Tag Archives: Heritage Quests

Shiny Brass Halberd for Two Please!

After more than four years I think I am detecting a pattern in when the instance group goes on hiatus.

While there have been notable times when an individual in the group is unavailable for weeks at a stretch, summer seems to be the season when getting the group together is most difficult.

And so it was on Saturday night, which found, out of our groups of six, only Gaff and myself in EverQuest II.

What to do? What to do?

I got out Sigwerd my 40 berserker to see if there was anything I could work on with him that would help advance the guild, which was closing in on level 35, a level which would grant us two more guild hall amenities.

I did not feel like doing writs, especially trade skill writs, but there are other ways to earn status for the guild.  I had done a few of the heritage quests with Sigwerd, but there were more out there he could attempt.

I decided on Dragoon K’Naae of the Thexians, the heritage quest in Nektulos Forest which rewards you with the shiny brass halberd at the end of the tasks, along with a chunk of status and AA points.

I mentioned this to Gaff on guild chat as I was headed out to find Dragoon K’Naae to start the quest.  Gaff started going through his characters to see if any of them had not done the quest.  About the time he came up with a level 34 halfling dirge named Punt I was out at the owlbears for the first stage of the quest.

Sigwerd and the Ferocious Owlbear

This was the point in time when Potshot and the others were probably lucky to be away, as when idle in an old zone in the game I tend to start rambling along about how things have changed since launch.  And Potshot had suffered from that already.  The previous weekend we had gone out to run some of the Journey is Half the Fun routes and of course Nek Forest was on the list.

Nek Forest used to be a tough run.  In following me through the zone later on even Gaff laughed and commented on how I traveled on the ground.  I never followed the road and always ran in very straight paths that were optimal for getting between two given points, the sure sign of somebody who had run the route in the old days when the time limit was such that following the road meant failure.

Of course, some of what I said about the zone must sound like one of those “had to walk back and forth to school every day in 6 feet of snow uphill both ways” sort of tales.

For example, as we ran to Port Naythex I mentioned how dangerous this section of the road used to be.  Not only were there heroic groups of aggro spiders, wolves, and owlbears on either side of the road, there were heroic groups of bats flying on the road.  And some of the bats, they were on fire!

It is that last bit that I am sure makes people skeptical.  But it was true.  If you were there, you remember flaming firelight shrillers along the road.  But you tell new players that these days and they don’t believe you.

And they probably don’t believe what a pain this quest used to be back in the day with no griffon towers and flaming bats dogging your every step and quest updates coming maybe every fourth kill.

That used to be the real grind of this quest, aside from the travel.  The first two steps involve getting 30 pieces of owlbear meat and 30 pieces of undead flesh, both of which are updates as opposed to items you loot.  When Punt and Chuggs, Gaff’s mystic, mentored down and along to heal and ward, arrived we were able to knock out the owlbears and undead pretty quickly.

Back in the day these two steps used to be the bulk of the time spent on the quest.  As I mentioned, you used to get an update about every fourth kill, which meant killing at least 120 owlbears and undead.  Oh, and only certain owlbears used to work.  They had to be plain Ash Owlbears, and not Elder Ash Owlbears or Enraged Ash Owlbears, or as I seem to recall, Burned Owlbears, who were probably scalded by those damn flaming bats.

Now though, any owlbear will do and you get an update every time.  So we burned through the owlbears, turned in that step, then burned through the undead.  Travel took more time, even with the griffons.

No Direct Flights for us in Nek Forest

And the griffons only take a while because the flights are not always direct.  To go from the Darklight griffon station, which is in the NE part of the zone,  to the griffon station just a bit north and west of us, we had to fly via the Commonlands and Port Naythex stations, both of which are at the extreme southern end of the zone.  We ran back from that one.

With those two steps done, we moved on to collecting water from Behemoth Pond, yet another travel adventure, and one with a timer no less.  But it is a pretty lax timer when you take into account that you can take a griffon flight.  We had time to slay the named beaver, Paddlefoot, on the way back and had time to spare.

Then it was off to the big fight with Captain T’sanne.  Again, this used to be a camp-fest like most named mobs, where you had to sit and kill his placeholder, plus any other mob in sight “just in case” until the Captain and his entourage made their appearance.

