Azuarc's leveling guide for Alliance, Act 2: Bloodmyst/Darkshore (levels 15-20)
We left off at the end of Act 1 with the early quests in Darkshore complete, but decided not to press ourselves further. Keep the remaining quests in your log, but we're going to go somewhere else nearby for a couple levels.
It is not completely necessary to take this trip to Bloodmyst Isle. If you do not have the Burning Crusade expansion, or if you simply don't feel like relocating, get yourself to at least level 16 through grinding, and then pick up again at scene 6 where we return.
Hop on the boat to Azuremyst and follow the road north. Get the flight point outside the eastern entrance of Exodar along the way, and then take the road past the small camp at Kessel's Crossing (grab the quests there other than the Kessel Run) and go all the way up to Blood Watch.
You're going to want the following quests:
It is important to note we will not be doing anything resembling a full quest run on Bloodmyst. What we do in Bloodmyst is strictly to get ourselves back on top of the leveling curve. For that reason, many of the quests will be ignored, and not because they were forgotten. Collection quests, in particular, tend to have extremely poor drop rates in Bloodmyst. Also, some of these quests may require level 15 (or 16) and might not be available immediately.
Oh, and you might consider resetting your hearthstone.
Let's start with a map:
Cross the river and follow its bank south, while keeping an eye out for Aquatic Stinkhorn (or any other mushrooms for the menagerie quest,) until you reach The Lost Fold. There are three things you need to do in the Lost Fold. Kill ravagers. Collect the ground-spawn Sand Pears. And mine the huge crystal here by right-clicking the mining pick you were given.
Return to Kessel's Crossing, and then back to Blood Watch.
Leave Blood Watch to the northwest, into Bladewood. Kill 10 Sunhawk Agents, and mine your second crystal there.
Go south-southwest into Nazzivian. Follow the north mountain wall straight to the Nazzivian monument. The glyphs you want are right in the front of the statue. If Tzerak is there, kill him as well to start the quest Signs of the Legion. Then look around the area for a Fel Cone Fungus, while getting the kills for that quest.
Return to town. Don't hearth unless you remembered to re-set your stone at the inn.
I'm told you need to be at least level 16 to get the quest for this scene, which is why it is scene 3 rather than scene 2.
Head east and a hair north, and look for some ruins on top of a hill near the shoreline. The one filled with naga, you know the place. Clear your way to the center of those ruins and find the fallen cartographers. This will prompt you to kill naga for a drop. While you're looking for that, be sure to grab a Ruinous Polyspore. Then return to town.
While heading back to town, look for a Blood Mushroom if you haven't already found one. You need to be finishing with the mushroom quest by now.
Go northeast out of town to Wyrmscar Island. Along the southern coast, all the way to the east, you will find a questgiver that sends you to Ragefeather Ridge, which is quite likely the area you passed through on the mainland to get there. Return to the moonkin camps to collect 8 dragon bones, and head back. The follow-up will have you kill the island's whelps. Kill your whelps and look about for Ysera's Tears. Report to the questgiver on the island, and then return to town. His follow-up will be a much higher-level quest.
Draenei: there is also a quest from the captain along the northeast shoreline that you may have gotten a quest for out of your mailbox. The prerequisite for this is questing in Azuremyst Isle.
Head northwest to Axxarien. This area is easy to pull with ranged, but extremely hard if you just blunder in. Xavras is in the back of the eastern portion of the area. Head for him first, carefully, and mine the crystal next to him. Then clear out for Hellcallers and Shadowstalkers. You'll get the crystals you need along the way.
Leave Axxarien to the southwest where Vindicator's Rest is. Talk, get the constrictor and ravager kill quests Oh The Tangled Webs They Weave and Cutting a Path, and then leave south to cut that path. Head back to Vindicator's Rest when you finish, and then Blood Watch afterwards.
We are now down with Bloodmyst Isle. You can drop any remaining quests you have from there.
We left Darkshore at around level 14 or 15, when the quests were about to start posing some difficulty. I'm all for facing challenges, but not when they're overly-frustrating. At level 17, you should be prepared to return. If you haven't already, make sure to hit a trainer for your level 16 skills and do whatever other city business you need to. Exodar is along the way, and Darnassus isn't far away. (Sorry, warlocks. To Ironforge with you.)
Re-set your hearthstone in Auberdine.
Before you leave town, grab the quest Fruit of the Sea from the dwarf under the hippogryph platform.
