I usually stick to the new race starting areas when it comes to my reports, but this zone was far too good to pass up. The Silverpine storyline following the Shattering of Azeroth is, in my opinion, the Sistine Chapel of the narratives that Blizzard has done for the reforged zones. Many of the zones flow better then they did before the Shattering, but none now have had the same depth applied to them as the story-weavers at Blizzard have done for Silverpine.
Now, usually when I evaluate a zone that Blizzard has done, I try not to go step by step through the quests. However, in Silverpine, all the main storyline quests flow one to another, and there are almost no quests that have been installed as "filler quests" and therefore inconsequential to the overall gameplay of the zone. Yes, there are still a few kill quests here and there, but most are to aid in the execution of the story; a story that I am only too happy to relay to you, the avid reader.
The Warchief Cometh--Stand by for the Warchief's visit. Accepting this quest starts an in-game dialogue between the Banshee Queen, Dark Lady Sylvannas Windrunner and the Warchief Garrosh Hellscream. The Dark Lady shows Hellscream how she has found a way to both bolster her defenses and perpetuate the Forsaken race--by using the Val'kyr to convert fallen souls into new Forsaken soldiers. Hellscream, however, is appalled by what he sees, comparing the Dark Lady to the Lich King. To ensure the loyalty of the Banshee Queen, Hellscream leaves behind his crownie, High Warlord Cromush, to "guard" Lady Windrunner and to report back to him.
The Gilneas Liberation Front follows and at first glance it would seem to be just a simple kill quest. Though it is a quest just to go out and kill 10 Worgen in the areas surrounding the Forsaken High Command Post, remember that the Forsaken are at war with the Worgen for the control of SIlverpine due to its proximity to the Kingdom of Gilneas. in order to aid in the distraction of the Worgen, High Apothecary Shana T'veen has an idea to collect some ferocious doomweed and "clean" beast guts via the quests Agony Abounds and Guts and Gore. When these three are complete, the Apothecary gives the quest Iterating Upon Success which is a lot of fun. She wants you to kill murlocs--50 Vile Fin Murlocs to be precise. She wants you to use the concoction that she created from the weeds and guts on these murlocs to test its usefulness against the Worgen. Now, let me be clear...I hate murlocs. I REALLY hate murlocs. So normally, the thought of killing 50 of these little monsters would be appalling. However, for this quest, you will be doing a bombing run from the air--making the elimination of these little buggers a lot easier. With no danger to me, I liked this bombing run.
With a successful concoction created to help eliminate the Worgen threat, we must now turn our attention to the outlying farms around the Command Post. First and foremost--the Ivar patch. Dangerous Intentions sends you to the Ivar Patch to meet with Deathstalker Yorick, who is hiding outside the cottage in an outhouse. Yorick wants you to accompany her into the cottage for Waiting to Exsanguinate in order to eavesdrop on a meeting of the Worgens Ivar and Lord Crowley. Crowley wants Ivar and his kin to join the Gilneas Liberation Front to assist them in their struggle against the Forsaken armies. Ivar agrees, and before the meeting is concluded, Ivar smells out the Deathstalker and kills her for her spying. Make your way back to the Forsaken Command Post, and issue Belmont's Report to the Banshee Queen.
Having heard your report, the Dark Lady wants you to assist some orcish sailors who are having problems off the Silverpine shores. The Warchief's Fleet has you going out to locate Admiral Hatchet at the Forsaken Rear Guard. Admiral Hatchet has a great quest for you ... Steel Thunder. This quest is a lot like the quest in Deathknell called Recruitment where you had the young Forsaken named darnell follow you around and the two of you collect Scarlet Crusader bodies and he carried them for you. However, this time you get a Orc Sea Pup to follow you, and you are collecting crates of goods for the Admiral, and he will, with every crate, say something funny. When I ran through this story again on my rogue, after the second crate he was complaining that he couldn't see around them, and after the fifth and final crate, he remarked that, "It hurts so bad, like da time poop came out sideways."
While you are out gathering crates for the orcs, you have two other assignments too. You need to kill a few more Worgen (we are war, after all) for the quest Give 'Em Hell, and you need to collect some diseased organs from the diseased bears and worgs for Playing Dirty. Diseased organs you ask??? What could we possibly want those for???
Three words ........ Mutant Bush Chicken.
