Good Times Over the Past Week, May 26th to May 29th

This weeks questing activities were varied and fun .  The week started off with some runs during the night of Memorial day when I took Stoorage (Level 10 Fighter) into the capstone quest of the Sharn Syndidate Series, Come Out and Slay.  Stoorage happens to be one of my characters on my premium account and since I wasn’t grouped with anybody who could open the quest on elite, I had to run it on normal, hard, and elite.  Shortly after I completed my elite run, I joined up with Hellbanisher who was working in the Searing Heights exploring area and was having problems locating one of the explorer points, the Lone Tree.  So I popped in there with him and took him to his last explorer point.  Shortly there after he had to log out for the night so I then took Stoorage out into Three Barrel Cove and ran the quest, The Stones Run Red.  After having some fun with the ogres and mephits I called it a night myself.

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Stoorage taking on Talon of the Sharn Syndicate.

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Stoorage floating down on top of a Bloodtide pirate.

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Stoorage wondering what is behind the door in the Stones Run Red.

Tuesday morning brought back the normal work routine and playing schedule, which meant my morning slayer run before work.  That morning I was scheduled to run Suppply but the game was down for some maintenance so instead I ran my Ragnar, my spirt shaman, in Neverwinters Nights II.  I finally finished the Fort Locke quests and made my way to High Cliff where I now need to prep to take on some lizardfolk.  At that point, I logged out and headed off to work.  When I got back home I logged on with Erdrique (Level 12 Druid).  I was planning on taking Erdrique into the next quest of the Threnal East Chain but I still had a minor slayer potion pot with about a half hour of time still on it.  So instead I headed off into the Red Fens and collected slayers until the slayer potion ran off.  After I ran through the Fens for a little while, I logged out for a little while.  After a few hours after dinner and spending some time with my wife, I logged back on with Wapoyei (Level 22 Cleric/Exalted Angel) and took him through VON 3 (The Jungle of Khyber) on Epic Normal and was pleasantly surprised at the smoothness of the run !!  After that I logged out for the night.

Ragnar making his way to High Cliff photo RagnarmakinghiswaytoHIghCliff_zps8e353175.jpg
Ragnar making his way to High Cliff gets ambushed in Neverwinter Nights II OC.

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Erdrique hunting in the Red Fens.

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Wapoyei breezing throug the Gateway to Khyber.

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Wapoyei and his gang taking on the drow in the Jungle of Khyber.

I logged back on for morning slayer run on Wednesday morning with Wapoyei (again).  As far as slayers are concerned, Wapoyei is working on the High Road.  I took Wapoyei up and down the passages of the High Road fighting a number of half-orcs and Netherese baddies and then logged out to head to work.  Later that afternoon, I logged back on with Erdrique who hit up the Red Fens once again and then headed out to take on the “original” vampire in The Church and the Cult.  I was initially worried about the traps in here on elite but I was able to bypass them pretty well and was able to make it to the vampire with little problems and to complete the quest.  After that run, I logged to spend the rest of the night with my wife.

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Wapoyei exploring the High Road.

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Erdrique and Fang toying with a mudman in the Fens.

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Erdrique having some fun in the Church and the Cult.

Thursday morning saw me log in with Sludgge (Level 20 Rogue/Shadowdancer) who I took into the Ruins of Gianthold (Heroic) for some slayer in the Stormfist area.  After collecting a few slayers, I headed out to work.  Later that afternoon, I logged on with Hamllin (Level 9 Fighter) and took him into the quest, Dead Predators.  I had some fun tripping wight priests and cleaving through a huge mess of dread zombies :).  I logged out after that run and came back on with Berann (Level 7 Barbarian) who I took through Walk the Butcher’s Path, The Sunken Sewer, and the Baudry Cartamon Story Line (Protect Baudry’s Interest, Stop Hazadill’s Shipment, and Retrieve the Stolen Goods).  I had fun with Berann, who was wielding his acid of pure good falchion through countless scores of kobolds :).   

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Sludgge getting ready to surprise some of the Stormfist in Gianthold.

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Hamllin prepping in the Graverobber.

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Berann taking the challenge of the Butcher’s Path.

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Berann annoyed at the bridge in the Sunken Sewer.

