Last night, after 11 raiding nights, spread out over 5-6 weeks, at a cost of about $1,000 gold to those of us who came most nights (we had a few weeks with repairs turned on which was a blessing, but this is still our RL's ballpark cost), we defeated the Lich King.With 10/10 standing for the ending which feels pretty damn impressive to me for a first kill.
This also meant I FINALLY got to experience the cut scene and the ending of the fight myself. The cinematic was a perfect end cap to the Wrathgate cinematic, and an effective closure to this expansion.
Good job Blizzard. And thank you for keeping one of my favorite characters true to himself to the very end. Sniffle. That's all I am saying about the ending and the cinematic, to avoid spoiling it for anyone. And yes, at the end of the fight, I thanked my guildies for allowing me to make it through that fight to see the conclusion myself first-hand, without having it spoiled.
The spoilers from twitterland prepared me somewhat for the ending but did not totally ruin the impact for me. So that's a good thing. And thank you for Naie after that incident for encouraging me to keep hope alive I could attain my personal goal, retaining the rallying cry I yelled every night 1 of every ICC raid we've done as a team.
It's been a long road to the Lich King. My RL just reminded me it has been 3 tanks, 5 healers, and 10 dps that participated in the learning curve from start to finish too. A huge effort. But we're done. It feels pretty amazing to actually kill the final boss of an expansion before the next expansion (or all its uber talent changes hits -- hello patch 3.0 I am looking at you.)
I took a ton of screenshots, none of which I am posting here as most are incredibly spoilerific, like this one. And I sat down on the stairs of the frozen throne for a very long time, and got screenshots there with some of my favorite raiders.
How We Stack Up
Just for fun, here are some statistics regarding our server's raiding progress, courtesy of Guild Progress:
|Ranked Guilds: 310|
|209 Alliance 101 Horde
Thanks to this week's Blog Azeroth Shared Topic for giving me an excuse to share my love of Undercity.
I love the overall Tim Burtonesque feel as I wander through the halls. I love that it's on a circular grid, making it easier to get to where you are going than Orgrimmar for instance.
It's a place that feels truly entrenched in the lore. Much like the Plage Lands. One of my favorite plague quests sends you back to talk to (squee for a shout out to one of my favorite bands ever), the census taker, to try to find a restless ghost's next of kin, who turns out to be the poor sad cockroach vendor, Jeremiah.
Add to it the subbasement level headquarters of the Royal Apothecary Society, and you have a city that truly feels like a perfect home for my forsaken ladies.
A few things about the Undercity that you might not know, as noted in its WOWiki page:
My only complaints are that it could really use a good tavern in the vein of Gallow's End tavern, and my poor Troll and Tauren have to dismount to use the elevator. But these are small complaints. I hope the Cataclysm changes are kind to my beloved home city.
Alliance side, Stormwind City has long held my heart, despite my not playing any humans.
I love the many fishing spots along the canals, and wandering through the shops. The main bank/inn/auction house area is nice and compact. Folks always seemed to prefer Ironforge as a hub, but I love Stormwind for feeling like a city in which people actually lived, and worked, and sat around drinking beer with their buddies. You can stroll through the park, admire ships at the harbor, browse through the royal library and art gallery, or generally lose yourself in your character's thought here.
Of all the places in the game, to me, this feels most like a real thriving capital city.
After writing this I am struck by the fact that my two favorite cities in WoW are those with canals. I guess my love for Venice, Italy is showing through here.
I don't want to spend a bunch of time on the worst towns, but will say these are the major cities I avoid when possible:
I would have loved for this to be the Kingslayer edition, but we had one healer beg off in advance (whom we replaced) and one no show after having to work late (who didn't contact us and thus for whom we waited 40 minutes), which meant no attempts were made on the Lich King last night. Our somewhat dejected band of pirates cranked through the weekly (XT) and then indulged me in something I've wanted to revisit for some time: Blackwing Lair.
