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WoWJul 13, 2023 10:00 am CT

Unlock old transmog and crafting patterns with new secrets in Scholomance and Naxxramas

One of the World of Warcraft team’s efforts during Dragonflight‘s patches has been bringing back old and previously unobtainable transmog appearances and crafting recipes. However, with the team never content to just put these things on a vendor, some of these things end up as secrets — sometimes complex, interrelated chains of secrets, like the items and quests needed to learn new and old Zandalari recipes from Zul’Gurub, as well as fishing up old item appearances. Well, in patch 10.1.5 they’ve done it again, bringing back not only an entire instance full of removed appearances, but even adding in the opportunity to finally farm up a full set of Tier 3 armor. But this isn’t for the faint of heart — or light of wallet.

If you’re not scared off by all that, read on to find out how to bring back Old Scholomance, uncover new old patterns in Naxxramas, and even get a new (old) undead horse!

A shopping list before you go

You’ll want to pick up the following items before you go on this trek; otherwise, you’ll find yourself heading back to the Auction House a few times.

  • First off pick up, 3 Dark Runes.
  • Next, all you vanilla hoarders, check your banks for a Spectral Essence. If you still have one, bring it with you. If not, buy:
  • As long as you’re looking at old stuff from vanilla that you saved out of sentimentality, grab any Invader’s Scourgestones or Corruptor’s Scourgestones you still have. Yes, the old ones.
  • More stuff from vanilla: The Argent Dawn Commission. If you didn’t save it — triple check your banks because it’s Unique — bring along:
  • 1 Black Coffee
  • This last part of your shopping list varies based on what your reputation is with the Argent Dawn on the character that you’re doing these unlocks on.
    • If you’re below honored… you’ll need to get to honored. There will be an opportunity to do this.
    • If you’re at honored, you will need 6 Large Brilliant Shards, 5 Arcane Crystals, another Righteous Orb, and 60 gold.
    • If you’re at revered, you will only need 3 Large Brilliant Shards, 2 Arcane Crystals, and 30 gold. No second Orb needed!
    • If you’re exalted, you don’t need anything at all.
  • Finally, you can’t shop for this one, but you will either need the toy Krastinov’s Bag of Horrors from the Mists of Pandaria revamp of Scholomance, or you’ll need to bring someone who does with you to Scholomance.

Step 1: Unlocking Old Scholomance

Head to Scholomance in Western Plaguelands. Clear through the dungeon like usual — it shouldn’t take you long at max level — and once you defeat Darkmaster Gandling, head to the room that is above and behind him. For players who’ve been in the old Scholomance, this is the room where Doctor Theolen Krastinov used to be stationed as a boss. Once inside the room, whoever has the Bag of Horrors needs to use it, and then head towards a small nondescript bone on the floor near one of the crypts in the back of the room. You’ll know you’ve found the right one when Eva Sarkhoff’s ghost spawns and is audibly frightened. At this point, click off the buff from the toy and she’ll calm down and talk to you.

If you don’t have a Spectral Essence, she’ll give you one that you can empower using those Essences of Undeath and Dark Runes you brought with you. Secondly, she’ll explain that she wants to perform a ritual, but needs a few things. Some of these are in the dungeon, while some will require a little bit of a scavenger hunt.

  • Start by picking up Eva’s Femur, which is right next to her ghost.
  • Head back to the Viewing Room (where Professor Slate is), and look at the bookcases along the wall. One of them, if you angle your camera so you can see the back of it, will have a noticeably brighter book you can click and loot; this is Eva’s Journal.
  • Next, equip your Spectral Essence. You’re going to do some flying around the Plaguelands to pick up some items for the locals in Caer Darrow (the little town around Scholomance).
    • On the fountain in Caer Darrow, pick up a bucket of Caer Darrow Fountain Water.
    • In the town hall in Andorhal in the Western Plaguelands, enter the town hall in the center of town and pick up The Deed to Andorhal, nailed to the wall.
    • In Darrowshire in the Eastern Plaguelands, pick up a Trampled Doll from the ground near a Scourge meat wagon.
    • Head to Corrin’s Crossing in the Eastern Plaguelands and enter what used to be the inn to loot the painting The Road Ahead off the wall.
    • Lastly, go into the front entrance of Stratholme, hang a left at the first opportunity, and follow the street until you find a wagon outside Ezra Grimm’s tobacco shop with a box in the back. Loot the box to get an Undelivered Shipment of Smokes.
  • Fly back to Caer Darrow (with your Spectral Essence equipped, so you can see and talk to teh ghosts!) and hand these items over to various ghosts to get five candles.
    • Artist Renfray is on the outside portion of the island, near the docks, and will take the painting.
    • Rory, on the docks nearby, will trade a candle for the shipment of smokes.
    • Sammy, being chased around the fountain by another ghostly child, will trade a candle for the doll.
    • Joseph Dirte is on the second level of Caer Darrow, near a wall, and will trade a candle for the fountain water.
    • Magistrate Marduke, near Scholomance itself, is looking for the deed to Andorhal.
  • With your journal, femur, and five candles, walk into the building that houses Scholomance, but instead of turning left to go into the instance, turn right and head towards a dead-end room in the northeast corner of the building. Once there, use the journal to perform a ritual, granting you the Memory of Scholomance achievement and causing a journal to appear on a pillar behind you.

