I managed to find the Eye of Shadow in the auction house to a somewhat reasonable price of around 360 gold, and off I went to the Eastern Plaguelands in order to complete “The Balance of Light and Shadow” for the final part of the puzzle: the Splinter of Nordrassil. This was definitely the most difficult part of the whole ordeal: Molten Core is rather trivial and perhaps half the raid needs to be somewhat awake in order to get through it in a reasonable time and you just need to get lucky with the drop in order to get the eye from there; the Eye of Shadow mostly requires patience, either through farming or having enough gold; but this final part actually requires you to do something alone, or well, I did it alone at least.
To expand a bit on that, I saw some old comments saying other priests could actually help with the quest, as long as:
- they only helped by healing and not doing damage
- they also have the Eye of Divinity in order to see the NPCs
- they don’t move, since apparently even moving potentially triggers the failure state
There was another priest queuing for the quest after me, but he decided not to risk it and assist me and I managed to complete it anyway which was nice.
The quest itself is somewhat curious, waves of ghostly NPCs spawn that you have to keep alive while they get bombarded by skeletal archers as well as melee skeletons that spawn, the melee skeletons will also aggro you once you start healing so some way to deal with this is recommended, I ended up using Oil of Immolation which made rather quick work of them and saved me a lot of mana. I also saw recommendations to use Stratholme Holy Water but that feels somewhat overkill since one would need a group to farm it and the oil made short work of the skeletons anyway. What I definitely would recommend however is a couple of big mana potions, the quest has you pretty much constantly in combat and healing so you will probably be stuck inside the five second rule meaning mana will be a problem; using Renew worked well for me, downranked to rank three as well as max rank.
What makes this quest curious however, is that while you are essentially spothealing a raid, you don’t get any of the usual UI elements which you would normally use to do this and instead have to completely rely on the nameplates. What makes this somewhat more annoying are the debuffs which the standard nameplates don’t display meaning you do also have to keep an eye on the NPCs themselves in order to see if they are diseased or not—curing the disease quickly is vital since it deals quite a lot of damage.
Overall the quest proved a positive surprise since I’m not actually expecting to find much difficult content in Classic which was nice, though the biggest challenge being actual UI problems as well as proper consumable usage does dampen that somewhat. The unecessary waiting between tries forced by the 20 minute or so respawn of the questgiver is also somewhat disappointing but still a lot better than the original two hour one, that was actually something I was very happy to see has been changed in Classic—or maybe it was changed in one of the later patches, not sure, though a lot of old comments indicate the timer used to be two hours.