GW2: The Cliffs and the Colossus

It’s me again, back to share another “down the rabbit tunnel” trail of maybe-lore with you all!

This one is more of a foggy could-be, mostly via neat visual thematic links that were -probably- done on purpose (and also convenient in terms of saving development assets.)

As serendipity would have it, while cycling through the fractals by my lonesome to get to the Uncategorized fractal to take the last post’s screenshots, I got into the Aquatic Ruins fractal.

Yeah, yeah, we know, fisherfolk, krait, slaves, dime a dozen, seen it before. Whatever, glowing plants, dolphins, big freaking jellyfish, generic aquatic environment, no?

aquaticfractal

Then I stopped.

Self, I said. I have seen this style of wooden architecture before.

In fact, come to think of it, I think I’ve seen this sort of grey cliff terrain before, with these kinds of plants… as I looked -up- at my surroundings.

aquaticcliffs

Come on, haven’t we all seen this sort of glow before? (Or after. I get so confused with time, damn fractals…)

labyrinthinenight

Ok, this is a night time pic, but yeah. Towering grey cliffs, bushy trees, wooden bridge architecture.

bazaarof4winds

It’s obviously not at the same point in time, of course.

Let’s hold off for the moment on trying to track down their origins, besides a faint nagging suspicion that these fisherfolk (a sea-faring people? their architecture seems to suggest it) could be the proto-Zephyrites of today.

I dived into the aquatic fractal for fun and to look around a bit since I was alone.

statuesunderwater

Oh man, more of these guys.

If you look up to the first two pictures, you’ll see that the folk in the aquatic fractal have been both busy using these statues as part of their impromptu raised platforms and trawling them out of the water with makeshift cranes.

We all know who these statues depict, right?

colossus

Yep, him again.

Self, said I.

I HAVE SEEN THESE GREY CLIFFS BEFORE.

And this freaking type of plant.

And the wooden scaffolding, for that matter.

W.

T.

F.

All right. Assuming these aren’t just all a lazy reuse of assets, they all have to be linked in some manner. Just… possibly at very different points in time.

Let’s get ourselves geographically located.

lcliffmap

Whyever did they dump the Labyrinthine Cliffs all the way over here?

Where is here and what was around here way back in the past?

The furthest past map I could find was naturally, were Guild Wars 1 maps.

Also, this is a beautiful fan-made one by Redditor that_shaman circling around the intarwebs that overlays GW1 landmarks over a GW2 map – I embed a copy here for your reference.

guild_wars_2_points_of_interest

It doesn’t include the Labyrinthine Cliffs, but we can use the prior map pic to fit it in along the coastline of Tyria, just north of the continent of Elona, sorta southeast of Kryta and south of Ascalon.

All that surrounds this place is a bunch of dwarf-related missions in Guild Wars 1. That doesn’t seem related at all. Dead end, perhaps.

So again I began trawling through the lore.

How about the krait? Where do they come in?

There’s a surprising amount of lore about the krait in the above link, which I think we’ll see more of when we start exploring Bubbles and underwater-related stuff, but the wiki doesn’t say much about their past history:

Krait history, especially prior to fifty years ago, is still mostly unknown. During this time all that’s known is their activities of enslaving shipwrecked sailors and that in 1078 AE, they already had a presence on the Tarnished Coast. Fifty years ago, however, they were forced out of the Unending Ocean’s deepest trenches, their former homeland, by the deep sea dragon‘s forces.

Well, that doesn’t help us very much, especially since we know krait were present in Guild Wars 1 too, so they’ve always been around being nasty slavers. But hang on, what and where is the Unending Ocean? Says the Guild Wars 1 wiki:

The Unending Ocean, also known as the Great Sea and the Clashing Seas, is the giant body of water that separates the continents of Tyria and Elona from the continent of Cantha. The island chain known as the Battle Isles resides within the Unending Ocean, between the three continents. In ancient days before the Exodus of the Gods and the distribution of magic, the Margonites ruled this ocean before they lost their humanity.

