MMORPG: Terrors of Thalumbra Reviewed!

Written by Feldon on . Posted in EQ2, Expansion News

From Ann “Cyliena” Hosler on MMORPG:

The ancient kingdom of Maldura, not heard from since before the Shattering, has made a desperate call for help to those residing aboveground. Their messages, unclear by the time they reached the surface, prompt the heroes of Norrath—those who have achieved level 100—to take action and delve into the unknown.

EverQuest II’s 12th expansion, Terrors of Thalumbra, introduces new content for level capped adventurers and tradeskillers. A plethora of new dungeons (13 Heroic, 6 Advanced Solo, and 1 Contested) and four raid zones can be found within the vast underland zone of Thalumbra, the Ever Deep and the city of Maldura. The local denizens, dwarves and gnomes called the dhalgar and gnemlin respectively, are wary of outsiders but desperate for help.

EQ2 ToT - Maldura Queen (1)_t

 

Pros
 A lot of group and advanced solo content
 Core storyline is entertaining & wide open for future updates
 New infusion mechanics allow players to delve into equipment customization
Cons
 Gear continues power creep, which could be an issue if the level cap increases in the future
 Side stories offer their usual humor, but otherwise aren’t very compelling
 Solo quests offer only a few hours of entertainment

Read Review: Journeys Into Subterranean Norrath @ MMORPG

Trackback from your site.

Comments (14)

  • Wirewhisker

    |

    Pretty much the same thing the playerbase has said. =)

    Reply

    • ziplock9000

      |

      “Core storyline is entertaining & wide open for future updates”

      They are joking right. It’s the worst questline of any xpac since 2004

      Reply

  • Antonia Bayle's bit on the side

    |

    A good and fair review.

    Overall I’m pleasantly surprised at ToT. After the upheavals of the last 12 months, it was a worry that there might not even be a proper expansion this year at all or that it may end up being half-baked, but I think they’ve done a pretty good job with far more limited resources than of previous years.

    My main grumble is the new quest content is a wee bit thin on the ground – ‘EverQuest’ being the name of the game afterall, I would hope for two to three times as many quests in an expansion at the least. Though it’s clear we’ve probably done well to get the ones we have with the resources now available. Perhaps additional ones may be dropped in to tide us over in the coming months.

    The zone design is fabulous I think, a bit claustrophic perhaps (which probably means they’ve done a good job more than anything else!). It’s great to have a large underland expanse to venture around in, which can hopefully be expanded upon to include new regions – or perhaps Luclin will feature some extensive underland areas when we finally get to go there in EQ2. Whenever that may be.

    Hopefully this expansion and the newly merged servers are seeing a little bit of a resurgence in people playing again, and seeing some new players try the game out.

    And with the possibility of cross server dungeons, and Dungeon Finder 2.0 coming to fruition in the coming months, and maybe even a revamped Public Quests system (which talk of seems to have gone off the radar again, hopefully nothing ominous and we’ll be nicely surprised in the new year at some point), then EQ2 has a fairly positive outlook.

    It’s certainly holding up pretty well for something that came out in 2004 I reckon, and still holds my attention far better than any other MMO seems to.

    Reply

  • Desius

    |

    Still holding off on this expansion. With scant content for the solo/duo player, no level increase, and only more gear creep, I can’t justify expansion prices for what is arguably a large content pack. I’ll wait and see if Daybreak’s next “expansion” is worth it. If they continue to bundle in previous content, it may be worth it at that point.

    Reply

    • Feldon

      |

      If you are waiting for a level cap increase, you’ll be waiting a long time.

      Reply

      • Desius

        |

        I won’t get into my own long-winded tale about how, despite the cost of expansions not going down, the first several expansions seemed to actually have content, whereas the last four or so seem like they were put together by a B-Team using a content-building toolkit with limited functionality.

        There is no “handcrafted” feel to new content anymore. Yes, new system mechanics keep getting added, like diety revamp, infusions, etc… but those seem more like they are just an answer for the constant problem of mudflation and feature/gear-creep.