Arriving at Captain T’sanne’s little castle, we found him out.  I was actually surprised to find a named mob not up and waiting for us.  A little investigation later on made me determine that another group must of just finished him off so we were just waiting for the respawn.

We did find another player there alone looking to knock off the Captain, so we invited him to the group and attempted to impress him with our knowledge of the quest.  He was level 27 so Sigwerd mentored

Oh yeah, this is the place... unless it isn't... I think

Falling back on old habits, we slew everything in sight as we waited for Captain T’sanne, who showed up about 15 minutes into our camp.  The fight, a multi-round event, went by so quickly that I did not even get a screen shot.

The it was time to travel back to Dragoon K’Naae for the very last step, the one that historically almost always gets messed up.

When you speak to K’Naae, you get attacked by a group of bad guys.  This is the very last fight in the quest.  Oh course, it is a group, so the first thing you do, standing there next to K’Naae, is kick off an area attack forgetting that K’Naae is not a magic invulnerable NPC like most quest dispensers, but somebody you can actually kill.  And now you’ve aggro’d him, so you have to kill him and wait for him to respawn to finish the quest.

I’ve had to go through that wait for K’Naae to respawn multiple times.  I’ve been there when another group shows up just as he comes back only to have them kick off the last event, AOE, and kill him before I could turn in the quest.

So the group had to put up with me saying, “NO AOE ATTACKS” about 27 times as we traveled back to finish the quest.

I seemed to have said it as many times as it needed saying, as we managed to finish the final fight without killing Dragoon K’Naae and were able to finish the quest.  This was also just enough status to push the guild over the top to level 35.

Quest Finished, Guild Leveled

That also earned Sigwerd and achievement and a title.


Finishing five heritage quests gets you both, though the achievement doesn’t really mean much to me except as a screen shot item.  Amazing how SOE could copy WoW’s achievements so directly and yet make them feel completely sterile and unfulfilling.  I cannot put my finger on why, but earning an achievement in WoW makes me happy and earning one in EQ2 does almost nothing at all for me.

But the title, Treasure Hunter, that is good.  Most titles in EQ2 feel as good as a title in WoW, if not better, and while perhaps a bit common, they are not handed out quite as readily as they are in, say, Lord of the Rings Online.  I still have to go find the right guy in Qeynos to speak to in order to get the title, but it is out there waiting for me.

And that was it for the evening.  We shall see how many people we get in game this coming weekend.  I am not sure that Father’s Day is a big deal in any of our households, at least not to the point of necessitating out of town travel.

But as a backup Gaff and I were looking into what might be interesting to run with Nehru, my level 52 templar.

The Search for an Ore with a Heart of Gold

Saturday night found us a bit short on players.

Gaff, who now prefers to be referred to as “El Supremo” in the guild hall, was on in multiple guises.

Likewise, Potshot was in game, as was I.

And Earl logged on, having been playing WoW up until our usual start time.

But Cerredwyn and Trucknut were out for the evening.

That meant putting on hold our return to Stormhold, the follow up to our scouting mission.  But we had enough people to run off and do something.

Since I was already in the heritage quest state of mind, having just finished on up, I suggested These Boots Were Made For…, the quest that starts in Antonica and yields the Dwarven Work Boots as a reward.  The quest takes you to a variety of locations and you have to face a few dangerous (at our level) mobs.

So we got together out at The Keep of the Ardent Needle to get the quest and get started.

The group for the night

Earl and I played our regular group characters, Earlthedogwo and Campell, while Potshot used one of his alts, Deneldir, and Gaff… well… he had a couple of Sarnaks in the low 80s which he had copied over and which joined in the group, mentoring Earl.

We grabbed the quest and then hit something of a wall with the first step.

The first step of the quest requires you to go out and harvest 15 units of wood and 15 units or iron ore from harvest nodes in the zone.  This of course got me to bring up how it used to be 100 units of each and it was like a Bataan death march of harvesting that would make you hate badgers before the end of it, as from a distance they look like ore nodes.

But we couldn’t start in on the mere 15 because Earl was shy of the mark for harvesting skills.  You need a skill level of 20 and he was sitting at 15 for both wood cutting and mining.

