The Wandering Village and the Fell Wood | Cold Marshes | River Caves
THE WANDERING VILLAGE AND THE FELL WOOD
I include both areas together since completing certain quests often involves going back and forth between both.
Note how my daily buffing is becoming pretty extensive. Stygar uses Iron Skins on himself, Alliria and Tithian use Stoneskin on themselves, and Lady Elanna uses Stoneskin on herself and the remaining party members. Stygar and Alliria both use strength buffs on themselves. Tithian uses Mage Armor and Cat's Grace on himself, and caps everything with Emotion: Hope. Stygar of course obliges with Magic Circle against Evil. Casting long-lasting buffs at the start of each new day can get tedious, but it is worth the effort.
Next, I run into the last remaining Priestess of Auril, Thvara Baelm. She is accompanied by a few Barbarians, a Barbarian Shaman, and a Fomorian Giant named Bogrob. It is possible to intimidate Bogrob into leaving, but I'd just as soon kill all of them. The same crowd-control than bombardment procedure works here as well. Alliria uses Entangle, then Spike Stones, then Spike Growth. Lady Elanna and Tithian throw in Web and Stinking Cloud respectively. Lady Elanna blasts away with Fireball after Fireball. Lord Markus, Akutagawa, and Stygar take down anyone who makes it out of the crowd-control zone. Alliria and Tithian shoot down anyone who's left standing after Elanna has done her work.
Dire Wolves' Den
Now I go north a little bit. Here's a potentially dangerous fight, getting swarmed from all sides by many Dire Wolves. Chaos is a handy spell to use in this kind of 'swarmed from all sides by many' situation, as it has an area-of-effect that is both large and party-friendly. And again, Lady Elanna's Greater Spell Focus: Enchantment feat stacks with the inherent saving throw penalty of the spell itself, making it almost a sure fire bet to render most of the monsters unable to attack the party.
The Wandering Village
Anyway, when you wander into the village, the first person you'll meet is a Drow merchant named Nym, who has quite an assortment of goods for sale (some of them from Light of Selune), including several potions and wands, as well as:
Also in town is Tahvo the Huntmaster who also has some goods for sale (and again some of them from Light of Selune):
Oakshield (+3 armor class, Barkskin once a day) - In previous playthroughs of IWD2, I used to have Alliria dual-wield. In retrospect, that extra attack with a dagger wasn't really a big deal. And I still had to deal with the -2 attack penalty. So I decided to have her use shields instead, and use a Ring of Protection for a deflection bonus instead. Oakshield ultimately won't be my primary shield, but having it as part of a secondary weapon set down the road means I can use another Barkskin each day.
Starting at about 10:20 of the video is where I show a quest. Simply have a Sorcerer speak to Pairi, show her some insight on her innate power, and then get an xp bonus.
At around 11:44 is where I speak with a hunter named Jari, who is depressed about being unable to get a winter wolf pelt as a dowry for his beloved's father. This is a quest that will be resolved quite soon.
At the north end of the village is Kanno the Bowyer, courtesy of the Light of Selune mod and standing beside Jari. He sells a lot of ammunition as well as:
Kanno also has a quest for me, to bring his acorns to a nearby Dryad so that he can get a bowstring from her.
This video shows the complete sequence for completing a quest involving children that have gone missing from the village. First, I speak with Elder Suoma to get the quest.
Oh and wait, now I remember to get the Bracers of Defense +3.
Then I speak with Venla the Healer to get more details, which aren't much. By the way, if you need to rest while in the Wandering Village, Venla is the one to speak to.
Now I enter the outskirts of the Fell Wood. There are two battles of note before I encounter Limha. First is a bunch of Snow Trolls, led by a Snow Troll Shaman. Same as before, take 'em out one at a time and deliver the coup de grace with fire or acid. Note again the use of Melf's Minute Meteors by Lady Elanna. She simply waits for one to go down, then she delivers the killing below with a Meteor, and then waits for the next to fall, and so on.
