http://ddowiki.com/page/Rainbow_in_the_Dark (for the purpose of orientation you enter at the very top – north of the map)
I usually try solo quests with the following criteria’s
- Quick – no more then 30 minutes or so
- No use of mem pops or other hard to replace (costly) resources
- No gold store hirelings – regular hirelings at the most and try without
The whole point is to accomplish the same goal as you could with a full group but don’t have the time nor interest in trying to find a full group to do it with. It’s not because I don’t like running with groups it’s just that for most part when I solo I try to avoid having to run something on higher difficulty and ignore certain optionals in order to complete as quickly as possible.
Having said that – quick in the sense that I want to keep it under 30 minutes can sometimes be accomplished by a full group a little quicker.
But it’s also possible that I end up using more resources when healing and supporting a full group considering that some really squishy players also like to get into the thick of it and mix it up, failing to leverage AOE’s (firewall or blade barrier) to their full effect. So what might be a wash (time wise) can actually end up costing me more considering the wider scope and the different builds in the party.
The primary goal of soloing is to accomplish a specific goal (like in this case getting a twig) without worrying about external factors; if I fail it’s my failure alone and not a burdon on a group.
Rainbow in the dark is one of those quests that’ll work well enough soloing. It’s fairly short – there are no puzzles that have to be completed by more than one person to move on.
You’ll be faced by critters you’ll find out in the Vale (more or less) that are slightly more potent than in the wilderness but that responds to the same tactics that you might find useful out there.
There are 4 other potential chests with the same kind of loot that you find in Vale rare quests. One will put you face to face with a beholder mini boss after you run through a tunnel with rusties and earth ellies and the other is a locked chest after several traps. The last 2 are behind a locked door with a puzzle and if you fail the puzzle you’ll drop through a floor with spears on the walls so you’ll probably die if you run it on hard or elite.
There are also 2 possible floor pressure point that’ll lock you into a small room with several fire ellies and a randomly placed trap that’ll teleport you to a lava pit with 5 or so fire ellies that’ll respawn if you don’t kill them quickly enough.
You’ll run into the following critters
- Bats – the swarms will usually attack you from the first tunnel you walk into (after picking up the light scepter) and other one or two other tunnels.
- Earth elemental – you’ll find them in most tunnels
- Fire elemental – Fire traps and end boss
- Rust monster – rusties are random and usually found in the same tunnels as the earth ellies
- Clay golem – they’re everywhere
- Shadows – for some reasons there are 2 or so shadows at various point. Don’t know why. I guess they’re there to pester you if you don’t have ghost touch, spectral gloves, death ward or something to kick their @sses with.
- Troglodyte – can be banished and have a save against AOE’s (such as blade barriers)
- Orthons and bearded devils
- Scorpion – a smaller variant that spawns when you pick up sigil and larger ones that can flesh to stone you
- Troll (can be banished)
- Beholder – one fairly close to the beginning and one mini boss at an optional chest
- Gelatinous cubes
In order to keep it short and sweet I always avoid the optional chests and if you can you can also use the ddoor option (When you pick up the sigil you can ddoor back to the beginning and take the right path and avoid the spawns of Orthons and such from the sigil room to the door that opens by the sigil).
You don’t have to kill everything to progress – but you’re going to need to kill one boss to get a sigil and of course the final boss.
The first thing you run into is two tunnels – one with earth ellies (freedom of movement is a good thing to have). I suggest that you kill everything if you’re going to use a ddoor and if not you can safely run past the first set of stone ellies. At the end of the tunnel there’s a drop that takes you to another tunnel. You can find rusties here – if you do they’ll also be at the end of the tunnel where you need to jump up. Either blade barrier, pull and destroy or push through. Using blur can be beneficial or have high enough AC so the rusties miss. I had my blue scale dragon armor almost break once pulling rusties so it’s a matter of wanting to save resources or bold enough to bolt through it.
After you jump up there will be a dead person with a journal – pick it up and the wall opens. This is where you run into the first beholder at the end of a narrow path with pits of spears on each side. It usually faces the opposite way so I always try to use destruction on it before it has a chance to de-buff me. If not you can put on the silver amulet, take a few hits and go toe to toe with it.
