Archive for the ‘This Week in Raiding’ Category

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This Week in Raiding… How Brajana Got Her Groove Back

December 13, 2008

As a quondam post of mine can attest to, it’s been a very busy, very messy week.  While the bus strike is still on, exams are over!  Which means I am stuck in my apartment with nothing to do but play World of Warcraft.

Friday, which was supposed to be a day full of heroics, didn’t end up being what I expected.  In the morning, I ran Heroic Utgarde Pinnacle, which of course (like everything else) I’d never been to before.  We made it through fine, but with no thanks to me.

I was a mess!  I don’t know what was wrong with me, but my DPS sucked, I kept face-pulling, and it’s probably a good thing they never asked me to trap.  Seriously, it was a mess.  By the end of the run, I was only about 4% ahead of THE TANK on the damage meters.  Ouch.

I felt like after they’d explained a boss fight to me, I’d immediately forget what they said.  I just was not focused.  I don’t think it helped that I’d never been there before and everyone else had, and I also had three cats vying for my attention, as well as my brother trying to have a conversation with me via text messages (I hate writing text messages!).

I picked up a pair of [Gilt-Edged Leather Gauntlets] in the end, but I actually felt guilty taking them – I didn’t contribute to the run, and didn’t feel like I deserved anything.

It’s probably good I didn’t end up running heroics all day with that group.  It probably would have just been more of the same!

After that, I continued to have more troubles with my computer, and wasn’t able to play most of the afternoon… but after I rebooted and let my video card take a nap, I managed to convince it to stay awake for a couple runs in the evening while  I helped Tigerfeet search for a new tanking staff.

We started in Heroic Black Morass Violet Hold.  It was lots of fun, and I love having Tiger as my tank, she’s a very good tank and more importantly, she is always very constructive and forgiving of silly little mistakes that we all make.  And for some reason, my complete lack of focus was gone!  Huzzah!  Misdirects for everyone!

We had a little trouble learning the second boss, which was Zuramat the Obliterator, the big Voidwalker type guy.  Apparently he is hailed as one of the most difficult heroic bosses around right now.  But after a couple of wipes and researching the exact mechanics, we had no problems… our Shaman healer got to purgin’ and we killed his little minions and all was well.

When we were done, while I walked away with [Twin-Headed Boots] but the staff didn’t drop, so we took our party to Heroic Utgarde Keep to have of either the staff or the crossbow dropping!

Finally, a heroic I’ve done before!  It went pretty smoothly, I can’t say we had any real troubles.  And congrats to Tigerfeet on her new [Enraged Feral Staff]!

I think I’m comfortable with running heroics now.  Which puts me a little more at ease about possibly jumping straight into 25-man raiding next week.  I’d rather get some practice in 10-mans first, but it seems the guild’s priority is to jump right past that.

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This Week in Raiding… Oculus and Naxxramas

December 6, 2008

So I finally hit 80!  Time to run some heroics and raids, right?

Nope.  Instead of skipping right to raiding and heroics, I took a trip to regular Oculus with a couple other newly 80 guildies, and a couple not so newly 80.  And it turns out running something on regular was a really good idea.  It turns out I haven’t run any instances since around 72-73… and other than those 4 times I ran instances then, I haven’t run a 5-man instance in many a month.  I was rusty, it was pretty clear.  I was running around all flummoxed, not used to it being more than just Hanno and me.

No sending my gorilla in and rounding things up, then volleying.  No, now I have to pay attention to which target I and my pet are on!  And I have to pay attention to when my cooldowns are up!  I admit I forgot to use kill shot about half the run… even though it gives me a little notice when I can use it, I’m so used to ignoring the notice that I just seemed to skip it.

But in the end, I started to get back into the swing of things.  I am glad I had guildies there to not think I was a total noob.

You shoulda seen me running around trying to find the entrance to the instance.  I’ve decided the minimap should be 3 dimensional.

If I’d PUG’d myself, I’d have kicked myself before the run even started!

Anyway, it was hunter night in Oculus apparently, and I could have picked up 3 upgrades.  I grabbed the [Wyrmclaw Battleaxe], the [Centrifuge Core Cloak] and passed on the [Spaulders of Skillful Maneuvers] since I’m going to be making new shoulders soon anyway (but I won the roll for the shard!)

All in all, it was nice to be back to running things and being part of a group.

While I didn’t get to go to Naxxramas, <Unemployed> had quite a successful week.  The got quite a few bosses down.  I just hope I get a chance to get in there before they clear it all!

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This Week in Raiding… Brought to you by Brajana’s Gorilla Delivery!

November 29, 2008

So, I didn’t do any instances or raids this week.  Not much I can say about that.  But what I can do is share this screenshot I took this morning on my journey out to Sholazar Basin!

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Brajana's Gorilla Delivery: If we can't deliver your gorilla with aplomb, no one can!

I also finally picked up [Manual: Heavy Frostweave Bandage], so all that Frostweave I’ve saved up can be used to get me to 450 FIrst Aid!

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This week in raiding… Brajana hits up Northrend!

November 22, 2008

Time to discuss my first week of instances in the Wrath of the Lich King.  I had time to experience the first three instances, Utgarde Keep, The Nexus and Azjol-Nerub.