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Berann working to protect the crate.

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Berann enjoys making a mess!!

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Berann looking for the stolen goods.

So, as you can see, quite a diversity in runs from low levels, to middle levels, to an epic quest run.  Not a bad week at all :).  Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting!!!

Taking a Stroll Through VON 3 on Epic Normal

Although I do have a good number of characters, the vast majority of them are below level 20, with too them going through the Heroic True Reincarnation train (Erdrique and Hamllin).  This has resulted in few epic content runs for myself.  With that said I do have a few characters that are level 20 and higher including Wapoyei (Level 22, Cleric/Exalted Angel), Rimuldar (Level 22, Wizard/Magister), Kolll (Level 21 Ranger/Shiradi Champion), Garrrin Level 21 (Barbarian/Fury of the Wild), Sludgge (Level 20 Rogue/Shadowdancer) and Larrs (Level 20 Bard/Fatesinger).  However, although these characters are in the epic levels, I have never really concentrated on their gear and I have always considered them to be quite lacking in that area, especially Rimuldar, Larrs, and Sludgge.  I also always feel “queezy” when I play Wapoyei or Rimuldar because they rely more heavily on their spell casting abilities, which I admit, I’m weak on, both in terms of gear and in figuring out the right toggles and buttons to push at the correct moments of time.  The melee and ranged classes have always been more favorable to me.

With that said, I was little worried taking Wapoyei in VON 3 on Epic Normal.  Now, I have to admit, it is epic normal, not epic elite, but I always tend to pick the challenge in difficulty to what I think I can handle, at least for the most part, and based on the reasoning I laid out above is the reason why I entered on epic normal. 

Wapoyei and his gang dealing with the enemies of the Jungle of Khyber photo WapoyeiandhisgangdealingwiththeenemiesoftheJungleofKhyber_zps29e0f1c1.jpgWapoyei making his through the Jungle of Khyber of Epic Normal.

Even with my limitations and experience in epic questing and what I would call minimal gear and lackluster skill, I was pleasantly surprised at my ability to get through The Jungle of Khyber on Epic Normal.  I had with me a Shadowdancer hireling to get the traps, my Onyx panther, my level 17 Owlbear hireling, and a my summon monster with me.  I thought for sure that I would have problems with the multitude of casters in the quest but my only real scare was when I had trouble taking out the optional named drow in the part of the tunnel where you drop down and see him guarded by a plethora of clerics and wizards.  I thought I had gotten in over my head but I was able to back track out of the dead end up the ladder to regroup and was able to head back in and take him out.  I didn’t have any issues at all with the beholders, or the three red names at the end and the Inevitable caused me little problems.

Wapoyei’s healing aura from his Radiant Servant enhancement line, divine punishment, and his light based spells augmented and enhanced his weaker melee attacks.  I was pleasantly surprised at his ability.  Like Kolll, who breezed through his last quest on epic normal as well (The Claw of Vulkoor) I think it is time to start working on Epic Hard difficulties.  We’ll see how it goes but I’m very pleased with his performance through their.  Now, I just need to work on my comfortability with Larrs and Sludgge..who are by far much weaker .

Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting!!  

Anogoreth, A Mystery in the Red Fens

My main character Erdrique (Level 12 Druid) is currently working his way through the Red Fens explorer area, having completed all the other explorer areas (slayers, rares, and explorer points) up to this point.  I have always been intrigued by the Red Fens, as it contains a  number of mysteries, including the rare encounter Anogoreth.  If you have never ventured into the Red Fens (which you can get to by talking to Ormar, a dwarf in House Kundarak) Anogoreth is one of the rare encounters in the explorer zone and he seems to be completely out of place there.  Anogoreth is actually a devil, an abishai in actuality, from Shavarath who seems to have been locked away inside an altar under a great tree in the Red Fens.

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Erdrique fighting Anogoreth in the Red Fens.

Anogoreth can only be summoned by placing the three crests into the altar located under the great tree in the Red Fens.  One crest is located in the destroyed village of the Raveneye Drow, one creast is located by the Zigguarat, and the last crest is located in the great mud pool in the Red Fens.  Once all crests are placed on the altar, Anogoreth is summoned and is quite confused.  As you can tell from my screenshot above, Anogoreth is aware that he was imprisoned but he doesn’t seem to know where he is and is looking for the demons he once battled.

