Our friend Alen didn’t play Wurm for very long, but for the brief time that he was with us he contributed a lot to our journey. His impulsiveness and fearlessness drove us crazy, but it was these traits that ultimately catapulted us to the eastern shore in one evening.
As we started out from Nighmare Lake it was immediately clear that Wurm Online was not the type of game for Alen and we knew he wouldn’t be in it for the long haul. All of the signs were there. He showed hints of impatience at every delay, no matter how small. He told us to hurry up while we stopped to forage for food and healing supplies. Then he huffed while waiting for the food to be heated on the campfire and puffed when the food came out too hot to eat. On top of it all, he wasn’t pulling his weight. He refused to join in on the foraging to help sustain the group or the wood chopping for fire fuel, exclaiming that he would be the scout. And scout he did. He haphazardly ran off looking for the next interesting thing to see and it was a wonder that he continued to return unscathed. It wasn’t surprising, however, that he expected a meal to be waiting for him upon his return.
Beyond Nightmare Lake, civilization is quite sparse. The road ended quite abruptly and left us stumbling through thick forest and rough terrain. Our walking speed was slowed by the thick grass, which made it difficult to run from the skittering wildlife so we mostly stood our ground and fought. The group consisted of Faeran, Nicilie, Alen and myself and with the four of us against one mob we were consistently winning. But night was fast approaching and visibility was diminishing. Alen was the only one left with his newbie light and we relied on it heavily. It wasn’t long though before the dim halo surrounding our new companion did not alert us to the imminent danger ahead and we walked directly into two spiders.
It is amazing how this encounter had sped our movement. After practicing this situation quite a few times now, we were able to keep our cool and stick together as a group. We ran, making sure we stayed the course, and it wasn’t long before we reached a long abandoned deed. The large fenced off enclosure had mostly rotted, however, the lone house was luckily unlocked and we filtered into the safe house. Both spiders had posted guard outside and so we decided to take inventory of our supplies and hold out for the night. We had a few pieces of meat and some veggies so we made a campfire and cooked dinner, however, there was not enough for everyone. We each took a few bites to satiate the oncoming hunger, but it was clear that it was not nearly enough. Inevitably, Alen was getting frustrated with the situation and wanted to go scouting, but after taking one step out of the house both spiders were quick to pounce. Alen was impulsive, but not stupid. He quickly returned to the safety of the house with just a slight scathing, but it was enough to slow his run speed. It was clear we had been forced into a siege and our supplies were diminished.
It was clear we had been forced into a siege and our supplies were diminished.
We tried our enclosure trick to lose agro by leaving the mobs on one side of the house and exiting the other, but the house was too small and the spiders seemed to be too smart for that. We tried as many variations of this as we could, many involving two of us kiting the spiders back and forth, but try as we might, the spiders would not quit.
We ultimately decided to stay put until the spiders lost interest and left on their own. We waited, and waited, and waited some more. It seemed like we were holed up for hours and by the time the sun peaked across the horizon, Alen was so impatient that he just couldn’t take it anymore. “I’m going”, he exclaimed and he bolted out the door. The rest of us just looked at each other amazed. The spiders were in hot pursuit and we were sure Alen was a dead man since one hit was all it would take to slow him down enough for both spiders to eat him alive. We watched the chase through the window until he ran over a hlill and was out of sight. All we could do was wait. He would find safety or die; either way we would find out soon enough. After a very long couple of minutes we got a message from him. “Guys! I made it! Come on.”
Really? That guy was freakishly lucky. We were mostly safe exiting the house now that the spiders were gone and we followed Alens trail towards the East. Eventually, a fortress was in view with tall stonewalls and a palisade gate entrance crowed with spiders, wolves and bears. It seemed that Alen encountered a few more friends along the way. We ran through the gates quickly enough to evade any attacks and were safe at last. It was immediately clear that this enclosure was large enough to loose any mob’s attention and things started to look up for our little band of adventurers. The coast was so near that we could smell it on the breeze. We were so excited that we ran the rest of the way. Since the start of our journey we had been heading to this coast in hopes that the map was true and there was indeed an open spot near the upcoming shore. The road began to slope downward as we approached and as the terrain began to render, our hopes began to dwindle. A large developed area came into view and it became obvious that our journey was far from over.
We were situated just north of what is now called “Peak of Wisdom” on the current map. We started up the coast and then back down the coast, but as far as we could see, every spot was deeded. It was also apparent that travelling along the coast would be very difficult, for some areas had large cliffs that went straight down into the sea. We had read that it was not wise to swim large distances lest we risk drowning. We would have to traverse these mountains inland, which was not a pleasant prospect. As we debated our next move, Alen was getting into mischief.
“Hey guys, is it possible to steal one of these boats?” he asked.
“I’m pretty sure that isn’t allowed here since this is a PvE server and stealing is mostly prevented here”, I replied.
“It seems that I can get into this one…”, and before we knew it he pulled up in a rowboat.
“Alen, put that back! That is someone’s boat. I’m pretty sure that boats take a lot of effort to build and it wouldn’t be right to take it.”
“Haha, your so funny Griphyth! Stop being such a sap and get into this boat.”
In them moment, I was fully against stealing but it seemed like Alen was ready to take the boat whether I was okay with it or not. The moral gears in my brain kicked in and Faeran, Nicilie and I weighed the situation carefully. This game does allow people to protect their items, and boats have a very particular safeguard. If you lock and moor your boat, then it is impossible for anyone to take it. Now, this boat was moored, but not locked. In addition it was not on any deed. If the owner wanted to safeguard it, then they could have. In addition, the boat was surrounded by a dozen other boats of all shapes and sizes. This was clearly a master shipbuilder. “This guy won’t miss this boat,” argued Alen. He might be right, I thought. After a group (and internal) debate, I finally agreed to go along with this thievery, and justified it in the same way others seem to in the community: “Deed it or lose it,” they say.
This boat meant so much for us since it would allow us to sail around the coast in safety in search of a spot to settle without risking another corpse run. There was one apparent problem that we soon discovered upon trying to load ourselves into the boat. This boat can only carry three people. Alen was quick to say, “You guys go on without me, I will find my way. You guys go North, and I will head South.” We couldn’t argue, since he started to head off right that instant. We would meet up with Alen again, but it wasn’t before our adventurous journey around the world in 80 Wurm hours.