Monday, April 27, 2009

Day 11: Spellmaking, enchanting, more crafts, clothes


Today I spent a lot of time trying to find a vendor who would sell me a Fortify Skill spell, so I could make a custom skill spell (knowing any fortify skill spell lets you make spells to fortify any of the other skills, apparently). According to UESP, there are three vendors who sell them. I visited each one, and two of them wouldn't even open negotiations with me (one said I wasn't high enough rank, and the other said I had no reason to be in Skaal village at all), and the third offered me some spells, but didn't include any of the ones I wanted. The Skaal Village people were right about one thing -- I shouldn't have been there at my level, from what I can tell. That's from the Bloodmoon expansion, and I haven't even begun any of that quest line yet.

Incidentally, if you're in Mournhold, and you see a wood elf named Gaenor hanging around the temple, don't talk to him at all. It'll only cause trouble.

At any rate, I ended up mainly using the Fortify Attribute effect for some custom skills, which is different from Fortify Skill. For the most part, I tried to keep things as powerful as I could make them while still taking 1/3 or less of my total mana to cast, and also keeping an eye on the spell success chance. That's the really tricky thing about Morrowind as opposed to Oblivion -- that spells can fail! Especially if you're fatigued, so one spell you might want to pick up is called Rest of St. Meris, available from Telly Savalas at the Balmora Temple, which restores your stamina.

Aside from the Sujamma and other strength-boosting drinks I mentioned before, I was also making use of the Feather and Great Feather spells I had, but the Great Feather in particular had a frustratingly high failure rate, and only lasted 10 seconds. Without augmentation, I can carry 180...pounds? Kilograms? 180, at any rate. Great Feather increases that to 280, and I can add an additional 20 by also casting normal Feather, which also lasts 10 seconds, for a total of 300. The effects are cumulative, but they only add up if they're cast by different spells (casting the same spell again only resets its timer).

Now, my Restoration skill is higher than my Alteration skill, and Feather is an Alteration spell. Fortify Strength is a Restoration spell. I made a custom spell called Heavy Lifting that fortified my strength by 30 points for 30 seconds, and that increased my carrying capacity to 330! This not only cost less mana to cast than Great Feather alone, and lasted 3x as long, but had a 100% success rate. So I made a second, identical spell called Heavy Lifting 2, to cast alongside the first one, and this increases my carrying capacity to 480. This, along with perhaps also some Sujamma, Greef, etc., will make transporting the loot from caves to my pack guar a much speedier process. Especially with this other spell I made, that fortifies my speed +40 for 20 seconds, which is also useful for running around the countryside!

Of course, I'm also making heavy use of that Restore Magicka mod spell, or else this would be consuming a lot of potions.

Speaking of mana, though, I also experimented with some Fortify Intelligence spells. I made one that lasts for 30 seconds, for use in combat. It boosts my intellect by 30 points, and costs 46 mana to cast, but the effect is that my total mana goes from 172 to 232, and strangely enough this boost of my mana pool seems to make it only cost 29 mana to cast. I also made one that boosts my intellect by 200 points, giving me 572 mana for 2 seconds, which is just enough time to cast one big spell before it wears off, or enough time to start making some potions or enchanting an item, as alchemy and enchanting are both more effective with a higher intellect.


Speaking of enchanting, I experimented a lot with enchanting this session. Unfortunately, I wasted a lot of soul gems on failures. I wiped out my savings on all these spellmaking and enchanting attempts, so I had to go buy some more empty soul gems to fill with those good old summoned ancestor ghosts to refresh my income, not to mention give me more gems to enchant with. I wasted maybe 8 of them before I thought of boosting my intellect to aid its success. What I was trying to do was enchant a robe with...fortify intellect. I finally succeeded after the second time with a +200 intellect boost together with the +30 from the other spell. My new robe will boost my intellect a further 20 points for 20 seconds (the best I could do), and will do it 4 or 5 times before it needs recharging.


I finally found a place with spools of thread for sale. According to CM's readme, it should be added to the inventory of any clothier or tailor, but for some reason the one in Caldera didn't have any. Now I just need to obtain some cloth (folded, or rolls, I'm not sure), and I can try making some clothes.

Clothing shops and other Balmora Expansion attractions

I also explored a bit more of the expanded areas of Balmora Expansion. Of note are several new clothes shops, offering some custom robes and armour, some of which look rather nice (too many of them, though, made my character cartoonishly disproportionate in the breast area).

There was also a tavern in which a roaming guild guide (the mages who teleport you to other Guilds of Mages) was located, who will follow you on command, so you can lead him to any location you think might benefit from having a guild guide, and tell him to stay there.

There was a brewery, but it didn't seem to have anything to do inside, just things to look at.

There was also a furniture shop, which promised to sell portable furniture that I could set up in any location, but I didn't have time to try that out this time. My kitchen could use a nicer table, though.

There was also a brothel with dancing girls, and a place where you can bet on the winner of a catfight.

Ranis delivers more of the same

Ranis gave me an escort quest this time. Escort a scholar to Pelegiad, she says, but more confidentially she says that all she really wants are his research notes, and she couldn't care less if he actually makes it to Pelegiad alive. I think I'm going to just head on over to House Telvanni and see about joining up with them. I've heard rumours about their elitism and loose attitudes toward murder, etc., but can they really be any worse than what I'm seeing from the Guild of Mages?

The road to Pelegiad, by the way, took me on the same path on which I met that lovestruck young woman I mentioned before, so I'm guessing this larger area around the lake is what I'm supposed to be exploring next. I think I saw some other buildings around there somewhere. That's the best I can say about Ranis' quests. They point me in interesting directions.

Ranis' next quest, unsurprisingly by this point, is to simply find and kill some necromancer. No negotiation options this time, just kill her. Personally, I'm skeptical that this person I'm supposed to find is a necromancer at all, given Ranis' callous and murderous attitude. I guess we'll see.

I still haven't gone back to explore those dwarven ruins yet! I think that'll be my next destination. And maybe look into the main quest. I'm afraid I'm leveling up too fast.

1 comment:

  1. Ranis is an exception rather than the rule. Most MG questgivers are actually decent folk. And in one quest there is an option to remove Ranis from the guild, though you do have to handle that "necromancer" quest you mentioned in a certain way. But based on your blog I'm pretty sure you're going to do it in that certain way. :)