Until you reach the Gumdrop elder and discover that the coin guy is only there in Heroic mode.
Kinda sux if one of you is only level 78.
But that's pretty easy to fix by spending some time in Zul'Drak and Icecrown, aided by some epic cold weather flying, and a week later she dings 80 without really needing to push beyond a normal casual routine of playing the occasional evening here and there, or maybe filling the cold empty void that comes with a significant other who regularly raids in a cone of silence (ah, new cordless headphones, how I love thee).
Big fat gratz on dinging 80!
What's a Shadow Priest to do?
So, we've got our sights set on Heroic Gundrak.
Before going anywhere, lets make sure to reduce as many noob indicators as possible.
Enchants, gems, all the nice things a player can do to improve what she's wearing without leaving the comfort of Ironforge.
But, neither of us really has any clue what a SPriest needs at level 80.
Consult the Armory, check out one of the guild's shadows, and monkey-see monkey-do.
30 minutes and 600g later (its good to be rich), and all her greenies are nice and shiny.
Time for some action!
Welcome to Heroics
You can imagine the situation is pretty nerve wracking.
Here's a player who has a very casual view of the game, getting in on her first real Northrend dungeon run, at level 80, in heroic mode, in a party with 4 pretty hardcore players.
That's a lot of pressure! When ever you have two different cultures collide, there's potential for drama and conflict.
Luckily, the players that joined us are the types who are experts in their roles, geared out the wazoo, plus, they're very welcoming of social members.
The run was a beauty.
The uber gf remembered to buff people, kept her mana battery spell up (vt? ve? i can never remember which), and most importantly....she didn't die in any fire in the one or two fights that come with that hazard.
And, after surviving all the combat situations, and generally staying with the pack and assisting the tank for DPS targets and remembering to mana up after fights, she went ahead and, completely out of combat, fell into some water and got eaten alive by some fish, which was just amusing.
Outstanding work for a first timer, if I do say so myself.
If you want to replace it, polish it
I'm a long-standing advocate of appeasing the loot karma gods by enchanting the hell out of any piece of gear you want to replace.
Well, fresh at 80, you pretty much want to replace every single piece of quest greenie gear, so that's what she did....enchant & gem everything.
And lets just say that it worked.
Every. Single. Boss. dropped something cloth with wonderful spell power, crit, and intellect (all things which EJ says SP like to wear, if I'm not mistaken).
Four sweet Heroic Blue items. Luckily the team we're running with is (A) geared up in ilevel 213/226 epics, and (B) very cool and happy to help a new priest upgrade her stuff.
By the third and fourth drops, it was just getting silly on vent.
So another 400g was happily withdrawn from the Gear Polishing Fund and she's off to a sweet start to her set of gear.
But that's not all, folks!
She's still got a few coins left to get her Elder title, so we're off to Black Rock Spire.
And one of the achievement-hounds in the guild notices and wants to try to trio the Jenkins one.
Have you ever tried this with only 3 players?
All I can say is .... WOW!
That's a lot of whelps.
Warlock runs around grabbing all the whelps while Hunter stands on explosive trap and Priest bubbles everybody. Seed, Volley, that thing that Shadow Priests do for AoE.
3 or 4 seconds of terror as 50 or 60 whelps spank us.
Sweet way to end a sweet night.