Wednesday, April 9, 2008
As I've noted before, I'm currently further ahead in game than I am here on the blog. In "reality", I've already hit 70, conquered wow and won the intertubes. But I took notes and screen shots along the way, and I plan to share those missing stories with you.
This... is one of those stories. (Queue Scary Door music)
Please find enclosed, per your request, 5 humans. Blond hair, rugged good looks and terrible porn star mustaches. Why? Cause the Bronze Dragonflight thinks Thrall will freak out if 5 level 70 Orc Shaman come rescue him... so they made us look like Bo Duke. That should put his mind at ease.
There's a pretty cool story behind Old Hillsbrad, which is the instance we're going to talk about today. If you've read the book Lord of the Clans by Christie Golden, you know this story already. For those who haven't, allow me to recap.
Thrall was captured when he was a baby. His parents were on Azeroth, working on some low level quests when their accounts got hacked and they were killed off. The total douche responsible, took their baby in hopes of raising him up as a trained pet. (Thrall = Hunter Weapon!)
He named his new pet "Thrall" which means "Slave". (it also means The "Close to the back door of Orgimmar so Alliance can farm him and feel important" Guy in other dialects.)
Thrall was educated in all sorts of combat and military strategy, because his master figured he'd eventually use him in the Arenas. He also thought that after Thrall got his Arena Rating up, maybe he could slide himself onto the roster, play 3 quick games each week and be rolling in full Vengeful in no time. (hack)
The relevant part to this is Thrall's eventual incarceration (due to a very bad attitude and unwillingness to sell arena points), and his inevitable yet brilliant escape from Durnholde Keep due in no small part to a very sexy diversion caused by Taretha Foxton, Thrall's "Little lady friend".
But what would happen if a group of dragons with sand in their who-whos decided to use the magics of The Caverns of Time, and went back to screw over Thrall as he escaped? Unhappy... that's what would happen.
That's where we come in. The Bronze Dragonflight, known to us in game as the Keepers of Time, have asked us to go back in time to accomplish a few things:
1. Create a sexy diversion
2. Help Thrall escape from Durnholde Keep
3. Reunite him with Taretha
4. Make sure George McFly takes Lorraine to the Enchantment Under the Sea Dance
5. Get Back to the Future. /phew
I first did this instance at level 67. And while I barely took down the first boss, Lieutenant Drake, (no idea why he was wearing this kilt, but we took it from him) I simply wasn't able to keep up with the marathon of fighting that starts right after you let Thrall out of his cell.
So I totally bailed on Thrall and came back when we were 69. This time I was all stocked up on Jesus Juice™, so I could get some mana back between spawns. I also discovered that things got WAY easier when I would run into each spawning group of mobs, drop Stoneclaw Totems to keep the melee busy, and then focus fire on the one or two casters.
Eventually we got to Captain Skarloc, who thankfully has the mannerisms of a Bond Villain, and his theatric banter gives me time to drink my way to full mana for the fight. I suggest you kill his two minions first, as they drop super quick. Don't let Thrall tank, unless you're setup to heal him. I simply drop an Earth Elemental, and he does the dirty work just fine. (horray for plate gear /sigh)
Once Skarloc is dead, Thrall submits to his basic instincts and steals the dead man's horse. We mount and follow as he leads us to Tarren Mill where he hopes to find Taretha. Thrall stops right outside of town, and waits for you to talk to him before going in. Don't. Take your team on a tour of the place first, and wipe out all the guards that patrol town. This should make the next part easier.
After everyone's dead, head back and talk to Thrall, and he'll lead you to a barn. Go ahead and follow him in, and you'll get to watch Thrall bitch slap a horse for failing to keep it's mouth shut. A small but appreciated gift from the Devs.
You'll fight a small spawn in the barn, the church and finally a small group in the inn. That's where you'll find Thrall's BFF, only to be interrupted by the verbal abuse of a gigantic dragon outside.
That's where the final showdown with Epoch Hunter begins. And it sucks. Here's what you do.
Get outside FAST, and get setup right out in front of the entrances of the Inn and the Church. You'll see Epoch hovering in front of you. He'll start the fight by sending in three dragonkin. One mage, and two warriors. Do what you'd expect...
Keep the melee busy with Stoneclaws, and your Grounding Totems should keep the casters fire from hurting anyone. Burn the caster down first, then burn into which ever Melee mob that Thrall has taken it upon himself to pull off your Stoneclaws.
After that group drops, you're gonna have an identical group spawn to your LEFT. Rinse and repeat. But then the third and last spawn will appear below Epoch, and this time you'll have 4 mobs. Two are casters that will burn through your Grounding Totems pretty fast, so make them a priority.
If you get in any trouble with these waves, drop an Earth Elemental. But remember, we've already burned two on the first two bosses, so you only have 3 left. And you'll need at least two for Epoch.
Once Epoch heads in, drop whatever Elemental tanks you have left... then RUN. Get AWAY from this dragon. He has a terrible aoe silence, and a knockback that will send your group in a billion directions. Once you're a few steps away, pop your nukes and go crazy. He WILL kill your elementals, so focus purely on burning him down.
It was scary the first few times I did this, but after I got used to simply dumping everything I had into him, I realized he'll drop pretty easy. And if you're lucky, he'll be nice enough to leave you a Time-Shifted Dagger which has some excellent stats for that level. (I'm still sporting two of these on my team while I grind to my pvp mace.)
Overall, I really enjoy this instance, multiboxing or not. It's fun to be so involved with a WoW Hero like Thrall, and the story is a fun one. An added bonus for those of you who enjoy Lore (stupid nerds), Blizz put in a bit of narrative in the town of Southshore, which you can access after you beat the boss. I don't want to give anything away (*cough* Ashbringer *cough*) so go check it out for yourself.