This guide strives towards the most efficient completion of the For the Alliance! achievements. This guide tries to cover as many bases as possible, from organizing the raid to actually downing the city bosses. If you would like to see additions, have questions or find any errors, please leave them in a comment below.
It must be said firstly that organizing a “For The Alliance” raid is time consuming and difficult. Everything from organizing the raid itself, directing your troops, coordinating movement between cities, and fending of PVP attacks is up to you. Do not take the organization of this achievement lightly, badly organized runs are frustrating and can become the laughing stock of the server forums. Even perfectly run raids can be stymied by any combination of city defense and server lag. But nonetheless, this achievement can be very fun and worth every bit of work put into it.
What is the achievement and why do it? For the Alliance consists of downing 4 of the 5 Horde race leaders in their respective capitals: Thrall of Orgrimmar, Lady Sylvanas Windrunner of the Undercity, Cairne Bloodhoof of Thunder Bluff, and Lor’themar Theron of Silvermoon City. Note that the Troll racial leader, Vol’jin, is not needed for the achievement. The reward for doing all of this work is 5 different achievements and a Black War Bear mount that will be mailed to you immediately upon completion.
A crucial decision for the raid is actually determining when to have it. Organizing during high population times can lead to disaster. While it may be easier to find players for your raid, the opposition is much more likely to defend their cities. In addition, because of the high number of players online, server strain becomes an issue and heavy lag can take effect, limiting your raid’s effectiveness. It is not impossible to succeed during high playtime hours, but it requires much higher coordination and demands more individual skill from your raid.
For these reasons, it is better to organize during off peak hours such as on weekdays, specifically in the morning or afternoon, for your raid.
For class composition you can play fairly loose. Having a very well geared main tank can make the whole endeavor much easier. The tank should not wear PVP gear but the standard PVE tank gear. Have tank lean for a survivability/stamina set versus a high threat set. Your tank needs to survive the city boss, an onslaught of adds and defending players. It is also crucial to have multiple tanks who are ready to take aggro at a moment’s notice. The opposition will target your main tank since this is the easiest way to dismantle a raid. It can also be helpful for Sylvanas who often aggro dumps.
You can toy with the number of healers you bring. I’ve done it with as few as three, but its smarter to bring 4-6. This will lower your overall DPS, but the more healers you have the more leniency you give yourself against lag and PVP. Make sure they’re actual healing assignments, preferably with at least two healers on the tank and everybody else on the raid. Holy Paladins and Discipline Priests are excellent tank healers, but any healer can do the job effectively. Likewise Holy Priests, Resto Shamans and Resto Druids make effective raid healers, but again any healer can do the job effectively. Healers need to watch for aggro, not only will players target them to dismantle the raid, but NPCs will also aggro because of the healing threat. It is hard for tanks to see everything that goes on in the chaos, so communicate when you have aggro and do your best to get it off of you if you can. Paladins and can for the most part getaway with PVE gear due to their high innate survivability, but other classes should wear their PVP gear.
For DPS the main goal is to take down the bosses as fast as possible, but priority number one is to protect tanks and healers. Failure contain the city defenders will wipe your raid every time. In particular, look for casters who attempt to hide from a distance and kill off your members. Area Effect attacks are excellent weapons for both you and your enemy. High AE damage classes can help clear out spawning guards and players on the raid. However, enemy players can do the same and put a large strain on your healers. If you see somebody attacking your raid, whether it be a tank, healer or DPS, stop attacking the boss and immediately deal with the threat by killing or crowd controlling them. A Priest’s Psychic Scream is especially effective since it requires no targeting and hits multiple enemies at the same time. DPSers do not necessarily need PVP gear since they are not usually focused. If you can survive a few seconds of a player’s attack then you should be fine.