Getting ready to summon some evil photo Gettingreadytosummonsomeevil_zps903accdf.jpgErdrique getting ready to summon forth Anogoreth.
So who imprisoned Anogoreth?  Why was he locked in this altar with these three crests left behind to unlock him?  Why are the crests in the hands of the Raveneye Clan?  How powerful was Anogoreth?  What is the link between Shavareth and Red Fens?  How long has Anogoreth been imprisoned? 

The answers to many of these questions we just don’t know and there aren’t many clues to go by.  Perhaps Anogoreth was a high ranking devil officer that was captured by the demon forces and banished to his tree.  Maybe Anogoreth was overthrown by his own forces or perhaps the Archons had something to do with him.  The real question is how did the crests come into the possession of the Raveneye Drow?  Of course that assumes that the Raveneye Drow understood what the crests were for.  It is also intriguing to realize that a demon hezrou is what has inspired the sahaugin to attack the Raveneye drow.  I wonder if that is linked anyway to Anogoreth.  So many questions and yet so little answers.  I guess that is what leads to a good mystery and an even better adventure!!

Thanks for reading everybody!!  Now go hunt down some enemies in the Red Fens!!  Happy Hunting!!

Item Naming and Crafting

One thing that I think that would be really cool would be the ability to create our own unique item names during the crafting process, whether it be greensteel crafting, Cannith crafting, dragontouched, Thunderforged, or whatever.  I think that would be a really cool concept to add to the game if it were possible.  It would allow us to personalize our equipment, making it feel all that more earned.  I think it would also give the players an idea on how hard it is to develop unique names for equipment.

I know there are a number of famous weapons I wouldn’t mind creating on my own.  I mean what paladin wouldn’t mind having their version of Excaliber?  Of what drow ranger wouldn’t mind having a pair of scimitars named Twinkle and Icingdeath. 

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I think it would be cool to be able to rename this khopesh other than +1 Acid Burst Khopesh of Pure good….

I think a lot of people could have some fun with that ability during the crafting process and of course I wouldn’t make it mandatory to complete the crafting but it definitely would add flavor .

I wonder if we will ever get that ability.  Maybe it will be wrapped up with the development of intelligent and sentient weapons?  Not sure, but it does sound pretty cool to me :).

Well thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting!!

Adventuring over the Holiday Weekend, May 23rd to May 25th

The weekend runs started off with my usual slayer run on Friday morning.  I was scheduled to log on with Hamllin (Level 9 Fighter) and to take him into Tangleroot Gorge.  So I brought him on and ventured around the wilds of the gorge taking on the hobgoblins and other denizens that occur in and around Tangleroot River.  Later that afternoon, after work, I was scheduled to take Hamllin (once again) into Dead Girl’s Spellbook (Valak’s Mausoleum).  I was kind of nervours about this particular quest because it never fails that I get killed once or twice in the wicked blade taps in there because I misjudge where they are (even though I know they are there).  Luckily, I didn’t perish this time and I was able to get my rogue hireling to disable them without any issues.  After that run I had to logout.  Friday night came along and logged on with Erdrique (Level 12 Druid), my main character, and grouped up with Rosnia and we took on the Red Fens, Tomb of the Shadow Lord, VON 3, and The Sanctum: Church of the Fury.  We had some minor problems in Tomb of the Shadow Lord but took it out.  Now Erdrique has all of his level 8 quests completed on elite and has moved to complete his level 9 quests.  He is also well on his way to working on the completion of Red Fens .

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Hamllin approaching a hobgoblin outpost in Tangleroot Gorge.

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Hammy whirling his blades in Dead Girl’s Spellbook.

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Erdrique once again fighting the Luridae drow.

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Erdrique and Rosnia dealing with the shadows, specters, and wraiths in the Shadow Lord.

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Erdrique and Rosnia taking down a fire reaver in Co6.

