Stratholme – Round 1

Saturday night came and we weren’t sure what to do. We had the new, all level 60 line up:

stratlevels.png

But we had several choices of where to go.

We decided to hold off on Scholomance until Vikund’s epic mount quest required another visit.

Lower Blackrock Spire (LBRS or “loobers”) was discussed, as some of us have a load of quests in our log for that instance. But not all of us did, and getting us all on the same page looked like an evening’s work on its own.

In the end, we decided on Stratholme.

We all had a quest or two for strat, and more were readily available in the Eastern Plaguelands.

Strat would also supply Vikund with the holy water needed to advance his epic mount quest.

And, finally, Earl is the master of Strat, having done the instance more than fifty times… doing it multiple times a day at one point… in order to get the a pair of pants from a set for his old warrior. (He never got those pants.)

Into the undead fun. At least it starts off undead.

stratent.jpg

We went in carefully, following Earl’s advice as closely as we could. The advice was obviously sound as we went through two without too much in the way of drama. Fights were a challenge, but never more than we could handle. We only suffered a couple of deaths, at least until we got to Postmaster Malown.

Now that was a fight. We were not quite ready for him to show up, and when he did, it was havoc as he and his three minions managed to slay first Ula then Bung during the fight. As he says when he shows up, “You just got MALOWNED!”

Then it was a matter of endurance, healing, and mana.

I personally used a health stone, two potions (long fight), lay hands, and a lot of flash heals to help keep Earl and myself in the fight.

Malown is a tough nut to crack too, as he casts fear quite often. Skronk managed to get a fear resist onto Earl, but the cool down on that spell is long, so I spent a lot of the fight running away, then running back again.

In the end though, we finished him off.

We worked our way around to the Scarlet Crusade end of town and entered their keep.

Things got a little more sticky here.

The fights were tougher and Vik lacked that extra bit of power he has against undead.

We plodded through, trying to get to the main boss, Grand Crusader Dathrohan. We did okay, suffering a few deaths, but hanging on, until we got to the hallway before you hit the carpet that leads to Dathrohan.

That was the hallway of death for us. Typical pose:

strathallofdeath.png

We wiped three times.

The hallway itself was not so bad, but at the end of it you learn that you aggro radius at level 60 is pretty big. We managed to proximity pull multiple groups from either side of the end of the hallway again and again.

We wiped. Fortunately the timer on the soul stone was almost up, so after we revived, we waited a bit, then tried again.

We wiped. We used the soul stone again.

We wiped. I managed, just as I died, to hit Skronk with divine intervention, so he was safe and could revive us all a third time. This is Skronk and I in the position as I cast and died:

stratdi.png

Finally, on try four, we managed to pull just one group. The another single group. Then a patrol. And finally we were set and advancing again.

We made it to Dathrohan, saw him change into the demon Balnazzar, and slew him quite handily. Our time in the hallway was more difficult.

At this point, it was getting late, but we decided to go after Cannon Master Willey.

This was the second best fight of the night, after Postmaster Malown. Here is Willey and his cannons:

stratcannonwilly.png

We did not read up on the fight before hand and Earl was foggy on the details, but we knew there was something to be done with those cannons.

As it turns out, when you start the fight, Willey summons reinforcements and you use each cannon to blow them away.

If you shoot the cannons at the right time.

Not knowing the details, we shot the cannons at the first sign of help for Willey, which left quite a few enemies unaccounted for. Which meant more dead casters and me running around using consecrate on the hired help.

This fight wasn’t nearly as close as the Malown fight, where we were down under 10% health and no mana on all of us at the end. Here we had a safe margin left at victory.

And so we stood at the cannons, then called it a night!

stratcannonvictory.png

Vikund got his holy water, so he could advance his epic mount quest. Now he just needs to get to Dire Maul, then back to Scholomance.

7 thoughts on “Stratholme – Round 1

  1. Pvthudson

    Too bad you still have to suffer through that terrible old world content to do that mount quest. But at least you are getting to see it. I would have beaten a trail out of that part of WoW come level 58

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  2. p@tsh@t

    I’m at a loss why peeps think the old Azerothian end-game content is such drudgery.

    I think people fail to realize that the old end game instances of Stratholme, Scholomance, Dire Maul, Upper and Lower Blackrock Spire were designed to be just that– end game instances that capped players would be running over and over and ones that the devs spent a tremendous amount of time polishing and tuning so that they would still provide compelling experiences through multiple if not many runs. At-level, they are challenging and fun which for us is the point.

    Compared to the mid-level stuff, IMHO the polish really shows. To me its a damn sight better than doing the kill 20 rats quests in Hellfire at 58-60 regardless of the so called rewards.

    Making Outland available at level 58 (and WotLK presumably at 68) are the worse decisions Blizzard has made in my view. Getting to 60 wasn’t hard, but opening it at 58 just trivialized a huge amount of content (and heavy lore based content at that). Its a shame many if not most current players wont have a chance to to crawl these wonderful old dungeons.

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  3. Elf

    I think the level 60 dungeons are fabulous and challenging, and am also a little saddened that they are likely to be mostly ignored by new level 60s these days, because of the lure of the Dark Portal. There is a lot of polished content to be enjoyed there. It’s just a shame that the loot and quest rewards, even from UBRS, have been thoroughly superceded by even the most basic drops in Outlands.

    And thanks for writing about the cannon master! In the past few months I have been wondering where I saw the cannon fight, and just couldn’t place the instance it was in. It had been so long ago since running Strat that I’d forgotten it was there. We bypassed Stratholme when my warrior hit 60, over a year after my warlock hit the level cap, as Burning Crusade had just been released and my friends were keen to see the new content. Still, we managed a run on Scholomance, clearing the place with 4 level 60s, which I thought was pretty good going.

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  4. *vlad*

    To get into Dire Maul West you will either need the key, or have a rogue to open the door for you. To get the key you have to kill the Imp in Dire Maul East, after following him through various parts of the instance. Don’t just turn up at Dire Maul and expect to walk in!

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  5. Pingback: Grudgematch « pΘtshΘt

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