Tag Archives: Jintha’alor

Finishing Zul’Farrak and Returning to Jintha’alor

We were back to finish off Zul’Farrak.  We had made our mistakes, explored the mechanics, and run through most of the challenges, and now we just wanted to punch that “final boss” ticket and get the last two quests out of the way.  It was back to Tanaris for the run.

The general vicinity in Tanaris

Last time Moronae rolled over to level 50.  I was close, so went out and got there as well.  And Skronk and Ula got on during the week to put in some work on leveling, so when we met up our group was:

  • Moronae – level 50 night elf druid
  • Viniki – level 50 gnome warrior
  • Skronk – level 50 dwarf priest
  • Ula – level 49 gnome mage

Level 50 was an expensive one for us.  Moronae and Skronk spent a bunch on new spells, while Viniki upgraded a bit of his gear, including grabbing Julie’s Dagger from the auction house.  It is fast, so my sharpening stones will be all the more effective.

Once we met up, we rode on over to the instance and started moving through it fairly quickly.

Back in ZF again

Being on a mission, we bypassed even more mobs that usual, slipping by the fountain area where the two routes through branch without bothering to clear it out.

The fountain stands unscathed

We did end up getting a patrol while we were on that little hill, but otherwise killed as few trolls as possible as we worked our way around to the stairs once again.

Once again, we cleared out everybody in the area, then ascended the stairs and took down the executioner.  Then we did a round of buffs, got full mana up, then unlocked Sergeant Bly and his companions and started off the event one more time.

Here they come… again!

We followed the same plan as before, concentrating on elites when they came up.  The non-elites threatened to get out of hand for a bit as heals and AOE drew some onto Skronk and Ula, but we managed to keep that under control.

When Bly began the march down the stairs, we followed, and at the base killed off Shadowpriest Sezz’ziz and Nekrum Gutchewer and the few remaining non-elites without much issue.

That done, I immediately went to Weegli Blastfuse and spoke to him, so he would blast open the doors to the final boss.  Skronk and Ula looted Nekrum for his necklace.  And then I spoke to Sergeant Bly, aggroing him for the fight over the Divino-matic Rod.

We slew him and his companions, looted the rod, and were successfully done with the event… on the third try.

Event done, all hostiles down

From there it was over to the big gate, which now lay open for us.

The gates are open

The fight beyond was something I could recall almost nothing about, save a sense that it was a bit of a let down after all the energy of the stairs event.  And that sense was about right.

There are three groups of mobs you need to pull first, then it is time for Chief Ukorz Sandscalp and Ruuzlu.  They actually summon some non-elites during the fight, but we killed them so quickly that the two non-elites they called only managed to get to use after both bosses were dead.  We lined up for a screen shot.

Where the chief once stood

The chief did drop the Ripsaw axe, which would have been a great weapon for Viniki… except that he had already upgraded to Julie’s Dagger, which I mentioned earlier.  Still, a could gold it a couple gold.

The best bit from the final boss was that, on our way out, a couple of stealthed trolls had spawned and attacked us.  An actual post fight surprise mechanic!  I love those!

After that though, we were pretty much done.  We went over to the one area we had bypassed the last three runs, just to see if there was anything to be found… a rare spawn… some loot… whatever.  But there wasn’t much to be had.

The only time we made it to this area

After that we fought our way out, killing a few extra mobs on the way as Ula was closing in on level 50.  Once out we rode back to Gadgetzan to turn in one quest.  Then we recalled and flew on down to the Blasted Lands for another quest turn in.  That, in turn with another quest, sent us up to the Hinterlands again where we needed to go into Jintha’alor once more.

Blue X, Us – Red X, Destination again

We rode on out to finish up The Ancient Egg and Saving Sharpbeak.

The in-game map is still a reasonable guide to getting there.  When we got to the foot of Jintha’alor Moronae was only about 30 minutes from a hard stop deadline he had.  But we felt we could get through in time.  We had just done ZF so quickly, why not?

Well, as we had forgotten, Jintha’alor actually ramps up to level 50 elites pretty quickly, which is higher level than most of ZF.  Still, we were level 44 or so when we last went up, so it was still easier than before.  We were able to bypass a lot of mobs and got to the top pretty quickly, all things considered.

