Flames of Ambition Preview—Black Drake Villa

25/02/2021

Contend with vile mercenaries and unravel baffling puzzles in Black Drake Villa, one of the two new dungeons part of the Flames of Ambition DLC!

A Mansion Ablaze

The ever-enthusiastic adventurer Eveli Sharp-Arrow has been hired to retrieve a mysterious tome from the archives of the Black Drake Villa. This long-abandoned mansion, located in the Gold Coast’s northern hills, was once the home to the infamous Durcorach the Black Drake, a Reachman conqueror and progenitor of the Longhouse Emperors dynasty.

“Eveli is here at the behest of a mysterious benefactor who sent her looking for something very particular within this secret library,” explains Mike Finnigan, ESO’s Encounters Lead. “She is always up for an adventure, and I think that’s what makes her so appealing and such a fun character to work with. Her stakes in the fight are the same as yours, and she loves to go where the road takes her.”

The once-proud Black Drake Villa ablaze

However, this job is not a simple smash and grab, and upon entering the estate’s grounds, you’ll quickly discover that a band of monsters now calls it home. Even worse, black smoke rises from the archives deep below the villa, and it’s up to you and Eveli to race into the fire, confront the mercenary group known as the True-Sworn, and retrieve the tome at its heart.

But who are these flame-touched mercenaries? You’ll have to discover that for yourself.

“You see very early that the library is on fire, so finding out who the True-Sworn are and why they’re there is part of the fun of the dungeon,” says Finnigan. “In fact, some of the mysteries of Black Drake Villa may not fully be revealed until the upcoming Blackwood Prologue or even the Chapter itself.”

As part of the Gates of Oblivion year-long saga, the adventures you and Eveli have within Black Drake Villa will set up the stories to come in 2021, including those within the Blackwood Chapter.

Flame-Touched Secrets

Standing between you and your goal is a tribe of bestial invaders and the fire-wielding mercenaries of the True-Sworn. Goblins, Minotaurs, and salamanders of the Ironeye Clan bar the entrance to the archives, and within, the warriors and mages of the True-Sworn threaten to burn you along with the library’s ancient knowledge.

Battle your way through the estate grounds

Leading these two groups are powerful bosses, including the minotaur chief Kinras Ironeye, the loyal Captain Geminus, and the powerful, flame-wielding leader of the purge, Pyroturge Encratis.

“There are three bosses in Black Drake Villa, and each one has its own Hard Mode, so players can choose their own difficulty in tackling them,” explains Finnigan. “When facing Kinras Ironeye, the Minotaur, you want to focus on eliminating the external threats he adds to the fight. Captain Geminus uses traps and some specific large monsters to challenge players. Finally, Pyroturge Encratis is a two-phase fight where you learn his abilities in the first phase and then have to deal with those abilities in a much tighter space in the second.”

Confront the powerful fire magics of Pyroturge Encratis

As you fight your way into the archive, you’ll discover that the villa holds many secrets, and should you take the time, you might find there’s more to this ancient library than meets the eye.

“Fortune favors the explorers in Black Drake Villa,” says Finnigan. “We always try and lean on what players enjoy in ESO, and exploration and discovery is a big part of all Elder Scrolls games, so the opportunity to provide things that scratch that itch within this dungeon was a lot of fun.”

When exploring the depths of the grand archive, be sure to keep an eye out on your surroundings. You might be surprised what you can find hidden within. 

Gifts from the Ashes

As you battle your way through beast and warrior, you’ll have an opportunity to loot all-new rewards unique to Black Drake Villa, including three gear sets, a monster mask, and a host of Achievements and collectibles. 

This includes Kinras’s Wrath, a medium gear set that grants Major Berserk (greatly boosting your damage) to you AND Minor Berserk to your nearby allies. Perfect for the team-orientated damage dealer!

Also found in Black Drake Villa, the monster mask Encratis’s Behemoth is another team-based set that makes nearby enemies vulnerable to flame while also boosting your allies’ flame resistance. This mask serves you well in your later adventures when you need to fight fire with fire.

Finally, should you complete Black Drake Villa on Veteran Difficulty, you’ll also receive the Illusory Salamander Stone memento, temporarily summoning your very own fire salamander, just like the ones the Dungeon’s final boss uses against you!

Legacy of the Longhouse Emperors

The hidden histories and secrets of the Longhouse Emperors are in flames, but not all the ancient library’s knowledge is lost to the arson of the True-Sworn. Eveli Sharp-Arrow needs your help delving into the inferno, battling the flame-touched mercenary group, and recovering a mysterious tome for her benefactors. Are you excited to begin your Gates of Oblivion adventure with the Black Drake Villa dungeon? Let us know via TwitterInstagram, or Facebook.

The Gates of Oblivion year-long saga begins with the Flames of Ambition DLC game pack, coming March 8 for PC/Mac and Stadia*, and March 16 for Xbox One and PlayStation®4.

*Available only in limited territories.

Keep reading