This guide is focused on warlocks, but 90% of it will apply to everyone. Much of this info won't be needed, but I tried to include everything I've learned to help out those that might struggle with it. If you have tried it and see any mistakes or have any info or suggestions, just let me know and I'll try to make corrections. I'll be adding more to this guide to cover Endless and possibly other specs if I can.
Proving Grounds is a single player scenario to test your skills as DPS, Tank, or Healer.
Once you zone in you can talk to some panda NPCs.
- Trial Master Panda will let you choose which event you want to try and which difficulty. All three types are available, even to warlocks, and difficulties are unlocked as you progress.
- Bronze Healer
- Silver Healer
- Gold Healer
- Endless Healer
- Bronze Tank
- Silver Tank
- Gold Tank
- Endless Tank
- Bronze Damage
- Silver Damage
- Gold Damage
- Endless Damage
- Reforge Panda Vendor.
- Reagent Panda Vendor.
- Healthstone Cauldron Gnome.
- Xuen will give you full raid buffs and debuffs.
- Damage Bronze: Very Easy
- Damage Silver: Easy
- Damage Gold: Medium
- Damage Endless: ? Still need to test, first few waves seemed about as hard as Gold. (Need 30 waves for the title.)
- Tank Bronze: Easy
- Tank Silver: ? Still need to test. (Will get a separate achievement for doing this as an off-spec.)
- Healer Bronze: ? Still need to test, seemed easy on first attempt though.
- Gear is scaled down to ilevel 463 like in Challenge Modes. Gear above 463 is scaled down and stats are lowered.
- Tier bonuses are not active.
- Legendary weapon gem is not active.
- Legendary weapon prismatic gem socket is active.
- Legendary meta gem is not active.*
- Legendary cloak proc is not active.*
- Hit/Exp are not scaled down.
- Gems are not scaled down.
- Enchants are not scaled down.
- VP ilevel upgrades help on items with sockets.
Not all gear scales equally. The simple explaination is that using the gear with the most gem sockets and the highest ilevel is best. The complicated version is explained here.
I find that haste may be the best stat to gear for since getting a single cast off is very often more important than the spell being 10% more powerful.* You also want to be hit caped for level 93s.
My general strategy is to get hit capped from raw gear without reforging into hit or gemming for hit. After that haste>>mas>crit.*
I like int/haste trinkets best.* On use is even better since it can be used exactly when needed.
This basic list works for lfr through heroic. If you aren't a warlock or cloth wearer you can get an idea of what kind of gear I went for. This is probably too much hit as a complete set, you can choose other gear or reforge out of it. Obviously since Proving Grounds will be out in 5.4 new gear will also be available, but socket count will beat ilevel so it might be a while before you have access to better items.
- Tier 15: 1 meta, 1 socket, haste/hit
- Necklace of the Terra-Cotta Invoker: 1 socket, haste/hit
- Tier 15: 2 sockets, haste/crit
- Starburner Robes: 3 sockets, hit/haste
- Tier 15: 3 sockets, hit/mas
- Jadefire Drape: 1 socket, haste/mas/crit
- Red Sky Cloudcloak: 1 socket, haste/hit
- Deadly Glare Cape: 1 socket, hit/crit
- Frostborn Wristwraps: 1 socket, random secondaries
- Twisting Wind Bracers: hit/haste
- Lifedrainer's Sordid Grip: 2 sockets haste/hit
- Vita-Binder Wrap: 2 sockets, hit/crit
- Cord of Cacophonous Cawing: 2 sockets, haste/hit
- Belt of Malleable Amber: 2 sockets, haste/hit
- Leggings of the Discarded Warning: 3 sockets haste/mas
- Tier 15: 2 sockets haste/crit
- Starwalker Sandals: 2 sockets, crit/mas
- Falling Blossom Treads: 2 sockets, hit/mas
- Dam'ren's Frozen Footguards: 1 socket, haste/hit
- Ra-den's Summoning Band: 1 socket haste/hit
- Ro'shak's Remembrance: 1 socket crit/mas
- Any other hit/haste ring, there are many including from PVP.
