Archive for the 'Pimp Your Druid' Category

Flying Mounts in Dalaran 4.01

Very quick post, the title says it all. Been meaning to post this since 4.01 landed but never had the time. Pre 4.01 there were very easy ways to use flying mounts in Dalaran explained here. Since then those methods were broken and no longer work. At first glance it seems that Blizzard removed the ability to fly in Dalaran but that is not the case. In fact there is an even easier way to fly in Dalaran! Specifically this is in reference to South Bank. Instructions on how to do so are listed below, enjoy!

Set yourself up inbetween the two domes. Keep the diamond on the bigger dome (on the right side) in sight that is your point of reference when flying into Dalaran.

Fly at a 45 degree angle forward, the easiest way to do this is to press your forward key + jump key at the same time. Keep going until you just fly above the diamond on the right.

As soon as you pass the diamond (your point of reference, dive bomb down straight into the South Bank area.

Dalaran won't be the cool place to hang out for long so enjoy this while it lasts!


Kael’Thas 52 – Vallen 1

52 ain’t bad considering it too me 132 tries to get Anzu.

Final Score: Kael’Thas 52 – Vallen 1

Next up, Attumen or Baron, choices choices…

Pimp Your Druid: Soloing Skadi the Ruthless

Hello again, It’s that time again for yet another edition of Pimp Your Druid. This time we will be looking into how to solo Skadi the Ruthless in Utgarde Pinnacle for your very own Reins of the Blue Proto-Drake. This is the 6th installment of the series and definitely by far the most challenging of all and not for your everyday casual druid, there will be some pretty stringent requirements before you should even consider this so lets get to it!


  • The mount only drops from the  heroic version of Utgarde Pinnacle
  • You must be 80 to attempt this
  • You must have a bear spec to attempt this
  • You must have a good mix of both kitty and bear gear (more on this later)
  • You should try and get as many buffs up as possible (more on this later)

What gear do I need?

Straight up, this is only something that should be attempted if you are well geared through raiding ICC 10/25. If you are not wearing mainly 264 or higher gear, you will most likely find this very challenging if not impossible. The question of whether to wear kitty or bear gear is probably something that needs to be decided by you. The fight is challenging in that you need a certain amount of dps to kill adds fast enough yet at the same time, if you don’t have enough HP, Skadi will smash your face. So balance is really the key and depends on your playstyle. Personally I wore all my dps gear + 2 tanking trinkets for the purpose of this soloing adventure.

What buffs do I need?

Mark of the Wild and Thorns are great, but you should also try and grab Fort, Kings, Might and food buff/flasks as well. You can use the Inscription (Runescroll of Fortitude) or Leatherworking (Drums of Forgotten Kings) versions but if you are cheap you can be like me and get in front of UP, queue for Random Battleground to get some free buffs and /afk out. While you don’t necessary need everything mentioned above everything you can grab only improves your chances at being able to kill Skadi. Personally I try and grab all of the above except for a flask.

What spec do I need?

You definitely need a bear spec 0/60/11 but where you spend your points can differ and vary. Personally I modified the bear spec to be a bit more suitable towards dealing with Skadi. If you’re interested in what my spec looks like you can see it here. The one major different between your cookie cutter bear specs and what I’m using is since the fight does require you to pop out and cast some heals to keep your health at a good amount, I have 2/2 Nurturing Instinct. For Glyphs I’m using Maul, Frenzied Regeneration and Survival Instincts.

Getting There/Clearing Trash

Good news everyone! You can skip everything prior to Skadi and there is even a safe spot prior to Skadi to buff up and get ready to pull.

Safe spot to buff up, get ready etc

How to Skadi the Ruthless

Skadi is a two phase fight, the first being a gauntlet of adds in which you must kill them all and pick up harpoons (3 total) which are then used in harpoon guns to bring Skadi down from his proto drake. The second phase will begin once you bring Skadi down to the ground and becomes a 1v1 fight with no more adds. Both phases of the fight are challenging and require a certain amount of timing.

