Saturday, January 31, 2009

Raid Night Beatdowns

Last night we had VoA and 10 man OS up on the calender raids. So the entire raid was logged in early and we decided to do VoA simple because we had Wintergrasp and assumed if you had control and the battle started you were fine. Well as soon as we start on the 1st trash pulls we get the raid will reset timer, from first trash pull to dead boss,looted, and portback to Dalaran maybe 12 minutes. 2 nice t7 chest pieces were the loot.

Now we were moving unto the second part of our schedule doing 10 man OS. Clear the trash and take down the two nearer drakes (left and right), then talk about if we wanted to try leaving the last drake up and decided against it. So we clear her out the way, I think its a female seeing as she has all the whelp eggs; then continue off to the big badie. Main tank on dragon, OT on add patrol and the occasional of heal boom another dead dragon.

So it was at this point maybe 45 minutes to an hour into the raid night schedule that 3B inquires if we would like to poke are heads into Naxx and see if revenge can be had after harsh introduction last week. Ready check for interest everyone is so we head over there.

Now the raid make up consisted of 2 tanks, 3 healers, 5 dps. Windshadow(mt),Graimerin(ot),Ruune(heals),Para(heals),Lixie(heals),Cassie(dps),Barre(dps),
Ely(dps),Cal(dps) and Sinnas(dps). So instead of trying the kitting method for swarm boy we went with the tank and spank + power heal version of the fight. 1st attempt should have been a win but something happened I either taunted the wrong mob or something else incredibly moronic because at around 30% health and during a loctus swarm I ended up with not only the crypt guard but also the boss. 2nd attempt and a better behaved paladin it was dead boss Sidhe Devils first Naxx 10 boss down.

So heady on the wine of success, we keep going threw some minor trash, and come to the grand widows room. Really fun trash before boss just cause the groups are big lol and then we are looking at her, and her gang of four. So its decide I'll take the four attendants off to the left as wind occupies the lady on the right. Well all the dps types join me for the intial spanking off her attendants then they move off to her. I kept insulting their job choice and family trees while occasionally judging the lady and giving her a bash with the shield. When we would get the raid warning about her enrage I would call kill target, dps would switch and dispatch them. First time 90% of the raid had seen that fight and it was a flawless one shot.

Now it is starting to get near when Para one of our healers need to log off but we wanted to get one try in on the final wing boss. Position, explain, pull. Oops Para had some weird thing happen and he dcd. Now he's main tank healer and it turned into a Chinese fire drill but we got a great look at the mechanics of the fight. Switched out Night for Para and gave it try #2. This attempt was perfect ranged and heals all positioned well to make my spider grabbing job easier and we all got our spider wing achievement.

We started this at about 7pm server time. We were all back in Dalaran by 10 pm server time. We did for are smallish guild a huge night of raiding content. We all learned from the errors of our previous Naxx atempt.

In closing we kicked but. Wind as raid leader had ready explanations, everyone knew the basic dynamics of the fight, super healing, and massive sustained on target dps. .

Thank you very much my fellow guildies for sharing a ubber evening with me, it would have been fun just doing the stuff as our guild the success is truly icing on top.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

I like Big Crits and I can not Lie

With all apologies to Sir Mix-A-Lot nothing else conveys why I min-max on some of my toons. Case in point, my left for the dust bin hunter; dear ol' Padrad. He started his Wow life post BC and was my PvP battleground diversion. But he was originally a survival hunter simple to cause massive havoc to flag carriers in WSG. It was very fun to watch a twink get wing clip rooted as the rest of the alliance team crashed around him and got the flag back.

Then came the time to level out of the 29 bracket and challenge Azeroth and beyond so I went Beast Mastery. I went the spec that contained when high enough level the built in I-Win button. Now a enraged pet that isn't subject to CC or fear also was very fun in BG's, so I would get massive yellow numbers and still play to my favorite aspect of the game.

By the time I got Paddy to level 70 BC was waining but with the help of the darling Shrinn on her druid we did have the chance to experience some 2v2 arena love getting me the 2 handed s3 axe a couple pieces of s2 gear and generally just having fun in game together.

Well as some know her computer melted down and we haven't been able to replace it yet so with no arena on the horizon Paddy was relegated to the yeah I'll get to ya.

