Tooth & Arrows: Destylae the Noble!!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Bit of an update to a previous post, but last night I finally got the Noblegardner Acheivement last night! However, it involved some very fancy footwork and learning the limits of the Guards at the main Horde City, Ogrimmar.

As I mentioned in my post on Dalaran, I had luck finding a Blood Elf and an Undead there, but for the achievement (the very last one that I had left in the series, too – EVERYTHING ELSE was easier), I also needed an Orc, a Tauren, and a Troll. All females. All over level 18.

Dal was coming up short, obviously, so I decided to try checking out the Horde secondary cities, Brill and Razor Hill, hoping that perhaps there would be appropriate Hordies looking for eggs for their own achievements. I flew from Stormwind to Brill (not very long with Master Flying, and faster than any auto-gryphon could get there), and quickly realized that it was worse than Dalaran as far as finding level appropriate Hordies. Especially the ones I needed.

So my next stop was going to be Razor Hill – which is, of course, on the other continent. I groaned inwardly at the thought of winging all the way back to Stormwind, just to boat to Rut’theran and have another incredibly long flight to Durotar. Then, just as the Horde guards spotted me and shot at me a little, causing me to fly up and turn around, I spotted the solution to my problem – IF I could pull it off.

You see, I was hovering over Brill. Which is right next to Undercity. But something even more important was between the two cities. That would be the Horde Zeppelin station.

Now, I’ve played Horde before, so I was familiar with the routes. However, I’d never attempted to ride a Horde Zeppelin, while playing an Alliance character. So I circled a bit until the Durotar Zeppelin came in to dock, sized it up, and decided to land right on top of the blimp balloon. I figured, if I got attacked by the bruisers or the crew, that would be the easiest place for me to escape straight up from. However… no aggro warnings flashed. I didn’t get marked as PVP… and the blimp shortly began to move.

I was congratulating myself for an awesome idea as the screen changed and I entered Durotar. Then I realized I hadn’t taken something into account.

Pre-Cataclysm, which was the last time I played Horde, the Zeppelins dropped you off outside of Ogrimmar, to one side or the other. Well out of Auto-PVP range.

Well, apparently, SINCE the Cataclysm… the Zeppelins have been moved into the exact center of the city. I freaked out and took off straight up. I was marked PVP, because I was in the HEART Of Ogrimmar, so of course I was PVP… And I hate PVP. Players gang up and beat the crap out of me. Guards I can outrun. Players? Nope.

However… nothing attacked me.

The Zeppelin station is already very high, and the flights of winged guards don’t pass close enough to aggro me – and apparently most Hordies fly below the Zeppelin level when they fly on their own mounts. No one saw me.

My first thought, after I did a little mental dance for not being dead, was that hey! I was in the middle of Ogrimmar. Maybe I could spot a pool of water deep enough to fish in, from the air, and figure out a safe approach to it, and get the Fishing Diplomat achievement. I pulled that off with… incredible ease compared to how annoying it would’ve been pre-ability to fly. (Not that I attempted it.. four times… over the course of leveling up… or anything…)

Then I took to the air again, swooped out of Ogrimmar, headed over to Razor Hill… And only managed to knock “female Tauren” off my list. That left me with an Orc and a Troll still needed, and me with very little patience.

Around this time I struck up a conversation with someone in whispers who was likewise haunting Razor Hill. Together, we decided to go see how close we could get to the Ogrimmar gates without getting marked PVP, and therefore be able to just sit out there and wait until we saw what we needed to complete the achievement. Since Horde and Alliance are similar in many ways – one of them being that the players like to do their dueling outside the gates of their main city. So we flew there.

Over the course of the next few hours, I got aggroed by guards, marked PVP once and flattened by the very Hordies we were observing, but overall it was fairly uneventful. I found a female Troll, but I got incredibly bored after awhile and decided to see if I could fly back INTO Ogrimmar and land on the blimp, to plan and see if I could get out the same way I came in.

It was easier than I thought it would be. So I wound up landing on a VERY HIGH outcropping of rock – higher than the blimp dock – and watching the goings on below. Also, much like Stormwind, the area between the Bank and Auction House seemed to be fairly busy. So I started hovering over players and clicking on every one that the tooltip identified as Orc, looking for a female. Now, as I was in the city, I was marked PVP. So I knew that if I was to pull this off and get out with my life, I’d have to do it carefully.

I mounted my Albino Drake – a big mount that blocks your immediate view of who might be riding it, and that is also faction neutral, as it’s given by an achievement that both Horde and Alliance can complete. I put out my Horde Windrider noncombat pet, and dismissed Hatari so I wouldn’t have to worry about him running off and attacking some random Hordling if I DID get knocked off my mount, which was a possibility.

Then, I saw one – a female orc. I selected them so I’d be able to see my target, and dove off the rock spire I’d been sitting on. I already knew from previous encounters that the item I needed to use for the achievement could be used while mounted, but this would still take PERFECT timing.

I swooped down into a whole group of Horde, skimming right over their heads, and the moment my button turned white, I clicked it. The achievement, the title, and the final achievement all snapped on at once, even as I was pulling up hard. I saw general chat – the crowd was yelling, and I was hit by an arrow and what I think was a fireball… but then I was too high. No one chased me… I went as high as I could and waited. I guess the random Draenai swooping down out of nowhere and essentially throwing a pair of bunny ears onto someone’s head was strange enough that they were all kind of caught off guard. Anyway, I put on my shiny new title, and slowly swooped down when I saw the Trisfal Glades zeppelin come in for docking, and landed on top of it, dismounting from my drake and remounting my Armored Snowy Gryphon in the process so I’d be a smaller target, but no one seemed to see me, and within a few minutes I was back at the dock in Brill, where I’d started.

Wearing my shiny new title, I winged my way back to Stormwind and logged off for the night. It was exhausting, but SO very worth it. And now I’m one step closer to the Violet Proto-Drake mount as well!

And, so, now Galakrond server welcomes it’s newest titled lady, Destylae the Noble!