First of all, I’d like to say that most of the people in Unemployed, myself included, are trying to learn instance encounters on our own. We aren’t looking up boss strategies beforehand, we’re trying to develop our own.  I’m enjoying that a lot.  While it may lead to some avoidable wipes, it’s a lot of fun going in and not knowing what to expect, moving and changing how you play on the fly!

Since I started my adventures in Howling Fjord, it made sense to have Utgarde Keep as my first new instance.  And it was pretty fun.  To be honest, it wasn’t entirely memorable… I barely remember what it was like, and it’s only been a week since I was in there.  I also know that there was a point where I didn’t realize the mob we were fighting was a boss.

However, I do remember one point where the tank asked me to have my pet off-tank one of the mobs in the pull right before one of the bosses, which resulted in a quick wipe.  Why?  Well, if you’re a hunter, it’s likely you’ve noticed that on occasion, your pet likes to run off with the mob they are fighting.  Generally, I have time to recall my pet before he gets too far… but I was busy also trying to trap at the same time, and Ambrose and the mob he was supposed to be tanking decided to go have their fight right on top of the boss.  Boo.

The next instance I got to experience was The Nexus.  What a pretty instance!  I must say, if I’d had my gorilla in there, he’d do a great job of blending in.  Lots of blueish white icy goodness in there.  The tank this time seemed to know where he was going, and we almost rushed through the instance, so I didn’t get to make many observations.  Ormorok the Tree-Shaper felt like a combination of the Dragonhawk boss from Zul’Aman and Astromancer Solarian from The Eye.  He spawns these little ice thingies… and if you don’t get out of the way, they’ll shoot you up in the air.  Which is fun the first time (just like Solarian) but some people need to be a little more observant.

Grand Magus Telestra was a lot of fun.  I didn’t really know what the heck was going on most of the time, but I know there were several points when she used me as her own personal yo-yo.

The final boss… was one of those wipes that could have been avoided.  There’s a stacking debuff that she puts on everyone, which causes frost damage periodically, and causes more damage with more stacks.  I couldn’t figure out why I was dying so fast.  The SMART thing to do would have been to read the text in the debuff, the part that said “Movement will cancel this effect.”  Instead, I stood back and shot my arrows, which is my default strategy when I don’t know what’s going on.

I also had a chance to run through Azzjol-Nerub, or Azz-rub as our Guild Leader has coined it.  Neat place, but slightly unerving.  The moment I stepped on that web-like floor, I had the feeling I was going to fall through.  It was worrisome, and I was always afraid the next step would be my last!

Oh, and big spider boss?  Creepy.  *shudder*

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This week in raiding… A’lar downs Unemployed :(

September 20, 2008

Well, the game is beginning to slow down.  Now that we have a pukka release date of Wrath of the Lich King, people are starting to realize how close it really is, and how the work we put into raids now isn’t going to do a whole bunch of good for us later.  We have had a guild discussion about the direction we want to take.  Our options are pretty much: a) Work on Kael’thas and Vashj, b) Work on Zul’Aman, see if we can get at least one bear mount, or c) Take a break from raiding all together.

Most people opted for the Kael/Vashj idea.  We’d all really feel it would bring a sort of conclusion to our raiding progress.  I agree, plus I’d like that title! 🙂  But I wouldn’t mind a bear mount either… and a break would probably do my grades some good.  So really, I’m along for whatever the guild chooses.

Tuesday night, we planned to get some more Tempest Keep, but unfortunately, our luck with A’lar returned.  After a number of attempts, we just couldn’t get him down.  Instead of trying to re-clear all the trash, we gave up and called it a night.  It was very frustrating.

Wednesday night, we didn’t have enough people signed up to do a real 25-man, so we tried to split into two Zul’Aman groups.  Unfortunately, there wasn’t enough interest to get two Zul’Aman groups going… so we ended up with one.  I felt a bit bad, because that meant that some people who really wanted to go to Zul’Aman couldn’t, but something is better than nothing!

We tried to do it as quickly as possible, but we only managed to get the first timed chest.  We had some confusion in the pull before the Bear boss, and it led to the timer going off when we had him down to 50%.  We still practiced the rest of the run as if it were a speed run, and we got all four bosses down.  We had to reset a couple of times on the dragonhawk boss, so we wouldn’t have gotten it anyway.  But it was good practice!  Hopefully we’ll do better next time.

Thursday night, we continued ZA from where we’d left off – at Hex Lord.  Got Hex Lord and Zul’jin down – it was my first time seeing both fights!  And they’re both pretty fun.  I have decided I really like Zul’Aman.  I like the way the bosses are set up, and I really like how the final boss cycles through each of animal bosses.

I see a lot of ZA in our future… and not so much Kael and Vashj like we were hoping.  I think too many people are just ready for the expansion and can’t be bothered to come… which I can understand.

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This Week in Raiding… Unemployed officially enters T6!

September 6, 2008

Tuesday, some Lurker and Leo action.  Not much excitement there, I just want to say that Leo doesn’t seem to drop the Hunter/Warlock/Mage set piece ever!  We had enough time to spare afterwards to head in and take a look at Vashj though!

