Urgoz’s Warren

June 1, 2010 at 11:39 pm | Posted in Guild Wars, mmorpg | 12 Comments
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A not particularly intimidating depiction of Urgoz. Keep in mind he is 2 or 3 stories tall.

While I was in Guild Wars the other day, my friend May asked me to swing by the following day for an Urgoz’s Warren run. I hadn’t added Urgoz to my achievements in the Hall of Monuments yet, even though I’ve finished it a half dozen times over the years. The HoM was added after the last time I finished it. I said I’d think about it.

When the time came, I said what the hell, but I was still 20 minutes late. That was no problem though, because after all, it’s GW and groups take time to put together.

Urgoz is an elite mission. This means a few things. It’s size, particularly before Eye of the North, is big. With the most efficient and deadly group it will take you at least an hour and a half. You could have 12 in the group instead of the normal 8. Finally, wipe, and you have to start over. From the beginning.

With such high stakes for failure, intricate builds have to be made, with clear strategies for victory. Skills that compliment other players, and specific skills are compulsory. For instance there is a ledge that only 3 or so skills (out of 1200) can get you to. You have to get to that ledge or you can’t continue.

With 1200 skills to choose from, 10 professions, this can lead to a giant amount of time spent planning. I got there 20 minutes late, but we didn’t enter the instance until an hour later.

Arenanet has commented that they changed the skill system because it was impossible to balance so many skills, to come up with new ones, and that they wanted everyone to have a passable skill bar. That’s what it’s like from their perspective. From mine, it’s a boon because doing difficult content will mean much less time coordinating with my group. Less people telling me what build to bring. Less elitism when it comes to class choice or skill bar.

Another problem was we didn’t have 12 people. We had 8 or 9. Due to people having to go or not having HzH on their character. We ended up going with 7. How do you do a 12 person instance with 7 people? Heroes. Guild Wars companion system. I brought 3, 2 other people brought 1. People seem so unhappy with the companions in Star Wars: The Old Republic, but GW proves they aren’t necessarily a bad thing. Maybe we could have spent even more time scrounging for puggers to fill out those 5 spots, but the Heroes did fine. And I don’t feel anti-social as a result.

Needless to say I was a little eager to get started after a while.

The first mobs we went up against are a great example, at least in this instance, of what Anet seemed to think at the time was a good way to increase difficulty. Throw mobs at you. There are 3 large groups of Dredge that charge in towards the center of the room, and your best bet is to back off and lure each group one at a time.

That said, most of the people I was playing with are experienced and we didn’t have much trouble.

There are 10 sections you have to get through, most with their own small challenge to over come. One area will have constant degen, another will cause exhaustion with every cast spell, the ledge I told you about. The whole place is a death trap really. Surprise spawns. Large numbers of mobs being thrown at you.

Eventually about an hour and a half in, we made a mistake. At one point you come to a room that has numerous groups of mobs that spawn when the group enters. A moment later a door closes behind you trapping you inside. The spawns are staggered but quickly begin to add up. To avoid catastrophe, you’re supposed to keep at least one person, hopefully with a resurrection spell behind the door, or perhaps a whole group of casters to cast beyond the door but avoid damage. We did not do that and wiped. In the 9th section.

It was all too sudden.

It, along with The Deep, has always been a flawed dungeon. I don’t think anyone should have to put in that much time to see absolutely no benefit. Can you imagine wiping on this 3 or 4 times in a row?

Perhaps I’m wrong and the lack of some level of difficulty or punishment for failure in games is what’s wrong with gaming today. There’s the whole argument that everything is too easy and we’re coddled like infants.

For me though it’s not about difficulty or getting a green at the end. I have no need for loot. I was just there helping out a friend, slightly hopeful I could add it to my HoM.

It’s supposed to be a challenge, I get it. It’s kind of a harsh punishment though, my time. That’s not something I want to give up willingly.



  1. It’s actually one of the main questions I ask; is this – if i fail – going to be an uter waste of time?
    I’ve done everything in GW, and I’ve enjoyed seeing all the content. However, there are some things I am never going to do again, and both of these elite missions are on that list. It’s so painful to fail, especially if its your fault – or worse your internet connections fault.
    I am sorry you bummed out on it.
    I am also glad to hear that your guild has setting up issues too. It takes so long to get ready for these missions. It rubs alot of people up the wrong way, and they start this mission cranky – its not fun. They never come again. I can say being an Australian, you can pretty much gaurntee any Australian is going to get the shits in less than 15 minutes. It’s too much. The actualy game play once it starts can be huge fun, but i agree the penlty is too high especially for a ‘casual’ game.

    • yeah I’ve got deep and DoA FoW and SF in my hall so it was tempting to go after urgoz. otherwise i avoid the place.

      I saw so many rage quits when urgoz was first released, many times due to that initial spawn thats right on top of you. it makes people cranky.

  2. “It’s kind of a harsh punishment though, my time. That’s not something I want to give up willingly.”

    Oh, that’s it exactly. I have never had the opportunity to make the attempt at an elite dungeon because I haven’t had the time to even get an organized party, let alone see how far we can get without wiping. I commend you for making it through in the past and I hope you can get your achievement another time. I’ll just have to pass on that one :).

    • I can understand that completely, especially when we don’t know if theres any real reward beyond the monument in the hall.

  3. I have never finished Urgoz’s Warren or DoA. When Urgoz’s Warren was first added the guild I was in had little interest, so I was left with pugs which lets face it puging the elite missions is just masochism. The last group I ever tried it with actually managed to get to the second to last room before the last monk rage quit. I left that guild shortly after Nightfall was released, so I was left pretty much in the same situation when DoA was added. I guess I just got despondent about the elite missions, the reward doesnt seem worth the tedium. I would like to get the monuments but thats about the only interest I have in them.
    With the exception of a couple skills “cough cough Shadow Form cough”, The elite missions are one of the few gripes I have about Guildwars.

    • i’ve done so much pugging its ridiculous, especially for SF, i had dozens of greens from there. people in pugs are the dregs of society.

  4. We do Urgoz/Deep all the time, PM if you want to go with an experienced guild.

    IGN: Ysandre De Arceneau

    • Thanks for the offer lovelace. I’m not sure it was inexperience as much as forgetfulness and bad luck that causes us to go down just before getting to urgoz.

  5. Whooza-whatsits? Man oh man, I’ve been playing Guild Wars since ‘Spirit Shackles’ was called ‘Wife’, but do I ever feel like the noob. There’s obviously far more content that I’ve missed than I ever thought possible.

    • Not familiar with urgoz warren? come on TF where do you think those scrolls to Urgoz’s warren go?

  6. I think the rewards used to be reasonable, I think people even used to farm the first two spawns of normal mobs just for the loot? Farmers always break things in GW though.

    • i believe theres a chest now that gives loot for each person, it used to drop 3 greens for 12 people. I think, haven’t been back lately.

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