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[SWTOR] Rakghoul Pandemic World Event Guide

Joooooin usss

ANNOUNCEMENT: As this post has been getting tons of hits as of late, I felt the need to put this note right up top and in big bold red letters: This guide is for the April 2012 Rakghoul one off event on Tatooine. It is NOT a guide for the Rakghoul Resurgence reoccurring event. For a guide to that, I highly recommend Dulfy’s guide found HERE.

Because there’s nothing to unite the player base quite like a hideous disgusting plague that will turn the infected into strange monsters, Bioware has graced us with a strange and wonderful world event on the quiet little world of Tatooine (aka The Planet Where Everything Goes Wrong… ALWAYS).  The story behind this event is that a ship infected with the Rakghoul plague has crash landed in the Dune Sea, spilling disease all over the area and infecting the wildlife and locals.  It is up to you to figure out what happened and to act quickly to try to contain the disease before all of Tatooine falls to the Rakghoul menace.

During the event you’ll also be collecting Rakghoul DNA Samples to trade in for various rewards.  You can get these by doing the daily missions.  You can also get them by ‘exploding’ from the plague.  During the missions, or from other players exploding, you can contract the rakghoul virus.  This can be treated with a vaccine that you receive from the daily missions or purchased from the rewards vendor. However, if you let the virus run it’s course (estimated to be about 20 minutes), you too will explode and infect everyone around you.  This will reward you with 5 additional DNA Samples and can be done as many times as you want during the day.  There’s even a side mission to infect 10 enemy players with the virus, but it only rewards 5 vaccinations.

Another thing to note is that the DNA Samples are NOT bound.  Meaning you can trade them or mail them, including across Legacy.  Do keep in mind that while the event is on Tatooine, most of the related mobs are level 50.

The Dailies

UPDATE: It appears that the mobs that are spawned that drop the mission items will scale to your level.  Anyone above level 27-28 (normal Tatooine level range) should be able to complete the dailies!

UPDATE: It appears that these missions are added progressively as you do them and do not all unlock at once.  You must do the day 1 daily to get access to the day 2 tomorrow, and the day 2 to get access to the day 3 the next day. As such, THURSDAY (4/19) is the last day to begin the dailies to get all the pieces of the social gear.

One of the first things you can do during the world event is the dailies.  In the North-East corner of Tatooine’s Dune Sea, you’ll find a downed star ship. Immediately, you’ll be given a multipart area daily mission that has you gather up some stuff from around the crash site and then take down the captain of the ship who has become a rakghoul.  It’s pretty simple and doesn’t take that much time once you know what you’re doing.  Mostly it’s kill this, gather that.

During that mission, you should also come across a blood sample drop that will give you a second daily that will take you to eastern Jundland to perform some tests on the sample.  This leads into the second daily where you get a light side/dark side choice to use the sample to make a cure for the local sand people who got infected, or to turn them into living biological weapons. UPDATE: It appears that additional missions are appearing go along with this one that reward different pieces of containment officer gear.  You can complete all of these dailies every day, Blood Samples is still available along with Passenger List.

Dailies Added to Event:

  • Day 1: Blood Samples. Acquired from drop in Crash Area.  Rewards: 2 Samples, choice of 1 extra sample or social boots.
  • Day 2: Passenger List: Acquired from clicking wreckage with mission indicator at the Crash Site. Rewards: 2 Samples, choice of 1 extra sample or social gloves.
  • Day 3: Hybrid Strain: Acquired from drop in Sand People area. Rewards: 2 Samples, choice of 1 extra sample or social pants.
  • Day 4: Pure Virus Sample: Acquired from clicking datapad with mission indicator in crash area. Rewards 2 Samples, choice of 1 extra sample or social helm.
  • Day 5: Recently Infected: Acquired from item with mission indicator in Sand People area near the Murals from Outbreak. Rewards 2 Samples, choice of 1 extra sample or social chest or social belt.

While you’re completing the second daily, you will automatically receive the third and final daily. Another multipart chain across the Sand People’s territory.  The big trick to this is the first part – get infected wrappings.  You need to kill the level 27-28 non-hostile infected sand people to spawn 2-3 level 50 sand people that drop the wrappings.  Beyond that it’s mostly just fetch quests that end with killing another elite.

Completing these dailies will reward you with a total of 10 DNA Samples, and the choice of 1 additional DNA Sample or a piece of social gear that looks like the Containment Troops armor that you see around the cities.

