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Posts with tag Heroic-Dungeon

5 ways to keep your DPS players happy in 5-man heroics

OK, you can't pretend you didn't see this one coming after the healing and tanking editions. As I may have mentioned, I have less DPS experience than tanking and healing, but from that time in Azeroth, I have gathered that there are things everyone can do to make their DPSers happy bunnies rather than melancholy murlocs. Actually, being a murloc would be pretty cool. One of my GMs does an awesome murloc impression.

So, tanks and healers, and other DPSers, how can you keep your DPS buddies happy?

1. Mark your targets. Tanks, or whoever is experienced, or whoever is taking on that role in the dungeon, mark your targets. Telepathy is not a standard talent in any tree, and while sure, it's possible to click the tank and then use an assist macro, you can easily keybind or add a button to your action bars that marks your target with a skull, a cross, a moon and so on.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion

5 ways to keep your healer happy in 5-man heroics

While much of Azeroth has been busy engineering the repeated demise of the big Dee-Dubya, many of us are still running 5-man dungeons. Maybe it's for valor points, maybe it's to hit the ilevel required to take a pop at that dragon, or maybe it's while frantically levelling another character to 85. With every 5-man instance comes a healer, and you really ought to be showing your healer some love.

Before you say Pah! I don't need to do anything to keep my healer happy -- I massively outgear all the 5-man content the game has to offer. This advice is worthless!, spare a thought for those who don't. The new healer who wants to get a look at some Hour of Twilight. The player with bags overflowing with PvP gear to cheat the ilevel requirement. The fresh 85s who are facing these dungeons for the first time. They need this advice, and if you're running with them, you could consider reading it too. And if you think it's not your responsibility to help your healer out now and then, remember: You don't do any DPS when you're dead.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion

Breakfast Topic: Are heroics really heroic?

Uh-oh, it's semantics time again, combined with a trip to the way-back machine, even! I still have nightmares about heroics back in The Burning Crusade when they were first introduced. In order to even get into heroic dungeons, you needed a key, and to get that key, you needed a certain amount of faction reputation. When The Burning Crusade launched, you needed to be revered to get a key; this was later reduced to honored. Needless to say, it took a very long time before anyone could step into heroic modes -- and they were difficult, to say the very least.

Trash respawn timers were tight. If you were lucky, you could get to the first boss before the trash started to respawn on you, and if you wiped on the first boss, you got to enjoy the experience of clearing all that trash all over again. Bosses were incredibly difficult, as well -- healing was an absolute nightmare. These days, in comparison, heroics are ridiculously easy. No, I am not kidding you. They are a breeze compared to the early days of The Burning Crusade. You don't have to work to get into them other than obtaining the appropriate gear, and once you're inside, the bosses aren't that much of a struggle.

So that leads to the question we were pondering in work chat -- are heroics these days really heroic? Sure, the items you get from the dungeons are better than your normal dungeon gear, but the difficulty of the dungeons isn't really ramped up anywhere near the extreme that we saw in The Burning Crusade. To me, heroic mode still equates to that antiquated BC model, where heroic meant hard mode, and hard mode meant You will want to stab yourself in the eye with a fork three pulls into the place.

There is something to be said about the sheer relief and sense of accomplishment you got when you cleared one of those old dungeons; you really felt like you'd done something great and played to the best of your ability. In Mists, we're looking at an endgame that doesn't even have normal mode dungeons -- at level 90, you simply leap into heroics. My question is whether or not the term "heroic" even has meaning at this point. We've gone from hard mode and a rep grind, to a slightly less severe rep grind, to not needing a key at all, to heroics you can simply AoE through without having to think too terribly hard about any given thing.

Should heroics still be called heroics? Or are they simply regular dungeons that give better loot, now? What do you think?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

Patch 4.3 PTR: Well of Eternity heroic dungeon available for testing

If you've been waiting for the Well of Eternity 5-man heroic dungeon to open on the patch 4.3 PTR, wait no more. It's now available from the Dungeon Finder tool, and you can zone into it successfully. The screenshot above is of Peroth'arn, the first boss in the instance, bossing around various minions (including a Highborne using a Blood Elf model, for some reason).

If you've been itching to sink your teeth into some serious lore, there's no time to lose! Hop on the PTR and get to testing as fast as you can.

Brace yourselves for what could be some of most exciting updates to the game recently with patch 4.3. Review the official patch notes, and then dig into what's ahead: new item storage options, cross-realm raiding, cosmetic armor skinning and your chance to battle the mighty Deathwing -- from astride his back!

