Exploring the Tomb of the Wizard King

I’m going to keep up with the theme I started earlier this week by writing more about the Sands of Menechtarun with today’s blog article.  I want to write about one of the more high profile quests in the area, The Chamber of Raiyum, also known as the Tomb of the Wizard King.  I recently took Erdrique (Level 26 Rogue/Legendary Dreadnaught) through this DDO classic which is one of my favorite quests to go through.  The Chamber of Raiyum is a level 12 quest on Heroic Normal and a level 22 quest on epic normal.  It is one of the quests that is necessary to complete in order to get flagged for the Against the Demon Queen Pre-Raid and Zawabi’s Revenge raid.  One of the quest rewards you received after you defeat the lich Raiyum is his phylactery which is one of three items Zawabi needs to send you on your way to take down the Demon Queen, Lailat (who I talk about here).

The Chamber of Raiyum is the easiest of the three flagging quests for the Zawabi’s Revenge raid to get to but is a complicated quest to run.  It is located in the area of the desert known as the Valley of the False Tombs.  It is essentially located in a straight line from the entrance of the Sands of Menechtarun explorer area.  The quest takes place in the largest pyramid in the Valley of the False Tombs and it truly is quite an impressive structure.

The enemies you encounter in this quest are primarily some form of undead.  If you are interested in collecting monster manual deeds for mummies or skeletons, then this is a good quest to do some monster farming.  The first set of encounters you come across are a pack of Windlasher gnolls and their pet hyenas.  After you make it past the gnolls, you will encounter primarily clay golems, skeleton warriors, skeleton archers, arcane skeletons, mummy guardians, and mummy avengers.  You will also encounter scorpions, mephits, and ghasts, though at far lesser volumes.  There are also a number of named enemies as well which include an efreeti, two djinns, mummy guardians, and the lich Raiyum himself.  On epic hard and elite, you may also encounter some death hex wraiths.

Battling the skeleton warriors in the midst of spinning blade traps in the Wiz King.

Erdrique coming across some hex wraiths on his way to Raiyum.

As you can imagine, with the quest taking place in the largest structure in the desert, the quest layout is pretty complicated.  It generally takes a few runs to get a good feel for how the quest is laid out, it felt like it took me forever to learn how it goes.  There are a number of places where you have to make your way down tunnels to pull some levers to open up passage ways that were blocked from the direction you just came, therefore forcing you to back track often.  As you enter the pyramid and you make your way into the main entrance zone you will encounter a small pack of Windlasher gnolls.  From this room, you can either descend into the bottom floor of the pyramid or you can go to the north or south to make your way further up into the upper levels of the pyramid.  Another key point of interest about this particular room is that there are two shrines here, one on each side of the room, that will be needed later.

Windlasher gnolls are the first enemies you come across in the Wiz King.  Also note the shrine here, there are two shrines in the beginning of the quest that will be useful later.

As you defeat the gnolls, you will note that a chest will unlock, which is located above the passageway that leads to the bottom floor of the pyramid (I guess you could call that the basement).  The chest contains a crest that can be placed in a wall slot that will open up the passage ways to the north and to the south.  Before I talk about the passages to the north and south I wanted to mention a few things about the basement.  Their are a couple points of interest located here.  This area contains a chest that is placed in a random location that contains a Seal of Fire.  This particular seal can be used later in the quest, but isn’t necessary.  However, more importantly, the basement contains Raiyum’s treasure room and two more shrines.  You can’t access the treasure room yet but will want to when you complete the quest.  When you make your way through the basement portion of the pyramid you will encounter a number of respawning ghasts and will also get caught in a few rooms that get sealed off and spawn skeletons and mummies to attack you.  These rooms open up when all of the ambushing monsters are slain.  There is also a small mephit NPC down in the basement that complains about having to do some cleaning and if you follow his complaints he will give you some hints on the locations of Raiyum two primary protectors, Hami and Hafez.  You will most likely make your way through this basement a few times when you work your way through this quest.

Putting the crest in the wall opens up the passage to get further into the pyramid of the Wiz King.

To explore the upper reaches of the pyramid though you need to take the passage to the north.  If you go to the south passage, you will eventually come across a room where the entire floor falls out from underneath you and can’t get across, sending your back down to the basement and back to the northern passage.  After you make your way into the northern passage you can then decide to either continue to the north or to make your way to the west.  This is the point of the quest that many players call “towers.”  If you are in a group with a few people, you can divide up the party to have them go in different directions to explore individual “towers”.  Each tower will lead to a different boss fight, which will either be with Raiyum, Hami, or Hafez.  Besides listening to the mpehit’s clue from the basement, you will have the opportunity to read some special plaques that are placed in a few rooms.  If your intelligence is high enough, the plaques will tell you which path you are currently on.  If you happen to go west after you hit the start of the towers, you will eventually come to another fork forcing you to either to continue west or to go south (if I’m remembering correctly).

It is time to pick the path to a “tower.”

As you make your way through the towers you will come across a number of interesting quest mechanics.  First off, you will have to deal with a number of skeletons and mummies, be prepared for some heavy weapon damage, especially if you are using slashing weapons.  You will be forced to open up passages by either pulling levers or by defeating red named mummy avengers called Eternal Gatekeepers.  You will keep climbing stairs as you ascend higher and higher into the pyramid.  Besides being forced to deal with all of the undead, you will also encounter a number of traps.  There are a plethora of spinning blade traps, with some moving and others being stationary.  To make things even more complicated, there are a few rooms that you have to cross that have half of the floor that crumbles away.  If you fall through the floor, you will fall into a room one level lower that is full of scorpions or mummies.  You generally have to pull a lever or two to get out of these rooms and then have to run back up to the level you were at when you fell.  These rooms can get quite annoying, especially since they will contain skeleton archers and arcane skeletons that can walk across the portion of the floor that has fallen away making dealing with them frustrating.  You have to cross these rooms because they are typically in front of another room that has a lever that needs to be pulled to allow you access to the upper reaches of pyramid.  Sometimes, you can see cracks in the floor giving you a clue as to which portion of the room has the crumbling floor.

