Just When You Think There’s No Hope

Dragorius with Shadowmourne

It's funny how a Dwarf with a legendary makes everyone feel better

It’s been an interesting couple of raid weeks for me.

On Wednesday night, “farm” night, we suffered through one of the worse raids I’ve ever been in since joining the guild over a year ago. We wiped on Marrowgar’s trash three time. We nearly wiped on Marrowgar too. I was healing (extra stressful) and I just couldn’t keep people alive. I couldn’t keep myself alive either – I was dead on a bone spike with 30% still left on the boss. I think everyone was relieved that we didnt technically wipe: a tank and healer survived at the very end. But that set the scene for the night.

I expected Deathwhisper to be a struggle. The last two weeks we’ve regressed and had to drop her back down to Normal mode. I blame the ghosts in Sunken Temple and Naxxramas’s Military Wing for establishing a dangerous precedent for dealing with ghosts. It seems, even with someone (usually me) screaming “ghosts!” every few seconds people still believe that the ghosts might just disappear if they ignore them. On Wednesday we got Deathwhisper Heroic after a few warm-up attempts. Things were looking up.

Saurfang gave us a few more difficulties but eventually we executed our Blood Beast DPS and healing assignments perfectly, with some help from a Rogue, and killed Saurfang.

We went on to spend the rest of the night wiping on Heroic Blood Prince Council.

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Priests have all the Personality

Suzushiiro in the opening credits of Big Crits

Suzushiiro (Holy Priest) in the opening credits of Big Crits

Are you watching Big Crits too? (Episodes 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5)

Big Crits is a newly formed 25 man World of Warcraft raiding guild. And everything that happens in the guild raids is recorded and edited back for us to watch as online episodes: an inside look into the running of a raiding guild.

I thought the show would be like watching a cross between an instructional how-to video with the occasional argument recorded over vent thrown in. Deep down I didn’t really think that a guild under that kind of pressure and exposure would be able to function as a hardcore raiding guild and be successful. Is the priority the show or the raiding?

Excellent raiding, in my experience, is rarely accompanied by guild drama. And wouldn’t the guild drama be the part that makes the show interesting?

To make a long story short, watching the very first episode answered a lot of those doubts. And it’s fascinating to watch. Read More »

The Insane and the Auction House

Darkmoon Faire Decks

If only it was just the Darkmoon Faire component...

Like most players working on the Insane in the Membrane Feat of Strength I’m referring back to Saate and Fannin‘s excellent guides time and time again. But I’m not following their guides strictly.

Some of the advice just doesn’t really work for me as a Priest, and some of it definitely doesn’t work for me living on Barthilas. I can’t solo instances as easily like feral kitties or plate wearers. I have Enchanting as a profession to fall back on (which seems to be unusual). I have awful luck.

I do have gold. But even I wasn’t prepared for exactly how much gold I would have to throw at the Auction House to progress.

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Junkboxes

Lower Blackrock Spire

Stealthed in Lower Blackrock Spire

I never realised that WordPress’s Save Draft button secretly means revert to yesterday’s version. So let’s forget the writing. I’m not writing this post a second time. Sorry. Here’s the picture. And the conclusion: I got Exalted with Ravenholdt.

Here are some facts:

The Glyph of Pick Pocket is your friend

Camouflage is your other friend. Spec it.

Heavy Junkboxes gathered: 1340

Blackrock Depth runs: 24

Lower Blackrock Spire runs: 36

Average length of each run: 11-14 minutes

Junkboxes gathered per run: 17-24 Read More »

The Auditions are Over

Character Selection

Will you forgive me for using a non-standard character?

Starting the Ravenholdt grind made me realise that, without even knowing that they had started, I’ve finished auditioning my characters for the starring role of Cassandra’s Main in Cataclysm.

I’m sticking with the Shadow Priest!

My Mage hasn’t reached max level yet but I’m fairly confident that I’m not wired to play a Mage. I love my casters, but the Mage really is a glass cannon. I’m just not sure I can really get into that part of the game play. I also get pretty impatient when I have to stand around while someone – OK, usually me – is lying on the floor waiting for a resurrection.

