This article has an associated Zaishen Challenge Quest.
This is a mission entry. For information on the mission outpost The Eternal Grove, see The Eternal Grove (outpost). For information on the explorable area The Eternal Grove, see The Eternal Grove (explorable).
- Protect the Forever Trees by keeping the Tree Singers alive.
- Defeat the Afflicted forces. You have 12 groups remaining.
Reward Tree Singers remaining XP Gold Skill Points Kurzick Faction1 points Standard 1..5 1,000 100 1 1,000 Expert's 6..11 1,500 150 1 1,000 Master's 12 2,000 200 1 1,000 Hard mode Standard 1..5 1,000 200 1 1,000 Expert's 6..11 2,000 300 1 1,000 Master's 12 3,000 500 1 1,000
- 1 You can only earn the faction reward the first time you complete the mission at a certain level in either mode, you will not earn faction for completing it in the other mode.
There is an additional health display on the top left corner of your screen, which shows the health status of the three Forever Trees. The trees are located at the points 1, 2, and 3 on the map. There are four Tree Singers grouped around each of these trees, each of which accounts for one quarter of the tree's hit points. When the singers are damaged, the health bar of their tree will degrade, and if a tree singer dies his tree's health bar will not regenerate back up to 100%. When all four singers of one tree are dead, so is the tree. Note that this does not result in a failure of this mission! Success only requires one tree singer (out of 12) to survive. While in the area near the trees, you will get the Aura of the Grove environmental effect, which boosts your running speed.
Each tree has an associated Juggernaut in the mission. Each juggernaut will continuously resurrect near the north tree as long as its forever tree stays alive. In addition to providing the Aura of the Juggernaut, which boosts your energy regeneration, the juggernauts make great tanks and do good damage as well. You can talk to a juggernaut to make it follow you, and talk to it again to make it stop.
There are two types of Luxon groups. One consists of pairs of Luxon Warriors, Elementalists, and Rangers. These will rush into the grove to attack tree singers. They must go through one of the two gates, so it helps to guard both gates and intercept them there.
The other type of Luxon group consists of a Siege Turtle and two or three rangers. These will go to a hill (marked X on the map) overlooking the grove and stay there. The siege turtle will bombard the corresponding tree, and kill tree singers if ignored. Siege turtles may attack your group instead if you get close. The rangers that accompany the siege turtles will not attack the grove, but will only attack you if you come near.
The siege turtle groups come, in order, from the west, south, north, south, north, and west. The other pairs of Luxons come from all three directions, and sometimes take circuitous routes on their way to the grove.
It helps to go far west of the grove to kill a siege turtle and several Luxons at the very start of the mission. After this, hang back in the grove and kill any Luxon raiders that come, leaving only to kill siege turtles. If you can split your party (e.g., with heroes), it can help to have a couple characters guard one gate while the rest of the party leaves to kill a siege turtle in the other direction. The rest of the party can readily intercept any Luxons heading for the other gate before they get there.
Once all siege turtles that come from the west and their accompanying Luxons are dead, there will be a cut scene. It is not necessary to kill the rangers that accompany the siege turtles that come from the north or south. Indeed, most such rangers that are left alive will become your allies at the cut scene, so it can be beneficial to leave them.
After the cut scene, your defenses will be reinforced by two Luxon warriors and two pet crabs at each gate. Mhenlo will go to the north gate to heal. Danika will stay back initially, but often step up to heal. Most Luxon rangers left alive at the cut scene will become allies, and will run back and forth between the hill they were at and the gate on that side. If not all such rangers become allies, those that do will usually kill those that don't.
Twelve groups of afflicted will assault the grove, split into five distinguishable waves. Unlike the Luxons, the afflicted have no means of bombardment, so you can guard the two gates and wait for them to reach you there. The waves are timed, and one wave can come before all mobs in the previous wave are dead. Indeed, the second wave will usually arrive before the first is completely cleared.
The first wave has mobs that attack both gates, but more attack the southern gate. The second wave is similar, and includes the warrior boss The Afflicted Maaka at the south gate. The third wave balances the mobs more evenly between the two gates. In the last two waves, most of the mobs attack the north gate, with only two or three attacking the south gate. The last wave also brings two bosses to attack the north gate, The Afflicted Senku and The Afflicted Xenxo. When all afflicted are dead, the mission is completed.
