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Zadina

Legion: Arcane Mage Artifact Acquisition

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Since the newest Alpha build, Mages can now play the Arcane specialization. I documented my journey to acquire the Arcane Mage artifact weapon, Aluneth, Greatstaff of the Magna. Join me in this adventure!

 

Sadly, my laptop can’t handle video recordings (well, technically it sort of can, but it’s going to be terrible quality), so this journey will be documented mostly by text and screenshots. If you don't like reading or images, you can check out this video by YouTuber Haxanadu. Feel free to read Blainie’s article about the Mage artifacts, too. To end this introduction, let me remind you that this is Alpha footage and everything is subject to change.

 

The beginning

 

After doing the - common to all three specialisations - introductory quests in Dalaran to unlock the Mage Order Hall, the Hall of the Guardian, you get to pick Aluneth as your artifact weapon. You look around in the deserted Hall to see if you can find any info as to how to bind the staff to someone. You are then sent to talk to Kalec(gos), who is now officially an Archmage of the Kirin Tor. Technically, he took that position after the dissolution of the Blue Dragonflight, but now you can finally see him – joined by the other Archmages – in the inside of the Violet Citadel.

 

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Congrats on the promotion!

 

Kalec reveals that Aluneth was entrusted to the Blue Dragonflight and it is hidden in the Nexus Vault. However, he sends you to scout the Azure Dragonshrine in Dragonblight first. Coldarra is in a bit of a messy situation and Kalec has sensed similar disturbances in the Azure Dragonshrine. Therefore, it's better to go gather intel in Dragonblight first, before heading to the Borean Tundra. Funnily enough, he says he can’t join you, but an older model of him is right in front of you once you use the portal to the top of Wyrmrest Temple.

 

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While you search the Azure Dragonshrine for clues, you notice something sinister is going on: the place is full of Void creatures and what looks like Ethereal constructions. Indeed, there are remnants of the Ethereum, the malevolent faction of the Ethereals. They had allied themselves with Malygos for the Nexus War and they seem to be looking for the artifact as well. Indeed, an image of the leader of the Ethereum, Nexus-Prince Bilaal, appears. Conveniently, he reveals that the Ethereum are also trying to break in the Nexus Vault and get their hands on Aluneth. It is time to get to Coldarra as soon as possible!

 

Adventures in Coldarra and The Nexus

 

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After this short journey to Dragonblight, you finally head to Coldarra and the Nexus. Kalec warns you that the place has been abandoned ever since the Nexus War and it has been overrun by malevolent forces. The Ethereum have actually managed to use the Surge Needles (the floating platforms) in the area to tap more into the void energies of the Twisting Nether. They want to use Aluneth to further the breach into the Twisting Nether, so they can finally accomplish their goal of becoming void. Meanwhile, Aluneth’s energy is pouring outside of the Nexus. You need to harness this raw, chaotic energy in order to destroy the Surge Needles.

 

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A destroyed Surge Needle

 

After you complete this task, the void energy is somewhat lifted from the atmosphere and you hear the voice of an old friend. It’s Azuregos, who must have returned to the Nexus, but was probably captured by the Ethereum. You venture into the The Nexus dungeon, where a scenario begins.

 

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You find a nearly dead Azuregos and you free him from his captivity. He tells you that you need to delve deeper into the dungeon to find a way to access Aluneth, since the Vault’s entrance was severed from the Nexus. Together, you make your way to the Librarium (where the 2nd boss of the dungeon used to be) to find the entrance of the Vault. Azuregos will help you by casting some arcane spells, but mostly he charges at enemies while threateningly channeling Evocation (lol). Some explosions of unstable arcane energy will hinder your way, but eventually you will reach the Librarium...

 

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The end

 

In the Librarium, Azuregos deducts that the entrance to the Nexus Vault is sealed off and you need to find another way to access it. At that moment, the energy from Aluneth surges and it manifests into the Echo of Aluneth, a void being that you will have to defeat.

 

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It is now apparent that you will have to get out of there as soon as possible. You make your way to The Rift, where you find that the bridge that used to be there is gone. Moreover, Nexus-Prince Bilaal is there. It is time to ride on Azuregos' back and face him once and for all!

 

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I swear, the stalactite wasn't there when I pressed Print Screen.

 

Bilaal will transform into a void being and you get to fight him on this last stage of the quest. After you defeat him, Azuregos will open a portal for you through the rift, which will allow you access to the Nexus Vault.

 

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You find yourself on the top of the Nexus tower and there it is, waiting for you: Aluneth (also depicted in the header image). Obviously, as a reminder of how dangerous a weapon it is to wield, it hurts you a bit first. Ultimately, however, the staff yields to you. Azuregos stays behind to guard the Nexus, while you go to Dalaran and receive Kalec’s congratulations on acquiring the staff.

 

Some final words

 

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By now, you've probably guessed that I am terrible at taking screenshots.

 

The questline for Aluneth felt slightly long, with Arcane being quite undertuned and the Alpha server crashing a lot at the time. It was cool to see this mix of old and familiar faces and elements, like the Blue Dragonflight, the Nexus and the Ethereals.

 

I'd say the best part of it was Azuregos' sarcastic commentary. It was really a blast fighting along him and remembering the good old pre-Cata days, when he was a world boss in Azshara. The mistake in the dialogue in the end of the questline, when he calls you a priest, was also hilarious.

 

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At least he didn't call me a shaman or a hunter!!!

 

Overall, there is some potential, since we will probably be doing more quests in later Legion patches for our artifact weapons. There are definitely a lot of questions to be answered about some aspects of Aluneth's current story. Hopefully, all these different elements in the Aluneth questline will be put to good use, so the ending result can be satisfying to everyone!

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So, time for my opinion on this.

 

I remember reading Blainie’s post about Aluneth and I shared his excitement about the staff and its amazing lore. Sadly, I can’t say I was impressed with the questline to acquire it. It makes sense to mix in the Blue Dragonflight and the Nexus, since they both have a connection to arcane magic. However, we’ve been there, done that already with Dragonwrath. I would have preferred something new, just like the adventure in Icecrown Citadel for Felo’melorn. And why now? If Aluneth was always there, why did we find out about it just now?

 

The Ethereum also make sense, at first glance: the Ethereals are known hunters of arcane artifacts and the Ethereum, the rogue faction of the Ethereals, seek to become Void. Why would they appear now, though? According to the lore, the Ethereum doesn’t really care about the Legion, so their appearance now seems a bit out of place. It could potentially have numerous implications, but I don’t think we’ll be seeing them again anytime soon. Moreover, the lore is a bit vague about the Void. It’s unclear whether the Twisting Nether and the Void are separate planes of existence or not. The Void and the Arcane are just another side of the same coin. Still, a lot of questions remain unanswered…

 

The Void is also deeply connected with Discipline and Shadow Priest lore. I haven’t done the Discipline Priest artifact questline myself, but I read that a lot of people felt that the Arcane Mage artifact questline was quite similar. The mistake in the dialogue in the end of the Aluneth questline looks like a token of proof for the similarities between the two questlines.

 

To sum up, there was a mix of elements that seem to have something in common with Arcane Mages and with each other (Blue dragons, Ethereals, the Nexus, the Void). In reality, though, the connective links between them were weak at best. The beginning of the quest in Dragonblight also felt like a bad filler. We need more Aegwynn. I just hope they come up with a dope story for potential Aluneth quests in future patches.

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I hope this is a placeholder, its a carbon copy of the Light's Wrath questline, that's why you see the priest name entry in some of the text.
 

This would be a huge bummer as I was expecting some kind of lore hashout regarding aegwynne.

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