tower reversed

eternal darkness notes

this is the eternal darkness combat system as i choose to understand it, based entirely on my own experiments.

herein, eternal darkness's "magick" may be referred to as "magic", mostly when i forget how it's supposed to be spelled. chattur'gha, xel'lotath, ulyaoth and mantorok may be abbreviated C, X, U, M.


most enemies have four separate body parts: head, body (torso), left arm and right arm. (i may use the term limbs to refer generically to any of these.) they also have an underlying energy, which - having already called something else "body" - i call soul. creatures die when their soul is reduced to zero. they get visibly darker and slower as soul drops.

most of the PCs' attacks damage limbs, rather than soul. each limb has its own discrete energy level. when this reaches zero, a few things happen:

some enemies (guardians and vampires, for instance) are simpler, and take all damage directly on soul. (you may or may not be able to aim at different body parts but they don't have independent energy.)


standard damage, as listed below, is inflicted by an aimed attack. projectile attacks count as aimed whether you press "aim" or not.

if you don't aim your attack, in a combo for instance, it'll hit whichever limb the game decides is in the way, which is usually but not always body. an unaimed hit does half standard damage, rounded up (so half of 9 is 5); the second and third hits in a combo each do one-quarter standard damage. (dual tulwars look like they get four hits, but it's really only three.)

if you kill a creature by damaging its body, even with a severing weapon, you won't sever the torso unless the killing blow (including enchantment - see magic) does at least 12 damage. however, a couple of weapons (like the fire axe) will sever torsos regardless of damage.

punch2(unarmed attack, all PCs)
gladius (P)4alex's gladius is not the same.
blowpipe4this is the dart damage only. see footnote.
two-bladed sword12
torch1ignites X and M zombies.
tulwar10also dual tulwar.
ram dao14see footnote.
revolver (colt)10(lindsey)
shotgun~40all three types. see footnote.
mace8see special note under cursed anthony.
revolver (lebel)6(peter)
revolver (enfield star)6(edward)
elephant gun23
fire axe9
revolver (glock)7(michael)
assault rifle4see footnote.
revolver (s & w)8(alex)
gladius (A)8
e. gladius6see footnote.

weapons footnotes


enchant item

cost: 3pt/5pt/7pt 5/10/15; M 15/30/50. (don't ask me why it's not 45.)

duration: 2 minutes.

enchanted attacks do more damage. to calculate the extra damage, multiply the base damage by the fraction from the table below (rounding up).

note: when the target is a mantorok zombie, all three basic alignments count as "same"; when the target is more or less human (bishop; cursed anthony; servants, etc; but not including PCs), enchantment does no extra damage.

attack alignment

example; flintlock, with 3pt C-enchantment, fired at X-horror. the alignment is stronger, giving +3/8 damage. base damage is 14; 3/8 of 14 rounded up is 6. so, total enchanted damage is 20.

mantorok enchantment: the attack itself does no extra damage, but the target starts taking damage at intervals, a little like blowpipe poison (however, unlike poison, this effect wears off with time.) the damage (to soul) per pulse is 2/5/7 (3pt/5pt/7pt); the first pulse happens with the attack. it lasts for 3/4/6 pulses. if you inflict another mantorok-hit while the target is still pulsing, the second attack overrides the first - any remaining pulses don't take effect. dispel magick (mantorok only, at least the same level) will also cancel this effect.


cost: X 10/20/30, U/C 30/40/50, M 40/50/60.

effect: X and C recover 1/4 (3pt), 2/5 (5pt), or all (7pt) of initial values (in this case, fractions round down.) U recovers exactly as much as it costs (for PCs).

for PCs, X/C/U recover sanity, magic and health respectively. for guardians, the spell recovers soul. the black guardian uses this in its third attack phase, but apparently just to get its breath back (it doesn't seem to affect its energy.)

mantorok: recover health and sanity (but no magic.)

reveal invisible

cost: 10/15/20.

duration: 1 minute. M: 1/2/3 min.

most of these puzzles just require the highest level spell available to the PC. the vampire and alex's invisible trappers only need a 3pt spell, but it has to be the strong alignment.

