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,

3 Responses to “If you want to go places you need to die few times.”

  1. 1 Steegos March 6, 2012 at 9:39 pm

    I have fond memories of Sarth 3d, was the first fight where there was a real hardmode and Blizzard really just got it right. Thanks for the short trip down memory lane 🙂 And great post, even when a raider picks up the mechanics of the fight quickly there is still a lot to learn, boss timings, when to use cooldowns, when to move to the right locations to maximise damage.

  2. 2 Coreus March 7, 2012 at 6:53 am

    Doing LFR five times a week shows remarkable persistence. Back when I needed it to gear up, I could barely get through one without tearing my hair out from a combination of boredom and being forced into a small space with people I couldn’t stand.

    PS: I tend to think the top guilds are top because they wipe more than any other guild, not less.

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