The Blackfathom Deeps: Alliance Quests

The Blackfathom Deeps

Alliance Quests

The Blackfathom Deeps is a level 20-30 instance located in the northwestern corner of Ashenvale (14, 14). For the Alliance there are 5 quests you should get before heading to the instance.

  1. Knowledge in the Deeps from Gerrig Bonegrip at the Forlorn Cavern in Ironforge (50, 5)
  2. Researching the Corruption from Gershala Nightwhisper in Auberdine in Darkshore (38, 43)
  3. In Search of Thaelrid from Dawnwatcher Shaedlass at the Craftsmen’s Terrace in Darnassus (55, 23)
  4. Twilight Falls from Argent Guard Manados at the Craftsmen’s Terrace in Darnassus (55, 23)
  5. Blackfathom Villainy from Argent Guard Thaelrid in the Blackfathom Deeps

Now that you have the quests it would be a good time to stock up on food, water, and any potions/elixirs that you can afford. I would recommend that once you put yourself in the Looking for Group channel for this instance you try to get a Warlock. They have the spell Underwater Breathing, which is very useful in this instance. If your group does not have a Warlock you will need to pick up an Elixir of Water Breathing from the auction House.

Now make your way to Ashenvale or get summoned there if there are people already at the summoning stone. Once you and your party are ready make your way down the stairs to the pool below. Swim under the wall and up to the other side and you will now make your way through the cave to the instance.

The mobs on the way to the instance are Levels 17-21. Once inside the instance the mobs are levels 22-28 Elite. Your tank should be at least level 24, if not 26, especially if there are higher level dps classes in the group. A tank will be hard-pressed to keep aggro off someone, say an uber warlock, if the warlock has 3-4 levels of spell/gear advantage over them. Trust us on this.

Now that you are inside the instance just go straight ahead, once you reach the first cavern you will need to swim straight ahead to make it to the above water area. You will have to do some jumping to get to the other side. Now follow the path a little ways and you will come to the second cavern and your first boss, Ghamoo-ra, a level 23 Elite. He will be on the island in the middle of the cavern; he will be surrounded by level 22-24 Elites, but they remain yellow and do not need to be engaged, so don’t attack them with any AOE or sweeping attacks. The fight is mainly a tank and spank, but he does have a blockable AOE spell called Trample. Another point of interest is that hunters of the same level can tame him. Cool, huh?

Now go back to where you first came into the cavern and take and immediate right. Swim under water in the little alcove and that is where you will find Lorgalis’s Manuscript for the Knowledge of the Deeps quest. From here swim right again and go to the next alcove, swim under water and come up on the other side of the wall. In this cave is where you will find the next boss; Lady Sarevess a level 23 Elite. She will be surrounded by level 20-23 Elites.

Leave there and continue swimming right, skip the next alcove you see and swim under the second. In that cave you will find Argent Guard Thaelrid, he will give you the quest Blackfathom Villainy. He is a gray-ish, wounded night elf lying face down on the ground. On a side note you can do these quests anytime as I did, they offer a great deal of Argent Dawn Rep. Now leave there and swim… wait for it… right, the next alcove is where you will continue on in the instance.

Follow the path until it comes to an intersection, straight ahead is the next boss, Gelihast. He is a level 24 Elite and is surrounded by levels 20-24 Elites. He is a dual-sword wielder, so make sure your tank has a shield and relatively high block/parry/dodge rating because of his devastating Attack Speed. Next to Gelihast is a table with a orb on it, click on it and you will receive a buff called Blessing of Blackfathom. From there take a left and in either the first or second cave on your left will be the next boss; Lorgus Jett. He is a level 24 Elite and will have level 22-24 Elites around him. He’s an easy caster that has shaman spells, but falls rather easily compared to a heavy-hitting melee mini-boss. (Note that he may appear in other parts of the instance, his spawn is random.)

