Archive for June, 2013

Seven more armor sets from the House of Crom

June 19, 2013 1 comment

A farmer’s tale

When the House of Crom was released and I realized there were 15* sets of armor dropping there, I was impressed by this sudden abundance of new gear; usually we are accustomed to gear being doled out in much smaller amounts. For example, Ardashir Fort and Arena have 6 sets; Ai and T’ian’an District don’t even have sets, just a few odd bits and pieces that are mostly copies of previously existing Khitai armor items; the unchained version of Amphitheatre contains 5 sets; and more recently, the Sepulcher of the Wyrm has just 3 sets, and parts of 7 Dragon’s Spine sets (the rest of which is partly from vendors and partly presumably forthcoming in the new Coils of Ubah Kan dungeon).

[* As a commenter on one of my old House of Crom posts pointed out, there is in fact also a 16th set, but it drops only from PvP in the Threshold of Divinity, so it’s unavailable on my PvE server.]

Anyway, 15 sets seemed quite impressive to me, though it eventually turned out a bit less impressive as I realized that many of the sets were just copies of each other with slight variations in color. Still, 15 sets is a lot and initially I didn’t even dream about trying to collect them all. I would have considered such a goal to be sheer madness; after all, this isn’t epic Field of the Dead that you can farm by yourself whenever you like. Initially I farmed a full-plate set for my guardian and was content with that.

Gradually, and without specifically meaning to farm any other sets, I picked up various parts of the PoM/ToS sets on my ToS, the demo/necro sets on my necro, and the heavy DPS set on my DT; eventually I figured I’d make a moderate extra effort to complete those sets as well, just so I could take screenshots of them. Still later I similarly noticed that I could complete the HoX and Excavator sets without too much extra effort, so I eventually posted screenshots of those as well.

Soon after writing that latest post about House of Crom armor screenshots, I came to realize that between that and my previous efforts, I had by then collected as many as 8 out of the 15 armor sets from the House of Crom. That’s more than half of them; and this observation inspired me to think of collecting the remaining 7 sets as a realistic and reasonable goal as well. If I might paraphrase the observation from the end of one of my old posts: if a certain amount of farming is reasonable, then twice as much farming is also still reasonable. (Well, I guess this is one of those situations where it wouldn’t be a good idea to apply the principle of mathematical induction :P) And in fact, just as we saw in that old post, farming for multiple sets is in fact easier if you’re farming for them all at the same time, with the same character. So if I do it all on one character, the goal of farming for the 7 remaining sets, while ambitious, isn’t in fact all that extreme compared to the farming I’d already done before. I decided to use my DT for the purpose, partly because she had lots of bag space available and partly because everything is so much easier to do if you don’t have to rely on finding someone else to tank for you.

And the farming effort turned out to be less extreme than I had imagined. My main worry was how to get people to help me farm the unpopular bosses: the Arcanist, Jotunrodull and Shryke in the Threshold of Divinity, and the Sentinel and Queen Cao-Polyphya in the Vile Nativity. The Arcanist was easily enough taken care of by starting my own Threshold of Divinity rare farming groups, and thus being the group leader; this put me in a good position to tell people to kill the Arcanist as well, and it usually turned out to be no problem. As for Shryke, I wouldn’t dare to try killing him with a pug group from global, but fortunately you don’t need a whole group for him; he can be killed just fine by 2 people (a tank and a healer) as long as they know what they are doing. With a bit of prodding and nagging, I was often able to find one or two guildies willing to help me, and we could even go and kill Jotunrodull while waiting for Shryke to respawn.

For Vile Nativity I mostly relied on forming semi-guild, semi-pug groups, and again being the group leader puts you in a good position to get people to kill the Sentinel and the Queen, even though the vast majority of Vile Nativity groups skip them. In earlier times I had some unpleasant experience with puggers there who preferred to quit the group rather than come kill those two bosses, but this time I didn’t encounter any such uncooperative people. I did, of course, still encounter a fair share of incompetent, drooling morons, but that’s inevitable when you team up with people from global. Anyway, in the end the boss that caused me the most trouble wasn’t Shryke, as I had expected, but the Sentinel of Defense — it took probably more than 20 kills to get the last item I wanted from him, which is a bit of bad luck since he only has 6 different armor pieces in his loot table.

Incidentally, throughout all this Vile Nativity farming, we never saw the Royal Atlantean Gown drop even once — another sad proof of its unfortunate, excessive rarity.

Anyway, without further ado, here are the screenshots. Since my earlier posts took care of the soldier, PoM/ToS, demo/necro, and HoX sets, the sets in this post are for barbs, sins, rangers and BSes.

Wells of Night

Many House of Crom armor sets come in pairs, and the assassin sets are no exception. The Wells of Night is the one with HP and stamina, but low DPS:

In terms of appearance, both sin sets are very similar, except for the color; and they are also very similar to the HoX set (Bedlam).

Most of the sets in the House of Crom have names based on the theme of madness and incomprehensibility, inspired by the idea familiar from H. P. Lovecraft’s stories, namely that the Lurker at the Threshold and similar entities are so far beyond the scope of our normal world that dealing with them will drive you insane. In the case of the Wells of Night, the connection to Lovecraft is even more direct, as this exact phrase appears several times in his work (e.g. The Horror at Red Hook, The Whisperer in Darkness).


This is the more offensive-oriented sin set: it has plenty of DPS and critical rating. On the other hand, it has much less hit rating than the Wells of Night set, and no constitution.


The barbarian sets also form a natural pair along similar lines. Ichorous is the one with lots of HP and stamina, but little DPS:

All the barbarian and medium sets are very similar in terms of appearance, again differing only in color. Their trademark feature are the extremely horny helmets, which provide excellent GPS reception even in the darkest depths of the House of Crom.


This is the other barb set; it has no constitution but plenty of strength, which provides not only DPS but also armor.

Also note the classy skull on the left shoulder.
That’s from the last person that tried to make a ‘me so horny’ joke.


Bear shamans and rangers, unlike barbs and sins, don’t get a pair of armor sets each; instead, each gets a separate offensive set (with strength for BSes and dexterity for rangers), but they both share a defensive set, which has generic combat rating (with low overall DPS) and plenty of constitution. This defensive set is called Membranous:


This is the BS-specific set; it has plenty of strength, which makes it uniniteresting for a ranger, while to a BS it provides not only good DPS but also more armor than the other two medium sets. One thing that strikes me as a bit unfair is that there’s no heal rating on this set (or any other medium set here); unlike PoMs and ToSses, which do have a heal rating set here in the House of Crom, the bear shamans don’t.


This is the DPS-oriented set of rangers. It relies on dexterity, which makes it uninteresting for bear shamans (or indeed any other classes):

Many thanks to people who helped me farm Shryke, especially Mel and Volo!

Categories: Age of Conan, Vanity Gear