Re: Mezzo Plays Warcraft III: Reforged
3-4: The Spirits of Ashenvale
We're going to be leaving Thrall for a bit and following Grommash and the Warsong Clan as they make their way north, toward the outskirts of Ashenvale Forest.
The orcs hear faint whispers coming from the trees.
Yet it's clear they are being watched by someone.
The goal in this mission is just to collect a whole lot of lumber. Let's get chopping.
Blademaster: Cunning hero, skilled at deception and assassination.
This is our first hero to have Agility as their primary stat. Despite his hero class being Blademaster, Grommash is clearly wielding an axe. This always bugged me. (Yes I know axes have blades but shhh.)
Wind Walk: Turns the Blademaster invisible and increases movement speed. If he attacks or casts a spell he becomes visible again. If he attacks an enemy to break invisibility, the attack deals bonus sneak attack damage.
Mirror Image: Creates illusory duplicates of the user. The number of illusions is equal to the number of levels placed into this skill. Illusions deal no damage and take double.
Critical Strike: A passive effect that grants the user the chance to critically hit on attacks. Critical hits have a special animation and are marked by the damage number appearing over the attacker's head. Additional levels increase the critical multiplier.
Grommash starts with two levels in Critical Strike, and one each in Wind Walk and Mirror Image. Knowing that he has this many self-preservation moves makes his behavior from the last mission even more obnoxious.
We have access to Shaman again, but they only have Purge and Lightning Shield.
Breaking through the first wall of trees leads us to some enemies. This is the first appearance of the Night Elves, and they're not happy about Grommash cutting down all those trees.
All Night Elf warriors encountered in this mission are female. The male Night Elves are currently in an enchanted sleep, which I'll talk more about when we get to the Night Elf campaign.
Pillage is a very important upgrade for this mission, since that helps us accumulate even more lumber. Grunts are also pretty good here, since they only cost gold to produce.
There's no gold mine at our starting base, but luckily there's one just outside that we can claim.
These Hippogryph Riders are pretty powerful. Good thing we have Raiders to Ensnare them to the ground.
The lights are Wisps, the Night Elf worker unit. They don't really do anything, but it's probably good to kill any that we see regardless.
And the Tree of Life is their town hall structure.
It can attack enemies in melee, but it's pretty slow and easy for a big enough force to cut down.
In this mission, and this mission only, destroying one grants 3000 lumber. We'll want to bring down as many as we can.
Near the gold mine we can find a goblin merchant.
This doesn't sound too bad.
The furbolgs are pretty tough, as you'd expect from bear folk. The Furbolg Elder Shaman can heal the warriors too.
Grommash leveled to 5 and I put another point into Mirror Image. Mirror Image has a bunch of nice little touches that make it harder for the enemy to discern which one is real. The images can make (false) critical strikes, and if you level up all illusions level up at once. Casting it splits the user into copies and removes all magic effects from them, preventing the enemy from immediately finding the real one should you cast it in combat. They can also be used for scouting.
Defeating the Furbolg Chieftain granted Grom a Health Stone. This raises health regeneration while held, and can be used like a potion in emergencies.
Returning to the goblin has him grant Grommash the use of a new unit type.
Shredder: Goblin mech that excels at cutting down trees and harvesting large amounts of lumber. They can cut down trees much faster than Peons and carry up to 200 lumber at once. Can also be used as a fighting unit in a pinch. They can be recruited from Goblin Laboratories.
These are just what we need for our deforestation project. I put them to work immediately.
Here's another Tree of Life we can chop down for some more wood.
I headed north to another base, but this one was much better defended than I expected. I had to make a hasty retreat.
Good thing I did, since there ended up being a raid on my base from two Night Elf factions at once. Grom leveled to 6 and learned his ultimate here, and I made good use of it.
Bladestorm: A spinning attack that turns the Blademaster into a storm of destructive force. Deals heavy damage over time to all enemies near him for a short period, and also makes him immune to magic for the duration.
This spell is not mimicked by Mirror Images, so casting it will give the real one's position away. Even with that drawback, it's quite powerful and useful.
After building up my forces and hiring a few more Shredders, I'm nearly done.
This last Tree of Life should be enough to meet the quota.
And there we go. Mission complete.