Now continue on down the path until you come to the next cavern. The first left down the path offers a locked chest at the end. Now from here I recommend you clear the area of all the mobs, when you are done with that go back to the circle pillar in the middle of the room. From there look at the entrance to the Temple door and jump into the water heading in that direction, go under the water and swim into the underwater cave. In there you will find Old Serra’kis, a level 24 Elite. Finding him is definitely harder than fighting him. You might want to kite him out into the cave and fight him on dry land.

Now get back up to the path and head for the Temple. In there you will find Twilight Lord Kelris, a level 24 Elite. Be sure to clear the entire room before attacking him. If you don’t, whatever mobs are left will attack you as soon as you attack him. Around the Shrine wear he was kneeling you will notice four unlit fire bowls, called The Fire of Aku’mai. To get the doors open you will need to light these. WARNING: Only light one at a time. Once one is lit you will be swarmed by a lot of mobs, so only light one then kill all the mobs and then light the next until all four have been lit.

The doors will open and you can proceed on. Follow the path until you come to Aku’Mai. He/she is a level 24 Elite that is able to wipe out a tank who is not properly protected with gear and buffs and an unattentive healer. Poison effects whittle away at the tank’s health even more, but it should also be noted that fear and traps can be effectively used to buy time to heal.

Now that Aku’Mai is dead go to the end of the cave and receive another blessing, at that time a Dwarf named Morridune will appear and offer a port to Darnassus. If all of your quest objectives are complete, take the port and go turn in all of your quests.

Blackfathom Deeps is an instance that can be ran through very quickly if you have the right group and there is some pretty nice loot for all classes. For High level Enchanters it also can be a very nice place to stock up on a lot of blue items to disenchant.

Keyed for Karazhan

Last night saw Gitr through the super long, 18 wave fight in Black Morass with 3 guildies and an orphan Holy paladin in CoT. It was a trial by fire, and I didn’t even know it. I’d been getting along swimmingly with one of the veteran mages in the guild, Pandara, and he was more than happy to come along to get me keyed for Friday’s milestone walk into Kara.

It was a great time for me MTing the instance with such powerful dps in the ranks (Hunter, Mage, and dps Shammy) to rip aggro away from me. The most that happened most of the time, was an occassional turn to the shammy that I taunted right back, followed by a Revenge and a couple of sunders. Being a Fury/Prot spec definitely met me with some challenges, but most of them were my own dealing with how I had my spells on my toolbars. I need to re-arrange things tonight or tomorrow before the raid.

Dark Portal done

The thrills started when Pandara ripped aggro one time and the Rift Lord shot right for him and killed him. Today I found out that one time he rocked my world by accident… that time, he did it on purpose to see what I’d do. It was not until today that I became aware that Pandara is Bp’s alt. The significance there is that Bp is our MT for Kara Team 1 and Team 2… at least until I get geared for Team 2. After that, I have no idea what Runnik’s plan is, but Bp said I have no worries about Friday, even as an OT build, and that he’d be making me do a couple of pulls to get used to taking the reigns.

Outside Kara

To recap yesterday, I got over 2k Honor, 4 BG marks, 30 Engineering points to 261, got the shoulders off of Aeonus (Pauldrons of the Crimson Flight), and got completely keyed for Karazhan. Boy did I sleep well.

Key Fragment #2: Check

I am remiss in not updating that I got key fragment #2 on Friday last week. To get back on track, here we go.

I was questing out in SMV trying to cross off as many off my log as possible when I got a whisper from a 70 mage asking me to a group to complete a quest and that he had a full group AND could summon me AND would pay me 10g. I said I would and I was summoned to the end of the path of Elites just West of the Blood Elf outpost.

Torloth the Magnificent is Dead

I asked what to do to help them, and they said to tank my guts out. There are going to be 4 waves, and I needed to put my game face on… I think they looked at my gear and got worried. We wiped on the first attempt when the second wave let too many mobs free on the squishies, but I think they were targeting mobs I wasn’t tanking full-time. We made it on the second attempt, and the third, and the fourth. People kept coming in the area and I was like a tanking prostitute. I never did get the gold, but I will be able to rip through this when it’s my turn to go to Black Temple.

