During my first play-through of Forgotten Souls, I learned that a Healer is essential, so I choose Avric Albright with the Disciple class. The starting weapons are not great, but with Prayer of Healing and Blessed Strike, the party should recover health easily.
Nature’s Ire features two large monsters: the Ettins and the Merriods. I will need a powerful fighter who can deal a lot of damage. I pick Syndrael and the Berserker class. The starting skill, Rage, is a bit weak but I use the extra XP to purchase Counter Attack. This skill will allow her to attack once in a while during the Overlord’s turn.
Beyond the Fringes
(1) The adventure starts! Syndrael charges the ugly Cave Spider and cuts a few legs with a swing of her Chipped Greataxe. Surrounded by noxious pools of water, she gets Poisoned. Avric and Desmond run to safety pass the Berserker who is stuck by an arrow and deeply bitten by the spider. She counter the attack and kills the arachnid.
(2) Syndrael shrugs off the effect of the poison and chops the last Cave Spider in two before joining her friends. The Disciple uses a Prayer of Healing to mend her wound and misses the Goblin Archer who fumbles with his own bow. The Berserker executes a riposte and cuts his head off. The path is clear.
(3) Avric passes through the thicket of bush and is immediately snagged by a grumpy Ettin. Syndrael cannot reach her friend but she steps into the stream and slashes at the huge belly of the monster. Guts are spilling out but the stupid monster doesn’t feel a thing and clubs her.
(4) The Berserker, blinded by the Ettin’s blood on her face, misses twice. Avric crawls next to her and pleads for help. The Ettin doesn’t miss and make Syndrael wright in agony (she now has 8 wounds).
(5) Syndrael struggles to untie the bonds but succeeds at her second attempt. Avric doesn’t waste the opportunity and strikes the Ettin between the legs with his Iron Mace. The beast crumbles to the ground. The loot track is full and the Heroes get to choose between the Bow of Bone, the Bearded Axe and the Rune Plate. The armor is very tempting but none of the extra effects will be triggered, so I opt for the axe that can do up to Pierce 3 and +2 damage. Both Desmond and the Healer mend the wounds of the Warrior. Fate advances by 1 and two spiders drop from the trees to block the exit.
(6) The Berserker unsheathes her new toy, cleaves the biggest Spider and hurts the other one. Avric uses Blessed Strike to kill the spider and reinvigorate the party, then cuts through the bushes to reveal…
Setup instructs to resolve a Peril card which can cause spiders to appear when Heroes fail attribute tests. It’s the end of the turn so 1 extra Peril card is drawn. Syndrael will have to move toward master monsters.
(7) The round of death. Avric tries to enter the rocky channel and needs to test either Might or Awareness. With a score of 2 in each attribute, he has 22% chance to succeed. He fails 6 times in a row and ends up defeated (Fate advances by 1). Because of the previous Peril card, 2 minion Cave Spiders also appeared. Syndrael revives the careless Disciple, healing him of 5 wounds, moves toward the critters and misses. Fate advances by 1 at the end of the Heroes’ turn and a new Peril card deals 2 wounds and 2 fatigue to each hero. Because they were full of fatigue, this means 4 wounds each (Desmond as well)! The Cave Spiders attack and poison Syndrael.
(8) Heavily wounded, the Berserker shrugs off the effect of the poison and exterminates all the vermin with two swift blows of her axe. The loot track is full and the Heroes get to choose between some Flash Powder and an Iron Shield. Both adventurers have low Awareness so the Disciple abandons his Wooden Shield for a sturdier one. Avric calls upon his Gods to heal 5 wounds to all Heroes and rushes into the rocky channel (now that all boulders have fallen on him). Fate advances by 1 again and Syndrael is poisoned once more.
(9) Syndrael searches some rubble and finds a Stamina Potion while Avric walks through the overgrowth to uncover webs of spider dangling everywhere.
Avric takes a few steps back and readies himself for combat. The arachnids, hungry, move their legs in unison and bite both adventurers.
(10) The Berserker slays a small spider but does not dare hit the big one (Doom would advance by 1). Avric rests and meditates on the best action plan. The queen spider grows more hungry and bites a huge chunk out of Avric’s leg.
(11) Avric kills a minion spider with Blessed Strike and does a Prayer of Healing. He uses energy to move a bit more and rests. Desmond moves next to the Spider Queen exhorting Syndrael for the kill. The Elf doesn’t take any risk and puts herself into a Rage, pulverizing the spider to the four corners of the woods. Fate is refreshed and Syndrael gets rid of the Peril card that was forcing her to move toward master monsters. The Berserker presses forward. Fate advances by 1 and a new Peril card increases the Doom level.