The Krait are known to live on the ocean floor of the Unending Ocean.

The Unending Ocean proper is marked on the GW2 map as being southwest of the Ring of Fire island chain. Cantha, in the lore, is southwest of that.

It’s a bit of a stretch, but technically, the Unending Ocean could maybe touch the Labyrinthine Cliff area since it’s all one big patch of water. The Elon River flows into the sea, but that sea seems to be unnamed.

But hang on, what’s this reference about the Margonites?

They were a bunch of demonic followers of Abaddon that we fought in Guild Wars 1. They were apparently previously humans before Abaddon transformed them, and my jaw dropped as I read further:

Before the Exodus of the Gods, the Margonites were a seafaring people who chose to worship Abaddon exclusively, rather than all six gods. In 175 BE, they ruled over the Unending Ocean and they began to create settlements on the coastlines north and west of Elona.

Sea-faring people?

Settlements on the coastline north of Elona?!

Reading further still:

Finally, at an unknown point in time, but presumably after the Exodus, Margonites who were still human reached the Crystal Desert by sailing over the Unending Ocean, and built the structures in the Thirsty River and everywhere around the Mesa.

I’ve made a little love and gratuitous screenshot post about the Crystal Desert before. The civilization that existed in the Crystal Desert once upon a time was culturally obsessed with building giant statues.

What do we have in the Aquatic and Cliffside fractal but a whole bunch of giant statues?

Are the people we see in the fractals ancestors of…descendants of…argh, somehow related to- Margonites, or the seafaring human stock that would spawn the Margonites some day?

I’m going to take a random stab at placing the Aquatic fractal in history.

It’s got to come after the Cliffside fractal because all the giant statues are sunken underwater, and there’s stone ruins in the depths too.

At what point in time in Guild Wars history do we know there was a humongous flood?

1219 AE Zhaitan, the Elder Undead Dragon, awakens. Orr rises from the sea. Lion’s Arch floods. Contact with Cantha severed.

That’s my best guess.

The fisherfolk may be the ancestors of our modern day Zephyrites of Canthan or Elonian descent and may have also been the descendants of a culture of seafaring humans.

Some of those seafaring humans may have been Margonites who worshipped Abaddon and got sucked into the Realm of Torment with him, and some of whom (who probably did not worship Abaddon) survived and turned southeast across the Crystal Desert/Sea (or were there to begin with.)

Incidentally, there’s one other GW1 reference I found interesting,

According to An Empire Divided, historians believe the Luxons once sailed in the Crystal Sea over a thousand years ago. Incidentally, this may be where the Margonites sailed. Due to the removal of knowledge of Abaddon, some knowledge of the Margonites has been removed, leading scholars to view them as myths, thus possibly causing a confusing between the two sea-faring people.

Maybe there aren’t two sea-faring peoples. But the very one and the same.

How about the Cliffside fractal? At what point of time is this situated in?

For this we have a source:

“The idea was that that particular fractal was that it reflected something that happened in the distant past. Something that happened in Tyria’s beginnings where there was this kind of colossus around.”

So we know it took place in very early history, possibly even prehistory.

We know that there was an Age of Giants very early on before the Age of Humans, though different tellers differ on the specifics since it’s sooo far back in time. Giganticus Lupicus was one of the giant races that may have roamed the land around this time.

The Colossus most probably isn’t a Giganticus Lupicus, since those have dog-like heads and the Colossus doesn’t. It’s possible it was a Giant of some other sort that was trapped and chained by the early humans of this period.

But here’s where it gets really interesting, it has been suggested that this fractal was inspired by the myth of Prometheus, or at least one of the designers makes reference to it in a podcast.

What is the myth of Prometheus?

Prometheus was a god who brought fire down to man. And for his hubris, he was chained up as punishment.

Is there a parallel myth in Guild Wars lore?

