Erdrique Hitting Another Level

This past weekend, Erdrique hit another level.  After I took him through Dream Conspiracy on elite he picked up enough experience to reach level 24.  I went ahead and put another attribute into Charisma, giving him a total score of 50.  I also decided to stay in the bard theme and took Master of Music as his feat.


Erdrique now has a 50 Charisma.


Taking the Master of Music feat.


Now level 24 begins.

I hope everybody else was able to have a productive weekend.   Thanks for reading and happy hunting!!

What Brought Aussircaex to Korthos Island?

Just before the new year I was trying to make my way through the quest, Prey on the Hunter when I started to think about the great white dragon, Aussircaex.  Aussircaex is the same white dragon that you encounter at the end of Misery’s Peak on Korthos Island.  After you help liberate her from the mind flayer, Darastrix, she comes this valley to take care of her eggs.  That is all well and good but exactly brought Aussircaex to Korthos Island to begin with?

My initial thought is that she was originally planning on using the great mountain peak on Korthos Island, Misery’s Peak, as her nesting grounds.  The location does seem appropriate.  Misery’s Peak does seem to maintain the same type of habitat necessary for a white dragon and her brood.  We are talking about snowy conditions, pretty cold temperatures, and a variety of potential icy food items to eat (ice mephits, frost spiders, sahaugin).  Not to mention being in a remote location that is less likely to draw trouble, unless you take into contact the villagers of Korthos Village.  However, with her lawful neutral alignment, it seems reasonable that she might have been able to strike a deal with the villagers to protect the village if they also helped to keep her location a secret (although being a dragon she probably didn’t consider the villagers a threat anyway).

The other possibility is that Darastrix somehow lured her to that location where he was able to trick her and take control of her with the help of the mindsunder.  I’m not entirely sure how a dragon looks for an appropriate nesting habitat, but if Darastrix happened to find out that she was in need of a roost, he may have been able to send seeds of thoughts to “promote” Misery’s Peak as a safe haven for her.  Of course to do this, Darastrix would have needed to know dragon ecology and would have needed to been on Misery’s Peak first.  It could be that Darastrix discovered the location of the mindsunder in Misery’s Peak and used its power to lure Aussircaex to the mountain and then to take over her mind.


Erdrique making his way through Aussircaex’s Valley through the Frost Giants to help her protect her brood.

However, all of this doesn’t account for where Aussiroth, Aussircaex’s mate had been this entire time?  Perhaps he too was also looking for a suitable nesting site and was somehow distracted.  Or perhaps, the events that occurred while we were adventuring on Korthos Island happened more quickly and Aussiroth didn’t realize how much danger his mate was in.  Not sure but is interesting to wonder about.

Well, I hope everybody had a great New Year.  Thanks for reading and happy hunting!!

A Look Back at 2018

Well, I must say that 2018 was a very busy and challenging year for me.  A lot of things happened in 2018 that really impacted my DDO play time as well as my extra side activities that I do related to DDO.  In fact, it appears I only did one blog, one blog in 2018 😦 (not counting this one), when I was nearly blogging daily in 2016.  I also had to stop updating the Crypt Crawlers Gamer Launch Site.  In fact, I hadn’t logged into it for so long that Gamer Launch deactivated the site and I now have to go through the process of reactivating it.  I used to also send out a weekly email to the Crypt Crawler guild members, and as you can imagine that pretty much stopped as well.  Lord only knows how long it has been since I made a forum post on the DDO forum boards.  In fact, I was only barely able to keep up listening to the DDOCast, DDO Players, and Damsels of DDO Podcasts.  So what made this year so different than the previous few years?  Well, a number of things in my professional and personal life came into play.

Professionally,   my long time supervisor and friend retired and moved on (he actually retired in May 2016 but it has taken this long for everything to finally settle in).  This led to a minor shake-up for my staff as one of them interviewed and filled that position which left me with a void to fill.  I also had a few other staff related issues to take care of as well.  As I started to fill out the ranks with my new hires, I had to take on more of the regular routines while I trained them.  We also had a number of other things that rose up as priorities that needed to get accomplished as well as things that I just wanted to update and promote.  All of this led to absolutely no time to help contribute to my extra DDO activities while I was at work (didn’t have time to contribute to DDO while at lunch and no longer had any down time whatsoever to speak of) and led to less play time (because I was bringing a lot of work home just to keep up with everything).

