My first real day in Land of the Dead

TotVL first PQ
TotVL first PQ

After yesterday’s news this almost feels awkward writing about something I did in game.  Yesterday was the first real day of Land of the Dead.  Feels like I’ve said that three times now… no really, this was the first real day that this place is open for business for both realms and the system of flipping it back and forth is in operation.  When I logged on after doing my morning routine I was shocked to see that we (Destruction) owned the place and had in fact just taken control.  This was early in the morning, perhaps 9am PST, and not many people were even online.  This is when I found out that only two zone flips are necessary to earn the expedition resources to flip the place – Design flaw.  Anyway, I entered LotD and was able to get into the warband participating in the purge (pushing order out).  We stomped them back to their camp and made quick work of them.  I was a healing machine and rightfully earned the very first gold bag on our server for a Land of the Dead purge.  Inside the bag I could take some various crafting mats, or a gold scarab cluster, or a piece of Conqueror gear (my shoulders were inside).  This gave me 4/5 Greater Wards!

After poking around every one of the PQ’s (all very well done) and obtaining all of my glyphs (these are used up when you enter a dungeon – sorta like access quests) I decided to take a break for a few hours because Order was 10 minutes from getting control of the place.  We had owned it for perhaps 1.5-2 hours.  When I logged back in after the break we had just taken control of the place again – what luck!  I was then able to immediately answer the call in my Alliance for a warded Healer to do Tomb of the Vulture Lord which is a dungeon equivalent to Lost Vale; in other words it’s relatively the hardest dungeon in the game.  It took us a while to get access even though we had the glyphs.  Order was really putting up a fight by hiding entire warbands in little corners of the zone and popping out to gank people.  Although terrible for us because we were already well on our way to losing the zone again, it’s a nice mechanic that reminds me of DAOC.

We eventually gained access by completing the PQ to open the door.  It required us to stand on tiles that matched ones lighting up on the wall of pyramid type temple thingy.  Order messed with us a couple times but we eventually were able to enter and begin our own instance (we opted out of purging Order from theirs because we had limited time).  The first obstacle we reached in this dungeon was a trap with swinging pendulum axes.  Three of our guys worked their way through the trap and stood on tiles to disable them.  In the next big room we were able to throw a switch that closed the door and (I believe) reactivated that trap in case Order decided to come in.  Statues filled this big room and a PQ began where we brought the statues to life and had to kill them.  We nearly completed this PQ when the call came out over alliance chat to rush to the fort for defense.  UGH!  Just as we had finally found our rhythm!

The fortress defense lasted an hour and I was able to complete a Sigil which awarded me my 5th GW (5/5 now!) so it wasn’t a total loss.  Order promptly seized control of LotD while we defended the fortress against a huge zerg, but we had played the game how it is supposed to be played.  Land of the Dead isn’t going to shine if players gain access and refuse to defend the mechanics which grant the other team access.  It will only feel like ‘right’ if each realm treasures the zone and wants to come out and defend.  Having to defend your city works in this mechanic’s favor because defending forts will help you two-fold.

Overall I’m still impressed with the new content.  I was able to collect 15 gold scarabs, 10 silver scarabs, some ankh thing, a purple staff with 43 wounds and 3 sockets, a talisman with a neat proc, and complete all of my greater wards.  Not bad for a day’s work.  I’m about to hop on and try my luck at pugging some of the new lairs or dungeon and I hope to report back that I completed them and found some phat loot.

  • What you see as a design flaw on your server, I see as a crazy long process on mine. Low population servers that have no hope of flipping a zone through VPs are going to have to do it through domination instead. Minimum of two hours if they are able to coordiante a two zone cap at the same time.

  • As the LotD is still 2 days old, many players will ignore the Old World for a bit. Not much you can do about that. When the newness wears off we will see how it really is.

    Between the LotD and the Fort pushes, it has been near non-stop action.

  • Our RvR has been dead except for Fortress pushes. Flipping two zones is met with almost zero resistance and it requires us to wait for dom flips. Fortress sieges have pulled both sides out of LotD to defend since neither wants to lose their city over a new zone.

    Yesterday I participated in about six keep takes and none of them had a single Order defending. As you mention Werit, this is largely in part due to LotD being new. It will settle down eventually and players wanting solid and consistent RvR will come out to play.

  • I really hope it doesn’t continue to be RvE the entire time when your side isn’t controlling LotD. I understand the newness aspect, but if this continues it will make T4 even less fun than it already is outside of the purge every 2-3 hours.

  • I cancel my account tomorrow before being charged again. I like how LoTD looks, but with no more time remaining in my life to playing an mmo, I’ll just have to wait another 4 months and see if WAR has lost further players or if LoTD starts to make a difference. Hopefully the mechanics will hold the players and attract more.

  • I hid in Lotd after a destro purge with a group of guildies and allies last night. our 6 man group survived 3 hours, all the while picking off straggling destro, and even wiping a warband as they engaged a PQ boss at one point.

    We died several times as well, but thanks to long respawn timers and always having a backup plan for ressurections, we were able to keep RvRing all evening while the rest of Order was stuck in KV and TM RvEing to try and get back in.

    I think it’ll only get better as more and more people wise up to the fact that you don’t want to engage the purging force in zerg on zerg fighting right as they enter. You have to spread out and break up into multiple smaller groups to keep the other side off balance, and provide yourself with plenty of healers and banner rezzers all over the zone to keep people up and running.

    LotD has brought roaming small group skirmishes to WAR finally. It’s design actually encourages it. This is a good thing. As for the access control mechanics, they could be better, but as long as I’m in the zone, I’m not too worried about it.

  • Destro were in Altdorf 2 times yesterday on Iron Rock. Was annoying but I’m glad this patch gave Destro a chance to farm loots.

  • 2 zone locks seems reasonable on my server. Means we get to fight in LotD regularly, rather than RvEing for ages.

    All down to the server though I guess.