Back in the Vanilla we received not one, not two, but three items of legendary status. Crafting these items was arduous and rewarding to complete. They were very lore centric and having one was a big deal Lets look at the first three Legendary items.
Sulfuras, Hand of Ragnaros
The baby legendary of the initial bunch, this was crafted by combining a Sulfuron Hammer with the Eye of Ragnaros. The part list for the initial hammer was pretty steep I mean take a look at it here.
- 8x [Sulfuron Ingot]
- 20x [Dark Iron Bar]
- 50x [Arcanite Bar]
- 25x [Essence of Fire]
- 10x [Blood of the Mountain]
- 10x [Lava Core]
- 10x [Fiery Core]
The Ingot’s only dropped from Golemagg in molten core and 50 arcanite bars was one hell of a tall order. But when you finally got the hammer made and then finally got Ragnaros to drop his eye, you had at the time THE best two hand dps weapon in the game and an item tied to the elemental lords of Azeroth’s birth, and it looked cool too!
Thunderfury, Blessed Blade of the Windseeker
The big brother to Sulfuras, Thunderfury was yet another item of the Elemental Lords that players could quest and construct. Ragnaros along with his two liuetenants had defeated Thunderaan, Prince of Air and being unable to destroy him completely, bound what was left of his essence into a talisman of elemental binding. A follower of Thunderaan unable to restore his master was instead able to craft a weapon to channel his lords fury and vengeance. To construct it you had to have both binding pieces that were drops from Molten Core bosses Baron Geddon and Garr, and had to gather the components necessary to craft the sword, not least of which required the following
10x [Elementium Bar]
In order to craft an elementium bar you needed to gather 1 [Elementium Ore] (from Blackwing Lair), 1 [Fiery Core], 10 [Arcanite Bar], and 3 [Elemental Flux].
When you finally got the pieces together you had to talk to Demitrian who summons the remaining essence of lord Thunderaan. An outdoor RAID boss fight in silithus later and you get your sword. This item was the best tanking weapon even up through The Burning Crusade. It’s proc alone making it invaluable to raids. Having one was truly amazing, difficult to get and offered a large benefit to any raid group that had one. If you had one you were pretty well set.
Atiesh, Greatstaff of the Guardian
If you’re looking for a lore weapon steeped in Azerothian history this staff delivers and in spades. When Naxxramas was released we got a chance to begin building the staff of the Guardian’s of Tristfall and ultimately Medivh himself. The staff was protected by the Kirin Tor after Medivh was assasinated and then was destroyed when Archimonde blew up Dalaran. The staff was shattered into Forty Two (42) pieces that were scattered to the far corners of Azeroth. Brann Bronzebeard himself held the base piece until he lost it to C’thun in AQ40. Kel’thuzad wanted the powerful focus for himself and when Naxx came to Azeroth the scourge began gathering pieces, eventually obtaining the head piece and the 40 shards of the shaft itself. Players could gather the shards for the frame from bosses in Naxx and the Head from Kel’thuzad himself. The base could be obtained by defeating C’thun in AQ. When all the pieces were assembled you could obtain one of four flavors of the staff. Priest, Druid, Lock and Mage were all able to wield a version of it with stats custom tailored for the PC. The staff also gave players the ability to teleport their entire group to Karazhan, the home of medivh himself.
Having one of these was truly epic and not many people managed to compelte it. It is a very lore centric item to the world of warcraft and if you had one, truly it was awe inspiring.
From here lets take a quick jaunt to The Burning Crusade. In BC endgame, technically three legendary items were introduced outside of the Kael’thas encounter. I wont spend too much time here because honestly while they are legendary quality, I felt truly let down by the items themselves.
The Twin Blades of Azzinoth
These items are the weapons of Illidan himself. Illidan obtained these weapons by slaying the doomguard commander Azzinoth nearly 10,000 years prior. They became the symbol of his office so to speak and all demon hunters since have wielded dual glaives such as these. These items were drops from Illidan himself, there was no quest to obtain them. While getting them was still an amazing task after having to defeat all of Black Temple and it’s challenges to even have a chance to obtain them, it didn’t quite have the feel of obtaining any of the previous three. I know someone who had obtained a Thunderfury after much hard work and then had received a set of blades and he said that it just didn’t feel like it had the same weight. While they are very lore centric, and they are wickedly cool. I think there should have been a bit more questing to get them. But that’s just one shaman’s opinion.
