Nostalgia

Theramore

Remember Theramore

5

Over the weekend I wanted to go and see Theramore for the last time as it was probably going to be the last time that I saw the place – the way it is now. It brought back memories of when I levelled my Priest through the zone. I was antsy to  get there as I needed to go to the profession guy there. I think it was the tailor, or maybe enchanting.

So I flew Cool over there pausing just outside the walls to take a few pics while I wondered where Jaina might be. Theramore was just as I remember, peaceful and quiet.

Theramore

Theramore

Theramore

Theramore

Theramore

Theramore

Cool told me she was in the tower so I flew us through the doorway and ran up. Not surprisingly, we were followed by some not so friendly guards. We made it up top to find quite a few NPCs attacking us but took care of them easily. Jaina however was more of a formidable foe – as you’d expect. The first time we both died and on the way back I wanted to see if I could take a good shot of her. I was happy to see she didn’t attack me even though I was almost in arms length of her.

Jaina Proudmore

Jaina Proudmore

Jaina Proudmore - attack

So we gave it another try and by the time Cool had died, I was teleported outside to the lake. It was quite funny when I told him what happened to me but it was a lot of fun to go back and remember how it was before it’s changed forever. Although we can always look back through our pictures and relive our memories.

Scourge Invasion-stance

Scourge Invasion

11

The first Scourge Invasion appeared as a world event when players logged into Patch 1.11 during the opening of Naxxramas. Reintroduced in preparation for the Wrath of the Lich King and tuned for the new level cap of 70, it’s the only world event to ever be repeated.

This is how Tanaris looks today – sun, sand and giant plants, among the other usual stuff.

During the the second Scourge Invasion of 2008, the rares dropped the pants for the new Blessed Undead Slaying sets with 100% drop rate. They could be easily taken down by a tank and DPS / healer if fought without adds. You had to be fast to tag them since they didn’t spawn all that often, especially at highly populated times.

Numerous high-level zones were placed under attack by one or two flying necropoli. These zones could be located by purple skull markers on either continent map and only appeared in Eastern Plaguelands, Burning Steppes, Blasted Lands, Tanaris, Azshara and Winterspring.

Assaulting the Necropolis

The necropoli were accompanied by Necrotic Shards, which could only be found near each of the flying citadels. These shards were always surrounded by a large number of undead who were non-elite, granting 5 Argent Dawn reputation until revered. They were also a consistent source of [Invader's Scourgestones] if slain while having the [Argent Dawn Commission] equipped.

The Shards near the undead weakened as each abomination was killed. When the strength of the shard reached zero, four Cultist Engineers would appear and begin to heal it. Each of these engineers could be “disrupted” through the use of eight Necrotic Runes causing the Acolyte to convert into a Shadow of Doom, a tough 70 elite mob. Defeating them would yield a [Corruptor's Scourgestone], 50 Argent Dawn rep, 30 Necrotic Runes and a chance to drop the chestpiece for the Undead Slaying set.

Destroying all four Shadows of Doom would destroy the Necrotic Shard, healing nearby players for 10,000, grant them a powerful buff and stop new Scourge from spawning for a short time at that location.

Today I took the opportunity to go back to Tanaris in my Blessed Regalia of Undead Cleansing set and re-enact the event. I can’t remember what I had as a weapon so I substituted my Scythe and veil for the occasion.

Scourge Invasion-stance

Aside from the necropolis event, Scourge mobs would occasionally appear in Stormwind and Undercity. However, their spawns appeared to be random as the city NPCs would yell for help. The most common were Flameshockers, level 63 mobs which didn’t hit very hard but had a lot of health. The city NPCs were capable of killing the Flameshockers on their own, but if a player or group chose to tag them, they would receive 5 Argent Dawn rep (at Honoured). Flameshockers could also drop Necrotic Runes.

Pallid Horrors would periodically spawn as they attempted to reach the city leader. The leader would yell they were under attack but did not pose any real threat as they were able to defeat the creatures themselves. Once defeated, a dead Necrotic Shard would spawn. The shard provided a quest to talk to an NPC at Light’s Hope Chapel which could be picked up by any player, even if they didn’t tag the mobs themselves.

The city mobs were neutral and wouldn’t attack a player who hadn’t attacked them first. Fortunately, they didn’t appear to attack vital NPCs such as bankers and vendors so players could simply ignore them and go about their business.

Prince Tenris Mirkblood was added to Karazhan as a part of the Scourge Invasion. He could be found behind a Bloodstained Door in a secluded section of Karazhan, above the stables where Attumen resides. To complete the Chamber of Secrets you had to loot some papers which were the objective of the quest.

You can read about our first encounter back in 2008 where his most popular drop was the Arcanite Ripper. We managed to do this boss twice for our axe wielding tanks back when 10P raids weren’t really that common. However, I was happy to see the Vampiric Batling could be looted by all.

On November 10, 2008 scourge forces attacked Stormwind Harbor and Orgrimmar’s Valley of Honor every thirty minutes with actively hostile 72 elite Frost Wyrm Raptors and 71 elite Towering Horror abominations.

