Matt Bird writes all sorts of nonsense, but he dedicates a large chunk of his time to writing game walkthroughs.
Welcome to Chapter II! The Devourer and his minions have escaped Thole, as well as the treacherous Burial Grounds, but that’s just the first step on their journey. Next up they must face off against a band of Nomads, free-wheeling folk with a taste for war who have penned up the people of Thole. With the right connections, the Devourer may be able to slip past this lot, but doing so could rob the great beast of some valuable new ‘assistance’…
- After smashing through the Skull Gate you’ll appear in the Nomad’s Camp, somewhere on the outskirts of Thole. Immediately after appearing you’ll likely be attacked by one or two Nomad Warriors, which, despite being fairly weak on their own, can give you some trouble if you went through the Skull Gate in a weakened state. Be cautious.
- Start making your way northwest along the path. Check the sides of the path for Duskweed, as it grows here in relative abundance. Try to engage only two enemies at a time, if you can, since these guys are a fair step up from what you encountered previously. It’s not too difficult to survive so long as you take it slow, and keep healing through the expenditure of Soul Essence. The same goes for the Devourer - and perhaps even more so, as the Soul Ravens and Dire Soul Ravens he’ll encounter are highly evasive, and only die easily when hit by special abilities.
- There are buildings to the northwest, and when you try to pass through a narrow corridor you’ll be captured by Zaar, leader of the bandits. (He’ll recognize Jasker, if he’s your Puppet.) This will force you off of the battlefield…
- … and into an arena of sorts. Zaar will then ask you a series of questions, and if you’re playing as Jasker you can be released from bondage without fighting if you exhaust everything you have to say, short of challenging Zaar to a duel. In order to avoid battle as the other two Puppets you'll have to avoid insulting Zaar, and simply tell him that you came through the Catacombs. That said, I highly suggest engaging in combat if you can, as the results are well worth the extra effort.
- This battle begins with a precursor challenge against three Elite Nomads, two Archers and one Warrior. This is quite a dangerous bout regardless of your Puppet, as the arena is quite small. Unless you’re using a melee character, spread out, keep away from the Nomads, and strike from a range with special abilities. Take out the Archers first, then go after the Warrior. Use any abilities which can stun to keep the Warrior out of your hair while you pummel the softer Archers. Be sure to grab the Healing Herbs they drop, as you’ll need them for the second half of the battle.
- Zaar will come out to play after the Nomads are dead, and he’s quite the foe. He hits hard at a close range, making melee combat near-suicidal, and he can hurl his axe at you from a loooooong way away. Continue using long-ranged attacks to smack him about, and stun him to give yourself the occasional reprieve for healing. He doesn’t take near as long to defeat as, say, the Ironclad Zombie, but Zaar is still pretty tough. Beating him will add Zaar to your party as a selectable Puppet, which is pretty awesome, considering how strong he is. He’ll also drop a bunch of gear when defeated, including the unique Zaar’s Ring, a solid accessory for any character… though its reduction of critical hits kinda hurts.
- The narrow confines of the arena will make avoiding damage rather difficult in this battle, and you’ll probably have to leap to the Devourer’s realm to recuperate and revive fallen Puppets. This in and of itself is initially problematic, as this version of the world has a Soul Raven Nest with insane amounts of HP. It will continually spawn Soul Ravens, and these can easily kill the Devourer if not killed swiftly… but, on the flip side, they will provide you with a constant source of Essence with which to repair both the Devourer and the Puppets. Jump back here and use the Devourer’s special abilities to quickly clean out the Soul Ravens (Soulrend is particularly useful), revive and heal up, then leap back to Zaar to continue the actual fight.
- If you defeated Zaar you’ll now have to fight your way out of the Nomad Camp. To the east of the arena you’ll find enemies in both dimensions, though if you switch to the Devourer you’ll also find a Cenotaph waiting. Use it to restore your party back to full health and/or to go to the Realm of Souls to add Zaar to your party.
- Now for some scrounging. Your destination is to the southeast of the Cenotaph, and you’ll be forced to fight your way through hordes of Nomads/Soul Ravens. They’re somewhat daunting opponents, but the experience received from defeating Zaar - and the addition of Zaar to the party - should make the process easy enough. It’s also wise to range through the entirety of the Nomad Camp, collecting items from enemies and boxes/barrels alike, as there’s lots to see. The Devourer in particular will find a Dark Crystal in the far north, up some stairs, which may yield some equipment of use. Make the most of the experience before bugging out.
- Once you’re done exploring, head east from the Cenotaph and follow the path as it curves. The remainder of the Nomad Camp is a string of battles against familiar enemies, and can prove a treacherous slog. So long as it’s outfitted with a solid weapon and armour - likely the stuff it dropped upon defeat - the Ironclad Zombie makes a great choice for wading through these foes with minimal trouble.
- Whether you beat Zaar or not you’ll eventually wind up outside the Nomad Camp, and barred from reentry by a magical gate. Southeast of here you’ll come to a pathway that leads onto the world map itself, as well as your next destination: the Outlands.