Saturday night found most of in Rift.
Earl was back, having survived the cold, the snows, and the broken branches.
However Jollyreaper was nowhere to be found online, so the question came up as to what we should do.
We started off with some quests, just to warm up, knocking out the quest line at Kelari Refuge, which involved, among other things, trapping flaming squirrels.
That lead to a series of squirrel and squirrel bite related stories. The general consensus in the group: squirrels are to be avoided and that flaming squirrels would be like a plague.
Kelari Refuge went by quickly and we moved to the next quest hub.
Once there we held up after a couple of quests. We decided we did not want to get too far ahead of Jollyreaper in the quest line. We decided, instead, to pursue rifts.
We actually started the evening with a nearby rift to bring Earl up to speed on the structure. His first rift was a water related one.
But we decided to make them our target for the night, which turned out to be well timed as just about then a zone-wide invasion event kicked off. Death invaders and death rifts were the flavor of the evening.
We started moving towards one of the ward stones that had been taken over by the forces of death, but in moving up the road we ended up battling wave after wave of death invasion teams. It was a running battle from group to group until we finally made it to the besieged camp.
I couldn’t help but think of Zerg creep when I saw the camp.
The fight there was short and easy. Ward stone take overs seem to be designed as solo encounters for the most part, probably so you can free up your own damn quest hub should it be overrun.
We then turned to death rifts, as the event required 10 to be defeated before it would advance, and there were still 9 to go at that point.
Death rifts look… like death.
We chopped our way through a number of death rifts. The four of us did not seem to have much problem with any given encounter, though there were a couple we almost blew because we jumped in to combat before figuring out the actual objective of that stage. We generally prevailed, and closed a number of death rifts on our own.
We finally got the message that the first objectives had been accomplished and that the Harbinger of Alsbeth had arrived and needed to be resisted.
Marked on clearly on the map and thankfully not to far away from our current position, we went riding off in pursuit of the Harbinger in hopes of zeroing it out.
Arriving there, we found another group already engaged. The “join groups” button showed up at the top of the screen and I clicked it, bringing us all together into a raid.
The fight itself was short, though not necessarily a cake walk. Hakawati got stomped at one point, but was able to soul walk and come back before the fight was over. But we were able to defeat the Harbinger.
We collected our little piles of planarite and such, and then I started looking to get us out of this raid and back into our original group. I was about to tell people on Skype that we should just all leave the raid and reform a fresh group, when I found the option to unmerge the group from the raid.
And it worked like a charm. Nifty. We were back in our original little group.
We ran around for a bit more after that, picking off a foothold or two, but activity was tapering off.
We ended up back at Kelari Refuge to train and sell off the excess in our bags. We each ended up a couple of levels ahead at the end of the night, but not so much that Jollyreaper cannot catch up.
If we can all get on this coming week, we ought to be able to make it to Meridian.