Up at the altar again

We managed to clear around the altar and then knocked out Vile Priestess Hexx and got her key.  That unlocks Sharpbeak’s cage.  We went into the cave to get Sharpbeak and the ancient egg.

Fortunately, the layout for the cave at the top of Jintha’alor is the same as the kobold cave in Arathi Highlands, which I had just been questing in with an alt, so I knew which route was a dead end.  We fought our way quickly into the cave, spotting the egg about where I expected it.

The Ancient Egg!

We managed to collect that… slowly, because when one person takes it the egg has to respawn… but Sharpbeak was nowhere to be seen.  I had to go look up the quest and realized that we needed to get back out and go somewhere else for Sharpbeak.  That was another cave.  Time was ticking down for Moronae.

Unfortunately, things were fast to respawn, so we had to fight our way out again.  Ula hit level 50 along the way in the cave, which was good.  Skronk dying in one battle as we tried to rush was less so, though Moronae’s combat ress came in handy there.

We managed to get out of the cave, away from the altar, and back down the path to the other cave.  Through that and a couple of guards and we were on a plateau where Sharpbeak’s cage was located.

We let him out… everybody gets the update from the same action… and we were able to see him off.

Sharpbeak rescued!

At that point Moronae recalled and logged off, a couple minutes over time.

The rest of us decided to run down the quest turn ins.  From Sharpbeaks plateau you can safely jump off… if you’re careful… and use the terrain to basically climb down the back of Jintha’alor.  That would have been handy to remember previously.

We rode off back to Aerie Peak to turn in Saving Sharpbeak.  The we took the flight path to Menethil Harbor to get back over to Theremore.  It was apparently rush hour on the dock.

Quite the boat crowd on a Sunday afternoon

From there it was back down to Gadgetzen then over to Steamwheedle and Yeh’kinya, where we turned in the quest.  Yeh’kinya then gave us our first quest for Sunken Temple, The God Hakkar.

I think Maraudon is actually next on our list, but we’ll get to Sunken Temple eventually.  Some of us get class quests at level 50 and they seem to all require you to get something from there.

That done, we recalled home once again.

Leaving Steamwheedle

Zul’Farrak is done at last.  Now the four of us are off to Desolace and Maraudon.

Our past adventures in Zul’Farrak listed out:

The Altar of Zul and Jintha’alor

After Uldaman, the next instance on the list for us was Zul’Farrak.  But before we could wander down to Tanaris and start in on that there was some prep work to be done.  ZF is an instance with a group of lead-in quests so we got together to get those done first.  Our group for the venture was:

  • Moronae – level 46 night elf druid
  • Viniki – level 45 gnome warrior
  • Ula – level 44 gnome mage
  • Skronk – level 44 dwarf priest

Moronae had been out working on gold to get his mount, which got him a couple of levels along the way.  The rest of us were about where we left off after Uldaman.

Our destination was the Hinterlands.

Map of the Hinterlands

In the Hinterlands is the hammer that one must transform into the Mallet of Zul’Farrak, which is needed to summon Gahz’rilla, one of the bosses in the instance.  We all still recall the time we went in and forgot to bring the mallet with us.

Otherwise though memories of the Hinterlands aspect of this were vague.  But we would just follow the quests and see where we ended up.

The line starts with the quest Withbark Cages, available in the cave just behind the flight point… the flight point which we all had after I got lost that one time… which was a quick out and back as a group.

Back to get the next quest already

That leads into the quest that sends you out to investigate Altar of Zul.  At the top of the structure, at the Altar of Zul itself, is Qiaga the Keeper, who drops the sacred mallet that becomes the Mallet of Zul’Farrak.  So we headed out to the Altar of Zul to see what we could see.

The steps up to the Altar of Zul

The mobs on the way up, were starting to creep up in levels compared to our group.  They were also a bit close to each other, so we ended up with our share of proximity aggro and pulls.  But they were all non-elite.  However, at the top, Qiaga and Morta’gya were both elites and level 50.

