Today I wanted to cover my first impressions on (as the title suggests) Throne of the Tides, the instance located in Vashj'ir. I guess it could be considered technically the second of the new dungeons. Keep in mind as you read this: I did not read up on anything in this dungeon (nor did my guild group I did this with). So we went into this dungeon in the cold. No information at all. What did we find? Well, do you like the ocean? Giant tentacles/jellyfish? Illogical architecture? Than this is the instance for you, I guess.
As of writing this, I have not quested in Vashj'ir. So I do not know what's going on down in that ocean. My sea turtle carried me to the dungeon discovery. My lack of knowledge made me excited for the dungeon quest for this instance. So think of my disappointment when I zoned in to find no quest. That seemed to be the theme of this dungeon. There was almost no structure. There was no guide. Sure there was only one way to go, but once we killed the trash it took our jellyfish elevator about five minutes to start working. And when it finally went up, I missed it. Just my luck.
The whole design of the instance is unique. After the first two bosses you must back track to finish the instance; interesting idea. Not sure if I like it. It kind of ruins the flow. Sure it's different and different is refreshing but that doesn't change the fact there is like no flow to this dungeon. No quest line to sum up what's going on. All of these elements added up to a confused Asil. "So we ride a giant jellyfish up to kill the first boss then another boss crashes through the ceiling? Than we have to kill random goblins who decided to join the party which lead to a mind controlling squid? Then we're gonna help generically named water guy purify water? This makes sense."
Yes, I know, the quests in Vashj'ir probably explain what happens.
The bosses in the instance are different to say the least. Okay well maybe some of them are unique. Lady Naz'jar (the first boss) has a cool geyser mechanic that we've seen before in different adaptations, but watching your friends fail at standing in the fire then plummet as a consequence never gets old. If you're a fan of this blog, you'll know already I'm a huge fan of any kind of plummeting. Ceiling boss aka Commander Ulthok (the second boss) is a simple "Don't stand in the bad stuff while tanking fight" or as I like to call it "Put Asil to sleep fight". Erunak Stonespeaker is technically the third boss and his fight is mildly interesting. Sure it might be at it's roots a standard 'turn and burn the MC'd person' fight, but that doesn't change the fact if you get MC'd you get a giant octopus on your face. Screenshot opportunities abound.
The last boss/event gets it's own paragraph because of how hilarious it was the first time I ever did it (by hilarious I mean you probably had to have been there). Basically the event at the end of the instance (for those of you who haven't done it yet) has you protecting Neptulon as he attempts something my Brita filter has already accomplished: purifying water. The first two phases are fairly simple, just kill trash. It's the final phase that makes it a winner. See, apparently in World of Warcraft purified water makes you turn into a giant super powerful being. Once phase three hits you become incredibly powerful and start taking damage from the AoE that is on every part of the ground. There's two ways you could do this boss (Guess which way the first group I ran this with did it!):
The correct way: Everyone turns and burns the giant octopus on the ceiling.
The incorrect way: Everyone runs around like a fool going "zomg look we're hugeeee" as I struggle to keep everyone alive as the ground begins to kill us exponentially faster. Then it was decided that maybe we are supposed to die. It was only after I was the only person alive did we look up to see the octopus we were supposed to kill. Needless to say, if you're a healer, phase three can be solo'd. So feel free to neglect your group!
In conclusion: It has some interesting ideas, but a lack of flow really makes me not a huge fan. It's not a terrible instance, but it's not something I look forward to doing. And I'm not just being biased because I hate water! Maybe I'm wrong though, what do you think?