The Shadow of Yserbius Walkthrough

(Parts 1 & 2):
First some general info.

On the maps, the bottom left corner is A1, letters going up the side of the map A to P maximum and numbers along the bottom 1 to 16 maximum. Unless stated otherwise, all areas are 16 by 16. Occasional single letters have been used to refer to specific locations on the maps. Some encounters are fixed, others random. Once you have the skill Read Tracks, cast this on first entry and mark each purple square as an X on your map. Do the same with True Seeing which will show staircases, doors, teleports and other important items as yellow blocks. Mark as a ?. Some Xs may turn out to be NPCs but it's well worth knowing where the tough fights are likely to be. Random fights aren't usually so hard. Occasionally I couldn't work out what a ? referred to; nothing seemed to happen, or there'd be a message saying something like 'the room is bare' so these are still on the maps as a ?.

Some monsters carry excellent treasure the first time you find them. These are not always replenished when you go back a second time but it's worth a try! Quest items, as far as I can see, are always replaced should you need a replacement for some reason or another. Equip yourself with the best lockpick you can find. Only a low level one can be bought, others are gained from fights. I found the best was a blue and kept this in the slot between my character's feet for ease of use. I have tended to say 'use a blue lockpick' in the solution and on the maps. But I haven't always noted which doors need a lockpick and I gather a blue one isn't actually needed until the Thieves' Den, Level 5.

Level 1
1) Dungeon Entrance:

Not much to say about this area. No monsters, no NPCs, no treasure, just four doors. One leads back outside to the Dungeon Exit, one to the Mine, one to the Hall of Doors and the last to the Soldiers' Quarters. It's 9 by 11 in size. In the top left corner is a locked door which you can't enter until your character is Level 20 or above and has the Thieves' key. This then gives a short cut to Level 6 The Labyrinth I. All Quest items relating to the Palace are taken from you when you enter, which is worrying, to say the least, when it happens!

2) The Mines:
In this area you will find several rumours. One tells of King Cleowyn's fantastic treasure. Another tells you to look out for better lockpicks and that it is useful to be able to detect hidden doors and traps. A third tells you that the upper levels of the dungeon are the King's Palace and are full of traps. Oh, how true! A wizard tells you that the lower levels of the dungeon are very dangerous and a lone adventurer will be at a disadvantage - also true, but not very useful info when you are playing a solo game! Another character will tell you that to reach the next level of the dungeon you'll need a special key which is located on this level. You'll also be warned about the pit in the centre of the mine which only the strongest can survive. A central corridor leads from the doorway to the Dungeon Entrance, to the south, to the Vestibule to the east. Some doors are locked and need a lockpick, others are opened by brute strength (17 upwards). A doorway in the southeast at E14 leads to the pit we were warned about. Ignore this until you are a high level - say Level 20. Fortunately a kind spirit will rescue you if you try to jump into it too soon. It leads to Level 5, Pit Bottom.

Another doorway in the northeast at K14 takes you through a series of rooms. At N6, you will fight to win King Cleowyn's Key which is needed to unlock a nearby door and will be used extensively on lower levels. Further through, at G2, another fight will gain you King Cleowyn's Lockpick, which will also be useful later. Cast detect in the southeast (B14) to find a secret wall. In here, a teleport can only be used by Level 20 characters upwards and takes you to Level 5 Thieves' Den.

3) The Soldiers' Quarters:
Reached from the Dungeon Entrance, you can reach the Treasury from here and, later, Level 2 the Basement and beyond. In fact, it turns into a useful short cut. It is also a route back from The Prison using two teleports in a hidden area in the bottom right. You arrive at C13, then go through D14 to reach M13 (and vice versa to reach the Prison). You'll learn from NPCs that you can acquire new skills in the dungeon. You'll also be told that under Cleowyn's Palace is a maze infested with thieves. They seem the only ones who know how to get through the thing. An orc barbarian will tell you that polar bears and ice lions infest the lower parts of the dungeon and a troll ranger warns you to take heed of the "Keep Out" sign at the end of the corridor and to look out for traps. Several doors need a lockpick to open them, either green or, better, blue. The central area cannot be reached until you find a teleport at the far east side, G15. Just through the teleport, some dire wolves guard a hollowed nunchukas which will give you some extra cash unless you can use it. A square corridor around this section has a few rooms off it. One contains some elf barbarians (C5) which often carry worthwhile treasure - I picked up some good magical swords and armour here. A good lockpick is needed for one northern door and another in the south (K3 and C6).

