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This Week in Raiding…

Saturday, July 4th, 2009

After getting Mimiron down last week, our eyes quickly fixed on General Vezax.

But we know that we still have some issues with the Keepers, and they take a while to get down, so we might not really see him until we’ve been able to master those fights!

So we pushed through Flame Leviathan +1, XT-002, Kologarn and Auriaya in our first night.  We’ve been having issues with Thorim, and even thought we got Mimiron down last week, we never quite got Thorim.  Well, this week wasn’t looking much better…  Thorim’s disconnect roulette, combined with some other various connection issues presented too much for us, and we were forced to retreat to the Assembly of Iron and Ignis.

Wednesday night we went in with a plan:  Mimiron first.  Tired of dealing with Thorim, we wanted to see if we could get him down a second time… and we did!

In fact, we ONE-SHOTTED him!  Huzzah!

And more importantly, we got Thorim down!  It took us 3 or 4 tries, but we did it.  I think we’ve improved on some things, and I look forward to next week to see how we do again.

Took out the other keepers, and by the second half of Thursday night’s raid, we were face to face with General Vezax.  After his brutal and annoying no-pets-allowed trash, we were finally ready to give it a go!

And it was no where near as bad as I thought it would be… at least for me :)   I wouldn’t want to be a healer or even a true caster in that fight!  But we seemed to get pretty good after our first couple tries, and got him to 28% at our best.  I think if we speed up our trash-killing, we’ll be able to get him down next week… and then it’s on to YOGG!  Wow, I can’t believe we’re finally nearly the last boss!  I’m so excited, I hear that fight is quite fun.

Oh!  And happy July 4th to everyone in the U.S.A.!  Hope your holiday is great!


treasure_chest1This Week in Raiding… is my weekly Saturday post where I allow myself to brag about new gear, bosses, achievements, and such.

Come back next week for another dose of epeen and QQ!

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This Week in Raiding… Cry Baby, Cry!

Saturday, May 30th, 2009

Tuesday’s roster was… interesting.  We’ve recently come in to a whole slew of new recruits, which bumped out signups from having about 23 signed up as available to having closer to 33.  Quite nice to have a selection to choose from, and backups in case someone can’t stay!

And the raid itself went great!  We took out Flame Leviathan, XT and Kologarn in 1 shot each.  We also took out Auriaya, and she saw fit to hand over her Siren’s Cry!  Luckily the loot distribution was such that I was next up for gear among the present Hunters, so it’s mine!

It’s a very different feeling, being the first to get a shiny new Hunter weapon from Ulduar.  I was last of our raiding Hunters to get a Naxx ranged weapon, as well as last to get Journey’s End.  I am glad I don’t have to be last again!

We also took down The Iron Council with only a few tries, clearing out the Antechamber on Heroic for the fist time.   I think we can improve on that fight – specifically, next time I will move over to the Stormcaller after the big guy goes down so it’ll be easier for me to interrupt.  It’s nice to have me on interrupts there since I can stay out of range of his Overcharge ability but still get him easily.

Wednesday night we found ourselves face to face with Freya again.  We spent nearly 2 nights on her last week with only once passing into Phase 2… it was a bit discouraging.  But this week went much better!  After 3 attempts, we got her down.  What did we do differently?  Well, not much.  But we learned that Shockwave is the most effective way to freeze the explodey flowers in place, and that for us, the best way to deal with phase to is to have everyone loosely stack, and then alternate between two spots with Freya whenever she drops her seeds.

Thorim… not so nice.  We were having serious issues in the tunnel, and are yet to find the perfect balance of DPS to bring along.  I think we’ll do better next time if we bring one or two more.

Thursday we decided to finally suck it up and finish that darn Siege Quarter.  In only about 2-3 attempts each, we managed to take down Ignis and Razorscale, the bane of Unemployed!  Huzzah!  Rejoice!

We spent the rest of the evening working on Hodir.  We basically got him down… less than 8% left on one of our attempts, so we KNOW we can do it.  And we will next time!  I think everyone was just a bit too tired and losing their coordination nearing the end of the night.

SERVER FIRST!

SERVER FIRST!

ach_stormcallerach_antechamberach_hotpocketach_25conquestach_siegeach_stayingwarm

So that’s 4 new bosses, and 7 achievements in 3 nights of raiding!  Not too shabby, if I do say so myself!


treasure_chest1This Week in Raiding… is my weekly Saturday post where I allow myself to brag about new gear, bosses, achievements, and such.

