Utopian Organ logo

Mutation mayhem

 Mutation mayhem

It’s a full-on mutation frenzy! We have Fire, we have Ice, Eternal, and Nature, all on offer together for four days only! And that’s not all, you also get an increased entry limit of 45, that’s right forty-five, runs this week. This is Amazon Games’ way of making up for the mutation mistake and tbh, I like it.

There are three levels of Mutation, as well as Story mode, for each Expedition.

  • M1 requires 650 gear score and is relatively easy, introducing the mechanics of the mutation type at a reduced level of damage.
  • M2 is a little harder and requires 675 gear score, with increased scaling and the addition of the Promotion challenges. It is still quite simple to do with an experienced group and is probably the most efficient mode, with improved loot for little effort.
  • M3 requires 695+ gear score and optimised perks, gems and buffs. It is considerably more challenging than M2, both with increased scaling and the addition of the mutation Curse as well as the Promotion.

Note: Elemental damage gems in your weapons are simply recommendations based on the elements your enemies are weakest to. Your playstyle may suit non-elemental gems better and you are encouraged to continue using those if so.

Expedition specific

General buffs

Mutation specific

Artifact: Blooddrinker Ring

The Starstone Barrows is an exotic mashup of our first dungeon experiences, with the expedition taking adventurers through both Starstone and Amrine. We start in Starstone and then instead of ascending the stairs to the central pillar, a breakage appears to our left and we sneak into Amrine to face Simon Grey. Then we work backwards through Amrine until we return to Starstone on the other side of the central pillar. This means we get a fun split of Ancient and Lost enemies, and need to carry double the potions. 

Just like at the end of Amrine, Simon is a heavy hitter with a periodic minion spawn, but now he’s completely buffed. If you don’t manage to dodge his smash-down attack, there’s a good chance of light-armoured players being wiped. On top of that, if you can’t kill his minions, he eats them up for a little heal, prolonging the fight.

Time is tight in this dungeon and there are a few tough fights where the mobs are grouped up or skipped. Keep those Ward potions handy and make sure you have a good healer.

The final boss, Greundgul the Regent, whose voice taunts us all the way through, has a fairly predictable mechanic and isn’t too bad as far as dungeon bosses go. The most important thing here is that everyone sticks together, literally stacking on one another during the jumping phase to help co-ordinate the dodges. Also during the bone throwing phase, it’s good to keep those bones close and take advantage of our AOE damage. If you can get a ranged attack on her face when she lands her jump, it makes everything easier as it stuns her and stops her jumping phase early.

Mutation: Eternal

It’s all purple in Starstone this week, with the Eternal mutation transforming the enemies to Void damage, so go with the theme and protect yourself with AmethystsParanoia is particularly annoying, with stacks building up as you hit the enemy. When you reach 4 stacks, a purple pool appears at your feet, dealing 40-70% damage. This is easily dodged as an individual, but when the melee are crowded together, you can end up with some big spikes of pain. It might be an opportunity to try a ranged DPS team for a change, with the tank holding aggro and 3 bow users shooting from afar. Creeping enemies Empower their friends when they die and Oblivion enemies use a life leech that heals them when they hit you. 

At M1 level, everything is a bit easier, so you will be fine with Opals rather than Amethysts, and may not need to use Ward potions or Coatings.

M2 - Savage

When you get to M2, Festering enemies start to appear, dealing disease against you so your incoming healing will be reduced. Remember, debuffs can be Purified in a number of ways. Slicer enemies also turn up, adding 30% base Void damage, so think about diversifying your protective gems in this mutation.

M3 - Frenzied

The real trouble starts when things get Frenzied. At M3, players begin being penalised for dodging, by acquiring a stack of Unstable that does 1.5% of max health as Void damage per second for 10 seconds and cannot be cleansed. You can get up to three of these stacks, and when you do it drops a 3m radius zone that does 10% of max health per second for 15 seconds – ouch, that’s 150% of your health if you just stand there! If you enter this zone with stacks of Unstable, it will consume them and do 30% of max HP. So, it’s really important to manage your stacks and move away from the group if you can’t avoid dropping a puddle. Don’t poop on the group.