- Relic of Yu'lon: int/int proc
- Light of the Cosmos: haste/int proc
- Shock-Charger Medallion: int/haste use
- Volatile Talisman of the Shado-Pan Assault: int/haste proc
- Essence of Terror: int/haste proc
- Most socketed weapons and off-hands are comparable enough to not have to list here, use Eye of the Black Prince to gain an extra socket.
- Loshan, Terror Incarnate: 0 sockets crit/haste - note: Sword gives 1% Exp for Humans, but does not have a base socket.
Any spec should work. Some mobility and high burst is favored.
I personally played Destruction.*
Healing and damage reduction are not needed. CC such as stuns, interrupts, roots, and slows are very helpful. It is possible that you will be debuffed if you don't play perfectly so a cleanse can be helpful. High run speed is not really needed, but general mobility for high dps while moving, is useful.
I chose Shadowfury (Stun), Unbound Will (Cleanse), Grimoire of Sacrifice (Buff spells, kill pet), and Archimonde's Darkness (Dark Soul CD gets two charges).
Conflagrate glyph can be helpful to slow a target while you are running and can't apply Immolate first.
Demonic Teleport glyph can help move from one side of the room to another more often.
A pet's CC will be extremely helpful, make sure you have it bound.
Using a pet does have the advantage of attacking Guardian type mobs when their shields LOS you as well as the advantage of interrupting without pausing your dps.
I chose not to use a pet however for increased burst damage and less time lost on pet target switching. I sacrificed Felhunter and used his Spell Lock on Command Demon. This is a macro to cast the interrupt when you need it.
Code:/stopcasting /cast Command Demon
Engineering Belt bombs work, but have been nerfed extremely hard in 5.4.
G91 Landshark bombs do work.
Potions do not work.
Kafa Press does not work.
Rod of Ambershaping does not work.
Shard of Archstone works a little against Weaver targeting, not worth using though.
In Proving Grounds cooldowns reset on the event start but current buffs will stay active. If you wipe you can start again, fail on round one, blow all CDs, then instantly start again and beat the first couple rounds with all CDs still up and still off CD. These rounds are easy enough, so it isn't really needed, but it is fun to do. This doesn't seem to work for some spells with charges however.
Mobs come in two sizes, Small and Large, this indicates how much HP they have.
Slayer: Saurok that stands still.
Let a amber trap hit for more damage on them.
Amber-Weaver: Bug-man that casts slow orange ball that stuns and increases dmg taken by 50%. This ball will follow you for about 10 seconds.
He can hit enemies/himself, but not your pet. You can walk behind him after he starts casting and it'll come to him and hit him. Using gate/teleport can help to aim this. If you need the healer or monkey CC'd or a specific target to take more damage then you can aim it for them. Trapping a Banshee will not stop its bomb from going off though.* Using Havoc on a non-trapped target should increase overall damage output.*
Banana-Tosser: Tiny monkey runs a circle around the room and shoots bananas that debuff for -75% hit. Bananas only hit outside his melee range, there is a circle indicating this. If your haste is high enough, you can stand in his circle and get a cast off before the he and his circle move away from you.
He takes about 3 seconds to run to edge of room and start tossing bananas. You can and should kill him before this, but it is hard to do so before a healer, if present, will heal him. He is the best target to kill first since the debuff will stop your dps and avoiding it requires near constant movement. Stun/root/slows are great to cast as soon as a round starts in order to burst him down before he makes you run after him.
Mystic: Fish-man that heals enemies for ~50% of hp, casts about once every 15-20 seconds, first cast is about 5 seconds into the fight.
Fear, Shadowfury, Amber-Weaver trap, Felhunter Spell Lock will stop him from casting. Can fear on the pull or stand behind him and let Amber-Weaver trap him, he will be trapped before first heal usually.
Varmint: ~8 rabbits that sit in a cluster
AoE them while fighting other stuff.
Guardian: Tank mob that casts temporary shields front of self preventing damage from 180* in front.
