Posts Tagged 'Raiding'

Bench warming

( Bench from Ikea)

Right now we are running a little heals heavy.  By heals heavy  it doesn’t necessarily mean that all the healers are available all the time. So mostly it works out that we seem to always have enough healers around, and a couple of healers that can do offspec dps if we need the dps, but sometimes a healer or two,  or a dps or two will need to bench warm for a boss.

Sometimes while we were working on hard modes,  this would mean a significant part of the raid night, and then we would slowly lose our bench warmers to alts, or they would just would log off and not come back, with no response in guild chat/vent when they were called on.

Now hard mode attempts still may take a couple of goes, and the bench warmers know not to go too far. But we still have Spine and DW hard modes to work on and that means likely some time will be spent by someone on the bench.

The problem with sitting is that you have set aside time,  been prepared for raid and some of that time  – unspecified time may be spent not doing what you wanted to do with that time, and instead have to find other things to do that keep you reasonably available when/if you are called on.

You can’t do daily’s in a raid group ( but if you drop you don’t get DKP from the mod)

You might get in a Pvp game,  but you also may not get to finish it, start farming, start something.

You could log into an alt, and do any of the above  as long as you in some way,  vent, guild chat, whisper, real id , remain in contact.  ( Or you can stand in SW which is mostly what I end up doing because I don’t want to ‘commit to any other pursuit/activity that I have to leave very quickly, ( and I have duel screens)

When volunteers were called the other night, one raider said they would sit if they had to,  but they just want to raid.

It can be that simple. “I want to raid.”

Bench warming isn’t killing bosses.  It is still being part of a team though,  because the reality also is,  if you don’t have bench warmers,  then you have the possibility of not having enough players at a time when random things happen, and people aren’t available – and we want to do hard modes which means we need the 25 people in the raid. Having people ready in reserve, helps make a healthy raiding guild.

I’ve bench warmed, I’m getting better at volunteering for it, but I’ve raided with people in flexible positions ( eg not tanks or raid leaders ) who refused to sit. Ever.

I understand why they don’t volunteer. You’re there to raid, you want to raid.  You’ve committed.

A raid can still be done with less than 25 or less than 10 –  but never more. However there has to be a Tank/heals/DPS balance for the content especially the harder kind.  Once the content gets easier because of nerfs or better gear then the balance can be shifted, but unless there is an achievement in it most guilds will try to run their current content with full raid groups, especially when encounters aren’t designed as tank and spanks where everyone stands in one position the whole time, and a couple of people pushing a little harder could compensate for lesser numbers.  You have oozes that have die by a  particular time, damage that needs to be healed up, targets that need to die before you move to the next one.

Bench warming is also where good guild leadership comes in.   You also need to keep your bench warmers warm. Keep them interested. Keep them committed, to the point that there are no bench warmers per say.  They are not reserves,  only put into play in extreme circumstances,  they are raiders, but for that to happen,  you need people to volunteer to sit out.

So the change of thought is  that you’re not being sat because they don’t want you,  but it’s to give someone else a chance at…  ( encounter, fight, loot ect.. ) It makes the raid group stronger. If in the event a  player is not available then you have someone in the position to be there instead, and the show goes on.

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Lose – ah.. USE the Lightwell.

The light-well is a pain.

I can’t put it down on Heroic Yor’sahj in case someone clicks it and gets a stack.  ( better to be safe then blown up right?)

I stick a bright yellow bowl of light in the melee and no one notices it, or clicks it to see what happens before the fight has began and considering I watched someone eat 10 charges of my lightwell last night when I had placed it for attempts at Heroic  Warmaster Blackhorn only to see it disappear before pull, made me VERY MAD. * Priest rage Priest rage*

No one takes it seriously.  People rarely click on it and I seem to be one of the few common people through several logs of who actually uses the thing. I click on it so it’s a little heal on myself for when I am worrying about everyone elses heath bars.

Am I really a bad holy priest if I ‘forget’ to place it down.

It really is only good for dancing on .

