The next morning, within the subterranean Barrow Deeps of Mount Hyjal...
- Main Quest - Awaken Druids
- Discover the location of the Barrow Deeps
- Tyrande Whisperwind must survive
- Furion Stormrage must survive
- Main Quest - Free Illidan
- Locate Illidan's Prison
- Tyrande Whisperwind must survive
- Optional Quest - Bear Necessities
- Get water from the Fountain of Life
- Return the filled vial to the Furbolgs
This is a very easy mission, as long as you treat it like a covert op. In the first third of the mission, you have two Heroes and plenty of troops. In the second third, you have a Hero and a handful of magic users and definitely need to sneak around. In the final third, you have a Hero and a handful of conventional troops, later increasing to a large army, but all of your troops excel at hiding.
Since it is always dark in the Deeps, Tyrande can hide 100% of the time. For 2/3 of the mission, use her as your primary scout. Move, hide, look, learn that sequence. When you see something new, sit and plan instead of rushing in. For example, bring Furion up and Entangle the biggest hostile melee unit. It works like a charm. You barely need to use your other units at all, and you should definitely not commit them unless you have to.
You will find a huge selection of items, most of which are basically useless.
You start out with Furion, Tyrande, 3 Dryads, 2 Druids of the Talon, 2 Huntresses, and 2 Archers. The enemies in the cave are easy enough, but there are a few groups that are capable of taking out one or more of your units if you aren't careful. If you lose any units, you really need to study the characteristics of your units.
Take your starting group south, making sure to keep the Huntresses and your Heroes in the front, and when you get to a big stalagmite in the middle, you have three options. You can go either west or east first, it doesn't matter. West, you'll find a group of Kobolds and a Kobold Tunneler. He drops a Potion of Healing. East, you'll find a Wendigo and an Elder Wendigo. The big guy drops a Scroll of Healing. Go south, take out the two Spiders and the Brood Mother here, then continue on.
Go west between the obelisks. Here you'll meet a few Skeletons and a Frost Revenant. The Blizzard spell he casts causes a good deal of damage if left ignored, so move your units before they get pummeled. Continue west, take out Skeleton Archers and another Frost Revenant, who drops a Wand of Lightning Shield. Slightly to the north there is a Potion of Greater Healing sitting on the ground.
With the Revenants and Skeletons dispatched, head east. There will be plenty of little Spiders found throughout the dungeon; I won't mention every one of them. They're easy to take care of. Continue east until you hit a pool with a toadstool growing in the center of it. Go north, take care of the Giant Spider, and claim a Spider Ring. Go east again, but hug the northern wall until you're actually going north. Kill the Spitting Spider and its hatchlings, then destroy the eggs on the left. You'll get some more spiders and a Scroll of Healing.
Secret Path: Before you leave this cave, look to the east. See all those bones frozen to the ground beneath the cluster of toadstools? Use Furion's Force of Nature spell on them until you've cleared a path. (If you didn't know already, these toadstools act as the underground equivalent of trees.) When you head north, you'll be presented a short cinematic introducing a bear named "The Largest Panda Ever," and aptly so. He's big, he's level 10, but he's also incredibly slow and has Heavy Armor, which of course takes extra damage from piercing attacks. He patrols back and forth, sometimes not even responding to your attacks. The best strategy here is to kite him along (if he follows) while taking shots at him from a distance. It takes some time to kill him this way, but it prevents any of your units from taking damage. He drops a Necklace of Spell Immunity, a very useful item. When he falls and you've gathered your loot, head south until you hit a Defiled Fountain of Life.
You want to avoid surprises, so always shoot at the nearest thing first. In this case, the nearest thing is a green rock, or is it an egg? Yes, shoot it! Don't just run past it! Oh, look, a little spider pops out! Oh, look, it's dead. If you don't abide by this basic principle, you may get a nasty surprise when you attack the 2 Brood Mothers, because the clusters of eggs on either side will erupt and spew out a bunch of little Spiders. It's easy to get overwhelmed, so keep on your toes; pull back units that are getting overly bombarded. In fact, run away with everyone, and let your Heroes stand and fight alone. That is another basic principle. And, as has been mentioned in the Overview, one of the Brood Mothers should be Entangled anyway. If you use proper tactics in this fight, your units will hardly be scratched. Otherwise, you could be in trouble. Eggs to the SW of the Fountain contain Spitting Spiders, a Giant Spider, and a little Spider. Heal up after all the fighting, if you are able, then head south to pick up your first Optional Quest (Bear Necessities) from a Furbolg Ursa Warrior.