(12) Both Heroes rushes through the webbed gulch, find a Health Potion and ready themselves for the danger ahead.
(13) The Disciple cuts through the bushes and is met by a volley of arrows. Retched Goblins Archers laugh as six sacks slowly float toward the falls. Avric hears the muffled screams of civilians and runs to their help, not knowing which sacks are the right ones. I really want to win the first main encounter and get 2 XP, so I use the heroic feat of Syndrael to grant one extra move action to both Heroes. In no time, the adventurers navigate through the water and are next to the sacks. The master Goblin shoots at the Warrior but she is already upon him, countering with a fatal slash of her axe. The loot track is full and Syndrael gets a Chainmail (I discard the Magic Staff and the Leather Armor). As she dresses the new armor on, a vicious arrow pierces her flank.
(14) Syndrael resists the urge to attack the Goblins Archers. While she fumbles twice to open a sack, Desmond comes running behind and helps Avric liberate 2 civilians! That little +1 from Desmond was a life saver as I rolled 3 for each attribute test. Fate is refreshed and the Heroes receive 2 XP each. Avric has been poisoned for a few turns, so I get him Cleansing Touch, plus Armor of Faith. Syndrael gets Whirlwind. Fate advances by 1 and a Peril card brings 2 Cave Spiders as reinforcement. All four monsters attack the Berserker, but her new Chainmail is impenetrable.
(15) Avric uses Cleaning Touch to purge the poison and heal his wounds. He attacks a Spider with Blessed Strike and moves toward the exit thinking the Elf would terminate the enemies, but Syndrael misses twice in a row. The monsters strike back feebly.
(16) The Berserker misses a third time and finally manages to execute her first Whirlwind that chops both arachnids. Avric pushes through the thicket…
…and rests. A big Merriod comes hissing and flailing its tentacles while Cave Spiders gather around Desmond who only thinks of rescuing the civilians.
(17) Syndrael comes to the rescue and kills two Cave Spiders with another spinning attack. The loot track is full and the Heroes get to choose between Mana Weave, Iron Shield and Steel Broadsword. Avric needs a decent weapon, so he takes hold of the blade and kills the last spider while chanting a prayer. The Goblins leave the waterfall and sneak behind the Heroes. The disgusting aquatic beast, blocking the way to the exit, agitates its tentacles to no avail.
(18) The wild Berserker wants the monster’s head as a trophy: she tries a powerful downward strike of her axe which… hits the ground. Avric keeps his cool and perforates the Merriod’s troat with a single trust. He grabs a Crossbow from under the slimy body and rushes forward with Desmond. The civilians are getting close to the exit!
(19) Avric finds a Stamina potion and presses forward. Desmond rescues a civilian just before the exit. Syndrael keeps fumbling with her weapon against the two weak but persistent Goblin Archers.
(20) Avric and Desmond save the last civilian. Fate is refreshed and each Hero gains 3 XP! The Disciple gets Holy Power. This will allow him to heal 2 people at the same while also curing them of a condition (Cleansing Touch) and granting them an extra brown die of defense (Armor of Faith). A nice combo. The Berserker gets Brute and Weapon Mastery. The game transitions to Act II and Syndrael finally ends the Goblins’ life. Fate advances by 1 and a Peril card deals 1 fatigue for each movement point needed to reach the closest Hero. Avric is next to Desmond, so no problem, but Syndrael is 10 movement points away from Avric! Ouch!
(21) Syndrael’s thirst for blood is quenched. She looks around and finds herself alone. Time to catch up with the party! Avric walks through the trees to uncover…
…an angry Merriod which constricts and immobilizes him with his tentacles. The Healer slips out of the deadly embrace and dodges the next attack.
(22) The Berserker, hearing the monster’s hisses, sees red again. She runs pass Avric, grabbing a Stamina Potion from his belt and quaffing it in one gulp, then brings down her Bearded Axe straight in the Merriod’s forehead, splitting his head in two. Fate is refreshed. Avric finds a Scalemail in the stream. He uses his Holy Power to heal the group and pushes forward. Fate advances by 1 and a Peril card forces Syndrael to discard her Healing Potion.
(23) The Heroes continue their journey in the forest of doom and are blocked by a huge fallen tree. Fate advances by 1 and perils are avoided.
(24) Syndrael uses all her strength and moves the tree aside. The path is clear and Avric, once again, ends up scouting ahead.
