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Running for the Deathcharger’s Reins

Something to do until Cataclysm arrives – not just for the horse, but to finish up the Argent Dawn Reputation for The Argent Champion Achievement.

Argent Champion Achievement

Argent Champion Achievement

I’ve been running it a few times every day and although I have yet to see the Deathcharger drop, I have collected enough Runecloth, green items and even a few Bind on Equip blue items to pay for my Master Flying.

So…to keep myself amused while waiting for the Deathcharger to appear, I thought I’d put together a little Shadow Priest Solo Guide to Stratholme.

At first I was unsure that a Shadow Priest could easily solo this but it can be done with a little careful planning.

I should also point out that this is not a speed run.  It takes me about 15-20 minutes, maybe a bit more if I’m looting.  A more experienced Shadow Priest could probably cut down the time significantly – if you can I’d love to hear about it!

A few tips I’ve learned:

Keep up all your buffs – especially Fear Ward!  Worst case scenario – webbed by Crypt Fiends and Silenced by Banshees who have gone Immune to all your spells!  Even if it happens that doesn’t mean the end.  Dispersion or a PVP trinket will buy you enough time to kill them all before they can kill you.

Kill all the gargoyles.  They can be avoided, but they do have a nasty way of coming up behind you when you’ve just engaged a pack of mobs.  I’ve found it easier just to kill them as they fly by than have to deal with them later.  Terrifying Howl is why you want to keep Fear Ward up.

Sometimes it’s difficult to kill Banshees and Crypt Fiends separately (they will both come running.)  Try to kill the Banshees first before they become Immune to all your spells.  I use Shadow Word: Death as much as I can to kill them quickly.

Try to kill the Eye of Naxxramas as soon as it appears.  It’s not difficult to kill but it will summon a couple of gargoyles that are just annoying.

To get to the Baron, you have to kill all the three bosses in the Ziggurats AND kill the Acolytes inside or the gates to the Slaughter Square will not open.  Watch for the “Red” yell text after killing the Acolytes – if you see it you’re good to go!  It doesn’t matter what order you kill the three bosses.

If you are working on reputation for the Argent Dawn, equip your trinket!

Stratholme Map

This assumes you have the Key to the City to enter the Undead side by the Service Entrance.  The map shows my path and the numbers correspond to the images.

Stratholme Path Map

Stratholme Path Map


1. Enter the instance, then go through the first gate.  There is a pack of skeletons and ghouls that can’t be avoided so just kill them all.

1.  Past first gate and path to next gate.

1. Past first gate and path to next gate.


Note there are two more packs between you and the next gate.  These can be skipped by running close to the wall.

2.  First gate to the Gauntlet.

2.  Path to the Gauntlet Gate avoiding mobs

2. Path to the Gauntlet Gate avoiding mobs


Run through the alley (no mobs to worry about), open the second gate and now the fun begins!

3.  Gate to the Gauntlet

3.  Looking into the Gauntlet

3. Looking into the Gauntlet


Before you open the gate, this might be a good time to decide which route you want to take for the ziggurat bosses.  I usually go left first to kill Nerub’enkan because it works out a little bit faster for me.

4.  There are a couple of Banshees and Crypt Fiends down the path to Nerub’enkan that are easy to kill.  This is also where I usually find the Eye of Naxxramas and finish off a few patrolling Gargoyles.

Nerub'enkan

Nerub'enkan


5.  Inside the Zigguarats
Acolytes inside Ziggurats

Acolytes inside Ziggurats

Once the boss is dead, the doors on the Ziggurat will open.  Don’t forget to go inside and kill the five Acolytes!

6.  Backtrack to where you entered, then continue east towards Baroness Anastari.

Path to Baroness Anastari

Path to Baroness Anastari


Note the Banshee and Crypt Fiend close to the stairway up to the Baroness.  These two can be a problem as they will run together (and sometimes bring a few ghouls) if you aggro one or the other.  Try to kill the Banshee first, then up to kill the Baroness.

7.  Baroness Anastari

Baroness Anastari

Baroness Anastari


Not a very difficult fight – once the doors open, go in and kill the Acolytes.

8.  Path through the street

8.  Path through the street

8. Path through the street


If you killed all the Crypt Fiends, Banshees and Gargolyes there should be a fairly clear path up to the last ziggurat.

9.  Before you enter the main area with the ziggurat, note that there are a few Banshees and Crypt Fiends.

Path to last ziggurat with Banshee and Crypt Fiend

Path to last ziggurat with Banshee and Crypt Fiend


I like to clear them out so I don’t have to worry about them.

10.  Maleki the Pallid

Maleki the Pallid and Friends

Maleki the Pallid and Friends


Maleki the Pallid has a couple of friends with him waiting on the steps.  Kill them first (I pull them down the steps if I’ve cleared the area), then kill Maleki and the Acolytes.

11.  Towards Magistrate Barthilas

Path to Slaughter Square Gates

Path to Slaughter Square Gates


If you killed all the bosses and acolytes, you should see the gates to Slaughter Square open, but first we’ll take a side trip to Magistrate Barthilas.

12.  Magistrate Barthilas

Magistrate Barthilas

Magistrate Barthilas


He has the Key to the City if you haven’t picked it up yet.

13.  Slaughter Square

Gates to Slaughter Square

Gates to Slaughter Square


Go through the gates and start killing the Abominations.  Start on the right side, then move to the left.  Keep one alive as killing the last one will trigger Ramstein the Gorger.

This is the area that seems to be “bugged”.  A couple of times I’ve been locked inside with no way out except to hearthstone and start all over.  A discussion of possible bugs and solutions can be found at WoWHead – Deathcharger’s Reins.

14.  Abominations

Abominations

Path for Abominations


Keep one alive as killing the last one will trigger Ramstein the Gorger.

15.  On the steps to engage last Abomination

Door to Ramstein

Door to Ramstein


I’ll engage the last Abomination in front of the door to Ramstein, and once it is dead the doors will open and Ramstein will come out.  I’ll make sure he’s aggroed me, then I’ll run inside to kill him.

After he is dead, a bunch of Boneguards will appear – just AoE them down and the door to the Baron should open.

16.  The Baron

The Baron

The Baron


If all goes well and it hasn’t bugged, the doors to the Baron will open.  It’s an easy fight – I can usually down him before he brings his skeletons.  If you get the mount, congratulations!  If not…well I know how you feel!
Baron defeated

Baron defeated


Note that if you want to exit back through the Service Entrance, a whole bunch of skeletons will be waiting for you but they are very easy to AoE down.

Hope you have better luck getting the mount than I have!

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© A. Lucas and Wolfgangcat, 2009. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to A. Lucas and Wolfgangcat with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.