Among the many available options for obtaining gear in WoW, the faction
rewards system is one that offers the most diversity and can be mostly
attained by a solo player. Most of us who played older MMOGs, and
particularly those that played EverQuest,
probably still cringe a little inside at the words "faction grind," but
fear not. As with everything Blizzard has made this too, an easy task.
In prior versions of the game one had to run a specific instance or do
a specific quest to achieve faction increases. In style="font-style: italic;">The Burning Crusade
they added in daily quests to help expedite the process and in Wrath
they have taken it a step further by adding in the tabard system for
many factions. The tabard system allows you to purchase a tabard from a
faction’s quartermaster that you can wear during 5 man
instance runs that will increase your faction with each kill. This is a
departure from the prior expansion where you had to go to specific 5
mans to increase faction gains with respective factions. There are 4
positive faction levels starting with Friendly, Honored, Revered and
finally Exalted. With each rise in faction level most quartermasters
will have new items for you to purchase that range from enhanced food
items all the way up to epic armor. For the Druid most factions have a
couple of very nice items and we will look at those and your path
towards obtaining them.
The most interesting thing to me about the WotLK factions is how
dynamic they are. The Knights of the Ebon Blade, for instance, only
unlocks itself after you finish a series of quest chains and an area
that was previously full of enemies is now a base camp for the faction.
The Sons of Hodir is similar in its level of personal immersion. With
each new level of faction gained the look of the camp changes, giving
you a feeling of shaping the world around you.
No one faction has all things for all players and this is of course by
design. However, most have something for most people and this makes the
relatively easy process of faction grinding and championing very
worthwhile. Let’s look at each faction a bit closer
and I will highlight a couple items from each.
The Argent Crusade, lore wise, is a group formed from a merging of the
Argent Dawn and The Knights of the Silver Hand. If you choose to create
a Death Knight you will get to see this happen as part of the
introductory quest line. Members of The Argent Crusade are sworn
enemies of the Scourge and their leader, The Lich King.
Reputation with the Argent Crusade can be gained by completing daily
Zul Drak as well as through several quest lines. The easiest way to
grind this faction is by completing as many of the faction quests as
you can during the leveling process and then wearing the tabard through
level 80 instances. Let’s look at a couple of the exalted
items that will be most beneficial to the Druid. For the
feral there are epic level boots with + Hit and Attack power bonuses
along with excellent agility and stamina. For the resto or balance
player there is a nice ring with haste and spellpower bonuses along
with stamina and intellect. Overall this faction is very worthwhile to
While The Kirin Tor is mainly considered a “mage”
faction, these inhabitants of Dalaran do have a nifty item or two to
offer balance druids. One of the bonuses of this faction grind is that
in addition to championing them with their tabard you gain reputation
simply by turning in the daily 5 man and daily 5 man heroic as well as
cooking and jewelcrafting dailies. Balance spec will find the
most benefit to this reputation as the better items are focused on
spellpower and spell critical strike. A very nice epic quality belt and
the balance head slot enhancement of choice are found in the upper
echelons of this reputation.
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Knights of the Ebon Blade
The Knights are one of the more interesting factions in Northrend. They
are a sect of former death knights who have rebelled and formed up
under Highlord Darian Mograine. Like most of the other factions, you do
a lead in series of quests to attain friendly at which point you can
champion the faction in level 80 instances. Feral players will find the
most benefit from this faction in the form of a wicked head enchant and
an epic quality chest piece.
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Sons of Hodir
This faction is one of only a few factions in this expansion that is
raised without the aid of championing via a tabard. The Sons of Hodir
are a group of giants in Storm Peaks who go from hated to friendly in
one of the more fun quest chains in the game. Once you complete the
initial quest line you progress to daily quests with a new quest added
at each level of faction. You can also turn in relics by the 10 stack
for a 250 rep increase from the quartermaster once you hit friendly.
This is one faction that everyone will want to raise as it offers the
only shoulder enchants in the expansion as well as a few other nice
Epic quality enchants are gained at exalted with a corresponding rare
quality item that is purchasable at honored.
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The Wyrmrest are a coalition of the four Dragonflights :
Red, Bronze, Green and even the previously despised Black (shakes fist
at Nefarian) who have allied themselves against the Blue Dragonflight
and their plans for conquest. This faction has the standard means for
raising it that include an intro set of questlines, daily quests, a
daily instance quest and championing with a tabard. Both the
restoration and feral druid will find nice rewards with this faction in
the forms of a head enchant and bracers.
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The trend that began in WoW’s first expansion is continued
here and ratcheted up a notch as faction rewards contine to offer
amazing results for the hardcore raider to the most casual of casual
players and everyone in between. Until next week, stay safe and have
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