Maybe if we changed the color people would click it more. Neon Green.  Add Flashing lights maybe.

I have been in LFR’s where someone has glyphed the lightwell so it has 15 charges, and they have a macro that THANKS the person who click on it.

“Thankyou for using my lightwell..  thankyou for using my lightwell…”

I’m pretty sure if I tried that in Raid I would get blocked/reported for spam or told to turn it off very quickly, but it served a constant reminder of it’s existance, and people clicked on it.

We have a habit of not taking as much personal responsibility for your own health, Some classes have their own heals, boosts, and wouldn’t rely on the lightwell or a health stone,  or arguably they would say they  don’t need it.  As a healer I look first to using a heal on myself before I use something like a lightwell,  health stone or a health pot, however there are things available to us to use to boost our own survivability. Click the lightwell. Eat your lock rock ect ect..  do eeeet  and live longer.

I can use Health stones as another example of things that people don’t use as much as they should.

Most fights when our locks remember :P  ( or are reminded ) we get a  health stone

We made 16 attempts on Heroic Zon’ozz the other week. say 25 x 16  = 400 times that a health-stone could have been used and the logs show only 41 in total was used. I used 2,  and a couple used it 5 or 4 times.  Some of the wipes were called early and the stone would have been wasted but 16 attempts/41  = 2.56 people using their health-stones each attempt.

On our kill 14/25  people used their health-stone.

That’s looking better ( 6 people clicked on the lightwell )

Did the kill give us more opportunity to use the stones,  or did the stones give us more opportunity to kill, I don’t know. But ( puts on authoritative voice) There is a positive correlation between using health stones and killing Zon’ozz  ( so far.. )

The Last Witness to a lot of wiping

My Fail Angel is the a last witness.

And it’s tempting to keep watching.

I sometimes forget that I need to click off the fail angel to ‘die’ and I have been dying a lot. But we are now 5/8 25 man Heroic leaving piles of bones behind in Dragon Soul – but taking epic lootz with us.

and who wouldn’t want to hang around and watch the likes of these types of fireworks.

Fire bug is not helping.

and boys and girls. Do not step into little purple puddles on your own = more fail angels.

I also wonder at what point I should confess I not really shadow priesting much. I’d like to claim all three specs as part of my ‘player’ identity.  But heals has been much easier to do stuff with in cata, and I am finding it easier to heal, then dps right now.

I’m raid Healing as holy, and my offspec is now Disc for Pvp with a  half hearted attempt to try and do arena and rated bgs ( stay away from trade chat pugs or random people wanting to do points for fun! )

It has been an adjustment getting back into raiding, needed to be more aware of time, and making sure I could do shopping/washing/garbage/dinner/don’t finish too late at work to make sure I have time to take a breath before I sit and raid.

I’m finding the guild atmosphere to be much like the guild I missed so much in Ulduar days, and that may or may not be in part that there is a greater gender balance – and happily vocal gender balance in this 25 man then my ICC 25 man raid guild.

If you want to go places you need to die few times.