Phase 1

The keys to this phase are add management. There are three different types of adds and you need to prioritize the order in which they die as it will make a big difference towards your overall survivability.

  1. Ymirjar Witch Doctor: The most dangerous of the bunch, the Shadow Bolt hurts a lot and they should be focused down as a priority, try and Bash/Feral Charge to interrupt as well to minimize damage.
  2. Ymirjar Harpooner: These are the mobs that drop the Harpoon (3 total required), which you’ll need to bring down Skadi. They will drop nets and back away from you so make sure they are in cleave range.
  3. Ymirjar Warrior: The least dangerous of all, just filler mobs that need to die.

As seen in the screenshot above, the gauntlet will start once you get close to Skadi. Your best bet is to drop a Regrowth & Rejuvenation on yourself so you some hots rolling on you as you begin the encounter. As soon as the fight begins, Cat Form and Dash down the tunnel, the reason for this is you want to grab all the adds (minus the last pack) together so that you can take them down at the same time. Having loose adds will only slow down how fast you can kill them and will reduce the amount of time inbetween new spawns.

Notice the box in red where all the mobs are still starting to come down the tunnel. Cat-dashing down to pick them up before they spread is critical. Also note in the green box how I have hots up to heal some of the initial dmg

Green Box illustrates all adds minus last pack. Red Box is the last pack of adds to be taken out afterwards. You must always keep an eye on Skadi to make sure you are not in his breath

After the initial grouping of adds, a pair of two adds will come down the tunnel at set intervals. The first grouping will be Ymirjar Harpooner/Ymirjar Warrior followed by Ymirjar Witch Doctor/Ymirjar Warrior repeating until Skadi is brought down. By the time you finish killing all the initial adds (minus the last pack) you would have already picked up the 1st pack of Harpooner/Warrior. Once that is all dead what I do is jump into the last pack which has a Witch Doctor. At this time the 2nd pack should have come out with has another Witch Doctor as well. Since you have two Witch Doctors which hurt a lot, its best to pop Berserk here and kill them ASAP.

Once the last pack is dead, you should be free to heal yourself a little so pop out and drop a few hots on before getting ready for the next set of adds (3rd set of Harpooner/Warrior). Here is where timing comes into play, you will need to decide this for yourself but essentially you do not want to drop Skadi down unless either all your adds are dead or they are about to die. Having extra adds with Skadi up is bound to cause problems so you may want to wait a little or rush a little, it depends on how fast you can kill the adds. My general strategy is to wait until I get 3 Harpoons, then use 2 of them and wait until the set of adds I have up are Harpooner/Warrior (to avoid shadow bolts) before bringing Skadi down. Throughout the whole time you are killing adds, you must keep your eye on Skadi and watch to see which side he will breath on. If you are caught in the breath you will most assuredly drop to low HP or die.

If you are doing this correctly, you should be able to kill adds fast enough to heal yourself inbetween, you should not have to use any cooldowns and finally and most importantly you will only have Skadi and no adds when he comes down.

Phase 2

Lets quickly review all the abilities that Skadi has (in heroic mode):

Crush: Inflicts 200% melee damage to the target, stunning it for 2 seconds.

Poisoned Spear: Inflicts 9,425 to 10,575 physical damage to a target, and inflicts an additional 3,770 to 4,230 Nature damage every 3 seconds for 12 seconds.

Whirlwind: Inflicts 9,425 to 10,575 physical damage each second to anyone for as long as they stand in melee range. Lasts 10 seconds.

As like Phase 1, timing is absolutely crucial to this. Poisoned Spear does a tonne of damage and needs to be minimized as much as possible. The way to do this is to cast Abolish Poison to remove it asap and quickly shift back into Bear Form. Naturally if you aren’t quick and you are caught in caster form then Skadi will smack you very hard. One way to ensure you have time to shift back is to continuously kite Skadi up and down the tunnel, that will keep Skadi running to you which will give just a little bit of extra time to shift back into Bear Form.

