Questing During a Holiday Week, November 24th to November 27th

My questing this week was once again quite diverse, which I always find as a good thing.  Diversity helps to keep the game interesting and fun :).  As usual, questing activities started with a Monday morning slayer run prior to work.  This time I too Sludgge (Level 21 Rogue/Shadowdancer) out into the Ruins of Gianthold (Heroic).  Later that afternoon, I took Hamllin (Level 13 Fighter) out into the Sands of Menechtarun, one of my more favorite areas, and ran the quest The Chamber of Rahmat.  I had some fun moving through the Tomb of Physician and fighting the gnolls and undead.  I didn’t have any real issues, just some annoyances with poison spells and mummy rot.  Later on Monday night, I logged in with Berann (Level 7 Barbarian) and took him through Where’s there smoke and the annoying Swiped Signet.  I didn’t have any issues, working through them on elite, and was mildly annoyed in the Swiped Signet when my hireling decided to get melted by an acid trap and then dealing with a few sleet storms.  I called it a night after those runs.

Sludgge prepping for battle photo Sludggepreppingforbattle_zpsdea6e734.jpg
Sludgge hunting down the enemies in the Ruins of Gianthold.

Hamllin teaching the gnolls who is the master photo Hamllinteachingthegnollswhoisthemaster_zps7f0c6e05.jpg
Hamllin having some fun putting some gnolls in their place in the Desert.

Hamllin looking for the Physician photo HamllinlookingforthePhysician_zps41019364.jpg
Hamllin on his way to find the Physician.

Berann making his way to Nash's homestead photo BerannmakinghiswaytoNashshomestead_zps5f329e26.jpgBerann hunting down some orcs for Nash.

Berann battling Scourge photo BerannbattlingScourge_zps355f4e0d.jpgBerann fighting Scourge in the Swiped Signet.

For Tuesday, I started my questing by taking Erdrique (Level 9 Monk) out into Searing Heights.  Later that afternoon, I brought Erdrique back on and took him out into the tropical forests of Sorrowdusk Isle and through the first quest of the Grey Moon Waning story arc, The Iron Mines: Freeing Achka.  Later that night, I logged in with Sludgge and took him into the quest The Tide Turns on epic normal.  I had a fun time actually having the ability to disable the the traps and not really worrying about these this go round.  I then took Sludgge into the challenge Buying Time and completed that on level 20 as well.  After those runs, I called it a night.

Beautiful sunset in Searing Heights photo BeautifulsunsetinSearingHeights_zpsfe442b6f.jpg
Erdrique enjoying the scenic vies of Searing Heights.

Fighting the ogres in Sorrowdusk Isle photo FightingtheogresinSorrowduskIsle_zps9986a712.jpg
Erdrique fighting the ogres of Sorrowdusk Isle.

Erd taking on Flamefang photo ErdtakingonFlameflang_zps8ae0f7c6.jpg
Erdrique fighting Flamefang in the Iron Mines.

Sludgge fighting Dheren Keurtic in the Tide Turns photo SludggefightingDherenKeuticinTheTideTurns_zps236451b1.jpg
Sludgge in The Tide Turns fighting an undead Dheran Keutic.

Sludgge directing traffic photo Sludggedirectingtraffic_zps69275d57.jpg
Sludgge directing traffic in Buying Time.

Wednesday, I didn’t get any questing in as I was traveling from NC to Florida for Thanksgiving :).  But on Thursday, after the Thanksgiving festivities I did get some quests completed with Erdrique.  I took him through the rest of Searing Heights and completed that area, then I took him into Dr. Rushmore’s Mansion: Behind the Door on level 9 and worked my through it.  After those I then took on Valak’s Mausoleum and blasted through the undead in Delera’s Graveyard.  After a brief break, I decided to fight some other types of evil enemies and took on the devil army of Shavarath in Devil’s Assault.  After that I called it a night.

Beautiful Parting shot in Searing Heights photo BeautifulPartyingshotinSearingHeights_zps74f991ab.jpg
Erdrique soaring high above the sights in the Searing Heights.

Erd fighting the enemies in the Mansion photo ErdfightingtheenemisintheMansion_zps04d22213.jpg
Erdrique battling the minions in Dr. Rushmore’s Mansion.

Fighting Valaks first born photo FightingValaksfirstborn_zps6a562fb5.jpg
Erdrique fighting the undead in Dead Girl’s Spellbook.

Taking on the enemies of Shavarath photo TakingontheenemiesofShavarath_zpsb89545f0.jpg
Erdrique prepping for the Devil Invasion.

So the weekend was a little short but still quite active and quite diverse.  I raised Sludgge from level 20 to 21 and will probably hit another level with Erdrique over the weekend.  I hope everybody else had a fun week as well and had a wonderful Thanksgiving.  Thanks for reading and happy hunting!!

