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The "Lytha way"
"Lytha way" - how pretentious can you get!
Okay. After you had now your time for this insighful comment, I would like to explain what this section of my homepage is all about.
Once upon a long time ago - some months, I would say - when everyone was waiting impatientely that the Editor for Thief - The Dark Project would be released (or was worrying that it would never be released), a small group of bored Thief-fanatics founded new playing styles. Besides the "Psychotic Mass-Murderer!", the "Coward", the "Dumbhead" and other intruiging ideas, this playing style named "Lytha way" was also born. It got the name because of the simple fact that our good friend Cadfael gave the child this name, and that was because I, Lytha, argued much about this gaming style. It is not an attack of pretentiousness of myself, I am just using the name of that playing style that will give a person most results when he tries the famous "search-function" of the TTLG-Forums.
The basic rules are really simple:
1.) Play in Expert Difficulty
2.) Get all the loot
3.) Don't deal any damages. ( * )
Basically, you should want to keep the damages dealt as low as possible. If you achieve this by none of the excluded actions ( * ), then you are really good.
If you are as perfectionistic as Sophie and I are, then you will also strive to get all the pickpockets, and all the items from the mission. Yes, this includes also the 2 moss arrows in the 1rst floor of the Mine in Cragscleft. If you are a real weirdo like myself, you will also enjoy reducing your hitpoints voluntarily at the beginning of the mission (by falling from some roofs), not purchase anything in the loadout screen (Garrett should save his money instead of wasting it with items that he doesn't need at all), and after all this, you will happily sneak through the mission, and experience fear and angst again (when i.e. a curious Fireelemental approaches you very closely in the Court of Lost City, and you know exactly that it will kill you if it only touches you accidentally...
Even though the rules are pretty harsh (not even hammering Hammerites should be allowed!), I see them relatively flexible, personally. If a mission like Undercover is not only filled with my most disliked enemies, had lots of noisy floor tiles in plain light, and would take really much time and nerves (and reloads) to finish it following the restrictive rules, then I expand them for my own purposes... since hammering Hammerites does not count as dealing damages, and since Hammerites are religious fanatics, I definine for myself that hammering them to death is allowed. But this should not be called "Lytha way" then no more, because it contains several murders. Call it "0 damage way" then, and everyone will be happy.
However, the main point is that the player experiences fun while he is playing - so feel free to experiment with whatever rules you create for your own. :-)
The "Lytha way" is in some missions not much more difficult that playing the mission as it should be played (knock everything out that is in your way). In fact, I think that especially Lord Bafford's Manor is a pretty example of a mission that takes longer and is even more difficult if the goal is to knock everyone out. In the "Lytha way", you just run through it and get never seen - in the "normal" way, you have to sneak up on the Guards to knock them out.
In other missions, of course, it becomes very quickly to an extremely non-enjoyable pain. If you have ever tried to play the Thieves' Guild, Undercover, or (even worse!) Escape without ever cursing a lot because the Thieves have seen you - again, hammering a Hammerite, or shooting gas arrows at the crowd in the entrance area of Constantine's Mansion, then you know how much of a pain it can become.
The intention of the "Lytha way" is to enhance the enjoyability of the game, to increase the replayability (by creating a new objective), and in one word: to have fun.
If you ever tried but failed, this indicates nothing but that you might need more patience (observe the movement patterns of all these Guards, so that you know which areas are safe and which aren't), more lore about the mission (which places are safe places-to-flee-to in a mad chase), and also a tiny little bit of more practice (i.e. it took me also a while to figure out how to get the sceptre of Bafford without ever getting seen). This here is a place where you can find some lore about the most difficult areas of a mission.
Don't get desperate, don't try to get your head through the wall, don't send me complaining emails, don't send me emails about why you prefer the "Psychotic Mass-Murderer". Try it, enjoy it or not - main point is that you have fun in the game Thief - The Dark Project.
* meaning: Don't lead anyone into traps, don't drown anyone, try to avoid gang-wars, don't use holy water on Undead, don't kill anyone with a hammer, don't shoot gas-arrows at your enemies, don't find other nifty ways to get rid of your enemies. Just sneak through the mission, and avoid getting seen.
Click in the left navigation bar on the mission about what you want to read hints about the "Lytha way" and fun of the extreme kind.