Game Diary: Arx Fatalis 05 — Oh Goodie, I’ve Always Wanted to Meet David Bowie!

Originally posted at Digital Hippos.

I’m off to meet David Bowie (the Goblin King) in order to settle the trolls’ labor dispute by retrieving the sacred troll artifact stolen by the goblins. That means it’s time to enter the belly of the beast: the goblin city.

I am unimpressed. The goblins live in a series of cramped stone rooms and passageways — not very different from their prison. I guess this is just what goblin decor boils down to: dank stone, stale air and dark passageways. Seriously dark — half of their torches aren’t even lit.

Right, then, first order of business: take time out of my busy schedule to use my “IGNITE!” to light the goblin torches and bring light to their dank, drab, soiled hovel. You’re WELCOME, gobbos!

As I explore the gobbo capital, two things are made abundantly clear to me: the king sees no one and the king loves pie. I also meet a particularly sour goblin who claims that he should have been king! The nerve! If anyone deserves to hole up in a throne room and at pies all day, it’s David Bowie! If I could I’d chop you to ribbons, you insolent little gobbo!

But he’s right about one thing: if I’m going to see the loner king, I need to get into that throne room. The only thing that goes into the throne room? Pie.

As much as I try to bake myself into a pie, Arx Fatalis simply does not allow for such brilliant, out-of-the-box creative thinking. There’s only one thing to do, then: assassination. You may consider that a jump, but I need to get to the king to get the trolls working, and the only way to do that is to end the king’s reign.

I’m sorry, David Bowie.

arx goblin cook

I pour a vile of poison onto the clump of dough used for the king’s pies. When the cook comes to bake the pie and deliver to the king, that’ll be it. I’ll be a regicidist (made-up word totally works).

Only one problem: the poison turns the dough green and when the cook sees it, he throws it away and starts with a fresh batch of dough.


Further exploration in the king’s bedroom (you’d think they would keep that thing guarded, but nope) reveals that he’s allergic to wine. Oh, good. I don’t need to kill David Bowie — I only need to upset the delicate pie-based diet of his delicate digestive system.

Strangely, the cook has no problem with the now-red dough. Someone should tell him, this is what cupbearers are for (thank you, The Tudors).

After ingesting the poisoned pie, the king runs out of his throne room, to his privy. Again, seems like a sick king sitting vulnerable on a chamber pot should be guarded, but nope. Hey there–

Wait … you’re not David Bowie! You’re not David Bowie, at all! Damn you, Arx Fatalis developers! I’ll see you on the Boulevard of Broken Promises.

arx goblin king on toilet

One very awkward conversation later (Seriously, this is happening? I’m talking to the goblin king while he sits on the toilet, every pie he’s eaten in the last 24 hours stampeding out of his colon?) and he gives me access to the reserve, where my prize — the troll idol — awaits! But that’s not all. …

i got a shirt!

I’ve never been so happy to see a shirt in my life! And a turtleneck, to boot — hellooo, ladies….

But before I can celebrate, the horrible, regicidal maniac gobbo from before attacks me! Thankfully, my new shirt is a boon to my defense, and I put him down like so much rabble.

Now we’re off to see the troll king, and get those fat, lazy trolls to work!

On my way back to Arx, something strange happens. The screen goes dark. At first, I think the game broke — but, no — a distinctly evil, gravelly voice starts speaking a bunch of vague, very evil-and-gravelly-sounding mumbo-jumbo. Oooh — story! I likes it.

The human king is so happy with my success, that he gives me a job! I’m some sort of special investigator to the crown. Best of all, the job comes with perks:

arx king rewards

Perks as in, my own room in the castle! Oh King, you’ve made me the happiest amnesiac RPG hero in the world! But there’s no time for pleasure, now. I have a dangerous cult to investigate….

Next time: snake ladies, dangerous cults, funny names, and Am Shaegar’s secret origins!


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