The Shadowlands pre launch will feature the third scourge invasion upon Azeroth, akin to the pre Naxxramus and Wrath of the Lich King launch events, taking place this time in Icecrown and capital cities. This event brings gearing opportunities for alts as well as a brief quest line that will award the feat of strength, ‘Death Rising’.
In the later weeks of the pre patch, zombies will begin invading our capital cities again! They will attack and transform players into zombies, giving them a special vehicle ability bar with unique abilities. You can opt to find an argent healer nearby to avoid succumbing to infection or you can wreak havoc on other players by spewing bile or blowing up your corpse, killing you and dealing damage to those around you. New players fresh out of Exile’s Reach are immune to this infection via a debuff called ‘New Recruit’, so no need to worry about the leveling experience being disrupted on a fresh toon.
Upon logging in during this event, you will be presented with a quest sending you to your faction’s capital which will begin a brief quest line spanning 2 weeks and will ultimately unlock a series of dailies in Icecrown. Completing these quests and dailies awards ‘Argent Commendations’ which can be redeemed at quartermasters in capital cities and Icecrown for several rewards including catch up gear for alts and a battle pet.
Nathanos Blightcaller is the end boss of the first week’s quest line and he is a world boss in Eastern Plaguelands with a weekly lockout. He drops item level 100 gear, equivalent to normal Ny’alotha raiding gear, and has several weapons on his loot table. This is a good chance to gear up your alts or catch up your neglected mains.
Special world rares will spawn in Icecrown for the duration of this event and are indicated by a purple skull appearing on your world map. These rares include many familiar old raid and dungeon bosses from Wrath of the Lich King such as Patchwerk, Professor Putricide, and even Blood Queen Lana’thel herself and all gear dropped is item level 100 and a reference to the boss’s original loot table. Most notably, killing Bronjahm has a chance to drop ‘Papa’s Mint Condition Bag’ which is a unique 34 slot bag, reminiscent of ‘Papa’s New Bag’ which was a 20 slot bag that dropped in the Forge of Souls dungeon.
Enemies in Icecrown have a chance to drop ‘Darkened Scourgestones’ and a much lower chance to drop ‘Pitch Black Scourgestones’ (these rare counterparts seem to have a higher chance to drop off the rares that spawn in the zone) which can be turned in to the quartermasters 25 at a time for 1 or 3 Argent Commendations respectively.
The main quest line will grant 18 Argent Commendations and the rest will mostly be obtained from daily quests. You can earn up to 17 Argent Commendations per day from dailies and a full set of item level 100 gear from the quartermaster costs 135 commendations; 15 per piece. This is the perfect opportunity to bring your alts and gear them before the Shadowlands launch as the gear is currently better than the starter gear in Bastion, which is only around item level 75.