CC stops shield. Multi-dotting and moving to other targets can work. Amber trap will go through shield. You can shoot out through the shield if behind him and targeting other mobs. Need to test if Havoc will pierce.*
Banshee: Ghost that ends the round if not killed in 10 seconds after spawn. Spawns about every 20 seconds.
Can use high damage spell to one shot (Chaos Bolt). Sometimes you will need to cast an Incinerate and Shadowburn to kill them, but usually it is a one-shot. These will spawn until round is over so watch even if other mobs are dead.
Sha: Has large amount of HP and a damage reduction aura, takes 50% less damage when shield is on, lasts ~30 seconds, and +100% damage when shield is off, lasts ~20 seconds.
Don't use CDs when shield is up. Use CDs when shield is down. Shield will start up, go down, then come back up. Multiple stacked CDs are needed to kill a Large Sha during the shield down phase. You can cast a Chaos Bolt before the shield drops but time it to hit after he is weakened to get a little more dps in.
Sha can't be trapped by Amber-Weavers.
Treasure Chest buff: 30% dmg increase for you.
Two of these spawn in total on gold. Save them for Sha rounds.
Very Easy: I'm not going to write about this.
Easy: I'm not going to write about this.
Some of these tips are not needed especially on early easy waves, but I'll list the best ways that I've found to handle each round. Many techniques are repeated each time you see the mob. Note: The video doesn't follow the guide exactly.
- Before Start:
Use Dark Soul (if you don't have Archimonde's Darkness, which doesn't work because of charges) and Infernal then start the gold challenge.
- Round 1: 30 seconds, Very Easy. 2 Slayers, 1 Amber-Weaver.
Stand to the side of the ring where the Slayer spawns and have portal on opposite side. Pre-Rain of Fire both sides. Immolate all mobs. Havoc Weaver and cast on the Slayer that will be trapped by the orange ball. If the Weaver casts a second ball use teleport to get behind the other Slayer and trap him.
- Round 2: 35 seconds, Easy. Amber-Weaver, Banana-Tosser
Stand in middle. Pre-Rain of Fire and have Shadowfury ready. Stun as soon as mobs spawn. Chaos Bolt>Incinerate>Conflag>Conflag>Shadowburn the Tosser, hopefully you can kill him before you need to cast. You can trap the Weaver with his own trap and kill him. It is sometimes possible to trap both of them if you position your self right and stun and then fear the Tosser.
- Round 3: 40 seconds, Easy: 1 Mystic, 1 Banana-Tosser, 1 Amber-Weaver
Stand on the side behind the Mystic. Pre-Rain of Fire both sides. Be ready to Shadowfury the Mystic and Tosser. Stun and kill the Tosser. Be sure to kill him before the Mystic heals him. You can have the Weaver's trap get the Mystic or interrupt the heal cast with Fear/Howl of Terror/Spell Lock. Havoc the Weaver and kill the Mystic and him while trapping them.
- Round 4: 40 seconds, Easy: Large Mystic, Banana-Tosser
Stand in the middle. Pre-RoF, Shadowfury as the spawn and kill Tosser. Kill Mystic, interrupt his heals.
- Round 5: 45 seconds, Medium: 3 Guardian, Banshees
Stand in the middle. Pre-RoF, Howl of Terror on mob spawn. Immolate all Guardians. Banshee should be spawned by then. Havoc a Guardian and Chaos Bolt Banshee. Might be able to Shadowburn that Guardian. Kill other guardians. You may get one or two more Banshees. Even if you kill all mobs, watch out for Banshee to spawn again.
- Round 6: 50 seconds, Medium: 2 Mystics, Varmint cluster
Stand in middle. Pre-RoF both sides including middle. Fear one Mystic on mob spawn. Kill the other, use Shadowfury to interrupt first heal so that it will be off CD for next round. Fire and Brimstone Immolate after the first interrupt. Keep RoF on Varmints. Once first Mystic is dead switch to the other, interrupt it with Fear/Howl/Spell Lock. Continue RoF. Try to end fight with full embers. Killing with Shadowburn can help.