Red level is a warning

However, we met up with Discostuart, a level 47 priest, who was also there for the Altar of Zul.  We joined up with him and went after the elites.  It was a bit of a muddle… Discostuart decided to mind control Qiaga but didn’t mention that up front, which led to some confusion, and we managed to get all the non-elites in the area on us as well… but we managed in the end.  We all got the quest update for investigating the altar and we all got the sacred mallet.

Mallet in hand, it was time to move on to Jintha’alor to find the altar in order to create the Mallet of Zul’Farrak.

Behold Jintha’alor

Jintha’alor is something of an open air dungeon.  Most of the mobs are elite and you have a path to follow up the various walled tiers of the complex.  The altar, from my readings, was somewhere between the two ponds at the back of the complex.

Blue X, Us – Red X, Destination

It started off fairly manageable, with elite mobs being around levels 46-47 and spaced out enough that we were not getting too many accidental adds.  There were even some gaps that allowed us to slip on by some mobs now and then.

Running up the sideline

But that soon started ramping up a bit, and as mobs got to be 48 and 49, our abilities became much less reliable.  That was to be expected, and we have run into that before, but it seemed to get a bit more critical this time around.  Moronae, who has been able to just unleash his DPS so far in our group ended up dying because my taunt, on an 8 second cool down, was hitting maybe 1 in 4 times.

Reviving Moronae after a fight

At our level things are getting a little more serious.  He started using cower, a skill that dumps a bit of aggro, more frequently.  This helped me as I had been blowing all of my aggression on offense that built up aggro.  Now I had a bit more room for damage mitigation.  Things were still close to going off the rails now and then, but we had a bit of luck go our way.

A level 60 player rode past us at one point and on up towards the altar.  I gather they were looking to gain faction with the Wildhammer Clan.  But they cleared a lot of the stuff ahead of us.

Skronk attempting to Mind Vision ahead to check the path

We were able to get pretty far along in the wake of the level 60, though once up at the top we were in among level 50-52 elites.  Those were mobs we could handle one at a time, but there wasn’t a lot of room for error.  A lot of resists meant mobs might go after anybody.  We took out a few of the level 50 wolves up there, but the way in to where ever we needed to be… we were not quite sure beyond the “between the ponds” landmark… was guarded by level 51 mobs that were clearly going to be coming at us in pairs.

About then the level 60, Bootsncats, showed up and asked what we were up to.  I told him we were up here for the altar.

I am for simple explanations

Since I wasn’t sure where it was, and it seemed like we might need to go into the cave just over the way, I added that.

You can see the cave and some targeted mobs

Bootsncats ran ahead and killed a couple mobs, though we chased after and almost managed to get in over our head with a couple of adds.

A level 51 resisting away

But as they went into the cave with us in tow, I started to feel that maybe the cave was too far past our mark.  The altar seemed to be out in the open, there just wasn’t anything to indicate what we had to do.

While Bootsncats was clearing the cave, we went back to the altar and sat around for a bit.

At the altar

One of us clicked on the sacred mallet they had collected and found that would upgrade it to the Mallet of Zul’Farrak.  Objective complete.

We left Bootsncats to his slaying.  As I noted, I think they were up there for the rep grind anyway.  We turned around to play our escape.  The ride out of Jintha’alor is traditionally done by just trying to blow past and out run all the mobs, jumping off terraces and running down wall tops to avoid fall damage.  So we all mounted up and rode off.

There was some confusion as to where we ought to turn.  I just rode down stairs then straight over the next ledge and so on.  Ula fell off the wrong side of a wall at one point and ended up going the wrong way.  Skronk and I were riding all out when we got to the base of the complex.

Nearly there!

However, both Skronk and I got swarmed by mobs at the bottom, dismounted, and killed.  Only Moronae made it out safely.  Skronk and I were close enough to safety that Moronae went to use his combat ress, the one with the 30 minute cool down, to revive Skronk so he could then revive me.  But Moronae mis-clicked and revived me instead.

Oh no, wrong corpse! Skronk was just behind me

There was a quick discussion as to whether or not if I declined it the cool down would go away, but it already seemed to be running.  So I took the ress, Skronk released and came back, and Ula somehow got herself back to us, though I am not sure where she ended up.