I didn’t log into the game on Saturday night, instead just worked on some minor character maintenance and spent the rest of night chilling with my beautiful wife .  So I didn’t really get back into some adventures until Sunday night.  On Sunday, I was scheduled to play Containment (Level 4 Cleric).  Containment is one of my characters on my premium account and was level 3 when I started.  Containment is still working on completing all of his Harbor quests on normal, hard, and elite (because he can’t open them up on elite difficulty ).  As a result, I took Containment into the Stealthy Repossession and The Smuggler’s Warehouse and ran through each one on normal, hard, and elite.  After I ran through those two adventures, I logged on with Erdrique and took him into the Red Fens to collect some slayers (I had taken a minor slayer boost).  I ran through their in about a half hour or so and still have about 20+ minutes left on his slayer boost potion, so I’ll be hitting that up again soon.

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Containment up close and personal with a few kobolds in Stealthy Repossession.

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Containment working his way to a kobold shaman in the Smuggler’s Warehouse.

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Erdrique wandering around the Red Fens.

Well, I hope everybody else had an enjoyable weekend!!!  That is all for now, thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting!!    

Wondering About Orphne’s Dream

Currently I’m taking Erdrique (Level 12 Druid) through the Vault of Night Story Arc and the other day I ran The Prisoner (aka VON 2).  The idea behind quest The Prisoner, is that the powerful sorceress Orphne was tricked by assassin from the Inspired and was subsequently poisoned.  As a result, she has fallen under a deep sleep has been trapped inside her dream (the Inspired are members of the Realm of Dreams, who you run across in the Inspired Quarter). 

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Erdrique dealing with the annoying air jets.  At least the quest doesn’t fail anymore when you get knocked off.

My question and thoughts at this point concern Orphne’s Dream.  When you enter her dream, you talk to her to get the quest started and she talks about how lovely her home is.  As you venture further into the quest, I begin to realize that her home isn’t very lovely at all.  First off, it has two treacherous “bridges” that are made from fallen columns that are constantly buffeted by powerful air jets that just love to knock adventures across the map.  Second, it is filled with some pretty vicious monsters including tharaak hounds, arcane oozes, annoying quorit stalkers, and of course the lovely beholders.  Third, what lovely home has a maze?  Fourth, what home contains former adversaries from your past such as huge fire giants?

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Erdrique thinking that his dreams won’t contain any beholders.

All of these questions make me wonder what Orphne actually keeps in her real house and I wonder where her real house actually is?  I’m not so sure I would like to visit such a place myself, lol.  In either case, I just wondered about Orphne’s and her choice of dreams.  Why couldn’t she dream of being in a quiet,serene, and peaceful place? 

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Erdrique taking on Orphne’s shadow.

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Now this part of her dream does seem tranquil.

Well that’s it for now.  Thanks for reading and happy hunting everybody!!  

So What is Whisperdoom’s Story?

Not too long ago, I pondered who and how the fortress of Splinterskull was created.  But another interesting question is how did Whisperdoom ever become the powerful monster that she is?  Now for those who don’t know, Whisperdoom is a huge and magical spider that you first encounter in Splinterskull fortress located in the Tangleroot Gorge explorer area.  Whisperdoom is so powerful, that when you suggest to Ungurz to slay her, he simply laughs at you and tells you to destroy her clutch because that you have a chance to to.  So how exactly did Whisperdoom get so powerful and how exactly did Yarkuch (Splinterskull’s commander) ever become in league with her?

Harrgon fighting the spiders in the Gorge photo HarrgonfightingthespidersintheGorge_zps68cc277a.jpg
Harrgon fighting some spiders in Tangleroot Gorge.  Could these spiders have been offspring of Whipserdoom as well?

Now spiders are definitely common all throughout Stormreach and Evenigstar.  Heck, we run across three poweful spiders even before we leave Korthos Island (Frostbite, Ciccic, and Kraak) however for the vast majority of the spiders we run across we know their origins.  For instance, the three from Korthos Island are ice spiders and are native to the frosty environs of Misery’s Peak.  Other powerful spiders, like Red Fang, were the results of experiments that went awry were others, such as Blood-drinker, were actually the offspring of Whisperdoom herself.  Unfortunately we don’t know how Whisperdoom became who she is, so we can only hypothesize about her origins.

