That is a very sweet combination! Do you think it is okay for blood magic to kill of the inattentive player? Kerkerkruip normally doesn’t do that, but this seems to me one of the few situations in which killing the player for stupidity is defensible and even fun. Would you agree?
Kerkerkruip 9 is almost feature complete, so I’m testing it out a bit. I just had a very fun game, which incidentally happened to incorporate a lot of new stuff. So let me tell you about it.
The first monster I met was the angel of compassion. This is a level 2 monster that is the opposite of the demon of rage: whereas the demon starts out pretty weak and becomes more powerful every time someone dies, the angel starts out very strong and becomes weaker every time someone dies. (But the angel gives you better powers when killed while it is stronger, so weakening it is not always the best strategy.) The way it works is this: angels have “angelic radiance,” which gives them a +1 bonus to attack and a +1 bonus to defence for every level of radiance. The angel of compassion starts out with 4 radiance, and loses one level every time someone dies.
Also, Kerkerkruip 9 has a new religion system, where you sacrifice powers to the gods in order to get certain bonuses. One of the gods is Sul, and the first bonus she gives – which you can get by sacrificing a level 1 power – is protection from curses and immunity to angelic radiance. When you start worshipping Sul, angelic radiance just doesn’t apply to you any more.
So, in this game, I found both the angel of compassion and the Temple of Sul almost immediately. I killed off a level 1 enemy, sacrificed the power, and then handily defeated the still very strong angel of compassion. Armed with its strong power (I had 3 levels of radiance myself, in addition to the rest of the power), I easily disposed of the minotaur, and then blood ape and (after sacrificing the power of the ape) the Reaper.
By that time I had found the staff of insanity. This is a new epic weapon that is very bad: low damage, lowers your attack and defence, lowers your faculties … really very bad. But it has one huge advantage: as soon as you hit someone with it, they go insane. Previously, you could only make people insane using the power of the tentacle, but now you can also do it with this epic staff. Insane people tend to take random actions, wait instead of act, attack themselves, attack their allies, and so on. (On the negative side, they sometimes get an insane burst of strength and deal +10 damage, but that’s just to keep things interesting.)
Now, the next enemy I had to face was Israfel. Israfel is a level 4 sexless angel who can split into two being: the male Isra and the female Fell. These can also reunite. The united being Israfel can heal itself, while the split beings Isra and Fell are very good at attacking: Isra mostly concentrates, and then Fell attacks you, benefiting from Isra’s concentration as well as her own. Truly a nuisance.
However, there I was, with immunity to angelic radiance (all these beings were angels and depend on their radiance for some of their strength) and the staff of insanity. I quickly made Israfel insane, and then his component beings as well. At that point they started to attack each other, which was very satisfying. When both were almost dead, I retreated. I went to the Temple of Sul, sacrificed the power of the minotaur and the power of the Reaper – getting more bonuses from Sul, including a level of angelic radiance – and returned to Isra and Fell. My plan was to quickly kill them using scrolls of death, of which I had two, so that they would not be able to reunite and heal.
That was not a smart plan. Sul doesn’t like necromancy. She burnt up the scroll as I was reading it and punished me with 10 damage. Fortunately, I survived. And even more fortunately, given that I had no powers left and was rather weak, Fell first killed Isra and then herself! So there I was, with a level 4 power under my belt, lots of piety with Sul, and the staff of insanity. Time to seek out Malygris.
The power of Israfel has two components, one of which is “link”. That allows you to link to someone and benefit from their concentration, just like Fell and Isra benefit from each other’s concentration. Linking to Malygris is great fun. Normally, seeing someone’s concentration rise is a reason to panic; but once you link up with them, it is a cause of glee. Hitting someone because they themselves are concentrated – I love it. Using Malygris’s own concentration, I easily made him insane.
And when Malygris is insane, well … if you have never gotten the special victory that is only possible when Malygris goes mad, I’d prefer not to spoil it for you!