The second part of the mission is harder than the first. As it is a point defense mission, standard area defense tactics such as traps or a minion master can be useful. Spirit range is long enough that a spirit dropped in the middle of the grove can have its effect throughout the grove, affecting combat at both gates simultaneously. Ritualist spirits such as Recuperation and Life will not merely heal party members at both gates at once, but your Luxon allies, Juggernauts, Mhenlo, and Danika, as well.
Note that if you only care about mission completion and not master's reward, you only have to keep one tree singer alive. If having trouble with the mission, you could camp out in one spot and fight mobs there. The north tree is probably the most easily defensible, as it contains Mhenlo and the juggernaut respawn point.
To get master's reward if grouped with only henchmen here is unusually difficult. You can try flagging henchmen off to one area while you guard another, and using juggernauts to accompany you, providing a more even group split. It is possible to do either portion of the mission without losing any tree singers even with only henchmen, but you'll most likely need either heroes or other players in order to effectively split your group and get master's reward. Getting master's reward with heroes and henchmen is much more doable, so the remainder of this section will assume the presence of heroes or players who can move independently of the rest of the group.
For the group setup, it helps to have a ritualist with Recuperation, Life, and some other healing spells. It also helps to have a minion master who can keep some minions up even with corpses only intermittently available. Spells such as Animate Flesh Golem, Animate Bone Minions, Animate Shambling Horror, and Jagged Bones can effectively provide multiple minions off of one corpse making them more effective than other minion spells. The minions are going to have to take some hits and die, so it is better to bring Death Nova for a minion bomber build than to try to heal them. The other six party members should comprise a reasonably well-balanced group of six.
The entire party should initially head west of the grove to kill the first siege turtle and the various Luxons near it. After that, come back to the grove and leave two party members (one of which is a healer) standing in the north gate to kill any Luxons that attack from that side. The rest of the party can guard the south gate, then head out to kill the south siege turtle when it comes. After that, switch the two party members at the north gate to the south gate while the rest of the party heads to the north gate. Kill the north siege turtle when it comes. Repeat this shuffling to kill the next two siege turtles, and then the six party members at the north gate can head over to kill the siege turtle party coming from the west, triggering the cut scene.
After the cut scene, send all three juggernauts and the minion master to the north gate, the ritualist to the center of the grove, and the rest of the party to the south gate. If a juggernaut dies, then move it back to the north gate between waves. The ritualist should cast recuperation and life as often as possible to heal, and various other healing spells to heal party members or allies on either side as appropriate.
The ritualist should not set up any attacking spirits in the center of the grove. Mobs prefer to attack things that are attacking them, so this can make them run to the center of the grove to kill a spirit. Mobs also prefer nearby targets over distant ones, so after killing an attacking spirit, they sometimes move on to attack tree singers. A hero ritualist should not bring any attacking spirits for this reason. A player ritualist can set up attacking spirits by the gates, but not in the center. A player ritualist can even set up the same attacking spirit by each gate and have two copies of it up and fighting at the same time.
Depending on the course of the fighting, a character from the south gate may need to go help at the north gate once the south gate is reasonably secure. Once the mobs to the south are cleared in the second and third waves, all characters defending the south gate should help clear the north gate. This setup should get you through the first three waves. When you get a message saying that 3 groups remain, it's time to change tactics.
After that, send two or three characters (including a healer) to the south gate while the rest of the party defends the north gate. The characters at the south gate should clear the couple of afflicted that come, and then head over to help at the north gate. Once the fourth wave is clear, the two or three characters can return to the south gate to kill the couple of afflicted that come there in the fifth wave, before again returning to the north gate to fight.
To complete this mission with only henchmen and heroes is unusually difficult. As such, let us assume that your party consists entirely of players and heroes. Two players and six heroes is sufficient.
As usual in hard mode, not only are enemies greatly strengthened, but so are your NPC allies, which is vital, as you have a lot of them. AI prefers to attack weaker targets over stronger targets, so mobs will usually prefer to attack members of your party rather than your NPC allies. In particular, the Afflicted will usually leave Tree Singers alone until all other party members and most allies nearby are dead. This helps greatly in getting master's reward, to the degree that if you can finish the mission at all, you probably won't lose any tree singers after the cut scene.
