Ghost Run [Playing with a Bug]

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Ghost Run [Playing with a Bug]

Post by Zolaerla » 7-Dec-18 00:33

Has anybody ever played through the game as a ghost, with a tiny bit of "cheating"? I don't know which versions of the game support it, but I tested on the Atari ST versions (1.0, 1.1 and 1.2) as well as MS-DOS and they all support it in-game. It does NOT work in CSB Win. I played around with it for a bit for a video I'm making about the game.

If you recruit a character, then die while looking at another champion, the game does not end. If you exit viewing that champion, you can continue to play the game in a "ghost-like" state. The champion you last looked at is unofficially the one doing all of the work, but the game works very differently. You can access their inventory by right clicking on the view screen (they are the "active" character).

Here's how the rules have changed:
Cannot attack or cast spells (you still use mana, just nothing happens)
Do not get hungry or thirsty
Do not regenerate health, stamina or mana
Do not slow your party down if they're overloaded
You cannot directly access their hands.
You cannot directly access their inventory.
You have to keep them as the active character so a direct right click can access their inventory
Monsters chase you like regular, but do not attack
Nothing deals damage to you (there isn't even a sound for falling down a pit)
You can still throw things (which lowers your stamina oddly enough)
You can click anything like regular in the view

I had to do a little "cheating" to get through the doors on level 4 (3 if you start from 0) that you have to chop down by bringing someone back to life, but I haven't really gone much further because it is frustrating having to do that. Killing them again back at the very beginning is a bit tedious, and trying to recreate it caused the character in the portrait to fall over dead immediately... but then you can redo it with the same portrait. This may be due to stacked timers for that character, but they all happened at once.

I'm tempted to make a custom map that changes those doors to click-to-open to make the entire playthrough possible in the MS-DOS version. You will still need to carry someone's corpse all the way to the end with enough mana to cast Zo Kath Ra and to actually fuse Chaos at the end, but otherwise I think it'd be possible once those doors were changed.

Anyways, I was curious if anybody else has ever tried playing this way? Or ever heard of playing this way?

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Re: Ghost Run [Playing with a Bug]

Post by Gambit37 » 7-Dec-18 09:04

Wow! I was aware of this bug, but had never considered that you could still play the entire game while in that state. Amazing that we're still learning about the possibilities of this game over 30 years later!

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Ghost Run [Playing with a Bug] - Won!

Post by Zolaerla » 9-Dec-18 03:22

Well, I made an ST save disk that removed the two "chop down" doors on level 4 (3, magenta worm level) and was able to complete the game. It was rather difficult in parts and required a lot of reloading, because you cannot deal with immaterial enemies at all, you can only run away from them. I used Boris as my "dead" weight and Tiggy as the "ghost", which is such a bad combination, but even that was possible. Doing level 13 with Boris who was practically brand-new was really tense, as just about everything killed me instantly. I also learned that if you trap the dragon in the resurrection chamber on level 14, it can get out! I always just tended to kill it, but this was a bit of a strange playthrough. Saving to the disk even works properly (though I used emulation saving a lot). It is a little sad at the very end that only the "dead" character gets any credit.

This did require a lot of patience in some parts, and lining up enemies just right so you could run through them. Levels 10 and 11 were particularly challenging because the gigglers still will steal from you and can take your torch, leaving you in nearly total darkness!

Anyways, this is certainly a unique way to play and you can complete it, at least in v1.2 on the Atari ST. I can give out a .st if anybody is interested in the modified save. It has Gothmog down to like 3 HP, with a Oh Ven ready to cast, looking at Halk who will be your ghost in that variation. Figured Halk would be a better choice than Tiggy since you do have to throw things in a couple places to kill enemies.

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