The Legion progression race has begun. Launching yesterday on US servers and early this morning in the EU, World of Warcraft’s hardest content, mythic Emerald Nightmare, is now available to everyone. For the vast, vast majority of players this doesn’t mean much, but for the very hardest of the hardcore, who booked time off work in advance or are lucky enough to play the game as their job, it’s why they play. The race to beat the game’s hardest bosses first, often with characters that are massively underpowered for the fights they’re up against, is a tradition with the release of every raid and has already begun in earnest.
For what’s happening next, have a look at our WoW patch 7.1 round-up.
So far, a total of four of seven bosses have been downed in the raid, by five guilds on the US side. That’s 100 people ahead of the curve, though likely soon to be joined by the EU’s best guilds – who generally beat the US by a significant margin in the overall competition to get a World First clear of a full raid.
Alliance guild Midwinter, of the Sargeras server, were first in the pack for much of last night, getting world first kills on Ursoc and the Dragons of Nightmare, the third and fourth bosses most guilds are going after (bosses two through five can be completed in any order). For all five guilds at the top of the standings currently – along with most casual players attempting lower difficulties – Il’gynoth, the Heart of Corruption is proving more difficult and is thus attempted last of the five.
Outside of that, 55 groups have managed to clear the first boss of mythic, the corrupted dragon Nythendra. In past raids this has been the norm: one ‘easy’ boss, then increasing difficulty throughout the raid with spikes at various points as mechanics become near-impossible to overcome without extremely high levels of gear. It can be expected that by the end of the week most competitive guilds will have cleared at least those four bosses that were hit last night, but that Il’gynoth and the two fights after him – both massively chaotic with huge challenges on healer mana, tank survivability and damage dealer speed – will prove more of a roadblock.
Slowly, kill videos start to trickle out as fights are completed by guilds with less concern for the secrecy of their strategies. There’s already a couple for Nythendra, including the Fire Mage POV you see below, plus a melee DPS POV and a healer POV from another guild. Fair warning, these folks can get a little passionate when kills are close.
If you’re interested in keeping track of this sort of thing, the site for it is WoWProgress.com. It tracks world firsts, how many times each boss has been beaten, kill videos and much more, including for less challenging categories. There’s even a section where guilds can advertise open spots in their raiding groups, or players can search for guilds that match their free time.
With Blizzard’s commitment to providing content more regularly via patches with Legion, there’ll likely be more of these races than in Warlords – 7.1 is expected to release before the end of the year, and will have its own mini-competition for the three-boss Trails of Valor raid, followed by The Nighthold early next year.
There will also likely be quite a few streams of various guilds running the first bosses later this week, but again the strategy-secrecy aspect means the very best often don’t broadcast their world first runs, despite the massive numbers of viewers they’d likely pull in. The Twitch WoW page is your best bet for keeping track of that.