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The Elusive Rare Spawn Guide

Tips for completing the rare spawn achievements.
Hunting rare spawns for the various in game achievements is much like a great African hunt. It takes patience, perseverance, and is sometimes even steeped with danger, all leading up to finally tracking down that elusive animal, or in this case rare spawn. Once found you prepare yourself to make the kill, and begin to move in only to have some random player of the opposite faction swoop down and tag the mob seconds before you. Ok so maybe that part wouldn’t happen on any hunt in real life, but you get the idea.

The point of the story is, hunting rare spawns is a difficult, tedious, and unpredictable process. Blizzard has recognized the difficulty of the hunt and has added four separate achievements for seeking out and killing rare spawns in Outlands and Northrend. The four achievements are as follows:

For those of you wanting more than just a map and a pat on the back before being sent on your way, below are some helpful suggestions I have collected from various places and personal experiences that should make completing the above achievements much easier. Hopefully greatly reducing the number of headdesks and general frustration achievements like these tend to cause.

The first thing anyone seeking rare spawns needs to understand is that rare spawns each have their own individual timers. The myth of rare spawns all sharing the same timer, tends to be perpetuated by more than a few people, but it is simply false. Some rare mobs will have a 10 hour timer, while others will have an 8 or even a 4 hour timer. No amount of wishing, praying, or petitioning will change this, so be ready for a possible long wait.

Once you have reached the area that the rare spawn normally appears in don’t just stand in one spot like a bump on a log. Just because a rare spawn is supposed to path there does not mean it actually will. Be sure to keep an eye on the area around you, no one wants to be the noob who missed their rare spawn because it was pathing 3 feet to the right.

Do one macro for each set of mobs, split them into more if you can’t manage to fit all the names inside the 255 character macro limit, or seek out an addon that will allow more characters in each macro.

I know if your mother was anything like mine, at some point in your life she told you never to talk to strangers, but here we are going to disregard that rule. Don’t be afraid to ask people in the zone if they would mind alerting you if a rare spawn is spotted. While you may be faced with some rather unfriendly responses, the majority of World of Warcraft players are nice people (really!) and you will be surprised at how many are willing to help. If you are uncomfortable talking to people you don’t know, enlist the help of any guild members or friends that are in the zone.

While this is completely optional, choosing to be generous to other players is never a bad idea. If you see someone that appears to be camping a rare spawn point strike up a conversation and find out their intentions. If they are waiting for the spawn you can always go elsewhere and check back later.

Never assume you are the only one searching for the rare spawn. Once found, tag the mob with an instant cast spell if possible. Hesitation may cost you the kill and you will find yourself unshowered, lacking sleep, and staring blankly at your screen trying to will the rare spawn into existence once again.

If possible, search for rare spawns during the off peak hours of your particular realm. You know, when Dalaran looks like a ghost town and you can almost imagine the tumbleweeds rolling around. It’s not a coincidence that more rare spawns can be found during these hours, the fewer people online means fewer chances for someone else to stumble across the mob you are seeking.

Visit helpful sites like Wowhead and Wowwiki. They will provide you with invaluable information.
Hunters who are curious about which of these magnificent creatures can be made into pets should visit Petopia for the answers to these questions and more. It’s like dipping into the knowledge base of the entire World of Warcraft community with a click of a button. Sort of like the Tree of Souls from Avatar, minus the creepy hair tentacle.

Finally here are some addons that will help in your hunt for rare spawns:

Silver Dragon- Tracks rare mobs. This addon comes with a list of rare mobs, and will remember where you last saw a rare. When you get near a rare mob it will pop a warning.

ESN_Rare- Scans the combat log, nameplates, and your target for rare mobs. When a rare mob is found it will alert you and create a macro that will allow you to target the rare mob.

NPCScan- Better than any macro, this mod checks the player’s creature cache to be aware of exactly when a rare mob is found and will alert the player. Be warned though, once a mob is found this mod will not be able to find it again till after the cache is cleared.

With that I wish you happy hunting and request that you join us on our forums to share your and tips, tricks, or awesome add ons that have assisted you in the hunt for the elusive rare spawn.