Thursday, January 31, 2008
Recently, when my mage was level 48, I visited Azshara, a rarely visited zone situated north of Orgrimmar. The zone has one of the most profitable quests, especially if you are a mage. You just need to collect 4 tablets in some ruins, avoiding or fighting level 48 to 49 nagas. And then you need to deliver them to 4 different places and come back. Three of these places are Orgrimmar, Thunder Bluff, and Undercity, while the fourth is in Azshara. With a mage's teleport, that is quickly done, and all the quests together give over 40k experience points.
But besides that quest series, there isn't much to do in Azshara. There is a group of shipwrecked people hidden in a canyon on the coast, which you need to protect from a nage attack, but the quest leads nowhere, and few people ever even find it. There is another quest to kill some blood elves, some quests involving the Molten Core faction, and some quests about finding the sceptre that opens Ahn'Qiraj. But as these quests require the effort of a whole guild, and AQ is open since a long time on nearly every server, nobody does that quest line any more. Not even sure if you could still start it.
Other than for quests Azshara is a good place for collecting herbs, from Sungrass to Dreamfoil. And there are some ruins populated by demons, which used to be a popular place to farm Felcloth. As neither level 60 herbs nor cloth are very interesting any more, Azshara is pretty much deserted right now.
And when you rid through the zone, you pretty much can't help the feeling that the devs had plans for that zone which were never realized. There are corners populated with various monsters to which no quests point. There are wide empty spaces that could be used for all sorts of things. There is Ursolan, an area full of timbermaw furbolgs with a gate to what appears to be a big furbolg city or dungeon, but the gate can't be opened. There is even a non-functional PvP battleground, a kind of hollow mountain with entrances clearly marked for Horde and Alliance, but no actual instance connected to it.
I wonder if Azshara will ever get the "Dustwallow Marsh treatment", adding a village or two, a few dozen new quests, and opening up Ursolan and the battleground. Problem is that this isn't very likely. WoW doesn't have a huge shortage of level 50 zones or quests. And patch 2.3 adding content to the old world was an exception, normally Blizzard adds content mostly to whatever the current level cap is, as it is there where most of the players are. Azshara exists in its half-finished state for three years now, and it might remain that way forever.