I bring your attention back to the GW2 timeline, coincidentally at the beginning of one era of history, where the very tame description awaits:

0 AE The Exodus of the Human Gods.

1 BE The Human Gods give magic to the races of Tyria.

Really? The human gods, plural?

The Guild Wars 1 wiki (and further links off the GW2 wiki) tell the real story:

Abaddon was the God of Water and Secrets, though has since fallen. Like the other gods, Abaddon’s origins are shrouded in mystery. The Apostate speaks of Abaddon gaining his power from an older, deposed god, however nothing more is known about this. Abaddon was once fanatically worshiped by the Margonites, a nation of sea-faring humans. The phrase “act with magic, act within reason, act without mercy” is attributed to Abaddon’s teachings. He also had a temple in Orr, the Cathedral of Hidden Depths.

In 1 BE, he spread magic to the races of Tyria, and thus indirectly responsible for the wars that came afterward. King Doric pleaded to the gods and they rendered magic into the five Bloodstones, diluting their gift. Abaddon was incensed and went to war with the others, and he was eventually struck down at the Mouth of Torment, in a blow that turned the Crystal Sea into a desert. There, Abaddon was sealed within the Realm of Torment and the city of Morah was established to watch over the spot where he fell. Shortly after his defeat, the gods left the world in an act that came to be known as the Exodus.

ABADDON gave magic to the humans. And eventually, he was attacked by the other five gods and locked in the Realm of Torment. Is he our sad Prometheus?

prometheus

This is how The Colossus looks at the beginning of the fractal. Sad, tired, head lowered, staring at the Archdiviner kneeling at his feet.

divinerfeet

The Margonites are said to have fanatically worshipped Abaddon to the exclusion of all other gods. This particular group of humans has also (eventually) fanatically constructed a ton of Colossus statues.

The GW1 wiki provides us with another intriguing drip of lore:

And so it came to pass that Jadoth, being persecuted by the horrific Forgotten armies, and hounded from his home, did seek refuge among the cooling mists of the Crystal Sea. Untold weeks passed as Jadoth huddled in his sanctuary, with nothing to see save the endless ripples of the boundless ocean.

On the 51st day of his exodus, a frightful sight manifested before Jadoth’s eyes: the unmistakable shape of Forgotten warships upon the horizon’s shimmering edge.

And prayed Jadoth, “Abaddon! Lord of the Everlasting Depths, Keeper of Secrets, open mine eyes and bestow upon me the knowledge of the Abyss that I might smite mine enemies and send them to the watery depths!”

An unsettling silence swept across the waves. The twilight sky shattered and stars streaked down upon the Forgotten armada. The seas boiled and ruptured, and gave birth to a maelstrom from which not even light could escape, and transforming the sky above into a midnight void.

And thus was magic gifted to Jadoth, chosen of Abaddon, the first of the Margonites.

— Scriptures of Abaddon, 1 BE

Does the Archdiviner represent Jadoth?

Yes, I will die just to give you all a relatively close up shot.
Yes, I will die on purpose just to give you all a relatively close up shot. He’s a Legendary, I don’t think I have the hours to kite him, assuming he doesn’t regen.

Did he, in fact, trick or fool an initially well-meaning Giant by name of Abaddon into gifting him with magic, and then turn around and entrap the Colossus into becoming a living idol for his people? And for a whole new fanatical religion that would later be the basis of the Margonites?

The Margonites of GW1 have a purple glow about their demonic form. The Archdiviner of the Cliffside fractal shoots purple magic bolts (and he’s certainly no mesmer.)

demonicseal

Those seals/chains are purple and demonic.

History, after all, is often rewritten by the victors.

The wiki, by the way, includes some pictures of Abaddon:

File:Abaddon mural (Gandara).jpgFile:"Abbaddon God Statue" concept art 1.jpg

Good lord, you say. Look at his face. That’s not anything like the Colossus. Surely you’re not going to tell me he’s just wearing a mask or helmet? How about them clawed hands?

