Let Corruption Flow

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This morning I have essentially wasted the time I would have normally written a lengthy blog post…  on the mad quest for the Corrupted Ashbringer.  Normally speaking each morning I log into Rift and GW2 to claim my daily rewards, and then maybe pop into World of Warcraft to check on my Class Hall missions before finally settling in to write a blog post.  This morning I logged into my Paladin and fished a bit, and after a couple dozen casts finally received the item I had been so feverishly hunting for.  So for sake of argument, the best I can tell I caught my Shard of Darkness after 1682 casts.  Which places me significantly more than my friend Kel that got his in 149, but significantly fewer than the poor soul who was fishing Sunday and said he was somewhere in the 8000s.  Of course after getting the shard…. I had to work my way through the rest of the quest chain this morning because there was no way in hell I could work a day without seeing this through.  I get on these vision quests sometimes, where I have to do this one thing… and when I do finally get it I have a lapse in goals for a bit.  Given how many things i put off doing for the sake of fishing up the shard…  I have a feeling I am going to be just fine with finding something else to replace it.

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The funny thing is… last night I actually felt the slightest bit of resentment that I was not spending it trying to get the shard while we were off doing a dungeon.  In the grand scheme of things however I am largely glad it worked out as it did, because while this quest dominated my life for a few weeks I managed to do so in a fashion that didn’t really seem all that grindy.  The final fishing part was only painful because each time I clicked that lure, there was a bump of excitement that only got squashed quickly when I noticed it was “more fish”.  As far as finishing up the quest, I thought I would be clever and just manually fly up to Archerus.  That however won’t work because it is actually completed in the version of Archerus that hovers over the Broken Isles, which meant another trip back to Dalaran to fly out with a special quest menu item.  From here we talked to the modern Four Horsemen who infused the crystal with their powers… and after another trip back to Lights Hope chapel I am wielding my new weapon skin.  This finally fixes all of my problems with the Ashbringer weapon, because this thing looks freaking amazing.  I have even been sporting a transmog just waiting to get the weapon.  Thanks so much for joining me in this journey… and tonight I am going to give it a trial run in some LFR in the hopes of getting some tasty upgrades on the Paladin.

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My Plaguelands Home

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Over the last week I have gotten various questions from guildies that all essentially equate to “What is going on in the Western Plaguelands?” because apparently it has been noticed that I have been spending an inordinate amount of time there.  I embarked upon a path to madness and have been working my way through it.  Essentially I have been courting the Heart of Corruption alternate appearance for my Paladin.  There was a time that I loved the Ashbringer weapon graphic… but that time was 2006 and my graphical fidelity standards were maybe a little more forgiving.  What seemed like a really awesome looking graphic at the time just feels extremely dated and part of a design ethic that has changed as World of Warcraft has matured. This is all the more apparent when you look at just how damned amazing Truthguard or The Silver Hand are in comparison.  Options were essentially to keep staring at the weapon I didn’t really like, transmog it to something that I did like… or set down a path to farming the modern and updated corrupted ashbringer appearance.  Clearly I chose the most annoying of these… and as a result have been living at the Thondroril River as a result.

Once upon a time when the Corrupted Ashbringer was introduced with the original Naxxramas, there was a sequence of items and quest text that pointed at the possibility of somehow cleansing the weapon and turning it into the proper Ashbringer form.  During the Naxxramas patch cycle this was thought to be the next Legendary weapon to be added to the game…  during an era when we actually thought every class was going to get a legendary that they could use.  It only took a decade to reach that point, with the Artifact weapons…  but whatever we were impressionable youth (not really youth).  Most of these fan theories revolved around the two copies of Nat Pagle’s Guide to Extreme Anglin… the one that was looted off players in Alterac Valley, and the copy found laying on the ground in Dire Maul.  I likely would not have started down this path were it not for the fact that Ashgar had recently picked up the book on a trip to Dire Maul, and happened to have a copy laying around.  His copy acquired I decided that I was going to do this thing… and queued up for Alterac Valley.  I however had the presence of mind to check the auction house to see just how much the books were going for.  The AV copy was hovering around 25,000 gold on my server, however I noticed there happened to be one sitting at 5,000 g that I leap on.  It was well worth that amount to not have to deal with Alterac Valley, or more so the RNG of trying to loot a bunch of bodies… in AV.

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Book in hand I went to my Class Hall and spoke with the NPC that starts the quest…  of note… this is not a traditional quest.  This is more in the lines of the original Everquest, where you have to know who you need to talk to, in order to progress to the next part.  The NPC takes your two copies of the book and merges them together giving you one complete book, and suggests that Prince Tortheldrin in Dire Maul West might know something….  but is only willing to talk to someone who has slain Nefarian.  After  a quick jaunt into Blackwing Lair, I had obtained my Head of Nefarian and was off to Dire Maul to have a chat.  From there he pointed me in the direction of another person, who currently resides at Chillwind Point who was also looking for the Corrupted Ashbringer, but failed to bring him the head of nef.  From there I found out that there is apparently a slime in the Western Plaguelands that is the remains of the mage Timolain, so it was off to find that and get the next step.  This part took me a week of checking in on the supposed spawn point… with this weekend representing my first real attempt at camping it.  There was a point on Saturday where I missed the spawn by about 15 minutes… because when we got home from running errands I logged back in to see a bunch of paladins furiously fishing.  During the podcast I managed to finally find a group up in the finder, and port onto a server that happened to have it up.  Getting my kill and looting the Phylactery of the mage turned Lich… allowed me to find out that he threw the corrupted shard in the near by river.

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The next part is as you might expect… for a quest involving Nat Pagle’s fishing guide.  You have to now fish up the shard from the river… and this is the step that breaks most people.  At count I have fished up a mixture of 1500 or so Mithril Head Trout and Bristle Whisker Catfish.  I’ve heard tale of this taking as many as 8000 casts before folks got their Shard of Darkness, the component needed to finally turn in and get the hidden appearance.  I spent most of Sunday fishing, when not needed for running mythics or other things.  I hung out downstairs with the laptop and kept dropping lures in the river… having a brief moment of excitement when I clicked each one… only to be disappointed once again when I saw fish.  For those that are interested in this madness there is a full guide found in the comments section on wowhead.  Much like with the Warrior hidden appearance, there is a handy macro you can use to check your progress on the various steps of the quest.

/run local p,q,t=print,IsQuestFlaggedCompleted,tostring p('Talked to Prince Tortheldrin: '..t(q(43682)))p('Talked to Alexia/Bardu: '..t(q(43683)))p('Slime can drop Timolain: '..t(q(43684)))p('Shard can be fished up: '..t(q(43685)))

This will give you some peace of mind that you really did get flagged for each step of the quest before you actually sit down and fish for hours without actually finding anything.  I have literally checked this macro a few times just to make sure that I still am eligible to fish up the shard out of paranoia.  The awesome thing about this process is that you end up making friends with several of the other paladins doing the various camps.  I ended up btag friending a horde paladin that happened to be hanging out for the bulk of the vigil so that we could chat back and forth while waiting on the slime spawn.  He was super lucky in that he got his shard after only a few dozen casts.  My luck however seems to have been spent completely on the two legendaries for Belghast, and I figure I will be one of those 10,000 casts to catch the shard people.  In any case… this is what I have been doing in the Western Plaguelands…  now leave me the hell alone I have some fishing to do!