Friday, July 30, 2010

And so, it finally happened...

That's right.. We killed the Lich King. Sure, we possibly did it after everyone else on the planet did it, and with the 30% buff up, so some of you might not think it's a real accomplishment. BUT to those of you who say that, I will say this once, and only once.. FUCK OFF. The fight is still hard, even with a 30% buff. Buffs don't make you learn mechanics and when to avoid defile or when to kill valks or anything like that.

Anyway.. Just wanted to get that out of the way to keep any naysayers out there from trying to rain on my parade. We killed Arthas last night, and damn it felt good. I can honestly say that 6 months ago I wouldn't have imagined myself getting that title on a tank. A year ago, I can say I didn't picture myself getting that title -at all- because I was so burnt out on raiding. Funny how things can come full circle like that eh?

Speaking of things coming full circle.. The GM of my RP guild on Wyrmrest Accord recently server transferred his main (a paladin) to come join me in on Azgalor... I think he finally got sick of me telling him what i was doing over realID. hahaha. Oh well. Maybe sometime we can get him his kingslayer title as well... and if not, meh oh well, there's always gonna be an INTERNET DARGON to kill... Especially with the Cataclysm coming up.

Short post today I suppose. I just wanted to toot my own, and my guild's, collective horns for a bit and say FUCK yes. We killed Arthas. Damn it feels so good.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The LFD tool's potential dark side?

First off, let me say this... I have nothing but the utmost love for the LFD tool that Blizzard implemented. Never has dungeon grouping been any easier and faster. Sure, as a DPS I may have griped about the queue times, but still a 14 minute wait while you're out doing dailies is nothing compared to sitting parked on your mount going "LF Tank for *insert dungeon name here*" for an hour.

Now then, Jaedia made a new post earlier today at her absolutely amazing blog The Lazy Sniper about the possible downside of the LFD tool. (Go ahead and read her post, i'll wait....) I left a comment on the blog, and as I was typing I got to thinking a bit. While I can understand, to a point, what she was saying in regards to the lack of "reaching out" among your server, I think the LFD could have brought out something much much darker. We've all seen them, we've all reported them, we've all been highly irritated when they're back in-game the next day... the ever loathed trade chat troll.

Now don't mince words. I am by no means blaming trade trolling on LFD. Trade trolls were around before the LFD was released, and they'll continue to be until the end of time. One thing I have noticed, however, is that since the dungeon finder went live the AMOUNT of trade chat trolling has gone absolutely through the roof. Think back a few months to before 3.3, if you will. Sure, there were still idiots in trade, but what was the majority of the discussion you saw in there? Most likely it was "Looking for X(role) for Y(dungeon) or Z(raid)". Now sure, you still see osme of that going on for raids, and the occasional achievement-run heroic, but honestly... what's the most you see in trade these days? "Anal [unfunny ability name/achievement name]", "LOLUMADBRO?", "*Insert overused Chuck Norris joke here*", "Why do they call it 'Invincible' if you can still see it?", "LFG FOR TOC 10, 6K GS REQUIREMENT" (as said by a level 39), and so on and so forth. In my experience, MOST of trade chat is made up of trolling instead of legitimate chat for any particular purpose.

Now, where's the correllation between the influx of idiots and the dungeon finder? Well, I don't know about you but I tend to remember the names of the more prevalent trolls. If i'm putting together a group, be it a heroic or a raid or whatever, and I get a whisper from someone that's well known for being an assface in trade chat then i'm gonna ignore it. I don't care if they're in Ensidia or Paragon or anything (which aren't on my server BTW). A dick is still a dick, and I play this game to have FUN. I'd rather fail at a raid then succeed under duress. (Pardon me while I pull myself back to the point). Anyway, people are more apt to behave if they felt like they needed people on the server for anything. No one gives two shits about the Terms of Service, and that's apparent day in and day out. Either that, or they just have absolutely no fear of being banned, but that's a WHOLE other rant on it's own...