There is a final daily that I mentioned above but as Psynister pointed out in the comments, deserves repeating as it is a daily. Simply spread the plague by getting 10 uninfected players infected.  The reward is 5 vaccinations.

Tracing the Source

There is one more mission to do during the world event, and that is the tracking the source of the outbreak.  This is actually more of a hidden thing, because it requires some know how to activate the mission.  There are three items you must find in your factions main city on Tatooine (Mos Illa for Empire, Anchorhead for Republic).  There is a crashed escape pod, a crate of medical supplies and the large monitor just outside the spaceport.  You have 10 minutes after clicking the first one to find all three or else you’ll lose on of the buffs and have to go back and find the object again.  After you have found and interacted with all three, you can find a new mission available by the speeder taxi of the city.

This mission is to find 12 pieces of the crashed ship that got scattered all over Tatooine.  They aren’t marked at all, so it’s a huge scavenger hunt that will have you skirting around cliff edges and leaping down to small ledges. There are a total of 9 in Jundland and 3 in the Dune Sea.  If you want a slightly more detailed guide, I would recommend checking out the one at SWTOR-Spy.  After you find all twelve pieces, you’ll be directed to find a crate in the sand people territory of eastern Jundland.

After completing this quest, you’ll receive a companion pet: The Crimson Rakghoul!

The World Bosses

During this event, there are three world bosses that spawn across the planet:

  • Infected Trapjaw: Level 30 champion found by clicking the skull in the Dune Sea.
  • Urtagh: Level 50 champion that is found the open world PVP area of Outlaw’s Den.  Be warned that you will be flagged for PVP by entering the area, and the opposing faction may want to kill the boss themselves.
  • Zama Brak: Another level 50 champion that is found just north-west of the crash site in the Dune Sea. He has the ability to send the tank soaring into the sky and dropping large toxic fields that do high damage.

Defeating all three of the bosses will earn you their respective codex entries and award the ‘Containment Officer’ title.

Rewards

So, you’ve been collecting these DNA Samples, but what do you do with them?  Well, just north of the crash site in the Dune Sea, there’s a little jawa with a dewback named Jeelvic.  He’ll gladly take those samples off your hands in exchange for some neat items.  They include:

Black-Green Color Crystals: 75 samples for the level 31 versions or 83 samples for the level 50 versions. Depending on which stats you want. These crystals are Bind on Equip, so you can sell them or trade them.

Infected Companion Appearance Lockbox: 20 samples. A lockbox that contains one random companion’s custom ‘infected’ appearance.  I haven’t seen it yet, but it sounds pretty awesome! Mr. Robot is reporting that these contain an infected appearance for a humanoid companion, and are bind on legacy.

Pale Rakghoul Companion Pet: 60 samples. A small white rakghoul that will follow you around. Remember, you can get the crimson version by doing the Tracing the Source chain I talked about above.

Hope everyone has some fun with this event!  It kinda came out of the blue and there has been no formal announcement that I’ve seen about when it began or when they plan to end it.  So let’s enjoy it while we can! 😀

Modular Customization & You!

‘Ey dere folks. Welcome to today’s episode of Modular Customization & You! Today we’ll be looking at taking the whosie whatsits from the thingie mabobber that you like the thingies on and jamming them into that there other something-or-other to enjoy maximum visual customability at home or at work – whether you be just your average run of the mill winner of the Great Hunt or your working class Sith lord on the go.

Did you understand any of that? Good. Me neither.  What I’m actually wanted to talk about today was a fun little thing that I stumbled upon in Star Wars the Old Republic, that logically I had no reason to think it wouldn’t have worked but it wasn’t clearly spelled out anywhere that I could find that it was doable.  Okay, I’m making this sound way more complicated that it actually is.  Let’s put it this way.  You know that piece of orange modification gear that you absolutely LOVE the look of but it is clearly designed for another class?  Like for instance that awesome breather mask that Darth Malgus wears and that Sith warriors can snag as a quest reward?  How awesome would that be to wear that around on say… a cyborg powertech to complete the image of the ultimate machine/man interface?  Well, I agree:

Meet my Level 25 bounty hunter powertech.  Oh I know what you’re thinking.  “What the heck, Vry? Bounty hunter’s don’t use strength!”  and I don’t.  That is the moddable version of the breather mask that you can buy with Nar Shadaa commendations on the Imperial side.  What I did was gathered up enough commendations to buy that breather mask and the moddable bounty hunter helmet (the one that looks like a miner hat with a Geordi La Forge visor) and I swapped out all of the mods on them.  Twenty-four commendations and a few thousand credits later, and wham! I have a breather mask on my bounty hunter, and no messed up stats.