I spent months and months in there in vanilla WoW, healing on my druid, and really wanted to go back in a role that could focus on more than just the tiny health bars. I think we tore through in about 40 minutes. It was a great ending to a long, tough day.
And thus, I bring you, 5 screenshots from BWL:
Knee-deep in skelly bones...
Just moments after my mage got a strand crawler pet in her fishing rewards bag, my main finally got her sewer rat!
After tons of fishing across 7 fisherwomen, this is my first rat. To say that I thought I'd never fish one up is an understatement.
Does this mean I should spend a day going after the even more elusive Mister Pinchy?
I'd forgotten to check my Oracles egg. I've been buying them for years now. I wasn't expecting to see another proto-drake, figuring my druid had taken all that good luck already.
This was taken on the Purple Parlor's balcony, looking out over Dalaran.
For the full round-up, check out MMO Champion's Priest Changes post.
I'm not excited about the addition of shadow orbs (Casting spells grants a chance for Shadow Orbs to be created that fly around you and increase your shadow damage. This will help lower-level characters feel more like "Shadow priests" before they obtain Shadowform.). I have orbs on my shaman. I didn't need them on my shadow priest.
And by removing our misery hit debuff, they bring all of us casters closer together with less unique utility/abilities. So that, in their words, "In general we're going to push even harder in Cataclysm for bringing people you like to play with, not bringing people who have awesome buffs. The answer to almost every question of "But why would they bring me?" should be "Because you know what the hell you're doing." Which I thought was what they said when they made all the WotLK class changes... :) At least some things stay the same
It would thrill my 25-man raiding team if I woke up tomorrow and decided I'd really like to heal on my shadow priest. But that's not going to happen. And that's a good thing.
The introduction of dual specs has been a double-edged sword. On the one hand, it has provided players who really like to perform several roles to do so on the same character. Or allowed raiders to save costly respec charges when they want to go PvP. But it's also created potential issues for players who truly enjoy one specific role a hybrid can play and who may then feel pressure from their guild to swap out and execute that other role "for the good of the raid."
I have to stop at this point for an aside.
At the start of WotLK, I shelved my Boomkin to level my shaman healer, "for the good of the guild." As in, no one else was going to level their healer so if I wanted to do any instances I'd better be able to heal them. That spilled over to my first forays into Naxx with an affiliated 10-man guild that my shadow priest had ton a bunch of Kara with at BC's end. Although I'd made it clear my druid was still my main, and she was a Boomkin (having been very unhappy with 3.0 changes making my prior 3 years' spec and healing style no longer competitive), we kept having fights we needed a third healer to accomplish. After failing at healing the four horseman fight, as the sole healer in the back, off spec on my druid, I was convinced to bring in my shaman.
This became a recurrence. If you look at my shaman and druid's armories side-by-side, you can see the failings of my raid team. The fights they just could not get down to accomplishing with 2 Main Spec healers. Not only did I start to resent having to swap out to heal, missing out on gear, I was missing out on the sheer fun I had when playing my main in her main spec roll.
Now, back to our main topic.
A key factor in deciding to make the leap to the horde last Spring was finding a group of folks starting Naxx, who overflowed with healers and welcomed having a shadow priest in the raid. In the three plus years since I rolled Anexxia, and for the 6 months I played my Alliance priest, rolling through Karazhan weekly, all I have done as a priest is melt faces. Since the very first time I threw out a purple beam and eviscerated some unlucky creature, I've been hooked.
I've spent the past year, i.e. the bulk of my WotLK experience, raiding on the shadow priest. I've tweaked my gear, my rotation, my knowledge of maximizing my output to a point where I am almost always in the zone when I'm playing. You know -- that point where you're not thinking about what you need to do next, you're just flowing, and kicking ass. I've taken it seriously to try to get my knowledge of my role, in playing my shadow priest, up to the level of competence I felt I had in my three years of raiding on my druid.
