Skyrim EP27: Mission Literally Impossible

By Shamus Posted Sunday Apr 20, 2014

Filed under: Spoiler Warning 84 comments

Link (YouTube)

So, I’m not completely clear on what happened here, and I’m not going to play through this bit myself. But as far as I can tell:

All your gear is taken away and you’re shoved into a situation where most of the mechanics are basically disabled. No fighting, sneaking, pickpocketing, or magic. Then you’re put into a contrived situation and given one incredibly obvious way to deal with it, which boils down to walking back and forth taking to a couple of NPC’s for a bit. You bribe the guy to cause a distraction (using brandy that’s never actually removed from your inventory when you “give” it to him?) so you can slip into the back. At that point you’re given all your equipment and basically forced to fight. You can’t speechcraft your way through, and no degree of lore or situational awareness will allow you to avoid the combat. Then there’s supposedly a thing where you can disguise yourself, but it doesn’t make any sense. You can’t disguise yourself using the robes on hand, but only by wearing stuff the other Thalmor aren’t wearing. I realize it wouldn’t make sense for our cat-man to disguise himself as a Thalmor, but I’m pretty sure it works the same no matter who you are.

It’s just that all of this could have been so much better. This could have been a moment for the game to shine, and instead it manages to be less interesting than usual. In a mirror universe, Skyrim was made by Obsidian and this part of the game was great. There were four different ways to get in the front door, three different ways of dealing with the guards, and everyone at the party had interesting things to say that explained why they came to these parties and what they thought of the Thalmor, hinting at subtle political divides within the various factions. Meanwhile, the bread-and-butter combat mechanics were shallow and awful and [more] broken. But every time someone complains about how shallow the game is, there’s always a fan that brings up the embassy mission and how much fun it was.

To be fair, we would have bitched about it either way.


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84 thoughts on “Skyrim EP27: Mission Literally Impossible

  1. Neruz says:

    The disguise only works if you are a High Elf; any other race gets found out by the guards trying to pretend to be a High Elf.

    1. Faren says:

      Sort of. High elves can talk to the guards, other elves can walk by them, and human characters can pass off as altmer from a distance. It doesn’t work at all for khajit and argonians though.

      1. ET says:

        From what I’ve been reading on the wikis, and how the crew is experiencing the disguise when playing, I really think that they should have either fixed the bugs/scripting/etc with the robes, or just decreased the difficulty in general, with regards to using the disguise.
        Like, it’s non-intuitive, rarely works/works only in very specific circumstances, and the hooded/non-hooded seem to work in ways that only make sense if you don’t think about it hard enough.
        “Oh, I know! If the player wears the hooded robes, it will cover up their face, therefore we should script in a +2 on the disguise/distance meter!”
        Except firstly, nobody else in the level is wearing the hooded version, so it looks out of place, and more importantly, every sane person and their dog knows, that people with hoods/masks/etc on their faces, are probably trying to hide something.
        (Hint: try walking into a 7-11 wearing a ski mask, even when it’s -40 outside. ;)
        It’s like the game devs had no experience with the real world, and were just scripting the game, based on second-hand knowledge gained from other peoples’ games. :P

        1. Humanoid says:

          I wonder which would be the greater gameplay sin. Say that you are actively provided with a disguise at the beginning, and that the disguise is foolproof, letting you wander around freely and disallowing combat throughout, right to the final objective. It’s not ideal, and would be just as linear a path as what we have now, but might it be a better compromise than the current mess?

      2. Kavonde says:

        They can? When I played through as a high elf, the disguise didn’t seem to work at all. Though it was more than a year ago, and I’m not 100% sure I wore the hooded version of the Thalmor robes, because why the hell would I think I needed to?

        1. Micamo says:

          It works on the normal guards but not on the Thalmor Wizards, who will attack on sight regardless.

  2. Phantos says:

    “No, you can’t do that! Or that! No, you don’t get that option! No freedom allowed! You have to follow this rigidly planned set of events we wrote!”

    What did you think this is, an ELDER SCROLLS VIDEO GAME???”

    1. rofltehcat says:

      That mission annoyed me so much. What should have been completely solvable by stealth (tried to ghost it) and dialogue ended with me just killing everything because there is absolutely no space to do anything different than kill them.