Congratulations — you’ve unlocked the vanilla version of Scholomance for all the characters on your account, which you can enter by reading the journal on the pillar!

Step 2: Delving into Old Scholomance

Go ahead and use the journal to head into the vanilla version of Scholomance. Everything is largely as you remember it, including all the old bosses. This is honestly a treat on its own because there was a lot of transmog that was removed along with this dungeon along with Ancient crafting patterns (like Ancient Plans: Intrepid Shortblade).

We’re interested in a very specific room, though, and that’s the room with Rattlegore, who you’ll find somewhat further into the instance than where he’s located in the modern version, through a room full of plagued whelps and down the stairs into a room full of bones. On the first bone pile to your left when you enter is a very, very small object you can loot to receive a Cracked Argent Dawn Commission. Repair it with 1 Righteous Orb and 4 Truesilver Bars to get the old Argent Dawn Commission. If you can’t loot it, there is a small possibility you still have your vanilla Argent Dawn Commission in a bank somewhere. If you still had your Commission, you can skip this step.

With this Commission equipped, bosses inside Old Scholomance and Stratholme will start dropping Invader’s Scourgestones, just like they did in the olden days. Go ahead and get the Viewing Room Key from Rattlegore as usual, then finish the dungeon. If you can’t get Darkmaster Gandling to spawn, try clearing all the minibosses and all the trash from the six rooms around where he usually is at — I had to completely clear these rooms to spawn him. And then, with the Commission equipped (it’s very important!), defeat and loot Gandling to get the Darkmaster’s Scourgestone. This will give you a quest to head over to Light’s Hope Chapel and turn it in; you have now unlocked the ability for any of your alts to pick up an Argent Dawn Commission at Light’s Hope Chapel — but don’t jump on that just yet.

Step 3: A speedy Stratholme run

Now, get your running shoes on, because we’ve got something of a time trial coming up. (Anecdotally, I did these quests on an Evoker and I had to respec into every form of movement speed that I could and I still finished this part only 30 seconds under the wire.) Head to the living side of Stratholme and collect a couple things.

  • First, open some of the crates lying around and get two Stratholme Holy Water. You’ll need one now, and one later.
  • Second, at the very first T-intersection inside the instance, kill a couple ghouls to get an Eye of Naxxramas to spawn. Defeat it to get a Ward of Naxxramas.

I cannot stress this next part enough: do not engage any other bosses within Stratholme. Doing so is known to bug out the next step. Also, be sure that you know how to get from the “live” side of Stratholme to the “dead” side of Stratholme, because that’s what you’re about to do.

Go to the courtyard outside the Crusader’s Cathedral in Stratholme, head to the left near a barred gate, and use your Ward of Naxxramas. You should see a funky black crystal with a glowing aura around it appear. Throw the Stratholme Holy Water on it. You’ll hear a yell from an enemy named Hand of Naxxramas, and a five-minute debuff appears on your character. This is how long you have to kill Aurius Rivendare and reach the Hand of Naxxramas. You have to do all of the following in five minutes, and make sure your Argent Dawn Commission is equipped while you do:

