Firelands is my new favorite thing.

Once upon a time very long ago and far away, the devs gave us shadow priests a present, and that present was mind sear. Unfortunately, they also realized that we were having too much fun following the simple rule of IS THERE >1 MOB? CAST MIND SEAR and nerfed the shit out of it for far, far, too long.

And then they fixed it AND allowed us to target friendly mobs for the nexus.

And then they put more AOE packs in progression content.

Angels sang and the world was happy, much like the first day I learned that “beer” was not synonymous with “Bud Light” (seriously, that day was an amazing day).

Mind Sear

This is seriously the most awesome looking spell in our arsenal. Look at it! Twisty weavy ribbons of facemelty death!

I love this spell so much that were I my eight year-old self I would snidely suggest I should marry it.

It’s not just Firelands mobs out in the molten front that my bff mind sear is good for (though it’s a lot of fun to kill four Flamewalkers at once for their delicious, delicious scales), and that’s why this raid is my new favorite: Rhyolith shards, Beth’tilac spiderlings and stacked groups of spinners: all these things just LOVE to eat mind sear.

Alas, we cannot mind sear everything, and that makes me make the epic sadface of >:(.

However, Firelands is also brilliant for another place where spriests shine: DOT ALL THE THINGS. Fun fact: this is not a playstyle that was familiar to me before, oh, the end of May. I’m still not entirely comfortable with it — I do way better with nuking, which is of course why I play a dot class — but I get a LOT of practice juggling dots on fights like Shannox (boss + dogs), Alysrazor (boss + horrifying giant naked chickens on fire + stupid night elves on fire) and every trash pack in the whole damn zone (it burns, oh god it burns), which makes me happy in my shriveled black shadowy heart.

The challenge is that there are a couple of secrets to this that I had to figure out, because there is very little more shameful than a dotter with no dots.

First: get yourself a good timer mod, preferably one that announces in big shiny letters when thing roll off. Many people swear by DoTimer, which is the standard; of course many people swear by mass-produced American lagers, too, so grain of salt. I personally use Ellipsis, because I find DoTimer bloated and clunky and all of its other functionality is covered in other addons (really you guys I have a buff mod, I do not need buffs in my timer).

Second: make sure your “target next” (tab-target) key binding is set to something you can get to and use with the same frequency as whatever other bindings you have. This was my single greatest hurdle in the playstyle change, and it’s so simple there are not enough Picards to facepalm over how long it took me to figure it out. See, I never used tab-target. Ever. In six years. I never HAD to, especially since way back in Ye Olden Times tab-targeting was a quick way to accidentally aggro Nefarian in UBRS and wipe the crap out of your raid. So once I did start needing to use it, it was still bound to my tab key — and I’m a left-handed player with a left-handed setup, leading to crazy fumbling, hand cramps, and general fail like a noob. WHOOPS. However, once I rebound that bad boy over on the right with all the rest of my other stuff, cycling through targets to throw up SW:Pain on everything was not only NOT IMPOSSIBLE but actually kind of fun, like spinning plates on sticks only with more screaming and death. Imagine that!

Also, just so you know, I am TOTALLY RAD at jumping off the Talons’ disappearing platforms.