The Gravel Pit

Turbine was going in such a great direction with Mines of Moria until the Waterworks.  Whoever designed the last of the quest chains in this region must have missed the memo on the design change from Shadows of Angmar to Mines of Moria. 

It started out great.  The content was stacked, and made sense storywise.  I was killing glass spiders to harvest their legs for crystal lamp repairs, checking out the hypnotoads, and the area itself was a breath of fresh air for the lack of vertically separate areas.  Then I got to the Great Wheel in the Waterworks. 

I was actually excited because it felt like all the Waterworks stories were coming together to the reparation of the Great Wheel, which would feed cooling water to all the dwarf forges.  However, the Great Wheel and subsequent learn-about-the-Vile-Maw quest chains were horrible for one reason: traveling time sink.

I went from the Great Wheel to the Rotting Cellar (Waterworks quest hub).  Back to the Great Wheel.  Back to the Rotting Cellar.  Upwards to the Silvertine Lodes.  Back to the Rotting Cellar.  Back to the Great Wheel.  To the Vile Maw campfire (pretty much next to the Great Wheel).  To the Rotting Cellar.  Back to Vile Maw campfire.  And, I am probably leaving legs of the quest chain between the Great Wheel and Rotting Cellar out.

The story was good, and it made sense to travel for terms of pushing the story.  It just wasn’t fun.  The quest content was not stacked very well on the Waterworks west side either.  No matter how good the story is, if the gameplay (or lack thereof) becomes tedious the story will suffer.  In all fairness, this was compounded by coming off of Shadows of Angmar Book 10: 1 hour of gameplay and 4 hours of swimming.  It sucks because everything else has been a shining light of PvE gameplay.  Hopefully there is not much more of that.

You don’t have to move the mountain.

13 thoughts on “The Gravel Pit”

  1. My biggest complaint about The Waterworks was trying to find the frakking goblin corpes. At first I thought they would be clearly visible, but no. Instead I end up playing ‘find the five magic spots’ in a pool filled with hypnotoads. Madness.

    I would have completely given up on the quest had it not been for online map which reveals their (rough) position.

    I don’t recall anything else being that annoying, aside from any quest which involves the ‘Balin’s Camp’ location.

  2. I never got that far into Moria. I loved the first 60 levels of the game, but I just hate those damn mines. It’s hard to see any of that beautiful scenery in there and every time I needed to go somewhere a few feet away, I seemed to need to transverse the entire map and go in a complete circle to get there.

    Plus, at that point, I really couldn’t stand those quests anymore. When they just say they’re looking for a dwarf and I need to “look East”, I cancel it out of a spite. If they want my help, they’re gonna have to put some effort into it. I’d kill for AoC’s quest system.

    It’s still my favorite MMO on the market, I’m just hoping they fix it up before I go back in.

  3. Lol Ravious I am at exactly that spot in Moria myself – I am just heading back to the Vile Maw for the second hand in. I am trying to finish every quest chain in the waterworks but the keep sending me back for something new.

    I wonder will the follow on end me into the Maw itself. I went in as a tourist just to see the place and was surprised to note that despite the -15 dread I still had about 1500 Morale left although the constant cowering was pretty dire. I managed to trigger the old Watcher by swimming out to him but he pretty much one shotted me.

  4. mpb, there is a deeed in there too. I managed to get it on the first try without disturbing the Watcher, but just as I was leaving he blocked the doorways and one-shotted me into a fine Dale-man red mist.

  5. I would be interested to hear what you think of the 6-man radiance armour instances when you get to a point where you start running them

  6. I am getting close.. am about 58.5 or so level wise. A few in my kin have all the non-Watcher pieces, so I definitely will.

  7. ya definitely get a group as soon as you can then.. I made the mistake of doing a full Grand Stairs run (about 15 quests) 2 bars from 60 =)

  8. Its an interesting concept that you can just saunter into the hardest dungeon in the game and spawn the uber boss. It means that even tourists can get to see him but if you want to actually kill him you need to grind out your radiance armour set.

  9. @Merimet – dang, now I’m feeling kinda bad about heading back to Eregion at the start of level 59 and completing almost all of the quests there. Now I’m two bars from 60.

    Oh well, c’est la vie :p

  10. @Rog
    Hah, I’m a mere lvl 16 at this point

    Wait until level 20, and the Boar Slaying begins in earnest.

    The genocide of Boars (and Wolves and Bears!) will be quite fun!

  11. Yeah, the animal slaying isn’t too bad… At least the drops are consistent when you’re stuck doing that stuff. Most of the time I just found another quest to do without an issue.

    I agree with a lot of people in that the game’s biggest problem is travel quests. Going back and forth is frustrating in and of itself, but sometimes you do this several times over. It gets boring… Sometimes it’s broken up because you can finish other things on the way, but not always.

    I’m hoping that they shift away from it more and more as time goes on. They do seem to learn their lessons along the way.

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