The apothecary uses those organs to mutate a bush chicken; but don't worry, It's Only Poisonous if you Ingest It. Use this chicken on the huge new Forest Ettin, he will pick it up and put it in one of his mouths (yes, one of his mouths, he has two heads after all) and after the chicken explodes, it will leave him much easier to dispose of.
Now that you have supplies and thinned the Worgen herd (what DO you call a collection of Worgen anyway) a little, it is time to gather some orcish sailors. There is just one problem standing between you and your goal, Skittering Spiders. To counter this Skitterweb Menace, simply kill 12 of these monsters. And to make the Horde Navy ready to set sail for Gilneas, Lost in the Dark has you free 6 Orc Sea Dogs fro the spidery prisons. Just be careful, not everything that is web wrapped in the field in front of that cave is an Orc. There are any number of bears, worgs, Worgen or ....... nothing in these spider webs in addition to the Sea Orcs. Once you have your Orcs and have killed 12 of the spiders, its time to delve Deeper into Darkness and kill the Skitterweb Matriarch at the rear of the cave.
Once the Orcs are in Order, take the Commendation Letter from Admiral Hatchet back to Dark Lady Sylvannas Windrunner, who has another assignment for you.
Lady Sylvannas decides that it is time to take the fight to the enemy, and regenerate some of hewr lost Forsaken forces at the same time. She has you take a Val'kyr to Fenris Isle, and Raise Forsaken from 20 humans there to fight along your side. These turn out to be very easy fights, as the Val'kyr practically defeats all the huimans for you, you just really need to tag them for her to engage. Once you Bolster your numbers, the Banshee Queen wants you to go inside Fenris Keep, and locate the Human Refugee Council. More easy fights follow as the Val'kyr does most of the work. Once you reach the third floor, in the main room (the same room that EVERYTHING happens in in one of these Keeps), you get drawn into a cutscene where the Human Refugee Council, thinking they have No Escape elect to join Lord Crowley and bolster the ranks of the Worgen Liberation Front, believeing that to be a better fate then to fall in combat and be pressed-ganged into the Forsaken Legions.
Once the Humans become Worgen, your Val'kyr companion flips out. Grabbing you, she lifts you off your feet and brings you back to the Dark lady before you can be spotted b y these new Worgen and made into a chew toy. Accepting your report Lady Sylvannas decides it is time for a history lesson on your way to the Sepulcher.
Lordaeron starts a cut scene in which the Dark Lady tells you the history of the Forsaken. This lesson is EPIC. Being a longstanding fan of the Forsaken, a dip into their lore is always a welcome addition to the gameplay. In fact, I believe this story so exquisite, that I feel compelled to relay the dialogue from it for you here in its entirety:
I have not always been the Banshee Queen. And my people have not always been the Forsaken. Long ago, this land comprised the northern kingdoms of Lordaeron, ruled by King Terenas Menethil. Terenas had a son. Named Arthas. Arthas ... Even saying his. Name makes my body quiver in rage.
This man-child, Arthas, took for himself a cursed blade known as Frostmourne. Through Frostmourne, Arthas killed his own father and razed this land along with every living creature in it. My own death came at. The hands of Arthas when he and his armies sacked my homeland, Quel'Thalas, and murdered my people. In his vast cruelty, Arthas severed my spirit from my body and raised me as a Banshee to serve in his Scourge army.
A similar fate befell all that would die to the Scourge war machine. In death, they were reborn as mindless undead.
But Arthas was not invincible! With each passing day, his power waned--his grip over the will of the damned loosening. It was when Arthas was at his weakest that I struck! And though the hour of his atonement had come, the worm managed to escape his fate, returning to the frozen wastes of Northrend.
With Arthas gone, so too was the control he held over the undead masses of Lordaeron. After recovering my body, I freed the remaining Scourge that were left behind. From the cruelty and mercilessness of Arthas, the man who would be the Lich King, the Forsaken were born.
Our goal ... Our sole purpose was to destroy the Lich King. We threw our lot in with the Horde and began our journey towards redemption.
Now the Lich King is dead, and we have returned. The people who called this land their home in life, do so in death as well. But the Alliance does not recognize our rights. They claim this land is. Their own while attempting to invalidate the claims of the founders of this kingdom.
I will never allow it ... Never!
Lordaeron belongs to the Forsaken -- always and forever.