      1. JackTheStripper says:

        Same here. I went into that courtyard save scumming to make sure was never found out and after a while I just gave up and started killing them.

      2. Ysen says:

        I gave up trying to sneak through after I realised that even being invisible, muffled, sneaking, and using a +30% sneak potion, I couldn’t avoid combat. So much easier to just murder your way to victory.

  3. imtoolazy says:

    “In a mirror universe, Skyrim was made by Obsidian […]”

    And with twice as many bugs and crashes!

    (In all seriousness, my last play session of New Vegas literally ended around fifteen minutes ago…because it crashed. Which is also what happened right before it fell off my radar a few months ago.

    But I’ll get back to it; I’m liking Old World Blues enough to keep playing again soon.)

    OH GOD (Oh Divines?)

    What if Obsidian had made Oblivion?

    1. Raygereio says:

      Obligatory Obsidian fanboy comment: Bethesda did the QA for New Vegas.
      Also if you’re playing New Vegas on the PC, get NVAC and see if it helps with your crashes.

    2. poiumty says:

      Weird how I never remember my New Vegas crashing at all. That game was incredibly stable for me.

  4. Neko says:

    I feel like the embassy mission was written by someone who has never written for a computer game, and never GMed a tabletop game. Cool little adventure story in theory, IFF you do things exactly how I imagined them.

    1. Humanoid says:

      As someone who ghosted around assassinating all the guards in this mission, I probably met the condition of doing things as the writer had intended them, and really had no issue whatsoever with this questline, and indeed might have nominated it as one of the better done parts of the game. That is, until this episode showed the other side of the experience, bringing about the realisation that the seemingly competent scripting here was actually just a fluke.

      1. Neko says:

        A! You made me remember something about later on!

        Once it was clear that The talky part of the ride is over, please exit through this door for the stealth ride, I was like, okay, stealth time. I used a lot of savegame cheese to ghost around and decided that if I wasn’t going to be the ultimate diplomat spy, I could at least get what I needed and vanish without a trace.

        Except… down in the dungeon we’ll visit next episode, IIRC, there’s a mandatory Oh no, you have been discovered, now heroically fight your way to the exit! part. Two Thalmor bust in and aggro on whatsisface. I decided to just GTFO with the documents while he was talking with them, figuring that at least he wouldn’t have anything incriminating on him and I could leave the way I came in… except, of course, no. The only exit was a trapdoor locked with a key that I think you had to kill the guards to get.

        I’m coming around to Chris’ theory about this whole thing – it’d have to be a naive writer who sketched out their grand vision of their cool story quest combined with a disgruntled developer who tried to explain that hey, you need to account for too many different paths and alternative dialogue if you do that, and deadlines are looming so let’s just lock the whole thing down so the player can’t deviate from the rails.

    2. I think Chris’ scenario about the dev that didn’t see eye-to-eye with the rest of the team might have merit, if not actually be worse.

      What if they proposed this mission and one of the more idiotic hacky-slashy devs liked it, and then decided to improve it?

      How often have we seen what starts out as a good idea ruined by management that doesn’t get why it was a good idea and just shoehorns the bad things they do every day into it?

  5. hborrgg says:

    I was going to make a derisive comment about how Josh should have been leveling up his one-handed skill, but really that sort of is one major drawback to this sort of system. Once you’ve been playing a game for 50-100 hours it feels nice to actually be able to mix things up every once in a while. So it really smarts when you find yourself thinking “Woah! look at this awesome laser machinegun I found! I can’t wait to. . . oh right, I’ve put all my skill points into regular pistols because they are way more common and sensible. Guess I better just chuck this.”

    1. ET says:

      Player boredom is one of the reasons I wish every RPG had skill defaults, ala GURPS. :)

      1. Jack Kucan says:

        I had to look that up. Skill defaults are a pretty cool system and I wish more games included it. It always annoyed me in Fallout 3 how I specialized in Small Guns and then couldn’t use Big Guns right. I really like the way New Vegas folded both into the same category, but I wish I could use Guns at a level of Max(Guns,Energy Weapons-20) or so (so that I could actually do an Energy Weapons build for once).

