Archive for September, 2011

Last night Reversion and I decided to see how badly nerfed Firelands was by taking our less geared alts, some guildies, and some trade chat pugs in. We had Reversion’s other druid tank who is pretty well geared other than having a blue weapon, my mage who can manage11k on trash, 13 on bosses, two well geared shaman healers from guild, Bocat, and two other guildies: a well geared dps warrior who knew the fights, and a somewhat geared mage who also knew the fights. Then we grabbed a resto druid and two dks from Trade, one dk as a a tank, and headed in.

Trash was fine. Our dps was so low that the nerfs meant things died about as fast as I’m used to. My dps was the worst at 11k, I believe, but only Bocat and the warrior really performed well. It was a bit painful. The dk tank was pulling about 5k so no help there.

After we got it cleared, it was Shannox time. Everyone said they knew the fight so we pulled. We had a couple issues:

The dk tank was on the dog and was using a different strat than we used…. basically trying to trap the dog before spear time, not after. Sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn’t, and often Reversion couldn’t clear his debuff

The dps was low. We had the melee staying on Shannox and Rageface just would. Not. Die.

People were standing on traps. To be fair, it was mostly two people who did had known computer issues (lag and addon problems). But that didn’t make it easier to deal with the traps.

The resto druid wasn’t a raid -level healer. His spell choice was bad (did not want to use Lifebloom. Seriously?)  and his gear was light. It wasn’t a deal killer but it hurt.

Did I mention the dps was low? I’m an arcane mage, I ought to be able to do more than 13k. Bleah.

On the third try (Reversion: was it only 3? I think it was 5 or more. Ug.), we got Shannox down. That was the first time everyone stayed alive to phase 2. P2 didn’t take any time and the healing seemed way less intense.

So basically, the nerf meant a group that had no business being there could kill the easiest boss, after a few fails.  But it wasn’t a total pushover. The “bads” that some elitists seem worried will get “free loot”, won’t. If you couldn’t down Shannox before it’s probably because of mechanics, not raw numbers, and the mechanics still have to be handled.

I may be complaining this weekend when we go in with our real crew, but at least it’s not a complete joke.

Oh, and did anyone else notice a buffed epic drop rate? We cleared Shannox trash, got one, and Beth trash and got another (Rev’s other bear now has a purple weapon!). Could be coincidence but after all the nights we’ve gone in there without a single BOE trash drop… Got a crafting ember on our one boss kill too, but that’s not a big enough sample size to make any guesses there.


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Keeping a low profile


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Trial period


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Tomorrow the nerf bat comes. We don’t actually know how much or how exactly, yet, but the official Nerfing comes soon. I kind of like the short cycle between announcement and nerf; it keeps the commentary and qq’ing it a minimum. Everyone gets to focus, say what they want to say, and then boom, it’s over, time to get on to the next news. Like patch 4.3. There’s a lot of news there.

Since we only had a week between the announcement and the execution, I knew we weren’t going to get Ragnaros down. Going into the weekend we were still 5/7, though I knew Staghelm was in our reach. Went in Friday hoping to stomp those 5 out flat and have a whole night for Staghelm; it didn’t really work. Our ret paladin was out and we brought in Bocat, our friendly guild shadow priest. She knows the fights and is great and we killed the first four with no problems. Then we hit Alysrazor and trouble. That fight is hard and having one person who isn’t in the normal roster can really throw the rythm off. She did great; we just didn’t have the team synergy we needed.

Saturday night, who shows up, unexpectedly, but Grom? Yay, we’ll have the full crew. We went in and two shot Alysrazor. Bang, dead. It was great. On to Staghelm. We started by pushing more stacks than we had last week, and kept adjusting as we went. We actually started doing more scythes on the third scorpion phase than the second, because all our cooldowns were back.  The fight felt increasingly stable; we were getting to the point where the orbs were killing us every time, but we were getting TO that point, which was progress. And then one attempt we managed the orbs right, we stacked back up, we blew cooldowns, and Staghelm died.

Finally. That kill was hard. I think our second kill won’t be as bad.

We even went and did a couple pulls on Ragnaros. Maybe could have done more but I was tired and we need time to digest that one.

So. Back to my point. The nerfs are coming and I am ok with that. Yes, I know we could down Ragnaros the way he is now, with more time on him. But we did get to 6/7 and that’s actually enough to be the number 10 Alliance guild on our server, which is kind of sad. I had a random rogue whisper me asking if we were recruiting, so that was kind of cool. We’ve got a solid core group and I’m looking forward to 4.3. I don’t feel like our first Rag kill will be devalued because it came after the nerf. It’ll still be a kill for us, will still take work, will still require us to push ourselves more and more. I’ve been kind of a hard nose in recent weeks, pushing raid members to improve. I try not to be too mean about it but I feel like our team is good enough to be more than server 25th on a low population server. I want to still enjoy raiding with our team, so I still value having fun as most important, but it’s not that fun to wipe and wipe without progress. We haven’t had that happen this raid tier. Maybe we would have on Ragnaros. Maybe the nerf is saving us from raid drama. Who knows.

I just can’t get worked up about it one way or another. I might be losing geek points for not engaging in drama, but… I’m more concerned about raid roster next week, whether I need to max out my vps tonight or not, and how we can hit the ground running in 4.3.

Let’s kill some bosses.

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Tough job market



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A bit salty


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Take it up a level

So. We raided Friday and Saturday as usual. Sorak was missing Saturday so we took Squishi. Friday we got our five bosses down, bang-bang-bang. We actually had two wipes on Beth which was a little embarrassing at this point but hey. And she dropped my gloves so yay.  Just need my head. Took 5 attempts on Alysrazor and our kill ended up being considerably faster than our previous kill – Slice got her while she was in the air the third time. Yay! Our hard work on that boss really paid off. We’re still using a three heal strategy and our dps have stepped up to make that work.

We even went to BH Friday night, killed Occu’thar, and still got done a little early.

Saturday was time to work on Staghelm. And work, and work…. we’re definitely getting there, but we aren’t having the easy time some groups seem to have. I wonder if it’s because I’m a healer that I see this fight as really hard? I’m calling the cooldowns and trying to remember what we still have available to use, and it’s hard. By the end of the night, we were taking 8 stacks of Flame Scythe and 7 cat jumps every time, and I’m thinking we should try increasing that to 9/8. We can blow heroism off the top and just burn it down.  Our best attempt was 11% so we’re not that far off. I think we’ve more or less got the Burning Seeds part, but the Mushroom things are still killing us. Part of the problem is I’m not seeing the debuff show up and so not getting targets hotted up fast enough.

It  just feels like our heals are a bit weak right now. Our numbers look good, and Kerick and I have awesome synergy, but I don’t feel like we’re using our third healer right. Usually we have a disc priest. She’s awesome and a personal friend, but I feel like I don’t understand how best to tell her to work with us. I know what Kerick’s job is going to be, on a fight. I know my job – usually, “heal all the things”. But how to best work with the disc priest? Do I stick her on the off tank with a side of raid healing, or straight raid heals?

We’re also questioning whether Divine Aegis is doing enough on Flamescythes or whether she needs to do more. All I know is I’ve read “COH moar”, but she’s doing that. So  I just don’t know.

Kerick and I can two heal some fights in Firelands, and more as we get them on farm (We’ve done Shannox and Ryo, and I’m willing to try Alys again sometime. A little more gear and I might even try Beth). But we can’t two heal Staghelm, and I think what’s holding the raid back right now is communication on my end. I have taken the job of heal lead and I need to be serious about it, and that means improving my awareness of the fight, my ability to call and analyze things, and not sacrifice my effectiveness, either.

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