Every so often, Skadi will also cast Whirlwind, this can be handled in one of two ways. First this is where you’ll want to pop your cooldowns (one for each WW). Barkskin, Frenzied Regeneration, Corroded Skeleton Key are all good options. The second is to actually switch to Cat Form, Dash and run away. During this time Skadi will still be casting his Whirlwind (for 10sec) so you can actually pop out and heal yourself as much as you can. At all times, you will naturally want to keep up Faerie Fire and Demoralizing Roar to minimize the damage to you. If you ever get into bad situations, you can use a health pot or Survival Instincts.

This will need to be repeated over and over until Skadi dies. How many times you will have to deal with Poisoned Spear/Whirlwind is dependent on what type of gear you choose to wear. The more dps gear the fewer times you will have to deal with it but the higher the chance you will die with lower HP. The more bear gear, the more times you will have to deal with it but the lower the chance you’ll die with higher HP. This as I mentioned at the beginning of the post is completely dependent on what you have available to you and what works best for you.

In red youll see I have the BG deserter buff bc this time I picked up kings/might! Green arrow points to how I have abolish up, you can try and cast it during a WW since Skadi tends to use poisoned spear after a WW. Orange arrow is me hopping down the tunnel.

Another one bites the dust! I’ve been trying this one for a while and it was quite the challenge, best of luck to all those out there who are giving this a shot. Till next time!

No Mount, Go Figure...

Topics of the Week #3

I decided to create a new category (Topics of the Week) as I find sometimes (more and more often) there will be random bits of information that don’t warrant a whole post but I do want to share so I think I will be creating more of these types of posts in the future. Here are the topics for Week #17 of 2010.

Blue Posts of Interest

Blizzard just had another Twitter Developer discussion and here are the points that were of interest to me. A full summary can be found here.

Q: Do you intend to have all 280% flying mounts scale to 310% when a 310% mount is earned, or will only purchased mounts do so?
A: Our current plan, is that in Cataclysm, you can learn a new rank of flying that lets all flying mounts move at 310% (even current 280% mounts). That will probably be as fast as mounts will ever get. We don’t like it that when you get a 310% mount that you stop using your old ones.

I expect a lot of complaints from this but I don’t see why every player shouldn’t be entitled to the same flying speed. Whether it be a PVE raider, PVP centric player or just a casual.

Q: With armor class bringing mastery bonuses, will players never want to “downrank” from, say, leather to cloth?
A: That’s the idea, really. They still can wear the older armor, but they’ll lose some stats from doing so.

Fantastic! Now hopefully rets/war’s will stop trying to take my leather gear!

Q: How will haste affect channeled spells. Will it be similar to DoTs and HoTs?
A: They will channel faster but their duration will remain unchanged. You will get more ticks on the same cast.

Something we already knew but more confirmation that haste will become an extremely important stat in Cataclysm

Q: Can you make crowd control in raids and 5-mans an important aspect of the PvE game again?
A: An emphatic yes.

*Two Thumbs Up* While I am not a huge fan of extremely complex trash packs (ex. C’thun Trash), I am a big proponent of having trash that gives a preview of the next bosses abilities so that you have some experience and practice by the time you reach the next boss. Its important that trash be something challenging so that people don’t afk/zone out and just mash aoe buttons until its dead. Blizzard has always stated there is a purpose to trash so I am glad to see they are bringing it back.

New Dungeons & Raids in Cataclysm

Some pretty exciting new posts describing what content is coming in Cataclysm. I’m particularly interested in Mount Hyjal which I am hoping wont be a rehash of the old version but will be a new and improved experience. From the description it sounds like it will, and seeing as this heavily involves Malfulrion Stormrage, can we say Feral Legendary? (Please?)

New Blizzard Store Items

Blizzard introduced two new items recently into the Blizzard Store for purchase which had a pretty big impact on in game life. First off it was the extremely annoying Lil’XT which for those who actually play with game sounds undoubtedly have turned it off by now. Hearing XT’s whiney game sounds within Ulduar is one thing but to hear it nonstop in front of South Bank is extremely painful. So annoying that Blizzard has decided to “temporarily” turn it off.

