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wow Artifact Series: Priest

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The Artifact Series is almost at its end, but not before we've visited the chapels of Azeroth in search of the Priests.

 

Let's take a look at the different specialisations we're going to be dealing with:

  • Discipline revolves around shielding players from harm while keeping them healed.
  • Holy is much more direct in its approach, reversing damage by healing, even after dying.
  • Shadow turns somewhat away from the Light, instead using sinister Shadow magic to inflict pain on enemies.

Discipline Priest - Light's Wrath 

 

An interesting name for sure, let's take a look at the story behind it:

 

"Obsessed with cleansing undead from the world of Azeroth, the fanatical Scarlet Crusade tried to create a second Ashbringer in the form of a staff. However, a dreadlord who had infiltrated the order intervened, interrupting their efforts and triggering a violent magical explosion. The damaged staff’s power proved nearly uncontrollable. After several wielders tried and failed to use the staff safely, the elite magi of the Kirin Tor hid it away lest it unleash further deadly calamities." (source)

 

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Now this is an interesting one. I'm sure any of you that have ever leveled in World of Warcraft, you've probably seen members of the Scarlet Crusade somewhere. The Scarlet Crusade is a religious group that were started up in opposition to the undead. They are mainly based within Tirisfal Glades and are one of the main opponents of the Forsaken. 

 

The Crusade was formed after Lord Uther was betrayed by Arthas and killed. The Knights of the Silver Hand were devastated by the loss of their leader and the devastation that the Scourge wrought across Lordaeron. They tried to defend the cities they could, but the might of the Scourge was simply too much. They had to watch as their people were decimated by the undead.

 

When Uther died, there were two main figures that took over the defenses of Lordaeron by Paladins and Priests: Grand Inquisitor Isilien, a priest acting as the liaison for the Knights, and High General Abbendis, a commander who served under Alexandros Mograine in the Second War. It was said that, as the city fell around them, both men were driven insane. Since there was no longer a Lordaeron to protect, their goal changed. They wandered the land with only one goal in sight: to annihilate any undead they could find.

 

The group grew as they wandered, with figures such as Renault Morgraine, the son of Alexandros, Taelen Fordring, the son of Tirion Fordring, as well as Saidan Dathrohan. 

 

For many of you, the last name won't mean much. Saidan Dathrohan was actually one of the first Knights of the Silver Hand, but he perished during the Third War at the hands of Balnazzar, a dreadlord. You're probably wondering, if he died during the Third War, how on earth was he a part of the wandering party?

 

Balnazzar possessed the body of Saidan and entered the Scarlet Crusade under the guise of the great Paladin. Balnazzar was supposedly "killed" by his brother, Varimathras at Sylvanas' order, but he survived. He wasn't happy with just sitting underground, so he used Saidan to exact his revenge on the undead and the Forsaken. We can assume that, while he is not named, Balnazzar is the dreadlord who attempted to stop the second Ashbringer being created.

 

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The Scarlet Monastery, one of the strongholds of the Crusade.

 

It was from this group that the Scarlet Crusade was eventually built. They are essentially fanatics, with the only goal of eradicating the undead, in any shape or form. The order itself is made up of Priests and Paladins, so it's an interesting choice for the Discipline artifact. The backstory denotes a great power contained within the staff, so great that none have ever controlled it, so it makes sense for the Priest "class leader" to control it.

 

Let's see if there's an alternative!

 

Alternative Artifacts for Discipline Priests

 

Iridi's Staff

 

This might be a slight stretch for those that haven't read the books of the Warcraft universe, but let's give it a go.

 

Iridi was a Draenei Priestess who, along with a friend of hers, served as an apprentice to a Naaru in Outland. After studying under this great being, they were each gifted an extremely powerful staff by their master. Both journeyed to Azeroth in the hope that they might be able to use this great power to aid their people.

 

Upon arrival, a horrible fate was awaiting Iridi's friend. Zendarin Windrunner, a cousin of the Windrunner sisters, murdered her friend and stole the staff. He took it to Grim Batol, hoping that it would aid him there. He had recently pledged his allegiance to Sintharia, the consort of Deathwing, and was attempting to create a new dragonflight, the Twilight.

