Friday night we decided to give challenge modes a shot. No one on our server had posted any times for any of the dungeons and we wanted to at least see what was going on. Heroics have been a bit of a joke so I for one was looking forward to potentially being worried about mob abilities...
The 'easiest' of the challenge dungeons, or at least the one completed most frequently, was Temple of the Jade Serpent. There is no group finder for challenge dungeons so you have to fly there. On the way there we hit our first issue... Group composition. Turns out we had two people who only had healing gear. Two people who had predominantly tanking gear. And one DPSer. Eh, run it!
Second issue... Turns out you have to have done the heroic version before you can do the challenge mode. One of us hadn't done Jade Serpent so we'd need to find something else. How about Mogu'shan Palace which was third most completed thus far? We can all zone in! Woo!
The first pull included a mob that whirlwinded for enough damage to kill off the melee. Which is all we had for damage. Memories of TBC heroics! Woo! Turns out the whirlwind is telegraphed so you can either stun it or run away from it. Brutal, but not unfair. Some of the trash pulls were rough, some just had lots of health. But it was all doable. Bosses didn't seem too bad either. We certainly needed to group up for meteor, that sort of thing, but it again didn't seem unfair. The timer for bronze was 45 minutes and we ended up beating the final boss in 43 minutes and 32 seconds. We had tons of deaths, pulled some extra mobs, but learned a bunch. We still had time before bed... So do another one or try for silver? Try for silver! We grabbed some invis pots from the bank and went back for more.
We ended up resetting a couple of times (dying to trash puts a real damper on a speed run) but ultimately ended up getting done in 23 minutes and 33 seconds. With the silver timer being 24 minutes. Just in! But we didn't do all that much wrong, which makes the gold timer of 12 minutes pretty out there...
Now, we weren't all in full 463 gear. We had 2 healers. We botched our invis potions. (I thought they had a 10 minute cooldown for some reason but they only have a 2 minute cooldown. And it turns out speed potions aren't invis potions.) So while I don't think we could possibly have hit gold last week I do think it's possible with a bunch of work. Which is just what I want from challenge dungeons!
It turns out a couple other groups tried challenge dungeons over the weekend because we put a time up in the leaderboards. They both also tried Mogu'shan Palace which makes me think they were following our lead and that we must have picked the easiest one first... Really it was just one we could zone into! Our time still stands as the best so far, with one other bronze run existing and two runs too slow for bronze. I seem to recall a Blizzard post saying just doing the dungeon should get you bronze but I guess not!