Tactics Ogre: quest for lich

, | Game diaries

It’s time to convert my wizard into a rare and powerful spell caster known as a lich. I did some research on how to pull this off, having encountered one in the game, as well as reading about them on various forums. It takes commitment, but I know I can pull it off.

The first step is to acquire a rare item known as the Ring of the Dead which can only be found in the 115-level dungeon called — fittingly enough — the Palace of the Dead. Specifically, there are some floors on which it will show up randomly. Such as floor 33. This is the first floor where you can find the Ring of the Dead, which means I’ll be battling through 33 levels to get to it.

After the jump, wait, what? 33 battles just to get a ring?

Well, combat is the meat and potatoes of the game, especially in the post-story part of the game. So why not journey into the Palace of the Dead?

Here is why not: the Palace of the Dead is not for the meek. The dungeon is filled with the undead (as one might expect) and powerful units such as dragons, medusaa, and dark priests. But the undead are tough enough. You need to use an exorcism spell on a “stilled” undead unit to remove it from play, or it will self-revive with full health in 3 turns. And the only way to still an undead unit is to bring it down to zero health.

The environment is also a problem. It has patches of mold-covered tiles, which cost extra movement and poison any unit that ends its turn there. Nasty.

However, getting to level 33 wasn’t so bad. Along the way we found some nice new gear and powerful crafting recipes as well. My priest has himself a Ring of the Clouds, which lets him use cloudwalk to float perpetually above the ground. Handy for avoiding mold!

On level 33 I face several powerful units, including two Cenobites with powerful dark magic. Any one of their offensive spells could deal hundreds of points of damage to a target. Or worse, put us asleep, bewitch one of my units into helping the other team (causing permanent damage to that unit’s loyalty!), or turn my ninja to stone. Over and over. Sigh. I really need to get my ninja some skills to raise his magic resistance.

Finally, we secure the Ring of the Dead by killing one of the Cenobites. The game features dozens of special classes like the lich, though not all of them are as challenging as the lich. Thankfully.

I had read that once the Ring is in my possession, I would need to travel to level 41 of the dungeon, where an event of some sort would occur. So I equip the ring on my wizard (which means taking off his ring of intellect +1), only to discover it’s a consumable item that I can’t use yet, and not a piece of equipment. I shrug and go deeper into the Palace.

Once I get to level 41, I’m surprised at a serious lack of any sort of event. What? I try having my wizard use the ring, and lo and behold!, with a brilliant swirl of evil fog, my wizard becomes a tall and imposing lord of the undead!

I wonder if I could have done that on level 34…

Wizards can use all elemental spells, including dark magic (but not divine). Liches can use those, plus the rare and powerful draconic magic (which warlocks can use), as well as the incredibly powerful necromancy. As an example, my life drain pulls over 120 damage from a target and grants it to the lich! Also, he gets spells like wither (reduces maximum hit points) and banish (basically a form of exorcism). He also gets a huge bump in spell damage because of his super high intelligence stat (one bonus to being a lich is stat growth in intelligence and mind, which are crucial stats for magic users).

The drawback to necromancy is that the spells need regents, which can only be found. You can’t buy them from normal stores. I have about a half dozen of each of the regents I need for necromancy spells that I got from the creepy shop on level 24. But I’m hesitant to use all these spells very often. Thankfully, my lich’s regular elemental magic is more potent.

Sadly, like any new class, I have to level up my lich from level one. The wizard was level 25 before he became a lich, and while he retained his stats, now he’s level 1. I’ve since gotten him up to level 21. Soon he’ll be up in the high 20’s with the rest of my units, and he’ll be an incredible terror.

(Click here for the previous Tactics Ogre game diary.)

BleedTheFreak (aka Scott Lufkin) currently lives in Iowa with his wife, two children, and a beloved PC.