I feel pretty close now. I am typically our top spellcaster in our raids, and even, every so often, edge out my SO the DK with the monster DPS. I've attended 2 or 3 or even 4 raids per week since July, depending on if we needed a little extra push for a progression fight. I've proven myself as being a totally capable, committed, core part of our progression raiding team.
The one thing I have not done in the past year? I haven't learned how to raid heal as a holy priest. Why? Because I have a healer (my shaman) that I have raid experience with and whom I enjoy healing on. I can still do that with minimal add-ons (I had grid set up for her and that's really it.) And I perform my main role exceptionally well. Have I been sat from 10 mans on occasion, seated so another DPS can take my place? Of course I have been. We have enough DPS whitelisted to raid 10 mans in our guild to have 3 10-mans a week If only we had the tanks and healers to support that, which we don't.
Luckily, we do have some folks who do enjoy their off specs, and do them well enough to act as a band aid when we don't have a full team of main spec healers, which seems to be more often than not these days. We also have two DPS whom we'd allowed to swap out from being Main Spec'd healers during the healer glut at the end of the year, whom we've tapped to do some healing again lately.
But to be frank, if you want to make progress or progression bosses, you need Mains, playing their main spec'd roles. Yes, we all know a person or two who kick as much ass in their off spec role or on their alts as they do on their mains. But that is the exception, not the rule.
I lack both the time and the interest to download a bunch of mods, configure them, learn how to use them, then absorb a ton of theorycrafting in case I am needed to turn in my kick ass DPS to perform as a crappy healer for a raid night. It would take months of practice for me to realistically get a spec I have never played (in a role I have only done in a few farm alt raids on my resto shaman) to be able to be performed anywhere near on par with the expertise with which I play my shadow priest.
And then there's the fact that I simply do not want to do it.
I raid healed for 3 years on my druid. But it's been a year and a half, almost two years since I played her in that role. That's not who I am as a raider any more. I'm Anexxia. The shadow priest. And I kick ass at my job.
I am all for allowing those who want to swap to an offspec to make a run happen do so. But I draw the line at forcing anyone in our raid into a role that they are not interested in pursuing. No one should feel as though they are being asked to carry the raid on their back. "You need to do this for the good of the raid" becomes a cross far to heavy for any of us to bear. I know -- I've tried to carry it, and it made me stop enjoying the game.
We've had this gap we've been trying to duck tape for several months now. And there is clearly only one solution...
Straw Hat Pirates, the oldest horde guild on Bronzebeard, is in need of ICC 10/25 raid ready healers. We are 11/12 in 10-man (got our first peek at the Lich King this week), and 6/12 in 25. Raid times are 6:15 p.m. Paciific (Server time) to 9 p.m. Raid schedule can fluctuate, but Fridays are a night off, and Tuesdays are the weekly raid quest night, with the 25 man and two nights of 10s other nights.
If you are interested in a sociable guild that has a casual raiding team, head to the website and submit an arrplication. You'll make a shadow priest smile.
From me, my guildies and the Lich King.
(don't click if you don't want any ICC 10 spoilers. i.e. a screenshot of the Lich king on his throne. with bunnies)
I'm not one to make a soup-to-nuts guide to shadow priesting -- I wasn't keeping a blog or journal going 3 years ago when I leveled either of my two shadow priests (one Horde, one Alliance), and plenty of other folks have done a great job of that already.
But that said, I do often get questions from new shadow priests, or most often, from healing priests looking to get crib notes for their shadow off-spec. Hence, some FAQs. If you have a question I haven't answered here, leave it in the comments and I'll answer it in Volume 2. A big THANK YOU to my tweeps who suggested some of the questions.
Q: Which is better, spirit or crit? And should I choose haste over spellpower?
A: I go with the stat weightings provided by Shadowpriest.com:
What this means is haste and spellpower are weighted almost the same, and hit is rated as more valuable right up until you reach your hit cap. Spirit and Int are your least valued stats, and better suited, perhaps, for your healing set. Crit is still tasty, but not as much as haste.
Q: What hit cap should I be targeting?
