Let it be known, level seven is unbelievably difficult! Well, actually, the first part was not so bad. I cleaned house on four separate guard posts, only to discover that clearing them out does you no good--the doors still lock behind you. I made it to the prison, and got, among other things, a crystal to help me find treasure, and access to escape route that goes nowhere but to a lava pit and a locked door. Argh.
Now, the lava pit is fairly useful, in that there is a door that will lead me to a crown I need to get through a maze, and I was thoughtfully given the key. From there, I have already identified (by accident) the bridge that leads to Tyball's maze, and I need only get the crown, use the convenient levitate ring I also found, and walk through the maze and hopefully kill Tyball. Exploring the rest of the level will have to wait until then--trying to go in the "opposite direction" from the maze is futile, because it's just more stupid locked doors.
I am not sure if this is how you're supposed to beat the level or not, I feel like I missed something and skipped half the level! I'll go back and see, assuming what I missed is not needed to kill Tyball. You know, I am not sure but I think I only found out his name earlier today (though I remembered it). In any case, the primary challenge has been avoiding fireballs from those damned elementals, because they can do a huge amount of damage--45 and beyond, man, so they can kill me in two hits or possibly even one hit (I was not at full health while dashing past the elementals). They are also hard to kill because I seem to miss them much more often than any other monster. Maybe if I switch from my extra-damage sword to my extra-accurate sword, I might have better luck defeating them.
Level 6 six was easy to complete, because there weren't too many monsters. I never found the Vilus guy--maybe there was a secret door somewhere that I missed. The golem who guards the shield of valor was a total laugh to defeat, I beat him in like six hits. I remember my first time playing, I had to shove him in the lava to get the shield, but that seems insane now, because he fell so rapidly! That means I've gotten or know where to get six of the eight talismans. I found the book of honesty, and now the shield of valor.. Shak is repairing the sword of justice, and there's a crazy dude who has the taper of sacrifice on the third level. I have the standard of honor and the ring of humility. That leaves the wine of compassion and the cup of wonder. I've gotten no clues on the wine, but I think it has to do with that Urgo guy who I rescued, based on my memory of he game--yet no one of the Seers on level six asked about him. The cup of wonder requires some shrine-based triangulation, but I don't know the relevant mantra. Those are basically all the loose ends--well, except for one more. One of the seers is looking for a guy named Gurstang, but I have not met him. I've not encountered him yet. Actually, I guess that is several loose ends...
1) Finding the cup
2) Finding the wine
3) Who the heck is Gurstang?
4) Where is Vilius?
5) I'm still missing Tym and Corp moonstones, I think. And Flam maybe. I never cast spells, so I am unsure. :-P
A friend of mine has begun the game as a mage, and I think level seven may prove impossible for him. It really is sort of insane to disallow magic, because it basically says to the player, "You really, really ought to be a fighter!" Ah well. How long to finish the game? I dunno. There's a few more bits and pieces, like the three-part key and I think burying some bones or something. I'm guessing the biggest time-consumer will be finding the hints and the related object, but the hard combat will mostly be over as soon as Tyball goes down.