Team Spode wasn’t in rare form on Sunday . . . we were in Medium Well Done form.
This is what you expect to see of Team Spode from a Trial by Fire—we didn’t disappoint.
A good chunk of Team Spode’s night was simply gathering together and moving through the vastness of Gianthold. We’ve been working a lot of the Northeastern instances, but we were trying to explore a bit and find a new instance to destroy. The end result was we finished three rare encounters in the wilds of Gianthold and wound up at the entrance to the Trial by Fire instance all the way down on the southern slopes.
It’s an instance full of trolls and spiders. After we ran into a barred off location just two doors down from the entrance, we spied a hidden hallway that the DM told us hadn’t been used in a while. We begged to differ. There were many many giant spiders down this hallway, which begged the question, “how did these things get so big?” They had to have been eating something, right? I mean, the trolls and the spiders seemed to be on friendly terms. Hmmmmm. Either the spiders had been snacking on trolls on the side or they had been munching on people like us. This brought up an interesting point. If Trolls regenerate all the time, then perhaps trolls are the perfect snack! You eat a limb, the limb grows back. Troll is the food-source to end mass hunger! Of course, it probably doesn’t taste like chicken. Personally I prefer snacking on Doritos to Troll arm, but if you put the right seasonings on there I might try it. I'm a double-barrel halfing! I'm a halfling on the edge!
The real problem with randomly heading to the Trial by Fire instance after spending 45 minutes to an hour wandering around in Gianthold is that pretty much all the spell casters were out of juice by the time we entered the instance, and there were no shrines in sight (we really should figure out that teleporter system in Gianthold). I was uber grateful for my Echoes of Power ability and innate low cost fire spells that allowed me to contribute a spot of flame thrower damage last night. Egads, I really was scraping the proverbial barrel of my mana pool this instance. This also meant no giant walls of fire for a good portion of the instance, and this meant a lot of pain when we came upon a flock of ranged attackers.
Don’t get me wrong, for the most part we were doing a stellar job of staying afloat. Hackin! Slashin! Doin’ our thang, but eventually we ran into a fight with some significant DPS where my cleric NPC (the only one with a touch of mana left) died and then Spode, Ulan, and the other NPC cleric also died. So it came down to Ophiga and me hiding behind a corner going OH CRAP WE GONNA DIE TOO.
I opened my bags, bit the bullet, downed a mana potion, used a heal wand a few times, and went in with guns blazing: chain lightning, firewalls, you name it! BAM BAM BAM! We grabbed the soul stones and then CRIPES, there was a freaking shrine right around the corner. Don’t you hate that? I hate downing a mana potion just to find a shrine next door, but I didn’t feel confident enough to rely on echoes of power to get me through the room of dead friends on the floor. You know?
What’s great about Trial by Fire is that it’s kind of tricky. You have this wonderful spiral down to a lava pit, you have a map that’s stacked upon itself, and you have a small little pit in a far room that’s just easy enough to overlook, but that one little crack in the floor is exactly where you need to go to finish the instance. It took us . . . a while . . . to find that little crack in the floor. It took us long enough that I started to give up hope. I was convinced the place was bugged. I immediately started cursing Turbine for a buggy instance, but it wasn’t. It was just tricky.
Well, there was one bug we found. There was a troll stuck in the wall where we couldn’t hit him and he couldn’t hit us, but it wasn’t for lack of trying . . . I tried dancing him to death.
After finding that final floor pit, we killed the boss with no trouble at all. pfft, anti-climactic point of no return, but it was still a successful dungeon. Jump in the pot and celebrate our medium well done state!
So by the time we made it out the door, Ophiga was ready for bed, but Joe and I were hungry for more. We talked a lot of smack to get Ophiga and Ulan (the east coasters) to run over with us to the Minotaur’s Maze instance. In fact, I promised her that we’d just peek our heads in and not stay for the whole instance. One we were in and saw what a rogue’s heaven this instance was, I think I started to see her pulse rise. I imagine that, had I not blown the whistle at midnight, she would have just kept on merrily disarming traps and pulling levers to her heart’s desire.
No no no . . . that’s an adventure we’ll be sure to have next week as we continue to explore Gianthold’s gianty goodness. :)