Dungeons and Champions

Our weekly Tuesday night runs in DDO continue to go well, although there have been occasional dungeons where we just can’t put all the pieces together and finish them. However, thanks to missing about 3 weeks there at the end of Spring Quarter, I fell a little bit behind; not quite a full level, but close. At this point most of the group has hit level 8 while Hrakn was still at 7. Having the main tank a level behind is not a good idea, generally.

So I made it my personal project to get Hrakn up to level 8 during the off-time this week. A couple of additional ranks would be nice, since a couple of us are nearing level 9. After a rather massive grind and some very difficult instances this morning, I’ve just crossed the threshold into level 8. I’ll try to put on another rank or two during the week via the LFG tool, but effective groups seem to be harder to assemble in this level range, since the content is more difficult and one yahoo running off by himself or blowing all his spell points against trash can end up wiping a group. More so because a lot of the stuff I’m running now is on Hard and Elite.

On the plus side, I’ve stacked on a lot of Favor – close to 100 points in the last week – and I’m getting close to 500, which is nice. What I really need, though, is to hit 75 favor with House Kundarak, to get an extra bank tab. Because right now my inventory situation is a big mess.

On the other front is Champions Online. After fooling around some with new characters, I’ve returned to one of my original set – Matterhorn, the sentient earth elemental. I’d left him back at level 6 while concentrating on other characters but have been playing him more or less exclusively for a couple of days. He’s now at level 17, which is actually the highest I’ve gotten in CO. I aim to push him higher and get him into the Nemesis content – I have a great idea for an arch-villain.

Champions Online has seen some changes since I’d played last. For one, the gaps in the mid-teens content have been smoothed out, and there’s now a ton of stuff to do in Millennium City after you finish Canada and the Desert – and more stuff to go back and do in those zones as well. There’s also Serpent Lantern stuff which becomes available at level 15 or so, but I haven’t done any of that yet. Whether the later content gaps have also been addressed, I can’t say yet. This was one of the biggest beefs with the game at launch, so I’d hope it’s been looked at.

I’m finding the limit of 15 in the mission log to be incredibly onerous, considering all the content that’s been added. The basic gameplay is still tons of fun, though, and the characters feel like superheroes at all levels, rather than low-level chumps running around collecting sheep pelts and delivering rusty hatchets and whatnot. Not that CO is totally immune to this type of quest, but there’s plenty of arcs that, if not quite epic, still make the player feel as though he (or she) is a bigshot.

2 responses to “Dungeons and Champions

  1. Sounds like you’re getting some excellent gaming time in. With the levels being so broad in DDO, falling even a single level behind can be a huge obstacle. I know that in traditional D&D having a group of disparate levels isn’t a deal breaker, but I suppose that an MMO is more tightly tuned difficulty-wise.

    Glad to hear you enjoying your CO time. I never had problems with the mid-level gap like other people, but I did end up grinding a full level late in the game. I’ve only taken a single character to the cap, though, so I don’t know if that’s been fixed or not. Adding more adventure packs will certainly help fill them since they allow variable levels.

  2. I need to get myself some time to log in and get Nin leveled, as he obviously got enough XP off that last run to do so. That’ll put him to 7, so I’ll probably need to find time to do the grinding thing to catch up with you.

    Oddly enough, other than the nuisance of having to have time for a full run, Delara’s might not be a bad grind for me. The good cleric support we had made Delara’s a bit of a breeze for Nin. Outside that one fire trap on the lever running from Margarite, there really weren’t many times he was in serious danger of dying.

    I picked up Dagger of the Inquisition as his end reward, as there wasn’t much there of great use and I had the Blade of Inquisition longsword from my first run. If it’d offered me Guild Renown I’d have grabbed that but it didn’t this time. So now I have dual undead bane ghost touch silver weapons and Favored Enemy: Undead.

    I also need to go back and do Kobold Assault on Hard. Favored Enemy: Kobold helps there :> If I had a really good group who actually listened to strategy, I might even be able to pull off an elite. Elite pretty much has to have two clerics and a good crowd control bard or sorc. Sorc is preferable if he has web. I wonder what a high-level firewall would do inside the castle.