[Invasion] Sarah the Self-found Solo Summoner

Hail and well met! This is a journal of the adventures of a solo summoner (name: SarahTheSSSummoner) in Invasion league. There's no particular format, just a chronicle of interesting things that happen. I fully expect there to be several incarnations of Sarah given all there is to kill you in Invasion, but I'll make each one last as best I can. I'm posting this mainly just because I like to write, but I'm happy to hear any comments you all might have as well.

Incarnation #1: Starts here, ends at this post. Judged by a Judgement Apparatus at level 64.
Incarnation #2: Starts at this post. ends at this one. Struck down by Cintiq at level 82.

Yes, I'm aware that I'm a masochist, playing solo and using only items I find myself in a hardcore league like Invasion. What can I say, I like the pain. I do play in groups and other builds, but typically only in softcore leagues where a momentary lag spike or play mistake don't mean the end of a character's progression in the league.

So why a summoner? Mainly just because I like them. There are three distinct phases to a summoner build: early on where you have to deal most of the damage yourself, mid-game where the minions are strong but fragile and need resummoning often, and late game where you let the minion hoard run wild while you direct the chaos. I enjoy the challenge of the changing playstyle, enough so that I've gotten two different summoners to L70 in different leagues, and I'm still looking forward to another one. Plus summoner builds are somewhat forgiving of lag and slow reactions/mistakes; often the minions will distract the enemies long enough for you to recover (and run).

Sarah is, of course, a witch. No other class makes sense for a self-found summoner since witch gets the good summoner gems as early quest rewards, plus has Lord of the Dead near her start. After getting Lord of the Dead and some mana regen, I'm planning to make a beeline for Minion Instability. I find that Minion Instability is a great keystone for summoners up until level 40-ish when the minions start to survive on their own, then it can be respeced out.

Level 15 plan

After that, it'll be time to add some more life nodes and the three sets of minion nodes near that path. Agility (dex) and Might (str) are right along the path ready to pick up when I need them for gear. Eventually I can go up around the tree near the curse nodes at the top, and respec out the spell damage and int/str nodes to the left of the witch start...if I live that long.
Last edited by ineffablebob on May 28, 2014, 9:03:37 AM
Level 1-2

Found a magic wand with added fire damage on the first set of zombies in the Strand, a good start! Dual wielding wands for 19% spell damage on Fireball, poor Hillock got burnt to a crisp. Picked up a +21 mana ring, too. And a Iron Hat. Why are there always so many Iron Hats? Raise Zombie obtained from Tarkleigh...so it begins.

Level 2-4

Roamed the Coast, finding nothing spectacular but enough to fill out my inventory screen except for an amulet and boots. Padded Vest, Goathide Buckler, and Fishscale Gauntlets for some evasion, very handy at low levels, and the magic affixes have +34 max life. Hit level 3 before I found Fire Fury, which worked out nicely, and level 4 as I neared the Tidal Island exit. Thought I may have gotten lucky and avoided seeing the Invasion boss, but right in front of the Mud Flats gate was a horde of Porcupine Goliaths. Bladeback Guardian in the Coast, really? Fortunately at low levels he's not that bad for a summoner as long as you're willing to kite...move until he's on the edge of your range and throw fireballs, let the zombies run in and trigger that crazy Incinerate Nova, once he starts shooting ice spears again run away, re-raise zombies, repeat. Four or five repetitions of that killed him off. Too bad the only rare he dropped was a crappy staff.

Level 4-5

Went to a new Coast to gain another level, following one of my favorite hardcore survival rules...whenever possible, be higher level than the zone you're entering. Not a huge deal at this level, but a good habit to get into. Saw no Invasion boss this time, but did kill Fire Fury again. Lord of the Dead obtained!

Level 5-6

Next up, Mud Flats. While I'd like to get that Quicksilver Flask and my gem reward, I've died too many times on the Tidal Island; I'm not going near Hailrake until I'm at least 3 levels above him. Found my first corrupted area: Incombustible Strange Sinkhole of Ice (chilled ground, 75% monster fire resist). Let's see, I've got 4 already-slow zombies and my main source of damage is fireball...nope. Toasted Oozeback Gloom but didn't see the invading boss, which is fine with me. Found a Twig Spirit Shield with even more life than my Goathide Buckler, nice. Grabbed the glyphs and moved on into the Lower Passage...Summon Raging Spirit, thank you Tarkleigh. I heart me some Summon Raging Spirit. Find some mobs, let the zombies engage, hold down raging spirit button (so cheap! mana bulb barely moves), profit. Spent some minor currency at the vendors to finish filling out my inventory screen.

