The second zone in my Zone Wrap Up is the Valley of the Four Winds. It is located on the southern edge of the new Pandaren continent and seems to be just a questing zone. The Tillers farm will be located here along with at least one Brewmaster scenario and the new Stormstout Brewery dungeon. Unfortunately, the only screen captures so far are from the video above, so I’ll leave you with just the video.
Blizzard has described it as:
A tranquil plain of lush farmland, bordered by dense mysterious jungles along the south and impassible mountains to the north. The valley is considered the “breadbasket” of Pandaria, but the year’s harvest is in jeopardy and a terrible malaise has overcome the Pandaren that live along the coast. The valley is also the home of the legendary Stormstout Brewery, where Chen Stormstout and his niece Li Li hope to journey to discover the whereabouts of their long-lost ancestors.
Unlike the Vale of Eternal Blossoms, this Valley looks exactly like I wanted the entire zone to look. Green, flowers, animals, growing things; I am more than pleased. This zone appears to be a cross between the Wetlands with water, cliffs and trees and Nagrand with its bright colors, multitude of animals, and plenty of growing things. I am loving it.
The Valley of the Four Winds, is what Westfall used to be to Stormwind. They supply all their food, a task made easier by the magic waters that flow out of the Vale of Eternal Blossoms. These waters make the fruits and veggies grow to huge proportions and the Pandarens have long taken advantage of this.
This fertile zone is also the ancestral home of Chen Stormstout, the wandering Brewmaster introduced in Warcraft 3. His families brewery is still located in the Valley, though he left Pandaria searching for exotic ingredients for his recipes. Apparently this is something all Brewmasters do, except this Brewmaster went all the way to Kalimdor to do it!
Along the way, he met the Orc Rexxar of the Mok’Nathal clan and paused his journey to travel with the Beastmaster for a time. They went to Theramore and met Jaina Proudmore, saw the horrible things her daddy was doing and this had him choose to protect Thrall and Durotar from more Kul Tiras incursions. Basically, he did a bunch of good shit for the Horde and makes a fucking strong beer.
Chen isn’t the only important person in the Valley, though. Chi’Ji, the Red Crane August Celestial also dwells here. For those who don’t know the The August Celestials are four “powerful ancestor spirits” that watch over the lands of the Pandaren. They are Yu’lon the Jade Serpent, Xuen the White Tiger, Chi’Ji the Red Crane, and Niuzao the Black Ox. I believe there will be another dungeon announced here for Chi’Ji’s temple, a questline that takes place in it, or a scenario that you’ll get to play in since Blizzard has said we will be “servicing” all four temples.
None, zip, zero, nada, zilch. We got nothing. This zone seems to be purely light hearted and fun, not for them hard-core, angry raiding crowd. So set down those legendaries, kick off your plate boots, and come relax, save the beer, farm the land, find a new pet or five. Relax before you go kick someone’s teeth in later.
The Stormstout Brewery
The great thing about the new dungeons, in my opinion, are that full-sized out in the world. Yes, it is instanced, but you can eventually fly around it and really see the full scale instead of just guessing about it because the entire dungeon is right there in the Valley. Players will be heading inside with Chen to discover why there’s no more beer.
And why is there no beer, you ask? Because of drunk monkeys, giant evil rabbits and oh, let’s not forget, the beer has gone so bad, it’s become alive and wants to kill us all. This instance makes zero sense, so it had better be funny as all hell.
Unfortunately, there are no images of the “alementals” yet, but the evil giant bunnies (also known as Verming) have a couple shots and I dredged up the map from Blizzcon. And don’t be fooled, that evil bunny is holding a lit barrel of explosives in his mouth. They’re not just evil, they’re stupid!
The only confirmed questing is the Daily quests we will be doing for the Tillers and the scenario for the Brewmasters. They are both “artisan” factions like the Lorewalkers, but the Tillers seem the most flushed out. There’s even a reason they’re sending you to clean up their local problems instead of doing it themselves: They’re too busy trying to feed the rest of the continent! Okay, I can buy that for once.
Though, if there’s a giant evil bunny in my pumpkin/radish field, I think I’d hit it with a large shovel instead of sending out the next adventurer to walk by in my place. And look at those weeds! Come on, you’re telling me you’re so busy you can’t weed or deal with the giant evil bunny? Fine! Give me my own farm and I’ll do your chores and my own!
And they do, give you your own farm I mean. This with be a phased area that you will perform different daily quests for to make it bigger, increase your reputation with the Tillers, grow herbs, pets, and cooking materials. My friend Nika Davies from the Twisting Nether server had a great opinion on these things and I tossed it up as a blog you should check out if you want to know more.
The other artisan faction found in the Valley of the Four Winds is the Brewmasters that Blizzard is using to create most of the first scenarios they’re putting out. So, presumably, you will find an encounter out here (or two) that goes along this lines:
…The lightning lager scenario that you can encounter by finding one of the Brewmasters out in the world. And the idea here is that you’re helping the Brewmaster create her Lightning Lager that can only be brewed while it’s raining and in the middle of a thunderstorm. The problem is that she’s being sieged by saurok, so she’s got a saurok problem to deal with. So you’ll have to help her defend the brewery from the saurok while putting out fires.
Whatever the heck a saurok is. There’s speculation that it’s this:
Well, go kill a bunch of those things in a lightning storm then! Sounds like a great idea. Just don’t lift your sword/mace/whatever up too high.
All in all, I think this is going to be one of my favorite zones. I like the idea of having a relaxed, fun place to make my own little farm even if the entire Stormstout Brewery makes me angry with its idiotic concept and ridiculous mobs. Now if I can just bring other people onto my farm, I’ll be a happy camper.