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Advanced Key Questing: Powering Up Your Way To Victory

by musicoftheflute


Most people would say the best place to start is the beginning. As far as Key Quest is concerned, I would have to differ. So as the title indicates, this is meant to be a guide for bumping you up to the advanced level of Key Quest – not to get you started.

If you don’t know how to play Key Quest, or you just played once and you kinda sorta got through the game (mainly because whenever you clicked on the dice, there was this really cool spinning graphic *-* You have no idea what it did, but because of its allure, you kept spinning the dice), then I’d suggest just going and jumping into a game of Key Quest! Just jumping right into it allows you to get a good feel for the game yourself and will help you figure out more innovative things on your own later because you’ll have a better understanding of how things work. If, however, you already feel you have a good foundation for Key Quest, then this guide is for you!

For several sections of this guide, I will be discussing what I believe to be the key to unlocking your true potential in Key Quest – namely, the powerups. The three main factors in Key Quest would be the mini-games, just plain luck, and then powerups. Out of these three components, powerups are the most stable and constant factor that you will, for sure, get in every game of Key Quest you play. Mini-games can happen here and there, and definitely can play a role in how the game unfolds, but some games just don’t have very many mini-games played in them. For luck, in a game, you could get very lucky or you could get several unlucky rolls in a row. Either way, though, because it is just chance, in the long run your luck will even out, so it doesn’t help to rely on that.

That, of course, leaves powerups! And the great news about using powerups is that it is strategy based, which means by thinking of powerup uses in new ways and through combining powerup usage, you can really powerup your game to the next level!

Now, enough of my rambling! Time to get on to the powerups. This list of powerups is separated into three sections: powerups you can get in two player games, powerups you can get in three to four player games, and super powerups you get from landing on your alignment square. You can get both the two player powerups and the three to four player powerups in games with three to four players, but you can only get the two player powerups in two player games. You can get the super powerups in any game regardless of the number of players.

Within each section, the powerups are arranged by similarity – you might think I’d organize them by what I consider to be most useful, but they are all useful in their own way. Along with the name of the powerup, I’ll give a very short description of it to make sure you know what I’m talking about, but in addition to that, I’ll also give you tips on when to use that powerup individually. After all of the powerups have been listed, I’ll give tips on how to powerup combinations, and even later on how to protect yourself with powerups and deal with an opponent’s powerups. Remember, it’s not the powerup that is important, but how and when you use different powerups that makes you an advanced player.

- - - - - - - - - - Two Player Powerups - - - - - - - - - -

Pocket Portal – This powerup allows you to automatically teleport to one of the portals on the board. After going the few spaces to grab a yellow or white key, you can use this powerup so you don’t have to go through the entire path. The other use for this powerup would be to get yourself back on a course you want to be on if your direction has been changed by an opponent or an event.

Mortog - This powerup allows you to jump to a space in front of an opponent of your choosing. The uses of the Pocket Portal apply to this powerup as well. Additionally, though, this powerup can be used to jump in front of an opponent that is just about to get another key. So you can let them do all the rolling to get to the key, and then you can use this powerup and just reap the benefits. This also applies when you are trying to get to the door – nothing like a jump start!

Transporter Helmet – This powerup allows you to trade spaces with an opponent of your choosing. Remember, though, you will continue traveling in the direction they were traveling. While this powerup has the uses of the Mortog and Pocket Portal powerups – nothing like grabbing the white key and then letting someone else roll the rest of the way around the board – the Transporter Helmet has an added offensive side to it. If an opponent is about to get their last key or on the way to the door, you can purposely go along one of the longer paths and then switch places with them! This will throw them off track and force them to spend a turn or two getting back on their desired path, and it gives you more time to come up with something else – or simply win for yourself.

Misdirected Compass – This powerup allows you to reverse the direction of any player. Note that I said any player – that includes yourself. The offensive possibilities are fairly clear: turn your opponent in the opposite direction so they have to spend time rolling along a path they just traveled or turn them around right before they’re about to get a key so that they don’t get the chance to grab it. The overlooked side of this powerup, though, is its defensive side. Similar to the last three powerups, the misdirected compass can be used after you get a key so that you don’t have to spend all of that time continuing along the path. This powerup is also very good for use in combination with other powerups – look to the end of the powerup list for more on this.

Boots of Flight – This powerup allows you to roll two dice instead of one. Remember, though – you are rolling two separate dice, not one twelve sided dice. This alters the probabilities of rolling the different numbers. When you roll two dice, the most commonly rolled sum is seven. Next is six and eight, and then five and nine, and so on expanding out from seven. While the primary use of this powerup is so that you can quickly get around the board (hey, it’s almost like getting two turns instead of one), this change in probabilities can be used to your advantage. While it is still only chance you’re relying on, every little bit helps. So, if there is something that is 7 spaces away that you want to land on (perhaps your alignment or the treasure chest) then it doesn’t hurt to roll the dice and see what happens!