Level 6-7

OK, Hailrake, let's do this...off to the Tidal Island. But first, my good buddy Grath the giant skeleton popped up. Didn't even have to kite this time, just threw raging spirits at him with the occasional zombie replacement until he fell over. And he dropped a Quicksilver Flask, how convenient. Even three levels below me Hailrake is a pain; he froze me and killed all the zombies, so I had to run away through half the zone until I could resummon and smack him. Nessa was properly grateful and gave me a medium life flask with charge recovery, and I took Ice Nova from Bestel...it's good damage for the first 20 levels or so, and after that I usually keep it around to break pots and barrels easily.

Figured I might as well clear the Fetid Pool, so I headed back to the Mud Flats waypoint...and promptly ran into The All-Seeing Eye, the invading Soulless Watcher boss. Wiped out the zombies with Arc and started after me, so I ran like a little girl. But the spirits I managed to cast before the zombies bought the farm had gotten him to half, so I stepped into the Coast to replenish the zombie supply, and went back after him. Had to resummon zombies one more time before he went down. Dropped a rare Shabby Jerkin, but no life bonus and piddly resists. Ah well.

Back to the Fetid Pool and all the nice undead therein. Found the invading boss fairly quickly, the Chatters-lookalike Glassmaul. Had to do a decent amount of kiting and raising more meat shields to hold off the horde of skeletons he summons, but was able to cast enough raging spirits to bring him down. The necromancer was the usual cakewalk with a summoner...steal his corpses by raising zombies and watch them kill him. The clear was enough to net me level 7.

Level 7-8

Began the path to Minion Instability! The spell damage will actually help me for a while since I'm using Ice Nova for good-sized groups.

Found the Flooded Depths almost right next to the Lower Passage waypoint, handy. Ran into Droolscar the undead-pirate-summoner fairly quickly, and took him down, though not without having to resummon the zombies about a half-dozen times. Wish he'd have dropped that Desecrate gem he was using, but no such luck. After that, old granddaddy crab was a piece of cake; lasted about 15 seconds.

Back in the Lower Passage, I ran into Droolscar again, but this time I just ran away. Let him haunt the caves, I've got better things to do...like finding the Upper Passage and the Ledge. Which I did in quick order, without seeing any other bosses. On my way to the Ledge waypoint, a skeleton dropped a Decoy Totem, which I will put to good use for a while. I may not keep it long-term, but in the early game it's very handy to distract bosses from your minions while they beat on him. Had to buy a Amber Amulet for strength to use it, but that'll take care of itself via passive tree soon enough.

Level 8-10

Ah, the Ledge, beloved of farmers. I find it very helpful to do a couple of runs to get to level 10, since the next zone has the first really annoying AoE boss, very bad for minions. Killed the Harbinger of Elements invader and found a rare sceptre with 10% elemental and 11% spell damage to replace my wand. But the real find was when I took down Kuduku the Totem and he dropped a unique! And not just any unique...Sidhebreath! On a low-level, solo, self-found summoner! And I'd just hit a strength node on the tree so I didn't even lose Decoy Totem when I replaced the strength amulet I was wearing. I'd be attempted to accuse myself of cheating on the self-found part if I hadn't seen it drop myself.

Feeling good after that drop so I ventured into the Climb to grab the waypoint...and was promptly almost killed by Kall Foxfly. Dude is a menace to summoners: Lightning Warp, Bear Trap, fast split arrow attacks. Ran away, reset the zone, and got Harbinger of Elements again instead, who was quickly dispatched.
I selffounded myself up to lvl 48 within 1 day. Then I got bored because I had 50% block 2,5k hp and 2,3k dps. Invasion is basically the same as any other league. Dunno what's so special about it. 1 more monster in every zone, that you usually skip because the time investment is not worth it. wow. much hard. such difficult. very invasion.
The god of EA
Level 10-11

Took one last walk through the upper Ledge and then proceeded into the Climb. Saw Nighteater, the invading super-Fire-Fury, in both zones. Needed lots of kite-resummon-kite in each case, but it wasn't too difficult. Nothing else particularly memorable other than being reminded how annoying those fire dogs are for low level summoners. So many burning zombies.

