KotFE Chapters 1, 2 & 3 Master Mode

With over a year having passed since I completed KotFE on veteran mode and four months since I finished KotET on master mode, I've been overdue for ticking that last achievement off the list: KotFE master mode. To be honest, the main thing that was holding me back was indecision in regards to which character to take into it.

My Sage was an obvious choice. As my main alt she's the character I know how to play best after my main, and she's really overdue for getting KotFE and beyond done from a story point of view as well. I had originally planned to take her through it as my second character after my main, but then kept putting it off due to worries about another light side playthrough not resulting in enough variety and all of the consular companions except Qyzen remaining missing. With Iresso having returned recently and Zenith at least on the radar, there's definitely some incentive there to finally get started in order to see their return stories. On the other hand... Sages are kind of lacking in damage reduction cooldowns, and just how many times do I want to heal things to death anyway?

It was mainly the latter which made me consider my Gunslinger as an alternative choice. Taking a damage dealer with great survival cooldowns through the content just seemed much more appealing from a mechanics point of view. Then again, I already have a smuggler all caught up with the current storyline; could I really justify taking another through when I hadn't completed KotFE/KotET on all base classes yet?

Sentiment and story eventually won out over gameplay considerations, and so Golu began her journey into KotFE. I was immediately treated to some cringe-worthy cut scenes as the bug that causes certain armour sets to display their Imperial look on Republic side apparently still isn't fixed yet.

Anyway, as was my experience with veteran mode, so far KotFE's master mode hasn't been nearly as bad as KotET's, which is why I figured I could summarise the first three chapters in a single post.

I knew chapter one couldn't be that hard since I remembered that there had been a time when people had made a point of speed-running it for CXP, to the point where Bioware felt the need to nerf its rewards. I died a couple of times to some of the skytrooper mini bosses since my damage output was low and I misjudged what to interrupt sometimes, but that was a simple learning experience. Only the last boss seemed to pose a little bit of a challenge, but even he was relatively easy to defeat with a bit of pillar-humping.

Chapter two was a similar experience, which was again not unexpected, as that too had had a reputation for making a good CXP farm for a while. The trash hit less hard as well. I had to laugh though when one of the mini bosses that are based on your class literally one-shot me when I failed to interrupt one of his casts.

The one thing I was curious about was the Monolith fight at the end, because somewhat contrary to the former I had also heard reports of this fight being quite hard. I ended up one-shotting him myself, but it was very slow and involved my character running in circles and healing herself for ten minutes. Afterwards I googled the fight to figure out what I had been missing and apparently you can climb on a rock in a certain spot where he can't hit you and easily beat him that way. Oh well, my way feels more legit to me even if it took longer!

The biggest and very unexpected road block I ran into so far came in the form of the Ground Assault Walker mini boss in chapter three that blocks your way just before you cross that bridge on your way to the droid factory. This is where the Sage's lack of damage reduction cooldowns really hurt me for the first time, because I couldn't survive more than a couple of hits from the walker and the small, fenced-in area wasn't really suited to kiting or breaking line of sight either.

I started by giving Lana some gifts to raise her measly influence rank from one to at least fifteen, but after that seemed to make no noticeable difference I decided that clearly the solution was instead to burn down the walker myself before it could kill me. So I did something I'd never done before: I respecced my Sage to dps, and funnily enough, just like in KotET chapter one, totally clueless dps was the way to victory over skilled healing. Even though I neither knew how to play Telekinetics nor had any accuracy on my gear, I one-shot the boss on my next attempt (though the adds got me afterwards... but it didn't matter because the boss was dead). I expect that this will be something that I'll have to repeat in future chapters.

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