It seems too early to make a judgment call on the actual spells and “rotation” itself. Read More »

Shadow Priest UI Revisited

Add ons

An Addon for everything!

I gave everything a bit of a shuffle a couple weeks ago, mostly because I needed more help watching my Focus (Lich King) target’s cast bar (Defile) and who is being targeted (Me, or someone else in the raid). I switched to Shadowed Unit Frames. But changing my unit frames led me into making other changes.

Because I don’t PVP much these days and very rarely heal so VuhDo isn’t nearly as prominent in this layout as it has been in the past. I’ve also switched back to the default Combat Text because I just like the positioning of the text over the targets so much for AoE.

I thought it might be worth consolidating everything into a single post. Read More »

Ravenholdt

Durnholde Keep - Occupied by the Syndicate

The mob directly in front of me likes to respawn in the air occasionally. LOL

I’ve started Insane in the Membrane. But I’m not entirely committed to finishing it. I probably won’t actually say “I’m doing Insane in the Membrane” until I’m about 95% through the requirements.

I reserve the right to decide, at any moment as I work through/research the requirements, that nobody in their right mind would do that. (Whatever that might be – Pick Pocketing 10 thousand mobs, or creating hundreds and hundreds of expensive Darkmoon cards, or running Dire Maul countless times, or ruining their Booty Bay reputation etc). But I guess that’s the entire point – you can’t be sane when you approach these reputation grinds.

But these crazy Insane in the Membrane rep grinds might entertain me during the pre-Cataclysm lull. Even though most guides – and the Achievement itself – start with the Bloodsail Buccaneers, I decided to start with Ravenholdt. Read More »

10 Man Drama in a 25 Man Guild

Professor Putricide 10 Man

How NOT to Professor Putricide (10 man)

In Vitare we don’t seem to fall prey to loot drama. I remember that there was a little dissent over a gun in Ulduar, and whether Warriors should be allowed to outbid Hunter trial raiders.

But we most definitely do fall prey to 10 man drama. Are you in a 25 man guild? How many times have 10 mans been the source of your guild drama? I’ll bet a hell of a lot of the time.

It doesn’t really surprise me anymore. Splitting your 25 man group into two teams (and lets not forget the 5 people who are completely left out) and pitting them against the same content, often side by side at the same time, is bound to cause conflict.

Vitare has one fairly steady 10 man group. Not two, just one. Read More »

Revisiting Blackrock Depths: Prison
(Extended into a Key Run)

Shadowforge Key Questgiver

You must be in spirit form to collect the Shadowforge Key quest from Franclorn Forgewright

Once you’ve completed Blackrock Depths: Prison a few times it’s probably a good idea to start thinking about forging your very own Shadowforge Key. Someone in your party must have a key in order to complete a Blackrock Depths: Upper City run. And once you reach about level 54 or 55 you can expect that most of your groups for Blackrock Depths will intend to do Upper City, not the Prison run.

If you play a Rogue you can probably skip this quest/run altogether because all the gates and locks in Blackrock Depths can be unlocked using Lock Picking.

Just be sure that you have the quest, Dark Iron Legacy, at the start of your run!

Even if you don’t intend to complete the quest any BRD: Prison run can be extended quite easily following this guide. If you find yourself in a good group with an extra 20 minutes or so on their hands, I definitely think it’s worth your time to stick around and kill a couple extra bosses.

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The 52 Raid Bosses of Wrath

The end bosses of the four major Wrath of the Lich King raid zones

From Naxxramas to Icecrown Citadel

Things are getting quiet in the World of Warcraft. Guild chat is quieter, forum conversations are rarer. Bloggers, Lathere and I included, are posting less frequently.

This is the perfect time, at the end of one expansion, to reflect upon that expansion and perhaps even start thinking about the next. One of the questions I found myself considering was:

If you had a fresh group of level 80s ready to raid now, what path of progression would you take them on in order to clear every single Wrath of the Lich King boss?

Someone new to raiding in World of Warcraft might assume that the answer is straightforward: clear all the Tier 7 bosses, then clear all the Tier 8 bosses and so forth. But how many guilds remained in Ulduar when Trial of the Crusader was released trying to finish off those last few bosses? They couldn’t know that the new bosses would be easier.

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