Arx Fatalis

From Before I Play
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  • I think taking the magic route is the most fun. It's difficult at startup and you have to deal with the terrible UI for memorizing and casting spells but by early teens you'll be hovering, running really fast, throwing fireballs, slowing down time, summoning demons (or demonic chickens), and raising the dead. The best armor in the game can be found pretty early and it has really low strength requirements so I was a spell casting, heavy armored, sword wielding badass by the end.
  • In one of the early dungeons you'll find something called an Akba stone or something to that affect. If you pick it up (and I recommend not doing so) DO NOT DROP IT!!! It's required to reach the final boss and it's otherwise a seemingly useless item that takes up a big chunk of inventory. If you discard it, you'll have to find it.
  • Arx Libertatis makes it play nice on modern systems and fixes some bugs.
  • If you're not going to be wizard enough to be able to cast Levitation yourself, be careful with levitation scrolls. You'll need it to reach some areas in the late game and some treasures earlier on.
  • Everything will be a bit shaky at first until you make your way to the big human settlement and get a chance to stock up on supplies. Power through. It's not until you get there that you'll get reliable access to potionmaking, a wider range of spells, heavy armor, competent weapons of every type, and a broad range of consumables.
  • Spellcasting is really funky until you understand it. It's not about making the glyph as the game shows it to you, it only cares about the corners. Your lines can be any length (shorter is faster and more reliable), you just have to pause a fraction of a second, and then start your next stroke at a clear angle to your last.
  • There also several spells you can cast the game never directly tells you about. You can look them up, but you can also discover them by figuring out the grammar and meaning of the spell runes and extrapolating from there.
  • To beat the game you must find 5 Akbaa stones. Three of them are located in the Temple of Akbaa, a dungeon you go through about midway through the game. If you pick the stones up then keep them in your inventory or drop them in an easily accessible location. All objects in this game have permanence so they'll stay wherever you drop them.
  • Level 4 has a barrier blocking a cave. This is the final dungeon and you shouldn't drop the barrier until you're ready. Within are two enemies, one of them will run away immediately and he has the fourth Akbaa stone. The fifth stone is in the final dungeon and can't be missed.
  • Object Knowledge is the most important skill. It lets you equip better items and is the only means to identify magic. The most efficient tactic is to hold on to unidentified item until you level up then put enough points to identify what you currently have. Expect to get 70 if you want to identify everything.
  • Close combat is the second most important skill regardless of character build. 30 is optimal, 40 lets you equip everything.
  • You'll want to work on getting 30 points in casting regardless of build. Fireball is a level 3 spell and the most useful for all characters.
  • 8 strength lets you equip over half of the game's armor and weapons. 14 is the minimum strength to wield everything.