Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Instances - the non-gamer and me

My non-gamer friend and I are working our way through 2-manning instances as we level (currently at level 56). Mainly the instances are green when we do them. This means we get XP and some gear upgrades from them, although they are also supported by Tailoring, Blacksmithing and Engineering (no heirlooms though). We also make good use of Elixirs and buff foods enchants etc. So far we have cleared all the instances up to Black Rock Depths with the exception of RFC (we have never grouped through LFG) and SFK (last boss stopped us at the appropriate level). We have also done all the bosses except Willey Hopebreaker (Stratholme – the Horde), damage races will remain a problem when two manning content. We haven’t one shotted all the content though, Dire Maul – Grodok Commons in particular was a stiff challenge with us even wiping on trash at times.
She won’t play female characters, I balance this by making all my tanks female – although we have done all the instances on my warrior so far. And won’t play Horde, they are too ugly.

The non-gamer has gone from struggling with moving and fighting their way around the start zone (1-5) to suggesting boss strategies and playing the auction house. Crafting professions however still remain something they don’t have any interest in, they tried enchanting but didn’t really get it. On the other hand I have come to dread them calling “Oh! Herbs!” Especially in instances. They have at various points cornered the low level leather market (up to heavy leather). They even feel comfortable with the gamer terminology used in game. Far from just being a healer to my tank they suggest strategies, some of which work.
We try to attempt instances 1-2 levels below the top level and there is a degree of imbalance from one instance to the rest, Dire Maul was a speed bump (due to being not completely downgraded) but after that it was business as usual. We are trying to see how far we can go with two manning the instances but there may come the day when we will invite an outsider in, both of us are un-guilded. That time has not yet come but when it does it will be someone from the same realm as us EU-Mazrigos.

Two manning instances allows you to really see how the boss mechanics work and forces you to plan out the fights. In fact we now are at a point where we have to take a raider approach, stocking up on supplies and reading boss strategies (well okay I do that stuff and they listen). Stocking up means elixirs, food and as an engineer (bombs). I learned goblin engineering and the Bigger One is proving very useful in some situations – big radius plus 3 second stun. They have a discipline priest and usually account for around 25% of the total damage. Currently I have almost the full imperial plate set, enough for the set bonus anyway.
Neither of us are expert players, but we have found the right level of challenge.

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