Come back next week for another dose of epeen and QQ!

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This Week in Raiding…

Saturday, May 23rd, 2009

After nearly 2 weeks away from the raid scene, I got back into the swing of things with Unemployed.  we had a big influx of new recruits, and not only have we got enough to run 25-mans, but we have enough to have people waitlisted!

Tuesday night we did a quick no-tower run through of Flame Leviathan, picking up Heroic: Shutout along the way.  We headed straight to XT-002 for playtime afterwards – no messing about with Ingnis or especially Razorscale, our eternal foe.

Unfortunately Pilsner was attacked by GIGANTIC FLYING ANTS and who took over her computer, forcing her to abandon our raiding to do some Raiding of her own (har har).  But thanks to all those extra people we’ve got, we were able to find a suitable substitute.

After making quick work of XT, we proceeded to Kologarn.  We had some issues… one of our new tanks wasn’t having the best ‘luck’ when trying to pick up the rubble, and they continued to lay the smackdown on our healers.  We swapped in a 4th tank and that seemed to do the job.

Auriaya went down pretty nicely on our second attempt, considering it was our first kill of her on 25-man.  It’s a bit of a hectic fight, lots of running and lots of cats.

It was quite a productive day for Unemployed… although I swear there is absolutely NO Hunter gear in Ulduar-25.  The closest thing that we had drop was some staff, but everything else is Plate or Spell Power (or both!)

Wednesday night was not so productive in terms of number of bosses down, but the attempts we had were progressively better as we went.

We hung out with Freya for the better part of the evening, and a couple of times made it -almost- to the second phase.  I’m sure we would have got it the next attempt if trash hadn’t started respawning.

We spent the last hour or so working on Razorscale.  I swear, if there is one boss we will never get down in Uld-25, it’s HER.  We rarely get more than 15% per ground phase, we just don’t have the pure DPS output needed.  It didn’t help that we were missing a shadow priest at that point, either.  I didn’t feel we made any progress on her that night, to be honest.

Thursday night was almost identical to Wednesday.  Freya attemps, Razorscale attempts.  We managed to get Freya to phase 2 once, but it wasn’t the “easy-mode” everyone claimed it to be, at least not on 25-man.

We tried a ‘new strategy’ onRazorscale.  I didn’t think it would work – and to be perfectly honest, I don’t think it did.  What I said would happen did – if we stick a few people at the back where the adds spawn, they will pull healing/ proximity aggro on everything, not just the Sentinel.

We decided to end the night by taking out VOA-25.  I’d never gotten Emalon down, and I’d only seen Archivon once.  Two emblems each?!  We totally need to do this EVERY WEEK.  It’s like, mandatory.  And not at all difficult.

Here’s hoping next week is better!


treasure_chest1This Week in Raiding… is my weekly Saturday post where I allow myself to brag about new gear, bosses, achievements, and such.

Come back next week for another dose of epeen and QQ!

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Freya = Mana Battery

Friday, May 22nd, 2009

FreyaWhile I’ll go a bit more into this week’s Freya attempts in my “This Week in Raiding” post tomorrow, I just wanted to point out this one thing I found quite helpful during the fight.

I know mana is supposed to be a non-issue during 25-mans.  That’s never held true for me, at all.  I run out of mana in no time, and I almost always have to switch to Viper more than once each boss fight.

Freya is a looong fight.  Six waves of adds before you can even touch her!  That’s a lot of mana to be using.

Assuming you are getting to the level of play where you have a chance at getting Freya down, there’s no doubt that you usually have a few seconds between each wave of adds.  You could spend this time trying to pad the damage meters by giving it to Freya hard, but I recommend this:  Shoot off a Viper Sting at her, and if you’re a Marksman, a Chimera Shot as well.

That’s 24% of your mana back right there (plus an additional >15% if you use Chimera). It’s as good as the ol’ Feign Death and drink tactic!

In fact, feel free to use 1 GCD to lop a Viper Sting her direction whenever it’s off cooldown and you’re running low.  Viper Sting is on a 15 second cooldown, and I doubt you’ll need to use it THAT often.  The special thing about this fight is that Freya isn’t your main target, so you won’t be losing DPS by putting Viper Sting instead of Serpent Sting up like on most other fights: You can maintain your Serpent Sting on your main focus while the mana just drains away on Freya!

Of course I’d recommend saving your Chimera Shot for real DPS while there are adds active, and only hit her with it when you’ve got down time… but 24% is still an incredible boost.

