1.2 – The Kobold Village
The Kobold village is the first major obstacle in the story and technically, the introductory dungeon. It’s a fairly simple quest arc, with Rroak filling you in on most of the details. There’s a Kobold village on the island; they are raiding Rroak’s village; they have a chief and you have to stop them.
There are several ways to go about this, but first, a brief description of the area in which the Kobold village would have been situated. The map would have been patches of wilderness with the Kobld Village on one side. The wilderness will have Kobold scouts and a few wildlife, trees and such. Technically, you can skirt pass the Kobold village and ignore the quest entirely but you’ll be skipping out on early experience and the setup for some of the story. Also, Rroak will get annoyed that you don’t help. You can complete the Kobold quests later though, since you’ll have to in order to progress through the main Island story quest. The village itself isn’t very large, but it is full of Kobolds and one Kobold chief. It also has a central gathering area in which there’s a large pot of stew.
Rroak will encroach you to help him get rid of the Kobolds. His plan is to charge in and kill every single one of them until you get to the chief. At which point, you’ll kill him also. It’s a good plan, he insists, hefting his waraxe. You certainly can do this at this point. Kobold are relatively easy fights and you have a barbarian and sorceress in your party. Of course, it won’t be too easy since it’ll just be a huge combat sequence and the Chief Kobold is a pretty high level Shaman. You probably want to even the odds a little.
So the other thing you can do is sneak into the camp by slowly taking out the scouts on the side and finding a back entrance into the tent. You’ll notice the Kobolds in the camp occasionally going up to the pot of stew in the middle and taking their dinner. Occasionally, other Kobolds will come and add stuff in and the stew will go on cooking. So, a quick discussion with Rroak later, you decide you can poison the stew and perhaps take out a bunch of Kobolds. This is obviously for the more roguish characters to deal with.
At this point, Shyaen will also ask if there isn’t another way to deal with the Kobold menace, since she thinks killing all of them might be a little excessive. So the third option you have is to sneak into the Chief’s tent and convince him to stop raiding against the human tribes. This would take a whole bunch of Charisma skill checks as well as possibly doing a quest for him, getting a giant ruby from a nearby cave guarded by giant spiders. The Kobolds don’t like giant spiders. However, even after doing this quest, the Kobold Chieftain will betray you and attempt to kill you.
The truth is, this whole quest line can only end in one way. You kill the entire Kobold tribe, either by poisoning them, defeating all of them in combat or by killing the Chieftain and then battling your way out. Rroak will cheer and lead you to his tribal village and Shyaen will bring up a conversation about the genocide you just commited. The conversation will discuss whether the genocide was justified, if there weren’t other ways of resolving the situation and touch on general worldview philosophy a little. This here, is the game’s central idea of which I wrapped the story around though I’m inching away from the word “philosophy” to describe the level of moral discussion that plays a part in Shyaen’s development as a character.
The basics of which is this. Shyaen starts off as a True Neutral character. She is wholly ignorant of the grim realities of the world around her, despite suffering horror on the ship. Her mind is still trying to process the situation of the world and while she is internally dealing with the consequences of her capture, she will start to regard every major storyline quest in terms of how the world is really set up. Between good and evil, if I were to facilely describe, but mostly between the choices and consequences of what your character chooses to do. The conversation thus hinges on how you respond to her questions regarding each situation. The Kobold village massacre is just an introduction to this system, apart from being the standard first dungeon to level up your characters.
More on the conversation game in a bit.