Friday, February 22, 2008

Lurker Down

I find myself starting post after post, but then getting busy farming, raiding or just plain chatting with folks in my new guild, and hence I have many partially completed, but mostly abandoned, posts.

I'm going to aim for a bit less detail in order to get some updates on the site. On Wednesday, we made our first foray into SSC. We really beasted through the trash - very little problems at all. We were pretty shocked when, only moments after the first bobber hitting the pool, Lurker came flying out of the water - we had been prepared to wait even as long as 20 minutes. We made several attempts on Lurker, but it was taking us time to get down the timing of things and adapt to the fight. On our best attempt, we got him to... 2%. Dang, we should have had him :( He only had about 200,000 health left at that point. A couple more attempts, but folks were tired and we decided to hold off for the next night.

On Thursday we went back in - had trouble all the way in. Silly deaths on trash, really sloppy work. But we made it in to Lurker and got him down on about the third attempt. We had a few folks with us that had missed the night before, but all in all, it was really fun and a great way to end the week of raiding... almost.

It was too late to go start on Void Reaver, so a few of us decided to run Kara - a speed run through. Apparently this guild has pretty much always run 3 healers in kara. My friend Mondas (yay, he and Cianna were some of many that came over from Asgard recently) had put up a little challenge on our guild forums and got our MT really itching to try a run through with only two healers. Mondas and I went in. We had a great time - and full-cleared. It should have been in about 3 hours, but we had a couple of issues on Nightbane and it ended up being a 3.5 hour clear instead. Oh well, next time will be faster.

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Saturday, January 26, 2008

A Race in Kara

So last night, Deressy and Hunzul went back to Kara. There was a bit of confusion as our raid leader had posted two groups, starting about an hour from one another. When he went to delete one, people had signed up for the later group - and so there was a LOT of confusion on the start time. Apoc (the raid leader) actually ended up stepping out of the group to allow one of our newer members, a shaman, to join when he arrived after being one of many confused by the time.

Then Apoc declared a race to Prince - he was going with his old guild (a guild currently raiding in Black Temple). Ha, yeah right. We *did* have about a 10 minute head start, but still. There was also a question of whether we'd be able to down Moroes without Apoc. Not *my* question, mind you, but the tanks weren't sure if they could do it. Also, we had a borrowed healer (one of our guild members had a toon in the guild Apoc was going with) who had never healed with our group before (more on last week's pally in another post).

We had a couple of silly deaths on trash, but no wipe (nice change). Attumen went down without much trouble and dropped his obligatory badge for everyone and a couple of items no one really wanted - Vambraces of Courage, which one of our tanks begrudgingly took, and Gauntlets of Renewed Hope, which were D/E'd.

On to Moroes. We actually one-shotted him, and had no real problems whatsoever. It was a beautiful thing. And we were *still* ahead of Apoc and his group. Moroes dropped Royal Cloak of Arathi Kings, which our new DPS warrior snatched up, and Crimson Girdle of the Indomitable, which went to one of our tanks.

On to Maiden. Our pally tank decided to let the off-tank take care of Maiden and he stepped back and healed a bit, dispelling the Holy Fire she does. Just as we were waiting to start the maiden fight (Lup was putting on his healing gear), Apoc messages me that Moroes is down. Maiden dropped for us in one-shot, too (we're having a very good night so far) and gave us Iron Gauntlets of the Maiden, which our off-tank needed and took, and Bands of Nefarious Deeds, which our warlock picked up without having to spend a roll.

On to the opera event. Now, I've done this maybe six or eight times now, and have seen Oz a *load* of times, and the Big Bad Wolf three times. I have never seen Romulo and Julienne. Until last night! W00t! A couple of the guys that HAD seen it explained it ahead of time so we'd know what would happen. There was a bit of confusion on who spawns first, but since you are only fighting one at that time, it doesn't seem to matter much. For the record, first you kill Julienne. Then Romulo. Then they both pop up together and you have to kill them both within a few seconds of one another. We put all our dps on one, then had the tank hold aggro on that one while getting the other's health down too. One thing we'd do differently next time, is that we got Julienne's health down first. However, she has a nasty habit of trying to heal herself. Next time, we'll do Romulo first and then Julienne - it will probably go a bit smoother. At any rate, we one-shotted the event.

