Have I ever mentioned that I'm incredibly fortunate to play WoW with my wife? It's a subtle, wonderful thing. And because I worship this wonderful creature, all of my journey to level 85 on my paladin is being spent in a group with her. Our first foray into Cataclysm's new content was the underwater realm of Vashj'ir. It seemed like a romantic way to spend time: dodging sharks, making appropriate crab jokes, and exploring new content.
The thing you need to know is that Vashj'ir is a three-dimensional zone. You don't only run around on the ground; you can also swim up and down. That's not a terribly complicated issue for instances like the Oculus, but those three dimensions turn into pains in the neck when you're trying to do a hundred quests as a pair. If you're leveling in a group with more than one person, it gets even more confusing. It's easy to lose track of where groupmates are hiding out and where quest mobs are swimming. And many areas of Vashj'ir have an "upper" and a "lower" level. If you're doing all this as a group, you'll need coordination.
Here are our top 5 tricks for working as a group in Vashj'ir.
- Use raid markers. The group leader can set raid markers above each group member's head. (I used a skull for my wife and the red X for myself.) These raid markers can be seen through most objects, and they stand out from Vashj'ir's beautiful scenery.
- Make use of voice chat. While admittedly, I play in the same room as my wife and we can talk to each other easily, larger groups will need something like Mumble or Ventrilo. This lets you communicate more easily than trying to type out "I'm by the fish!" in group chat 300 times.
- Stick together. Even using voice chat and raid markers, it's incredibly easy to get lost in Vashj'ir. It's a huge zone with hundreds of interesting nooks and crannies. You can get lost in it for hours, just looking around at all the sights. If you're trying to keep your group together, don't get separated when farming or turning in quests. By making the compact to stick together, you'll save yourself a lot of frustration when you don't have to search around every corner to find lost group mates.
- Do the same quests. Like most zones, a lot of Vashj'ir quests include picking up dropped items from dead mobs. Since the drops are generally random, group members will finish the quests at different rates. Don't turn in your quest until everyone's done; there are many phased quests in this zone. If you turn in at different rates, you may find yourself in different phases.
- Complete the zone in order. There are well over 100 quests in Vashj'ir. They are very nicely organized in a relatively linear storyline, making the cruise through the underwater realm fun and interesting. Try and follow the quest progression together; if someone jumps ahead, you'll play heck getting back on the same page.
Visit the WoW Rookie Guide for links to everything you need to get started as a new player, from how to control your character and camera angles when you're just starting out, to pulling together enough cash for mid-level expenses such as mounts and dual specialization, to what to do when you finally hit level 80.