Being that there’s a lull in new games to play (at least until the patch situation calms down some more), I’ve decided to post something old.

Back in the summer of ’05, I finally got to play Morrowind. It was the Game of The Year edition, so I also had Tribunal and Bloodmoon. While going through the game, I would take time out now and then to send emails of my progress to my friend Nancy.

It was very much like a Game In Progress, only private. In what might almost be called “white heat”, I would type up the results of my latest session and send them off. My impressions, frustrations, aggravations, and, of course, triumphs were detailed.

Not every little detail, of course. The game is much too large for that. I mainly described the high (and low) points as I went through MW and the expansion Tribunal.

I’ve kept the subject headers from the letters. In some cases, I’ve made new ones when I had to split material so posts wouldn’t be too long (long play sessions meant long emails). I’ll be putting up one or two a week until the series is finished.

So follow along as I made my way through the game, keeping in mind it was the first playthrough, and also the first new RPG I’d played since, hmm, I guess Divine Divinity.

Subject: Our agent reports from the field…

Vivec screenshotWell, I promised to keep you updated, and of course I know you’ve been checking your mailbox hourly, so why keep you in any further suspense? ;)

Things are moving along slowly. I mean that literally. Your character walks as though weighed down with lead booties. (MOVE! MOVE! ARRGHH!) That’s deliberate. The only way to move fast is to run, which also depletes fatigue rating, so after awhile you have to go back to walking at the speed of a crippled snail in molasses.

The “experience by skill use” sounds good on paper. In “real life”, it’s a drag. Thus you end up doing a lot of make-work stuff to increase skills. For example, one can increase acrobatics by jumping. Ergo, while running, one also hits the “jump” key to hop. By now, I can hop almost as well as a….snow bunny ;)

Therefore I have taken to doing a little cheating, which the game allows. In fact, I could almost swear they were looking over the Doom guys’ shoulders. You hit the tilde key to bring up the console, just like in Doom. You can give yourself any item in the game, just like Doom. You can set god mode, just like in Doom. And you can mess with skills and stats, which of course Doom doesn’t have.

However, for the moment, I am only using the console to give myself money and to restore mana points (which otherwise can’t be restored except by sleeping or using potions). The money goes to buy skill training mostly.

I have moved on from the first town, and joined a few guilds. Did some minor quests. Matters were proceeding slowly but at least there was progress (thanks especially to the many trainers around).

And then some assassin came out of nowhere and attacked me. I was in the Mages Guild at the time. A guild of which I am a member. Do you think that any of the [censored] members around at the time would help? Nope. Thanks a lot, FELLOW GUILD MEMBERS! Bah! Humbug!

In fact, I’ve been attacked twice. I suspect this is level-driven; it started at level 5 (am level 6 at the moment). So I was told to go to a certain town and see a certain person. There is no way to go there directly (of course). I had to go to a nearby place instead, called Vivec.

The place is beyond description. It’s broken up into separate mini-towns, connected by a network of canals (yeah, I know, Venice). I am there now, wandering around in circles, trying to find a way to get to the boats so I can get to the place I really want to be.

Will our hero ever get to Ebonheart and find out why someone wants to kill him? (This is a male character; they start with higher strength). Will he ever be able to walk at a decent pace? Will The Arachnid keep with this to the finish? Stay tuned, sports fans!