Remember, he was imprisoned within the Realm of Torment, which probably twists anything residing within after some time.

And it would be quite possible for him to have descended into madness and desire revenge for what the Five Gods did to him, pre- or post-imprisonment, and to have eventually welcomed the role his fanatic followers thrust upon him.

How about a GW2 source? Also from the wiki, Abaddon has one temple, the Cathedral of Hidden Depths, accessible via one personal story chapter:

File:Cathedral of Hidden Depths.jpg

I dunno. But there seems to be some resemblance.

A more tame version would be that the Colossus is the older, deposed god that Abaddon and his followers obtained power from. Which would make the Archdiviner Abaddon and the fractal an echo of him conducting a ritual to steal that power, except we get to set the Colossus free in the fractal.

Still, if the Human Gods were actually Giants with magic that the human race worshipped once upon a time, that might explain why all statues of them are so bloody huge.

All rather interesting in the light of the new short story about Scarlet that Anet has released and further speculation on Reddit that Scarlet may or may not have absorbed the powers of Abaddon or become a god herself in some fashion, no?

Here’s looking forward to more story revelations from ArenaNet, per Living Story episode, just to see how many things I get right or wrong. 🙂

Exciting times ahead in Guild Wars 2!

Feel free to leave your sobbing about how we’re never going to see a Fall of Abaddon fractal now in the comments…

RotMG: Lvl 20 in 20 Minutes

Disclaimer: I do not claim to be fast at leveling. Pros probably do it faster. And if you haven’t seen all the other zones, it is a shame to skip them until you’ve explored them.

But when you just want to get back to lvl 20 after a sudden death without a convenient train chugging along kiling everything in sight, this is how I do it.

1) Quick vault stop with new character. Pick up weapon, armor and ring to twink it out.

(This only works well after you’ve gotten a character to 20 long enough to kill enough mobs for good drops. But keep saving. I have a bunch of Staffs of Destruction and Robes of the Invoker that I keep on hand for the next wizard to be born. More advanced players likely have better stuff to twink their characters with. This is what I have at my present stage. *shrugs* I didn’t have many rings, but I found a ring of Defence which couldn’t hurt in keeping me alive.)

2) Head into a server. Make a beeline for the first quest mob that pops up in your radar. Shoot ’em.

(Quest mobs give higher xp than ordinary mobs. Something we will make use of in leveling. Recognize the quest mobs and always mow them down, chasing down the last 1-2 of their satellite mobs is less important if they’re being dodgy.)

Confirm that all your keys are working, and you can kill stuff and are fairly survivable, and probably hit level 2 while doing that.

3) Turn and head towards sand and the desert. Shoot anything in your way.

(Like these bandits. The big one is the quest mob.)

4) Go nuts shooting things.

Try to find these guys. The giant crabs and the sandsman kings. They always like to clump up in big groups in the desert. Each crab and king is a quest mob that gives 44-50 xp or so, they don’t hurt a lot, and tend to rush into you and your bullets.

Keep along the road to maintain the level of the mobs, and wander off to the sides into desert sand when you think there’s a big clump lurking just beyond your radar.

5) Profit. Level.

It’s fine to shoot anything else that is moving when you run out of crabs and kings. Be an equal-opportunity death dealer.

6) Keep shooting. Keep profiting.

I still like them kings and crabs, even at lvl 9 and higher. The cylones are a bit annoying with their confuses, but heck, you don’t need to move to shoot them dead.

7a) Now you can continue along in this vein, and/or start wandering into higher tier territory looking for quest mobs if you’re playing it safe.

7b) Or you can get bored like me at lvl 11 and decide to risk it where it’s really interesting risk-reward. The Godlands.

Now since I am out to go leech xp, I don’t want to find a quiet server where I can solo the Gods as I would when farming. I go find the most crowded server and check for a big yellow pack of lvl 20 players in the approximate centre of the map, where the Godlands should be.