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, News items, Lore, Cataclysm

Patch 4.3: Blizzard's official preview of the End Time heroic dungeon

After the round of interviews about Patch 4.3 last night, Blizzard has released a preview of the first in the upcoming linked, thematic Caverns of Time dungeons that we'll be exploring in our efforts to defeat Deathwing once and for all: End Time. It's a doozy.

Unlike previous CoT instances, this one sends the players into the future after Deathwing wins, to help Nozdormu find the reason he's blocked from accessing the past -- specifically, to the time before the Demon Soul was hidden by Malfurion. Along the way, you're forced to battle various former Horde and Alliance leaders, now reduced to echoes of their former sanity, and then the mysterious, malefic maestro of madness Murozond, an anomaly in the timestream not even Nozdormu can unravel.

Check out all the screenshots and get a preview of the experience at the official site, already. Not even a Volkswagen Beetle van full of heavily armed people could stop me now.

Brace yourselves for what could be some of most exciting updates to the game recently with patch 4.3. Look at what's ahead: new item storage options, cross-realm raiding, cosmetic armor skinning and your chance to battle the mighty Deathwing -- from astride his back!

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, Lore, Cataclysm

Patch 4.1: Blizzard explains new valor point mechanics

The era of the daily heroic is over! After much speculation that the one run per day random dungeon valor point rewards would turn into seven runs per week randoms instead, it turns out we are all getting exactly what we hoped for.

Blizzard has finally commented on (and explained) the incoming valor point change, which will hopefully make gearing up and gaining valor points easier for players who don't have the time or want to play each and every night to run a random for their points. Lylirra explains:

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Filed under: Cataclysm

Cataclysm Dungeon Guide: Vortex Pinnacle

Ahh, the Vortex Pinnacle, for whenever I want to go hit up an instance that involves jumping in cyclones (or tornadoes) that toss you from platform to platform.

This 5-man instance is the ... pinnacle of the Skywall complex in the Uldum zone. You can find it just southeast of the shores. Make sure you go the right direction or else you might end up in the Throne of the Four Winds raid instance. Oh, and you're going to need a flying mount. The forces of Al'Akir are waiting to storm Uldum and the rest of Azeroth. Our mission, if we choose to accept it, is to clear out the place and prevent them from really establishing a foothold on our lands.

At a glance, here's the gist of the instance.
  • three boss encounters
  • levels 82-84
  • average item level 272 recommended (according to dungeon finder)

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion

The Queue: I was right edition

Welcome back to The Queue, our daily Q&A column in which the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Mathew McCurley will be your host today.

Welp. Pack your bags, ladies and gentlemen, I was right. Straight from the woman herself. Victory dance.

Cetha asked:

Has there been any mention on the size of the download if you get the digital copy of
Cata? I'm trying to figure out if it would just be easier to get the discs and install it than to try and download another 16GB of info again, which didn't go so well the last time.

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Filed under: The Queue

Cataclysm to include outdoor heroic 5-man bosses

In vanilla and BC, there were world bosses like Azuregos and Doomwalker that spawned out in the open world and could be taken down by a raid. While these bosses were often farmed by the highest progression guilds on the servers, they were often so quickly killed and so long in respawning that not many players got to see them. Now, in Cataclysm, a new take on this idea is being implemented.

Valnoth - Re: Thank you for the outdoor raid bosses
Q u o t e:
No, I'm not being sarcastic. I am genuinely happy that they have been brought back in Cataclysm since they really do play a part in developing a server's community, especially when there is more than one guild that's capable of putting out enough people to down them. And going by the health of the current ones, they seem to be balanced towards a 10-man raid which means a lot of people will be able to actually have a shot at getting them. Here's to some competition and some good-natured trash-talking between guilds come Cataclysm. \o/


There are a COUPLE of these bosses in Cataclysm, but they're not true outdoor raid bosses. They're just much harder group bosses that drop heroic dungeon level items and specialty items. Have fun!



Valnoth later responds to a player's concerns that these bosses will definitely be doable by a five-player group and are not intended as true raid bosses. Frankly, while I loved farming Azuregos, the Dragons of Nightmare and Kazzak back in the day, it was really a drag trying to do them with smaller-than-optimal raid groups in order to beat other guilds. There was a lot of griefing, and the spawn rates were terrible. Hopefully, with their being made heroic 5-man quality, they'll be able to spawn more often and more people will have a shot at them.

