- “A strange vision haunts me... I see a continuous cloud of smoke ascending toward the sky, left in the wake of a giant fire moving ever faster away. It is not a natural phenomenon, nor a creation of evil; that much I know. I have no knowledge of what it looks like, save that it is the product of the labor of many. Yet, without more hands, it may never come to be.”
Area 52 is a neutral goblin-run town found on the southwesternmost island of Netherstorm. It is a settlement structured much like Gadgetzan and Everlook, with a short wall surrounding a small hovel of buildings. The goblins are seen building a rocket ship, named the X-52 Nether-Rocket, to journey into the Twisting Nether.
- Toshley's Station
- Thunderlord Stronghold
- Mok'Nathal Village
- Anchorite Karja says: With all due respect, A'dal sent us here to investigate Kael's activities, not mount a full-scaled attack.
- Spymaster Thalodien says: Look, sweetheart. No one's talking about storming Tempest Keep ourselves, but when we see a target of opportunity we have to take it.
- Exarch Orelis says: Hold your tongue, Knave! Do not dare use that tone with a priestess of the Light!
- Magistrix Larynna says: [Thalassian] DOr shar'adore da shando (Translation: I'm surrounded by idiots!)
- Anchorite Karja says: The magistrix will be happy to know I'm fluent in Thalassian. Your courtesy is not lost on me.
- Anchorite Karja says: Back to the topic... we should focus our attention on these manaforges. We need to learn what the enemy is doing with them and why.
- Magistrix Larynna says: We've told you all there is to know! Do you forget that many of us used to be trusted followers of Kael'thas?
- Spymaster Thalodien says: ...and just look at where that got us!
- Exarch Orelis says: Even you must admit that your information from defectors is outdated and unreliable. Let us make calculated attacks on these manaforges and gather what information we can.
- Spymaster Thalodien says: Finally, some talk of action from the big guy!
X2 crew conversation
- Experimental Pilot says: All my bags are packed, I'm ready to go.
- Engineering Crewmember says: The ship's not ready yet. We still need to calibrate the fuse length to make sure that it doesn't burn out and leave you up there alone.
- Experimental Pilot says: You need to do what? All this science, I don't understand ... Look, this is just my job, five days a week.
- Engineering Crewmember says: Essentially, it's going to be a long, long time till we are ready to launch. Maybe you should just head back home to your family.
- Experimental Pilot says: I can't. I'm not the man they think I am at home. Besides, I didn't bring them out here.
- Engineering Crewmember says: Why not? A family can give you strength.
- Experimental Pilot says: This isn't the kind of place to raise your kids. It's cold, and there'd be no one to raise them.
- Engineering Crewmember says: Couldn't you raise them?
- Experimental Pilot says: Oh, no, no, no... I'm a rocket man.
- The city can be reached via .
- The innkeeper in Area 52 does not sell any goods, but food and drink can be purchased from Gant.
- There are numerous areas where you can attack the opposing factions (and vice versa) without pulling aggro on the guards. It is advisable to stay in a building or fly above the ground if you need to go away from keyboard if you are PvP flagged. Area 52 Death Machines kill roof-campers, but engineers can control them with .
Area 52 has a number of references to the outside world in it, primarily in relation to aliens and space:
- The town's name is a reference to Area 51, a US military base which has strong pop culture ties to extraterrestrials and their space-faring technology.
- The town being mainly inhabited by goblins may be a play on little green men.
- Many of the goblins working on the X2 Nether-Rocket are clad in Star Trek-inspired uniforms.
- The conversation between the Experimental Pilot and Engineering Crewmember borrows several lines from Elton John's "Rocket Man".
- The rocket's name is a reference to the X-plane, the experimental U.S. airplane/rocket program.
- When going through the doors, players receive a short "debuff" (with no apparent effects) from the A-52 Neuralyzer, which says "The flash of light you did not see did not erase your memories." In the film Men in Black, agents were issued a device, also called a Neuralyzer, that wiped people's memories with a flash of light whenever they had any contact with aliens.
- Innkeeper Remi Dodoso's name in Area 52 spells out the notes 'Re' 'Mi' 'Do' 'Do' 'So' in the solfege scale. This is a reference to the musical theme used in the movie Close Encounters of the Third Kind to communicate with the aliens which have landed on Earth.
- Area 52 and the X2 rocket periodically get attacked by Negatron, a reference to Megatron from the Transformers series.
Patches and hotfixes
- Hotfix (2017-03-21): "Looking at the map while in Area 52 now displays Outland, as intended."
- Patch 2.0.3 (2007-01-09): Added.