Our break ended last night and Dominion threw ourselves into Mount Hyjal.
We had little trouble with Rage and her flunkies.
I had decided to use Anetheron's Infernals to test out my Fire Resist gear. The gear works great. I resisted most of the damage from the Infernal, but I also ran into a threat problem. My Fire Resist set is lower on spell damage than any of my other sets and producing good threat was a problem. I was also having to position the Inferal before I could really open up on them.
I would pull them with Exorcism and lead them away from the Raid so they wouldn't take damage from the Fire Aura.
Twice a Hunter pulled aggro on the Infernal and another time a Mage managed to pull. I'm not overly concerned about it for the Anetheron fight, but I am greatly concerned how this will translate in the Illidan fight. The Flames of Azzinoth are considered Demons, so I can use Exorcism every time it's off cooldown to help. I've got to be constantly moving the Flames as well. It's a concern but one that I can't really do anything about until we reach Illidan anyway, but I've got to come up with a strategy to generate more threat.
Right after Anetheron, I had a something come up that required a rather long AFK, and I came back as quickly as I could, but I felt bad that the other 24 guys and gals had to wait for me. There really wasn't anything I could do about it, so I apologized for my absence and we continued.
I didn't really have my head in the game and the first few pulls of Kaz'rogal trash did not go smoothly, but the Raid recovered and we downed Kaz'rogal. I managed to stay alive through the whole fight and even had enough mana to drop a Consecrate or two.
I've been purposely trying to limit myself to 1 mana pot per combat ever since I learned that would be the rule in the Expansion. I figured I might as well get used to it now.
With my brain back in gear, Azgalor's trash went smoother. We did lose one of our tanks in the inital pull, but I grabbed his target until he could be battle rezzed and he taunted it off me when he was ready.
The greatest challenge I faced in picking up Doomguards on Azgalor was watching for the silence. Getting silenced just as you need to pick them up can make for some interesting moments to say the least. But I wasn't alone out there and my team really backed me up well.
One Doomguard was initially picked up by one of our Resto Shaman who resisted the silence. She was able to frost shock kite the Doomguard long enough for the silence to wear off and for me to pick it up.
We still had enough time to at least try Archimonde. I had anticipated that I would replaced, but it turned out I was going to stay in and heal as Prot spec.
This time I was in the melee group, standing near Archimonde's foot. I did my best to shadow the movements of the Phatkiller (Resto Shaman) who the group leader. More than once I was saved by her Tremor totem. I thought you didn't get much warning on Fires in Group 5. You basically get no warning at all in melee. The Fires spawn behind you, and you have to rely on your teammates in the other groups to draw them away. I caught on fire more in this position than any other. In fact, on our kill, I spent considerable time out of melee and cut off by fire.
I wound up pretty low on the healing meters. Some would attribute that to the fact I was healing in Prot spec, but I believe most of the problem was that most of my healing was overheal. Our Main Tank was topped off pretty good most often my Flash of Light would be completely overheal.
It was a tough fight, but on our 'last pull' we managed to down him. I was really hoping for a Cataclysm Edge to drop. One of our Holy Paladins has been drooling over the possibility of getting that sword for his Ret set. So I was pulling for it to drop for him, but no cigar.
I didn't loot any thing aside from Badges. I pretty much have everything I want from Hyjal as far as loot goes. I'm not even sure I'd roll on a Tempest of Chaos at this point. With the changes to Protection Paladins, moving us to a more melee type weapon, I'm not sure I need it.
I haven't talked much about the Expansion in my blog, but I am keeping up with the changes as best I can. Maintankadin has a dedicated sub forum that is a great source for information.
Part of this is simply because much of the information can and likley will change.
There are many decisions that need to made like what Professions I'll use in Lich King, and I'm also trying to decide if I should spend badges on some of the Warrior-centric gear (I'm looking at you, Chestplate of Stoicism).
My major problem at the moment is my bags are bulging. I have less than 5 open spots most nights. Keeping 2 different healing sets (Crit set for Holy, mp5 set for Prot), 2 different Ret set (more hit for PVE, more resilience for PVP), several different tank sets (threat, survivability, thrash, etc) really takes a toll on the bag space. I'm still hanging onto my Frost Resist gear in case it's needed for a farm/alt SSC run.
Then you add in all the pets, tabbards and mementos (full Dungeon Set 3, Verigan's Fist, etc) and I'm out of space in a hurry.
But the overriding reason is that for me, and for my guild, the Expansion is still over the horizon. We still have goals we want to accomplish before everyone heads off to the Frozen North.
My focus right now if finishing Burning Crusade.
I don't want Dominion to be 'that' guild. You know the one you hear saying things like "Well, we almost got to C'thun, but the Expansion got us". I doubt very seriously we will get as far as Kil'Jaden, and that doesn't bother me.
At this point, I'd be happy with getting Illidan in time. He was the guy taunting us in the cinematic open of Burning Crusade. He is the 'Lord of Outland' we have come to dethrone.
But I know our time is running out, maybe faster than any of us want to acknowledge.