Black Book – Useful Tips and Tricks for Newbies

Here’s a few tips for new players to get over those game anxieties!

Beginners Tips

How to skip the dialogues/cut scenes upon re-load

Try to scroll with mouse wheel during dialogues.

How to kill Heretic (vampire)

You have to use the Key card that dispels the Koldun Fiend. Once you remove his status, you can damage him.

Your book is too full!

If you have more that thirteen pages, really ask yourself why. The less pages you have, the more consistent your book will be. In general, try to have around 9 orders and 4 keys. Why that number specifically? Well…

Invest in the skill that lets you draw more keys first!

These skills are not level locked, so you could take these at level 2 and level 3. Why are they so good? They will ensure that you’ll know for a fact what you’ll draw every turn. This means every turn, you could play something like 3 Key-Tongue and a In Father’s Name. That’s 3 guaranteed damage, and even more if you…

Buff yourself!

Piling statuses on yourself will snowball really quickly. Let’s say on our Key-Toungue deck mentioned above we throw on one George the Father. Well because of Well Versed, now we’re doing a free 15 damage a turn instead of a free 3 damage. And we have some ward too, from In Father’s Name, so we’re building some passive shield too. But some enemies early game can dish out serious damage. How can we work on our defenses but still deal damage?

Lay waste to your enemies!

Early game, waste is a beautiful damage dealer. Think about this: we could use Urazi to deal 4 damage, or we could use Skorchit to deal 3. Seems like we should use Urazi, right? Well, in two turns, that Skorchit will deal 5 damage, and the Urazi will still have dealt 4. Waste builds fast. If I use 2 Skorchits in a turn, I do 6 damage that turn, and 5 damage the next. That’s 11 damage in 2 turns from 2 cards, and the second turn I can just build my shield and still do passive damage.

Here’s an early game deck

I highly advise you play around with your own decks. In the end game, I used only white cards and threw out 13 pages on turn 2, so by the end you’ll have a lot of room to get creative. But if you’re struggling in early game, try this:

Pages

  • 2 George the Father
  • 2 Avoil
  • 2 Kila
  • 3 Skorchit

Keys

  • 3 Key-Tongue
  • 1 Amen or Once and Forever.

The strategy is to play at least 1 George the Father and 1 Avoil early game to build some prayer up while protecting yourself. If the enemy isn’t doing damage, play a Skorchit instead of a Avoil. Once you have enough prayer, your Key-Tongues will be doing crazy damage, and your Kila will be insane because of the well-versed bonus they’ll get from the Key-Tongues. All of these verses are available in the first seal.

You can sin!

Don’t stress over every little sin, you’re allowed to accrue quite a bit, and you won’t be locked out of the good ending. In my first play though, I had at the height 16 sins, and ended the game with 0 sins just by doing “good” things in the story. From what the creators said, keeping below 100 is your best bet, which wasn’t a struggle at all. There also doesn’t seem to be any reward in story for doing a completely sinless run, but that does make for a fun challenge run later down the line. Your only real source of sin should be Chorts, which speaking of…

Don’t get too pestered!

Early on, don’t be afraid to send your Chorts on (low sin) missions. Specifically, the one that lower the damage of your spells, and the one that lowers the shield gain of your spell can be pretty devastating early on. That being said, in the long run they don’t really hurt at all. There’s a skill tree that lets you send up to 2 Chorts on meaningless jobs; I took those two skills at level 8 and 9 and only ever let 2 Chorts go on jobs. I had 5 other Chorts, and I just let them pester me. Also, you will get more Chorts just by leveling up, so if you beat an encounter and wonder why a new Chort joins, it’s because of the level up and not because of the encounter itself. Enjoy this wonderfully esoteric game!

Other Tips

Keeping deck to a minimum is really the best advice you can get in this game. The only exception is to have some niche cards on top of your standard 13 IF you have perks to draw more cards every turn and you’re too lazy to change deck before a specific encounter. The best one from this category is the black card that dispels a positive status on your enemy, as it trivializes certain enounters.

Try to have a synergistic deck based on one mechanic. There are a lot of things that work: stacking blessings, stacking colors, stacking damage type. As you can see, the key word is “stacking”, don’t be all over the place.

Very good (and fast, which is very important as the game is long and the fights are numerous, most of them are quite generic, so assembling a kill combo for 10 turns to kill some random demon becomes boring fast) early-mid game deck is based on the status that reduces enemy attack (I don’t know how is it translated to english, sorry). You take tier 3 spells that:

  • Debuff enemy attack
  • Multiply the attack debuff x2
  • Deal damage equal to attack debuff status x3
  • Fill the rest of the deck with whatever you like, it does not really matter much. I took some block cards that are also multiplied if the enemy is debuffed, and attack cards that deals double damage if the enemy is debuffed

Not only this deck reduces even the stronges enemies’ attack to nothing ON TURN 1, but also lets you one-shot bosses pretty easily: 3cursesx2x3 that’s >300 damage right there in one turn, multipliers are very strong in this game.

  • 0-sin playthrough seems to be possible if you invest into Chort management skills from the start and equip an item that reduces their debuffs (I’m not sure if it works properly at this point though). Later on, their debuffs become irrelevant.
  • Don’t neglect herbs, especially the ones that remove debuffs from yourself.
  • If you click on the right corner of your book during the fight, you can see your deck, which cards are in discard pile and which are exiled (sorry for using MTG terminology here, as again I don’t know how these terms are translated to English). Very useful for puzzle encounters
  • Make sure you talk to your companions every time they have an exclamation mark. If you talk to them enough times, they give you a specific quest which upgrades them significantly. It is possible to miss these quests, so make sure to talk to them every time you have a chance and exhaust all dialog options.

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