Don’t worry, because the Carcinized Zerethsteed AOTC mount is still available in Shadowlands Season 4
There’s been a lot of consternation in the World of Warcraft community that the arrival of patch 9.2.5 and a new season 4 would result in a much shorter time frame to obtain Shadowlands‘ version of the final raid’s Ahead of the Curve mount: the Carcinized Zerethsteed. While we learned that season 4 would not be starting alongside patch 9.2.5, giving additional time for players to obtain the mount, the development team has also confirmed to Wowhead that while the Ahead of the Curve achievement will be unavailable in season 4, the mount itself will still be obtainable until the release of Dragonflight.
This is great news because the mount is not only unique (albeit buggy) but it shares a model with Halondrus, the first major roadblock in the Race to World First for Sepulcher of the First Ones and the resulting source of many enjoyable memes.
It isn’t actually the first time that the achievement became unavailable but the mount could still be earned. After the first Ahead of the Curve mount was achievement-based — the Kor’kron War Wolf, from what was then Normal difficulty Garrosh in Siege of Orgrimmar — the achievement and the quest drop that rewarded the mount have been distinct. In the runup to Battle for Azeroth the achievement was removed with the prepatch, but the Violet Spellwing could still be obtained, and the same thing occurred with the Uncorrupted Voidwing going into Shadowlands.
Despite this, it was a valid concern that the Zerethsteed could become unobtainable early, as season 4 is expected to last way longer than the typical interval between prepatch and expansion release. This confirmation that players will still be able to earn it after the start of season 4 is a welcome one, giving players and groups like Perky Pugs (and their popular “Friendship” mounts run — I’m guessing it’ll be “Friendship Crab” this time) plenty of time to gear up and organize runs in order to obtain it.
Originally published May 26, 2022; updated August 2, 2022
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