Ah, green fire. It is something Warlocks have been asking Blizzard to implement for years. Warlocks draw their power from fel energies, exposure to which causes green discoloration. Orcs’ green skin and Blood Elves’ green eyes are both examples of how fel energies can corrupt and change a person’s physical features. It is only natural that a class which harnesses that energy would emit the color as well. It took some time, but Blizzard was finally happy with a way of implementing it in-game, and I was fortunate enough to experience it.
When all was said and done, I spent about two weeks working towards my green fire. It was probably the single hardest challenge I have faced in World of Warcraft, and no other victory has filled me with as much feeling of accomplishment. I would like to share how I personally was able to finally defeat Kanrethad Ebonlocke, Leader of the Black Harvest.
It all begins with the Sealed Tome of the Lost Legion. It was added in Patch 5.2 and it drops from rare mobs found on the Isle of Thunder. These mobs have an individual respawn time of about 45 minutes and I was able to predict the spawns with relative accuracy. They are not tapped to the individual who first attacks it. Anyone can receive loot from it, with the caveat that anyone who attacks the mob causes its health pool to increase.
So, you will not be fighting other players for each spawn. Everyone gets their own loot, and the book can drop for the same Warlock multiple times. The big question, of course, is “what’s the drop rate?” Well . . .
It took around 50 kills for me to find my Sealed Tome of the Lost Legion. I have seen reports on Wowhead of players needing 100 kills. Your mileage will vary, of course. But if you thought getting the book was hard, you will be begging to camp rare spawns soon enough.
Binding the book with a healthstone will get you started on the quest An Unusual Tome. You get to summon your demon companions and question them about the book’s origins. Each demon will say something different and some of the responses are quite amusing.
In the end though, you will travel to Outland to witness some of what Jubeka Shadowbreaker and Kanrethad Ebonlocke were up to, only to head into the Black Temple to try and fill in the missing pieces. Within the Black Temple you will find a post-Illidan structure filled with Ashtongue Deathsworn in a solo scenario. Eventually you will navigate through the temple and, well, “assist” the Ashtongue Deathsworn with a demonic uprising. I really enjoyed the lore and found the quests within the scenario very amusing.
All good things must come to an end though. Eventually you will have to face Kanrethad Ebonlocke, and he is tough. For starters, I found an excellent overview of his abilities on the World of Warcraft forums written by Esinar.
It was a great start, but I needed to tweak a few things to get a strategy that worked for me. As a reference point, here were my stats for defeating the final boss.
My DPS was not high enough to dish out 30 million damage in 7 minutes. The reason you need to do it in 7 minutes is because he will place a debuff on you called Curse of Ultimate Doom. There is no way to absorb that damage, so I brought along a stack of Purification Potions. As of this writing, the potion will remove that debuff, but my feeling is that this was not intended. It could get hotfixed at any point.
Here is a rundown of the fight. Ebonlocke will appear, mock you, and summon a Pit Lord. This is your tank and it should be immediately enslaved. He will summon 60 Wild Imps, 3 Felhunters, and a Doom Lord. Then he will do that again, in that order, one more time. After the second Doom Lord, only Wild Imps will spawn. The Felhunters will dispel the Enslave Demon effect on the Pit Lord, making him go free. The Doom Lords have too much health to be killed and have to be crowd controlled with Banish and Fear.
The Pit Lord has no special threat generation, so to keep him as a tank you have to jump through Demonic Gateways whenever possible and use Soulshatter strategically. If Kanrethad Ebonlocke targets you and casts Chaos Bolt, the only way to stop it is to break line of sight. It is possible to survive a hit from it, but it requires a lot of “oh shit” button pressing and full health. Ebonlocke also casts Cataclysm, a move he presumably learned from studying good old Deathwing. This has to be interrupted with the Pit Lord’s Charge ability, which is difficult if the Felhunters have made you lose control.
There is a lot going on. I highly recommend watching Esinar’s video and reading his strategy.
Beyond the addition of the potion, I followed Esinar’s guide with spec and talent choices, but I changed the strategy slightly when it came to the Felhunters. Those bastards were causing me to wipe nine times out of ten. I tried just absorbing the damage with shields and healthstones, and I tried moving the Pit Lord behind a pillar to break line of sight. Both of those strategies worked sometimes, but they were not reliable. How the Felhunters managed to dispel Enslave Demon when he was behind a pillar is beyond me.
What did end up working for me was telling the Pit Lord to move to the other side of the platform. After the first two Wild Imps phases and after interrupting Cataclysm, I would move the Pit Lord as far away as possible. Sometimes the Felhunters got a dispel off anyway (despite the rather impressive distance), but it took so long for the Pit Lord to come back to me I was usually ready to enslave it by the time he did.
For reference, I used the following macro for the Wild Imps phase:
/castsequence [mod:shift] reset=30 Fire and Brimstone, Incinerate; Incinerate
That will spam Fire and Brimstone and Incinerate, if you hold shift. If no modifier is held, it will just use Incinerate. I did this because it takes six or seven Incinerates to kill the Wild Imps and it is too time-consuming to activate Fire and Brimstone separately. Adding a Fire and Brimstone’d Immolate with Rain of Fire should ensure you have more Burning Embers than you know what to do with. I also used the Pit Lord’s Flame Breath ability on the Imps, which had the added benefit of removing my debuffs.
I died many times to a Demonic Circle that expired mid-fight. I was using it to teleport behind a pillar when Chaos Bolt was cast so not having it meant I had to try and soak it. I died a few times to the Curse of Ultimate Doom ticking because I forgot to use my Purification Potion at the midway point. I died to Cataclysm because my Pit Lord was not enslaved or Charge was on cooldown because of an error in judgment.
I died a lot.
But when I finally did it, it was fantastic. I debated in my head quite a bit on whether the fight should be nerfed. With better gear, some players have avoided the second Felhunter phase altogether. That makes the fight much easier because there are not two Doom Lords running around breaking out of their crowd controls. With time, it will get easier and easier, and because of that I think it should be left alone.
I would prefer Blizzard increase the drop rate on the book though. The difficulty should be completing the quest, not starting it. I was never able to get Benediction or Rhok’delar, Longbow of the Ancient Keepers. I was able to complete the original Dreadsteed and Thalassian Charger questlines. I loved those questlines. When class quests were removed from the game I was very upset, and I am glad Blizzard may be on the track to bringing them back.
The memories I make in World of Warcraft will last much longer than any piece of gear ever will and I am very happy I was able to come out victorious in this exceptionally difficult challenge.