Personally, my poor wife had two major surgeries in the fall, one in her neck and another in her lower back.  These were the second surgeries she had in these areas.  As a result, she has had to take a lot of time off of work and has needed considerably more help around the house to take care of the daily chore routines.  None of that is a problem of course, but that leads to less time to blog and do other things.  Then there was Hurricane Florence.  I live in coastal North Carolina and the impact Hurricane Florence this past September cannot be understated.  Our house took major damage and we will be working on rebuilding that for quite some time.  Couple all of these things with just the daily ins and outs of life and the amount of game time dwindles rapidly.

With that said, I did still play in 2018,  Although Erdrique hasn’t completed his bard life, he is level 23 and is currently making his way to level 30 so that he can do an epic reincarnation and then another heroic true reincarnation.  Speaking of that, I need to review my current path and update it.  I believe Erdrique still needs Favored Soul, Artificer, Warlock, Wizard, and Sorcerer in order to unlock heroic completionist, so I still have a little ways to go.  I really did enjoy the content that was released this year starting with the Mists of Ravenloft with Update 37 in December 2017 to Update 41 that was released just a few weeks ago.  I found the Ravenloft, White Plume Mountain, and Disciples of Rage quests pretty run and interesting.  I really did enjoy the Barovia landscape.  I also liked the update to the Night Revels and return of Eternity.  I found it nostalgic to encounter her once again.  Overall, I think it was a good year for DDO, even with my reduced play time.


Erdrique running in the revamped version of Delera’s Graveyard in the Night Revels.

I’m hoping I can get back to participating more heavily in the DDO community once again.  That’s my plan at least but we’ll see how well it will go.  I really did miss the opportunity to blog and to try to extend the lore and fun of this great game!!  I hope everybody has a safe and happy New Year and I look forward to see what 2019 brings us in DDO.  Thanks for reading and happy hunting all!!

Thinking About Those NPC Alliances – Grey Moon

One thing that I have noticed in DDO is the number of alliances that our characters make with various NPC characters. One of these alliances is with the Grey Moon Ogres of Sorrowdusk Isle. We first encounter the Grey Moon Ogres when we travel to Sorrowdusk Isle from House Deneith. We help deal with a minor revolt from within the old and proud ogre clan and stop the possible destruction of Stomreach by defeating the troll tribes and worshipers of the Cult of the Six. In doing so, we gain a lot of respect and favor from this old clan of powerful ogre warriors. However, after we complete the story arc for Grey Moon Waning and Cult of the Six we don’t hear back from them.

So it made me wonder what the Grey Moon Tribe has been up to and if we can expect to hear from them anytime soon. It also made me wonder if there would ever be a time where we could call upon the Grey Moon ogres to help deal with some terrible threat to the lands of Xendrik or Stormreach itself. In regards to the first thought, my first impression is that the ogre tribe re-established itself and brought itself back to order with Lord Hragg making sure to “clean house” of any potential trouble makers but I also imagine he looked more into the issues that caused that particular rift to begin with and addressed those as well. It was quite clear that Lord Hragg was more than just a warrior but was also knowledgeable. Especially since it was Lord Hragg who translated and read the manuscript from the Temple of the Six.


Helping out the Grey Moon tribe.

Looking more at the possibility of combining forces with the Grey Moon tribe to fight off some potential threat is intriguing. We know that at some point in the future that the safety of Stormreach, and possibly the Isle of Grey Moon, will be in jeopardy from some type of evil force. Perhaps another attack from Droaam or another force from Dal Quor will be the next threat that the heroes of Stormreach will have to deal with and maybe this new threat will bring out the alliances from our past exploits, such as Grey Moon, to our aid. Who knows what we’ll see in Stormreach in the coming year?

Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting in Stormreach!!

Preliminary Thoughts on Night Revel Key Drops

Since the Night Revels has been open, I have been taking various characters through Delera’s Graveyard to obtain keys.  Since I like to switch up my character runs daily, I seemed to recognize that some characters picked up more keys than others. Of course this was just pearly based on my subjective observations.  Looking back at my notes, here is what I recorded:

Erdrique (Level 16 Bard) and Sttollen (Level 17 Rogue) (I run these two together)-they picked up 11 keys so far.

Wapoyei (Level 24 Cleric/Unyielding Sentinel)-Picked up 1 key

Izmit (Level 15, Shardar-Ki)-Picked up 6 Keys

Burrlland (Level 15 Purple Dragon Knight)-Picked up 5 keys

Breyy (Level 7 Artificer)-Picked up 2 Keys

Now one thing you can definitely see is that during this past week or so, my quest runs have been primarily with characters in the level 15 to 17 range.  Since Erdrique and Sttollen I tend to play much more often, it makes sense that they have gathered more keys than my other characters.  However, I was surprised to see how many keys Izmit picked up.  I don’t play Izmit that often, but his two spiked chain attacks are quite effective in the graveyard.