Battling the eternal gatekeeping between spinning traps.

A room that will have some crumbling floors guarded by some skeleton archers.  Need to cross this room to get to the lever in the adjoining room to proceed higher into the tower.

Scorpions might be the rooms one floor below those rooms with the break away floors…as you can tell, Erd fell through such a room.

The rooms on the other side of those with the crumbling floors will have a special lever that needs to be pulled that are generally protected by more traps (sonic if I remember correctly) and mephits.  These are also the rooms that contain the plaques that can be read that indicate which boss you are on the path to.  As you continue on the path through any given tower, you will also come across levers that need to be pulled that are within small rooms.  Some of these rooms will close when then the lever is pulled making you feel like you are in a closet.  When this happens a skeleton spawns and when you destroy the skeleton the door reopens allowing you to continue on your way.  Eventually you will come to the top of the tower where you will encounter Raiyum, Hami, or Hafez and their respective guardians.  As you reach, what I’m going to call as the peak, of the tower you will enter a room that either has a djinn or an efreeti.  The djinn will either be the optional named monster Akvan or Merhdad and the efreeti is the optional named Rahab.  These three outsiders are the guardians to Raiyum and his two primary servants.  Although these three enemies are considered optional objectives, the one that is guarding Raiyum is a mandatory requirement because you can’t get to Raiyum until his guardian is defeated.  However, the other two guardians are not required because if you happen to pick the correct tower that Raiym is currently residing in then you can complete the quest without dealing with Hami or Hafez.  One other thing I would like to mention about Akvan, Merhdad, and Rahab is that they can easily be defeated without actually fighting them.  Just as a side note, there are two other quests located in the Valley of the False Tombs (Chamber of Kourush and Chamber of Rhamat).  Both of these quests will allow you to obtain a special seal (a different seal from each quest).  One of these seals is what is binding Akvan to this plane while the other is the seal that is binding Mehrdad.  If you bring these seals with you and talk to the djinn to kick off the encounter you will have the option to break the seal which then immediately defeats the respective djinn.  The seal of fire, located in the basement of this quest, is what is used on Rahab the efreeti.  So if you come prepared, these guardian fights are extremely easy :).

By reading this plaque I can tell I’m on my way to fight the Jackal.]

This is the path that leads to the Lion.

Finally making my way toward the king.

If you happen to pick a tower that leads to Hami or Hafez, you will have to defeat their respective guardians to encounter them as well and when you do defeat Hami or Hafez the floor in their room crumbles away and you fall all the way back down to the basement where the treasure room is located as well as two other shrines.  To get to the shrines you need to activate a rune which has a lower level Intelligence check (I believe).  You will note that the treasure room is blocked off and is connected to the room with the shrines.

No other way to go but down after defeating Hami or Hafez.

At the bottom of the long fall and back in the basement are two shrines behind a rune locked door as well as the treasure room.

Raiyum’s treasure room is warded.  Notice the face in the flames.  Also notice that around the frame of the door are three “skulls” and that one of them is extinguished meaning that one of the undead bosses have been taken care of.

The Chamber of Raiyum is one of those quests that makes it worth while to complete all of the optional objectives.  There are number of them to complete, at your leisure.  These included defeating the den mother for the windlasher gnolls (Yheeroua, she doesn’t always spawn but when she does you need to defeat her to open the chest to get the crest, so in that sense she is a mandatory kill requirement), destroying the eternal gatekeepers; defeating Akvan, Merhdad, Rahab, Hami, and Hafez, and then opening and entering the secret treasure room.  Each of these objectives give at a nice chuck of experience and it can’t be quite substantial if you take the time to complete them all.  Also, when you defeat Raiyum, Hami, and Hafez and their respective guardians you will open up access to the treasure room.  Although you are awarded a chest when you defeat Raiyum, the real reward is getting into the treasure room.  The only bad thing about this is that you either have to dimension door back to the beginning of the quest or you need to run back down the tower to get back to the treasure room because when Raiyum is defeated his floor doesn’t break away, unlike with Hami and Hafez.

Fighting Rahab to get to one of the undead bosses in the Wiz-King.

Preparing to fight one of the djinn guardians.

Time to take down Akvan.

The treasure room is now open.

There is also one other little mystery I wanted to make note of.  I know that there is at least one hidden door in one of the towers.  The only thing special about this hidden door, from what I have seen, is that it generally hides a mummy prince.  The mummy prince is just a mummy avenger.  He isn’t red named, doesn’t guard a chest, and isn’t any type of optional objective.  He is probably slightly stronger than the other mummy avengers you find in the quest but he doesn’t give you anything special as far as they quest is concerned.  It makes me wonder if there was something else that was meant to be added.

The key fights in this quest are with Hami, Hafez, and Raiyum.  Hami and Hafez are powerful mummy guardians who also happen to be strong clerics.  They tend to like to throw out comet fall and their orange blade barriers.  Raiyum on the other hand focuses more on his arcane spellcasting.  As soon as he breaks out of his coffin, he sheathes himself in a permanent cold version of fire shield, making melee attacks very frustrating.  He is also highly resistant to energy based spells and attacks.  He likes to use spells such as fireball, chain lightning, and disintegrate to make our lives a pain.  If you are a melee, make sure you have cold protection and resistance on of some sort.

Erdrique taking on the Jackal.

Fighting the Lion.

Battling Raiyum could be detrimental to one’s health.

To wrap things up, the  Chamber of Raiyum is a fun, although long quest.  Although the design of the quest is intended to take a long time to complete, it can be completed rather quickly by splitting up a party and taking down separate towers or by getting lucky and picking the correct tower that Raiyum happens to be hiding in (using the mephit complaining about Hami and Hafez in the basement could help with this).  However, if you do come across Raiyum prior to Hami and Hafez, I think it is worth your while to go back and defeat the other two just to get the experience and to unlock the treasure room.  In either case, give the quest a look through if you haven’t done it before.  It is definitely an experience!!  Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting in the Wiz-King.

