Last night our alliance took a trip into the newest dungeon added to DF:UW, Sinspire Cathedral. I’d never been, but had heard good things, so I jumped at the chance to join in. In total we had a full group of 10 players, a mix of warriors, skirms, and primalists, all in top-end gear.
When you first zone in you are placed just outside the Cathedral, and need to cross a bridge to get inside. The Cathedral looks massive, providing a very epic ‘first glance’. As you cross the bridge you really get a sense of how large this place is, and just how many levels it has.
You start fighting mobs in the entry hallway, and you need to clear some easier mobs to spawn a tougher mini-boss. Once that mini-boss is down, doors open on either side allowing you to progress further. We didn’t have much trouble here, working well as a group and with most of us using clubs/hammers (best damage type against undead).
Once those doors open you really start to get a feel for how large Sinspire is, and also its complexity. There are multiple paths to take, most leading you around the outside of the main building, but there are also ramps leading to the three side towers. Most of these areas contain mobs of various difficulty, making it more difficult to really stop for people to catch up. The map also isn’t much help since Sinspire is more vertical than horizontal in layout.
We made our way around (one of our members knew the way) to the next mini-boss, who again opened another door, this time to the back tower. Climbing the long spiral staircase of that tower, and crossing the bridge back over to the main building, we found ourselves just one floor from the top. Here we found the first real boss. It took use a bit to figure out his mechanics, but once we had them down the fight wasn’t overly hard for our group. His loot was pretty great.
Killing that boss opens up the door to the dungeon exit, as well as the climb to the final boss. What’s particularity nasty about Sinspire is that if you can’t defeat that boss, you can’t exit the dungeon without dying and releasing, meaning you leave everything you have on you inside the dungeon. More than one member of our group had experienced that, and some were pretty antsy about going back in only to donate a gear bag.
We killed our way to the final boss, who is inside a large circular room behind a one-way portal. Much like the dungeon itself, the only way out of his room is to kill him or release.
Before the boss rises from his throne, you must first clear a few trash mobs in his room. They are not overly difficult, but do take some time. As you are doing that, the final boss gets up and starts attacking you.
He has a few interesting abilities. First he hits like a truck, so anyone he is focused on must parry up, even warriors in dread armor. He occasionally drops a large totem that has an AoE damage pulse. Not too difficult to bow down, but something to watch out for and switch over to when necessary. His other main ability is a PBAoE that he charges for a short time. If you don’t get out of range, it will likely down you instantly. That ability killed many of us multiple times. Finally, he will walk to the center of the room and channel a pull towards him. The damage the pull does isn’t massive, but anyone caught in it will heal him. We messed this up the first time, with multiple people not moving full out of the area, which resulted in him healing about 40% of his HP (he has a ton, so 40% is very significant).
Because of that heal, we had to fight off respawns during the fight, which combined with an AoE blast that killed a few of us, put downing him into question. However we were able to recover, re-adjust our strategy a bit on the fly, and ultimately kill him. A very cool, and very satisfying fight.
The loot from Sinspire is fantastic. Each boss dropped a lot of gold and resources, and the final boss also drops a key to his chest, resulting in even more top-quality loot.
If the mechanics of the final boss were placed into WoW or a similar themepark, it would be an average encounter due to tab-targeting, lack of friendly fire, and ‘easy’ mechanics like ‘click-to-heal’ abilities. Those things don’t exist in DF, so even bringing down a simple totem with some ranged DPS is a bit more difficult due to your more-limited view, the fact that you can’t hit tab to find the totem, and also because you actually have to aim your arrows as you move and adjust to whatever else is going on. It’s by far the best PvE content AV has produced for Darkfall, and hopefully with some upcoming ‘motivation changes’, more players will get to experience it.
And of course, the PvP would also be pretty unique in that place given the layout and the mobs.
It’s amazing how much more exciting something becomes when there are consequences for failure.
The first time we did Sinspire, we underestimate the number of arrows/bows that we would need to take him out. Eventually, we wiped simply because we ran out of arrows and you can’t staffbolt him to death with a dawnstaff.
And unlike a regular MMO, you don’t respawn with your stuff and your locked in the room. So a “wipe” means you lose all the loot from the dungeon. :)
We thought about hanging out until the next group showed up and jumping them, but no one had the patience….
All that said, it was a really fun day and I don’t think anyone was upset about it…
Shooting the final boss or the second-to-last guy?
We melee’ed the final boss down.
Final boss with the heal. Believe me, I was all for melee’ing him but others were scared of the aoe and close proximity of heal.
Couple thoughts. One, does a Primalist WoF block the PBAoE? If so, you could plant one nearby and then melee him safely if he has just cast his AoE Heal. It could provide a great time for Consecrates to top off Stam / HP too.
I assume this is not an “instance” either, where anyone else from any other guild could come in.
You didn’t mention how at the first miniboss, there is a fantastic choke point where literally 1 person as a Primalist can heal the miniboss and hold off a whole group, and other interesting tactics.
Lastly, a question, could you provide an actual drop list for what you experienced. I am pretty burned on what UW considers “loot,” so your comment about great loot is having trouble getting over my hurdle of skepticism.
How much gold and rare mats? Is it dragon skills / ancient sinew, etc etc, or other “junk” rare mats you can get from anywhere?
Not sure about the Prim WoF, something to try next time perhaps.
Not an instance in the themepark sense, no. Anyone can come in.
The final boss dropped more loot than the red dragon. Something like 80k in pure gold, and I think 100+ essences of various kinds. Also 1-2 r80 mats, a large map, plus other lesser loot. The second-to-last boss also drops a good amount of stuff, a bit less than the final boss but still very worthwhile.
Even the trash mobs in there, the terrors and such, drop more loot than the average terror.
A question about DF:UW – I’m thinking about starting up. How ping-dependent is the PVP? My Ping to a US server is usually 250ms+, which sucks for lots of twitch games. Is it going to suck for me?
250ms might honestly be tough, although not impossible. Would connecting to the EU server offer better ping? Also have you tried the ping-booster apps like WTFast? I’ve heard from people who have ping issues that sometimes those help. I played with a few EU players who connect to the NA server, they get between 120-180 ping, which is playable for them at a high level.
Thanks for the info. Europe would be worse. I’m in New Zealand.
Ah, there is an Aussie clan that plays on NA (Dawnblade Gank Squad, I believe). Never talked to any of them, but it seems its at least possible, and I know DF1 had a pretty sizable number of players from that region as well.
I’ll do a bit more poking around then. Thanks again