Curator was next. This is the fight I'm probably most familiar with, as it's quite straight forward. He went down rather quickly and dropped Gloves of the Fallen Hero, which our warlock snapped up uncontested, and Forest Wind Shoulderpads. I don't think I've *ever* seen those shoulderpads *not* drop.

We made a couple of attempts on Illhoof, even bringing in a good priest friend of mine when our other healer couldn't stay awake any longer. However, everyone was tired, so we decided to skip on to Aran. We one-shotted Aran, who dropped Pauldrons of the Justice Seeker (which got D/E'd) and Shermanar Great-Ring, which our pally tank picked up with a need roll.

We decided to move to Chess and then call it a night. I was really hoping my boots would drop! My boots serious need replacing - I am wearing blues. I have a couple of purple cloth boots, but they are more spec'd for boomkin than healing. I had no luck though. We D/E'd Legplates of the Innocent and our off-tank picked up Battlescar Boots on a free roll.

Needless to say, we didn't win the "race" but we had a good time along the way. We've got a good bit to cover on Monday night now - and... (YAY!) I can now summon Nightbane! W00t!

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Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Monday Night Clean-up

We recently reorganized the nights and times we raid to better fit into people's schedules. And we just concluded our second week of the new schedule. Essentially, we raid Fridays and Mondays. Friday night, our goal is to clear as much as we possibly can. Monday is clean-up day. No, I don't mean we clean our houses, computers, stray WoW add-ons...we finish up anything we might have missed in Kara on Friday.

Last Monday, we had three bosses to finish - Illhoof, Nightbane and Netherspite. We started with Netherspite and never got him down. It was a bit demoralizing.

This week, we didn't even get to Prince on Friday. Folks were just a bit too tired, so after Chess, we stopped - which meant we had four bosses left for Monday. In addition, we had a brand new healer with us - one of our guild members that picked up some healing gear (that was off-spec for him) on Friday and decided to respec. To be honest, I was completely nervous about running Kara with two healers and one of them being completely new at healing.

Our start was rocky. We wiped a couple of times on trash - stuff we clear every week and shouldn't have problems with. The healing was suddenly very hard for me - indicating we weren't working well together. I can't emphasize enough how important communication is. A quick chat with the other healer, a few directions and the healing was immensely smoother. We still had a couple of bad wipes when he was AFK or got disconnected, but on the whole, he did a good job.

To be totally honest, I wasn't sure we'd get anyone down but Prince (and possibly not even him, with the new healer)...and he sometimes depends on whether the infernals decide to drop on your head and cut you off.

As it turns out, the Prince fight went pretty well. We had some new folks with us, and it was the first time they'd seen the fight. Luprey tanked it this time - he'd never downed Prince before as the Main Tank (MT). On the first try, it was a definite wipe - the enfeeble got about 3 people on the very first one. Second try was also a wipe. The third try, we had it down pretty good. He was at 6% and I was pretty excited, we were all still alive. The roaming axes took out a couple of people and then an infernal dropped on our heads! We had nowhere to go but to Prince, so we moved up (I was the marker, with a big blue square over my head) and stood right on top of Prince and the MT. I couldn't stand the idea we'd have him down to 4% and not down him. 3% I mean. Well, 2% and a couple more people died. Those who were down were hollering over vent to "Do it! You can do it!" "Down the...(use your imagination, this is a family-friendly site)!" And Prince went down! I've got a nice long list of things I'd like to roll on from Prince, but the only thing I wanted he dropped was the T4 Helm. There was no doubt in my mind I'd use my need roll- and I did. One of our new tanks, Bromstein, won the roll. Grats, Brom!

