So there I was, just minding my own business and trying to get the smoke out of my gear (being a flaming kitty is cool and all, but the dry cleaning costs are incredibly expensive), when one of those bronze dragons showed up. She looked human, but I can smell dragon a mile away (which incidentally has not helped much, being as the things seem to be around every corner these days -- I thought dragons were rare, mystical creatures?).
"Champion," she said. "My master, Nozdormu, needs your help urgently. The list of heroes powerful enough to assist him in his time of need are few. Please come at once!"
I glanced at the list. Apparently, "few" means half the population of Azeroth. Still, I was bored.
"So," I said, wearily. "What needs killing now?"
"He does," she replied. "We must kill his future self, who is preventing us from going to the past to get the item needed to save the present."
"Right. Wait, what?" I answered, confusedly. "If he has a future self, than that means we've already succeeded, and ... fine. Just tell me where to go, before I have to think about it again."
End Time, the first of the new 5-man instances, is arguably the easiest. In order to get to not-Nozdormu, you'll have to go through two of four echoes, which are alternate future versions of today's faction leaders. There's a bit of trash, but nothing that can't be AoEed down. As such, we'll jump right to talking about the echoes, which are more interesting.
Echo of Jaina
Just like all the other annoying frost mages you fight in PvP, Jaina moves and Blinks all over the place. (So clear trash, mkay?) Unlike the annoying frost mages you fight in PvP, she comes armed with proximity mines. These Flarecores have to be detonated ASAP, as otherwise they swell up and detonate anyway for major AoE damage. A ranged DPSer should handle this, but if not, this is the one time you're allowed to stand in the fire.
This is a pretty frequent group-wiper, though not so much now that people have figured the mechanic out. Every so often, Sylv will hop into the air and summon a ring of ghouls, which will then close in on your position like the ghouls in every terrible zombie movie. The ghouls have a good amount of health, so a coordinated break-out is necessary. Either have someone who can mark a ghoul, or simply drop a raid mark on the ground and kill the ghoul closest to it. Either way works; just coordinate before the pull.
Baine is fought on four small rock islands arranged in a rough square on a sea of lava. (Unfortunately, you can't jump into him and knock him over, resemblance to Mario notwithstanding.) You can skip the trash to get to Baine, although my experience has been that four people successfully dodge the patrols, then one pulls a pack, aggros it on the group, and wipes it; your mileage may vary. Anyway, the basic concept of the fight is pretty simple. Every minute or so, Baine will shatter one of the four platforms. If it's not yours, just wait until he comes back to the tank. If it is yours, follow the tank to the next platform, and repeat.
The nifty thing is that you get a 20-second buff every time to touch the magma, called Molten Fists. This will give you a huge boost to your white attack damage, enough that it's worth running out to dip in a toe every time it drops off. The damage it does is minimal, as long as you get in and out quickly. Baine will also randomly throw a totem at party members, knocking them back. This totem can be thrown back at him for yet another buff, but this one is fairly minimal since it only lasts 6 seconds.
This can be a fairly intensive fight for casters (who have a lot more dodging to do) but it's a simple tank-and-spank for melee, with the usual dodging of glowy bits. Make sure to interrupt Stardust; the extra raid damage can overwhelm ungeared healers. Save Berserk for when she's below 30% health, in order to power through her enrage. That's actually a good idea for pretty much every 5-man; once you get two pieces of Tier 13, if you know you're only going to get one Berserk, use it sub-60%.
After defeating two of the echoes, you'll be heading to the Bronze Dragonshrine to face Murozond. The trash here is dragonkin and hits pretty hard, so a well-placed hibernate on the casters or root on the melee can help. The Murozond encounter has an interesting mechanic: At the beginning of the fight, Temporal Snapshot will be cast, which is essentially a save state. Five times throughout the fight, anyone in the party can click the hourglass in the center of the arena to return to the save state, which completely resets the party's condition to what it was at the time of the snapshot. This includes health and mana, but more importantly: cooldowns.
You can have a lot of fun with this. Obviously, you want to pop TF and Berserk every reset. What a lot of people miss, though, is that buffs on you are saved as well, so pop everything before the Snapshot is cast. You can use a Potion of the Tol'Vir, for example, and have its effects return every reset. Have fun with it; I can push my DPS a good 50% higher than normal on this fight, though finding places to Shred can be difficult as you dodge the breath, tail, and Distortion Bombs.
Finally, here's a quick list of the items you can snag from End Time. Sadly, none of the quest rewards are useful for ferals, and you can not hit the hourglass again to reset the loot drops. (Yes, I tried.)
- Cloak of the Banshee Queen (Echo of Sylvanas only)
- Gloves of the Hollow (any Echo)
- Time Twisted Tunic (Murozond)
- Arrow of Time (Murozond)
Looking for the latest and greatest in feral cat druid guides? Shifting Perspectives has the answers! Check out our cat 101 for Cataclysm. Also don't miss gearing your cat for Firelands raiding, addons for cat druids and raiding strats for feral cats, as well as our feral cat Firelands boss strats.