Join the hunt in the March of Sacrifices, one of the two new dungeons arriving with the Wolfhunter DLC game pack. Discover everything you need to know to survive Hircine’s Great Hunt in this preview article.
Enter the Hunting Grounds
Hircine’s realm, known as the Hunting Grounds, is a world locked in a perpetual contest between predator and prey. Filled with wild creatures both fantastic and mundane in addition to monstrous lycanthropes, it is a mystical wilderness as beautiful as it is dangerous.
“Most of the Deadric realms in The Elder Scrolls Online have a very distinct otherworldly feel to them,” says Mike Finnigan, ESO‘s Dungeon Lead. “The Hunting Grounds, however, has a more natural environment, and as such it bears many similarities to Tamriel’s wilds, but at the same time it’s also just a little bit different.”
A natural, yet mysterious environment
Father to all of Tamriel’s lycanthropes, the souls of those who accept Hircine’s “blessing” spend eternity stalking the Hunting Grounds. However, on occasion, the Daedric Prince hosts a Great Hunt, giving mortals a rare opportunity to enter the March of Sacrifices and stalk a powerful creature of his choosing. In this case, it is the Great Indrik called Tarcyr. While the hunt is dangerous, the rewards for success more than match the risks, as Hircine promises a boon to any who bring him the Indrik’s heart.
“Hircine is fickle with his favor. His followers enjoy the freedom of the Hunting Grounds to forage, hunt, and kill to their heart’s content, but the ultimate reward, a boon from their patron, is sought after above all else.”
Only the greatest of Tamriel’s hunters are skilled and bold enough to take part in the Great Hunt, as those who fail are doomed to remain within the March of Sacrifices forever, and should you and your companions enter the event, you’ll encounter other teams of hunters who (for their own reasons) are after the same prize.
Hircine welcomes you to the hunt
Perhaps most incredibly, as you navigate the March of Sacrifices, you’ll immediately notice the unmistakable presence of Hircine himself looming over the event, watching your every move.
“Make no mistake, you are very much within the Hunting Grounds for Hircine’s amusement,” says Finnigan. “And what better way to give you that feeling than having the big guy himself looking down on you as you hunt?”
Hunt (And Be Hunted)
Within Hircine’s realm, you will encounter many monstrous beasts roaming the wilderness, but be warned: The other teams competing in the event will do anything to win Hircine’s favor, and they can be just as dangerous as any of the Hunting Ground’s native creatures.
In addition to the area’s fearsome beasts and competitors, five challenging bosses guard the twisting paths of the March of Sacrifices, including wild witches, spriggans, and more. Of course, one of the bosses you must face is the target of your hunt: the Great Indrik, Tarcyr.
Stalk the majestic Tarcyr
When stalking this incredible beast, the March of Sacrifices will challenge you and your team in new ways.
“As Hircine is the Daedric Prince of hunters and stalkers in the wild, the biggest element players will want to get used to in this dungeon is using stealth and taking on the role of a hunter,” explains Finnigan. “Some fights will require the use of mechanics not necessarily seen before. In particular, Tarcyr is quite different than anything we have done, and I suspect it will challenge players quite a bit.”
Hunting this majestic beast is no easy task, and you and your team need to be especially stealthy in order to scout out its location for an attack.
Of all your fellow hunters participating in the event, none are more dangerous than Balorgh. An Orc werewolf champion of Vykosa (from Moon Hunter Keep), Balorgh will do anything to win Hiricine’s favor, and as the dungeon’s final boss, he must be confronted if you are to claim ultimate victory.
The ferocious Balorgh
“Balorgh uses his hunting skills to stalk players during the fight, and we used a combination of visual and audio queues to really heighten the anticipation and anxiety of being the prey.”
In Hircine’s realm, the roles of hunter or hunted can change in a moment’s notice, and you and your team will need to watch the shadows if you are to survive.
Should you complete the deadly trials of the March of Sacrifices and win Hircine’s favor, you’ll earn a host of powerful and unique rewards.
These include collectibles such as a Trophy and Bust for completing the dungeon on both Normal and Veteran Mode, the Bestial personality for those who completed the March of Sacrifices at its hardest difficulty, and a Werewolf Behemoth Sigil memento, earned by completing “The Great Indrik Hunt” Achievement.
When crafting the unique The Great Indrik Hunt Achievement and memento, the team saw an opportunity to do something a little bit different from other dungeons.
“The idea for the Achievement and task was born out of the Tarcyr fight,” says Finnigan. “We love to try and telegraph boss mechanics whenever possible, and that desire lead us to develop a side activity where you can hunt Indrik for fun.”
The Werewolf Behemoth Sigil memento transformation (back)
The goal of this additional task was to give players an opportunity to earn something unique, but not interfere with regular attempts.
“We didn’t want it to be a detriment to players trying to obtain the dungeon’s other Achievements (such as Speed Runs, no Deaths, etc.) but for those that may not want those, it’s a fun distraction with a unique reward.”
In addition to the above collectibles, March of Sacrifices also contains three new and deadly gear sets. These include Hanu’s Compassion light set (pictured below) that gives you and anybody you resurrect a powerful buff, helping you both get back into the fight.
Finally, should you complete March of Sacrifices on Veteran difficulty, you’ll earn the Balorgh monster mask. When coupled with its shoulders, this fearsome set buffs your weapon damage each time you trigger your Ultimate ability, opening up your enemies for some ferocious burst damage – perfect for the beast within.
Prepare to Hunt
The Great Hunt and all its dangers and rewards calls to you. Will you enter the March of Sacrifices, stalk the Great Indrik, outwit your fellow hunters, and win Hircine’s favor? Should you fail, you’ll be doomed to roam the Hunting Grounds as prey forevermore! Let us know if you’re ready to join the Daedric Prince’s dangerous game on Twitter @ TESOnline and Facebook.
The Wolfhunter DLC game pack is coming soon for ESO Plus members and the in-game Crown Store.