A Race Against the Clock

One of the more classic story arcs in DDO is the Vault of Night.  The Vault of Night story arc consists of the following quests: Tharashk Arena (VON 1), The Prisoner (VON 2), The Gateway to Khyber and The Jungles of Khyber (VON 3), Haywire Foundry (VON 4), The Vault of Night (VON 5), and the Plane of Night (VON 6).  The last two quests in the chain are raids and to get into VON 5 you have to complete the previous four quests first.  You used to have to do these in a specific order (hence the reason why they are numbered VON 1 through VON 6 by many players) but this is no longer necessary.  One of the quests to complete, Haywire Foundry, requires you to make your way through a manufacturing plant and saving the artificer Haywire in hopes of recruiting him back into the Laughing Knives (I wondered specifically about Haywire here).

Sludgge exploring Haywire Foundry.

If you have picked up the story arc for the Vault of Night from Marek Malcanus, you will eventually learn about Phineas Haywire.  Haywire has lost some of his confidence after the Laughing Knives couldn’t break into the Vault of Night and is now working in his foundry located in House Kundarak.  You also learn that one of his assistants has been spotted waiting for him on the side of the bank in House Kundarak not to far away from the port that houses ships that head out to Ataraxia’s Haven or Three Barrel Cove.  The name of assistant is Arlsie For (a warforged).  When you catch up to Arlsie you learn that the assistant hasn’t heard drom Haywire in sometime and that he is worried about him.  He then tells you where Haywire’s Foundry is located.

Sludgge picking up the quest Haywire Foundry (VON 4).

The entrance to Haywire Foundry is close to the Ever Full Flagon near the entrance to the House Kundarak Ward.  Right outside of the entrance is another warforged named Husk who is actually a collectible turn in trader.  There was a time when Husk was actually the assistant for Haywire, just as a quick side note.  Haywire Foundry isn’t a complicated quest and it doesn’t have a complicated map either.  When you enter the foundry you actually come into a large curvy hallway that leads into an open cavern that is filled with lava and a single stone pathway leading to a locked gate.  Within this room is a  lever, along the cavern wall across the lava, that needs to be pulled in order to raise the gate.  In this room, the lever is guarded by a few elementals (fire and earth).  Defeating these elementals is an optional objective and makes pulling the lever easier.  Once you raise the gate there is another lever mounted on the wall and another gate.  On the other side of the gate is another warforged that you need to talk to, RC-2.  RC-2 tells you he will take you to Haywire and to pull the lever on the wall when you are ready.

Sludgge at the entrance to Haywire Foundry.

Sludgge inside the foundry and getting ready to pull the lever to raise the first gate to find Haywire.

Sludgge waiting for RC-2.

This is when the quest really begins.  Shortly after the next gate is raised, RC-2 goes a bezerk and attacks you.  It is another optional objective to take it down.  When you defeat him, you see some type of parasite leave his body and disappear.  You then realize that you are inside the foundry.  The initial layout to the foundry is like a cross.  After you defeat RC-2 and continue to make your way north, you will come across some more warforged and a speaking stone mounted in the wall.  After defeating the warforged combatants and using the speaker stone,  you learn from Haywire that something has gone horribly wrong and his creations have turned on him.  To protect himself, he has locked himself is in security chambers in the upper reaches of the foundry.  However, to get to that point, you have to lower the shields that have been activated and stop any more travel to the north in the foundry.

Preparing to deal with RC-2 as he gets ready to go beserk.

Battling some defiant drones in Haywire Foundry.

So where is this painting at?  Just something Sludgge notes in the hallway to the speaking stone.

Coming upon the speaking stone in Haywire Foundry

At this point you can either go east or west.  I typically go east first.  If you have a group, you can split up into different directions.  Each direction poses different challenges and each one has a main control lever that needs to be flipped in order for the force field blocking the passage to the north to be lowered.  The passage to the east leads to a curving hallway that leads up into the foundry.  This path has a number of pitfalls to be weary of, literally.  These pitfalls are actually areas of the floor that completely break away and to a fiery lava pit below.  The first one of these pitfalls can be actually be disabled.  However, the second pitfall cannot be avoided.  But, with that said, you can skirt the left side of the wall in the tunnel and when the floor breaks away you will land a some pipes that you can use to cross the gap.  Speaking to this, there is an optional chest about halfway down this particular pitfall.  Like the first pitfall, the bottom of this pit is covered with a pool of lava.  About halfway down this fall is a tunnel that leads to a chest.  The chest isn’t trapped or anything and ripe for some looting.  However, once you loot the chest you need to enter a second tunnel that leads back up the shaft you just fell down in.  As you make your way through the tunnel a number of acid spray traps will activate that will need to dodge.  If you do happen to come down this way, then having jump will be useful as well as acid resistance as you make your way back up the shaft by jumping and climbing back up various pipes.

Sludgge preparing to go down the eastern half of the foundry.

Making my way down the path to the eastern side of the foundry.

Dealing with some mithral defenders down the hallway.

Staring down the second pitfall along the winding tunnel to the eastern side of the foundry.

In the first tunnel leading to the chest down the second collapsible floor pit.

