As promised, Turbine released the fellowship version of the epic battle Retaking Pelargir as the centerpiece of Update 15.1. This group instance is very similar to the solo/duo version but with two new side quests, four total during each run, more mobs and the epic foes are tougher. Be sure to read the Department of Strategery’s Retaking Pelargir solo/duo guide as a primer to this guide.
This battle is broken into three main stages: the gate winch, the bulwark and the pier. Your group will receive two side quests on both stages two and three. Be sure to bring a tank for the epic foes, especially Archer Thisarti. Use potions for diseases, fears, poisons and wounds in addition to class skills since they can stack quickly. Reaching platinum for the main quest will require the group to satisfy the following conditions:
- Platinum on all four side quests
- Save 13 defenders, 10 citizens and 6 supplies
- No damage to the gate winch and all siege weapons intact
- Defeat Kisung Teng and Zagaróth swiftly (<45 seconds)
If your group manages to succeed, you’ll receive reward boxes with random uber rewards, for example a Gondor-themed steed only available from this battle. It’s +62% speed, 200 morale and bind on acquire, not account, so tough luck if you get more than one.
Again, the instance will take about 20-35 minutes, and you do not need access to the Central Gondor quest pack; it’s open to everyone.
Note: This guide is up to date as of Update 15.1.
Stage one – The gate winch
This part works exactly the same as in the solo/duo version except there are more enemies, more half-trolls and other signature mobs and torch-bearers that will set fire to the gate winch if allowed to complete their induction. Balance your group between both sides – three and three or four and two will work depending on your composition. If you’re paying attention the enemies shouldn’t even get near the soldiers, let alone the winch.
Use engineer traps, crowd control and all other manner of killing power to take down any attacking enemies. This stage will take 5-6 minutes and then it’s on to stage two.
Stage two – The bulwark
At this point in the battle, your brave fighters will need to split up. In addition to the corsairs scaling the walls with grappling hooks, there are now two more spawn points – one behind the citizens and supplies and one near the ballista overlooking the front. Each spot should have one person defending with the rest moving the barricades around to create a slowing and bleeding chokepoint. Use the grappling hooks here to slow down or speed up the pace of the battle, but you’ll most likely want to keep it slow and manageable and cut them all down.
The first side quest will either be Backs to the Wall or Parade of Thieves which are the same as in the solo/duo battle but the assaulters move a bit swifter. One person should be sufficient for each of these quests, but make sure you communicate with your group or you might end up with three people far from the battle when the next side quest activates.
The second side quest will either be Kang-thek the Sorcerer or Ugturu the Half-troll. Again, same as in the solo/duo battle but with much more morale. Coordinate with the ballista engineer and lure the epic foe to a targetable spot and start pummeling. If needed, pull the person guarding the citizens and supplies for some extra DPS but they’ll need to keep an eye behind them since those perishables will go down rather quickly. A ranged fighter like Hunter or Minstrel will work well in that position, but they’ll have line-or-sight issues with the fountain.
When Kisung Teng arrives on the battlefield, most spawning has already ceased so redirect all damage to this epic foe. For these bosses (side quests included) take advantage of the Vanguard killstreak skill Rending Bark and the Captain skill Oathbreaker’s Shame to inflict incoming damage debuffs on the boss. After defeating him, repair and dismantle the barricades and carry them on to stage three.
Stage three – The pier
At the piers, you’ll be greeted by two familiar catapults and that ominous, scalable wall. Build the catapults and designate who will take care of the side quests.
The third side quest will either be The Ship-slaves or The Thrice Blown Horn (yes, the hypenation is backwards and it bugs me). If it’s The Thrice Blown Horn, one or two people will be sufficient. There will be three spawns of enemies with a scout enemy in each. Target the scout first since he is the one that will blow the horn that you’re preventing from alerting reinforcements and count toward your merit.
If you get The Ship-slaves, three to four people should backtrack toward the second stage. One person should aggro enemies along the way while the others focus on freeing the six slaves, two on the lower level and four on the upper level. The amount of enemies you defeat do not affect your merit, so try not to pull unnecessarily.
The fourth and final side quest will either be Archer Thisarti or Okurayo the Minstrel. They’re the same as before just don’t forget about Thisarti’s devastating poisons. All players should return to focus damage on these epic foes to defeat them as quickly as possible.
Then it’s business as usual as the final onslaught commences and the final epic foe, Zagaróth emerges from below. If you want extra DPS, turn the catapults toward the center and bombard him back to the first age.
From my experience, it’s very difficult to get below gold on this battle, but it’s even more difficult to pull it all off perfectly and obtain platinum. Good luck!