Valak and his Mausoleum

There used to be a time where I couldn’t stand to run the quest Dead Girl’s Spellbook (Valak’s Mausoleum).  Valak’s Mausoleum, probably better known as Dead Girl’s Spellbook, is one of the side quests out in Delera’s Graveyard.  Dead Girl’s Spellbook was one of the earliest quest to use a time limited mechanic in DDO.  It is a level 6 quest that is bestowed by a NPC who is known as “Dead Girl” and who is standing just outside the quest entrance within Delera’s Graveyard.  The point of the quest is to retrieve Valak’s spellbook which contains some poweful necromantic secrets.  Of course Dead Girl doesn’t tell you what is in the spellbook, she only mentions that Valak was her mentor and died recently and now her studies are incomplete, unless of course she can get a hold of his spellbook.  She does tell you that Valak was a little “mad” and has set a number of traps and other nasty things within his grave to protect his spellbook, evening casting some type of a spell that will kick you out of his grave after a short while (thirty minutes).

Well, I just took Erdrique (Level 9 Monk) through Valak’s Mausoleum.  This particular quest can be very frustrating for those who aren’t familiar with its layout and with its contents.  As you can imagine, their is a large amount of undead in this quest.  You will encounter a number of skeletons (warriors, archers, and arcane skeletons), wights (including priests), wraiths, and mephits.  Another aspect of this quest is that it contains a number of runes that are activated by throwing levers or turning valves, some vicious large blade traps, a mini-maze, a little swimming, and some ambushes.

As you enter the quest, your first challenge will need to be to open up a rune controlled door.  To activate the runes you have to throw four levers.  These levers are guarded by a number of skeletons and wights that tend to spawn once you activate the levers.  The main thing to remember during this whole quest is that it is timed and that you should try to be as efficient as possible on taking out these enemies, while doing what you can to not to engage dungeon alert.

Looking for the levers to activate the runes photo Lookingfortheleverstoactivatetherunes_zpsaa2def64.jpg
Erdrique working on activating these runes by throwing levers in the first room of Valak’s Mausoleum.

Getting past the first room will lead you into a room where you can lose some time if you aren’t careful.  You basically are lead into a mini-maze that is guarded by some wraiths and skeletons, including arcane skeletons.  You can lose time here if you don’t realize that the end of the maze is sealed by a door and that door can only be opened when three wall levers are activated to light up three runes that seal the door.  So when you enter the maze look for the levers first and then make your way out.  It also should be noted that this area contains a hidden door that conceals a rest and resurrection shrine if needed.  Also, when you throw a wall lever the arcane skeletons will spawn.

Fumbling around in the maze photo Fumblingaroundinthemaze_zpsbe72992f.jpg
Erdrique entering the mini-maze.

Fighting the undead in Valaks Mausoleum photo FightingtheundeadinValaksMausoleum_zps622c3428.jpg
Erdrqiue fighting in the mini-maze looking for the wall levers.

Now, after the get past the mini-maze you will encounter a lengthy hallway that does nothing but spell “trap.”  As you can guess, it is trapped with three very large blades.  If you have an evasion character (which was lucky for me I did), you can easily evade the traps, otherwise you will have do your best to time them.  Of course this assuming you don’t have a character that can disable them.

Once you pass the large blade traps you will enter a very large room that contains a catwalk.  You can’t see the opposite end of the room but as you can imagine it is sealed with another rune controlled door.  To open the door, you have to turn two valves that are located on the catwalks that activate the runes.  Now, this is one room where you can waste a huge amount of time.  This room spawns a number of skeletons (archers and warriors) and if you take the time to destroy them all, you will lose a large amount of time.  Your best bet here is to run along the catwalk and throw the levers and then fall down (feather fall) from the catwalk to the door and move forward.

Some more runes to activate photo Somemorerunestoactivate_zps4e24d7d3.jpg
Erdrique activating more runes to advance in Valak’s Mausoleum.

Once you get past the catwalk room, you will enter another lengthy hallway which again spells “trap.”  But instead it offers an ambush.  As you enter the end of the hallway, the door slams shut and you have to battle your way back to take out the wights and other enemies that have followed you.  When you kill the correct enemies, the door will open.

When the door opens and you enter the next room you will encounter another sealed door.  Figures right.  Well this time you realize you need to go for a swim.  The room you entered is actually covered by a shallow pool that will lead you to two other rooms, each with a lever.  Each lever, when thrown, will spawn an ambush of undead mobs, including one of the levers being guarded by Valak’s first born.  The levers will open the door in the other room so you can proceed further on.

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Erdrique preparing for a short swim.

Fighting Valaks first born photo FightingValaksfirstborn_zps6a562fb5.jpg
Erdrique fighting Valak’s first born.

