Might and Magic Book One [2] – The Dungeon below Sorpigal

With Sorpigal fully mapped and a level gained, it was time to try my luck with the dungeon below it. Might and Magic doesn’t lead the player into the “next area” at all, but I figured the dungeon below the starting town should be OK for a level 2 party.

All of this happened on May 24th of 2013.

New Colors and new Objects

As usual, I took my graph paper and started mapping. The dungeon has a slightly different color scheme and introduces a new type of door made of iron bars. This made me wary for a bit, because I thought the look of the doors meant something, but it actually doesn’t mean anything, except that they’re usually locked. I can still pick the lock easily. In hindsight, now that I’m writing this, I’m thinking it might be possible that they are harder to bash open, but I never tested this, so it’s just a guess.

Might and Magic I - The Inn of Sorpigal

I was seeing this door a lot today, mostly due to dying and reloading.

In any case, I explored the starting “room” and counted five doors – one regular and four iron. Because of that, I went through the regular door and ended up in the biggest part of the dungeon. I found a lot of random rooms, but nothing really of importance. First, I died once and on my second run, I managed to win a few encounters and return to the Inn safely. Eventually, I mapped most of it, but decided not to go back to that area before tying the iron gates.

The Iron Gates

Two of the iron gates had just lead me to small, single-tile rooms. One of them was an encounter on top of an anti-magic field. Since the dungeon is dark and I’m using the Light spell to navigate it, this was a problem, because the spell would go out. The other room was empty, apart from a message written on the wall.

Scrawled on the wall, a message reads: The Jail above has many cells.

I’m guessing this refers to the hidden area of the jail, which I managed to discover on my own already…

Might and Magic I - Dungeon Below Sorpigal, Map Only

Map only, for anyone that’s interested.

OK, full disclosure: I didn’t discover it on my own, not really. I opened up the Clue Book I got from GOG, hoping to see how some of the weapons compare to each other and, since the item list is at the end of it, I ended up scrolling past the maps. The half a second it took to scroll past the map of Sorpigal was enough for me to notice there’s a bunch of rooms behind the jail. I discovered the dark area behind the jail on my own, but I found out about the two cells north of the dark area because of this quick glance.

The Northern Area

The iron gate at the end of a long hallway to the north lead me to another area of the dungeon. In it was a long hallway leading to a portal which I didn’t try right away, because I wanted to map the dungeon first. Later on, I went to the inn to save and then tried it. It lead me to a cave or a dungeon in the same overworld region as this dungeon (C-2), but it was much harder. Soon after I went in, I was killed by a group of troglodytes. Since it’s a one way portal, I decided not to take it yet.

Might and Magic I - Poltergeist

The Poltergeist got easier when I realized Turn Undead can be a very useful spell.

The rest of the northern area was a smallish maze with a fixed encounter in one of the passages and three walls with messages in three other passages.

Don’t turn around.

This was good advice, because turning around would cause me to get ambushed by usually a pretty tough and big group of monsters. I tried it once and managed to beat one group, barely, but the next one got me, so I ended up walking away backwards from these messages to avoid the ambush.

Might and Magic I - Dungeon Below Sorpigal, Full

The full map with all of my notes.

Lastly, one of the passages lead to a sub-area with one big and two small empty rooms, and a final door leading to a constantly dark area. I didn’t have any encounters there, so I never tested it, but I’m guessing it’s another anti-magic field.

Again, in hindsight, I’m thinking using a torch in these places might be an option, but I never tried it.

The Southern Area

The Southern Area had the layout of another jail. There was a long hallway with fixed encounters on every tile and two cells on each side of the tile. Entering the cells was easy, but they would lock once I got in, so I had to pick my way out of them. It took me several return trips to get strong enough to get through this section.

Might and Magic I - Jail Block

There’s an encounter after every step in this hallway.

After I got through, I managed to get to a couple more rooms. Two had fixed encounters, one big room was empty and the last big room had an old man in it, who gave me a quest.

Good! Take this scroll to the wizard Agar in Erliquin and you shall be rewarded.

My First Quest!

I’m not sure where Agar or Erliquin is. Maybe there’s something in the manual about it? In any case, I’ll find out eventually. For now, the vellum scroll is Lancelot’s backpack.

Might and Magic I - First Quest

If there’s a Quest Tracker in this game, I didn’t find it.

The Arena

After exploring the southern area, I went back to the middle area, where I continued to explore further. There wasn’t much left to find though. There was a long hallway, a room with an encounter, and there was the Arena.

Might and Magic I - The Arena

The Arena is something I’ll have to get back to later.

You can fight in the arena, but it wasn’t a good idea at my party level (3 to 4). I tried one fight and I was dead in seconds.

Spoils of War

The dungeon below Sorpigal was fully explored now, and the results were quite good. I got my party to levels 3 and 4, depending on the character. I also got a quest and I got some nice items, such as the Large Shield+ 1 which I gave to Percival, a Bardiche +2 which is now being used by Lancelot, another Full Plate for Lancelot, so now both he and Percival have one, as well as some other random, minor items.

Might and Magic I - Otto's Training

Otto has been getting most of my money these days.

Stuff in this dungeon can still easily kill me if I’m not careful, but I can also easily kill them now, so I’m OK with it. I think I’ll finally go outside next.

As usual, there are some goodies to be shared. The map images are already linked above, but there’s also the PDF and the two DOCX files so anyone who wants can edit them.