Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Heeding the Call: Druid class quests

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Occasionally, I'll be featuring some guest posts on my blog. Today, once again we have the rawr-tastic Aeman, who talks about epic druid class quests, and what they mean to us today.

Guestcat sneak attack! Vortexx waxed nostalgic over the L60 epic hunter quest line that starts from the Ancient Petrified Leaf in Molten Core. And rightly so, in my opinion - that was an amazing quest that baptised by fire anyone who attempted it. Anything but flawless execution generally resulted in your swift and unpleasant death, and the reward was worth it. And, of course, The Burning Crusade rendered it totally obsolete, surpassed by a blue out of a L61 dungeon. To put a few more nails in the coffin of old-world questing in general, Blizzard reduced the experience required per level from 20-60 (and with Lich King, from 60-70). Add in the triple experience boost from Recruit-a-Friend, and something like the Sunken Temple class quests became a relic of times long past.

So what about druiding? Well, we don't have many. We don't have hunter/warlock pet quests, we were one of the last classes to get a Sunken Temple quest, and we never had an epic weapon like Rhok'delar or Benediction. Naxx40 had Atiesh, but let's be honest: a feral like me was never going to see that pretty thing. I took my Mace of Unending Life and was happy with it (we never got near to getting an Atiesh, anyway). We didn't get much, but we got a few... and some were pretty neat.

1) Heeding the Call: the quest for Bear Form. Honestly, to this day this is a great little quest, with the one exception that Lunaclaw is a pretty nasty critter, L13 on a L10 quest. I had a much easier time as a Tauren thanks to Entangling Roots (the Night Elf version spawns in a cave, and you couldn't root indoors when I did the quest), but all in all - quick, fun, interesting (Thanks Great Bear Spirit!) quest. Also, MacHall made a fantastic comic about it. (:

2) Lessons Anew: the quest for Cure Poison. Unfortunately, PvP-oriented changes made Cure Poison obsolete as compared to Abolish Poison. Combine that with the need for five Earthroot to complete the chain, and I'll admit I skipped this quest without an afterthought when I leveled my Moonkin. Ah well.

3) A Lesson to Learn: the quest for Aquatic Form. Ok, I loved this quest - the original incarnation of this quest, before they nerfed it six ways to Sunday. For those who never knew the original, they made one big change: one of the two pendant pieces currently can be found in a chest near an air fissure (off the coast of Silverpine/Westfall). That piece *used* to be about 15seconds out into Fatigue territory - far enough that after getting to the box and opening it, your only options were Hearth or Teleport:Moonglade because you didn't have TIME to swim back. Night Elves: it was on the far side of the sunken ship. Yeah, all the way out there. One of earliest and most enduring memories was spending a half hour with two other baby druids, swimming around bare-ass naked, trying to find this token without drowning. Frankly, it was awesome. Fast forward to today: Aquatic Form is actually trainable, which I think is just a damn shame. But I suppose the nerfed quest wasn't really worth doing anymore, anyway.

4) Torwa Pathfinder: the Sunken Temple quest. I never did it; the reward was a 50s-level blue item, and I'd been 60 for months when the quest finally went in. My Moonkin got boosted from 30-60 and so never even set foot in Sunken Temple, but in general this is just a quest line like any other, and isn't really worth the effort these days.

5) Morthis Whisperwing: the quest for Swift Flight Form! I've played one character to 80, two to 74, three more to 60, and a whole pile to at least 30 or so, and I think this is simply the best quest line in the game. The integration of all aspects of druiding in the different subquests is brilliant - hell, I'd do the whole thing just for the Aquatic Form quest. ^.^ And hey, the final step gets you access to the Raven God in Sethekk Halls, who happens to drop the coolest mount in the entire game.