That sent us on a side trip to Oakmyst Forest, one of the low level zones in the maze of zones that make up the city of Qeynos.  That took a bit of time, but Earl got his skill up and we began to search.

The wood part of the collection is always easier.  When you harvest from a wood node, you get… well… wood 90% of the time.  And when you don’t, you get rare wood, which is always good, or material to imbue items.

It is the ore nodes that get you, and the ore nodes in Antonica are aptly named.

Indifferent to your needs

The ore is callous indeed.

Ore can yield up two different things.  You can get metal, in our case we needed the raw iron clusters that come from callous ore, or you can get loam, which is quite useful in several trade skills, but which doesn’t help a bit when you need that iron.

So all of us finished up the wood part of the collection quite quickly.  And then the search for ore began.

Antonica, like most of the early zones, also has a simple method of populating the zone with harvest nodes.  A given location can spawn any of the land based nodes.  So you might harvest wood from a spot at one point, and later some roots or sandwashed stone will spawn in that location.  The chance of anything spawning at a given point appears to be about equal.

This is in comparison to zones added in expansions, where harvest nodes of a given type cluster in locations where you might reasonably expect to find them, stone and ore near rocks, roots and wood near fertile areas with plants, and so on.

I bring this bit of information up as it leads to something of a natural selection process in harvest nodes.  People around the Keep of the Ardent Needle are often starting this quest and are therefore looking for wood and ore.  They will harvest all of these nodes within site, and only a few of them will respawn as wood or ore.   And then the next group will come through, and then the next, and soon the Keep appears to be surrounded by bushes, roots, and sandwashed stone, the harvest nodes you do not need.

Couple this with the fact that ore doesn’t always give you the item you want (it appears to be biased in favor of loam, though I only say this because I always have a ton of loam and never enough metal ore) and you can spend a long time fulfilling this rather simple segment of the quest.

As I said, it is a good thing they reduced it from 100, since even at a mere 15 iron clusters we spent more time searching for ore than any other segment of the quest.

Earl and I even died trying to reach some ore that was surrounded by basilisks.  Deneldir, a warden, had to come out a revive us.

They died mining

Eventually though, and not too long after our unfortunate deaths, we all had 15 miserable pieces of iron ore to turn in to Hwal the quest giver.

Then he sent us off to collect a few more things, though these involved just killing named mobs.  A chance at last to see new places, meet new people, and kill a few of them.

The first destination was Blackburrow, which was so quick that I didn’t even take a screen shot.  We ran in, killed a gnoll excavator, got our quest update, and were on our way within a couple minutes.

The next stop was Stormhold, a chance to show Earl a good interior location.

Of course, the community helped out in diminishing the whole experience.  We had a guy named Ignition who seemed to be waiting for groups to attack named mobs so he could tag them first, so the group would kill the mob and he could take the loot.

He tags and expects you to kill

He seemed to be quite good at his asshattery, as he got us once.  The joys of open dungeons.

And then there was the space problem.  A lot of dungeon zones in EQ2 are cramped while characters and mobs can be quite large.

A hall full of scion

And this was not helped by having a pair of Sarnaks… female Sarnaks, the big ones… in our group with one tanking.  That lead to a lot of obstructed views.

Hey, down in front dragon lady!

But there was some good as well.  Our named tagging friend didn’t follow us, and named mobs seemed to be up all throughout the zone, so there were some master chest drops for the group.

The big chest with the best loot

We picked up a few of the quests in the zone, and I shared out a few others I had, so we took a bit of a tour of Stormhold, before arriving at our destination, which was the Caveroot Horror on the second level.

Again supporting my theory that all named mobs are up all the time, there were two Caveroot Horrors and the scion that spawns down there as well, just waiting for us.  That got us the quest update and another master chest drop.

Deep in Stormhold

Then it was just a matter of fighting our way back out of the zone and heading off to the Thundering Steppes, a place with which Gaff and I have a long history.

In the Steppes, it was Bloodtalon we sought.  And he was up, of course, but we hesitated before we went after him.

To get the group all together at a level that would allow everybody to get credit for killing Bloodtalon, everybody ended up at level 21, except Campell who was level 20, which made the big bird, a level 27 heroic encounter, look a little daunting.

