I sat down, sipped my hot tea, and prepared to blast through the remainder of House D quests. “No problemo!” I said to myself in ’90s style. “Just a few left to go. And what is this one… oh… oh my… OH NO…. NOOOOO!”
You see, I had forgotten The Pit.
Back in the hazy memories of an earlier era of playing DDO — perhaps pre-F2P, even — I joined a couple friends in running this quest. All I remember is a lot of muffled swear words on the mic, falling, falling, and plenty of death for all. We never finished it, and I swore that I wouldn’t return.
But now I was in a quandry, because I had made it my quixotic mission to complete all of the quests in DDO. I couldn’t have The Pit sit there as a black mark on my otherwise pristine list! And so, with a heavy heart, I armed myself with a guide and went into this nightmare.
Every MMO has at least one (and usually many more) of those nefarious quests that are a complete pain to complete and carry with them a reputation that wards off newbies and veterans alike. The Pit has always had that label in DDO, although there are some masochists who seem to like it. God knows why, because it was the worst night of gaming I had all week.
The Pit takes place in a largely vertical space where you have to keep traversing a confusing array of ramps to find specific rooms and either complete puzzles or platforming elements. Most all of these are very difficult, especially if you’re coming in fresh, and they are complicated by infinitely respawning mobs and so many traps that you cannot turn off.
Start to finish, The Pit took me two hours. And that was with a walkthrough, mind you. I died at least twice, fell off more ledges than I care to recount, and took a ten minute break to regain my sanity and check a video for a particularly tricky jumping section. There was nothing fun nor enjoyable about any of this, just loads of backtracking and clicking and jumping and building stress.
But the end did come, finally, and with it a sense of relief. Not the relief of a job well done, but the relief of “I never, ever have to do this again. And I never will.” Perhaps with an experienced group, The Pit is a breeze, but solo it was agony.
I did try my hand at the optional end boss (a giant slime), and no, I didn’t get Muck’s Bane. The silver lining to all of this is that I reaped a large chunk of XP and gained a new level. Goodbye level 12, hello level 13 at last!
But seriously, never again. Never.