        Edit: Actually, now that I think of it, weren’t the Fallout games based on GURPs before they lost the license? I wish they kept or implemented default skills.

  6. Indy says:

    Okay. Wiki page for this quest And a few of the highlights:

    When it takes everything out of your inventory, it doesn’t remove quest items so if you’re up to the last quest in the Companions quest line, you can just walk right in with the giant axe of elf-killingness and nobody will bat an eye.

    The actual people at the party are random. Aside from the hostess and the drunk, the guests can vary wildly. General Tullius, Jarl Elisif, Maven Black-briar and a bunch of others. Most have some condition that has to be met for them to appear and, again conditionally, all of them have the ability to distract the party, mostly by shouting at the drunk. If one of them picks on the servant girl, she’ll wind up in the dungeons later.

    Thalmor robes, such as the set that seems intended for the player to grab first, don’t work as a disguise. Hooded Thalmor robes do and their effectiveness depends on your race. At least until you get back inside and it suddenly doesn’t work anymore. In order to get hooded robes, you have to either smuggle a set in or try to kill the wizard upstairs. Stealth could still be possible up until you reach the dungeon where you have to kill the Thalmor so the scene can progress.

    It’s possible to wind up saving Etienne, Malborn and the servant girl but none of them are essential so they can all die. You could just leave Etienne tied up because his journal has everything you need. If you do decide to save them, Etienne will turn up in the Thieve’s Guild clubhouse, Malborn will turn up in Windhelm where he can ask you to kill a khajit who looks at him funny before leaving Skyrim and the servant will also go to Windhelm.

    There are a bunch of little facets and intricacies but they don’t really amount to anything. The guests aren’t interesting, the distractions aren’t brilliant, the disguise doesn’t work right and you’ll always get blood on your hands before the end. This quest will leave you with one of two impressions:
    “I killed a bunch of Thalmor in their home.” OR
    “I tried to use Speech and Sneak and wound up killing a bunch of Thalmor in their home. At least they deserved it.”

    And there’s a troll for some reason.

    1. Ilseroth says:

      This guy pretty much said what I was going to; there is *another* option during the party; but it seems random whether or not the option is present.


      You can have a guy hit on a servant to the point that the servant freaks out on him as the distraction.

      It’s not particularly annoying and for the record; I successfully sneaked through the whole mission; up until the dramatic conclusion where you garaunteed to get caught… But I was playing a character with 80something in sneak and almost all my perk points spent in that tree.

      So yeah for the record, it is possible to get through the mission without being detected right up till the end, it is just insanely hard because the guards are all pretty eagleeyed (they can see you from very far away (I used Detect Life, and the Throw Voice shout to move the guard in front of the door.

    2. Hal says:

      In my current playthrough, the “random guests” thing ended up biting me. The only guest who wasn’t on the “always there” list was Maven Black-Briar (and her conditions for not appearing are pretty narrow as is.) This made for a very “cozy” party: The hostess, the drunk, the guy who hits on the servant, Maven, and myself. Oy.

    3. Tizzy says:

      There s a troll because that’s the devs way of admitting to what they just did to you…

    4. RTBones says:

      Yes – the troll was something I never quite understood. Other than the fact that you are exiting via a cave, it didn’t really make sense. I suppose on the other hand, the troll would keep out ‘prying eyes’ looking for your secret exit.

      1. Ciennas says:

        Not a secret exit- that’s where they dump corpses of people who they no longer require any information from. The troll was smart enough to recognize a good thing when it saw one, so it stays there.

  7. Daemian Lucifer says:

    You know,Ive said before that its not a bad thing that theyve decided to go for more detail instead of quantity,and I stay by it.However,they shouldve gone all the way with that.Every time you try to ingest something,it should trigger a long drinking/eating animation.The longer the animation,the more health/magicka restored.This is why the potions would be at a premium,because you could chug them quite quickly.

    1. czhah says:

      It would also prevent constant potion-chugging from rendering restoration spells almost completely pointless. As things stand, you can lame your way through almost every encounter by just drinking a cartload of potions.

      1. Tizzy says:

        Basically, unless you’re facing someone who can one-shot you or a large crowd (rare, given the engine retrictions), losing a fight is almost always your fault. Except at low levels, before you carry around cartloads of equipment.

