Kalu'ak Fishing Derby from the Test Realm

This weekend I participated in the Kalu'ak Fishing Derby. I went last week too - but the quest NPC was bugged and I don't think anyone was able to complete it. It appears to be functional now, so I went ahead and put together a walk-thru for you guys. Here is me in Dalaran, waiting for the contest to start -->

You can see that the NPC is a walrus from the Kalu'ak faction. He was here when I popped in about 15 minutes before the event was scheduled to start. I don't know when he actually spawned though, not that it matters since you can't interact with him at this point.

About five minutes before the Derby begins, he makes an announcement. I don't know if this is continent-wide, or just in Dalaran. I thought this was a nice touch, to give a five minute warning. Luckily is isn't really important for those who are prepared in advance. This is probably more of a reminder for folks who aren't already planning to participate. However, those of you who are familiar with the Stranglethorn contest will realize that if you are in Dalaran to hear this, you are probably not going to win. At this point in time you want to be at or en route to your fishing spot.

For the purposes of this walk-thru, I stayed in Dalaran to document the Derby as it unfolded. That's right, I sacrificed a win for you people! Well, maybe a PTR win isn't worth all that much. Heh.

Anyway, at 2pm on the dot the Derby kicks off with this message from Elder Clearwater. I presume this is a continent-wide message, so hopefully you are NOT in Dalaran when you see this. At this point his quest has been activated and anyone can return to him with the golden fishie! Or whatever.

The way this works is that competitors will be fishing anywhere in Northrend in an attempt to find a Blacktip Shark. The first person to bring Elder Clearwater a blacktip shark will win the prize for that week. Blacktip sharks can be found anywhere you might find pygmy suckerfish, which basically means any fishing pool.

Since all of Northrend is a viable fishing location, this will hopefully cut down on the pool camping and cutthroat nature of the STV contest. However, there will still be some use for strategy. The most important thing will be to find a location that is plentiful in pools while minimizing competition. Also, keep in mind that areas with more appealing or useful fish are likely to have larger crowds. Since the return quest is in Dalaran, I don't think it hurts you to venture out to isolated locations. But you don't want to be so isolated that the pools are too few, too spread out or too slow in respawning.

For my first try I went to the northern end of Howling Fjord and fished the lakes and nearby rivers. There were plenty of spawn pools and only a few other people in the area. On my second try I went to Grizzly Hills and the Blue Sky Logging Camp. There are lots of spawns around Blue Sky and the rivers that flow from it. Both of these spots worked fine for me with the number of spawn pools and respawn rate.

this week's contest ended in less than ten minutes - as you can see in this pic. I was kinda bummed because I'd gotten maybe five minutes of fishing done. In the chat window you can see a continent-wide announcement of the winner. The time on my mini-map is 2:09, a mere nine minutes after the contest began. Over at El's forums I saw that the EU contest took closer to 30 minutes for someone to get a fish. So there seems to be a fair amount of randomness to the drop rate. Of course, we have no clue how many players are participating and I'm sure that changes the situation somewhat. Still, you may want to be prepared for the possibility that the contest could end in 5-10 minutes on a populous server.

You don't have to stop fishing after a winner has been declared, blacktip sharks are still available for the full hour. The first week I tried the contest, there was no "winner" announcement message at all. I kept going for the full hour and I got a blacktip shark in about 45 minutes or 100-125 catches. This week I also continued to fish for the full hour, but the server went down at 2:55 and I missed the last few minutes. I was able to fish for about 50 minutes total and made 130 catches, but found no blacktip. When I finally got back online the contest was over. You still have an hour after the event ends to turn in your fishie if you happen to find one. Since I didn't get one, I wasn't able to document the completion text. I plan to try again at next week's contest.

When you return to Dalaran, you speak with Elder Clearwater who has a blue question mark on his head. Anyone who has caught a fish can bring it to him and complete his quest. You can see in this pic of the quest text that you just hand over the fish to get credit. This information may change if you are a runner-up, this is the quest that was available before the winner was announced. Hopefully I'll do better next week getting a black tip and be able to document the consolation prize quest.

Originally this contest was going to run on Wednesdays at 8pm, but this week it was changed to Saturday at 2pm. It's my understanding that raiders complained about the Wednesday time slot because it interfered with a "major" raid night. Personally I find it odd that such a huge number of raiders are running on Wednesday to create that much of a stink. I thought it was rather nice of Blizzard to have a weekend event and a weeknight event to offer contests for a variety of schedules. Unfortunately it seems the squeaky wheel got the grease, so we'll have two weekend events instead. Still, another chance to be a winner is another chance right?

If you guys have any questions or a request for next week's event, feel free to share them in the comments below!


  1. Glad to read your account. Were you fishing the same type of pool, or changing through the hour?

    EU PTRs are still at California time, so the contest is close to midnight for most Europeans. Generally people who are up at midnight on a Saturday aren't in the mood for PTRs! So there may be as few as 5 or 10 people competing on each realm (there are 4), including people who may get bored before they catch anything.

    Personally I took just under 20 minutes and just over 50 catches to win, but I started in Dalaran (I wanted to check for any quests), so I could have done it faster.