We're going north again. This is not a very involved or specific trip. We need to turn in Bashal'aran, and we need to get the water at the falls by Cliffspring, but moreso we just need to kill cats and rabid bears to finish the third buzzbox and Cleansing of the Infected. Once we finish these quests, we can return for the follow-ups.
So nothing special to this. Return to Bashal'Aran and turn in. Then, simply, go north and bumble about in the middle of nowhere, killing whatever you find, namely Rabid Thistle Bears and any moonstalker for your buzzbox claws. If you find yourself somewhere, turn around and go back to nowhere. Gradually you want to find your way north to the end of the river. Right next to the bridge that crosses it is the third buzz box, and once that's turned in, you can jump over the falls and fill your vial.
One last task, while we're here. The crabs on this beach, to either side of the falls, are for Fruit of the Sea. Work your way west and clear out the sea creature bones being guarded by the murlocs. Turn around and kill crabs to the east until you've got your crab chunks for Gubber. Head back to Auberdine when you finish. You probably want to avoid the Encrusted Tide Crawlers further east.
Druids: the aquatic pendant for your sea lion form is far to the north from this shore, a little bit west of the river delta.
Ok, let's take stock of what we've got left:
We need to address several quests in the north and several in the south. We're going to return to the north first. This trip could take a while; break it up if you need to.
The very first thing you must do, if you haven't already, is cleanse your bowl in the moonwell at Auberdine.
After that, head to Bashal'Aran and go past it to the zone wall. Follow the zone wall north until you see a furbolg camp. Also, if you look at the zone wall right between the two, there appears to be a slope up into the mountains. Head up that slope. At the top is the Den Mother for Tharnariun's Hope. She is level 18 and has quite a few little cubs, and some of them are linked to her. Although the cubs aren't very dangerous, they add up to the damage you need to do while fighting the Den Mother, which is why this will not be an easy fight, especially for a caster class, but she's definitely doable at 17 if you ignore the cubs and focus on her. Then head back down the slope.
The furbolg camp is a big ring, and around the edges of it should be three casks you can interact with. Clear around those casks. Do not try to sneak up to them, because as soon as you loot one, up to 2 mobs may spawn. Or maybe you'll lucky and get nothing. But you might be forced to run away if they spawn in bad places and bring friends. The quest formerly had two of these casks in the southern camp and one in the northern camp. If by some chance you cannot find all three, you may have to look in the northern camp by the river.
Head slightly north toward the Cliffspring river and you will find a second encampment nearby. There is a bonfire in the center of this camp. Clear your way toward it - carefully! - and then with all three food items in your possession, you can use the bowl at the campfire. As soon as you do, all the furbolgs will race toward the campfire, and then become friendly. A moment later, the satyr Xabraxxis will spawn and attack you. He's level 19, and casts a few annoying warlock spells. This isn't a hard fight altogether, but it can be very frustrating at lower levels, and if you are caught off-guard and killed after using the bowl, all the furbolgs will no longer be friendly and you probably won't be able to clear back in toward Xabraxxis. The quest item you need is from the bag that appears next to his corpse.
Two down, two to go.
Cross the river and immediately turn right. A path into the mountains will lead to a cave above the falls. Fight your way past the naga here into the cave, and collect the Scaber Stalks as you go. Important: when you first enter the cave, turn RIGHT. Although there are mushrooms throughout the cave, the Death Caps everywhere else are guarded by difficult three-somes, but there is a single Death Cap at the end of the ridge to the right that is extremely easy to get to. You will probably only be missing one Scaber Stalk by the time you reach it, so turn around and run back out and the mushroom by the entrance will have respawned.
The last quest we are interested in is the Tower of Althalaxx. The tower is further north up the zone wall, but you will need to talk to Balthule Shadowstrike out near the road first. Balthule will ask you to kill several of the fanatics here to collect Worn Parchments. Pull carefully and do NOT try to go near the entrance of the tower. The creatures inside there are well over level 20, and unimportant to us right now. Bring the quest drops to Balthule, and you are free to hearth back to town.
We're going south, past the southern river to a spot called the Grove of the Ancients. Onu, the ancient there, has a quest for us to grab, (as well as a sleeping druid we will ignore,) but this is the region for Grizzled Thistle Bears and Moonstalker Sires, which are our targets for Buzzbox 525 and A Lost Master. The buzzbox is along the road on the west side, a little north of Grimclaw. You do not need to finish A Lost Master now, but grab what you can as you collect your grizzled pelts.