Quote from: Vaneras (Source)
A hotfix was recently applied, which temporarily disabled some of the sounds Lil’ XT makes.The issue was that some of his sounds were flagged in such a way that they play for everyone around him and not just the player that owns the pet, an annoying problem to be sure. We can’t alter volume or who the sounds play for through a hotfix so the temporary workaround is to disable them completely right now until the proper fix can be patched in later.

The second and probably the most controversial is the introduction of the Celestial Steed. This marks the first time that Blizzard has moved away from in game pets and introduced an actual mount for real currency. During the data mining of 3.3.3 when this mount was discovered it looked fantastic and there were tonnes of speculation as to where this mount came from. I won’t lie as I was definitely on board with getting one until I found out that it was obtained through the store and when I logged on to see every fucking person on Auchindoun with one. While it has a great look its quickly turned into the default mount for casuals replacing Reins of the Bronze Drake (From Culling of Stratholme) or the Jenkins Mount as I like to refer to it. We all play this game for different reasons and some may call it elitist but I don’t like using items/titles that everyone else uses. I invest time into earning titles/achievements/mounts and I for one will display it (flaunt it) every chance I get. For all those out there showing off your Celestial Steed, just remember 3 letters: TRH

Flying at South Bank

A few weeks ago I made a post describing the different places that you can fly on your flying mount within Dalaran. A commenter added some feedback which greatly simplifies the challenge of landing in South Bank. Thanks to Samskeyti for the tip! Updates can be found on the original post here.

Hello from South Bank!

Counteracting Pre Patch/Expansion Blues

Jace has recently posted about things to do to counteract the pre expansion blues. Most casuals and casual raiding guilds have probably already hit their road block and are starting to tail off and its something that always happens. While we (Daybreak) haven’t quite hit that point yet, things are noticeably starting to slow down. We have made some fantastic progress through ICC Heroics and we’re standing at 11/12 ICC10 Heroic and 9/12 ICC25 Heroic. I think my goals are to complete ICC10 heroic and to complete 11/12 ICC25 heroic. I’m realistic, I know my guild isn’t bleeding edge and if we do happen to manage to kill Arthas on 25 man heroic, that’s just gravy on top.

What else am I doing to keep busy?

  1. The Insane (Yes really)
  2. Trying to get 100% of all enchanting recipes (Sitting at 96.3%)
  3. Doing a lot of old content

Rarren the Insane?

As mentioned above, I decided recently to start my quest for The Insane title. Yes it’s insane, its crazy what the hell am I thinking? I am not pushing hard to complete it in the shortest amount of time but I figured it was time that I at least start and work on it casually. I decided to add a tab to track my progress and I will post and give some insight into how things are going. If you’re interested in tracking my progress you can find it here.

Shadowmourne Rewards – Once Per Legendary

World of Raids is reporting that the flavor items from killing LK with a Shadowmourne is a once per legendary drop (link). Say it ain’t so Blizz, say it ain’t so!

Topics of Week #2

So I’ve been meaning to post some more discussions on ICC hard modes but I keep forgetting to take screenshots to help illustrate the ideas. Tuesday is our ICC10 night and I kept reminding myself to take some screenshots and naturally I forgot again for the 3rd week in a row. I think I may have to just start posting and add the screenshots later which isn’t the most ideal. Since we got our Bloodbathed Frostbrood Vanquisher mounts we’ve been going back and helping a few people get theirs as well before we start Heroic Arthas. Starting next week we’ll begin our push towards Bane of the Fallen King so stay tuned for that.

In the interim, lots of info have been flying around this past week and rather than linking everything I decided I’d just share what I thought was news worthy.

Cataclysm Class Information

Quote from: Bashiok (Source)
Beginning Wednesday, April 7 we will begin releasing class previews containing an overview of some of the changes currently being planned for each of the 10 World of Warcraft classes. The type of information you can expect from these posts are a list of the new spells from 80-85, the new passive mastery bonuses for all talent trees, a brief outline of some of the talent changes we’re currently planning, and in some cases new low level spells for select classes.