    I'm still working with a hunch that there is an (unseen) minimum number of catches required before there is a chance that the shark will show up, or a skewed probability where the chance of a catch increases the longer you fish (like quest items). Otherwise (on a busy realm) the Derby will routinely be over in a few minutes, since someone will get lucky. From talking to people, the lowest observed number of catches for the shark is about 40. It could still all be chance, but I'd expect to have heard from someone that had caught it within 10 catches - and I haven't.

    I updated my article about the contest with pictures, if you are curious to know what winning looks like ( http://www.elsanglin.com/kaluak_fishing_derby.html ). And "soon" I'll post a video. The quest mechanics are essentially the same as the Booty Bay contest.

  2. Much appreciated post! Thanks for the information!

  3. El: The first week I did the event - I was only fishing Fangtooth Herring pools. The second week I was only fishing Glacial Salmon. I tried to select a location with lots of pools, but I don't think I was ever near a coastal area to incorporate variety into my gameplan.

    The first week I did the contest, there were 3 other lvl 80s in the Fjord with me. I can only assume they were also competing since a lvl 80 has little reason to be in Howling Fjord. This past week I didn't take a zone census, but I never ran into anyone else while I was fishing. I had the whole Blue Sky camp and the river north of Amber Pine to myself.

    I thought it was interesting that it took me over 100 fish the first week before I got a shark, then the following week I caught over 100 and had no shark. I would certainly suspect there's some sort of minimum catch involved, at least it's worth further investigation. I will continue to document my weekly catches and maybe a pattern will emerge.

    This week I was at a disadvantage since I did not leave Dalaran until after the contest kicked off. Next week I plan to get into position before the start time, so I should have more reliable results. If not I'll try to whisper the winner and see what their tally is. I'm on the US-PVE realm, which I suspect has the highest test population of the four servers. Theoretically our contest will most resemble a Live server, although I don't think we had a strong turnout either.

    Thanks for sharing the link to your contest page for folks who want to read more about the quest works!

  4. i cant wait for this patch now

    new 5-mans, a new raid AND new fishing activites?!

    thanx for the info kaliope! quality work as always!

  5. Im glad they moved it from wednesday myself because that is a raid day for us and I knew i'd never get a chance to compete without giving up my raidspot. Im also glad this is another opportunity to get the achievement because, on my server at least, you still need to form a raid to win in STV !

  6. About the contest time issue, the reason that lots of raiders raised a stink over Wednesday night is that on EU servers Wednesday is server reset day, so just about everyone is raiding on this day. 8:00pm server is of course prime raiding/play hour. So I'm glad they changed it.

    I'm sad though they changed it to middle of the day on Saturday as I can't usually login to play in the middle of the day even on a weekend. Saturday evening would have been so much better :(

  7. I guess I'm having a hard time mustering sympathy for raid conflicts, since Sunday is a very good time for folks who raid. I thought it was pretty reasonable to give Wednesday to the casual weeknite players, so there would be a fishing tourney open to those who *can't* do Sunday afternoon. So far most of the rationale I see for Wednesday being bad is coming from players who are perfectly able to attend the Sunday contest.

    Don't get me wrong, Saturday afternoon is better for me than Wednesday night because my guild also has a raid then. I just think it's sad that raiders can't let casuals gain anything without throwing a fit. Despite it benefiting me personally, I almost wish Blizzard hadn't caved on the Wednesday slot. They are just reinforcing the raider mentality that the game is all about them and all casuals get are the leftover crumbs.

  8. I see it differently, it's not about raiders vs. casuals but rather about middle of the day being a bad time for people like me with families. Evening after the kids go to sleep is the time I can play and I was hoping for a fishing contest at this time, even if the day originally chosen (Wednesday) was less than optimal.

    So at least for me, this certainly isn't about "throwing a fit" as a raider or wanting WoW to be all about raiding. It is about WoW being more friendly to players 30+ with kids and the fishing contest being stuck yet again in the middle of the day pisses me off much more than missing out on the guild Wednesday raid once in a while would have.

  9. Your situation is exactly why I liked the 8pm/weekday slot, even if the choice of weekday wasn't great. Some folks can only play in the evening when family obligations calm down. Creating an event that catered to that group seemed really considerate of Blizzard. Now they've moved it to a time that's apparently good for raiders and crummy for people with families. If Sunday at 2pm is bad for you, odds are that Saturday at 2pm is also bad. Why change a time that would have covered a larger variety of play schedules and replace it with a time that mainly works for players who were already available for the existing contest?

    I see it as a raider vs. casual issue because the raiders are the ones who complained about it. From where I sit, Blizzard caved and turned their back on the players they were intending to help. They are rewarding the "squeaky wheel" mentality and they wonder why they get so much grief on the forums from these same people. I find it sad because the majority of players do not complain and they are the ones who will miss out as a result of this change. Even though I'm not all that casual anymore, I feel for them. Since no one else seems to be talking about this side of the argument, I thought I'd throw out my 2cp on the subject.

  10. Here's what I'm confused about - El's fishing guide says the day has changed to Sat but on Aerie Peak the fat guy wasn't singing - never showed. Can we have a real time and place for this event?