Tag Archives: Headless Horseman

Sunday WoW Items Before Shadowlands

We’re into November, and a bunch of stuff is coming up in World of Warcraft, not the least being the Shadowlands expansion.  But that is out on the 23rd, and a few things are in between then and now.

The November 1 calendar entries

Darkmoon Faire

It is the start of the last Darkmoon Faire before the expansion, and the first one since the big level squish.  You can get a final five points in any of your Kul Tiran or Zandalarian professions before Shadowlands profession updates arrive.  My main is just 3 points shy of finishing engineering, so I’ll be in there with him.  You have until Saturday night to get that done.

I’m also going to see if I can figure out the deal with heirloom gear.  Most of mine seems to be useful only through level 34 now, which isn’t so useful in a 10-50 alt leveling context.

Day of the Dead

It is also your chance to run the Day of the Dead event.  Get on this right away though, as it is a single day event.

Anniversary Event

World of Warcraft turns 16 this year, and the anniversary of the initial launch coincides with the launch date for Shadowlands.  I guess they did not want the two events interfering with each other or confusing anybody, so the anniversary event starts today and ends on November 22nd.  The 23rd is reserved for Shadowlands.

End Date

The event itself is a modest example of the genre.  You get a package in your mail box with some time warped tokens, a quest starter for a time walking event, a firework, and the usual xp boost token.

16 years means 16% boost

I am going to guess that Blizz doesn’t want to go into Shadowlands while giving people an xp boost.  They’ll save that for later.

The Headless Horseman’s Mount

Once again I queued up for the Headless Horseman.  I was half-hearted when Hallow’s End started, but was motivated by Belghast’s post about going all out for it.  Having done an audit of all of my characters, I knew that I had 18 characters who were level 20 or higher after the squish, the minimum level to run the Headless Horseman’s instance.

The first couple of the days I just ran with the dozen eligible characters on the paired servers, Eldre’Thalas and Korialstrasz, that I think of as home.  At the end though I dug out some old characters, spec’d them up, and ran with anybody I could get in the queue.

But, after the final run this morning as the event wound down, I found myself once again without the mount.

Not mine

Lots of masks, a lot of candy, a few rings, one sword, but no mounts.

On the bright side, I didn’t do horribly with the rando alts.  I’d probably go back and spec a couple of them to tank specs just to shorten the wait in the queue, but I didn’t do too bad.  I only had one bad group along the way, which wiped on the event three times before I bailed.  I was tanking that one with a level 50 pally and was putting out more DPS than the rest of the group combined.

Next year in Scarlet Monastery I guess.

The Ringless Horseman

(Post title courtesy of Kaozz)

It was 10pm on Halloween night.

Real life Trick-or-Treating was at an end, our own little trick-or-treater was in bed, the candles in the pumpkins had been blown out, the porch light had been turned off, and all was finally quiet.  Even the cats had settled down,

On Eldre’Thalas, which runs on Eastern Time, the Hallow’s End had faded.  Trick-or-treating was also at an end, the decorations had been stowed away in their various bit buckets, and Azeroth was back to its usual self.

Fortunately, as we learned at Brewfest, the instance servers run on Pacific Time, so they are late to start and late to end when it comes to Azeroth holidays.

Which meant that we had a few more shots at the Headless Horseman to try and get his mount.  Four to be exact.

Ula was not on, but Gaff, in the form of his druid joined us for another round of Headless Horseman fun.  So we were:

73 Druid – Nerral
80 Priest – Skronk
80 Warlock – Bungholio
80 Warrior – Earlthecat
80 Paladin – Vikund

Unfortunately, you need to be level 75 to summon the Headless Horseman, so having Nerral along did not add another shot at the mount.

As before, the battles were pretty manageable.  Not totally easy, but the only way we were going to lose was to screw up pretty badly.

But in the end, no mount.

We got lots of rings, hence the title of this post.  We’d all be surprised if he had any rings left after our haul.

Not that the rings were bad (Vikund is wearing the Ring of Ghoulish Glee now), but by the end we all had most of the rings.  You cannot sell them.  You cannot have more than one of each.   Nerral has a couple of rings now that he can use when he hits level 80.

Other than rings, we did get the Magic Broom to drop four times, and Vikund picked up the Horseman’s Baleful Blade.  It isn’t quite a Tankard of Terror, but it looks nice.

But no Horseman’s Horrific Helm (which would have been nice for Vikund or Earl) and no Horseman’s Reins, the item that gives you the Headless Horseman’s mount.

Did anybody get those reins?