After this you can either turn left or right. Left will bring you to the sigil and right to the door that need the sigil to open. Note that you’ll see contact sensitive pressure points in the middle of some intersections (I think they’re random). Go around them unless you like to fight fire ellies. From now on you’ll run into clay golems. My favorite tactic is to lay down an extended blade barrier and pull from all directions so I kill off the maximum amount of golems with as few resources as possible.
This is where you’re going to have a choice – you can go up a ramp into the room with a puzzle (and a floor that drops out if you fail the puzzle) or you can continue slog yourself towards the room with the sigil. If you go up the ramp and solve the puzzle on the back wall (note that there are lightning traps here) you’ll get 2 chests. There’s a merit to failing the puzzle and drop anyways – if you do it’ll take you up a short critter free tunnel (there’s one earth ellie below the drop) and you’ll end up at the top of the room with the sigil. Otherwise you’ll have to double back and take the long slog anyways.
The merit is that if you avoid the long slog, drop down into the room (fight bearded devils and Orthons and a final Orthon mini boss while getting shot at by trogs and than fight smaller scorps that’ll come through the floor) is that when you do take the long slog back you’ll only have to fight the critters once. If you take the long slog to the room and then back you’ll first have to fight yourself over there and then fight the spawns on the way back (remember the left and right intersection – that’s where you’re going, take the right one and place the sigil in a door).
In order to minimize time and resources it’s usually better to drop through the floor and fight the critters only once.
Note that by picking up the sigil bearded devils and Orthons will spawn into the quest to give you a good gauntlet as you move back. This is where blade barriers are king (Or use a ddoor to avoid it all).
I usually run as far as I can and pull as many critters as possible, lay down a blade barrier and jump around until they’re dead and banish or destruct any surviving critters.
You’ll find a shrine shortly down the right path (after the sigil door). It’s usually guarded by several clay golems and 2 gelatinous cubes (one behind a hidden door) and you’ll sometime run into a trap that drops you in the lava pit (as I explained before).
After this you walk into a tunnel with stone ellies and possible rusties and you either go straight forward (over a spear pit) or right (to get a key to open door beyond spear pit). This is a Gnoll area and I’ve found that a combination of blade barriers and implosions works good.
In the same room that you find the key there’s always a boarded over tunnel to the mini boss beholder (and loot chest). I never do it since I really don’t feel like buffing again and I don’t need the loot. Plus you have to run through earth ellies and rusties to get there.
After the spear pit you can go left or right again – left will take you to the end boss and right will take you to a room with a secret door and a chest at the end of a corridor with traps.
I normally just go for the end game. After a bunch of gnolls you come to a room below stairs with several pressure pads on the floor – some might be lit up around a holder for your scepter. The floor puzzle is very easy – start from the left with an empty colored circle. Step up one color, move to the next one and step up one color from the previous until you have the color of the rainbow. The first will be red and the last purple.
The end game isn’t all that bad; one very irate fire ellie with tons of HP but no other trash mobs to worry about. With bloodstone tier 1, 2 and 3 holy rapier and another rapier with ice burst, holy and maiming, I usually kill it off in 3-4 minutes (a little quicker if I decide to use searing light).
The whole ordeal shouldn’t take more than 20-30 minutes. Quicker with Ddoor.
Note the following:
I have 2800 HP and unless I run into the lava pit fire ellie trap it’ll usually last me till the shrine and then some. I also have the Favored Soul capstone reward that provides a free cure light clickie with an 8 second cool down. Since it’s powered by my meta’s (for free) I usually heal between 40-200 HP – which helps while jumping around over a blade barrier since you’re bound to take a few hits from all the critters (not to mention harried. On top of that I have the bauble with a major mem pot/rest clickie (average of 300 SP) and 75SP from my ring of spell storing. Unless the first beholder removes my buffs I can do the sigil and back in about 10-15 minutes.
So what do I do when I pull over a dozen critters and get surrounded and harried? Being surrounded usually means that you end up levitating on top of critters taking one hit after another. By using leap of faith I can usually pull away long enough for the cool down and leap again. It’s a very effective tactics whenever you get harried in any quest or wilderness.
Also – avoid using pets if you can – they love walking across fire trap pressure pads and the final puzzle pressure pads.