Just wanted to let people know about my experience with the SoE.
Just started playing DDO less than a year ago and not long after I started MotU came out and one of the people in my Guild was giving out SoE to members. After alot of discussion with my woman we decided to go ahead and do the SoE. I leveled my monk(one of the first chars I made) to L16 and the person that gave me the stone also gave me some decent stuff too. I thought "Way cool, now I can do all those higher level dungeons." Well, I went out and started one of those higher level dungeons and died repeatedly. After trying several other dungeons at level and dieing alot I became frustrated, stopped playing him and started another monk on another server. After leveling him to L16 the hard way I went back and looked at my first monk and realized several things.
He wasn't much good mostly because I didn't have the equipment or expertise to know how to combat the higher level monsters.
Also it didn't take long to realize that I had made some bad mistakes when leveling him through those 8 levels due to the fact that I just didn't know what feats/enhancments to take. (I was able to rectify most of this with the free Lesser Reincarnation.)
So I started playing my stoned Monk again except this time I went and did alot of those lower level dungeons that I had missed for little or no XP just to get the equipment he needed to be effective. (Kind of defeated the purpose of leveling so fast, I think.) Now he is a decent char, but still somewhat under powered compared to my other one.
So IMO, unless you have another Char who can feed your SoE leveled Char, or have tons of PP to get the stuff you need from the AH, or some helpful Guildies/friends who don't mind supplying you, then your gonna have problems with that stoned Char.
I'm certain that the SoEs are a great thing for TRs or players that have been playing a long time and have lots of loot and stuff in their bank to equip that rapidly leveled Char, but for someone who is just starting it isn't necessarily such a great thing.
I know that some feel that SoEs are Pay-to-Win and all that, but in my experience that wasn't the case.
Also there are at least 2 people in my Guild that leveled with SoEs that seem to have quit playing since leveling(haven't logged on in several months and still L16) and I think that they probably had the same experience that I had. Not to mention that F2P people will probably find that SoEs are a mixed blessing. Sure you can get to L16 real fast but how much content is there at those levels thats F2P?
Anyway, Happy Hunting Everyone!