Monday, 13 February 2012

PuG rants

First off let me say that I am actually a firm supporter of the LFD and lately the LFR mechanisms. For a long time I was a guildless, friendless adventurer with limited play time available. Being able to queue up and jump into a dungeon kept me playing the game. I do however have to acknowledge that it did have some negative consequences. Not least of which it seems to empower the worst among us to behave poorly.

I recently had the "pleasure" of healing a paladin tank who was tanking BRD with no shield. This would possibly be OK if he was using a two hander in ret spec, but no, he was using a intellect off hand?? What?

A little later I was in a dungeon with my hunter, 2 DKs and a holy paladin. The DK tank died or came close to dying quite a few times. The DK DPS was ranting at the healer for consistantly calling for mana breaks, and then running off and pulling. The tank wasn't holding aggro at all. At this point I thought I'd have a look at what was going on. Both DKs were unholy specced. And the "tank" wasn't even in blood presence. There were so many easy to fix issues, but rather than stop for 2 minutes and sort them out everyone was trying to gogogo regardless. Take a breath people and try and improve... even slightly.

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Heroic Raiding begins

So with big DW down a couple resets ago, and one reset to change from the Monday night raid to the Thursday night raid, Heroic mode can begin for Ironshield. The rest of the team tried it last week, but gave up in favour of the full clear.

After a brief hiccup where we realised we hadn't selected heroic mode until after we'd pulled Morchok, leading to our first ever Morchok wipe and a second round of trash, I stepped into heroic raiding.

Pull one went pretty smoothly although I wasted some cooldowns early on as I expected a bit more damage to start. And then underestimated the enrage damage and took a massive hit from mid health as the boss hit 20% and we were wiped. We rebuffed and had a bite to eat and had another crack. This time I hung onto cooldowns until stomp 3 / 4 when the healers were having a harder time keeping up with crystals. I also managed to remember to move towards the crystals when they formed to help the soakers maintain range while soaking. Every time it started to look a bit hairy we got a black blood phase and the healers could casually top us off while regenning some mana to boot. The next thing we knew he's down in single figures and our health is all green. He toppled with a bit of an anticlimax considering the amount of strategizing we'd been doing leading up to it.

Just to rub it in a bit he dropped plate healing boots, which means that my best item is a pair of boots for a spec I don't even have yet. I'm going to have to learn to heal soon at this rate. I've got LFR 2pc, assorted 397s and 410 feet now for holy. At least our hunter got some useful loot, though I assume it's going to cost her a fortune to gem them now. Another reason to prefer tanking, my gems are yellow and increasingly blue. Everyone else has to fight over Reds.

Our attempt at going 2/8H was somewhat less successful. It seems jumping into heroic Yor'sahj with no planning and almost as little knowledge is not really a great idea. We made to to the second bloods one time, but that was the best we managed. To the strategy table! We finished off the evening with a few Firelands bosses to get some more Legendary components. Beth'tilac in particular feels really easy now.

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Death of Deathwing

As the title implies, the 42nd downed Deathwing this Monday. On the second night that we had seen him, and with almost an hour left of raid time. Ironshield and 7 other team members got wasted with the last pulse of his blood AoE, but the DK tank, and a healer - (I think) managed to shield / survive it and he keeled over. Next week, HARD MODES. I managed to witness our raid's first kill of about half of the Dragon Soul bosses so I feel quite involved this tier.

This leads me to wonder, are these nerfs coming too fast? I know this topic has been done to death, but hey this is my blog, I can flog a dead zhevra if I want to. The 42nd is a pretty casual outfit. We started with the philosophy of not forcing people to join the guild in order to join the community, and as far as I know the recruiting has been done much more on a social and attitude related bias than performance (or God forbid, gear). We raid two nights a week for 3 hours. I personally only usually do one of those, but 2 usually happen every week. We fairly regularly pick up a stray from one of the teams other guilds to make up our ten, but there is usually a core of at least 8 who regularly raid. With this setup, is +-8 resets really too many to be killing the tier end boss? Especially when you consider Christmas and New Year were in that slot. I acknowledge that Blizzard sees more data than we could ever hope to, but I personally expected to spend more time than this on progressing this far.

Blizzard have told us that some guilds have hit a wall. And I can believe that, but only really because they progressed too far and far too quickly. As far as I know, all the hard mode raiders on my server went 7/8 on the very first reset, and most killed Deathwing the next week. This isn't a hard core progression type realm by any stretch of the imagination. So my conclusion is, are these nerfs coming early because ultimately the raids were under tuned? At least the first part? But even the last few, this DW kill didn't feel nearly as epic as the Ragnaros post 30% nerf kill. Yes Ragnaros was a massive amount of dance, and the seemingly unrelated phases felt disjointed, but killing him felt EPIC.

DISCLAIMER : the only "data" I base any of my conclusions on is my own experience so conclusions may vary :)