Next, we decided to head down to Illhoof. We had attempted him once before - but at that time we had low dps and essentially no AoE other than our warlock. While we still didn't have a mage with us tonight, we figured we'd try it - we had a shammy, two hunters and the warlock. We wiped the first time - many folks had never seen the fight before at all. Wiped the second. I think the third too (I'm terrible at keeping count on how many attempts we've had - probably a bit of a defense too - it keeps me from getting discouraged). However, we *did* kill Illhoof - we "worked it out" as our raid leader would say. By the time he was down, so was the other healer and several others. A small crew was left to kill Kil'rek, but he went down too! Our first ever Illhoof kill! Yay! The one item I was hoping Illhoof would drop, the Cord of Nature's Sustenance didn't drop. Oh well.

On to Netherspite! Upon arriving in Netherspite's chambers, we explained the fight to all the new folks who had never seen it. This time, we decided to attempt the fight without any of the healers stepping into a beam. Non-mana users were going to be taking care of that beam for us. And you know what? We one-shotted him! Woot! Someone had suggested running through the green beam if you got low on mana, but that was never an issue for me - with the banish phases and everyone bandaging during that phase (although I did throw a few heals on the way to the windows), my mana never got that low. We lost Hunzul early in (he was out of range of both healers), but after another banish, I rez'd him - we were doing really well and wanted the DPS. No sense in saving the battle rez for another attempt. Again, he didn't drop anything on my wishlist but yay! (Hunzul did get a really nice drop though).

Now I was really hoping we'd head to Nightbane next - I was feeling lucky! Unfortunately, we had only one person who could summon Nightbane (and on an alt), so we called it a night.

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Tuesday, January 8, 2008

A Bit of This and That and a One Night Clear (Mostly) of Kara

So it's been a while since I've posted - I've actually started several posts that I never finished. Why you may ask? Well, it started with a bit of a frustrating week in Kara. Despite getting some nice loot (Shard of the Virtuous", Ruby Slippers), we had some issues downing bosses we normally down with little or no problem. We got Oz at the Opera again (that wasn't really a problem, other than that it glitched on the start and we had to reset and start it over), but we just couldn't seem to down a couple of others.

Being a relative noob to our guild, I've been (thankfully) rather ignorant of the politics (read: drama) in our guild and prefer to remain so. On Friday night, there were a few things that happened and by the next morning, our main raid leader, shammy healer and mage had walked out. Because of their departure, we lost some others, including another mage/rogue and our main holy priest. Now, I think if they had just left we still would have lost a few, but there was also a big hubub when they left. And of course, that just made things worse.

I hate drama! Have I said that already? But really I do! Part of me wonders if our guild will survive. Part of me feels obligated to stick it out to the bitter end to try and MAKE it work - particularly since a few of my friends have joined there now too. Am I keeping my eyes open? Yes. Am I leaving now? No. Am I stupid enough to think this will be an easy road? No. But I'm not a quitter - once I join something, it is VERY hard for me to walk away. Too bad, really - the easy way out would be to quit.

On a positive note, we did a fairly complete clear of Kara last night - we missed a couple of bosses, but we cleared Attumen, Moroes, Maiden, Opera (Little Red Riding Hood - YAY, it wasn't Oz again!), Curator, Aran, Chess and Prince. We also did a couple of attempts on Nightbane and one on Illhoof, neither fight I'd seen before. I think we could take one or both on another night - we had virtually no AoE - and only one warlock. Our group makeup for the night was two warriors (the offtank was brand-newish in Kara), two shadow priests, two resto druids, two hunters, one warlock and one rogue. The great news is both Hunzul and Deressy (Gloves of the Fallen Defender which I used to get Handguards of Malorne, Aran's Soothing Sapphire and Girdle of Treachery, got some new gear! AND Cianna, one of our friends, got the Sunfury Bow of the Phoenix to drop off Prince that she's been trying for since July!

So Deressy went instead. It was, however, a rather frustrating week there. We downed Attumen, Moroes, Maiden, got Oz at the Opera (again!) and chess. Deressy walked out with some nice new gear - . Not bad, eh?

