Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Off Topic Rant - Bathroom Etiquette

So this is way off topic, but involves the center of my office world - the bathroom.

It may be just me, but there are certain things one does or does not do while using a public restroom. Washing of hands, courtesy flushes, etc.

What one does not do is talk to the other occupants while they are using the urinal. I mean seriously, this isn't the water cooler. If you want to chat me up, come to my office. I don't bust into your bathroom at home just to have a good chat - and really, why do you feel the need to talk to me at all? This is right up there with not washing your hands and then leaving me to wander the office all day looking for the shoes that matched the no washing.

No wonder I don't like the people I work with. Filthy buggers.

Our perfect night - almost

Last night was a total zerg fest - and it was amazingly awesome. We started about 15 minutes late waiting on our resident rogue, but then rolled into Ony. It seems Blizzard reads my Blog - because Lady Prestor was not amused and we actually wiped twice. Well - the first one was because both tanks ran into the whelp cave to go for the achievement - and we both DC'd. Oops. The second was just due to being dumb. Our DPS is so high that she's landing around the time the whelps are burned down. This makes getting her back into position a touch tricky.


Into ToC regular. Total zerg, very boring. I think there was one moment where a battle rez was used because the hunter was being silly - but that may have been on Heroic......I'm pretty sure we're not even trying any more in regular. It's a lot of fun though, since we almost pushed Anub into Phase 3 before he had a Phase 2......

One request to Blizzard - let me get back to the tournament grounds without having to go to Dalaran. That's just annoying. I've saved you all from a loose demon, I've killed Arthas's minion, and I've battled the most annoying PvP team that the Alliance can toss at me. Why oh why must I go back to Dalaran when I just want to reset the instance as heroic and start over?

Tribute to more than 45 attempts (skill? Insanity? Skilled Insanity?)

Either way - we got it done last night. Four wipes on FC was our only stumble, although we're still falling apart at the end of Phase 3 on Anub. I think there were three left standing at the end, and two of those died to the DoT. Still, a kill is a kill. I just wish I'd Fraps'd this one.

So from Trash to Cash - just over two hours for 33 badges, and a whole lot of loot out of ToC. Getting four idols is really nice, as I'm sure folks will want to get multiple sets of gear (greedy hybrids). I'm saving up my tokens for my 245 set pieces and some Furious Gladiator stuff.

If anyone has any tips on making a tanking video more interesting (let's be honest, how long can you watch Ony's face breathe fire on someone?) I'm all ears. I'm trying to get some collaborative work done with our Disc priest - maybe shoot the video from multiple angles.

I may be healing a 25 man ToC this weekend, if so, I'll have some numbers and feedback on how much I suck at healing now.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

A Tribute to Skill

Shot from the tank's perspective - it's fairly boring towards then end as you just see me standing there with the occasional add sticking his tail in my face.

Monday, September 28, 2009

LFG Idiots - a small rant

I'll be the first to admit that I'm something of an instance snob. I refuse to run Brewfest with anything other than guild mates (primarially because I don't need anything, or want anything, from there - there's not even badges for crying out loud), I hate ToC, and the Occulus can get bent. Of course this is on my Paladin - on my alts I'll take whatever I can get.

It's also true that for every bad PuG there seems to be a good PuG - or at least one good PuG member. This is the guy who helps summon, isn't an idiot, or at least does some decent baseline DPS. I personally love seeing a PUG with a ton of Heirloom items as well - because at least you know they put in some time with one other toon - so they should know the basics at least.

My real rant

I hate PuGs that base entrance or acceptance on arbitrary numbers. LF 3k DPS, 2k SP, 30k HP, etc. Of course my true favorites are those that want you to link Starcaller before you can get into a Naxx 10. 90% of the time all this leads to is a busted run. Sure - nobody wants to carry the 400 DPS fury warrior (really - how is that possible?) through a run or a raid - but you won't get that information until you see him play. Hell - I could state that my mage is a 3k mage, and she might be - if I blew all my CDs on a massive trash AoE.