These changes will by no means be comprehensive, and are subject to change between now and the launch of the expansion. It’s also important to understand that some classes are currently further along in the development process than others, and as a result the amount of information will vary from class to class. Please do not let this frustrate you should your class be amongst those which are on the “lighter” side of things, as all classes will receive the same level of design attention before the expansion is released. Additionally we’ll be providing more information for all classes, especially as we move into the beta phase.

Druid – April 9

These posts are being coordinated internationally so they’ll be posted at different times throughout the day and night on the given dates to give players around the world the ability to see posts made at a convenient time. This thread will be updated with links directly to each class preview as they’re posted.

Brace yourself kitty kats, Friday will be a big day with hopefully insightful information for what is to come for us. I’m sure by Saturday morning there will be many people posting on their blogs complaining about how this will ruin their class and their enjoyment in wow etc etc. As mentioned in the post, these are by no means final and are really just a preview. Remember, play the class/spec because you love it, not because its the FOTM, its OP, etc…

New Recruit-A-Friend Mount

Quote from: Bashiok (Source)
Beginning in just a few days, players who participate in the Recruit-A-Friend program will receive a whole new reward for showing a friend the ropes in Azeroth: the X-53 Touring Rocket, a two-seater flying mount that automatically increases its speed as your mount skill improves (up to 310% speed if you already have a 310% mount). The X-53 will be replacing the current Zhevra mount reward, which is retiring from the Recruit-A-Friend business after a good run. If you’ve already claimed a Zhevra (or claim one prior to the change), you’ll be able to hang on to it, of course. We’ll have more details on the new Recruit-A-Friend mount once it becomes available.Current Recruit-A-Friend FAQ –

Well shit, I just did an RAF and got my Zhevra but looks like I’m going to have to do this again, this is way too cool!
Shadowmourne Bonus
Apparently with 3.3.3, once you have a Shadowmourne in the raid for an Arthas kill, you actually get an additional drop. Naturally its nothing useful for raids but it sure is entertaining. Being a huge fan of pimping my druid I am absolutely delighted to hear about this and am cursing my guild for not working on the Shadowmourne questline earlier. The good thing is all you need is to have Shadowmourne in the raid which means I’ll probably be going back to ICC well into 85 to pickup every last item.
Gold Cap Potentially Raised in Cataclysm
Quote from: Eyonix (Source)
To answer your question though, increasing the gold cap is a definite possibility for Cataclysm — though nothing is set in stone yet.
Awesome! I’m not quite there yet but I could be pretty quickly (I think?). After I hit 100k gold I started buying some mounts for Mountain o’ Mounts. I would have been a lot closer if it were not for the 16k I spent on Reins of the Traveler’s Tundra Mammoth which is a fantastic utility mount. Either way maybe its time to make a push for the cap, only 71k to go (that’s 143k for those who are wondering).

Flying Mounts in Dalaran

My last post I had shared with you our shiney new Bloodbathed Frostbrood Vanquisher mounts and with new mounts, naturally you have to show them off. While sitting on Krasus Landing is somewhat fun, there are way more fun locations to hang out in Dalaran with your flying mounts. Wait, flying mounts in Dalaran you say? Yes! As I’m sure most people know by now there are several locations where you can use your flying mount within Dalaran. However there are also some neat ways to actually run around Dalaran on your flying mount. All will be revealed in the following post. So, lets get to it.

First I’ll list off all the locations that you can use flying mounts in Dalaran:

  1. Krasus Landing Entrance
  2. Dalaran Well
  3. Violet Citadel Grassy Area
  4. North Bank
  5. South Bank

Krasus Landing: Right at the exit to Krasus Landing, there is the 3 arches archway. In any of these arches you can mount up and show off your lovely mount. Make sure you stay in the archway, if you move out into the cobble stone area or backwards into the staircase area you will get dismounted.

Dalaran Well: You’ve seen this in another one of my posts and is another common place to see flying mounts. Simply fly above Dalaran (high enough so that you dont get the dismount warning) and when you are above the well, just dive downwards to the well. There is actually quite a bit of leeway to the left/right of the well so there is room for error. If you get the dismount warning simply move close to the center of the well and it will disappear.

