Today Blizzard has published the unlocking schedule for Blackrock Foundry, the second raid zone for the new World of Warcraft expansion, Warlords of Draenor. If you're already getting sick of farming Highmaul, you only have to wait it out a few more weeks until you can start experiencing the next level up in raiding. Along with Blackrock Foundry comes the three new sets of tiered gear, beginning with Tier 17. If you missed the armor sets, have a look at them here. This page brings me great joy – not because I'm particularly fond of any of the sets, but many of the knee pads in the preview images look like feet and I like to imagine that there's a Blizzard artist out there who enjoys creating comically tiny short people. As a short person who isn't always comically tiny, I can appreciate it. The lower tiered sets look kind of boring or goofy to me, but the tier from Mythic Blackrock Foundry is pretty sweet. I'm pretty sure the Priest design is a leftover from Pandaria. I can't complain though, honestly, because how my character looks is totally on me. Because I'm a lazy slob, my druid looks like a clown car, and that's only my fault for not transmogging.
So, how about that schedule, eh? It's not unlocking the same way that Highmaul did. LFR will come much later than the rest of the unlocks. My guess is, Blizzard doesn't want us just loot pinataing our way through Highmaul too fast. While some guilds are already clearing Mythic, my little guild just tried Heroic for the first hour of our two hour raid time Monday. We got Kargath down with a little effort and then went to go see what the Butcher was like. It's a total gear check here, since there are not extra mechanics, just extra damage. If we could bang on a Blackrock Foundry LFR loot pinata right now, it could trivialize Highmaul content faster. I'm perfectly okay with Blizzard holding off on LFR while those of us who are slower at consuming content have a little more time with it. However, I am a huge fan of options, so I do look forward to being able to get into this.
On February 3, the gates to Blackrock Foundry open for both Normal and Heroic modes. Alongside this, a new world boss, Rukhmar, becomes available. Rukhmar roams around the south-western shore of the Spires of Arak peninsula. A week later on February 10, Mythic mode opens up. Two weeks after Blackrock Foundry initially becomes available, the first wing for LFR raid finder becomes available. Slagworks includes Gruul, Oregorger, and The Blast Furnace. The next week on February 24, Hans’gar and Franzok, Flamebender Ka’graz, and Kromog become available in Wing 2: The Black Forge. Wing 3, Iron Assembly, unlocks on March 10 with Beastlord Darmac, Operator Thogar, and The Iron Maidens bosses. The final wing in Blackrock Foundry, Blackhand's Cruicible, unlocks on March 24 with Blackhand himself.
If you plan on joining me in the loot pinata party, in order to hop on over into Blackrock Foundry LFR, you'll need an item level of 635. You have plenty of time to get there! Last monday, my priest was at 611 and is now at 637, so there are no excuses. Hope into Highmaul and get showered with welfare epics over the next few weeks to get yourself Foundry ready. If you're new to 100 and you're not sure where to start, ShadowPriestCambria put together this nice little guide over in the World of Warcraft subreddit that's pretty good. My Priest's trinkets were pretty weak, so I took the advice here for some ideas. People are suggesting that for normal progression, having an item level of 645 is ideal.
Hopefully opening day for Blackrock Foundry won't mean yet another DDoS against Blizzard servers, but that has been the trend ever since Warlords of Draenor launched. I honestly hope anyone planning on doing this gets a better hobby between now and then, because it's not cute or funny. I'll be there on day one to check out the scene and probably die a few times. Are you looking forward to heading into Blackrock Foundry? How is your Highmaul progression doing?
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