Level: Prologue
Level: The Wilds
Level: The Walls

Chapter 3: The Wilds of Govad

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Darkest Dungeon

The first challenge to overcome in this side dungeon is the absence of light.  E'lara can light her arrows or Caddoc can pick up a torch to provide enough light to navigate by.  They find themselves at a locked gate and must search the darkened corridors for an appropriate key... but the presence of skeletons arising from the shadows doesn't make it easy!

A Death Stone spirit found in the dark warns of a headless, extremely deadly woman, but the heroes don't know what to make of this just yet.  A hint leads them to discover the key they were looking for hidden behind a movable section of wall.

Past the gate discovered before, Caddoc and E'lara find a circular pool of water being fed from the mouth of a head-shaped fountain.  A nearby crank seals the mouth, but the stagnant pool of water remains.  Where the fountain met the water, however, a boat full of wood is revealed, and E'lara lights it with a flaming arrow.

This prompts the stone head to speak.  The riddle he speaks provides a clue: "light a fire in shadow."  E'lara lights another arrow and fires it blindly into the darkness across a glowing chasm...  where it hits and lights an unseen brazier.  When lit, a wall section slides back to reveal a pressure plate.  Caddoc needs to stand on this to hold up a series of wooden platforms to let E'lara cross the chasm—if he steps off, the platforms instantly drop back down.

This forces the two characters to separate:  E'lara forging ahead, Caddoc staying behind (which can be a challenge when more skeletons appear at the far end as the elf approaches!).  Once the skeletons have been dealt with, E'lara's skills again come in handy;  the chamber at the other end of the tunnel appears at first to be empty... until the elf realizes that burning away wall-hanging carpets reveals hidden rooms.  (A lever here locks the wooden platforms in their "up" position to allow Caddoc to join her.)

The room also features another crank like the one used to stop the fountain.  This one drains the pool of water to a much lower level; by backtracking a bit to a previously-flooded passage, Caddoc and E'lara find a path winding down the sides of the cistern to a crack in the wall farther below.

Squeezing through the crack, the two heroes enter a previously-unseen part of the dungeon.  A large chest sits tantalizingly close at the end of the corridor...  but when approached, a massive spider bursts through the wall and grabs one of the characters!  As it begins to pull them away to devour, they struggle to escape while the other hero attempts to free them.

Exhausted, the characters reap their significant rewards in and around the large chest.  Seeing no way to cross back through the crack they used to enter, they have no choice but to follow the path burst open by the spider (which leads to the caverns of its lair).  Though the path seems spooky, they are not molested further and soon find another cistern path that takes them back up to the surface.


 
Intent

The company president wanted to find a spot somewhere in the game for a dungeon where the player went "down and down and down, wondering if they'll ever come back up."

Nearly every element here is reused from elsewhere in the game (and, more crucially, re-purposed in ways that feel distinct from their other uses).



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