What you dont know is if I can manage my mana properly. Will I be on fumes at the end of a 30 second fight? Do I know when I should use defensive CDs while tanking? Take your chances with the rest of us. Sometimes you get gold - othertimes you get a gold plated turd.

Just because we're successful

Doesn't mean I want to pick out curtains with you. Sure, you can friend me - but don't think I'm going to tank/heal any old heroic for you just because I'm on. Now, if more badge/token pieces were BoE - different story. I've got to earn those badges the hard way on my alts though, and the invites just don't fly in as fast on the old mage.

Finally - if you're in a melee DPS role, and we have to hunt around looking for a healer - then yes - I'm going to roll on that healing neck that may not be 100% itemized for my DPS. Your offspec can go pound sand.

Some little things

First - I learned this week that I'm an absolute moron when it comes to my blog. I can recite Cisco commands from heart, rebuild a SQL database from memory, and have the IP of every major device in my office memorized - but I didn't realize I was writing all my blogs in the "Edit HTML" tab. No wonder I didn't have any options for lists or fonts.

Second - I at least figured out how to resize the YouTube videos I embedded, so I could go back to the style sheet I liked. They're small - but I figured folks could edit them in as they see fit. Now if I could just figure out how to make a link go back to wowhead on mouseover (so I can link items and talents without having to click on them to go there) I'd be sitting really pretty.

Finally - a small drawback to the mage Arcane spec. Our resident buffet provider went Arcane after the patch, and to make the most of his talents (whatever one it is that gives him SP for damage absorbed) the Disc priest and I have been shielding him all the time. On the plus side - he does a lot more damage. My SS and our disc priest's PW:S are pretty tough. Add that to his own mana shield, and his SP is through the roof. The drawback is that he lives a lot more now. We used to depend on him dying - it was a measure of a good pull if he died, but we didn't wipe.

We've lost that now.

As an aside - I'm now torn about what to do with my new badges. I've got all the tank gear I need/want - aside from my tier tokens - and I've saved up enough badges to buy those once I get the idols. I see no point in replacing my ilvl 245 gear with 232 T9 - even though the 4 piece is pretty sweet for some fights. I generally only heal for 2 or 3 fights (faction champs, Firefighter, Yogg+1) - so upgrading the healing gear isn't as crucial. I'm running 5/5 Deadly, with all the furious off set pieces except the cloak (another weekend and I'll be sporting that).

So the question is - do I get Furious gear with tokens, or wait until my 3s arena is high enough to get them? I wonder if I can get the savage off sets with a reasonable rating. Oh, and WTB PvP weapon for last season. There's something dumb about being all decked in PvP gear, but with PvE shield and mace strapped on.

Friday, September 25, 2009

10 man raid vs Ony 25

After getting our 25 attempts remaining "Tribute to Insanity" achievement last night, we were a little confused on what to do with the rest of our raid night. Algalon is still taunting us, but he doesn't seem as attractive any more. Instead we went down to the Wyrmbog, and decided to tackle 25m Ony - with just 10 folks.

Phase One

Damage was manageable, with a few spikes when I'd catch a wing buffet/cleave/breath all at once. Obviously manageable, as we went into Phase Two with both healers > 95% mana. For having 22 million HP, we were taking her down smoothly and evenly - no real problems.

Phase Two

Now it got interesting. The whelps weren't a big issue, but the guardians added a bit of a twist. They (unfortunately) took so long to burn that our ranged wasn't getting any real time on Ony. This is where we finally wiped. I will say though, that I think with a little more planning, we might have gotten closer. 57% with 10 people was our final number.

Bring on the PUGs!!

Hopping into trade I quickly rounded up a fair mix of retarded and good players. Obviously when we asked "How many did her pre BC" and we got a 100% "I did" folks were lying. Either that, or they were fire hugging, tail-whip eating, idiots in Vanilla. One DK - I swear to all that is holy - was tail whipped every single attempt - sometimes more than once.

