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Archive for June, 2010

Never there

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Too Long A Trip

Sorry for no content in the last few days; my parents came to visit and we spent time on the beach rather than in Azeroth.

Unfortunately that meant I still haven’t finished the Midsummer achievements. I did them on the wrong character last year, before I decided to get all of Long Strange Trip on my mage. She just needs Midsummer and a couple Hallow’s End achievements; depending on Cataclysm’s date I might get my purple dragon before it’s obsolete. Let’s hope so anyway…

But I still need to visit a lot of fires. I only need one continent’s worth for the achievement – I did Kalimdor and Outlands last year – but I do need blossoms to buy the gear. For some reason, this holiday seems way more grindy than most. All that traveling, and it’s not optional; it’s as bad as the elders. Worse maybe since you don’t get ganked as much with elders.

I thought Children’s Week would be my least favorite, but the battleground stuff ended up being fun; Reversion and I worked together as a team and got it. Now… well I guess I’ll spend a little time each day this week trying to honor flames. How do you honor a flame, anyway? Are there marshmallows involved?

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Just because you don’t see me tanking it does not mean I am not tanking it.

Just because stuff pulls off of me does not mean I don’t have it under control.

Look. I am a Bear. Bears have not ranged silences. That means I can’t move all those casters spread all over FoS around where I would rather have them. I have to leave them standing over there. No don’t send your pet to off tank it leave it the *** alone. No don’t you go off tank it. **** ****! No, don’t start shooting it, just LEAVE IT ALONE.

See there is something bears CAN do with those casters. I call it ranged tanking. It works like this. Wait for the caster to pull off of you and then fire Growl followed instantly by Feral Feairy Fire. Yeah, that is it. Now it is on me again. So get your ***ing pet the ****** off of it! And don’t think you are ‘helping the tank’. You did not even know to stop dps during the ‘mirror’ so you clearly don’t know *****.

Oh, and one more thing. If you pull agro off me, CHANGE YOU FRIKIN TARGET. I have one taunt and just one. And it only works once every 8 seconds and you ain’t the only one doing high threat. If I have to taunt off you more than twice in a fight chances are I will not bother to the third time. Yeah, that repair bill? Your welcome. Learn the lesson.

Just in case you are still confused let me spell it out.

Don’t

Attack

Something

No

One

Else

Is

On.

I know I change targets a lot. You probably can’t tell which one I am on. But if you shoot at one in the melee pack you are probably ok. No, that guy over there in the corner is not in the melee pack. Look if you have not figured out ‘tab’ or ‘assist’ or just plain randomly clicking on stuff near the tank, do me a favor and never queue for a heroic again.

I drew this great picture of a bear in a witch’s hat saying ‘and ur lil dog too!’ but I forgot my iphone. Just pretend it is here.

Ug. Maybe my next tank will be a pally. No, not for the range silence. So I can DI *%@#$^&*ers that @#$&()&% my damn pulls.

In cata can I pay a priest to follow me around and life grip people into the fire? Oh I so want that. Of course blizzard will probably mess up my plan by adding a built in bubble effect to lifegrip. Can I tank as a priest? Then I could lifegrip them into cleaves. That would be nice. I think I will sit here and dream of how nice that would be…

Aaah

:D

So I have been waiting all day for someone I ran a raid with last night to post an update. What is up with that? Some people are so slow at updating their blog.

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Monday night Rev and I log onto Argent Dawn to see what SAN is up to. There’s a few folk around, so we decide to re-attempt Blackwing Lair. Hairy and Daruma join, as do Missholloway, Rogerstring, our soulstone-slave Invariant (my RAF alt, on follow and not doing anything) and Norinka, a SAN druid who hadn’t joined us before.

First, we got attuned. We found the guy who drops the letter that starts the quest (that Jack built? wait…) outside of Blackrock Spire, cleared UBRS fast, and touched the orb behind the dragon boss there. Then we could use the orb outside the instance to get in BWL.

First boss was still dead from our weekend attempt so we went and faced down the corrupted red dragon, the one that dots you with a dot that kills you at the end. We had it carefully planned; Consolidate was Soulstoned and would Brez me, Norinka would Brez if she could, and we’d just burn him down.

We started. Daruma threw Heroism, I popped my wings, tanked, got dotted, died, got rezzed, re-taunted – and he dropped before too many more of us did.

