Might and Magic Book Two [11] – Snowbeasts and Luxus Palace Royale

I realized I somehow completely forgot about Thundara and the Snowbeast, so I made it a point to go there next time.

Chronological Records: The Era-Shift Cataclysm

Most people are superficially familiar with the events at year 0 C.E. and the group of reality travelers best known was The Varnites. The records of their deeds, however, are not perfectly clear, as historic records are inconclusive, conflictive and overall incomplete.

This text is an attempt to, if not make things completely clear, at least document the conflicting information.

End of Year 903

Most sources agree that the Varnites were in Thundara in the final weeks of year 903 B.C.E. However, there are conflicting reports on how the events unfolded exactly.

It is well known that in these years, the still existent city of Thundara was plagued by a pack of vicious, now extinct creatures, simply called snowbeasts. The style of contemporary art and literature would indicate that this plague had a significant effect on the local culture and way of life.

The Varnites have been in Thundara previously and were already familiar with the snowbeasts, but it was only at this time that they returned fully prepared to deal with the issue.

Part of this might be myth, but the snowbeasts are usually described as highly intelligent creatures, able to detect and comprehend the dangers of magic, so most records and stories claim that the Varnite adventurers were forced to completely give up on magic while fighting them and use brute force instead.

Might and Magic Book Two - Snowbeast

I’d show you the Snowbeast, but it uses the Ghoul graphic.

In any case, all known records agreed that the Varnites destroyed the entire pack within a week, before Year 903 was over. The conflicting part is what happened next.

According to some records, due to a misunderstanding with an emerald ring they found one of the victims, the Varnites were falsely imprisoned in the local magical prison for three entire years.

Most records, however, completely disagree with this notion. The Varnites destroyed the pack and freed two survivors from the lair – a pair of unknown adventurers.

Conflicting Reports – How Many Varnites Were There?

There is some confusion among the laymen about how many Varnites actually arrived to Crom. Among the experts, however, there is no controversy. The Varnites numbered at six. The source of the confusion is the fact that they were known to take a pair of local adventurers with them at most times, providing them with training and skills needed to take over once their task was done.

Because of that, it is often wrongly assumed that the Varnites numbered at eight. Some even believe that there was an army of Varnites in Crom, which used groups of agents to accomplish tasks. As is apparent, the reality is slightly more mundane.

Suspicions of Necromancy

Some reports also claim that, after defeating the snowbeasts, the Varnites remained in Thundara for a few more days to investigate the possibility of a necromancy plot in the abandoned storage facilities beneath the city.

Might and Magic Book Two - Killer Cadavers

This was another one was those annoying, tedious battles.

It is certain that there was an undead infestation there and someone definitely did clear it, but there are no detailed records at this time.

Side Note: What Actually Happened in Thundara

Apparently, I’m trying out yet another new style of writing. It’s fun to think about what I did in Might and Magic Book Two from this perspective, so I’ll be doing it for the next several postings. In any case, to make things clearers, here’s what happened.

I got back to Thundara and used Teleport to get to the snowbeasts. There was an anti-magic field, so I had to use brute force to win. I actually tried it a few times, so I can say that it was easily doable at my level, but not without danger. Depending on how lucky I was, I could get out of the fight with no losses, or I could barely win at all.

In any case, I freed two more hirelings behind the lair, but I can’t remember the names, so I couldn’t tell you which two they were.

There was also a corpse with an emerald ring. There was a message in the city about a woman who went missing and had this ring, so I thought I should pick it up. What happens is that if you do pick it up, you get caught by the guard and are imprisoned for three years. Since there’s obviously a time limit and, from what the Gates to Another World manual says, the time travel aspect of Might and Magic Book Two won’t help me, I decided to reload the game.

Just to make it more fun for me, I decided to go with the Elder Scrolls Chim approach here and invent “conflicting reports”.

I also explored the dungeon below the city and found a bunch of storage rooms. There was a lever in one of them which, when activated, added fixed encounters against killer cadavers throughout the floor, including one in the next room against over a hundred of them. I beat that one and I beat a few more, but I don’t know if there’s more to it than that, so I decided to leave the event open as a “possible necromancy plot”.

The Crossover of Year 903 to Year 904

Within the final days of year 903, the Varnites managed to overthrow the tyrant Mandagual, who rebelled against the queen and closed his gate keep, blocking passage to the royal palace.

Might and Magic Book Two - Mandagual's Keep

Mandagual was a thorn in my side for too long.

With that, they finally gained an audience with the queen, or they would have, but she demanded proof of their combat prowess first. It should be said that the queen Lamanda had a reputation of being eccentric, so this request may have just been a myth.

Might and Magic Book Two - Queen Lamanda

Queen Lamanda wants the Triple Crown won first.

While there, they allegedly met Gwyndon, one of Corak’s apprentices, who may have given them information on how to contact Corak beyond the grave.

Might and Magic Book Two - Corak's Apprentice

Corak’s apprentice sends the party towards his body and soul.

