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[WoW] Challenge modes – General tips and preparations

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Introduction

Some friends and myself started doing challenge modes a while ago. Those are quite fun but the last time we often were too careful, tried to pull only single mobs when it was possible and had no clue what we were doing at all. I watched a few videos since then, read a few guides and came across a really strong group that conquered cm gold together with me. My experience increased a lot and I started to prepare a small guide for my friends and myself for when we’ll do our challenge modes. This is the result. There will be a separate guide for each instance in the future.

The team

There are certain classes that are really strong in challenge modes. If you want to have an easy life you go with a blood DK and a restoration druid. However, if you want to go with specific people and not with specific classes you will have to accept some compromises. The team for our cms is:
– Protection Warrior
– Balance Druid
– Holy / Discipline Priest
– Frost / Unholy Deathknight
– BM / Survival Hunter

It is important to know what your class can and can’t to and if you play one of the classes above you may find this guide more useful than others since I will go into more detail for these classes.

 

General information

– Most trash groups in challenge modes are best dealt with by pure force. This means they need to be pulled together and bombed away. CC helps a lot of course, but not cc that is only single targeted. Good examples are Shockwave and Indimidating Shout (with Glyph) for warriors or Remorseless Winter for Deathknights. Druids can work with a combination of Ursol’s Vortex and Typhoon. Also Solar Beam is really powerful when all mobs are grouped up. Priests can also work with Psychic Scream (with glyph) and… that’s all. Wow. Sucks to be a priest, but whatever. Hunters are still OP as hell and can use Binding Shot and Powershot. The best abilities however are long duration stuns like Remorseless Winter and Shockwave, but if you chain the other CCs this will usually be enough time to kill most of the pack.
If you play a class that is not mentioned above, have a look at you mass cc abilities and develop a strategy that you can use.

– A deathknight’s Gorefiend’s Grasp is really helpful while pulling together the packs. If your tank isn’t a DK but you have one in your group, he can assist with the grasp although he needs to be very careful with his positioning.

– As a meele you must never stand before the mobs. This is really important in challenge modes since all cleaves will potentially one-shot you. Also you would deal less damage because of parries but doing less damage is of course not as bad as being dead.

– Pre-potting is really, really helpful for each trash group where it is possible. Often this is necessary to burst them down in the first place and allowing these brutal nuke strategies. You do not need to prepot for each group and it is possible to do it without, but as said above, it will help A LOT.

– If you are aiming for gold you will use something like draenic invisibility potions to skip some trash groups. This saves a lot of time and often makes the whole try a lot easier. In Grimrail Depot for example you can skip all groups before the first boss, kill him and the next 3 mobs and you get a new checkpoint inside the instance. So even if you die, you will never have to fight these mobs again. I will go into more detail later when I address specific instances.
However, if you are going to use these potions be aware that they will put a cooldown of 10 minutes on all of your other potions so you will not be able to pre-pot anymore for that duration.

– There are some mobs that must be interrupted. They MUST. BE. INTERRUPTED. It is necessary to chain disrupt spells and abilities to accomplish this goal. This is probably the only reason you take melees into a CM in the long run.

 

Gearing

– Equipment that has a higher itemlevel than 630 is scaled down but equipment with a lower itemlevel is not scaled up.

– Because of this the best way to gear is to save any equipment above level 630 with the best stats for your class and keep it.

– The following things do NOT work in challenge modes: legendary ring proc, gems, tertiary stats like avoidance and leech, augmented runes, set bonuses.

– The following things DO work in challenge modes: food (take the 125 one), enchantments, flasks, potions.

– It is best to keep some « on use » trinket for massive burst damage or strong mitigation. Scabbard of Kyanos is such a trinket.

– Healing pots are very important. Bring them with you.

– If you do not have Heroism / Bloodlust bring Drums of Fury.

 

I hope you find these general tips useful for your own challenge mode adventures. There will be more detailed guides in the future for each specific dungeon, so come back some time to check them out!

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