  • Run to the undead side as fast as you can. Do not waste time fighting trash or looting.
  • Go to each of the ziggurats in the undead side, defeat the boss outside, walk inside, and defeat the five minor enemies inside.
  • Once you have done this at all three ziggurats, the entrance to the Slaughterhouse — the last part of undead Stratholme — will open; run there.
  • Defeat every abomination in the courtyard to spawn Ramstein the Gorger; kill Ramstein.
  • A swarm of Mindless Undead will pour through the locked gate. Note the location of this locked gate, it’s about to be very important. Kill all the mindless undead to spawn five more skeletons just inside the building in the Slaughterhouse.
  • Kill these five skeletons, run down the short flight of stairs, kill Aurius Rivendare. Resist the urge to check him for the mount.
  • Run back out of the Slaughterhouse and beeline it towards the gate the Mindless Undead came out of, it should now be open.
  • At the end you’ll see a second barred gate, a portal, and the Hand of Naxxramas. Target it and use your extra action button to nuke it to ashes with your Argent Dawn Commission.

If you manage to do all this within five minutes, you’ll see an emote in the chat where you think to yourself that you need to finally tell someone about this. That someone is Archmage Angela Dosantos, who is either at Light’s Hope Chapel or at the entrance of Tyr’s Hand directly south of there. She will offer you one of three quests, all called The Dread Citadel — Naxxramas, and will require either some materials and gold or, if you’re exalted, nothing at all, to remove the wards around a second entrance to Naxxramas, earning an achievement called Wards of the Dread Citadel.

With this, you have now unlocked the ability for all characters on your account to use this Eastern Plaguelands entrance to Naxxramas — it’s at a crossroads just southeast of the “live” side entrance of Stratholme — as well as the ability to collect Scourgestones in Stratholme, Old Scholomance, and Naxxramas without needing an Argent Dawn Commission.

But what do we do with all these Scourgestones? Well, you can turn them into Duke Nicholas Zverenhoff in Light’s Hope Chapel for Argent Dawn rep if you need to, but we have another use for them coming up shortly.

Step 4: Finding a very sleepy Death Knight

Before we start this next step, make sure you have at least 20 Invader’s Scourgestones. Feel free to reset instances and clear Stratholme and old Scholomance and you should rack them up pretty quickly.

Whether by using the old entrance, or the new portal in Eastern Plaguelands, your next step is in Naxxramas. At first, not much has seemingly changed, other than being able to loot Frozen Runes directly off the walls, as well as a portal to the Eastern Plaguelands now being in Naxx’s center ring area. Go ahead and fight some bosses (at least five, because you’ll need five Corruptor’s Scourgestones shortly), but keep your eyes peeled for the following items:

Once you have all three, use them to construct a Makeshift Grappling Hook, then use that item; you have now unlocked the ability to grapple at tiny, hard-to-see grappling points all over Naxxramas. However, the ones we’re interested in most are in Thaddius’ room at the end of the Construct Quarter. Defeat the boss, then head back to the left-hand miniboss’ platform in that room and follow the path shown in this video to find Zackett Skullsmash, a seemingly dead goblin death knight way up in the rafters.

Now, you can gently poke Zackett all you want, but he’s not budging. If you want to wake him up, go ahead and toss that second Stratholme Holy Water that you looted on him. You did loot a second Stratholme Holy Water when I told you to, right? Zackett is pretty upset about being woken up from his ten-year-long nap, but he does accept bribes, and he’ll give you a quest, Inconvenience Fee, to bring him 20 Invader’s Scourgestones, 5 Corruptor’s Scourgestones, 3 Dark Runes, and a Black Coffee. Once you do, he’ll offer you a Desecrated Bracer of your choice — bind-on-account items usable by any class that was in the base game — and relocate to the center ring of Naxxramas. You may have to enter and exit the instance to see him there.

You’ve now unlocked the final piece of this particular puzzle for all characters on your account — the ability to trade Scourgestones to Zackett for Death’s Bargaining Chip, a currency which is bind on account and used for all the interesting stuff Zackett sells.

Bargaining with death

Zackett’s goods include the following:

  • Slime-Covered Scrolls, which turn into Ancient Recipes for Naxx-related crafting gear. (But not the old Frost Resistance patterns. More on those in a second.)
  • Dented items, such as the Dented Raider’s Chestpiece, which turn into a random item from that slot from Kalimdor or the Eastern Kingdoms, and also have a chance to be a Lamented Crusader’s item (e.g. Lamented Crusader’s Chestpiece). Lamented items are the real prize, as those are how you begin crafting a piece of Tier 3 armor.
  • Plagued Grain, a new toy that sets down a box of grain that is in no way suspicious.
  • Rotten Delicious, an item that is used to obtain a new mount.
  • If you have the achievement Drop Dead, Gorgeous, for owning a full appearance set of Tier 3 armor already, you’ll be able to see and purchase the patterns for Cursed Cloth, Languished Leather, Scourged Scales, and Undeath Metal. These patterns are bind on account, so you can get them to your crafter with 300 points in Classic Tailoring, Blacksmithing, or Leatherworking skill, and are required to turn a Lamented piece into a Desecrated piece, like the Desecrated bracers Zackett gave you earlier.
  • And last but not least, Phylacterweave, for 2000 gold.