 

Iridi tasked herself with a journey to Grim Batol in order to retrieve the staff, but soon found herself embroiled in a much greater quest. At Grim Batol she met a group of adventurers, including Vereesa Windrunner, Rhonin, Krasus and Kalec.

 

The group were on a mission to prevent Sintharia from fulfilling her goal and creating the Twilight Dragonflight. They searched Grim Batol and found a nether dragon, Zzeraku, who was to be fed to the twilight dragon, Dargonax. Iridi freed the dragon in the hope that the great beast would fight Dargonax, but it quickly became apparent that the nether dragon would lose the fight.

 

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Sintharia, also known as Sinestra.

 

Iridi attempted to channel her and her staff's power into the nether dragon, but it wasn't enough. Dargonax consumed Zzeraku and turned on the group; Iridi realised the peril that they were in, as well as what it might mean for Azeroth if the Twilight Dragonflight was created, so she forced the last of her and her staff's energy into a last attack.

 

She ended up stunning the dragon long enough for Rhonin, Kalec and Krasus to help her kill it. The effort was unfortunately too much for Iridi. She ended up perishing, but her last request was that she was to see Outland one last time. Kalec took her body and buried it in Outland, but the Draenei died knowing she had saved Azeroth.

 

The events of Iridi happen in the Night of the Dragon book, but I think it's an amazing story that could be extrapolated into WoW for an artifact. Iridi is a Priest herself, but her staff could have had some serious power placed into it. Theoretically, after Dargonax dies, there is nowhere for the immense amount of energy that has been poured into him to go. 

 

So, what if the staff had somehow been infused with his energy after the explosion? One of Dargonax's abilities is being able to acquire the powers of those he kills, so what if the staff took on one of the abilities he had stolen? 

 

When he kills Zzeraku, he steals the ability to move into an ethereal form, as the nether drakes can. What if the staff infused itself with this ability, while also retaining the "Naaru touch" that it had before? It would allow the user an effect that would have a %-chance to force the current friendly target into an ethereal state. In this state, they take reduced damage and perhaps have another small buff applied? 

 

I think this could fit really nicely into the idea of "shielding" for Discipline, since it's reducing damage, not healing. 

 

Holy Priest - Tuure, Beacon of the Naaru

 

It's always a good day for a Priest when the Naaru are involved. Let's see what the story is:

 

"As beings of Holy Light, the benevolent naaru rescued the draenei from their homeworld after most of its people were transformed into demonic recruits for the Burning Legion. Demons nearly overwhelmed the fleeing draenei, but the naaru protected the refugees with this beacon crystal. Tuure channels the Light's essence into healing radiance, regenerating horrific wounds and bringing people back from the brink of death. Ultimately the crystal was lost to Legion forces on an invaded world. It hasn't been seen since." (source)

 

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I'm going to say it outright: Draenei weapon. As much as this might heal people and have the Naaru power, the focus point of this weapon is the fact that it saved the Draenei. This holds no bearing whatsoever for the Alliance races and even less so for the Horde. 

 

The lore here is very self-explanatory, it's essentially the crystal which stopped the Legion from finishing their genocide against the Draenei. I'm seriously disappointed by this, since it isn't a Priest weapon. Let's see what we can come up with.

 

Alternative Artifacts for Holy Priests

 

So, suggesting a different Holy artifact is actually incredibly difficult. In WoW, the Priests are, by the majority, associated with the "Light". The Light itself doesn't actually hold any deity at the head of the belief, since the idea of a God was removed from WoW, as well as angels.

 

Spirit healers are as close to an angel as we can find in WoW, but the majority of references were removed due to the fact that the Light is very closely based on Christianity. Without any ruling deity within the Light, it's difficult to bring a physical being into the artifact sphere. The Naaru are probably the closest thing we have to a physical form of the Light, but it's going to be a bit boring doing another Naaru weapon. 