The next group will be a bunch of Barbarians, including a Barbarian Shaman. Again, they can overwhelm me if I'm not careful. Party-friendly spells that hinder their ability to land blows, like Chaos and Slow, are always helpful. And in this instance Chaos was enough to get the job done. The leader of the Barbarians will leave behind Wroth (+1 Bastard Sword, cursed, cannot be removed except by a Remove Curse spell, 25% chance of Animal Rage of wielder whenever wounded).
Now I enter Limha's tent. When I first talk to Limha I have somebody else besides the Paladin do the talking. Otherwise I won't get the chance to buy any spell scrolls or other items I might want from her. The one trinket of note that she sells is:
Ring of the Warrior (+1 to attack bonus) – I bought this for Akutagawa. This was partly by default because I got other rings for other characters, but also because something like this does come in handy for a Monk, who has a lower attack bonus than dedicated warrior classes, and also doesn't have the attack bonus from enchanted weapons as well.
Once I'm ready for Limha, I have Lord Markus goad her into leaving Agog to attack me. Once I'm done with Agog I prepare to the max, including a Mass Haste spell from Lady Elanna. Limha and several Snow Trolls will attack me. The Trolls will come from too many angles for crowd-control to be effective. Also, Limha will be layered up with spell protections and casting from a distance. The ol' Feeblemind trick won't work here anymore during Tactics.
Thus my first step should be to summon some help right away. Alliria starts with Summon Insect, and Stygar and Lady Elanna both start with Animate Dead. They're placed right next to Limha to keep her occupied. I have them attack Limha as meat shields in order to occupy her while the rest of the party goes to work on the Trolls. In fact, I periodically have Lady Elanna use Animate Undead in order to keep Limha tied down against meat shields, and force her to expend many of her spells on them instead of my party.
Once the Trolls are taken care of I go all out for Limha. Note that I only have Lord Markus, Akutagawa, and Stygar go up close to Limha. I have Alliria, Tithian, and Lady Elanna firing away at a longer distance. There's a specific reason for this. The Disintegrate spell is a card that Limha likes to keep in her deck until she can target a character with a weak Fortitude saving throw with it. Well, she tried to walk up close to my back three characters and try it anyway, but fortunately I happened to make the saving throw.
Note also that Limha will always be under an Improved Invisibility effect, the first example of why your warriors should grab the Blind-Fight feat as soon as can be managed. They can start chipping away at her despite her permanent invisibility. It takes a long time to wear her down as the video duration should make obvious, but persistence will eventually get the job done. Once she falls, I loot her body for her scroll case, Bloodsucker (+2 dagger, 1d6 vampiric drain), and other goods.
The video concludes with me getting an xp for bringing the good news to Venla the Healer.
The Restless Dead
Suoma refers me to Tahvo the Huntmaster for my next quest. Tahvo wants me to find out why a Barrow Wight has become restless at a nearby grave. The Barrow Wight relates, with some prodding, that its prized drinking horn has been looted from its grave.
Now I travel east to the Fell Wood again. A spirit warns me against venturing further in lest I perish and join the Restless Dead.
I start by journeying along the northeast path. A frequent occurrence will be encounters with Restless Dead, for which I have everyone switch over to blunt-damage weapons. One thing to keep in mind is that they'll single out whoever holds a weapon capable of disruption. As such, I always kept up a Stoneskin-effect on Stygar after the previous one wore off. Another idea could be another Barkskin, since it would stack with the Brazen Bands.
Alliria uses her Wilderness Lore skill to find the correct path to take. At each new clearing Tithian always checks for and disarms traps.
The party eventually finds it itself in the same clearing as a Dryad. This presents an opportunity to complete Kanno's quest as well. Alliria gets the Bowstring that Kanno is looking for from the Dryad, and gives the Dryad the Acorns in return.
From here I continue on through the southeast path, where I have to defeat a pack of Snow Trolls.
From here it's again more Restless Dead and more traps to contend with. Alliria's Wilderness Lore skill continues to show the way.
The party eventually arrives at a new clearing with a dead body in the middle. There are three traps here that needs to be disarmed. The corpse itself has Sulo's Hook (dagger, -2 penalty to attack, +3 deflection bonus to armor class), as well as the Horn that the Barrow Wight wants back.