        There is something profoundly unsatisfying about this…

    2. Humanoid says:

      I could live with no combat consumables at all. It’d create a feeling of either being strong enough for an encounter or not strong enough, instead of the weird halfway house of being strong enough, but only if you pay money (effectively) to the game master. I don’t consider consumables to be tactically interesting either, if anything it’s the opposite in that it tends to replace magic in terms of beneficial effects, in effect casting spells which cost gold instead of mana.

      If nothing else though, I’d love it if games stopped classifying food as healing items. Food is for hunger, not for patching up sword wounds.

      Incidentally, I remember I finished Fallout 2, my first Fallout game, without using a single stimpak, because I assumed it was classified as a drug like all the other drugs and I didn’t want to suffer addiction/side-effects.

      1. czhah says:

        To make things worse, using potions doesn’t even cost you that much gold: alchemy gets self-financing very quickly, if you invest in it at all.

      2. swenson says:

        And that’s why I immediately added a survival mod that removes food as healing items. It really does change the game. No more eating six boar steaks, three cabbages, and a bottle of wine in the middle of combat! (wait, does wine even heal you?)

  8. Daemian Lucifer says:

    Interesting how the soldiers go down in a couple of seconds,but the wizard is the meat shield.

  9. Harry says:

    Jarl Ravencrone really grew into her name.

  10. Seriem says:

    OMG Shamus is totally SJW, and I can totally say that because some of my best friends are Khajiit :D. On more serious note I am replaying KOTOR 1 right now and it is so sad how many more options you have in that old game

  11. Tobias says:

    I do like Jarl Ravencrone. That talk with her was one of the main reasons for why I joined the Imperials on my first playthrough. They just got better Jarls. Even if you cound Maven as negative two.
    And it made me annoyed that I couldn’t live in her town.

    Also, it is a pity that Josh did’t have some sort of mystical power that could make him briefly invulnerable whereupon he could cheese it all the way through the outside area. Like I did in my playthrough.

    1. Corpital says:

      Invulnerability? That’s crazy! You might as well demand he’ll wear armor with an armor rating higher than 0.

      Speaking of something near zero, does anybody know if there is any logic governing if enemies go through doors? Mostly they do not, but then sometimes they do and it frankly baffles me.

      1. Daemian Lucifer says:

        Sun spots.Thats what governs them.

    2. Hitch says:

      With Hearthfire, Jarl Ravencrone will sell you a lovely bit of swamp on which to build a home.

      1. Ciennas says:

        Sounds expensive- I never have the money to buy four castles in any playthrough.

        1. Kavonde says:

          It’s not situated nearly close enough to pig country, either.

      2. BeardedDork says:

        yeah but that bit of swamp is way closer to Solitude than it is to Morthal, although the House Carl that comes with it is awesome. I haven’t actually seen Lydia since becoming her Thane.

      3. rofltehcat says:

        Building a house on a piece of swamp sounds like a great idea! Nothing could ever go wrong!

  12. Type_V says:

    Quest is so dumb. Even if you don’t aggro anyone, or you are playing as a high elf in a Hooded Thalmor Robe, the wizard will be standing in front of the doorway at the other side of the courtyard and he will aggro you if you go near him, which makes the other soldiers turn on you. Mandatory fighting in our only infiltration mission. Boo.

    Personally I stealth killed 15x backstab my way through this entire area.

    And for some reason, there is a troll at the end. And after that, I got attacked by a Dragon so I couldn’t even fast travel away and do something else.

    1. Corpital says:

      Wait, does that mean the dragon there isn’t random? I’ve only done this mission once (near level cap, dressed in unbreakable layers of dead dragons and magicka) and that dragon seemed rather like a random encounter.

      It landed, got one arrow in the face and then immediately flew away to a nearby goat. Then, without actually killing the goat, proceeded to aggro a bear and a few bandits, who then killed the dragon together. I…I didn’t even loot anything, just left everybody standing there and went home to cry a little.

      1. Hal says:

        The dragon is random. I think people just remember a dragon spawning at this time for a few reasons:

        1) You’re likely using minimal gear for the infiltration mission, so you might feel under-geared to take down the dragon.