 

Instead, let's look at some of the other important things we can base a weapon on:

  • Notable Priest weapons in the game, such as Benediction.
  • A weapon based on a notable Priest in lore.
  • Some form of physical embodiment of the Light.

Of the three choices, I think the third one is probably the best. I don't want there to be a simple revisit of another weapon, so why not make a unique one? For my target, I'm going to choose a race that might not at first be associated with the Light, but the Scourge. 

 

Wings of the Val'kyr

 

In the current age of WoW, the Val'kyr are associated with two individuals: Sylvanas and the Lich King.

 

The Lich King forced the female Vrykul of Valkyrion into his servitude as Val'kyr, changing any that were deemed worthy. They are said to judge the fate of any Vrykul that enter combat, with the favoured ones being turned into Ymirjar and the others being turned into Vargul.

 

They also aided in training the Death Knights of Acherus, ensuring that any new warriors wouldn't perish before they were supposed to. They are essentially the spirit healers of the Scourge, bringing the dead to life.

 

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One of the Val'kyr in Acherus.

 

Once Arthas died, there were only nine of the new Val'kyr remaining, but they were trapped atop Icecrown Citadel. This was when the mantle of leadership moved from Arthas to Sylvanas. The Val'kyr needed a vessel to free them, a sister that had experienced both life and death. 

 

The leader of the Val'kyr, Annhylde, sacrificed herself to give Sylvanas life again and the pact began with eight Val'kyr and the Banshee Queen.

 

Despite still holding some kinship with the light, the new Val'kyr don't quite fit the bill for our artifact. They weren't always like this though. The Val'kyr weren't created by Arthas, they actually predate him by a long stretch of time.

 

They were initially champions of the Light, with an immense amount of power. They were incredibly strong warriors in battle, but their main purpose was to serve their people in death. They ensured that the Vrykul warriors ascended to the Halls of Valor where they will meet Odyn.

 

The older Val'kyr died out a long time ago, but they are still an incredibly cool concept. They were essentially the true spirits of redemption for the Vrykul, but they weren't as passive. They were active in their duties, both in life and death. 

 

As a weapon, I think we could see an unbelievably amazing thing come to life: wings. If we look at the Demonology Warlock artifact, they will have a skull floating by their shoulder, so evidently Blizzard aren't set on the conventional weapon forms. The Holy priests already had the Val'kyr model for their Spirit of Redemption, but what about Val'kyr wings while alive? Instead of a weapon, the Priest could have a set of wings on their back which could change the animations of certain spells.

 

The different models could reach across different forms of angels, whether it be an angel of the Light, a Val'kyr, a form of troll "angel", or even wings of the Moon Goddess. It would allow different races to be represented while still giving a fantastic tie to the varying forms of the Light.

 

Let us know if you've got any better suggestions for the Holy artifact, since the current one simply isn't good enough!

 

Shadow Priest - Xal'atath, Blade of the Black Empire 

 

Now that's a scary name, let's check if the story is as fitting for Shadow:

 

"This terrifying dagger was made from the claw of an Old God eons ago, and dark priests used it for ritual sacrifices during the height of the Black Empire. After the fall of the Old Gods, Xal'atath was hidden away by cults. It has surfaced from time to time over the course of history, inevitably associated with some horrific ritual or disaster. The blade has a will of its own: it uses powerful Void energies and mind magics to warp everything around it for some nefarious purpose." (source)

 

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Now this is an interesting one. There is very little lore that is specified for this dagger, since it refers in general to an Old God. The Old Gods of Azeroth were beings that appeared after the Titans had left Azeroth. They came from the Void, seeking to destroy everything the Titans had built. It was from the Old Gods that the Black Empire emerged, housing their great army.

 

Azeroth couldn't handle the sheer levels of power radiating from these ancient evils and ended up buckling under the power, falling into a chaotic state. The Titans returned to Azeroth, but it was too late. The Old Gods had afflicted their creations with the Curse of Flesh, forcing them into slavery alongside the Elemental Lords.

