 34 EP 42 (Previously CS 40 EP 42)
"264” Cabalah CS 47 EP 45* (Previously CS 48 EP 45)
*Correction/clarification: Also Immune to Psi-surge
“277” Ziog CS 48 EP 42 (Previously CS 49 EP 42)
“310” Ixian Undead CS 43 EP 52 (Previously CS 45 EP 52)
I'm not sure this fixes much. For example, those 3 Cabalah in 35/130/181 — you can't use the Sommerswerd otherwise you die soon afterward, and they're immune to Kai-Surge (unless immunity to Kai-Surge was REPLACED with immunity to Psi-Surge?). So, taking a –16 off your total CS, which can't really be any higher than 55 or so, leaves you around CS 40 to face creatures that have 53 instead of 56. Big whoop. It's still –11 or Less. The rest feels pretty cosmetic too. It looks like the Chaos-horde is the only thing that's been meaningfully downgraded.

Have the ridiculous random deaths been fixed at all? (Notably the 40% chance of death as you flee the crumbling tower.)
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Re: Book 17 The Deathlord of Ixia - What's Changed?

Postby SnowShadow » Wed Feb 01, 2012 11:05 am

No I'm afraid the instant death is unchanged when escaping Xaagon, didn't spot any other changes either.

Also I believe Mongoose Publishing stated that they would reword the text to make it absolutely clear that Ixiataaga is treated as Undead: It's on another thread, think 'fixing bk 17', that Joe states that the sheer Necromantic power Ixiataaga possesses make the Deathlord equivalent to Undead. This is so that you can claim Sommerswerd's double damage bonus (I always did!). As far as I can tell this hasn't been done, didn't appear in section 214, but as I said I haven't read it properly yet. Then again even if you do use the Power Spike you at least now get Grand Weaponmastery Dagger bonus.
Lone Wolf House Rules here: viewtopic.php?f=14&t=42027

Korlinium Scabbard - think of it as Sommerswerd's Fair Usage Policy.

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Re: Book 17 The Deathlord of Ixia - What's Changed?

Postby Zorkaan » Fri Feb 24, 2012 6:45 pm

SnowShadow wrote: Also I believe Mongoose Publishing stated that they would reword the text to make it absolutely clear that Ixiataaga is treated as Undead: It's on another thread, think 'fixing bk 17', that Joe states that the sheer Necromantic power Ixiataaga possesses make the Deathlord equivalent to Undead. This is so that you can claim Sommerswerd's double damage bonus (I always did!). As far as I can tell this hasn't been done, didn't appear in section 214, but as I said I haven't read it properly yet.
Sincere apologies about that stuff, SnowShadow. During the edition process, Joe Dever had told me "I can confirm that Ixiataaga is an undead entity - the clue is in his title 'Deathlord', as in 'Lord of Death'. This fact should have been made clearer in the original stats as it has a significant impact on the combat if the player is using the Sommerswerd against him. I'd appreciate it if you'd make this clarification known to the fan on the forums." Unfortunately, a bug in the process caused that the section 214 has not been updated with this modification. I'm really sorry.
Oiseau wrote: I'm not sure this fixes much. For example, those 3 Cabalah in 35/130/181 — you can't use the Sommerswerd otherwise you die soon afterward, and they're immune to Kai-Surge (unless immunity to Kai-Surge was REPLACED with immunity to Psi-Surge?). So, taking a –16 off your total CS, which can't really be any higher than 55 or so, leaves you around CS 40 to face creatures that have 53 instead of 56. Big whoop. It's still –11 or Less.
I'm unsure that your total CS is so low against the 3 Cabalah. Indeed, at the beginning of the Grand Masters Series, it is stated that:
- "For five years, ever since the demise of the Darklords of Helgedad, you have devoted yourself to developing further your fighting prowess--COMBAT SKILL--and physical stamina--ENDURANCE. Before you begin your first Grand Master adventure you need to measure how effective your training has been. To do this, pick a number from the Random Number Table. If you pick a 0 it counts as zero. The first number that you pick from the Random Number Table in this way represents your COMBAT SKILL. Add 25 to the number you picked and write the total in the COMBAT SKILL section of your Action Chart... "
- "If you have successfully completed any of the previous adventures in the Lone Wolf series (Books 1-12), you can carry your current scores of COMBAT SKILL and ENDURANCE points over to Book 13. These scores may include Lore-circle bonuses".

