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With the new patch, the Timeless Isle has opened up off the east coast of Pandaria.
Wowhead has an extensive guide to the new area, along with maps and videos. There's ilvl 496 and 535 gear, vanity items, new battle pets, pirate-themed gear, and world PvP.
Ninotchka has a thread on the forums about gearing up on the Timeless Isle.
Here's the Team Kaels and Flex Raid report from Ninotchka:
|Early Tuesday night, I led a ragtag team of adventurers into the chambers under the corrupted Vale, in our first attempt at a flex mode raid. We had 25 people, a conglomeration of Team Kaels, Team RubiPam, Team Z, and Team Notamemberoftheseteams, including one fresh new guildie who joined from reading our Daily Kos diaries. We spent an hour and a half on the flex raid and downed 2 of the 4 bosses. Honestly, I hadn’t expected to get that far and I hadn’t done ANY research whatsoever on the third boss, Norushen, so I had no plan and we went in and wiped to avoidable damage a whole bunch of time. My error, and I apologize. Next time I will study harder and have more faith in your incredible abilities. Really. We two-shot the first boss and one-shot the next. It was glorious.
The practice was good for Team Kaels, as later that night we went in to the raid in normal mode and managed to down both those same bosses in normal mode. We were excited enough about the progress to add another night to our raid schedule, and last night we went in and got a reality check on Norushen, again. I had done my research this time, but normal mode is tuned much tighter and we’re wiping to enrage. We had a couple 20% wipes and a 10% wipe, so we probably just need to tweak the strategy a bit and we’ll get it down on Friday. If the ditzy tank can live through her trial each time that is. Somewhere around the 45 second mark I seem to start messing up, it’s embarrassing.
|Team RubiPam report: THE KING IS DEAD!
Team RubiPam went into Monday night, after wiping on Lei Shen repeatedly at about 30% last Thursday night, grimly determined but not really expecting (at least I didn't) to get him down before the patch dropped. Rubidium changed up our strategy a bit, telling Pamena to do complete atonement healing, just smite, smite, smite no matter what essentially. We kept getting closer, one wipe at 7% before our break, but then after the break more wipes - the dance is just tricky for us. We were close to the witching hour - it was 10 minutes before quitting time, and we had about 2 pulls left in us, so we didn't call last pull going in. Amazingly, we all kept surviving each stage, and at about 3%, Rubi warned Pamena and Bemused that he was going DPS so we needed to use all our cooldowns. The Thunder King's HP kept inching down.....and BOOM! HE WAS DEAD!!!!!!!! We all got the "Ahead of the Curve" achievement for killing him before the patch and the accompanying nerf dropped. Much rejoicing!!!!
This is the letter I sent around to our team later that night:
I just want to say how proud I am of our team for getting Lei Shen down before the nerf - and how much we owe to our leader Rubidium. He is Team RubiPam's combination of Nina, Kaels and Snuffy - he puts so much work and thought into organizing the fights, calling for correct movements when we need reminding, figuring out strategy, and rethinking strats, as he did for tonight, to get us a successful outcome. Rubi has been the rock on which this raid has stood for two expansions now, and I am so thankful he has stuck with us.
I'm equally thankful for our two stalwart newcomers to the group, Lynera and Buckdeekay, who have stepped up so admirably over the last few weeks. I did not know whether we could recover from losing Elu, but everyone has worked hard to improve and make up for that loss, and we got our reward tonight.
I have said it before, but it bears repeating - there is no better feeling in the game than finally beating a raid boss your team has been crashing on for days or weeks, and that goes double for an end boss of a raid tier. I am so proud of all of us, and I so much look forward to raiding with all of you to take down Garrosh. This will be the first raid tier our team is starting on time, at the beginning of a patch or expac, so that in itself is something new and great for us.
|Friday Night ICC and Saturday Night Massacre:
Snuffy has been organizing a 25 man heroic run on ICC early on Friday nights (8:30 or so) so he can get the final things needed for Shadowmourne, which is the last legendary we need for the guild achievement. We went in Friday night with I don't remember how many people - I think we had just under 20 by the time we hit the Lich King, but because of the extremely high powered dps of Monomis, Taymage and Carune ( I think Carune was there, not sure), we actually got the LK down before he could call up any valks. Kinda sad, really - but it is still a fun raid instance, and we did the whole thing in an hour. I think Snuff needs 4 or 5 more runs to complete the thing, so everyone 80 and over is welcome to come along on Fridays, it is great fun.
Saturday Night Massacre was also great fun - did our usual circuit of Galleon, Sha and Nalak, then did a guild LFR of TOT - my mind is fuzzy now with all the patch stuff, but I THINK we did the first two wings of TOT, and had 16 or 17 guildies, so it was extremely smooth sailing, good time had by all I think.
I had put another flex raid on the calendar for Wed night (last night) because we had several people who could not get into the one Nina ran Tuesday night - but we just had 7 people sign up, and I was unable to do it myself because of pain in my hands. So after extensive discussion in guild chat, I cancelled last night's run, but encouraged people to sign up for Saturday night when we will definitely do it. I don't think the world bosses are worth doing any more, since the gear from the Timeless Isle is good and so easy to get. So this Saturday we will go straight into a fresh run of SoO in flex mode - spots will go first to those who couldn't go on Tuesday, but if you ran it Tuesday, you can do it again, you just can't loot the bosses. Alternatively, if you have a well-geared alt, you could bring that toon for the first two, and then your main if we get further than that. So fun to have new stuff to do!
|With a few of our members off for work or personal concerns, we called up our beloved First Alternate, Cognosi, and recruited a third healer, Buckshammy. Chanta joined us on her hunter, Zarjah, and helped with valuable expertise and coordinating pets with Cog. Boldly our heroes set forth to defeat the Empress of Shek'zeer.
It's a complex fight with a lot of mechanics. We were consistently able to get her below 40%, but the Empress's minions do some empress-ive damage (sorry, I couldn't resist) and we were having trouble coordinating the movement needed to imprison one of them in an amber trap.
We have a hard stop at 11 p.m. because Jantuk, our main tank, has to be at work impossibly early in the morning. So at 10:49 we knew it would be the last pull of the evening, and we were prepared to learn from it and do a better job next time...
... and then we did it! Down went the Empress! Heart of Fear cleared! On to Terrace of the Endless Spring! NO MORE BUGS! Special thanks to our subs and a gold star to Sardric for some pretty awesome damage.