I’m guessing she became as powerful as she is with the help of somebody experimenting on her.  Kind of like how Basil experimented with Red Fang, only I believe this particular person was much more powerful than Basil ever was.  Most likely Whisperdoom was enchanted by a powerful wizard or sorcerer.  Somebody who was able to give the great spiders extraordinary intelligence, tremendous damage resistance, elemental resistance, and terrific fortitude.  All of these were enhanced even greater when Whisperdoom was found by an ogre clan after the fall of Splinterskull where the ogre shamans gave her the gift to be able to cast spells. 

There is no doubt that Whisperdoom’s abilities are legendary.  She was even able to produce some formidable offspring such as Blood-drinker, her numerous daughters, and her glass spider daughters.  Whisperdoom is so powerful, that it makes you wonder if we actually did destroy here in The Spawn of Whisperdoom.  I wonder if we will ever learn how she became as strong as she is.  I think there is an interesting story there for sure.

A Rundown of Quests during the week, May 19th to May 22nd

It was another wacky week for me with my runs in DDO.  I generally have a set schedule of runs during the week and another set during the weekend.  During the typical work week (Mon-Frid), I have broken up my questing runs between a morning slayer run prior to work, an afternoon run when I get home from work and prior to dinner, and then more extensive runs each night (except for date night).  During the weekend nights (Fri and Sat) I typically stay up late and get more quests run but don’t typically work on any slayers.  Each set of runs I have rotated around my numerous characters to make sure they get some play time.  A little unusual, but it seems to work for me.  However, there does happen when a wrench gets thrown into the system.  For instance if I have a late meeting at work, or have to travel out of town, some of “schedule” will then get shifted.  This is what has happened over the past two or three weeks, including this week.

So the week started out fine, except for the fact that DDO was down for maintenance on Monday morning.  So instead of questing in DDO, I logged into Neverwinter Nights II and took my Shirit Shaman, Ragnar, back to Fort Locke and turned in a number of quests and now I’m getting ready to head out to Neverwinter proper.  I didn’t get a chance to log in for any afternoon run on Monday but Monday night, while I was also playing with digital table top group, I took Garrrin (Level 21 Barbarian/Fury of the Wild) through Storm the Beaches and a little bit into the Ruins of Gianthold.  After those runs, I called it a night.

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Ragnar, in NWN II OC, using Neeskha to find a trap.

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Garrrin swimming along in Storm the Beaches.

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Garrrin laying down the final blow on Gold Concord Cleric in Gianthold.

Tuesday morning started out with me logging in with Rimuldar (Level 22 Wizard/Magister) and I took him into the Vale of Twilight.  I wracked up a few Lamannia slayers and then headed off to work.  That afternoon, I logged on with Hamllin (Level 9 Fighter).  Hamllin was working on his level 6 quests and headed into Red Willow Ruins.  After I completed Red Willow Ruins, I logged on with Erdrique (Level 11 Druid) and worked on some character maintenance.  For this week, my wife and I moved date night to Tuesday night because she was scheduled to work on Wednesday so I called it for the night.

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Rimuldar burning up the vermin in Vale of Twilight.

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Hammy cleaning up in Red Willow Ruins.

I logged back on Wednesday morning for my slayer run and took Garrrin into the Ruins of Gianthold (Heroic) where he stumbled upon Lord Jax and finished his rare encounters out there, although he still needs to finish up the slayers.  After work I did a number of runs, since my wife had to work late.  So I worked on completing a few runs that I passed up earlier in the week.  First off, I took Erdrique through the next quest in the Co6 chainThe Fane of the Six: Fall of the Prelate.  He didn’t have much problems at all, I thought the mephits might cause me some issues but I was able to push past them.  Once I got Erdrique through that, I logged Hamllin on took him through The Thrall of the Necromancer where he finished up the Delera’s Story Arc.  I then took a quick break to have dinner and then logged on with Cantlin (Level 11 Sorcerer).  Cantlin is still working on a number of lower level quests so I took him through Archer’s Point Defense, Mirra’s Sleepless Nights, and Ruined Halls.  After those runs I logged out for the night.

Garrrin taking out his frustration on this Runetusk photo GarrrintakingouthisfrustrationonthisRunetusk_zpsee303b26.jpg
Garrrin taking out his frustration on a Runetusk Ogre.

