OK, I've received a few PMs regarding Fil Gashan hard mode, so if you're wondering how to complete it, I'll present here a strategy that you can all feel free to read/use/redistribute. By no means is this THE strategy, this is simply A strategy that's been developed over the past several months on both the live servers as well as the beta server. Many folks in both the live and beta server communites contributed to this strategy.
Hard mode for Fil Gashan is unlocked by sneaking past every sentry and assuring that both your cover is not blown and no alarm bells are ever rung. To do this you need to grab uniforms on both the first and second floors for every member of the fellowship to sneak past the suspecting sentries. If a sentry spots you and/or rings a bell, you'll fail. All other mobs in the instance are fair game for killing: fighters, skirmishers, chief guards and lieutenants.
Before I go into the more detailed strategy, there are a few ground rules about the uniforms that are important to note:
1) The Chief Guard's Uniforms can be found on the first floor of Fil Gashan. They can be obtained in one of two ways a) a drop off of an Elite-Master chief guard, or b) looted from a random spawn strongbox. These uniforms, when worn, can fool any guard that resides on the first floor of Fil Gashan.
2) The Lieutenant's Uniforms can be found on the second floor of Fil Gashan. They can be obtained in one of two ways a) a drop off of an Elite-Master Leiutenant, or b) looted from a random spawn strongbox. These uniforms, when worn, can fool any guard that resides on the first or second floor of Fil Gashan.
3) When uniforms are looted, they first appear as a "Wrapped Chief's Guard Unifrom" or a "Wrapped Lieutenant's Uniform". Once you right click on a wrapped uniform, it will unwrap it, at which time the uniform become bound and is unique. All wrapped uniforms are tradeable. If you accidentally unwrap a second uniform of the same variety (i.e. chief or lieutenant), it will simply be lost since the uniforms themselves are unique. If you leave the instance at any time, any uniforms or wrapped uniforms will be removed from your inventory.
4) When you put on a uniform, you get a buff that will tell you which types of mobs (unaware, watchful, alert, etc.) you can fool using the uniform. The uniform lasts for 5 minutes. You cannot reapply the uniform within the 5 minutes that you have it on.
5) When sneaking past guards, you must remain mobile at all times if you want them to remain unaware. If you remain still for too long, the guards will notice you and aggro.
6) When sneaking past sentries, only one uniform wearer can go past at any given time. If two people wearing uniforms try to sneak past the same sentry at the same time, your cover will be blown and you will have to retry. So a basic rule of thumb is to have everyone sneak around an area one at a time.
7) As soon as you enter combat, your uniform (and uniform buff) is removed and you can therefore be spotted by any mob. You must reapply the uniform after every fight when you want to sneak around afterwards.
This strategy will not contain the boss fight strats. This is simply meant to explain how to unlock/maintain hard mode while running the instance.
When you enter Fil Gashan, you'll see the first sentry sitting right in front of the first alarm bell. These are the guys you're trying to avoid, and the guys that must never be aggroed if you want to maintain hard mode. To retrieve the first uniform, pull the mobs behind the sentry back to the front corridor (I usually pull one of the kneeling mobs to the left or right). One of the mobs in this pull will be a chief guard. Keep in mind that the first 2 people to get uniforms should probably be a healer+heavy armour tank/DPS duo, so give this one out to one of those two types.
Once the first person has his/her chief guard's uniform, they can go ahead and put it on and begin to sneak around and look for the second uniform. Everyone else should wait in the front hallway. To get to the second uniform, sneak past the alarm bell until you get to a 4-way intersection. Take a left here and go all the way down the hallway until you reach a door at the end. The uniform is located in a strongbox in that room, which is otherwise empty.
From here, the person should roam around the entire first floor (with the exception of the mess hall, located due north of the entrance) and spy the layout of the first floor. Several of the doors will be closed. They can be opened simply by right-clicking on them. Please be careful not to accidentally right-click on a mob and initiate an auto-attack . Also, one thing to keep in mind is that the Elite Master Chief Guard spawns and the Strongbox spawns will be different every time you go in the instance. So the point of running around and checking out the layout is to find the easiest fight for 2 people so that they can obtain a third uniform. A rule of thumb is to try and avoid any fights where there is a roaming Chief Guard. The stationary Chief Guards are by far easier to take down, simply because you can gauge the pulls easier and therefore have less of a chance of accidentally aggroing several extra fighters & skirmishers.
Once you've picked the easiest fight, head back to the front of the instance and hand the second uniform out. At this point, you should have two people with chief guard's uniforms that are comfortable fighting an EM + possibly 4-5 signatures/regulars at the same time (I usually use a minstrel/champ combo and it works very well). Once those two are ready, they must go one at a time to the area that you want to fight your Chief Guard for the third uniform.
ASIDE: Make sure that you have a good system for giving directions. The one I use is pretty simple. I give all directions based on turns starting from the 4-way intersection. For example, If I want them to go the north-west quadrant of the first floor, I'll simply say "The next fight is going to be Left-Right". By saying "Left-Right" they know to take the left at the intersection and then take the first right, placing them at the NW quadrant.
Remember, it's very important that the uniform wearers go to the locations one at a time. If you walk past a sentry together, you'll fail. One good trick to use, is when the first person is at the fight location and is waiting for the second uniformed person to arrive, that first person can keep moving around in that little section of the map. This will throw off the guards long enough for the next person to arrive. Just make sure you aren't running next to any of the sentries, or else they could notice you and ring a bell.