The Furbolg tasks you with saving his tribe's Shaman, and gives you a vial with which to retrieve a life-saving dose of healing water. This quest is quick and easy. Go west. You can choose to kill the Skeleton Archers and the Skeletal Marksman if you wish. Past them, to the NW, is a trio of Ghosts. As you saw from the previous mission, they have the ability to possess your units. But not your Heroes. Quickly dispatch them with Tyrande and Furion. (Or avoid them entirely.) Ghosts may seem very dangerous, but you should know from the later section of the Undead campaign, if nowhere else, that a Possession only happens via direct contact, NOT from a distance. Thus, as long as you pick Ghosts off from range, they can't really hurt you.
Go due west, and fight through the trio of Lightning Lizards and a Thunder Lizard guarding the Fountain of Life. You can heal up your units here for free, so do it. Fill the vial and promptly return it to save the Shaman's life. You'll be rewarded with a Talisman of the Wild, which summons a Furbolg to fight for you for 3 minutes. There is only one exit from this part of the cavern. You might consider collecting all unused items at this point, especially if you are waiting for units to heal. It turns out that you won't be coming back for items, although you may come back for healing.
Head south along the path. You will note that there is a small cave south of the Furbolg camp that has a bunch of boxes in it. Use the Force of Nature trick to get at the boxes. They are all empty. Sorry, better luck next time! Keep heading south.
Both of your Heroes should be level 6 by now. This means that they both have their Ultimate spell. They cannot increase in level any more in this scenario.
When you reach the fork in the path, you'll watch a cinematic where Tyrande splits from Furion's group in search of the enigmatic Illidan. Furion will be left with 3 Dryads and 2 Druids of the Talon. As he cannot get through the door, you must take your units down the only available path.
This section of the mission requires you to really take the sneak-and-peek approach to a higher level. None of your units can hide in plain sight, and almost all of them are quite delicate. Thus, in principle, Furion should advance alone, with the magic users far behind him, and used only in a support role. But Furion need not be lonely! Remember, he is a Keeper, and he can take a Grove with him wherever he goes. That, and Entangling Roots, and more, make him an extremely powerful Hero.
Past the corrupted ground, to the east, you'll hit a Sludge Monstrosity. Dispatch it. But remember: You have fewer units now, so be careful not to let any one of them take too much damage. If any of your units is taking any damage at this point, please reread the previous paragraph. There is no way that any of your units should be taking damage from hostile melee units unless you invite it. (You can always use Furion's Tranquility spell or any remaining Scrolls of Healing, however. You can also run wounded units back to the Founatin of Life.) Continue along the path. You'll encounter a pair of Skeleton Archers and a Wraith in front of a mausoleum. When you get to the Circle of Power, go north and kill a pack of Kobolds and Kobold Geomancers.
Secret Path: Before you step on the Circle of Power, head north. Do the Force of Nature trick again, and fight some Sludges and get a Wand of Negation.
Super-secret Path: Clear out all the trees along the ledge, all the way to the north until you reach the river. On the other side of the river, you will see some more trees. Convert them into Treants and send them off to the north. They will encounter and recruit 3 Furbolgs. One of them is a tank, and the other two are decent melee units and healers. They will really augment your forces. Send them into the Waygate, and they will pop up near the Circle of Power.
Secret Path: Before you step on the Circle of Power, head south. Nowhere to go, right? Use Furion's Force of Nature spell to clear away the toadstools. You'll come upon a rather large group of Skeleton Archers and Skeletal Marksmen. Use your newly formed Treants as cannon fodder, and you shouldn't have any trouble keeping your regular units alive. A Skeleton drops a Scroll of Healing for you. But that's not all!
- Go back east, as if you're about to head north to the Circle of Power. Instead, go south and use Furion's Force of Nature spell on the toadstools here and you'll reveal a second, smaller Circle of Power. This might be a good time to save the game, because stepping on a Circle of Power might transport you directly to Hell. Anyway, stay alert, because you have no idea what is about to happen, and no guarantee that you will be able to get back. Send Furion through alone, but in principle, all your other units should be standing by, ready to help out. You can even finesse this further. Now step on the Circle, and you'll be transported to a vault, where an Ice Revenant and a pack of Skeleton Archers are guarding a Waygate. Again, use your Treants as cannon fodder while your regular units deal damage from afar. This would be a very useful time to summon a handy Furbolg (if, of course, Furion is holding the Talisman). It's very easy to lose units here, so pay close attention if you don't want to lose anyone. The Ice Revenant drops a Robe of the Magi +6. This is a must-keep item. Take the Waygate back to the big Circle of Power.
