Thursday, February 5, 2009

The AOE Grind

When I was leveling my first toon, a warlock, I thought I had a handle on AOE grinding. Use my pet to round up four to five mobs, DoT them all up, then fear which ever one came towards me. After a minute I'd have to run all over the place collecting loot since they all died in different locations.

Then I ran Sunken Temple. There was a Frost Mage in the group a little out of the level range on the high side. We had a room full of dragonkin melee mobs. He Ice Shielded, grabbed a preists PW: Shield and proceeded to gather up all the mobs. Frost Nova them in place. Blink away. Then Blizzarded them down. When they started to close in on him, it was a simple case of rinse and repeat.

I was awed. The control was amazing.

Eventually, I leveled my own Frost Mage to 60 so I could enjoy it as well.

Death Knights make fantastic AOE Grinders, especially if you are Unholy or Frost. First we aren't squishy like the mages and locks are. Second, we can produce tons of AOE damage while taking a hit. Third, we have the health and mitigation to stand in there.

So here's how you do it (This is the Unholy version).

Step One: Find a bunch of melee mobs in fairly close proximity you want to kill. Lately I've been using this technique on the mobs you kill for the Sons of Hodir dailies.

Step Two: Cast Bone Shield and mount up on your horse.

Step Three: Ride next to several mobs close enough to aggro them. Unlike a Frost Mage, you do not need to circle them into a tight pack to be effective, you just want them to come to you.

Step Four: Pick one out and hit it with Icy Touch. This will dismount you and all the others will start to come your way.

Step Five: Drop DnD, Plague Strike your first target, hit Pestilence followed by Unholy Blight.

Step Six: Loot.

Frosties obviously won't have Bone Shield or Unholy Blight, but they do pick up nicely with Howling Blast.

Effectively you are just AOE tanking without a pocket healer. Easy to do on non elites and makes those kill and drop quests go a lot faster.

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