I'm not one to go vent on the forums when I've had a bad game night. I don't think I ever have, in fact.
But let me tell you a story anyway.
U18 apparently invented a new bug where getting interrupted while activating a mission objective clicky can turn the clicky on without giving you credit for the objective. There's a thread for it here. Of course, then you can't activate the clicky again and you're stuck. This broke three missions over a few days before I was sure what was causing it and taking care around mission objectives. When you can stand next to a torch clicky, watching it merrily burn, while the game insists that you need to open the crimson lock before you can get to Brother Salasso, even though I already killed him and got my end chest and the first silver trinket upgrade... it's a little irritating. But what am I going to do, wait for a GM? Ha. Ha. Ha. You can recall out, rerun the quest, then rerun it again for kicks by the time you'd get a GM response.
But this isn't that bad, it's just one more bug with an easy workaround, right? Just add it to the pile, and don't breathe on any clicky unless everything in the room is dead. We're DDO players here; we get around bigger bugs than this just trying to log in, we can take it! Never mind that it ruins any chance of zerging certain missions, what's life without stopping to smell the roses a little?
So then I start up Tomb of the Shadow King. Full disclosure: I hate this quest. Every second mob does stat damage unless you have death ward, every fourth mob dispels your death ward, and everything but the freaking invisible stalkers require ghost touch. But this toon is a first lifer and needs that silver flame trinket, so in I go. I've gotten used to running this quest with 6 or 8 STR damage because I hate chugging four or five lesser restoration potions after every single bloody fight, but thankfully I'm using a melee toon who has plenty of STR to spare this time around. And, even better, it's a paladin with Hunter of the Dead as my prestige! Hunters of the Dead get ghost touch on every attack! I can actually use real weapons! Yes! This should be easy.
So I get to the end, and apparently I missed a torch. No problem, it seems like I always forget to click one of the north or south wing torches, I'll just go nab it. So I check both of those... and then check the hallways... and then start paying attention and check the entire thing again to be sure. Nope. Bugged. Mission's dead. Well, that's my fault for not paying attention, right? I'll just do it again, no sense waiting forty minutes for a GM.
And you know what happens the second time? First my toon stutters, then it starts snapping back in place a few feet once every ten seconds or so. That's right, the lag has come. It's not that bad, though, we've all shrouded through far worse. The lag dies down, smooths out, all is well... and then it explodes just as I'm running through a spike trap. No matter how far I run, the big old rubberband tied around my waist just snaps me right back into the middle of the pokiness. Can you imagine the ignominy of dying to a spike trap on Normal? It's not like my paladin exactly dumped CON, either, I should be able to stand in that thing forever before it kills me. Well, I actually avoid that ignominy--barely. The lag finally lets me go when I'm at about 15% health, I grab the soulstone of the pocket healer I was using because I didn't feel like wandwhipping my heals, and head for the rez shrine. There are a few mobs along the way, but I still have all my lay on hands charges and a stash of backup wands. And then the lag strikes again, at exactly the same time as a horde of umbral gargoyles. They timed it, you see. The monsters in DDO know they're no match for a player character, after all we're the ones filling up our monster manuals while their player manuals remain embarrassingly empty, so they started keeping track of the server lag to get every possible advantage they can.
Lag finally clears up. I'm a soulstone. Ragequit. Have I mentioned I hate this quest? I take break for around two hours or so. I don't want "futily beat my face against broken MMO quests" to be the sum of my evening free time, after all.
Eventually, after doing other things, calming down, and deciding I do in fact want to get that quest done tonight, I run some Cannith challenges to farm 5% xp pots and gauge the level of lag. And then, with fear and trembling, with infinite care, with a prayer in my heart for the favor of whimsical, sadistic Lolth and her foul Overdemons of the Server Room, I go back into the Plutonian King's domain.
And then I see something odd floating above the heads of monsters as I hit them. Why would the word "Incorporeal" be floating above mobs on nearly every other attack I make? This paladin is a hunter of the dead; I get ghost touch, right? So I alt-tab and do a quick google search, and find a thread talking about exactly this. It turns out that if you log out while dead (i.e. RAGEQUIT) hunter of the dead is bugged so they don't get their PRE stuff when you log back in. You have to log out again, then log in again to fix it. The date on this thread? October 2011. Still not fixed.
Yeah, no. I am doing this quest for the third time tonight, I am already ten minutes or so into it, no way in Khyber am I restarting *again*. By the grace of my own apathy, I still have the piece-of-**** ghost touch maul of undead bane (no + value) that I was using at level 3. It will do. Out of frustration, it dang well better do.
With infinite care, I click each and every torch, watching the objective counter every time, keeping my hands away from the keyboard to avoid accidentally moving and interrupting the progress bar, and mentally biting my nails every time one of the torches is near a dart trap lest the entire quest fail because of an errant projectile glancing off my plate mail as it dings me for 1 HP. And you know what? It finally worked, I finally finished the quest. Only three more quests to go before I actually get that silver flame trinket upgrade! All of them with plenty of clicky objectives and incorporeal mobs!
And I sat back, and realized that no, I do *not* want to play this stupid game any more tonight. Then I realized that until they get the damn bugs fixed, I do not want to play any of my TR toons who use storebought xp pots lest I lose paid time because of a feathered mission objective, I do not want to play any of my casters until they fix the spell power and crit being borked in U18, I do not want to play my ranger because she still needs to get her commendation gear but the prime farming mission chain is unavailable due to (gasp, surprise!) yet more bugs provided free of charge with U18, I do not want to pay anything for the preorder hireling with borked PRR, I do not want to touch my pale master until they fix Wail (especially since I checked this out on Lamannia's U18 preview and it seemed to be FINALLY working, and then checked it on U18 live and it's broken again! Pale trapper is one of my favorite builds, and its main spell has just been sitting there broken for multiple updates, despite occasional dev claims that it's fixed for reals this time. Even when Turbine fixes things, they spontaneously break again!), and most important, I realize I do not want to lay down a single dollar for the expansion or anything else until Turbine gets it together and stops breaking half the game with every new update and ignoring all the old bugs. And so on and so forth with an endless stream of DDO-related Do Not Wants.
But you know what I do want to do? Come and rant endlessly wall-of-text-style on the forums. And I don't do that, ever, for any game. EVER.
During that two-hour break, I fired up Steam and played some Bastion. I didn't have to wait for it to take five minutes to log in, crash, and then restart before I could play it for real. It didn't lag out and kill me. It didn't rubberband me. It didn't take away the game abilities I supposedly had. The levels didn't make me repeat them three times to finally finish. In fact, playing Bastion was downright fun! It made me so dizzy I had to take a few deep, steadying breaths. I'm not used to games being fun, you see, because I haven't been playing much besides DDO lately.
/endless rant from a ticked customer