After arriving in the Sepulcher, Dark Lady Sylvannas wants you to Honor the Dead by recovering 6 Forsaken Insignias from the Veteran Forsaken Trooper corpses that were ambushed attempting to cross Olsen's Farthing with some artillery for the front. Before leaving though, talk to Warlord Tarok to pick up Hair of the Dog, a fun quest that has you spray 8 Orc Sea Dogs with ale (beer) to revive them--because any good sailor will tell you that the best way to get us up and going in a hurry is with a shower of beer. Admiral Hatchet is also back with more work for you. Apparently, with the Human Refugee Council on Fenris Isle drinking the blood and converting over to Worgen, Worgen Reinforcements From Fenris have begun flooding across the lake, and he wants you to help put a stop to it.
When you reach Olsen's Farthing, one of the first things you will find are Worgen with a red "!" above their head. Kill one ... Go ahead, I will wait. Doing so will give you the opportunity to Excise the Taint, wanting you to kill 10 (well, 9 now) Worgen in the Farthing. Just be careful with these Worgen though.....one strike, and they will disappear and reappear behind you. This is another quest that you can just turn into the WoW Gods instead of an NPC, and once you do, you get to Seek and Destroy the remaining Alliance stragglers in the Farthing...in this case, a Worgen hiding on top of a platform inside the building with all the junk piled in front. Collect Smither's Logbook, and again turn this quest into the WoW Gods (in this case, Dark Lady Sylvannas is talking to you in your head and, believing the Alliance to be Cornered and Crushed, has you report to Master Forteski at the Deep Elm Mine).
When you get to Master Forteski, he tells you how he believes that the Bloodfang Clan of Worgen are cornered with Nowhere to Run. So, he asked you to escort him and his men into the mine to move in for the kill. However, what is supposed to be a simple escort quest goes horribly wrong when, upon entering the mines inner chamber, Forteski observes that it is lined with explosives. Packleader Ivar Bloodfang (the same Ivar that we saw earlier at his farm) throws a bomb in to kill everyone inside the mine. In a last desperate act, Master Forteski grabs you and throws you out of the cave, sacrificing himself so that you may live to fight on.
With the mine being ... handled ... the time is right to go and deal with the Orc Sea Dogs and Worgen along the coast. As with the Sea Dogs earlier, these have a chance to say something funny when sprayed with beer "I may or may not have pissed myself." is probably my favorite, though there are others.
When you have sprayed enough Orcs with ale, and killed enough Worgen, go find the call box at the docks to the lake. From this call box, Admiral Hatchet tells you to kill 50 Worgen reinforcements with the cannons until The Waters Run Red with the Worgen blood.
Turning to the Sepulcher to turn in all your quests, the Banshee Queen has another task for you. She wants you to go with the Val'kyr Arthura to the Forsaken Forward Command Post, and report toDeathstalker Cimmander Belmont. The Commander, though, has a job for you before he will tell you why the Dark Lady sent you the. "All Will Be Revealed," he promises--but first he needs six Wolfbane. Before you leave the Command post, turn around and talk to Forward Commander Onslaught because he has some items for you to accomplish as well. You see, the Forsaken are Losing Ground in Gilnaes, so to help even out the odds, Commander Onslaught needs you to kill 12 Worgen Rebels. While you are at it, he also wats you to locate the FCD (Forsaken Communication Device) to help restore communications with the Forsaken Forward Outposts. (As a side note, when you go out of the command post to engage the Worgen in the area, take a good look at the pikes being wielded by the Forsaken Vanguard........they are pretty HOT.) While collecting and killing, keep an eye out for Korok the Colossus, a large ettin running around in the battlefield. Killing him will drop Korlok's Second Head, which should be returned to Commander Onslaught with the rest of your kills and collections when you have completed. He will then send you to investigate the Brak in Communications: Dreadwatch Post. Make sure that, above all, you heed the warnings of Commander Onslaught. There are terribad Worgen roaming this main road into and out of the City of Gilnaes, so STAY OFF THE ROAD as you make your way to Dreadwatch Outpost.
Upon reaching....whats left of the outpost, Commander Onslaught uses the FCD to contact you and relay his horror at the loss of this forward outpost. However, all i snot lost. Break in Communication: Rutsak's Guard has you investigate this secondary outpost along the Gilneas front. (Remember that road I warned you is terribad........its time to cross it. Don't worry, though...Uncle Goreblades is here to help. Watch the waves of Worgen coming up from the city. Eventually, there will be a break in the flow long enough for you to make it across. When you see it......RUN across the road. If you do it right you wont aggro any of the elites and no roflstomp of your toon.) When you reach the outpost, there are many burning Forsaken corpses outside the only building standing. Inside the building you will find the quivering Captain Rutsak. Talking to him, you find out that the 7th Legion has arrived from Stormwind City and slaughtered his men. Captain Rutsaktells you the tale of the Submariners Commander and his haunting of the Forsaken Captain. Rutsak has only one solution to his plight--Vengence for Our Soldiers: kill 10 bubbleheads from the 7th Legion encamped in the Cathedral District of the City of Gilnaes.
