Icecrag Adjustments

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Dugmaren
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Icecrag Adjustments

Postby Dugmaren » Wed Sep 03, 2008 9:08 am

So I recently did IC2 and got to thinking that the tactics involve running past a bunch of content. So, think I'll change IC2 (and IC while i'm at it) in such a way that when we finally end up in the zone we don't skip stuff.

Open forum for suggestions & fixes for either zone. Harder fights, better equipment, easier fights, zone's too long, you're sick of remo's eatting you, you hate how Lase twinks it every other day, ummm... you hate Cofen in general.. the ansi makes your eyes bleed? You know.. whatever.

Dug
shalath
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Re: Icecrag Adjustments

Postby shalath » Wed Sep 03, 2008 3:24 pm

Dugmaren wrote:So I recently did IC2 and got to thinking that the tactics involve running past a bunch of content. So, think I'll change IC2 (and IC while i'm at it) in such a way that when we finally end up in the zone we don't skip stuff.

Open forum for suggestions & fixes for either zone. Harder fights, better equipment, easier fights, zone's too long, you're sick of remo's eatting you, you hate how Lase twinks it every other day, ummm... you hate Cofen in general.. the ansi makes your eyes bleed? You know.. whatever.

Dug

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Kegor
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Re: Icecrag Adjustments

Postby Kegor » Wed Sep 03, 2008 4:07 pm

This reminds me of a topic I started a long while back about balancing all zones for average completion time range, difficulty, and eq based on the first two. Really though what's been overlooked in this equation for most zones is the time factor.

IC2 has its moments, but I would have to say overall that the first part is very repetative and time consuming (while easily skipped), whereas the lower part is very dangerous, exciting, and very easily skipped. I have never been in a group that has done the lower level straight up, so I can't really comment on the difficulty there, but the proper balance of time and difficutly should be found and it should be unavoidable. As for the first level, I would start by thinning out a few rhemo groups and adding a caster or two to the remaining rhemo groups, while adding ATD's in select spots (similar to CC). This would make it a bit less repetative, a little more exciting, and make gameplay through that area a little faster while still being required to kill the mobs before you get to the more challenging part. Sprinkle a few real nice 2% rares in the mix of the entire zone, and you got yourself something special.
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Re: Icecrag Adjustments

Postby Klandal » Wed Sep 03, 2008 11:34 pm

Summary of the zone:

Upper IC2:
Upper IC2 is a series of hallways with remo/guards groups that are mildly annoying due to the swallow proc. A few casters and other mobs that have checkable rares. You acquire various orbs from mobs and place them throughout the level to gain access to the grid, or lower IC2. Upper IC2 is twinkable with small group or even solo with enough effort.

Possible items from Upper IC2:
an ogre shaman's juju bag
various staves/vials (random)
a black strap-harness (item rare)
a pair of black leather sap gloves (item rare)
a sapphire bracelet (random location)


Grid/Lower IC2:
IC2 Grid is a blind entry portal into a very densely populated grid of dragons, caster groups, golems, etc. that search out hidden rogues and where a few rares can load. It is difficult to gain a foothold on the grid because of the difficulty of the mobs, the density of the mobs, and the fact that they patrol. In the northeastern corner is an additional small area with the group of Ruin, Havoc, and 2 additional wyrms. As you can imagine, a group with 4 total wyrms, 2 ancient and 2 regular wyrms, has a high spank possibility, even when using the humming white staff provided earlier in the zone. After slaying the Ruin/Havoc group you gain entry into their vault and are able to learn the correct order to enter the portals to get to the next area. A series of portals sits near the middle of the grid where only one portal leads further on, the remaining portals send you outside Ice Crag. There are a series of these portal groups, and after 4 or so correct portal entries gets you to the final area. (Here's the problem with Ruin/Havoc fight: it's highly difficult and yields only one good, two if rare loads, item(s) you can't get elsewhere in the zone. The order of the portals can be figured out without killing them as well, which leads to them being bypassed altogether.)

Possible items from IC2 Grid:
a stark white mask
a blued steel pauldron (rare)
a sapphire bracelet (random location)
a circlet of the purest blue earthstone (rare)
a pair of arctic white gloves (rare)
a frozen teardrop (rare)


IC2 Strife Area:
This is another blind entry into a multi-caster fight with Strife as its leader. They don't search so a rogue can tell you when to enter safely. The fight is of typical end-of-zone fight difficulty and yields the remainder of the items from the zone.

Possible items from IC2 Strife Area:
an icy white robe with blue piping
a suit of shimmering earthstone armor
a serrated war-axe encrusted with frost
a wide silver belt
a silver circlet


Risk vs. Reward:
Upper IC2: Yields rare Tier 2 priest waist/hand items and effectively rare Tier 1 hitter wrist item. Annoying but doable with small group or even solo. Highly worth the effort.