Expedition specific

General buffs

Artifact: Freya’s Francisca Hatchet

The Garden of Genesis is one of the classic expeditions, having been in the game since release and very popular as a place to raise your item expertise. It’s the only Angry Earth dungeon and can be run pretty fast, although there are a couple of sticky spots that can slow groups down. The worst of these is Alluvium Marl, the Caretaker, who guards his Greenhouse in the middle of the dungeon. He can be seen terrifying those facing him. Our advice for this boss is to just kill him, and do it fast.

Mutation: Hellfire

Burn baby burn, this rotation it’s Fire. We start with the basic Hellfire. Look at the enemies’ nameplates to see whether they are Explosive, and be sure to position yourself well away from edges when they die, to avoid being blown over. Fiery enemies apply Burn, giving you a Fire DOT, so it’s worth drinking some Desert Sunrise before you start. Ignited enemies deal 50% of their damage as Fire, so slot Rubies in your armour and wear a Flame Protection amulet to get your Fire resistance up. Enemies with Enflamed can cast a Burn zone on the ground, so watch your positioning.

At M1 level, everything is a bit easier, so you will be fine with Opals rather than Rubies, and may not need to use Ward potions or Coatings.

M2 - Barbaric

At M2, some enemies start being Barbarically buffed. Shattering is annoying for your tank, dealing 40-75% increased stamina damage! It might even be worth stacking more of the stamina perks to keep up. Watch out for those large Enraged enemies, who deal 50% more damage once they get 20 stacks of Fury.

M3 - Dessicated

The Curse of the Burning Garden is Desiccated, which is your basic dip and nae-nae. When a player gets a Fire ring around them, they need to dip all team members in order to remove their Shrivel. But make sure they nae-nae away before the timer ends to avoid spiking others with a chain Fire for 50% of their max health. If you’re unlucky enough to be left shriveled, damage and healing will be reduced by 50% until the debuff wears off.

Expedition specific

General buffs

Artifact: Void Darkplate Heavy Chest

Arrrrrr me hearties, let’s get Lost and Angry. Barnacles and Black Powder is mostly full of Lost enemies like pirates and ghosties, but features a couple of angry ole tentacles and a final boss having an identity crisis. The Lost are particularly weak to Nature damage, so consider putting an Amber in your weapon. Hammers and Ice Gauntlets have a slight advantage but feel free to make use of the features of your favourite weapon if you prefer. As always, attribute food and honing stones keep you at your best.

The last boss in Barney’s is so annoying, she deserves a mention of her own. While she does move to a predictable pattern, her attacks become quite frenetic and she closes in the arena dramatically, leaving very little wiggle room toward the end of the fight. Legend has it that despite looking very similar to her Lost sister the Siren Queen, Nereid is of the Angry Earth with modified Lost weaknesses. Instead of the regular 30% Nature, 15% Ice, 10% Strike, she is weak to 30% Ice and 20% Strike only. So it might be worth swapping to an ice weapon, but don’t be fooled into thinking your slash weapon would be any stronger than it already is.

Mutation: Overgrown

Overgrown means those mobs are going to be healing one another, which really should be a privilege exclusive to us. Compost mobs drop a healing circle that works like a Sacred Ground for them and looks a bit like one too. This is one of the rare times that disease perks are useful in PVE, so pull out your Hatchet with Infected Throw, or slot a weapon with Plagued Strikes or Plagued Crits. Your Bile Bomb heartrune will also spread disease around, so vomit away to your heart’s content.

Toxic mobs spawn THE most annoyingly friendly little green blob that follows you around, does damage over time that increases at the higher mutations, and casts an area root. We just love not being able to move and getting damaged at the same time! Best bet is to try and stay out of its way. If you get stuck, it might be worth it to have Nature Absorption potions slotted and chug one down. Arboreal enemies are dealing 50% of damage as Nature, and Bramble enemies deal 20-40% base damage as Nature, so Amber slotted in your gear will protect you.

At M1 level, everything is a bit easier, so you will be fine with Opals rather than Ambers, and may not need to use Ward potions or Coatings.

M2 - Oppressive

Once we reach M2, we start seeing Mage Hunters, who drain mana when hit, so healers need to make sure their mana potions are slotted. Suppressor enemies cast a silence zone in which no abilities can be used, but at least it doesn’t have the explosion at the end.

