Shortly after the Warlords of Draenor expansion was released, Shawn decided to start playing World of Warcraft (WoW) again.  He wanted to start “from scratch” so he deleted his character and then created a new Level 1 version of it.  In other words, his original Hansbrix Dwarf Hunter disappeared from Azeroth and was reincarnated into a new Hansbrix Dwarf Hunter.

It just so happened that I had a low level Dwarf Priest that I rolled a long time ago and had been neglecting.  I think Bradanna was somewhere around Level 10 or so.  It didn’t take long for the new Hansbrix to catch up.

Shawn and I have been having fun playing our Dwarf characters together and running through old content.  This blog has the highlights of the adventure of Bradanna and Hansbrix as they explored Dun Morogh.  The screenshots you see in this blog were taken on January 1, January 3, January 10, and January 11, 2015.

One of the first things we got into was Pet Battles.  Gotta catch ’em all!  This was a part of the game that I had barely touched before Shawn and I started playing these two Dwarf characters together.  (I think I did a little bit of it on Nazuga, my Orc Mage, shortly after I did the TrialMan Challenge.)  It’s a lot of fun!


Snowball fight!

I’m using three Murloc pets for my Pet Battles.  Grommloc has a giant axe.  Murkalot has a flail and a shield. Murkablo is a mini Diablo Murloc.  These little guys come into the battle armed, so they seemed like appropriate choices.

Shawn and I spent time making sure we each got 3 of whatever pets were available to battle with. Doing so would prevent the problem of having to travel back to this area later on just to capture pets.

Do enough of Pet Battles, and you will eventually start earning some Achievements. I may have gotten one or two Pet Battle related Achievements back when my Orc was doing some of the very early Pet Battle stuff.

The Achievements pop up pretty quickly.  I figure Shawn got the same Achievements, but I have no way of taking a screenshot of them.  We even left Dun Morogh to briefly venture into Elwynn Forest so we could fight the Pet Tamer.

Taming the Wild: Defeat a Master Pet tamer.

Trainer Extraordinaire: Earn 100 pet battle achievement points.

A Rare Catch: Capture a rare quality battle pet.

Building a Team: Capture 25 pets in pet battles.

Hansbrix is ready to battle, and capture, this Snow Cub.  His Hunter Pet, Fridge, would probably like to help with that.

We were still low level, so we ended up using Hansbrix’s Hunter Pet, Fridge, as a “tank”.  The game eventually figured that out.  This quest involved killing off some Dark Iron Spies.  This one was probably programed to threaten whatever player in a group attacked him first.  “Time to die, Fridge”.

This screenshot provides a good visual explanation as to why my Priest has picked up the Skinning skill.  She didn’t have any professions when Shawn and I started playing our Dwarves together.

Hansbrix kills everything in his path (and some things that are off the beaten path) as any Hunter would.  Bradanna saw an opportunity to make use of those carcasses by Skinning them and turning them into usable leather.

We were supposed to go to the Ironforge Airfield but got a little bit lost on the way.  This accidental detour offered a Pet Battle with a squirrel.  The outcome of the battle resulted in an Achievement: Experienced Pet Battler: Win 50 pet battles.

Before long, we managed to walk to the Quarry and get on a helicopter that would take us to the Ironforge Airfield. The helicopter only goes to two places: The Quarry and the Airfield. Hansbrix is in the front helicopter and Bradanna is in the one that is following it.

This area had some fun quests to do.  We got to extinguish fires and plant Ironforge banners that would somehow rally the troops of Dwarves who were out fighting against the Dark Iron Dwarves that had invaded the Ironforge Airfield.

We also got to do the quest where you get in an airplane and drop bombs on the Dark Iron Dwarves who are invading the Ironforge Airfield.  These three quests are unique compared to everything our low level Dwarves got to do so far.  I highly recommend that Alliance players take their low level characters through this area (or a higher level character if you happened to miss this content).  It’s a lot of fun!

Now, if I step away from Azeroth for a minute… I  feel a little queasy about the idea of dropping bombs on invading enemies who are described as “dark”.

However, in the context of Azeroth, the Dark Iron Dwarves are invading land that belongs to Ironforge (and therefore, the Alliance).  Also, we’ve all seen the Dark Iron Dwarves come up out of the ground during Brewfest to steal the beer. They are clearly the enemy – and a game with the word “Warcraft” in the title needs at least a few enemies.  That being said, a new player to WoW who rolled a Dwarf in January wouldn’t have seen the Brewfest stuff yet.

The last quest at the Ironforge Airfield involves going into the ground battle and killing the Dark Iron leader – General Grimaxe.  This seems to me to be a classic military move.  Kill the enemies General – and the troops go into disarray (and become easier to fight off).

One of the rewards for completing this quest was the Airfield Defender’s Garb.  It’s the only one my Priest could wear, and it’s pretty.  I love the details at the edges of the sleeves and bottom of the robe.  The Airfield Defender’s Garb was the first piece of apparel that looked like something a Holy Priest should wear.  I’ll be hanging on to this one.

Bradanna is wearing the Ironforge tabard (which I probably should have taken off for this screenshot, but it didn’t occur to me at the time).  The Ironforge tabard helps a character gain reputation with Ironforge as the character does quests and dungeons.

The last quest in the Ironforge Airfield sent us to the High Seat in Ironforge to talk with Moira Thaurissan and give her Stonebreaker’s Report.  She wasn’t happy to see us or to read the report. Behind her in a cradle is her baby.  Look closely at him, and he blinks.  (It’s a bit creepy, somehow).