Week of Jumping, Quest Runs February 1st to February 4th

With the Risia Ice Games going strong, a large portion of my DDO activity this week has been centered on Kolll (Level 22 Ranger/Shiradi Champion) and doing a large amount of ice jumping.  This week, I have substituted my morning slayer runs and daily after work runs to the Risia Ice Games and collecting those white, blue, and purple coins.  My goal is to have collected 100 purple coins and to turn them in before the Risia Ice Games end this weekend (well actually ending the morning of Monday, February 8th).  So far, I have exactly half that number of purple coins.  We’ll how the rest of the weekend turns out with my jumping :).

Kolll on the mast and preparing to jump.

So, although I was doing a lot of ice jumping, I was still also getting some questing in.  All of my actual quest runs occurred during my regular nightly routines.  I kicked things off on Monday night by taking Hamllin (Level 17 Fighter) into the quest Undermine on elite.  Undermine is just one of those quests where you can get through it extremely smoothly or wind up having a rough time.  I figured if I made it through the minefield without any deaths then everything would be good.  I also playing during our digital table top D&D session as well, so I was also distracted.  In any case, I made it up to and through the minefield without a single death.  However, once I made it past the minefield, I got killed three times: once just at the bridge and twice while fighting Kaboom and his cronies.  The first time I got killed was because my hireling wasn’t with me, for whatever reason, and the other two times were just bad luck.  However, I did complete it.  I also picked up 12 mysterious remnants and picked up Kobold Exterminator III in my monster manual for over 1,700 experience.  As for the optional objectives, I was able to destroy Rhyolite (the huge earth elemental), Cascade (the water elemental), and the boulder.  I was quite happy with the boulder as it was the first time I completed that objective on my own.  Now the only quest that Hammy needs to complete the Attack on Stormreach chain is Seigebreaker.

Kolll swimming back to the boat after a successful jump.

Hamllin fighting off the Droaam forces in the beginning of Undermine.

I logged on Tuesday night with Charlock (Level 16 Fighter) and I took him into the quest Hiding in Plain Sight on elite, as I would like to get him through the Restless Isles quests.  Although he was slightly over level for the quest (quest is level 12 on elite), I still wound up getting a nice chuck of experience for it.  I didn’t have any issues making my way through the quest but discovered that I needed to use the DM’s Vision (from wearing the Voice of the Master and Mantle of the Worldshaper together) to find the hidden door as my detect secret doors clicky from Teraza’s Sight wasn’t good enough.  Charlock collected three monster manual deeds while working his way through the quest: Halfling Hunter I (1,600 experience), Dwarf Exterminator III (4,700 experience), and Ogre Exterminator I (1,100 experience).  Charlock also completed the four optional objectives: destroy 75 shipping containers, take the documents, defeat the Aurum blockade, and defeat the Aurum officials.

Kolll on the boat house and prepping for another set of Risia jumps.

Kolll sailing up the mast for his attempt in the Risia Ice Games.

Charlock getting ready to battle Hazadill and his goons at the end of Hiding in Plain Sight.

On Wednesday, the only thing I was able to work on was some of the Risia Ice Game jumping.  I didn’t log in that night because Wednesday’s are date night.  Thursday was a different story.  I was scheduled to bring on Erdrique (Level 25 Rogue/Legendary Dreadnaught) and to start the Sands of Menechtarun for some epic questing.  The first quest I wanted to tackle was The Chamber of Raiyum, also know as the Tomb of the Wizard King.  On the way out to the quest, I took some time to take on some slayers and collected another 29 gnoll slayers and 65 undead slayers.  The gnoll slayers boosted me over the 750 slayer mark for that faction.  I also came across General Tanakh, Palumak the Scourer, and Whirling Ozann.  I picked up the Bow of Elements (Air) from Whirling Ozann.  After the quick slayers, I entered the Chamber of Raiyum on epic hard and I must say I had a very good time :)!!  I didn’t come across any major issues at all while making my way through this extensive pyramid.  As I made my way through the quest, I collected Mummy Exterminator IV which netted me about 10,000 experience.  I also completed the all optional objectives which include defeating Akvan, Mehrdad, Rahab, Hafez the Lion, Hami the Jackal, and the Eternal Gatekeepers.  As a result of killing all of the named encounters, I was also able to get access to the treasure room and complete that optional objective as well.  I collected two scrolls, Scroll of Unkor’s Cleaver and Scroll of the Vulkoorim Fighting Leathers.  I also picked up 56 Token of the Twelve Fragments and a +3 Strength tome from a breakable :).  In the chests I looted a Token of the Twelve and Silken Mail.  For a quest reward I picked up 21 Commendations of Valor.  The only thing I didn’t complete was taking out the den mother but she didn’t spawn for me during this run.  Overall, it was a great run indeed!!

It is a beautiful night to do some jumping.

Kolll scanning the Harbor and prepping for his next jump.

So my quest runs this week varied from hitting up a lower lever quest in the Harbor to epic Wizard King.  I also got a lot of Risia Ice Game jumping in and I’m halfway to my goal of 100 purple coins.  I hope the weekend is just as much fun :).  I plan on taking Erdrique back into the Desert for the rest of those quests and would like to get through Spies in the House.  I also plan on continuing with Kolll and the Risia Ice Games.  I hope everybody else had a great week and I hope you all have a great weekend as well.

Kolll wondering how many participants the locals of the Harbor have seen in the Risia Ice Games.

Erdrique making his way to the Tomb of the Wizard King.

Erdrique finding a +3 Strength Tome from a breakable in Epic Hard Wizard King.

Thanks for reading and happy hunting in the Wiz-King!!