Oh, I know some of you are out there saying that of course you could do this. It was so obvious.  Well, I didn’t know.  I thought that mask was a sith thing, the miner hat was a bounty hunter thing, and that was that. So I looked and looked and couldn’t find a thread about it or a post anywhere saying it was doable.  So I am here, on the internet to declare, Yes! You can be this custom fit your look to any orange modification armor that you could normally equip! That means no heavy armor for the Assassins, no equipping Jedi knight only robes on your imperial agent. I would also recommend not decking your bounty hunter out in light armor.  But otherwise you can just rip the mods out of one and stick’em in the other.  There’s no “this can only use strength mods” restrictions at all, and I am absolutely loving it. Why? Because that means my bounty hunter can stroll around the Imperial fleet wearing some bad ass Sith juggernaut copycat oranges.

Bonus Objective: Go back to the first paragraph and re-read it to realize that yes, it DOES make sense in its own twisted way. Mwa ha ha!

Back to Square One: The Expansion Shuffle

No worries, the Mayan Calendar predicts that Cataclysm will be delayed until Q4 2012.

You must unlearn what you have learned. – Some puppet in a movie

Like some untold horror from ages past, it looms over us as we bask in its ever darkening shadow as it approaches.  The excitement builds to an unappeasable boil and those who have glimpsed the madness to come eagerly prepare for its arrival.  The word lingers on the lips of everyone, ‘Cataclysm’.  The end of the world.  But it is not the first of it’s kind.  While Azeroth is scheduled to be sundered and shattered and all manner of other frightening verbs, the simple fact of the matter is that this is a cyclical terror that is doomed to menace us again and again.  While Deathwing’s return marks the proverbial end of the world as we know it for our characters, the fact of the matter is that we players face an ‘end of the world’ every time an expansion comes around.

Now that Patch 4.0 is on the PTR the excitement for Cataclysm is beginning to foam with unease and anxiety over what the game is set to bring.  Are holy paladins doomed to extinction?  Will death knights be just as overpowered as before?  Will there be something that hunters won’t want to roll on?!  How will mechanic X, Y or Z affect the way I play?  And do electric sheep dream of androids?  As the questions begin to flow, anxiety turns to frustation.  A sense of personal belonging becomes a sense of entitlement: Why did Blizzard break MY class?  I didn’t want healing to change this much!  I can’t believed they buffed THEM but not ME.  For someone like me, who long ago accepted the fact that I can’t expect anything to carry over, it becomes devastatingly entertaining to watch. (Devastating in the sense that you can really really really REALLY tick people off this way)

So, in my tradition of making grandiose lists that benefit no one but myself, here are a few of Oddcraft’s tips for surviving the inevitable “end of the world”:

STEP ONE: EVERYTHING YOU KNOW IS WRONG

Just assume that everything you think and understand about how you play your character is completely wrong and you’ll need to pick it up from scratch.  If you want to give it a try, roll a class you’ve never played before, get it to level 15, and go into a dungeon with the most unfamiliar task possible for this class (Healing for tanks, tanking for heals, anything but dps if you’re normally a dps).  It’s weird right?  Like wearing a sweaty pair of someone else’s sneakers while sleeping in their house, in a room that their grandmother died in a year before.  That kinda weird.  It’s not unbearable, but it’s a damn awkward feeling.

Occasionally you’ll get that lovely moment where you can feel the heat of the blush spreading across your face as a small line of text points out that you’re doing something horrible wrong and they it should be done is ‘this’.  It can come in the form of helpful advice, annoyed scornful anger, or head to desk beating intolerance – but all the same, you’ve just learned that everything you knew was wrong.  That’s the feeling you should walk into Cataclysm (or any expansion with).  Maybe it’s a bit easier for me because I remember those horrendous n00b moments (Why? Because my personal mindset of always focusing on the negative in my life has me constantly remembering every single little screw up. I’m also a Sagittarius and my favorite colors are green and black. Nice to meet you.) and believe me, I’ve had them.  Like being a melee hunter until level 38 when someone in a Scarlet Monastary run was kind enough to explain why exactly Blizz saw fit to hand me a gun, or leveling 1-70 on a warlock using the rotation: Voidwalker goes in -> DoTs -> then wand until dead.  I’m not above saying that I need to relearn some things a lot of the time.