 

A great war begun, but it took centuries before the Titans made any headway. They imprisoned the Old Gods one by one, but they ended up losing their legendary champion, Sargeras. He realised that it was pointless to try and stop all the different evils across the universe, since there was simply no end to the evil. He ended up releasing all the demons he had captured and created the Burning Legion.

 

To have fought an evil as great as the Old Gods, as well as losing one of their brethren, the battle took a severe toll on the Pantheon. These evil beings are more powerful than any Titan, as evidenced by the battle. Each Old God took multiple Titans to subdue it and even then, they couldn't kill any except Y'Shaarj.

 

There are a number of Old Gods, but we have only seen 4 named in the game:

  • C'thun
  • Yogg-Saron
  • N'Zoth
  • Y'Shaarj

Of the 4 that we know of, the dagger most likely comes from C'thun: the dagger itself holds an eye within the hilt and C'thun is known as having eyes all over its body. The scheme of the weapon somewhat matches the style of the body, but we can't be certain. This is mainly due to the fact that we have no idea what Y'Shaarj looked like when whole, nor have we ever seen N'Zoth. 

 

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C'thun, as seen in World of Warcraft.

 

The Old Gods are always a tricky subject, since we know so little of them, and since there might be more on Azeroth that we don't know about.

 

Regardless, I think the Old Gods were a strange choice. Shadow Priests by their nature are not necessarily evil. They still command the powers of the Light, hence their ability to shield and heal, so they aren't completely evil. The Old Gods are the most purely evil beings on Azeroth, they show no respect to the idea of balance whatsoever. Shadow Priests revolve around the idea of balance, as said by Bishop Natalie Seline. Seline is actually one of the owners of this dagger and off-hand, as evidenced by the text on the off-hand, inv_offhand_1h_artifactskulloferedar_d_0Secrets of the Void.

 

While Shadow Priests undoubtedly call upon the magics of the Void and shadows, they understand how to harness it and still allow themselves to control the Light. The Old Gods are essentially completely consumed by the Void, with no regard for anything other than destruction.

 

This does raise a particular question as to whether or not there is actually a link between Shadow Priests and the Old Gods, since they both are proficient in the magics of the Void. Might we see a link between the two in this new artifact quest?

We may even get to see who the fifth Old God is or find the true location of N'Zoth!

 

Let's see if there are any other routes for the Shadow Priests.

 

Alternative Artifacts for Shadow Priests

 

I think the basis for the weapon is actually very good. The Cult of the Forgotten Shadow, led by Bishop Seline, investigated the differences between the Light and Void and discovered a unique relationship. They believed that there had to be some form of balance between the two entities, so they worshiped the Void as other Priests did the Light. I think building from this could work very well, but I personally don't think a fragment of the Old Gods quite fits the Shadow Priest. It represents the Void only, but has no representation of the Light. While it might not be the most exciting of solutions, there is one race that strays dangerously close to the Void, despite being pure effigies of Light.

 

The Dark Star

 

Personally, I feel like this was a missed opportunity. For those of you that don't know, the Dark Star is a Naaru named K'ara. K'ara arrived on Draenor on Genedar, the Draenei ship, many centuries ago. When the ship crash landed, K'ara was thrown from the wreckage and, as a result of the crash, began the inevitable shift in its cycle. K'ara fell from the heavens, shifting into its Void phase as it fell. The orcs of Shadowmoon Valley saw the Naaru's fall and named it the Dark Star.

 

Members of the clan attempted to harness the powers of the Naaru, but they were driven insane by the powers of the Void within. They began to defile the spirits of their ancestors, a direct contradiction of one of their oldest traditions. The chieftain at the time ruled that no other members would be allowed to practice shadow magic.

 

The Dark Star was left alone until the Iron Horde appeared. Ner'zhul attempted to harness the void energies of K'ara, hoping that he could serve the Iron Horde with its power. He sacrificed huge numbers of Draenei in order to complete his work with the Naaru, but he was eventually stopped by an adventurer and Prophet Velen.

 

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Velen purifies the Dark Star.

 

Velen is too late to simply stop the ritual, so he sacrifices himself to purify the Naaru and restore it as a being of light. I think, had they thought ahead this far, that they could have established the Shadow Priest artifact here.