Thinking About the Mummies of the Wiz-King

A couple of weekends ago, I took Erdrique (Level 16 Rogue) through the Chamber of Riayum, also known as the Tomb of the Wizard-King.  I had some help from Khamels and as we made our way through that great pyramid I wondered about some of the enemies you encounter in this huge structure.  Most notably, I was wondering about the mummy guardians.  Now, there are a plethora of enemies in the Tomb of the Wizard King but there aren’t that many different types of enemies.  You basically have some gnolls and hyenas in the beginning, a few clay golems, skeletons (archers, warriors, and casters), mummies (mummy guardians, mummy avengers, mummy prince, eternal gatekeepers), scorpions, ghasts, and some mephits (excluding the named enemies).

The enemies I started to wonder about was the mummy guardians.  In nearly every coffin you break, you come across a very angry and vicious mummy guardian.  I imagine these mummies were perhaps some of the higher level servants to the terrible tyrant Raiyum when they were living.  I’m guessing he entombed them for his own servants in the afterlife.  However, every once in awhile we would come across one that was quite stubborn and just refused to attack.

 photo Why Cant all of the Mummies by like this guy_zpsrybaak7e.jpg

So what is the deal with this mummy guardian in the Wiz King?

So I wondered, what was the deal with this particular enemy?  Now thinking about this a little bit, I began to wonder on how loyal or faithful these servants truly are.  I get the sense that in these cases, these ex-servants weren’t very happy serving King Raiyum and don’t wish to help to protect him.  Heck, they might even be hopeful that we can destroy him.  Of course they won’t aid us in that endeavor, but they won’t stop us either.  All of this just makes me realize two things: 1).  Good help and loyal servants are hard to find and 2). If you aren’t a good boss but a tyrant expect to be abandoned!!

Now what is actually going on is probably some type of glitch or perhaps these things are just truly “dead” and not undead.  However, I do get the feeling that these things are supposed to be attacking the party.  In any case, I believe these “baddies” have decided to throw a mini-revolt against the Wizard King :).

Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting in the Wizard King!!

Questing Activities Over the Weekend, Quest Runs August 14 to August 16

This past weekend was quite productive and fun for me :).  As is typical, I started my question on Friday morning by taking one of my character out into a slayer area prior to work.  This time I was scheduled to take Kanndar (Level 12 Paladin) out into the wilds of Sorrowdusk Isle.  Kanndar still has quite a ways to go before he finished out that slayer area.  Later in the afternoon, after I got home from work, I took Erdrique (Level 16 Rogue) into the lengthy quest, A Relic of the Sovereign Past (also know as the Black Anvil Mines).  I had an interesting time running through those mines and battling the duergar, especially summoning forth a chaos beholder and a mindflayer from the Shard of Xoriat, which made the quest that much more fun to get through.  While making my way through the Black Anvil Mines, I was pleasantly surprised to pick up at least three monster manual deeds (two for dwarves and one for clay golems) which netted me a nice little chunk of experience.  On Friday night, I logged on with Erdrique once again and joined up with Khamels.  We then made our way over to the Sands of Menechtarun where we completed the Chains of Flames, Tomb of the Wizard-King, and An Offering of Blood all on elite.  We are now both flagged for Against the Demon Queen and I’m hoping to knock that out next Friday or so.

 photo Kanndar looking for enemies in Sorrowdusk_zpszwos4f8j.jpg

Kanndar making his way through Sorrowdusk Isle.

 photo Taking a beholder for a spin in Black Anvil Mines_zpsmo1dtx21.jpg

Erdrique looking forward to taking his chaos beholder out to hunt duergar in A Relic of the Sovereign Past.

 photo Making my way to the Burning City_zpsmqflrrpv.jpg

Erdrique making his way to the Burning City;

 photo Watching my beholder in action in Chains of Flame_zpsemmdlogw.jpg

Erdrique and Khamels fighting the fire brand gnolls in the Burning City.

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Erdrique and Khamels taking some swings on some mummies in the Wiz-King.

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Erdrique dealing with the scorrow in An Offering of Blood.

On Saturday, I logged on with Erdrique and joined up with Hellbanisher.  We headed back out to the Desert to take on the quest Maraud the Mines, which was the last quest I needed to complete on elite in the Desert besides Against the Demon Queen.  We then headed off over to House Jorasco and took on the quest, Dreams of Insanity.  I had expected us to have some problems in this quest, but we blew through it relatively easily.  After that run, Hellbanisher had to log out.  I then took Erdrique out into the Red Fens for a slayer run, where I’m working on 5,000 kills, and then I took Erdrique back through the quest Invaders!  The last time I was Invaders! I was demolished because I wasn’t paying attention to my hireling.  This time I did a lot better but I still got killed and had to re-enter the quest.  I was killed when my hireling’s pathing was disrupted and I thought the hireling was behind me.  Oh well, no big deal.  I then headed out to take on the challenge Extraplanar Palace: The Dragon’s Hoard.  I ran this three times to the ingredients, enchanged armor fragments, I needed to upgrade my Spare Hand and Ring of the Stalker and during these runs it was first time I came across the spectral dragon, Auraxyllon, which I thought was extremely cool :).

 photo Making our way to Maraud the Mines_zpsjy5laawg.jpg

Erdrique traveling to the quest, Maraud the Mines.

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Hellbanisher freezing some iron golems.

 photo Having Tensers in a Dream of Madness_zps5cph57kv.jpg

Erdrique getting hit with Tensor’s Transformation by an orb in Dream of Insanity.

 photo Working on the slayers in the Red Fens_zps6sf9ypej.jpg

Erdrique making his way through the Red Fens.

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Erdrique dealing with the beholders in Invaders!

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Erdrique putting the kobolds to work in The Dragon’s Hoard.

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Erdrique dealing with the kobold’s harassers. 

 photo Encounter Auraxylon for the first time_zps7e1q4txe.jpg

Erdrique fighting the spectral dragon in the Dragon’s Hoard.