Teleport in.

Hang around the pack, try not to die, watch the 100-200xp numbers roll in. Don’t die.

Hell, don’t shoot if you think you’ll die. Plenty of time to farm and dodge after you’re nearer to lvl 20 and have higher stats.

I wouldn’t do this at lvl 1 though. Some people do. Some people make it, but some people also die. Like that guy in the last screenshot. You just don’t have high enough speed to dodge well, and too low hp to eat too many bullets. And there’s some kind of xp cap that makes it so you’ll only get a fraction of the xp. Not worth it, imo, unless you just want the adrenaline challenge.

8) Continue to not die. Profit. Max level.

Ok, that’s only lvl 18 in the screenshot, but shortly after that, lvl 20 was hit.

Nexus’ed out to take a break. Back to farming potions in the next RotMG spurt I play. And I will give all the dang stat potions to the archer this time. Sheesh.

Commentary: This is how to do permadeath properly, in my opinion. Or at least the only kind I am liable to play. Make it quick enough to recover from, rather than serve as something that will disrupt a player’s MMO experience and encourage quitting. And put the locus of control back onto the player. It wasn’t some other guy’s fault that killed me. It was mine. I’ll take my lumps cos it was my own bad play, my mistake, that caused the death.

RotMG: The Godlands

…And I’m right smack in the middle of playing Realm of the Mad God.

Realm of the Mad God is one of those games that defies conventional classification. It’s sorta kinda an MMO (in that there’s lots of people playing it at one time), and it’s also a Flash game (which follows the pattern of quick bouts of gameplay snuck in whenever you want), and it’s definitely in the bullet hell arcade shooter genre (plenty of projectiles flying about, but not too extreme.) It has Roguelike permadeath. But you know, it has classes and levels and grinding over and over for better stats and gear in order to get buff enough to kill bigger bads, and that’s gotta make it an MMO, right?

I really like the game. Steam says I’ve got 44 hours logged in it, and before that, I was playing it a fair bit on Kongregate.

I also probably suck at it. Because I’m nowhere near to being “expert,” “pro” or “hardcore” at this game, going by the level of all the leetspeaking folk on the game’s forums who seem to wander around casually in maxed out stats and amazingly good gear. But you know what? I don’t really care. I like playing the game and learning it on my own time.

What is definite is that I’ve moved on from the newbie stage. The newbie stage, imo, is when getting from level 1 to 20 is an adventure in itself, wandering the roads and rivers encountering all the various monsters is a big surprise, and picking up lower tier equipment is an exercise in glee because you sure don’t own anything better yet.

I’ll call myself in the “learning” stage. After you play for a bit and start regularly killing the Gods (monsters) in the Godlands, you start to accumulate a decent amount of T7-T8 gear. To the pros, this is probably still trash to be thrown into the chipper, but it’s enough for my new characters to walk around fairly unmolested and do slightly more twinked out damage, speeding up the process of getting to the max level of 20.

After having wandered the world sufficiently, one also starts to recognize the various areas and various monsters expected to be found in the various terrains. My favorite spot to level really fast is to meander off solo and walk around in the desert until one encounters the huge morass of Giant Crabs and Sandsman Kings that always seems to over-spawn in there. Some people join XP trains, but it seems slower to me – it’s a preference, I hate waiting around for other people before getting moving, I feel more constructive just regularly killing stuff.

So I’m at the stage where I can field level 20s regularly. The next stage is “potting up” or stat-grinding. By killing Gods in the Godlands, there is the rare chance that they’ll drop a potion with which to raise one stat by one point. (Some other event or boss mobs in dungeons also drop potions, but I still find them fairly rough going.)

Some really skilled guy made this video series where he records himself “potting up” a wizard from scratch. Me, I am nowhere near that confident of my skills dodging bullets. I think I went through 4+ wizards and a couple necromancers by taking silly risks in dungeons trying to learn boss fights, getting accidentally shotgunned by Oryx in the end-of-realm fights, and just lagging or being careless a couple seconds too much.

