Island Expeditions: Random Events and Invasions
As players explore the Island and collect Azerite, you will encounter unique and random events that can change the focus of your attention as new large sources of Azerite appear. This guide will provide details on these events and what to look out for when they happen.
What Are Random Events and Why Are They Important?
These events can exist anywhere between the form of bonus objectives where you need to rescue a trapped friendly NPC to large scale invasions of NPCs like Vrykul or Dragons. These events maintain their own unique theme that is different from the rest of the Island theme. So instead of the usual druidic creatures of the Verdant Wilds like bears and cats, you may also encounter raging fire elementals or twilight dragons in the Wilds as well. When these events activate, they will crowd-control all mobs near their spawning location.
These events generally yield large amounts of azerite, ranging from 400 to 2000+, should you complete them. Most of these events will be marked on the map by a if you haven't recently scouted the area. You should always try and fight for these events as they are significantly more effective Azerite gain than just killing mass amounts of regular enemies.
Changes to Events in 8.1: Tides of Vengeance
Island Expedition events and invasion systems are receiving several changes, adding both new mechanics and changing some old ones. A quick list of all changes are listed here.
The Unbound Monstrosity Azerite elemental has been added to the list of major invasion events.
More "out-of-theme" enemies are present on every Island Expedition.
Azerite Ruptures and Extractors.
Multiple Invasions can occur in a single Island Expedition.
Many new rare enemies on every Island Expedition.
Bonus Objective items such as Antivenom and Torches are much more visible by a beam of orange light.
All chests and satchels related to invasion events are locked until the nearby rare spawn is defeated.
Invasions will always occur, even when beating the enemy team and on high difficulties.
Every Island Expedition contains 3 major stages of events and invasions that occur after certain amounts of Azerite are collected. The exact amount of Azerite required to trigger these events is different every Island Expedition.
Note on Triggering Events:
On higher difficulties of Island Expeditions, Stage 2 and 3 events require significantly more Azerite looted by both teams to trigger. As a result these events (specifically the Stage 3 event) are much harder to trigger as you can often end Island Expeditions before enough Azerite is looted to even trigger them. In short, if you are looking to see these events, you will almost always encounter them in Normal mode, sometimes in Heroic mode, and almost never in Mythic mode. Make sure to let the other team get some Azerite to increase your chances of seeing these events.
Every Island Expedition contains 3 waves of major events or invasions that occur after certain criteria are met. Here are exactly how the events are triggered.
This wave of changes occurs immediately after the Island Expedition begins. This consists of small camps of special enemies spawning in and friendly NPCs getting in trouble.
After some Azerite has been collected between both factions, a single event occurs at a location around the Island offering a large amount of Azerite. As of now this is always the spawning of the Unbound Monstrosity elementa.
When much more Azerite has been collected between both factions, the final wave of events occurs on the Island, consisting of an invasion of new creatures.
Bonus Objectives, Rare Spawns and Extractors
At the start of an Island Expedition, you will encounter events all over the Island, most of these are shown on the map with a , some of them remain hidden until you are close enough.
Bonus objectives you are near are marked on the map with a yellow . All bonus objectives involve rescuing an NPC from danger. What danger they will be in is also random and usually requires a item depending on the danger. When any player of the team gets close enough to the NPC, the objective details will appear to all players on the team.
Poultice or external healing to full health
The specific item required will be tracked in the objectives tracker and the item will be checked off if any member of the party has the item. If you encounter an objective and don't have the required item, you will have to search for the item first. In all cases, the item required can be found nearby. Once you find the item, click on it and you will receive a debuff to indicate that you have it. Return to the NPC and click on the NPC to claim the reward. Only one team can claim the final reward.
Completing the objective awards
400 Azerite (600 on Heroic).
Like most rare enemies out in the world, some enemies are named and have a silver dragon portrait. Most rare spawns appear as a icon on the map and minimap. Sometimes these enemies are subtle and may be hidden under the ground or in a trapped chest. These enemies award more Azerite than elite enemies and generally have less health than their elite equivalents, making them worth the trouble.
Rare enemies award
200 Azerite (300 on Heroic)
Elite Rare enemies award
300 Azerite (450 on Heroic)
Special Rare Enemies
Unique Rare enemies are different from other rare enemies on the Island because they are usually more powerful than other rare enemies and often guard a chest or satchel containing more Azerite. Enemies normally located at the location of these rare spawns are put in indefinite crowd control that only breaks on damage. Sometimes these enemies are themed NPCs that would normally appear in the
large-scale invasions talked about later in the guide.
