Firelands today - Paragon's thoughts just hours before patch

Only a handful of hours to go before 4.2 hits live and we'll start off with the normal modes. I talked to Jubeto, arx, Smirk, Lazei, and Jhazrun and asked them about their expectations on Firelands just before the h-hour.


Firelands is coming tomorrow, what are your expectations?

Jubeto: I'm expecting us to clear the normal modes in 2 days. The hard mode mechanics didn't seem so hard and I'm hoping we can clear the content in 2 weeks. I'm slightly worried about the Legboss and Ragnaros' last phase, it seemed pretty hard even in the normal mode.

Arx: The Authentic PTR Experience (TM) and the Encounter Journal eat away at my excitement a bit, but otherwise I'm getting pretty excited for Firelands, the race, and out-of-game stuff as well!

Smirk: We wont be stressing the normal modes so I'll be maxing and relaxing the first week, after heroics open it's another story though.

Lazei: I'm not really that excited. Normal modes should be down before EU servers are even up, and 3 or 4 hard modes will suffer the same fate next week. I wouldn't be surprised if there were panic buffs to the bosses at some point either.

Jhazrun: By the time the last notice of finished encounter testing concluded our PTR sessions, many of the the bosses were barely recognizable as the miserable piles of bugs that were their first versions. Given that latest success in their track record, I'm comfortably anticipant of the impending patch.


How have you prepared for hard modes?

Jubeto: I've speced my offspec for pve affliction in case I'll have to play that. I've also stacked plenty of volcanic potions, our guild bank provides everything else. I didn't prepare my retribution paladin alt for this content even though I probably should have, I just find dotclasses' gameplay much more interesting so I didn't feel like gearing it up and judging from the ptr tests retripaladin won't be shining there.

Arx: I began the ritual yesterday by sacrificing two goa-- mainly I've just been trying to get work stuff in order to manage some time off, and of course preparing my character and UI.

Smirk: The normal stuff: soft drinks and fast food in real life and PTR testing in game.

Lazei: Bought a few elixirs from auction house and updated my addons.

Jhazrun: The opening of the Heroic encounters marks the start of the game's most intense race since January, so in preparation I've spared no effort in valiantly decorating my UI for the endeavor.


How long do you think it will take the first guild to kill Ragnaros on hard mode?

Jubeto: As stated earlier, I hope its done in 2 resets.

Arx: That's very hard to say. We haven't seen the tuning of the encounter, so everything is just pure speculation. I expect Firelands to be over faster than the last progress though, so let's say a total of 2 weeks for the other bosses and 3-4 weeks for Ragnaros.

Smirk: If the heroic tuning stays like it was on the PTR Ragnaros should die within two weeks.

Lazei: It can take anything from 3 days to 4 weeks. If it's too easy it will die instantly. If it's overtuned or bugged, it'll last long, but die soon after a fix.

Jhazrun: The often-praised "difficulty" of the last expansion's Lich King encounter was primarily the product of the (frankly despicable) practice of using constant add spawns to exponentially ramp up the challenge at lower gear levels (further amplified by the growing buff system). Ragnaros has no such arbitrary blocks, and mechanics-driven encounters have traditionally been taken down faster than gear-dependent ones, so I imagine Firelands wouldn't take much more than a month.


Which boss are you looking forward the most and why?

Jubeto: Probably majordomo, I didn't get to test it on hardmode. We killed the firebird already on beta and I liked the boss, it was properly tuned and you get to dodge fire.

Arx: I missed the last week of testing, so my info might be outdated, but I'm certainly looking forward to Staghelm trash. I hope they didn't nerf it :D

Out of the proper bosses, Staghelm and Ragnaros to me seem to have the most potential for extremely tight tuning.

Smirk: Majordomo felt like the most fun encounter based on the PTR experience. It has a huge variety of stuff you have to pay attention to from grouping up to spreading and keeping an eye on your debuffs and positioning.

Lazei: I'm looking forward to all the bosses. Tanks rarely have to mind any special mechanincs, so I can yell at people for failing on every boss while facerolling myself.

Jhazrun: Barring the obvious answer of Ragnaros himself, the Shannox encounter flows pleasingly smoothly in contrast to the awkward gimmicks of the other fights.


How do you think your class (and spec) will perform in Firelands?

Jubeto: I'm playing demonology as my main spec, It's not as strong as affliction in most fights but it's not bad either. I'll be very high in the dps meters with my special olympics spec just because I'm that awesome.

Arx: Resto druids seem to be in a very good shape right now, but we'll see. I expect to see a pretty healthy mix of healers this content. With shamans put to their proper place (farm bench), of course.

Smirk: I'm playing a holy paladin so I guess I'll be fine as long as there is tanks around.

Lazei: Horribly. In several blue posts Blizzard posters have stated that they don't see mastery capping as a problem in this tier. No wonder, because the tank itemization for this tier is so far from optimal that I'd consider rerolling if I wasn't a tank.

Jhazrun: As far as I can tell, one of the sub-themes of the raid has been to find new and exciting ways to irritate healers to oblivion and back. Unfortunately, the admittedly noble pursuit is particularly bothersome to the non-modular healer classes - Priest and Shaman - who normally rely on spells like Prayer of Healing and Healing Rain, and the balance seems to be resting quite precariously on the back of a few niche tasks.


Lastly, is Paragon prepared?

Jubeto: I think so, but I'll have to get an confirmation from Illidan.

Arx: We are. I expect a very tight race this time, and we'll fight tooth and nail!

Smirk: I'd like to think we are!

Lazei: We thoroughly tested everything on the PTR at 4 am on weekdays, with a 2 hour notice, for a few weeks. For some additional challenge, some boss mechanics and adds were invisible. If anything, I hope we won't be this prepared for the next tier.

Jhazrun: No-one is prepared for the locomotive magnificence of the Firelord's lower limbs.


GL to Paragon for Firelands!

May the best win ;o

For the Horde

Good luck to For the Horde as well, "the race is on" ;)

"Jhazrun: No-one is prepared for the locomotive magnificence of the Firelord's lower limbs."

I literally lol'd.

well it seems very hard , some guilds already did it normal mode.

Lazei: I'm not really that excited. Normal modes should be down before EU servers are even up, and 3 or 4 hard modes will suffer the same fate next week. I wouldn't be surprised if there were panic buffs to the bosses at some point either.

Prophet Lazei!