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Getting to Kobold Village September 21, 2009

Posted by Wilhelm Arcturus in Ancient Gaming, entertainment, MUDs, TorilMUD.
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The Leuthilspar Tales – Part 1

I always wondered how the elves of Leuthilspar on the Isle of Evermeet, a powerful and insular people, let a bunch of kobolds build a settlement just 15 rooms outside of their town.  The guards at the front gate of Leuthilspar could wipe all traces of Kobold Village from the island on their lunch hour and still have time to eat.

Then again, if you were a grey elf on SojournMUD (now TorilMUD) back in the early days, you were happy to have that kobold settlement so close to hand.  Back then there were only three adventuring zones for the elves of Evermeet, Kobold Village, the Faerie Forest, and the Elemental Glades.  This was long before Drulak, the Elder Forest, or the Sylvan Glades were added to Evermeet.

This was an especially big deal as grey elves, plus any half elves that started in Leuthilspar, were stuck on Evermeet for the first 20 levels of their character.  As they help file says to this day:

Grey elves stay on the island of Evermeet until they reach level 20. If you leave the island at or after level 20 and lose level, you will be back on the island of Evermeet, unable to leave until you reach level 20 again.

Other races could wander the world at level 1, choose many places to adventure, and take up residence in the mighty city of Waterdeep, the central hub of the game.  But the elves, they had to wait for 20 levels before they could pass through the elfgate that teleported them to the outskirts of Waterdeep.  (And getting back to Evermeet, that was another story entirely!)

Kobold Village was very popular with the young elves because it offered everything a new player could want; danger, excitement, experience, coin, and equipment.  No doubt this caused the city leaders to turn a blind eye on this hostile outpost on their doorstep.

But first you had to get there.

Out the front gate of Leuthilspar, 10 rooms to the west, then turn north until you hit the fence with the big sign.

The sign barely reads in common:

/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\
|                                                |
| DuE to the FlOoD of STranUrs cUming to MY      |
| seTtlement, I have decided to BuiLD thiS fens  |
| To kEp yur SCUMMY Butts out and frOm kILLing   |
| my InnoCENT peoplE!!                           |
|                                                |
|   Signed,                                      |
|     Gwark, settlement leader                   |
|                                                |
| warning:  i Have tolD all roviNg Kobld guaRDS  |
| to attak on SIght of intRudrs!!                |
|                                                |
|/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\|

Illiterate kobold humor at its best.

But there was that fence.

If you look at the fence in the room with the sign, you are not left with many options.

The fence is made out of trunks of trees bound together with heavy iron chains.  The fence is well over 30 feet tall, and looks like it would be a painful endeavor to scale as large iron spikes have been places to poke out of the fence intermittently.  One wrong slip climbing that fence and you’d find yourself impaled.  If you want to get past the fence you’ll have to find another way other than climbing it.

That is one heck of a fence, and there is no going around it.  To east and to west the fence is still there.

To the east there is, at least at reboot, something on the ground.

A rusty saw lies here slowly corroding away to the elements.

And if you examined the saw, the results were not encouraging.

The saw is rusty and looks to have zero value to you.  Just leave it alone.

That statement was pretty accurate given the stats.

Name ‘a rusty saw’
Keyword ‘rusty saw’, Item type: WEAPON
Item can be worn on:  WIELD
Item will give you following abilities:  NOBITS
Item is: NOBITSNOBITS
Weight: 2, Value: 10
Damage Dice are ’1D2′
Enchantments:
Can affect you as :
Affects : HITROLL By -3

It was crap and it wouldn’t help you get past the fence.  But if you looked at the fence in all the rooms, you might have noticed the wording changed in the room to the west of the sign.  The last line was changed to:

There appears to be a loose plank on the fence here.  It looks like the plank wasn’t nailed in properly.

These days the word “plank” is in yellow ANSI, the only colored word in the whole description.  Back in the day no such highlight existed, another example of the dumbing down of the game world, or putting everything on easy mode.  Heh!

And if you examined the plank, you would see.

It looks loose enough to tug off.  One good tug would rip the plank out and give you enough room to squeeze through the fence.

It is a PLANK that looks loose enough to TUG off.  Yeah.  Tug Plank!

A giant wooden fence moves aside, revealing a passageway.

That was one heck of a tug if it moved the whole giant wooden fence aside.

And that is that, right?  Now you’ve found your way to Kobold Village.

Did you go there when it was daylight?  Sure, these days there is a nice little starter zone that hands you some equipment including a lit object, but back in the day when you started as an elf you got no such thing.  Some cheap clothing, a tiny bag, a water skin, a few rations, a torch that lasted maybe two minutes, and a weapon that crumbled to dust the first time you dropped it.

Okay, they fixed that weapon thing not too much later.  All the newbie gear was set to crumple to dust since often enough the items were just dropped on the ground when replaced by better gear.

So maybe you found the plank in the fence in daylight, or maybe you were holding a torch that lasted long enough for you to find it and get through.  But if it was night and you didn’t have a light source, well, there was no getting through for you.  Your elven infravision would be enough for you to see the exits in a room and sense that a warm blooded being was in a room with you, but it was not enough let you find that plank, see your own equipment, or pull a torch out of your bag and light it.

And even if you had a light source or a torch on you, if you got into Kobold Village and then died… and if you were wearing newbie gear, you were going to die at some point… then running back to get your corpse might be thwarted for a while as you waited for daylight so you could tug on that plank.

Because every 30 minutes the zone would reset itself, and dead NPCs would respawn, and any doors left open, including that hole in the fence, would close.  So you would be there, naked and in the dark waiting for daylight or somebody else to come along and open the fence up.

Or, if you were new and used to the way that all the rooms in Leuthilspar always had the light source flag set, you might not even understand why you suddenly couldn’t tug the plank and get into Kobold Village.

But that’s the way things were back then.

Next time, the residents and key locations of Kobold Village.

Comments»

1. Andrew - September 21, 2009

Now I’m pining for the good ol’ days of MUDs again.

Never played SojournMUD though.

2. Elisten - September 21, 2009

LOL – such memories! I love the Kobolds.

Cant wait for the rest of the story!

Eli

3. West Karana » Daily Blogroll 9/22 – Server is Down edition - September 22, 2009

[...] The Ancient Gaming Noob brings us back the days when women were women, men were men and four footed farm animals had better be quick after nightfall. back when 3D graphics were called ‘text’ and people were thankful. Today, he tells a tale of Leuthilspar and the well-defended Kobold village that lurked just outside of town — if you could find it. [...]

4. Zenwolf - September 22, 2009

Thanks so much for posting this! It brings back so many memories. I can’t even count the amount of time I spent grinding kobold guards, captains and trainees, weapons masters, the animals in the field along with the shaman, miners in the mine, and Gwark himself. Fun times.

Finding the hidden entrance to the faerie zone was always fun, and you could never have enough glowing fox tails! Warm pies from the oven of the Cottage, deadly roots in the cellar, and that wiley smiling cat with the necklace….

I played Sojourn from around 1994 – 1999 or so. My characters were Lucan Wolfbrother (grey elf ranger) and Indis (human monk).

Best wishes!

5. Xyd - September 24, 2009

Yes, many a fond memory of Kobold Village. Especially those blasted Taskmasters and Miner Leaders. And let’s not forget a Sentry or three which lead to the Tako demon. Wait, the Tako demon? Wasn’t this a low-level zone?!

6. Nilan - October 14, 2009

Taco-bell demon!!!!!

He was fun. I seem to remember Me Auric and Zouve getting lost in there and ending up with a Taco and Burrito and god knows what else killed us.

Laugh!!!


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