 

Shadow Priests, by their nature, use Void magic, but still have the ability to use the Light. The Naaru are a being of light that has turned to the Void in their inevitable life cycle. What if Velen had not fully cleansed K'ara, but instead had established within it the ability to shift between Void and Light freely, just as the Shadow Priests do with Shadowform.

 

The process could have perhaps taxed K'ara so much that it needed to enter a protective state, in which it forces itself into the form of a crystal. This crystal is an extremely potent, centralised form of energy. The Priest could then use this to construct a weapon, in which they wield the power of a Naaru which freely moves between Void and Light.

 

I think this could fit the idea of the Shadow Priest better, since they require the balance. While none of the Shadowmoon Clan could efficiently control the power without stooping to insanity, perhaps the Priest, who retains a link to the Light, can retain balance in their mind.

 

That's pretty much it for the Priests. Make sure you check out our next, and last, Artifact Series next time: the Mages!

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I'm loving the idea for the Discipline Staff. It makes sense given their desperate attempt to make a second Ashbringer in the wake of the undead hordes sweeping through, killing and infecting everyone around them. Tie in the Dreadlord and Paladin/Priest lore for its construction, I can get behind this.

 

As for the Beacon (Holy) and Xal'atath (Shadow), the article contradicts itself. Displeasure in the crystal as the back bone for the holy staff because its Draenei of origin, but then to suggest they missed an opportunity to use The Dark Star for the shadow weapon left me VERY confused. Thats literally switching out one for the other.

 

The idea behind the Beacon for the holy spec is PERFECT sense. This war isn't about Alliance or Horde, its about the Legion. This crystal kept the Draenei alive from the Legion. Its pure light. When I read its "bio" it made perfect sense to me. The Naaru ARE light and the holy spec uses almost nothing but. You can't get a more pure thing to represent that. Its not about finding links to the Alliance and Horde.. its about finding whatever necessary to defeat the Legion. 

 

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Thanks for the comment! Just to clear up any confusion concerning my comments regarding the Naaru:

 

I criticised the artifact choice because it rests solely on the protection of the Draenei. The only reason that this particular Naaru has any mention in a story anywhere is due to it saving the Draenei. It holds no meaning whatsoever with any other race. Why would the Horde care about this artifact in the slightest? Yes, the Naaru are undoubtedly powerful, but why would a troll priest care about a Naaru saving the Draenei?

 

Maybe my criticism is unwarranted, but I just feel like the lore is too heavily set within a single race. The reason why I chose the Dark Star as a Shadow Priest artifact is because it actually represents the Void, as opposed to the Draenei or the orcs. The lore that surrounds the Dark Star is very orc and Draenei based, but the actual lore of the Naaru itself is Void centred. Since it is directly related to the Void, it is directly related to the shadow spec.

 

The focus of the Holy artifact is on it saving the Draenei, not on its relation to the light. Yes, the Dark Star definitely holds some connotations to races, but the Iron Horde aren't the same as the orcs of the Horde. There is mention of the Draenei, since they helped to purify it, but in the reality of the artifact existing, it wouldn't have as strong of a relationship. It's relationship would centre on the Void and Light working together in one weapon.

 

Basically what I'm trying to say is, the Holy artifact never would have been notable had it not saved the Draenei. The Dark Star would still have been an incredible (and noticeable) power through the Void, even if Velen had never purified it. The focus within the lore for the two weapons is different.

 

That's my opinion at least and my justification for the choices.

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Thanks for clarifying. LOL. I can definitely see your point better now, and in some parts of it agree. My personal outlook is maybe not so much the lore, but it's effectiveness. Its true that a troll or undead priest under normal circumstances wouldn't care for the crystal or may not even know about it. In this situation though with the coming of the Legion, every last race is affected and may go so far to say if Azeroth falls, so does the rest of the universe given our resilience. With something of this magnitude, any object or item that has proven itself against the Legion should be acquired.  

I do agree though that the lore in its entirety is kinda flimsy.