As always due west will lead back out of the forest. I have one more stop before actually going back to the Wandering Village though. First, I come back to the initial entry point for the Fell Wood, and this time I go through the northwest path. This time, I kill a rather large pack of Winter Wolves. They come a few at a time, so spells aren't really necessary here. They'll leave behind their pelts. Jari will want one, while I can sell the rest.
Now I head back to the Wandering Village, and return the Horn to the Barrow Wight. The Wight leaves behind the Wight's Blade (+1 Longsword, 66% chance of Bane on target) as well as another random magical weapon.
I get xp bonuses for informing Tahvo of my putting the Wight to rest, and for giving Jari a Winter Wolf Pelt.
The video concludes with Alliria speaking to Kanno since only a Ranger can get the full benefit of the exchange. First the party gets an xp bonus when Alliria gives the bowstring to Kanno. Then she purchases the brand new bow from him. The bow is:
The Greenbow (+6 damage, +3 attack bonus, add Strength modifier to damage, Holy Power for missile weapons only 1/day) – This will be Alliria's bow for the rest of the game.
He'll also give Alliria the Precise Shot feat as well as a tome of the Elven God, Solonor. When Alliria uses it from one of her quick-item slots she'll get:
Scarab of the Great Archer – +2 attack bonus with missile weapons, Holy Power once a day (missile weapons only). This will be Alliria's amulet for the rest of the game.
Elder Suoma directs me to speak to Kurrtu to start the next quest. Just as I finish speaking to the Elder, Nym the Drow merchant bids a rather ominous farewell and steals away.
Kurrtu wants me to find out why Kyosti's ghost has become restless. Kyosti's widow, Carita, is apparently nowhere near as co-operative or as eager to learn why.
Now I head back to the Fell Wood. The Hunter's Ghost that stands at the initial entry to the Wood wants me to rid the forest of the 'Ghost Lights' in exchange for helping me to learn what has become of Kyosti.
Now I make my way back to the Dryad's clearing. The Dryad is willing to provide a clue with a little prodding. From here I make my way back to the clearing where I found the Drinking Horn. A path has opened to the southeast.
Now I come upon the pond that the Dryad described. As per her instructions, southeast, then northeast, then northwest. Of course there will be more Restless Dead and traps to deal with along the way.
After taking the appropriate directions I then find myself at the creek that the Dryad referred to. This time, northwest, northeast, and then southeast.
I now find myself in a clearing with a Death's Candle and two Witch Lights deep in the Fell Wood. This is a significantly more difficult battle in Tactics, because they now inflict a lot more electrical damage with their attacks. Persistence is the key here, meaning I keep on them with physical attacks and using healing spells or potions when I have to. Lady Elanna throws in Mass Haste to help bring them down faster. If you're having trouble, try memorizing multiple instances of Protection from Lightning beforehand.
Now I head west to get out of the wood, and then return to the initial entry place. The Hunter's Ghost gives me the remains of those who died in the Fell Wood, but also informs me that a spirit is now standing over a shallow grave to the west of the Wood.
I end up having to kill a few Dire Wolves on the way there. I then encounter Kyosti's Ghost and learn that he was murdered by his own wife, Carita, while her new lover, Leevi, hid the body. He allows me to take Kyosti's Spear (+1 spear, +1d6 piercing damage, 10% chance of extra 1d10 piercing damage).
I then conclude by informing Kurrtu that Kyosti has gone to final rest for an xp bonus. Carita and Leevi are now gone.
Isair and Madae
Now I bring the good news to Elder Suoma as well. She informs me that my key to making it through the Fell Wood is to destroy the Dark Treants that reside within.
Only ... I now have the cutscene involving Isair and Madae. The corpses they leave behind are easily defeated with fire-based spells.
I then get another xp bonus for bringing the remains of the Fell Wood dead to Elder Suoma.
Now I head back to the initial entry point for the Fell Wood. A Dark Treant heads down the southeast passage. I buff up to the max and follow.
Dark Treants take extra damage from fire-based spells, so Alliria and Lady Elanna oblige while they close in with Flame Strike and Fireball respectively. Once they've surrounded me Lady Elanna follows up with repeated castings of Chain Lightning.The way is now clear to the Cold Marshes.