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Difficulty

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This article is about quest difficulty. For the difficulty of skill checks and saving throws, see Difficulty Class.

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[edit] Difficulty

There are nine different quest difficulty settings in DDO. Starting from easiest, these are Solo, Casual, Normal, Hard, Elite, Epic Casual, Epic Normal, Epic Hard and Epic Elite. Higher settings are more challenging but often more rewarding in terms of Experience, Favor, and loot from within the quest. Not all quests are available at all difficulties.

Initially, only Solo, Casual, Normal, Epic Casual, and Epic Normal difficulty are available to Free To Play and Premium players who have never completed that quest before. F2P & Premium characters who have undergone True Reincarnation gain access to Hard and Epic Hard difficulty on the first reincarnation. Elite and Epic Elite difficulties become available on second and subsequent reincarnations. VIP subscribers have access to Hard, Elite, Epic Hard, and Epic Elite at all times. Completing a quest on any difficulty unlocks all difficulties up to and including one setting higher.

While in a party, the first player to enter a quest can usually choose from any difficulty that any of his teammates has unlocked. This may not work if an NPC teleports you into the quest, such as with Gladewatch Outpost Defense.

Quests which features Solo difficulty are now Solo-ONLY as of Update 3. This is because Casual replaced the Solo setting as the lowest setting on all quests except those that featured only Solo and added Casual to all quests that originally featured nothing below Normal.

[edit] Heroic Difficulty

[edit] Solo

  • Solo difficulty is only available for a small amount of selected solo-only quests.
  • There may be fewer and/or smaller encounters than Normal (Though you can no longer run these quests on normal to tell anymore)
  • The quest's level may be reduced by 2 levels for purposes of generating chest loot. Rewards from the quest's giver are unaffected and still rewarded as if you ran the quest on elite.
  • Enemies and traps are lowered in difficulty.
  • Dungeon Scaling does not apply. The dungeon is already easier due to other factors.
  • Enemy misses become Grazing Hits on raw die rolls of 19.
  • Some enemy special attacks, like scorpion poison, have no effect.
  • Rest shrines can be used every 5 minutes.
  • There is no XP penalty for re-entering the dungeon, though the XP bonus for not re-entering at all can still be lost.
  • You must solo. You cannot have teammates or hirelings, although artificer and druid pets, as well as summoned monsters, are allowed.

[edit] Casual

  • Dungeon Scaling is in full effect, and scales the dungeons more heavily then standard normal scaling.
  • Favor is 1/2 of Normal, dropping fractions.
  • Main quest XP is roughly 0.45 to 0.5 × Normal.
  • All enemy encounters are of the same size and CR as normal, and have the same abilities, but they are heavily scaled down as casual is heavily adjusted down by Difficulty Scaling.
  • The quest's level is reduced by 1 (if possible) for purposes of generating chest loot and comparing against the party's level for XP adjustment. Rewards from the quest's giver are unaffected.
  • Enemies and traps are scaled down in difficulty "by about two levels" according to an interview with Community Representative Tolero. [1]
  • Rest shrines can be used every 5 minutes.
  • There is no XP penalty for re-entering the dungeon, though the XP bonus for not re-entering at all can still be lost.
  • Some chest loot that is guaranteed to appear at other difficulty settings has only a chance of appearing. On average the droprate is reduced by 50%.
  • Optional XP bonuses are worth double their normal values.
  • Casual is intended for solo players, or groups looking to enjoy the storyline while not worrying about the combat.

[edit] Normal

  • Dungeon Scaling is in full standard effect.
  • Enemy misses become Grazing Hits on raw die rolls of 17-19.
  • Rest Shrines can be used every 15 minutes.
  • Most normal difficulty dungeons are most evenly balanced against a party of four players. However most quests are also designed to be soloable on normal as well due to scaling. If it's a raid, 12 players are still recommended, but often not required.
  • Normal difficulty is intended to be the default choice for the large majority of players looking for a balanced experience.
  • Monster Damage Reduction, at their best, block only 50% of your damage instead of their true value

[edit] Hard

  • Dungeon Scaling is in effect, but has less of an impact than Normal.
  • Favor is 2 × Normal.
  • Main XP is roughly 1.05 to 1.08 × Normal.
  • There may be more and/or larger encounters than Normal.
  • Enemies are always a higher CR, and have far higher statistics designed to challenge more prepared parties.
  • Enemy spell casters often have more and higher level spells.
  • Monster Damage Reduction, at their best, block only 75% of your damage instead of their true value
  • The quest's level is increased by 1 solely for purposes of generating better chest loot and comparing against the party's level for XP adjustment. Rewards from the quest's giver are unaffected.
  • Traps are greatly increased in difficulty, in terms of damage dealt, save DC and skill DC needed to disable them. They are intended to challenge decently-geared rogues of appropriate level.
  • Hidden doors and Lock DCs sometimes scale up a few points.
  • Difficulty Scaling is in full effect, but has less effect than Normal, unless the quest is a raid.
  • Enemy misses become Grazing Hits on raw die rolls of 15-19.
  • Rest Shrines can only be used once. Some quests have fewer shrines when compared to Normal.
  • Hard is intended for full, well-balanced groups of 6 players, or 12 if it's a raid.