I do love their idea for Xal'atah. The claw of an old God like Yogg'Saron or C'Thun (who we've experienced first hand their ability to mental'y corrupt, confuse, and blast the mind with warping void energies) fits the bill perfectly. Though the Dark Star being forged into a dark dagger version of say, the Ashbringer, would be very exciting, yes.   

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Really happy to hear that and I'm always open to discussion about anything I write! I love it when you guys get involved and give your perspective on it. 

 

I actually think you have a good point in regards to idea of the "need" for anything that has proved effective against the Legion. I was just more assessing from the lore point of view, but it's still a very good point and justification for the weapon. 

 

The claw opens up the extremely mysterious link between shadow and the Old Gods. If Shadow uses the power of the void, there must be some link somewhere to the Old Gods. Will be interesting to see if the use of the artifact opens up any more lore concerning their relationship, if there is one.

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      The first area to start the Argus experience is Krokuun. Green circles on the map indicate Invasion Points, golden icons are Lightforged Beacons used to teleport back to and from the Vindicaar. Argus has no flight points or paths and teleporting (traveling) is faster than on Azeroth. You can't teleport between different Lightforged Beacons, but you can teleport to any Lightforged Beacon aboard the Vindicaar. Lightforged Beacons for areas are unlocked through quests.

      The Vindicaar
      Before we proceed, it's important to talk about the Vindicaar. The vessel plays a huge role on Argus. It serves for transport for both factions and it's important to know what you can find aboard the ship. Every zone will have a separate Vindicaar and it seems we will be using it even in Antorus the Burning Throne raid to travel to the Seat of the Pantheon to fight Argus the Unmaker and imprison Sargeras.
      Vindicaar Map
      Below is a picture of the Vindicaar map. Important quest givers and turn-ins will always be marked with yellow question or exclamation marks on the map.
      The Netherlight Crucible - a system to empower new and existing Relics can be found at 57, 71. Vindicaar Matrix Core - "Warlords of Draenor" style zone perks for Argus can be found at 49, 44. Only one perk can be active at any given time. Examples Light's Judgment Lightforged Warframe The Navigation Console is at 42, 22. You right-click it and pick a Lightforged Beacon to teleport to.
      Reaching the Vindicaar
      After you unlock the Vindicaar you can use it to teleport back to Dalaran at any time and vice versa. A Lightforged Beacon will be available at Krasus Landing in Dalaran and a portal to Dalaran from the Vindicaar will unlock too, but if you're lost on Argus and need to find a Lightforged Beacon to transport you back to the Vindicaar, it's essentially faster to just use Dalaran Hearthstone and reach the Vindicaar from Krasus Landing in Dalaran.
      This is how Krasus Landing in Dalaran looks like if you haven't unlocked the Lightfoged Beacon to the Vindicaar yet. The portal will appear to the left side of the High Vindicator when it becomes available.

      Once you descend to Krokuun a portal will unlock that can be accessed at any time. If you want to get to Dalaran, the Vindicaar portal is at 40, 33.