BM at low levels in Wrath offered some nice things pre 3.0.8 but was never over awed by the exotic pets. I mean come on the great dwarven hunter Bram(unknown spec) has his red gorrila; and Paddy has PrimalGrai so if Bram doesn't need a special pet Paddy didn't either.

Watched BRK's movie on trap dancing and how the survival spec put out massive crits and figured hmmm I do love big yellow numbers lets check it out. He gained almost 10% to his crit rating and the occasional free shot and now his traps actually get used. I've removed volley from the action bar, and am now looking forward to leveling so I can get a Polar Bear from dragonblight area.

I have no expectation of raiding on Paddy, heck I have Fal for big yellow numbers for raiding. Just now days when I run into to place a trap on my current target and auto attack changes to melee that big ol honking s3 axe goes Whoomp and throws up a crit sometimes. Yeah my melee weapon isn't a stat generator only now woohoo.

So while I do not link damage meters to stoke my e-peen ego I do run blizz combat text so I can smile when one of the dwarfs lands a massive hit.

I mean heck even Grai lands some impressive crits for a prot paladin these days, the old joke that pally's should duel wield shields would be awesome now.

So I shall take my leave of you fine folks now, and once again go in search of over sized numbers in blizz's scrolling combat text be they yellow or white, and sadly miss the days when Paddy's companion was able to generate orange ones.

But as Sir Mix-A-Lot said while i admit to my love of crits you other players can't lie and love them also.

Monday, January 26, 2009

My Little Warrior Done went and Grew Up

For as long as I have had Grai, I have had Fal. At most I think they were 5 levels apart through all the journeys. From the vanilla WoW days to Burning Crusade and now into and through Northrend. One of the givens to having them both was Grai is the main and Fal is the other guy.

For vanilla Fal lived as a arms warrior happily swinging his big ol honking 2 handers. Remember the joy of the old mace specialization, that random stun proc was a life saver many times. Overpower please Mr. Rogue try and dodge I lived for that to light up. Then came Kang and i switch to bleed effects and axes.

During all that time when asked the answer was easy Grai is my main, yes even in the bad old days I had my main as a Pally tank. The Cathedral in the monestary how many times did I run that for my sheild seems like hundreds in retospect. We were know where near the ubber must have tanks the BC turned us into but I loved being out front just getting hit.

BC was Fal's first foray into to the fine art of fury warriordom. Had the old Rogue in Plate spec. , loved bgs where i could pop berserk and or death wish and eat locks for lunch. This was before whirlwind effected both weapons and oh the damge increase that brought to the party. Just there was absolutely no plate gear designed for fury warriors pre t5 stuff and the first badge rewards where all tanking. So Fal farmed and mined and dreamed of being a over the top dps toon.

Well then we got the pre patch for Wrath. We knew Titan's Grip was comming first it was gonna be a huge speed penalty, then when it came to live it was only a extra 5% to hit we needed; now even thats gone. To me all the changes along with the abundance of plate with prime stats for fury warriors leads me to call this the fury expansion.

The title refers to a simple comparison this is Fal's armory profile this is Grai's.

Friday, January 23, 2009

We Went, We Saw, We Skinned

Sidhe Devils entered 10 man OS as a guild last night for the first time. We had 2 tanks, 3 healers, and 5 dps. We all knew what was needed of us and came suitably prepared. We left with achievements, skins of various styles and a sense of guild accomplishment.

As this was our first attempt we took down all 3 drakes. As I was on Grai I got to be the portal hoper and found out I need to be quicker to the glowy purple thing. We didn't lose anyone during those fights just shouldn't have our dps first through. The attendants don't hit me hard but they do hit non-tanks for a fair bit of damage.

We managed the lava wall like pros. Excellent calls for direction and which way to move, in or out. It showed one of the reason I truly love my guild. Everyone was ready and on their A game. Yes I know this isn't a difficult raid but to run a first time guild group with no wipes I believe shows that prepared we can tackle anything.

Also I have learned to be quiet. Instead of being a chatter box during the raid I actually shut up which might be a epic win for our raid leaders.

Tonight is the spider wing, hopefully good teamwork and people will pay off again. I know it will be a fun time spent with my guildies so any loot is a bonus.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

We are Going In

Well tonight hopefully Sidhe Devils will do our first guild raiding. We have Vault and OS on the schedule, for the 10 mans. Lucky me I have two toons to offer to help if we need spots filled. Grai who has tanked 10 man OS and Fal who has dps both. So if all goes well one of my guildies or maybe even me will get a nice bonus bag of emblems and gold this evening, along with a chance for tier gear.