This gives me the leeway to wear primarily haste/sellpower gear, with a few pieces that are bulked up on hit (I used a hit trinket forever which meant I only had to wear 3 other hit pieces.) Here's the breakdown:
Q: How about tips for the disc priest that only pretends to be shadow on those pesky low healer fights?!
A:The most important thing I can say to you is to invest in a DoT timer and resist the urge to clip your Vampiric Touch. Don't put up your Shadow Word: Pain until you have 5 stacks of shadow weaving plus any other spellpower buff from trinkets, etc. Mind Flay is your all-purpose fill-in sell when Mind Blast isn't up and it's not time to refresh your DoTs. And finally, 4 or more targets are optimal for Mind Sear. Less than that and you are better off DoTing 2 and focus firing the other.
Q: How do you prioritize and balance haste/crit/sp, etc as you gear up?
A: Haste didn't make it onto the scene until I was level 70 if I recall. So I can only answer from the 70-80 sphere. Spellpower is the end all be all stat, in my mind, as you level. Haste becomes attractive once you have better gear that gives you a solid mana pool. I didn't start truly noticing haste's discrete effect on my DPS output until it got up to about 19%. That is also the point at which I started using haste pots, rather than Wild Magic Pots, on boss fights. You should get the incidental crit you want/need as you go along as a secondary stat.
Q: Meteor Chaser's Raiment or the T10 chest?
A: They both cost the same in badges, but unless you are doing hard modes and can get the max upgrade to the T10 chest, the Meteor Chaser's Raiment is your best buy. For more details on the T10 versus the other emblem gear, see my Frost Emblem post.
Q: Shadow Word Death: Will this get me chewed out by the healers and kicked out of a group?
A: If you have a healer who is not used to shadow priests, an ill-timed SW:D is likely to result in a tongue lashing. Because it's rarely the case it's used as the death blow for a mob, which means you, dear caster, get it back in your face in damage. And it's rarely your best use of a GCD these days in bang for your buck, so it's typically not part of a rotation, except for those folks who like to include it in their initial ramp up for their 5 stacks of shadow weaving. So, use it sparingly, and when it makes sense. Don't use it when the entire team is taking AOE damage or you may die. Do use it when you are having to run around or being tossed up in the air to sneak in a little damage.
Q: What's your rotation?
A: It varies depending upon the situation. In 5-mans, I tend to DoT the primary target then mind sear because everything dies too fast to make single targeting them down feasible (too often there's not enough time for the DoTs to tick.) In raids, my boss rotation typically starts with a VT, then DP, MB, MF, MF then SW:P. That second go of MF is so my trinket's 10 stacks of extra spell damage is up before I cast SW:P.
Q: What shadow priest mods do you use?
A: Apparently there are a few Shadow Priest-specific DPS and buff mods I have never heard of, because folks often ask me if I use them. I keep it simple: Quartz Castbar to see when I should start queuing up my next spell, and Need to Know which allows me to track my DoTs. Omen and DBM for raiding. Auctionator and Lil'Sparky's Workshop for crafting, though the latter is giving me LUA errors now.
More soon. If you have a question, leave it below.
On our Festergut 25 attempt this past Monday, I was blessed with being placed in the melee group. This meant I didn't get the barfs and could stand still and DPS the boss except when I was gifted with a spore I had to run to a ranged team. My DPS increased by 1300-1500 thanks to this placement And as expected, there was at least one public case of ruffled feathers over this placement.
Why did a shadow priest get this coveted placement over another DPS? Aren't shadow priests the class least affected by the having to run to and fro for Festergut? Alas, no, which should have been clear to the person asking me these questions if they had reviewed our raid logs. It takes a while for shadow priest DPS to ramp up. First, you have to get your 5 stacks of shadow weaving up. Next, you have to keep on refreshing that SW:P that you put up after those 5 stacks and during the use proc of your trinket, careful not to let it drop off. And finally, you want to keep your other DoTs up, without clipping them unnecessarily.
