Updated Thu, Feb 21, 2008 by Xerin
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If Outland were to have a capital city then Shattrath City would be the capital. Shattrath City is the only major city within Outland serving as a major hub for both the Horde and the Alliance. It’s controlled by a neutral faction known as the Sha’tar who is ruled by a single Naaru by the name of A’dal. It is located in a larger portion of the Terokkar Forest.
City from afar
Both the Alliance and Horde are welcome within the city and can freely move around any area and interact with each other through normal racial relations. The only limitation is that there is no violence within the city. It’s flagged as a city of sanctuary and as such combat can not take place.
There is no defense located within the city, only the Naaru who use their mystical powers to hold any attackers at bay. The city does however hold several refuges and other military related people who are in need of assistance in the war against Illidan and the Burning Legion.
A Draenei Temple
Shattrath City used to be the Draenei capital on Draenor (Outland) serving as their major place for trade and worship. It was conquered and left abandoned by the corrupted Orcs who were under the direct control of the Burning Legion. A hull of its former existence with no other purpose to be a ruin left in the memory of yet another forgotten race.
Things changed though when several Draenei Priests were conducting their rites inside of a ruined temple. The Naaru sensed the power of the holy light being channeled within that area and investigated what was going on. The priesthood known as the Aldor quickly spread word the Naaru had returned to the Draenei and their spirits were once again high. They quickly returned to their city and began reconstruction.
It wasn’t long though before the city once again came under attack. This time one of Illidan’s armies led a siege against the city. It was Prince Kael’thas’s Blood Elves who were leading the charge to destroy the city and raze it the ground.
As they were marching across the bridge into the middle of the Terrance of Light, the Aldor (Draenei) began to prepare to defend their beloved city and the Naaru of whom they worshiped as most as much as the Holy Light. They got closer and closer, but a strange thing happened. The Blood Elves laid down their weapon and requested to see A’dal the leader of the Sha’tar.
Their leader knelt down and said “I’ve seen you in a vision, naaru. My race’s only hope for survival lies with you. My followers and I are here to serve you.” From there the Naaru accepted the Blood Elves into the city and they were then known as the Scryers. They now fight alongside the Sha’tar against both the Burning Legion and their former master, Illdian.
Don’t let their good nature fool you. If not for the naaru’s power to sooth conflict the Scryers and the Aldor would be at each other’s throats. The Aldor dislike their enemies inside of their holy villiage and the Scryers are not very trusting of the Aldor. This is the only conflict held within the city walls.
That’s where the city stands today. A fortress against the several enemy factions in Outland with its primary defense being the beings known as the naaru. Their will alone is what protects the city and prevents it from falling into ruin.
Shattrath City so far is my favorite city in the entire game. The city follows the Draenei building practices, only differing in the area where the Scryers reside. Smooth cool blue walls and coloring fill the city along with nature and arcane technology providing lighting and other utilities.
The city is split up into four different zones: the Terrace of Light, the Lower City, the Aldor Rise, and the Scryer’s Tier. Each zone is different visually from the rest, but each zone offers plenty of variety and function to make this one of the largest and greatest cities in the history of World of Warcraft.
A'Dal Rules from a Peaceful Terrace
The Terrace of Light is one of the first areas you will probably visit when you enter Shattrath City. It’s located in the heart of the city and contains several functions and quest givers. It houses A’dal, the leader of the Sha’tar along with Khadgar, an epic hero of the Alliance from Warcraft II.
Several portals leading to all of the major cities in Azeroth are located within the central building along with a vendor who sells dungeon equipment for special dungeon tokens. Since that is obviously a feature that will change in the future, I won’t give you specifics. I will just say it appears that you’ll be able to loot tokens from bosses in the raid dungeons and turn them in for your choice of gear.
There is a portal trainer here that at level sixty will teach Teleport: Shattrath City and Portal: Shattrath City at level sixty five. The outer ring houses the army of the Aldor who are currently training to fight against the various evil forces in Outland. Some of the naaru are even out on the battlefield waging war against some of these evils!
The Aldor Rise is the “Alliance” area of the zone. Don’t let that fool you though, Horde are obviously welcomed there as well, it’s just that the Aldor favor the Alliance to start with. You can (from what I understand) run dungeons to gain factions with the Aldor and the Scryer.
It follows the theme set inside of the Terrance of Light, but with more temples/quests and lots of Draenei. Plenty of soothing water flows through various funnels all through the area. There is an inn here along with some grand master profession trainers and vendors. It’s a good resting place by default for the Alliance and a great place to set your home.
Scryer’s Rise is sort of a mix between Blood Elf and Draenei design. Their area is very regal with plenty of flora to decorate everything. The Scryer are very untrusting and keep to themselves for the most part. Like the Aldor Rise, the Scryer’s start off friendly with the Horde but you can easily change your affiliation by questing and slaying enemies.
A quick word on the factions. You can only be friendly with one of the factions. When you quest or assist one faction then you loose faction with the other. So you can really only affiliate yourself with one of them at a time. They do not like each other and they do not like you helping the other faction. That gives it a lot of realism when it comes to Blood Elves holding an area within Shattrath City.
The Lower City is comprised mostly of flora and tents housing the majority of the refugees. Lots of shops, trainers, and other functions are located in the Lower City. There is even a good luck charm salesman who sells talismans. I might want to add that none of the talismans worked for me….
That pretty much sums up the city. Words can’t really establish how awesome this city is. Really though, words can’t effectively describe the majority of the areas in Outland. As you move away from Hellfire Peninsula (which in itself is breathtaking) you begin to find yourself in these glorious cities and areas that just glow with color and atmosphere.
That’s it for our preview of Shattrath City. Stay tuned for more coverage of “The Burning Crusade” and the other areas/instances!
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