On other news from the gang, Carack has gotten up to 425 enchanting. Woot to materials being lowered for those now the push to 450 in earnest. A certain bear wants the new stam to bracers chant.

Outside of that no real news except the grind for rep continues and most likely will for awhile still. Well work beckons, so i will hopefully write of glowing victories tonight in our raids.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Kinda like going Home

Just after I got Fal his 400 unarmed skill and his 4 weapon skills to 400 achievement, I get a whisper from a dear friend needing help in CoT :Strath. I asked what they needed tank or dps , figuring tank. Well I got the first pleasant surprise when I found out they needed dps and that meant that lil 'ol Fal could go hit things.

Zaanah who had whispered me said the invite was on its way when the second pleasant surprise happened. Jerdaz was also in the group because he invited me, now Jerdaz is one of the legion of alts Kiernan he's a good friend and old guildie. So 2 of the group I know to be old guildies from Essence of Grandeur a very good guild on Kael'thas US. So I accept the invite only to get pleasant surprise number 3 Carrador and Azzarea, warrior and rogue respectfully are also in the group.

All members of EoG when for some odd reason they let me run it way back when. It felt to me like a EoG guild run back into heroics. Brought back many happy memories and i had hopes of forming new ones, and those hopes were realized.

Now way back in the days when Kara was hard Carrador would change specs sometimes OT sometimes fury depending on what we needed on any given run. So tanking wasn't gonna be a worry. Azzarea has always been a very good rogue timely interrupts and good dps. Zaanah is and always will be the person I think of when I think of frost mages. To many good runs watching her own the dps meters while maintaining CC if used and just a very nice person. Jerdaz is just a dam good player I don't care which one of his innumerable alts he's on his skill will show through.

So we decide before we even start the run that we are not trying for the 30 minute timer none of them had ever done starth culling on heroic and I have only done it as a Pally tank. So we get started with a easy lets just beat this attitude have some fun and see some new levels of content. Meathook gave us a bit of a problem the first time he kept interrupting Jerdaz's heals and the dot wiped us the first try. Second attempt after a few changes in our strategy we collected our loot and badges and moved on.

The rest of the run was good communication and even better teamwork. We executed our plan on the instance and got our rewards. Azzerea was able to claim the epic fist weapon from Mal'Ganis and we all secured 4 badges. Zaanah offered us a port and poof back in Dalaran.

I don't remember whom asked if we could run another one. We all agreed and decided that heroic Violet Hold was quick and close. Sounded like a winner so off we go to protect the citizens from the motley collection of felons from the azerothian universe.

Again I'm the only one who has done this instance on heroic, so we discuss which bosses we have seen and the strategies for them. The only 2 bosses the majority of the group hasn't seen are the bird boss and the ethereal boss. I had seen both so figured the rng would never give us both in one run and assumed I could explain on the fly.

First 5 waves no problem so what boss, Bird boss quick easy explanation burn him then clean up the adds. We aced it. Mana and food back up during our little break 5 more waves of trash dispatched no worries. 2nd boss ethereal I was there and the rng hates me. SO i give a quick and poor explanation of my prefered kitting method, forgot one major point that we needed to turn back the way we had come and not across the floor. Ooops that one was completely my fault.

So we regroup inside get our buffs reset and burn through the first 11 portals, nice. Now this time the group shined beautiful kitting and massive sustained dps we gets loot and badges. 5 more waves of trash and we get our big blue felon, dispatched her with no issue. 4 more achievements for my friends and the bonus one of not having any damage done to the door.

2 heroics cleared rep earned badges gathered and loot for all. I believe Zaanah got the epic bracers from the final boss in VH. For any group a good run and not a bad few hours invested. A group that had never done either instance on heroic defiently a good job.

Me I got a nice dps ring but the best part was new memories with old friends. This game we play sometimes sees us move from guilds for many reasons. Wishing to raid, schedule changes, wanna be in a guild full of bloggers; and many that are for lousy reasons. I left EoG to join Sidhe Devils because of blogging and burn out. So running a quasi EoG guild run heroic was kinda like going to your hometown. All the good things I remembered where still there maybe a little shiny er or maybe just a new suit of clothes. But the decent people I remember and miss are still there. 10 levels higher and wiser in the tricks blizz plays on us but still the same wonderful warm and welcoming people.