Rare enemies award
200 Azerite (300 on Heroic)
Elite Rare enemies award
300 Azerite (450 on Heroic)
Chest or Satchel contains
150 Azerite (225 on heroic)
Azerite Extractors are a new mechanic coming to Island Expeditions in Patch 8.1 Tides of Vengeance. An Azerite Extractor is a machine that a player can deploy at a marked location. There are two types of interactions where Azerite Extractors are used:
Azerite Rupture locations are marked on the map with this icon on the left. An Azerite Rupture location allows a player to deploy an Azerite Extractor. After doing so, a zone-wide announcement is made to both factions and the location of the rupture is made known to both teams. After being activated, a wave of Azerite themed enemies will spawn and need to be defeated. Once defeated, the Azerite Extractor pauses and will need to be interacted with again to resume mining. Every interaction will spawn a wave of enemies, on the third wave of enemies an Azerite themed rare spawn will attack. Defeating the rare spawn rewards a large amount of Azerite and this event ends.
Both teams are notified when the Azerite Extractor is activated.
Regardless of which team activates the Azerite Extractor, whoever tags the enemies will get credit.
A total of 3 activations will summon the rare spawn.
Once the rare spawn is defeated, the icon for this event disappears and the extractor can no longer be activated.
Azerite Extraction locations are marked on the map with this icon on the left. A player from either team may deploy an Azerite Extractor at this location, which will notify both teams with a zone-wide message and make the location known to all. After being activated, the Azerite Extractor will slowly generate Azerite for the team who placed the Extractor indefinitely until destroyed. The Azerite Extractor can be destroyed by NPCs or the other faction, after which, a new Azerite Extractor can to be placed by either team.
Both teams are notified when the Azerite Extractor is placed.
Both teams are notified when the Azerite Extractor is destroyed.
Some small enemies will be attracted to the Extractor and eventually destroy it if left completely unattended for a long period of time.
The Azerite Extractor lasts until it is destroyed, generating Azerite every 15 seconds it is active.
A new Azerite Extractor can be placed after one is destroyed after a small delay.
In Tides of Vengeance, multiple invasions can occur in a single Island Expedition.
As teams collect Azerite, a large-scale invasion may occur. An invasion has a huge impact on the Island both in terms of gameplay and visuals. During an invasion, a large amount of enemies will appear scattered in clumps around the Island. Invasions introduce many new rares as well as interactables all awarding hefty amounts of Azerite. Every invasion also has a leader among them guarding 2 chests that unlock after defeating it, all awarding a large amount of Azerite. All of these will appear marked on the map by a or a icon if the boss is located through a portal.
The expedition captain will warn you when an invasion occurs and what type of enemies they are.
In addition to many additional enemies appearing, changes to the weather or map layout can occur as well. Some weather effects limit visibility or cause hazards to erupt occasionally around the Island. On higher difficulties, these weather effects have greater effects on gameplay.
Some invasions change the atmosphere and add assets to the map.
Other invasions can drastically change the weather and limit visibility.
In general, invasions consist of the following enemies. Some invasion types cause more enemies to appear than others.
- The leader of the invasion is not always obvious, but is usually either on the Island or through a portal guarding 2 large locked chests. You must defeat the leader to unlock the chests for looting.
Invasion Site Rare
300 Azerite each
- An invasion causes many other rares to appear scattered across the Island, each of them are usually guarding a chest or satchel.
2 Boss Chests
250 Azerite each
- Guarded by the invasion boss. The boss must be defeated before these chests can be looted.
Invasion Site Chest
150 Azerite each
- Guarded by at least 1 rare of an invasion
Many small NPCs
- Each invasion site will have several other types of enemies themed around the invasion force.
Since the launch of Battle for Azeroth, the pool of possible invasions in Island Expeditions was limited, with one new invasion type becoming available every week. All of these invasions are expected to be available on the week of November 13th.
The Air Elementals appear from portals around the Island. Around these spawning locations a few tornadoes will spawn and deal heavy damage to player that pass through them. The boss of this type invasion is usually located through a portal that takes players to a hidden sanctum in the sky.
Most Air Elementals deal ranged physical damage through casts such as
. Overall, these elementals deal a lot of damage if left to free cast spells. Crowd Control effects that affect elementals will work.