(25) Greed. Syndrael gets 2 red tokens and 4 wounds. Avric gets 1 blue token and heals the Warrior a bit. The big loot was not found and all remaining objective tokens are discarded. A nasty Peril card deals 3 wounds and poisons each Hero.
(26) The Disciple is met by a volley of arrows, but the evil master Goblin strikes Desmond who is badly injured. Avric heals him slightly and charges the goblinoids. Syndrael screams for revenge and almost kills their chief with a single blow. Their counter attack is terrifying. Because the Heroes are next to them, they can use 1 surge for 3 extra damage. They keep rolling double surges which means +5 damage. Syndrael has 8 wounds, Desmond 4 and Avric 10!
(27) Avric is full of Fatigue so he cannot heal anyone. He hits a Goblin feebly but rolls a surge to recover 1 fatigue. He uses Blessed Strike for his second action. He rolls two surges, kills one Goblin. He and Syndrael recover 2 health. He uses 1 surge to recover 1 fatigue and 1 to recover 1 health. Enough to do a Prayer of Healing that help them recover 1 health each. Syndrael kills the master Goblin and rests to buy the Heroes some time. Alone, the minion Goblin is no treat.
(28) The Healer kills the Goblin with his Broadsword and heals each Hero of 3. Only scratches left. Fate is refreshed. Syndrael searches the surroundings and discover a Treasure Chest that holds sharp Iron Claws. Avric hesitates to wear these evil looking gauntlets but he must prepare for the dangers ahead. Syndrael must have stepped into spider webs because 2 Cave Spiders suddenly drop from nearby trees! Both miss.
(29) Syndrael attacks twice and splits the master Cave Spider in two. The loot track has reached its limit and the Heroes must decide between the Bow of the Eclipse, the Obsidian Greataxe and the Cloak of Deception. I give the bow to Syndrael in case ranged weapons will prove useful later. Avric shreds the last arachnid with his Iron Claws and peers ahead.
Setup instructs a Peril card to be drawn and the overlord effect as well. Doom advances by 1 and Cave Spiders will appear when Heroes miss attribute tests.
(30) The whole encounter is a déjà vu of the Rocky Channel. Both adventurers miss their attribute tests and get full fatigue. Because of the Peril card, 2 Cave Spiders are spawned. The Heroes manage to kill the master Spider. Fate advances by 1 (now 2 spaces away from the Doom token) and a Peril card deals 3 fatigue to each Hero. Desmond has 7 wounds now.
(31) There’s no time to waste. Avric deals a feeble blow to the spider, enough to recover 1 fatigue and heal Desmond, and moves away. Syndrael charges into the clearing ahead.
Cabin of the Lost
The final encounter! The Heroes must kill the Ettin who gains 1 extra defense for each civilian on the map. And there are six of them! Desmond, the only one who can rescue civilians, wastes no time and rushes to save a first one. The Cave Spiders come running and bite the adventurers viciously.
(32) Syndrael, surrounded, misses her first attack but then performs a Whirlwind that kills 3 spiders at once! She picks the Grinding Axe from the loot and discards the Heavy Steel Shield. Avric rips the Merriod’s belly and finds a Shroud of Dusk. Desmond runs near the river to rescue a 2nd civilian which triggers the locked door to open. An angry female Ettin, Zaldara, shows her ugly face and calls a master Cave Spider as reinforcement. Zaldara takes giant steps toward Desmond but cannot club him yet. The Cave Spider also heads for the old man who is now trapped within its web.
(33) Things look good but Fate is only 2 spaces away from the Doom token and Desmond is hurt. If he is knocked down, Doom advances by 1. My strategy is to block the Ettin in the tile with the river with 2 Heroes while Desmond rescues the remaining civilians to lower Zaldara’s defense. Syndrael attacks and miss. Avric moves in to form “the wall” and does no damage but boosts the group with Armor of Faith. Desmond slips pass his friend and heads into Zaldara’s cabin. Syndrael is Stunned because of a Peril card. The Fate toekn advances by 1 and is now 1 space away from Doom. Zaldara attacks and deals 7 damage to Syndrael. She has 12 wound tokens and the game would already be over if she didn’t have the Brute skill that grants her +4 Health. The bad news is, the monster card instructs Desmond to be placed on the entrance of the encounter… He will not be able to rescue 2 civilians next turn and reduce Zaldara’s defense.
(34) Avric misses his first attack, hurts the Cave Spider and calls his Gods for help. Syndrael, stunned, misses her only attack. Zaldara, seeing the golden opportunity, throws Avric toward the entrance and deals a massive blow to Syndrael’s pretty face. No more face. Fate advances by 1 and the game is lost…