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Reaper difficulty

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Reaper Difficulty or Reaper Mode is the highest difficulty in DDO introduced in Update 34. This game mode has ten sub-difficulties, known as "skulls," that can further increase the challenge rating. In this difficulty, many things are changed, so proceed with caution! Most notably, self healing in reaper mode is significantly reduced. Players will also find that they do less damage and take more of it, including attribute damage. There are special monsters only found in this game mode known as Reapers (see below) which have dangerous, powerful abilities. As a reward for braving this difficulty, players will earn more experience points, more named treasure (with increased chances Mythic Bonuses and exclusive chances for a "Reaper Bonus"), and Reaper Experience, which unlocks Reaper enhancements and cosmetics.

Update 34 Release Notes:

Reaper Difficulty offers a new challenge for the toughest adventurers! Reaper difficulty can be selected from the quest portal UI for many quests and raids throughout the game. When you select Reaper difficulty, there is also a drop-down list of between one and ten Skulls, which affects quest/raid difficulty and reward. Special Reaper Bonuses can be found on items acquired in Reaper Difficulty, there is an increased chance to get named items, and you'll earn Reaper Experience. Reaper XP will award a Reaper Point at certain thresholds that can be spent on abilities in a special Reaper benefit tree, among other things! Warning: Reaper difficulty is meant for players who enjoy a serious challenge. You have been warned!

Game mechanic[edit]

Reaper is the fifth difficulty setting for quests, above Elite. Further, Reaper allows players to decide how much of a challenge they want by selecting an appropriate number of "skulls" (1 Skull = easiest vs 10 Skulls = hardest), adding further difficulty if the player so chooses.

A quest can be opened on Reaper difficulty by any character who can open Elite difficulty. This means VIP accounts can do so at any time, but Free-to-play and Premium characters must have already completed the quest on Hard, or have reincarnated at least twice (same as opening for Elite difficulty), or are in a party with a member who can open on Elite.

The following applies to reaper mode:


Reapers look similar to wraiths, but their glowing eyes are distinctive.
(Mouse-hover for pop-up)

Perhaps the most significant change that comes with Reaper difficulty is the chance to encounter Reapers themselves. Whenever mobs are spawning in a quest, or have been placed as setup for the quest, there's a chance for spawning additional wraith-like Reapers.

Spawn mechanics[edit]

Each time a monster spawns, there is a chance that a reaper may spawn as well. This chance is higher the more skulls you select. Their spawn locations are always the last location of the associated monster at the time the reaper spawns. Usually there is a significant delay (around 5 seconds) between the monster spawning and the reaper spawning. This can mean that the reaper may spawn after the party has engaged with the monster or even killed the monster if the monster spawned recently. The reapers have their own logic and will not follow the monster if it has some scripted pathing. This may cause reapers to be in inaccessible locations if the monster spawned there and then moved.

Racial traits[edit]

Reapers possess the following traits:

  • Lawful Evil Outsider (not undead, despite appearance)
  • Incorporeal
  • Permanent Deathblock: Protects against death spells.
  • True Seeing: They see through Invisibility and concealment, such as Blur or Displacement
  • Floating: Cannot be affected by Trip, Grease, Earthquake or other ground attacks.
    • Of particular note, most crowd control works on Reapers normally. Despite looking very similar to wraiths, they do not have resistances that undead usually have and can be controlled by most spell effects except those listed above.

Regular-tier reapers[edit]

Carnage Reaper
  • Deals extremely high melee damage. Even at low levels, Carnage Reapers can often kill targets in one or two hits.
  • Inflicts a vulnerability debuff of 20% more damage. Stacks up to 10 times. As if many are going to last half that long.
  • Likes to engage in melee.
Famine Reaper
  • Casts various high-damage offensive spells, predominantly damage based.
    • e.g. Frost-lance, Magic Missiles
  • Every 10 seconds, gains a stack of Doom Caster: This caster's spells will hit harder and fail less.
  • Affects nearby characters with Reaper: Slowing Touch: The Reaper's touch gnaws at your form, slowing your movement and preventing tumbling. Bestowed automatically when you enter Reaper's melee range for 4 seconds. Combat log: -50% movement, -20 melee speed, -20 ranged speed
  • Will teleport to player if it loses line of sight for long.
Fear Reaper
  • Has an AoE stacking DoT effect, "Fear of Death", that damages all characters anywhere in the quest until the reaper is destroyed.
    • This is activated by a combination of Line of Sight and proximity.
  • Has a radius around him where "Fear of Death" doesn't apply. Anyone within the radius of the fear reaper is safe from the effect.
  • Doesn't like to come close to the players. Usually stays in initial position, but would like to have line of sight.
  • Has a melee attack. Hits hard, but in line with champs.
Plague Reaper
  • Melee. Plague Reapers do similar damage to Fear Reapers but inflict a very strong healing debuff. Attempting to heal the person hit by the plague reaper is not advised unless necessary, as it will often prove unproductive until the debuff wears off.
  • Will teleport if player is too far.

