Insidious Guild – Ultimate Challenge (screenshot)

Aside

guild-ult-challengeA little while ago the Insidious Guild on Nagrand got THE ULTIMATE CHALLENGE (yes, has to be written in caps, its the ultimate). That means 250 Guild Challenges. Sheesh the boy and girls in Insidious are a busy bunch of achievement junkies players.

Insidious wants you (recruitment post)

join Insidious Nagrand - the Panda wants you

The mighty and awesome guild Insidious on Nagrand-US (of which I happen to be an officer) are looking for a few warm bodies with computers and wow accounts attached for progression raiding 3x nights a week.

The guild is 15/16 in the current content (it was 11/16, then 13/16 – BOOYA!), and typically aspires to get well into hard modes for each content release. With wow patch 5.2 now in the works, we’re darn keen to clean-up the Empress and get through Terrace in a hasty fashion.

What can we offer:

  • Some of the most sane and kind hearted players in Oceanic realms,
  • who love progression kills, achievements, titles, and are not afraid to keep at it until we seen the great stuff drop.
  • a darn fair loot system (EPGP) which is supported by most of our players arguing for who else should get the gear instead of themselves. Rare stuff!
  • A social collective of players who indulge overly in all aspects of the game.
  • Players who are in the game for the long haul.

What we need:

  • Great players who know their class/roles;
  • Particularly a Mage, Hunter, or Elemental Shaman is highly desired, with a Holy Paladin or Rogue also being bloody useful.

You’ll need to be:

  • An adult who wishes to enjoy your time online, and have a thick-ish skin and appreciation for off-colour Aussie humour,
  • be happy with progression raiding, and all the corpse running that usually involves,
  • able to raid (vent, addons, etc) 3x nights a week from 8:30 to 11:30 server time,
  • be willing and able to bring your own mats,
  • and generally a good sane person.

For those who are interested message Genowen, Mortigen, Kalsor, or Rhamiel in game, or visit the Insidious on Nagrand-US website for details. Apps through the website. Or ask me questions here too.

So come join us for some happy killing.

A bloody good night Tanking

Our Wednesday raiders typically smash Mogu’shan Vaults in a reliable and solid way. Much of the gear now goes to offsets or to DE and frustratingly a few of the team still await those few gear drops that will snugly fit them out. Last night I joined them for the MV clear, but due to the silly season we were a few characters/roles short. That meant some characters needed to switch roles around, which adds risk and can frustrate.

elegon-discs

To facilitate the first 3x boss kills before one of our regular tanks could join us – I became the off-Tank for the first three fights. I was bloody nervous being Blood spec. Now that I can look back some cool things happened:

(a) It was challenging and fun. Fun because I saw these fights in a totally new light, and didn’t feel that I made more than a few silly mistakes which cost us. I love seeing new content, and changing roles really does change the fights significantly.

I loved the Petrify mechanic in the Three Puppies Fight and think it is a very clever idea. I hate it as a Melee dps as the mobs move around, but I love it as a Tank as the fight becomes about correct taunting, positioning the bosses, awareness of bad on the floor, and control of cool-downs. It is better as Tank than melee dps.

Trash in MV is “be aware” and “use common sense” rather than disastrously punishing and that makes sense. Yes, some hit hard/often (especially if you’re missing significant amounts of requisite Tank stats because you’re using high level Dps gear) but use of cool-downs and not being an ass made this viable.

I didn’t understand the tricky-button-thing for Feng and likely didn’t use it properly ever. It smells like a gimmick to me, or rather a good idea executed using a gimmick button, anyway I need to see and do that fight more to learn what/how.

The poncy dress wearing Troll Shaman Boss was cool, switching based upon being pulled into the Spirit realm means we have a reason to be there – and the task of smashing the special Tank mob is plain enough to be straight forward. Much more than that it seemed I was just hitting and swinging. I’m OK with that.

(b) While actually Tanking nothing really awesome dropped, but some Tank gear did drop when I was back in Dps mode, which I snaffled for my Tank set (a great 489 Ring, and a dps Helm I can re-purpose for Tanking). Offspec gearing looks to be a higher need if I Tank again, so I’ll amp up the priority.

(c) I’d like to see the later 3 bosses in Tank mode too. Elegon’s taunt-switch sounds like something I think I’ve done before and having the positioning and stacking buffs keeps us honest.

I have no idea how to execute the Emperor’s New Dance mechanic for the Will of the Emperor fight, but will be willing to learn (link)

ps. We did have a few funny screw-ups along the way, but I have not yet made character assassination demands from the Priest involved yet; just waiting while I ponder how much gold those screenshots are worth to stay hidden. Your secret is safe Sir, for now.

Happy Killing

Garalon 10 Man Normal Guild Kill

I had the pleasure of smashing Garalon last night in Heart of Fear, playing 10 man Normal mode with the guild. Here is the kill screenie I took with the other Insidious folks.

garalon-guild-kill-mini

The wonderful thing about last night was the fact that we stayed at it, and it was one of the classic kills.

We all survived to kill him, and then all died just after the boss (he enraged, but we killed him in 7:05m), we kept at it beyond the official end time of the raid (which caused much aggro and enraging offline), and many folks were tempted to change strat after each attempt (which evoked in me the “shut up and pull” twitch).

Our top DPS did 105k dps (this particular Warrior is a dps bamix, just insert squishies), with the next three characters doing 90k or higher as well; with all dps having 97-98% up time on the boss. For a fight where you switch targets that is pretty healthy!