M3 - Censored

In M3, players are Censored with silence. Using abilities causes a meter to build up and when it is full, silence is cast on each member of the group where they are standing. Abilities cannot be used inside the silence zone and when it expires, it detonates with a massive 65% max health damage. So it’s pretty important to keep an eye on the meter and make sure that silence zones are strategically placed, especially in boss battle arenas. While silence is active, natural mana regen is turned off, however you can get 25 mana per 0.75 seconds by standing in the silence. Just don’t be in there when it explodes!

Expedition specific

General buffs

Mutation specific

Artifact: The Wall Tower Shield

The Ennead has more bosses than any other organisation, with three major boss fights and two bosses in the final battle. This brings us to a total of four big bosses. And don’t forget, you have to defeat the last two twice. This expedition also starts out with Ancient enemies, but with a Brimstone flavour, so if you’re getting toasted, you can consider adding some Fire protection. 

The first boss you encounter is Godling Khepri Supernal, a giant scarab beetle. You need to use the architecture of the room to avoid his laser beam, by running around to the other side of the pillar once he starts casting. As long as the group works together, this is a pretty easy fight.

After getting through the twists and turns of the first maze-like section, you will use three Azoth staves to burst a Corruption bubble and encounter a series of Corrupted enemies. This culminates in the second boss fight, with General Crassus. He goes through three phases and summons a lot of adds, so it’s worth having dedicated DPS keeping them under control.

The final boss fight is a doozy. It starts with Anpu, aka Big Guy, who has some nasty elemental attacks, reaching out with ranged spikes and causing an AOE spin, as well as smacking down like a regular brute. The one attack you can control to some degree is his charge, which is usually targeted at the furthest player. If they keep a pillar between Anpu and themselves, he will bonk his head and stop his charge. Make sure you don’t stand in the trail he leaves when he charges, as it does major damage.

Once you knock Anpu over, his little buddy, Heru (aka Small Guy), turns up. He is infinitely more annoying, because he requires the whole team to work together. When he enters his levitation stage in the middle of the arena, four players need to be at each of the floating pillars and use their azoth staves, while suffering massive tick damage. It’s worth drinking a regen pot just before using your staff, to keep the ticks under control. He also stuns and creates damage zones, so be careful.

The real fun starts once Heru goes down, as at this point they both get up and the place becomes chaotic. If you don’t kill them both within 30 seconds of each other, the other one respawns, so one strategy is to get Small Guy down to almost dead, then focus on Big Guy, then when he is almost dead, take them both down. Just careful of Small Guy going into his levitation phase while you’re trying to fight Big Guy, it’s good to have a lot of DPS here to get this fight over and done with.

Mutation: Icebound

Ice, Ice, Baby! Everything slows down in the cold and this mutation is no exception. We start with Icebound, which means all enemies are dealing Ice Damage, so pull out your Aquamarines and Frozen Protection amuletMost annoying is Shiver, a zone of exclusion that bites anyone who is outside of it, which keeps the group huddled up together. Be careful of enemies with Glacial, as they will drop a crystal that can root you in place. To prevent this, you need to destroy or run away from the crystal, depending on where it is positioned.

At M1 level, everything is a bit easier, so you will be fine with Opals rather than Aquamarines, and may not need to use Ward potions or Coatings.

 

M2 - Barbaric

At M2, some enemies start being Barbarically buffed. Shattering is annoying for your tank, dealing 40-75% increased stamina damage! It might even be worth stacking more of the stamina perks to keep up. Watch out for those large Enraged enemies, who deal 50% more damage once they get 20 stacks of Fury.

M3 - Frenzied

The real trouble starts when things get Frenzied. At M3, players begin being penalised for dodging, by acquiring a stack of Unstable that does 1.5% of max health as Ice damage per second for 10 seconds and cannot be cleansed. You can get up to three of these stacks, and when you do it drops a 3m radius zone that does 10% of max health per second for 15 seconds – ouch, that’s 150% of your health if you just stand there! If you enter this zone with stacks of Unstable, it will consume them and do 30% of max HP. So, it’s really important to manage your stacks and move away from the group if you can’t avoid dropping a puddle. Don’t poop on the group.

Avatar photo

Landi

Landi is an avid furniture collector and regular DPS for Don't Die Alone. She contributes to the Mutation Rotation and Faction Control series of articles.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *