Cataclysm Zones: The Echo Isles

In order to make sure that everybody gets a fair shake in the early going, Blizzard is giving two of the game’s existing races their own, special starting areas. While not as elaborate as those of the Goblin or Worgen, of course, it’s still nice to see that they’re paying attention.

In the coming months, players will have the opportunity to retake the Echo Isles from the evil witch doctor, Zalazane. Nascent Hordies of the Orc and Troll persuasion already pass this area as the first questing hub outside of the Valley of Trials, but from Cataclysm onwards, it will be the exclusive 1-5 introductory area for the latter.

As a beginning Troll, no longer will you be burdened with the menial tasks of slaying scorpions or picking apples (though, I will miss slapping lazy peons upside the hide). Instead, you’ll be charged with protecting the Darkspears’ newly reclaimed land from deadly predators and the encroaching Naga, who regularly threaten its safety.

But that’s not all, because this mini-zone has been completely re-jiggered! New Troll outposts and buildings have appeared on the islands, along with bridges that connect the archipelago with the mainland (I can’t be the only one that hated swimming across the inlet for every quest). And it looks even sexier with the new Cataclysm water effects.

Hit the break for full details and even more screenshots!

After years in exile, the Darkspear trolls are preparing to invade the Echo Isles and reclaim the land once bestowed to them by Thrall. Led by Vol’jin, a wise and highly regarded Darkspear, the tribe’s bravest warriors will set out from Orgrimmar and Sen’jin Village, seeking to bring about Zalazane’s fall and begin the process of rebuilding their homes and villages on the Echo Isles. In World of Warcraft: Cataclysm, new troll adventurers will begin their journey on these tiny islands off the coast of Durotar, where they’ll be able to experience this time of trial and transition firsthand.

Though the Darkspears may once again have their land, the tribe’s turmoil is far from over. The impending cataclysm will spark rivalry among the Horde leadership, and after years of running from a seemingly endless string of conflicts to preserve the Darkspear nation, Vol’jin is done fleeing. The Darkspears have reclaimed their islands and have no intention of settling elsewhere. Of course, as an untested member of the tribe, you’ll have some training to do before tackling the Darkspears’ larger matters.

Every great hero starts somewhere. As a troll of the Echo Isles, the journey begins with safeguarding your people’s well-being. Early in your adventures, you’ll be charged with protecting the local Bloodtalon raptors and hatchlings from the sorcery of a nearby sea witch, slaying the beasts that feast upon the Darkspears’ primary food sources, and assaulting the naga who’ve overrun the northern isle. But it won’t be long before Vol’jin trusts you with vital — and potentially dangerous — information about the political struggles plaguing the Horde and, ultimately, the fellow members of your tribe.

In World of Warcraft: Cataclysm, you’ll face these trials and more in the trolls’ new and enhanced introductory questing experience (level 1 to 5). Be steadfast and honorable, and your actions will help usher in a new era of Darkspear perseverance in a time of ultimate peril.


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