While Wrath of the Lich King improved many of the existing features in World of Warcraft, the patch brought in, prior to its release, plenty of brand-new features to everyone, and not just those who upgrade to Wrath of the Lich King, in order to help keep the game fresh and interesting. One of these new features is sure to suit a wide range of play styles: achievements. These self-contained goals offer new challenges, satisfy goal-oriented players, and allow others to see your accomplishments in World of Warcraft — plus, they are just plain fun.
World of Warcraft's achievements system launched with exactly 749 individual achievements covering every aspect of gameplay, including world exploration, PvE, PvP, professions, and character development; from the purely whimsical to the truly epic, there is something for everyone. Some achievements come with in-game rewards such as mounts, tabards, vanity pets, and titles. All of these rewards are purely cosmetic and just for fun, but you’ll certainly stand out when you proudly display them.
Some achievements also involve completing pre-BC instances and raids such as Blackrock Depths, Scholomance, Stratholme, Blackrock Spire, Blackwing Lair, Onyxia's Lair, Molten Core, Ruins of Ahn'Qiraj, and the Temple of Ahn'Qiraj in order to allow newer players to experience older content that had previously been rendered obsolete.
And don’t fret about running out of achievements any time soon. The list is easily expandable so you can expect additional achievements with each new World of Warcraft content update.
In Mists of PandariaThis section concerns content exclusive to Mists of Pandaria.
Smaller status popups will appear showing progress toward a part of larger achievments.
The achievements window
Beginning with patch 3.0.2, players saw a new button () in the micro menu at the center of your main action bar. Click that button to bring up the achievements window or use the default bound key of Y.
The top of the window displays the total number of points you’ve received for completing achievements. Below, each achievement appears with its name, description, point value, the completion date, and a progress bar (if applicable). Some achievements expand to display a list of individual components, highlighted to show which parts you’ve finished. You can also designate which achievements to track as you play, similar to the existing quest tracker. An important design goal is to provide players with everything they need to know to unlock an achievement.
At the bottom of the Achievements window are the Achievements and Stats tabs. The Statistics tab shows various other statistics.
Types and categories of achievements
World of Warcraft's achievements come in several varieties. Some simply require specific actions to unlock, such as getting a haircut or defeating a member of each race in your opposing faction in PvP. Others involve a progress bar and require you to do something several times — such as give out 10 hugs. Some achievements are progressive; for example, once you complete an achievement to collect 10 vanity pets, you might next be asked to collect 25. Finally, meta achievements unlock when you complete other achievements — unlocking all World Exploration achievements (see below) unlocks a World Explorer meta achievement. Some achievements, including those that involve quests, honorable kills, items currently in your possession, skills (including professions), exploration, and reputations, are applied to your character retroactively.
To help keep track of all the different achievements you can unlock, players find the following categories in the achievements window:
- General: These achievements tend toward the whimsical, including getting a shave and haircut (a new feature of Wrath of the Lich King), obtaining a certain number of tabards and vanity pets, falling from a great height, and more.
- Quests: Quest-based achievements include completing a certain number of quests and completing specific quest lines. This category contains zone-specific subcategories.
- Exploration: You’ll earn achievements by exploring each zone in the game — and get meta-achievements when you fully explore a continent.
- Player vs. Player: This includes arena, battlegrounds, and world player-vs.-player objectives. A few examples:
- Hot Streak: Win 10 ranked arena matches in a row.
- Alterac Valley All-Star: Capture graveyards, towers, and kill the enemy leader all in one game.
- City Defender: Kill 50 enemy players in your faction’s capital cities.
- Guild: To be added with Cataclysm.
- Dungeons & Raids: Every end boss of every raid and dungeon in the game grants its own achievement. Future achievements in this category may include ones for completing a run without any player deaths, with fewer than the maximum number of players, or within a certain time limit. This also allows newer players to experience higher level pre-BC instances and raids such as Stratholme, Blackrock Spire & Onyxia's Lair which had previously been rendered obsolete.
- Professions: Advancing to each tier of mastery in a profession earns you an achievement, and there are specific achievements for secondary skills (with major professions to follow).
- Reputation: This set of achievements includes attaining exalted reputation with each faction in the game.
- World Events: Seasonal events such as the Midsummer Festival, the Lunar Festival, and Hallows' End have specific achievements of their own.
Those not listed in the Progress Overview...
- Account: These achievements tend towards things that occur for your account, such as how many characters you have created. Account achievements are yet to be implemented as of patch 3.3.0.
- Feats of Strength
Feats of Strength
Feats of Strength represent the past glories of Azeroth, and as such, players will find them very difficult — if not impossible — to earn. They’re worth no points, and unlike normal achievements, unearned Feats are not displayed in the achievements interface. Feats include old-world player-vs.-player ranks, obtaining rare mounts, special titles, and more. Feats of Strength are awarded retroactively (that is, they are immediately granted to your character if you qualify) since many of them are impossible to earn in Wrath of the Lich King.
It’s great to be able to see your own achievements — but it’s even better to let the world know what you’ve accomplished. By right-clicking other players and selecting the appropriate option, you can compare your achievements to theirs. Every time you earn a new achievement, your accomplishment is announced to your guild and everyone in your immediate vicinity — and the custom achievement animation and sound effect are unmistakable. Also, your achievements are viewable on the Armory, allowing you to track and show off your accomplishments via the web.
- List of Feats of Strength achievements
Although completing achievements does not give characters any benefits for combat or skills, certain achievements do grant the character a vanity pet, a vanity item, a very fast mounts, a new tabard or a new title.
New characters are not able to see or use the Achievements system until they are level 10.
However, plenty of Achievements are obtainable prior to level 10 (such as opening an account bound companion like Core Hound Pup), and earning one will unlock the achievement interface no matter what level.
Patches and hotfixes
/ Patch 3.0.2 (14-Oct-2008): Added.
- ^ Ghostcrawler 2012-05-08. Bringing Achievements to the Account Level. Official World of Warcraft Community site (US).
Ghostcrawler 2012-05-08. Bringing Achievements to the Account Level. Official World of Warcraft Community site (EU).
- ^ Lucifer 2012-05-15. MoP Beta - New UI elements and changes. Wowjuju.
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