Hilariously, Hairygiblets and Rogerstring still had the dot at the end. Five seconds later as we’re examining loot, they drop dead…

We continue upstairs and find a room full of pillars, whelps, and a slowing field. None of us knew what to do; a guildie who wasn’t there mentioned that a stealthed rogue could disable the field. Great! Except… we didn’t have a rogue. Oh well. We started wading through the room in slow motion, me trying to grab aggro, wishing paladins had a charge… Hand of Freedom wasn’t really helping (it didn’t remove the slow effect but would prevent one re-application sometimes)

Invariant, being low level, died from aoe or something. So did Rogerstring. I decided we should press on to the end, hope that killing the boss at the end would stop the field and let us get out of combat (the whelps just kept respawning) so we could rez. This is important.

The supressor whelp room is actually two floors. Invariant was dead on the first floor. The rest of us pressed slowly onward, like something from a bad horror movie. The kind with endlessly spawning whelps.

We found a boss, killed him. The field didn’t drop, but the room just past didn’t have it. I decided to start clearing trash while Consolidate slowly made his way down to get Invariant. At this point Consolidate was the only one healing. This is important too.

I pulled a few trash mobs, planning to kill them before they could kill me. It was working – until out of nowhere there’s a DRAGON in my FACE eating my SPLEEN. Through my face. Yeah. And he knocked me back into 9000 adds, who instantly start whacking me. I tried healing myself but kept getting interrupted. Most of us died right then. I sighed.

Consolidate was downstairs, and not dead, and I’m thinking he can rez me when I hear a “whoa!” behind me and turn to look at his screen. The dragon had just summoned him! We hadn’t known it would do that.

Long story short – we all ran back.

We again started clearing trash in the room and again the dragon appears, but this time we’re ready and take him down! Not that bad as long as there’s heals in the room.

More trash dies. Some of it was nasty, with lots of shadow bolts. Some of it resisted magical damage, ie Holy damage, ie there I was futilely throwing my abilities around and keeping aggro mostly by force of will. Fortunately we had a hunter, and when Norinka shifted to cat, things really died.

We moved into a big room – the whole place was very cool, lots of draconic experimental remains lying around – and see a dragon, some big dudes, and a dragon in the room that followed. Wise to their tricks, we killed the trash behind us, then pulled the dragon. Sure enough he knocked us around like crazy, but we prevailed!

By this time it was late, so we called it for the night, agreed to extend our lockout and finish up Tuesday.

Tuesday rolls around and so does patch 3.3.5. And the servers are DOWN! Sigh. Reversion and I are forced to spend quality time together, play with our daughter, go for ice cream… then, just at Nomster’s bedtime, the servers were up. Sort of. Once we got through, there was a number of SAN folk around so we re-grouped up, asked if anyone else wanted to finish the place, and started summoning.

Well, other people did want to come. They kept coming as we progressed, so here’s the final list:

Divergent – me – paladin
Consolidate – Reversion – druid
Hairygiblets – hunter
Daruma – shaman
Tasteless – druid
Shiftless- druid
Norinka – druid
Dropout – paladin
Edamaxim – dk
Enyss – druid
Vet – hunter
Missholloway – paladin
Rogerstring – shaman
Invariant – useless

(no order here, this is how they appeared in one screenshot I have)

So some subset of us kill that dragon we’d left alive the night before, then Chromagnus the penultimate boss, a two headed dragon-corehoundy-looking-thing. And there we were, on Nefarion’s balcony.

He didn’t look that impressive sitting on the throne, even if his head was on fire, but he was a real raid boss. Vet had lot of experience killing him and gave us a rundown – kill adds coming through the doors on phase one, take him by the balcony on phase 2, beware of “class calls” – incidentally, I was really impressed that they added a class call for DKs. That’s a nice touch. Most of us seriously overgeared the place and the class calls ended up not being an issue for anyone but the hunters who had to un-equip their bows or they’d get broken.

So we fought him. During part of it, Invariant died, and Nefarion called out the line I have as the title for the post, heh.

And then – he died.

SAN is hoping to go to Molten Core tonight. After that… who knows but we’re loving the old school raids as we wait to get enough 80s to do Ulduar and ICC. If you’re on an American server and this sounds fun, join us! Roll an alt or transfer and come play!

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I think of this trick as virtual tanking… it is really virtual crowd control. 
Let’s say you are murderizing some Defias in a small town somewhere. Suddenly a second one spots you. 
  
Oh NOES! You are not ready for a second one. And that fire ball looks like it will hurt. No problem! 
 
 Hah! Safe. But wait he is coming this way. How about we give him a target again? 
  