The next room you enter is another large room, where again you can lose a large amount of time.  This room has two levels and each level has rooms on each side, west and east.  Make sure you stay on the lower level and clear out the room to the west and east.  Each room will have a lever that opens up the congruent doors on the upper level.  When you get to the upper level you will enter those side rooms as well and throw another two levers to open up the final passageway.  You lose time in this room if you don’t clear out the lower levels first and if you waste time trying to defeat all the enemies.

Taking on the wights photo Takingonthewights_zps8117d018.jpg
Erdrique taking on the many wights within Valak’s mausoleum.

The next hallway leads to the final chamber where you will take on Valak and his minon’s.  It is guarded by a set of mephits but that is it.  The last chamber is pretty spacious with a large, ornate coffin which is the resting place for Valak.  Valak, a powerful arcane caster, is pretty interesting as he wields this large scepter/staff and casts his spells at your.  He is guarded by a set of wight priests.  After you defeat Valak, you can grab his spellbook and complete the quest.

Taking care of Valak photo TakingcareofValak_zps083b1776.jpg
Erdrique fighting Valak and the end of mausoleum.

The quest itself is pretty challenging on your first go round because you don’t know the layout of the quest and where the time sinks are.  I hope this will help those who try this quest on the first time.

Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting everybody!!

Enemy Profile-Uneeou (Gnoll Aeromancer)

Continuing with a blog post related to my run with Hamllin (Level 13 Fighter) in the Sands of Menechtarun and in The Chamber of Rahmat I wanted to take a closer look at the gnoll, Uneeou.  Uneeou is an optional orange named Windlasher gnoll that is only found in the The Chamber of Rahmat.  He can be a pretty vicious and dangerous enemy.

Battling Uneeou photo FightingUneeou_zpsa4e109d5.jpg
Hamllin battling Uneeou in the Chamber of Rahmat.

Uneeou is a hard enemy to figure out for me.  For one, he appears to be one of the many Windlasher Aeromancers who appear to be more like an arcane casters with an affinity of casting lightning based spells.  However, Uneeou seems to have the extra ability to cast blade barriers, which you can see in the above screenshot above.  So it seems like he is a mixture of cleric and arcane spellcasting which makes battling him pretty interesting.

To make things worse, Uneeou is always surrounded by a pack of minions.  And these minions include other spell casting gnolls, powerful evokers.  He also has some melee guards as well as a number of pet hyenas to make things even more annoying (mainly because of the constant trips).  The easiest thing to do is to draw out the enemies a little bit at a time, hoping to pull some of the enemies away from Uneeou, as taking them all on could leave to a large mess of mass confusion and hysteria :).  Not to mention, that more than likely one or more coffins will be destroyed during the battle with the with the possibility of releasing an undead mummy guardian into the fray, causing even more grief.

Even with this said, Uneeou himself isn’t particularly beefy in his hit points.  While he can deal a good amount of grief to you with his spell casting, he won’t be able to withstand a direct assault for long.  I’m not entirely sure if Uneeou has any resistance types.  The DDOwiki mentions that aeromancers have electrical resistance, which makes sense, but I didn’t really have a chance to see that with Uneeou.

So, if you run the Chamber of Rahmat, be cautious when you stumble upon Uneeou and try to use tactics to the best of your ability.  If you barrel on in, make sure you take him out and his evokers, and do your best to finish off the hyenas, otherwise it might be a bloody and messy battle.  Drawing them out a few at a time might save you some time and frustration.

Well that is it for now, thanks for reading everybody and I hope everybody had a happy and safe holiday!!  Also, happy hunting out in the wilds of DDO :).

Taking a Brief Look at King Raiyum’s Court

One of the things I like to write about are explorations of the lore and back story to the various enemies we encounter in our questing throughout DDO with our favorite characters.  Well, I just took Hamllin (Level 13 Fighter) through one of the walk-up quests in the Sands of Menechtarun, the Chamber of Rahmat and as I was taking Hamllin through the quest I began to think about King Raiyum and how his court may have looked like.  If you haven’t paid too much attention to the storylines of the quests in the Desert, you might not realize that King Raiyum was a tyrant king who ruled with a strong, iron fist.  He was also a very talented summoner and was responsible for bringing forth Lailat, the Demon Queen to the Sands of Menechtarun.  King Raiyum had a number of servants and councilors in his court that included Rahmat and Kourush who also happen to have their own respective pyramid tombs.  So lets take a closer look at King Raiyum’s court.

Hamllin looking for the Physician photo HamllinlookingforthePhysician_zps41019364.jpgHamllin making his way through the Tomb of the Physician (Chamber of Rahmat).