mantorok: PC becomes invisible. not everything is fooled.

damage field

cost: 30/40/50.

duration: 2 minutes.

durability: 50/100/200.

when touched, this does body (not soul) damage, base value 5 plus enchantment (see enchant item.) the field disappears after dealing damage equal to its durability. damage fields as an obstacle to the PCs must be dispelled, they won't wear off with time or damage.

vampires instantly destroy damage fields they cross and don't take any damage. winged guardians don't take damage, because their wings are closed, but still wear down durability as if they were being damaged.

mantorok: similar effect to mantorok enchant item (see above.) the field does 5 body damage, plus pulses of soul damage. the only difference is that here each pulse does 5/7/10 damage.

dispel magick

cost: 10/20/30.

mantorok counts as stronger than all alignments including itself (that is, only mantorok-dispel works against mantorok magic.)

summon creature

3pt: summon trapper, 5pt: summon zombie, 7pt: summon horror

cost: 50/60/75

sanity cost: approximately 22/18/25 sanity per minute.

summon creature comes with a protective field identical to damage field, but unbreakable (except by vampires - who still can't hurt the caster.) it vanishes, of course, when the spell is broken (creature dies or is released, or sanity runs out.)


cost: 20/40/60. M: 30/50/70.

durability: 15/35/70. (graphically represented as 3/5/7 sparks.)

X and M shields work on most sanity drains as well as health attacks.

mantorok: if an enemy attacks you physically (not sanity drain), they take soul damage equal to the damage they'd have done to you.

magickal attack

cost: 30/50/70. M: 40/60/90.

this inflicts damage directly on soul. base damage is 10/20/30. this is augmented by the usual enchantment bonus, giving:

attack alignment

mantorok: base damage is 15/30/45. the attack also triggers pulses, identical to those described under enchant item above.

magick pool

cost: X/U 30/40/50, C 40/50/60, M 50/70/90.

duration: 1/2/3 min.

recovers 1/sec of the relevant meter.

mantorok: recovers all three meters.


cost: 20/40/60.

can't be cast without a target.

the spell will only work if you cast it with alignment stronger than the target. the target then acts as though it had that alignment. this doesn't make it your friend.

i think zombies require a 5pt spell and horrors require a 7pt spell. bonethieves and others can't be bound as far as i know.

mantorok: target also acquires a mantorok shield.


magic used by enemies against PCs acts as if the PCs' alignment is "same" - that is, as if the PC is the same alignment as pious and his ancient.

pious uses summon creature at 9pt to summon the black guardian. 9pt + one essence + two thousand years of preparation, or 9pt + amplifying magical array + three essences, seems to get you an ancient.

pious uses magick pool at 5pt - or at least, a spell with the same runes - to communicate with his ancient.

the X. black guardian's close-range attack is 3pt project/creature (not corresponding to any PC spells.)

i can never make out what spell pious uses to bind mantorok, although "bind" would seem likely.



most PCs run at about the same speed; alex and ellia seem faster, but aren't. max is slow and roberto is slower (or is it the other way around?)

most PCs can run for about twenty seconds before becoming breathless; karim, max and michael can run for more like seventy seconds. (if eternal mode is on, PCs will never tire.)

if sanity is reduced to zero, any further sanity attacks will drain health instead. damage is half the normal sanity damage, rounded down.

PCs start to stagger at 40 health or below.

enemy descriptions

zombie (Z)

zombies come in various sizes, which i call Dwarf, Small, normal, Tall, Giant; plus several varieties of Rune zombie, and some exceptions. see "who's who", below the main enemy table. dwarf zombies don't seem to be able to "detect" PCs (ie no sanity drain.)

the basic zombie attack is a punch. they can also gnaw; i haven't given any stats for that because it's hard to quantify, but the damage is pretty fast if you don't shake them off. (MZ can't gnaw.)

M zombie (MZ): no special features. headless, they'll stand still and attack.