On a DK note – my self healing abilities did about 2% healing (or approx 1,526,635 health) which shows just how important self healing abilities are in that fight. On the early attempts I was not self healing as much, as it is a Dps loss to use some of the more efficient heals, but in combination with damage resistance cool-downs (Icebound Fort, you’re a wonderful toy) I think the extra effort really helps keep everyone alive. The less healing I need the more healing that somebody else takes.

The counter to that was the 7.1 million Health healing that I needed over the fight, which was about average across the team (massive crush in the logs fusks the ratios, so has to be ignored)

For Raid Progression it makes us MV 6/6, and 3/6 in HoF – and 20th on the server (although 18th if you go 10 man strict – how ever the bloody hell logic). Apparently the next boss is far easier, or so the raid lead promises.

When he’s not dead due to how awesome our raiders are the big fat bug looks like something out of a sci-fi film.

garalon

Happy Killing

Ps. The comment about changing stats wasn’t a snarky shot at anyone in the team, it’s my own OCD.

Head Down Bump Up

I’m DHBU at the moment covering for one of my PMs who is on two weeks leave, and my wife started working again this week, and all sorts of real life junk…which gets in the way of a good gaming session.

In Warcraft the absolute highlight of the month so far was last night getting a new sword upgrade (finally) from Elegon, which replaced my crappy item level 463 weapon - Starshatter. It’s a great looking toy. It might get transmogged to an older style Death Knight weapon soon, as they look even better.

Screenshots and happy rants will follow soon, for now though – I’m a happy lad.

I cannot help but love an almost 1200 raw dps upgrade, plus the additional stats.


Happy Killing.

A weekend without WoW

I had the pleasure this past long weekend of going for a trip to the beach. There is a majestic holiday spot along the western coast of Victoria called Lorne, and a mate’s family has a house there. A modest five bedroom place that is hard to resist… So we packed up the 6 month old, a small mountain of her bags, and the odd package of civilized rations (wine, chocolate, bagels, salami, olives, etc), and drove out into the non-Internet.

Being offline in this manner was great and it was insane how much of a decompression you can fit into a few short days.

As those days passed I started to contemplate the impact that 4-5 days away from WoW might have on my lifestyle, and it was pleasing to think that the game will be waiting. Initially I felt the tug of the login screen. I did not want to miss out on my dailies, instances, and scenario runs. I have a drive to participate in LFR each lockout so to get the small drop chance of upgrades from some bosses – especially a weapon drop from Elegon.

Then as time passed I accepted that I could not get online. My gaming machine was a 2.5 hour drive away, and I didn’t really wish to stop relaxing to ramp up into a run. The friends and family were entertaining and except for the poor sleep a person gets when their child does not know the new place much, we had a great time. The break was excellent.

Upon returning late last night I could probably have logged in for some dailies or a quick scenario, but it seemed I would be somehow cheating on the holiday experience (or perhaps shortening it) by getting into a typical night of gaming.

Instead I read my book, and let the anticipation build. A side affect too was the positive reaction from my family in not spending a  night in front of the glow of the screen.

Tonight is a gaming night, and I’m really looking forward to it. I can almost taste the queue timer for LFR as I type, the sting of the wipe, the glory of gold in the loot-bag. :)

Got flasks and mats? LFR zerg, just DPS you tard (just kidding).

My thoughts on gear from the recent post proved true too, as the Insidious regular raiders have boomed ahead in gear levels, and are now consistently above 6666 score on WoW Heroes. I think this is fantastic as it means that they’re seeing the successful encounters to lead progression along. More gear means more capacity to win through the earlier bosses in good time, and also should allow the later/harder bosses to be attempted more successfully each lockout. It might not occur in one or two cycles, but it should happen.

With the new Heart of Fear open for investigation there may also be a new source for some early boss kills. At the very least that means Valor and chance of loot.

Great times ahead.

My first guild raid and a boss kill

Insidious first kill of the Four Kings in Mogu'shan Vaults

Sunday I joined the Insidious regulars for a set of attempts on the Four Kings encounter (aka Spirit Kings) in Mogu’shan vaults, and we killed him. Yup, that’s me in the middle of the screen doing a Guild first boss kill.

Now to be humble, I have no idea of actually how I performed other than to say I stayed alive and didn’t wipe us, and the World of Logs might show me running in fire for all I can tell – but the four stinky old spirits were vanquished successfully.

I am darn excited to have done it.

In the nick of time

The raiders in Insidious were fighting bosses down to the wire before MoP and a space appeared so I nabbed it. It meant that I got to see the Heroic Ragnaros kill and Heroic Deathwing kills while the content was current – just in the nick of time.

I thought some pictures might be good too. Thank you to Insidious.

I should have screenshotted his legs

Feelings on GM retirement

Part of the challenge to play wow well is at a basic level having enough time to make progress. There is a minimum amount of time needed to do any particular task, and of late my time available has been decreasing – this is especially true of any player who wishes to also have a controlling role in a guild structure. It takes a bit (or a lot) more time than just playing.

In future I expect it to get even harder to get a regular cycle of time each week, so (with much apprehension) I’ve retired as GM of the Insidious guild, returning the title to the old GM. In hindsight I have some thoughts on being a guildie, a GM, and a player that I thought might be interesting to others. Continue reading