Yes, Devouring Plague is an instant cast. But Vampiric Touch isn't -- it has a cast time so I can't cast it on the run. Ditto for Mind Blast. And Mind Flay is a channeled spell. And my Muradin's Spyglass rocks as long as I keep up my10 stacks at all times. So, not sure how one would come to think that the running in and out for spores would somehow not affect my DPS. I'm not just going to fling out DP until I am out of mana to try to keep the DPS flowing. And since you asked, no, in a fight with the entire raid taking damage, I'm not inclined to Shadow Word: Death myself either.
Being put on the spot, by someone I don't really know, who was jonesing for the special placement I'd gotten (which had netted me our #2 damage done slot overall for the fight, #4 on DPS) made me pretty uncomfortable. Personally, I wouldn't have brought it up in guild chat, or proceeded to whisper a guildie, asking them to justify why they deserved the spot. I stood in the middle because that's what my raid leader asked me to do, just as the prior week I'd stood at range, gotten the pukes just about every go, and done significantly less DPS.
This brings up a larger issue for me though which is not presuming to tell others how to play their class. Telling a guildie who excels at their class that they should do XYZ instead of what they are doing is out of line. Period. Firstly, it's not your business; if they want suggestions from the team they'll ask. And secondly, you don't top the damage charts by doing it wrong. You really don't. I promise. Facerolling OPd class du jour excepted, of course.
When in doubt, keep your opinions to yourself. When my guildie confessed he was jealous of my placement, after the harangue about my playing, I said "yeah." Because that much was apparent already, or we wouldn't have been having the conversation. A conversation that, to be totally honest, really turned me off. So next time you get the urge to offer some unsolicited advice to someone, considering keeping it to yourself. Or go tweet your thought or write a blog post. Your raid will be the better for it.
Patch 3.3 brought with it a new top-end emblem (Emblem of Frost), and a nice assortment of gear to fill in some lingering holes or help with the never-ending hit-swap dance. Personally, for now, I am hanging on to my badges to see how my luck fares in our ICC 10 runs, and how our progress goes in ICC 25. I'm not at all tempted to purchase my first few pieces of tier gear. Overall, other than the shoulders, it's looking like it's not worth wearing until you have the 4-piece bonus, or have been able to upgrade pieces via the marks that drop off each wing's final boss. So, after giving it a couple more weeks, I'll decide if I want to take the plunge and upgrade my less than 245 iLvl pieces, or wait until I have the 300-something badges for 4 pieces of tier gear.
If you purchased all 5 of your tier items, you would be looking at an emblem spend of 405.
As previously noted, I'm not a math geek so I am not going to argue BiS (best in Slot) with the maths here. Rather, I am going to discuss your gearing up opportunities by boss, to help you prep your wish list. If you want to see BiS across all available 10-man and 25-man raids, including ICC hard mode boss drops, shadowpriest.com has an excellent list. With more math than you can shake a stick at.
Words of Caution: As with ToC, you will want to be picking up some haste gear from ICC which means doing the hit-swapping dance, so don't be quick to shard or sell your existing gear when you receive an upgrade. You will likely have to swap gear around for raids to ensure you stay hit capped.
Your boss-by-boss gear guide, after the jump.
Here are my answers to the DPS survey meme from (http://dkdeathgoddess.blogspot.com/) that has been making the rounds...
What is the name, class, and spec of your primary dps?
Anexxia, shadow priest.
What is your primary dpsing environment? (i.e. raids, pvp, 5 mans)
10- and 25-man raids.
What is your favorite dps spell/ability for your class and why?
Mind Sear. MWAHAHAHAHA. Watching Ony's whelps blow up with it is immensely gratifying.
What dps spell do you use least for your class and why?
I never use any of my holy damage spells. Unless I am running someone through SFK which has a few of those pesky shadow resistant worgen.
What do you feel is the biggest strength of your dps class and why?
We bring a number of buffs to the raid (fort, sirit, shadow protection, replenishment, raid-wide incremental healing from VE), good DPS, and a sexy shadowform to boot! So, in short, we bring the sexy.
