Challenge Modes: An Undaunting Task

“A hero has faced it all: he need not be undefeated, but he must be undaunted.”
– Andrew Bernstein

So it’s been a while since I last posted about running Challenge Modes with the Challenge Mode Noobs.  We’ve been running it on the weekends while we can and Navi‘s been detailing our adventures as we go.  My screenshots have been piling up and I’ve been slacking on posting them, so here’s an image dump of our last runs.

There were three instances I needed to finish up the Challenge Conqueror: Bronze achievement:

Scarlet Monastery

Navi, me, Karn, Luxy and Lush in Scarlet Monastery

Navi, me, Karn, Luxy and Lush in Scarlet Monastery

Scarlet Monastery Bronze 05/24/13

Shado-Pan Monastery

Luxy, Navi, Karn, me and Lush in Shado-Pan Monastery

Luxy, Navi, Karn, me and Lush in Shado-Pan Monastery

Shado-Pan Monastery Bronze 05/24/13

Scholomance

Navi, Karn, me, Luxy and Lush in Scholomance

Navi, Karn, me, Luxy and Lush in Scholomance

Scholomance Bronze and Challenge Conqueror Bronze 05/25/13

Completing all the Challenge Modes with a bronze medal rewards you with a sweet title, “the Undaunted”.

Arvash the Undaunted

With bronzes safely secured, it was time to turn them into silvers.  I already had two in hand; one from an earlier CMN run in Mogu’shan Palace and the other in a CMS (Challenge Mode Slackers – aka my guildies, lol) run in Gate of the Setting Sun.

Temple of the Jade Serpent

Sev, Navi, me, Luxy and Lush in Temple of the Jade Serpent

Sev, Navi, me, Luxy and Lush in Temple of the Jade Serpent

Temple of the Jade Serpent Silver 06/22/13

Siege of Niuzao Temple

Karn, Luxy, me, Navi and Lush in Siege of Niuzao Temple

Karn, Luxy, me, Navi and Lush in Siege of Niuzao Temple

Siege of Niuzao Temple Silver 06/29/13

Scarlet Halls

Luxy, me and Navi in Scarlet Halls

Luxy, me and Navi in Scarlet Halls

Scarlet Halls Silver 07/06/13

This past Sunday, we tried for another silver in the Scarlet Monastery, but we had trouble with the trash pack after Thalnos the Soulrender.  When we finally figured out how to manage it, it got late and Sev had to go.  I think we’ll be ready this weekend to snag the silver in there.

With those three silvers, that puts me at 5/9 (4/9 for the Frostees), leaving four instance”S” to complete:  Scarlet Monastery, Stormstout Brewery, Shado-Pan Monastery and Scholomance.  Halfway there to our Ancestral Phoenix Mount!

To echo a comment that Luxy made on her most recent post (which you should check out for a hilarious pic of Navi, haha), I really enjoy running these CMs with the CMN (me, Lush, Luxy, Navi and our fifth revolving member, lol).  It can get frustrating at times when we make dumb mistakes on adds or missing medals by seconds, but the rewards for finally getting it are totally worth it.  It may take us one or two or four resets to earn that medal, but we never give up, everyone is a good sport and we just laugh about it after all is said and done.  Plus, what can beat bubble-running through adds and getting your favorite druid healer killed in the process? =P

Running Challenge Modes with the CMN and SR

Ready for More CMs

Sorry this post is a little dated by a week or so, but I wanted to post some our screenshots and achievements with Challenge Modes lately.  I think the most interesting part about this latest string of runs is that each one involved a different lineup.

Ready to Run Gate

Here is a Gate of the Setting Sun run that we got bronze in.  This is the original Challenge Mode Noob (CMN) group of me, Navi, Lush, Luxy and Karn.

Luxy, Arv, Lush, Karn, Navi and friends in Gate of the Setting Sun

Luxy, Arv, Lush, Karn, Navi and friends in Gate of the Setting Sun

Gate of the Setting Sun: Bronze

Another bronze medal was earned in the Siege of Niuzao Temple.  We didn’t have Karn this time, so I brought in Zug to join us.

