Outside Highmaul: The fall of an empire


The Ogre capital of Highmaul was once one of the most expansive cities on Draenor, but when the seat of the Gorian Empire faced siege from both the champions of Azeroth and the void-addled forces of Cho’Gall, not even Grand Imperitor Mar’gok could prevent the cities fall.

Instanced highmaul front
The sky darkens as the ancient empire faces its end.

instanced highmaul front gate

While the fall of Highmaul marked the first major Alliance and Horde offensive in the Draenor Campaign, players entering the raid can still travel back and explore the city as it appeared in its final hours. Using the method described in the video above, especially curious adventurers are also able to get outside of the front gate and explore the surrounding version of Nagrand, as well as the normally inaccessible upper tiers of the city.

highmaul summoning stone

Highmaul entrance Our first stop outside the instanced city is the arena entryway, where the instance portal is normally located. Much like in our End Time exploration last week, a copy of the summoning stone can be found inside the instanced version.

However, unlike the End Time’s stone, this one cannot be used. The invisible wall behind the instance portal is also still present, preventing us from exploring further inside the building.

oshu'gun pit

highmaul pitTraveling southeast, we come across a large pit in the ground where the Oshu’Gun crash site should be found. The crashed ship has not been rendered, causing a large hole in the map; unlike the normal rendered boundaries, this hole has no invisible walls and players can fall into it. Doing so will cause you to disconnect and you’ll have to wait a few minutes to be returned to the front of the raid.

Ironfist harbor
Visit scenic Ironfist Harbor!

Crossing the mountain range just south of the pit takes us to the half of Ironfist Harbor. Because only part of the harbor has been rendered, the typical exit has been blocked off by an invisible wall, meaning players will have to swim back to the the mainland if they jump down.

highmaul river

Highmaul water splitAs we return towards Highmaul, the rivers suddenly fill with water once again. This is because Water was only added to the half of the map visible from the higher tiers of the raid. As a result, there are jagged areas where the water abruptly ends.

Gorian strand
Get out of here Iron Horde! We were ransacking this city first!
Highmaul boat
“All aboard!”

Climbing the broken precipice, we come to a cliff face overlooking the Gorian Strand where Brackenspore is locked in combat with the invading Iron Horde fleet.

You can climb onboard the ship by running up the front plate and jumping at the top.

highmaul upper level

Highmaul walkwayHeading around the bay takes us to a large series of grassy hills. Climb these and you’ll find yourself at the highest level of Highmaul. Pictured above is the tower where you fight Grand Imperator Mar’Gok, follow this structure and you’ll overlook the walkway to the upper levels.

instanced highmaul
It’s a peaceful sort of chaos.
highmaul unfinished building
On live they just slapped a gate over it.

Exploring further down the tiers, we can jump off the city wall to the normally inaccessible middle tiers of the city. While these levels are finished on the overworld version of Highmaul, the instanced version is unfinished and has undeveloped areas like a doorway that leads to nowhere.

instanced highmaul lower levels

While it may not be the largest area to explore, there’s something oddly peaceful about sitting on an abandoned terrace and watching a massive battle unfold in the city streets below.

So whether you’re an avid explorer, or just looking to hide from your raid leader so you don’t have to do the flamethrower on Brackenspore, the instanced zone outside of Highmaul is well worth the visit.


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