What do you feel is the biggest weakness of your dps class and why?
Lack of burst DPS. When heroism/bloodlust goes up...I just get to mindflay faster. This looks to be somewhat addressed in 3.3 as far as haste affecting DoT ticks.
In a 25 man raiding environment, what do you feel, in general, is the best dps assignment for you?
Anything that involves quickly dispatching a bunch of pesky adds, unless you want me dispelling the boss, in which case that needs to be my DPS assignment as well.
What dps class do you enjoy dpsing with most and why?
Elemental shamans are an excellent compliment to any caster's firepower, if we can stay in range of their yummy totems. And of course, Boomkins. And mages if they give me their focus magic...
What tanking class do you enjoy dpsing with least and why?
I love pally tanks - they never kvetch about how we need to single target DPSing packs of mobs. Alas, many of the druid tanks post-Wrath have been more likely to have issues keeping aggro on multiple mobs, and tell us things like "no AOE!" Which makes me sad, and gives me poor DPS since low health mobs don't give the DoTs time to tick if we are focus firing them in order.
What is your worst habit as a dps?
I panic shield low-life DPSers, and pp out and heal if a healer goes down in raids.
What is your biggest pet peeve in a group environment while dpsing?
Being micromanaged by non-shadowpriest players as to what spells I should be using. No thx. And being told to silence, even after reminding folks multiple times that it's a PvP talent that I didn't put points in for raiding.
Do you feel that your class/spec is well balanced with other dps?
My guild's raids of late have been optimized for melee DPS, which significantly decreased my overall damage. It would be nice if my personal performance was not impacted by the rarity of an elemental shaman, boomkin or unholy DK in our raids.
What tools do you use to evaluate your own performance as a damage dealer?
Recount and WMO.
What do you think is the biggest misconception people have about your class?
That shadow priest = sucky DPS. In our 10s, our top 3 are a tight pack, and I am usually second place after my SO's DK. And when our 25s have been more balanced, I've also consistently been top 3. Of course, we have barely scratched the surface of hard modes, and only in 10s, so that may be why mmmv.
What do you feel is the most difficult thing for new dpsers of your class to learn?
DoT management. I think folks put up SW:P before having 5 stacks of shadow weaving, and clip DoTs or let them fall off.
What dps class do you feel you understand least?
Paladin. I have one at level 20, but I am a ranged caster at heart. So paladins confuzzled me.
What add-ons or macros do you use, if any, to aid you in dps?
Quartz castbar to help me see how latency is affecting my cast time.
Strength over other stats or balanced stat allocation, and why?
Spellpower, spellpower, spellpower. With our DoT baesd rotations, you want as much bang for your buck on each tick, with SP being your best buy stat-wise.
I'm too late to the party on this to tag anyone!
Gosh so many things for us all the complain about...or not. Maybe this is a good time to reflect on past years where we had queues up to 1k players and DCs left and right and zombie plagues keeping us from spending our happy free time in game. So if these are the top of our complaint lists right now, then perhaps we should count ourselves lucky.
I joined the Kel'Thuzad fan club today. I know, I know! After my, you know, killing him a few times, you might have gotten the impression I didn't like him.
But, you see, he made me an offer I couldn't refuse. By the name of Lil' K.T. And it was contingent upon joining his fan club. So there ya go.
I simply...could not...resist.
I got up bright and early this morning, thanks to our falling back to standard time here in the U.S., and set about completing Day of the Dead festivities on my favorite characters across three servers. Day of the Dead is a celebration of one's deceased ancestors. For this reason, it's imperative you head to the graveyard outside your race's home city, or to Shatt. Otherwise, though you can obtain the achievement, you won't be able to complete the quest for honoring your ancestors' spirits. Apparently you can also complete these activities at Dalaran's graveyard, but for the life of me, I have no idea where it is.