      Argus Campaign
      In this section, you will learn everything about how to get to Argus and unlock the campaign.
      Getting to Argus
      The first quest is an auto-accept, which means it will automatically appear in your quest log wherever you are. The Alliance has a different intro than the Horde, but after traveling to Argus, both factions will be completing the same quests.
      Alliance Intro
      The Hand of Fate (Alliance) As an Alliance player, take the Dalaran portal to Stormwind and go to Stormwind Harbor to talk to Vereesa Windrunner (21, 30) and turn in the quest
      Two If By Sea (Alliance) Accept the new quest and speak to Vereesa Windrunner. She will have a dialogue option to set sail for Exodar. Horde Intro
      The Hand of Fate (Horde) As a Horde player, take the Dalaran portal to Orgrimmar and go to Bladefist Bay in Durotar to talk to Lady Liadrin on the Sunstrider (58, 12) and turn in the quest.
      Two If By Sea You learn that the Draenei crafted a vessel to take you to Argus safely. It's called the Vindicaar, your main transportation hub on Argus. Accept the quest from Lady Liadrin and set sail for Exodar. Turn in the quest by talking to Vindicator Boros on Azuremyst Isle (21, 55) once you arrive. Accept the next quest from him. Aethas Sunreaver: I see the Alliance answered the call as well.
      Continuation for Both Factions
      Light's Exodus (Alliance) At this point, you will notice the Horde ship that will be just opposite yours and the quests will be the same too. Turn left and take down the path leading to Exodar and Prophet Velen simply by following Vindicator Boros and the rest of the crew (Vereesa & Arathor). Light's Exodus (Horde) Boros tells you to go to Exodar, where Velen and other Draenei gathered in the Vault of Lights. Turn left and follow him and the rest (Aethas and Liadrin) down the path to Exodar. Once you enter Exodar your movement speed will be increased by 60% (Light of the Chosen) and Prophet Velen will speak to you. Vidicator Boros: Come. I will show you to the Vault of Lights. The others await our arrival. Lady Liadrin: Impressive. The Legion won't expect a force this strong. Vinocator Boros: Argus is our ancestral home. We will not see it in the Legion's hands any longer. High Vindicator says: prophet Velen is just ahead, champions. Prophet Velen: Fellow draenei... champions of Azeroth... the time has come to invade Argus. Prophet Velen: We will save our world and put a stop to the Burning Legion... once and for all. Prophet Velen: Come, champion. Let the Light guide your path! When you zone in, you will notice both Alliance & Horde leaders and Illidan talking to Velen. Illidan Stormrage: The Legion grows desperate. We should strike now while their attention remains focused on Azeroth. Prophet Velen: You are right, Illidan. This may be our best chance to gain the upper hand. Talk to Velen to end the quest  
      The Vindicaar Accept the quest from Velen and board the Vindicaar that's now preparered for your assault. You must establish a beacon to transport you to the vessel. Prophet Velen: Lend me your strength, champion. We will open the way together. Right-click the Light Crystal to activate it (1.1 second cast). Afterward, you will be channeling another spell for 15 seconds until a Lightforged Beacon will appear allowing you to board the Vindicaar that's ready to travel to Argus for the very first time. Prophet Velen: The Exodar has long been crippled by the crash that brought us to this world many years ago. Prophet Velen: Every spare moment, every resource, has gone toward the birth of a new vessel. Our instrument of retribution. Prophet Velen: The way is open. Come, children of Argus, allies, champions. The Vindicaar awaits! Conversation upon boarding the Vindicaar: Lothraxion: My brethren in the Army of the Light await our arrival. Only together will we achieve victory. Prophet Velen: The Light will guide us to them. Romuul, begin final preparations and ensure our forces are accounted for. It is time. Grand Artificer Romuul: Yes, Prophet. Right away. Hand in the quest at Prophet Velen (35, 45 aboard the Vindicaar on Azuremyst Isle).
      Into the Night Argus awaits, accept the quest from Prophet Velen to travel to Argus aboard the Vindicaar. Prophet Velen: Let me know when you are ready to depart. Talk to Prophet Velen and click on "I am ready." to travel to Argus. A trailer will play shortly after you find yourself on Argus. Conversation after you enter Argus aboard the Vindicaar Illidan Stormrage: Their next blast will decimate us-- unless we strike first. Prophet Velen: We must destroy the weapon while it is still recharging! Romuul, deploy a bunker below! Grand Artificier Romuul: Bunker deployed, Prophet! Turn in the quest at Prophet Velen and accept the next one.
      Alone in the Abyss Prophet Velen has another quest for you. Speak to Romuul to disembark the Vindicaar. Prophet Velen: Romuul, send our vanguard to establish a front. Grand Artificier Romuul: Activating transport array. Prophet Velen: Champion, we will descend together once you are prepared. Grand Artificier Romuul says: On your mark, champion. Talk to Romuul and select the option: "Take me to the surface." Conversation after you descend: Illidan Stormrage: Come, let us show Sargeras' ilk what they have brought upon themselves. Exodar Vindicator: Our home... what has it become? Prophet Velen: Hold your ground! We must protect the Vindicaar with our lives!
      On Argus
      Three new quests will become available simulatenously. Righteous Fury from Velen and Overwhelming Power from Illidan. Both can be found at 60, 79 in Krokuun (Argus). If you walk down the path, A Stranger's Plea can be picked up from Chieftain Hatuun at 58, 78. Should you decide to go back to the Vindicaar, you will find a portal at 63, 81 in Krokuun (Argus) that will take you back to the vessel.