STEP 2: BACK IN MY DAY…

Now that you know that everything you know is wrong, the first inclination in your head will be that obviously, everything was better when I did understand it.  In Burning Crusade, Vanilla was the best.  In Wrath of the Lich King, Burning Crusade was the greatest achievement WoW had ever seen.  Who wants to wager that we’ll see people clamoring about how Cataclysm is not as epic as downing the Lich King, or way too easy with the point system tier gear, or that how you leveled your blacksmithing back when it was hard and no one got easy mode ‘multiple points’ for making an item.  How dare they be able to do what I did easier and quicker!

Since these is simply a micro version of the generational thinking that leads our parents to think that the world has gone to hell and young people have no respect, and the young people to think that they old people are outdated and do not merit being listened to, I will simply address the topic two fold and say this:  Shut. Up. Pretty. Pretty. Please.  If you would like to play a static game, in which the situation does not change on a dime, and your hard earned achievements mean the same now as when they first came out, I would like to point you towards your Xbox 360 or Playstation 3.  They provide excellent methods of developing a proud, strong ePeen that are just as easy to wave around in people’s faces and the simple fact is beating the game on the hardest difficulty does not get any easier in a single player game.  There is your Valhalla, brave warrior.  Seek it out and drink heartily from your cup in the hall of your fathers.If you think the game is dead, go play something else.  There’s a variety of choices out there.  One’s that require you to build a strong team to tackle content that the pitiful casual players will never get to glimpse.  Just don’t sit here and belly ache about how the game you loved is “dead” in trade chat.  You’re not doing anything but a disservice to yourself.  (For the record, that’s the same speech I gave my grandparents when I turned 18.)

The alternative to the “please please please be quiet” technique, is to take a step back and look at it in the broader scheme.  The people from vanilla were complaining about Burning Crusade, Burning Crusaders were saying the same things about Wrath of the Lich King, and again and again and again.  Once you can see the whole thing for what it is, you’ll realize that there’s always something to complain about, that someone always has it easier than you did, and this transcends a single expansion or patch, so this is not a unique or individual event that can be pinpointed for all of this.  It’s constant, and ever present.  The only way to get past it is to decide that you’ve either had enough and leave or acknowledge the change and move on.  This is the same thing that happens every day in the real world between parents and children, grandparents and grandchildren, and TV talk show hosts and their audience.  There is no ending it, so the route to go in my opinion is to accept and move on.

As for the reverse, new and youthful players, listen to the wisdom of the old players (when it actually is wisdom…  I must stress that.  Not everything an old schooler says is a nugget of golden truth, especially when the ‘old schooler’ is a 12 year old wearing a shirt with a NES controller that says ‘Represent’) because if the past two expansions are any indication, expect to see some old fight mechanics repeated and possibly mixed together (Anub’arak in Azjol-Nerub is the Lurker Below with bugs instead of fish people, and how many times have we’ve seen Baron Geddon’s living bomb come back to haunt us?)  So they may actually have some fun insights to share with you as to how you can combat the new fights.

STEP 3: ACCEPTANCE

If anything, all these changes be it changes to mana regeneration or making the game easier or harder, should not be looked at with disdain but with the joy of new exploration.  It’s the wild west again my friends and we’ve got a brand new world to explore, and all new tools to learn how to explore it with.  It’s the joy of learning a new class without having to start with nothing but your backpack and a full suit of vendor trash on your back.  Use this as a time to learn something new, and improve yourself with it.  What’s the worse that happens?  Some things are out of whack in 4.0 and they get tuned again and again until they are back in line.  Look at Death Knights from 3.0 to 3.3 – HUGE change.  What about the awesome might that was Retadins? – To the ground baby!  But also look at the issues with AoE threat, or making it easier to find groups with the dungeon finder.

CONCLUSION

So yes, 4.0 will be the end of the world as we know it.  Just like 3.0 was (Oh god, nerf Death Knights!), and 2.0 was as well (Oh god, nerf Felguards!).  Just grab yourself a towel full of supplies and soaked in resources, stick out your thumb for a ride to the next evolution of the game and no matter what, regardless of what you’ve read on forums, no matter what screams of fear echo in the hearts of blog comment sections:  DO. NOT. PANIC.  And I’ll see you all on the other side.

I’ll Maly Your Gos…

So I recently finished up my Champion of the Frozen Wastes by killing the hardest boss to do in the game: Malygos.  Harder than Heroic Lich King you ask?  Yes.  Why?  Because at least people are trying to do Heroic Lich King.  The only time any one ever bothers with Eye of Eternity is when it’s the weekly, which on my realm has happened a record TWICE.  So it became an imperative that I go and kill Maly this week, or else possibly lose my chance at Champion of the Frozen Wastes forever.  But during my arduous journey to find a pug that can actually down Malygos on not one but two seperate characters, I learned some things that may help you when it comes to downing the big blue meanie.

