Six days later, near the forested borderlands of Quel'Thalas...
- Main Quest - The Elfgate
- Destroy the High Elf base (blue) guarding the Elfgate
- Subtext: "In order to march upon the high elves' capital of Silvermoon, you must shatter the magical, heavily guarded Elfgate that protects the heart of their forested lands."
When this mission starts you will start with Arthas, 5 Ghouls, 2 Necromancers, 3 Meat Wagons, and 5 Acolytes.
As the level begins, you're left to finish off a small enemy outpost. A few moments later, you're introduced to Ranger Sylvanas Windrunner, who comes along the southwest path.
Start building a base, and don't worry about defenses. There are three exits to your base, each lined with runes and blocked with trees. You're safe as long as you don't level them with Meat Wagons or Ghouls.
When you've given them an opening, Sylvanas's army starts sending out attacks. They'll send a couple of Swordsmen, a set of Archers, and a few Priest/Sorceresses. They also use Ballistae, which destroy clusters of buildings effectively. Sylvanas accompanies every other group.
Should you give Sylvanas multiple routes to attack you, she will always take the shortest route. This means she'll attack from the southeast exit instead of the east, and the southwest exit instead of the other two. She'll also attack your closer expansions.
Build Spirit Towers and have Ghouls and Meat Wagons handy to take the heat off your Towers. If you time your own assaults properly, you can switch Arthas from assault to defense, and not worry about multitasking defense.
Your new unit, the Necromancer, can cast Raise Dead to summon two Skeleton Warriors per corpse per cast. In conjunction with the Meat Wagon's Get Corpse ability, this gives you a mobile army to work with. (Referred to as Necrowagons or Wagonmancers). Additional corpse fodder is provided by Ghouls and enemy units.
Sweep methodically through enemy territory, leaving heavy defenses along the border for Sylvanas to assault. As you take over Gold Mines, push the border along before you.
Go to the trees by the runes east of your base. North of here is Gnoll camp #1, with a Potion of Healing. East of here is the path to the smallest enemy base. Open a path and strike "with great vengeance". Take over the Gold Mine, but skip defenses.
Push across the bridge. Note the Goblin Merchant here, behind the Archers. Head down and clear out the second base. Establish a fuller expansion here. If you're lucky, you'll get in some Spirit Towers before the regular attacks start.
Before you head off to base three, there's another Goblin Merchant nearby. You'll know, because a Ballista and some Archers start attacking you. Through the trees to the east there's Gnoll camp #2, with a Health Stone. To the north of the Merchant are runes; through here is a Fountain of Health guarded by Archers.
When you're ready, and preferably having just finished off one of Sylvanas's attacks, gather your troops and head west and south. The units are thicker here, so bring heavier power if necessary.
Move your expansion here. Feel free to Unsummon your previous infrastructure, and/or open up the southwest and southeast routes.
To the north of this base is a set of runes that lead to Gnoll camp #3. You'll find a Ring of Protection +2, and a Scroll of the Beast in the crates. To the south of this base is a Fountain of Mana with Golems.
Put together a sturdy attack force. If you haven't used Meat Wagons, you'll want them now. The final base is directly to your east. You win when all of Sylvanas's unit-producing structures (completed or not) are down.
Gnoll camp #4 lies south of the Outer Gate. Here lies a Potion of Greater Mana.
Alternate Route (Hard)
As you're haunting the first gold mine, move your forces (including a trailing acolyte) down the southeast path, the path Sylvanus first attacks from and seize the bridge and fountain immediately.
Construct your necropolis (have ghouls harvest a full load each, to immediately turn in when complete, x2 on dedicated harvest duty), ziggurats (3, 2 guarding bridge (upgrade), 1 to expand blight towards fountain), graveyard (near bridge defenses, begin armor upgrade), crypt (train x2 more dedicated harvesters, build 2 more ziggurats to expand blight to fountain) and temple (begin upgrade, upgrade attack in graveyard). While this occurs, use Arthas, 3 ghouls, both necromancers (raise dead, autocast) and the meatwagons to destroy the eastern base from the bridge. Return (minus wagons, mopping up buildings) to fend off Sylvanus, train 5 acolytes to haunt the mine, then take out the northeastern base and haunt the mine there as well (ghouls on harvest duty, new ones if needed).
Figure out where on the bridge the waves ranged units bunch up, and attack ground with wagons. Train x2 more necromancers (no autocast, grouped) to utilize the graveyard in defense and cast unholy frenzy on enemy priests and sorceresses (-4 hp/sec on top of splash damage). Use Arthas to clear the goblin merchant across the bridge, then hide him here to attack passing ballista and death coil priests, then retreat to blighted fountain for super healing (fountain, blight, unholy aura). Construct x2 more graveyards, slaughterhouse, more defensive ziggurats, x1 more temple and rally x2 more wagons on graveyards with collect on autocast (when full cycle out for unfilled defensive wagons until all 5 are full). Train x6 necromancers, x4 ghouls.
Wait until right after an attack wave to move all units (x1 acolyte included), minus wood harvesters, to the southwest base. Dump 2 wagons, pull defenders with Arthas and ghouls, raise 20 skeletons (no autocast), focus wagons on towers and unit production, auto collect corpses and begin haunting mine.
Send surviving skeletons east towards the main enemy base, followed by Arthas, ghouls, necromancers, wagons and the acolyte. Dump another wagon if you encounter Sylvanus, and destroy the small outpost near the shallow waters leading into main elf base. Summon a new defensive line/forward base, dumping remaining wagons for skeletons as needed for defense. Unsummon the old one when it's operational.
Refill all wagons, clear mana well, recharge Arthas and necromancers, rally temples on well to charge new recruits mana, attack ground with all 5 wagons where units bunch up. Casually take your time exploring the map (including the area southeast of the last base) collecting items and creeping.
When ready send all units (even wood harvesters) in, necromancers on autocast raise dead, dump wagons (which should focus towers, etc).
- The Gnoll Overseer in the Gnoll camp #1 (see below) carries a Potion of Healing.
- The Overseer of camp #2 carries a Health Stone. A hut here drops a Book of the Dead.
- In camp #3, the Overseer leaves a Ring of Protection +2, and the house on the right leaves a Scroll of the Beast.
- The Overseer of camp #4 drops a Potion of Greater Mana.
- The Golems, to the south of the last elf camp, that are guarding the Fountain of Mana drop a Potion of Greater Healing.
Points of Interest
- The runes east of your starting location also lead forward into the first Elven base, and upward into the Gnoll camp #1.
- The runes southeast of your starting location lead you between the second and third Elven bases.
- The runes southwest of your starting location lead to the third Elven base.
- Between the first and second Elven bases, there is a Goblin Merchant.
- On the road between the second and third Elven bases, a Goblin Merchant lies to the south, and a Fountain of Health is hidden by runes to the north.
- To the east of this Goblin Merchant is Gnoll camp #2.
- The runes north of the third Elven base lead upward into Gnoll camp #3.
- South of the third Elven base is a Fountain of Mana guarded by Golems.
- Gnoll camp #4 is south of Sylvanas's base.