        I’m waiting until the amount of new content accumulates through however many of these “campansions” as it takes to give me more than 6-10 hours of gameplay.

        I was very dissatisfied with Altar of Malice after seeing almost all there was to see (minus raid content) in two, five-hour play sessions over a single weekend.

        Eventually, another expansion (2-3 expansions in the future, no doubt) will come out and it will be a comprehensive expansion, containing all the others. Maybe then it will feel worth the expansion cost. I will wait. I am patient. :)

        Reply

        • Feldon

          |

          You’re comparing an EQ2 team that had 45 developers with one about a third that size. They are a hard-working team and they have learned to use the antiquated tools they have as efficiently as possible, but there is still only so much they can do. The days of 400 solo quests like Kunark are gone. If you feel that an expansion is over once you have done the solo quest lines, then yes, EQ2 and indeed ALL mmo expansions are going to feel small. There is just no way for an affordable development team size to produce a hundred hours of content in a year. It’s just not possible anymore. Even with a large team using the best tools.

          Reply

          • Desius

            |

            Yes, but while the content has decreased by a factor of 10, the cost has remained about the same.

            EQ2 Rise of Kunark released for $39.99 USD in 2007.
            There was at least 50-60+ hours of content in Kunark; lore-rich content at that.

            EQ2 Terrors of Thalumbra goes for $34.99 USD in 2015
            ( apples to apples price comparison, there was no F2P/Gold/All-Access 10% discount back then )

            That is what I have the biggest problem with.

            So yes, in addition to comparing the level of content released by different sized dev teams, I am also comparing the dramatic drop in the value of the cost of the expansions as a whole.

            I can empathize with and respect the current devs for continuing to put out content with a much smaller team, but I think the quality has suffered as much as the quantity.

            Reply

    • ziplock9000

      |

      I agree that it feels more like a large content pack than an expansion. The overland zones are very small and the questline is the ultimate “kill 10 of these”.
      I look back at expansions like RoK and Sentinel’s Fate and that were 4x bigger and had infinitely more depth in quests and landscapes and cost the same price.

      It almost feels like we’re being ripped off for what we got.

      Reply

      • Striinger

        |

        I really wish I knew who started the “kill 10 rats” or equivalent gripe about MMO’s, because it really makes me wonder what people are smoking. The ‘core’ quests almost always revolve around doing tasks for an NPC…which is…well…the basis of quests (except for, perhaps, a ‘signature’ or ‘epic’ questline).
        So, these tasks can generally be collecting (information or things), delivering (information or things), making things, destroying/killing things or a combination of the above. I’ve played a lot of MMO’s…old and new. Aside form the ones that are PvP focused (where you just kill each other), most quests boil down to doing tasks more than once to gain some favour/faction/currency. Admittedly, killing 10 doesn’t make for much variety (unless you read the script, maybe), but what’s the model that’d work better for EQ2 quests?

        Reply

        • Feldon

          |

          Kill 10 of something is the easiest type of quest to implement. EQ2 has many different types of quests of varying complexity such as using an item on an enemy. Honestly my pet peeve is serial errand quests that require lengthy travel.

          Reply

          • Cyliena

            |

            I just get frustrated when I’m sent out for the same type of quest back-to-back-to-back. A little more variety peppered in would be nice.

            Reply

  • Tom Tobey

    |

    She took off .5 points for art because there weren’t enough tentacles.

    Reply

    • Cyliena

      |

      Shhh, don’t tell everyone my trade secrets!

      Reply

Leave a comment

- Name (required)
- Website (optional)
Please post your comments without flaming or insulting other players or personally attacking SOE employees. Comments from bogus e-mail addresses may be deleted. If you wish to have an Avatar picture, feel free to create an account on Gravatar.com. Once you sign up for a Gravatar account, then any Wordpress-powered blog you comment on will automagically show your avatar.

Powered by Warp Theme Framework