C zombie (CZ): when a head or arm is severed, after some time, it'll grow back. (you can see them try to regrow a torso as well, if that's severed and you don't finish them.) headless, they'll wander around and attack. CZ can also recover after you seemingly kill them, assuming you don't finish them. the mechanics go like this: if soul is reduced to 10 or less (but not to 0 - they can't recover from this), the zombie collapses and can be finished; if you leave them alone, they'll get up again, with 10 soul.

U zombie (UZ): when soul is reduced to zero, if the zombie still has its head, it'll begin "singing". it can't be injured any more in this state, except by cutting its head off. after singing for a while, it'll explode. if another UZ wanders in range, it'll start singing too; the spark will transmit to the new zombie, then they'll both explode. if several zombies explode at once, the explosion range and damage seems to increase exponentially. the damage from a single UZ explosion is 5 health + 5 magic.

X zombie (XZ): when a head or arm is severed, it remains in phantom form. punches using phantom arms do no damage to health, but double sanity damage. XZ can recover from apparently being killed, in exactly the same way as CZ.


trappers are just trappers; there's little more to say about them. no stats are given for them because anything that can hit them kills them.

horror (H)

horrors come in different sizes as well, though most of them are standard; only anthony and edward encounter exceptions.

horrors take double damage if hit from behind.

horrors attack with a punch (more of a swipe, really), a double punch, or the long-range shock attack. they also discharge when you're close to them (even if you're invisible). the shock attack has extra effects besides damage.

you can't sever horror's torsos. also, some horrors have different energy levels for left and right arms.

C horror (CH): shock instantly exhausts the PC, as if they'd been running (so that you can only stagger away, not run.)

U horror (UH): shock freezes the PC for a short time.

X horror (XH): shock reverses directional controls for a short time.

bonethief (B)

bonethief attacks are a slash, a poke, and of course the pounce-scratch-burrow manoeuvre. as far as i can tell the slash and poke do the same damage; i've not given stats for the pounce-scratch because, like the zombie gnaw, it's not really quantifiable.

when you witness a bonethief bursting from a host, it does extra damage to your sanity.

winged guardian (W)

these are the things that look like grim reapers. the only name for them the game offers is "guardians", in something pious says, and since "guardians" are another kind of monster i've gone with "winged guardians" for the reapers.

winged guardians are simple, in that they have no energy for body parts and take all damage directly on soul, although you can target different sections.

you can't hurt winged guardians unless you either hit them from behind or hit them while their wings are open, just before they strike. in this case, standard damage seems to be damage from behind; hitting them from the front does something like half standard.

winged guardians don't "detect" PCs, that is, there's no initial sanity drain; but they do drain sanity continuously (1/pulse) while they're facing you.

when winged guardians lunge - i can't quite tell what they're doing here, a tail sting? - the target is frozen in place for a short time. if you have a shield and get hit with this, the shield is blown away regardless of how much durability it had left.

guardian (G)

guardians are simple; they don't even have body parts, let alone energy for them.

guardians don't attack physically, except sometimes with a shockwave if you get too close while they're teleporting. i don't seem to have recorded the damage for this.

vampire (V)

the blood drain attack is hard to quantify so i haven't given any stats.

driving off the vampire in its early appearances doesn't require as much punishment as killing it. the second figure for soul in the table is what it takes to drive it off.

driving off the vampire restores 50S, 75S and 100S respectively. although you have to go out of your way to even lose that much.

slaying the vampire recovers all your sanity, so it's impossible to say whether then finishing it restores any (as it would with other enemies). frankly, you're spoiled for sanity during the whole vampire episode.

black guardian (BG)

the black guardian gives me a headache. see separate page.

no stats are given for the XBG's continuous-damage electricity. it only damages sanity, not health (although, if you don't shake it off, your head explodes.)


pious's staff attacks are enchanted. base damage is listed in the table; during his first phase, when he's casting 3pt spells, the enchantment is 3pt; then 5pt, then 7pt. remember that the PCs count as same-alignment. this means the actual damage is 7H/7H/8H.

pious can and will "detect" you repeatedly.

pious is simple; though you can target body parts, he takes all damage directly on soul.


killing innocent humans brings a sanity penalty. killing possessed humans (those with bonethieves inside) doesn't bring this penalty, but you get a bonethief-bursting sanity penalty instead. killing enslaved humans (those drained by a vampire) restores sanity.

as noted, humans are completely non-aligned. enchantment doesn't affect damage at all.


the bishop behaves much like a zombie.

as well as the initial detection sanity damage, the bishop continuously drains sanity (1/pulse) while he's facing you.

cursed anthony

cursed anthony (as fought by paul) is complicated. for a start, uniquely, reducing his "body" energy to zero doesn't kill him, it just lowers soul as with a head or an arm.

the first time you reduce his soul to zero, he'll revive with the same initial soul.