4) The Hall of Doors:
A smaller area, just 8 by 16, reached from the Vestibule and the Dungeon Entrance. Once again, only the outer area is immediately accessible. The centre can only be reached by teleport at D16 and there is a locked room past D1 which can be unlocked with a blue lockpick. In here, at E1, is a teleport to the Mausoleum on level 3. A teleport from The Treasury leads to a locked room at C16. You'll learn that the wizard came to Twinion and caused the volcano to erupt. His castle is buried deep in the bowels of the mountain. A troll cleric tells you someone left a rune on the floor which said that to reach the King's Apartment you must take a turn for the worst. Another NPC tells you scrolls and amulets contain magic here but the magic in them is soon exhausted. Once you have entered the centre section, you'll find four rooms, each with an encounter, some with very good treasure especially elf clerics and rogues at F9 and goblins with gold coins at F11. A teleport at C5 leads to The Basement in Level 2.

5) The Treasury:
Another 8 by 16 area. LOTS of trapdoors in here which will show up with True Seeing. All lead to The Basement, Level 2, some to an area which can only be reached by this method. One NPC will tell you that the wizard may have claimed the king's body when he died. Another tells you of a strange area, 2 levels down, with 6 small rooms accessible to everyone but a large area she is unable to reach though a wizard told her to study her runes to solve the mystery of the area. This refers to the Rune Room on Level 3. A teleport at H16 leads to the Hall of Doors and a doorway to the Soldiers's Quarters. The central area, reached through the door at B8, contains many monsters so don't tackle it too soon. Many are undead. I used sovereign scrolls to cast Control whenever possible. Other than this, nothing useful here.

6) The Vestibule:
Reached by doors from The Mines and The Hall of Doors. Strange concentric corridors, tapestries, locked doors and four central rooms. An NPC will tell you that you must solve the mystery of the linked vestibule doors to continue further down into the dungeon and another will say that they devised a clever maze of squares to discourage thieves and invaders. An elf cleric says he found nothing in the King's Treasure Room - maybe he missed something - and adds that teleports will speed your way through the dungeon.

Use Read Runes to read the tapestries. One reads 'A hero of strength may open my series of doors' so all you need is sufficient strength to get through. A second says 'A certain lockpick opens my series of doors'. A third says 'A certain key unlocks my series of doors'. These refer, respectively, to Cleowyn's Lockpick and Cleowyn's Key which were found in the Mines. The fourth set of doors can just be opened. The fact is that you can only use one route at any one time. Once one door is opened, all others are impassable. So you need to go through at least four times to reach each central room. It's worth it, though. In one, reached using the Lockpick route, a fight at H10 will gain you the Key to Cleowyn's Palace. In another, the route using Cleowyn's Key, you'll find stairs at G7 to The Palace Corridor, Level 2. The 'strength' route takes you ultimately to a teleport to The King's Domicile, Level 4, from J9. You can win teleport passes round this area, handy for reaching the shop until you have the Teleport spell.

Level 2
1) The Basement:

This area is reached by stair from the Hall of Doors - taking you to the main, central corridor. A fountain at K7 will heal you ... once. One NPC tells you there's more to this basement than meets the eye; he wants to know the secret of what lies behind the thick walls of this corridor. Another tells of a marble block near here with the name Arnakkian Slowfoot, wizard to the King. Others tell of a race of elf-like creatures deep in the dungeon and that you must work with races you would normally ignore to succeed (I think this refers to the on-line game). One says to the east of the Rune Room on Level 3 is the Wizard's Challenge, quite a challenge it is too, though he found several short cuts to it.

