Thursday, January 28, 2010
As a result a lot of my writing time has gone into the guild forums instead of my own outlet. In addition actually having a main character to focus my energies means I'm constantly planning things out. When I get home I want to spend my time doing the things I plan instead of talking about them. So as a result blogging gets put aside. I feel bad because for some strange reason a few people enjoy reading my blog and there has been quite the void in content since joining serendipity.
Anyway I have some time now with no distractions so here we go with what I've been up to.
Well this one should be obvious. With new content, I'm kept quite busy raiding both 10 and 25 man's on my warrior. The last few weeks we have had enough people to run 3 10 man's. Two of the 10 man groups have been doing very well. Group 1 and group 2 (the group I'm in) have cleared up to putricide and have pushed him into phase 3 a few times. Group 3 hasn't has quite as much luck and generally doesn't make it past saurfang. You can tell there is an overflow where the majority of raiders are in group 1 and 2 and the less dedicated (and a few raiders here and there) form group 3.
Well this week they decided to mix up the groups a bit. We have a had some new recruits and a lot of signups for the 10 man and so instead of 2 strong groups and 1 meh group... we ended up with 3... meh groups. I was in group 3 but only by name because the core raiders had been scattered quite a bit but the result wasn't that everyone did great! Instead all the groups managed to do was clear the first wing. I think one of the groups MIGHT have gotten fester down... our group wiped at 1% after 5 attempts.
What really bothered me is that the week before we one shotted everything right up to putricide. We were excited because group 2 was doing awesome and really had a good flow going. In fact we were working on an actual name to call ourselves instead of just group 2.
Serendipity's 25 man progression is doing ok. We finally downed rotface on 25 man after 25 wipes spread over 4 nights (different weeks). My warrior has picked up quite a few upgrades but still no freaking shield! I'm sitting at 42.4k unbuffed and 27k armor. I've lost quite a bit of expertise and gained a crap ton of hit rating (at 10% as a draenei)
I've only mildly been working on the rest of my 80's. I run the daily heroic on the classes I feel like playing which generally includes my prot pally because getting groups is easy... and my mage because I went back to fire to screw around in heroics and OMG is it fun. Living bomb 2 or 3 things run in and dragon's breath, flamestrike, blast wave (glyphed so no knockback), flamestrike and usually they are dead by then. If not I blizzard and spam pyro on the poor left over mobs.
I still haven't run a single heroic or raid on my priest at all since ICC came out... since my druid hit 80 I haven't had the burning desire to play her and I feel kind of bad. The rest of my dps I kinda have to be in the mood to play.
The biggest reason I have been running the daily heroic though is because of the primordial saronite. I've sold a bunch of these so far which have funded my druids epic flying and lead me to my new special project... which is...
The one class I do not have a level 80 of is a death knight. But I've come close. In fact my horde DK Guine is lvl 77... but as I was approaching lvl 80 I realized how hard it was going to be to gear up a tank without support. I hadn't bothered to level any professions and the thought of grinding reps and dailies.... I just didn't want to do it.
I still want a lvl 80 DK though... so my baby lvl 26 priest Skylu was murdered... and arose a DK taking up my 10th character slot on durotan. I kept the appearance and race the same, a female Night Elf, and even named her skylu (which btw means if any of your friends had that toon when you deleted the old one... the new character will show up on the friends list).
This isn't my first attempt to level a DK on durotan and my last attempt capped out at 74. This time though... I'm giving myself incentive. I already had every BoA item from leveling my warrior so bam! Shoulder, Chest, 2h axe, 2 1h swords, and the haste trinket instantly arrive in my Dk's mailbox along with 4k gold and 20 frostweave bags. This toon is living the high life. I went ahead and picked up dual specs at 58 so that I can tank and dps while leveling. She had a stack full of glyphs and gear before leaving the starting zone. I picked up the skeletal gryphon on my way to honor hold and immediately learned flying and the gryphon at 60.
As soon as she hits 70 she will have epic flying and the tome of coldweather flying so that I can zoom around northrend questing. As it stands right now she is lvl 66 and has tanked everything up to her lvl as far as outland instances go. I skipped over questing in zangar entirely because I hate that zone and will hit 68 shortly while questing in Nagrand.
When I'm not tweaking my warrior (btw I picked up power aura's and I love it), or running heroics on my 80's... I'm leveling skylu to 80.
(oh also my shaman got the Challenger title from last season's arena!)