...and then there's tenderisation. this was really screwing up the analysis before i figured it out. basically: if you destroy any of anthony's body parts (reduce them to zero energy) with the mace, then instead of reverting to its initial energy, that body part reverts to minimal energy (1, perhaps). so then, any attack, no matter how weak, will destroy the limb again; and if that second attack is the mace, the limb is again "tenderised". (if you use any other attack, the limb reverts to initial energy again.) like i say, complicated.

alex's enchanted gladius, when thrown, causes this same effect to its target.


little to say about these. any hit will destroy them; they drain sanity at 1/pulse until you kill them.

enemy stats

limb's "soul values" are given in brackets. "kill" means destroying the part kills the creature ("soul value" would be equal to or greater then the creature's initial soul.) "half" means destroying that part twice, or - say - destroying left arm and right arm, kills the creature. (this is generally for the early enemies, where it's impossible to analyse their soul independently because you have no magic.)

there are other cases where it's impossible to nail down values. for instance, there's no way to tell whether an MZ's head takes 3 or 4 to destroy: the only thing fine-tuned enough would be the torch and that kills them instantly. in these cases i've listed whichever value i felt like. (usually, what sounded right.)

"detect" sanity drain and "finish" sanity restore are usually the same, so they share a column.

most creatures' left and right arms are identical, so they share a column.

H = health, M = magic, S = sanity.