So to close this long and ramble post Thank You all for being who you are. The longer I play this game I realize its not the game that keeps me here its the people. Be they old friends, current friends or friends I have yet to meet. You are the ones that help me find fun and keep me coming back.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Have I said I love Titans Grip

For almost all of my 3+ years of playing WoW I've been a Paladin tank. Every once in awhile, I would spec holy just to get a different view of the fight. Not this time around Falromord my dwarf warrior is getting more play time has better gear and is generally much more fun to play. Like alot of places the guild I'm in our healers are catching up with the dps and tanks, so we dont have enough currently to run multiple heroics.

Enter Fal from stage right. Short bad attitude and carries to very big maces. He just dinged 80 Sunday, but is currently hit capped for Titans Grip (TG), with the penalty still in place. Over 4k AP in 5 man groups and seeing how he has been running with a druid tank 28% crit in berserker stance.

He hits that primitive note inside me that says as a man I'm supposed to beat something up and take their stuff. I give our tank a second or two to get good threat generation and then KAPOW lets bring da pain.

He and Grai have truly always existed together since I started playing. They have normally never been more than 5 levels apart at anyone time. Just normally Fal provides money and gear to the pally. Fury warriors had it tough in BC wearing whatever cast off bits off armor we could grab as we approached Kara. Lots of leather and or mail gear, and Kara had absolutely no true fury pieces other than the T4 tokens.

This xpac we have TG, we have plate with hit,crit,expertise and oh yeah two big old honking weapons with outsized stats. I play more with Fal's spec these days than Grai's trying to squeeze out that last drop of dps. I use the EJ spread sheets to find out the best rotation for dps per rage point. I'm in nerd heaven.

Instancing is easy now, because our lack of CC doesn't hurt us these days. So will Grai always be the "main", I think so; or possibly I will have co-mains. I just know that when I see looking for dps for x these days I'm happy to respond and say I can do that.

Monday, January 12, 2009

I've Been Scooped

Yesterday was a very eventful day for little ol' Fal. When i logged in to do some quest in Icecrown a couple of guildies mentioned that CoT: Strat was the non-heroic daily and were putting together a group. They had a tank so I got to go beat stuff up. Ahh the joy of a lolgrip warrior.

So we went in and had a successful clear but we had another guildie that wanted to make the run but didnt , because we were full so we ran it again swapping Fal out for Grai to tank and Nas came as dps.

Then I had RL stuff that needed to be taken care off so I log off for a bit and got chores done.

Having a few free hours I hop back on and timed it perfectly as the guild was building a group for HoL, so I offer my dps and away we went again. Started the instance about 20% short of leveling and maybe 300 rep from honored with Argent Crusade. We figured out the first boss (don't let him grow) and the rest went down easy till Loken. Loken took 2 tries we decided to just eat the storm and keep pounding.

After loken i was 1400 ish xp from the ahhh so we did one last trash pull and this happened.

So I have a thing I do every Sunday night and when i got back home I check and see that The Big Bear Butt Blogger scooped me.

Thank you to all the guildies who made these last 10 levels very fun and lets go beat some more stuff up.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

10 Man OS

Got a whisper last night from a friend saying they needed help in 10 man OS. I said sure switched from Fal to Grai and away we went. Mostly a pug group but I imagine some of his guildies but about half of us had never seen it, including me. Clear what limited trash there is and then it was onto the drakes. They went down easy after the portal phases were explained.

Now we get to Sartharion again good detailed account of his lava wall ability, and we engauge. First attempt the MT positioned the dragon short of the spot and the melee got caught in the lava wall. Second attempt went like clock work boom dead dragon. 4 emblems for me in about 40 mins. no tier loot as I had a lousy roll, but saw a entry level wrath raid and had some fun.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

My Favorite 5 Man Story

Ok The Big Bear Butt Blogger is asking for stories about or favorite 5 man instance story where we had to use or groups class abilities to overcome the instance.

Before I venture into my story, a little background about Graimerin and what it was like trying to be a Paladin Tank pre-BC. I leveled him 1-70 as protection specced and up to 60 pre-BC. End game as a paladin then was not for tanking, heck even our tier gear looked like a dress. So with the pre-BC patch changes paladins changed for good or bad eh thats another post.

