<- Previous update: Aggro Acrimony
- Forest Hunter massacre
- Defeated the Moonlight Butterfly
- Defeated Havel
- Found hidden bonfire in Quelaag's Domain
- Discovered the Great Hollow
- Explore the Great Hollow
- Explore New Londo Ruins
- Brave Sen's Fortress
I've posted this image already, but I think it encapsulates my experience in the Great Hollow quite well, both literally and metaphorically.
Yep, that about sums it up.
The Great Hollow is an old hollowed-out tree, vertically spacious enough to where you will
fall to your death if you're not advancing with tightrope caution. Navigation is at the mercy of a series of these thick, gnarled branches, bending and stretching irregularly all around the center. Traversing the gaps between branches will often place you in a situation where you must
descend, land on a lower branch, and take some fall damage in the process. Misjudging your aim will, of course, lead to certain death. This makes the locale quite annoying to go through. Since the area is so well-hidden, however, I figured this must be some kind of optional
area, with nothing too important to be found. Nevertheless, I did what I could down there--and I know I'll be returning later.
While I was there, I focused primarily on collecting every item that I saw sitting on each branch. I picked up all colors of Titanite--like Green and Blue--and even some colors I had never picked up before, like Red and White. Occasionally, a few crystal lizards would appear at random, usually hiding inside little alcoves beyond my reach, so they always
disappeared before I could even react, let alone hunt them down. I did manage to kill one
, though, by stunlocking him against a wall with my bow, but I wasn't so lucky with the rest. I decided to not even worry about them. I wasn't even sure how many there were, but I spotted them pretty often.
Jumping from branch to branch was so scary, because if I fucked up my placing, it was a looong
way down. Luckily, I happened to have three Rings of Sacrifice in case I needed them, but I still made sure to be extra careful when leading myself down from precarious heights. Fortunately, I only fell to my death once early on--which was great, because I was also laying down a lot of Prism Stones--mainly to help gauge whether or not jumping down a certain height would be fatal or not, but also as a way of marking my trail, to prevent myself from going in circles. Prism Stones are the premier exploration item, and I guarantee
I'm part of a minority who actually uses them.
One of the coolest things I found was a Cloranthy Ring. It's basically my Grass Crest Shield in ring form. It even comes complete with the green aura that I like. Awesomely, the effect also stacks
with the shield--but honestly, I think one stamina boost is enough. I can't sacrifice Havel's Ring for this. Still a neat find, though.
The only hostile enemy in the upper section of the Hollow were those lousy basilisks--the freakish eyeball lizards that curse you if you let them smoke you out. These ones were a different color, though, so I assumed
that they would be tougher to fight--but they weren't, really. Without some kind of physical attack, they're only ever dangerous if they happen to gang up on you. The speed at which your curse meter builds stacks
with the number of smoke billows there are, and the meter itself is only about an inch long--so it's better to fight them one at a time.
As I descended further down the hollow, the scenery gradually began to change. Large fungi which served as platforms appeared along the rim--and the next thing I knew, more of those little mushroom dudes started waddling towards me. I first encountered these things in the Darkwoot Woods. As they approached me, some of them tripped and fell flat on their faces, and I mistakenly
assumed that they wouldn't be hostile, just like the ones I saw earlier--until they started punching me.
The number of hits it took to KILL one of these little bastards seemed a bit
too high--and I was only rewarded, like, 50 souls for each one. When they die, though, they make loon noise
, which is kinda interesting. I like that sound--we have a lot of loons up here in Michigan. Anyway, things were soon about to get worse, because the baby mushrooms were soon followed by the parents
. They were much taller, looked meaner, and seemed a lot tougher... but I felt like I could take them.NOPE
. Turns out, they pack a wallop! One single punch from one of these fuckers took away, like, 80%
of my health. It was pretty dumb. On top of that, they had a lot of HP investment, and there were simply too many of them for me to kill. It took me about three or four attempts before I finally realized that I was probably
better off just giving up. I even tried new armor, and it didn't help me one iota.
That's about as far as I got in this location, but I'll be back.
The last thing I did was hunt for a few more crystal lizards, but--on account of my carelessness--I ended up getting myself fucking CURSED by a group of basilisks. So, now I finally know what happens: Getting cursed instantly kills you. Upon respawning, your healthbar gets cut in half. Unless you have some specific, rare, or expensive items, there's nothing
you can do about it.