World of Warcraft: Cataclysm will destroy Azeroth as we know it; nothing will be the same! In WoW Insider's Guide to Cataclysm, you can find out everything you need to know about WoW's third expansion (available Dec. 7, 2010), from brand new races to revamped quests and zones. Visit our Cataclysm news category for the most recent posts having to do with the Cataclysm expansion.

Filed under: News items, Cataclysm

Official preview of the Stonecore now available

Blizzard has added to its continuing official Cataclysm previews with a sneak peak at the Stonecore, a 5-man regular and heroic dungeon located in Deepholm. From the preview, we learn that the Stonecore is where Deathwing had been fixed up with elementium plates by the Twilight's Hammer cult, as well as the exit point used to shatter the World Pillar, break into Azeroth and start causing us trouble. Check out the official preview for more information and some pretty screenshots.

From my personal experience in beta, Stonecore is one of the most fun dungeons and heroics that I've run. It's frantic and fun, and the final boss is something really awesome and unique. You'll love this place.


World of Warcraft: Cataclysm will destroy Azeroth as we know it; nothing will be the same! In WoW Insider's Guide to Cataclysm, you can find out everything you need to know about WoW's third expansion (available Dec. 7, 2010), from brand new races to revamped quests and zones. Visit our Cataclysm news category for the most recent posts having to do with the Cataclysm expansion.

Filed under: Cataclysm

Lichborne: Heroic Cataclysm dungeon-delving for death knights


Welcome to Lichborne, your weekly source for news, guides, tips and opinions on the death knight class.

OK, I'm not usually one to use tired old catchphrases, but forgive me, I'm going to use one right now: You are not prepared. That pretty much sums up Cataclysm heroics, especially as they are now on beta. Chances are, you've grown used to the easy stuff we have in Wrath. Not only are Wrath heroics a little underbalanced, and not only have patches specifically made them easier and faster to run, but at this point, we're running things in tier 9 and 10 gear that were made for people in pre-tier 7 gear, and we're steamrolling them.

All this ends with Cataclysm heroics. I cannot stress this enough. You see that picture up there, at the top of this article? You'll be seeing that a lot. Cataclysm heroics are hard. They are hard enough that the random dungeon finder may end up being something you want to avoid in favor of creating your own group so that you can work together and get the proper balance of crowd control and skill. While some of the difficulty comes because we'll all be in dungeon blues, some of it is because the dungeons are genuinely set up to be harder, with harder-hitting mobs and bosses with mechanics that require you to use utility moves to have a chance of beating them.

With this in mind, I have a few tips for you on getting ready for the new heroics. Trust me, you'll need them, if you don't want to spend all day wiping to the first trash pack in your first random heroic.

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Filed under: Death Knight, (Death Knight) Lichborne, Cataclysm

Arcane Brilliance: Things I've learned while dying in Cataclysm heroics, mage edition

It's time again for Arcane Brilliance, weekly mage column of choice for dress-wearing, warlock-hating Frostbolt slingers the world over. Also, fans of the short musical films of Journey, Short Imagined Monologues, and the sublime, video game-based synth and fretwork amalgams of Sixto Sounds. Seriously, listen to this one. Holy crap.

So over the past few days, I've found myself a broken corpse lying in a spreading puddle of my own bodily fluids a bit more frequently than I'm used to. The reason for this is simple: heroics. No, not the ones on the live servers -- where you can throw together a random group consisting of a ret pally tank, a six-year-old playing a hunter his mom bought him on eBay the day before, a feral druid healer who for some reason came into the instance suffering from nine more minutes of resurrection sickness, a mouth-breathing rogue who may or may not be a serial killer, and an AFK shaman farming badges while auto-following the healer -- and still blast through the place. I'm talking about heroics in the Cataclysm beta.

They're absolutely brutal, guys. Now, granted -- it's still early. The testing process for these beauties is still in its infancy. We're tackling them using premade characters with talent builds we threw together by looking at the talents and thinking, "This looks nice." We're wearing gear that's barely entry-level for heroics (if we're lucky) and using spell rotations that we're basically making up on the fly. We're going into instances we've never seen before, doing boss fights nobody knows the mechanics for, and dealing with crippling, often game-breaking bugs. These places simply aren't finished, not by a long shot.

But then again, that's why we have a beta. We go in, throw our soft, cloth-clad bodies against the long claws of some horrifying beast or another, use the final droplets of our blood to scrawl feedback for the developers ("Landmines ... everywhere ... can't feel ... legs ... fading to black ... tell warlocks ... hate them ... so ... much ... "), and then come back for another round. Blizzard takes the data it gathers from our gruesome deaths and uses it to construct a better game.