Still, there we were and the night was slipping away, so we cleared a couple of nearby griffons, then went after him.

Bloodtalon faces our wrath

It turned out that we did not have much to worry about.  The many group buffs each of us provided ended up being more of a force multiplier than I would have guessed.  In the picture above, Bloodtalon is almost down while the group has suffered almost no damage.

Quest update!

That completed the set of tasks that Hwal had set us, it was time to return to him.  We rode back through the Thundering Stepped to Antonica, then headed to the Keep of the Ardent Needle.

While the hunting part of the night went faster than I expected, with all named mobs being up and waiting for us, the long stretch of mining for ore ate up a lot of the evening, so when we turned in that section of the quest, we also decided to turn in for the night.

Now we have to decide what to do for the next Saturday night.  If the whole crew shows up, we could probably get them through to where we made it in this quest and then carry it on to at least the 72 minute wait portion.  But it would be nice if they could do the ore harvesting ahead of time.

We’ll see where we end up.

Light Returned in an Hour or Your Money Back

Back in early 2005, in what were still the young days of EverQuest II, Vikund, my level 35 paladin, rode into The Commonlands from Nek Forest and spotted a named mob, the Lightbringer Wisp.

At this point in the timeline of the game, the Lightbringer Wisp only spawned once per 72 minute day/night cycle, only in the wee hours before dawn, and despawned when the sun came up.

It could be a tough beastie to catch, and here I had stumbled on to it and nobody else was camping it.

It was a weekday morning and I was home from work for some reason, so it was nowhere near peak play time for the game.  Still, there was a certain amount of luck involved in showing up at the right moment.

Naturally, I killed it and looted the lightstone from it.  The lightstone which starts the heritage quest The Return of the Light.

I then proceeded to run Vikund through the quest to the end in a little less than 2 hours.

It was one of those moments of luck that sometimes hits me when I first experience something.  I ran around the zone and every named mob I needed was up and waiting for me.  Even the last battle in Bloodskull Valley was a breeze.  This was at the time when any mob that was low enough level to be gray to you pretty much could not hit you if attacked.

And so I came out at the other end of the whole quest thinking, “This is easy.”

Of course, it was never that easy again.  Further attempts to run the quest with alts meant hours of stalking spawn points in hopes of catching named mobs.

Even later on in the life of the game, when specific placeholder mobs were put in place so you knew what to kill (often over and over) in order to make the named mob spawn, I was unable to match the sub 2 hour mark.

At least until this past weekend, when I did the whole thing in under an hour.

Things change over time I guess.

I recalled that the last time I checked the Lightbringer Wisp was pretty much up and available to kill all the time.  You kill it, it respawns in a few minutes, ready to be killed again.

What I have only recently realized though is that ALL of the named mobs seem to be up at all times now.

So I was able to do the whole quest from start to finish, including the now unnecessary but I do it out of habit access quest for Bloodskull Valley, in under an hour.

Granted, it helped that I had access to a flying mount, since it was another free flying mount weekend.  Though the flying mount was probably less help than you might think.  The fact that I know the quest well certainly moved me along rapidly, and was a bigger factor than travel time.  But the fact that every named mob I needed was standing there waiting to get the chop was the key.

When did that change go in and is it universal?  Are named mobs always up everywhere in the game?  I guess our peek into Stormhold agrees with that theory, as we saw a lot of named mobs.

The only part of the whole quest chain that seemed to move back in time was the big orc battle in Bloodskull Valley.  Aside from the occasional spell Sigwerd, a level 37 berserker, came through pretty much unscathed.  We are back to lower level mobs not being able to hit you.

Oh no, I'm hit! Only 99% of my health remains!

The epic orc battle, which I really want to do with a full group at level, became more a matter of power management while waiting for General Drull to show up.  The temptation to use my power gobbling area attacks was pretty strong.

I did get an achievement for slaughtering so many orcs.

Master Orc Hunter

I think I get a title and a side dish with that achievement.

Anyway, Drull was thrown down and I came to the only part of the quest with which I had trouble, the final turn-in.

The steps of the final act depend on your faction.

You give the lightstone to Cannix, who says he is going to keep it, at which point a small group of heavies show up and attack Cannix.

