DDO: Gygax the Great

Here is an important Dungeons and Dragons Online lesson that I learned this past week: I really, really need to check the level of dungeons before I jump into them all willy-nilly. That sounds like common sense, and it is, but one of my other lifelong MMO habits tripped me up on this. The habit was assuming that if you were questing comfortably in a zone, that all quests in that zone would be level appropriate. But DDO doesn’t always operate that way, because sometimes quests were added in later to previous zones or the devs wanted to mess with me or whatever. In any case, I found myself getting absolutely thrashed in a quest only to find out (after two deaths) that it was about three full levels higher than I was. And in DDO, that’s pretty significant.

So on my current push to get to level 10, I took a break from the rest of House P (for now, for now) and went over to do the Delara’s Tomb chain. It’s an old favorite and a main staple of the game, plus it was totally level appropriate. What did I have to lose?

Before getting into the mission itself, I made a slight detour to visit Gary Gygax’s in-game memorial. It’s a little weird and goofy, sure, but it’s also pretty fitting for the guy who co-created the most well-known pen-and-paper RPG in the world. I like the little red 20-sided dice inset. Nice touch.

And I had forgotten that Gygax provided the DM narration for the Delera’s Tomb chain, so that theme continued. Of course — and this is D&D blasphemy to say — Gygax is a horrible voice artist, but that almost doesn’t matter. You get the father of D&D to be your own personal DM for a short time. That’s kind of cool.

I don’t know what Delera was thinking when she approved this tomb as a place to inter those who couldn’t afford a proper burial, but there’s no way you can build something like this and not have it turn evil. It’s just a given.

The quests themselves? Were okay. After a few really great ones in House P, I had higher expectations, but it was mostly catacombs and skeletons and ambushes as far as the eye could see. I’m really starting to feel lonely on these expeditions, too. My guild never talks or does anything, so I’m going to make a point of shopping around this next week and see if I can’t hunt down one group of players who actually like being together for runs (I’m on Ghallanda if anyone has recommendations).

Since I was in the area, I wanted to sort of recreate a picture and pose that I remember doing for this blog back in 2010. Seven years! Man, where does the time go?

4 thoughts on “DDO: Gygax the Great

  1. I still remember the horrified gasps from my party the first time I ran Delera’s and said, “Who IS this guy? He’s awful! Could they not afford a real voice actor so they just used somebody’s brother instead?” When they told me it was Gary Gygax, I thought they were pranking me (I’d somehow missed the message about Gygax being the DM that pops up at the start of each quest).

    I’m mostly on Thelanis, but I *think* my halfling barb on Ghallanda is about at level for Delera’s. If you see Liai, say hi!

  2. I can group with you on Ghallanda. You can also do a character transfer to Argonnessen, which is 2495 DDO Points, but I remember you mentioning that you had a great many DDO Points saved up on your account. Argo is hoppin’ and is much better than Ghallanda in my opinion. Let me know as a reply to this post.

  3. I would agree with everything you said about Delera’s Tomb, I like to revisit it once in a while and I always drop by once in a while to the shrine, just because. The end rewards are pretty important, most people run it just to get The Voice of the Master because you can put it on just before quest turn in for bonus xp. There are some other really good low level items for other builds. I run it mostly for nostalgia, and if you are equipping as you go from quests it is a good loot run. I think Ghallanda was the default server for european players when codemasters european ddo server collapsed. The Ghallanda server has a weird history. Khyber, Sarlona and Canith are more popular. Right now Cannith is the first server listed so we are getting a lot of new players. I think Ghallanda might be tough to find a group on. I think because it was traditionally the european server but I could be wrong. I usually got a small group of mercenary adventurers going on Cannith, many different levels 7 and above. I had a few characters on Khyber but never really got going there. I think Sarlona was my first server, but when Cannith became the new server I jumped on it for the naming goldrush.

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