To make a piece of Tier 3 armor:

  1. Kill mobs in Old Scholomance, Stratholme, and Naxxramas for Scourgestones.
  2. Turn Scourgestones into Zackett for Death’s Bargaining Chips.
  3. Buy the Dented item for the slot you want in exchange for Death’s Bargaining Chips.
  4. Hope that the Dented item turns into a Lamented Crusader’s piece.
  5. If you can craft your own material to turn the Lamented piece into a Desecrated piece, great! Do that. If not, you will need to work order it from someone who can using the Dragonflight work order system. The materials for each include 50 Wartorn Scrap (drops from Naxxramas trash but can also be found on the Auction House), 6 Essences of Undeath, 2 Dark Runes, 1 Frozen Rune, and a varying amount of Arcanite Bars, Enchanted Leather, or Felcloth.
  6. Once you have your Desecrated item, which is bind on account, send it to the alt you want to convert it into the appropriate Tier 3 armor. They’ll need 10 Righteous Orbs and anywhere from 70 (bracers) to 280 (helmet and shoulders) Phylacterweave. This is an immense gold sink; obtaining Tier 3 armor this way will run you 2.8 million gold per set.

Master Crafter Omarion and the missing crafting patterns

As long as you’re in Naxxramas, head to the first room of the Military Quarter. On the ground inside a cage you’ll see an obvious glowing book; picking it up will yield an item that gives you the quest Omarion’s Second Handbook. Enjoy the quest text (it’s actually quite funny), then take it back to Omarion at Light’s Hope Chapel; he’ll remark that unfortunately all the pages except one have been torn out, and offer you only one recipe: the tailoring recipe for the Glacial Cloak, in exchange for Argent Dawn Valor Tokens. You can get these from Duke Nicholas Zverenhoff outside for, yes, more Scourgestones.

However, if you want the other old Frost resist recipes, you’re going to need to do a bit of searching for the book’s Lost Pages. Many of them are found via grapple points all over Naxxramas, while others are on the floor blending into their environment. This map is a good starting point to find all sixteen of them. Good luck. Once you find them, you can actually craft the entirety of the old Frost Resistance sets; five out of the eight pieces used to be boss drops, but now you can make a whole set for yourself.

Bonus: the Reins of Valiance

What’s a secret without a mount? Luckily, while this one was a bit of a head-scratcher, it didn’t take long for the intrepid Secret Finding Discord community to figure it out.

Valiance is a new horse who appeared in the Military Quarter of Naxxramas with 10.1.5; it’s the undead horse that former Horseman Thane Korth’azz rides, and unlike most it chose him as its rider. As such, if you try and approach it, it will knock you back and reject you as its rider. Luckily, horses love treats.

  • After you’ve unlocked Zackett, enter a 10-person version of Naxxramas (this cannot be done on 25) with Instructor Razuvious still alive, and purchase a Moldy Delicious from Zackett Skullsmash for 30 Death’s Bargaining Chips. (Remember: all your alts can obtain Scourgestones at this point, and Death’s Bargaining Chips are bind on account, so just run a couple alts through Naxxramas.)
  • Slowly approach Valiance, trying to give it the Moldy Delicious. Eventually it’ll accept the treat, but it still doesn’t accept you.
  • Go to the Instructor Razuvious encounter and look for the Obedience Crystal. During the original encounter these were used to mind control the Death Knight Understudy adds in order to tank Razuvious, but now we’re going to use them for another purpose.
  • Use the Obedience Crystal to mind control an Understudy, then bring the mind-controlled Understudy over to Valiance, at which point the Understudy will mount Valiance. Bring the Understudy and Valiance back to Razuvious, then break the mind control by right-clicking the Understudy’s portrait and dismissing it (like you would a pet).
  • Now defeat the aggroed add and Instructor Razuvious, and the Reins of Valiance will drop. Congratulations!
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