Dear Esther and the Mother of All Caves

I did end up back at the start of the game after my unfortunate drowning the first try.  I guess I didn’t drown, but I did get tossed back to shore and got stuck.

This time around I decided to take every path that I found.  Though I missed it the first time through the game,  I went through what looked like a cave, but was just an opening to another area of the beach.  I did get two new diary entries and an odd symbol on the beach to ponder.

I found in most circumstances then, as I explored, new diary entries would be heard, but you’d still be led back to a pre-determined path.

There was a moment when I approached this house on a hill that I thought the ever desirable lighthouse would be in sight soon.

I was led down a side winding path to the beach again instead, and found some ruined ships.  One had a cryptic message.  “And neither did he eat or drink.”   Somebody on the island had an awful lot of time and paint.

This area had several pathways, most serving to give you various views of the ships you can’t jump up on.  Hidden, almost, was the real path which again wound around to a new beach area.   Yet another innocuous cave entrance beckoned.

Note: in games caves drive me crazy, they’re mazes I have trouble navigating.  In real life, I love caves, and visit any I can while we’re traveling.

This seemingly innocuous cave is The Mother Of All Caves.  Spectacular sights, unexpected drops. Underwater areas.  No drowning this time.   I knew I was in for an unusual journey when the way forward was this deep deep hole.

There are seemingly endless fantastic cave rooms.  Paths going in circles. Paths going up, paths going down.

It went onward for a long time.  At one point I thought I saw daylight.

No!  Onward and onward.  I was really hoping to leave the caves because the up and down undulating movement was making me a bit queasy, but you can’t just stop where you wish to stop.  You’ve got to finish each chapter or start over.  No. No.

Finally the chapter changed, and it looks like a real cave exit.  Who is keeping all of those candles lit in the caves?  They’re everywhere throughout the caves.

Steam tells me I’m at 30%, so there’s lots more story.  Hopefully no caves for a bit!   I have to say, these caves were quite a surprise and revelation after all the waving grasses and wildflowers on the rest of the island.   I can’t imagine what’s ahead if they can create something like this cave system.  Pretty amazing.

Monthly Wrapup

It was a good month for games.  I played Battle for Azeroth, and really love this expansion.   It may be the best yet.   All my higher level characters are playing really well.   It’s taking each one long enough to work their way through Freehold in Tiragarde so that I can queue for dungeons.

 I’ve gotten Freehold, Waycrest Manor and Shrine of the Storm with various characters.  Freehold is smoothest, with everyone getting lost in Waycrest Manor, and dying at the Ritualists and  Lord Stormsong in Shrine of the Storm.   Tanks and Healers are a bit cranky.

Everquest 2 was played a bit almost everyday.  In a stressful month, I was thinking of it as “my happy place”.  Now that’s a good thing for a game to be.

I’ve played my newly minted Mystic the most, and she’s at level 17.  She also has 7 gold, which is way more than my level 17 Fury has.   I’m almost thinking you get more looted money and things to sell in the Frostfang Sea area.

My Fury is not getting any money as loot, it’s gross stuff like Canine Saliva.  She’s in the Qeynos/Antonica area.  I just like the little ching ching sound of gold.   Also, it feels as if there is better bank and vendor access in the Frostfang area.  For sure, there are more rugs to be had in Frostfang.   I wonder if they kind of loaded it up when they went Free To Play.

There’s still a little Bruiser Froglock on the Isle of Refuge.  I wonder if I send her to Kelethin if she’s likely to get some new and unusual furniture 🙂

I enjoyed my Steam games and plan to go back in and work on those.  My son recommended the Witcher to me and I have all three of the games.  He’s generally right about what games and classes I’d enjoy playing.

Loved Broken Age.

Curious to see the plot play out in Dear Esther.  

The Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell is pretty funny, in I’m sure an unintended way, as it is so serious in tone.

I logged in to Rift a couple of times, and am set to send my Cleric out adventuring.

It took forever to get ESO to update, but I’m now able to log in and see which character I want to play.

Looking at my GW2 Hunter for a post or two, I think I may back up and try her Personal Story.


Try It Tuesday An Unknown Tale From My Steam Library: Dear Esther

I’ve picked out four games from my Steam Library to finally play a bit.  I’ll play them–though not all the way through–just to get an idea of this game I purchased, and to try something new.

I’ve read lots of reviews of Dear Esther.  It sounded intriguing, good story, interesting gameplay.

Technical Issues

I tried it first on my gaming laptop.  No sound, not even ambient.

Not wanting to spoil the game for myself, as I hadn’t read about it in any detail… I also thought something must be wrong because I couldn’t find any keyboard key that let me interact with objects.  Why are you putting in books and pamphlets I can’t read for clues, I thought?

My brief perusal of a game review let me know there should be sound.  A narrator speaking!  I moved to playing on my main gaming pc and it was fine, sound, music, and the narrative voice.

It turns out there is no way to interact or jump or do anything to really explore the environment.  You have to go along the path set out for you, even though, early on here to be sure, there appear at times to be more than one path.

This led me to scrawl a note to myself:  Is exploration actually exploration when you can’t choose a path?  Or is visiting an all new place enough?

The diary entries pop up at intervals.  I’m not certain if these are meant to show you you’re going the right way, or if they just appear every so often to draw you along in the story.

 I took a path that I thought would get me to the intriguing working lighthouse with it’s blinking red light.  All it did was take me away from the lighthouse, so it seems.   There’s a small cave that has a circular path through it.

Speaking of Clues.  This has a Myst like feel to it for me, so I’m noting anything that might be a clue in my ever handy notebook old school style, as I did back in the heyday of Adventure games.   I drew out this formula which appears in a shack and again in a cave.  Must be a clue, right?  Is there a Island of Dr. Moreau aspect to all this?

There’s also a picture in the cave.  Random cave scrawling or does it have deep deep meaning?

 Coming out of the cave, I start heading up a new path towards the Lighthouse.  The narrator makes me think maybe I should turn around and try to get to the half sunken trawler behind me.   I had tried moving along the shoreline on the old lighthouse side of the river (?) but the screen went black and there were these drowning noises so I backed up.   Maybe things would be better on the side of the shoreline.

 Ha!  glug glug.  Black screen. Then bounced back to just outside the cave looking just in this direction.   Worse yet, I’m stuck.  Cannot move in any direction.   That is a thing that can happen in old adventure games.  You do what you shouldn’t, go where you shouldn’t. Stuck.

It appears that you have four chapters in the game and it only saves when you’ve finished one.  If I didn’t make it past their save point, no harm no foul, I haven’t gone far at all and can start again, much the wiser.  Stay out of the water!