I rerolled and started up WoW again with a new group a few months ago. We’re rolling along, but at a very casual pace so we all stay at about the same level and group regularly for scheduled instance runs. We’re finally getting the group up to what used to be the pre-endgame instances– Zul Farrak, Maraudon and the Temple of Atal Hakkar aka Sunken Temple.
With the lunar festival going on, it reminded me that it was a good, easy way for non-druids to get the flight path to Moonglade. Druids can teleport there anytime they want– one of those druidy things. Of course, that got me thinking about getting through to Everlook in Winterspring (you need the flightpath in Moonglade to connect to Everlook to fly there).
Ordinarily, the only way to get to Moonglade and Winterspring (55-60) was through the Timbermaw Hold tunnel from northern Felwood. The tunnel is populated with Timbermaw Furbolg, and all players start with a hostile faction rating. The only way to improve your faction with them is to complete a series of repeatable reputation quests and/or grind on hundreds of the Timbermaw’s enemy, the Deadwood. And, if you had been killing the Timbermaw while they were hostile to you, your starting reputation with them is even worse.
Now Felwood is a level 48-55 zone, and the reputation quests and the Deadwood furbolgs are in that range as well, so most folks tended to wait until they were in their 50s or even 60 to grind reputation with them.
For certain crafting recipes and other faction rewards, literally hundreds and hundreds of Deadwoods would need to be dispatched since most of them only offer 5 points each toward reputation (slightly higher at lower levels, and a few chiefs are worth 25, but they are few and far between). “Hostile” to “Unfriendly,” the lowest level of repuation that isn’t kill on sight, on takes 3,000 reputation points. Of course, if you didn’t do any of the quests, that’s 600 dead Furbolgs. With 21,000 points for “Revered”, well, you get the picture. To top it all off, there are only two locations in Felwood to grind these out, so there would usually always be a few groups mowing them down and competing for kills. Fun.
Mindless grinding. I absolutely hate it. Give me a real quest. Make me demonstrate my skill and ability to the precious Timbermaw rather than merely the thickness of my backside. To be fair, though, WoW failed equally with all the reputation factions, IMHO. The Argent Dawn, the Thorium Brotherhood, you name it, they all suck. Bad.
With my older characters, I ultimately bit the bullet and hunkered down to grinding rep so I could get the coveted Mooncloth Boots recipe for my tailor which is only taught by Meilosh, one of the Timbermaw inside the tunnel. Grind, grind, grind and more grind. Too bad I don’t play Lineage, maybe this would have been cake.
This time around though with my new group, I said screw. I’m just not doing that damned grind. Not even a single damned Deadwood. With BC, there is almost no reason at all to go to Everlook. Drops for the Tier 0.5 upgrades? Who needs them, go spend 15 minutes in Outland. What used to be a mysterious and dangerous place is now terra efflua. There’s no there, there anymore, even though it is a really cool zone. Once you reach 58 and can go through the Dark Portal, why bother with any of the old “Level 60” content?
Nonetheless, I was feeling a bit of nostalgia for what used to be the top of the world and there are some good tradeskill recipes available from vendors in Everlook that are always saleable for a profit at the auction house, so I thought, what the heck. I’d like to get my new level 44 priest over to Everlook, grab the flight path and never look at a furbolg again.
Now there’s basically two routes to Winterspring: enter the the Timbermaw Hold tunnel from Moonglade, or from northern Felwood. The tunnel forms a Y underground which is where Meilosh is found. I needed the flight path from Moonglade, so I did the lunar festival quest which involves buying and setting off a small amount of fireworks then the yields an invitation to the festival in Moonglade. Step into the light and FOOM! you’re in Moonglade.
Now the other way for lazy non-druids to get to Moonglade is to tele-mort. If you swim north of Darkshore, you will eventually find yourself in waters that the minimap tells you is part of Moonglade. Take a dive, drown and poof! you will release at a graveyard in Moonglade. Tele-mort.
I picked up the flight path in Moonglade and then decided I’d try to streak through the tunnel to Winterspring. In a prior WoW life, our tank did just that. He just put his head down and streaked on through. Of course, he was full plate head to tow and at or above their level. What about a wee squishy like myself, a mere level 44 holy priest?
From whichever entrance you take (Felwood or Moonglade) it takes about 1 minute or more to walk the tunnel end-to-end. Of course, if you’re Hostile to the Timbermaw, they are doing their best to “slow you down.” At level 44, the Timbermaw were Level ?? or Skull and Crossbones to me. Meilosh is level 55, so they probably had a good 11 levels on me.
At first, I started up the tunnel from the Moonglade side shadowing a roaming Timbermaw out of aggro range. At some point a little way in, he turned back toward me on his patrol, so the game was afoot. I quickly bubbled up with Power Word: Shield and kept running. As I ran, I was picking up more and more Timbermaw and very quickly the PW: S was consumed and I couldn’t yet rebubble. I kept running and slapped a renew on myself which seemed to be mitigating reasonably well. Unfortunately, I got stunned before I could rebubble and the end came quickly. It didn’t help that I hesitated at the Y in the tunnel.
Timbermaw Hold is technically Felwood, so I released to the graveyard in northern Felwood and resurrected with the angel. Of course, respawning in a high level zone with resurrection sickness is probably not for the feint of heart and before I knew it, I was greeting the angel again. I buffed up, bubbled up and sprinted for the road. Fortunately, I was able to ditch the baddies and make it to the flight path at Talonbranch Glade. There’s a weapon vendor there, so I was able to repair as well.
I waited out my resurrection sickness and then was off. I entered the tunnel, this time I opted to wait as long as possible before bubbling up and slapped a renew on myself first. I only caught about 3 Timbermaw before I hit the Y, and from this route, the path to Winterspring was basically straight ahead and avoided the cluster of Timbermaw around Meilosh which is on a slightly lower level. I bubbled up, slapped another renew on and was beginning to think I just might make it when a couple good whacks took my bubble down. I quickly potted a Superior Heath Potion and was about to click my desperate prayer when the cooldown on PW: S was up. I quickly bubbled and was greeted by the snowy vistas of Winterspring. At least if I died here, I’d release to a Winterspring graveyard.
Of course, I kept running a respectable distance from the tunnel to make sure I’d shaken my pursuers which finally gave up the chase. A short trot halfway across the zone on the roads and there I was, Everlook.
I picked up the flight path behind the town and hearthstoned back to Ironforge. No furbolg rep for me, thanks. Not this time.