Izmit taking down some undead in the graveyard to get keys.

Now there are many different factors that can affect the drop rates for keys.  The number of monster spawns in the area, whether or not you are grouped in a party, if you are grouped in a party how big the the party is, how many monsters you or your party are killing, and the amount of time you spend running in the graveyard.  A better metric for this would have been to calculate a key per hour (or some other time amount to quantify effort) for each character and even taking into account your party size and monster kills.

Now for some of these runs I spent more time in the graveyard while others I spent more time in the Night Revel quests (since I just banked the keys I just switched them from character to another).  We still have another week with the Night Revels so I’ll be curious to see how many keys some of my other characters will pick up.  I’m my schedule holds true, I plan on running a few more lower level characters this week as well as some epic level characters along with Erdrique and Sttollen.

Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting in the Night Revels!!


Enjoying the Warchanter

My primary character, Erdrique, is slowly making his way through the path to heroic completionist.  As such he has completed paladin, fighter, ranger, cleric, druid, monk, and rogue lives.  Although he will finally end his “career” as a paladin (my favorite class) he still has a long way go.  Currently, Erdrique is making his way through a bard life with a primary focus on the Warchanter prestige enhancement line.  Erdrique is currently level 16 (with level 17 “banked) and as such he picked up the majority of abilities in the Warchanter line.

One of the reasons why I decided to take Erdrique down the Warchanter path was because I felt it fit my play style more than the Spellsinger or Swashbuckler.  Another reason is that I also have another bard who is primarily focused on the Spellsinger path.  But, overall, I tend to favor more melee oriented characters.  I even tend to wade into the melee action a little more than I should with my casting characters.  With that said, the Warchanter tree just seemed to have a number of unique abilities that seemed fun to use in traditional melee combat.


Erdrique prepping for battle in the Tomb of the Astrologer.

These abilities primarily include those that add ice damage to your attacks (Iced Edges, The Frozen Fury, Northwind, and Spinning Ice).  These particular abilities give your character a fun little twist by allowing to freeze some enemies in their tracks giving your melee character to add a little bit of crowd control as well as some extra damage.  However, the real power of the bard is the ability for it to add a number of buffs to themselves and their party members by using their spells and songs.  The Warchanter tree continues to augment this ability with abilities such as Song Heroism, Skaldic Rage, Fighting Spirit, Boast, and a number of others.  These abilities all give some small bonus to various abilities allowing your character to be more effective in combat (and in many cases adding some of these to your party members as well).  So far, I have found these to couple my play style quite well.

We’ll see how I feel once I get Erdrique into the epic levels.  Of course the epic destiny Erdrique left off on isn’t the best for a Warchanter bard but hopefully it won’t take me too long to move out of it and into a destiny that is more complimentary.  In any case, I have found the Warchanter bard to be a fun class to play.  It tends to augment my playing style quite well.  If you haven’t tried to play a Warchanter bard and you like to be a melee combatant, I would recommend giving it a try.

Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting in DDO!!


The Enemies in Diplomatic Impunity

Awhile back, I wrote a blog about the quest Diplomatic Impunity.  In that original blog post (sorry about the pictures being blocked 😦 ), I wrote about the general characteristics of the quest and some of it’s unique characteristics: the ability to parlay with the wildmen, watching the invasion force make it’s landing, and the end fight.  This time I want to focus a little bit more on the various types of enemies you will encounter while you make your way through the jungles of the Skyfall Coast and to the ruins that Droaam is using as their initial staging area.

When you first set out in the quest, the first things you will most likely encounter will be the native creatures of the Skyfall Coast: scorpions, panthers, and wild men.  In many instances you can avoid the scorpions if you wish.  The scorpions are hidden in their underground burrows and will spring up to attack when you travel over and through them.  The clearings that mark these locations are generally pretty evident.  There does appear to be a named scorpion (Needleclaw), although I don’t think I have ever encountered him (I will have to check my monster manual on that one).  Avoiding the panthers and wild men is a much different story.  Unless you have a very good sneak ability or invisibility you will most likely have to combat some of these creatures.  There is a possible named panther (Bashevis) that you can defeat as well.  Both, the panthers and wild men tend to stay in their own groups, which makes fighting them challenging at times.  When you run across a pack of panthers, you can expect to be tripped a couple of times and when you run across a group of wild men, you can bet their will be a shaman among them creating a wealth of havoc for you.


Erdrique and his group taking on one of the scorpion nests in Diplomatic Impunity.

