Blogging from the Rakghoul Tunnels
So the Rakghouls are back yet again, this time on Tatooine, after nearly seven entire months of waiting since Alderaan.
For one, I'm thrilled to see them return. It's been, as I say, quite some time since the event was previously live, and it's nice to have this as a filler before Strongholds go live in ten days' time. I had a lot of things to still catch up upon from last time, such as needing to complete four more Rakling achievements - that Symbiote still evades me to this day - and some more Reputation.
"What's different this time around?", you may ask.
The answer, besides various cosmetic things, is; "Not much". The tunnels have exactly the same layout, the missions are the exact same, and the Operation is still is simple mechanics-wise as ever. Whilst the basic design of the Tunnels would, of course, be the same as before - Rakghouls have some affiliation with this style, it seems - it's disappointing that the tunnels are exactly the same. Not even the dialogue from the various NPCs has changed, although as this iteration of the event was the first time any of my Empire people did this, at least that side seemed new.
So what exactly is "different"?
The various enemies you can find in the first section of the Tunnels have changed - instead of Killiks, Nobles, and Joiners, you get Sand People, Settlers, and Mandalorians. That's pretty much all that has changed within the tunnels themselves, although as far as I can tell, there don't seem to be any random floating skulls any more (of which I could've sworn I took a screenshot back in January).
On the surface, though, things are noticeably different
In terms of planetary cosmetic differences, Anchorhead and Mos Ila now have tents with barbed-wire-fences surrounding them for the T.H.O.R.N workers, akin to the ones near Organa and presumably Thul. The Infected Citizens and randomly-spawning Plaguebearers are still in place, of course, including that gold Frenzied who drops the Pale Rakling.
In terms of actually new things, there is a new World Boss with the event. Unlike with Alderaan, you don't run the risk of accidentally running into the guy if you take a long way to the Spike instead of the fantastic T.H.O.R.N speeder, as he's right by Outpost Largona in Jundland, which is nowhere near the Spike. Even then, he's different only in terms of cosmetics; the mechanics are the exact same. Instead of the Shaclaw Shellshock, we instead have the Reek Plaguehorn.
Much like Shellshock, the fight isn't much cop (and can be done with as few as four people), but it's more what he drops that is. 1 Exotic Plague Specimen for each group member, and then there's this guy.
Isn't he just adorable?
The Plaguehorn Reek.
Quite simply, this little guy - Argyll, as I call him - has very swiftly become my favourite pet, replacing my Deepcrest Subteroth from Nightmare Draxus, which is something I didn't think to be possible quite so soon. For those of you who keep an eye on pets, this is the first Reek pet in-game, and it doesn't seem that they've created another for the time being - the complete pets list in the decorations on the PTS includes many upcoming pets, such as a Pyroclastic Subteroth and a Nightmare Kell Drake, and no Reek is among them - so he will be absolutely exclusive to this event, which is more than can be said for the Plagueshard Lylek.
He's also quite sizable. I haven't compared him to a Kell Drake yet, but on my female body-type-2 Gunslinger, he comes to just above her knee, horn and all. He also nearly fills the Dejarik table on the XS Freighter. Currently I suspect that he is second in size only to the Vrakes, although until I send my Commando to my PTS Stronghold to place any one of his three Kell Drakes next to Argyll, this is just an assumption.
This of course means that there is only one planet-specific-pet drop remaining: the Plaguetooth Sleen from whomever the Infected Narvaxx is to be on Corellia. Another totally exclusive pet, but of course there's a Sleen mount already live, with two more (Aquatic and Jungle) on the way in the future. This makes the Reek pet all the more exclusive: he is literally the only player-associated Reek one can possess. I for one hope that a Reek mount will be added to the game (although one can guarantee that it will be Cartel) at some point in the future.
As for other pets for the event, seeing as one could not reach Hero or Champion rank before the event ended last time, we all of course had at least two Raklings to defeat the Lurker with - Fungal and Contaminated. For me, I had four Raklings to still defeat him with: those two, and then the Crimson and the Symbiote. I got lucky with the Crimson from the Lurker, and so that's three done. That leaves the Symbiote, and of course, that one still escapes my grasp. Next event, though, he's mine..!
I've mentioned the PTS throughout this document, and that brings me to my only real "complaint" about this.
As we all know, Strongholds will be going live for Early-Access people on the 19th of August, and nearly every Reputation team will possess Decorations. T.H.O.R.N is no stranger to this, offering up two plants. However, instead of being placed on the vendors that relocate to Nar Shaddaa and the GSI Office, they can only be bought from Jeelvic.
Jeelvic, of course, disappears along with the tunnels, as he can only be located there. This means that the decorations will also disappear. It's bad enough that those mounts and the Monkey-Lizard do so, but items which can only be used as Decorations, for potentially another six months? That just seems.... wrong.
I hope that BW make the Decorations available in the GSI Office. I don't particularly mind the mounts and pet not being accessible 24/7 all-year-round, but to not have one faction's decorations accessible whilst all others have theirs for sale proudly just seems lackluster, really. It's a shame, really.
So that ends my musings on Rakghoul Resurgence's resurgence. I cannot wait for the Resurgence's resurgence's resurgence on Corellia, as then I can finally have a shot at completing <Galactic Veterinarian> and have at least another 6 chances at obtaining Symbiote to finally complete <Lord of the Raklings>.