        2) You may have gone to a lot of trouble to keep some fragile NPCs alive, and suddenly a dragon appears and they rush in the beat it to death with their fists.

      2. Loonshia says:

        Skyrim.txt right there.

    2. swenson says:

      That’s why you lure the wizard away with an arrow or that distraction shout, and while he’s looking at it you run past him into the dungeon where you have a scripted fight anyway.

      I was so proud of myself for not getting seen once getting into the dungeon! And then so disappointed when I realized I had to fight anyway. :(

  13. Tuskin says:

    18:35 “Hes having a province in Canada” – Campster
    It took me way longer then it should have to get that joke.

    I would explain the joke… but I think that would ruin it.

    1. sofawall says:

      As a Canadian, there actually is no province named Nunavut.


      1. Hydralysk says:

        Yukon bet that few people here care about the difference between provinces and territories.

        1. ET says:

          Lol. I’m Canadian, and it took me a second thought to remember we technically had that distinction.

          1. Daemian Lucifer says:

            That was such a meager pun.No need for that eruption of loud laughter.

  14. Ciennas says:

    The troll isn’t random. You’re escaping through the door that they drop the bodies of interrogated prisoners through. Enough of those pile up, some kind of predatory critter is going to set up shop in there, especially an old/weak/lazy one.

    I have tried to play this mission all sneaky as you like, and never could manage. You’re telling me that’s scripted?

    Blargh, it’s like The Pitt guards all over again!

  15. Viktor says:

    UGH JOSH. Bullet points:
    You have multiple axes, why use daggers? It’s not like you have the dagger perk anyway.
    You have armor, WEAR IT.
    How well the disguise works depends on your race, with the beast races not being able to disguise themselves even with the hooded robes.

    1. Greg says:

      I kind of have to agree … they seem to be aiming to drag this season out as long as the New Vegas one, but at least in New Vegas Josh generally managed to see multiple parts of the world each episode, kill many exotic targets, and do a few quests. The signature New Vegas style of “use weapons I have no skill in” doesn’t work nearly as well here when the perks are more important damage-wise, the default is melee not ranged combat, and blacksmithing/enchanting are supposed to make up a fair amount of your damage as well.

      It’s to the point where it’s just showing off that, yes, if you play the game completely suboptimally and take the time to loot every damn thing there is, it becomes an absolute grueling slog. Whoopdee-doo, how surprising.

      1. Corpital says:

        Are you kidding? It took me over 200hours and three characters until I did and finished this mission. Currently at 400hours and char 7 and haven’t done it a second time. Heh.

        Wouldn’t playing optimal consist of collecting ressources for two weeks and then smithing/enchanting crap for another two days to have better equipment? And powerlevel the enemies, which defeats the purpose of better stuff? Only kidding a bit here, sadly.

        Also, the essential NPCs. Gourmand casino quest too confusing/bugged? Shoot everyone and be done in five minutes. The Boomers are idiots? Well, just kill everyone and…oh…nevermind.

        1. Thomas says:

          I loved that part of New Vegas. When a quest broke or the game didn’t give you the options you wanted, you could always settle for making sure that X people group were wiped off the face of the earth

      2. Humanoid says:

        Well one thing it demonstrated is that sextupling bugger-all damage results in bugger-all damage. I was honestly expecting it to actually be reasonably effective if Josh had been able to sneak around competently but I was wildly overoptimistic on the damage mechanics apparently.

  16. Hitch says:

    The fix for the hooded robe/non-elf race problem should be obvious.

    Make the party a masked ball. Then hold a competition to win a golden mask that the PC can enter. Then rig the contest so the PC always loses, so the PC can go murder the character that won the golden mask and steal it. Then don’t require the PC to use the golden mask to get into the party. Perfect.

    1. Spammy says:

      I give your suggestion two middle fingers raised high.

  17. Justin says:

    Re: the Colovian brandy: The game removed a regular bottle of wine from your inventory for the drunk guy.

    1. Destrustor says:

      Doesn’t Malborn just give you two of these anyway?

  18. Benjamin Hilton says:

    The really sad part is that Bethesda themselves have done amazing quests similar to this in the past.