- There's a very good chance that this group of enemies will run away from Furion. You will hear the Waygate sound, and they will be gone. Now, if you thought that Furion dropping in alone on a tough group of hostile units with no guaranteed retreat route is scary, it's actually much scarier if they all teleport away. Who is protecting your little units, that's the question. So for a couple of minutes, you will be scrambling around like crazy, with your little units running away as fast as they can. Running to where? Running away from what? Where is the enemy? It will take some time to get this all sorted out, to reorganize your forces, and to hunt down all the enemy units.
Go back to the Circle of Power and step on it.
Travel across the crystal bridge that appears and confront the trio of Watchers communing around a table. Remember to use the toadstools to summon Treants for cannon fodder, if you need them. They're invaluable for keeping your other units alive--especially if you have Furion use Tranquility while they're soaking damage. One of the Watchers will drop Claws of Attack +9.
Go south of the table into a little cave. At the center will be a Fountain of Mana guarded by a group of Skeleton Archers and Skeletal Marksmen. Kill them, get a 'Scroll of Mana, and recharge your group at the fountain before heading north of the Watchers' table.
Head toward the natural causeway and take care of the Black Dragon Whelps. When you reach a precipice lined with torches, it'll cut to a cinematic. Travel down the ramp and into the valley-trench.
Remember the instructions about sneak-and-peek? If not, go back and read them again. And again, because now it is really important.
You will now be encountering about 10 Druids of the Claw in Bear form. They do not threaten you. You can easily kill them in batches. And therein lies the problem. If you kill one of them by accident, then you lose the scenario. Therefore, you will not let even one of them see even one of your units. The way to do this is to creep Furion forward and map out the Bears' patrol patterns. You can pretty much avoid almost all of them if you only want to finish this section as quickly as possible. However, if you want to fully explore the map, and why not?, it will take more effort.
Once you determine which locations are safe, send ONE repeat one Druid of the Talon forward to cast Cyclone on a Bear when it is far from your march route. You will find that Cyclone lasts an awfully long time. Now run Furion around the newly safe area and deal with anything you find, as you see fit. You will find that, when the Bear eventually does drop back down, it just sits in one spot and sulks.
Cyclone the first bear. Cross his path and kill the Giant Spider to the north. Its eggs are empty. Go north. The eggs around the Spitting Spider here will yield a Scroll of Mana. From here, there is a Fountain of Mana to the SW being guarded by Sludge Minions and a Flinger. The big guy will drop a Wand of the Wind, which will allow your hero to also cast Cyclone. This is, however, basically useless, because it can only be used a couple of times, it doesn't last very long, and exactly which item would you drop, anyway?
Go north through the archway at the top of the 4-way fork. Neutralize the bears all along the way; it doesn't require a lot of effort. The path will narrow, and you'll meet a pair of sleeping bears blocking your path. Lift one of them with Cyclone and pass through unmolested. The crates behind them hold nothing. Continue SE along the path. You'll see a group of little Spiders and a Brood Mother. You can avoid them if you want, but the Mother drops a Potion of Mana. Head north up the ramp and kill the Sludge Flinger.
Continue along the path until you meet a group of Sludges guarding a gate. Kill them, break down the gate, and proceed to the Circle of Power on the other side. You'll be presented with a cinematic of Furion Stormrage blowing his horn at a junction connecting all the tunnels in the dungeon, waking the Druids of the Claw from their feral slumber. The first Main Quest is completed. You'll now be given control of Tyrande, who seeks to free Illidan from his prison. She has 2 Huntresses and 3 Archers escorting her.
At once you'll be attacked by a Watcher and 2 Wardens. They're easily defeated. Unfortunately, you won't have much choice, you will have to kill a bunch of your brethren (or sistern).
Remember the instructions about sneak-and-peek? If not, go back and read them again. And again, because now it is really important. Tyrande has just a few units to help her, and no healing capacity, and she is rather weak as Heroes go. However, she is a first-rate stealth Hero.
Go south, defeat the Sentry on the path and smash through the gate to the south. You'll awaken a small Stone Guardian. Defeat it and go east, into a library occupied by 3 Mystics. Kill them and open up a barred gate in the NW corner of the room, where you'll find a Mystic apparently dabbling in summoning magicks. Take him out. Then destroy the pedestal for a Tome of Knowledge. Go back out the way you came, and head through the archway to the west. Check the archery room to the south, and break the crate in the SW corner to free a Skeleton Archer.
Head out and to the SW. Kill the Warden behind the desk, then kill the Sentry beyond the open gate. Break down the gate to the south to free a Huntress and 2 Archers. Go up the ramp north of the suit of armor and step on the Circle of Power. Now return to the gate where Tyrande started and head north. When you come to a bend that forces the path SW and then west, you'll find a bunch of crates scattered about. They contain nothing useful, but one is home to a Skeleton Archer.
