When I first began my adventures in Medievia, I visited Lucynde's Challenge, but never finished. It had always bothered me, as I do not like to leave puzzles unsolved. Lucynde's Challenge is a new player zone, designed with rooms and mobs that increase in difficulty as you move farther through. You collect tokens from the largest mobs in each room, and turn them in at the end, to Lucynde herself. She gives you a coin, which you use to purchase a truly exquisite piece of equipment. Or, so I had been told.
Pondering this elusive challenge, I decided to find a long lost lower level character, and give this whole thing a try. The entrance is in the Haven Travel Agency, next to the mirror to Karlisna. As I tumbled out of the magical mirror, I was greeted by large gates and a welcoming sign stating "Good Luck!" I opened the gates, and was amazed by the sheer beauty of Lucynde's lands. Flowering ivy draped elegantly over the fences, and I could hear birds chirping in the distance. It was a very relaxing moment, and I thought perhaps this would be simple. In front of me was another sign. I felt compelled to read it, and was glad I did. The sign reminded me that each room is harder than the last, and I needed eleven tokens to complete the challenge. I prepared myself with armor, blessings and sanctuary, and opened the first gate.
Standing in front of me was the largest scarecrow I had ever seen. He glared coldly at me, and his eyes glowed red. With one tremor, he was no more. I grinned, and made my way quickly to the King of the Scarecrows, killing him and securing my first token! Ah, sweet victory. I found my way back out the gate and looked around. There was the second gate, and behind it, I heard croaking. Loud, obnoxious croaking. Hmmm. Opening the gate, I was leapt upon by a huge, poisonous toad. Yuck. No matter, I smote them all with great ease, stepping gingerly through the slime until I reached a truly gigantic toad. His warts were covered in muck, and he smelled just awful. I cast harm on this monster, and as his flesh melted away, I snatched my second token from his fetid corpse. Blech.
What was coming next? What horrible creatures awaited me behind the next gate? Sharks. Huge, bloodthirsty sharks. Tiger sharks, bull sharks and, of course, a Great White. This was the token shark, and no matter how frightening he was, I had to slay him. This battle was a bit more challenging, but in the end, I triumphed, running like mad back out the gate, the third token clutched in my shaking hand. I collapsed, leaning against the ivy covered fence, wondering how such a beautiful place could harbor such horrible creatures. Lucynde was not done with me yet, however, and my next task proved a little more daunting: werewolves. Howling, drooling werewolves, with cursed tails and an appetite for cleric. Uh oh. I had no choice, I had to try..and I emerged bloody but triumphant, with the fourth token!
Now I was really starting to worry. These monsters were getting harder, and I feared that I would either have to abandon my efforts, or die. I was right on both accounts, but more on that later. Wincing as I limped toward the next room, I peeked over the fence and was surprised to see lawn gnomes. Yes, lawn gnomes. I smiled, taken aback by their seemingly innocent look and demeanor. I mean, all lawn gnomes do is stand in a garden or on grass and look a little silly. I was sorely mistaken, and those gnomes proved it. This took a bit longer than the werewolves, and the last gnome was almost as tall as me, and kept calling me "Shorty". I felt that was uncalled for, and I made my point by slaughtering it. Ha! Token number five.
At this point in the challenge, I needed to take a quick break, refuel, and purchase more sanctuary orbs, potions, and a few staves and wands to help me with the mobs to come. I returned to Haven, rested, ate and drank, and prepared myself once again. Little did I realize how much I would need heal potions and sanctuary. I peered around for a gate, a door, a fence, but all I found was a large rock, that seemed to be blocking an entrance to a cave. Using my shoulder, I rolled it aside, and was immediately surrounded by thick, grey smoke. Listening closely, I could make out a sort of rumble from deep within the cave. Tiptoeing into the darkness, I drank a cloudy potion that rendered me invisible. I crossed my fingers, and began my slow descent into a dragon lair. Blue, silver and black little dragons put up a brave fight, but I was able to better them with spells and a long, cruel tentacle. I had no idea what was next, and as I rounded the corner, I was greeted with a disturbing sight. The massive dragon, Gar'Zatei. Wisps of smoke trailed from it's nostrils, and its claws scraped the rocky ground as it glared at me. "You? YOU?! I think not", it growled at me. I didn't care; I was almost halfway to the end of this challenge, and not even a dragon was going to stop me! I cast sanctuary on myself, and that was the last thing I remember, until the necromancer was peeking down at me, laughing that awful laugh (maybe he saves that just for me, who knows), and reciting those spine chilling magical words. Yippee.
This is but the first installment in my tale of adventure from Lucynde's Challenge! There will be another, detailing my further injuries, triumphs, failures and you will know if I completed this dastardly yet thrilling zone! Till next time!
Continued in Part 2