Soon after, I got to go on another PuG with Alaron to get the fragment from Steamvaults. That was a dang easy job, and we moved on to get the third fragment. Alaron had the key to get into Arc, so we were all set, or so I thought. Anyone guess my problem last Friday? Tempest Keep? Gitr?

Right! I couldn’t fly yet! I ran to the flight point, flew to Area 52, and then got summoned to the TK meeting stone to pick up that flight point. The next thing I knew, every busted out their flying mounts. It dawned on me at that moment that I had finally reached that instance I’d read about that required a flying mount to even get to. Yeah… suck bucket!

After facing some ridicule in green text that I didn’t appreciate much, I left the group and started killing warp hunters, feeling so miserable about the let down of not finishing the fragments that I logged for the night and went to bed.

Respec

Since the Kara Team 2 for Doom’s Assailants needs an OT, and everyone keeps saying I need to return to my ways of Fury, I respecc’d for the awesome deal of 15g last night. I didn’t really get a chance to try it out yet, because I went directly to an AB match… you can guess how that turned out.

Newly-minted 70s in BGs with a re-visited spec do not fare well with epic’d out warlords. I died 6 times and only got 35 honor kills and one Mark of Honor for our 2000/930 loss. It was pitiful. It took 12 of us to re-take the Stables… I don’t know what it is about Alliance and Horde in AB. I’ve played both, so I’m pretty sure most of them have. It just doesn’t make any sense at all that Alliance can’t get their act together.

Gitr's new specSince I’m sure to get a lot of questions and feedback on my new spec, here it is for all to see, comment, and make fun of. I’m not a build shop master by any stretch of the imagination, so we’ll see how this goes when it counts.

I’m going to try to get into TK with a PuG tonight because it’s the second night in Kara for Team 1. Time to get some gear!

Raiding for Dummies, Noobs, and Jabberwocks

LFG StockadesSo I have started yet another toon, but this one will, perhaps, get to do something none of my other ones have: that is raid. He is my first Alliance character in over a year, so that in itself will take some getting used to. I know the Horde area like the back of my hand, but playing the Alliance feels like a whole new game.

I have done many 5-man instances, but honestly I still feel like a noob with every one I have done. So I need to not only level a new toon rather quickly, I need to practice and hopefully master my class. So I have a few questions to help me become a better player, so that when I do raid, I won’t be the weakest link.

  • What are some things one should be doing while leveling to prepare for instances?
  • Should I try pre-BC instances to better learn my class, or should I just get to 70 as fast as possible and maybe do run thrus of lower ones then?
  • What has someone done that made you pleasantly surprised in a PUG? What have you done that surprised people?
  • Now in my case, I am a Demon spec Warlock. I am going that way for leveling. When PUGing, should I automatically give everyone a Healthstone? If there isn’t a Priest who do I Soulstone? Should I offer to do crowd control or just ask which demon they want?
  • What are some of the worst things you have seen a Warlock do in an instance that I should avoid? What have you done in an instance that immediately made you smack your head with your palm?

Give a guy and hand and give me an education I won’t soon forget.

PUG Done Right

So I was in a good PUG the other day, awesome actually and I felt the need to share. First off “good” and “PUG” are two terms that aren’t often used together. Normally PUG = UGH or PUG = /facepalm.

Not this time.

Why? Because despite the fact it *was* a PUG – the people in it knew not only *what* they wanted – but knew how to go about looking for it.

Skychaser was hanging out in Thrallmar the other night and had been alternately questing and running Ramparts with pick up groups in order to build rep and snag gear. I’d already munged through on successful run with a miserable group that included a 70 warrior tank. Poor communication, completely incomprehensible target marking, and craptastic threat generation from the tank (amazing) were all highlights. We wiped at least three times in what I consider to be one of the easiest and most entertaining instances in Outland. The only thing that managed to pull the group through to the end was the fact that the tank had just an insane amount of health. He didn’t have to be good – he just had to survive. Too bad no one else tended to.

