Finished + Tips (skill spoilers)

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Finished + Tips (skill spoilers)

#1 Post by gronk » Wed Jun 06, 2012 8:26 pm

Finished the game on first try. :D
(played the demo until week 10 and started over for the full game).
I simply couldn't put it away.

Although the game is undoubtedly difficult it is not hard or impossible if you are careful and read the tips on this forum. 8)
(though i replayed several sections over and over to get it right)

A few tips:
* Moods are the key to win: try to keep the moods around the zero line with only one bar one step away. This way you can very easily change to any other mood quickly. Always pay attention what your mood is before you choose a mood activity. (if you don't know, save, advance and reload)
I kept the current mood coded in the save game name.
* There are only very few absolute key skills you need to survive (unless you aren't careful with your choices) and although you wont be able to raise all skills there are plenty of skill points in the game.
* there are a lot of important events that have secondary skill checks (much higher requirements). You only need to pass one!
* Play in windowed mode and have at least one notepad on the side to take notes. Write down events for every single week. Keep notes for characters and weeks separate.
* Save every week, either at the mood activity choice (press escape) or at the class select. This way you can reload as far back as needed.
* The 2 lists of what each mood activity does and what skill sets are affected by each mood (to plan ahead) can be found in this forum
* a lot of events and skill checks seemed to be thrown in to get you off the right path.
* try to raise the 3 skills equally until 30 (or 50) for the important sections.
Even better is to raise 2 different sections with mood bonuses. This way you get a few extra points.
* don't raise skills without bonus (except economics)
* didn't need a dress once. Would have been nice for one event, but i just got it the day of the event (and couldn't put it on)
* used hunting a LOT to keep my mood unchanged
* willful, cheerful, yielding and depressed are the most important moods in that order (therefore by carefully balancing your anger you should be fine)
* 1st week: animal handling, 2nd week: reflex to unlock sports. after that as the events come.
* there is a very important decision/skill check towards the end of the game

Skill spoiler below
* Royal Demeanor
you are queen! elegance and presence need to be at least 70 (composure is fine at 30)
* Conversation
public speaking is only checked once and then its optional. court manners and flattery are used very often. raised cm to 90 (my highest skill)
* Expression
not needed, only raised decoration once and that wasn't enough by the end of the game, though it didn't seem to have an effect.
* Agility
reflexes 30 is a must to unlock sports, the rest is optional (yes, dancing is optional)
* Weapons
not needed if you are careful
* Athletics
used a few times as a "second chance" check, but seems to be optional if you are careful (and although it saves your life, the event outcome will always be better if you get the first check right, which is always possible)
* Animal Handling
very important. You can leave dogs at 30, but falcons 70 will probably save your life
* History
This is a very annoying section. It is used for a LOT of checks, although most of them seem to "only" provide background information. I wish i had the time to raise this more often. at the end i only had a total of 30 points here
* Intrigue
This is important, although i am not sure that you can't bypass this with other checks. ciphering is only needed to unlock the dress and to raise the other 2 to 50
* Medicine
used a few times but all of them optional. didn't get the chance to put a single point into this, although i wish i could have (for one event)
* Economics
Raised this very early to get through an (optional) event. Glad i did, because accounting is important! After all you are supposed to run the country
* Military
Ended up raising this to a total of 200 points, although a lot of those were after i really needed them
* Faith
like history. didn't pass any of the events (though checked them with reloading and they only seem to provide background information)
a lot of flavor here, but didn't have the time to raise this.
* Lumen
This is an odd one. 50 in wield magic seemed to be "enough" although i ended up raising this to a total of 240 points.

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Re: Finished + Tips (skill spoilers)

#2 Post by Atarun » Wed Jun 06, 2012 9:00 pm

gronk wrote:Finished the game on first try. :D
With or without backtracking?
You do advise to save all the time so as to allow backtrack as far as needed, that's why I'm asking. That and sheer curiosity. :wink:

As for the lists that can be found in the forum, were you talking about my Moods Impact table and this topic?

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#3 Post by Anarchy » Wed Jun 06, 2012 11:20 pm

(though i replayed several sections over and over to get it right)
That should answer your question.

I find that dresses are nice especially if you'll be using all three subskills (which, granted, isn't always the case). There's no need to max out any skill if you have the corresponding outfit, since you can always just wear it in advance to clear a check that requires max skill. Well. Unless the situation calls for multiple checks.

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#4 Post by skyrunner620 » Thu Jun 07, 2012 1:15 am

It's hard keeping everything straight, and hoping some questions can be answered. I love the game but I've hit a mental wall in terms of, trying to achieve specific events and having saves all over the place so I end up just starting from the beginning to direct the story where I want it to go, but trying to juggle which events kill you, which ones can be ignored, while targeting the specific thing you're trying to trigger is tricky.

What happens if Charlotte gets bitten? I can't bring myself to fail either the composure or reflexes check to see if she dies and I get horrible vengeance thrown my way.

Leading the parade and making a speech, who you dance with at the ball, and whether you pass the presence, court manners+flattery checks, I'm not at all sure what stuff that affects and if it is worth spending time passing. I gather it might have something to do with the civil war, which somehow I've avoided every time.

