There is no doubt, there are a large number of quests in DDO, with many getting a lot of play time and with others barely getting any play time. A lot of this has to do with the experience quests hand out, the ease of which the quest can be run to maximize the experience per minute ratio, as a favor grind, and for pieces of wanted loot or gear as well as other factors. One set of quests that is not as popular as many others are the quests within the Ruins of Threnal Adventure Pack. I always found Threnal fun and very interesting, exploring the three excavation sites (Western, Eastern, and Southern) and tracking down the mysteries held within in each. However, there are four other quests in this area that hardly ever get ran. These quest include the Threnal Arena, The Giant Lieutenants, The Giants’ Lair, and The Giants’ Supplies. I recently took Hamllin (Level 12 Fighter) through all of these quests and was reminded how fun they are.
One of the reasons why these quests aren’t run all that much is because they don’t show up in the Adventure Compedium and completing them doesn’t help you gain any favor. Also, three of the four quests don’t appear in your quest journal. Of the four quests, Threnal Arena is probably the most commonly ran. This is mainly because after its completion you can pick up either the Threnalian War Blade or Threnalian War Dagger. The quest is unique in that it starts after you “talk” to the altar in the ruins of the Threnal Arena and put down the Threnalian Ceremonial Blade that you pick up after completing the Western Excavation. The quest has three waves of combatants: Apprentice Challenge, Master Challenge, and Grandmaster’s Challenge. The foes you fight in each challenge get more difficult and range from annoying rust monsters, gargoyles, flesh renders, fire reavers, ice flensers, and with beholders in the last challenge. Each wave offers a small amount after its completion. Overall the quest isn’t all that difficult but if you aren’t careful the beholders can easily drain you of all of your levels, which nearly happened to me.
The next three quests are collectively known as the “Giant Caves”. As you can guess by that statement and by the name of the quests, they are entirely composed of giants, hill giants and fire giants. These particular set of quests used to be considered one of the best loot runs, basically when the level cap was around 10 and 12. It is ironic how a set of quests that used to farm relentlessly are now really just a “relic.” People used to come into these quests looking for +1 Stat Tomes, +5 Mithral Full Plate armor, and one of “top five” weapons (disruptors, banishers, vorpals, smiters, and paralyzers).
Two of quests that compose the giant caves are level 9 on normal while the last one, The Giants’ Supplies, is level 10 on normal. All three quests are pretty short. The dungeon layout for all three is pretty straight forward. The Giant Lieutenants is quest that is closest to the arena. The other two quests aren’t very far from the primary Threnal quests. In the Giant Lieutenants, your objective is to slay five hill giant lieutenants, pretty straightforward. You will encounter other hill giants and fire giants as well. In the The Giants’ Lair your objective it way waste to all of the giants and slaughter them all. In the last, the Giants’ Supplies you have to destroy all of the crates that are scattered about in the main room (which has an upper level and lower level that you use giant mushrooms to travel back and forth from) and to destroy the fire giant leader.
All three quests are relatively straight forward, but it must be cautioned that these giants aren’t simple pushovers either. They also tend to group together and like to swarm their enemies and they can be extremely dangerous if you aren’t prepared for such tactics. Separating them is probably the best option and fire resistance/protection is a must in all three caves.
It is a shame that these quests aren’t run more frequently. I wish they were fixed to include favor when that system was released years ago. I’m not sure why they weren’t added that way. They are actually quests with objectives. Although they are short they can be pretty tough.
The next time you are in the Threnal Ruins, try giving them a shot. Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting in the Ruins of Threnal!!