Level 11-12

That Decoy Totem is sure coming in handy. May have saved my life when I ran across The Duchess in the Lower Prison, distracting the horde of minions long enough for me to run away. Not really feasible to take down a soul eater/summoner boss at this level. The zone also netted me a new wand and gloves with more max life and a bit of cold resist. Between that and a Sapphire Ring crafted from my starting Fireball and a random Iron Ring, I'm up to 72% cold resist, which should be plenty for the Caves of Merveil once I get there.

Level 12-13

Hit level 13 just before going in to face Brutus, which worked out nicely. Decoy Totem to the rescue again; the zombies didn't live long, but the raging spirits beat him down while he was distracted by the oft-resummoned totem. He dropped a bunch of rares, including better gloves and armor than I had, but the real benefit from that fight is the Summon Skeletons quest reward gem.

Level 13-14

Lots of stuff to do in a fight now, between summoning skeletons, firing off raging spirits, and dropping decoy totems. Pretty much stopped using ice nova; once you have enough minions an AoE is superfluous. The minions *are* an AoE. Now that I have so much to do during a fight, I find it helpful to summon a couple of new zombies after each battle, even if the current ones still have some HP left. Makes it less likely that I'll need to take time out from spamming other skills to resummon them in the next fight.

Made my slow, laborious way through the Prisoner's Gate, one of my least favourite zones. Too many goats and fire dogs, and it's about twice as large as it needs to be, but at least I made it to level 14. Didn't see the invading boss, either, a nice bonus.

Level 14-15

Through the Ship Graveyard and to the Coves. Ran into The Revenant, the invading voidbearer boss, and killed him off though not without the sacrifice of many minions. Good thing there were lots of corpses around. Got to the Cavern waypoint and obtained Minion Life from Nessa, linked to the zombies.

Level 15-16

To the cave to reclaim the Allflame! Walked in, then turned right around and left again, as the first mob group was a bunch of goats accompanying Guardian of the Mound. My fire resistance is 3%...no thanks. Second attempt went much better at first, until I found Jikeji, the totem boss who summons lightning warp totems. Those things are a menace, as they both kill minions and distract them from attacking the real threat. Lost count of how many times I had to run away and resummon zombies, then run back in and drop skeletons near the boss to do some damage while the zombies ran around after the warping totems. Finally dropped him, after which the rest of the cave was no problem. Level 16...Minion Instability!

Level 16-17

The unstable minions came in handy right away in the Cavern of Wrath, against a horde of snakes led by Tailslinger. The tunnel where I found him was narrow enough that I could stand to one side of the entrance and just summon skeletons. They'd die, but damage him, eventually taking him out. And he dropped a +1 level of minion gems helm, with 3 linked sockets (though only one blue)! Not going to use it just yet as my current helm has the zombie/minion life link, but as soon as I find a chromatic or two it'll be put to use.

Then I found Alpha Paradisae in the Cavern of Anger. That battle didn't go nearly as well. He could kill the minions at range so they didn't hurt him on explosion, plus that fire trap effect was dangerous to me. Exercised the better part of valor before things got worse, and while I was back in town did some ring-crafting to balance up my resists a bit more. 34% fire resist looks a whole lot better than 3%.

Went back into a new instance of the Cavern of Wrath, figured I'd run the whole two zones again for another level before Merveil. Going to do it again, because I found The Duchess and Amarissa (the lightning unique) together, and that wasn't happening. Reset the zone, and this time made it through both caverns without running into Invasion bosses. Hit level 17 on the way and grabbed the life node just before Purity of Flesh, so another life boost next level. Also found my first Vaal orb, so of course I had to use it on that minion helm...but it sucked. Enemies cannot leech life from me, bleh. Oh well, there will be other minion helms.

Merveil was an exercise in skeleton summoning. Hid behind one of the stalagmites to avoid her ice spears and spammed skeletons with the occasional decoy totem thrown in. Between the instability explosions and actual skeleton hits, the first form eventually died, though it was a near thing whether my mana flasks or her life was going out first. Second form is much easier since killing the summoned squids yields flask charges and corpses for zombies. Got a couple of decent evasion armor rares from her, but my dex isn't high enough to use them.