He also kept dying to blastwaves from the guardians. Pro tip - if you see the tank running like hell from a mob - you should probably do the same. Kind of like that t-shirt "I'm with the bomb squad. If you see me running, try and keep up".

The PUG DPS wasn't great, a few were under the tank, but it was enough to push the old gal down into Phase 3. We had one Phase 3 wipe, but that was due to 1/3 of the raid getting cleaved while moving her into position.


The fight was a nice throwback, and we'll be farming her every week for those badges. Hopefully we can get a quick PUG again next week for the 25 man. Those extra 3 badges will add up quick.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Anub'Arak - Parabola 10 Man Hard Mode

It's not pretty - but we we got it done. Watch in HD for the best picture. Shot by our resident Priest, and none of the techno pop you get in most kill videos.

Our strategy generally involves grabbing the adds and holding them on the ice next to Anub'Arak, with eveyone stacked on the ice to prevent burrowing if they shadowstep off. In this kill video our Shaman got agro off the add tank around 4:27 into the fight and wound up folding. If this hadn't happened, I'm pretty sure it would have been a flawless kill.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

I was expecting more of Lady Prestor

Seriously - LOL @ ONY. Don't get me wrong, considering her loot table was on par with regular TOC 10/25 I wasn't expecting Algalon - but this is it? Nothing changed, and not only did she not deep breath more - she didn't deep breath AT ALL.

Yes - we're all in 245/232 gear and essentially farm Heroic ToC/10. Yes, we all did Ony back when it was 40 people you didn't know and some guy named Puff telling you what to do. No, we weren't expecting something huge....but this, this loot pinata. I'm fairly certain she's still soloable.

7:42 - that's the time from buff to loot (trash buff, not at Ony). She went down in phase one so fast I thought I'd lost agro some how. I can't even imagine what it would have been if our druid had been cat instead of bear. Her fire breath wasn't even enough to punch through our Disc priest's shield.

Phase Two saw about 20 whelps, and two guardians. They were quickly AoE'd (whelps) and the guardians tanked down. Once she came down into Phase Three it was just tank and spank, and with the changes to fear mechanics (back in BC so non warriors could tank Nightbane) she doesn't even change targets.

How it should have happened

Tank runs in, grabs Ony, moves to back wall where she's been tanked for years. At 95%, just enough time to let everyone settle in, a giant spike shoots through the wall one shotting the tank (like a million damage, think Mimi's rockets), even through the Paladin Ardent Defender.

Assuming the OT can pick her up, he dances her around until Phase 2. During phase 2 she drops meteors and nukes, with deep breaths ever 15 sec or so (randomize it). When she finally lands, her fire from the ground does real fire damage - and chunks of the floor turn into magma/lava - doing like 6k a tick. Goblins loyal to Deathwing are trying to run out with the eggs, only breaking more and sending them into the raid.

Yeah - that's what should have happened. Instead we got the achievments and the loot in less time than it takes to make a PB&J. She'll die every week - if just for the bag and the 3 badges. Hey, I've got three specs to flesh out - I need those things.

Leveling a Paladin - the Prot way

While Paladins aren't the FotM they were at the start of Wrath, they're still an extremely popular and versatile class. Lacking only a ranged DPS spec, I have found my Paladin to be my favorite character in game so far. I've even thought about rolling another Paladin - seriously. As a tank/heal dual spec, I'm never at a loss for group finding, and I'm nigh on indestructible while questing. Yes, it takes a little longer - but hey, that's why I have another monitor with "The Shield" playing.

The Basics - and what you need to know

I'm assuming that most folks who stumble onto this site are not brand new to the game, so I'm not going to cover all the quest zones, gear choices, etc. As far as race goes, if you're horde you're going to be a Blood Elf (until Cataclysm...mmm giant cow), though if your alliance you have a few more choices.

Blood Elf - Aside from being damn hot (The difference between me and Rhidach? I make this look good), you also get Arcane Torrent. Not only is this one of the few silences you'll have available, it also returns 6% of your mana back. It's not huge, but it's enough to keep the train rolling. And honestly, nobody expects a female Belf to have 48k while running the flag in WSG. We just don't look that dangerous. Of course having a pocket Disc healer and some 5k+ heavy hitting flag returners doesn't hurt - but I'm getting off topic here.