The party should include a ritualist with Recuperation and Life. The ritualist can be flagged in the middle of the grove when fighting afflicted and these spirits will heal both your party members and all NPC allies on both sides at once.
The party should also include at least one minion master, and possibly two. Use a minion bomber build, as trying to keep minions alive is pretty futile. Instead, raise minions, Death Nova them, and let them die. Skills such as Animate Flesh Golem, Animate Shambling Horror, and Animate Bone Minions that can effectively raise multiple minions from a single corpse work especially well. Avoid Blood of the Master, as the health sacrifice from that is likely to get your minion master killed. Heroes are probably better than players at this, as players have difficulty finding minions to death nova them amid the mayhem.
Assume that virtually all resurrecting will be done in combat--and that you will have to do some resurrecting in combat. Rebirth is useless, and skills that revive a character with little health may not be terribly useful.
The mobs that come do so at set times, and do not wait until the previous mobs are dead. This can be particularly deadly if the third or fourth wave of afflicted comes before the previous is cleared. Afflicted tend to group up a lot, and as such, skills that damage several mobs at once without making mobs scatter out of the way are highly useful. Area hexes, conditions, and wards that dampen mob damage are also quite useful.
At the start, the whole party should head west to kill the 10 or so Luxons that come. Speed matters here, as if they aren't killed fast enough, mobs can slip into the grove while you're away and kill undefended tree singers. In particular, delays in loading the mission may force a restart.
After that, split your party into two reasonably balanced groups of four, and send one to each gate. Each group should kill any Luxons that come to that gate. If the gate is not under attack and a Siege Turtle comes on a group's side, the group can go out and kill the siege turtle and its accompanying Luxon Rangers.
Two siege turtles will come to each side, and eventually, another siege turtle will come from the west. Clearing that last siege turtle group will trigger the cut scene. Do not do this until all other Luxons are dead. Also reposition juggernauts such that two are near the north gate and one is near the south gate, for use after the cut scene.
Any Luxons that are still alive at the cut scene are likely to turn allied, though siege turtles are less likely than other Luxons. This is actually a problem for you, as the Luxons will wander back and forth from the grove to the hill where they were stationed with a siege turtle, and probably be attacked by afflicted far outside of the grove. If this happens, it will delay the first wave of afflicted reaching the grove, but the afflicted will win, and arrive at the same time as the second wave, which can overwhelm your party. Furthermore, NPC allies that spawn inside the grove may chase outside of it to help the Luxons fighting well outside of it, so you end up with fewer NPC allies rather than more once the fighting starts.
After the cut scene, flag the ritualist in the center of the grove, to heal all allies on both sides from there. Flag a minion master at the north gate, near where Mhenlo stands, while the rest of the party defends the south gate. The rest of the party should spread out a bit, to not all get hit by Afflicted Soul Explosions at once.
Nearly everyone should stay behind the gates at nearly all times while fighting afflicted. Until a wave is nearly cleared, assume that if you take so much as a single step beyond the gate, you'll die instantly unless you have significantly over 100 armor. That's not quite true, but it is pretty close. Only Juggernauts and very heavily armored players or heroes should go out beyond the gates, and even those should beware of outrunning their healing. If any mobs get behind you, kill the ones behind you, rather than moving up to kill casters. Juggernauts will take very heavy damage, and are the best tanks you have, so it can help to heal them.
The first wave comes and won't be entirely cleared before the second arrives. When the second wave arrives, kill The Afflicted Maaka as quickly as possible, and keep it blinded or weakened until it is dead. Once the boss is dead, it may sometimes be necessary for one or two characters to help out at the north gate.
After the second wave is clear (7 groups remaining), reposition juggernauts as before. The third wave distributes mobs more evenly than the second, so it can help to move a party member to the north gate for reinforcements. When the third wave is clear (3 groups remaining), reposition juggernauts as before again if any have died. If you can clear the third wave significantly before the fourth wave arrives, you'll almost certainly win.
The last two waves send most mobs to the north gate, and only 2 or 3 to the south gate. A couple party members at the south gate with healing from the ritualist in the center can hold that gate, while the rest of the party defends the north gate. Once the south gate is clear, the characters there can help at the north gate.
