Under Age in the Scarlet Monastery

We’ve been down this path before, literally.

Here we were on Saturday night looking at the Library in Scarlet Monastery.  As happened three years back, we were victims of our own success, having pushed through the previous content and now looking to take on an instance where we really at the low end of the level range for the task.

The previous Saturday I had not been on, but I was told that the group pulled out alts, reorganized, and with the addition of Gaff to the team, tried to run through the library, but were rebuffed in the end.

Before that we had run through the Graveyard pretty readily, but now we were going to try the Library again, which is targeted at groups of five that are in the level 32-36 range.  As we set out that night we were:

31 Tauren Druid – Azawak (Skronk)
31 Blood Elf Paladin – Enaldie (Ula)
31 Tauren Druid – Hurmoo (Vikund)
32 Undead Mage – Bigbutt (Bungholio)
32 Orc Shaman – Earlthebat (Earlthecat)

We decided to move forward to see how well we would do.

Azawak and Hurmoo, being stuck in the old school way of things, ran out to the meeting stone by Scarlet Monastery to summon people.

Waiting by the stone

This turned out to be unnecessary for the moment, as we ended up using the new dungeon finder to enter the Library.  However, it later came to pass that we well placed, and not merely because the dungeon finder stumbled on us and gave us the”additional instances cannot be launched” error.

It was only a momentary hiccup however, and we got into the Library almost immediately there after.

One of the first things we got to try out was Earl’s new full set of shaman totems.

Shaman totem array

Sticking close to the mana totem, Hurmoo never ran out of mana for healing.

We played a very cautious game.  Almost everything was at least our level, and usually higher by a level or two.  Each group we pulled was a set piece battle and only once did we accidentally get an unexpected group, an event we managed to survive with a single death.

And so we managed to creep slowly through the library.

Another hallway in the Library

Eventually, after clearing everything out (and reading all the available books furtherance of that one achievement) we stood outside the room of Arcanist Doan.

At level 35, he seemed perhaps a bit steep for our group, but we were there.  So in we went.

And down Doan went.  There was an uncomfortable moment when Hurmoo was silenced when he really needed to get a heal off, but things worked out.  Nobody died (except Doan) and so the Library was complete.

A look at the clock showed we spent a little over an hour doing it.  Plenty of time for a peek into the Armory now that we had the Scarlet Key from Doan’s room.

Using the dungeon finder again, we all left the Library.  Then Bigbutt, who was the group leader, tried to queue us up for the Armory.  However, it would not let us into the Armory.  Despite a load of good experience in the Library, Azawak and Hurmoo were still level 31 and you need to be at least level 32 to use the dungeon finder to get into the Armory.

Bad sign?

Well, we decided to try the Armory anyway, so it turned out to be a good thing that Azawak and Hurmoo were sitting there at the meeting stone for Scarlet Monastery.

The Armory was disturbingly red for Hurmoo. (and Azawak too I assume.)  Red as in every mob’s level being displayed either in that orange-ish red that says “careful now…” or in that deep, blood red which indicates that the number in question was probably displayed as a skull for you only a level or two back.

Azawak and Hurmoo both got levels pretty quickly though, the experience being quite good.  That turned some of the blood-red numbers to the slightly safer orange-red.  That was good, as we got into a pretty sticky fight at the top of the stairs past the fireworks barrels. (That seems to be the designated trouble spot in the instance.) Hurmoo came as close to running out of mana as he had all night as we dealt with adds, fleeing mobs, and more adds.  Deaths were kept to a minimum and once we recovered we moved forward until we were there.

Herod, the Scarlet Champion

Herod is level 37 and dressed sort of like that guy in the South Park episode.

Azawak, our tank, was level 32 and a bear.  Hurmoo, the healer, was also 32.  This seemed like it could quickly go bad.

But, as usual, we came all that way, we weren’t going to stop short.

And then the fight was a breeze.  Herod did his little spin trick and we all sat back and gave him a golf clap, then when he was done, we stepped back in and resumed wailing on him until he was dead.  And then the Scarlet chorus line showed up and died when Earl farted on them or something.  Seriously, they were dead so fast I barely saw them alive.

Victory in the Armory

And then we wiped leaving the instance.

We went to run out and passed a couple of respawns and decided to just press on through, only to discover the whole instance appeared to have respawned.  They killed us and we took the angel route at the graveyard then headed to the Undercity to turn in a quest from the Library.

Riding to the Undercity

On the ride we started in on the whole, “What the hell?” question about how easy the instance seemed relative to our levels.

Blizzard couldn’t have nerfed everything, could they?

We did consider that, despite the fact that we are all playing different roles now, we have picked up some experience over the last three years.

And even in new roles, that experience helps.  I’m sure having been the healer before has helped Azawak.  And I am not exactly new in my role as healer.  That was my role often enough in other games.

And we also seem to be much more gear aware.  Nobody is still wearing any of the same pieces they were wearing in the Deadmines.  I know the first time we went through Scarlet Monastery most of us were.

We have also divided up the trade skills and have been putting stuff in the guild bank for people.  We all have enchants on a few items each and glyphs loaded up.

So maybe Blizzard hasn’t nerfed everything.  Maybe it is us.

But I still don’t think we’ll pull off the Cathedral this weekend unless we put on a couple more levels each.

5 thoughts on “Under Age in the Scarlet Monastery

  1. Pingback: Why the WoW PUG scene is so great now « Hardcore Casual

  2. Paul

    Nice read from an old guy! I’m 48, old school Pen and Paper D&D. Now I need to hurry and level my two new alts and run SM again.


  3. Facepalm

    Agreed, another great write-up. Blizzard may have nerfed the majority of the “classic” content, but I’m betting that your experience as players & teammates is what made the difference. Nice work!


  4. Random Poster

    You have to consider as well that talents now are more powerful than they were back in the day as well. So its not all about the slight nerfs they put in (they reduced mob levels is all) but the facts that you yourself know more about the game, you sort of know what to expect in all these instances, and your baseline power level is higher than it was before.

    I myself spent most of yesterday running SM up to the Armory thanks to the “Random” (seriously I got SM wings ALL day yesterday at one point I got GY 15 times in a row)tool as my paladin alt and I was able to pull the entire GYentrance leading to the GY itself, then everything to the Fountain, and then everything to the Boss, so three giant pulls at level 31.


  5. Carson63000

    Also, looking at armory, I notice that Hurmoo is fully resto spec, and Azawak is feral.

    Running some of these instances (including SM) on alts that I respecced to “group-friendly” specs (like a resto druid), I’ve really found it noticeable that they were tuned for ordinary levelling groups who were probably going to have to tank them with a fury warrior and heal with a shadow priest. Or some such.

    Experienced players, with proper tanking and healing specs, and no doubt add-ons and macros configured much as if you were playing endgame, make an enormous difference.


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