DMZ87 (kill)3 (3)3 (3)punch: 5H 5S
SMZ98 (kill)3 (4)3 (4)punch: 5H 5S
MZ109 (kill)3 (4)3 (3)punch: 7H 5S
TMZ1211 (kill)4 (5)4 (4)punch: 8H5S
GMZ1312 (kill)4 (5)4 (4)punch: 8H5S
RMZ1514 (kill)5 (6)5 (5)(a) punch: 8H
(b) punch: 9H
DCZ3827 (kill)5 (8)8 (8)punch: 7H10S
SCZ4330 (kill)6 (9)9 (9)punch: 7H10S
CZ5035 (kill)6 (10)10 (10)punch: 10H10S
TCZ5841 (kill)7 (12)12 (12)punch: 12H10S
GCZ6344 (kill)8 (13)13 (13)punch: 12H10S
RCZ7553 (kill)9 (15)15 (15)(a) punch: 12H
(b)punch: 13H
DUZ159 (kill)8 (8)4 (8)punch: 5H 10M10S
SUZ1711 (kill)9 (9)5 (9)punch: 5H 10M10S
UZ2012 (kill)10 (10)5 (10)punch: 7H 14M10S
TUZ2314 (kill)12 (12)6 (12)punch: 8H 16M10S
GUZ2515 (kill)13 (13)7 (13)punch: 8H 16M10S
RUZ3018 (kill)15 (15)8 (15)(a) punch: 8H 16M
(b)punch: 9H 18M
DXZ1519 (kill)3 (8)6 (4)punch: 5H 5S10S
SXZ1722 (kill)4 (9)7 (5)punch: 5H 5S10S
XZ2025 (kill)4 (10)8 (5)punch: 7H 7S10S
TXZ2329 (kill)5 (12)10 (6)punch: 8H 8S10S
GXZ2532 (kill)5 (13)10 (7)punch: 8H 8S10S
RXZ3038 (kill)6 (15)12 (8)(a) punch: 8H 8S
(b) punch: 9H 9S
SCH14164 (kill)17 (51)r: 34 (43)
l: 17 (43)
punch: 16H
2punch: 31H
shock: 10H
discharge: 7H
CH16575 (kill)20 (60)r: 40 (50)
l: 20 (50)
punch: 19H
2punch: 37H
shock: 10H
discharge: 7H
TCH19087 (kill)23 (69)r: 46 (58)
l: 23 (58)
punch: 21H
2punch: 42H
shock: 10H
discharge: 7H
GCH248113 (kill)30 (90)r: 60 (75)
l: 30 (75)
punch: 28H
2punch: 55H
shock: 10H
discharge: 7H
SUH8564 (kill)13 (50)r: 26 (44)
l: 17 (44)
punch: 11H 22M
2punch: 21H 42M
shock: 5H 5M
discharge: 5H 5M
UH10075 (kill)15 (35)r: 30 (51)
l: 20 (51)
punch: 13H 26M
2punch: 25H 50M
shock: 5H 5M
discharge: 5H 5M
TUH11587 (kill)18 (41)r: 35 (59)
l: 23 (59)
punch: 14H 28M
2punch: 28H 56M
shock: 5H 5M
discharge: 5H 5M
GUH150113 (kill)23 (53)r: 45 (77)
l: 30 (77)
punch: 19H 38M
2punch: 37H 74M
shock: 5H 5M
discharge: 5H 5M
SXH11164 (kill)13 (39)r: 22 (51)
l: 22 (51)
punch: 11H 11S
2punch: 21H 21S
shock: 5H 5S
discharge: 5H 5S
XH13075 (kill)15 (45)r: 25 (60)
l: 25 (60)
punch: 13H 13S
2punch: 25H 25S
shock: 5H 5S
discharge: 5H 5S
TXH15087 (kill)18 (52)r: 29 (69)
l: 29 (69)
punch: 14H 14S
2punch: 28H 28S
shock: 5H 5S
discharge: 5H 5S
GXH195113 (kill)23 (68)r: 38 (90)
l: 38 (90)
punch: 19H 19S
2punch: 37H 37S
shock: 5H 5S
discharge: 5H 5S
CB6220 (kill)17 (kill)14 (31)slash: 15H15S
burst: lose 30S
UB5017 (kill)14 (kill)10 (25)slash: 10H 20M15S
burst: lose 30S
XB4017 (kill)n/a12 (20)slash: 10H 10S20S
burst: lose 30S
CW45n/an/an/asting: 7H30S
GCW68n/an/an/asting: 10H30S
UW35n/an/an/asting: 5H 10M30S
GUW53n/an/an/asting: 7H 14M30S
XW35n/an/an/asting: 5H 5S30S
GXW53n/an/an/asting: 7H 7S30S
CG150n/an/an/a(magic only)50S
UG150n/an/an/a(magic only)50S
XG150n/an/an/a(magic only)50S
n/an/an/apunch: 15Hn/a?
n/an/an/apunch: 10H 20Mn/a?
n/an/an/apunch: 10H 10Sn/a?
CBG?n/an/an/aenergy ball: 5H 5M
pincer: 15H
UBG?n/an/an/aenergy ball: 5H 5M
stomp: 15H
XBG?n/an/an/alightning: 5H 5M
"project-creature": 5H 5M
liche200n/an/an/astaff: 5H +edetect: 25S (rep)
menaced guard
3044 (kill)44 (kill)44 (half)penalty -50S
menaced monk
?6 (kill)2 (kill)6 (half)penalty -50S
other humans(a) 9
(b) 15
22 (kill)22 (kill)22 (kill)punch: 2Hpenalty -50S
(kill enslaved: +35S)
bishop?50 (kill)50 (kill)23 (half)punch: 11H30S
cursed anthony15025 (30)18 (30)r: 18 (30)
l: 18 (15)
punch: 6H
sword: 6H

enemy vs enemy

i've not done a lot of research on this, but i think it goes as follows: if enemies of imbalanced alignments hit each other, attacks by the stronger-aligned enemy do triple damage, attacks by the weaker-aligned enemy do half damage. note however that if either enemy is a player-controlled creature, this rule doesn't apply.