Having sated most of my curiosity (as I’ve ventured into most dungeons, only to Nexus out screaming from most of them when I find myself low on health, and seen most event mob fights), I’m determined to properly pot up a character.

I’m fondest of the wizard class, it’s the simplest to play (hence why everyone starts with it first), long ranged (giving more time to dodge and react), straight firing (easier to aim) and does a fair bit of dps (enough to qualify for soulbound drops on Gods, aka a good farmer!)

Now, general advice is that you earn pots for one character with another farmer – because hey, characters in active play can have shitty things happen to them – accidentally kicking the bucket and losing all your gear is already bad enough, losing all your stat potion progress would be even more irritating. Ideally, in order to get a truly badass wizard, I’d have another wizard on the side farming the pots for him.

Alas, my altholism also has me nurturing a lvl 20 rogue and lvl 20 archer on the side, and I’m unwilling to kill them off at present, nor buy any more character slots. So I’ve decided to try potting up the archer. He has higher defence than wizards, but slightly shorter range and a wider spread of fire. It’s not my best playstyle, but I get by. I also think his performance might get better if his stats improve, so I’m determined to give it a shot.

I had a bad accident with a lvl 20 huntress just a few days ago, which lost me T9 Roc Leather Armor that was from Oryx, a T4 Demonhunter trap that I had been hoarding up for some time and a free T10 Bow of Fey Magic that a nice random player gave me after seeing me plink away at Gods with a measly T5 Fire Bow. Ah well, easy come, easy go. That’s Roguelikes and permadeath for you.

The silver lining to the accident was that it freed up a slot for a dedicated wizard potion farmer, which I resolved to make, and keep re-making when it eventually bites the dust from another accident.

So… enter episode 1: In Which My Wizard Farmer Goes to the Godlands Again and Shoots up Gods in the Hope of Potions Dropping

Well, no, I lied. A couple careless deaths will teach one the value of proper preparation. I’ve made it a habit to always carry health potions before going to any risky areas. This gives me some reaction buffer time in case my health drops too low in a hurry, and lets me stay around longer before I’m forced to Nexus and leave the server and the fight. Oddly enough, the higher tier mobs seem to drop health potions rarely at best, and most of them are a pain in the ass to fight because they’ve got quite a hail of bullets.

So I wander around for a few minutes one-shotting mobs meant for level 1s. Conveniently, they still drop health potions. Sumos are a good source of health and mana potions when you find them. Well stocked, I teleport over to a group of lvl 20s in the Godlands. (This is always just a little bit risky because they could be in the middle of flaming bullet death, but you know, the 1% risk of inevitable death beats walking over.)

One thing I immediately found out is that it is really hard to get any viable screenshots from this game. It’s an arcade shooter with bullet hell wannabe pretensions. Stuff moves FAST. You must dodge FAST.

My left hand is on WASD. My right hand is aiming the cursor and my firing arc with the mouse. There is an auto-fire toggle key in this game, your own bullets can shoot helluva fast, especially once you increase your dex stat. Taking the hand off the mouse long enough to hit Print Screen is an exercise in significant risk. To make matters more interesting, my wizard farmer has pretty decent dps, so Gods evaporate in a couple seconds of being hit square on by my stream of bullets. Many times, I ended up taking pictures of Gods that weren’t there anymore.

Still, it’s interesting to note how far I’ve come. When I first started the game and got to the Godlands, I found it a very confusing, scary place with all kinds of unrecognizable monsters shooting all many of chaotic colors. I ended up huddling with the big pack of players that like to shoot up Gods together – most of them are looking for free XP, I suspect, though it is actually faster to kill stuff at one’s level range. It’s a big risk to go too low leveled into the Godlands because your speed stats are slower, so you dodge slower, you have less defence, and that means when you accidentally eat a faceful of bullets, you earn yourself a happy death announcement notice to the server – like that guy in the screenshot killed by a Djinn at lvl 5.