Boss-tier reapers[edit]

Update 42.4 announced additional types of reapers, some of which only appear on "Reaper Skull 5 and above" difficulty.

Despair Reaper
Orange named
This reaper will engage in melee. However, it also applies despair debuffs to the target player from far away.
Has a permanent aura circle effect that boosts saving throws.
Has a buff Cloak of Despair: Cloaked in your despair this reaper has great advantage to their saving throws.
Message: "You grow weaker as your enemies grow stronger" (exact meaning of this is unclear)
Decreases the damage of nearby players
Seen in R5 and above.
Vengeance Reaper
Orange named
Reported (separately) as Spellcaster of power (similar to Famine Reaper), and as heavy melee
Spawns blue circles that explode in a few seconds for heavy damage
"Explodes" on death, buffing all enemies around them (they deal greatly increased damage)
Message on buffed enemies: "They Carry My Vengeance - This creature's offense has been greatly increased by Vengeance"

Monsters are stronger[edit]

  • Monster damage is increased.
  • Many/all monsters are Champions, often with multiple buffs. The strongest and most dangerous of the three tiers of champions, red-crown, is found in Reaper difficulty (and nowhere else).
  • All monsters receive bonus to saving throws (Tests in a level 2 quest have shown a +1.5 to saves per skull)

Players are weaker[edit]

  • Player damage is reduced.
  • Self-healing is dramatically weaker (60% in 1 Skull; an additional 4% per skull, up to 96% reduction for 10 Skulls.) (This applies also to Lesser Restoration pots, making them fairly ineffective for restoring ability damage.)
  • General-healing is weaker (0% at 1 Skull; an additional 4% per Skull, up to 36% reduction for 10 Skulls.)
Reaper Debuff math
  • As of U40, damage and healing values now have a minimum value of one due to Reaper scaling. If Reaper scaling would reduce a value for damage or healing that is above zero to zero, then the value will now be at least one.
  • It is unclear if this includes Ability damage to enemies.
  • Crowd control effects have reduced duration (If a CC is reduced, it is reduced to 6 seconds minimum. It keeps the shorter, single target CC relevant, particularly tactical stuns from enhancement trees.) On reaper 10, cc is reduced by a factor of ~8.5.
  • Death timer: Dead players cannot be raised for some time (6 seconds per skull?). Being returned to the soulstone because of distance will reset the timer. NOTE: Will also reset raid death timers.
  • Incorporeality and Concealment (Blur/Displacement/...) have reduced effect. Reaper Difficulty introduces a flat 5% Concealment bypass, with a further 5% Concealment and Incorporeal bypass per Skull difficulty. Beginning with combined total of 10% Concealment and 5% Incorporeal bypass at Reaper 1.


  • Characters cannot enter a quest on Reaper Difficulty if they are more than four (Heroic) / six (Epic) levels over the level of the dungeon or raid (based on Normal difficulty, not the modified level on Elite Difficulty).
  • Characters also cannot enter a Reaper Dungeon if they are Epic Level (level 20) and the Dungeon is Heroic. This applies to level 18 and 19 quests, but not to level 20 heroic quests. Epic characters above level 20 can enter the heroic level 20 quests.
  • Reaper dungeons lock their instance when a player leaves. No other player may enter (or re-enter) the instance again.
    • Tip: Dungeon does not lock if you close DDO (for example using Alt+F4) and party leader dismisses you while linkdead. (DDO Forums)

Other changes[edit]

Lost Souls drop from defeated monsters.
  • Defeated enemies can drop Lost Souls. One character in a party can consume them to recharge some of their spell points. The amount of restored spell points depends on quest level and is equal to 5 * (base quest level + 3)
    • Hirelings cannot interact with the Lost Souls, and so cannot regain SP in this method.
    • Interacting with Lost Souls breaks Invisibility, Stealth and Ki Finishers, much as interacting with a lever does. May or may not be WAI.
    • Since Update 42 Patch 4 the appearance of Lost Souls scales with party size and Reaper skulls. Fewer souls appear for smaller parties and on lower reaper levels.
  • Upon entering dungeons on Reaper difficulty, characters are restored hit points and spell points equal to what's granted by their reaper enhancements.



Completing quests on Reaper difficulty provides more Heroic or Epic experience points (XP).

  • Base XP is the same as Elite
  • First-time completion bonus for Reaper difficulty is +95%.
  • Bravery Bonus for Reaper difficulty is +100% (same as Elite).
  • Sagas progress as on Elite.

Reaper quests award both regular experience and Reaper experience (RXP).

Reaper experience[edit]

In addition to the regular heroic or epic experience (XP), completing quests on Reaper difficulty yields Reaper experience (RXP).