That is it. I hop back out and you stop right there and waste a couple seconds trying to cast a fireball. 
  
Denied! 
 
No, don’t come over here. Stand there and cast some more. I am not done with your friend. 
 
I love it when the fall for the same trick a second time… 
 
Almost done with your friend. 
 
Come on over. 
 
Your turn! 
 
LOS interupts are so much fun!

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Reversion and I spent most of the weekend raiding on our SAN alts (see previous post) and Sunday late afternoon logged into our somewhat neglected, well geared mains – the eponymous Analogue and Reversion. I was in the mood to run ICC 10 so I asked Reversion to scavenge us a raid while I played with the Nomster. She is better behaved for raiding if you wear her out first :)

Well he started asking in guild and lo and behold, a number of raiders had tertiary alts they wanted to get some badges on. Before we knew it, we had 9 of 10 slots filled. All we were missing was a second healer. Nobody in guild volunteered so we decided to pug it.

Reversion started asking, and got two nibbles; a druid who said he had experience healing tanks in raids, and a holy priest who was lightly geared. He asked me to decide, and I picked the holy priest. I like healing with a different class than I am. Plus we already had three druids in the raid…

We get in, start clearing trash. The guild clears trash faster and more aggressively than any pug I’ve been in, so it keeps you on your toes healing and today seemed especially bad. I thought it was just because the other tank wasn’t turning the Servants of the Throne around. I keep an eye on the priest’s mana bar; with only 4800 gearscore, his mana regen might be weak and I’d need to toss him an innervate. It didn’t get very low though, and I kept having a hard time healing. When a pair of frost giants appeared, we wiped – more or less; I managed to escape but almost everyone was dead.

I started looking at the healing meter. And something was very, very wrong. I was at the top, as I expected – with 70% of healing done. After that the pugged priest was at 15%. The shadow priest was at almost 12% just from Vampiric Embrace! This didn’t seem right.

Well, maybe he was using a lot of bubbles and it wasn’t showing up right on the meters. He was holy, not disc, but who knows. I told Vuhdo to display for me the Power Word: Shield and Weakened Soul debuff on raid members. Oh, there was – one shield, briefly, on one tank. And thirty seconds later, another – on himself.

No, I was starting to suspect our problem lay with the healer.

I started giving him specific instructions via whisper, fight to fight – “Ok, you keep [off tank] alive”, knowing Reversion and I could coordinate his cooldowns and my Oh Crap moves and be fine. It worked, more or less, but the numbers on the meters were staying where they had been and I was working harder than ever to keep everyone alive.

We got to Saurfang, killed him. Fortunately the Mark went onto one of the tanks, something I find is a lifesaver when the healing is underpowered. Better to have all the heals going to one person than split among three.

Saurfang dropped the healing staff, Mag’hari Chieftain’s Staff. I’ve got that; I use it sometimes. The pug healer and a couple dps rolled on it. Reversion asks in the raid whether it’s main spec for the healer – who had lost the roll. No reply. So he gave it to the winner of the roll.

We go into the Upper Spire. Pug healer dies in the mist, releases. I charge merrily along healing as we pull trash. All of a sudden we notice something is very, very wrong. Well first, it’s been a good five minutes and there’s no sign of Pug Healer. Second, the tanks now have only 50k health.

It sinks in as we look at our buffs. The Strength of Wrynn – our 20% boost – is gone.

Suspicion immediately falls to the pugged healer. “Did you talk to the king?” we ask him. No response. The raid decides we’ll leave the instance, wait half an hour, and hope the buff comes back. We remove the pug healer and troop outside.

There were two schools of thought on this; some thought he was just so stupid he managed to remove the buff from us while trying to get upstairs. I thought he might have done it on purpose because we didn’t give him the staff. Either way, we weren’t playing with him again.

Half an hour later, the buff is back. Slowly we re-form the raid. This time, a guildie volunteers to heal – a holy paladin! Huzzah! We end up pugging in a rogue for some dps since one of the earlier group had to call it a night, and we set off to kill some abominations.

Boom boom boom – and a surprise for me, the Plague Wing achievement. Apparently Analogue had only downed the Professor on 25 man. Turns out it was my paladin who had done it on ten man. Heh! It’s always funny when you get an achievement for a fight you know pretty well.

We were getting tired, and sloppy, but we went to the Blood wing and I got another first, this time a real first: Blood Princes and the Queen. I’d seen the Princes but only to wipe; Reversion had finished Blood Wing previously, so now I’m caught up. My personal progression in ICC is 10/12!