IC2 Grid: Yields rare Tier 1 mage neck/ear/hand items from main grid. Yields Tier 2 hitter face item and the Tier 1 hitter wrist item if it didn't load in the easier-to-get places. Grid itself is worth checking to twink the rare items if they loaded and worth the risk. Ruin/Havoc fight isn't even close to being worth the effort. If the mask were 4dam instead of 4hit it _might_ get done, but without a reason for the casters to become splattered pools of blood to get into the vault too, it will likely get bypassed. The pauldron can't compete with vortex cloak so that's pretty moot. Upgrade the mask and put in a good non-Tia-slot caster item (perhaps priest neck/waist/hand/legs or mage eyes). You essentially have to clear the grid in order to prep an area for the fight in addition to the Ruin/Havoc fight; it should yield a top item or two.

Strife Area: Yields Tier 2 caster about/head, Tier 2 tank body/weapon, and Tier 1 hitter waist. The fight is typical difficulty and yields multiple worthwhile items on way to Tier 1/Tia. Highly worth the effort.


Edit: added pauldron to discussion
Last edited by Klandal on Thu Sep 04, 2008 4:59 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Klandal
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Re: Icecrag Adjustments

Postby Klandal » Thu Sep 04, 2008 1:32 am

Also, if you didn't want Strife to be reached without completing Ruin/Havoc you could have the portals to progress pop after their death, or make entering the wrong portal have a fairly severe detriment. You do still need at least the one portal to get out of the grid though to leave zone/cr. I'm not sure if this is an issue for you or not but thought I'd mention it even though none of the items from Ruin/Havoc or Strife are Tier 1.
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Ghimok
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Re: Icecrag Adjustments

Postby Ghimok » Thu Sep 04, 2008 4:40 am

You forgot possibility of rareload blued steel pauldron loading on ruin/havoc fight. I can't remember stats on it as there are so few of them in the game, but i think it's borderline between Tier1/Tier2 hitter gear. Still not worth fighting Ruin/Havoc for though really.

But yeah really I think the upper grid is fine, although it's pretty boring with a full group. Actually though I've seen more people die in upper grid when there is a full group than when we 3man it as people are generally more on their toes in a 3man group than they are in a a full 15 person group, and you realy need to be on your toes with remos. ATDs might force you to do upper grid with a larger group, but I don't think that's necesarily what Dug is looking for here, and it's not really the upper grid that's being skipped, it just often gets small-manned. You really can't skip the entire upper grid if you want to get all the orbs to open the portal to the 2nd grid.

The 2nd grid is tough. In fact if you do it straight up you will spank. Numerous times. Gaining a foothold at havoc/ruin's entrance is the only tactic that works effectively for doing the grid in any fashion (whether rare hunting or actually clearing it), and since the risk-vs-reward of doing Havoc/Ruin doesn't warrant smiting them at all, ever it makes sense to use their lair as a foothold. As you can see by the group that you witnessed, it isn't even rogues that break IC2 as we didn't even have one in the group.

My suggestions would be to tone the number of dragons on the 2nd grid down by 20% and remove a wyrm from the Havoc/Ruin fight. Then make the functionality of the 4th portal dependent upon whether havoc/ruin are killed so that you can't do strife without killing havoc/ruin, but you can still CR or rare hunt the grid. Make the pauldron load all the time with the stark white mask and then give strife fight a true tier1 item. Perhaps move sapphire bracelet to strife area and put one of the lesser hitter items like silver belt up on upper grid as a rare and then make one of the caster items on strife tier 1.

Something like that.
Last edited by Ghimok on Thu Sep 04, 2008 4:55 am, edited 1 time in total.
Klandal
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Re: Icecrag Adjustments

Postby Klandal » Thu Sep 04, 2008 4:54 am

Good catch, thanks. Will add it to my original post.
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Botef
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Re: Icecrag Adjustments

Postby Botef » Thu Sep 04, 2008 8:39 pm

Remo changes ruined some of the fun of the top part of IC2. With 15 people even good tactics don't work very well, there are just too many edible targets! Like Ghimok said, its way more fun - and easier - to do with a few people than a whole group. Randomly getting eaten is fun every once in awhile like in Jot, watching a full group of top tier players get swallowed whole in a few rounds isn't.

4 dragon fights are generally not very fun to begin with imo, especially if your not getting a top tier item out of it. Thats a deal breaker fight like magma final fight is, you cant just throw corpses at it and win. The rewards definately should reflect that. Always wondered why its in the middle of the zone rather than the last fight, Strife is a cake walk in comparison.
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Malia
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Re: Icecrag Adjustments

Postby Malia » Fri Sep 05, 2008 12:50 pm

Agree with most of what is said, thin out the 2nd grid and make remos not swallow, there is no tactics at that point, its just throw bodies at them till you win. Jot was good once in a while, but a whole zone of just swallowing !chance mobs isnt fun.