Level 17-18

Monkey monkey monkey monkey monkey...you know the drill. Was mildly surprised not to see an invading boss in the Southern Forest, since that zone is so narrow, but somehow I avoided it. All the monkey slaying earned me level 18 and Purity of Flesh, so I'm up to 422 life. With a little gear reshuffling my resistances are 53/64/32/8...not stellar but should be workable.

Level 18-20

Made my way out in the Old Fields and happened across the Den without really looking for it. Made up for that stroke of luck by choosing poorly at every turn, so I ended up exploring every dead-end passage before finding the White Beast. And who is there right next to him but everyone's favourite goat, Guardian of the Mound. Ran away very fast, and was fortunately able to creep back in and pull the beast forward enough to kill him before the goat aggroed again. Yeena gave me a moderately decent belt with 62 life and 9% lightning resist, much better than the old blue chain belt I had been using.

Hit 19 on the way to the Crossroads waypoint, and picked up the Agility node for 30 dex, which means I can use the tri-resist Buckskin Tunic that Merveil dropped. Swapped out a ring too, and now resists are 65/48/58/8. A bit more lightning resist is good for Act 2. Then reversed course and went through the Riverways down to the Blackwood waypoint, picking up level 20 along the way.
Level 20-21

Headed through Fellshrine to grab the Crypt waypoint. Unstable minions plus Sutured Abominations is amusing; after the first abomination goes down, the poison cloud takes out the minions, which explode taking out more abominations, and so on. As long as I keep dropping skeletons in the middle of the pack, they'll all die that way. Also ran into Grath again; a bit more challenging since he used his skeleton totem more often, but not too tough. Level 21, starting in on the minion node cluster up by Death Attunement.

Level 21-22

Back to the Crossroads and west to the Chamber of Sins. Bad run of Invasion mobs...nothing in the Crossroads, but then the All-Seeing Eye in Chamber level 1 (who I avoided), and The Firestarter in level 2 (who I ran away from). Reset level 2 and got a horde of blue shocked miscreations that decimated the minions instantly (ran away again). Had to take a break at that point, so reset and started over from the waypoint when I came back. Went much better this time, got to the level 2 waypoint without incident.

Along the way I hit 22, and also picked up not one but two unique amulets: The Ignomon and Araku Tiki. That's three uniques so far, all amulets. How come none of my other characters have this kind of unique drop rate? Doubt I'll use either one on this character, but they can go in the guild stash for other people.

Level 22-23

Next up, Blackwood, before I level again and start hitting the level range XP penalty. Found Mammothcage and fought him for a while. He's not really dangerous as long as you don't stand next to him, but it took forever to kill him since the minions kept attacking the other skeletal bears. Finally managed to kite enough of those away from his cannot die aura to get rid of them, and then the minions made short work of him.

Found the Spider Lair, fought through the tunnels to the Weaver. Found Tailslinger again, and once again the blow-up-skeletons-in-his-face approach worked just fine. Hit 23 just before entering the Weaver's Chambers. Fairly quick work on the giant spider, with totem and zombies distracting the spider horde while I summoned raging spirits for the kill. Picked up Lesser Multiple Projectiles from Silk, in anticipation of spectres in the near future.
Level 23-24

Walked out of the encampment into the Old Fields to obtain zombies and ran immediately into Shivershell. Pretty easy fight since I had 7 levels on him, just had to stay off the pile of his friends' corpses so detonate dead didn't hit me.

Went back to the Blackwood to head toward the Western Forest, and immediately found Granitecrush. He wiped the minions immediately so I decided to just reset the zone rather than spend the time to kill him. The next instance spawned a Hexproof Secluded Copse of Endurance (monsters immune to curses, monsters get endurance charges). Looks reasonable! Advanced *very* cautiously through the snakes and spiders to get to the boss, but unfortunately "Kutec, Vaal Fleshsmith" was just too risky to take on. He summons zombies and casts Desecrate and Corpse Explosion, which meant it was basically me against him while the minions fought among themselves. Not a good risk to take, especially since his minions were wiping the floor with mine.

Made it to the Western Forest without incident after that, and had no problem with either the guards or Alira. Hit 24 and picked up Might (30 str) and Death Attunement (8% attack/cast speed for minions, extra spectre) with the level point and the quest reward. I needed the strength for Decoy Totem, which is still extremely useful, and it'll also be handy later when I switch to using Spell Totem with my skeletons. Also, found some rare gloves with life leech and a 6% quality Flicker Strike during my trek westward. Useless for this character, into the guild stash with them.