Arv, Zug, Luxy, Lush and Navi in Siege of Niuzao Temple

Arv, Zug, Luxy, Lush and Navi in Siege of Niuzao Temple

Siege of Niuzao Temple: Bronze

The hardest Challenge Mode of the bunch, Shado-Pan Monastery proved to be just that.  Navi invited another fellow Frostee, Souglyy, to join us for the run.  We had a rough time with this CM and didn’t medal, but we pushed on and still finished it through.

Arv, Navi, Luxy, Lush and Souglyy in Shado-Pan Monastery

Arv, Navi, Luxy, Lush and Souglyy in Shado-Pan Monastery

Shado-Pan Monastery Challenger

We wanted to do another, but Souglyy was feeling tired, so Luxy asked another friend, Ut, who came along and brought his pally, Makemebad.  This time we hit up Stormstout Brewery, which I missed on a previous run that the Frostees had with Zug and Adoe.  This time, we got a Bronze.

Makemebad (Ut), Arv, Luxy, Navi and Lush in Stormstout Brewery

Makemebad (Ut), Arv, Luxy, Navi and Lush in Stormstout Brewery

Stormstout Brewery: Bronze

Later that night, we had another go at a CM I missed, Scholomance.  This time, Navi asked their warrior, Fallnapart, to come along.  We came close to getting another Bronze, but just fell short.  I did get the Challenge Conqueror achievement for completing all the Challenge Modes.

Luxy and Arv in Scholomance

Luxy and Arv in Scholomance

Scholomance Challenger and Challenge Conqueror

We tried our hand again in Scarlet Halls, a Challenge that we didn’t medal in.  Short again a dps, Navi asked one of their warlocks, Azadelta, to come.  Three brezzes!  This time we were successful in getting a Bronze medal.

Luxy, Arv, Lush, Aza and Navi in Scarlet Halls

Luxy, Arv, Lush, Aza and Navi in Scarlet Halls

Scarlet Halls: Bronze

Zug was feeling the CM bug one Monday night, so he got me, Adoe, Shadeey and Slice to group together for a Gate of the Setting Sun run, the first Shadow Rising CM run in a long time.  We ended up running it three times in a row, each time getting faster and faster.  On the last run, we were making good time for Silver and were surprised that we didn’t get it after killing Raigonn.  The reason:

Two More Enemies!

Yep, two freakin’ mobs, lol.  We quickly ran out of the instance and ran back in and took care of a few adds that we skipped at the beginning to finally claim our prize.

Shadeey, Zug, Arv and Slice in Gate of the Setting Sun (Not Pictured: Adoe)

Shadeey, Zug, Arv and Slice in Gate of the Setting Sun (Not Pictured: Adoe)

Gate of the Setting Sun: Silver

This past Monday, the original SR Challenge Mode team of me, Zug, Adoe, Sorak and Slice decided to go back to Gate and improve on our Silver and go for the Gold.  On our best attempt, we completed the run in 16 minutes, 4 minutes shy of the Gold.  We would have had more attempts at it, but with all the resetting we were doing, some of us got the “You’ve entered too many instances recently” message or were having login issues.  So we left it at that for the night.

Navi mentioned on her blog that I might be getting CM burnout from running on two teams, but honestly, I’m enjoying it.  Different compositions call for different strategies and you’ve really gotta think quick on your feet to adjust.  With the CMN team, we’ve got at least two brezzes from Navi and Lush, so you have a little leeway if someone goes down.  With the SR team, we have no brezzers, so you really have to pop CDs and blessings at the right time to keep everyone alive cause you can’t really afford to be a man down if you want to make good time.

But no matter what, I’m determined to help both teams reach their goals, whether to get all Silvers for the mount or even Golds for the transmog gear. =)

Challenge Modes with the Frostees

Getting ready for Mogu'shan Palace Challenger

Challenge Modes.  Heroic instances on crack.  These special instances are not to be taken lightly and require strategy and finesse to complete.  There’s no chain pulling and AoE’ing all the things down; now you have to be smart and use CC and your class abilities to make it through safely and quickly.