Before we can look at King Raiyum’s court, we have to figure out exactly who was in it.  My assumption is that every named undead in the tombs and the surrounding areas were significant members of his court.  These include the following:

1).  Rahmat, the Physican
2).  Kourush, the Astrologer
3).  Hafez, the Lion
4).  Hami, the Jackal
5).  Ashok Kalidan
6).  Jezzerae, Concubine
7).  Kaenis, Beggar
8).  Thumok the Mad
9).  General Tanankh
10).  The Thirsty One

Now there is no doubt that the first four of these powerful mummies are indeed part of King Raiyum’s court.  It is well known that Rahmat and Kourush were King Raiyum’s most trusted councilors and it  was also believed that they all competed with each other in terms of finding the secret to never ending life.  The next two, Hafez and Hami are two intriguing members of the king’s circle.  If you can read the inscriptions in the Chamber of Raiyum (Tomb of the Wizard King) you discover that King Raiyum learns of these great warriors in his land and convinces them to join him.  They are no doubt his protectors and are also powerful mummies when you encounter them during your adventures.  We see that his court is comprised of at least two powerful magic users, Rhamat and Kourush, and two body guards, Hafez and Hami.  Now I’m going to assume that Rhamat the Physician was a divine caster and that Kourush the Astrologer was an arcane caster, simply based on their names.  Although, if I remember correctly, I believe Rhamat cast Prayer on me when I was battling him, which would suggest that he is a divine caster.  I haven’t faced off against Kourush lately so I can’t verify his spells.

The next member of his court is a rather unwilling pawn, Ashok Kalidan.  Ashok Kalidan caught the eye of King Raiyum as being a local hero and the king wanted him to serve at his whim.  Unlike Hafez and Hami, Ashok had no interest in serving King Raiyum so the king decided to kidnap his family and to hold them hostage unless he joined his forces.  As a result, Ashok became the king’s personal assassin and was sent out on a number of missions to take out rivals.  This wound up corrupting Ashok’s soul and that is why he was sealed away in his shrine as a wraith.  So even the king didn’t have the complete loyalty of all of his court.

Now the next two members of the court we encounter are in the quest the Chamber of Rhamat.  Jezzerae, as her name implies was most likely the king’s mistress.  Its hard to determine if the king actually cared for his mistress or not but the fact that he preserved her and had her positioned in one of his most trusted court members tomb does seem to suggest some type of care.  The next member we come across is Kaenis, a beggar who is now a ghast.  Now trying to figure out what role Kaenis filled on the court was a little difficult for me but I’m beginning to think that Kaenis was the court treasurer.  The fact that he is now a beggar, which implies the lack of money, seems like an ironic twist to his fate that King Raiyum could have easily laid down on him.  I can see Kaenis doing everything he could to manage his king’s wealth and walking on knives when he counciled Raiyum on how to spend his money.

Now the next three members of the court are wandering around the outside of the tombs.  The first of these is Thumok the Mad.  My feelings about Thumok is that he was a seer who was able to see visions into Raiyum’s future.  I wouldn’t be surprised that the things he saw eventually turned him crazy and the king just took some delight in preserving this side of him.  The second of these General Tanankh, it is clear to me that he is the King Raiyum’s general and was the leader of Raiyum’s army.  He now serves to lead Raiyum’s undead forces.  The last of these is The Thirsty One.  Well, I can’t help but think that the Thirsty One is the king’s jester or court clown.  He probably did way too many tricks with water and in a vicious cycle of irony the king decided to preserve him as a skeleton.

Now there are a number of other powerful mummies out in the desert area and inside the various quests.  I’m just assuming that these minions are just powerful members of Raiyum’s now undead army and are not necessarily members of his court.  In life, King Raiyum’s court was wicked and powerful and in death they are even more so.

So that is a quick look at King Raiyum’s court.  We have the physician, the astrologer, the body guards, the assassin, the mistress, the treasurer, the seer, the general, and the jester.  It is quite evident that the court was extremely powerful and it was also evident that not all of the members were proud of their service.

I wouldn’t mind learning more about these members and villains in the future.   I find them very interesting, I think I will have to give this a little more thought and delve deeper into their back stories, if I can.  Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting!!