Sunday, July 18, 2010

You have earned the achievement: Bored out of your mind!

So, I mentioned in my last post that I have been spending a lot of time soloing BC heroics. I have gone on to spend even more time soloing BC heroics. So much so that A) I'm exalted with Honor Hold and Cenarion Expedition, and B) I finally got my BC Dungeon Hero achievement... Every last BC heroic done solo. Woof.. There were some harsh ones in there too. I'm going to give a few superlative awards.

WARNING: There is a bit of strong language in the upcoming sections. I don't normally drop the F-bomb in blog posts, but there is one time that it just fit SO WELL. I apologize in advance if this offends you.

Easiest overall heroic:
This has to be the Hellfire Ramparts. Not much of a surprise, i'm sure. Easy trash for the most part, nothing overly hard hitting, easy bosses, relatively short overall. In and out.

Most trash in a heroic:
This is a tossup really. Shadow Labrynths, Slave Pens, and Botanica all have monstrous amounts of trash.

Most deceptively hard heroic:
Mana tombs. Holy donkey shit this place had me fooled. The first few trash packs leading up to the first boss were ridiculously easy. Nothing that could even drop me 5% of max health. Then the first boss, whose name escapes me, but he's a giant voidwalker... Well, he basically just came up and ATE MY FUZZY FACE OFF.. Okay.. So I should actually run away from him when he shifts into the void.. Got it. 2nd time, I was left standing with about 8% health.. after popping my cooldowns... woof. 2nd boss is a giant rock monster by the name of Tavarok (reminscent of the rock giant in the Nexus). This boss doesn't hit particulary hard with his melee attacks, but he has one REALLY FUCKIN ANNOYING ability that makes it almost impossible to solo. It is a 4 second debuff that stuns you and reduces your health by 10% of your max health. HOLY CRAP. Luckily, druids have a TON of cooldowns to use, and it took a lot of lucky use of all of them, and a decent DPS output to take this mother down (After 5 or 6 failed attempts).

Most annoying trash:
Blood Furnace. Those stupid engineers lay bombs and throw grenades and they hurt. Those felguard fools near the end knock you back, and they hit hard. God the trash in there used to irritate me badly.

Most annoying boss:
Kael'thas - Magister's Terrace. I'm sure this one isn't much of a surprise either, but Kael'thas is just OBNOXIOUS to solo. His fireballs don't hit exceedingly hard but he casts them FAST. And he has no melee abilities (that I recall) so all he does is cast, making it hard to generate rage. He will also flamestrike, which ticks for a good amount if you sit in it. Also, you can't move him out of the flamestrike, so while you're waiting for it to clear, he's still just sitting back there wailing on you with fireballs. The phoenix hits VERY fast, but goes down quickly... Then there's the Pyroblast. If you've never done this fight, let me break it down quickly for you. You have 60 seconds from initial aggro to drop him below 50% health. If you fail to do so, he will put a 10k absorption shield over himself and begin casting Pyroblast. You cannot interrupt the cast while the shield is still up. You have 4 seconds to break down the shield and interrupt his ass. Chances are, the pyroblast will kill you (it hit me for about 49k with barkskin on). Oooof.. Took me a couple tries to bring his annoying arse down.

Most deceptively easy heroic:
Botanica, without a doubt. For the exceeding amounts of trash in that place, there is nothing really very difficult or hard hitting in there. Even the bosses are generally pretty easy (all 5 of them)