The first time I attempted a Challenge Mode was back during early 5.1.  It was me, Zug, Sorak on Fayle, Slice and Adoe and we tried out Gate of the Setting Sun.  I don’t really remember much of the instance, but I think we got the first two bosses down before we got stuck, frustrated and eventually gave up and decided to come back to try this another time.

A couple of weeks ago, I got a whisper from Navi asking if I wanted to run some Challenge Modes with her and Luxy.  I’ve been wanting to get back and try them again since my first attempts at it, so I was excited to go and said yes.  Originally, we were supposed to have Roshii and Souglyy round out the group, but they weren’t able to make it, so Navi brought Lushnek instead and Luxy invited her mage friend, Karnmageddon.  Navi wrote up an excellent post about our first week with the Challenge Modes here, even making an interesting comparison between Challenge Modes to the Disney movie, Wreck-it Ralph, lol.  I’ll summarize a little bit of that week.

Our first Challenge Mode was Scarlet Monastery, which was our trial by fire run.  We wiped plenty of times and didn’t medal, but we did see it the whole way through and still got an achievement for completing it.

Scarlet Monastery Challenger Time 04/13/13

I also unintentionally got an achievement off Thalnos the Soulrender by leaving three Empowered Zombies alive.  The fight did last a while and I guess we were so focused on the boss that we really weren’t paying attention to the adds, lol.

Empowered Spiritualist

The next day, we tried our hands at the Temple of the Jade Serpent.  Karn had done this Challenge Mode before, so he gave us some good tips along the way and we managed to squeak by with our first medal, a bronze!

Temple of the Jade Serpent Challenger Time 04/14/13

A pretty nice reward for our first go at Challenge Modes. =)

Temple of the Jade Serpent Challenger Groupshot 04/14/13

Temple of the Jade Serpent Challenger Achievements

________

Last Saturday, we started out our Challenge Mode weekend with Mogu’shan Palace, which was the  daily on Dath’Remar.  The instance went pretty smooth and quick and we improved on our bronze medal the week before by snagging our first silver!

Mogu'shan Palace Challenger Time 04/20/13

Taking the group shot was a challenge in itself, at least for me.  Apparently, I just fail in jumping onto objects and kept leaping over Xin the Weaponmaster’s chair for our group shot.  After a couple of attempts (I got on the chair once and tried to use my Instant Statue Pedestal and fell right though the chair, ><), I finally got settled to take our screenshot.

Mogu'shan Challenger Groupshot 04/20/13

Mogu'shan Palace Challenger Achievements

We then tried to do the Challenge Mode daily on Drak’Tharon, Scholomance, but I didn’t have enough time to do it.  With the five bosses and all that trash, I decided that it would take too long to do.  So we opted for Scarlet Halls instead, which Navi heard was the easiest of all the Challenge Modes.

I don’t know how this was supposed to be the easiest or maybe we were just doing it wrong, but we ended up dying…a lot, lol.  Most of it was because I didn’t have any Invisible Potions on me to skip a lot of the trash, especially the gauntlet after defeating Houndmaster Braun.  I think even Luxy had some defective pots on her, she would pop them running in, but the mobs would immediately see her and destroy her.  So we spent a lot of time corpse running through the gauntlet, while Navi and Lushnek would rez us at the end of it.  We eventually got to Flameweaver Koegler with just minutes left to get a bronze medal, but we messed up on interrupting his Book Burner ability, which filled the room with fire and wiped us.  Nevertheless, we got back and finished the instance, hopefully we can make it smoother next time. =)

Scarlet Halls Challenger Time 04/20/13

Getting two medals out of four instances isn’t bad for our first time running Challenge Modes.  I had a lot of fun doing these and I know everyone else agrees.  We will definitely be prepared (and I will be POTpared, lol) for next time.