So while my main account is out-of-commission, I’ve been dinking around on my second account, which is home to only a few little alties. The highest-level of them is a 61 tauren tree druid because just as I have an 80 Alliance Hunter and an 80 Horde Hunter, I also want an 80 Alliance Tree and an 80 Horde Tree, because that’s Just How I Am.
Anyways, the LFG tool has been great: as heals I can get a group within about ten seconds (in the rare event that “YOUR DUNGEON IS READY” doesn’t pop up immediately upon queuing). I’ve been doing the Random Instance thing near-daily, and all in all it’s been fun times.
Sooo today I queued up and got into a Ramparts group with three Death Knights and a warrior. The pulls start.
The first thing I notice is that pretty much everyone in the group is consistently taking damage. The second thing I notice is that nobody is holding aggro so half of the mobs keep ending up on me. Constantly.
“So, who’s tanking?” I asked after a couple pulls of this.
Three responses of “IDK” and one response of “everyone kind of is.”
“Umm, it’d be nice if we had a tank so I don’t have to keep spreading my heals out and running out of mana and pulling aggro as I do so,” I ventured.
“Don’t worry, I don’t pull aggro, I’m fury,” said the warrior as his health mysteriously plummeted like a rock.
At this point I was sort of tempted to tell the group “gotta go, house is on fire” or something, but I decided to continue on. How bad can it be, right?
Four wipes later we were at the first boss.
Lemme say that again. Four wipes later we were at the first boss.
It was here that somebody decided to randomly designate one of the DKs as a tank, and said DK said “ok” and then charged in with Blood Presence up. Halfway through the boss I realized I was Treetanking and since my barkskin + spam heals only go so far at level 61 I ended up kicking the bucket. Somehow most of the rest of the group survived, though, so it wasn’t entirely a loss!
We doggedly made our way up the ramp and into that big room that branches off to the two final bosses. I think we wiped another two or three more times in here but I’d lost count long before. It was here that I decided to pull up Recount out of curiosity: not only had all five people in the group taken roughly the same amount of damage, but I was sitting at a solid third at 20%. Tree Tank is 4 fite.
We took out that dragon boss first; miraculously nobody died, although yes, I was effectively tanking for a good portion of the fight.
After the boss went down and Hellreaver was distributed, one of the DKs said “ok see ya” and dropped group. A second DK– one who had spent the entire instance talking about how all of his gear was red, and subsequently not doing anything about it– followed suit. Three of us were left with one boss to go.
At this point I was kind of desperate; we’d somehow managed to get this far and I wasn’t about to quit now. “We can three-man it!” I said, exasperated. So we attempted to three-man Omar the Unscarred and failed miserably.
There I sat at the Spirit Healer, feeling a bit dejected. “Well, thanks for the group anyway,” I typed out in party chat.
And then suddenly, out of nowhere, the warrior decided that we could do it and started doling out helpful tips for the DK. I was kind of shocked, wondering if this was the same guy who moments earlier had told me that he never pulls aggro, but hey, I wasn’t going to question it, and we all agreed to give it one more try. The three of us got ourselves up there, standing in front of the boss, and then pulled.
…so, I don’t care that it was a boss in normal Hellfire Ramparts, this was the most intense WoW fight I’ve been in since Hodir or medium-mode Iron Council or one of those crazy fights. Because we were taking so much longer than usual to down the guy, Omar was pulling trick after trick out of his little magic bag; tossing people into the air, flinging curses around, summoning felhunter adds– you name it, he was doing it. I was spamming heals like my life depended on it, which it quite literally did, and more than once my screen was flashing red and I was sure I would meet my doom when somehow a Swiftmend would pull me through. I frantically Tranquility’d at one part and popped Innervate not long after. That was right about when, as expected, I pulled aggro and tree-tanked the boss for at least ten seconds. The DK eventually regained aggro, fortunately.
I was still spamming buttons and using at least one heal at every global cooldown, and it was here that I realized that not only was I almost out of mana again and had no Innervate to use this time, but the boss was sitting at about 15% health.
So I did what I had to do.
Popped a mana potion, ran up to the boss, and started tree-punching him between heals. The boss was still going nuts; cursing people, throwing people in the air, and doing crazy AoEs and I was tree-punching him.
And then somehow he went down. My mana was shot. The warrior was still taking damage from something; I had enough mana left for one Rejuvenation on him which managed to save him from certain death as we all sat around afterward with less than 10% health each. The WoW gods were apparently pleased with me because Crystalfire Staff dropped. I rolled Need and won it.
Then I took my staff and hearthstoned and went as far, far away as I possibly could.
The moral of the story is: Don’t knock Tree Punch, it could save your life someday.
Oh, and for the love of all that is good and holy, if you are putting yourself in LFG as a tank (or healer), PLEASE BE PREPARED TO FILL THAT ROLE.