When EverQuest II launched, we were promised plenty of online role-playing quests and immersive story lines. The new Asian-themed Fallen Dynasty adventure pack delivers that in a convenient, low-cost downloadable chunk.
In order to gain access to the Tower of the Four Winds and its quests, players must gain favor with the nearby villagers. As you progress through the quest line, you learn about the pirates who are invading the area, a mysterious missing tome and the Whistling Fists Clan of Monks.
Like the rest of EverQuest II, the new outdoor zones are gorgeous. Much of the adventure pack was designed in Taiwan, and the zones have a distinctive feel that set them apart from the rest of the game. There is no new armor, but the new samurai weapons look like they will slice into enemies into sushi.
Anyone can enjoy the starting quests in the Village of Shin, but you’d better be at or near level 55 if you want to venture into the hostile area called Mystic Lake. Solo instances in the Tower of the Four Winds scale to your level, but if you’re not a Scout, Mage, or some other player who can pour on a lot of damage in a short amount of time, you won’t be able to complete them in the time given. To add insult to injury, you get no experience for the monsters you do kill in the solo missions if you don't finish; you only get XP for completing the mission. So it's all or nothing - bleh. Of course, if you go in with a group instead of solo, you'll be fine.
Elsewhere, the new Forsaken City provides plenty of room for group play, experience and loot, with none of the monsters-getting-stuck-in-walls problems that have plagued the game in the past. At the bottom of the City, you’ll find the hardest group instance in the game, called "Nizara, City of the Nayad." We recommend that you take a well-balanced, well-equipped group of level 70 players with you, or the zone will quickly reduce you to a quivering pile of chop suey. But that's the appeal: for just eight bucks, Fallen Dynasty provides low-priced thrills for high-level characters.