The evening ended on a lower note when we wiped twice to Dreamwalker; I was tired and just couldn’t keep the raid alive while the paladin was inside. But the second two wings were way easier than the first, because I had an actual healing partner and not a parasite.

So all in all a very good raiding weekend. Stay tuned tomorrow; SAN is going to finish up BWL and I can’t wait.

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Typical

Corporate Raider

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SAN Weekend Raiding Update

We were hoping to raid with SAN Saturday afternoon, but we had issues getting people to fill slots, a narrow time window- basically, it wasn’t going to work so we agreed to try again Sunday. Later that evening, Reversion and I signed back on to try to recruit guildies to go visit UBRS and BWL for some classic WoW fun times. We got a great turnout!

Me – Divergent – as the paladin tank
Rev – on Consolidate with leet druid heals
HairyGiblets – the hunter
Daruma and Rogerstring – our shamans
Missholloway – an almost-level-appropriate paladin
Delwyn the Rogue – level 72 at the time I think
Invariant – my 58 warlock on the RAF account, along to give soulstones and that’s about it.

We wandered into Blackrock Spire and headed for the Upper part, slaying all who stood in our way. First notable accomplishment: the whelp room! We turned off Retribution Aura, made the shamans wait to throw totems, I ran around clicking eggs like crazy then we AOE’d and boom, filled Guild chat with achievement spam. Lots of Jenkins titles that night!

We finished tearing along through UBRS and found the BWL entrance. I zoned in, then back out since I wanted us to get the UBRS achievement and we hadn’t yet. Tip: zoning out of BWL and back in sets you at the entrance to BRS and you have to run all the way back…

Anyway, we killed the end boss for UBRS and proceeded into Blackwing Lair. None of us had been here before and we weren’t sure what to expect. We figured out we needed to mind control and have the big dragon kill eggs, but wiped twice trying to get the hang of it. Finally we realized that you really just need to ignore the adds because if you kill them they keep spawning. So I worked my butt off to aggro all the adds, Consolidate healed me, the boss, the raid, whoever, and the guildies took turns mind controlling the boss. They did great, I avoided killing the boss when he wasn’t mind controlled (I think I did that one of our wipes) and with a great sense of accomplishment, he went down.

You don’t have to take my word for it either! Hairygiblets videoed our fight and linked it on his blog: here

Oh, another tip: Our first wipe, we didn’t have to run back because Daruma Reincarnated. Our second wipe, we all died, and Consolidate volunteered to run back. Unfortunately, ALL the trash in UBRS had respawned and he and Hairygiblets had to fight their way back in. It seems like there’s a really short respawn timer. Actually the bosses and stuff were back too. I’m not sure what was going on there.

Having passed the first test, we were ready to see more. So we poked our heads into the next room and found a corrupted red dragon who needed to be put out of his misery. He has an annoying mechanic though; he puts a dot on someone, and after a couple seconds, they die from it. No ifs, ands, or buts. Every third dot goes to a tank… so we had a really limited window to get him down, and we didn’t. Got him about halfway. Unfortunately it was quite late so we called it. Next time we’ll bring more bodies as dot-soaking-targets.

A very fun little evening, though!

Sunday afternoon as promised, guild members signed on. We ended up with only five of us; Divergent, Consolidate, Hairygiblets, Datq the resto shaman and Daruma, so we picked up puggers and went to ICC, with me healing and Consolidate tanking this time.

Hairy got some video from this too.

To summarize, we made trash die, we one-shotted the first three bosses, we went to Saurfang, has blood beast issues like you’d expect with multiple first time people (some of the puggers were new too I think) and then a top dps’er ragequit, and some of us were running out of time so we called it.

Again, this raiding with SAN is a lot of fun and anyone who has a spare 80 or is looking for somewhere to role an alt could do worse than joining a blogger guild. Guild chat is never dull!

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Loophole

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At the entrance to our subdivision, there’s a cult – well, a particular religious sect that is widely regarded as a cult and known for knocking on doors. Back around Christmas, they knocked down their old building and since then, Fridays and Saturdays they’re out there building their new one.

It’s really funny because they look exactly like how cults always do in WoW – little knots of 2-5 people standing around just far enough from the next knot that you can take it out. One or two patrolling around. And just like in WoW, while from a distance it vaguely looks like they’re doing things, when you really watch them you realize they’re basically just standing there.

Always funny when something in real life reminds you of a game so strongly…

I wonder whether they drop anything good?

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