If you are from one faction, you have to kill the heavies, then on getting no thanks from Cannix, you must then kill him, at which point you get the lightstone and the quest ends.

From the other faction, you have to let the heavies kill Cannix, then kill them to get the lightstone and wrap things up.

But I could not remember which faction had to do which, so it took me three tries to get it right.  Being from the Qeynos/New Halas/White Hat faction, I have to let Cannix die and then avenge his death.

Once I got that right, I received my reward.

The Light Returned

All done in just under an hour.

And the Greater Lightstone was significantly better than what I was wearing in my neck slot, so it wasn’t just for status, AA points, and a sparklie house item.

Though I see the quest still has the problem of leaving you with four interim, no trade no value lightstones that you can only get rid of by destroying them.  That always seemed odd to me.

I am not sure we could, as a group, do the whole thing in an hour at level.  We would probably be an hour just collecting 6 lightstones from the Lightbringer Wisp.  And the orc battle would be a challenge, but that is a good thing.  We could probably manage the whole chain in an evening.

If you want a heritage quest you can do in an hour, solo, at level, In Honor and Service is it.  But more on that another time.

Reynaldo Fabulous says, “Nice Boots! I’ll Take ’em!”

I had run the heritage quest “The Journey is Half the Fun” at least four times before I even rolled up Reynaldo Fabulous on the Guk server.

The first couple of times I ran the quest, it was as part of a guild group.  There were a couple of stages, most notably the Thundering Steppes and Nektulos Forest, that required a scout class with evac to be able to finish in the allotted time.

After that, I ran the quest a couple of times with my own scout characters, so I had that ability on hand.

When Reynaldo hit level 40, I felt it was time to start him down the path to his own pair of Journeyman’s Boots.  As a berserker, he lacked any innate speed buffs as well as the evac option.  But, since other heritage quests had been tuned down in EQ2, I decided to see if I could solo my way through the quest.

And, to cut to the chase, I could.

With the griffon towers in Nektulos Forest, the I finished the run with plenty of time to spare, while Thundering Steppes I finished with a good 30 seconds still on the clock even after I stopped along the way to pick up some sparklies.

In fact, the only problem I had on the whole run was in Feerrott.  It has been a while since I last ran through there.  The spiders along the southern leg of the run have a nasty 30 second root, and there are a lot of spiders, so Reynaldo was waylaid on his first run through the ‘rot.

The second time through I used a totem of the chameleon to go invisible and just walk past the spiders.  And, despite the fact that I am always a bit lost in Feerrott, I managed to make in with time to spare.

And, as a double bonus, the last bit of discovery experience Reynaldo got in Feerrott pushed him over the line to level 42, so he was able to wear the boots before he had even finished the quest.  And turning in the quest was good for 75% of a level, so he was nearly 43.

The boots themselves got improved along the way, as you can see below:

February 2007 Boots

February 2007 Boots

And now:

December 2008 Boots

December 2008 Boots

Yes, I realize that is the chain vs. plate, but aside from the mitigation, the other stats seem to be boosted, and the +10 spell and combat art damage is a very nice boost indeed.

So they made a nice addition to Reynaldo’s wardrobe.  In fact, his clothes were not keeping up with his last name, most of them being tier 3 gear.  Fortunately, Killanna was around and made Reynaldo a new suit.

Reynaldo in Fulginate

Reynaldo in Fulginate

I opted for fulginate.  While ebon is truly fabulous, at the rate Reynaldo is going, he would only end up wearing it for a few days before looking for a replacement.

Still, he bought tailored, not off the rack.

Chasing Heritage Quests

Wednesday night, Lich King Eve, found three of us together in EverQuest and looking to start charting a course forward in the game.  We had decided to look into heritage quests, starting with Restore the Light right there in the Commonlands.  We redid our group members to get ourselves back to the holy trinity of MMO games; Tank, healer, dps.  So we ended up as:

Denrohir – 18 Dark Elf Shadow Knight
Midden – 19 Dark Elf Warlock
Torill – 19 Kerra Fury

As several people pointed out in my post on the Constant Lightbringer, the lead in quest mobs have gone from being rare timed spawns, to spawns with place holders, to today’s constantly available mobs that respawn almost right away.

hailramanai

So we were able to run through most of the quest, from Rama’nai to the High Priest of Valmarr, including the four named orcs required for Bloodskull Vally access, in about as much time as it took us to travel to them.  The only real searching that had to be done was for the High Priest, since you used to be able to spawn him at a number of locations, and his current resting spot on one of the towers was not one of the locations I ever used.

