Zereth Mortis Zone Overview and Guide
Zereth Mortis is the new Patch 9.2 zone, which contains the new Sepulcher of the First Ones raid, a new self-contained progression system in Cypher of the First Ones, many new cosmetics, pets, and mounts, created through the Protoform Synthesis system, and new crafting and gathering materials for every profession, which are used to craft the new maximum item level Legendaries.
This guide will brief you on the zone and its sub-areas, on how its questing progression unfolds, and in the daily / weekly / one-time activities, rewards, and achievements available.
Created by the First Ones as the workshop of the cosmic force of Death, where all of the Shadowlands was originated, Zereth Mortis is currently inhabited by Automa and The Enlightened Brokers, as well as some native life forms and the invading Mawsworn and Anima Devourers.
While your goals in the zone vary over time, the overarching theme is that of exploration, recruitment of allies, and collection of information and powerful artifacts, all with the ultimate goal of stopping The Jailer's plan to use the Sepulcher of the First Ones machinery to remake reality to his whims.
System Graphics Outline Mode
Setting Outline Mode to High in the System / Graphics settings of your WoW client is immensely helpful when questing outdoors, as it will highlight quest objectives, treasures, special enemies, and other useful things that might otherwise go unnoticed.
You can further customize selection highlights for your targets and quest objectives in the Interface / Display menu, in order to make it as comfortable to quest outdoors as possible!
Layout of Zereth Mortis
The green circle in the left side of the map is the town of Haven, where you can repair your gear, set your Hearthstone at the inn, teleport back and forth from Oribos, and access multiple gear and reputation vendors.
The green square on the northwest of the map is Exile's Hollow, where Firim and Pocopoc are located, as well as the Cypher of the First Ones research console and Cypher Lore Codex dispenser.
The green line in the right side of the map connects two Ancient Translocators, which you can use to fly over to the Sepulcher of the First Ones.
You will also be able to set and swap your Conduits or unlock rows of your Soulbinds with the Forge of Bonds placed in the middle of the town. This forge is usable once you return to Haven with your Covenant allies in the first campaign story chapter. Delivering Anima to your Covenant's sanctum is also possible in Haven by talking to your chosen Covenant's representative, located in the middle of the town.
The rest of the map is used for story and daily questing, and has multiple rare enemies (identified as skulls on the map) and treasures sprinkled throughout, which we will detail at the end of this guide.
Flying in Zereth Mortis
You will eventually be able to fly in Zereth Mortis by completing the Unlocking the Secrets achievement, but until you are able to do so, you can use the Ancient Translocators placed around the zone as flight paths to quickly move between areas.
Is is also recommended to change your Covenant to Venthyr before you can fly, as it will make getting to many of the zone's treasures much easier and all combat in the zone is trivial enough that your actual Covenant ability is of little importance.
If you would like to learn more about the requirements for unlocking flying in Zereth Mortis, please see our guide detailing it below.
Zereth Mortis Collectibles
Within Zereth Mortis are plenty of new battle pets and mounts to earn and unlock. To find out more about them, their appearances, movesets, and reuquirements, please consult our collection guides for Patch 9.2 below.
Zereth Mortis Introduction Skip for Alts
After doing them once, you can instantly complete the first three story chapters and gain full access to Zereth Mortis, Pocopoc and the Cypher of the First Ones system on alts by choosing the skip dialogue option of Tal-Inara when starting the Zereth Mortis questlines in Oribos.
Zereth Mortis Storyline Campaign
While detailing every part of the new storyline that unfolds in Zereth Mortis is best left to spoiler articles, there is a new extensive storyline — identical for all Covenants — that will introduce the zone itself, some of the new raid bosses of the Sepulcher of the First Ones, and tie up the loose ends of the Shadowlands plot, such as The Arbiter's replacement and Sylvanas', Anduin's, and The Jailer's fates.
Daily Quests of Zereth Mortis
As you progress through Zereth Mortis you will unlock several daily and world quests of the same kind that are available in most WoW zones: killing, collecting, clicking, and bar-filling.
World quests grant 125 reputation with The Enlightened faction and random, but previewed, rewards. Daily quests only award the previewed rewards.
After completing the third campaign story chapter, you will be able to pick up the quest Patterns Within Patterns in Haven, which you can do again weekly.
Your reward for completing this quest is 1250 The Enlightened reputation, 400 Cosmic Flux, and a Tribute of the Enlightened Elders containing 900+ gold, 140+ Cyphers of the First Ones, 500 Reservoir Anima, and a 233 item level Epic piece. You will also get Renown, if not already maxed.
If you do the campaign, complete 3 world quests every day, and turn in Patterns Within Patterns on cooldown, you will gain enough reputation to unlock Unity at the earliest time possible. The Memory of Unity allows you to have a second Legendary at 291 item level on a large choice of gear slots.
