I'm sure we're all familiar with the elite quests scattered throughout Azeroth. Or if not familiar with the particulars of each and every one of them, at least aware that there exists such a thing as quests that are flagged "elite" that involve killing more powerful "elite" monsters. Well, in the Burning Crusade you won't be seeing any of those. And, no it's not because Blizzard has decided to remove elites from the game. Instead, Blizzard has dropped the "elite" flag from quests and replaced it with a "group" flag, which I first noticed when questing on my new level 12 Blood Elf. Curious about the above Anok'suten quest, I located a partner and headed out to complete it immediately -- in the end it involved killing a single level 11 elite, surrounded by non-elites of around the same level. I might have been able to solo it -- but the suggested players hint is appreciated.
And this trend continues into Outland -- only the elites are a bit bigger.
When looking at "group" quests on Faience, I tend to count myself as player 1 and my Felguard as player 2 -- a convenient categorization that puts many such quests within solo reach. It usually works out for me... and when it doesn't, well, I do occasionally need a reminder that I'm not immortal (this often comes when I find monsters immune to fear). With this in mind I set about clearing this annoying "group" quests from my log, starting in Hellfire Peninsula. Of course, having hit level 63 makes some of these a bit easier...
My primary target was a quest up in Fallen Sky Ridge, an area surrounded by level 63 Raging Colossuses who spawned help as they got low on health. I'd done a related quest, requiring me to kill 5 colossuses, at level 61 -- the colosussuses were perfectly killable with the DoT-and-fear method, but this required a lot of space to avoid adds, in an area tightly packed with these giants.
I first attempted this quest, Natural Remedies, at level 61 and failed miserably. The quest required me to work my way over to the far corner of the area where I would need to channel a spell in order to quell the power of a giant crystal there -- a crystal which was, obviously, emanating evil and corrupting the creatures around it. There were a great many giants in the way, if I walked carefully enough, I could get back to the proper spot without angering any of them. (Killing them didn't work well, as they were packed tightly enough to make fearing them likely to bring adds, which usually meant my death.) It was easy enough to channel my spell, but then an image of Pathaleon the Calculator showed up and started making threats -- which he eventually followed up on by summoning a rather angry level 64 elite, which in the crowded area (fear leads to adds, and adds lead to death), forced me to flee.
And though the rewards weren't terribly interesting to me (starting from tier 2, I've yet to replace a piece of gear), I really had to go back and beat this thing. Or at least give Pathaleon a piece of my mind. It was about honor! About pride! It was about... well, after my third death, my inability to avoid adds may prove that it's really about my repair bill. I'm sure some other savvy adventurers will be happy to put Pathaleon out of his misery, leaving me free to spirit rez and hearth out.
Read more about Faience's adventures in Outland.