Well – I was still smarting after that run, but wanted to go back since I really hadn’t snagged anything useful. While I was grinding through a kill quest I saw the following pop up in general chat:

“Looking for more, Ramparts – Beast Master Hunter or Enhancement Shaman DPS”

A little more specific than I’m used to seeing in a /LFM. Intrigued, I sent a tell and volunteered. Moments later I got an invite – seconds after that I was summoned to the instance.

Nice…they were ready to go! (One point for the PUG – Preparation!)

Upon entering I looked at the group and was somewhat surprised by the composition. Normally – the average PUG run seems to be filled with shadow priests, fury warriors and hunters of indeterminate spec. Everyone wants to dps – no one wants to tank – and everyone expects everyone else to heal. Not here.

We had a holy priest…an Orc tank…a Tauren Fury warrior OT…a feral/resto hybrid spec druid – and me – an enhancement shammy. Roles were quickly delegated and I found myself cheerfully filling the the primary dps slot for the team. Once everyone else was sorted into a role, the druid took on the role of marking targets and explaining the precedence. This was nice, as it’s far easier to manage aggro when you and the tank are working on the same target.

With the basics out of the way, buffs done and loot agreed upon, we jumped into the first pulls and started killing. I tell you, a lot of folks complain about Ramparts and the ugly multi-pulls that come along with it, but our tank was allowed to initiate the fights and cement aggro with not only one target, but *all* targets. No one jumped in and started beating on stuff right away. By the time we did wade in, he already had a great head of steam going and could easily manage the odd onsee twosee that peeled away to go after the healer. If a dps class grabbed aggro for a moment, they immediately stopped pounding the target and allowed the tank to regain control. If he was unable to, the OT would move in and pick the target up and drag it back over to the tank for him to manage as time allowed. All the while our healer conserved mana and easily kept us alive.

I know this is pretty reasonable stuff that any competent group would do – but come on folks – this was a *pug*. Pug’s are famous for ZERO aggro management, poor healing, and spectacular wipes caused by poor aggro radius awareness. I was thrilled to say the least, but kept figuring that our progress thus far was a fluke…The PUG monster would obviously show its head at any moment.

So it was with a sense of excited anticipation that we cleared the first corner of Ramparts in order to create the battle-space for Watchkeeper Gargolmar and his pocket healers. Pulls were consistent and dps applied with precision as we tore down the packs of orcs that surrounded the area. With just enough time to rest and recover a little mana, the tank pulled Gargolmar and the rest of us went to work on his healers. In very, very short order the two clothies were dropped and our group focus fired on the boss. Moments later, the big guy is calling for his (absent) healers and shortly thereafter he’s on the floor.

Not bad.

The rest of the instance pans out in much the same way. Careful pulls, precision dps, and a superlative hybrid druid that always seemed to know when she should DPS and when she needed to pull out of cat (or bear) and help the priest with heals. Even those nasty rings of casters that normally wreck unprepared groups were rounded up and summarily executed. No runners – no unexpected tank death and no adds. The rest of the instance dropped as easily as the trash mobs. We scarred Omor up and took his stuff – and both Vazruden and Nazan were tanked and spanked with little to no fuss at all. Skychaser managed some boss loot and walked away with the nifty Garrote String Necklace, a nice change of pace for me as I rarely win contested loot rolls.

All in all I was just overwhelmed at how well the PUG had run. The players were obviously all well versed in group dynamics and it was a truly pleasant change of pace to see how all of us simply and almost instinctively knew how to support each other. I give the greatest part of this runs credit for success to the tank for knowing his business and to the druid who managed our group, the targeting, and her support role with aplomb. To be clear – everyone in the group knew their job – but the two stars were without a doubt this pair.

In a way, I almost hate that this run was *so* good. When you find a PUG that just clicks, it always leaves the hope that the next PUG you’re a part of will be just as good. Sadly, this is rarely the case. Like a junkie looking for a fix and hoping to get hooked up with “the good stuff”, Skychaser immediately jumped in with another PUG forming for the Blood Furnace. The crew looked good – an old school hunter in full pre-BC epics, a reasonable looking tank, a priest, a warlock and me. As we stood about the instance entrance, buffing and having a bite to eat, the priest suddenly went shadow and said:

“So, who’s healing?”