Sunday was quite laid back compared to the quest runs on Friday and Saturday.  I was scheduled to log on with Cannock (Level 7 Druid) who still needs quite a number of quests to be done.  I had planned to take Cannock through some Harbor and Market quests and I noted that the first quest in my compendium that wasn’t completed on elite yet was Where there’s smoke.  So I took Cannock out into the Cerulean HIlls and did some slayers and then popped into Where there’s smoke and had some fun battling the orcs.  After I completed Where there’s smoke, I decided that I should work on some challenges for Cannock and I took him into Dr. Rushmore’s Mansion: Behind the Door.  Now it had been a while since I have failed a challenge, but during Cannock’s first run through there I did fail as my luck failed me when I didn’t have enough snake crests to get through the door to either Mistress Temptia or Ugg the Confused Meatshield.  However, I went right back in and I was able to complete the quest and to take both of those names out.

 photo Cannock taking out the orc from a distance_zpsgvq8haqg.jpg

Cannock hunting in Cerulean Hills before entering Where there’s smoke.

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Cannock feasting on some orc in Where there’s smoke.

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Cannock trying to get one last snake crest before time runs out but didn’t complete it :(.

 photo Cannock taking down the Mistress_zpsum1xabpr.jpg

Cannock getting to Mistress Temptia this time!!

So the weekend was quite productive.  The quest runs through the Desert brought Erdrique that much closer to being forced to level 17.  I was also able to raid a variety of quests from slayers, to challenges, to lengthy quests, to relatively simple quests over the weekend.  I nice diversity indeed.  I hope everybody else had a good weekend as well!!  Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting!!

A Look Back, Questing July 27th to July 30th

This past week, I had some fun quest runs that ranged across mid-levels through epics.  I started the week off though with some questing with my spirit shaman, Ragnar, in Neverwinter Nights II.  This was because I couldn’t do my typical morning slayer run on Monday because of the release Update 27 and maintenance were occurring that morning and through the afternoon.  However, by the time I got off work, the servers were updated with latest release and the maintenance was finished so I logged on with Erdrique (Level 15 Rogue) and took him out to do some slayers in the Red Fens and then over to the House Phairlan to do the quest, The Desert Caravan.  The Desert Caravan is the beginning quest that directs our characters to the Sands of Menechtarun, my favorite area :).  Later that night, I logged back on with Erdrique and I eagerly made my way out to the Sands of Menechtarun.  While out there I gathered some slayers and explorers and then hit up the quests: Purge the Fallen Shrine and The Chamber of Kourush.  After some other maintenance tasks after completing these quests I called it a night.

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Ragnar casting a spell on the thugs in Neverwinter.

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Erdrique hunting down some enemies in the Red Fens.

 photo Erdrique hitting up the Desert Caravan_zpsvbiz2puv.jpg

Erdrique preparing to protect the caravan.

 photo Erd enjoying the moon light in the Desert_zpsy1eizaam.jpg

Erdrique enjoying the moon lit night in the desert.

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Erdrique getting up and personal with a cacodemon (fleshrender) in Purge the Fallen Shrine.

On Tuesday, I logged on with Berann (Level 8 Barbarian) and took him out into Tangleroot Gorge to gather up some more slayers and rares for him during my morning slayer run.  Later that afternoon, I logged on with Hamllin (Level 16 Fighter) and I took him back into the exotic Restless Isles for some ogre and wildmen hunting practice.  That night, I logged on with Lorrikk (Level 12 Monk) and I headed out to the Necropolis and was joined by Helldemons and we knocked out three of the four flagging quests for Necro II: Tomb of the Shadow Guard, Tomb of the Shadow Knight, and Tomb of the Lord.  These were all solid runs.  After we completed those three quests, we both called it a night.  Lorrikk now only needs to finish Tomb of the Shadow King to be ready for the Shadow Crypt.

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Berann making his way through Tangleroot Gorge.

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Hamllin defeating the glass spiders in the underwater caverns of the Restless Isles.

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Lorrikk preparing to enter the quest, Tomb of the Shadow Guard.

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Lorrikk getting annoyed at the umbral worgs in the Tomb of the Shadow Lord.

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Lorrikk and Helldemons making their way through the Tomb of the Shadow Knight.

Wednesday, as usual, was my “short” day of questing.  I did my morning slayer run with Rimuldar (Level 23 Wizard/Magister) who I took out into the King’s Forest prior to me heading off to the office.  The afternoon was devoted to Erdrique, who I logged on and checked his mail and auctions and cleaned up his inventory and caught with that annoying “character maintenance” stuff.  I then took him out to the Lordsmarch Plaza and kicked off the Deception of Stormreach chain and ran the quest Diplomatic Impunity.  I didn’t come across any issues while dealing with the initial assault of Droaam forces.  Looking forward to progressing through this chain and the Attack on Stormreach chain as I collect the monster manual awards for ogres, gnolls, and orcs.

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Rimuldar getting stuck in a bear trap in the King’s Forest.

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Erdrique taking on the dangers of the Skyfall Coast in Diplomatic Impunity.

For Thursday, I logged on with Garrrin (Level 23 Barbarian/Fury of the Wild) and took him through the King’s Forest for my morning slayer run.  During the afternoon, I logged on with Hamllin and took him out into the Restless Isles and collected some more slayers for him out there.  It won’t be much longer until he is finished out there as I believe I’m working on my 1,500 slayer mark, which is the maximum out in Restless Isles.  I will then move Hamllin to complete Ataraxia’s Haven and then he will be off to the Desert :).  Later that night, I logged back on with Garrrin, who has seen quite a bit of action lately considering I played him through the Web of Chaos chain on epic hard last Saturday.  This time, I was joined by Hellsbain and we took on An Offering of Blood and Tomb of the Wizard King on epic hard.  We had a good time moving through those quests and ran into only some minor issues.  After we completed the Wizard King we called it a night.

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Garrrin running into a small bunch of dire bears in the King’s Forest.

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Hamllin exploring the Restless Isles and looking for some ogres.

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Garrrin and Hellsbain fighting the scorrow in An Offering of Blood.