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Erdrique looking for the Prelate in Sorrowdusk Temple.

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Hamllin taking it to the undead in Thrall of the Necromancer.

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Cantlin versus a hobgoblin witch doctor in Archer Point Defense.

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Cantlin getting smacked by a specter while laying down a fire wall in Mirra’s Sleepless Nights.

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Cantlin gazing down one of the passages in the Ruined Halls.

Thursday morning started out with me logging onto my premium account with Stoorage (Level 10 Fighter).  The first thing I did was level him up to 10 and then I took him back out into Three Barrel Cove.  I believe the only rare encounter he still needs out there is Brine, the sahaugin commander.  Once he gets that, and finds the Elusive Bounty explorer point, he will basically be done and will be ready to head out to Sorrowdusk Isle.  Once I got back from work, I logged on with Erdrique who was scheduled to continue with Co6, so I took him through The Sanctum: Quench the Flames.  I figured this particular quest would cause some issues with its deadly traps but I actually fared ok, only watching my druid pet getting killed once or twice.  I logged out for a little while to take care of some odds and ends and logged back on that night with Rimuldar (Level 22 Wizard/Magister) and took him through Beyond the Rift on Epic Normal.  I didn’t realize I hadn’t completed this quest with Rimuldar and I wanted to get him out into Eveningstar.  The run went pretty smoothly.

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Stoorage looking around Three Barrel Cove.

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Erdrique dealing with the mephits and the summoning circles in Sorrowdusk Temple.

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Rimuldar staring down a bebelith in Beyond the Rift.

So those were my runs for this week.  Not bad, nice mix of lower level and some higher level runs out there.  The weekend will most likely be a little short because I don’t plan on logging on Saturday night but then again it is Memorial Day weekend so I can probably make that up on Sunday.  We’ll see.  In any case, I hope everybody has a safe weekend and happy hunting!! 

Hamllin’s Journal-A Small Problem

Quest: A Small Problem
Level 5 (Normal), Level 6 (Hard), Level 7 (Elite)
Crawlers: Hamllin, Okhamel

I’m not entirely sure why Erdrique chose me for this particular mission.  Perhaps he felt that I would be able to be received better by the House Phiarlan elves since I’m elf as well.  Unfortunately that isn’t the case, House Phiarlan is pretty exclusive in who they “relate” too.  Oh well, Erdrique gave me a mission and it is time to carry it out.  I figured I would need some help on this mission so I went to the guild airship to see if anybody was present that could help.  I found Okhamel hammering away at the training dummy and asked for his assistance in this matter. 


On our way to the House Phiarlan Ward of Stormreach, I explained to Okhamel what the mission entailed.  Evidently House Phiarlan has been looking for some help in dealing with a vicious group of spies and assassins better known as the Maleficient Cabal.  A contact from House Phairlan, by the name of Rouge has contacted him asking for assistance.  That was all I knew about the situation until we met up with Rouge in House Phairlan Ward.


Okhamel and I headed out to the House Phairlan Ward shortly after I filled him on the quest particulars that I had received from Erdrique.  It didn’t take us long to find and meet up with Rouge.  Rouge was surrounded by a number of other retainers of House Phairlan at the front of the house ward.  We introduced ourselves to her and quickly learned that she wasn’t an entertainer at all but a House Phiarlan spy.  She informed us that, House Phiarlan had a number of agents spread throughout the House Ward investigating some type of threat from the Maleficient Cabal.  Rouge me the impression that the Maleficient Cabal has been a thorn in the side of House Phiarlan for some time and has caused problems for the spy network in the pass.  Rouge told us the Maleficient Cabal enjoys embarrassing the House and it appears they plan on doing so again.  They apparently want to ruin the latest stage production for the House.  Rouge directed else to talk to Glitter Underhill, who was responsible for directing the play.