    The Whodunit quest from the Dark Brotherhood was great. You’re just put in a house with 5 people and told to kill them. You can just go on a rampage, or you can use stealth and poison. You can talk to each of them and learn things that will help to separate them for easier kills. With high speech you can even get them to suspect and turn on each other. I replayed that mission multiple times just to kill them in different orders to see how the others react and who turns on who.

    It makes me wonder how they could do that in a guild quest then, but can’t even match it in a main quest now.

    Granted this was still a variation of stabbing dudes in the face, but at least it let you be inventive and use your brain.

    1. Hitch says:

      It’s been my experience that the “main quest” is usually the weakest part of a Bethesda game. I play them for everything else.

      1. Daemian Lucifer says:

        So,just like bioware games?

    2. newdarkcloud says:

      I love that particular quest. It is one of my favorite RPG quests of all time, simply because of how awesome it is.

  19. Tizzy says:

    I’ve clocked hundreds of hours (sigh!) in vanilla Skyrim. There is o doubt that I really love the game, but I would neverhold up the Embassy mission as fun.

    I enjoyed the reveals, story-wise, that it delivered. This is at a point when the main quest is still reasonably enjoyable. But that’s about it. Mechanics-wise it was very confusing, and I remember laughing in hindsight at how much Time I had spent overthinking what I should bring into the embassy. This has got to be the weakest point: there is litterally no good reason to bring anything but your full gear, so why the hell even have this? This needed something more akin to holdout weapons, new vegas style.

    1. Tizzy says:

      It’s as if they had decided to throw the player into a situation where all of the usual mechanics are removed, and then chickened out at the last minute. Unlike, say, the Cidnha mine escape mission, which was so broken because of your utter lack of equipment. (Depending on your build, your mileage varies considerably in that one.)

  20. Jnosh says:

    Ah Josh, always trying to expose even the smallest of potholes in Bethesda games.

  21. ET says:

    Is it just me, or when Campster said “I’m gonna muffle your footsteps.” at 19:33, did his intonation totally make it sound like an excerpt from some kind of Skyrim slash fic? :P

  22. I still can’t believe that the premise for this mission is that your questgiver thinks the Thalmor are behind the dragon attacks, especially the ones that rescued Ulfric, because that would keep the war going and everyone off-balance.

    There are so many holes in that plan that I’d expect Delphine to show evidence of being insane.

    On the other hand, if there was a mission that showed the Thalmor were aiding the dragons or making them more prevalent could have been cool.

    1. Classic says:

      I think we’re supposed to understand that her constant hounding by the thalmor has made her a little crazy and paranoid with regard to the thalmor.

      Not generally crazy or dumb (relative to Skyrim writing), but enough where if there’s any kind of wrongdoing, the blame immediately falls on the thalmor first.

      Kind of like Fred and Red Herring from A Pup Named Scooby Doo.

      Of course, this is hampered by the fact that Bethesda games don’t seem to want to tell you what to feel about a person (except that you must tolerate them because they cannot be slain) so almost all of the voice acting is prohibited from characterizing someone too hard.

      1. Aerik says:

        I agree that that’s what we’re supposed to understand, regarding Delphine being a little paranoid about the Thalmor.

        It would have been really satisfying if we could have called her on it, and started the investigation at a more logical place.

        Not least of which because then we could skip this mission. :)

  23. Daemian Lucifer says:

    Guys,how about having the next season be one of the simple shooters?Something like serious sam or painkiller.You know,a relaxation from all this “witty” dialogue and quests and such.

    1. rofltehcat says:

      I suggest: Mark of the Ninja. It is no shooter etc. but I think it’d be a nice game as contrast, er I mean: to horribly murder everyone (“for a change”).

      1. syal says:

        FTL. Josh can go around upgrading Piloting, Oxygen and Door systems to max and never upgrading shields or engines.

        1. viggih says:

          Or Spec Ops:The Line. Everyone would get what they want.

          Chris could be like “Ludo-narrative dissonance”!!! and stuff, Shamus could complain that Doom was much better, Rutskarn could pun his little heart out(but he could do that with any game really) and Josh could be is usual insane self

          (I wonder who comes out better, Reginald Cuftbert or Cpt. Walker)

  24. Dirigible says:

    My personal playthrough of this mission started as a Heavy-Armour wearing, Two-handed Axe using Nordic Barbarian trying to use her underlevelled sneak.