I was pretty unhappy when I heard that Swift Flight Form would be trainable at level 71, but I can understand the rationale: expecting players to grind rep for an Auchenai Key after the 60-70 experience reduction isn't really practical. That said, I fully plan to do this quest line with my Moonkin once she hits 77 (and I can afford epic riding for her); it's that good. I'm also still visiting Anzu every other day or so - now that I can solo him - in the hopes that he'll finally drop that mount for me. (:

Last but not least, an honorable mention. If you ever go exploring in Moonglade, in the southeast you may find the Great Cat Spirit padding among the trees. Stop and say hi. Give him a hug. Maybe once upon a time Blizzard had plans for a Cat Form quest line, but they were never realized - Cat, Travel Form, Dire Bear, and Flight Form are all just a quick purchase from the trainer. It's a shame, I suppose... but we'll always have Sethekk Halls and Lunaclaw. Oh, and speaking of shapeshift form quests... hey Blizzard, how are those new feral models coming? Hmm?

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9 remarks:

Keeva said...

OK I'm sorry but this is just getting WEIRD.

This is the exact post I was thinking of doing, just a couple of days ago, about the class quests.

GET OUT OF MY HEAD!

*tinfoil hat*

PS how can you say the Torwa quest isn't worth it? The loot isn't worth it, but all druids HAVE to go do the quest line up to the stab-the-devilsaur part, if only for entertainment purposes. It's the most fun part!

1. Find enormous dinosaur
2. Hibernate
3. *ankle stab*
4. TRAVEL FORM AND RUN LIKE HELL WHEEEE

I've done it four times :P

Luthvian said...

after watching aeman talk about the aquatic form being trainable (this was a few days ago), I decided to at least attempt it old school and do it on my druid. I skipped training the form at the trainer and went swimming to do the quest.

I wish mages had decent class quests. the only two I ever did were the "oo look, I'll make you a mage-only robe with spirit on it!" and the polymorph pig one.

Trismegistus said...

Hi there,

Would you be so kind as to post a short guide on how you solo Anzu?

I think a lot of Druids would be interested in that information.

:D

Hazwoof said...

The Aquatic form questline is VERY worth doing. Not only is it fairly easy, but the belt you get has been upgraded to a blue item with an on-use self-heal! My newest druid was wearing that belt well into his 30s, and it saved his butt on many occasions. :)

Averna said...

@Keeva: LOL. Very weird! I didn't even think of the topic, either, it was all Aeman's idea.

@Luth: Don't you guys have that crazy wand quest that Tabetha sends you on near Theramore?

@Tris: that very well could be the next guest post that Aeman does! I'll bug him about it and see what he says =D

@Hazwoof: Awesome gear + seal form = WIN ^^

coil said...

@Trism:

To be honest, a good part of my "how to solo Anzu" guide would be "have best in slot tank gear." >.> I was doing it for a bit before my most recent round of upgrades, but at this point I'm BIS on all but 4 pieces (or so).

BUT I'll be more than happy to share the few tricks I do have. (:

-Aeman

Anonymous said...

Actually I disagree, all of the forms should be obtained from quests!

I'm lvl80, have 300 riding and refused to train swift flight form.

Last night I just finished the quest line, up to Anzu and it was such a great experience.

At 80, it was not a strain at all. And so what, now I need to grind for lower city rep for a bit. That's still not an excuse for making the form trainable.

Let's not create a whole generation of lazy bum druids, by making all their forms available each time they ding a level!

Druids are unique due to their forms! Let's keep it special and not marginalize it to a simple coin exchange.

4shley said...

On a related note - I feel that hunters should not be allowed to progress to L 61 without completing the hunter epic demon-killing quest. Maybe some small details (like having the leaf only available from Molten Core) can be adjusted, but the rest of it should be required. Less huntards, what?

Good class quests going obsolete makes me sad.

Kae said...

Back when I was a little baby druid wandering the harmless wilds of moonglade (fear teh deer!), I stumbled upon the great cat spirit. I bowed before him and asked my druid mentors in guild, "There's a giant kitty spirit in Moonglade! Do we get a quest from him at a higher level?"

My mentor replied to some effect about the great cat spirit giving me kittens, as often his comments seem to revolve around such things, but then he relented to be serious and said that he'd never seen a quest from the cat. He said it might be a horde-only quest for cat form. For some reason, I ignored the "might be," and thought for a long time that alliance druids had the bear form quest while horde druids had a cat form quest.

Dummy me. When I went to level my horde druid years later, I was disappointed to find that there was no cat quest available.

/gullible?