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Shared Topic: “Worst Quest Ever”

September 27, 2011
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This week’s Blog Azeroth Shared Topic comes from Oathblade at Info about WoW from the Altaholic:

We all have the ones we hate to do. The quests that make us froth in rage to see their name in our quest log. So what quest do you hate above all others? If you can break down why its so horrible and rework it so it works.

I certainly have my own “worst quest,” though not perhaps for reasons Oathblade has in mind.  This is one quest that makes me cringe every time I accept it, yet I’ve done it on nearly all of my characters because it’s part of the progression in a zone I like to level through.  It a quest that has a very simple objective, but an amazing emotional impact.

The first time I did this quest was on my Death Knight as I rushed to level her to 80.  What I found was a quest that stopped me dead in my tracks and made me understand, in a completely immersive way, why it was so absolutely crucial that the Horde and Alliance win the battle against the Scourge.  It demonstrated everything that was at stake in the war in Northrend, which was something I only felt the impact of in maybe one or two other quests (both in the DK starting area).

What I found was that I had been tasked to become the Mosswalker Savior.

What remains of the Lifeblood Pillar

In the Northeastern corner of Scholazar Basin, there was a village of Oracles who called themselves the Mosswalkers.  When the Cult of the Damned destroyed the Lifeblood Pillar allowing the Scourge to pour down through the avalanche from Icecrown, the Mosswalkers’ village was directly in the way.  For whatever reason, the Scourge are not raising these gorlocs to undeath, so instead they are slaughtering the Oracles in their homes.  Moodle, the least happy-go-lucky of the Oracle companions, tells you, “There’s some small chance that the Mosswalkers are not all dead yet… and at the very least, they deserve to not be butchered like this.  Let’s find some revenge for this slaughter and see if there are any to be saved in the process.”  Sounds easy enough, right?

Then you get to the ruins of Mosswalker Village.

The home of the Mosswalkers

The village is destroyed, with fires raging throughout the small huts the Oracles use as shelter.  Still hanging from the now decaying trees are the “shinies” that the Mosswalkers use at their shrines for protection and to please their gods.  Yet the Oracles have found they have no protection from the murderous Scourge, who are busy hacking at the Mosswalkers’ corpses or dragging the few remaining survivors around with chains.

What’s next is worse.  You begin to fight back, killing the Scourge in the village and freeing the survivors … except that you don’t actually manage to save all the Mosswalker survivors.  About as many of them die when you kill their Scourge torturers as live.  As they take their last breath and hand you their remaining shinies, the Mosswalkers utter their final words:

“Please take… my shinies. All done…
“We not do anything… to them… I no understand.
“Use my shinies… make weather good again… make undead things go away.
“We gave shinies to shrine… we not greedy… why this happen?
“I do something bad? I sorry…”

The Mosswalkers are innocents, perhaps more so than any other of the races we see the Scourge attack throughout Azeroth.  They lead a peaceful existence, wishing only to collect their shinies and build their shrines.  They literally cannot understand what is happening to them when the Scourge attack.  It is SO. DAMN. SAD.

Looking over the player comments on WoWHead, it’s clear that this quest has tugged quite a few heartstrings since WotLK was released:

“I was in this place for over an hour just killing the scourge and saving the mosswalkers…
 I couldn’t just leave them there… Even after I turned it in and couldn’t check if they were alive I still killed all the scourge that were killing them.”  – Psycobean

“I couldn’t vendor the shinies the Mosswalkers dropped when they died. In the end, I went over to the shrine by the Mosslight Pillar and destroyed them one at a time. Was the closest I could come to actually laying the treasures by it.” – 32ndShadowwind

“This is one of the few quests in the game that really puts your heart in the objective. Northrend has generally run with a very serious quest theme, but Sholazar Basin took a break from that – you were invited to play along with some of the lesser races, chasing their loose chickens, digging up “shinnies” and allowing you to experience the heartily atmosphere inside the jungle’s sanctuary.
Then this quest comes and shatters the whole illusion, reminding you of the world of danger surrounding you and how these wonderful races would be purged should the Scourge manage to enter the basin, and you’re the only one who stands between them.” – Bogrim

It’s not that The Mosswalker Savior is a bad quest, quite the opposite.  The Mosswalker Savior is an amazing quest that manages to get you to pause during your grindy questing experience in order to actually think about the people (or gorlocs) you’re helping along the way.  It gives you a context for all the work both factions did in Northrend.  I only hate seeing it in my Quest Log because I know it means I’ll have to watch so many of the Mosswalkers die all over again.

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. September 27, 2011 3:18 pm

    It’s possible that this quest made me cry. Er I mean. It was allergies. Yeah……

    • September 27, 2011 3:24 pm

      Right. I only keep tissues by my desk when I level alts through Sholazar because I’m prone to sinus infections.
      <.<

      >.>

    • September 27, 2011 3:32 pm

      Must be a lot of these infections and allergies going around. My eyes start streaming every time I see “We not do anything… to them… I no understand.“

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