And with that, Hallow’s End was over for us.


Last Call for the Headless Horseman

Until next year Sir Thomas Thompson!

Horsemen and Champions

While we finished the last, real, official, current, canonical five person non-heroic instance last week, swatting down King Ymiron like the bug he is, there were still things on our agenda.  Some loose ends to tie up.

The whole group was on.

80 Priest – Skronk
80 Warlock – Bungholio
80 Mage – Ula
80 Warrior – Earlthecat
80 Paladin – Vikund

And the first order of business was the Headless Horseman, a Hallow’s End standard.

This is our second year hitting the Headless Horseman in hopes of getting his mount.


The Headless Horseman Takes Off

For the group this represented attempts 16 through 20 to get the brass ring.  But it was not to be.  We now have quite a selection of rings, so many that we had to leave one horseman corpse unlooted, but no mounts.

Going after the Headless Horseman did not take us long though.  Compared to last year taking him down seemed quite easy.  There was no question that we were going to win.  Last year we lost once and it was work to win the rest of the time.  This year we previously went at him minus Earl and with a level 54 shaman in tow and it still seemed more like a chase than a fight.  (The shaman died a couple of times, but that didn’t change the balance of the fight.)

I don’t know if this means that were are just better this year in skill/equipment or if the HH didn’t get big enough boost over last year, but we beat him down 5 out of 5 times on Saturday and are 20 out of 20 overall so far.

Which left us enough time to go take a full group run at the Trial of the Champion.

We tried to do this as a four person group previously, and were not successful.  This instance is supposed to be a bit of a step up from the other five person instances in Northrend, so we were back again to give it a try.


Mounted for Battle

The first part, the mounted combat segment, was a bit chaotic as before.  Three of us died during that part.  However, the graveyard is close and if you run back you can mount up and join the battle again.  So after a lot of running around, we defeated the first three bosses in mounted combat.

Then we were treated to a change.  The event has been altered since last we ran it so that now, once the mounted portion is done, the bosses don’t just turn around and start wailing on your lance equipped character.  Instead, they just retire to the gate through which they came, allowing us to get ourselves together and plan out attack.

We faced Morka the Skullcrusher, Zul’tore, and Deathstalker Visceri.  Visceri had a mana bar, so we figured he ought to be first on our list.  We went straight after him.

Earl was able to keep all three on him and, while healing got a little scary for a moment or two, once Visceri was down, the drama ebbed and we were able to drop the other two.

The first round was complete.  We were now further than last time.

Next up was Eadric the Pure, who shows up with nine trash mobs in three groups of three.  We were surprised to find that none of these groups were linked with Eadric, so we were able to mow them down and then move on to the big guy.

His big move is Radiance, a flash of light that damages and blinds you for a short time.  However, this attack can be defeated by simple turning away from him, which the announcement that heralds the attack pretty much tells you to do.

We figured that out pretty quickly, though we all turned around at the announcement of another of his attacks, having fallen for the old “Simon Says” gambit, which did not diminish his Hammer of the Righteous.

In the end, Eadric went down.

Which left us facing the bonus round, the Black Knight.  He was a pushover out on the tournament grounds,  but now he was back from the dead and seemed a bit more formidable.

We had to face the Black Knight three times to get through the encounter.  He comes at you in three phases, first as a scourge, then as a skeleton, and finally as a ghost, and each segment has its own flavor, which we had to learn the hard way.

The first phase was straightforward.  We never had a problem there.

The second phase, when he is a skeleton, sees the Black Knight summon a group of minions who got out of control the first time we ran into them, leading to a wipe.

The second time around, we took care of the second phase by getting Earl to collect all the minions and then Bung and Ula rained area attacks on them, swatting them all down pretty quickly.  Then we smote the Black Knight, which lead us to the third phase, where we wiped again while trying to come to grips with the constant damage to the whole party and the “Marked for Death” special that hit and caused the death of Skronk early in the fight.  Another wipe.

So we ran through the the three phases one more time, there being no partial credit for the Black Knight, and at the final phase just had everybody keep a close eye on their health while we burned him down with maximum DPS.  We still ended up losing Ula and Bung in the fight, but they poured enough damage onto the Black Knight that we were able to finish him off.

And so we stood in victory over the orb that was all that remained of the Black Knight.


Black Knight - Not Invincible

Unfortunately, there was no achievement.  The Trial of the Champion achievement requires you to defeat all the possible bosses in the instance.  One pass through leaves at least three bosses left undone.  So if we want the achievement, we are going to have to come back for another visit.