Simply stated we had no ranged pull, a blue rage bar that depleted very , very quickly and almost no gear even close to being designed for protection spec.

Enter BC we got most of the commonly used abilities that are common now.

Ok now for the story.

This goes back to when you needed to be revered with a faction to get the heroic key for that dungeon. I was in a different guild and we where getting ready for Kara. I had a few of my D3 pieces and needed badges, so I could have me some epics. Well the group I was in consisted of myself on Grai, a shaman healer (Archangle), a frost mage (Zaanah), and 2 warlocks (Vagar)and (Kiernaan). This group of good friends became Grai's gang long before there ever was a blog. So I had read that heroic slavepens was supposed to be the easiest one so off we go for adventure,glory and badges.

Well we were doing ok as we plodded threw the instance again the majority of us in crafted blues and or dungeon sets. The casters might have begun working on there BoP tailoring epics not sure it was a long time ago. So we get to the room we all came to hate. Multiple mobs with varying abilities that could destroy your carefully laid plans. I marked up the mobs knowing that the rays could fear and the priestess had that nasty mind control that would happen at the worst possible time. Well first 3 or 4 pulls end with a long run back from the graveyard when either Vagar or Kiern had one of the greatest ideas ever in WoW.

The told me throw your shield and drag the group way back here where we have stuff cleared and we will use chain fearing as we move threw the mobs. What was and is a fun way of handling that room Zaanah would sheep the rays I'd drag the rest as far away from there buddies as possible and BOOM 2 are running in terror. Misjudge how far one would run and it went bad but we learned how to abuse that room.

I learned that having skilled players of any class, many times Kiern came one one of his alts their are many; can and will overcome the special tricks that the devs throw at us. If you have never seen how much fun chain sheeping + chain fearing can be you missed a fun time.

We as a group got better gear and left Heroic SP behind along time ago but even these days of AoE tanking and speed runs, I still miss working out how to get by this ****ed up room,boss, etc.

These days if the group wants to I'll do a speed run, or if its a guild run I'm just as happy to let my group do there stuff. I love the team work aspect of this game and the trust and bonds of friendship that can form from inclusion instead of exclusion.

Random thoughts

Not alot today WoW wise but a couple of big changes in RL.

First off I'm back to feeling okay had a touch of the stomach bug this weekend which was why I never made it back Saturday for a few guild runs we wanted to try. Fal made it to 78 last night when i did duck in for about a hour.

And secondly and most important I'm back in the work force. As my in game guildies and friends know I have had a couple major back operations. So I had kinda given up hope of finding something I could do that would fit in with what i need to do so I don't lock up. Well as soon as I figured there was no chance "poof" a job that was willing to work with me about what I can and can't do.

I'm excited and nervous and now will be busy 3 days a week with the chance of more hours and days being added if my back can hold up.

Best wishes to anyone who is pursuing RL or in game goals I found out that when it looks the bleakest good can happen.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Full Sidhe Devils Heroic

Well today Sidhe Devils did our first WotLK heroic as a full guild run. The line up was Para holy Pally, Cassie on her rogue, Windshadow kitty dps, Suvon hunter and little ol' Grai prot pally. We formed up and gave heroic AN the old college try but couldn't seem to figure out a way to handle the waves from the first boss. So we decided that heroic UK would have to take the beating so we could be avenged.

So we all get out to the instance get buffs set and off we went. I had done heroic UK before so I explained how I like to potion the mobs and which ones we could skip seeing how it wasn't going to be a full clear rep run.

Para was concerned that he wasn't geared properly but we did fine once the silly pally out front didn't try pulling full hallways at once. One of the coolest moments in the run was after the first boss when 4 in the group got the achievement for their Emblem of heroism. The wand dropped which couldn't be used by anyone so it went to vendor trash. That was the only drop that wasn't useful to someone.

The next 2 bosses where much more generous to us with Suvon getting the dagger which will help him maintain his awesome dps when the savage cobalt slicer Nerf hits and Wind and Suvon both getting awesome drops from the final boss. Wind got the druid staff that is very very good and Suvon got the epic crossbow.

So we all managed to get at least 3 badges each and have a great time together. The emblem gathering for the devils is in full swing now and I couldn't be happier. Seemed a great way to start into the new year.