It was fun getting a festive 12-hour costume, and the adorable (yet, alas, not permanent) teeny macabre marionette pet, and dancing with the graveyard spirits. I am more than a little disappointed that the marionette is only available to you during Day of the Dead-- he was set to become my undead shadow priest's favorite pet ever. *sniffle*
A nice bonus was the 26g and change my 80s made from making the day of the Dead bread and fulfilling that quest (which is how you get the marionette.) The XP awarded to lowbies is pretty nice too -- 3k to my level 31, 9k to my level 58, and 20k to my level 72 who completed it. Smart of Blizz to include this little push to get even the most bah humbug players amongst us into the holiday spirit.
For a look at all the things you can buy and links to the quests, check out the Moonglade blog's Day of the Dead guide. More pictures of various races' dancing spirits after the cut. And don't tell anyone, but my favorite so far was the synchronized male NE dancers in Darn. It was epic.
Things got a little Spooky in the World of Warcraft in the wee hours of the morning today. It's the start of the annual Hallow's End celebrations, marking the break of the Foresaken from the Lich King.
The peeps at WoWHead put together a comprehensive guide to all the fun and merry making in store for those in pursuit of the Hallowed achievement.
I got off to a good start, including scoring a Sinister Squashling from the Horseman, 3-manned with my usual hit squad. I was somewhat surprised I hadn't done more of these achievements last year on the shadow priest, but then again, I was still raiding Alliance-side at that point, so I guess there wasn't enough time to do everything. Unfortunately, RL calls so no additional time for trick-or-treating or achievement crawling today.
Fun fact: Dalaran has 3 candy buckets available to you: your faction Inn, Ledgermain Lounge and the Cantrips and Crows Inn at the Sewer.
More festive screenshots after the jump.
Patch 3.2 landed like a Loot Reaver pinata. Everywhere you looked were mains and alts alike running instances like mad and jumping significant WoW Heroes levels. While it is all very awesome, it's also left many folks a little uncertain as to what is available to them and from where. We'll start to tackle that problem here.
Trial of the Crusader (normal)
Dropping all iLvl 200 items on regular mode, just like the raid instance Naxxaramas, some have said this 5-man instance has made Naxx obsolete. I disagree since the raiding experience Naxx provides is invaluable. However, this instance is a great way to quickly gear up your alts, or stock up on your Abyss Crystals as the case may be.
Trial of the Crusader (heroic)
Dropping all ilvl 219 items, this heroic 5-man instance even provides upgrades for folks who've gone through Naxx 10.
On the heels of my 10-man guide to shadow priest gear upgrades available in Ulduar, I bring you this heroic 25-man version. (it's going to be hard to retrain myself on that one.)
As previously noted, I'm not a math geek so I am not going to argue BiS (best in Slot) with the maths here. Rather, I am going to discuss your gearing up opportunities by boss, to help you prep your wish list. If you want to see BiS across all available 10-man and 25-man raids, including Ulduar hard mode boss drops, shadowpriest.com has an excellent list. With more math than you can shake a stick at.
Words of Caution: Much of the Ulduar loot lacks hit. So don't be quick to shard or sell your existing gear when you receive an upgrade. You may have to swap gear around for raids to ensure you stay hit capped.
Your boss-by-boss gear guide, after the jump.
On the heels of having had, shall we say, "lively" discussions with Master Looters over whether two belts were "best for healers. healers get first priority" in Ulduar in the past two weeks (once in 25 the other in 10), I realized the best defense is an offense. These discussions go a lot more smoothly when you can point to unbiased third parties and say "um, no."
I'm not a math geek so I am not going to argue BiS (best in Slot) with the maths here. Rather, I am going to discuss your gearing up opportunities by boss, to help you prep your wish list. If you want to see BiS across all available 10-man and 25-man raids, including Ulduar hard mode boss drops, shadowpriest.com has an excellent list. With more math than you can shake a stick at.
Words of Caution: Much of the Ulduar loot lacks hit. So don't be quick to shard or sell your existing gear when you receive an upgrade. You may have to swap gear around for raids to ensure you stay hit capped.
The list, after the break.