  • RXP grants you Reaper Points (to be invested in Reaper enhancements)
  • RXP unlocks Reaper vendors (see below)

NOTE: RXP is only awarded when at least ten enemies are defeated in a quest. Killing 9 or fewer enemies still gives regular XP with bonuses for Reaper difficulty, but yields zero RXP. DDO Forums

Starting at Level 4, Reaper Points can be invested in any of three Reaper enhancement trees. There are 3 trees available, which are essentially:

These work in a similar manner to enhancement trees, but are only actively applied to a character while within a quest on (any) Reaper difficulty. As with enhancement trees, these points are never actually spent, so a character can pay PP to re-allocate them as desired.

The base RXP reward (displayed at the top of the experience log) is the based on dungeon level, the number of skulls selected and the quest length.

Base RXP = (50 + 3 * (quest level on Normal) * (number of skulls)) * Length Bonus (0.8 (short), 1 (medium), 1.2 (long), 1.4 (very long))

The final RXP total (displayed at the bottom of experience log) is modified for the following reasons:

  • deaths
  • number of enemies killed
  • number of traps disarmed
  • number of breakables destroyed
  • over-level penalties
  • power leveling penalties
  • first time bonuses
  • XP tomes

DDO Forums Regular experience boosts such as Heroic Inspiration, VIP boost, guild airship buffs, and experience elixirs also increase RXP granted.

A character continues to acquire RXP when capped for heroic or epic experience (i.e. after reaching the XP banking cap or level cap, quest completions will continue to award RXP).

The following bonuses don't apply to RXP:

RXP persists through reincarnation, but must be re-allocated once a character hits Level 4 (or higher).

See also:

Overlevel penalties[edit]

For Heroic quests (only), there is an RXP over-level penalty. Since Update 42 Patch 4 the penalties are the same as for regular XP. Compare the maximum character level in the group to quest level on Elite:

  • +1: no penalty (Bravery bonus does not apply to RXP; you get the same RXP as if running at-level)
  • +2: -10% (this is the highest possible penalty in heroic quests, because higher level characters cannot enter)

There are no overlevel penalties in Epic quests, just the six level lockout. (test)

Note: The over-level penalty also applies to hirelings, including gold seal hirelings. A particularly punishing example is summoning a level 20 hireling, such as the Onyx Panther (ML18) in heroic reaper. This prevents all RXP. DDO Forums

Quest length multiplier[edit]

As of Update 34 Patch 2, RXP is modified based on the length of the dungeon/raid:

  • Short - 0.8
  • Medium - 1.0
  • Long - 1.2
  • Very Long - 1.4

CR 30 dungeons[edit]

RXP is doubled in base level 30 or higher dungeons.

Reaper Vendors / Rewards[edit]

Reaper vendors.jpg
Reaper PurpleWings.jpg

Reaper Vendors are available in the Hall of Heroes. They sell Creature Companions and potions that grant special cosmetic feats.

Very high totals of Reaper Experience are rewarded with special cosmetics or a creature companion. There are three different vendors, each with a different Reaper Experience requirement that must be met before they will talk with you. The platinum costs are high; buy these items when you have high haggle.

Note that the eyes (and wings?needs verification) last for a single life and need to be purchased again after you TR.


The contents of chests and end-loot, including the presence of Named Items, have (slightly) improved chances of better results on Reaper difficulty, often with higher reaper difficulty (aka "most skulls") resulting in slightly higher percentages of that better result.


  1. Higher treasure level in randomly generated loot
  2. More Monster Champions = more Mysterious Remnants
  3. Increased chance of dropping named items: +1% per skull level. DDO Forums
  4. Increased chance of named items having Mythic bonus.
  5. Chance of named items having Reaper bonus.


  • Each of these chances increase in likelihood for each reaper skull.
  • Applies to static named items from quests. Crafted items or end rewards don't have this benefit.
  • Some dev quotes available here.

An item with Reaper bonus gains one of the following:

Non-reaper quests[edit]

Certain quests are not available on Reaper difficulty:


Prior to Lamannia Update 33, Reaper Mode was a whiteboard idea for a dungeon difficulty harder than elite in development internally and mentioned to the Player's Council. Some of its simple text leaked onto the Lamannia preview server while Update 27 was being previewed.

Originally Posted by (executive producer) Severlin Source

I can neither confirm nor deny that we have been discussing the possibility of a Reaper mode with the player's council or that we have been looking into some sort of proof of concept for a new difficulty above elite. Nor are we committing to nor announcing another difficulty level at this time.

Originally Posted by Lamannia Update 33 Release Notes Source

Reaper Mode

The Dungeon Master is trying to kill you. Check it out! Available for quests within two levels of your character. (NOTE: This is an EARLY preview of Reaper Mode, and does not include any rewards or benefits from running it. That'll come later. Reaper Mode will not be arriving with Update 33.)

Originally Posted by Cordovan (Contribs • Message• Cordovan) Source

We don't want to formally commit to an update until it's ready, but it is definitely possible that Reaper difficulty will be in U34.

External links[edit]


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