WHAT?!?!?!?!?! GO INSIDE THE CITY?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?! ARE YOU NUTS?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!
Relax. Blizzard has bestowed its wondrous phasing technology on Gilnaes City, and you will not be harassed by--or even encounter--any guards. Now, quit your whining, and go kill some sailors.
Now, for those of you who hadn't known, all sailors have a Commander. And really, what good it is to kill 10 submariners without dispatching their leader. So, accepting Vengence for Our Soldiers also accepts (rather sneakily I might add) On Whose Orders?, the quest to kill Master Sergeant Pietro Zaren and obtain his orders from the Alliance High Command. Grab the orders, and Commander Onslaught will contact you agaim through the FCD. The Worgen are assaulting the Forsaken Command Post, and now an Alliance Armada is en route. To find out What Tomorrow Brings, use the HUGE telescope to scout the harbor. A short cut scene later it is time to report a naval debacle to Commander Onslaught. With this terrifying information, Onslaught orders you to Fall Back! and report to Commander Belmont at Emberstone Village. (Don't forget to turn in Vengence for OUr Soldiers back at Rutsak's Guard along the way.)
Commander Belmont want to reassure you that all is not lost here at the front, and to prove it to you, he shares information about a powerful Gilnaen who is vehemently against all Worgen--A Man Named Godfrey. Commander Belmont wants you to escort him and the Val'kyr Arthura to Tempest's Reach to find this Godfrey--a Gilnean so against the Worgen that, upon learning that the King of Gilneas was a Worgen, Godfrey took his own life. So, now you go off to Tempest's Reach...but there is only 1 problem. there are A LOT of Worgen between here and there. my advice--kill one. I dare you, its not a trick) Do so, and you will learn that Resistance is Futile (everyone LOVES a good Borg reference) and you need to kill 20 Worgen combatants along the way. My advice.....seek out the Worgen travelling with dogs, as these dogs count toward your kill counter. Find your way to Tempest Reach and make your way down to find Godfrey's body along the sand of the beach. Inspect the body, the in is time for the Great Escape. Hold on tightly, its time for another ride on the Val'kyr.
Having carried you and the body of Godfrey to the Forsaken Front, Dark Lady Sylvanas wants her Val'kyr Agatha to raise Godfrey for Rise, Godfrey, and also raise two of his men. With Lord Crowley, Lord Walden and Baron Ashbury risen as Forsaken, the Banshee Queen has another assignment for you as she completes the initiation of her three newest assets.
The former Dalaran magi in Ambermill have found a way to make themselves invisible, and lay poised for an attack on the Forsaken armies once the Alliance High Command issues the orders. The first step in curbing this magical threat involves Breaking the Barrier. And in order to do that, you need to go into Ambermill and find the Ambermill Codex. While you are there (because 1 quest in Ambermill isn't enough), the Val'kyr Daschla wants you to retrieve for her 6 servitor Cores from the Unyielding Servitors that are roaming Ambermill. Once you have your cores and the codex, return for the Banshee Queen for the next step...delivering the codex to Dalar Darkweaver back in the basement of the inn at Sepulcher, to figure out how to use the codex to your advantage. A quick hop, skip and flight point later, talk to Dalar, and he tells you that he can interpret the codex...but in order to open the book he needs an artifact. Relios, the Relic Keeper patrols along the outer ring of the Dalaran crater in the Hillsbrad Foothills. Quite a long trek by foot, so Dalar, being the compassionate Forasken that he is, opens a portal behind him to the base of the crater--a crater now occupied by Arcane Remnants. Make your way to the top of the craterand around its perimeter until you can locate and destroy Relios, taking the signet ring from the finger of his still-warm corpse. With your mission accomplished, make your way back to the portal and back to the Sepulcher and to Dalar. Dalar takes the ring and pours through the codex to find the Dark Lady her answer to the Ambermill dilemma, and very quickly, he does. But, there is a problem--Only One May Enter (diamond in the rough) the portal to engage tha magi of Ambermill. Grab the ring from Dalar, and hop the flight point back to the Banshee Queen to tell her what you have learned.