When we were working on hardmodes in Ulduar I think it was, I kept a log of our attempts one night thinking I would use it for a post,  but I never got round to it (  A2 is not an accidental pull by me..  I promise  :)  the rest of the word is OR )
Dc’s, accidental pulls, good attempts, bad attempts.
It’s been a while since I have done 3 hours of attempts on a heroic boss  – and I got to re-experience it the other night.
I’m on trial in a  25 man raiding guild as heals ** and we spent some time on Heroic Warlord.   The wipe diary for that night would run similar to the Ulduar one I wrote down,
Dc’s, strat revisions, good attempts, bad attempts, and finally a trash re spawn.
This isn’t a complaint. One of the biggest achievements and tedious times in Wow for me was doing Sar 3d. I was dodging flame walls in my sleep, it took around 70 attempts but we did it. I learned my role very intimately.
You don’t get to fire dance now when you zerg  Sar now.
I was lucky enough,  (or unlucky enough) to be brought in on Heroic Hagara  – It was an encounter that the guild had been working on and had only recently managed to get it. We still didn’t one shot it, but it was done in a couple of attempts. They had done it before so the goal post was a lot nearer.
I didn’t have the little intricacies that they had learned along the way either by making mistakes, or watching other people make mistakes,  I  ran into a frost patch,  I slowed down to find my dispel target, and this week I got iceblocked and didn’t run into the center.
I was doing Firelands for a few weeks in a row recently with a friend working on his staff.  I had done a couple of bosses in there on a guild alt run once when it was current content, but because I was adamant in sticking to trying to have a life, and I defined raiding as at the very minimum of having less of a life.  I had completely removed myself from the idea of raiding, and so I never tried pugging it,  or going in on any other alt runs,   but the raids for my friends staff  meant I was learning boss strats on the fly and doing achievements, and hardmodes mixed up into some weeks being heals and some being dps. I got confused, and the content was still current enough ( especially when 9 manning it) to make mistakes that caused wipes ( o my defense it wasn’t always me)  I never had the chance to learn the bosses and the encounters  in succession, and  never had the weeks of cake walk that encounters become when someone has wiped and learned on a weekly basis, and it was a little upsetting to feel so unarmed with experience.
I  remember on the first night of DS patch, going into a LFR for the first time with all the other noobs and on occasion wiping,  but more often than not,  surviving because the Tanks, or at least some people in the raid had done it on the testing realms and were able to teach/ help. They had experience in wiping.
I wouldn’t be raiding now if it weren’t for LFR, the experience, and the gear of  weeks of running up to 5 toons through 8 bosses ( that was pretty much all I did when I played those weeks in wow) I learned the basics enough that unless there are significant differences to strats ( like no dispelling on H Warlord- BOOM! bodies flying everywhere)  means I do ok.
This whole post might sound like an excuse for being a bad
I know some people can watch/read a strat once and have their role down pat but that’s not most people and not always me.  There are so many variables in an encounter to consider, and there is knowing a strat, and knowing it intimately in a way that only comes from experience though it helps if only one person is learning the fight out of 25.
I’ve done some UAT/CAT testing on a project and there was testing done by test scripts trying to cover all the variables on the assumption that everyone was trained  perfectly,  that there was no data input errors, but a lot of the bugs were found by ad hoc testing – pushing the system to limits that a test script wouldn’t consider, and I liken a strat to a test script, step by step execution, but learning an encounter is more ad hoc testing.  By ad hoc testing you learn and  understand the fight not just follow a dotted path that promises you success if you follow it to the letter.
There is more than one way to down a boss, and a million ways to wipe a raid, but would raiding be as fun if everyone did the same boss the same one, if no one explored different possibilities or found different uses for abilities in different encounters? What works for one raid team won’t for another, the make up of your classes and specs will be different, and through wiping you find what works for you.
We can be comforted by  that even top guilds wipe on bosses ( albeit a lot less )

** Admitting to nepotism for the trial, and much encouragement from my BF to get back into raiding,

How to get that #1 dps spot in LFR – Boss by Boss.

Yes another LFR  post

Why would I join a raiding guild ( and actually raid in said raiding guild ) when I can do LFR on 4 toons a week and have endless excitement.

So some general advice

Don’t forget to food and flask, make sure you have all the buffs you can get.  Ask the locks to give you their haste buff, or rogues to give you tricks, don’t be afraid to ask, and ask often.  Being demanding may encourage them to give it to you to shut you up.

No clicking on Lightwells,  and grouping to stand on the healers AOE, why should you move or make any effort to keep yourself alive it’s your job to dps and carry the rest of the scrub add killing guild members raid members.  Your Uber dps is what wins all the fights.

If you do die don’t forget that you are important, even if  you managed to pull agro before the tank could. Tell them to Battle rez you.  Tell them again and again, until you get one.  If you die on Deathwing  because you ‘fell’ demand a healer comes back to get you.

Don’t forget to link your Recount after every boss to reinforce in everyone’s mind how awesome you are.

