leveling up Aloth

Outside of the Black Hound Inn in Gilded Vale I met an elf named Aloth; a wizard. Happily, after helping him settle a misunderstanding with a group of locals, he agreed to join my party. One restful night in the inn later, each of the characters was ready to level up.

Choosing new skills for myself was easy; as a low-level monk there was not a wide selection.

But choosing new spells for Aloth was difficult.

It wasn’t just that the number of spells to choose from was overwhelming. It was the possibility that I could choose wrongly, and that choosing wrongly would make things too difficult or prevent my progress altogether later in the game. If I made the wrong choice now, why even bother playing?

I closed the game and then busied myself with some chores. I kept thinking about Aloth. I’ve played other CRPGs; would Aloth even stay in my party the whole game? Aren’t all his spells useful, given the right circumstances? He would level up again later and I could choose different, better spells then. It’s just a game! If I mess up I can load an earlier save. It would be a setback, and it would cost me some time, but I could use my mistakes to make even better choices a second or third time through. And the quickest way to lose the game would be not playing at all.

That’s life and learning in a nutshell. It’s easy to be overwhelmed and to disengage. It’s harder to accept failure as part of the process, but it gets you further.

I leveled up Aloth by choosing a couple support spells. I ended up adding two new members to my party before, while straying from the road to explore, we were all summarily slaughtered by a pack of wolves.

But I keep playing!

Stay virtuous everybody.