Just a robot girl that likes thinking and plays a bit of RPGs when there's nothing else to do.
This is a semi-build/walkthrough guide for the challenge I suggest. After I finished the game no-potions-no-death, I thought I could do better. That wasn't hard, and I wanted to play it again. I started looking for a way to make it harder without crippling what I liked. Below are the challenges I had this time.
- Very Hard Difficulty - This one is obvious.
- No potions - Potions are cheating here, just like in every game where they are used in a pause.
- No vendors - This means no selling and no buying. Using services like healing, training, or repairing is fine.
- No crafting - Crafting makes you OP. Everything does actually. So, this should obviously be restricted.
- No death - Why play otherwise?
What Does It Change?
- You have to farm for good items. You can no longer gamble them, craft them, or buy them in a fixed location. But you will value what you will find.
- You will be motivated to do every quest to get experience faster.
- You cannot get high Damage Resistance and high HP.
- Lockpicks and repair kits are limited.
What Does It Not Change?
- Every skill or ability is at your disposal.
- You can use every item you have found. Prey to Ysa and find that amulet with 25% Damage Resistance.
- Feel free to use the Reckoning mode whenever you need to. Believe me, it does not trivialize every boss fight.
- Mercantile is a must this time. You need to have it at least at level 3 to be able to make money.
- Lockpicking, Dispelling, and Detect Hidden are what you can spend the rest of your points on.
- Persuasion is also helpful.
As soon as you reach Gorhart, use the fast travel to the first location and visit the Fateweaver once again. This time he will allow you to respec.
- Level 1: Storm Bolt 3.
- Level 2: Staff Mastery 1, Arcane Weaponry I 1. Arcane Weaponry II 1
- Level 3: Conservative Casting 2, Sphere of Protection 1
- Level 4: Conservative Casting 3, Sphere of Protection 3
- Level 5: Conservative Casting 5, Sphere of Protection 4
- Level 6: Sphere of Protection 6, Storm Bolt 4
- Level 7: Storm Bolt 6, Healing Surge 1
- Level 8-10: Max these: Skillful Defense, Hardy Constitution
- Level 10-15: Max these: Chain Lightning, Weaponries I-II, Staff Mastery
- Level 17: Remove all points from the Might tree and go for Tempest. Its AOE will compensate that lack of HP. You can get it with level 16, but its casting speed is low until maxed, so level 17 is the lowest possible. You will also need an item with +1 to Sorcery but they drop pretty often.
- Level 18+ After you max Tempest, put the points back to Skillful Defense and Hardy Constitution. Then go for Battle Frenzy to get that damage boost and have more HP off the Might tree.
Obviously, you need +Life and %Damage Resistance. The latter is preferred.
Talismans do seem to drop often with the mana cost reduction affix. Having zero mana cost will make the playthrough very smooth.
The following unique items are advised:
- Selkie Veil: Mana cost reduction is very useful. You get this item early in the game, keep it.
- Archsage's Ring: Mana cost reduction, Damage
- Gentleman's Courtesy: Life, Damage, and huge Armor rating
- Gauntlets of Arland: +18% Life is decent
- Birkita Chausses: these are the best you can get from the House of Valor quest line with +15% Life and +10% Elemental damage
- Gentleman's Favor: +20% Life is very juicy
- Earthcrushers: +15% Life
- The suggested order of locations and HP if indicated: Odarath > Glendara > Webwood > Lorca-Rane > Haxhi (300) > The Sidhe > Ettinmere (400) > Windemere > all locations in Plains of Erathell > all locations in Detyre.
- When to use the Reckoning mode: A Thrasher with Borgarts, Crudocs, Ettin Warpriests, two Leanashes, and two mages in Erathell. Trolls should be killed without the Reckoning mode so you can use it only if you are left with little HP.
- Quests to skip until you get good gear: The main quest line, the Warsworn quest line, the final quest of House of Ballads. The Widow should be fought only when you have Tempest.
- Gnarsh: With 28% Damage Resistance at level 23, she did 410 damage with the sprint attack. 550+ HP is recommended.
- The Scholia Arcania: The final boss does a lot of damage. However, the terrain is on your side.
- The House of Valor - some fight are very hard. Using the Reckoning mode is a good idea.
- Use shrines. The Death Touch is a life-saver early on. When you get to Ysa, you will be able to use them all at once.
- Use the Reckoning mode strategically.
There's also a fun way to play this game. If you try it the way I did, you can replace the Reckoning mode with non-healing potions pre-combat. That will be some sort of a Witcher playthrough, still difficult but different.
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