After finishing the buzzbox, head south to the Master's Glaive. Clear your way into the area, step onto the edge of the island there, and use a Scrying Vial. (Right-click it, and then target a spot near you on the ground.) This will let you communicate with Onu and he will ask you to grab the book on the lectern in the center of the isle. Grab the book, and then turn around and circle clockwise around the island to the back. There you will find Therylune, a dryad in need of your assistance escaping. With the path somewhat clear already, you should be able to move through this escort fairly easily.
A note on doing escort quests in general: stay behind the NPC, and don't attack anything that they don't get into a fight with. Pulling what you think will attack them is a sure way to have them trudge ahead into other trouble and get yourself overwhelmed or at least your ward killed. Most escort quests are not intended to be soloed. However, there are no ambushes on this escort, so it should be easy to do this one alone.
Once you get Therylune back to the road, go around the glaive to Remtravel's Expedition. Remtravel is along the north edge of the excavation site, where the path leads down into it. He does embark on an escort quest after someone talks to him, so don't be alarmed if he isn't there immediately. However, we do not care about doing the escort quest. This one *IS* a hard escort quest, and takes a group. All we want to do is talk to him once and turn in the quest we've got for the free experience. No more.
Once you've talked to him, just go back to Onu at the Grove of the Ancients. We need his follow-up quest.
Go all the way to the north, out by the Tower of Althalaxx. Take the road to its very end, and you will encounter the Mathystra Ruins. The ruins are guarded by level 18-20 naga, and littered throughout the area are small relics. They are very easy to miss, and can look a few different ways, but all of them are small stone carvings. Amble about in the ruins until you grab the relics you need for Onu.
Return to the beaches. At the south end of the beaches as they turn west again should be a beached sea creature that is completely unguarded. Grab its goods and follow the coast north. You will pass a strange machine, the Threshwackonator 4100, and later see a pirate gnome questgiver standing on a rock in the water.
Gelkak Gyromast wants you to collect some key fragments from the creatures in the area. The high-level crabs on the beach have one piece, the tallstriders in the area have a second, and the third is held by the murlocs off the coast to the northwest. Be careful with the murlocs. Gyromast will ask you to take the key to his "first mate", which is the robot you passed earlier, and then you will end up fighting him. The Threshwackonator used to be an elite, and very difficult to kill, but he's a pansy now.
The other important activity while you're here is to kill the Moonstalker Sires and Matriarchs to the east (perhaps while hunting down Foreststriders to get the key piece) for A Lost Master. Once you've got them, return to town. Keep your old cloak.
It's time to say goodbye to Darkshore now. Run south to the Grove of the Ancients and talk to Onu. Then equip the cloak you got from A Lost Master and head south until you see the polar bear Grimclaw. Right-click your cloak, do not cast any spells or loot anything, and run into the cave behind the furbolgs. Inside, turn off your cloak's effect, and talk to Volcor. You will have two choices for how to help him escape, but unless you have become dearly attached to this 3 stamina cloak, choose Escape by Stealth and hand it over to him. He will run out on his own, and you can collect on the quest the next time you stop by Auberdine. You can either run out of the cave to the side or pull the targets back and kill them. Just don't do Escape by Force thinking it will be as easy as clearing the mobs one by one.
Travel south into Ashenvale. Duskwood is easily the best zone for this level range, but it's difficult to level in just Duskwood from 20 to 30, and best to wait a couple levels to get the best benefit out of it anyway. So we will go to Ashenvale first, since we're already here. Ashenvale is another zone like Darkshore that people tend to hate mostly without cause, but there are some very valid reasons if you are on a PvP server. This is the first contested zone we will be working in, and it can be quite contested.
The slight snag about the next section is that some of the quests require you to be level 20. If you are not level 20 yet, hop off the road to the west and kill the stags and wolves in the area until you are. This is one of the rare times I will specifically recommend that you do any grinding to get caught up.
Head south down the road, pause at Maestra's Post to get the two quests there – the follow-up to The Tower of Althalaxx, and Bathran's Haunt – and then continue down the road. If the NPCs aren't there, it means some Horde stooge has been killing them. You'll be coming back this way, so just get them later.
Past Maestra's Post, off the road, is the Shrine of Aessina. There is one NPC here, waiting for us to finish Therylune's Escape. After that, finish the trek into the town of Astranaar, collect quests, get the flight point, and set your hearthstone.
Fly back to Auberdine to turn in A Lost Master, and then go wherever you need to to train. From there, head to a city to train. Warlocks and shamans in particular will want to pick up their level 20 quests and follow them up until the sections where they lead into Ashenvale.