A Weekend of Experience, Questing November 21 to November 23

This weekend I ran an interesting set of quests.  The weekend started with Wapoyei (Level 23 Cleric/Exalted Angel) taking on some slayers and rares out in the High Road on Friday morning.  I was joined that morning by Friedrice and we ventured down the explorer area taking on the various Netherese and hobgoblin enemies.  That morning we only came across one rare encounter.  After we battled some of the wild forces in the High Road I logged out and headed off to work.  I didn’t log back in until later Friday night and because of that I logged on with Hamllin (Level 13 Fighter).  I had originally planned on logging in Hamllin right after work but my wife surprised me for my birthday but having my daughter come down and visiting us so we went out to eat for dinner.  So when our celebration was over I logged on and took Hamllin out into Ataraxia’s Haven and took him through the quest Sykro’s Jewel where he took on the scrags and duergar without having any issues.  After I completed Sykro’s Jewel I logged out Hamllin and logged in with Erdrique (Level 9 Monk) who I had originally planned on playing Friday night.  I was joined up with another guildie, Sontris, who has recently returned to the game after taking about a year or so off.  We decided to hit up a Cannith Challenge first, Dr. Rushmore’s Mansion: Behind the Door, which I thought we were going to fail until we found one lucky crest to open up the doorway to Ugg.  After we completed that challenge, we headed off to Redwillow’s Ruins, Mirra’s Sleepless Nights, Dead Predators, Purge the Heretics, and Caged Trolls.  We knocked them all out on elite with relatively little difficulty.  Once we completed the Caged Trolls we decided to call it a night.

Wapoyei and Friedrice fighting in the High Road photo WapoyeiandFriedfightingintheHighRoad_zps4f07b84d.jpg
Wapoyei and Friedrice making their way through the High Road.

Hamllin fighting Dreanem in Ataraxia's Haven photo HamllinfightingDraneminAtaraxiasHaven_zpse0209e21.jpg
Hamllin battling the sharpshooter in the gazebo at Ataraxia’s Haven.

Wondering about these smugglers photo Wonderingaboutthesesmugglers_zps0e3eeb5f.jpg
Hamllin wondering what is the deal with these smugglers in Syrko’s Jewel.

Erd and Sontris fighting the phantasmal enemies in Dr. Rushmore's Mansion photo ErdandSontrisfightingthephantasmalenemiesinDrRushmoresMansion_zpsdbec2789.jpg
Erd and Sontris working their way through Dr. Rushmore’s Mansion.

Preparing to travel through the portal photo Preparingtotravelthroughtheportal_zpsd5c288f4.jpg
Erdrique and Sontris hunting down the enemies in Redwillow’s Ruins.

Working through Parthilcar Tower Crypt photo WorkingthroughParthilcarTowerCrypt_zpsa433ce8d.jpg
Erdrique and Sontris looking for what is disturbing Mirra in the cyrpt.

Exploring the Dead Halls photo ExploringtheDeadHalls_zpsb39c4db8.jpg
Erdrique taking on enemies of the Dead Halls.

Hunting in the Hidden Chapel photo HuntingintheHiddenChapel_zps91d76ba8.jpg
Erdrique and Sontris working to clean out the Hidden Chapel.

Looking to take care of trolls in the Emeralds Claw Laboratory photo LookingtotakecareoftrollsintheEmeraldsClawLaboratory_zpse8078470.jpg
Erdrique taking on the enemies of the Emerald Claw to destroy some trolls.

On Saturday, I logged on with Erdrique once again and I was joined up with Sontris once again.  The first quest we attempted was the Lava Caves: The Circles of Power.  Unfortunately, we didn’t have a good map and there were no purple crystals anywhere near the base.  We did our best to collect enough crystals but it was a pretty doomed adventure, lol.  After that attempt, Sontris logged out and then I took Erdrique to Delera’s and ran the first two quests on elite: The Mystery of Delera’s Tomb and The Missing Party.  The Missing Party netted Erdrique well over 20,000 experience :).  After that run I called it a night.

Erd looking for crystals and Sontris in the Lava Caves photo ErdlookingforcrystalsandSontrisintheLavaCaves_zpsbce986a0.jpg
Erdrique looking for Sontris and some purple crystals in the Lava Caves.

Erd dealing with the skeletons in Delera's Tomb photo ErddealingwiththeskeletonsinDelerasTomb_zps4270eeaf.jpg
Erdrique taking on the skeletons of Delera’s Tomb.

Erd looking for Jael's Journal photo ErdlookingforJaelsJournal_zps1d8c4215.jpg
Erdrique looking for Jael’s journal.

Sunday I was scheduled to log in Wapoyei.  I logged him in and took him out to the Desert to take on the Chains of Flame on Epic Normal.  I knew the quest would take a good amount of time.  I made my way out there and summoned forth both of my owl bears and my onyx panther.  I also had with me a Shadowdancer hireling to take care of the traps.  Overall it was a long quest but I really didn’t have any issues.  One of my owlbears did get killed but that was because of the buggy AI where he got stuck in one of the traps.  Although the quest took a long amount of time to finish, I felt it was worth it when I netter well over 80,000 experience for the run.  By the time I finished it was well after midnight, so I called it a night.

Wapoyei realizing why the Burning City is named what it is photo WapoyeirealizingwhytheBurningCityisnamedwhatitis_zps08aae50e.jpg
Wapoyei realizing why the Burning City is named what it is.