We were out and done.  We took a side trip to Skulk Rock to slay some oozes for a quest we picked up.  If Jintha’alor was any guide, we were probably going to need some more levels before we could expect to successfully assault Zul’Farrak.  I figure we probably need be 47 minimum across the board to finish it all.  So something to work on.  But the groundwork has been laid.

Preparing for Sunken Temple

Well, that sounds silly, doesn’t it?

I mean, we did Sunken Temple the previous week, why would we then start preparing for it?

Well, we’ve been big on doing all the quests for instances and seeing all the sites as we make what might be the last run through pre-cataclysm Azeroth, and Sunken Temple has a couple of important quests.

Sunken Temple has the level 50 class quests.  Remember those?

Maybe not.

There were a set of quests, one for each class, that finished up in Sunken Temple.  But you have to be level 50 to get those quests, and as you can see, our line up for the night was just a bit shy of the mark.

49 Blood Elf Paladin – Enaldie (Ula)
49 Tauren Druid – Hurmoo (Vikund)
49 Tauren Druid – Azawak (Skronk)
49 Orc Shaman – Earlthebat (Earlthecat)
49 Undead Mage – Bigbutt (Bungholio)

Hurmoo actually got on earlier in the day to get to 49 to try and keep up, so he still had nearly a full level to go before 50.

Anyway, the class quests each end with a nice blue item as a reward.  This was fine back when you had to be level 50 to have a hope of finishing Sunken Temple.  Our first run at the instance back on the alliance side ended badly when faced with the level 55 Eranikus.

And then came the great November nerf of 2007 on the Tuesday after that first run.  And suddenly Eranikus was level 50 and we walked all over him.  Well, we didn’t wipe in any case.

But they didn’t change the levels of the quests associated with the instances.  So despite being able to finish Sunken Temple, we weren’t high enough level to get the quests.  We decided to work on that.

The quests aren’t simple, talk to the NPC and head into the instance variety either.  No, we had an evening of prep work to do.  First it was off to Steamwheedle.

Taurens on the Beach

There to pick up Screecher Spirits, a quest line that runs along through a couple instances.  This required us to run out to to the Feralas coast to kill three flying snakes, talk to their spirits, and then head back to Steamwheedle.

Flying through Thousand Needles

Once complete, we had to then run off to Zul’Farrak to knock off a couple of bosses for their tablets.

But first we had to engage in a bit of at-level PvP.  A slightly higher level shaman and priest were on the dock at Steamwheedle.  Enaldie rushed right in to tackle them and promptly died.  Then we managed to continue to squander our numerical advantage by joining in one by one until we were all dead.  It took a while, and Earl, Azawak, and Hurmoo keep them busy for several minutes, but in the end we were all dead.

Fortunately for us, they had other tasks to take care of and they didn’t hang around to camp our corpses or otherwise make us any more miserable.  We took our meager revenge on an alliance player hanging around at the Zul’Farrak entrance.  That will show them we’re serious!

Back here again

Once in Zul’Farrak, we made our way reasonably quickly to the first boss.  We managed to bypass quick a bit of the troll trash on the way, but on defeating the first boss somebody, who shall remain nameless, did not get the tablet.

They did not get the tablet because they did not have the quest.  In tracing things back, in turned out that they had not picked up the initial quest.  So it was break time for some of us while others returned to Steamwheedle then flew to Feralas to kill wind serpents, then came back, updated the quests, and finally returned to Zul’Farrak where we reset the instance and started over again.

Fortunately, as I said, the effort to get in and find the bosses was not substantial.

Finishing up our time in ZF

We actually stopped, rang the gong, and killed Ghaz’rilla again, just to do it.  Then it was back to Steamwheedle and off to the next destination, the Hinterlands.

At least we have a mage in our group, so we could get a portal to the Undercity from Tanaris.  However, once there, it seemed that only two of us had the flight point way out in the Hinterlands.  Tarren Mill seemed to be the closest point we all had, so it was off to Tarren Mill.