The air elementals cause a
, lightning will strike randomly around the Island and under players. After the strike, a tornado will form and deal heavy damage and knock players away if hit.
In Patch 8.1 Tides of Vengeance, this event no longer occurs every Island Expedition. It is likely this event has been added to the invasions list.
In Tides of Vengeance, after collecting a certain amount of Azerite on the Island, an Azerite Eruption may occur, causing many Azerite themed enemies to spawn in
several locations around the map.
A Black Dragonflight invasion brings many Dragonkin type creatures to the Island. These dragons will appear from portals around the Island, including the boss who does not need to be engaged through a portal.
Most of the black dragons will have fire based attacks, specifically fire breath attacks and other frontal cone abilities to watch out for. Due to all of these creatures being Dragonkin, CC abilities such as
New in Tides of Vengeance!
A cult of necromancers arrive at the Island and the undead are disturbed, both arriving through spirit portals all around the Island. Be prepared to fight dark magics and undead amalgamations.
Expect enemies to use a lot of shadow-based attacks as well as summoning more undead beings from the spirit world.
Earth Elementals appear through portals around the Island and spawn a cache of Azerite around each of the locations marked on the map. In addition, a portal to a hidden underground cavern appears allowing players to defeat the elemental boss.
Earth Elementals use many physical and nature based attacks usually in the form of ground effects or rock projectiles.
kicks up, reducing visibility and causing the ground underneath players to sometimes become hazardous.
Fire Elementals spawn through portals around the Island and set several areas around their spawning locations on fire, as well as several
that spew fire at players nearby. The fire elemental boss can be found through the portal marked on the map.
Fire Elementals deal most of their damage as Fire damage with casts such as
. Also many damaging abilities from this invasion type appear as fire swirls on the ground that can be avoided.
A powerful fire elemental causes a
, causing fire swirls to occasionally appear beneath players and blast the area with fire after a short while. In addition some areas will have volcanoes that spew fire at players.
Trolls sail to the Island on boats and then walk to locations marked on the map. The tribe of trolls can vary such as the trolls being made up of the Sandfury tribe, Witherbark tribe, and Drakarri tribe.
Many of these NPCs deal damage with spells such as
which deals massive damage if not avoided or interrupted. Some of the named enemies attack players with poison effects that can be dispelled.
The Naglfar itself appears along the coast of the Island along with many Kvaldir forces sailing onto the Island on longboats and hiding within the mist spread across the Island. Players may take a portal to board the Naglfar and defeat the leader of the invasion on the ship.
The most difficult aspect of a Kvaldir invasion is dealing with the weather effect below, as it restricts the ability to cast on enemies and allies to less than 20 yards. The Kvaldir themselves deal mostly shadow and nature based attacks that can be avoided or interrupted.
A Kvaldir invasion causes an
to settle, which restricts the ability to see and cast on allies and enemies beyond 20 yards. In addition patches of
completely hide you or enemies from vision to those outside the mist.
Mantid creatures fly down onto the island and encase creatures and Azerite in amber around their locations.
Mantid enemies primarily deal Physical based damage, with strong and fast melee attacks, and the larger enemies dealing Physical damage with ground slam abilities.
Mogu forces fly onto the Island riding their cloud serpents and shroud the area in darkness. Some enemies also appear through a portal, which players can travel through to fight the invasion "boss".
This invasion type has players fighting both the Mogu and their Cloud Serpents. The Mogu attack primarily with physical melee attacks and shadow attacks such as
, while the Cloud Serpents use lightning and shadow based breath attacks.
causes the Island to become dark. No major effect on gameplay.
The arrival of the Naga causes a
. This currently has no known impact on gameplay.
Minions of the Old Gods appear through portals scattered around the Island, causing some areas to be void touched. Standing in the void zones causes players to become increasingly vulnerable to Shadow damage.
A Pirate ship appears along the coast of the island, here to do what pirates do. A cannon on the shore can launch players to the pirate ship to defeat the pirate captain. Many other groups of pirates sail to the Island on small boats and setup camps around the Island with the Azerite they have collected.
The Saurok Warband arrives from out of the water and prefer to setup camp along the edges of the Island, next to the water. This invasion brings a large amount of enemies to the Island with camps of enemies being fairly close to each other. The Saurok Warband has no distinct leader and instead has many small squads of Saurok consisting of a rare elite. Each camp of Saurok will be guarding satchels of Azerite.
