While the Sixteenth Hall may be the last Moria instance that I reached, it is the central one in their story. It is the lengthy but straightforward, and its three parts lead you through the instance progression. (This is fairly spoiler-ish, so I’ll insert a break now. RSS readers: note.)
The Grand Stair is where all the Moria factions come together. It is Moria’s historical meeting ground, and the wings of the instance hold the various factions that you fight. There are orcs, fire orcs, trolls, and goblins with wargs. Then the leader is an uruk transformed by fire and shadow. From the Grand Stairs at the top, you head to the Flaming Depths.
You see much the same thing in the Forges, where members of those factions work together to craft the enemy’s weapons. You end with another super uruk, and your quests tell you that Fil Gashan is the next place to look. This is the barracks of the enemy, where those weapons were heading. Again, we have a fire-infused uruk to fight, the subcommander of the orcish forces in Moria.
The Sixteenth Hall sits just above the Foundations of Stone. You enter and fight the usual orcs. The first boss is not well. He is a big orc, but he coughs up green puddles that must compose half his body mass. Something is making him very ill.
Once you pass him, you are amongst the globsnaga, fungus-infected orcs. These creep into the Waterworks and the Redhorn Lodes, and here you find them en masse. They are warped, bent by the strange growths. You fight through them to their leader in the Sixteenth Hall, an orc so overgrown that he looks like a hermit crab.
Once he is down, there is a third section, deeper still. It is dominated by insects, scavengers. After defeating several hive queens, you find a large being flanked by insect servitors. He is the final boss of the instance, and he is a nameless being of unknown evil. He is the one feeding corruption into, and feeding upon the corruption of, the Sixteenth Hall.
By now you have delved beneath the Hall itself, into what must be the Foundations of Stone. Heading there, you find the last two instances, and they deal with the monsters introduced late in the Sixteenth Hall.
Skumfil is the seat of corruption. It is the home of rotting flesh, and unsealed grave where bodies have been dumped from times unknown. Scavengers and carrion-eaters abound, growing huge on the pestilent bodies. There are giant insects, cave claws, and kergrim that feast on corpses. Below, we see the spiders that are living unhappily in the fungus-covered depths.
The Dark Delving is the seat of the corruptors. This is the home of the nameless, H. R. Giger creatures with fanged maws instead of heads, thrashing tentacles, and corporeal darkness. Enemies here return also from The Rift, world-devourers out of time immemorial.
This links to the culmination of the epic books in the initial Moria release. Volume Two, Book Six leads you on another journey through the orcs to the more ancient things they are trying to invoke. Continue down, past the trolls, past the demons that come to play, and find the being of darkness and flame that seeks not to rule but to destroy and consume. It is a named nameless, of all things, a cousin to the Balrog and a brother to the misshapen hordes.
Here we find ourselves full circle, a journey into the depths first spurred by an enemy infused with fire and darkness. May you complete your instances and find your radiance gear, that you might bring a purer light into the depths.