I spy with my little eye… a four-part quest series in Dungeons and Dragons Online that will make for an excellent blog post! I haven’t touched on the Sorrowdusk Isle series yet, and I do so love it when you can get through a small cluster of quests in rapid succession. This place is a haven for cults that’s also populated by some ogres that I befriend (for some reason).
And the first task to make friends? Go and rescue a captive ogre named Achoo. Er, Achka. This very, very short (so short) quest takes place in the Iron Mines, and I was in and out in under five minutes — and that was with TWO deaths, thanks to trying to sprint across a bridge lined with force traps. I thought it was a matter of timing the run, but I guess there was a control panel I missed. That was all on me.
I head back to the very same instance for Justice for Grust, which pushes further into the Iron Mines to lay the smackdown on a tyrannical ogre. At least this time around I was able to make it across the force bridge (“Force Bridge” sounds too cool for school) without dying, and the rest — even the part with a troll ambush — was a cinch.
One of my favorite little pleasures of DDO is the quotes that the various mobs, especially the named ones, spit out while fighting. Most bosses get some sort of final word, which is usually an exclamation of incredulity over being found mortal.
Not really sure why I’m allying with one clan of ogres over another, but by now I know that morality and personal agency has nothing to do with MMORPGs — I am a soldier who simply follows orders. I go where commanded. And in The Trollish Scourge, the command is to clear out a cave full of its nasty green tenants.
Of course I manage to get myself killed by yet another force trap bridge, because I am just that good. This is a steampunk/magicpunk campaign setting, right? I should be able to fashion some sort of mech suit to help me wade through these dangers without any issue.
When I saw that the final quest in this series was called Extermination, I had great hopes for an Archer-style rampage through hordes of trolls and whatnot. It ended up being far more mild than that, a return to the previous instance where a half-dozen trolls, four oozes, and a squadron of scorpions lay in wait.
And yes, that dang bridge killed me again. I tried timing the force blasts but they caught me anyway. At least my cleric is always able to rez me as I ghost-run across the bridge, accept the rez, and return the favor to his now-lifeless corpse.
The dun-dun-DUNNN moment of this series happened at the end where I discover that some sort of cult-worshiping mage is behind all of this. Of course, it’s not explained, because bosses never have productive monologues these days, so I felt a big shrug come over me. OK, there’s a human boss, so what? Someone dropped the narrative ball here.
Overall, it was an acceptable series that had the touch of “old school” DDO all over it: bland caverns, no interesting mechanics, and reused instances. At least none of them were that long or difficult, so that ended up being a credit in its favor.