- 20 Pet - Elder Reef Lurker
- 20 Baron Mirek Vasburg
- 28 Elite Juggernaut Berta
- 28 Elite Juggernaut Klaus
- 28 Elite Juggernaut Lieber
- 20 Luxon Ranger
- 20 Luxon Soldier
- 20 Brother Mhenlo
- 20 Danika
- 20 Ex-Redemptor Berta
- 20 Klaus
- 20 Leiber
- 20 Tree Singer
- 20 (26) Afflicted Warrior
- 20 (26) Afflicted Ranger
- 20 (26) Afflicted Monk
- 20 (26) Afflicted Mesmer
- 20 (26) Afflicted Elementalist
- 20 (26) Afflicted Assassin
- 24 Siege Turtle
Bosses - elite skill captures
- 28 (30) The Afflicted Maaka - Enraged Smash
- 28 (30) The Afflicted Senku - Shadow Form
- 28 (30) The Afflicted Xenxo - Weapon of Quickening
Inside the mission
Tree Singer: Today, three brave Kurzicks have volunteered to become new, more powerful juggernauts. We honor them for their sacrifice. Let the Awakening begin!
Baron Mirek Vasburg: You must remain vigilant. There have been many signs and omens ... it is certain that the Luxons will attempt to kill the Tree Singers and interrupt the ceremony.
Danika: Until the ceremony is complete, fear not for my life, or the baron's ... concern yourself only with the lives of the Tree Singers. Without them, all is lost.
Baron: Ha! These Luxon brutes have no chance against us.
Danika: I've seen my friends here handle enemies far more frightening than these ragtag savages.
Tree Singer: You have done well so far, but do not grow complacent. We sense there is much danger lurking in the forest.
Danika: Grow complacent!? There's not much danger of that, is there? Not with all these bloodthirsty Luxons everywhere.
Baron: Countess! You should show more respect. Our apologies, honored Tree Singers.
Danika: Why aren't we done yet? Can't you sing any faster? Honestly, if you doubled the tempo, wouldn't the ceremony finish faster?
Baron: I expect it is not so simple, Countess. Though perhaps they would finish sooner if there were fewer interruptions.
Danika: Yes, I know. That's why I've been fighting for the last hour ... so the adagio chorus book there doesn't get interrupted.
Brother Mhenlo: I am pleased to see Luxons and Kurzicks fighting side by side. Together, you can defeat this Affliction. I believe you ...
Danika: Let's talk peace after the battle is over! After all, if these Luxons aren't better than the ones we fought earlier, they won't be alive much longer.
Kurzick Soldier: Here they come. More Luxons.
Kurzick Soldier: Haven't they had enough?
Baron Mirek Vasburg: Hold! They're waving the white flag.
Luxon General: The Afflicted! They've returned.
Nobody gets out of here alive unless we work together.
<party leader>: Baron Vasburg, he makes a good point."
The Luxons are no longer the greatest threat to the Forever Trees.
It couldn't hurt to have a few extra blades to help turn back the Afflicted.
Baron Mirek Vasburg: Until further notice, the Luxons are our allies.
You stand with us now.
If anyone has a problem with this, speak it now or forever hold your peace.
Good. Now comes the hard part.
Baron Mirek Vasburg: Look at this mess.
<party leader>: So, are you ready to believe now?
Baron Mirek Vasburg: Believe what?
Brother Mhenlo: That Shiro has returned.
Baron Mirek Vasburg: It's hard to argue with the evidence littered here at our feet.
<party leader>: Then it's settled?
You'll help us gather the Kurzicks together to fight Shiro?
Baron Mirek Vasburg: Yes. We are with you.
<party leader>: Even if that means fighting alongside the Luxons?
Baron Mirek Vasburg: Until Shiro has been destroyed, we will look upon the Luxons as our allies.
Brother Mhenlo: Well then. I think our work here is done.
Let us go find Master Togo.
Luxon Guard Captain: If you're looking for Master Togo, you'll find him with our champion, Argo, in the Harvest Temple.
Brother Mhenlo: Then we must go to the Harvest Temple.
- Upon completion of the mission players will find themselves in: Vasburg Armory
- To continue the storyline, take on the following Primary Quest: Into the Whirlpool