With the Burning Crusade Classic pre-patch on us, it was time to go figure out how to play our characters with the changes to our specs. That seems to suggest an easier dungeon, something we had run before, so we wouldn’t be getting used to a new rotation while learning new fights.
My suggestion was Dire Maul East. We had done it before, even doing a three person exploration the week before the patch. We could get in, get the update for Ula’s spell, get a couple of quest updates for my pally, including one with a serious shield upgrade, all while getting into the swing of things.
I got on first last weekend and got myself out to Feathermoon to pick up an additional quests that might be laying about, noticing the elven ship model had replaced the old standard model ship on the run off the Feralas coast.
Skronk got on next and headed out the same way, followed by Moronae. We all moved on over to Dire Maul to meet up at the summoning stone. On the long list of things that changed with the pre-patch, the summoning stones are now that rather than being just meeting stones. Ula was running late, but once she was online we would be able to bring her to us as you can summon party members so long as you can get three people to summon.
Coincidentally, with the release of the patch a post I wrote back in 2011 that included mention of the Dire Maul summoning stone has suddenly become popular again. Now that it can summon, people want to use it I guess. So, just as a reminder:
When Ula did get on and I told her the plan, we found out that with the pre-patch her final conjured water recipe no longer needed a quest, she was able to just get the skill from her class trainer.
Still, since we were already set up and because the run would net the tank a nice new shield, we opted to go forward with the plan. Our group was:
- Wilhelm – level 60 human paladin
- Moronae – level 60 night elf druid
- Ula – level 60 gnome mage
- Skronk – level 60 dwarf priest
And once we got ourselves together outside of Dire Maul we pushed on to the eastern entrance.
Another change with the pre-patch is that most, if not all, of the formerly elite open world mobs appear to have been downgraded to normal mobs, so getting into the instance was pretty easy.
As we started up I will say that I was pretty happy with the changes the pre-patch brought to the protection paladin lineup. I probably wasted some gold re-speccing before the patch, but at least I got a feel for the before/after.
Righteous Defense, a direct taunt that grabs up to three mobs was a good start, and then Avenger’s Shield, a ranged attack for pulling, made me pretty happy as well. The shield does hit three mobs, so it isn’t as precise as Viniki’s gun, but it is still better than having to run up and shake hands with every mob in order to pull.
Once inside I was able to get going, with consecrate, holy shield, and retribution aura able to hold groups of non-elite mobs on me even as Ula and Moronae did their AOE attacks to burn them down, a noticeable improvement over my experience with Viniki.
We did get into a bit of trouble early on when, being a bit complacent about aggro radius, we managed to get two single mobs, a threesome, and a pack of non-elites all on us at once. Even being a bit over level, that came apart… sort of. I went down, then Skronk did when he inherited the aggro from healing.
You can see Ula running for the exit on the right. Once dead I actually remembered that Moronae had a combat ress, and called for him to use it. The first thought was to put it on Skronk, but then I called for it to hit the pally as I still had lay hands and a few other tricks that I had forgotten about in the flash of action. And, of course, I could also ress once we were done.
Once I was back up, Moronae and I finished off the remaining mobs… we had actually killed most of them as the group before the wheels came off… then I ressed Skronk then found Ula, who hadn’t quite made it to he zone line and ressed her.
That was the big dramatic event of the run, and it wasn’t even a wipe. Moronae lived and his combat ress got us back on track.
After that we were a little more careful about aggro radius and, thus, had few issues. We managed to do Pusillin in one round, a fight we managed to wipe on both times we did it previously. Paladin fire resist aura helped out there.
We made it back and around through the satyrs, collecting a few felcloth along the way, past the next few bosses, and into Ironbark’s room in the conservatory.
Thanks to our last run here, we had gotten a feel for getting through the room without having to take on every single group. You just have to time your advance between the roaming groups.
Ironbark broke down the door for us and cleared the way to the final boss. There we had another fight where consecrate, holy shield, and retribution aura kept the adds on me.
That got us through the instance. We posed for a victory shot, then I collected my quest item and Ula opened a portal to Darnassus so I could fly from there to Moonglade to turn in the quest.
That got done quickly enough that we decided to go do one of the pre-patch events. You can see Ula and I are wearing tabards. Those come from a quest out at the Blasted Lands at the Dark Portal. All you have to do is kill six invading fel reavers and that is the reward. So we went out and did that and got one more screen shot with us all in matching tabards, like we are in a guild or something.
Overall, three of us seemed good with our classes post-patch. Moronae though, he was feeling like feral druids had taken a hit. He may revert to form and boost a warlock to swap out into the group for next time. We’ll lose a combat ress but gain soul stones along with some other options.