    It ended with a near-naked Nordic Barbarian on a blind sprint through the courtyard Josh is currently stuck at, pursued by half a dozen Thalmor because I was sick of trying to fight them without appropriate armour, and I knew they’d give up when I got to the next room.

  25. I posit that if this was made by Obsidian, the whole quest would be broken a la White Glove Society.

    1. Okay, here’s my Mumbles imitation:

      “I got through this on the first try.”

      Was it intuitive? Meh.
      Were there solutions that should have been available? Yes. Marjorie or some other authority figure should have been available to tattle to on Mortimer.
      Was it broken? Not really, no.

      It gets really difficult down in the kitchen, where quest required a lot of skill checks, and I don’t think Cuftbert really had enough of them to (1) speech or medicine check the chef into giving up his recipe book (2) or trick him into the freezer and (3) follow said recipe.

      Once that was done, I’m sure you’ll say, “what about the scripted guy in the hall?!” He’s not really scripted. He’s on a patrol route, and there are speech/skill checks to put him at his ease if you don’t want to just wait for him to pass while you sit behind a door. You have to use your radar to tell when he’s gone and you can safely head back to the elevator. You also have to wait until dinnertime to call a waiter down to pick up the “human pie” and remain hidden while he gets it.

      I was able to get through it with Heck’s son in tow, go up to the banquet and murder Mortimer with little muss or fuss. I hadn’t spoken to the people outside about Heck and I wasn’t trying to juggle being a chaotic player with actually solving the quest which is one of the few that requires stealth and timing in a few places. According to the wiki, there are many potential bugs, but none appear to break the quest itself without being completely obvious (i.e. someone important goes hostile for no reason or they die, etc.).

      Of special interest is the incredibly long “Detailed Walkthrough” section there, since they’ve got even more complicated ways of maxing your XP from the various threads running through the Ultra-Luxe.

  26. Off topic but since the readers here are aficionados of the arts,
    For Pirates
    For Non-Pirates

    seems to give the same 15% “discount”, but I’d like to suggest that Shamus maybe poke Vodo to make the twentysidedtale referrer official (the TPB one references TPB for example).

    Anyway. What the heck is Otherworlds? It’a a Indie Sci-Fi media bundle, it is pay-what-you-want, but with tiers unlocking based on the average paid.
    The bundle contains Sci-Fi Books, Music and Games, Comics, Magazines.

    70% of the money goes to the creators, 25% goes to Vodo, and 5% goes to charity, and the charity in this case is the EFF (Electronic Frontier Foundation, you know… the guys protecting your digital rights.)

    PS! I’m not affiliated with, TPB, Vodo, EFF, I just “drove by” and saw this and thought, hey look at that, somebody exploring new frontiers in the digital world? I gotta spread the word on this one indeed.

    BTW! Shamus, the email to Vodo (to poke about your own referer, is: support at )

    I have no idea if a referal gives anything, if I where to guess I’d say you might get a cut of Vodo’s percentage.
    My idea was that Shamus could make a blog post on this and use a referal url when linking to that bundle.

    PPS! If you (Shamus) decide to do a refer thingy with Vodo then maybe not make this post public as you’d probably want to post the url in your own post instead.

    PPPS! In retrospect suspect the 15% off thing is kind of a “joke” thing as you can set your own price for the bundle with a slider (the minimum is 1 buck it seems)
    So there may be no direct benefits other than some cross promotion potential.

  27. Jeff says:

    Reading through the comments of this post and the previous one, I feel like I’m the only guy who maxes out everything related to sneaking (complete with Illusion for invisibility) not for the purpose of avoiding everything, but so that I’m an invisible god of death.

    I’m pretty sure I had no issues with this mission because my default playstyle is to be unnoticed only long enough to slaughter everything that dares look at me funny.

  28. August says:

    “In a mirror universe, Skyrim was made by Obsidian and this part of the game was great.”
    Or just as likely “this part of the game was bugged and uncompletable on launch”

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