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Posts with tag totc

Not all fights require a hard mode

Hard modes are some of the most popular encounters in Wrath of the Lich King. They grant better loot and extra rewards like mounts and rare titles, especially for specific server firsts. However, I'm of the opinion that ever since Ulduar, we've kind of lost sight of how the hard mode encounters should work and have instead just started making everything have a hard mode.

Frankly, the Gunship encounter in ICC, while fun, shouldn't have a hard mode. It's not really even hard; it's just free iLevel 277 gear for turning on a toggle. I blame Trial of the Crusader -- and specifically, having an entire separate raid lockout for Trial of the Grand Crusader -- for this. I realize I may be on the losing side of this divide, but I really don't think every single fight needs a hard mode. Some fights, sure. The four wing bosses of ICC, absolutely. The Lich King? Heck, it could be argued that Arthas should have taken a page from Algalon's book and only had a hard mode, or maybe Sindragosa should have been a hard-mode-only fight instead of a wing boss, and you only get to fight her after the Lich King is dead in some sort of doomsday scenario where she's chained up by Arthas and breaks free to destroy Azeroth in case of his demise.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding

Ready Check: Twin Val'kyr



Ready Check is a column focusing on successful raiding for the serious raider. Hardcore or casual, Vault of Archavon or Ulduar, everyone can get in on the action and down some bosses.

The Twin Val'kyr encounter is the fourth and penultimate battle in the Trial of the Crusader. In this fight, your raid will face down two Val'kyr bosses. They are identical in every way, except for the nature of their attacks. Fjola Lightbane will attack you with the power of the Light. Her sister is Eydis Darkbane attacks you with the power of the Dark.

The Twin Val'kyr fight is a confusing one. However, e should be careful not to mix up confusing with difficult. But we should at least be honest and acknowledge that keeping track of the "Stand in Light" and "Attack the Dark" can get pretty mindbending. To sum up, you get light and dark buffs that protect you from your aligned source of damage, and buffs you when you do damage to your opposite.

So, while this fight's pretty easy once you get the handful of maneuvers down, it can be confusing to talk about.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, Ready Check (Raiding)

Ready Check: Lord Jaraxxus



Ready Check is a column focusing on successful raiding for the serious raider. Hardcore or casual, Vault of Archavon or Ulduar, everyone can get in on the action and down some bosses.

Last week, we took a short break so that Matthew Rossi could join us and celebrate the return of Onyxia. Hopefully, everyone's had the opportunity to go re-pwn her by now. If not, don't give up -- I'm confident everyone will be able to get her down eventually.

Lord Jaraxxus? Maybe not. Lord Jaraxxus is the first boss fight in the Trial of the Crusader which I felt was a true raid-check. It's not an impossible raid check, mind you. Once you get the hang of the fight, you'll do fine. But getting the dance steps down in the first place will probably give a few raids a migraine headache. Let's take a look at the big demon behind the cut.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Guides, Ready Check (Raiding)

Shifting Perspectives: Leveling 51-60



Every week, Shifting Perspectives examines issues affecting Druids and those who group with them. This week, we haul ourselves to Outland and are shocked to discover that +spellpower sometimes comes on leather.


The above video is the result of an idle question I was asked recently by a friend: "So how much damage would you guys do in caster form meleeing?" I started to answer and then realized I had no idea. The notion of actually hitting something with a weapon is utterly foreign to the class. We have claws and a can of celestial pain for that nonsense if provoked, but still, the question was pretty interesting, particularly because after seeing Prinnygod's comment from last week I started to wonder about all the different ways you could level as a Druid if you deliberately avoided Cat and Moonkin. Sure, you'd be a gibbering wreck at the level cap, but that's beside the point. Blizzard once had a talent called Weapon Balance in the Balance tree that improved our melee damage with weapons by 10% -- they were expecting us to hit things. I wondered how that would have worked out if Druid talent trees had never been overhauled.

So I took my main to the mobs outside the Argent Tournament and smacked stuff while running a stopwatch. What you'll see here is a level 79 Frostbrood Whelp with 12,600 health which took me 34.4 seconds to kill, with two global cooldowns devoted to casting a Rejuvenation and then a Lifebloom. I'm currently on a Feral (Bear) spec and thus wearing gear that does help one's melee damage, mind you, but that still works out to a godawful 366.28 DPS. The moral of our little story can be found at the end of the video. Master of Arms is going to be a real trip.

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Filed under: Druid, Analysis / Opinion, Features, Leveling, Guides, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

How will they do the loot in Trial of the Crusader?

For my money, the most interesting things they're doing in patch 3.2 are the changes to the badge system and the reimagining of the 10- vs. 25-man raiding paradigm. The new raid, Trial of the Crusader, will be available on both normal and heroic difficulty mode for both 10- and 25-man groups (the heroic mode is called Trial of the Grand Crusader). In other words, there are a total of four versions of the raid: 10-normal, 10-heroic, 25-normal, and 25-heroic. They're all on separate lockouts

Those of you who know certain past posts of mine could probably predict what my mind jumps to from that news: how will the loot be done? I see four three major possibilities.

  1. 10-normal and 25-normal drop the same gear, while 10-heroic and 25-heroic drop a tier above (10n = 25n < 10h = 25h).
  2. 10-normal drops one kind of gear, 10-heroic and 25-normal are equal to each other and better than that, and 25-heroic is best of all (10n < 10h = 25n < 25h).
  3. All four raids drop different levels of gear, 10n < 10h < 25n < 25h.

If you've read my past stuff, you could correctly guess that #1 would be my favorite option. I don't really want to argue it here (or in the comments), because I've had that conversation more than I care to already.

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Filed under: Patches, Items, Raiding

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