Monsters and Mage Maelstrom...

For all discussion on all the previous Bard's Tale games: the classic 1980s games (Bard's Tale, II: Destiny Knight, & III: Thief of Fate) & the humorous Bard's Tale (2004) spin off.

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jamespodesta
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Monsters and Mage Maelstrom...

Post by jamespodesta » October 16th, 2018, 8:10 pm

I found this curious hack while reverse engineering the Amiga version in the emulator...

00C17B0E 1010 MOVE.B (A0) [62],D0 // load chosen attack 62=arrows
00C17B10 13c0 0001 6a2c MOVE.B D0,$00016a2c [62] // store in temp
00C17B16 0c00 0037 CMP.B #$37,D0 // Mage Maelstorm
00C17B1A 6608 BNE NotMageMaelstrom
00C17B1C 13fc 003d 0001 6a2c MOVE.B #$3d,$00016a2c [62] // just use Flame Column


Each monster has 4 combat attacks. Many of them are configured to do Mage Maelstrom.
But this code says if its a Mage Maelstrom attack ($37) then instead do a Flame Column ($3d).
So Amiga version didn't support monsters doing Mage Maesltrom attacks...

Can anyone confirm if other platforms fully implemented monsters attacking you with Mage Maelstrom...

Looks to me like the Amiga developer just run out of time and decided not to implement the more complex Mage Maelstrom spell for monsters and just hacked it to cast Flame Column instead...
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kaypy
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Re: Monsters and Mage Maelstrom...

Post by kaypy » October 17th, 2018, 3:42 am

Cant directly help with this, but possibly related:

Has anyone ever seen Mage Maelstrom have any effect?

On c64 at least, I have never gotten it to work on anything, nor suffered effects that were easily attributable to it (maybe nothing uses it, maybe nothing uses it *successfully*?).

I came to the conclusion that its only effect was to waste a turn... (which might be a reason to stop monsters using it?)

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ZiN
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Re: Monsters and Mage Maelstrom...

Post by ZiN » October 17th, 2018, 11:46 am

kaypy wrote:
October 17th, 2018, 3:42 am
Has anyone ever seen Mage Maelstrom have any effect?
No, it never worked, neither in BT2 nor in BT3. (IIGS and C64 versions)

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Re: Monsters and Mage Maelstrom...

Post by ybkara » October 17th, 2018, 1:12 pm

Testing with the DOS version of BTII, it successfully nukes a pair of Sorcerers in town -

One is fried for 111
points of damage and
critically hits him!

One is fried for 235
points of damage and
critically hits him!

Seem to recall it working on the C64 version as well - was marginally useful for dealing with 1 group of mages @ 90" in lower level dungeons, when you didn't feel like just dropping MAMA on everybody.

Don't recall it ever being successfully used against me, however.. And I usually did run a lone archmage for my entire party. Looking forward to doing so again in the remake..

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jamespodesta
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Re: Monsters and Mage Maelstrom...

Post by jamespodesta » October 18th, 2018, 1:48 am

Does it take down non-mages? Looks like the PC version might be using the hack to just fire Flame Column.

Well.. it works in the remaster anyway.. and enemies can use it on you, so lets hope your mages have good resist coz a lot of enemies have it and it can instakill all your mages which is pretty much a wipe.
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ZiN
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Re: Monsters and Mage Maelstrom...

Post by ZiN » October 18th, 2018, 4:29 am

Cool, perhaps casting ANMA (Anti Magic) and playing Lucklaran will help with that. Also, having a paladin in spot #1 helps the whole party in resisting hostile spells, right?

ybkara
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Re: Monsters and Mage Maelstrom...

Post by ybkara » October 18th, 2018, 7:39 am

Testing on non-mages - it fizzles. For all the faults of the DOS version, they did seem to actually implement the spell right.

Glad to hear it works in the remaster - I think both the DOS and C64 version has monsters cast it on you- but by the time I ever encountered monsters that can cast it - I was past level 36, and basically immune to magic and breath attacks. You level up quick when you don't share experience. Perhaps in the destiny stone lower levels it was still possible to take damage.

Outside of Lagoth Zanta and his guards, who could actually still hit with spells/breath even at very high levels - only summoned monsters got hit, and there were ways around some of that. A Kringle brother with a breathring in inventory was invulnerable on the first floor of Grey's crypt, at least.. and in the DOS version, anybody with a breath bring stopped all inbound breath attacks (C64 - just made it do zero damage to whoever held it. Didn't need to be equipped).

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Re: Monsters and Mage Maelstrom...

Post by Midnight Angel » October 19th, 2018, 10:09 am

According to the manual, "because the maelstrom is illusionary in nature, a disbelieving enemy can totally nullify it."
Hmm... does this imply that if one member of the target group makes its save, they all repel the effect?

At least, it would explain why the spell tends to be a dud against larger groups of non-low-level monsters...

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