Now for the Boss fights

 Boss 1 Morchock  (Aka Moar Rock  – he is a big rock)

Ignore the resonating crystal  – if you get targeted, even if your line is red. Do not move. It’s only LFR and the healers can heal you through it.

After he casts You have about 2-3 global cool downs before the blood of the earth ( that black stuff )  chases after you. Don’t run to the spines as quickly as possible,  if you get hit there will be a healer in range to heal you up.

Boss 2 Warlord Zon’ozz ( elephant on Steroids)

Pick a spot and don’t move.  Don’t group up so that it makes it easier for the healers to heal or dispel you.  They won’t let you die anyway.

Boss 3 Yor’shaj the Unsleeping ( the ooze dude)

Pick a spot and don’t move, don’t chase after blobs.  Make sure you AOE when the multiple adds come,  and do not kill the Mana ball

Boss 4 Hagara the Unbinding ( lightening emo chick) /swagger

Stand in anything you feel like, frost circles, whirlwinds, lots of Aoeing opportunities on the trash never mind about agro, the tanks have you covered.   Your still going to need to watch out for the spines  or you will die,  and dead dps does no dps.  If you’re a pet class be careful of the spines, and of the lightening phase you may lose your pet – and lose dps..

Boss 5 Ultraxion ( Big dragon staring contest)

Don’t click that purple swirly thing,  the healers will just heal you up,  and no one will remember when you miss it every single time.  You don’t have to do much besides stand there and dps and use your cool downs.

Boss 6 Warmaster Blackhorn ( I’m on a boat.. again.. )

Range is supposed to target the drakes – don’t.  That will involve changing targets. So just focus on the two dude in the center.  When a large purple swirling thing hits the deck, ignore it, you don’t need to move.  You still will need to pay attention to the dark purple circles. Don’t stand in them,  if you do it can be difficult for a healer to heal you through it.

Boss 7 Spine of Deathwing ( I’m on the back of a big mutha of a dragon ripping it’s armour off ( hey its kinda cool )

It doesn’t matter if you kill more stuff  then your supposed to,  dps freely. Just close your ears to the “STOP DPS YOU NOOBS,”STOP ” “OMG Stop!!!” if its red shoot it, and since more tendrils killed means more corrupted blood to dps.  If there is nothing up to kill dps the Amalgamation (s) as you feel like.

Boss 8 – Deathwing ( BIGGEST scary dragon and the dude that this whole expansion is supposed to be about )

Don’t swap to the corrupted tentacle, or the bolt when it spawns.  Stay on the Wing for as long as possible, until the tank screams at you ” SWAP” If your melee and you hide behind the back you might be able to escape detection. Aoe where possible.  Don’t single target anything, the healers can heal through everything.  When you reach the last phase ignore all sets of adds, just focus on deathwing.

In Cahoots

One of the new features coming out is to allow people to form a raid group with people through real ID cross servers for Battlegrounds, classic dungeons and raids, as well as LFR. You can join x-server 5 mans in LFR  through real ID now,  but the change will let you bring more people along,

It’s natural to have some form of favoritism to people you know,  like, want to impress, want them to like you. Even when trying to be fair on the 5 man dungeon levels when there are people from the same guild  running it they might look out for each other more, heal more often, be more forgiving of stupid stuff, encourage silly stuff – eg I’ve been instances where I have had to heal 2 tanks because the two people who knew each other thought it would be funny to try to compete with each other over who the tank was going to be.  When I asked who was tanking I was told it was my job to heal. When crap goes down, and people are dying you may heal your friends a little more than the random.  You might be more attentive of the healers mana if the healer is your friend, defend your friend when the group wants to kick him because he has dc’d. You also might give your friend that piece of loot that they need/want .

I understand wanting to help someone more than wanting to ‘hurt’ them

Why should I give a crap about  the Mage that told the Tank to suck his appendage because he pulled before the tank and got called on it,   Not only was he rude, he wasn’t playing by the ‘rules’.  He could iceblock, and then it becomes the tanks job to fix his mistake,  Then an  offtank who convince the raid to kick *such and such* because of low dps  ( when it was the main tank he wanted kicked)   I can only imagine that his motivations where to get the main tank position and possibly roll on the loot the tank would have ( main tank had been a DK too)  Or maybe he just didn’t like him.