The Order of the Kills
Their can never be a hard fast rule for downing the bosses. Which strategy you take and what order you kill them in will depend on the opposition’s city defense. This varies from the time of day and server. In general some bosses are more protected than others. Thrall in Orgrimmar is by far the most protected as he is the Horde leader and nestled deep within the Horde capital. I always recommend taking him first so that you can take the opposition by surprise. If you can take him down you have the hardest part complete.
The next choice is between Thunder Bluff and Undercity. Thunder Bluff is closer, but also the obvious choice. Thunder Bluff is easy to get to for the Horde, and with Patch 3.2 a portal from Orgrimmar to Undercity was added, making it much easier for Horde to change cities. However, I still recommend going to UC next because it is unpredictable and most people will not go that far out of their way. The choice is ultimately yours but buying yourself even a little bit of time goes a long ways when the heat is on you. It is also optimal because after you down Sylvannas in UC, its a tossup for Horde as to what city you go to next, Thunder Bluff or Silvermoon.
But ultimately, Silvermoon will be saved for last. This is because Silvermoon is as dead as a city can possibly be and in fact, many Horde probably don’t know even know who the Blood Elf racial leader is.
This is a good strategy but by no means necessarily the best for your raid. Use your own intuition and knowledge of your server to customize your plan of attack. Be willing to improvise as you go and make changes as needed.
Getting to the Bosses and Killing Them
- Getting to Him: Have your raid assemble in Astrannar, Ashenvale and then ride the road east and then south into the Barrens. From there ride east along the northern Barrens until you reach Orgrimmar’s side entrance. The goal is to take the significantly less guarded side entrance that leads directly to Thrall’s room.
- Killing Him: Thrall himself is actually a fairly simple fight. He is a tank and spank fight with the occasional chain lightning so spread out. Most likely, Vol’jin will be pulled as well. Just off tank him while your DPS deals with the guards. Keep the opposition bottlenecked at the entrance to Thrall’s room.
- Getting To Her: Undercity can be reached by taking the zeppelin in front of Orgrimmar or by flying to Southshore and traveling through Hillsbrad Foothills, Silverpine Forest and Tirisfal Glades until you reach the Undercity.
- Killing Her: Sylvanas is the hardest Horde boss to kill, but was made easier by the fact that Varimathras seems to no longer attack Alliance members. The main strategy is that Sylvanas occasionally vanishes and then reappears to attack somebody from range. This causes everyone in the raid to untarget her. As a result, have your raid focus target Sylvanas so that you can quickly pick her up again. Again, bottleneck city defenders at the boss’s entrance and be very careful to not aggro any of the battlemasters along the room’s edges.
- Getting to Him: Have your raid use a Mage’s portal to Dustwallow Marsh. From there exit the zone west and go through the Barrens, through Mulgore and up to Thunder Bluff. The main trick to getting there is surviving the elevators. Smart Boomkins, Elemental Shamans and Fire Mages will stand at the top of the elevator and use their knockback abilities on your whole raid to plunge you all to your deaths. Immediately crowd control and kill and anyone who is standing at the elevator’s entrance. Secure the elevators with an initial group and then bring the rest of your raid into Thunder Bluff proper.
- Killing Him: Cairne is a simple tank and spank with one important twist. Cairne will reset if he is pulled out of his tent. The main tank must immediately get face aggro, turn Cairne around and tank him with their backs to the wall. Cairne has a tank knockback so its important to be on the wall to maintain aggro and to not get plunted out of the tent.
- Getting to Him: The only way to get to him is by having your raid fly to Light’s Hope Chapel in Eastern Plaguelands. From there, ride north through the Ghostlands and Eversong Woods to Silvermoon City.
- Killing Him: Wear your PVP trinket for this fight if you have it. Theron is actually a group fight. Rummath and Halduror will aggro as well, but both are pushovers. Kill Halduror first and then Rummath. Make sure all healers and casters stand 30 yards away from Theron to avoid his Mana Burn. Theron also has a Mass Charm spell that will you will have to PVP trinket or Human Racial out of.