Friday, December 30, 2011

Happy New Year

Happy New Year! Or is it last year? I'm in so many different times and places right now... 
I have a minor Bronze Dragonflight obsession. It's growing - especially for Chromie. She intrigues me and one of these days I'd like to dedicate something a bit longer to her. For now, a quick doodle!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

LFR - Why do I keep checking leader?

I think I have a problem.

Normally I raid with my guild, so I've only qued for LFR 5 times. 4 times on my shaman and once on my warrior. Of those 5 times, I landed the raid leader spot in 4 of them. I noticed that I had the leader flag checked, and I didn't unceck it. Why? Why didn't I uncheck it? Does my subconscious hate me?

Actually no. Turns out (at least in my limited experience), spamming useful hints with raid warning pretty much keeps 24 other people in line. Now I'm assuming about a third of the people in LFR at any given time actually know what to do. They also might shout out helpful things like "GET OUT OF THE PURPLE" but nothing quite beats the ping! of raid warning. The other two-thirds might be a little confused, but they can read, and so adapt quickly. Usually - there's one or two that you might have to sacrifice to the derp gods, but so be it.

And there are some that disagree with you. Especially on Yor'sahj. But, raid leader powers take care of that too. We can all debate the slime kill order until the end of time, but the people follow the /rw. Hell, I called out black once, leaving both green and red alive. It was a stupid call, and I immediately questioned my own intelligence, (ala "WTF AM I THINKING") but it didn't matter. The people followed. And it worked (mostly b/c green aoe damage in LFR is negligent, but still).

Still, it's amazing to me what small bits of organization will do. Sure, wipes occur, but I noticed not as many people drop if the wipe occurs and there's been fight communication. Everyone seems more willing to stick around if there's been a bit of group interaction.

So if you know your stuff, been around the block a few times, please, please check the raid leader flag. Typing /rw hit the button during Ultraxion makes all the difference between an easy LFR experience and giving up all hope for humanity because they can't hit a goddamn button.

Or maybe I've just been really lucky and LFR is still filled with crazy, brain-dead degenerates. But I've gotta hope...

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Heroic Beth'tilac

Party up top: We had four melee go up (myself, 2 rogues, and a DK). Our composition was based on what groups had the most self-healing, since we only have one healer go up. The 4 melee we send up can pretty much avoid/heal/mitigate incoming damage, leaving the healer free to heal the tank and conserve mana. Wolves, stoneclaw, shamanistic rage, even the occasional MWx5 chain heal, are all recommended. On the last descent I run towards the spiderlings to kill them before Beth follows me down.

Frenzy on the bottom: I fell off the web on two different attempts just so I could experience the bottom level. It had nothing to do with the fact that I stupidly avoided one lava puddle by jumping straight into another. Nope. It was all for science! For melee on the bottom, stick to the drone like glue. The drone will occasionally fixate on someone. Whoever that fixated person is must run to the drone tank. Help taunt the spinners down in the beginning. Ranged will be managing the exploding spiders.

Phase 2: Stack on butt. Pop dps and dmg cooldowns. Pray your healer’s mana lasts long enough. Save your lock cookie for that last 20 to 10%. We found Beth needs to be at 80% or lower before Phase 2 for a successful kill.

Swag: Widow’s Kiss, I guess. Shoulders, if you’re desperate.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011


Oh heroic Morchok. It's not that you're conceptually difficult. We're just having a "derp" night. All 25 of us. Go us.

That's ok! Wipe time = picture time!
Yesss my minion. Crush them! Crush them ALL!
They stand and watch the WHOLE fight. You'd think they'd help a little more. But no.
And finally, from last week:

Friday, December 9, 2011

Heroic Alysrazor

Heroic Alysrazor's changes come in the first phase. The adds still come, but with more health, and are a bit more staggered out. Meteor's also drop into the middle and must be stopped (i.e. killed by ranged) before they reach the walls and explode. The meteor is crucial because after a few seconds Alysrazor will cast a giant firestorm, and you have to hide behind the meteor to avoid it.  It goes:
Add 1
Add 2
Add 3
Add 4
Fiery Vortex
Lather, Rinse, Repeat

With 4 melee to an add (in 25m) they all drop in time. However, depending on your DPS and how well all 4 are paying attention and not trying to chase the hatchlings, Add1 and Add2 can cause some problems. We had to assign a hunter to get the first interrupt off Add 2, because Add 1 was just barely dead and none of us could make it over to the second in time (not even with ghost wolf...though it helps).

If you don’t kill Add 2 before the meteor drops, it’s not the end of the world. They won’t cast Fireball while Firestorm is going on. Just make sure you kill her ASAP after the storm is over.

Don’t know what side to hide behind? Follow the crowd. Angle your camera up and make sure the rock is between the fiery bird and you.

Fire tornadoes still hurt. I drop stoneclaw as a precaution. We pop hero as soon as the tornadoes are in, because it usually lasts longer than the down phase does.

As long as the melee can manage adds, and the ranged can handle meteors (plus help on the hatchlings from both when appropriate. Read: when neither adds nor meteors are up) Alysrazor will go down.

Swag: Pants!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

The Madness of Madness

6/7 down in 25man Dragonsoul. Working on Madness all night. We had him So.Close. Like, 3% close. But RL dictated sleep > raid. Tomorrow for sure!