Fortunately, I did buy myself a couple Purging Stones from the pardoner the last time I visited him, so I was able to un-curse myself just fine--only to get cursed once again immediately after.
Jesus Christ. I had more Purging Stones, but fuck it--why waste more of them?
It was at this point that I just dropped everything and said, "Well, if I'm cursed, I might as well
make use of it."
So, I set a course to New Londo Ruins. As you all know, being cursed, whether it be by Transient Curse or by basilisk breath, allows you to make contact with the ethereal--so, what better time than now to pay them visit, huh?
Before entering the ruins, I stopped at a bonfire to regroup and look over some things--and I made a fateful decision:
I'm ditching my Grass Crest Shield in favor of my Eagle Shield. The latter is a greatshield that gives me more stability, more overall defense, and synergizes well with my Winged Spear. I can't parry with it, which is unfortunate, but I rarely ever parry during an important duel anyway--and as for the stamina-boosting effect, that can be summarily replaced with my new Cloranthy Ring, if I'm ever in need of some green aura goodness.
She had a good run, but it's time to place her in the box.
...Just kidding. I'll probably still use it every once in awhile.
The other decision I made was to bust out my new armor set--which actually isn't new; I picked it up in the Darkwoot Woods a long time ago--but I could never wear it, because it was too heavy. With the power of Havel's Ring, though, I can at least wear it all and be at mid-roll range. I think
it's mid-roll, anyway--I don't know the exact math behind it.
Finally, I bought a couple more Purging Stones, just
in case--and then I was prepared.
As I found out in Update #2, New Londo Ruins is actually accessible as soon as you make it to Firelink Shrine at the beginning of the game. I ended up down there while wandering aimlessly, and naturally, I got fucked up--so, now's my chance for some good ol' redemption.
Remember how I mentioned earlier how the crestfallen warrior is now absent from his post in the shrine? It seems that he's had an ill fate. As I approached the docks, an aggressive blue-clad hollow began striking me. Recognizing him as the crestfallen warrior, I hesitated for a moment before laying waste to him. What business he had in New Londo Ruins, I have no idea--but I was eager to find out, if I ever would.
Speaking of the hollows, none of them are hostile in this area, and I wondered why. Most of them are moping around in corners or making a ruckus somewhere. Some of them made funny poses. None of them seemed to have any idea what they were doing, though--because they're brainless hollows. But the fact that they weren't hostile was enough to convince me not to kill any of them. You don't scratch my back, I don't scratch yours.
Finally, after crossing the docks, I was face-to-face with the ghost that killed my ass so many months ago. Two good strikes with my spear was enough to vanquish them, but they had a couple of dangerous attacks of their own--namely, the one where they outstretch their arms towards you, forcing you to back up. Finally being able to block their attacks was nice, too.
I found another Fire Keeper Soul in this area. Very good. Getting it was kind of a bitch, though--it was sitting on this narrow strip of a platform submerged in the lake. Advancing towards it would spawn three ghosts--two in the front, one in the back, sandwiching you between them, forcing you to make a move quickly on this narrow fucking platform. Once again, Firebombs saved me a headache or two here.
By far the worst
thing about the ghosts was their uncanny ability to pass through solid objects, allowing them to hide underneath platforms and stab you from below. Sometimes they'll hide in the ceiling, too. A particularly scary variety of the ghosts are the ones with the red eyes
. They have no discernible difference, from what I was able to tell, except that they're a little more aggressive, and they elicit a blood-curdling scream
when they spot you. Not cool.
Pip has forbid me from exploring New Londo too much, at least until I have surpassed Anor Londo--so, I sated my desire for loot, and then left without getting too far. Of the most notable things I found were the following: A Parrying Knife, a Cursebite Ring, a Composite Bow, and my personal favorite: a Rare Ring of Sacrifice. It's the same thing as a regular Ring of Sacrifice, but it also nullifies your curse. Kinda situational, but "situational" is my middle name.
The last thing I did was speak to a dude in crimson robes called Ingward, standing atop an old creepy-ass church. He undid my curse, and explained to me the purpose of New Londo Ruins. Originally, this was the home of the Darkcunts, and the Four Kings--but Ingward and the rest of his "sealers" caught wind of their wretched cunt behavior, so they flooded the city to lock them away for good.
I already like these dudes. I have some crimson robes of my own, but I have no interest in sorcery at the moment.
With that, I took out a bone and returned back to my bonfire.
It was time for me to brave Sen's Fortress.