I’m hoping that my runs this weekend will be just as interesting.  I’m hoping to take Erdrique through the Cursed Crypt and more of the Desert quests this weekend.  I also have a number of other level 11 quests I would like to catch up on.  We’ll see how it goes.  I hope everybody else had a good week and I want to wish everybody happy hunting in DDO :)!!

A Desert Dominating Weekend, Quest Runs January 30 to February 1

There is no surprise here.  I really enjoy it when my characters hit the level 13 to 15 because that is the time when I get to hunt in the Sands of Menechtarun in most cases.  Now the quests out in the Sands of Menechtarun run from levels 10 to 12, however since I typically run quests in order down the list in the Adventure Compendium, I’m typically above that level by the time I get out there.  In any case, my questing kicked off Friday morning with a slayer run through a different zone, Three Barrel Cove, with one of my premium account characters, Suppply (Level 9 Paladin).  Suppply doesn’t have much left in there and will hopefully finish that up soon.  After work, I logged on with Hamllin (Level 15 Fighter) and I took him for his turn through the quest A Relic of the Sovereign Past and had some fun slaugtering the duergar and looking for the magical sword Tesyus.  Hamllin completed the quest without any real issues although I didn’t gather the adamantine ore as I was running out of time and needed to make dinner (stupid schedule change).  Later that night, I started my dominance of the Sands of Menechtarun with Erdrique (Level 16 Monk).  I took him through a few runs of slayers in the desert and then ran off and hit up the quest, An Offering of Blood on elite.  Unlike Hamllin, I moved through the quest without any deaths and had a good time taking on the drow of the desert on elite.  I called it a night after that fun run.

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Suppply prepping for these would be attackers in Three Barrel Cove.

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Hamllin making his way through the Black Anvil Mines and taking care of some duergar.

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Having fun with the jaded Whirling Ozann.

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Erd having some fun with Tomb of the Jade on the scorrow in An Offering of Blood.

On Saturday, I brought Erdrique back on took him back hunting in the desert.  I worked on his gnoll slayers where I wracked up my 3,000 gnolls and continued to work on the same mark for undead and scorrow.  I then headed off and explored the Chamber of Raiyum, better known as The Tomb of the Wizard-King.  I was actually able to find him in the second tower I explored and was glad it worked out this way.  This allowed me to hunt down the last of his guardians and to fall down to the treasure room and loot that area without having to run all the way back to the beginning of the quest (I didn’t have dimension door and I was solo).  After that run I called it a night.

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A pile of dead mephis around Erdrique, they should have known better.

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Erd noticing these interesting symbols in the Tomb of the Wizard-King.

I logged on Cannock (Level 7 Druid) and started out my questing on Sunday night in the Harbor and took him into the dreaded quest, Stealthy Repossession.  However, just before I entered the quest, an old guildie logged on which was good to see. After I took Cannock through Stealthy Repossession and ignoring those pesky prophets I logged out and brought Erdrique back on once again.  I had suggested we run Chains of Flame since that was the last quest I needed to flag for the Demon Queen pre-raid.  So I joined up with Corewyn and we later picked up another guildie, Culindar, and we headed out to the desert once again and had a fun time battling the firebrand gnolls and their fire mephits, fire elementals, and other pets.  We had little difficulty moving through the complicated map and upper levels of the Burning City on elite and completed the quest in under an hour.  Good times indeed!!  After that run, I did call it a night.

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Cannock not trying to be sneaky in Stealthy Repossession.

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Erd contemplating the night sky just outside of the Burning City.

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The Crawlers making their way through the Burning City.

The weekend was dominated with runs through the desert which is always fun to me :).  I hope everybody else had fun this weekend as well!!  Happy hunting everybody and thanks for reading!!

Having Some Fun in Epic Hard Quests

I’m still learning my way through the epic questing scene, even though I have quite a number of characters that are level 20 and higher.  As such, I have started to slowly move to running some of the epic quests on epic hard as opposed to epic normal.  Of course, I have only done this a few times with characters I’m more comfortable.  In fact two out of the three last epic quest runs I completed were on epic hard.  And each of them went pretty smoothly.  The first one was with Wapoyei (Level 23 Cleric/Exalted Angel).  In this particular instance, I decided to take on the Lords of Dust on Epic Hard.  Wapoyei still needs quite a bit of work in terms of obtaining gear but his healing and radiant server aura is powerful and I felt like he could hold his own in there.  That and being able to summon forth his onyx panther, and his two owl bears (level 25 and level 17), and another hireling that he would be ok, not including his summon monster.  So I took over to the Harbor and entered into the quest and then realized that my rogue/shadowdancer hireling had expired and didn’t feel like heading out to get another one so I pushed forward with out that hireling.

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Wapoyei creating havoc in the cultist base.

Even without the additional help of the rogue/shadowdancer hireling, that I had planned on helping me out, I still was able to move Wapoyei and his makeshift party through the quest with little difficulty to be honest.  I used the onyx panther and the owl bears to help maintain and gather ire of the many cultists while my aura pretty much kept everybody up in health.  I also used energy drain in conjunction with the spell destruction for some fun insta-kill results, including many of the champions I encountered.  I also used a number of light spells (nimbus of light, searing light, divine power, and avenging light) along with the epic destiny rebuke foe to help as well.  Although Wapoyei was one level higher than the quest, I still expected to get killed at least once.  But I never fell, nor did any of my pets, including my level 17 owlbear which I found quite surprising.  The biggest problem I had was with Karas at the end, but by using the the intimidate ability on three pets Iwas able to keep his focus on them as opposed to Wapoyei, which allowed me to keep the pets in my aura as well as allowing me to attack.  In the end, it was nice run.

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Kolll taking down a gnoll monster champion who tried to drop his chest in the wall…bad, bad, champion.

