Ah, the great outdoors. Whether you miss the old style of archaeology or have been hanging out for a revamped version, you can’t deny we’ve seen a bunch of new ways to discover various treasures around the Dragon Isles. As someone who’s loved uncovering new treasures of the past, mindless digging for months on end left a lot to be desired, particularly if you wanted to complete those annoying pristine achievements at the end of an expansion. The Secrets of Azeroth was a fun event, but as the days went on, I felt a little pressured to log in and complete the clues each day as I recorded every clue and satchel found.

Eadweard Dalyngrigge - Azerothian Archives

To start the Azerothian Archives chain, click on the banner inside the Valdrakken Inn. Once you’ve completed the initial tutorial and introductory questline including Excavation 101 and Technoscrying 101, you’ll unlock the related world quests and receive the Archivist’s Buckled Cap.

Is Progress Account-Wide?

Although the introductory questline is account-wide, you can complete the world quests once on any character that week. I’ve only seen one of the WQs on an alt who hasn’t completed the questline, but when I completed the questline on another toon, I could see all the world quests on that character too. The weekly (Big Dig: Traitor’s Rest) event can be completed on any alt whether you’ve completed the questline or not. That will help with the currency grind if you’re after those transmog pieces, and, boy, are there a lot!

World Quests

Three types of world quests reset every 3 days. They reward reputation with the Azerothian Archives and Mysterious Fragments, the currency needed for all vendor rewards.

Zenata - Azerothian Archives

Technoscrying – use the Technoscryers in your bag to highlight any items of interest.

Be sure to /dance with Zenata at all three locations while wearing the Technoscryers for the Goggle Wobble achievement.

Roska Rocktooth - Azerothian Archives

Excavation – use the specific totem for each site to help maintain the right conditions for the excavation. Keep the elemental bar balanced using the elemental assistant.

For example, Scattered Around the Tower: Click the totem when there’s too much lava (marker is on the far left of the bar) or stomp on lava puddles when the marker is on the far right. The sweet spot is the yellow part of the bar so ideally you want to keep it close to the middle so you can start excavating.

Most of the time you will loot grey crap, but on occasion, you can loot a Curious Find like the Dragonhorn Flute that rewards 100 Mysterious Fragments. Complete When a Rock is Just a Rock by collecting 10 rocks with Roska while excavating with the Azerothian Archives around the Dragon Isles.

Reese Research NPC

Research – follow the arcane familiars to absorb information for the Tome of Archived Isles Research. Gain clue = 9%, Juicy clues = 14%, Information-Stuffed Clues = 21%

Clued In – During Research world quests, locate lost or buried artifacts to spawn 20 Infomation-Stuffed Clues.


Reputation and Rewards

Not sure why there are reputation levels when there doesn’t seem to be any type of acknowledgement when you hit another rank. It’s like they added another faction but forgot to turn off the reputation part. Instead, focus on farming those mysterious fragments if you want to purchase anything from the vendor (see below). There are also two pets and mounts to collect from the vendor, Big Dig event and achievements.


In addition to the three achievements for each world quest, there are four more to complete.

reeseJust One More Thing – rewards Reese

Even Nirobin, a self-proclaimed genius of the highest caliber, could not deny the cuteness of his arcane creation.

Complete any site’s entry in the Tome of Archived Isles Research for Nirobin of the Azerothian Archives.

  • Lost Atheneum – Forbidden Reach
  • The Riverbed – Ohn’ahran Plains
  • Igira’s Watch – Zaralek Cavern
  • Gaze of Neltharion – Forbidden Reach (see image)
  • Concord Observatory – Waking Shores
  • Winglords Perch – Forbidden Reach
Research progress

Gaze of Neltharion WQ completed twice. Credit: Lazey

That means you just need to fill one page by completing the same research quest 3 times. You can check your progress by clicking the Tome of Archived Isles Research floating on top of Nirobin’s table in Alge’thar Academy (58, 36).

Finally At Resthap'he rewards Hap’he after completing the weekly quest six times.

It is bewildering how the most arrogant and stuck up of the Azerothian Archivists can’t help but create the most adorable arcane familiars. Perhaps Nirobin does have a soft side…

The Archives Called, You Answered – rewards the Title: %s, Isles Archivist
Tenured Archivist – Earn max reputation (Tenured) with the Azerothian Archives.

The Big Dig

The Big Dig: Traitor’s Rest is a weekly public event in the Azure Span. This happens every half-hour past the hour (10:30, 11:30, etc). Open the world map to see if you’ve completed it that week. This is the only quest that appears to be repeatable on alts once you’ve unlocked world quests on one character.

Traitor's Rest

It’s similar to the Tuskarr Community Feast where you’re prompted to help with different tasks depending on how many people participate. Just stand near Eadweard Dalyngrigge who will give you a task now and then.

Clayscale HornstriderIf there are many people around a dig site, you can right-click the bar to activate digging. The main page bar can be filled multiple times, but the reward quality can vary.

The Clayscale Hornstrider can drop from the Immaculate Tome or the final boss.

If you want more fragments, contribute to all the dig sites that spawn. Make sure you spend a few seconds at each one for it to count, then move on to the next provided other people are excavating the same spot.

Kill the final boss to get credit for the quest. The weekly rewards 5,000 Mysterious Fragments and 3,000 rep with the Azerothian Archives so it’s worth doing each week. On alts, you will get a crate of 100 Dragon Isles Supplies instead of the Mysterious Fragments.

Relic Rescuer – During Big Dig events, recover relics for Eadweard by digging near him while awaiting orders.
Tome Comber – During Big Dig events, recover tomes by filling bar pages by digging for relics and completing orders. The tomes awarded are random.

Vendor Rewards

The following items can be purchased from Provisioner Aristta at Alge’thar Academy (61, 31) or behind Eadweard Dalyngrigge at the Big Dig site using the Mysterious Fragments you’ve accumulated or dropped from the Big Dig event. The Historian set is a recoloured reddish-brown version of the recruit-a-friend set while the Excavator is a muted blue set.

Explorer’s Stonehide Packbeast

I can see myself adding a few of these to my collection like the pants from both sets, the magnifying glass, chisel, torch, 1H mace, 1H pick, and rope. :P

All-in-all, it was cool to do some new content but there didn’t seem to be much of a story so if they used this as an experiment to see how players react to this type of content, they’ve definitely introduced a variety of ways they can revamp the archaeology profession going forward. I do miss making progress in the archaeology journal though.