Thori’dal, the Stars’ Fury
Every hunter I know wanted this item. It was THE best dps bow in the game, and until recently held that same title. It drops from Kil’jaden in Sunwell Plateau and it generates it’s own magical arrows. Before the removal of the need for quivers and ammo pouches this was HUGE. Research doesn’t show a tie to any lore specific character for this item and honestly there’s not a lot of info on it other then it’s awesome stats. It is speculated that it is a manifestation of the sunwell’s power because of it’s ability to create magical burning arrows, but blizzard has never released any official lore about the item itself.
From there we move on to the absolute return of the TRULY legendary items. In Wrath of The Lich King these items are lore centric and as we can see the reward for the time put into obtaining them is there.
First up my personal favorite (for obvious reasons)
Val’anyr, Hammer of Ancient Kings
This item is obtained by defeating bosses in the instance of Ulduar 25. You obtain 30 [Fragment of Val'anyr], and then fuse them together into the shattered fragments. The quest leads you to a computer console of the titans that explains the history of the mace and how to reforge it. Let me share with you the history of this item. Created by the Titans themselves, Val’anyr was given to the first Earthen king, Urel Stoneheart. With it, he was to create and give life to the rest of his brethren. Urel Stoneheart used Val’anyr during the first war between the Earthen and the Iron Dwarves. The weapon was shattered and its remnants were believed lost in the conflict.
So here you have an item gifted by the titans, the shapers of all life on Azeroth even the Dragon Flights themselves, given to the First Earthen king, and well honestly the first earthen. They GAVE him the power to create life. This item is an old item of power and is tied intricately with the creation of the Dwarves. Having one means you’ve collected the fragments, defeated Yogg on hard mode and have put the time into getting the item. It just feel awesome to hold something with such heavy lore weight and think “wow, this item created an entire race. And here I’ve only unlocked a small portion of it!” Having one truly you can feel the reward for the work put in and it feels truly legendary.
This is probably the most talked about and watched legendary to date. Everyone and their mother is talking about it and it’s uses. This item is also steeped in insane amounts of lore. well… let me just get right too it
Shadowmourne… A great two-handed axe fit for a giant, born of sacred and corrupt powers, host of a thousand dead souls and able to be wielded only by the most stalwart armsmasters of Azeroth. Its creation seems nearly impossible; and yet, the rumors do not cease.
Darion Mograine believes that only the hammer of Arthas himself will provide a worthy model – but such absurd ambition is just the beginning of Shadowmourne’s creation. To contain the energies that dance across its cold edges, Shadowmourne would be hewn from piles of impure Saronite: the hardened blood of the Old God, Yogg-Saron. To fuel its power to kill, it should be drenched in the souls of the most potent servants of the Scourge as they are slain, one by one, with the unfinished blade. To help break through the Lich King’s armor, it is to be adorned with fragments of the Frozen Throne, originally crafted by Kil’Jaeden out of ice from the Twisting Nether
Only with these mighty components, it is said, can Shadowmourne be finished. And, yet, even if the axe could be completed, questions and fears remain. Is forging the souls of the deceased into a weapon treated with blood and the essence of the Twisting Nether truly any different from the crafting of the Scourge’s runeblades? And who will be bold enough to try to wield such a weapon? Might Shadowmourne bring the same doom and misery to the living as its sister blade did?
Um… yes pls. so far in order to obtain the item of such legendary proportions there is a long quest line in place. the quests, as far as is known is as such.
- [80R] The Sacred and the Corrupt
- [80R] Shadow’s Edge
- [80R] A Feast of Souls
- [80R] Unholy Infusion
- [80R] Blood Infusion
- [80R] Frost Infusion
- [80R] The Splintered Throne
- [80R] Shadowmourne…
- [80R] The Lich King’s Last Stand
This ranges from obtaining Artha’s mace, to killing specific NPC’s and bathing the blade in their blood up to defeating the Lich King himself. It is an outstanding amount of work to obtain and from what we can see, it’s well worth it. Obtaining one of these will be hard work, but in the end the return for the time invested will be amazing. And just fitting with the epicness of the weapons we received a plethora of sound files with the new voice of Arthas. Does this mean that Arthas’ soul will be the final one to occupy the blade? It is at this time unknown, but I for one look forward to finding out. In case you missed it here’s a short video of the weapon.
BC didn’t feel like obtaining the legendary items was very significant in the world, no where near as much as Vanilla WoW’s items did. In Wrath though it feels like obtaining the items has weight in the story, and truly feels awesome to hold. Now there are non legendary quality items that have this feel to them, that truly feel epic and story impacting, but that my friends is a post for another time.
What do you think of the legendary items? Do you think the way they are obtained now is good or bad? Do you like the lore of the items?
Until next time
Article main image courtesy of Lucasfilm Ltd. Images throughout courtesy of wowhead, mmo-champion and wow.com