who's who

  • the taller zombie in the second inhabited room is a TMZ.
  • the antorbok RXZ does low damage (a).
  • the magormor RMZ does low damage (a).
  • anthony's horror is nonstandard. it seems to just have half normal energy, or take double normal damage; the only difficulty is in the relative soulvalues of the limbs for the ACH (anthony CH). normally, a CH can survive the loss of both arms and one head, but the ACH can't, so it can't simply be a scaled down CH. with anthony there's no way to gauge soul, so i'm at a loss to account for it.
  • the tall zombie encountered after the horror is a GMZ.
  • there are two taller zombies in the first room; the downscreen one is TMZ and the upscreen one is GMZ.
  • the smaller zombie in this room is an SMZ.
  • the taller zombie in the next room is Tall.
  • the santak rune zombie does low damage (a).
  • the smaller zombie near the black statue is Small.
  • the alignment rune zombie (fought in the ram dao room) is nonstandard. its energy levels are the same as a normal zombie, but its attack does high (b) rune zombie damage.
  • max's servants have the higher listed value of soul (b).
  • in max's basement are two ridiculously tall zombies, though it might just be a trick of perspective. the taller one is just Giant. the shorter one, which contains a bonethief, is nonstandard; it has the energy levels of a rune zombie, and the attack power of a Tall/Giant/Rune (a) zombie.
  • the bankorok RMZ does high damage (b).
  • max's guardian is smaller than the usual size (as encountered by edward) and has half normal energy.
  • the nethlek rune zombie does low damage (a). the tall zombie with it is Tall.
  • there's a short zombie in one of the later rooms. this is a Dwarf. (DUZ)
  • the aretak and tier rune zombies do low damage (a).
  • the possessed monk has the low value of soul (a).
  • the smaller MZ fought after the jewel puzzle is a DMZ.
  • the pargon rune zombie is an exception. it does high damage (b); its energy levels are the same as listed, except for its arms:
    • pargon RCZ: arm 20 (20)
    • pargon RUZ: arm 10 (20)
    • pargon RXZ: arm 16 (10)
  • the tall zombie in the same room is Tall.
  • the small zombie in the corridor past the sliding panel is Dwarf.
  • the workers have high soul (b).
  • the small zombie in the room full of UZs is Dwarf; the tall one is Giant.
  • the nurses have low soul (a). the soldier has high soul (b).
  • the tall zombie found soon after the handleless door is Giant.
  • oh yes... and the black guardian's zombies are nonstandard, too. god, i hate you, black guardian.
    • BCZ (black guardian CZ): seem to take double damage. an unaimed bastardsword strike severs their torsos.
    • BUZ and BXZ: die instantly from almost anything. however, the bastardsword for some reason won't sever their torsos. also, using the mantorok shield to damage them implies they actually have normal energy levels...
    • damage fields wear out only as fast as if they were inflicting normal damage.
    • whatever's going on here, it's a room effect. any zombies you summon have the same properties.
  • all servants have high soul (b).
  • the taller of the two horrors at the city entrance is Tall.
  • the shorter horror in the first room - that is, the room you reach by activating the leftmost array thing - is Small.
  • the seriously frickin' huge horror in the last room (rightmost array) is what i've called Giant.
  • note that these descriptions don't correspond with the Small/Tall/Giant zombies. a Giant horror is bigger relative to a normal horror than a Giant zombie is relative to a normal zombie. they're terms of convenience only.
  • one guardian, the one in the same room as the Giant horror, is half size, but has normal energy, but won't use attack magic.
  • the tall zombie in the first room is Tall.
  • the outsize winged guardian in the next room is what i mean by Giant (GCW, GUW, GXW) - again, an arbitrary description.
  • the small MZ guarding the staff is Small. the tall one is Giant.
  • the small MZ in the prison (where roberto had to raise the bars) is Small. the left tall MZ is Giant and the right one is Tall.
  • the tall zombie that's up against a stronger-aligned zombie is Tall.
  • the tall zombie in the obelisk room and the tall zombie in the effigy-placing room are both Giant.
  • the small MZ on the escape route is Dwarf. the other small zombies are a mixture of Small and Dwarf.


tower reversed