Violet Citadel Grassy Area: Similar to the Dalaran Well, fly above Dalaran and as you are above the grassy area dive down and hit the grass. The grassy area is huge and yes you can move around the whole area (even behind the buildings). The only restriction is that you cannot cross the large grey stones otherwise you will get the dismount warning.

North Bank: So about up to this point I’m sure everyone is thinking “ya ya Vallen we all know that stuff its not hard” but here is where we differentiate from the rest and learn some new tricks. While the other 3 above are simple this one does require a little bit of practice but once you get it, you’ll realize its not that much more challenging to execute. The trick done correctly will allow you to walk around Dalaran with your flying mount without much restriction. So to execute there are 3 steps that need to be done. They are as follows:

  1. Fly over to the well, then line your drake up to the center of the stairs, then fly up so that your character lines up with the diamond above the bank
  2. Fly upwards at a 45 degree angle, continue to fly until on your minimap you can see your toon directly above the bank steps
  3. Dive bomb down towards the stairs and land

If you’ve done it right, you will not have the dismount warning and you will be free to wander around Dalaran. If you do get the dismount warning you’ve done it wrong and you’ll need to try again. Not a big problem, simply fly back to the well and get your dismount warning reset and try again. Now there are a few restrictions, you cannot walk onto the grey stones and you cannot cross any of the lines on the walkways. You will see these lines throughout Dalaran if you cross these lines in the walkways you will get the dismount warning and get dismounted. From the North Bank, you can essentially walk all over the main walkways in Dalaran except for the South Bank area.

Step 1: Notice that I am square to the stairs and my head lines up directly with the diamond.

Step 2: Flying up at a 45 degree angle. You might get the warning pop up but as you fly up it should disappear.

Step 3: Once your character is above the bank steps, simply drive bomb directly down. The dismount warning should not appear. If it doesn't work try again.

Hanging out in front of the Alliance inn, notice the line in the stone to my right, that is the type of line you cannot cross and are throughout Dalaran

Hanging out in front of the Horde Area

South Bank: *UPDATE* New technique thanks to Samskeyti! The technique is extremely similar to North Bank and is actually about the same difficulty.

  1. Next fly over to the Beer Garden that is directly to the right of South Bank.
  2. The whole garden area is a safe zone so land in between the tables.
  3. Rise up so that like at the North Bank, you are lined up to the diamond above the bank.
  4. Fly upwards at a 45 degree angle, continue to fly until on your minimap you can see your toon directly above the bank steps
  5. Dive bomb down towards the stairs and land

Simlar to South Bank, there are limitations to where you can run around to. The area of movement is much smaller than the North Bank and is limited to only the fountain area. However if you are an Alliance member, this is probably where you prefer to AFK.

Beer Garden to the right of South Bank. Try and land between the tables.

Fly up straight and line up with the diamond above the bank

Fly up at a 45 degree angle (remember to tilt yourself slightly so that you are flying above the stairs, then when you are above the stairs dive bomb down


So there are all the flying mount locations in Dalaran (that I know of). If you know of anymore feel free to share as I’d love to try em out. 🙂

Anzu 132 – Vallen 1

About eight months ago I posted a guide on how to solo Anzu, something that I had been doing since pre WOTLK. Today that stupid chicken finally decided to play nice and drop.

Final Score: Anzu 132 – Vallen 1

Patience truly is a virtue

I’m Retired!

As of 04/04/2011, I have officially retired from WOW. This blog will remain as a archived resource for those who know that CAT DRUID IS 4 FITE!

About Me

A blog for the ramblings and thoughts of Vallen, a full time raiding cat druid from Auchindoun-US with a passion for raiding & achievements. An avid wow player since 2004.

For any questions or concerns contact me via comments or e-mail

Achievement Points
Flying Mount
Mimiron's Head
Amani War Bear
Master Builder's Shirt
Tabard of the Lightbringer

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