Along the way we all managed to gain a level.

That accomplished, only the last big battle, and the quest wrap up, lay before us.  For purely comedic value, I suggested that we go see how tough Bloodskull Valley was.  We went in and the scout that waits out front killed Midden in a couple hits.  Torill managed to ress her, and I asked Denrohir to stand out front, and then the tide of orcs washed over us and slew us all in a second.

So while SOE has simplified the rest of the quest to a quick game of tag, the hardest part remains far beyond the abilities of any at level group.  We’ll be back in 10+ levels or so to try and finish up the quest.

Stuck there, we decided to move on to Faydwer to try out In Honor and Service.  We headed out to the Thundering Steppes by bell to take the boat to Butcherblock, but when the boat left the dock, Denrohir got left behind.  It seems he activate the wrong account and won’t have access to Faydwer until he picks up the Shadow Odyssey expansion next week.

So Midden and I rode the boat back to the Thundering Steppes.  From there we headed to Antonica.

The first stop there was for the Dwarven Workboots quest.  However, we came up short outside of the Keep of the Ardent Needle where the quest giver, Hwal Rucksif, resides.  There was a level 25 triple up arrow Qeynos guard sitting on the bridge to the keep.  We thought that maybe we could take him, if luck was on our side.  But, as soon as Denrohir got close, he was dead, and that was that.  Another heritage quest we won’t be doing at anywhere close to level.

Finally, we decided to see if we could get to the starter mob for The Journey is Half the Fun.  As I expected, he is on the bridge to North Qyenos behind a couple of guards.

We were able to get around the guards to the Qeynos gate end of the bridge by swimming the moat, but we could not jump over the bridge parapet to get to Cru Naseto, the quest giver.  Finally, in last move, I highlighted the North Qeynos gate and enter the city.  That pulled me into North Qeynos, where thankfully no guard was waiting to slay me.

We then left the city and were on the bridge and were able to get the quest from Cru.

hailcrunaseto

Then we jumped back in the moat and made our escape.

We wrapped up the evening by running the Antonica and Commonlands segments of The Journey is Half the Fun.

clrun

And that is about it for us and heritage quests for a while.  We can work on one once the expansion comes out, but we have a lot of levels between us and being able to accomplish anything further when it comes to to at least two of the other quests.

The Constant Lightbringer

With a few of us now roaming or, in Gaff‘s case, running amok in the fields of post-cataclysm Norrath I have been thinking about what we should use to guide our adventures and advancement in EverQuest II.

For our regular Saturday night group in World of Warcraft, single group instances have marked the path.  Following the quest lines in Azeroth bring you steadily to new instances on a regular basis as you level up in the game.

There is no similar progression of discreet group activities in EQ2.  Not that there are not things for groups to do.  There are dungeons and group quests and the like aplenty.  But many of the dungeons in Norrath are sprawling affairs that are more like underground zones with many quest branches as opposed to focused dungeon crawls.

In essence, I’ve been somewhat spoiled by Blizzard feeding us nice two hour dungeons on a regular basis.

Still, just because the sign posts for progression are not obvious does not mean that they are not there.  In looking at the options I figured that Heritage Quests might be a good progression path for our group.  They don’t start rolling until level 20, except for that one on Faydwer, and I’m not sure if you can get that when you’re Freeport aligned, giving us some time to get used to playing our new characters.

I had that in mind while I was running around the Nektulos Forest end of the Commonlands with Melkerr.  As has been my long standing habit, if I am over in that area at night with a scout, I started tracking to see if I could spot the Lightbringer Wisp.

The Lightbringer Wisp is the mob that drops the burned out lightstone which is the quest starter for one of the first heritage quests, Return the Light.

And, there it was on tracking!

I immediately headed for it.  This was a rare mob, a once-per-night spawn, I had thought I had better grab it fast.  People used to farm it to sell the burned out lightstone on the market.