Draenai - A close runner up to the Belf for hotness, the female space goat isn't bad. As far as racials go, having the +hit never hurts, and the Gift of the Narru HoT will scale with gear. Having a mana free heal is a good thing.

Humans - 10% faster rep gains will be important in Northrend, and Every Man for Himself is your only real fear/stun breaker. Added Expertise with swords and maces helps out as well, at least until you're in full 245 ToC gear.

Dwarves - Personally, I dislike them the most. I hate the attack animation. They do have stoneform though, which is usefull for dropping bleeds and poisons. Expertise with maces is nice, but the gun specialization is kind of a waste.

No matter what race you choose, you're now on your way to becoming one of the most hated classes in WoW. Second only to DKs and maybe gnomes of any class.

How to Level Prot

Everyone and their brother seems to suggest leveling as retribution, getting your Bloodied Arcanite Reaper, strapping on your Stockade Pauldurons, and basically auto-attacking your way to 50 when you get crusader strike. The changes to SoC are helpful here, and you get Pursuit of Justice for 20% faster movement - but you're not unstoppable yet.

Going down the protection tree lets you grind your way forward like the proverbial juggernaut. Keeping Seal of Light up, and judging Wisdom, may not kill your enemies with reckless abandon, but you will have zero down time.

Talent Choices

Divinity - an excellent talent for leveling (and unfortunately there's no room for it at 80), this talent is a cheating machine. Simple in nature, it increases healing done by you, and to you, by 5%. This means your heals, JoL, and SoL all heal for 10% more - as they are on you, and by you. While this doesn't seem like a lot (if you had 1000 HP, JoL would return 20HP on a proc, 22HP with 5/5 Divinity), it adds up quickly over time. You also need points to move into the third tier, and this is as good a place as any to put them.

Divine Strength - 5% more Str = more threat, more damage, more parry, and more Block Value. You can't go wrong.

Tier 2 is a complete waste while leveling. Skip it entirely. We're going to depend on getting hit later for Reckoning, and teh 5% dodge from Anticipation goes against that. Be sure to get this at 80 when you're dungeoning/raiding though.

Toughness - More armor = win. Take all 5.

Improved Righteous Fury - 3% less damage taken while a passive abillity is up. Yes please.

Improved Devotion Aura - Even though you'll probably be running Ret aura for the increased damage, this is 6% more healing to anyone affected by your aura. Your healers will thank you if you're grouping, and this stacks with the 10% you get from divinity in tier one.

Improved Hammer of Justice - Reduced CD on our one stun. Take it and laugh. A lot.

Blessing of Sanctuary - Get this talent as soon as you can, and keep it up forever. With the changes in 3.2, and again in 3.2.2, this will be the only blessing you will ever run on yourself. 3% reduced damage, and mana return on every block, dodge, and parry. This is on top of the 10% increase to both Stam and Str. Let the good times roll.

Reckoning - A 10% chance, after blocking or being hit, to generate additional attacks. In BC tanking this was a great way to get yourself parry gibbed. For leveling, it's amazing. If SoC wasn't so far in the ret tree, it would go nicely with this talent - but we'd be level 50 by that point. Stick with JoL or JoW, and watch the mana flow.

One Handed Weapon Specialization - You're going to be sword and boarding it anyway, increased damage can't hurt.

Sacred Duty - 8% more Stamina. The CD reduction on our bubble and "bubble wall" is just icing on the cake.

Ardent Defender - Easily the most overpowered "OH NOVOS!" talent in the game. It took a slight nerf in 3.2.2, but 20% damage reduction to anything that hits you (or pushes you) below 35%, and a permanent auto-self rez so you can keep on fighting. Your HP return is based on your defense (for your level) so you probably won't be getting the full 30% back - but it does buy you a few extra seconds. In the end game, this talent is priceless.