Monday, January 11, 2010
The highlight for me was on saturday night when we went into ICC 25. I had worked really hard during the week to pick up as many upgrades as I could and it paid off being able to tank in ICC 25. Our guild currently has a bunch of tanks well geared so for 25's one or two of us are going DPS. One of our protadins went retribution for the night which left me Nikkyo and another prot warrior as the tanks. Marrowgar is the only boss I've done on 25 before and I had only ever tanked him on 10 man so this was quite the big step for me. About halfway through the fight the other warrior tank died. Nikkyo and I popped cooldowns while the other tank was battle rezzed and joined back in. Marrowgar was a one shot and low and be hold he dropped the sweet tanking legs which I was lucky enough to win the roll on.
Of course here is where the slight guilt kicks in. This was the first progression raid that I had been on with them and getting loot over the other tanks didn't really feel right to me. Anyway we moved on to LDW whom I've only ever killed on 10 man and it certainly wasn't as a tank. In fact my previous raid group was horribly stuck on this fight and the raid leader refused to listen to suggestions. Serendipity also had not downed LDW on 25 man. This fight places a lot of focus on the tanks so I was really nervous as we initiated the pull. Things were really hectic especially on my side. I for the most part kept my head straight but the other side lost a few dps and ultimately when she transitioned into phase 2... something I've never even seen on 25... we just couldn't get it together and wiped.
Our second attempt went better all around... except I screwed up horribly several times letting 2 or 3 of my melee dps die to the adds before I had solid aggro. We got the transition into phase 2 again but we ended up hitting her enrage. Finally on our 3rd attempt everything clicked and we got into phase 2 without too many people dying... then everything went to hell. I'm not sure what happened but people started dying off left and right including all of our healers. One of our ele shamans started chain healing her little heart out and it was just enough to kill LDW.... with all of 6 raid members left standing... 3 of which were us tanks. She dropped I want to say a tanking ring? and some other crap. I passed on the ring even though it would be an upgrade simply because I knew I was close to getting the rep ring.
The airship battle is just as easy in 25 as it was in 10 except they have 4 cannons! I got to be on the away team and actually use my rocket pack for what it is intended for. I was also on cannon duty which was an interesting and awesome strategy then the way my other raid group did things. When the cannon froze up I just jumped over and taunted MR fancy pants while the melee kicked the crap out of the mage. Then we all jumped back and I hopped into my cannon. The dodge trinket dropped which went to our bear tank Nikkyo.
Saurfang was interesting. Especially since... well we didn't know that 5 adds spawned instead of 4. We did all of this set up and planning and then BAM 5 adds. Surprise? We spent 4 attempts with me tanking. Ultimately though me and the other war tank were tied on avoidance, the pally tank who was dpsing had higher then both of us so he switched back to prot. Apparently the other warrior sucks at dps so I switched to the good old arms spec and pulled out my Awesome (read terrible) dps gear!
The next attempt I had my buddy Curinir whispering telling me how he and the other officers were impressed with how much dps I did in my offspec. I'm thinking cool! But then... see I was in a heroic earlier and my recount bugged out and still wasn't functioning during raid. So I had no clue how I was doing compared to what I normally do... or compared to the rest of the raid. Anyway this next attempt went a little better and finally the attempt after that we killed the damn orc. I was able to look at the logs on World of Logs and find out I did around 4700 dps. Not great... but not terrible considering I don't have a single piece of gear over 219 (except for the 232 ony helm)
We got 2 war/sham/whogivesafuck? tokens one of which went to the other warrior and the other went to the shammy. So every tank got atleast something from the run which was pretty sweet. At this point I noticed that I needed 15 rep... 15... to get the friendly ring. So I asked if we could go kill SOMETHING in the next wing. There were a few people who needed >100 rep so we died to the steamvaults a bit before killing the trash I needed for my ring :D
The rest of the weekend I've spent running heroics to work on my arms set a bit. Working on my dps set is gonna continue to be my focus for awhile then I'll get back to the rest of my alts!
Tuesday, January 5, 2010
Yesterday while I was at work towards the end of the day I was reading Zan’s blog and it got me thinking. In my little guild I’m comfortable. I’m the master of all the classes I play and there is no one above me… or at least that’s how I feel. I’ve talked before about how being challenged and grouping in pugs is a good way to improving as a player. Well I came to realize that I’m not really following my own advice. Sure I run with a semi pug raid every week… but with the classes I bring I’m generally on top. Again, no real room to grow.
This also got me thinking about my wife, brother and sister. Sure I play a warlock like my wife… I know the proper specs and rotations and what to do to reach the max damage. The problem is though my wife and I generally speak a different language. We think and process information differently so it is hard for me to explain things to her and it is hard for her to express her questions for me to answer. Our guild is isolated so she doesn’t have any influence beyond me on what to do to become a better player.