Three doors lead off the south side of the corridor but there isn't much here apart from a room behind a locked door at D14 (use a yellow lockpick or better). King Hobgoblins and Hobgoblins at A14 are tough - use a sovereign scroll. Yes, there are three secret areas around the corridor. One southern area can only be dropped into via trapdoors from the Treasury. A one-way door leads back to the corridor at E4. A teleport from the Hall of Doors will land you in another at P15. From here, make your way to P8 where another teleport will take you across the north end of the corridor to the left side of the area. There's a complicated series of stairs and one-way walls starting at I1. These will take you to the Soldiers's Quarters and back down - twice - to allow you to reach two more areas down this side. There are some lucrative fights at N5 and O5 and, finally, a teleport to The Great Corridor, Level 3, at A1.

2) Palace Corridor:
Seemingly not much here. You can only access the three corridors directly. One NPC tells you the object to open locked doors is on the first level. This is the Palace Key which we found in The Vestibule. Another says there are 3 secret areas in this level but they can't be entered from this corridor. True. The only way in is from The Rune Room on Level 3, which you won't be able to do for a while yet. A third says that not all traps are dangerous; she found a useful key down one. Some advance warning from another NPC lets you know that the entrance to King Cleowyn's Apartments are guarded by a dwarf called Deldwinn on Level 3. You are warned not to try to fight him as he is enchanted and cannot be killed by mortals. An Orc Knight also warns that the King's Palace is filled with spirits of the tormented dead and to look for an asymmetry in the Palace if you wish to hear the truth about the dead king. You can reach The Vestibule from doors at the top left (O1, P2) and stairs down to The Rune Room at O16 and P15. A door at C5 is locked but translating the runes on the tapestry next to it tells you that none shall pass save one who holds the key to the Palace. This allows you to reach the doors at A1 and A2 which lead to Cleowyn's Palace.

3) Cleowyn's Palace:
A tough area with various undead lurching around such as ghosts, banshees and nightmares. An NPC near the entrance from the Palace Corridor tells you King Cleowyn appears on his throne on special occasions and won't leave until all mortals have left the palace. Another warns that the Pit is pitiless, do not go near it, but also says that the traps are dangerous but they may aid you. A third says to obey the King and return his cherished possessions to be blessed. Keep them and you will die. There are a few locked doors to open with a blue lockpick and others to open by brute force. The pit mentioned is at D5 but I found it no problem; it drops you two floors to the King's Domicile (unless they mean the one in the Mine?). Pillars and trapdoors abound. The trapdoors lead to the Prison on Level 3. Get back by using the Pit to the King's Domicile in the Prison and the elevator there to come back up (see those sections).

The trapdoors stop you reaching the bottom left corner of the area - a problem. But a tapestry at K8 tells you that what you see is not always what is real. You'll discover what this means when you approach some pillars and find they move away from you. Use this technique to go through the door at I16 and head along the corridor round the bottom right corner. Go through the door at the end (A10) and the pillar at A8 will move away from you - and keeps doing so. Move along the bottom edge to A5 and then north to B5. You'll enter a major scrap with King Cleowyn and other ghosts! Use Control and Poison Cloud and once you win, you'll gain the King's Ring - very handy. Return to A5 and the King's spirit will meet you. He tells you the imps that serve Arnakkian have stolen his crown, robe and sceptre. Return them to their proper places in the Mausoleum and he will reward you. He also tells you he was killed by Arnakkian's spirit and you must find his body and put it in the Mausoleum so he can rest in peace. He tells you to find and read the tapestry and the Ring is the seal of his promise.

Whatever you do, don't go back to B5. The King will reappear and take back his Palace Key before attacking you, necessitating a trek back to the Vestibule for another one. Instead, head to the tapestry at H12 which was blank until this fight. Now it translates to say that imps have hidden the robe, crown and sceptre. Only a master of the runes may find them. Two-faced Y is at the centre of the quest. From Y, open O and E and I. When a rune key is used correctly, it will disappear. At this stage, this will mean nothing but just wait a little while and all will become clear. There will still be one small corner, bottom left, that you can't reach due to traps. I assume there is nothing important there


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