Holy Shield - More blocking, and more damage while blocking. Take it and keep it up.

Spiritual Attunement - It looks good on paper, but unless you're really lucky and just chain running instances, it's a waste. Come back and put one point in it later if you have to - skip it for now.

Combat Expertise - You're really taking this for the 6% stamina at this point. The Expertise is just a bonus.

Redoubt - More BV and more Block total. Great talent if you're AoE grinding - which your supposed to be doing by now.

Avenger's Shield - The real reason we all rolled Protadins at the start. We all want to be Captain America.

Guarded by the Light - Absolutely necessary at 80 when you finally get Divine Plea. Pretty meh until then. Skip it for now, save points for when your 79 and 80.

Touched by the Light - Needed for threat when tanking at 80, not needed for the grind up. Skip it until you become a grownup tankadin.

Shield of the Templar - 3% damage reduction, and gives your Avenger's shield an interrupt/silence effect. Now if we could just lower the cooldown...

Judgements of the Just - Our version of Thunder Clap, it slows down melee attack speeds. Another 20 seconds off your Hammer of Justice is another big bonus. Plus, we need these two points to get us to...

Hammer of the Righteous - This bad boy will proc your JoL or JoW on every target it hits. Glyph it IMMEDIATELY, so you'll tap an additional target with it. Running low on mana? Swap to JoW and hit this bad boy in a crowd. Top yourself off, and keep on trucking.

By now you should have 51 points in protection, and are sitting at level 60 in the Outlands. At this point move to the Retribution tree, pick up Defelction, and start working your way towards Pursuit of Justice and Vindication. Benediction will increase your longevity by reducing mana costs (everything but our heals is an instant cast), and any of these talents will serve you well.

Things to Remember

Free mount at level 20 - go get it.

Shield and a 1H - leave the 2H to leveling warriors and DKs.

Hand of Reckoning - Does a silly amount of damage to a target that doesn't have you targeted. Use it to pull before your shield (especially at low levels) and it's a good finisher until you get Hammer of Wrath (on fleeing targets only).

When fighting targets that run, judge Justice. It will save you those extra mobs you might not be ready for.

Blessing of Might until you get Sanctuary. After that, it's the only Blessing you'll need.

Don't worry about stacking 'tank' gear, any plate with Str or Stam will do. The goal isn't to be defense capped, it's to just grind your way up.

Keep RF up even when you're soloing - you have it for the damage reduction, not the threat. Now that it doesn't have a time limit on the buff, it should be easy to remember.

Seal Swapping - Remember the goal is zero down time, so switch seals/judgements as necessary. Be flexible.

Faster is better - use the fastest 1H you can find, even if it's a white weapon. If you can afford to get an heirloom weapon, you'll be double dipping as they seem to have both spellpower and AP/Crit. Get the thrash blade if you can, the more attacks the better.

Avoid AV until 3.3. The rewards have been halved, but at least you won't have to worry about running into a lvl 80 with full Season 6/7 gear or ToC - though the jump to 80 will be rough though. Ignore this if you're running both heirloom XP pieces, that should offset the diminished rewards at 70. XP is so fast in the outlands though, that you shouldn't have a problem.

If you can, tank your way through the Outlands. There's DKs a plenty, and none of them seem to know how to tank. If you're really feeling gutsy, you can heal your way to 70 with a dual spec. Once you hit Northrend though, you shouldn't have a problem finding your way into dungeons.


It's not as sexy as Ret, but with little to know downtime - and being nigh on to unkillable if you don't get carried away - leveling prot is a great grind to 80. You'll have the basics of the 9/6/9 rotation already ingrained, and as long as you start collecting tank based gear in Northrend, you should be ready for regular 80 instances by the time you get there.

Thanks to Old Man Feffy for reminding me of this grind spec.

Questions? Post em in the comments!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Faction Champs - how I hate you

So this is the 2nd (3rd?) week that Heroic TOC has been available - and I still hate the Faction Champions fight more than anything else in the game. I don't just hate it on Hard Mode either - because Hard Modes are hard after all. I hate it because it's random and unpredictable.