Fragments of their various personal logs, which consequently, are written in an extremely strange manner, also hint at the possibility that this is where the Varnites found their fourth alien artifact.

There is a myth related to this period which should also be mentioned. Allegedly, Gwyndon told the Varnites where to find and how to recover Corak’s soul. Their cleric was, apparently, powerful enough to extract it from a place of power and store it within a physical object. Whether this actually happened is unknown, but it should be said that there is no credible evidence of this occurring as of yet.

Side Note: What Really Happened in Luxus Royale

First of all, I should explain something about party skills which I only recently realized. I probably said this already, but here it goes one more time, just in case. If you have two mountaineers in your party, you can walk over mountains. In the same way, if you have two pathfinders, you can walk through dense forests. With these two covered, you can basically walk anywhere you want.

Might and Magic Book Two - Funny Room

The funny room is a great place to get experience and items.

That being said, I’ve been exploring things more thoroughly now and have stumbled into a lot of Easter eggs and hidden bonuses. I even found a cave I have yet to explore.

In any case, I was actually able to simply walk through mountains to get to Luxus Palace Royale, but I wanted to try and do it legitimately, so I fought Mandagual and his minions. It turned out to be relatively easy. He could still one-shot me, but with three healers in my group, I was able to cling to life and kill the group one by one.

At the palace, I talked to the queen, but I guess the prerequisite is to win the Triple Crown at the arena’s, which means winning black ticket battles, I believe, which is extremely difficult.

Might and Magic Book Two - Gnomes

You can eat gnomes in one of the taverns, in which case you get attacked in a special spot on the map.

I also found an NPC with a succubus/nasty witch sprite, claiming to be Corak’s apprentice. She told me Corak’s Body is in Corak’s Cave and that his soul is in the Lost Woods at 10,15. I actually went there and found a hostile encounter against a bunch of ghosts, which dropped Corak’s Soul as an item. This brings us to the last part of this side note.

Potential Places to Grind

I found a bunch in this session, actually.

  1. The Corak’s Soul Encounter in the Lost Woods (C1, 10,15) is worth 40 000 experience.
  2. The two Funny Rooms in the queen’s throne room are worth 18 000 experience and commonly drop great items.
  3. The entire castle has fights against Court Mages, Paladins and Holy Men. They all drop great items, aren’t too difficult and are worth a moderate amount of experience.
  4. The Queen’s Orchard in D-2 is also riddled with easy, but worthwhile encounters.

That being said, from what I can gather, there is level scaling in Might and Magic Book Two and it can get annoying, so I don’t intend to grind too much.

Side Note: Party Progression

Here’s my usual party report. The high-level fights in the castle provided some excellent gear upgrades.

Lorelei, Level 16 Dwarf Knight

  • Helm +7
  • Quiet Sling +2
  • Sun Naginata +3
  • Ivory Cameo
  • Mgt Gauntlet +4
  • G Plate Mail +5

An extra level and three upgrades in total. The Naginata does more damage and gives a better armor bonus than the Dark Trident. The Might Gauntlets now give even more strength and the Plate Mail is an armor increase and can be used to get a temporary level boost of 20.

Priscilla, Level 16 Human Paladin

  • Helm +9
  • Shaman Pipe +7
  • Mgt Gauntlet +1
  • Plate Armor +5
  • Tri-Sickle +5
  • Agate Grail

Priscilla gained two levels, so she finally caught up with Lorelei. She also upgraded her helm from a +6 to a +9.

Rax, Level 16 Half-Orc Robber

  • Crossbow +2
  • Thief’s Pick +2
  • Blazing Axe +4
  • Silent Horn +3
  • Great Shield +2
  • S Chain Mail +4

Rax gained a level and finally received a new piece of gear. Her Crossbow was replaced with a Pirate’s Crossbow +2 which gives a thievery bonus in addition to the damage increase.

Alana, Level 16 Gnome Cleric

  • Hero Medal +4
  • Quick Flail +2
  • Great Shield +4
  • Helm +6
  • B Splintmail +4
  • Defense Ring +2

Alana simply reached level 16, nothing else this time.

Robin, Level 16 Elf Archer

  • Speedy Sword +4
  • Hero Medal +3
  • Useless Item
  • Chain Mail +4
  • Defense Ring +2
  • Great Bow +5

Robin actually got a downgrade this time. She used up her Ray Gun, so she will be needing a replacement item now.

Aleen, Level 16 Elf Sorcerer

  • Staff + 10
  • Magic Charm +3
  • Invisicloak +7
  • Padded Armor +3
  • Defense Ring +7
  • Hero Medal +2

Aleen gained two levels and some amazing upgrades. The minor one was her Padded Armor going up to +3. More importantly, she ditched her Silent Horn for an Inviscloak +7 and her Dagger +4 for a Staff + 10.

Next Time

I want to give Corak’s Cave another go. I think I’ll go get the Admit 8 pass again and give it a shot.