I ran straight to it and managed to kill it, though it was a bit of a challenge for me at level 16.

I then relayed the need to find the Lightbringer Wisp again to Potshot.  We would all need to grab the burned out lightstone.

Then, checking track out of habit, I saw the Lightbringer Wisp again!

Holy crap!

I cajoled Potshot to get his dark elf posterior out to the druid ring in the Commonlands post haste!  This was a respawn without precedent!

He got out there and we managed to die on our first attempt at slaying the wisp due to my obsession with the coming of the dawn when wisps, you know, disappear… go to ground… despawn.

We revived as the rosy tendrils of dawn were spreading across the sky (nice sky effects there SOE!) and rushed back and managed to bring it down.

And thus Potshot got his burned out lightstone.

And as we sat there basking in our good fortune, the Lightbringer Wisp had the temerity to spawn in front of us in the full morning light.  Now I was a bit confused, but still driven by the memories of how things apparently used to work.  I had started the quest with my lightstone, which meant that I no longer had the lore item in my inventory.  That used to mean you could loot another light stone.

So we called Ula out to the druid ring.  Then, still fearing it would despawn, we killed it and I tried to loot it.  No burned out lightstone.

Ula showed up and so did another Lightbringer Wisp.  By this point even my jaded mind was starting to form the thought, “They seem to have changed something here.”

Ula there, we slew the obliging wisp and she got her burned out lightstone.  And before we could leave the scene, the Lightbringer Wisp spawned again.  It being high noon did not seem to scare the wisp away.

Later, I came back with Torill my fury to grab the burned out lightstone from the Lightbringer Wisp burned out lightstone dispenser.  Again, there it was out in the midday sun.

Torill and the Lightbringer Wisp

Torill and the Lightbringer Wisp

I wonder what else has changed with this quest since the last time I did it?

Honey, I Shrank The Owlbears!

Okay, who has been messing with the fauna in Nektulos Forest?

Seriously.

Gaff asked if I wanted to do the heritage quest Dragoon K’Naae of the Thexians with his third set of alts. (He has already leveled up his main and another set of alts past me, slug that I am.) I told him I had the quest and that I was at some step past the owlbear meat collection.

Of course, I logged on last night and found out that I was still on the owlbear meat collection stage, so I decided to catch up, as Gaff has reported that part finished with his multi-box crew.

I headed out to Nek Forest and ran off to the corner where the owlbears have now been banished. Somehow they, and the firelight shrillers, lost their premium spot astride the main path through the woods. I tell you, it is all politics in Nek Forest.

I started looking around for them, but the area seemed empty. Empty until I saw a little movement in the grass.

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Holy crap, those aren’t owlbears! Those are… owlhamsters, or owlpotbellied pigs.

Seriously, they used to be… you know… bear sized. Like this.

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Now, with my new video card and the graphics turned up a bit, I was missing them in the foliage.

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Is this some aspect of Frostfell I have overlooked in the past?

Anyway, using tracking and keeping my eyes on the ground, I managed to hunt down the owlbears I needed to complete the stage. It is a good thing I did not need all 60, as they were blending in quite well with the ground cover.

Finishing that up, I went to find the big Dragoon, but he was taking a powder, so I wandered into a building of some sort that appeared to have been put up since I last visited.

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I thought perhaps the Dragoon had a new house built, since they appeared to have cleaned out the trailer park that he used to live in. (If you remember what his area used to look like, you know what I mean by that.)

Of course, I went straight into the building because, if MMOs have taught me anything, they have taught me to barge straight into the homes of strangers, in case they have something nice or a quest to give you!

But it turned out not to be a house.

Instead, it was the entrance to Darklight Wood, home of the emo fae and the oxymoron capital of Norrath.

(Believe me, do not bother trying to order jumbo shrimp in Darklight Wood, they totally do not do irony there.)

So I did what anybody does when they find themselves in the opposing faction’s home town.

I made witty conversation!

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I tried to be helpful to the locals.

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And I generally tried to fit in.

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Eventually I figured out that they must speak another language in Darklight Wood, as nobody seemed to acknowledge anything I had to say.

So I headed back to the Dragoon, who was still taking a powder somewhere. Once he shows up, I will be ready to do the next stage with Gaff.