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Shadow Shard Updates Please


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The Shadow Shard is such a cool place, but sorely in need of updates.

 

  • Make them co-op so villains too can "enjoy" that special feeling of your Defense not working against googly eyes.
  • Firebase Zulu is fine as a beginner zone for "dipping the toes" at level 40-44. Make it a Vanguard-run operation and perhaps put in some Vanguard NPCs we haven't met yet as trainers and such.
  • Cascade Archipelago (level 40-44) is entirely void of content it seems, besides a single Task Force contact.
  • The Chantry (level 44-47) has two Task Force contacts and the Chantry itself.
  • The Storm Palce (level 48-53) is called a Trial Zone but I can't for the life of me remember what the trial is supposed to be. So that's where an update could be focused!

 

Spread out the level ranges a little so FBZ remains 40-44, Cascade goes 45-47 and Chantry 48-50. Then make the Storm Palace into an incarnate level threat zone much like DA, at level 50-54. Updated enemies would be nice but to be honest the Soldiers of Rularuu are so OP to begin with they won't need to be buffed much.

 

I'm sure all this is too much work, but I can still ask. And if someone remembers what the Storm Palace trial is... let me know? I'm guessing it was intended for some content that was never created or just as a place to hunt high level mobs back in issue 2, but then how is it different from a regular hazard zone? I feel there's a mystery here.

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I love the Shadow Shard and have some ideas for what to do with it that don't seem to be in the threads linked above, and this is the more recent thread so I guess I'll put them here?

 

First of all, the Storm Palace is the setting of most of Faathim the Kind's task force - he's in the Chantry, but he sends you to the Storm Palace and you go to most regions of it in the process, including storming the Palace itself at the end.

 

That said though... in general, old "trial zones" and even many hazard zones that have nothing to do in them except hunting and a single trial or task force or something seem silly, especially given that the trial itself is often done in an instance anyway so it's not like the zone needs to be reserved for it. Much better to have something like the Rikti War Zone, where you have numerous solo arcs, repeatable missions, special rewards for fighting the enemies there (for the Shard, maybe something like the special salvage suggested in the second thread above), Task Forces, and a big raid event you can do in the zone (which can even be done in the zone itself, sharing space with all the other content just fine). So far, the Shard has repeatable missions and Task Forces, but that's about it.

 

I'd like to see more native contacts added to the Shard. Even if the Primals haven't explored or colonized most of the place yet, the natives are already living there; they're friendly to Paragon's heroes and even seem to revere them as legendary figures, and they live in a shattered hellscape that makes their lives very difficult. Surely, they must have no end of tasks a hero could help them with. Adding these as regular contacts, with actual arcs rather than just repeatable content, could give us more insight into Shadow Shard Native culture and lifestyle while also not really advancing the overall plot of the zone very much (which is likely to be more of an endgame sort of thing). Just traveling around and helping people in need, like heroes do.

 

There could be a Firebase Zulu arc with Crey attempting to enslave and brainwash the natives for free labor, say, or a Cascades arc involving the Circle kidnapping natives for fresh bodies, or a Nemesis plot to trick the natives into thinking the heroes are actually their enemies, or the Reflections carrying out some bizarre scheme on behalf of Rularuu that they don't understand any better than their victims do.  And these arcs could be pretty self-contained, filling things out without the need for a grand new storyline that might take a ton of planning and resources, and not getting in the way of big new stuff either.

 

Making the Shard, or parts of it, a co-op zone would be cool too - what about the villains retaking Mole Point Bravo? It's been a while since You the player villain and Technician Naylor failed miserably at capturing it and turning it into an Arachnos outpost, and maybe now that the heroes are distracted and have given up on trying to recover it, the time is right for Arachnos to try it again with more intel, better resources, Praetorian tech and a higher-level player villain. I feel like Firebase Zulu should remain a hero-only zone, but Mole Point Bravo could go in the Cascades somewhere or become the center of a new villain-only zone of its own. Then Zulu can make an uneasy truce with the villains because there's enough danger there already and they need all the help they can get, and then the villains can go exploit some natives themselves. 😛 Or maybe help stop the world from being devoured too if they feel like it.

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In the category of "possibly straightforward to implement":

 

Is it possible to perma-install the Nemesis Base from the Black Scorpion/Dark Watcher's RWZ arc somewhere in the Shadow Shard, similar to how the Council base was added to Faultline? Honestly I just want something there to break up the visual monotony, and it would be fun to have an area that spawns a large number of specific lvl 50+ enemies as opposed to the random spawns elsewhere in the Shard.

 

File:NemesisBase1.jpg

 

Stretching this idea: just as the Council base can deploy a Warwalker GM, enough defeats around a hypothetical Shadow Shard Nemesis Base could allow for the spawn of a GM Nemesis (assets to be stolen from the Nemesis Plot Invasion event).

 

Edited by tidge
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On 12/17/2020 at 10:10 PM, Moonscribe said:

I'd like to see more native contacts added to the Shard. Even if the Primals haven't explored or colonized most of the place yet, the natives are already living there; they're friendly to Paragon's heroes and even seem to revere them as legendary figures, and they live in a shattered hellscape that makes their lives very difficult. Surely, they must have no end of tasks a hero could help them with. Adding these as regular contacts, with actual arcs rather than just repeatable content, could give us more insight into Shadow Shard Native culture and lifestyle while also not really advancing the overall plot of the zone very much (which is likely to be more of an endgame sort of thing). Just traveling around and helping people in need, like heroes do.

Really, the only task regarding the natives there should be is "get them out of there." There's no future for the Shard; it's a tiny, insubstantial dimension that only continues to exist thanks to Rularuu using his power to maintain it, otherwise it would fade into the dimensional ether.

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11 hours ago, Vanden said:

Really, the only task regarding the natives there should be is "get them out of there." There's no future for the Shard; it's a tiny, insubstantial dimension that only continues to exist thanks to Rularuu using his power to maintain it, otherwise it would fade into the dimensional ether.

Fair point that evacuating the natives would probably be top of the list when it comes to helping them out, but that doesn't seem incompatible with any of the arc concepts I floated, or with the general idea of having natives give new arcs in the Shard (maybe after you complete their arcs, they vanish from the Shard and show up in Peregrine somewhere). There are probably going to be a few others like Sara Moore who don't want to get out until the rest of their people are safe, and given the stubbornness of human nature, there will probably even be a handful who don't want to leave at all, despite everything. (Actually, that could be another arc idea - a small group of natives doesn't want to be evacuated and forcibly resists attempts to do so, and in the end you have to decide whether to leave them there to their fate, or beat them up and take them to Paragon by force for their own good.)

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