I don’t know what got into me, but I woke up today feeling ready for some Bray grind ._.
It’s true I haven’t been working all that hard for Novus upgrade (only 6 melds onto scroll now), and grinding 800 Myths per Alexandrite isn’t gna speed that up alot. So Pie was farming Myths for his last book, and it sounded like a good idea to go Myth running together. And that’s when we got Mei in my team again 😀 This time, I did one of my shortest Bray runs, at 5mins 26secs. (I changed the video to a better quality and faster run record of 5m 16s. This one displays better execution on everyone’s part :D)
I shall summarize what to do in each of the stages of this run as simply as possible.
1) 1st big pull: Try to land a Shield Lob on every mob as you run past them, helps immensely, especially if some lame healer decides to cast Eye4anEye before the pulling ends, or squeeze in an adlo/cure, causing stray mobs to immediately charge at the healer D: Sometimes if you run too slowly, tiger might paralyze you before you reach the safe fence area, which is quite problematic. Healer should try to Esuna/Leeches asap to minimize the damage you take, and that might pull aggro too. So, Shield Lob all (you should at most leave out 2 of the mobs at the end to prevent waiting for global cooldown and letting mobs catch up) and run straight to the safe fence area.
Next, wait for mobs to get close and flip the Hallowed Ground switch. This skill allows many interesting things to be done for 10 seconds. Cast all the aoe aggro generating stuff you have (Circle of Scorn/Flash) and wait till the 10s timer is up. Try to turn on Sentinel next (or whatever you feel is enough to keep you alive) and continue spamming flash until your mana dries up. That’s about all for this stage. With experience, you will learn which defensive cooldowns to pop first and how to position yourself to land all your flashes. If you run out of mana too early, and see that mobs are still far from dying, do use a couple of Riot Blade combos to continue flashing! Yep, before it’s too late (BLM suddenly double Flaring).
If you can successfully tank this first big group, congratulations, you are perfectly qualified for speed-running Bray. This group requires the most amount of group tanking skills and raw stats.
2) Door: After downing the previous big mob group, proceed on and Lob the plant once, and then the monkey 2-3 times. By lobbing the plant once, you make sure the plant won’t do much to your squishy teammates before it gets put to sleep. You need to Lob the monkey a few more times since it’s following you through the door. I recommend 3 Lobs to be safe.
Btw, if any BLM or WHM refuses to sleep the plant and let it roam through the door… Idk, but I rage-quitted. There used to be a time when nobody cared about the plant and all, and the tank simply has to stand on the line while tanking the plant, the monkey AND the boss until the boss area is sealed. It’s perfectly doable, but any good BLM should know that this is all ABSOLUTELY UNNECESSARY if he simply sleeps that plant. Less healing stress for the healer and less risk of the plant passing through the seal line due to inappropriate aggro distribution. So, whenever I see people leaving the plant awake, I get irritated. Also, when both dps just run to door without picking the key up… ye, time is wasted and plant wakes up before seal is up and strolls into boss area 😀
3) 1st Boss: I use this boss as a DPS check, to determine how well my DPS mates are doing. If they can down the boss before the second sniper appears, well, we’re in good shape. If the boss is above 25% HP by the time the 2nd sniper appears, then this isn’t gna be a speedrun.
For this fight, simply take the sniper aggro by intercepting the line and tank the boss, while dodging ground aoes. I prefer to lead the boss near to the sniper so that my mates will not intercept the line again by mistake (or while dodging aoe). Nothing special to take note of, other than that more snipers spawn the longer you take killing the boss.
3) Goblin Trios: Lob each of the first 3 goblins at the start once and run along the right side of the terrain. Reach the last group of goblins at the end and Lob one of them. Doing this should also aggro the group on the right. You only need to kill these 9 goblins, so all members should stick close to this right side to not aggro the raptors. From here on, same old group aggro work for you. Sometimes I will throw a Cover onto the healer, especially if he starts to Holy spam.
4) 2nd Boss: The most annoying mechanic here is the spawning of adds every now and then, and killing them off doesn’t stop more from spawning. But that does not mean you should not kill them off. Some bards prefer to kill once they spawn, and enjoy a period of peaceful dpsing the boss until the next spawns. Other groups prefer to simply ignore and focus boss, while running out of the adds’ aoe circles when they come. Both work fine, so it’s really up to the DPS to decide. To add on, some more experienced WHMs will stay close to the boss and wait for the goblins to go to them. If DPS does not hit goblins, goblins will most likely get aggroed by healers. So when goblins get near, healer uses Holy and deals respectable damage to both boss and goblin, while also stunning the goblin 😀
For us as tanks, if the add spawns quite close to you, feel free to plant some aggro on it asap. The goblin will most likely follow you and throw aoe circles at you instead of your mates. Since you do not need to stand still to do you job (unlike BLM/WHM), you are the best target for those goblins. The only hard part is to maintain aggro on boss as well, since the DPS will have total freedom to unleash their might while you do the dirty work (high ilvl BLMs WILL steal aggro from you very quickly if you do not pay attention, if they crit >_o). However, if the adds spawn too far away, meaning you have to turn the boss too much, then just forget about the add and let the DPS handle it. The last thing you want to do would be to face the boss towards your mates and let the cleave attack hit them, or further mess with their channeling if boss uses straight line aoe.
You will notice that periodically blue areas appear on the ground. Just step out of them. If the whole area around you is covered with blue (mud), find a spot where there’s only 1 layer of mud ._. Ye, if you stand on the spots where 2 circles of mud overlap, you get hit twice when they explode. Most of the time they explode after the boss uses Oversurge, but then most of the time you don’t get hit by it anyways. Furthermore, it doesn’t do a whole lot of damage.
Basically, this boss is more about DPS and healers. The tank simply keeps aggro, Halone combo and dodge ground aoe.
5) Profit: Grab chests and you’re done. Yay!
After so many Bray runs, I have started to get more and more picky about the composition. Nowadays, I would prefer to run with PLD, BLM, BLM/BRD, WHM.
Black Mages and Bard for the 2nd slot both work fine, and the difference in timing between the 2 most often depends on the skill rotations and gear level of the players. I have run 5min + runs with BLM+BRD as well, so, I really do not mind either combination. I like at least 1 BLM for sleeping and for double Flare bursts to end aoe pulls faster.
As for healers, I generally have much shorter runs with WHMs, especially if they use Holy. In fact, this is the main reason why I only run with WHMs now, in hope that they have learnt the art of Holy. Holy spam cuts down so much time during aoe mob pulls (in the first 10 seconds when you have Hallowed Ground on and they do not have to heal you, several Holys can be casted to deal massive damage and allow you to position better for Flash casts) and is icing on the cake at 2nd boss. Try it and you will realize the difference ^^ (For reference, refer to the above linked vid. The healer (Libera) executes some of the best Holy spams I have seen, and it’s a joy running with such fantastic mates <3)
To end off, let’s congratulate Pie in obtaining his Animus (Stardust)!