Saturday, June 2, 2012

WoW Ironman Challenge Complete!

Ironstevo has done it! He has gone where no other undead have gone before. He has finally completed the WoW Ironman Challenge! It was a long, perilous and incredibly nerve-wracking journey. Now that it's over Ironstevo is going to get himself a cold one, put up his rotting feet and relax.

For anyone unaware the WoW Ironman Challenge is to level from 1-85 using the rules below.

Only White or Grey gear. No Heirlooms of any kind.
No transfer of gear, items, or money from any other character (yours or others).
No gear enhancements, including gems, enchanting, and reforging. Class abilities are allowed (eg. Rogue poisons, Shaman imbues).
No specialization, talent points, or glyphs. No pet talent points.
No professions or secondary skills, except for First Aid.
No potions, flasks, or elixirs except for required quest items.
No food buffs or other external buffs (including buffs from items and other players).
No groups or assistance from other characters, even if not grouped.
No dungeons, raids, battlegrounds, or arenas.
No guilds, except for level 1 guilds created specifically for the Ironman Challenge.
No Refer-A-Friend.
No addons which assist in combat and/or leveling (eg. leveling guides, Ovale).
THE BIG ONE: No deaths. Character death for any reason disqualifies the character
The following are allowed:

All class abilities, racials, and personal buffs.
All mounts, bags, and non-combat pets.
All quests, including holiday events and dailies (unless prohibited by some other rule, eg. Fishing and Cooking dailies).

More info on the challenge can be found on this thread on the World of Warcraft forums: The Official Ironman Challenge Thread. There is also a leader-board that automatically tracks progress at This morning after Ironstevo hit 85 it looked like this:

Yaaaay!! (Click to Enlarge)
I first heard about the no death Ironman Challenge after reading a post written by one of my good blogger buddies (Tome of the Ancient) titled Be very Afraid. I had followed her journey on her warlock Ironsally, which was an amazing one for sure and a fun read. Anyway, the thought of a no death version seemed like a really fun idea and the perfect way to make the game challenging again.

For a quick recap, Ironstevo was my second attempt at the Ironman Challenge. My first toon (Ironsteve, undead hunter) died at level 52 in one of the most ridiculous ways possible -- when I clicked on an Alliance flight master in Tanaris. Durka durr, yeah not exactly the best way to go. Here is the post where Ironsteve said goodbye to the world...of Warcraft.

After Ironsteve died I rolled an iron druid with the same name, and then shortly after rolled Ironstevo to level at the same time. My thought process was -- if either of them died at least I would have another ironman toon to fall back on. Well, Ironstevo ended up passing Ironsteve the druid rather quickly and eventually I found myself on Ironstevo almost exclusively. Ironsteve the druid is still alive (he is almost level 50) and I'll probably pick him up again at some point.

So these Iron toons were really made with one basic goal in mind (other than reaching the top, which I figured wouldn't happen, but am VERY happy it did) and that goal was for something fun and rare-related to talk about on my blog. For each of my ironies I went crazy frapsing and taking screen shots of all the rares I was finding, which was a ton of fun. The rares I found really helped the leveling process with the massive amount of experience that they give now. This extra experience made it possible for me to really cherry pick the quests I was doing, so I could be extra careful. Any quest or mob that I was even remotely uncertain about I skipped.

When level 60 came for Ironsetvo the rares diminished and I really began taking my time from level 61-72 in Outland. Luckily now that Outland has the oldest quests in the game I was very familiar with just about all of them after leveling armies of toons through those zones before. Then, right before I left Outland I ran across a treasure chest in Blade's Edge Mountains that gave me a massive amount of experience when I looted it. After doing some research I found out that these chests are all over the world and I really started looking for them. When I entered Northrend I started finding them all over the place. They were giving me double the experience that a quest turn in would give. Again, this really let me cherry pick the quests that I did. I wrote up a post about how to find these chests a couple weeks back called: Treasure Chests and why you should be looking for them.