Still, there is much we can learn -- even in this unfinished state -- from the first incarnations of these heroics. Join me after the jump, won't you?

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Filed under: Mage, Analysis / Opinion, (Mage) Arcane Brilliance, Cataclysm

The Light and How to Swing It: Handily healing heroics


Every Sunday, Chase Christian of The Light and How to Swing It invites you to discuss the finer side of the paladin class: the holy specialization. This week, we discuss how to quickly and efficiently heal your way through any heroic.

When Wrath of the Lich King was released, Blizzard shared a few things with us. First, Ghostcrawler campaigned with his promise of One (Star) Pony Per Child, ensuring that there would be No Alt Left Behind. We also heard that the developers were crafting a new hero class, the death knight. Not to worry, it totally won't be overpowered at launch. That, we could suffer under the death knights' oppressive rule for several months. Finally, we were also told that there was a clear progression plan for Wrath, and that there would be no more regular farming of Karazhan- and Mechanar-esque instances for badges.

I guess the last statement was actually true; we're now farming Patchwerk and The Nexus for Emblems, not badges. All joking and semantics aside, the fact is that whether you're a freshly 80 holy paladin ready to get your feet wet, or a veteran battle healer who's seen all of Icecrown's overlords toppled, there's value to be found in running heroics on a daily basis. While most of the 5-man dungeons are nearly trivial now, there are steps that we can take to put the run on fast-forward. By minimizing the amount of time we have to spend killing Loken and Cyanigosa, we can get back in to the action in record time. Let me note that this is not a guide for newer holy paladins who aren't completely comfortable in heroics, or if you or your tank are still working on gearing up your character. I will be covering how newly 80 holy paladins should be handling heroics soon, this guide is meant for those who have run these dungeons many times before and have the gear necessary to tackle any healing situation.

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

Arcane Brilliance: Gearing up after the glorious patch 3.3


It's time again for Arcane Brilliance, the weekly mage column that loves nothing more than to gaze down upon the whole of Northrend from one of the floating chunks of stone around Dalaran and realize that at some point, a mage has probably killed every living thing down there. At least the targetable ones, anyway. And the ones you can't target? I'm sure more than one mage has certainly tried.

So I'm officially nominating patch 3.3 for "best patch ever" status. Here's a short list of the highlights of this patch:
  • Three highly challenging, fun, lore-filled 5-man instances, full of sweet loot
  • A massive new raid, with four gated sections, 12 bosses, and the promise of eventually being able to shove a Fireball up the Lich King's tailpipe
  • The incredible, game-changing Dungeon Finder Tool, which is responsible for peace in the Middle East, has brought an end to the recession, and has cured cancer
  • A few choice mage buffs, including a PvE viable Frost spec
  • Quest Tracking without the need for an addon
  • Quel'delar and Shadowmourne
  • A swiftly approaching new Arena Season
  • Weekly raid quests
  • The Kalu'ak Fishing Derby
  • Perky the Pug
  • A host of little changes for low level characters
  • Rocket bare
Not shabby, right? And best of all, Blizzard has managed to deploy the majority of this new content without also deploying a host of bugs, glitches, and instability, or otherwise making the game unplayable for awhile as we've come to expect from patches this large. There were some log-in issues and bugginess on day one, but by day two, everything was running relatively smoothly by day two. I'm being relatively conservative when I say that Blizzard, in my personal opinion, has hit this one out of the park.

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Filed under: Mage, Patches, Items, Analysis / Opinion, Tips, How-tos, Instances, Features, Guides, Classes, Alts, (Mage) Arcane Brilliance

Arcane Brilliance: Making your Mage raid-worthy, part 1


Welcome to another Arcane Brilliance, the weekly Mage column that asks all the tough questions, and then Ice Blocks before the tough answers one-shot it.

A little while after Wrath hit, Arcane Brilliance posted a column on how to gear your Mage up for Naxx. Several things have changed since then:

  1. Pretty much everything I wrote then is now wrong.
  2. You don't really gear for Naxx anymore. Naxx is now a place you go in order to gear up for other places.
  3. Trial of the Champion.
Knowing these things, I thought an updated gearing column might be in order. So if you're raising a fledgling Mage, and level 80 is about to hit you like a truckload of Death Knights, and you're looking for the quickest way to turn green and blue into purple, look no farther. Well maybe a little farther. The column's not over yet.

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Filed under: Mage, Items, Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Instances, Features, Raiding, Guides, Classes, (Mage) Arcane Brilliance

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