In my view (please correct me if I'm wrong), those paragraphs indicate that after LW12, Lone Wolf trained very hard to develop his power, and above all that in LW13 the player can choose either to carry his scores of CS from LW12 or to calculate another CS because Lone Wolf is far much stronger in MS 5075 than in MS 5070 (I do think it's authorized by the rules, because they state that you can, and not must, carry your previous score, and because they explicitly take into account that Grand Master Lone Wolf is necessarily stronger after his long training than he was immediately after his victory against Gnaag). If the player thus chooses to calculate another CS at the beginning of LW13, he will renounce to his bonus from the Kai Lore Circles (only 5), to his previous picked number and to the 10 CS he added to this picked number, but in return he will add 25 to his new picked number. In that case, if he chooses to also carry the Silver Helmet (+2), the Silver Bracers (+2), Kagonite Chainmail (+3), selects the Grand Discipline of Weaponmastery (+5), and finishes books 13-16 (+4) he can have a CS of 50 in front of the Cabalah without using the Sommerswerd, Helshezag or Alether Potion. In the new version of LW17, the Combat Ratio would thus be -3. Ok, that's not very different from a -6 lol.
Oiseau wrote: The rest feels pretty cosmetic too. It looks like the Chaos-horde is the only thing that's been meaningfully downgraded.
The changes are indeed not very important for some monsters (not all: the Gybia, the Ixian Undead, the Chaos Horde, the Drakkarim Undead have all lost 4 or more CS points), but I'd like to remind here that Ixia is perhaps the deadliest area of Magnamund, with foes far more dangerous than those of the Darklands. If all their stats had been decreased to have the same level as the monsters of LW14 and LW15, it would have been a background inconsistency. LW17 is a difficult gamebook, but with the cumulative decrease of most of the fights as listed by SnowShadow, I think it is easier now, because the players will lose less Endurance in each fight, it's nearly mathematical.
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Re: Book 17 The Deathlord of Ixia - What's Changed?

Postby Zorkaan » Fri Feb 24, 2012 7:08 pm

SPOILER

In sections 96, 125, 287, it is now added that "Kajarda are Undead".

There are also other subtle background changes added by Joe Dever. Here are some them:

"22" the flying ship draws ever closer to the fortified walls and turrets of the great northern Lencian port (PREVIOUSLY the flying ship draws ever closer to the fortified walls and turrets of the Lencian capital.)

"73/240" Closer examination of the timbers reveals it to be more than eleven thousand years old. (PREVIOUSLY Closer examination of the timbers reveals it to be more than fifteen thousand years old.)

"141" Despite the millennia which have passed since they were crafted by armourers of the Age of Eternal Night (PREVIOUSLY Despite the millennia which have passed since they were crafted by Old Kingdom armourers)

"152/343" Warily you trek through the awesome ruins of this age-old city, where once, at the beginning of the Age of Eternal Night, a proud and mighty race reigned supreme.(PREVIOUSLY Warily you trek through the awesome ruins of this age-old city, where once, in the time of the Old Kingdoms, a proud and mighty race reigned supreme.)

"162" You quickly discover that these ice-boats are propelled by ancient Ixian Witchcraft, an arcane art far older and more benign than the Deathlord's vile necromancy. (PREVIOUSLY You quickly discover that these ice-boats are propelled by Old Kingdom magic, an arcane art far older and more benign than the Deathlord's vile necromancy.)
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Re: Book 17 The Deathlord of Ixia - What's Changed?

Postby SnowShadow » Fri Feb 24, 2012 7:16 pm

Wow thankyou Zorkaan, fascinating and so subtle probably never notice them unless reading two books at once and picking random numbers with my nose!
Lone Wolf House Rules here: viewtopic.php?f=14&t=42027

Korlinium Scabbard - think of it as Sommerswerd's Fair Usage Policy.

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Re: Book 17 The Deathlord of Ixia - What's Changed?

Postby Zorkaan » Fri Feb 24, 2012 7:51 pm

You're welcome.

SPOILER In fact, these modifications fix some inconsistencies of the first version:

- Vadera is not the capital of Lencia (cf. the Magnamund Companion and especially the novel Dragons of Lencia!)

- The Ixian were not "Old Kingdom" people since they were exterminated by Ixiataaga around 5000 MS, during the Age of the Eternal Night (which is a period prior to the Age of the Old Kingdoms), and their civilisation thrived around 6000 MS (eleven millenia before Lone Wolf).

- The Ixian did not perform Magic in the sense of Left Hand / Right Hand Magic (because Left Hand Magic was brought in Magnamund by the Elder Magi, and Right Hand Magic given to the Agarashi by Agarash himself, centuries after the slaughter of the Ixians), but "Ixian Witchcraft" notably to craft their ships and submarines.
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Re: Book 17 The Deathlord of Ixia - What's Changed?