Don't get me wrong - there's nothing wrong with random damage or events that aren't published in a raid warning of come kind - but this is silly. Our shamans spend 90% of their time purging HoTs if we get the tree druid (no warlock to banish him), our only priest in mass dispelling his tail off, and I'm speccing Holy just to take up the slack.

It doesn't help that we are a PvE guild, with PvE players.

I'm looking at changing my healing spec to something like this so I have all the PvP oriented talents, while still having my instant FoLs and Beacon. I figure if I can just prevent 1/10 of the curses that go out because of the increased resistance, that's a win. I also toss out Hands like they are going out of style, trying to keep our rogue running loose with BoF, and a timely BoP when needed.

I've noticed some mana issues on this fight, somewhat due to the fact that I'm running Seal of Light and Glyph of Light. When I'm only getting off every other spell due to lockouts and such, I need to make sure they're big ones. I've been tempted to go back to my PvE gear, just for the 4pc Tier 8 bonus - but having over 1k resilience seems better to me.

How to beat them senseless

We typically focus on killing a DPS first in regular mode, and a healer first in Heroic. This might have to change this week, as we're having a bear of a time taking down the DPS after we kill the priest. Too many folks dead.

They have all the damage avoiding methods players do, and will occasionally focus fire someone. Healers have to be be quick to save someone when this happens. Spreading out a lot helps reduce the chance of being focused, as they seem to have an attention span of about 8 seconds. After that they seem to shift focus and head somewhere else.

Here's hoping we get past them tonight, and start making better progress next week. The flawless tribute run is still out there for us to nab.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

A full 10

It's amazing how much better things work when you have a full group. Last night saw the return of a friend, and a switch in roles for one of our Shaman. Talk about being thrown to the wolves "Here's Algalon where you used to be 1/3 healers - now there's just two of you!". Did a pretty good job though.

Tank Librams

Get the new badge libram. I swear it has 100% uptime, and that's about 5% dodge. I'm not pro enough to switch librams for stacking the shield block plus the dodge - and that's going away in 3.2.2 anyway. The loss of the GCD seemed to hurt too much anyway - as on some fights I'm really pushing to stay on top threat wise.


I still don't have a lot of math on this, but I can definately "feel" the changes from 3.2. BoL is hugely OP now though, especially with the increased HoT from SS and FOL. I'm having to toy with the idea of three heals on Algalon though, just because of the insane amount of damage that's getting tossed out. I'm at 47k raid buffed, and our druid is at 50k - and we're still getting rolled down on transitions. Having the same 10 guys for a few attempts in a row should be enough though - and I'm hoping to post the "We got him!" blog soon.

Alt Leveling

AV XP after 70 is huge. My little mage (with both XP boosting Heirlooms) is getting about two full bars per win. Forget questing.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Making new friends

In changing over to Horde, I noticed that my friends list was not empty. Makes sense, but it was still kind of worrisome. One of the fastest ways to meet folks is to start running PUGs, so I hopped in LFG and joined the first group that was looking for a tank.


I've had some bad PUG runs in my day, but I'm batting 1.000 on picking fail PUGs on horde side.

Alright, lets be fair. The first run was a HOL heroic. It was me, a Holy Paladin, and 3x DKs. Only one of the DKs had any kind of gear over 213, which isn't really a big deal for heroics. Personally I'm getting kind of tired of people who are looking for 3k DPS for a bloody heroic run...

Anyway we get to the 3rd boss (lightning guy) and DK#2 asks for a minute to explain the fight to DK#3. I don't mind, they're both pulling 1200-1400 DPS (more than enough for heroics) and DK#1 starts getting antsy and starts pretending to hearth. He finally leaves, and a minute or two later we pull. The fight took longer than necessary (DK#3 died very early), but we got him down and moved on. DK#3 died a few more times to the WW dwarfs, but finally the four of us were standing in front of Loken. DK#2 explains the fight to DK#3 - and off we go (using the stay in strat).