Time to get some loot from the chest in the pitfall.

Now having to deal with the acid traps as I make my way out of the pitfall.

So more of those same acid traps.

Warforged casters, otto’s ball, and mithral defenders…yay…

Once you make your way past these two collapsible areas of the floor, the hall will cycle around to a door.  This door is the entrance way to the creation, forge, or production area  (however you want to term it).  The room is shaped like a large rectangle with two levels, essentially.  On the ground level, there will be a number of fenced in cages, each housing a newly created warforged.  There will also be some stacked crates along the walls also have some warforged casters and rangers prepared to attack.  Along the western wall, in the center of the wall actually, will be a ramp leading up to a catwalk, or the second level.  This ramp is trapped with the control box under the ramp itself.  As you make your way to the catwalk you will be assaulted by a number of warforged enemies.  You will also encounter a series of flame jet traps which can be turned off by pulling various levers scattered along the catcalk.  There is an optional objective to turn off all of these jets.  But be careful because use jet you turn off will free a warforged enemy from the cages below.  Once you make it around the catwalk, taking care of flame jets and warforged along the way, you will encounter one of the levers that controls the force field blocking the northern passage.  Be wary here, this particular lever is protected by two sets of traps.  The first set of traps are easy to find but the second is a little more difficult.  To deactivate the second set of traps, you need to hop onto the ledge that the lever is on and then snake around corner.  The second control box will be in this location.  Once you disable the second control box you will then be able to pull the lever without any repercussions.

Sludgge pearing inside the broken down door to the forge area of the foundry.

Inside the forge area ranging some warforged who are perched on some of the stacking crates.

The dangers of firewalls in the forge area.

The lightning guard golems here are only present on epic difficulties.

Fighting to get to the catwalk.

Looking for the trap box for the catwalk.

The flame vents look quite intimidating. 

One of the levers that turn off the jets.

The lever that is needed to unlock the northern passage is heavily trapped.

Don’t forget about this trap box on the power lever either!!

Once you have pulled the lever, you can make your way back to the floor level and deal with the warforged you just freed.  You will also notice another lever on the eastern wall. This lever raises a set of gates that block two tunnels.  These two tunnels lead to a shrine and to another set of tunnels that can take you to the other half of the Foundry, although at this point the bars are still up on this side.  Once this portion of the foundry is clear, you need to make your way back through the winding tunnel and across the pitfalls so that you can enter the western portion of the Foundry and activate the second switch.  Unlike the eastern portion of the Foundry, which is asked by taking a winding tunnel upward, the western portion of the Foundry is accessed by climbing a flight of ramps that are trapped throughout the climb with some large blade traps.  At the top of the ramp, you will enter a small hallway with another door.  This door leads to another rectangular shaped room.  This room is a storage and shipping area.  Like the eastern side, this room has two levels.  The second level consists of various alcoves that are directly above the storage alcoves on the bottom floor along wall.  Each of these alcoves, bottom and upper floors, are sealed with a force barrier. This room is crawling with warforged that you will to take care of.  Also, a short distance from the entry way to the room you will see the lever that raises the gates to those same tunnels from eastern room that leads to the shrine.

Sludgge on the ramp to the hallway to the western half of the foundry, this is heavily trapped as well.

Breaking down the door to the western half of the foundry.

The western half of the foundry is the shipping and storage facility.  You can also find the blood rage symbiont in this room, if you are lucky, from a breakable.

Fighting our way through more warforged to another catwalk.  Notice the barriers as well.

And the fighting continues on the top level along the catwalk.

Unlike the eastern half of the Foundry, the western half doesn’t have any traps but it does force you to fight in narrow and restricted hallways.  As you make your way to through this room you will come across a staircase that leads to the second level.  You will then make your way along a narrow catwalk tunnel that wraps around the room and eventually takes you to the second lever that needs to be pulled to open up the passage to the northern end of the Foundry.  However, when you pull this lever, the power that was being used to generate the force fields for each alcove is turned off letting out a number of warforged.  These alcoves also contained large crates, with may of them exploding when you approach producing even more warforged.  This room is much more straight forward than the eastern foundry room but is just as dangerous because of the tight fighting spaces.  As you make your way out of the western foundry room and back to the staircase, you will encounter another large blade trap that is only detectable after you pull the power lever and make your back towards the stair case.  It is actually just before the staircase.

Making my way to the next lever.

Finally coming across the second lever.

Now the northern passage to the foundry is open.  This passage is another tunnel that leads to another intersection.  It doesn’t matter which way you go when you reach this intersection because the tunnel at this point will form a small square.  You can go completely around the square to take out all of the enemies just to make sure everybody, and everything is accounted for.  When you reach the top of the “square” you will might detect a hidden door to the south.  This hidden door leads to another shrine that is also protected by two more traps.  This will be the last shrine you will have access too.  Opposite to the shrine, to the north, is a gate.  That gate is controlled by a lever and a little while after the lever is pulled it will reset and the gate will close.  Once everybody passes the gate, they can’t go back (unless you use a dimension door spell or something like that).  The room on the other side of this gate contains a number of rune wheels.  In the center of the room is a chest that is sealed by another set of gates controlled by the rune wheels.  The sequence to turn the rune wheels is based on the symbols that are on the pillars that are above the inside rune wheels as well as the symbol above the chest.  The first thing to note is the symbol above one of the inside rune wheels.  Then rotate the two outside wheels that are on either side of the inside rune to that symbol.  When you do this, the inside rune wheel will be unlocked.  This will then allow you to rotate the inside rune wheel to the symbol that is above the chest.  When all three inside rune wheels are set correctly, the gates protecting the chest will lift up allowing you to access the chest, that contains a key.  One thing to take note of, as soon as you enter this room, oozes will continue to spawn, including arcane oozes, until the gates are lifted.