Overall, the weekend was full of experience :).  Netting a large amount of experience from Delera’s and a good chunk from Chains of Flame was pretty rewarding.  I hope everybody else had a good weekend as well!!  I also wish folks a Happy Thanksgiving this week (for those in the US) and wish everybody some happy hunting.

Another Beautiful View

One of my more favorite areas in the game is Ataraxia’s Haven.  Recently, I took Hamllin (Level 13 Fighter) out there to run the two quests Reclamation and Sykro’s Jewel.  A defining trademark for Ataraxia’s Haven is the light house.  I’m not entirely sure how many people realize that you can actually reach the top of the light house for a stunning view by completing the quest Sykro’s Jewel.  At the end of the quest, when you rescue Ataraxia (Sykro’s daughter) you can leave her cell and go across the hallway to climb a ladder to the upper reaches of light house.  The top of light house has quite a view of the Haven.

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Hamllin enjoying the view from the top of the light house in Ataraxia’s Haven.

So if you are ever questing in the Haven and want a fun view, trying running Sykro’s Jewel and climbing to the top of the light house :).  Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting!!

Taking a Look at Another Oldie but Goodie, Redwillow’s Ruins

Over this weekend, I took Erdrique (Level 9 Monk) through another old but fun quest, Redwillow’s Ruins.  Redwillow’s Ruins is a level 6 quest on normal, making it level 8 on elite.  The quest giver is located in House Jorasco and is Jandul d’Jorasco.  The plot for the quest is that a famous archaeologist by the name of Falcor Redwillow has convinced Jandul to finance a very expensive expedition to some ruins Falcor recently located.  Jandul financed the expedition without getting approval and to make things worse, Falcor’s expedition was waylaid where a large number of his crew were slaughtered and his relics stolen.  He has sent Jandul a report of the disaster outcome of the expedition and no Jandul is looking for some help to salvage the expedition, and this is where you come in.

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Erdrique battling some trolls in Redwillow’s Ruins.

Redwillow’s Ruins is a fun quest.  Its overall design is very much like Gwylan’s Stand and Stormcleave Outpost.  The quest giver transports you to the quest which starts out in a wilderness like area.  As you progress through the map you will encounter a number of caves that you can enter and explore, with the majority of these caves containing optional named bosses and chests.  Once you are teleported to the quest, the primary objectives are to find Falcor’s remaining party, gather the things that his expedition was collecting, and then defeating the leader of a giant army.

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Coming up to the goblinoid cave that is guarded by the gargoyles.

An interesting aspect about this particular quest is the diversity of monsters that you encounter and I find it really interesting how Falcor himself doesn’t really understand why these enemies are working together.  The quest contains trolls, bugbears, hobgoblins, gargoyles, drow, hill giants, and scorpions.  The biggest mystery here is trying to figure out why the goblinoids are working with the trolls until you discover that the real instigator of all of these troubles is the hill giant leader, Tor’ghan.

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Having some fun in the bugbear camp cave in Redwillow’s Ruins.

One thing to be aware of is that one of the caves you can enter (the one guarded by the gargoyles) does contain some vicious traps that are extremely problematic if you can’t disable them.  The cave contains a number of hobgoblins and a shrine.  However, if you don’t have somebody who disable the traps you can easily bypass this cave.  You will also encounter a party of drow, Redwillow’s other contacts if House Jorasco didn’t pan out, and will have a fun time taking them out as they get upset about Redwillow not working with them.

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Erdrique stumbling upon the drow camp in Redwillow.

Once you collect all of the items and return them to Redwillow, he opens up a portal to take you to a different part of the ruins to fight Tor’ghan and his giant and goblinoid army.  The area he teleports you too is quite dangerous because as soon as you zone in, you are instantly assaulted by the enemies who happen to be surrounding the portal.  Once you get past this initial wave you will have a much easier time controlling the aggro as the enemy giants are more spread out.  And the enemy leader Tor’ghan isn’t very difficult to handle.

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Getting ready to enter the portal to fight the giant army.

Overall, Redwillow’s Ruins is a fun quest, especially if you those quests that are based more in a wildnerness zone as opposed to a dungeon.  It has a wide variety of enemies, a large number of chests, a good amount of named loot to get, and some interesting traps.  It is a free to play quest as well so if you are level 6, you should give it a look.

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Fighting the giant army in Redwillow’s Ruins.

Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting!!

