When we finished the final current dungeon in Wrath Classic and got the “been there, done that” Northrend Dungeonmaster achievement, I wasn’t sure where we would go from there.
Ula had suggested we might do heroics, and I was all in for it if people wanted to, but I wasn’t sure how committed we were as a group. We did not do heroics back in the day.
Then the month of May was busy for a couple of us, so it didn’t really come up as an option, until this past weekend when we were all on and working on Argent Tournament stuff… I thought that might just be a “me” thing to do, but it is a good source of gold and opens up some gear upgrades… when Fergorin suggested we go try a heroic instance.
We had the time, and we were all together, and we were all level 80, why not?
When the question of which one landed, I suggested The Nexus. It is probably the one instance we have done the most, so it would be familiar. We remembered the bosses and their quirks. It was also one of the instances we managed to do with a group of four, save for the final boss, so it seemed like it might be achievable.
So it was off to Coldarra. Fergorin and Bjorid flew on out, then summoned the rest of us. There was a question of how to start a heroic, though the dungeon difficulty selection in the group setting was found quickly enough. Then in we went.
Once we got ourselves buffed up and ready, our first target was one of the patrolling dragonkin, which seemed a bit tough until I remembered that they are essentially double size elites. And we did finish them off, it just took a bit longer, and needed a bit more healing, than I expected.
But once we got to the groups of normal dungeon trash, we did okay. They were level 80, but so were we.
We hit the first boss, Commander Kolurg, which was a new one on us. Kolurg is only in the heroic version. He is there with two clerics, so we decided to kill the clerics first to eliminate healing, then finish of Kolurg.
And our plan would have worked too, except that we forgot that the clerics might fear us, which they did, and which caused us to run off and pick up some more adds. Then things went south. We hurried up to kill at least one of his clerics, but we needn’t have bothered. Kolurg’s whole encounter respawns if you wipe. So we had to clean up and try again.
After that we decided to pull Kolurg and his group as far back as we could to avoid additional unfortunate encounters. That, and our original plan to kill the clerics first, worked out.
We then cleared our way around to our old friend Grand Magus Telestra, who is probably the dungeon boss we have defeated the most times so far in our WoW Classic experience. This is always a busy encounter, and a lot can go wrong, especially as she cycles through her routine a second time in heroic.
We actually found out about the whole “do everything twice” aspect on the fly, but we managed to adapt and follow our plan… when she splits into three, slay the arcane version first… and managed to pull through to the end without feeling like it was a struggle. We won.
You can also see the shine of my having raised my standing with the Knights of the Ebon Blade. Ula and I both remembered to go buy tabards from factions that we wanted to raise. I went with the Ebon Blade while she chose the Wyrmrest Accord.
Our foresight was acknowledged by the rest of the group, who all put tabards on their shopping lists for next time.
We worked our way around to Anomalus, who like Telestra, was the same fight with just more of the same actions. We knew the routine, followed it as we had in the past, and were rewarded with another boss down.
The only hitch was that, in jumping off of platforms to bypass groups of mobs, Ula managed to land in a little pocket of floor that was to low to climb out of.
Fortunately, Beanpole’s ritual of summoning was available and we were able to port her up out of the hole so we could continue on.
Next was Ormorok the Tree-Shaper, who was also a something of a “the same, but more of it” encounter in heroic. However, things got a little out of hand on the first attempt… I misjudged his size and walked up too close to him before we were ready… and we were down again.
We had to release and run back through the instance, avoiding the mobs we had bypassed… and only getting tripped up on that once… to get another shot at Ormorok. The second run, when we were prepared, was a success.
Which left us with Keristrasza, the final boss.
This was another fight with some mechanics we knew, the key one being the need to jump every so often to avoid the frost DOT build up. We knew our positioning, we had ourselves buffed up, so we had at her.
And wiped. At about the 25% health mark she enrages and puts out a huge burst of damage. We had managed to overcome that in the regular version, but this time around it got away from us and I was down while she was still at 22% health.
Another release and run back, though at least she is at the front of the instance.
We got ourselves setup for another try, with the same result. I was down by about the time she hit 22%, and once I was down she finished off the rest of the party immediately.
Time was running by and dinner was at hand at our house, so we had time for one more run. I had my lay hands skill ready and was going to hold that until I was in peril at around the 20% mark. And, in the fight, that work… for a bit. It nearly got us there, but I was out of potions and other options and Fergorin was out of mana, so we got her to the 5% mark, then it fell apart.
We were close. It felt almost doable. We just needed a little bit more.
But I was out of time, so we would have to come back another day. In the mean time, we all went looking for some gear upgrades. There were some to be had from the various faction quartermasters and other vendors.
Ula read somewhere that the suggested gear score total for doing heroics was 3,000 and, while gear score doesn’t seem to be a visible thing by default in WoW Classic… not that I can see, though there are achievements based on gear score, so maybe I missed it… but my Auctioneer addon does show me gear score in its detail view.