Last night, for a brief time, I was in the new instance (I hear that’s the official name for it, btw) doing some tanky stuffs, and on the Champions encounter Alliance side, we got the Troll Hunter, Undead Rogue and Blood Elf Mage.
This turned into a surprisingly difficult enounter.
Hmm, our group makeup was myself as Bear Tank, Jardal as Tree Healer, Kaelynn the Rogue, Wetfoot the Hunter, and Mackaela the Draenei Warrior.
The three Champions lined themselves up Hunter to the left, Rogue in the middle, Mage to the right.
Yes, we wiped on the transition, the fact that sometimes the last mounted Champion does NOT actually get dismounted before the melee phase begins throws me every time… in this case, I was already dismounted and looking for a new mount when suddenly the melee phase began with two team deaths. Since I was already on foot, I didn’t get the normal “hey, I’m hitting the ground, the melee phase must be starting” clue. Instead, I realised it when there were no more mounts to be had… and two people were suddenly dead. Grrr.
Anyway, so yes, the three Champions were lined up nicely, awaiting our pleasure.
It really was an interesting learning experience.
I’ve done this with a single tank and healer, and with a single tank and two healers. I have found dual healers makes things go nice and smooth, even if it takes a bit longer than normal.
This time, it felt like we hit a wall early on.
The challenge, of course, is dragging both ranged people into threat generating range while staying on top of the Rogue… and trying to get the melee DPS out of the AoE poison puddles.
The Mage does knockback, throwing you around, and the Hunter will toss himself back out of melee range and does a Multishot that hits for around 10k on cloth/leather wearers.
We tried the standard “charge in” method first… poison puddles and Multishot just got us down too fast.
Next we tried the “pull from extreme distance” technique, tossing a Feral Faerie Fire at the Rogue and backing away, making the ranged run forward and huddle closer together, then charge them and take them as a group once all were in threat generation range.
Again, poison puddles and Multishot simultaneously. The health of the group just plummeted like a stone each time while we tried to work things out.
I don’t mind saying, it started getting frustrating.
Then Kaelynn suggested an alternative approach. She said she’d done it using two tanks before.
Well, Mack has a tanking spec, and can try Spell Reflecting on Mages, so we decided to give that a try.
I moved to the far left side of the chamber, to Feral Charge the Hunter from the flank. Mackaela was ready to come in on the Mage’s side.
The idea was, I’d charge the Hunter and pull the Rogue, and tank them both off on the Hunter’s side, concentrate on the Hunter and follow him when necessary, and trust my Maul and Swipe to keep the Rogue in line.
Mack and the rest of the group would burn down the Mage.
We acted on that plan, and yes the Rogue throws the AoE poison puddle on an individual he chooses, so the Mage group did have one to deal with… but for the most part, the Hunter and Rogue stayed on me, the rest of the team was left alone… and the Mage kept attacking me with her big lightning affect, leaving the party alone.
Mage went down hard, followed by the Hunter and Rogue, we had no deaths, health stayed nice and steady for everyone, no issues at all.
It was a piece of cake. Although I have heard some like pie.
I love that kind of thing. I LOVE a situation where you can work with what you know, what you suspect, and come up with a battle plan that is different from the norm, and end up kicking butt.
This instance is turning into one where HOW you do it will change drastically based on WHO you happen to have in the group.
Instead of “We need one tank, one healer, three DPS, good to go”, the group composition can change, and make full use of the varied talents of multi-specced folks.
And not just Hybrids, either. The call went out asking if Wetfoot had Silencing Shot, we were looking into alternatives like Ice Trapping the Hunter, and Kaelynn was interrupting like a madwoman.
Really, congrats to Blizzard. The more I get to know the instance, the more I appreciate the way it puts the challenge on the players to not give up, and find a new way to get things done using all the tools at our disposal.
I still dearly want to get my Hunter in there for a shot at that new Gun, damnit.