The Necropolis, Part 3

General Comments

Necropolis 3 has the dubious honor of being the lowest ranked pre-U14 pack on my tier list. And it has every reason to be there, boasting absolutely nothing good or likable about it.

Experience: 0/5

You might look at the base experience rating of Tomb of the Tormented and say “hey, wait a second, why are you rating this pack so low?” Well… go scroll down a little further to the “walkthrough” section of the wiki’s article o the quest. You know things are bad when even the wiki is joking about the quest, saying “Some say that the “Tormented” are not the zombies in the tomb, but you.” Yes, that’s a verbatim quote on the wiki.

The problem with this pack is that the mechanics are too ambitious and end up being so infuriating that everyone avoids these quests altogether. And even when people do run these, the experience per minute is subpar.

While Necropolis 1 and 2 had capstone quests (Bloody and Shadow Crypt, respectively) which offered tremendous experience when done right, Necro 3 has The Cursed Crypt, which has a really annoying quest mechanic and which is overall mediocre experience/minute, even when done optimally.

Loot: 1/5

There’s some named loot here, but none of it is any good.

Fun Factor: 0/5

Yes, zero out of five. I hate everything about every quest here. I hate the fact that this is yet another undead-themed pack with dark and monotonous settings. I hate the fact that Turbine tried to be inventive with the quest mechanics but ended up making the quests frustrating in the process. I hate the fact that so many monsters here dispel my buffs. There’s simply nothing here to be enjoyed.

Tomb of the Blighted‘s gimmick is that the dungeon is filled with “blight ooze” or whatever, and when you step in it, you are “blighted,” making you lose strength and constitution every 20 seconds. The only way to cure this is by switching weapons to this holy water weapon which you then throw on yourself. You have to switch to this weapon and use it to break down most of the vine walls here, too. This is tedious, repetitive, and annoying to do.

Tomb of the Forbidden is a long quest and requires at least two people to complete. At multiple parts of the quest, there are bars, like the kind you’d find in jail cells. At these points in the quest, you have to use a gear to open something, and then drop it so that your party member can pick it up through the bars. This might’ve been a semi-interesting mechanic if the controls weren’t so finnicky; multiple times, I’ve dropped a gear where graphically, it’s clearly between the bars, and yet my party member has been unable to pick it up, and vice versa. It’s frustrating because these gears are on a timer; you have to unlock both sides within a time limit, and the puzzle thing resets itself if you don’t.

The infamous Tomb of the Tormented is possibly the single most reviled quest in DDO’s history. There are three mazes in this quest, but these aren’t conventional mazes, oh no. Instead, they take place underneath the quest, and are navigated by famished rats, whom you guide by dropping rotten meat through the floor. The AI of these rats is awful and they move terribly slowly, the mazes themselves confusing, and it’s made even more annoying when there are some traps which can kill your rats and can’t be disarmed. The quest just takes way too long to complete, and doesn’t feel rewarding. When you complete it, it doesn’t feel like “wow, I just completed a great challenge;” rather, it feels more like “wow, that was extremely annoying. Glad to be done with it.”

Tomb of the Unhallowed is easily the least frustrating of the bunch, though that’s not to say that it isn’t boring and uninspired. It features lots of back tracking and at times, it switches the plane to Dolurrh, halving healing.

The Cursed Crypt features a myriad of enemies whom you can’t kill. If you kill them, you fail the quest. So by default, AoE is discouraged here, which means no Warlocks, heavily impaired Sorcerers/Wizards/Druids, no blade barrier, no cleaves, no THF, no Improved Precise Shot… it’s a chore, and it’s annoying to have to skirt around these enemies. In Let Sleeping Dust Lie, which has a similar mechanic, you can at least kill off the other monsters quickly, which results in pacifying the monsters which you can’t kill.

I’ll at least give Turbine credit for trying. After all, the quests are original and innovative in a sense… but innovation isn’t always a good thing. For instance, the Virtual Boy was innovative, but was nonetheless a failure. Turbine’s problem is that, although these ideas haven’t really been tried before and are therefore innovative, these are not good ideas which should be tried. A 10 wizard/10 sorcerer split build can be said to similarly be unconventional and innovative, but it is nonetheless a terrible idea and will be incredibly frustrating to play. So too is the Necropolis, part 3: it’s unconventional in its quest mechanics, but these quest mechanics are still awful ideas and frustrating to deal with.

Popularity: 0/5

It shouldn’t need any explanation as to why these quests are unpopular.

Pricing: 2/5

This might be the only thing remotely in this pack’s favor. It’s 350 TP… but then again, there are so many better ways you can spend 350 TP. Like on a +5 Heavy Mace!

Overall: F-Tier.

I honestly don’t think that any amount of rethinking this pack or buffing its experience or loot will help this pack one bit. While packs like Red Fens and Restless Isles could perhaps be updated to be more relevant to today’s metagame, I don’t think the same could be said of Necro 3. I think it’s definitely the right move for Turbine to simply forget about this pack and to quietly let it die and be forgotten, never to be spoken of again.

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