Right before the Maze Engine release that brought back Castle Never and a few others as leveling dungeons, we called for your best, and worst, memories of the original dungeon designs and a few of you answered! Here are some of the submissions in no particular order:
Cryptic looked to address this – turning Knight’s Valor into the toggle skill we all know and love, increasing the effect of Marks, making the Tab-Mark a permanent one, etc, etc. And the patch notes included such gems as “Damage of powers has been increased by 20% across the board. Weapon damage increased across the board. Average increase of roughly 50%”
So. We knew we were getting an upgrade, a big one. To celebrate, the night before the patch 5 of us decided to run Epic Lair Of The Mad Dragon together. You remember Mad Dragon, right? Erinyes all over the place. Teleporting monsters. A midboss that spawns infinite minions if you take too long killing him.
There we were, 5 pre-patch tanks, all competing for Marks, all with veeery low damage outputs, running the dungeon widely considered the most annoying, due to the monsters who heal each other and jump around.
It was pretty fucking fun.
We put our heads together and came up with a plan. I would be the “Tank” tank, aiming to grab mobs and hold them until the others were ready to deal with them. Two of the others swapped powers to become “Pushers” – prones and big knockbacks, devoted to keeping the healer monsters away from the others. And the last two went “DPS”, such as it was, devoted to making things dead.
It went…. about as well as you’d expect. Our main advantage was the ledges and cliffs: If we could aim it right, we could punt an Erinyes so hard it would have enough hangtime to yell “I can see the Iron City Of Dis from heeeeeeeere” before splattering on the bottom of the map, which was a good thing because even with all 5 of us pounding on one devil it was sometimes hard to kill it faster than it was healing itself. So our entire plan became to pick off the healers first, kick them into next week, and then pick off non-healer pushable monsters and kick THEM into next week, then slooowly pound down anything that was immune to pushes. When there were no cliffs, we ran into trouble – our eventual solution was for everyone to carry some prones and to make sure the Erinyes never got to stand. Which meant, sometimes, we spent several minutes clustered in a corner stabbing a prone monster and kicking its legs out every time it tried to stand. We looked like a bunch of heavily armed playground bullies.
The final bossfight was anticlimactic after the run to get there; it TOOK a while, but by then we’d gotten the rhythm down. The imp adds mostly got swept under the dragon and hit as a side effect of very few GF powers being single-target. When the healers spawned, whoever had aggro would pull the dragon away and everyone else would run to the healer, hold it down, and kick it until candy came out.
We meant to try that again post-patch, to put the 5xGF group back together the next night and run Epic Mad Dragon a second time, but it never panned out.
Thanks to all the participants! If you missed the chance, you can still add your story in the comments below or on our message board!