You get a lot more power as a group then you do as an individual.

When it’s 3 rogues and 2 druids from the same guild and server, trying to kick half the raid in a LFR  you can see that there might some under-tow of interest, and that they at least know each other because they are all in the same guild. They were found out, and people started clicking no to the raid kicks.

Its gets a little difficult when it’s  people on the same realm, but different guilds,  and you need to look closer at interactions to determine if they know each other.

But when you add different server, and different guild, and they aren’t shouting greetings in raid chat ” Oh Hai, fancy meeting you here”  then you have no idea who is in cahoots with each other.

And the conspiracy to hoard and swap gear, or kick people they don’t want in the guild  is less transparent.

The upside is you will never know.

The downside is you don’t then have the choice to leave,  take the 30 min debuff  and chance it with another group.

The Family that feasts together

When I was living at home we had a family rule,  that dinner was eaten together as a family at the table, with the TV off. ( with the exception of  friday night pizza night)  Yes there were sometimes arguments, but it was the one time of the day where we could sit down and just be together.  If I was still living at home there is no way I would have been playing Wow as often. Because the dinner time call would not have tolerated ‘but muuuummm I’m in a raid.. ‘

Many cultures consider eating together important,  its a time for family bonding, for talking about your day.  It’s not about  just eating,  its participating in the ritual of arguing with your siblings as who’s turn  it is to set the table,  and sitting down at the table together. It may not always be peaceful, and I was one of 4 kids competing for parental attention, but the simple act of sitting together breaking bread together  was important.

We have had feasts in the game  since Wrath, In Cata, we got a Barbecue or as we aussies call them Barbeques, the Broiled Dragon Feast recipe  and the Seafood Magnifique Feast recipe, ( I know one guildy that probably never wants to see another Eel again after he did most of the pool fishing to get that)  we also have Cauldrons.  So not only can your guild eat together you get cauldron cocktails!

The Feast forces you to sit in  reasonably proximity together to eat it.   There is even a nice little announcement letting people know a feast has been prepared, and like people ‘rush to a table’ people rush to the feast.  Make jokes about the Moonkins feathery butt sitting on the feast, or making fush and chips jokes  (Thoughts go out to the Christchurch Kiwis :( )

A group that eats together can be stronger, more unified,  more bonded in the real world,  can this be said in game as well?  that the very simple act of eating together encourages you to work together more as a team? I think so.

Putting a fish feast down  and eating it is now an important part of the after Wipe ritual. Your not raid ready until you have a feast. It’s become an essential  part of raiding, this ritual of sitting down, and eating together.

Or your raid leader is like your mum ” eat the feast everyone”  ” Dinner is readddy…”

Another place a feast or even a cake encourages people to bond is in BG’s

You only get limited time to ‘bond’ with people in a Bg – a feast  or  a cake can  change the mood enough to get the group to bond together quick enough to make them want to work together.

You can stand waiting for that bg to start for your 130 odd seconds in silence,  or you can put a feast down and watch people spur to action,  or comment,   they will be more likely to buff,  more likely to get candy out and mage food out, people become more willing to share,  and your then in a room of people,  not mindless avatars staring at a computer screen.

Or everyone else can stand around while you waste a fish feast on a Bg of players that won’t eat it. ( maybe they shouldn’t have put a live crab in there)


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@Pugnacious_P

  • Aussie Wow severs wp.me/pb7GB-1tI 18 hours ago
  • RT @Narull: Oh and the servers are still linked to the US so you can still play with US friends if you like! 2 days ago
  • RT @Narull: Next Tuesday oceanic realms go offline for 24 hours and come back online in Australia. Free character transfers for ANZ as well. 2 days ago
  • aussie servers would also mean they would die down when all the kiddies went to bed... 2 days ago
  • but I raid with Aussies, and only used to do Rated BG's with non Aussies cause there was a bigger pool of players 2 days ago

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