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Darkening Deep

Paul Crilley Posted:
Columns Chronicles of One Telaran 0

Greetings fellow game players. And how are we all on this glorious day of war? For war is certainly here, war between the Defiant and the Guardians. Those naughty Defiant are upping their game, sending attacks against Guardian strongholds, and Captain Toria and Captain Envris would really appreciate it if we could all lead the attacks against the enemy. Shouldn’t be too hard. We only need to kill about 100000 of them.

Caedryn is far too busy to take part though, because he is busy busting heads in Gloamwood. Not just that, but he is starring in his own movie-of-the-week.

It’s one man against hundreds.

He must destroy them all before they destroy him.

To save himself, he must sacrifice his freedom.

And things of that nature.

You see, this week Caedryn has turned terrorist. Or is that freedom fighter? Depends which side you’re on, I suppose. Caedryn most definitely thinks of himself as a freedom fighter. It just sounds sexier, doesn’t it?

Waykeeper Sharla’s scouts have recently uncovered huge stockpiles of goblin venom in Darkening Deeps. Sharla wants Caedryn to destroy those stockpiles, thinking it will give them the upper hand and enable them to wipe out the goblins once and for all. And how does he want me to do that? By infiltrating the goblin camps and planting bombs in the store sheds housing the venom.

Stupid goblins. Can't even see me.

Yippee kai-yay, mother-flippers. Sounds dangerous. And cool. Sort of like Lord of the Rings meets 24. (Movie producers? Call me.) Caedryn can handle it.

To complete his mission, Caedryn has to sneak along a path that winds around the top of a ravine, then descend into the actual cleft itself to plant his bombs in the venom stockpiles of the goblin villages. Tense stuff. The only thing that’s missing is a ticking clock scenario. (Caedryn must destroy these stockpiles of goblin venom before the goblins use them against a school filled with youngsters!)

Into the deep ravine.

Caedryn makes his way around the ravine, killing off goblins as he goes. This is actually harder than I thought. These guys are pretty tough. And it’s only while fighting them that I realize I have a skill I haven’t been using up till now. It’s hidden away in my right hand toolbar and is called Dual Strike.

The description reads: Strike with two weapons, dealing weapon plus 204 to 208 Physical damage. Requires 2 equipped weapons. This ability grants 1 Attack Point.

I can’t believe I haven’t used this before now. It’s part of the Paragon soul tree, and I haven’t really been bothering with that when I allocated my skill points, instead concentrating on my Champion soul. That’s going to change though, as Dual Strike really does help. It deals some rapid, heavy damage to my opponents.

While I’m on this mission, Waykeeper Sharla asks me to do a few other things as well. The first is to recover family heirlooms from Gloamwood residents who have been kidnaped and sacrificed by those scumbag goblins. He wants to return these heirlooms to the rightful families so they can have some kind of closure. Sure, I say. Human interest for my movie of the week. Witness Caedryn reverently lifting a painting of a dead victim’s family, packing it away to return to said family. See Caedryn’s head bowed, his shoulders slumped as he contemplates the pointlessness of their deaths. See his blazing eyes as he looks up and vows revenge against those who did it.

Gold, man! Pure gold.

What else? Hmm, well a movie like this needs some comedic relief. A quirky sidekick. That is supplied by another mission, this one given to Caedryn by Waykeeper Sera. It seems on of their “best” scouts has gone missing behind enemy lines. He ventured into the Deeps and has been missing for three days now. Caedryn is to find some sign of the silly chap.

Caedryn eventually finds him. It's not that difficult, actually, seeing as he is standing on a lip overlooking a goblin camp, in plain view, holding a torch in the air and running back and forth like a headless chicken.

Their best scout? I see.

The scout spins some story about being injured in a skirmish, (there are no signs of injury on his person), and crawling up a very steep hill to recover. Hmm. Right.  But there you go. The comedic sidekick. Sera didn’t ask me to rescue him, unfortunately, only to find some sign that he was still alive. But I have a feeling when I return to her; she’s going to ask me to bring him back. It would have suited my movie better if Sera had just asked me to help him if I found him. Then he could have come along with me as I plant the bombs, and our back-and-forth-buddy-cop-witty-banter would have lightened some of the heavier moments. Plus, he could have got himself captured in the last act and I’d have  to rescue him, which I’d do in the nick of time, just before the final explosion of the goblin venom goes off, thus giving us a really cool, slo-mo-running-away-from-the-flames-shot.

Goblin venom glows green! Yeah, that's how you know its evil!

But such is life, directed by a Z-list hack with no sense of the dramatic. I plant all the bombs and make it back to Waykeeper Sharla. A bit of an anti-climax, really. Why can’t life be like how I imagine it should be in my head. It would be a lot more fun.


Paul Crilley