After you make contact with Ullevian and observer the Droaam forces making their landing is when you will have to start dealing with those particular forces.  The majority of the Droaam forces are clustered in groups spread throughout the rest of your pathway as you make your back to the ruins where Ilos Hrolk has made his lair.  Each skirmish tends to have two gnolls, one warpriest and warmage, a couple of half-orc archers (skirmishers), a couple of melee (including orc infantry soldiers and half-orc conscripts).  If you don’t take out the warpriests and warmages relatively quickly, things could get messy.

Ilos Hrolk, is a half-orc fighter and is quite a brute.  During your end fight with him, we will keep bringing in reinforcements to help him and the whole scene could get pretty hectic rather quickly.  Couple that with some miscellaneous traps to catch those parties who try to retreat and regroup, it does get interesting.

Overall, the enemies in here can be quite challenging.  Although the diversity isn’t large, their makeup allows for some interesting synergy between them and makes your attacks on them more disciplined.  If you haven’t explored Diplomatic Impunity, go check it out.  Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting in the Skyfall Coast!!

Who Controls the Night Revels?

The Night Revels is a popular event in DDO.  It occurs during the Halloween Season and takes place entirely in Delera’s Graveyard.  The event consists of undead constantly rising up from the grave in the graveyard looking to create havoc and destruction.  The event then culminates in the completion of a set of quests that allow you to gather ingredients to turn in for various awards.  With this current season’s festivities going on, I began to wonder something.  Who controls this source of undead revolt?  See, the event prior to this, Mabar Endless Night Festival, one could argue that Eternity, the terrible spectral dragon, was the cause of that scenario but what about here?


Izmit battling in the minions of the Night Revels in Delera’s Graveyard.

Delera’s Graveyard is ripe for possibilities.  We have the necromancer Dreadlord Giddeon, the lich Validus, the necromancer Valak, and the mummy Saerik Vorculas.  And we probably shouldn’t limit the possibilities to those undead minions in Delera’s Graveyard.  I could easily see something like the Black Abbott or Lady Vol also being a source of this uprising.  However, I don’t believe this to be the case.  The current timing of the event corresponds to when Mabar is closely aligned with Stormreach.  This allows the undead to come out en masse and it also makes me wonder if somebody from the plane of Mabar is also the “leader” of this uprising.  I’m wondering if we still have another major enemy to worry about in the future.


Taking on the undead in Delera’s Graveyard during the Night Revels.

I guess we’ll see what the future holds.  In either case, if I keep slaughtering the undead forces in the graveyard, perhaps a revelation will occur to me :).  Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting in the Night Revels!!

The Joy of Spinning Ice

I’m continuing with Erdrique’s first bard life and I’m having fun making my way through the War Chanter Tree.  Back in January I talked about the various enhancements that War Chanters get with respect to doing ice damage to their enemies.  That post was a general description of the various enhancements that add cold damage to your attacks.  In this post I want to focus more specifically on Spinning Ice.  Spinning Ice is a just a fun little attack.  It is basically a specialized cleave attack that not only does additional cold damage but also has the ability to do some fun and creative crowd control by having a save that monsters must pass or be in frozen in their tracks.  This freezing effect even occurs on undead enemies as well as other frozen/cold/ice based monsters (I believe this is also the case with Northwind and The Frozen Fury).  Nothing is more fun to see than a ice flenser get frozen in its tracks :).

So far, I have found Spinning Ice to be a great complimentary attack to cleave and great cleave.  I typically try to use Spinning Ice first because it is a longer cool down time than either cleave or great cleave.  When I wade into a large group of enemies, I’ll hit Spinning Ice, Cleave, and then Great Cleve.  I then focus on those enemies that aren’t frozen and continue to attack them with my other melee attacks, included The Frozen Fury.


Erdrique using Spinning Ice in Under New Ravishment (Night Revels).

The save on Spinning Ice is based on your bard level and charisma modifier as well as any stunning modifiers that you might have.  So far, I have found this to be fairly effective.  In a group of enemies with about 5 or 6 attackers, I generally will freeze two to three of them in a single attack.  So not only am I doing damage to them, but I also stop the incoming damage coming from them as well.  At least for a few seconds.  Enemies will stay frozen based on your bard level (half the amount of time of your bard level) although I do believe there are some other saving throws that enemies can make to break free.


Having fun with Spinning Ice in Diplomatic Impunity.

All in all, it is a very fun attack.  Erdrique is currently level 16 and is doing quite well with it.  It is really great to find a cold based enemy and watch them freeze :).

Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting!!