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Finally got to Durgan's Battery


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I've been slowly playing through the White March part one and I just tonight got into Durgan's Battery. This is the Durlag's Tower or, just as good, the Severed Hand I was hoping to find in the Endless Paths. I enjoyed playing through Od Nua's old haunt plenty, and the part

where we talk to Od Nua and he tells us about his son is one of the reasons this game is a classic for me already,

but I find Durgan's Battery much better paced.

 

I haven't even been to much of it yet and already the backstory is compelling. It reminds me so much of the severed hand with

barricaded doors and ghosts giving nice little story tidbits with floating text wrought with implication of the impending doom.

 

 

The Severed Hand is one of my favorite "dungeons" of any game, and I'm really hoping to find some of the same opportunity for story driven side quests and cool flavor here. The outlook is quite sunny (maybe I should say stormy instead) in that regard already. The clues I've found are interesting, fun, and above all pithy.

 

I'm only playing on hard this time, but it seems to me that each encounter has a good variety of enemies with interesting abilities. This isn't just slogging through tough encounters filled with forgettable foes.

 

Overall, I would definitely say that the White March shows a tremendous improvement in design as the team learns how to use the engine better, but I didn't sign on to say it until I entered Durgan's Battery. Hell, even the animation when I put all the components together in order to gain entry was cool. Enough to yield a "cool" factor without being so drawn out that it's irritating.

 

There were two dungeons in the old Black Isle Studios/Bioware games that I thought were genuinely tragic, Dulag's and the Severed Hand (the story of which completes in Dorn's Deep). They are my golden standards and I thought I'd venture to heap some praise on Obsidian for approaching (and hopefully matching by the time I'm done) those two examples of great side story design.

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bother?

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Yeah, I felt very similarly about Durgan's Battery. I think the Endless Paths fell victim of Kickstarter stretching (I believe Obsidian have acknowledged this) and would have been better had it been shorter (though it's not clear that the theme would work then). Durgan's battery did a great job of taking the standard "fallen Dwarvern hold" theme and making it fresh. It conjures that sense of mysterious menace very well I think.

 

Fingers crossed there'll be a similarly great concluding dungeon in White March 2.

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White March was great:

1. Difficulty spike, level 7, dont fool me, that was very strong level 7. :yes:

2. Some sidequests have interesting twists in it, like one with Priests.

3. Weapons trully epic. The introduction of Grey Sleeper or that G. helmet made it clear that is one epic weapon here.

4. Narration with dwarf ghosts and floating text set the mood. Like in some space horror game.

5. The returning theme of fire tonued beast and faceless army.

6. The whole Duran Battery Stronghold have some nice design, there was walls, throne rooms, armoury, mines...

7. I liked Devil of Caroc as personality.

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The Devil of Caroc is a completely man made monster. Her monstrous nature is forced upon her for her very survival and, when that nature draws her to her imminent demise, she is once again transformed again into a different monster. The skill set she needed to survive is completely different from the physical characteristics that grant her new life, but balancing her physical characteristics with her old skills creates a powerful fighting machine in every sense of the word. What makes her compelling in both gameplay and in story is that she is so weirdly built.

 

I get you, though, Jerek. She's weird and yet I find I enjoy her. If my PC encountered her in other circumstances, the party would have captured or killed her, I'm positive.

 

There's certainly a lot to praise about the White March. Like I said, it all culminated in Durgan's Battery for me. The White March is like eating the cake, getting to the icing, and finding another better cake underneath. I can only hope that the White March 2 will be the icing on one huge heavenly cake.

bother?

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Oh I don't disagree why, I am quite willing to accept that her build is the correct one for representing her new incarnation plus her old skills and in a hard difficulty or lower run her slightly wonky build really doesn't matter all that much. It's just a shame that on PotD I'd be hard pressed to make myself take her, but then PotD does sometimes require a bit more min-maxing at the expense of role-playing.

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Well to be honest Durgans Battery felt small to me. I would expect two more levels, but maybe I am just spoiled with Endless Paths :)

 

And for me also the best dungeon/area from IE games still remains Severed Hand from IWD 1 :)

From Pillars I would say probably....Dyrfords Crossing with the statue and the dungeon :) Its pretty big dungeon but not too big.

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