I hope everyone has been enjoying WoD so far!! I have been having a great time with my new guild, levelling and gearing up ready for next weeks raids. So far I have been playing a lot of WW and BrM, not so much MW but I will hopefully be trying that out in heroic raids next reset ;)
One of the most fun things I have done so far is tanking challenge modes, at this point I have done Shadowmoon, Everbloom and Upper Blackrock Spire. I will proceed to go through my thoughts and talent choices etc for each but as a general overview (pre buff to guard) I will say that it was not as easy as MoP!! The overall feeling of it was that I felt squishier than I am used to, bear in mind that until this week I had absolutely NO tanking items whatsoever, so I have been using all my dps trinkets etc, so I was probably a little softer than some of the other tanks anyway, but that aside, it was actually really nice to feel like I have to make conscious decisions as to what I spend my resources on, especially since the gear level I was at means I have very limited resources at the moment, making it even more poignant what buttons I press and when.
Then guard became useful again.....
After the guard buff I have to say, Blizz, I love you. pre buff, having two charges of guard meant little to nothing in CM's. You could press it and think "yay I will be safe!!" and guard's like "I'll save you!! Jk I'm gone with one melee swing." Since the buff I actually feel safer when I have charges to use. it feels worthwhile pressing the button instead of just pressing it out of habit and realizing it dose sweet FA.
Level 15: Fro Ww I like to use momentum, but as BrM it's Tigers lust or go home for me. The on demand speed burst makes for some awesome kiting!!
Level 30: Sadly I was hoping the sphere would be good, however upon using it, it's just not strong enough at the moment. Chi burst is nice for a lot of AOE when you are playing WW but as BrM I'm still favouring Chi Wave.
Level 45: I'm still running ascension here, primarily because I have sod all stats and energy seems to be a massive issue for me right now, for WW I still like the brew, but as BrM its Ascension for me.
Level 60: As WW I tend to use RoP, just so that I dont get my tank splatted when LS resets the mob swings. However i have found myself using Leg Sweep a lot more in BrM spec, as when I want to kite it is great to do, then just bugger off :D
Level 75: At the moment as BrM and WW I am switching between DH and DM depending on the dungeon and how much magic damage is involved overall.
Level 90: As WW I have one spec with RJW for AOE, and one with Xuen for burst damage on bosses. As BrM I have not let my faithful kitty leave my side, he is REALLY powerful if you want to do big mob pulls, as he will merrily tank the shit out of them for you.
Level 100: Ok, I need to put this in a concise way, as BrM, Chi Explosion is the devil, it encourages stupid chi management, and you will find yourself without shuffle far too much. Serenity is the way forward at these gear levels, on bosses it means you can windmill away with BoK and get yourself a massive shuffle up, leaving you free to spend precious chi on purifying and guards to keep you healthy. I found Soul Dance to be particularly useful in places like Shadowmoon Burial Ground, as it helps you
to stagger magic damage, and there is so much of it in this instance
it really pays off to make use of it.
Now then, lets get to it....
Before I start, the comp we ran with was Brewmaster monk, Holy priest, Frost Mage, WindwalkerMonk, Rogue (switching between specs) We also weren't going for golds, it was just about getting through the instance, however we got bronze on all of them apart form UBRS. All these dungeons will be from Brewmaster perspective, I will be doing the others but most likely as a windwalker!!
Shadowmoon Burial Ground.
Overview: This is a VERY magic damage heavy instance. The caster mobs are particularly nasty so using CC was good for us here, however a word of caution, if you are using glyph of keg smash, you can break CC so be very careful here if you do use it. The bosses themselves aren't much of an issue with regards to melee damage apart from Ner'zhul, who does hit quite hard, but as he stops hitting you to cast his ability every now and then, you will find you have a few grace periods for you to heal up. One of the major issues I have with mobs his size is the hitboxes are really small, and you literally have to stand in the bosses face to attack, and this can sometimes lead to the boss running "through" you and smacking you in the ass, which does hurt, there isn't really a massive amount you can do about this, except for bearing it in mind and keeping on your toes.
Talents: I used tigers lust, Chi Wave, Ascension, Leg Sweep, Diffuse Magic, Xuen and Soul dance.
One thing to note is that you cannot change talents during the dungeon unless you go outside, so sometimes it might be beneficial to run two of the same spec, on my WW I have an AOE spec and a single target spec.