It’s a pretty complicated fight, and while I have read up on it and tried my best to listen to the raid leader explain our strategy – it’s always so different to be right in on the action.  And in fact, for me it was more like watching a video… because I was the first to get the static charge, and also the first to die from it.  I think the problem was that when the people around me realized that I had the charge, they also ran away, as I did.  So we ran together for a little while, which in turn meant I needed to run even further and I think it put me out of the healer’s range.  Oh well, it was a good place to observe the rest of the attempt!  And we managed to get her down to 69% on our first attempt… not too shabby!

Wednesday night was more of Vashj.  I wasn’t there, but it looks like a lot of learning took place… and there may have been problems with the changes in the fight at 50%, because it looks like that’s about how far the raid could get her.  Instead, I was out enjoying a fabulous meal at Lago, a belated birthday dinner.  I had a Butternut Squash Ravioli, and it was amazing.  I could eat that everyday.  It was really rich and tasted very buttery, but it was amazing.  I finished it off with a great Root Beer Float with Caramel Tequila ice cream in it… mmmm!

Er, I mean… raiding!  RIGHT!

So, Thursday night we took another stab at some progression and headed into Hyjal.  We didn’t have any serious problems on the trash – actually, it went a lot faster than it had before.  We are really getting the hang of it!  Though I’m sure having 4 warlocks and 2 mages to AoE the trash really DOES help a lot. Our first attempt at Rage Winterchill of the night we didn’t quite get him down.  If I remember correctly, we just had too many loses to icebolts and death & decay.

Second attempt we decided to drag Rage over to Jaina, which we had been reluctant to do before.  From about 25% to 4%, the only people we had alive were 3 DPS (myself included), one tank and one healer, plus the NPCs.  It was amazing how long we lasted… but it wasn’t long enough.

But… third time’s a charm!  It went pretty smoothly the last time, and I noticed that the healers really got their macros working to get a heal on the icebolt target, we hardly lost any to it.  Unfortunately, I died do to a small peccadillo – running into the Death and Decay rather than running out of it… but we still managed to get him down!

It really IS a pretty straight forward fight, now that I think about it.

He dropped 2 pairs of leather bracers, DPS and healing.  I thought about rolling on the DPS ones, but I figured there would be someone who needed it more, and I’ll just wait til something more appropriate for me drops!

Oh, and Friday night was ZA, which I wasn’t scheduled for.  But about 2 hours into the raid, I got a whisper asking if I wanted to go heal for a couple bosses on Ferguson!  Whaaaa?  I was a little nervous, because I’ve only raid healed once, and I’ve only been to ZA about 3 times on Brajana, never on Ferg.  But what the heck, it was worth a try!  We went in and got Dragonhawk down and made a couple attempts at the Lynx boss (which I’d never seen before).  It was fun, I should go to ZA more often.

And the best part?  I got my very first [Amani Hex Stick], never had one before… and what happened on my first try?  [Mojo]!  That’s what happened! 😀

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This Week in Raiding… Brajana gets a roommate!

August 30, 2008

So, I was pretty much absent for the raids this week.  My brother’s come to live with me, and I had a deadline at work and a deadline at school both on Friday.  So, I was a little busy and only got to raid on Thursday.  Unemployed spent the week swimmin’ with the fishes, it was almost an exclusive SSC week!

Tuesday night, there were server issues for our entire battlegroup – Emberstorm went down and took Unemployed’s raid efforts with her!  The guild still managed to get Lurker down, but on the way to Leo, the server decided that one boss was more than enough for a Tuesday.  But not all was lost – Tigerfeet established the origin of the term “e-man” by taking a rogue and having a quick visit with Lady Vashj, just as the server was going bottom-up.

Wednesday, more SSC.  More server issues.  Still, Leo went down and there were a few attempts made on Karathress… but the pugnacious server was just would not hear of it.

I was there on Thursday, and the server issues seemed to be completely cleared up, finally!  We got Karathress down on our second attempt, even though we had switched around all the tanking, healing and even misdirect assignments that we had done last week!  Once you get the hang of this fight, it’s really not so bad.  I’d much rather do Karathress than High King Maulgar, any day of the week!

Once we got Karathress down – we had two options.  Take a peek at Lady Vashj, or head back to Mount Hyjal to make some serious attempts on Rage Winterchill.  We went with the latter, since we had plenty of extra time to get a couple good attempts in.

Over we went, and we breezed through the waves!  Much faster than our attempts last week, even though we had some people who had never been there before.  Last time, we didn’t get all the waves down – but this time, we made it all the way to Rage!  Not only that, but we got him to 51% on our first attempt!  VERY exciting.  And our second and last attempt?  under 40%!  Unfortunately, the Ice Block spell was taking its toll, the healers and the players getting caught just aren’t quick enough yet.  Even me, I died both times I got Iced.

And what did I learn?  I need more HP.  Unbuffed, I’m sitting under 8000HP.  It’s just not acceptable, I’ve been focusing too much on my DPS and not enough on my health.  Maybe I should regem or reenchant some items?  Any advice would be peachy!