Friday, August 12, 2022

Hey, Ray! Won't You Please Stay?

Just as I didn't plan on doing two consecutive music posts last week, I wasn't intending to post twice in a row about new content in EverQuest II but that was before I checked my email right after publishing yesterday's post on the Myth and Monoliths update and found I'd been invited to this year's Oceansfull Festival

It started yesterday and runs for another couple of weeks, finishing on August 24, 2022 at 11:59 p.m. PDT. As I type this my Bruiser is sitting on the edge of one of the platforms in the new dungeon, recovering from having been killed by the second boss. 

Yes, the second. He has indeed managed to kill the first, which puts him well ahead of his dismal performance in Fabled Kurns. It took him a long time, although nothing like as long as it took him to spawn and find the second boss, something that requires an insane amount of swimming up and down pipes, lighting braziers and using waterspouts and whirlpools to teleport around the zone.


There's a ferociously detailed walkthrough up on the wiki already. It gives some idea of the nit-picking complexity of the whole affair but you can't get the full, vertiginous effect just by reading two-dimensional text. For that you need to be corkscrewing up a column of water, trying to fend off guards and sharks while watching for the almost invisible exits.

I would say "Thank Prexus someone took the trouble to write such a comprehensive walkthrough" but it's actually not as much help as you might think. For a start, the map references don't really play all that well with the three-dimensional space and as it turns out there's no need to do most of it in the specific order listed. I didn't and all the portals still opened and the named spawned anyway.

In the end I just used tracking to find the guardians, once I'd killed the first and knew what they were called, then swam about almost randomly until I found the portals. Not efficient but it was quicker than trying to follow the bloody locs.

The first boss was annoying. The second boss is very annoying. She's actually the final boss by the walkthrough's reckoning, which might explain the extra level of difficulty. I guess I won't know for sure until I've found the two that come inbetween. 


At least they are doable. I know it's my inexperience with the mechanics that's the problem, not a straightforward gear lockout. I'd rather the walkthrough went into detail about how to kill the bosses instead of noting every last twist and turn of the path leading up to the fight. Trying to mouseover the tiny buff icons on the boss in the middle of a fight to see what immunities she has, while scrolling back the through the chat box to see what warnings she emoted isn't my idea of entertainment. I'd rather read the Cliff Notes version from someone who's done it already.

The drops from the first boss were good enough to make it worth the effort, though. 315 Resolve we're up to now on this solo, holiday stuff. That's an upgrade to most of what any of my characters are wearing. 

Aesthetically, the entire zone is gorgeous, although we have seen it before. It's from an earlier expansion, abeit slightly tweaked. The best thing about the whole instance has to be the manta ray at the beginning, the one you have to stand on and ride to the platform. If Daybreak don't make that into a mount and add it to the cash shop they must not like money.

There's also an interesting crafting opportunity you have to find for yourself. It is mentioned in the preamble to the walkthrough but not, as far as I can see, inside the game itself. I thought it was odd that there were fishing nodes inside a dungeon, even one in the Plane of Water, so I got out my rod and after a few casts I somehow managed to fish up a fishing rod, or rather the recipe to make one.

The Oceansfull Fishing Rod lets you breathe underwater, which is something my Bruiser currently needs to buy Totems of the Otter to do, so it's going to be well worth having. Three of the items he needs to make it can only be found in the instance itself. So far he hasn't seen any of them. I hope they don't drop off the bosses...

There's some other new stuff in this year's festival, including nine new items in the clam shells that spawn all around the coast of every major landmass at this time of year. I always enjoy prying those open. There's also a collection from previous years the Bruiser hasn't finished, as I discovered when he was doing the short, fun access quest to the new dungeon.

Given the way yesterday's session debrief got completely out of hand, I'm going to leave it at that. If you play EQII you'll certainly want to go check Oceansfull out for yourself and if you don't you've probably already heard more than you ever wanted to know about it.

I'm off to open some clams. Finger crossed I get something good, not just twenty different kinds of coral.

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