Level 24-25

Decided on the Crypt next, to fetch the Hand for Yeena. The necromancers casting Elemental Weakness reminded me that I have no curse as of yet. Found a couple of gems through the crypt run, but no curses and nothing useful for a summoner. If I don't find anything before Act 3, I'll probably pick up Enfeeble then (as the reward for Clarissa/Tolman).

Didn't see any Invasion stuff until the very end of the Crypt level 2, when Glassmaul spawned just in front of the Archbishop. Fortunately I was already moving slowly and moved back as soon as I saw his aura, so only Glassmaul aggroed initially, and I was able to fight them individually. Pulled the Archbishop and his blue spider guards with the old totem-at-the-top-of-the-stairs trick, and then triggered the spider ambush after they were down. Found a rare evasion/energy shield boots with a blue/green link, +mana, life regen, 7% increased rarity, and 15% movement speed...about the best I'm likely to manage at this level.

Hit level 25 sometime during that last fight. Passive tree now looks like this. I'll come back for that last 10% minion life node in the Death Attunement cluster later.

Level 25-26

Next up, Chamber of Sins 2-3. Hit the waypoint and was immediately attacked by a bunch of invading miscreations...fortunately not the boss. The devs really ought to think about resetting the spawn points near the waypoint there; it's one of the few zones where you can be attacked immediately on zoning into a new instance. While looking for the stairs to level 3, found and killed both Strangledrift and the giant spider unique. Also found a Cast on Death gem; I suppose there might be a more useless thing to find in a hardcore league, but I can't think of one right now.

Got level 26 on the way through Chamber level 3. Spending my next 3 points on those life nodes in the witch starting area, then it'll be time for some more minion buffs. Took all the possible wrong turns, so explored the entire level before finding Fidelitus. Killed Strangledrift again in the process; dude gets around. He's fairly easy if you can hide around a corner from him and summon skeletons that blow up in his face. No issues with Fidelitus either, just hid behind a pillar and cast skeleton/totem repeatedly.

Level 26-27

Spectres with LMP obtained, thanks to the quest rewards. Won't be too long before I get to the Vaal Ruins and those nice projectile constructs. First, though, I decided to beat on Kraityn up in the Broken Bridge. Easy fight, and I didn't see any invading mobs on the way through.

Moved on via tree-poisoning to the Vaal Ruins. Found an Ample Quicksilver Flask of Heat (dispel frozen/chillen, 17 extra charges) on my way, very pleased with that. Got my revived constructs once in the ruins; great artillery revives, best you can do in Act 2. Still fragile at this level, though. Hit 27 along the way and got another life node. Also found an Acceleration Shrine, which is great fun with Summon Raging Spirit. Wish those lasted longer. Killed Glassmaul (again) in the ruins level 2, otherwise an uneventful trip to the Wetlands.

Level 27-28

Found Oak and helped him out for the +40 life, then moved on into the Caverns. Between Oak and my level 28 life node, I'm up to 721. Next priority will be the small minion life cluster that ends in Grave Consequences. The minions are surviving a bit better with the life leech and regen from the Death Attunement cluster, but they still need help. Also switched up revives to the Shaggy Monstrosities bears with the chaos damage aura, since they survive a lot better than artillery-type revives at this level.

Level 28-29

Into the Pyramid. Met Balus Stoneskull, the flicker-strike bandit, and demolished him. Hit 29 on the way up, and after a brief trip back to the caverns for a bear spectre refresh, destroyed the Vaal Oversoul in a fairly brief fight. Chaos damage and raging spirits for the win! He killed off a bear early, but otherwise everything went as planned.

Level 29-30

Revived a couple of the Oversoul's constructs and rolled through the City of Sarn to the Sarn Encampment. Stayed the heck away from the upper portion of the zone to avoid Perpetus. Forward into the Slums, where life became difficult rather quickly. First there's the snakes, which in numbers can destroy a minion army in no time. The key to those is to get a skeleton or totem in behind them so they aren't all shooting the same direction, then the zombies/revives can survive long enough to do damage. Then there was Mother of the Swarm, spawned next to a rare Carrion Queen. Ran away from that and found another rare Carrion Queen, with multiple projectiles, and sent about a gazillion zombies and skeletons at her before she finally died. Discovered I'd hit a dead end and had to go through Mother of the Swarm after all, causing the sacrifice of another gazillion or so minions; fortunately I was able to maneuver both bosses into an alleyway where skeleton-explosion-in-the-face was their downfall. Fought two more rare Carrion Queens before I found the Crematorium...not an easy zone at all.