#1: HAVE A KEY

This is apparently a fact that somehow got lost in the shuffle when tier 7 was swept under the carpet for quick dungeon runs for massive amounts of triumph badges. Yes, Virginia,  this expansion did have one raid that required an attunement.  It wasn’t a brutal one either.  Just kill Sapphiron in Naxx and have someone loot the stupid thing.  And yet, since having a key for something was such an abstract and distant thought in Wrath of the Lich King, I ran into a good deal of pugs that simply did not have and didn’t even ask if anyone did have a key to the Eye of Eternity.  Which tended to lead to half the raid dropping out and the remnants scavenging trade for a few loose bodies to go kill Sapph for the key before trying to reinforce the raid again to go back after Malygos.  Fortunately, at least my shaman actually has the key, so it wasn’t an issue and even a boon towards getting a group.  Which leads me to point 2…

#2: IF YOU HAVE A KEY, DON’T HEAD TO NAXX

You put a raid together under the banner of ‘LFM Weekly [Malygos Must Die!]’ and then summon me to Naxxramas? I guess by Friday, a week of pugs not having a key has generated the assumption  that absolutely no one had the key, and that a Naxx run was the default precursor to the actual raid you signed on to.  But when someone, in this case ME, announces they have the key and we can just skip straight to Malygos, the proper response from the raid leader should not be: “Well, I still want the key.”  Which immediately raises all kinds of paranoid thoughts about how dubious the looting of Sapphiron could actually go and if it would risk the structure of the 10 impatient people that are jumping through hoops for 10 emblems.  If someone has the key, just go the Malygos and save everyone the headache.

#3: PHASE THE THIRD

For some reason, there seemed to be a lot of issues with the third phase of the fight.  That’s the part where the floor shatters for no reason and then the red dragons come and help you while Malygos acts like he’s Sherlock Holmes cracking the case when all he’s really done is put 2 and 2 together.  You know those people who will just drop out of the Oculus as soon as they see the loading screen and spend all their time in trade yaking about how vehicles are the worst things ever to happen to WoW (Which makes them the 3,472nd ‘worst thing to happen to WoW’ right behind ‘Death Knights’ and just before ‘Casuals’) , well this is the fight they hate and don’t want to bother learning how to do.  Chances are, you’re raiding with at least 3 of them (7 of them if you are in the 25 man).  So to make things a bit smoother, from my observations I’ve found that there are 2 ways to go about phase 3:

Method A: Stay grouped up tight around a single target. Probably the tank.  Healers can then use their bursts to keep everyone solid while the dps burns down Maly.  When the big spark shows up, move as a group either left or right (predetermined, not on the spot) and continue the cycle of killing and healing.  The downside of this technique is that requires that everyone be on board with it – if one healer goes left and the other goes right, well that’s no good – and it requires a bit of fore thought.  The person to group up on must be recognized as such, there are decisions to be made, and it requires everyone to keep their cool and stick to the plan.  While it does leave a wide margin of error, when properly executed phase 3 will but sliced through like a hot bastard sword in a tub of margarine.

Method B: I affectionately dubbed this technique the ‘Screw it, watch your own butt’ method.  Mostly because it requires you to ignore everyone else and just watch your ass for the whole of phase 3. This is especially good for the people who are familiar with the Aces High daily quest, because it’s essentially doing the same thing.  Keep stacking combo points and DoTs on Maly, heal yourself when necessary, and throw the shield up when you are about the get blasted.  This technique surprisingly works and requires zero coordination or group effort.  The onus is on the individuals to act accordingly and bring the blue meanie down.  It can take a little longer than Method A, so you’ll want to burn through the first two phases at a brisk pace for it, but the fun comes when you see people die and no that it’s no ones fault but their own.  Which is a rare feeling to get in a raid.  Which makes it twice as satisfying.

So there are my tips for having a semi-stress free Malygos pug.  Will this guarantee you victory?  Heck no.  Especially if you’re in a pug that is in T9/T10 armor and still hitting phase 3 with only a minute or two left for the enrage.  Then you’re probably just boned.  However, with these not so handy but very dandy (so I think it balances out) tips, you’ll be able to generate the appearance of competence all on your own.  Oh, and one last thing: Mages,  the raid is one fight, and as much as I appreciate the thought, a mage table is completely pointless here.  Don’t summon one.  It makes you look silly.

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