Sunday, March 21, 2010

Ice and magic: Azurous

The blue dragonflight of the dragon aspect Malygos has had a troubled history on the world of Azeroth. Mad with grief over the bloody slaughter of his brood by Deathwing and by the reckless use of arcane magic of mortal spellcasters, Malygos declared war on all other magic-users, striking at the city of Dalaran and even at the other dragonflights.

However, the so-called "Nexus War" is not the first time the adventurers of Azeroth have come into conflict with blue dragons. In Winterspring is a blue dragon stronghold, and one of the powerful protectors of that stronghold is Azurous, today's rarespawn.

Tracking a dragon

Azurous is a rare elite dragon found in Winterspring, on Kalimdor.

Azurous can be found close to the blue dragon sanctuary of Mazthoril, located slightly to the southwest of the neutral city of Everlook. Azurous follows a long, winding path around Mazthoril, crossing the road that goes between Everlook and Frostwhisper Gorge and going back south into the hills just above Lake Kel'Theril. He then continues south for a long way, eventually turning east in the hills south of Mazthoril, crossing the road again and returning north through the outskirts of the Ice Thistle Hills.

When he passes the Ice Thistle Hills area, Azurous is within visual distance of Everlook, an uncommon thing for a rarespawn.

Dragon hunting

As noted, Wrath of the Lich King was not the first time the blue flight have been cast as hostile towards the other races.

Azurous is no exception. Ás an elite, and one who wanders across a significant part of southern Winterspring, Azurous can be quite a hazard for an unprepared adventurer. Not only does his elite status grant him a lot more health and melee damage than an average mob his level, he also possesses a strong icy breath weapon which he will freely use.

Furthermore, Azurous has various immunities which may mess up attempts to slay him. He is immune to stuns and fears, and is either highly resistant or plain immune to arcane magic. Beware if you travel through this part of Winterspring. Sadly, Azurous has no unique loot to show off for the effort of slaying him, only yielding the standard world drops.

The dragons of Winterspring

Trying to enter Mazthoril has always been met with the stiffest resistance, and all the dragonkin in Winterspring except matron Haleh have always been hostile. Azurous would appear to be the outermost line of defense of the blue dragon den, since his patrol takes him furthest from the main cave system.

Technically, Azurous is a drake, much younger than a fully grown dragon but much more powerful than a whelp. Three other blue drakes, Spellmaw, Manaclaw and Scryer guard the inner areas of Mazthoril, protecting their matron from invaders (even if some of those invaders come in peace). Presumably, Azurous and the other three are among Haleh's oldest children, and thus entrusted with the defense of the lair.

I would guess that Azurous is the youngest, most impulsive of the drakes of Mazthoril, and that his restless and brash nature drives him to travel the surrounding lands as an aggressive scout. Occasionally he looks down with pity upon the mortal town of Everlook (barely more than a collection of anthills to the drake) before moving on in his vigil.

The big picture

Up until the release of Wrath of the Lich King, Mazthoril was the only blue dragon strongold in World of Warcraft. As such it provided an early exposure to the blue flight and their xenophic nature in guarding their magical secrets. The coloration of the blue flight is aesthetically pleasing and fits in with the blues and whites that dominate Winterspring, making them fit in with the icy landscape. While Mazthoril and its denizens have not reappered so far, maybe one day they will return and play another part in the unfolding saga of Azeroth.

Azurous is a gorgeous creature. I am quite fond of the drake model, which is now even available as a riding mount for players. It has a good design and details, down to the mace-like tail, and looks quite excellent in the colors of the blue flight.

Therefore, to round out this entry out I am just going to present one of my favorite screenshots I got of Azurous and let that speak for itself.

Until next time.



Emma said...

Hm. Looks like hes sligthly more turquoise than the northrend drakes, or is it just the lighting?

Dragonshade said...

I think it's the lightning. Winterspring has this odd purple glow.