In the desert on the southern tip of Kalimdor, the Titan city of Ahn’Qiraj slowly sinks beneath the sand…
Constructed by the Titans to serve as a prison for the Old God C’Thun, Ahn’Qiraj was initially overseen by Highkeeper Ra until he learned of the death of the Pantheon of Titans and fled to Pandaria in despair, leaving the city unattended. Like in the other Titan prisons, the influence of Old Gods gradually corrupted the remaining guardians into servants of C’Thun.
Thousands of years later, a race of sentient insects known as the Aqir came across the now empty city after being driven from their homes during a massive war with the Troll empires. The Aquir elected to hibernate within Ahn’Qiraj in order to hide from the trolls and regrow their numbers, renaming themselves to the Qiraji. Years later they awoke and burst forth from the gates of Ahn’Qiraj once more, waging a costly war with the Night Elves and Dragon Flights before eventually being driven back and sealed within the city walls for good.
However, the seal turned out to be a somewhat temporary solution; as C’Thun awoke and stirred the Qiraji into action during the events of Vanilla, the heroes of Azeroth found it necessary to open the gates once again and lead an assault into the city, killing C’Thun and wiping out the Qiraji empire once and for all.
All of which brings us to this weeks exploration, where we’ll be heading back to Vanilla and venturing into the ruins of the city that lie just beyond the instance walls.
All you need for this exploration is a Demon Hunter and a spacebar. Using the method in the video above, head to the staircase just past where you fight Moam and do a series of double jumps across the ledge running alongside the stairs. From there, you can climb a ramp next to a nearby tower and you’ll come out on top of the wall that runs around the edge of the instance. Allowing you to explore the various areas that lie beyond it!
Heading along the outside of the raids back wall, we’re lead to a collection of buildings that are floating in midair. This is because these buildings were only ever designed to be seen from over the city walls to create the illusion that Ahn’Qiraj was a much larger city than the area the players had access to, so it didn’t matter if they intersected with the sand dunes below.
We’re also able to explore a few unused rooms in the raid. Blocked off by octagonal stone scarab doors, both of these rooms are fully finished and connected to the normal path of the raid. It’s likely that some sort of boss or trash mobs would have been added here had the rooms been used.
Continuing rightward along the outer wall and mountain range leads us to an instanced version of Vanilla Silithus, complete with the outer dome of C’Thuns room from AQ40, a (non functional) copy of the AQ 40 entrance portal, and about one quarter of the desert beyond the gates including a portion of Hive’Zora, and even the original Scarab Gong!
Not only is Ahn’Qiraj one of the oldest and most lore-filled cities in Azeroth, but it was the site of one of the most historic events in the history of World of Warcraft. Plus, it’s kind of pretty in its own horrifying sort of way.