I think DK#2 and #3 lasted through two blasts (I used my Divine Sacrifice and bubble on that one at the healer's request). By the third blast Loken was only at 54% and I was the only man standing. I had a full health bar (I think the healadin hit me with LoH as he died) and so I started the long process of soloing Loken. I tossed up SoL and JoL, healed myself for the HoT, and just worked him down. I wound up potting, using LoH, RD, and even Ardent Defender popped. In the end though I managed to avoid wiping though a liberal and strategic use of CDs.

Heroic Occulus went about the same the next day. Over the course of the run folks would drop and I'd slowly add guildies until it was 3 of us and we managed to dop whatever his name is.

Two more runs (A Gun'Drak and a Nexus) added themselves to this list over the last two days. Thank the stars for Lay on Hands and Ardent Defender OPness.

On a plus note - we did PUG a rogue who did a pretty decent job seeing as he'd never seen most of the fights before. We did TOC regular and Ulduar (IC, Hodir, Thorim, Vezack HM) and we 1 shot everything. He didn't live through all of them - but he did a decent job. So, like everything else - not all PUGs are bad. Even the 5 mans had a few redeeming players. And dammit if they are nice - even though they aren't the best players in the world.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

A look at ToC and rankings

So I spent all last week at home trying to recover from shoulder surgery. I raided the same day I got cut on, but I don't remember a whole lot of it. Typing is still a major challenge, and I'm sure I've lost a second or so on my reaction time. All in all I was able to log a lot of hours though - and got to fill a lot of different slots in random runs throughout the day. We finished GToC in traditional No Dice fashion, and actually saw phase 2 on Algalon. All in all a productive week.


At first I couldn't figure out what made the new boss so difficult - and then I realized it. There's fire you have to not stand in! Glory be almighty - this is a new trick we haven't seen before. I'm still baffled by players who die in this encounter due to fire. It's hot, it burns, and your damage is going down while the boss isn't spinning around. If you have a boss mod, it's even easier. I give him a 4/5 rating - just because there's pools of fire to stand in.

There may be more to this fight - but I haven't seen it. I tanked it on 10 and 25 man, and didn't use an OT either time. The 10 man was a guild run, so I think the one guy we pugged died. The 25 was a total PUG, and we prevented a 1% wipe with about 5 folks standing. So many things went wrong, but that's for tomorrow's post.

TOC and GTOC (10)

Everyone knows regular TOC is a joke. We got most of the achievements just doing what we do. I'm fairly certain any competent group can do 10/25 without too many issues.

Heroic mode is another story.

First - I love that they added abilities to the bosses. I hate it when they just up the damage and HP totals by a factor of x and call it "hard mode". The new twists caught us almost every time, but I'm happy to say that we finally got Anub down last night with 3 or 4 shots left. Pugging a tenth spot 90% of the time is getting old.

One thing I really don't like - there's no repairing once you're on Anub'arak. You're stuck in the bottom of this hole, and there's no way to run out, repair, and run back in - without hearthing or getting a mage port that is. I suppose you could leave the raid, get ported to the nearest graveyard, and go again. Still though, it's a pain that was similar to SSC before they put the reagent/repair guy there. Fortunately we have two Engineers in the group - so we can put down Jeeves twice an hour. That and the upgraded squires make it fairly handy (I think they can repair, maybe not).

Guild Rankings

On a final note - our "strict" 10 man progress rankings were finally stripped from us. To be fair, we weren't doing just 10 mans, and I definately am wearing more than the badge 245 pieces. We just weren't regularly guild running 25s, instead getting them as a PUGs. I suppose that we'll have to settle for being ranked in the top 200 or so, but it will be tougher in the long run.

Either way, we're still downing bosses - and the rankings are more for epeen and social status than anything. It's not like we get better loot simply because GuildOx ranks us higher.

Still looking for one more raider. Bladefist, Horde, 6:30-9:30, T/Th/Fri

I'm damn hot as a belf btw. I love my gnome coffin lid for a shield.