Shawn and I have been playing WoW for years, but chose to start over as though we were brand new players.  This is the first time our Dwarves have encountered Moira, and we aren’t given much of her backstory.  We can see she’s the “Dark Iron Representative” and is part of the Council of the Three Hammers.  But, she doesn’t look like the Dark Iron Dwarves we were fighting.

So far, this is the only NPC who brings her baby to her workplace.  Ironforge lacks day care centers.

Moira sends us to arrest Ambassador Slaghammer while both Muradin Bronzebeard and Falstad Wildhammer make comments. (They make up the rest of the Council of the Three Hammers).

Moira says that his “betrayal will long haunt me,” and did not immediately want to believe that what she read in the report was true.  Ambassador Slaghammer can be found in the Dark Iron embassy.  In other words, the Ambassador is one of her people.

Did we just drop bombs on Dwarves that are actually a part of the Ironforge “empire” (for lack of a better term)? Is this a Civil War type of situation?

Muradin Bronzebeard: I know Commander Stonebreaker and I will vouch for his loyalty and his honesty.  We must take his word.

Muradin Bronzebeard: What cause do the Dark Irons have for taking up arms against Ironforge? Are you unable to control your own people, Moira?

Falstad Wildhammer: Muradin has a point.  If you cannot govern your own people, you have no place at this table.

Moira Thaurissan: Both of you know I would never order such a thing!  Why would I set one half of my son’s inheritance against the other?

Moira is talking to Muradin and Falstad (not to Hansbrix and Bradanna).  She’s defending her position at the “table”.  Her statement reveals that her son is part Dark Iron and part…. some other “faction” of Dwarf.

New players who reach this point have no way of knowing Moira’s heritage or how she ended up becoming the Dark Iron Representative.  (As a long time player, I have some vague concept of what happened to Moira, but new players wouldn’t have any way of discovering that at this point in gameplay.)

Moira Thaurissan: No, this is the work of a traitor to both our peoples.  Despite my best efforts, some Dark Irons remain in the grip of Twilight’s Hammer.

What’s this Twilight’s Hammer she speaks of?  As a long time player, I’ve run into the Twilight’s Hammer cult before, and recognize them as “bad guys”.  New players, however, who reach this point in WoW don’t have any reference point for Twilight’s Hammer.  Moira says that the Ambassador is “in the grip of Twilight’s Hammer”, and wants him arrested.  There’s no backstory given.

Moira Thaurissan: The cult must have someone in the city to coordinate this kind of attack.  That leaves one suspect, Ambassador Slaghammer!

Moira specifically identifies the Twilight’s Hammer as a “cult”.  Maybe this minimal amount of information is enough for a new player, but I’m not sure of that.  If I’d never played WoW before, I would have all kinds of questions here – and none of them are being answered.

Mountaineer Barleybrew has a quest for us that will send us to Loch Modan.  We aren’t quite done with Dun Morogh, but we take the quest anyway.  Also, we can’t actually go to Loch Modon right now because we are supposed to go arrest Ambassador Slaghammer.  Mountaineer Barleybrew shares some insights about the council (in the quest text).

I’ve been waiting for the council to hear my plea for hours, and it’s not looking good.  Moira’s greatest desire seems to be to paralyze the council.  Meanwhile, Loch Modan suffers.

Moira isn’t well liked, that’s for certain! This is kind of awkward.  The one member of the council that is female is presented as untrustworthy and intentionally there to prevent the council from getting things done.  She’s also part of the Dark Iron Dwarves that Hansbrix and Bradanna just bombed.  More story, please!

Ambassador Slaghammer: I go willingly, hunter. My purpose in my master’s plan is fulfilled.

Fortunately, the new WoW player doesn’t have to try and figure out who to believe.  Ambassador Slaghammer is willing to go to “jail”.  He admits that he was involved in the “betrayal” Moira says “will long haunt her”.  The quest enables the player to put these floating purple chains on Ambassador Slaghammer.  He then automatically follows the player back to the High Seat.

The guard says: Glad to see that Dark Iron scum is finally getting what he deserves!

A second guard responds: Quiet!  Moira’s in a foul mood and if she hears you, she’ll have your head…

Moira Thaurissan: If we were in Shadowforge City, I would have you tossed into the Ring of Law for your transgressions, Ambassador.  The darkest dungeons of Ironforge will have to do for now.

Ambassador Slaghammer then follows a guard down to the Ironforge dungeon, without hesitation.

We decided to take a moment to visit King Magni Bronzebeard.  Poor Magni!  We miss you.  There was never any drama in the High Seat when you were in charge of Ironforge.

A brand new player doesn’t have any reason to visit Magni, and wouldn’t find him unless the player decided to randomly do some exploring. Once they got here, they have almost no context about what happened, other than an NPC who blames himself for what happened to Magni.  This makes me sad!

We were supposed to go to Loch Modan next, but didn’t do so because we hadn’t quite finished up Dun Morogh.  We took some extremely friendly Gryphons to Chill Breeze Valley.  The purpose was to have Bradanna explore this final area of Dun Morogh, and for both Dwarves to pick up some of the pets that are available in that area.

That was the last little piece the Bradanna needed to explore in order to complete Dun Morogh. Hansbrix had been through this area already because he went through the Dwarf starting zone.

Bradanna had been through there too, but long enough ago where it didn’t count anymore.  Things had changed in between.

Explore Dun Morogh: Explore Dun Morogh, revealing the covered areas of the world map.

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