Virtudice – This powerup allows you to automatically roll a six. Seems simply enough, right? The most common use of this dice is just to get as far as you can on a roll. I’d have to suggest another use for this, though. If possible (that is, as long as I don’t already have 3 powerups and can afford to hold on to it) then I will keep this powerup until there is something that I want to land on that is six spaces away. This way I know I’ll be able to land on that square (whether it is a mini-game, my alignment, or the treasure) without having to rely on chance.

Loaded Gummy Dice – This powerup allows you to pick what number you will roll. For some strange reason, I have seen many people exchange this powerup for the Virtudice powerup! You won’t find me saying this with any other powerup, but the Loaded Gummy Dice is simply better than the Virtudice powerup. This is because with the Loaded Gummy Dice, you can roll a six too – if that is what you want. You could also roll the other numbers. Much like the Virtudice, I see people use this simply so they can get a six and move farther than they would with a random roll, but please, don’t do that! Save this powerup and land on either your alignment square or the treasure chest depending on what point of the game you are currently in. If you need that last key, go for the treasure chest square. But if an opponent is just about to finish, go for your alignment square and hope for a good powerup!

Rainbow Fountain Water – This powerup allows you to change a key from one color to another for any player. This powerup is great because of both its defensive and offensive possibilities, depending on whether you change one of your keys or one of your opponents. The obvious uses for this would be changing one of your doubles into a key you need or messing up an opponent by changing one of their keys into a color they already have. The advanced uses, though, come around when you combine this powerup with others.

Distraction Potion – WATCH OUT BEHIND YOU! *grabs your on-hand neopoints* Mmk, so yes. This powerup allows you to trade one of your keys for an opponent’s key. While I most frequently see this powerup used defensively (trading a duplicate key you have for one you need), I would think first of this powerup's possible offensive qualities. Namely, messing up your opponent when they have all 5 keys and they’re just about to make it through the door. Hey, you might mess up yourself in the process too, but at least you still have a chance to win! Not to mention, you probably have another idea up your sleeve, though, quite possibly a powerup combination because you decided to keep reading this guide! ;)

Spare Key Ring – This powerup allows you to take any extra keys an opponent might have. To put it simply, this powerup is amazing. A good quester will use this to take a key from an opponent if an event causes them to get doubles of a key. An advanced quester will use powerup combinations to purposely get an opponent to get doubles of a key.

Giant Lint Ball – This powerup prevents an opponent from getting any keys or powerups for their next turn. Remember – that includes things that they would take from you. The offensive capabilities of this powerup are plain and simple. The defensive properties of this powerup are almost always overlooked, but are nonetheless helpful and will be examined later.

Tornado Ring – This powerup randomly changes the powerups of a player of your choice. Remember, that includes yourself. This powerup must be used very carefully when it comes to its offensive uses.... While it could get rid of a powerup you don’t want an opponent using, it could also give them a new one you really don’t want them using. Out of the frying pan and into the fire as the expression goes. Take into account how many powerups you’re going to be affecting; if they just have one powerup and it’s pretty bad, then go ahead, but if they have three and the one you want to get rid of won’t completely ruin the game, then perhaps look for other ways to solve the situation. As for the defensive use of this powerup, I do not think I have ever seen any of my opponents use it before. If you have one or two other powerups that you don’t want to use, or perhaps you just want to shuffle things up a bit, then go ahead and use this powerup on yourself to change out your other powerups for new ones.

Sticky Hand – This powerup will allow you to steal a powerup from one of your opponents. This powerup is offensive and defensive and is fairly straightforward in its uses. Prevent an opponent from using a potentially devastating powerup on you, or just grab a powerup you want to use on an opponent. The only thing I really want to mention here is to remember that if they get a sticky hand, grab it with your stick hand! While this is a rather simple tip, it’s still something I see a lot of people miss.

Battle Dice – This powerup allows you to automatically battle another player of your choosing. If you win, you get a powerup, and if they win, they get a powerup. The only time I really like to use this powerup is if the game is nearing an end and my opponent is about to win. Hopefully, it’ll bring me a good powerup to at least delay the game a little longer and give me more time to come up with a strategy. If you don’t mind the chance of your opponent getting a powerup, then you can use this whenever you want. I would have to suggest using it when your opponent already has three other powerups, though. At the very least, this means that they don’t just get a free powerup and they have to give up one of their current powerups to get a new one (unless they want to keep all of their current powerups).