The more surprising quest I ran was Tomb of the Wizard King on Epic Hard with Kolll (Level 22 Ranger/Shiradi Champion).  At the time, Kolll was level 21 which made him one level under the level of the quest (level 22 on Epic Hard).  Even with him being under level, I figured I would have plenty of room to kite and hide, allowing my pets and my favored soul/exalted angel hireling to finish off anything I started.  So, I entered the quest and summoned forth my onyx panther, my level 17 owlbear, and my hireling.   The first few encounters with the gnolls in the beginning went fairly well and I was able to take them out pretty easily, including a few champions.  However, I did run into a little hiccup.  As I moved further into the first room I was so fortunate enough to have two monster champion windlasher evokers and I was bright enough to grab both of their attention.  Needless to say, I hit my first death but was able to get back up and take them out.  I then took out the Den Mother, who was a champion, and moved my way further into the quest.

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Kolll hadn’t encountered these bad boys before.

By using a combination of duck and cover, kiting, and multi-shot I was able to make my way through the majority of the quest without any other issues until I hit an expected new enemy source, the death hex wraiths.  I never encountered these before and before I new it was found myself as a soul stone.  However, I had my hireling get me back up and I was able to take them out.  I also was a little surprised to encounter the skeleton mages at the tombs of the Jackal and and the Lion but they were much easier to deal with.  I did get killed one more time during the final fight with Raiyum when more of the dread hex wraiths spawned when I got him down to under 50%.  Again, I was surprised and this time my whole little party wiped.  I was forced to buy a resurrection cake but Raiyum was nearly finished by that time and I was able to finish him off and the rest of his wraiths to complete the quest.

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A mysterious remnant was trying to hide on me.

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Too bad the rest of the mummies in the Wiz King weren’t like this one.

So overall, I was pleased with both Wapoyei and Kolll.  I was also happy when running the Wiz King with Kolll as I gathered quite a number of scrolls; a token of the twelve; a few monster champion remnants; the seals for the demonscale armor, vambraces of inner light and the mysterious ring.  I will continue to run more quests on the higher difficulty settings and I hope the majority of them go as smoothly.  Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting!!

A Heavy Weekend of Undead Slaying, Questing January 16 to 18

Although it was a relatively light weekend, my quest runs were dominated dealing with the undead.  My quest runs started with a slayer run with Charlock (Level 13 Fighter) in the Red Fens.  After collecting some slayers and running around the bogs I headed out to the office.  Later that afternoon, I took Hamllin (Level 14 Fighter) back into the quest, And the Dead Shall Rise…  The last time I entered the And the Dead Shall Rise I had some issues with the floor because of the visual bug.  This time I made it back up to Validus and still had a few problems but I was able to take him out with a combination of heals from the cleric and ranged attacks.  In any case, I finally took my revenge :).  Later on Friday night, I took Erdrique (Level 15 Monk) into the Sands of Menechtarun and into the quest Purge the Fallen Shrine.  Erd gathered quite a bit of experience during the slayer run and easily made his way through the the outsiders in Purge the Fallen Shrine.  I then took Erdrique out into the Tomb of the Blighted and then called it a night.

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Charlock hunting in the Red Fens.

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Hamllin taking on the mummy avenger in the quest And the Dead Shall Rise.

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Erdrique hunting the gnolls in the desert.

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Erdrique hunting the outsiders in Purge the Fallen Shrine.

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Erdrique taking down a gelatinous cube in the Tomb of the Blighted.

I didn’t log into the game on Saturday besides to do some maintenance.  But on Sunday, I took Erdrique back out into the Sands of Menechtarun to collect some more slayers.  Erdrique has now hit 1,500 slayers in gnolls, and 750 slayers in both the scorrow and undead.  Later that night, I logged on with Kolll (Level 22 Ranger/Shiradi Champion) and I took him into the Tomb of the Wizard King on Epic Hard.  At the time Kolll was level 21 and I was curious to see how he would do in the Wizard King on Epic Hard.  I actually did better than I had anticipated and completed the quest and received a large number of scrolls, collected some mysterious remnants and picked up a couple of seals.  Overall, not a bad run.

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Erdrique taking care of business in the Desert.

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Kolll is fighting the Jackal in the Tomb of the Wizard King.

So, as you can see, it was definitely a weekend of undead slaying, although a light weekend.  Needless to say it was still a productive weekend and I was glad to have a solid run with Kolll as I continue to get more and more comfortable in the epic quests.   Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting.

Glancing Around in DDO, Quest Runs September 15th to 18th

It was an interesting set of quest runs this week.  To begin with, I didn’t do a slayer run first thing on Monday morning because the game was down for some routine maintenance.  Instead I booted up Neverwinter Nights II and logged in with my level 5 Spirit Shaman, Ragnar, and took him out into the ruins around Highcliff.  However, later that afternoon I logged on with Hamllin (Level 11 Fighter) and I took him into the Tomb of the Shadow Lord.  I had put that run up in the LFM panel and I was about a third of the way through when a pug asked to join me.  I accepted him into the group and then we entered the quest shortly later.  At that point, he told me he was going afk and never returned.  Talk about a little discouraging.  I logged out after that to take care of dinner but logged back on later that night with Larrs (Level 20 Bard/Fatesinger).  Larrs was who I had originally scheduled for a slayer run, so I took him out into the Ruins of Gianthold (Heroic) and collected some more slayers while I prepped for my weekly digital table top game.  After collecting some slayers, I then logged on with Stoorage (Level 10 Fighter) and took him out into Three Barrel Cove to run Guard Duty and Prove Your Worth.  During that time, our digital PNP game was cancelled so I was able to put full attention toward DDO.  I ran Guard Duty on normal, hard, and elite (because Stoorage is only on a premium account) but a fellow guildie joined me for the Prove Your Worth quest and opened it on elite on the first go round :).  After that run, I called it a night.

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Ragnar and his party heading into the fray of battle.

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Hamllin curious about this sign in Tomb of the Shadow lord.

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Larrs getting acquainted with his spells.

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Charlock protecting Riflee’s crew.

