I had a few post ideas for today. I thought of writing about bad PuGs, I thought of writing about my thoughts on certain talent specs, and I really really wanted an excuse to post a screenshot I snagged of my new current DPS high score (yay Patchwerk!). But in the end I decided that today I am going to write about…
You see, in my mind, there is very little else out there that will test a young hunter’s mettle like solo’ing Deadmines in your mid-30s. You may think I am joking, until you try it. It will force you to learn about things like aggro management (keeping multiple mobs on your pet, with limited means), rudimentary freeze trapping, and pulling off crazy techniques you won’t do in most “civilized” instances anymore, like tossing around Immolation Traps to get more damage going, or Mongoose Biting that pesky parrot nipping at your ankles. It even teaches you about mana management, for really, what hunter has mp5 or more than a shallow puddle of Intellect at level 36?
Ever been into the Goblin Foundry? If one of those goblins runs off you’re pretty much screwed by all the millions of mobs sitting at the bottom. You have to pull your mobs carefully and you have to be sure they don’t run away.
Ever taken on Mr. Smite and his nasty stun (“You landlubbers are tougher than I thought!”) and his rogue buddies that come out of nowhere? Lemme rephrase that; ever done it with only 1500 HP?
And how about Edwin VanCleef himself and his rogue buddies?
Way back in the day when I was leveling my first character, Tawyn, I was quite fanatical about solo’ing Deadmines. It started out when I was level 26 or 27 or so and I was tired of being in bad groups for the place, so Tux and I decided we’d solo it. I don’t think we could quite beat the first boss. But we kept going back every couple of levels. It became a regular routine. Every time, we would get a little closer. Finally it happened at level 41: Deadmines, solo’d. (I skipped trying at level 40, I was having too much fun running around Stranglethorn on my mount. This was back before that northern flight point and the mount was a godsend, lemme tell ya.)
Since then, it has become a little challenge for me to try to lower that “high score”. Lunapike solo’d the place at 38. Tamaryn, in temporary boomkin guise, did it at 40. And today…
Althalor did it at 36, with his level 35 moth Chakapas.
Now to be fair, it felt a little easier this time than it has for me in the past. I think it’s probably mostly due to having Aspect of the Viper, since there are really no other major spec or ability differences that I can think of at that level. Still– a new personal record. One to be challenged by whoever my next up’n'coming hunter is.
I often think that in this world of raiding and heroics where we’ve got someone else to tank for us and someone else to heal for us, and often someone else to do the crowd control for us, we get locked into one mode of playing. That’s why I believe it’s important sometimes to go back to the basics and get a little unconventional and experimental and hone your lesser used skills and really dig deep into your class in a way that a lot of others do not. Many people may say the lessons you learn from such a thing don’t help you much in an end-game situation, me, I think they do. You can never know too much about your chosen class. But the only way to decide for yourself is to try it… I think you just may be surprised.