This whole idea might have been obvious to everyone… but I just thought I’d point it out to those who may have forgotten about this little gem.  So instead of  swapping to Aspect of the Viper, pop a Viper Sting (+ Chimera Shot) .  You won’t lose much, if any DPS because Freya is essentially invulnerable during the add phase!

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An Inverse Correlation

Tuesday, May 19th, 2009

It was a holiday yesterday up here in the North, and I decided to take the day and see how far I could get my beloved Paladin.  He was all set with his Charger at level 61, ready to head to Northrend to slay demons and red Orcs.

After about 10 hours of playing yesterday, I managed to go from 61 to 64.  That’s practically halfway done Outlands!  In a day!  Hah!

I even picked up dual specs, he’s my very first character to specialize.  I made up a prot spec for his secondary talents and tried to learn what it’s like to tank as a paladin.  I haven’t had a chance to try yet, but I’m looking forward to it.

I did want to try some instancing though.  So I jumped into LFG while questing, and hoped for the best.  I get a few “u healz?” whispers, which I promptly answered no to.  Then I got an invite.

Ramps PUG attempt #1: 2 Death Knights, a Rogue, a 64 feral Druid, and me (62 Ret/Prot).

Group Leader DK asks me if I’m a healer.  I say no, I’m ret/prot.  Druid pipes up and says she can heal, she is our most viable option for healing and doesn’t mind doing it even though it’s not her main spec.  Sounds good to me!  “Who’s tanking?”  I ask.  “I’m not, DUH, I’m BLOOD I don’t tank” says Group Leader DK (this is the same guy who insists on a ret paladin healing).  I volunteer, since it’s my second spec.  “Ghugh you are HEALING.” he says.  /facepalm.  The druid and I both say that she’s volunteered and is a better option to heal.

We run to the instance.  We zone in, I Bless everyone.  “OK so Ghugh you are healing let’s go” says Group Leader DK.  I say, “Uhh… why me?”

You have been removed from the group.

OKAY!  Well, it probably wouldn’t have gone well anyway. A little while later, I get another group invite

Ramps PUG Attempt #2: 3 Death Knights, a DPS Warrior and me.

“We need a healer” says DPS warrior.  I tell them it’s not my spec, but I put my healing gear on and seem to heal effectively enough for a Ramps run, and the tank is 64 so that should help.  We start running off towards Ramps.  A couple of us fail to make a jump and end up splattered on the ground underneath Ramps.  We all have a good laugh, blame Crusader Aura and start the run back to our bodies.

DK #1 has left the group.

DPS Warrior has left the group.

OKAY!  Looks like we’re done here.  Back to questing.  I get a whisper from a healer.  He invites me to a ramps group as DPS, says he has a tank already.  That’s a good sign!  We pull a group together quickly.

Ramps PUG Attempt #3: 1 Death Knight, 1 Feral Druid, 1 Holy Priest, 1 Elemental Shaman and me.

We made it into the instance.  This is a good sign.  We pull the first group – this is the furthest any of my PUGs have gotten.  Good sign!

We make it through the run with no Deaths.  Huzzah!  Success!  I can’t say it was a perfect run, but it was something.  We all agree to go again.  This is where the problems started.  I believe the healer and tank began to get a bit cocky.  “Just chain pull” says the level 59 healer.  “Just pull the entire room” hears the 61 DK tank.

I started noticing a strange behavior.  The DK was just… standing there.  Tanking.  He used some abilities, but he was NOT auto-attacking.  I target his target – it seems he’s always got whatever mob is BEHIND him targeted.  Man, DKs must be so easy to play if you can tank without even facing your target!  Things got worse and worse – after a wipe, he pulls before the healer is even into the zone.  He pulls when no one has mana.   He facepulls and lets the ele shaman and I try to pull the adds off of the healer.

We get to Nazan… make it through the Rider’s phase pretty smoothly, but then everyone forgets the “don’t stand in the flames” rule.  Priest gos down, Shaman goes down, Druid goes down.  It’s just me, the DK and the Dragon now.  My eyes look towards the very close instance exit and I contemplate making a run for it.  But no – I’m at nearly full health and mana, I can do this!  Holy Light!  Judgement of Wisdom!  Holy Light!  Judgement of Wisdom!  Luckily I’m regenning enough mana with my Judgements to afford my big heals.  It’s a long fight, but we take him down.  Just the two of us.

Ramps PUG Attempt #3: SUCCESS!

Today’s lesson: 

There is an inverse correlation between the number of Death Knights in a PUG and the success of the PUG.