Luck was with us in that it was Saturday night and we managed to fly in during one of the few moments that Tarren Mill wasn’t under siege by high level alliance players.  We were able to fly in and head to the Hinterlands unhindered.

Through the Hinterlands

We had to head to the far end, both to get the flight point, but also to visit Jintha’alor, where our next quest objective lay.  Hurmoo happened to have a couple of other quests for that area which were sharable.  As on our past visit, we did the slogging fight into Jintha’alor to get to the pinnacle and grab the ancient egg, but on the way out we did the wild ride through everything.

Airborne Kodos!

The ride is not without danger.  But we managed to get down mostly intact.

Post-ride Health

Once clear, we headed down to Raventusk Village, the horde encampment in the Hinterlands, turned in the extra quests we had for the area, then looked towards getting back to Steamwheedle to turn in this leg of the long quest line.  A portal to Orgrimmar and a flight down to Tanaris, then a ride out to Steamwheedle took care of that.  We turned in the quest and got the next segment that leads us to Sunken Temple.

Which left Hurmoo one final task.  We quickly ran out to knock off one more quest which, when Hurmoo turned it in, made him the last one in the group to get this particular achievement.


We were all now ready for our individual class quests in Sunken Temple.  We’ll have to do a bit more preliminary work on a some of them, but we should be ready for our final assault on Sunken Temple come Saturday night.

Oh, and with level 50, Hurmoo can now be a tree.

Make like a tree!

Another advance in healing.

The Mallet of Zul’Farrak

One week back into WoW and already we were short of players for a Saturday night. Bung was out of town while Earl said something about a “wedding anniversary.” A likely excuse.

That left three of us:

47 Mage – Ula
48 Priest – Skronk
49 Paladin – Vikund

We thought we might go looking for that Mallet of Zul’Farrak that came up missing last week in ZF.

gongmessage.png

This meant heading up to the Hinterlands and facing the Altar of Zul.

I was more than a bit dubious about our chances. The last time we went up to the altar we were a group of five and we got plastered all over the scenery. Now there were just three of us, though we were at least a few levels higher now.

Being higher level helped us almost immediately. The last time around our level meant our aggro radius was big enough that even getting to the altar was a pain. This time we managed to get pretty much to the base of the pyramid on which the altar rests before we had to start fighting.

We killed the mobs on the steps and soon faced Qiaga the Keeper and Morta’gya the Keeper, both level 50 elites, as well as a normal level 48 mob. We buffed up, took a deep breath, and went after them.

And won.

We won handily in fact. It was not even a close fight.

We all looted the mallet off of Qiaga. Of course, the mallet is not ready for ZF yet. You have to enchant it first.

enchanting it means a visit to another part of the Hinterlands, Jintha’Alor. More elite trolls in the level 46-50 range.

We took this carefully. You have to get to another altar at the top of Jintha’Alor to transform the mallet, so we battled our way up the stairs and along the paths, taking one or two mobs at a time. I believe we only ended up with more than two a couple of times, and only once was there enough drama in a fight to make anybody nervous enough to get Skronk to start his “remain calm” mantra.

We made it to the top, to the amphitheater where the altar is. There is an elite troll bound to the altar, Elder Torntusk, but he leaves you alone if you don’t bother him.

Around the altar patrols an elite as well as Vile Priestess Hexx. We took out the elite, let Hexx wander away on her rounds, and ran up to the altar to transform the mallet. You just have to get close to the altar and right click on the mallet in your inventory and it becomes the Mallet of Zul’Farrak.

Only one of us needed to get the mallet, but now we have three copies, just in case.

We were pretty much done for the night at that point. We had only one more thing to do, the Valkyrie ride back down and away from Jintha’Alor. While we could have used our hearth stones to head home, there is something of a tradition of mounting up and riding wildly down the stairs and over parapets to get out. It is something of a celebration. So off we went.

downja.png

Of course, here is where we had our only death of the night. Ula took a couple of big hits from passing mobs as well as a couple of rough landings and ended up dead at the bottom of Jintha’Alor. Skronk and I rode on while she just revived at the angel and ported back to Ironforge.

So now we prepared for our next trip into ZF. We have the mallet, we can sound the gong and get on with the instance.