I would make Ruin/Havoc fight !track too, at least then if we do it, we can do runs like on magma instead of having 4 dragons track you all over grid so even if you survive 4 breaths you die to tracking. In past survivors have jumped out portals regrouped and tried again with someone holding zone on inside, again not much of a tactic. Also, by making it !track you stop people from luring out dragons so you can twink rares on grid =)

As for zone length atm if you do full ic2 id say your 2hs as is and thats skipping grid in middle. On a good run your less, on a bad run your more but id say average is 2hs. By forcing you to do ruin/havoc to get to strife your gonna increase this zone by at least 4hours of grid work and dragon fighting to even get to last fight. Not sure id wanna see that happen. Id rather leave it the way it is and put some really nice rewards in for doing ruin/havoc fight making it worth the time.

Its nice to have choices in zone, ok we got an hour we can do the top, or we got 2h we can do top and bottom and skip the middle, or hell its saturday afternoon we gonna do whole thing today. Gives small groups something to do also.
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Dugmaren
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Re: Icecrag Adjustments

Postby Dugmaren » Sun Sep 07, 2008 2:04 am

K here's what I'm thinking -

1. Upper grid & Strife are fine.
2. Remove Ruin & Havoc's ability to hunt. Allows you to do runs on them, and makes it harder to clear grid to hunt for rares as safely.
3. Moving an item (thinking circlet of blue earthstone) to Ruin & Havoc's lair to make it more "worth" doing.
4. Moving an item (thinking silver circlet) to a grid group to make doing even some of the grid more "worth" doing.
5. Nuking a couple remo's & dragons from grid.

Pending no major objections to that can put it in and move on.

Dug
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Re: Icecrag Adjustments

Postby grundar » Sun Sep 07, 2008 12:52 pm

while reading the new monster manual i saw something that could help the 15 man rhemo proc madness. the "first bloodied" recharging of certain special abilities
so like rhemos get 2 possible swallows till say pretty hurt, when they recharge one more swallow, that insures that the whole group doesnt go to swallow proc on a single rhemo.. will allow you to keep all or most of them on the upper grid. this still makes for a good group and not just 15 random people who afk in zone and are just dragged around by zone leader be required... and it keeps a certain number of controlled deathprocs which are lots of fun and need not be removed from the game!

and btw, judging from the amount of pauldrons/masks in game which were likely gotten before dragon changes a new vnum needs to be created for whichever items get upgraded mightily.. like that suggested 4 dam improvement. people will hate me for this but i see no reason to reward people for having done something that was easy before with the stats of an item that is hella hard now, treat it like jot invasion was done and like fucking vortex (what a ridiculously unbalancing item i decided i wont try to get one in protest of its blatant disregard for balance) should have been treated if it wasnt.

sorry if i got a bit derailed there, kind of drunk still
Klandal
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Re: Icecrag Adjustments

Postby Klandal » Sun Sep 07, 2008 10:01 pm

Having been in the handful of groups that actually did full IC2 I can attest to the fact that the Ruin/Havoc fight was never "something that was easy." We still cleared the entire grid and spent quite a bit of time developing tactics to separate the wyrms to make it even possible. Two ancient wyrms plus two more wyrms output a ton of damage, even pre-dragonchanges. It made it even more difficult given they tracked. Changing them to not track will make the fight more doable for sure, although it will still be high death count ala Dresk fight in Magma.

The earthstone circlet loading in vault will put one top tier option in the vault; the mask isn't used by those who have them to my knowledge.
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Ardessa Moonblade
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Re: Icecrag Adjustments

Postby Ardessa Moonblade » Sun Sep 21, 2008 4:26 am

I think all the advice on changes for IC2 are well and good. I have been to IC2 about a dozen times now, and have yet to see Havoc or Ruin attempted.

For IC1 Changes: The absurd thing here is that the remos in the vault are much worse for instadeath swallow procs. If you tank them for more than 5 rounds, you will get swallowed. Whereas the ones in IC2 seem to proc less often. It seems like perhaps there is a strength based save to resist their swallow proc. Also, the fact that the rhemos have enchanters grouped with them to keep them blurred skews the challenge even more.

Basically, it seems like IC Vault is more trouble than it is worth. I seem to remember (granted, this was 10 years ago) that the Shroud of Ethereal Winds had max_int attached to it. Silvery sack is nice, but the blued steel greaves/vambraces are pretty pointless now.

It might be worth revisiting this zone, upping the challenge on a few of the fights that are wimpy (Malice, Mahdrel, Lone Guardian fight), and maybe tweaking the remos in Vault. Thank you.
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Re: Icecrag Adjustments

Postby flib » Tue Nov 04, 2008 5:29 am

as klandan has a tier system :P stupid Word of Warcraft..

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