Postby Oiseau » Fri Feb 24, 2012 8:59 pm

I consider the "can vs must" argument pretty weak, as it is based on semantics. This is not how I would play the transition between Books 12 and 13. Recalculating something as ingrained as CS makes no real sense to me. As long as I'm fudging numbers, I'd rather add +4CS and +8EP for the first four Grand Master Disciplines. But even this, still feels like cheating to me.

Nevertheless, most Lone Wolf books past #10 are pretty broken difficulty-wise. Fixing them with house rules always gives the feeling of applying a band-aid to a neck wound.
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Re: Book 17 The Deathlord of Ixia - What's Changed?

Postby SnowShadow » Fri Feb 24, 2012 9:13 pm

Ouch Oiseau! :wink:

I kind of feel that on becoming a Grand Master the dormant Kai Seed has finally reached fruition and can be harvested by the God Kai himself to be sown in future generations and as such he grants you further rewards.

I.e. Permanently -1EP, +10CS, gain Grand Master Disciplines and age 1 year every 4. That puts your stats on a par with a standard Grand Master; after Book 12 Initial CS 15-24, EP 31-40 with Lore Circle bonuses gets altered to CS 25-34, EP 30-39.
Lone Wolf House Rules here: viewtopic.php?f=14&t=42027

Korlinium Scabbard - think of it as Sommerswerd's Fair Usage Policy.

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Re: Book 17 The Deathlord of Ixia - What's Changed?

Postby Zorkaan » Fri Feb 24, 2012 9:52 pm

Oiseau wrote:I consider the "can vs must" argument pretty weak, as it is based on semantics. This is not how I would play the transition between Books 12 and 13.
I don't understand why do you discredit semantics whereas we are speaking of literary material. I just stated what is written in the rules of the gamebook: you have freedom to keep or change your CS in the Grand Master Series, since you can carry your scores... Or not. You can dislike it, but it is allowed by the rules to recalculate CS (or am I wrong?).
Oiseau wrote:Recalculating something as ingrained as CS makes no real sense to me.

In fact, I see it more as a way to increase your CS more or less significantly (the system cannot make decrease your CS), because LW has become stronger since MS 5070 thanks to a more or less effective training. Concretely before LW13, you had CS= Picked Number + 10 + Lore Circles Bonus (5) = 15 to 24. In LW13, you have CS = Picked Number + 25 = 25 to 34. Your CS thus gains a + 1 to + 19 bonus between LW 12 and LW13, a variation that can be explained by the rules too: "you need to measure how effective your training has been." Recalculating your CS thus seems to be a way to quantify the effectiveness of the training of Grand Master Lone Wolf between LW12 and LW13: I do think it has a real sense.
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Re: Book 17 The Deathlord of Ixia - What's Changed?

Postby Oiseau » Sat Feb 25, 2012 12:43 am

Interesting. What does "Word of God" say on this subject ?
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Re: Book 17 The Deathlord of Ixia - What's Changed?

Postby August1 » Sat Feb 25, 2012 3:12 pm

There is a reason the word used is 'can'. It's an option, one specifically allowed so that players can recalculate their CS if they so choose.

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Re: Book 17 The Deathlord of Ixia - What's Changed?

Postby Oiseau » Sat Feb 25, 2012 3:49 pm

Is this official ? Because, think about it — why would anyone not recalculate their CS in these circumstances ? You cannot possibly end up lower than before, and could gain an increase of 10 points or more. This interpretation does explain the stupidly hard fights in the Grand Master series, but look at the result in Book 13 :

Veteran Lone Wolf
Average starting CS : 15 (max 19)
+ Lore Circles : 20 (max 24)
+ Special Items (Sommerswerd, Silver Helm, Kagonite Chainmail, Silver Bracers) : 35 (max 39)
+ Grand Disciplines (Kai-surge, Great Weaponskill) : 48 (max 52)
(Shield and Bronin Vest technically not allowed…)

Now you're saying you "can" recalculate your base CS and add 25 to a Random Number, sacrificing your original base CS and Lore-Circles ? That's +10 right there. Doesn't that break the game balance the other way ? Exterminus is a joke if you face it at +8… or even +12 with maximum starting stats… you can instakill the thing, for crying out loud. By the time you get to Kekataag in Book 20, you could have as much as +9 against him, with double damage due to Sommerswerd. Forget the puny champion of evil and go for Naar himself !

