Last night, I took my Moonkin specced Druid into the Firelands, to join Team Teddybear (and friends) in a spontaneous clearing of trash.
I know, right? My Moonkin spec is active one day and I’m managing Eclipses against Firelands trash.
Ahem. A little trial by fire.
So fun, though. Playing on my main is really so much more satisfying than on alts. If given the choice, I’d always be on my main, and I’m being given the choice.
You see that up there? What that spider is doing to the head of that Hawk… that ain’t right.
Now, taking on the Firelands bosses may seem daunting, but let me tell you, killing the trash is well within a raiding team’s capability. If your raid has been able to successfully down most of the current bosses prior to the Nefarian and Council fights, then you can do eet.
Why would you want to? Well, this is the ICC rep raid of the expansion. Farming trash mobs gives you reputation with the Avengers of Hyjal, and at each rank you gain access to some truly sweet gear purchased with minimal gold.
At Friendly, you get an option of very, very nice cloaks, at Honored there are Belts, and so on.
The cloaks look cool, too. The bottoms are rounded and the pattern is very fancy, not that how they look makes a difference to anyone. Er, anyone else. Hmm. Looking good, Captain Shakespeare, looking mighty good.
We went in and cleared trash under Matheos leadership, and after just three clears/resets, everyone in the raid was Friendly and had some new cloaks.
We also averaged one BoE epic drop per trash run. Each of the firs two runs, a BoE item dropped, and the third time it was a Leatherworking recipe. A one handed Strength axe and a Strength/Expertise necklace.
Would it be worth stopping your normal raids to go farm trash? I don’t think so. Personally, I’d prefer to do all the current raids until they were well and fully nailed down if I hadn’t already, and then move on to Firelands. It’s not going anywhere.
At the same time, if you miss the days of pug raids forming to do IceCrown Citadel, then you should be delighted to hear that they’re back, at least as far as trash clearing goes.
I don’t like doing spoilers, but there were a few things I wanted to mention about Firelands that I think won’t ruin anything.
First, it feels much better than Molten Core, or other underground raids. Having it be totally open to the sky, with fiery meteors hurtling to the ground and blazing Hawks circling overhead adds a sense of being exposed to scrutiny, with the freedom to move around.
Gazing across the vast landscape truly feels like you’re venturing into another world.
Second, this may surprise you, but the trash encounters are more forgiving than the early run up to the first boss in ICC.
In ICC, you had a narrow channel you had to go down, and there were traps that would activate the giants (that were instant raid wipes in the early days if you popped them while other trash was still alive), and there were masses of things to web your party, and all sorts of other fun stuff.
In Firelands, it’s very open. If you are careful, you can pull each different group or single individual without getting extras, and without getting knocked back into other mobs. If you charge straight in like a bunch of billy badasses, well, that’s not the fault of the design team.
The Molten Lords are two tank fights, where each tank wants to swap lead whenever they reach 3 stacks of the debuff. The rest of the group wants to watch for a little powder-puff of flame under their feet, it signals an impending eruption of boom. Not too bad, not an instant kill or even all that damaging, but do you really want to stand in the bad if you can avoid it by paying attention?
The groups of 5 salamanders are designed to test your groups CC. There are two (or three) casters that WILL chain heal the rest… hey, this shouldn’t surprise anyone that’s done Molten Core before. Since we CC’ed three of the Salamanders, I can’t tell you how many were casters, but it’s an easy fight if you get your CC off and keep on it while the first two get burned down.
The turtles and the hellhound patrols… we avoided those. Matheo said they are bad news, and there is plenty of trash to kill without having to worry about them. We did pull one group of turtles, and you know, they were pretty tough. We ran out like little girls, in the finest traditions of raiders tired of repair bills everywhere.
Really, it was just fun. I was expecting to continue Hyjal questing to unlock the Firelands dailies, and ended up having a very fun night of raiding instead.
It helps that the mobs patrol everywhere, and you’ve got freedom to move where you want as you go. They’re spread out a bit, and while some paths overlap each other, well, that’s what Silencing moves are for, to drag ’em, right?
Anyway, what I’m saying here is that if you’ve got solid heroic gear, and you put in the effort to get crafted epics made for your character, and you’ve been doing some Troll dungeons and got your shiny new Justice gear wearing a hole in your pockets, well, why not look for some Firelands trash clearing pugs, and have yourself a great time?