The expansion rolls on, and it is still as enjoyable as before, with few same bad things going on.
Yes, cursed Tower, I’m looking at you now! :) Pins the Rogue made another attempt with her ilvl now 169 – and found out that ilvl matters a lot. This time, unlike in her 151-155, the runs were much smoother, and I cut through the layer 2 floors like a hot knife through butter (layer 1 was previously a problem for her). Yet layer 2 boss of Upper Reaches – a devourer that spawns a couple of spheres – proved to be impossible. I burned all 5 attempts there, and whatever I did, different strategies, it killed me with 20% health left. There was clearly not enough DPS, and clearly not enough survival. This time I tried another run, and got 33 soul remnants compared to previous 17, better anima powers both in DPS and staying alive, and the boss died very easily.
Well, what can I say? The issue stays all the very same. Your success totally depends on absolute random if you’re unlucky to play a class without sufficient self-heals. Torghast buffs or nerfs did not solve this trouble, and you must be prepared to waste many hours trying to beat it. What if 5 runs in a row were as my first one? It would totally kill all the desire to play Torghast at all. A most discouraging design, especially when other alts with personal tanks and/or self-heals are yawning at the exact same ilvl and and layer. I’ve yet to try my tank and healer solo in Torghast when they level up.
The Maw btw is kinda a boring place to be. Currently I’m skipping this gameplay totally apart from 5 souls quest for Renown. Maybe I will unlock this later to explore everything, but one thing I’m sure of: my alts do not need to be there. At all.
Threads of Fate Leveling Experience
I do not regret picking Threads of Fate as my leveling choice for the rest of the alts. Truly so, leveling through major questline is faster – despite the many cutscenes, the density of quests per hub and the route between them is a lot more optimized for gaining levels quick. Also you’re still bound to do the same Sojourner hubs in Threads of Fate (if we talk about repetition).
And yet with that many alts it’s more enjoyable. There are options, there are changing world quests on the way, and this non-linear structure is most welcome. A player – and every alt – builds more or less his own path. You can skip whatever hub or quest, opt to do dungeon runs and do them in any order you see fit. The only thing you should care about is filling all “aid Covenant” bars before you hit 60. This is very important, because once you helped the faction, their final quest sends you to Oribos for a Renown level.
I learned this the hard way: Oluu the Paladin finalized her Ardenweald bar, and with giving in her “aid” quest to Lady Moonberry she hit 60. As you hit 60, they will not give you quest back to Oribos, so you will waste this Renown level (or several, if you didn’t fill bars for all Covenants). So the best strategy here will be to stay in a Covenant zone just for the time you need to fill its quest bar, then immediately bounce back to Oribos for Renown quest, and repeat this for all Covenants. Then you may do dungeons and dungeon quests, world quests, remaining hubs, and gain remaining XP for level 60 however you please.
It is most excruciating activity yet. I needed Pins the Rogue ready for LFR, and I grinded the hell out of heroics this weekend. She gained 159->169 pretty fast, but for this final LFR acccess point she needed either legs or dagger piece. I’ve picked these dungeons that have both or give the required item with the first 2 bosses, and I cannot count how many runs I did for this final point.
Mind you, this is only character #3 that can leave dungeons behind from now on (except for an emissary or Oribos quest optonal/leisure runs). The inability to gear up anywhere else is very painful, and I’m looking at many toons to walk this path.
And, as 80% runs are fine considering PUG people – friendly, helpful, wipe-resistent and everything, which is actually surprising, a snake of overgeared snob tanks is rising its head. Here’s how it works: pull half of dungeon (sometimes all trash AND a boss), wipe, blame low DPS, rage quit. Eh? I’m worried about my only healer which will try to struggle through this – maybe I will have to shadow-DPS during gearing up, we’ll see.
As for raids: Pins got into Castle Nathria LFR, and guess what? No loot whatsoever. 9 bosses/0 loot. The statistics are even crappier now.
Here’s our chart so far:
The next chapters become available, and interesting for all Covenants. The Night Fae are investigating in Ardenweald, seeking for a Night Warrior cure from former Night Warrior Night Elves’s souls (now gay (!) deer/unicorn (!) spirit couple – actually very moving), Kyrian & Maldraxxi are fighting the same House of Constructs enemies together, but in different locations, and Venthyr continue to collect medallions of powers, Blade-movie-style (their tomb raiding this week was super fun!).
Summarized in my tweet:
- Kyrian: We fight for Bastion & Maldraxxus!
- Necrolords: We fight for Maldraxxus and Bastion!
- Venthyr: We have Game of Thrones!
- Night Fae: Ok, we have a gay Bambi love story. *crickets*
So far Covenant campaigns do not dissappoint at the very least.
Covenant Special Features
Finally, I’d like to talk about Covenant Special Features that I’ve discovered.
Night Fae’s Conservatory is most useless yet. I have several seeds to grow, but I’m saving this until the building is upgraded. I’m not ready to waste the seeds for like… 10 fish or whatever is the current reward.
Maldraxxi’s abomination stitching is super fun! The mats come easily, there are fun daily quests, and you can actually use the different abominations in your journey: a personal tank or healer, and all. I’ve no time yet to dig deeply into the whole thing, but when I do, it would be most awesome!
Venthyr’s Ember Court is awesome! You run fun quests all over the world to unlock options and guests for your party. The Ember Court itself is a fun 5-minute scenario once a week, where you try to please the guests (and you can’t please all, so you will have to pick). For example, one guest likes it casual, so you may start brawls to move the casual/formal scale into casual side, but the other guest likes it formal, so it makes him unhappy. If you need to please a formal guest, you may serve tea, or participate in a soul atonement ritual. The guests are named, lore-important figures from all Covenants, so it adds the flavor.
And when the scenario ends, the higher is the formal scale, the happier will be formal guests, and unhappier the casual guests, and vice versa. I’ve seen another scale yet: messy/clean, maybe there are more. Upon the end you will get a chest with a guest-themed reward, depending on how well you’ve pleased a certain person. You’re building up reputation-like happiness level too, so it’s highly replayable, diverse and most fun activity yet!
There’s not much to say about Kyrian – I got their arena building and quest, but it requires a little grind in the open world for quest items to participate in the first event, so I haven’t got there yet.
So far Maldraxxus and Revendreth events are super fun, and offer a long road of entertainment and achievements!
This is it for tonight, and I’m off to further leveling, dungeon grinds, and Torghast random.