In the next room, there are 3 Watchers on the far side of the causeway. You only need to kill one of them. You'll find a stack of Healing Wards in one of the crates near the Huntress statue. Definitely take those. Go south and activate the second Circle of Power. The gate below will swing open, and you'll be free to pass through.
There's nothing in the room north of the bend; continue along the path until it bends and goes west. Go south into a room with 3 sleeping Wardens. If you attack anything in this room, they will wake. Attack them first and kill them. Destroy the gate in this room to have your Huntresses gain access to the Moon Glaive ability, which makes their attacks bounce. Good deal.
Go west, then head north at the archway. A Watcher will charge you. Take care of him. There is a Ring of Regeneration in the prison cell on your left, but be careful; 3 Skeleton Archers and a Burning Archer will spawn once you break down the gate. The cell on your right contains 3 Archers; the eggs contain 2 Giant Spiders, while 3 little Spiders roam freely. Dispatch them and free your sisters. Go north to find two more cells. The one on the right contains only a Warden, while the one on the left contains 2 more Huntresses and a wolf named Loki. Crack open one of the crates in this cell for a Periapt of Vitality. This is a slightly better item than a Ring of Protection +2.
Go north through the forested area, dispatch the 4 Corrupted Treants that appear, and go on through the Waygate to the north. You'll be teleported a short distance to the NE. Go south along the path and heal at the Fountain of Health if needed. Just SE of here are Gauntlets of Ogre Strength +3 hidden in the trees. Continue west. Go south at the suit of armor to an area with swinging cages. Kill the Skeleton Archers here, and gain access to a gated vault containing a stack of Goblin Landmines. You could have some fun with them, but they aren't really important.
The next area, west of the suit of armor and then north, is being patrolled by a few Watchers that run around in a large circle. Bearing in mind that all of your units can hide (except Loki), you could, if you want, join the ring-around-the rosie and get off at your stop. Or not.
Use an Archer to pull one Watcher off the path at a time. When he follows you down into the forested area, kill him quickly. Repeat until they're all dead. Or just do a frontal assault with your massive army, hiding any unit that is in trouble. Take either path north, they both converge eventually and there's nothing to be found on either one. At the Huntress statue in the pool, you'll be attacked by 2 Wardens and 2 Watchers.
The scenario is just about finished, but there is one more slightly-hidden area. Go SW from the large patrol ring to a narrow, winding path ending in a couple of Circles of Power. Step on the first one. Nothing happens. Step on the second one, and you are teleported to the far SW corner of the map, where you get a Mantle of Intelligence +3. This is a nice item, but not quite good enough to take along. Teleport back, and head to the final encounter.
Head north, past the pits of blue fire, and meet Califax, a Keeper of the Grove who is keeping watch over Illidan's prison to make sure no one tries to free him. He is flanked by 2 Watchers. Watch out for his abilities; they're similar to those used by Furion. However, he is weak, only level 3. And you have a massive 30-point army, plus Loki, plus Tyrande. He'll send Treants at you and probably root Tyrande to the ground. Keep your attention on him to bring him down, then finish off the Watchers.
Approach Illidan's cell and enjoy the cinematic!
- Potion of Healing - Kobold Tunneler
- Scroll of Healing - Elder Wendigo
- Wand of Lightning Shield - Frost Revenant
- Potion of Greater Healing - Just north of the Frost Revenant who drops the Wand of Lightning Shield
- Spider Ring - Giant Spider
- Scroll of Healing - Pile of spider eggs
- Necklace of Spell Immunity - Found at the end of the first secret path, dropped by The Largest Panda Ever
- Talisman of the Wild - Quest reward from "Bear Necessities"
- Scroll of Healing - Skeleton on the secret path
- Robe of the Magi +6 - Ice Revenant at the end of the secret path
- Wand of Negation - secret path NW of crystal walkway
- Claws of Attack +9 - First trio of Watchers on the other side of the crystal walkway
- Scroll of Mana - Dropped by a Skeleton at the first Fountain of Mana
- Scroll of Mana - In the eggs near a Spitting Spider in the valley where the Druids of the Claw are patrolling
- Wand of the Wind - Sludge Flinger near the second Fountain of Mana
- Potion of Mana - Dropped by a Brood Mother after you pass the Druids of the Claw
- Tome of Knowledge - In the pedestal in the secret library room
- Stack of Healing Wards - In a crate in the waterfall room
- Ring of Regeneration - In a prison cell
- Periapt of Vitality - In the prison cell with Loki
- Gauntlets of Ogre Strength +3 - near the Fountain of Health
- Stack of Goblin Landmines - In a gated vault
- Mantle of Intelligence +3 - very SW corner of map
- Manual of Health - from Jimmy the seal
TAKE NOTE: The Necklace of Spell Immunity will make scenario 7 a LOT easier.