The first instanced dungeon in Tree of Savior—Underground Chapel— is a simple affair; it is little more than a grind party in a limited area with more challenging mobs and a boss at the end. While it may not be complicated (or interesting for that matter) it is really good XP for leveling and is the best opportunity for using your group oriented class skills. However there are some things that are different from the typical MMO dungeon which may not be readily apparent when you first start playing the game. It’s not too difficult to stumble through the first time but for those interested in knowing what a dungeon is like, here’s a brief summary from my own experience so far.
First of all, you’ll need to go to either Tenet Garden or Novaha Institute and find a little red pagoda looking thing with a spinning shield above it. I have no idea what these are supposed to be, but clicking on it will bring up a text box that will ask if you want to do the dungeon. You’ll want to choose either “enter” if you have your own party formed or “search for a party” if not. Either way, you will have to go to the physical starting location for the dungeon in order to enter.
Once you’ve entered the dungeon you’ll notice that your party is made up of five players but that it doesn’t necessarily cover all roles the way a typical MMO dungeon would. You may have three Wizards and two Clerics, or three Archers, two Swordsman, and no Clerics. That’s because the encounters aren’t really based on having a traditional trinity and each group member will have to figure out for themselves how to best use their class abilities to the benefit of the group. For example, I’m set up to dps and provide buffs but I will also throw out heals if there aren’t any other Clerics specialized in healing.
The map for Underground Chapel is fairly simple. There are three corridors and five rooms with two of them branching off of the left corridor, two off of the right, and the fifth at the end of the middle aisle which is where the boss is located. You only have to clear the middle aisle of trash to reach the boss and end the dungeon but because of the enormous amounts of XP you earn per kill it’s worth it to get a full clear. It gets old after you’ve done it a couple of times but with only two dungeon runs allowed per day, it’s not like you can burn yourself out quickly.
The mobs do hit hard and you will want to watch your own health bar. Only one class, the Peltasta, has a taunt of any kind from what I understand, and the Cleric’s healing ability creates tiles on the ground that must be walked over to get the heal which means you must be proactive to heal yourself if you are taking too many hits. You may also have abilities that will drop threat if you have too many mobs attacking you. Some groups can feel quite chaotic if you don’t all work together to group the mobs in one cluster so you can aoe them down. If you’re lucky, you’ll have a Linker, a Wizard class that can link enemies so they share damage and can pull them together in a single clump.
Once you reach the final room, you’ll want to clear as much of the trash as you can before engaging the boss but it’s pretty easy to pull him on accident before you have defeated everything in the room. This boss can be a bit challenging because he does hit hard and there’s no tank soaking up all the damage. The NPC animations make it pretty obvious when something bad is going to happen so just watch out for red on the ground or big, dramatic animations and run out of the way. If you do happen to die you can restart at the beginning of the middle hallway and it’s a short run back to where the boss is. You do not have to wait for the whole group to wipe before rejoining the fight.
After you’ve killed the boss a message will show up saying that you have 60 seconds before you will be ported out of the instance and back to the pagoda where you first entered. There’s no gear or anything rewarded in the dungeon, only gobs of XP and something called a Shadowgaler Cube. Using this item grants you another item called “Talt,” which according to the tool tip can be used to upgrade your guild. Not being in a guild I have no idea what the upgrade system is like. However when you do receive the Talt you also have the option to spend silver to earn a different reward instead, or it’s a reroll and there are other things that can be earned but at a lower drop rate. I’m still not entirely clear on this.
And there you have it, everything you need to know about the first dungeon in Tree of Savior. It’s a bit underwhelming to say the least and I’m hoping they get better as the game continues. However the next one isn’t until level 90 so I have another twenty levels or so before I can see for myself what, if anything changes. As a method for leveling, it’s great. As a form of challenging or at least interesting group content? Not so much.