- - - - - - - - - - Three to Four Player Powerups - - - - - - - - - -

Pocket Mini-game – This powerup automatically begins a random mini-game. I don’t see many people that actually use this powerup. Perhaps because of the chance of an opponent getting a key or powerup instead? Either way, if you are thinking about using this, all I can suggest is to first have a mini-game square landed on by a player so you can see where you are skill-wise for games against the other players. Then make a judgment call.

Catapult – This powerup sends a player of your choosing back to their home square. Notice how I say “a player”, not “an opponent.” This means you can also send yourself back home. The most frequent thing I see this powerup used for is to prevent an opponent from getting a key they need or from getting to the door. Basically, something to buy you more time. I’d like to suggest these defensive uses. First off, if for whatever reason you’ve lost the key that is close to your home, use this powerup to send yourself back to your home so you can grab that key. For defensive uses on other players, look forward to the powerup combination section!

Bottled Quicksand – This powerup causes an opponent of your choosing to lose their next turn. The offensive qualities of this are obvious, but the defensive qualities are overlooked. More on this in the powerup combination section, but basically, you can prevent an opponent from using a powerup on you while you run to the finish line.

Pile of Dung – This powerup allows you to place a pile of dung anywhere on the board you want for one turn. No player can pass the dung. The most common use for this is to simply prevent a user from moving anywhere that turn, effectively acting similar to the Bottled Quicksand. An advanced player would use this to force an opponent to take a certain path. This is harder to do with just a single pile of dung, though, so check the Super Pile of Dung powerup for more information on this.

Giant Rock Mote – This powerup allows you to send a rock mote rolling in a direction of your choosing for 15 squares. Anyone that it hits loses their turn. It is similar to both the uses of Bottled Quicksand and Pile of Dung as far as causing another play to lose their turn. The advantage to this powerup is that you can get all of your opponents at once with it.

Key Grabber – This powerup allows you to take a key of your choosing from an opponent. Fairly straightforward in strategies and uses; look forward to the combination section to see what you can do once this has been used on you or hopefully what you can do to prevent this from being used on you.

Swap Key Ring – This powerup allows you to trade all of your keys for all of the keys of another player. This can be a nasty powerup to deal with, but look at the powerup combination section for ways for that can almost always prevent this powerup from being a disaster. As far as using this powerup for a strategy yourself, I would not completely rely on it. There are too many other things that could go wrong, and this powerup can be turned against you, so if you do come up with a strategy that involves this powerup, make sure you have a second plan in your back pocket in case something goes wrong.

- - - - - - - - - - Super Powerups - - - - - - - - - -

When you land on your alignment square, you randomly get one of these four super powerups. They resemble their basic powerup counterpart, but they have a little bit more – which makes them super!

Super Key Grabber – Instead of grabbing just one key, you can now take two keys from a player of your choice. You have to take both keys from the same player, though, so think carefully. This powerup can be devastating, so check the powerup combination section for ways to avoid its wrath.

Super Boots of Flight – Instead of rolling two dice, you get to roll three! Zoooom around the board you go. Because you are now rolling three dice, the probabilities have changed from rolling two dice. When rolling three dice, the sum is most commonly ten or eleven, and then nine or twelve, eight or thirteen, and so on.

Super Catapult – Instead of sending one person home, you can send two players home! Again, remember you can send yourself home if you want. Additionally, you do not have to send two people home, and you can only send one person home if you want. Refer to the basic Catapult powerup for the strategies, as well as looking to the powerup combination section under the basic Catapult powerup.

Super Pile of Dung – Instead of placing one pile of dung, you can now place two! While you can use this to prevent two people from moving that turn instead of just one, let me suggest a better use. Instead, use the two piles of dung to force someone to take a certain path. For example, let’s use the Neopia Central board, and say the player just passed the Neohome start and grabbed their final key, the blue one. They think they’re about to win, but you have a secret plan up your sleeve! You have the Super Pile of Dung. Place one pile of dung on the mini-game square just below the treasure chest square. This will prevent the player from going up on their next roll, forcing them to begin the long path that has the white key. But wait; there is also the portal so how do you stop them from using that? Well, simply place the pile of dung on the other portal, the one that is above the door. That way, when they pass over the portal on the bottom of the board, they cannot go through it because the pile of dung blocks the exit portal! Now, instead of simply delaying them by one turn, you’ve delayed them by three or four turns because they have to go around part of the board now! Much better use, don’t you agree?

That pretty much covers the individual strategies for powerups! For the next week, when you play Key Quest, try to keep these strategies in mind. Also, make sure to look forward to next week’s section in which I will discuss strategies involving combining powerups! If you have any questions or comments, feel free to neomail me!

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