She doesn't melee too hard, however the Dark Eclipse does a lot of damage without diffuse up so make sure that you sit on a white rune to avoid it. If the fight drags on there will be a lot of aoe patches pof damage that will cause positioning issues, so dpsing her down quickly is important, as aonk you can really contribute to this by using touch of death on the first mob that she summons, meaning your dps dont need to come off her, taking her down quickly.
Not much different to normal heroic, slightly more damag, and it is more important to pick up the mobs from his Exhume spirit ability as they will wreck your companions pretty quickly if you don't. Just be careful as they can swarm a little and get behind you if you're not careful.
Again, no different to heroic apart from extra damage, diffuse is best used for his inhale here when you have to stand in the Necrotic Pitch, as your healer will need to be using their heals on your squishier pals ;)
Melees very hard and can have issues with positioning due to the stupidly tiny hit box, again, touch of death with become your team's best friend when he casts his first Ritual of Bones.
Overview: A chance for monks to do what we were born to do, as long as you co-ordinate it with your team, you can do some REALLY big pulls here, because unlike other tanks we can kite for days and days and then some. Using the statue becomes a big deal here, it will take a lot of aggro off you, and so will Xuen if you use his taunt, he will also do a batshit crazy amount of damage for you.
Talents: For this dungeon I ran Tigers lust (Dat kiting yo), Ascension, Chi Wave, Leg Sweep (when you get aggro, run in, LS, then run back out ;) ) Dampen Harm, Xuen, Serenity.
A nice easy boss to deal with, Dampen Harm and Guard will happily protect you against his Parched Grasp, and Xuen will do silly damage when he goes into his non tankable phase. If you have your ranged stack to the right of the boss you will also negate any orbs going through the vines on the floor, thus not having to deal with any adds.
No different to heroic except that Dhulu (the big git that runs about a lot) does hit quite hard, BUT....you can use you're statue to tank him if you wish, just make sure you slap another one down when it dies, and I would recommend using the leer of the ox to keep him on it.
Quite a fun boss, save touch of death for the pale orc to stop him from healing himself by eating it, and if you are running dampen, be sure to stay out of the green fart clouds, as they hurt!
Here's where it gets a bit more interesting. Depending on how tanky you feel and how well you can manage your cds/co-ordinate with your healer, you can deal with her in a few different ways. The way we found easiest was to interrupt the second parasitic growth, and then leave her in her frost [phase, and move her to arcane just before the end, depending on how quickly you can get her down. The arcane phase is by far the worst and if you can avoid it all together, I would recommend it. HOWEVER....not interrupting parasitic growths will mean you take more damage as a tank, but it all depends on your comp, you and how much you value extra tank healing over aoe healing. in the fire/frost phases, most of the damage is avoidable, but the aoe pule in arcane phase is really painful. I would recommend using lust here unless your damage is big as a group.
A nice easy one to finish, make sure you stand him in the fire from your NPc allies, use statue to tank the adds, and you can also help out with the weed whacking using Tigers Lust. also use Touch of death to free allies that are caught in vines.
Upper Blackrock Spire
Overview: Well....be prepared for some pain. The trash isn't TOO bad....but the bosses hit like friggin trucks.
Talents: Tigers lust, Chi Wave, Ascension, leg Sweep, Dampen Harm (Although diffuse is nice for some of the bosses, so dual speccing may be worth here) Xuen and Serenity.
Not too difficult, doesn't do THAT much more melee damage, and using transcendence is great because you can help out with releasing the conduits and get back to pick him up quickly.
A real tough boss, a lot of movement in a small area with really crappy camera angles. Once the two adds he has are dead he becomes easier, but the adds make things REALLY difficult, and if you get caught by Eruption, you're pretty much guaranteed to die as you can't nimble it :(
A lot of add management required here, keep interrupts on the summoners and use your statue to help you out if you get too many adds out.
Ragewing the Untamed
Make no mistake, this boss hits like a train, and the breath is devastating if you dont move right out of the way of it, I would save Xuen and the statue for the whelps, and try to make sure you have some cd's left for when the boss comes down onto the bridge as he gets a damage increase the longer that he is up.
Positioning is everything on this boss. Fortunatley they have removed her knockback, which makes the fight a lot easier, but once the adds start spawning avoiding the fire breath is imperative, as Zaela herself hits like a train, and also has the same affliction as Ner'zhul where she will run through you and slap you on the ass on occasion. I would save Xuen for when she spawns the 3 adds at 60% hp, these need to get killed like, yesterday, as they grip your team mates and pull them into the path of the fire from the drakes, so Xuens cleave and taunt become really handy.