The Enlightened Reputation
Zereth Mortis introduces the new The Enlightened reputation, which is the source of many power upgrades, especially for crafters, as previewed in the previous section. You can consult our specialized guide below for more information on their rewards and how to earn reputation with them:
Legendary Crafting Material: Progenitor Essentia
Progenitor Essentia is the new equivalent of Patch 9.1's Korthite Crystal, used to craft the new Legendary bases through Vestige of the Eternal, which you can get once campaign story chapter 5 is finished and you are Honored with The Enlightened.
You can rarely obtain it in Zereth Mortis when gathering and opening treasures, and can research the Creatian power at the Cypher of the First Ones console to increase the odds of getting it from gathering while buffed by Echoed Jiro found in Zereth Mortis.
Zereth Mortis Catch-Up Gear
Players can get their hands on a full set of item level 226 catch-up gear from both initial quests in Zereth Mortis and Hadja, a vendor which is unlocked after you return to Haven with your Covenant allies after the first campaign story chapter. Each piece will cost you 500 Reservoir Anima, and the tokens to create the items can be sent over to alts due to being bind to account. You can also consider transferring Anima through the Traveler's Anima Cache item purchased at Au'Dara near the Oribos flight master.
Further gear progression can be had with Sandworn Relic traded gear, which has an item level of 246 and is purchased from Rafiq at the Pilgrim's Grace town, in the middle-right edge of the main landmass of Zereth Mortis, near the teleporter to the island containing the Sepulcher of the First Ones. The relics required for this gear can be farmed in the northeast area of Zereth Mortis, the Endless Sands, outlined in green on the map below.
Zereth Mortis Systems
There are three important new systems to interact with in Zereth Mortis:
- The Cypher of the First Ones system is a new progression system fueled by Cyphers of the First Ones which grants open world power bonuses and Zereth Mortis content unlocks;
- Protoform Synthesis can be unlocked through the Cypher system and allows you to create pets and mounts with materials found in Zereth Mortis;
- The Creation Catalyst is unlocked in the fourth story campaign step, Forging a New Path, and allows you to create your own tier set gear!
Rares of Zereth Mortis
There are 29 different rare enemies in Zereth Mortis, and killing them all is the objective of the Adventurer of Zereth Mortis achievement. You also need to kill at least 10 of them in order to unlock flying in Zereth Mortis, as that is the condition for the required Adventures in Zereth Mortis achievement.
Rare enemies that are active will be shown as skulls on the Zereth Mortis map. Most will show up and be killable as soon as they spawn, but some require additional player input in order to become marked on the map and attackable, such as the Corrupted Architect, who requires you to engage the Cartel Xy brokers who are trying to reactivate it first.
As always, the best strategy to take down as many rares as possible is to join other people in the premade group finder and be generally alert to chat mark pins, which appear on your map once you click them in the chat window. You can place your own mark pins by Ctrl+clicking on an unmarked location on your map. Ctrl+clicking a pin removes it, and pins are shareable in chat by Shift+clicking them, just like other items.
Each rare drops 10 The Enlightened reputation (15 for the northeastern Endless Sands rares, who also drop Sandworn Relics), some Cosmic Flux, Reservoir Anima, Cyphers of the First Ones, grey items, and crafting resources for Zereth Mortis' Protoform Synthesis feature of the Cypher of the First Ones. You can also occasionally get profession recipes for your professions, as shown in the image above.
Treasures of Zereth Mortis
There are many minor types of treasures in Zereth Mortis, which are usually placed on hard-to-reach places that can only be easily accessed by Venthyr players using Door of Shadows, Warlocks, or Demon Hunters.
You can also use the Cypher gear jump power shown above to jump into hard-to-reach treasures, so keep an eye out for gear with the Dimensional Translators power!
These typically reward only small amounts of Cyphers of the First Ones, Cosmic Flux and / or other resources, but can be looted once per day.
You can also find one-time treasures which generally grant greater rewards, such as the Stolen Scroll located right above Haven.
Some of the treasures can only be accessed once you have unlocked certain traits on the Cypher of the First Ones console, such as the Drowned Broker Supplies displayed below, located in the lake to the immediate south of Haven. In this case, you require the Dealic Understanding research in order to control the orange circled NPC and retrieve the underwater treasure circled in yellow.
Another example of unlocked treasures are the puzzle boxes unlocked through the Cachial Understanding trait. Pocopoc will point you to some of them when nearby, and you will occasionally get the unlocking of some caches as a world quest. Our Cypher of the First Ones guide has details on every type of puzzle and how to solve them, if you need help.
- 06 Mar. 2022: Added a new tip on how to get inaccessible treasures.
- 22 Feb. 2022: Added extra information on new Zereth Mortis systems.
- 15 Feb. 2022: Guide added.
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