[edit] Elite

  • Dungeon Scaling is in effect, but has less of an impact than Normal/Hard.
  • Favor is 3 × Normal.
  • Main XP is roughly 1.10 to 1.16 × Normal.
  • There may be more and/or larger encounters than Hard.
  • Enemies are always a higher CR than on Hard, and have far higher statistics designed to challenge very well seasoned veteran parties.
  • Enemy spell casters often have more and higher level spells and sometimes even gain the Maximize feat.
  • The quest's level is increased by 2 (compared to Normal) for purposes of generating chest loot and comparing against the party's level for XP adjustment. Rewards from the quest's giver are unaffected.
  • Traps are massively increased in difficulty, in terms of damage dealt, save DC and skill DC needed to disable them. They are intended to seriously challenge decently-geared rogues of appropriate level.
  • Hidden doors and Lock DCs sometimes scale up a few points.
  • Difficulty Scaling is in full effect, but has less effect than Normal/Hard, unless the quest is a raid.
  • Enemy misses become Grazing Hits on raw die rolls of 13-19.
  • Rest Shrines can only be used once. Some quests have fewer shrines when compared to Normal/Hard.
  • Certain quests will feature more difficult unique required objectives only on elite. A good example is In the Demon's Den. See its quest page for details.
  • Elite is intended for full, well-prepared, well-balanced groups of 6 players, or 12 if it's a raid.

[edit] Epic Difficulty

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Epic difficulties are only available at level 20 and above.

[edit] Epic Casual

  • In Eberron quests that would normally drop them, Epic Token Fragments do not drop.

[edit] Epic Normal

  • Unlike Heroic Normal, enemy DR is not percentual.

[edit] Epic Hard

  • Unlike Heroic Hard, enemy DR is not percentual.
  • Enemies have Epic Ward.
  • Orange named enemies have Deathblock.
  • Rest Shrines can only be used once. Some quests have fewer shrines when compared to their heroic version.

[edit] Epic Elite

  • Massive scale up on monster CR, raising up their HP, damage, saves, and spell DCs far beyond Epic Hard levels.
  • Enemies have Epic Ward.
  • Orange named enemies have Deathblock.
  • Rest Shrines can only be used once. Some quests have fewer shrines when compared to their heroic version.

[edit] Raid

Although raids aren't a difficulty setting, they do impose their own special rules much like difficult settings do. Here's a short list of some of them:

  • Casual difficulty is never available for raids, they are intended to be challenging adventures not suited to casual play. Normal, Hard and Elite is available for all raids. Epic is available for select raids.
  • Dungeon Scaling is disabled, regardless of quest difficulty.
  • Hirelings may not be summoned in raid dungeons.
  • Many special items from the DDO store are disabled while in raids, including:
    • Summoned Repair Shop
    • Summoned Rest Shrine
    • Rest of the Eladrin statuette
    • Resurrection cakes of any type
  • Every raid except the two lowest level ones (Chronoscope and Tempest Spine) feature some form of lock out. Either early on the raid, just before the main boss fight, or both. This is to prevent you from releasing and coming back in to try again without restarting from the beginning, much like Epic difficulty imposes upon all quests.

[edit] Difficulty History

[edit] Epic history

Epic info box

Main article - Epic (This has NOT been fully updated since level 21-25 and Epic Destinies were implemented.)

  • Enemies, traps, bosses and sometimes even objectives are massively scaled up, see main article for full details.
  • Only level 20-25 characters may enter.
  • Enemies have Epic Ward.
  • Orange named enemies have Deathblock.
  • Enemy misses become Grazing Hits on raw die rolls of 13-19.
  • Rest Shrines can only be used once. Some quests have fewer shrines when compared to elite.
  • Epic was originally intended to be a massive step above elite quests, and purely for the "best of the best". These days it's been tweaked downwards to just slightly harder then a level20 elite quest would otherwise be, and thus very doable by a wider range of players.

[edit] See also

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