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Stoorage waiting for Grabthars to catch up

On Tuesday, I started off the day with some slayer runs with Containment (Level 5 Cleric) who I took out into the Waterworks.  As I started this run, I had also put it up in the LFM panel and I was surprised to get a hit.  A level 6 Ranger joined up with me and we split up and took out the slayers in no time, that was a pleasant surprise.  I wish I could of stayed on longer but I had to log out to get to work.  Later that afternoon, I logged on with Erdrique (Level 18 Druid) and I took him through the first quest of the Disciples of Shadow storyarc: Disciples of Shar.  Keeping up with the theme of the past few days, I had also posted this run in the LFM panel.  I received one request to join and so I brought him along.  I had actually received a second request but the second person never joined our group :(.  We had no problem making our way through the Disciples of Shar on elite.  And then logged back on later than night to run Wapoyei (Level 23 Cleric/Exalted Angel).  I was joined up by our new guildie, Asservo (Level 20 Cleric) and we ran the Chamber of Raiyum (Tomb of the Wizard King) on epic normal.  It was a pretty smooth run with one slight hiccup that we overcame.  We actually got through the quest pretty quickly because Raiyum was actually in the first tower we chose.  After the run, Asservo had to logout but I headed off to An Offering of Blood, which I also ran on epic normal.  I had put that group into the LFM once again and did receive one request to join when I was the last fight.  The requester did join and I finished the quest just as he caught up to me, couldn’t have had any better timing.  I then logged out after that run.

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Containment punishing a kobold in Waterworks.

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Erdrique and his party are making their way to Dedryk Black.

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Wapoyei and Asservo doing what they do in the Tomb of the Wiz King.

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The stunning construct spiders are a pain.

On Wednesday I started off the day by taking Charlock (Level 13 Fighter) out into Sorrowdusk Ilse to collect some more slayers.  This time I didn’t get a single request to join the party.  After collecting some slayers I headed out to work.  Later that afternoon, I logged back on with Hamllin and was joined up with Twotoe and we took on Escort the Expediton out in Threnal and we got that one knocked out, although we did run into a few complications. But needless to say, we did get it done :).  I didn’t play that night because it was a date night, so I spent that with my wife :).

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Charlock is the spider killer in Sorrowdusk Isle.

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Hammy and Twotoe working it out in Escort the Expedition.

Thursday was a unique day.  I had taken the day off to do some things with my wife so I didn’t get my slayer run in until later in the day.  I took Lorrikk (Level 11 Monk) out into Searing Heights and then after that I logged on with Erdrique and took him out into the quest Delirium. I had put this particular quest up in the LFM panel and received two pug requests once I made it through the drinking challenge.  I brought them in and combined with my hirelings we had little problems getting through it, thankfully!!  However, after that run I called it night.

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Lorrikk floating to a better vantage point in the Searing Heights.

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Erdrique and his hirelings taking on the beholders in a drinking game in Delirium.

So the runs this week had a good amount of pugging involved.  No of my groups filled but they were still fun.  I hope everybody else had a fun week as well.  Until next time, thanks for reading and happy hunting!!

Nice Weekend of Runs, August 8th and 10th

This past weekend was pretty productive for me.  The weekend runs started with my slayer run with Sludgge (Level 20 Rogue/Shadowdancer) through the Ruins of Gianthold (Heroic).  I took Sludgge around and wracked up some slayers out in the Stormeye slayer area until I needed to log for work.  After I got back from work, I logged on with Hamllin (Level 10 Fighter) and took him into Stromvauld’s Mine on elite.  Hamllin blasted through Stromvauld’s Mine with little issues, which surprised me a little because I figured I would have some problems with the ranged drow in there but didn’t really encounter any issues.  After that run, I logged on with Erdrique (Level 15 Druid) and was joined by Sornea and we took on the quest The Enemy Within.  We entered on elite and took on the forces of the mindflayers and their frost marrow skeletons.  Sornea logged out after that run but I continued on with Erdrique and entered into Ataraxia’s Haven and completed Dreams of Insanity.  Dreams of Insanity is a pretty difficult quest and I was quite surprised to make it through the quest on elite without any issues.  After that run, I logged out and called it a night.

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Sludgge running down the path to Lord Jax in Gianthold.

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Hamllin fighting a scorpion in Stromvauld’s Mine.

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Erdrique and Sornea taking on the enemies from The Enemy Within.

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Erdrique fighting Mirot in Ataraxia’s Haven.

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Erdrique investigating the Gate of Nightmares.

On Saturday, I logged back on with Erdrique and I was joined up with Okhamel.  We headed off into Ataraxia’s Haven and Erdrique finished up that explorer area.  We then headed off into the Sands of Menechtarun, one of my more favorite areas.  While in the desert, we completed An Offering of Blood on elite and Tomb of the Wizard King (The Chamber of Raiyum).  Although we didn’t get an elite streak bonus we did get a plethora of experience, approximately 40 k worth .  After those runs, we both logged out for the night.

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Erdrique finishing off Bestore in Ataraxia’s Haven.

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Erdrique and Okhamel fighting through the waves of scorrow in An Offering of Blood.

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Erdrique fighting King Raiyum.

Sunday, I logged on with Cantlin (Level 11 Sorcerer) and was joined by Khameltoe and we took on Purge the Heretics on elite and Dead Girl’s Spellbook on elite and then headed out to Sorrowdusk Isle.  While in Sorrowdusk Isle, we started to the Grey Moon Story Arc and we completed the Iron Mines: Free Achka and The Iron Mines: Justice for Grust.  After those runs we logged out for the night.

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Cantlin and Khameltoe fighting in the Hidden Chapel.

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Cantlin burning up the undead in Dead Girl’s Spellbook.

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Cantlin venturing into Sorrowdusk Isle.

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Cantlin and Khameltoe making their way to Grust.

So the weekend was quite productive with my main character Erdrique who received a large amount of experience from the quests he ran and for completing the Ataraxia’s explorer area.  He is getting that much closer to level 20 and his next life .  I hope everybody else had a strong weekend as well.  Thanks for reading everybody and happy hunting!!