The Warband comes equipped with many different types of Saurok. Some are casters that deal ranged damage with water based attacks such as
and also heal allies. Others are rogue-like NPCs that apply poisons to the targets through melee attacks. Expect a great deal of Nature and Frost damage and having a poison dispel may be useful.
New in Tides of Vengeance!
A group of taunka sail to the island on canoes.
Not much is currently known about them.
The Tol'vir will appear around the Island through portals and trap other creatures in Sand Traps. The "boss" of this invasion is located through a portal to a hidden tomb.
The Tol'vir specialize in dealing Shadow and Holy damage, as well as some physical damaging abilities.
A Twilight Dragonflight invasion is very similar to a Black Dragon invasion, with most damaging abilities dealing Shadow damage instead of Fire.
Similar to Black Dragons, Twilight Dragons will have many shadow breath attacks and other frontal cone abilities. CC abilities that effect Dragonkin such as
The Venture Company will fly onto the Island with their Balloons and then run to setup camp at various places around the Island. These camps usually have a rare enemy, a rare elite enemy, several turrets that will attack players automatically, and a couple satchels of Azerite players can loot at any time. The turrets at these camps deal a lot of damage that is unavoidable and should be killed quickly.
The Venture Company has no "boss" type NPC that players can kill for the two large satchels that come with it, instead the Venture Company sets up many small camps of enemies with rare elites that each guard one satchel.
Vrykul raiders will sail to the Island on Vrykul longboats and then run to locations on the Island and setup camp, dropping their collection of Azerite in satchels and chests nearby. These enemies can be engaged as soon as they get off their boats, but the chests and satchels will still spawn where their intended destination was on the Island.
Vrykul Warriors deal high physical damage and are accompanied by Runeweavers that casts Shadow damage based spells.
Water Elementals and Ice Elementals appear on the Island and cover areas of the Island in patches of Ice that deal damage and slow movement speed when trying to enter the areas. Often a portal can be found to an underground cave to fight the elemental lord of this invasion.
occurs, causing snow to fall as well as
s to create areas of frost around the Island that deal some frost damage and slow movement speed while in their effect radius.
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Anyone else getting a limited selection of invasions? I've done dozens of expeditions but never seen an elemental, tol'vir, or dragon invasion.
Grave vision, with that icon, is actually used in a graveyard in Drustvar, if I remember correctly, for a set of quests involving ghosts there.
Invasions depend on the island.
Anyone else seem to not be getting the invasions at all ever since the Hotfix on the 15th?
I have no idea why but I have not gotten a single Island Expedition yet.
Anyone know what triggers those to start?
I am further along in the quests and rep than one of my alts, and that alt (no zones actually finished, less than friendly with most) has already gotten an Island Expedition.
@Sangheilios - I got some screenshots of the rare Vrykul event. Feel free to use them in your guide. You can find them on this page
I think its another rare event you have not yet covered in your guide :)
Great work so far.
Naga invasions can have a portal, I had one earlier today that led to Tidemistress Sser'ah (who was bugged, spawned under the ground)
I just did one and had a sandstorm effect during it no the Island. Really interesting, and not yet on this guide I think.
We have two communities called
Island Expedition 2
to help get groups for leveling, normal, heroic, mythic and PvP. Unfortunately, the first community is full at 1,000 members and until Blizzard can raise the cap we have started the second community.
If you are an Alliance character on USA servers, you can use this code to either join Community 1 (
) if it is not at a full 1,000 members or Community 2 (
) that is just starting out.
Had the water invasion today. Lord Mercurius was the boss we fought in one of the two portals that appeared. Where the invasion mobs spawned the ground was frozen and movement was slowed. Snow orbs were everywhere but visibility was not hindered.
If you get the Ice Elemental invasion then about 80% of the time the damaging ice ground effect is bugged, and even if you kill all the Frozen Orbs and mobs the ground effect does not despawn like it's supposed to. The ground damages you every 2.5 seconds. It takes 3 seconds to open a Frozen Chest after you kill the rares. Guess what that means? You can't loot a the chest. (The only time I've seen someone successfully do it is a rogue blowing CoS to do so). Guess who can loot the chests? The AI team you are playing against. Guess who never tested half this garbage before releasing it? Blizzard.
[Screenshots containing UI elements are generally declined on sight, the same goes for screenshots from the modelviewer or character selection screen.]
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