Tholuxe Paells/Saryn/Bertox Server
The City of Guk instantly comes to mind, extremely similar to the AD&D Bullywug race of frogmen in the Fiend Folio. A giant wet slimy maze of confusing winding tunnels filled with water. Musty plank bridges, ladders and increasingly powerful foes the further within you venture. Originally, I played on the player vs player server (Tallon Zek). Once I finally gained enough levels to venture within Guk my goal was to camp the Giant Heart Spider to get my first shield. While camping the mob for hours along came a high elf mage complete with TWO Steins of Maggok so you know he’s badass! Instantly the Mage begins attacking me with pet and spell alike. I go directly for the mage and ignore his air pet bashing on me. Clicking my disarm button I notice a stein is no longer in hand and a pouch appears on the ground! The mage had full bag slots and yes I had successfully removed one of his major mana / pain in the ass quest items. I looted the stein and pressed the attack killing him. As I sat there binding my wounds and gaining back HPs, no potions or healers for me back then the mage returns from a long corpse run. He starts looting his corpse and screaming at me that I stole his Stein of Maggok. As a dark elf role playing on a pvp server I do a /who all looking for any friendly casters in zone. I tell the mage to loot and scoot but he continues to scream in /ooc claiming he’s bringing his guild to get me back. In turn I /auction “Stein of Maggok 10pp at Heart Spider Camp” Sure enough a dark elf wizard pops up in no time and I sell him the Stein. With his tail between his legs the High Elf finally gates knowing he’s bested. Based on the number of times I’ve died and had my cash and 1 item looted it was the probably my best memory of adventuring in Guk.
- Befallen (see image above)
A City of the dead, overrun with evil necromancers, rats, skeletons, mummies, and two of the more powerful weapons for Shadowknights in game (before the first expansion) The Thex Mallet Quest required killing certain mobs to gain the parts of the mallet for turn-in and the Bone Bladed Claymore. I had heard that the Troll Shadowknight who dropped the BBC resided on the bottom of 3 levels in a hidden room and the Thex Mallet parts were on the 2nd and 3rd levels from rare spawns. I found a crumbling well in the side room next to the guy dropping a wooden key. Peering down below I could see the 3rd floor! Throwing caution to the wind and having no maps I jumped in and met the much more powerful mummies and skeletons waiting for me below. As I began to fight adds began to pile on! Knowing my fool-hardy limits I made a break for the zone. I made it to the first door of the bottom level only to learn my key did not work on this door… My screams and cries for someone to open the door were quickly muffled as the Elf Skeleton I would later learn held part of the Thex Mallet ended me.
- The Oasis of Marr
The Oasis of Marr would have to be my 3rd favorite zone. At lower levels this area offered the relative safety of killing caimans, deepwater crocs, and orcs along “The Highway”. This zone also let us know how truly small we were in the world as a Sand Giant, Spectre, or Lockjaw the named croc came by. When I watched two parties take out a Sand Giant for the first time I truly wanted to be that powerful and geared!
- Nektulos Forest
Home of the noob Dark Elves. Before the expansions all Dark Elves would gather at the noob log, a downed tree trunk where people sat to med-up, trade supplies, and hopefully get help when things were too heavy with dreaded Kodiak Bears. As I sat there on the log licking my wounds and binding from a rather nasty snake’s venom I began to see people screaming about a bard in zone. Being a relatively new evil race PvP character I knew there were no bards on our side. within a matter of minutes people were screaming about bard training undead. What I failed to realize is that this speedy bard was running to all the undead camps and making a circle around the surrounding hillsides. As I looked up from my perch on the log with 47% life I saw a curious curly mustached man with a mandolin standing in front of me. A few seconds later he darted off to the other end of the log and then the wave of more skeletons, decaying skeletons, and even a mummy were on top of me… “Loading Please Wait”.
Sebilis comes to mind as another challenging zone. Once the expansion Kunark went live our small guild found itself farming keys to get in this city said to contain a dragon and all sorts of amazing class only loot. Once we killed our Froglok Foragers and Hunters to gain the key parts we entered this new even more challenging maze of Frogloks, giant insects, and undead. Battling our way down to the bottom of this area we encountered the sporali race of mushroom men who seemed to see through invisibility. Wave after wave of adds came down these tunnels as we attempted to fight our way through only to encounter more pockets of opposing forces. Within mere moments a sporali would run off only to bring 2-3 more back with him. On and on this went with no real control of the encounter but after a short time the healers mana began to wane and no one knew where we were. The corpse run that followed was pretty amazing. It would be months before we ever saw the dragon Trakanon that lived at the end of the maze and even longer before we downed the dreaded beast.
- The Plane of Fear
I gotta hand it to the developers on this one, FEAR is exactly what this place was for the level 45 and up players. An incredible agro radius within the area quickly brought mobs from all over with the intent of killing you quick. The allure of armor, weapons, and spells kept nagging at us to try this zone. One Friday night we gathered up 5 groups of guildies and told all, We’re gonna raid Fear! Nothing could be further from the truth. During that time internet was not high speed nor were the connection speeds of computers consistent. We gathered up at the portal to enter Fear and before everyone was even in zone the dying started. People began running around down the hill in Fear not realizing the incredible agro radius that followed. Scarelings, Amygdalin Knights, Tentacle Terrors, and spiders began to surround the portal. We kept going back in staggered at first and then in waves attempting to rescue the dead but all was for naught. Four hours and two other assisting guilds later many of us had lost almost half if not a full level. We didn’t even get a chance to fight any names in Fear….
Neriak, like R.A. Salvatore’s Underdark captures the world of the Dark Elves perfectly. A winding series of areas (zones) opening with the Foreign Quarter where outsiders trade/vend at a distance. Deeper within you find the heart of the city and centers of defense, arcane, religion and the Lodge of the Dead. As a dungeons and dragons player for over 30 years this online world projected my imagined world into an online place to play complete with interactive doors, gates, quests and random personalities. During my first interaction instead of asking about a quest I hit the auto-attack quickly meeting my demise just as the cruel dark elves would kill off the overconfident fledgling adventurer. As I returned to life “Loading Please Wait” the world would forever change for me…