Between reading the wiki and just plain old experience, I can now tell apart the various Gods, and recognize all their firing patterns and colors.

Medusas are fairly nasty in that they have a red AoE attack they like to throw in front of them. The green stuff they fire starts close together, but spreads out, so keeping at range and dodging a couple milimetres works. White Demons are very easy, with the three ball pattern.

Treants shoot an orange shotgun spread too, they do it fairly fast and are a bit annoying.

Yes, there’s Gods in the snow fields as well. White on white, very tricky when you first encounter it, but really, it’s about knowing their patterns when you saw them on the grey rock already. Djinns used to confuse me with their flower like bullets, I couldn’t quite figure out where to dodge them at first. It’s still hard to describe in words now, but there’s a little gap between the fourth and fifth bullets that I usually just strafe left and right a little between, and one can maintain firing on the Djinn pretty much constantly. Djinn also release a circular ring of bullets when they die, so when you see that, you know they’re dead, even if you’ve dodged off-screen from them. Ghost Gods are nothing special, a spread of bullets as in the picture above, just stay in the gaps.

Stuff gets more confusing when there is more than one God at a time. It’s still about anticipating the patterns and knowing where to dodge. There’s a Flying Brain behind the Treant, they like to shoot very fast pink bolts. I’m not terribly good at dodging them but I try. Two Beholders shooting their star shaped pattern. Some of the Gods also shoot those asterisks, which all tend to be nasty debuffs like blinds and slows. I try not to get hit by any of them, period.

The Leviathan is one of the harder Gods. It appears to have higher hp than most, and it has a really complex bolt pattern it fires. Up close, it’s a horrible shotgun that can wipe out a careless character, so I just stay the hell away from the bullet spread and plink it from afar until it dies.

Eventually, you can even tell what Gods are beyond your visual sight range just by looking at the bullet patterns. In this case, at least 2-3 Treants, and a Flying Brain.

Interestingly, I find it easier soloing Gods because you pull them away one at a time or in manageable numbers, and you’re always backing away into a previously cleared safe zone, so blasts are more predictable.

My initial urge to huddle in a big group was actually counterproductive in more ways than one. For one thing, other people can do more damage to the God than you, killing it too fast for you to do sufficient damage to qualify for a soulbound loot drop. For another, various people are attracting more Gods and they are backing toward the big huddle from various directions, causing overlapping fire from different angles, and there’s all these people running about and shooting producing even more visual chaos.

I didn’t expect there to be much more to the story. I killed a lot of Gods. Had a meditative flow experience slightly broken up by the panic of trying to capture screenshots. Alt-tabbing to keep pasting Print Screens into a paint program is more than a little scary when you’re afraid some random guy will drag a horde of Gods into you while you’re not able to react and dodge in time. A few of them dropped stat potions – two defences that I recall. Yeah, miserable drop rates. Brought them back to my bank Vault to give to the proper character. Went back and fought the Gods some more.

Then serendipity happened:

I teleported into a group of lvl 20s who were attempting to break the Mysterious Crystal in the Godlands. Do enough damage, and it releases a special boss. I joined in. The crystal eventually gave way.

The Crystal Prisoner boss was released. I joined in, not really expecting much because I tend to get very hurt and have to back away and lose my damage on the boss or else bite the dust. Turned out there were sufficient priests in the mix that were shooting off heals, and I managed to actually get by and dodge properly. And to my immense surprise, when the prisoner boss died, a white soulbound bag (the rarest kind of soulbound bag, I am given to understand) dropped for me.

Jumping on it in glee, I pulled out my greatest haul yet. A Crystal Wand and an dexterity stat potion.

That’s the RNG for you. Into the bank vault it goes, until I have an open slot for a priest. (Which would, of course, mean me losing the current wizard to permadeath.)