Some fun shots from tonight!
Wipe on Spine, the pile of dead makes me giggle

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Heroic Rhyolith

Planning on knocking out my remaining Heroic FL guides this week so I can dive right into DS guides.

H. Rhyolith: Ugh. This guy is the bane of my existence. RNG-determined  volcano spawns suck. Weird turning mechanisms suck. Even after we had him on farm I cringe every time he's up.

This is another heroic fight that changes for ranged, but not so much for melee. There are more adds to kill, including little gray blobs that increase Rhyolith’s armor if they get close enough for him to absorb them. I don’t want to encourage too much melee cleaves – since, while damage on the adds is good, it could influence turning (or lack thereof). I did get in the habit of having earthbind hot-keyed for this fight. It did seem effective in giving the ranged (or the arms warrior that cleaved anyway) just enough time to kill some of the adds.

Again, have one person designated to call out directions. For Normal we had our raid leader calling turns out, for Heroic the melee leader (me) does it, since ranged and heals have a lot more of their own stuff to worry about. Try to keep him going straight for as long as possible after he crushes a volcano, so that you can respond to him activating the next, wherever this might be. Obviously if he’s near an edge you can’t do this, so you just have to turn him in a direction and pray it’s the right one. Even if it’s not, never change direction. It’s faster to force him to do a complete circle than to make him reverse. Also (and I learned this the hard way) call out straighten several seconds before you need it. Nothing sucks more than having him miss the volcano you aimed him for because he’s just a little too far right.

Phase 2 is different. Now there are dancing lasers! Do your best to avoid them, while still sticking behind and to the middle of the boss as much as you can to benefit from AOE-heals. Shamanistic Rage, Stoneclaw, and eating your lock cookies, are key here. Several of our wipes were just because we got flattened by his first phase 2 stomp + lasers. The goal is to stack everyone up for heals in the beginning, yet far enough apart, quick enough, that lasers won’t cut a path through half the raid.

Swag: Dreadfire Drape

We did him on normal last week, just to get the achievement. I may or may not have been yelling "DANCE YOU ANNOYING ROCK DANCE" as he spun around in all-right circles. May have.

Friday, December 2, 2011

4.3 Dragonsoul First Impressions

A couple days into 4.3, I've been able to run all the new dungeons, plus the new raid. Here are my thoughts: 

New Dungeons

End Time has a cool, cool setting. Bosses easy in heroic Firelands gear, but just the design is awesome. I love the bronze dragon flight. They are so twisted in lore. What's really up? We may never know. Poor Normy.
Hour of Twilight is a trip back to Northrend. I was having Dragonblight quest flashbacks the entire time. But it does continue to the string of quests that really make you feel like you're in the middle of the this whole "get the Dragonsoul or ALL ELSE IS LOST!" 
Well of Eternity SO COOOOOL. And pretty. The Well, spiraling down throughout the whole dungeon is an excellent touch. Also: Azshara! I can't wait for Mists of Pandaria when she's an actual raid boss (it'll happen, you'll see).

Dragonsoul Raid
 Deathwing circles Wrymrest the entire time you're fighting in the first section. Scared the crap out of me the first time he swung towards us. I like that it's in wyrmrest. it makes Northrend not feel completely forgotten (though we get there through Caverns of Time...a little roundabout). On one hand, as a raider, I was glad I could hop right into DS and start raiding. On the other hand, as a lore nerd, I would have liked a few required quests ahead of time, tie it all in. I guess the new dungeons do that -  I just did them in opposite order.
Though the falling dragons makes me wonder if they're rehashed models from normal Northrend when Malygos' forces were fighting. Reskin that red as green or yellow or blue or black and bam! New war.
Morchok was so.very.easy. We had 2 people DC, relog, and rejoin (though one sadly got tele'd out) and we still got him on the first attempt.
Warlord Zon'ozz entrance is pretty fun. Hurtle me into a gaping maw? Wheeeee. The fact that he is Pong reincarnate, come back haunt us every more?! 14 wipes later the General is dead. We finally mastered pong. I think personally it's pong's way of staying relevant. Don't forget me bitches, or I won't hit the giant boss hitbox. Mwhahaha.

Yor'Sahj the Unsleeping. Skittles. Skitttlessssss. Once you know what color slimes play nice with each other, he's pretty easy. I was distracted half the fight watching the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show and was still able to kill everything. Skittles because each slime is a color of the rainbow!
Aspects are the best part of this whole raid.
Ultraxion requires you to push a button. At a certain time. Can you push that button? Can you even see that button or has your super customized UI hidden it? This guy is also a pretty steep DPS check, but I'm saying most our wipes came from button troubles.
Lootship: Part2
Warmaster Blackhorn started out with "hey guys, remember lootship?" And then we all nodded but agreeded this guy was no lootship.  ... He totally is.

Spine of Deathwing starts with a cinematic. Hint, this cinematic pulls everyone into the fight, no matter where they are. Buying gems in the temple? Too bad.YOINK, onto Deathwing you go. My guildies weren't very happy with me for that one. Actual attempts have a fast learning curve. Every time he does a barrel roll I giggle a little.
Madness of Deathwing has an awesome setting. Maelstrom. All the aspects behind you. Truly epic. Actual fight? We're still working on. Getting very good at dying though!