The Haunted Memento could drop from any invading undead mob during the invasion. Just by having the item in your inventory gave you the Haunted buff – an untargetable and harmless Scourge Haunt which could follow you anywhere. The effect could last as long as you had the item in your possession and could be given/tossed to any friendly player by targeting the player and right clicking the item, much like a Heavy Leather Ball or Happy Fun Rock. Catching the item triggered the /cower animation. However, the item was destroyed with no confirmation if the recipient had no bag space. Can you guess who this happened to?

The shadow could be dismissed by placing the memento in the bank, stealthing or summoning a companion though the buff remained. Likewise, if receiving the Memento while your companion was summoned would dismiss your companion.

Do you have memories from either Scourge event?

BoM-banner

Scepter of the Shifting Sands

4

The Scepter of the Shifting Sands was an item created from an extremely long quest chain used to open the Gates of Ahn’Qiraj. Being the first to bang the gong would allow the entire server access to both the Ruins of Ahn’Qiraj and the Temple of Ahn’Qiraj. In Patch 1.9 this epic chain was added but in Patch 4.0.3, it became unobtainable due to world changes and missing quests.

The chain began in Cenarion Hold and required you to go into different raid locations and kill certain bosses meaning you needed 40 individuals to coordinate and collect materials for the end result. It was such an epic chain that it required participation from the entire realm in terms of hand-ins for the War Effort and massive time commitments from the individual if they were determined to complete the scepter for themselves.

Remember the [Agent of Nozdormu] badge which enabled you to loot [Silithid Carapace Fragments]? Each turn-in required 200 fragments rewarding 500 reputation with the Brood of Nozdormu. However, it required handing in thousands of fragments to get the required rep and I have to say that this was one of the most boring grinds I have ever done in-game. In fact, I’d have to say the 500 eggs for Noblegarden were a piece of cake compared to this.

After getting neutral reputation with the Brood of Nozdormu, you were offered the quest to locate the crystalline red tear outside the gates of AQ. So if you ever wondered what that red crystal was sticking out of the ground, there’s your answer. Once you had completed the quest, the following cut scene started.

After that, Anachronos asked you to locate the 3 dragon shards located somewhere in Azeroth, specifically the [Green], [Red] and [Blue] shards with Eranikus, Vaelastrasz and Azuregos respectively holding the secrets to these shards.

The chain eventually led you to Tanaris to talk to a gnome named Narain Soothfancy. One of my favourite items from this part was the turban he gave you which transformed you into his likeness. These days, you won’t find Narain in his hut but his twisted reflection.

I actually didn’t start the chain until Wrath came out due to the effort involved but had always loved the whole event. The opening of AQ was one of the best, most memorable events for me in-game. The Emissary outside Cenarion Hold was so exciting to see and try to kill. When the Gates of AQ finally opened, the lag was pretty intense but I was anxious to try the raid. As soon as I entered AQ20, the RL asked me to continue the pulls on my Hunter. I was nervous but excited at the same time as they were only a couple of pulls into the place when I had arrived. The last time I felt that nervous was when I had to kite Drekk in UBRS. Back then, a bad pull or kite could mean wiping the other 9 players.

Here we had double the people so the pressure was even higher not to wipe. Sadly, we were two pulls away from the first boss when I had to leave. Even today it’s one of my all-time game highlights but then it helps when you know the raid leader :)

One quest I absolutely hated was the one requiring me to go to The Isle of Dread in Feralas to find Lord Lakmaeran, a large chimera. Killing the surrounding Chimaeroks for the 20 [Chimaerok Tenderloin]s were the annoying part as the drop rate was horrible. But I did like the reward – Recipe: Dirge’s Kickin’ Chimaerok Chops.

Since the Isle of Dread no longer exists, there’s a rare chimera in Silithus with a very similar name, Prince Lakma. Interestingly enough he still drops the Chimaerok Tenderloins for the recipe.

Another annoying part of the chain (at least for me) was obtaining [Chapter I] from Dr. Weavil who resided on Alcaz Island in Dustwallow Marsh. His mind control mechanic left a lot to be desired and required Coolidge’s help to complete. I found that kiting him up and down the stairs worked a treat though.

May 2006 – Taking a closer look

Underwater view

I always wondered what this swirling maelstrom was for and even tried fishing in it but couldn’t stand on top of the crates to try =/

After the components of the blue shard were completed, Narain offered the quest to supply the items for an [Arcanite Buoy]. You’re then asked to take the buoy deep off the coast of Azshara and spawn Maws, the “minnow” carrying the shard. When you kill the shark the blue shard drops. One of the rewards for completing this blue chain was the [Band of Icy Depths], an item I still find useful today for things like exploring underwater caverns.

August 2006

Even though the [Black Qiraji Resonating Crystal] could no longer be obtained once the gates were opened, it was still possible to get the feat of strength – Veteran of the Shifting Sands if you had the scepter prior to 4.0.3. All I can say is, I’m so glad I did it before it was too late. A big thanks to everyone who helped along the way, particularly Coolidge :D

So how about you guys?

Was there any part of the chain that you loved or hated or are you just glad you completed it?

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