Nice Mixture of Questing, November 17th to November 20th

My questing runs this week included quest runs from all ranges: low, medium, and high levels.  My questing started out with a Monday morning slayer run with Garrrin (Level 21 Barbarian/Fury of the Wild) who received some assistance from Friedrice while collecting some easy slayers in the Ruins of Gianthold (Heroic) landscape area.  Later that afternoon, I logged on with my main character, Erdrique (Level 8 Monk) and I took him into three of the common House Kundarak quests: Chamber of Insanity, The Ruined Halls, and the Forgotten Caverns.  I didn’t have any issues with these runs while tackling them on elite.  Later that night, I logged on with Rimuldar (Level 23 Wizard/Magister) and I took him into the Lords of Dust on Epic Normal and had an interesting time taking on Gnomen and his cultists.  I logged out for the night after I got Rimuldar through the Lords of Dust.

Garrrin and Friedrice demolishing the enemies of GH photo GarrrinandFrieddemolishingtheenemiesinGH_zps79c37998.jpg
Garrrin and Friedrice hunting in the Gianthold.

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Erdrique fighting the shades in the Chamber of Insanity.

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Erdrique amazed by the diversity of monsters held in the Ruined Halls.

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Erdrique using stunning fist to immobilize the trolls in the Forgotten Caverns.

Rimuldar stoning a Jarilith with Prismatic Spray photo RimuldarstoningaJarilithwithPrismaticSpray_zpsff83951c.jpg
Rimuldar enjoying the use of Prismatic Spray to stone jarilith’s in Lords of Dust.

On Tuesday, I started the day with Stoorage (Level 11 Fighter) who I took out into Sorrowdusk Isle to collect some more slayers and rares in that exotic area prior to heading off to work.  When I got home from work, I took Hamllin (Level 13 Fighter) out into the quest the Keeper’s Sanctuary.  While running the Keeper’s Sanctuary, I did suffer one death from a nasty set of blades and spikes that were protecting a hidden chest.  I knew I was going to get killed so I wasn’t that upset about it, but besides that little hiccup I didn’t have any issues.  On Tuesday night, I logged on my low level cleric Containment (Level 5 Cleric) who I took into the Cannith Challenge Dr. Rushmore’s Mansion: Behind the Door.  I was quite happy with this run because not only was I able to complete the quest, I was also able to figure out the bubble puzzle room for the first time, which was quite nice indeed .  After I took Containment into the challenge, I then spent some time to get him some new gear from the auction house and then I headed into the Waterworks to complete The Kobold’s Den: Clan Gnashtooth and The Kobold’s Den: Rescuing Arlos on hard (need to do this becase Containment is on my premium account).  After those runs I logged out and headed off to bed.

Stoorage hunting down some ogres in Sorrowdusk Isle photo StooragehuntingdownsomeogresinSorrowdusk_zps37f14d65.jpg
Stoorage hunting and exploring in the Sorrowdusk Isle.

Hamllin fighting Annelisa in the Keeper's Sanctuary photo HamllinfightingAnnelisaintheKeepersSanctuary_zps8615fa39.jpg
Hamllin battling Annelisa in the Keeper’s Sanctuary.

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Containment fighting the Mother of the Nest in Dr. Rushmore’s mansion.

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Containment dealing with the kobolds of Clan Gnashtooth.

Containment battling Chef Kraskuth photo ContainmentbattlingChefKraskuth_zps8e4c5672.jpg
Containment inviting himself to Chef Kraskuth’s meal.

On Wednesday, I was scheduled to log on with Hamllin and to take him out to explore Three Barrel Cove first thing in the morning.  Later that afternoon, we had some more connection issues and I didn’t get on until late on Wednesday night and only took care of some typical character maintenance with Erdrique.

Hamllin enjoying the scenery in TBC photo HamllinenjoyingthesceneryinTBC_zps366b36f5.jpg
Hamllin enjoying the scenery in Three Barrel Cove.

For Thursday, I did some slayer runs through Three Barrel Cove with Suppply (Level 8 Paladin) prior to work.  That afternoon, taking advantage of my wife having to work late, I decided to log in with Erdrique and to take on the quest Archer Point Defense, which I had planned on doing on Wednesday but couldn’t because of the downtime.  So after I caught up on Erdrique’s scheduled quest runs, I then logged on with Hamllin and took him out into Haywire’s Foundry, which was the quest I was originally slated to run.  I had fun time taking down Haywire’s crazed worforged and other constructs.  Later than night, I logged on with Stoorage who complete a run throug the Cannith Challenge, The Lava Caves: The Circles of Power.   While running Stoorage through the Lava Caves, I was worried that I wouldn’t complete it until I found a large source of purple crystals straight ahead in the map.

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Suppply going for a swim in the Cove.

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Erdrique hunting down the hobgoblin leader in Archer Point Defense.

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Hamllin battling the warforged in Haywire’s Foundry. 

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Stoorage looking for some crystals in the Lava Caves.

It was a good week of questing overall, even with the snafu on Wednesday.  I got some explorer quests ran, some challenges ran, and a nice mixture of regular questing ran.  I also had a nice selection of levels ran ranging from level 5 to 23 .  Now I’m looking forward to the weekend .  Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting!!