Listening to the information that you have returned to her with, the Dark Lady hatches a three part plan that has one crucial linch-pin--YOU. For the first step, Transdimensional Warfare, Chapter I, the Dark Lady wants you to travel to the cave in Beren's Peril, and make your way to the portal deep in its bowels. Fight your way deep into the cave, fighting past many Dalaran guards and you cant miss it--its a HUGEish portal at the back of the cave protected by several guards. Deafeating the guards and interacting with the portal causes Lady Sylvannas to contact you again with the next part of her plan: Transdimensional Warfare Chapter II, which calls for the death of 20 Ambermill guardians. "Talk" to the portal, and you will travel through to Ambermill--but where before there were only Servitors there are now Magi and Dalaran Watchers just itching to fall to the Forsaken. Fell 20 of these humans, and the Dark Lady makes known to you the third and final phase to her plan, Transdimensional Warfare, Chapter III. For this phase, the Banshee Queen asks you to overload Archmage Ataeric and bring down the Transdimensional Shield to open up Ambermill to the forces of the Forsaken Armies. One nice thing about this fight, is that you never actually engage the Archmage...instead you have to kill the Arcane Fiends that he spawns close to him to damage his shield. Once he is destroyed, the shields drops and the army moves in. With the deed done, return to the Dark Lady at the Forsaken Front.
With her initiation of Lord Godfrey and his cronies complete, the Dark Lady wants you to start Taking the Battlefront. But before you can go, the High Warlord Hellscream left behind has a task for you to accomplish for the Horde. The Worgen have sent several Druids up along the Forsaken eastern flank. With A Wolf in Bear Clothing so close to the front, he wants you to do the only sensible thing--eliminate 10 of them. These worgen druids are actually easier to spot then you will think....in fact, due to their proximity up into the Deep Elm Mine you may have killed some earlier in the zone. They really have two details that make them fairly easy to spot: firstly, the "Inconspicuous Bear" tag floating above their head; and secondly, unlike all the other animals roaming in Silverpine, these bears are not diseased.
As soon as you defeat the first Worgen, you are joined by Lord Godfrey, Lord Walden, and Baron Ashbury--each needing your help. Lord Godfrey wants to purge several buildings to assist in Pyrewood's Fall. Lord Walden wants you to assist in delivering his Lessons in Fear to 7th Legion Scouts occupying Pyrewood. Baron Ashbury has a lesson to teach as well; feeling that frightened Forsaken troops cowering in Pyrewood are Of No Consequence, and he wants you to help him deal with them. Just remember to kill the bears (which revert back to their Worgen form when they die) before moving on to Pyrewood with your three companions bickering back and forth while running behind you.
Once Godfrey has executed his last cowardly Forsaken trooper and Pyrewood is in flames, the fallen Gilnaen Lord wants your help in Sowing Discord by slaying the Dwarven General Marstone across the marshes. Lord Walden wants you to press your advantage as well, and while killing the General, kill his troopers in order to obtain the 7th Legion Battle Plans. Help them kill the General, and obtain the battle plans........but don't run away quite yet. Dark Lady Sylvannas knows that Lord Crowley's daughter, Commander Lorena Crowley, is commanding troops at the Greymane wall. Going all James Bond for your Queen, Lord Godfrey wants you to serve On Her Majesty's Secret Service and sneak in and abduct her for use as a bargaining chip against her father. Insert a short cut scene and then burn down the Commander until Lord Walden grabs her unconscious body and carries her back to the Banshee Queen.
With a bargaining chip in her possession, the Banshee Queen Sylvannas Windrunner asks you to accompany her to the front line, past the Cities in Dust, and destroy the Alliance forces still fighting on at the Greymane Wall. So, you, Lord Walden, Lord Godfrey, Baron Ashbury, High Warlord Cromush and the Dark Lady--along with her three Val'kyr attendants, survey the battlefield before riding out to the Greymane wall to force an confrontation with the Worgen Lord Darius Crowley.
How does the story end?????????
As I stated in the beginning, this zone is expertly done. The story flows more then in any other zone I have ever quested during my time in Azeroth. While I am not going to tell you here how the story ends, I am going to tell you that it is a very unexpected plot twist that leads you right into Shadowfang Keep. SO I urge you to all go play the zone...enjoy the story. You will not be disappointed.