Black Raven Monastery | Eight Chambers | Underdark | Drider Caves | Z'Hinda Citadel
BLACK RAVEN MONASTERY
To the Black Raven Monastery
Here I begin to make my way to the Monastery through a valley. The first bridge can damage the party, but it's harmless as long I have my characters step around the holes on the bridge.
The central portion of the valley is occupied by a pair of White Wyrms. They won't attack as long as you don't take the Egg from their nest. They won't mind if you take the other items from the nest though.
There is a second bridge I need to cross with several Tundra Yeti on the other side. One approach is to lure them across the bridge so that the White Wyrms will attack them as well. But I kept it simple. I have Akutagawa and Tithian travel partway across the bridge, and let the Yeti come to them. Lady Elanna can then bomb away at will with Fireballs.
Now I simply go up the cave entrance, and to the entrance to the Monastery itself.
Black Raven Monastery
As soon as I enter the Monastery itself I am greeted by Salisam Harbash. He indicates that only Aruma Blane can grant permission to access the Underdark entrance, but also that she is unlikely to grant it.
Now I investigate the room to the south. Inside will be a thief to the south named Ven. The possible options that are available depend on who speaks to him. A chaotic character might be agreeable to trying to help him with a heist. But I prefer a lawful character like Lord Markus to shake him down a little. Lord Markus manages to convince Ven to cough up Nonin's Ring.
Tithian then comes in and loots the crates in the room. The prize is Ryomaru's Harmless Staff, which can inflict all kinds of nasty conditions on its target, and occasionally on the wielder as well. This becomes Akutagawa's long reach weapon for the rest of the game, and you have to admit the back story of the staff fits with a Monk using it as well.
At around 3:45 of the video I speak with Bered, who can explain the story of Valas, the founder of the Monastery. He also sells a number of items, including Tomes that can invoke various spells each day, and the tome of How to be an Adventurer, which allows a single character to get a one-time bonus of 10,000 xp. I had Tithian use this since as a Drow he's usually 2 levels behind the other characters and this allows him to catch up somewhat. Bered also sells a number of spell scrolls. I bought from him:
I complete a side quest at around 9:00 whereby Akutagawa instructs Sersa on how to improve her fist technique.
In the southeast corner I find Aruma and Doron. The chests here will have the Hammer of Lucerne (+1 Halberd, undead must make a fortitude save or be destroyed) and a Staff of Discpline (+2 Quarterstaff, +2d6 damage vs. chaotic creatures). Aruma, of course, withholds permission to access the Underdark entrance.
At around 12:40 I speak to Salisam again. He tells me he can give me access if I can peacefully remove Aruma from power. He hints that breaking Doron's apparent hold over Aruma may be the key.
But first, I complete a side quest at 14:10 by returning Nonin's Ring to Nonin himself. I get an xp reward and some healing potions in return.
At 15:20 I find what I need, Dolon's Letters inside a chest. I then reveal them to Aruma and let things play themselves out.
The video concludes with Salisam granting me permission to access the Eight Chambers.