The Idol of Halokh

One of the more interesting objects, to me at least, in DDO is something that is called The Idol of Halokh.  If you don’t have access to Three Barrel Cove and the quest the Scondrel’s Run, then you might not be aware of this unique item.  The Idol of Halokh is an idol that has been broken up into five separate pieces and have been hidden throughout the mines of the Scondrel Run.  To complete the quest, you have to gather the pieces and then assemble them on the altar at the beginning of the quest entrance. The assembled idol looks just like a form of turtle.
The Idol is now complete photo TheIdoisnowfinished_zps2ee95c02.jpg Erdrique looking at the completed Idol of Halokh.

This is what drives my curiosity about this item.  I find it puzzling that an important idol would be in the form of a turtle.  When one thinks of a turtle, they don’t think of a powerful force of nature and they don’t think of a creature that is nimble, clever, or creative.  However, when I think about a turtle I think about how the species as adapted over time to develop strong defensive mechanisms, are long living, and are persistent.  I happen to have two of my own turtles and these are the traits I see in them.

But when I think of an “idol”, especially one that is being used to test ones strength, agility, and ingenuity, and that is guarded by a clan of powerful minotaurs I don’t imagine the idol as taking the shape of turtle.  I would think the idol would be more representative of a more “ferocious” creature or race.  Maybe something more akin to a shark, kracken, or hydra or some other type of powerful water based mountain to show how it is linked to being a test for pirates.

But, now that I think about it, there are a few other things to keep in mind.  In Eberron we not only have the typical pirate but we also have airship pirates as well.  Also, one has to think about those attributes I mentioned previously when one thinks about a turtle.  Everybody knows that a pirate has to strong, agile, and be able to think on their feet but also a pirate needs to be adaptable in order to maintain a strong defense to stay alive and has to be persistent in their trials if they wish to prosper.  As for living a long life…well maybe the turtle shaped idol is also used to “inspire” that thought, but we all know that being a pirate is a very risky job…just like an adventurer .

Thanks for reading my rambling about the Idol of Halokh.  If you get a chance, take on the minotaurs of the Scondrel’s Run and put it together to see the idol for yourself!!  Happy hunting everybody!!

Who Exactly is the Soulless One?

One of the oldest quests in the game is the Chamber of Insanity.  I recently took Erdrique (Level 8 Monk) through this quest (Level 7 quest on elite) and took on the Soulless One.  For those that don’t know, the Chamber of Insanity is short quest located in House Kundarak not far from the Ever Full Flagon.  The Chamber of Insanity is a small warehouse or other small property that was leased to some proponents of the Blood of Vol.  Supposedly the cultists were taken care but their undead minions still persist.

While exploring the Chamber of Insanity, you will encounter four powerful wraiths, a few live and kicking necromancers, a few wights, some zombies, some arcane skeletons, and the Soulless One.  In this particular instance, I’m curious about Soulless One.  He is a red-named specter that you encounter in the center of the Chamber, which is unlocked only after you destroy the four wraiths.  Unlike his four protectors, the Soulless One is actually a specter.  Although he isn’t extremely powerful, he can be annoying as he is also with some other undead casters (an arcane skeleton and wight priests) that combination can be deadly.  However, if you separate the Soulless One from these others he is relatively easy to deal with.

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So who is exactly is the Soulless One?

While taking Erdrique through this quest I wondered who exactly is the Soulless One?  We have no clues as to his identity that I’m aware of.  The only thing that we know for sure is that these necromancers and undead minions are servants of the Blood of Vol.  My guess is that the Soulless One was a powerful fanatic priest to Vol.  He/She was probably a powerful necromancer as well and probably was responsible for establishing the lease of the Chamber.  I imagine that Soulless One implored some powerful necromantic powers to sacrifice some others to create the four wraiths you encounter (Agony, Despair, Hatred, and Madness).  By doing so, he literally stripped the souls of these shades and while invoking this magic he also transformed himself into powerful specter, taking on the name of the Soulless One.

I imagine he is now operating to protect any secrets the Blood of Vol maybe keeping in the Chamber.  It could also be surmised that the Blood of Vol would like to use the Chamber of Insanity for future projects as well.  I could easily see this property being used to torture enemies of the cult and to extract information from those prisoners and/or enemies against the cult.  I could see the potential of four powerful crazed wraiths, as well as a demented specter, to be an incentive to spill some information.

In any case, the Soulless One seems to be an interesting enemy.  I have no idea what race he/she was or what area they came from.  Did they originally come from Stormreach?  What was his/her ultimate goal?  Where did he study?  Who was his master (if any)?  Questions we will probably never really find he answer too but which are interesting to think about.

Ok, thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting!!