On the upside, the loot chests were pretty nice, with a couple of nice, purple upgrades for the casters and a good cloak for Vikund.

And so we made it through the Trial of the Champion.  Since it was Hallow’s End there were a few out takes from the victory shot, since everybody seemed intent on scarfing the candy from the Headless Horseman.

Skronk Hurls HHTOCEarl HHTOCbung

We all had the Out With It achievement already, we just like throwing up in public.

As for next week.  I’m not sure what we’ll do on Halloween.  Probably five more shots at the Headless Horseman and some more puking.

Hunting the Headless Horseman

Saturday night found the group back in Azeroth and full of holiday spirit.  It was the last night of Hallow’s End and we were determined to find the Headless Horseman.

The usual suspects were out, all still at level cap:

70 Warlock – Bungholio
70 Warrior – Earlthecat
70 Priest – Skronk
70 Mage – Ula
70 Paladin – Vikund

I had done some scouting with my hunter earlier in the week to find the Headless Horseman.  Thinking that, since he was in the the graveyard of the Scarlet Monastery, that he might be manageable, I summoned him and got smacked down.

He turned out to be a bit higher level than the rest of the instance, being a level 70 boss mob.  My pet and I didn’t get one-shotted, but the fight was only a couple of minutes before we were both down and the Headless Horseman was barely scratched.

I mentioned this to a friend who gave me the basics of the fight, plus the tidbit that everybody can summon the Headless Horseman once per day.  That meant if we went in as a group, we could do the fight five times and harvest five times the drops.

So the goal was set, defeat the Headless Horseman on Saturday night.

I got Vikund out the day before and parked him at the summoning stone outside of the Scarlet Monastery, thinking to facilitate the forming up of the group.  I had forgotten (or perhaps I never knew) that summoning stones not only have a minimum level for usage, they also appear to have a maximum level for usage.

At least I did not have to do any traveling myself.  While I waited for everybody else to find their way back to the instance we last ran so long ago, I hung around and played “Dance, Dance, Recursion” with the horde guys who were hanging out.

Inquisitor Whitemane Memorial Orchestra

Inquisitor Whitemane Memorial Orchestra

Once we were all assembled, we headed on in.  At level 70 the mobs in the graveyard wing are like tissue paper.  On my run in with my hunter I had a problem getting a hit in on some because my pet would kill them so quickly.  So we had no trouble getting to the pumpkin that summons the Headless Horseman and clearing the area.

While I had gotten the basics of the fight (summon him, fight, he throws his head, kill the head, he is back to 100%, fight him again, again with the head, summons some helpers, do him in at last) the actual fight was a bit challenging the first time out just because we still weren’t sure how it would play out.  We are not hard core and level 70 bosses do kill us with surprising regularity.

But we managed it this time.

Headless Horseman Down in Flames

Headless Horseman Down in Flames

That accomplished, we just needed to summon and defeat him four more times to maximize the loot potential.  So, one by one, we all got our turn to summon him.

Ula Gets A Turn

Ula Gets A Turn

Things went well on the next fight, but then, on the third round, Ula got zapped early on and we learned that if you do not kill off the Headless Horseman quick enough in that last stage, he does the head detach routine again and summons more minions.  Being short a good chunk of our DPS, we got into a loop and were slowly ground down until we wiped.

We carried on, bringing the horseman back and defeating him two more times.

The Horseman Up Close

The Horseman Up Close

We decided we wanted that fifth bite at the loot-drop apple, not having gotten that epic mount drop yet.  So I pulled Vikund out, he being the most replaceable member of the group, and brought out Tistann my hunter to summon the Headless Horseman one more time.

We did the fight one more time, brought him down, and failed to get the mount.  Oh well.

We did end up getting three Witches Bands, two Horseman’s Signet Rings, the Magic Broom (which Skronk got), a couple of Hallowed Helms, and all the Tricky Treats we could ever want.

We recalled back to Shattrath where Skronk demonstrated the flying broom and we ate Tricky Treats until we threw up.

Skronk Spews On A Passing Pirate

Skronk Spews On A Passing Pirate

There is, of course, and achievement for eating candy until you throw up.  And one for killing the Headless Horseman.

That covered, and with a little time left on our hands, we ran off and did a few daily quests.  I had never done any of the daily quests.  Some were fun.  I’m always up for a bombing mission. Some were the same old thing, kill n of x.  They were lucrative, of course, but I’m not sure I would do them… you know… daily.

And with that we logged off for the night.  We still have to figure out what we are going to do this coming Saturday night.  The Lich King is still more than a week away.