Once you've downed your chosen chief guard for the uniform, have one of the two ferry the wrapped uniform back to the front of the instance and hand it out to one of your patient fellows. The second person can remain behind and "spy the next fight". Sometimes you'll get lucky and fight a chief guard that's standing next to a strongbox (which contains another uniform) In those cases, you'll sometimes get two uniforms while only having engaged in one fight (lucky you!).
So, once the third person has their uniform and you've got the next fight all sussed out, those three (or four, if you happened to get lucky and get a strongbox) can all go and fight in the next location.
Once you've got a total of six uniforms, you can ferry the remaining back to those at the front of the instance, and then all head to the mess hall (again, it's the big room due north of the entrance, straight through the 4-way intersection). Remember, ONE AT A TIME! Sneak into the mess hall, wait for the orcs to finish their lunch break and proceed to kill the Chef (I'll leave that to you .. it's not so bad).
Oh and remember, you only have 5 minutes on the uniform timer. If you're ever running low on time, simply get to a safe spot and wait it out, and reapply the uniform. If you can't get to a safe spot, you're better of dying and retreating... it may be a costly repair, but you'll maintain hard-mode.
Once the Chef is dead, you'll see a door open up on the northwest corner of the room that leads to a hallway. At the end of the hallway, there's a gate with an alert sentry standing in front of an alarm bell. This is the ONLY alarm bell that can be rung during the entire instance, and it's part of a script that happens when you run up to the gate. I know I know.. it's so counterintuitive right? Trust me, the beta testers had a field day with this. Once that bell is rung, it'll summon several guards + a lieutenant. Kill this wave of mobs and you'll get your first wrapped lieutenant's uniform.
One important thing to remember is that from here on out, only the lieutenants uniforms will safely protect your identity. The chief's guards uniforms will not work on the second floor. So it is VERY VERY important to remember to only equip lieutenants uniforms from here on out.
The ferrying of uniforms for this part is going to be done by one person, and the class really doesn't matter.
The first person to get a lieutenant's uniform should put it on and head up to the second floor. To get to the second floor, you simply run past the alarm bell in the hallway leading off the mess hall and you'll eventually reach a circular staircase. You want to go up two flights of stairs (they'll continue going up to the third floor... just stop after the second flight). Once you're up top, continue running past several guards and you'll eventually get to a door. Go ahead and open this up and you'll see you're out on the balcony that overlooks the mess hall (go ahead and /wave to your fellows.. the sentries won't see... I promise).
If you continue heading south, you'll eventually go through an archway and you'll start to see several closed doors, each flanked by two door guards as well as two roaming sentries + two alarm bells. As long as you stay on the move you should be fine. Go ahead and simply explore the second floor, check out the layout. There are six rooms that can possibly spawn lieutenants and/or strongboxes.The basic idea here is to find an empty room that has a room next door/adjacent with a lieutenant in it.
All you have to do is time the pathing of the sentries so that when they turn the corner and are at their southern-most point on the map (south and towards the middle of the map.. and by middle, I mean east/west middle) you hop out of the room, go next door and range-pull the lieutenant and run for your life! You want to run back towards the balcony area and jump down to the mess hall as quickly as you possibly can. What this will do is pull the lieutenant + door guards down to your fellows waiting below. All you have to do is wait for the mobs to come down to the mess hall and then proceed to take them out with the your fellows. One good trick we use is to throw a blinding flash or a riddle on the lieutenant. This will prevent him from starting a warband maneuver. You will be rewarded with a wrapped lieutenant's uniform.
From here on out, you basically rinse/repeat the pulling of lieutenant's down to the mess hall. Remember, this is a one person job, there is no need for the others to be up there (it would just provide more room for error). Sometimes you'll get lucky and a strongbox will spawn. Sometimes you'll have to pull several lieutenants in a row. Remember, the layout (just like the first floor) can be different every time you run it. Also, new guards/strongboxes will re-spawn on the fly.. so always be aware of the layout every time you run up there and try and spy the easy pulls. Oh, and try and avoid the second boss' room. You don't want to inadvertently start the encounter solo . The second boss' room is the only room on the inner-part of the corridor. All six lieutenant rooms are on the outer part of the corridor.
Once you have all six uniforms, you'll need to get everyone up to the second floor (one at a time, of course) and into the room that is directly across the hall from the second boss' room. The first person up there should make sure that there isn't a re-spawned lieutenant there first. If there is, simply pull him down to the first floor and kill him. Once the coast is clear (sentry as pathing back to the south) you're all free to run to the second boss together.
Once you've got the second boss down, you should be able to loot the second chest for key. This key will open up a door on the third floor. So once you've looted the key, have everyone put their lieutenant uniform on. Wait for the sentry to path back to the right (south) and once the coast is clear, everyone can jump down to the mess hall with the exception of the key-holder. The person with the key can proceed across the balcony and back to the stairs.
The person with the key should proceed up two more flights of stairs and unlock the door at the top (note: there will be two guards standing next to it, so BE CAREFUL!). Continue running straight (south) and you'll run past several sentries/bells. You'll want to stop right before the boss room. This is a safe location to wait, even if your uniform happens to expire. From there, have all members run up from the mess hall (up all four flights of stairs) right to the boss room.
Assuming you've gotten this far, all you have to do now is take out General Talug (again, I'll leave this to you). Once he's downed, you should see two pretty strongboxes one of which contains a platinum coin for your teal set-piece gloves.
Hope the strat works out for you. Feel free to post comments/criticisms etc. Again, this is just the strategy I happen to use, feel free to take bits + pieces and make it your own.
Best of Luck + Cheers,
Thorog ate our fingers :[
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