Relief for the 50’s

EverQuest: Lost Dungeons
of Norrath
Gameplay
graphics
audio
value
fun
Genre
Reviewed On
PC
Available For
PC
Difficulty
Intermediate
Publisher(s)
Developer(s)
ESRB
ESRB
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Do you have an EverQuest character stuck in the quagmire that is levels 50 – 60? Relief is on the way!

I am a long time player of EverQuest, that had moved on to newer games (not because EverQuest is a bad game but I spent four years in Norrath and it was time for a change). I had a few characters in the low 50’s, level wise, and had been struggling with advancing them. I came back to try Lost Dungeons of Norrath to see if this would help the situation and to see what seems to be the center piece of the upcoming EverQuest II – the ‘pocket dungeon.’

The concept of Lost Dungeons of Norrath (LoDN) is to put together a group to take on an adventure given to you by one of the several new LoDN quest folk – located in EverFrost, North Ro, South Ro, Butcherblock Mountains and the ‘Tunnel’ in East Commonlands. You take your group to the assigned area and enter a dungeon just for your group. No other folk running around killing your critters. Critters do not respawn after you kill them so moving around inside the dungeon is easy to do (and getting back to the group after an unfortunate death is possible as well).

In order to participate in an LoDN adventure your character must be at least level 20 and have completed the quest for the adventure stone that is given out by an NPC (nonplayer character) in your character’s home town. Then you just need to find a group of three to six (I always felt better with a full group) hardy adventurers near your level and you are off for adventure.

There are several types of adventures that the leader of the group can pick from when obtaining an adventure that include – rescue mission – assignation missions – collect X items from the minions in the dungeon missions – and just missions to slay X number of foes in the dungeon. The level of the critters you will encounter is based on the levels of the folk in your group (in most cases I was fighting deep blue [just a level or two lower than I was] monsters) but the difficulty of the adventure can be adjusted by the group leader before they accept the adventure.

There is a time limit of an hour and a half to complete which ever mission was chosen so there is no time to dilly dally. You also get 30 minutes to get the group to the entry point for the dungeon and the hour and a half timer starts when the first character zones into the dungeon. You are told which zone the adventure starts in and once you zone into that zone a blue line on your compass shows up telling you which direction the dungeon entrance is in. But be warned, that just indicates the direction to take with no regard to any monsters that may lie between you and your dungeon. So as always, knowing the various zones and where the nasty critters live will be of importance in getting your adventure group to the dungeon entrance in one piece.

And just for the record – the experience gained from these missions is indeed such to make the journey from 50 to 60 MUCH more enjoyable. My characters were gaining, on the average, about two orange bubbles (each level in EverQuest is divided into five ‘orange bubbles’ viewable from the inventory screen) per mission. Which is far superior to what you get from the ‘normal’ low 50’s haunts – like Karnor’s castle. This experience came from killing the critters in the dungeons not from the actual completion of the adventure. Successful completion of an adventure grants everyone in the group that finished it a certain number of adventure points (dependent on level of group) that can be used to purchase items and spells.

The graphics are what you would expect from EverQuest – excellent and the addition to game play is well worth the price of this expansion. So if you are a player of EverQuest with characters at least at level 20 I would strongly urge you to get this expansion.

Now if they can expand this concept to include solo pocket dungeons (or pocket out doors areas for Druids and Rangers) EverQuest II could be quite the exciting game! In either case Lost Dungeons of Norrath is a welcome addition to the constantly growing world of EverQuest and well deserving of the 4 GiN gems I have given it.

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