Instances I wish would die in a fire:(/cast rant)
Escape from Durnholde Keep (aka Old Hillsbrad Foothills) and The Black Morass (aka Opening the Dark Portal). I don't know why, but ever since I played in BC, i've had an obscene hatred for the Keepers of Time instances. I don't mind Culling of Stratholme because it had no rep requirements and has no pre-requisites to get into. Back in BC however.. Oh those bronze dragons made you jump through some goddamn hoops if you wanted to use THEIR portals. First one - get the quest from the bronze dragon at the enterence to the caves. 2nd one, follow a little kid around the caves for TEN GODDAMN MINUTES while they explain what the portals are. As an additional fuckoff to BC, they thought it would be a great idea to add a 20 minute debuff when you initiated this quest, so you couldn't do it in such a short time span. REALLY annoying when someone on the opposite faction kills you right after you initiate the quest. Brilliant foresight there Blizzard, but I digress. 3rd - turn in quest after following the kid around get the first quest that FINALLY allows you to go into Escape from Durnholde. Now let me make this clear.. Unlike ANY OTHER INSTANCE IN THE FRICKIN GAME as far as I know... You couldn't just up and do any of these instances without bypassing the quest chain, and you still can't. Now then, do the first instance, complete it, turn in to the dragon inside the instance, and FINALLY you can go do Black Morass.. You can't do Black Morass until after you do Escape from Durn and turn in the quest to the flippin dragon-fool inside. Horrid design Blizzard... absolutely annoying beyond belief, which is why I saved these two for last with my BC Dungeon Hero achievement. (/end rant)


Now then, out of all of this, I've been pondering repeatedly to myself... What is the hardest OVERALL BC heroic, and i'm not entirely sure I can answer that. There are many dungeons that have elements that make them difficult. Shadow Labs has an abundency of trash, some of which hits very hard, but most of the bosses are pretty simple, although the last one has the potential to be mean at times. Mana Tombs' bosses are hell for a solo player, but the trash is a joke. Botanica is absurdly long, but no real difficulty other than to just DO it. After getting past the baseline hatred I have for the Keepers of Time, their instances weren't too difficult, other than the lack of downtime for eating when you really need it. If we're going to go solely off of death counts, I would say Mana Tombs and Shadow Labs are tied for the most difficult slot... and I think I would be pretty alright with that decision.

Thursday, July 15, 2010


So.. My little baby druid is all grown up now. I had my first REAL experience tanking ICC, and it went HOLYSHITWELL.

I say first "Real experience" because tanking Dreamwalker is like tanking a heroic. Keep an eye on the adds, and your good. OTing Sindy is basically dpsing the first half of the 2/3 of the fight and then learning to not ICE BLOCK THE RAID.... but I digress.

Tonight, in my guild on the US - Azgalor server, this bunch of insane people went through the first 7 bosses with only 2 wipes (both of which were my fault for not knowing the mechanics of the fight well from a tank perspective.

First off, my SERIOUS hats off to Havelock and Shermaan for doing EXCELLENT jobs at explaining shit to me when I had no clue what was going on. I'd also like to thank the rest of the raid: Morkuma, Orithea, Kotakh, Allimony, Rhuan, Krikket and Aluwyn for bearing with me while I learned to kite oozlings on Rotface, and eat slime on Putricide (a fight i'd never seen before from ANY perspective). I caused wipes in both of those fights cause I didn't know what was going on. I admit that. Even after explanations, sometimes you just have to actually DO it to get the real feel for it. One wipe was all it took both times, and we downed the first two wings of ICC before the lag monster reared it's ugly little head on our main tank Sherm, causing him to basically lock up as soon as he charged the Blood Prince council. (Or as my guild apparently calls them, the Twilight Sparkle Party).

Now, on to other news. What have I been doing for the rest of the week? Why i've been grinding my brains out in BC dungeons and BC heroics for the hell of it. Why? Simple: Rep, Achievements, and LOTS of money. Honestly, i've made about 1k gold a day just from running these heroics all over the place. (And by all over the place I mean from about 3-4 dungeons... mayyybe.) I'll probably dedicate an entire post about this later, but man.. some of those places are hard to solo. Even as a well geared tank, I find myself having issues with some bosses, but I digress. Lots of BC heroics later (about 4 days worth of simple grinding) and my druid is now the proud owner of a swift flight form. Yayyyyyyyy!

Well, that's it for now. I think i'm going to have to be posting more often cause my numbers keep falling off!
(it's my bear! he's waving at you!)