Also when it comes to raiding the group that I run with is solo progression based. This is fine for me… but my wife and family don’t have all the core skills for this kind of raiding. They also won’t learn any of them outside of actually raiding for themselves. I don’t have the stomach or patience to try and put together a run with 5 pugs on old content that people are expecting to get carried through (the pugs not my family).
Well the solution that I came up with is fairly obvious. I talked to my wife and we decided that we would try and get back into my old guild Serendipity. It seems odd to reapply to a guild that you left because you couldn’t focus on raiding… because you want to focus on raiding… but that is what it came down to. I still have a lot of friends and people I miss playing with in the guild and a lot of the issues that I had with the rules and leadership have been changed. I talked to Curinir one of the officers and a friend whom with I still play and raid. He in turn talked to one of the officers and the GL Nikkyo who is also one of my friends.
I got on vent with them and we chatted a bit mostly about what toon I wanted to play as my main. I told them that I really wanted to raid tank again and wanted to play my warrior. As luck would have it that is one of the things they are a little low on. Not so much tanks in general as they have quite a few but not any really reliable warrior tanks. I told them that I wanted to bring the rest of my family and Kobeck because I thought it would be a better environment for everyone. Kobeck recently had a bit of falling out and quit 25 man raiding with the tempest group but still does 10 mans with them. I’m hoping that joining a progressing guild would rekindle that fire. Not to mention that during my course of conversation I learned that Blanda and b2 recently joined.
The wife and I transferred to serendipity, but my brother and Kobeck are still a little hesitant. I understand completely and am not going to push the issue. Hopefully they will decide to join us because I think it is the best move for all of us.
Last night turned out to be a raid night for them and they were heading into ToC 25 and possibly ToGC 25 after. At first my wife didn’t want me to go because we had spent a lot of time just talking and getting set up in the new guild that we didn’t have time to do anything together… or eat dinner really. I threw some chicken on the grill and we managed to finish eating and got our daughter to bed just before raid time. She said it was fine that I could go <3>
Off we went to ToC 25. There was a little confusion on gormak with the impale stacks but we got him without issue and likewise the worms dropped easily. We lost 3 or 4 people to one of the worms and then icehowl came out. I got agro took one hit, got healed, and then took 2 hits with in .3 seconds and was dead. Ow. Now my warrior isn’t the greatest geared… but man that was embarrassing. Nikkyo was quick with the bearform and taunted. I got a battle rez and spent the rest of the fight keeping sunder up and cursing at myself. Next up we had jarraxus. All I can say is… NEED MORE RAGE. I was rage starved nearly the entire fight. I even missed one or two fireballs because I simply didn’t have the rage to interrupt. I stopped using demo shout and thunderclap HOPING to take more damage.
Faction champions came up and were marked up. Next thing I knew nikkyo pulled without explaining to me what I was supposed to be doing. So I charged in and just started annoying everything I could. Taunting the melee, silencing the casters, intervening focused raid members, stunning, charging, fearing and all around being as big of a douche as I could to the hordies. In the end we won and what would you know it? Satrinasubertrinketofstamina dropped. I went from having no decent stamina trinkets… to picking up the emblem of frost trinket and getting satrina’s trinket. I’ll miss the 3% avoidance I lost but I’m loving the fact that my warrior sits at 37.5k unbuffed. Twin valks was boring. Anub was a pita… I really screwed up on the first attempt. Me and the other offtank had a lot of miss communication going on and quite a bit of cross taunting. We were doing ok but Nikk got too far away from the healers after anub came out and he went down. Second attempt went off without a hitch though. Well except for the DK offtank death gripping my mob off the ice patch where it promptly borrowed >.<
Raid was supposed to go to 11 and so we had about 20 minutes worth of attempts on TogC. All I can say is Holy Shit. I most certainly do NOT have the gear for that fight. 38k impales???? WTF??? OW. With all 4 of his snobold stacks up I took a 28k hit through my freaking shield wall. One attempt I lived for awhile with last stand up… then I died and nikkyo popped his survival instinct thingy… 88k health…
I also learned that I’m having some pretty bad threat issues. Really thinking I need to put another point in bladed to teeth (or whatever its called) I have 2 points in that so that I could have a point in imp spell reflect which is nice for some fights. Really wish I didn’t have to glyph in order to have semi decent cool downs because I really could use the threat. I know threat will come with gear and it doesn’t help that I dropped down to 198 hit with all of the upgrades. Overall it was a pretty eye opening experience on what I need to do to improve and things could have gone far worse considering that was my first time in a 25 man on my warrior.