Archaeology is the new secondary profession that you can learn in the upcoming World of Warcraft Expansion Cataclysm.
In a nutshell
There are archaeology sites marked as spades on the world map. To survey you travel to one of these dig sites (there are always 4) and use the survey skill to look for fragments. You’ll find a direction and range indicator in form of a scope with a red, yellow, green light to it.
Each race has their own dig sites and artifacts which you can put together by solving surveyed fragments.
Here is a little video of how Archaelogy plays. I just dug up some Night Elf Fragments in Desolace and am looking for the next closest in Feralas, Oneiro the new Alliance Base.
At the moment Archaeolgy gives quite a junk of xp (64k at 84) but I expect to see that „adjusted“ 😀
By each time you have a number of fragments (seems to be 30 for the first 2 steps at least) solving them turns them into items and the next item per race will be unlocked.
As you can see at the end of the video I solved 30 Night Elf Fragments and the item I got was:
3 sec cast
This is a small box of delicate ceramic, probably used to store cosmetics, jewelry or other small items belonging to a Highborne lady. The clasp is of silver and fashioned to look like two acorns and a holly leaf.
This unlocked the item:
Necklace with Elune Pendant
3 sec cast
Elune is the primary goddess of the night elves. She is associated with the larger of the two moons, the White Lady. While she is a goddess of peace, she is not a pacifist. One of her aspects is the Night Warrior, who takes the valiant among the dead and sets them riding across the sky as stars.
You will be able to solve bind on account epic items. This item comes from Troll Fragments:
Archaeology: Zin’rokh, Destroyer of Worlds
3 sec cast
According to your research, this great weapon was one of the many treasures of Hakkar the Soulflayer in Zul’Gurub. Hakkar was defeated years ago and this sword passed through the hands of many powerful warriors and paladins before apparently becoming sundered. It is remarkable that you have been able to reforge it, but also a little troubling that if the Destroyer of Worlds has returned, perhaps the Soulflayer is not far behind.
Zin’rokh, Destroyer of Worlds
Binds to account
1658 – 3079 Damage
(623.3 damage per second)
Durability 120 / 120
Requires Level 85
Item Level 359
Equip: Improves critical strike rating by 228.
Equip: Improves hit rating by 228.