Took a brief trip back in the City of Sarn to hit 30 before proceeding. Found and killed the Harbinger of Elements, and had just gotten the level when freakin' Perpetus came running out of nowhere from behind me. I was lucky; a minion sprung his bear trap instead of me, so I could run around a corner and summon a totem to keep him distracted, then keep the minions coming to kill him off. Not exactly the easy trip to get the last 10% of a level that I was expecting!

Level 30-31

Next stop, Crematorium. Even slower and more careful than usual is the name of the game here, because A) my fire resist is only 59%, not yet capped and B) all that fire means a witch can find herself alone and minion-less in a hurry. Especially when you hit a group of those fire-bomb throwers. And it's a good thing I was going slow, since Hatebeat made an early appearance, and I ran into two different groups of fire-bombers that wiped out all the minions and reduced me to hiding behind a doorway, dropping skeletons in front of them until the whole mess blew up. Also found a corrupted zone, but no way was I going in there with only one level advantage and not-max fire resist. Compared to the fire bombers, the Piety fight was easy; stayed out of Lightning Storm range, dodged the occasional ball lightning, and summoned totems and skeletons until she went away. Picked up that Enfeeble from Maramoa's quest reward, so now I have a curse for those all-the-minions-are-dying situations.

Into the Slums Sewers, where poison-bombers were everywhere. One or two wasn't bad, but when I got to the bust room a group of about a half-dozen (one rare) gave me some trouble. Had to run away and resummon a few times to take them down. Otherwise, an uneventful zone except for running across The Duchess. I gave the fight a go, but her minions were still too strong for mine, so in the end I had to leave her alone.

First rogue exile spotted in the Warehouse sewers: Jonah Unchained. He killed all my minions eventually, but by then he was so far down in life that a few skeleton explosions finished him off. He's a lot rougher to fight in higher difficulties when he's got more life leech. Found the waypoint and then the stash room in quick succession after that, which is a nice change from my usual make-every-wrong-turn method of map exploration. Even worse in the bust room this time, as a rare discharger and Cintiq the Inescapable were waiting for me. Fortunately Cintiq didn't live up to her name as I was able to get away, resummon the minions, and send them back in while my hand hovered over the quicksilver and life flasks, in case she flicker-striked to me. Only had to run once more before she went down.

And then the Warehouses. Maybe it's just me, but the graphics in that zone just hammer my video. I hear the fan spin up on my graphics card every time I zone in. Rough zone for fighting, too. Three more rare Carrion Queens...those are welcome to stop invading and go home any time, thanks. More snakes, with multiple projectiles this time; at least those make fun revives once you've killed them. After those, running into Glassmaul again was a bit of a relief; easy kill. On the upside, hit level 31 and got my extra zombie with Grave Consequences.

Level 31-32

More Carrion Queens in the Marketplace. Only found a single rare one before the waypoint, fortunately. Took down Marceus the Defaced without incident, didn't even lose a zombie. And I ran across the ornate chest holding Fairgraves' hip flask, so I won't have to come back for that later.

Found the Battlefront entrance next, so decided I'd get the waypoint before going back to the Market Sewers. First mob in from the entrance...Mother of the Swarm with accompanying Carrion Queens. Sigh. Defeated her with some judicious kiting and lots of skeleton explosions. Also found a corrupted area, but since I'd have been the same level as that zone, didn't even think about going in. Not worth the risk. Found the ribbon spool before I found the waypoint, so I guess I'll carry that around for a while.

Went back to the Marketplace and fought through several more Carrion Queens, including yet another rare. Into the Market Sewers, and almost immediately ran smack into a group of grapplers led by Wonderwalker, who wiped out the minions almost in one shot. Ran away, resummoned, and took him down once all his buddies were dead; he's a lot less scary once he stops getting charges as you kill them, as his inherent power-charge-on-hit seems to build up a lot slower than the power-charge-on-kin-slain. Had to kill two rare grapplers on my way to the bust room, one of which got me to about half life with a discharge that shocked me...hooray for the Quicksilver flask as I ran several rooms away before he finished the job. Grabbed the bust and got out of there.