Glitter Underhill was found at the Phiarlan Coliseum and looked quite distraught.  Giltter Underhill is a Halfling and seeing his distress was quite comical to say the least.  However, the seriousness of the situation was definitely not something that could be laughed at.  Evidently the stage testing for Glitter’s play about The Truthful One was quite a disaster.  Basically he needed a giant who was intelligent enough to read to take the lead role and the only giant he knew of was Brawnpits, a hill giant that lived out in the Mammoth Valley.  Glitter needed us to recruit Brawnpits into the play and he had a wagon set up and ready to go to travel to Mammoth Valley.  After recruiting a few other cleric mercenaries, Okhamel and myself joined up with Glitter’s caravan and moved out to the Mammoth Valley.

Once the caravan arrived at its destination, Okhamel and I stepped out and took a look out at the landscape of Mammoth Valley.  Mammoth Valley was at the base of a large mountain and it was a well forested area.  However, it did appear that travel occurred frequently to the mountain because there was a well worn path making its way to its summit.  The forest was fairly lush but not as much as Tangleroot Gorge or Sorrowdusk Isle. 

Okhamel and I (as well as our mercenaries) started to make our way up the well-worn path.  It didn’t take us very long to run into trouble.  Glitter had mentioned to us on the way to Mammoth Valley that it was inhabited by some pretty fierce animals including wolves, lions, and giant spiders.  I thought to myself, “Great now I get to become a elven snack to some powerful hunter in the forest…”.  Well, Glitter’s warning was definitely accurate.  As we made our way up the path we were ambushed by a number of wolves.  The behavior of the wolves were curious though.  They just seemed to attack without any provocation or any coordination, kind of like they were disoriented and just restless.  After the short excursions with the restless wolves we came across a camp that housed the Brothers Grim.

The Brothers Grim are hill giants and are nephews to Brawnpits.  The brothers’ name are Nale and Thum.  They warned us not to try to steal their things and told us that Brawnpits was camped further up the mountain.  So we left the Brothers Grim and headed up the mountain that formed the base of Mammoth Valley.  As we made our way through the jungles that of the mountainside we were constantly harassed by wolves and lions.  Again their behavior was extremely odd, almost like they were just impatient and ready to act out at anything or anybody.

The path through the valley was winding and curved around and upward a slope that ascended the mountain.  As we approached the bend, we heard booming voice above us.  Brawnpits was watching us and he warned us to be careful not to jump down into a small lagoon below us, telling us that the water was extremely shallow.  He then offered for us to relax at his campsite.  We accepted the hill giant’s offer and followed him up the path.  He also mentioned on the way back to his camp that he noticed the animals being restless as well.

Brawnpits’ camp was actually pretty nicely laid out.  He found a nice clearing on a cliff of the mountain and had a nice huge pot of some type of brew cooking.  After we got settled we offered up the proposal  that Glitter Underhill sent forward.  It took some time to try to explain theater to the large hill giant but he lazily accepted the proposal as long as we could prove ourselves to him.  So he gave us a number of tasks to complete before he would work in the play.  The first task he had laid for us was to retrieve some water with the blessing of the water spirits from the shallow lake below.  He told us there was an alter on a ridge just above the lake that he needed to pay homage to in order to get the blessing we needed for the water.   So we headed back down the mountain towards the shallow lake spring.   

As we head back down the path to the spring and the lake, we came across a few more restless wolves.  We dispatched with them and shortly later came up to the altar.  As we approached the altar, two majestic water elementals appeared and mentioned to us they have given us their blessing and we could now take some water from the sacred pool.  So we then went down to the pool and took some water and brought it back up to Brawnpits.  Brawnpits was happy to get the blessed water but our trials were just beginning.  He now wanted us to gather some rocks for his fire.  They couldn’t be just any rocks, but needed to be crushed earth elementals.  He told us where they could be located and he steadily made our way back down the mountain to fight some earth elementals.

The elementals were spread throughout the lowland forest and the mountain pass to the north and west of Brawnpits camp.  The elementals were not alone though.  There were numerous restless wolves, and some no foes, restless spiders, mixed in with them.  After taking them down, we returned to Brawnpits with the remnants of the earth elementals.  He then gave us a new task, to find wood for his fire.  We told us we could find more wood to the north and east of his camp.