- Round 7: 55 seconds, Hard: 1 Guardian, 1 Amber-Weaver, 1 Mystic, 1 Banana-Tosser, Banshees.
Stand in middle between Mystic and Guardian. Pre-RoF both sides, Shadowfury middle on mob spawn, burst kill Tosser. Get Guardian trapped, Banshee should spawn around the time the trap will hit, it is possible to trap it too. Fear Mystic. Havoc Banshee and Chaos Bolt the trapped Guardian. Immolate Weaver, Mystic, and Guardian. Kill Mystic>Guardian>Weaver. Stand behind Mystic to trap him. A Large banshee will spawn again around the time the Weaver dies, try to trap him or teleport away from orange ball so that you can stand still and kill Banshee.
- Round 8: 60 seconds, Medium: Sha, 2 Amber-Weaver
Put teleport near buff chest if you have time before round. Stand in middle, pre-RoF all. Immolate Sha, and Weavers. After Weavers start ball cast move to stand behind one so he will be trapped and kill him. Then move behind the other and try to trap and kill him. DPS Sha without using powerful spells or CDs. When his shield drops use Chaos Bolts/Shadowburn to try to kill him before it comes back up.
- Round 9: 75 seconds, Hard: Sha, Mystic, Banana-Tosser, Banshees
Stand in middle. Pre-RoF, Shadowfury stun on mob spawn, burst kill Tosser. Immolate Sha, and start killing the Mystic. The Banshee will spawn before you can kill it. Havoc the Mystic and kill the Banshee. Sha's shield might drop before you can kill the Mystic, try to keep up damage on both while focusing big damage on the Sha and not letting the Mystic heal.
- Round 10: 80 seconds, Very Hard: Large Sha, Slayer, Banshees.
You may want to use a cool down to kill to kill the Weaver and Banshees. You will want to use all of the rest of your cooldowns with a chest to kill the Sha, he has a lot of health.
Stand in the middle opposite of side of your teleport and with the mobs between you and it. Pre-RoF. Havoc the Sha and kill the Slayer, hopefully getting some Shadowburns copied. DPS the Sha without using big abilities unless capping on embers, when there is 1 minute left on the timer you can use your Doomguard. Kill the Banshee when she spawns. Use the chest buff when the Sha's shield drops and blow all CDs. Hopefully you will kill him before his shield comes up. It is possible to kill him afterwards, but it will be difficult.
- Endless gives mobs a buff that increases their health by 1%. This stacks for each round.
- Round 1: 60 seconds. 6 Small Varmints in a cluster, 3 Large Amber-Weaver around ring.
- Round 2: 60 seconds. 2 Large Guardians, 1 Small Amber-Weaver, 1 Small Mystic. Large Banshees.
- Round 3: 60 seconds. 2 Large Banana-Tossers, 12 Large Varmints in a spread out.
- Round 4: 60 seconds. 4 Large Guardians around ring, 1 Large Amber-Weaver in the center. 1 Buff chest.
- Round 5: 60 seconds. 1 Small Banana-Tosser, 1 Small Mystic, 1 Small Sha. 1 Buff chest.
- Round 6: 60 seconds. 2 Large Mystics on edges of ring, 6 Large Varmints in a cluster. 1 Buff chest.
- Round 7: 60 seconds. 1 Small Banana-Tosser, 3 Large Guardians, 2 Large Amber-Weavers.
- Round 8: 60 seconds. 2 Large Slayers, 1 Large Mystic.
- Round 9: 60 seconds. 1 Large Banana-Tosser, 2 Large Slayers, 1 Large Amber-Weaver, 1 Large Guardian. Large Banshees.
- Round 10: 60 seconds. 1 Large Sha.
- Round 10: 15 second break.
- Rounds 1-10 repeat with each continuing to increase mob health by 1% per round.
Void Walker can solo the first two rounds while you are AFK. I'll add a guide for this.
I might add a guide for this. Haven't tried it.
I might add a guide for this. Only tried once so far.
*Would like more research/experimentation, need to verify this works or is best.