Granted, this erases every complaint I ever uttered about the game-breaking fights in Books 13+ (although they remain unwinnable for a newbie), but still… to think I could have just boosted my CS by 10 points all those years !

Now, can someone find a wording that allows us to circumvent all the "falling mast" instadeaths in the later books ? ^_^
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Re: Book 17 The Deathlord of Ixia - What's Changed?

Postby Drake_NZ » Sat Feb 25, 2012 9:17 pm

In my experience of playing the GM books very strictly (albeit with a guaranteed starting roll of 9 for CS), books 13-16 are quite reasonable in terms of difficulty (if you take into account the +20 ep from advanced curing). Without kagonite chainmail book 14 is reasonably hard (although you should have a very large stash of potions to use) and the end of book 15 is quite challenging if you play the rule that your EP reduction can't be restored by curing. Book 16 is almost trivial with the new changes.

The max CS (under the strict interpretation) for book 17, is 56 (including kai-surge). Obviously you lose your sommerswerd bonus for 1-3 fights or so but there is still a +1 weapon you could have with you. Most of the fights you can avoid, but even the hard ones are doable. Using Adgana (+6 cs) against Ixiataagia for example would give a +1 combat result with double damage! Giving you fairly decent chances if you have enough EP when you get to him.

I agree it's still reasonably hard though - my reaction is that grandmastery weapon bonuses should stack - giving you an extra +5 CS and making the discipline worth taking earlier. That would make the books average - normal easy (about the same level as books 3-12).

It would be good to know what CS Joe expects a character to have by book 17!
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Re: Book 17 The Deathlord of Ixia - What's Changed?

Postby Drake_NZ » Sun Feb 26, 2012 6:32 am

Actually - on reflection one reservation I have is whether on a 'strict' approach it is realistically possible to complete bk17 without the kagonite chainmail. The fights are hard enough but without the bonus +3 to cs and the adgana you also get it could be downright crazy hard. For example, Ixitagia would be at -7/-8 - extremely hard, but perhaps with the benefit of doubling all damage it might be doable with a few good rolls.

Once I've gone through a few more times I'll have some better data and be able to decide.
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Re: Book 17 The Deathlord of Ixia - What's Changed?

Postby August1 » Sun Feb 26, 2012 8:24 pm

After checking my notes with Mister Dever about these later books, it would appear that yes, this is the official interpretation. Joe's always been very precise and his use of the word 'can' there is meant to be interpreted as an option.

If you dislike the practice, well... that's why it's an option. :)

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Re: Book 17 The Deathlord of Ixia - What's Changed?

Postby Drake_NZ » Sun Feb 26, 2012 11:34 pm

Very interesting! Did this come directly from Joe himself?

If so, how would one recalculate CS and EP? (I'm guessing you would have to reroll both).

Say I have a base CS of 19, which has increased to 24 from circle bonuses. I then roll a 0 for my "training" so I now have 25 CS, or do my circles get added back on? (I assume not)

So in theory you are allowed to take an optional roll and get between +1 and +9 to CS (and presumably EP is similar).

Does this interpretation also mean you can keep rerolling them in every GM book after 13? If so, your stats might actually get worse!! (or perhaps you could roll, and then elect whether to take those new stats).
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Re: Book 17 The Deathlord of Ixia - What's Changed?

Postby Oiseau » Mon Feb 27, 2012 3:19 am

I still dunno… For me, the word "can" gives a choice between :

You keep your old stats, your old equipment, etc, and progress from Magnakai to Grandmaster ;

OR

You reroll your CS and EP, but then it's a new character, and you don't get to keep your stuff on top of that.

If you're really allowed to have the best of both worlds (old bonuses + new rolls), why use "can" at all, since there's no reason to refuse a +10 CS boost ?

Anyway. I won't turn this into a protracted nitpicking exercise. I'm just saying, if the official rules really allow you to reroll your stats AND keep your Sommerswerd, I played it stupidly wrong for years — and ranted against non-existent difficulty (aside from falling masts).
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Re: Book 17 The Deathlord of Ixia - What's Changed?

Postby August1 » Mon Feb 27, 2012 4:49 am

The nit, it has already been seriously picked. :)

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Re: Book 17 The Deathlord of Ixia - What's Changed?

Postby Drake_NZ » Mon Feb 27, 2012 6:42 am

Do you reckon we could get a signed affidavit from Joe on this point? :lol: Its funny but given how many hours I spend dying in the lair of Ixia I would actually pay money for that. Maybe we could do a kickstarter campaign to reprint book 13 with an amended introduction ! :mrgreen:

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