So we headed back through the valley and to the north east.  We came across a number of wood piles and we started to gather them up.  However, as we gathered the wood, we were attacked by huge fire elementals, evidently these were hearth spirits.  Their attacks were relentless, with fireballs being thrown all over the place.  Eventually we defeated them and brought the would back down to Brawnpits.  As we were asking Brawnpits about the hearth spirits, we were attacked once again, by more hearth spirits.  After we extinguished them, Brawnpits got concerned and asked us to visit the sky spirit in the upper reaches of the mountain back to the north east.  So we took off immediately.

As we started to make our across the cliffs to the sky spirit, we were ambushed by members of the Maleficient Cabal.  The tieflings sprung out from everywhere to attack us.  After we cleared one set of attackers, we were met with more further along the cliffs.  Eventually we defeated all of them and made it to the altar of the sky where we summoned forth and talked to the sky spirit, who happened to be an ancient air elemental.  He gave us his blessing and warned us that the tieflings were getting ready to strike at Brawnpits so we quickly made our way back to him, with the help of feather fall.

We made it back just in time.  As soon as we touched down back in Brawnpits camp we were attacked by a small force of Maleficient Cabal forces.  With our help, Brawnpits was able to repel their attack, but it was still quite disturbing.  The Maleficient Cabal was going through some extraordinary measures to keep Brawnpits from joining this play.  We offered to guide Brawnpits back to the caravan so that he could to the House Phiarlan Ward without further incident.  As we made our way through Mammoth Valley, we were constantly attacked by the forces of the Maleficient Cabal.  We eventually made our way back to the Brothers Grimm.   When we got to their camp Brawnpits bellowed out that he had made his decision and commanded the brothers to pack up and head out immediately.  Even though they started to complain, Brawnpits reinforced his superiority and soon after the brothers were on their way.

We then escorted Brawnpits the rest of the way back to the caravan, getting ambushed two more times along the way.  However, our biggest surprise was when we got back to the caravan.  One thing we noticed when we first came into Brawnpits’ camp is that he was not alone.  He was sharing the camp with what we thought was an ally.  The pretend ally was elemental creature that took the various forms of canine species.  While we ran the errands for Brawnpits, this strange creature changed into a hyena, a worg, a winter wolf, and a black wolf.  However, when we got to the caravan, we learned that these creatures were indeed special spirits who had been warped or were in an alliance with the Maleficient Cabal.  As we approached the caravan the four magical beasts attacked us relentlessly and a magical wall of fire sprang forth blocking the path to the caravan.  It became evident that we would need to defeat these creatures to make our way through.

Brawnpits was crestfallen to fight who he thought was his friends.  After some time, we took down the four spirits.  It wasn’t easy.  We used up a good portion of our supplies to survive the encounter.  After the firewall came down, we led Brawnpits to the caravan and headed back the House Phiarlan ward in Stormreach.   When we arrived, Glitter Underhill was ecstatic to see us back.  We introduced him to Brawnpits.  Glitter gave us our payment and we head back to Rouge to report on the success of the mission and to see what else needed to be done.  Rouge told us that Brawnpits was working out well and appreciated everything that we have done so far.  She then told us of a plot that the Maleficient Cabal was working on to infiltrate House Phiarlan’s Grand Gala.  She told us to report to another Cyan for further details.  Before we moved to report to Cyan I sent Erdrique a message to let him know our progress.  It appears we have a lot more work to do.

Whats up With the Division of Labor in the Aurum?

Now I have noticed this before but it just now has sunk in.  Earlier today, I was running Garrrin (Level 21 Barbarian/Fury of the Wild) through the heroic Gainthold Wilderness zone when it dawned on me that there is a clear division of labor in the Gold Concord Sect of the Aurum. 

 photo GarrrinapplyingthedeathkilltoGoldConcordCleric_zps64833363.jpg
Garrrin dealing with the Gold Concord dwarves of the Aurum and notices a quite distinct division of labor.

I’m not sure how many others have noticed this or not, but all of the Gold Concord wizards are male and all of the Gold Concord clerics are females.  There does appear to be one exception to this rule, where the rare encounter Brazwold appears to be a cleric, thererfore making him the only male Gold Concord Dwarf cleric.  So what does this mean?  Perhaps Brazwold just likes to surround himself with female followers or something, lol. 

Anyway, just thought I would point that out.  Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting!!