A sneak-and-creep to the Oracle w/ many powerful artifacts on the way. An easy scenario to complete on hard difficulty w/o losing any units.
You will note that Thrall's starting force eats only 16 food, but you are paying 31. In the cinematic, Cairne and 3 Tauren went elsewhere. Draw your own conclusions.
- The Oracle - Seek out the Oracle; Thrall must survive.
- The Heart of Aszune - Find and return Azsunes heart.
- Enchanted Gemstone - Find the gemstone and bring it to the Spectral Bridge.
Thrall starting units
- Grunt (2)
- Raider (2)
- Witch Doctor
Cairne starting units
- Tauren (3)
Destroy all crates, etc. for useful items. There are very many consumable items in this scenario that will not be mentioned in the walkthrough. You will not be able to take any of them on to the next level. Accordingly, don't hesitate to use any of them as soon as you find them. Fyi - some crates have enemies or harmless lifeforms inside. Initiate all attacks with your Hero. You shouldn't need to save the game more than occasionally. If you lose any units, you are DOING IT WRONG. Think covert ops. Think sneak-and-peek.
Protect your Shaman and Witch Doctor. Eliminate ranged enemies and casters first. Time is not an issue. Always heal up and wait for mana to regenerate. If in doubt, run away.
Remember that, while you cannot heal your units, Cairne regenerates health quickly and he has Reincarnate. Use this to your advantage. When in doubt, run away.
This is a schematic drawing of the "rooms" in the cavern. The rectangles indicate finished rooms. Circles represent unfinished caves. Numbers indicate that there is an item in that "room", although most of them are unimportant (see list of items). Letters indicate something else, as indicated below. Blue lines represent corridors or tunnels or unimportant "rooms" joining the important "rooms".
A: Thrall is level 8.
B: 3 human Footmen
C: recruit 3 Trolls
E: HUNGRY Lizard
G: open door F
H: trap mechanism for cave 20
I: Fountain of Health
J: Cairne is level 8.
WG: Waygate. 2 of them are 2-way; NE one is one-way.
Note: Skirmishes, unless difficult, are skipped over - just win them without losing any units.
You will start with Thrall
- Follow the tunnel, fighting undead units, until the first fork (north & south).
- Head north first; kill the units for a Mantle of Intelligence +3.
- Continue south to the next fork (south & east). Head south first; kill the units for a Ring of Regeneration.
- Continue east to the next fork (north & SE). Head SE first (destroy the gate), kill the enemies, and collect the Tome of Agility from one of the crates. Save the Tome for later.
- Continue north to the next fork (north & west) and kill the Death Revenant for an Orb of Fire.
- Head west first and kill the enemies for a Tome of Intelligence. Use it.
- Backtrack to the fork, then continue north, around a corner, and over a bridge to the next fork (north & east & south). Note, enemies will appear on both sides as you cross the bridge threshold. Kill another Death Revenant at the fork.
- To the north is the King's Door and it is locked.
- Head south first, kill the Salamander and Salamander Vizier for the Blood Key. Return through the King's Door and collect the Crown of Kings.
- Continue east (up the ramp) and through the Waygate to the next fork (north & south). The path south is locked at this time.
- Head north first and kill some human units. In the cells, you will recruit some Troll Headhunters (3); kill the Salamander Lord to get a Sobi Mask.
- Continue east, killing some more humans, to the next fork (north & west). Head west to recruit Troll Headhunters (2).
- Backtrack to the fork and continue north and find some Harpies attacking a Red Dragon. Let them fight and finish off the Harpies. Collect the Heart of Aszune and pass through the Waygate to the north.
- Head south and return Aszune's heart.
Now you will use Cairne's group (Note: you still have control of Thrall's group)
Cairne's group must be very careful, because they have very limited healing capacity, especially the Tauren.
- You start at a fork (NE & SE). Head SE first, kill some units, and get the consumable items available.
- Continue (NE). Destroy some rock debris and fight the Granite Golem for the Stone Token. You may want to skip this fight.
- Continue on the path to the next fork(NE & south). Kill some humans and pick up the Tome of Strength. Use it.
- Kill some undead units for the Talisman of Evasion.
- Head south first and find the Hungry Hungry Lizard. Wait for it to clear a path through the mushrooms. Collect the Lion Horn of Stormwind. Note: It is possible to do something else while the Lizard eats. If you instead kill the Lizard, you won't get the Horn.
- Continue NE to the next fork (north & NE & SE). The SE is blocked by an indestructible gate. You will see the Enchanted Gemstone.
- Continue north to get some Healing Wards. These deserve special mention, because you will now be able to commit your Tauren to combat.
- Continue north to activate the northern Circle of Power to open the gate. Do not activate the eastern Circle of Power, which instantly destroys all the units guarding the Gemstone, plus the useful Necklace of Spell Immunity. Kill the units around the Enchanted Gemstone manually to get the Necklace. This will be a very tough fight. Also, kill the additional units in the SE to get Claws of Attack +12. Make sure to heal at the Fountain of Health.
- Continue NE and kill the Salamander Lord for a Belt of Giant Strength +6. Kill the War Golems and Siege Golem to get the Ghost Key.
- Open the door to link up with Thrall.
- Save the game.
- Cross the bridge to complete the mission. DON'T DO THIS YET!
The mission ends as soon as you cross the bridge. Before you do this, make sure that you collect the most useful items that you found. In particular, Cairne should use the Tome of Agility. Redistribute the items that your Heroes carry. You could do this during the next scenario, but you are going to be very busy then.
The most important consideration is to upgrade Cairne's mana level and regeneration rate. The second most important consideration is to increase Thralls' size. Accordingly, Cairne should definitely carry the Pendant of Mana and the Sobi Mask, while Thrall should carry a Periapt of Vitality. The other items to definitely carry are the Crown of Kings, both sets of Claws of Attack, the Orb of Fire, the Belt of Giant Strength, the Pendant of Energy, and the Circlet of Nobility. Choose a Periapt of Vitality, Gauntlets of Ogre Strength, a Mantle of Intelligence, or the Lion Horn as the 11th item.
The specific breakdown of the last 4 items is
- +100 hit points
- +75 hit points and better regeneration; +3 attack for Cairne
- +45 mana and better regeneration; +3 attack for Thrall
- 3% size (approximately) for a bunch of units
Important: As soon as you cross the bridge, the scenario ends, and Thrall is given a special item. If necessary, it will replace an existing inventory item, and not necessarily the one that you would prefer to lose. That is why Thrall should only take 5 items across the bridge. You did save the game as instructed, right?
- Mantle of Intelligence + 3, room 3
- Ring of Regeneration, room 8
- Tome of Agility, room 7
- Orb of Fire, room 6
- Tome of Intelligence, room 5
- Crown of Kings, room 10
- Sobi Mask, room 11
- Talisman of Evasion, cave 17
- Tome of Strength, cave 17
- Lion Horn of Stormwind, cave 18
- Claws of Attack +12, cave 21
- Necklace of Spell Immunity, cave 20
- Belt of Giant Strength +6, cave 22
- Many consumables