So basically rare spawns (that fight back) were replaced with rare treasure chests later on in Ironstevo's journey. Ironstevo even got his final ding on one in Sholazar Basin.

I certainly feel like I've gained a lot from this challenge. It gave me a whole new outlook on the game. Having to be so careful and aware of your surroundings...ALL the time. Looking for alternative ways to complete quests that everyone else does without a second thought. I think if nothing else, this challenge is a great way to make yourself a better player.

I also find I have a new love for the warlock class. I've never really been a fan of warlocks for multiple reasons, but having spent so much time with Ironstevo over the last couple of months I've changed my mind. Unfortunately they will never be as awesome as mages, but what can ya do?

I have met some incredible people out there in the ironman community. The support of other ironman players has been amazing. I would also like to give a big thank you to my readers who have been offering their support as well. You know who you are! You guys rock.

So to wrap it all up (or if your too lazy to read what I've just written and would rather just listen to me talk about it) here is a video below of Ironstevo's journey to 85. The audio is a bit scraggly (sorry about that), my mic is from the Marty McFly days...


  1. Only because it sums it up much better than it would in just text...

  2. Congratulations, I am in awe!

  3. WAY TO GO IRONSTEVO!!! I've been checking obsessively to see if there was a post! Yay! Congratulations! And he dinged 85 on a chest, that's perfect, clever guy. Okay I was so excited I had to comment before I watched the video, on to the video!

  4. Wow - well done - amazing. I don't have the patience for such a feat. I am in awe and wonder.

  5. Thanks for the support all! =D

    and JD...that video...omg lol

  6. So proud of you Euphy!!! Awesomesauce!

  7. I was waiting to see this post up (I saw your twitter post yesterday) to say congrats! Well done, what an achievement!

  8. OMG! Congrats!!

    I meant to say this the other day but I saw it as I was waking up, checking my phone and I think I fell asleep again but better later then never right?

    But what are you going to do now?

  9. @Cymre Haha, it's all good. I've actually made a couple of new Ironman toons on Wyrmrest Accord which has a fairly healthy Ironman population. I probably won't take it as seriously this time around, but if I do make it far I'm sure I'll end up posting about it. =)

    @everyone else - Thanks for the kind words guys n' gals!

  10. I am humbled and in awe - have killed off about a dozen Dwarfs at level 14 and finally submitting to defeat, I can only imagine what a grand challenge and how good success must feel! That is awesome, wonderful, and fantastic! *Standing Ovation!* *tossing bouquets*

    1. Thank Matty, after loosing my first iron toon in the 50's I think I was a little to pissed to give up. I think my hate for that evil dwarf flight master may have helped pushed me to the end a little... =P

  11. I came to your blog looking for info on some rare spawns and stumbled onto this post. Fascinating video/story! I am kind of tempted to give Ironman a shot.

    1. Oh you so should if you have the time/'s a helluva lotta fun! =D

  12. Ive started a druid for this i just hit lvl 10, my husband is also doing this with me but as a horde toon, so we actually can do it together, its more of a race to see who will die first :P But I have a question since you have finnished, are there rewards for doing this? we are just happy with doing it but some have told us of things that you will get and I just dont know if they are true or not. Thanks!

    1. Personal satisfaction of knowing that you achieved your goal. ;) At least that's what I got out of it. I also had a lot of fun just participating, and meeting other people in the Ironman community. There's no actual achievement/reward associated with completing this challenge though.

      Good luck to both you and your husband! =)

  13. how you do this when you have chosen to play affliction? + before you hit 85 you have a buff on you? im new to this but are both of them not against the rules but congrats on doing it

    1. I have never chosen a spec on Ironstevo or any of my Ironman toons, as it is against the rules. He hit 85 before the whole talent system was re-vamped and almost all of those spells you see on his action bars up there were taken away. Buffs are allowed, so long as they are self-buffs only or required as part of a quest. Hope that answers your question. :)

  14. Now do it on a high pop PvP server. :_)