The Briony subplot is hard to get a read on. Sometimes I get attacked by bandits on the way and survive (or die), sometimes it just doesn't happen and I have no idea what changes that. If your lore (and maybe Novan history works?) is high enough, you can offer to help her, or talk her out of it. If she goes she's dead, but I've never gotten any 'blame her mother' option if she does die. The time I went with her my herbs was not up to the task so I couldn't go that route.

There are two investment opportunities, the medicine and the economics, but I haven't noticed any effect on the game at all except for a footnote at the end. What's up with these?

What effect does wearing/not wearing the necklace given to you early on have? The guy always seemed like a smarmy git so I've been reluctant to try anything that might resemble flirting with him, but I gather from the checklist he's the one you would break an engagement with?

The festival; what triggers the guy demanding a duel with you? My skills have never been adequate for that so I don't know what happens if you win and don't just stay in the castle, but sometimes he never showed up at all and I can't figure out what I did differently.

Recruiting 3 lumens; is it possible to get both mentors and Charlotte's aunt on your side? The best way seemed to be arresting the priestess and releasing her before the red priestess shows up, but I haven't played that up to the navy battle yet.

The kraken; this happens when you sink the ships with magic? The one ending I did had Elodie stuck ferrying out to the kraken to keep him bound. I didn't want to sacrifice anyone and I didn't see 'kill kraken' as an option. Is it even possible?

Some other stuff that seems like it might be in there but might not; do you ever battle the blue priestess, maybe by arresting her and never releasing her, or taunting her, or, something like that? Can you battle Charlotte's aunt? I've hired the spy and thus learned her secrets, but I can't pin down all the ways to deal with her.

The duel with the foreign king, I gather only happens when the navy is defeated. Does the magnitude of defeat make any difference at all, or is it always the same? You can win the duel (probably in a few ways?), sing and get him to relent, have someone else duel, be evil and join forces, is there any other way this can be dealt with?

Sorry for this being all over the place. Not sure if spoiler tags are needed.

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#5 Post by hanako » Thu Jun 07, 2012 1:30 am

The festival; what triggers the guy demanding a duel with you?
Family trouble. This guy is pissed at you if you executed Arisse (his mother) in the civil war, or if Briony (his niece) ran off and got herself killed. Even if you had nothing to do with it, he blames you anyway.

(Many of these aren't hard for other people to answer, so I'm sticking to the one that's least obvious.)

How many people are trying to kill you can vary depending on things you've done in the past, so things like this duel challenge, or the bandits on the road, won't happen if you've prevented the right people from bearing grudges against you.

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#6 Post by gronk » Thu Jun 07, 2012 10:17 am

@Atarun: yes i was referring to these, although the nice table wasn't available when i did my run. Since i would never raise a skill without bonus the only thing you really need to know is which moods give bonuses.
I don't think its possible to finish on first try without backtracking. Firstly to know the order in which skills become relevant is obviously the most important thing, but also how far to raise them.

@Anarchy: In my run i had never had the case where a dress would affect a skill check positively. I think there is a pattern around which levels generally pass checks (30, 50, 70). If you raise skills only with bonuses you are never really in a position where you are just below one of those thresholds.
For example the first two session will always get you to over 30. At 30 (and the other skills also over 30) you get almost a +2 bonus which should raise you all the way to just over 50. The only difference a dress makes seems to be at the very end of the scale (80 & 100).
In my run i did not have a situation where that would have been the case.

I think there is a safe or easy path and it is relatively clear what that path would be.
Rescuing Charlotte is one of those. Not only does it make sense to raise reflex as early as possible to 30 (which saves her) but it also avoids "noble unhappiness" (not confirmed, but it makes sense). Plus the game almost pushes you towards afraid due to the extra cheerful you get at the beginning (also hinting that its important to keep the moods near 0).
Leading the parade should obviously give you points towards how much people like you. More people liking you avoids unhappiness, i.e. lowers the danger level. Besides its an obvious thing to do. Making a speech is the taunt option in my opinion since its very hard to get public speech to the required level and pass all the other events around that time.
By far the easiest way to deal with Ixion is the bluff, which wearing the necklace requires only a skill check of 30 court manners, which you should raise before the ball to about 50 anyways.
Accepting the marriage is also the obvious safe option. It makes politically sense (in the scheme of the setting) plus it gives you a powerful protector not only personally but also generally. And it removes a potential threat (both on your person as well as country). It also gives you an additional free mood adjuster at the beginning of the game since you end up married anyways (1 cheer, 1 will or 1 yielding).
Since you end up married, not upsetting anyone, plus the tip in game to avoid showing favorites makes the old man at the dance the safe option, plus i believe it makes the dance check irrelevant.
Again the "sense magic" check is the taunt option to get you to ignore important skills at that point of the game to heavily invest in passing a single check.
Ignoring the flier, not going to the party, not eating the chocolate, sending the boy to his grandfather again are the obvious safe options regardless of skill checks.
In retrospect finishing the game with everyone loving you is quite easy if you stay in the scheme of things.

I'll definitely play this game several more times to try to get more of the other paths unlocked, though i suspect they will be hidden behind the "big" choices (dance, spies, Julianna) and high skill sets (history&intrigue, faith, lumen early)
Though so far i found that impacts are quite easy to relate to choices and events and it always (so far) made sense.
Getting to the "special" endings obviously requires that one knows the game very well and will require many many runs.

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