Spectral miner

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Spectral miner
Spectral miner.jpg
Level 40
Family Ghost family creatures
Body Type Biped
Classification(s) Non-corporeal undead
Area(s) Found Shadow Valley
HP 300
Speed ?
Attack Attributes
Physical Attacks
Mining pick +271 AS
Warding Attacks
Curse (715) +193 CS
Offensive Spells & Abilities
Grasp of the Grave (709)
AS Booster +75
Defense Attributes
Reinforced Leather ASG 7
Defensive Strength (DS)
Melee 183
Ranged ?
Bolt 152-187
Unarmed Defense Factor
Target Defense (TD)
Bard Base 158
Cleric Base ?
Empath Base ?
Paladin Base ?
Ranger Base ?
Sorcerer Base 143-166
Wizard Base 164
Minor Elemental 163
Major Elemental 159
Minor Spiritual ?
Major Spiritual ?
Minor Mental ?
Defensive Spells
Spirit Warding I (101)
Spirit Warding II (107)
Spirit Defense (103)
Spirit Shield (202)
Treasure Attributes
Coins Yes
Gems Yes
Magic Items Yes
Boxes Yes
Skin None
Other No

This somewhat orc-like looking humanoid creature is surrounded with an eerie white glow and appears to be transparent. An abundance of excessively wrinkled skin and long bushy grey eyebrows serve to make spectral miner appear ancient.

Hunting strategies

The best strategy for hunting spectral miners is to stance dance for all professions and hunting styles except CS-casting ones, although stance dancing may be good for them too depending on the spells use. Miners have a really low DS for their level and are always in offensive stance when genned. Many professions also have quite an easy time uphunting them if they are very cautious to not get caught in offensive stance when a miner uses its AS-boosting ability. It is worth remembering that your DS will be significantly lower in Shadow Valley than elsewhere.

For wizards, Minor Steam is very effective vs their ASG 7 armor, especially since you don't care about the lack of steam death crits. At 35 trains, I can almost always kill with a channeled evoked Hand of Tonis bolt to knock down followed up with 2 Minor Steam.

Other information

  • Spectral miners have the chance to drop the alchemy components: ayanad, s'ayanad, t'ayanad and n'ayanad crystals
A spectral miner gestures sharply at you!
Numerous grotesque limbs in varying states of decay suddenly burst out of the floor!  With startling speed and ferocity, the arms grab at whatever they can!
The arms snatch viciously at you and drag you down the to the floor!
Roundtime: 5 sec.
  • Spectral miners have an AS booster, which doesn't happen that often, that can raise their AS much higher for one swing. Here is an example:
A spectral miner eyes flare with evil red light!

A spectral miner swings a mining pick at you!
  AS: +326 vs DS: +229 with AvD: +31 + d100 roll: +96 = +224
   ... and hits for 44 points of damage!
   Right hand smashed into a pulpy mass.
   You are stunned for 1 rounds!

  • Spectral miners can shake off stuns upon displaying the following message:
A spectral miner wails in joyful agony!
  • Other Messaging:
A spectral miner walks right out of a wall without warning!

Behind the Scenes

These are the cursed workers of Muylari's mining crew, who perished upon awakening the Terrorite demon which was dormant below ground. They are likely an allusion to the miners in "The Shadow out of Time" by H.P. Lovecraft, which is part of the background for The Graveyard and The Broken Lands. Like the Shadow Valley story its narrator suffered from amnesia and pseudo-memories, and was afflicted with "daemoniac dreams", experiencing a demon wind of the eldritch Elder Things in underground ruins. The exits of Shadow Valley are plunges into chasms of utter darkness with unknown felt horrors, returning to the waking world, reflecting the endings of both "Shadow" and "The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath." It is noteworthy that they were phased into the mineshaft walls, possibly due to an isles of transfer phenomenon, reminiscent of the later Ur-Daemon of Teras Isle. The skull of one miner was clearly elven, which relates to the archaic lore of orcs originating in the transformation of cursed elves. On the other hand, there is a subtext of fairy mythology throughout the story, and the fey are often referred to as elves (or appear that way as with the Ilvari of the Red Forest.)

Like the ghostly pookas coming from Celtic mythology, whose black horse form with their heavy chains came from folklore rather than Rolemaster, the orc-like spectral miners may be based on the Welsh/Cornish "knockers" who were sometimes thought to be the ghosts of deceased miners. The strange sounds and the partially dematerialized mining equipment and excavators likely comes from "The Mound" ghost-written by Lovecraft. The horror of the scene is things from later times being found in impossibly old and sealed off places, which is the implicit theme of The Broken Lands. In this context the skull in the wall is relevant because that story ends with the reanimated headless body of the narrator of the older expedition. The Terrorite demon closely resembled the Great Old One Yig, Father of Snakes, and the flying serpent avatar of Klysus (Luukos).

Of special interest for interpreting the demon is the intrusion of foreign memories in the mine shaft. Consider: "Faint echoes of a strange singsong chant enter your mind without the courtesy of using your ears. Disturbed, you can find no visible source of the uninvited memories." This is also an unambiguous allusion to "The Call of Cthulhu": "Now and then the less organized ululation would cease, and from what seemed a well-drilled chorus of hoarse voices would rise in sing-song chant that hideous phrase or ritual: Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn."

This is translated as: "In his house at R'lyeh, dead Cthulhu waits dreaming." It is reminiscent of "Kadaena Throk Farok" and the Dark Shrine relief, along with the Abdul Alhazred couplet. Their tunnels are reminiscent of the dark grotto and were probably flooded with black ooze, which may really be the magru as shoggoth-like hybrids of Absorbers and Hoard, which had phasing powers and so explaining endogenously the emulsified chalk and equipment. Shadow Valley would have originally been located near the underground portal of The Broken Lands, whose premise includes making powerful demons that sleep over long eons. (It is probably the case that the Shadow Valley release event was the result of a celestial alignment causing the valley to shift and allowing the demon to wake up again.) The unnaturally lit white tunnel deep into the earth, along with the dreams and sorrowful phantasms, fungi, webbing, zigzag shapes, dragon, buried alive, and mist valley of dead trees reflect "The Fall of the House of Usher". The ruined temple on the shadow plain refers also to the fallen house of Usher, but also the gilded temple from "The Mound", and the farm house near the bridge at the end of "The Colour Out of Space". It might serve as a dual reference to the farm house from "The Whisperer in Darkness" which addresses the places in "The Mound", along with Yuggoth which has black rivers of pitch and bridges. The maddening metallic sound in Usher could reflect a Sheruvian monastery script by the summoning chamber, though that is unlikely, with the shield as gong and eye shaped windows in the Dark Shrine. The broken bridge could refer to the folk lore tale of the "Kelpie's Bridge", where kelpies are fey water spirits in the shape of "demon horses", who drown those foolish enough to ride them.


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