Hit level 32 during all that, plus the book from Hargin's quest reward, so I put two points into intelligence nodes on the way to Grave Expectations. I'll pick up that minion cluster and the Holy Strength life nodes next.

Level 32-33

Did a quick Catacombs run for the XP. Nothing exciting except another run-in with Cintiq, which was fairly easy. Once you hit her with Enfeeble and drop a Decoy Totem, she loses a lot of the fear factor. Got about half a level.

Back to the Battlefront, which was kind enough to spawn invading Flame Sentinels. Double-edged sword, though; great revives, but they just destroy zombies at this level since they don't have much resistance yet. So lots of resummoning, but I have my favorite artillery spectres up and running. Also came across another corrupted area, but when I stepped inside and realized that Neglected Cellar was the one with Rima, Deep Temptress (cold traps, ice storm), turned right around and walked back out. Fighting her without about a 20-level advantage is asking for a one-way trip to Standard.

On to the Solaris Temple. Getting Enfeeble on those Flame Sentintels really helps; it won't keep the zombies from falling, but it slows the rate down enough for me to keep up the resummoning. Moving along just fine until Corrector Draconides leaped into the middle of my minions and set everything on fire; didn't even see him until he landed. Was fortunate enough to run away and resummon before he got me with a bear trap. He did trap me when I came back, but I had all the minions up that time, who killed him before he could follow it up. Hit level 33, convenient since it keeps me two levels higher than the next zone.

Solaris level 2 is a very large zone, and I saw all of it. Fought the Goddess of Purity, fairly easy as long as I kept the decoy totem on the side of her away from the artillery corps and enfeebled the holy waters as they spawned. Also ran into Grath, who isn't so bad by himself, but this time he spawned right next to a pack of Flame Sentinels. That was an adventure, unkillable fast-attacking sentinels with a giant skeleton boss and his accompanying minions. In the end I won, but through no fault of the skeletons and zombies, who were all over the place and didn't stay upright for long. Flame Sentinels, decoy totem, and raging spirits for the win on that one. Eventually as I ran around the map I noticed one tiny unexplored bit, which happened to have a door in it, which led to the waypoint and Diala. She likes that I listen.
TLDR but 8/10 for the alliteration. 10/10 if you had squeezed "sexy" in there as well.
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I'm going self found as a summoner in invasion too (melee really wasn't working out so well in terms of character lifespan). Mine's a templar, and just about to hit the marketplace sewers in normal. Had to do a Brutus run as a witch to get my skeletons as I foolishly neglected to check out the templar quest rewards before embarking but otherwise things have gone pretty smoothly so far. Very jealous of your unique drops, all I've had is a crappy leather hat so far.

My graphics card doesn't like the warehouse district either, but it's been much happier since I turned the shadows off in the options. Makes everything easier to see too so might be worth trying.
damn TLDR but I like these kinds of narratives. I remember people doing these things for NBA live associations back in the day, but I think streaming is the new form watching someone's journey.
holocaustus wrote:
TLDR but 8/10 for the alliteration. 10/10 if you had squeezed "sexy" in there as well.

Ah, she's sexy but too modest to say so. :)

Completed 13 ChallengesHarefoot wrote:
I'm going self found as a summoner in invasion too (melee really wasn't working out so well in terms of character lifespan). Mine's a templar, and just about to hit the marketplace sewers in normal. Had to do a Brutus run as a witch to get my skeletons as I foolishly neglected to check out the templar quest rewards before embarking but otherwise things have gone pretty smoothly so far. Very jealous of your unique drops, all I've had is a crappy leather hat so far.

I know, it's crazy. I don't think any other character I've played has gotten three uniques through the early 30s, much less one that works so well with the character. The RNG is looking out for me so far...probably just biding its time to smack me down with some crazy boss spawn. :)

Completed 13 ChallengesHarefoot wrote:
My graphics card doesn't like the warehouse district either, but it's been much happier since I turned the shadows off in the options. Makes everything easier to see too so might be worth trying.

Thanks for the tip! May try it out next time I'm there.

byzrk wrote:
damn TLDR but I like these kinds of narratives. I remember people doing these things for NBA live associations back in the day, but I think streaming is the new form watching someone's journey.

Yeah, you're probably right, but personally I never got into the streaming thing. Not that there's anything wrong with using the streams, just personal preference. I figured I'd write this up in case there's anyone else like me that would rather read than watch.

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