The path to the north is now open and it is time to fight our way through it.

Expect some trouble soon.

These mithral defenders once guarded the next passage to the north blocked by the portcullis in the picture. 

The hidden shrine in the northern half of the foundry, protected by traps as well as a secret door.

The key that you pick up opens a locked door to north.  This particular locked door essentially holds the “final” fight.  Inside this room is the Master Control Unit (basically a powerful red named iron golem), a couple iron golems, and a few large adamantine defenders that need to be destroyed.  Once they are destroyed you can get access to another chest that contains a second key that unlocks a portcullis that is protecting yet another control switch.

Time to enter the rune wheel room.

More lightning guard golems in the rune wheel room.  These only appear on epic settings.

Time to activate the rune wheels.  Take note of the symbol above one of the inner wheels (here it is a capital H for the yellow wheel) and set the two outside rune wheels (one to each side of the yellow rune wheel) to that symbol to unlock the yellow rune wheel.  Then set the yellow rune wheel to the symbol above the chest and move onto the next inside rune wheel.

We can now reach the chest protected by the locked rune wheels.

Time to the battle the guardians in the master control room.

Need to take down the master control unit.

The battle ensues in the doorway to the master control unit.

Now, up to this point, Haywire Foundry has been pretty straight forward.  This is where it starts to become the mad dash against the clock.  As you loot the chest, you get a dungeon master narration that is mimicking Haywire telling you to listen up and that when you pull that particular lever the self destruct mechanism of the Foundry will be activated.  When you pull the lever, you will have a few minutes to make your way through the rest of the foundry and to get to Haywire before you get blown up.  It is best to buff yourself up with jump, haste, rage, fire resist, fire protection, acid resistance, acid protection, neutralize poison, greater heroism, and mass aid if you can before you pull the lever.  When you pull the lever, a section of the way on the eastern side of the room will open up exposing a broken stairway.  You need to make your way through this broken stairway and up the shaft jumping out of the lava covered shaft floor.  When you get to the top of the shaft, you will come across another winding and up sloping pathway.  This pathway is lined with a few acid and poison traps as well as number of mithral defenders.

The chest that was protected by the master control unit and his guardians.

The mad dash now begins.

Hurrying up the path to Haywire.

One of the optional objectives in this quest is to destroy ten of those mithral defenders.  It is best to pull a number of them to a safer place along the pathway (outside of the traps) and to take them out as quickly as possible.  It is good to do this to keep dungeon alert down.  You can completely ignore them but it can get quite messy if you don’t take any of them out.  Eventually you will hit a portion of the hallway that is split down the middle that leads to a large cavern.  When you get to the cavern, it is best to hang off to the side of the room (as you enter the room hang a left and hug that wall).  This is because once you enter this room the blast doors will close and the explosion from the foundry will generate a huge flash of fire that will shoot right down the center of the cavern.  Keep in mind too, that when you enter this room, fire elementals will spawn.  Just make sure to battle them on the side of the room.  Eventually the draw bridge in this room will drop down allowing you to continue on to Haywire.  The quest completes once you talk to Haywire and pick up the Lightning Rod.

The cavern where the backlash of the foundry explosion will occur.  Oh, and don’t forget the fire elementals.

Speaking of fire elementals…

One thing I haven’t really mentioned yet are the types of enemy you will encounter in this quest.  This quest is dominated by various types of warforged and their construct cousins.  The various warforged include engineers, surveyors, troubleshooters, and drones.  The engineers and surveyors are especially troublesome as they are the arcane and divine casters of the group, respectively.  The surveyors are rangers and really like to cast barksin on themselves and the drones are fighters.  Besides the warforged, you have the elementals in the beginning and end of the quest, various forms of defenders (metal dogs), iron golems, oozes, and in epic settings you have the lightning guard constructs.

The most striking thing about Haywire Foundry is that race against the clock at the end.  I remember when I first did this quest had some many panicky situations when I tried to jump out of the initial shaft that starts the “mad dash.”  However, as long as at least one party member reaches Haywire and picks up the Lightning Rod then you will get the quest completion, even if you are a permanent fixture Haywire’s exploded Foundry.  Overall, it is a fun quest, that can be a little hair raising, especially at the end.  Give it a try if you have never completed Haywire Foundry before.  Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting in Haywire Foundry!!


3 thoughts on “A Race Against the Clock

  1. Pingback: A Closer Look At Another Oldie but Goodie, The Prisoner (VON 2) | Erdrique's Blog

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