    • By Stan

      After taking a three-year hiatus, Christie Golden is writing another Warcraft novel!
      Update: It seems that the new book will be about Anduin.
      Placeholder for tweet 889207263268749312 Christie Golden tweeted today about a new Warcraft novel she's writing. While she cannot reveal what the novel is about, we hope it will serve as a prelude to the next WoW expansion.
      Placeholder for tweet 889151974184148994 Christie Golden is a New York Times bestselling author of over 50 novels, including Star Wars, World of Warcraft, StarCraft, Star Trek and Assassin's Creed. Some of her most notable works are Arthas - Rise of the Lich King, The Shattering - Prelude to Cataclysm, Jaina Proudmoore: Tides of War or War Crimes.
      What's your favorite Christie Golden novel?
    • By Stan

      This week's 7.3 PTR patch will have some Elemental Shaman Changes and adjustments to Tier 21 bonuses for Hunters & Monks. What will be different?
      Tier 21 Set Bonus Changes
      Blizzard's currently polishing the latest set bonuses and based on community feedback, a future PTR build (coming this week, probably tomorrow) will introduce the following changes to Tier 21 set bonuses:
      Beast Mastery / Marksmanship Hunter
      Current Beast Mastery T21 Bonuses
      Item - Hunter T21 Beast Mastery 2P Bonus - Kill Command Damage - Kill Command damage increased by 10%. Item - Hunter T21 Beast Mastery 4P Bonus - Wild Call Kill Command Reset - When Wild Call resets the cooldown of Dire Beast, the cooldown of Kill Command is reduced by 1.0 seconds. Current Marksmanship T21 Bonuses
      Item - Hunter T21 Marksmanship 2P Bonus - Marked Shot Sometimes Shoots Twice - Marked Shot has a 15% chance to fire at the target an additional time. Item - Hunter T21 Marksmanship 4P Bonus - Marked Shot Buffs Focus Builders - When Marked Shot deals damage, the damage of your next Arcane Shot is increased by 20% or Multi-Shot damage by 20%, and your next Arcane Shot will generate an additional 5 Focus, or your next Multi-shot will generate an additional 1 Focus. Upcoming Changes
      BM 4P Bonus changed to make Kill Command reduce the cooldown of Aspect of the Wild. MM 2P & 4P Bonuses swapped places, so  2P Bonus: Item - Hunter T21 Marksmanship 2P Bonus 4P Bonus: Item - Hunter T21 Marksmanship 4P Bonus Blizzard (Source)
      Some changes you will see in a future PTR build:

      The BM Hunter 4p has changed to Kill Command reducing the cooldown of Aspect of the Wild.

      The Marksmanship Hunter 4p has changed to just be a way simpler tooltip with roughly the same value, and has swapped places with the 2p. This makes the new 2p a buff to your Focus builders, and the 4p the chance for Marked Shot to shoot a target twice. Mistweaver Monk
      Current Mistweaver T21 Bonuses
      Item - Monk T21 Mistweaver 2P Bonus - Gust of Mists Applies Absorb - When Gust of Mists heals a target, they gain Tranquil Mist, absorbing 20% of the amount that Gust of Mists healed for. Item - Monk T21 Mistweaver 4P Bonus - Renewing Mist Casts Heal Gust of Mist Targets - When you cast Renewing Mist, you have a 15% chance to send a bolt of healing Chi at all targets affected by Tranquil Mist. Upcoming Change
      Tranquil Mist (2P Bonus) will be a HoT effect, instead of an absorb Blizzard (Source)
      In a future build, the Mistweaver 2p bonus will be a Heal Over Time effect instead of an absorb to allow better interaction with the 4p bonus.