It wasn't terribly late but a few of our folks had to leave due to early work the next day, so we put the rest off until Friday.

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Saturday, December 29, 2007

Essy Goes to Kara

Did I say Essy?! Why yes, I did! Despite all doubts to the contrary, Essy finally stepped foot into Kara. Was she planning to do so last night? Heck no! Her bags were full, her poisons weren't stocked up, she had a few healing pots but no other potions... Deressy, on the other hand, was completely prepared. Why the sudden change? Well, again, we had to PUG a couple of people and one of the ones that came happened to be a resto druid. A fully-geared, heal-til-you-are-exploding-with-health resto druid (yes, I was, in fact, drooling over his gear the entire run).

We picked up where we left off on Friday night - with Shade of Aran. We had to clear a bit of trash on the way. Now, I think I really like trash - not only do you get rep from killing trash but you occasionally get purple trash. Deressy has purple trash. Now Essy does too! She grabbed the Grips of Deftness to replace her green Caustic Feelers.

Now, I'd heard before that the Shade of Aran fight is rather awful and that folks hate it. I had no such view of the fight, as my one time running it (with Deressy), we one-shotted it. However, this time, well...

Let's just share a quote with you from my friend Gadoraa (who went with us again)..."I'm beginning to not like this room." My response was "Beginning?!" I actually lost count of the number of attempts on this guy. I was lagging a bit and kept missing the kick on his firebolt. Then we he did the flame wreath, someone would inevitably move and we'd all be toast. A few folks died on the arcane blast. Over and Over. Rinse and Repeat. And yet, all it did was serve to make us annoyed enough to try again. Again. Again.

And finally, on the attempt when he shackled me right as he started his arcane blast (duh, cloak of shadows would have probably gotten me out and I forgot), I died. And we killed him! Yay! But ugh, a 7g repair bill on almost all blues. However, I did get a shiny new purple to make up for it! He dropped Rapscallion Boots just for me!

On to Prince. Prince did you say? Argh! Last time we attempted him (I was Deressy) we had the most infernally worst luck (pun intended) and after several attempts, never did get him down. Tonight however, we were golden. Well, almost. On the first attempt, an infernal dropped right on Prince and the group meleeing him. Wipe. On the second attempt he went DOWN! And I was soo.....ARGH! NOT HAPPY! Every single drop, I kid you not - every one - was a healing item. And both our healers were already geared! So here is a list of gear that Deressy DIDN'T get: Lights Justice, Helm of the Fallen Defender, and Jade Ring of the Everliving.

At that point, there was a little discussion about where to go next. Our mage got confused, ported to Shatt and logged off. We were off to attempt Nethersprite and realized he was gone. Oh well, we'll 9-man it. Many of us had never been there before at all, and so the blue/red/green beam thing was a bit confusing. Plus at least one player wasn't on vent. After our first wipe, Gad had to go - he was falling asleep on his keyboard. One more 8-man attempt and we called it a night.

Oh, and AFTER we killed Prince, Essy went and turned in some quests and picked up the quest to...

Kill Prince.


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Friday, December 28, 2007

Couples Night in Kara

Well, two couples anyway!

Tonight was our first time that *zul and I got to run Kara together. There was another couple running it with us - the other healer (a priest) and his wife, a boomkin. It was a fun run, although we had to PUG a couple of people. Actually, though, we grabbed a buddy of mine that hangs out on the essy channel (long story, and we'll have to leave that to another post), Gadoraa - a feral druid. He'd never been to Kara before, but was keyed.

So we headed in - our goal was to clear as much as we could in 4 hours. One had never been in before, and two had never been past opera. We had a really odd make-up: one resto druid, one feral druid, one boomkin druid, one marksman hunter, two beastmaster hunters (one was Hunzul), one warrior tank, one pally tank and one mage. Yes, I know that's only 9 people. We were waiting and hoping a 10th would show up. By the time we got to Moroes, we had another mage to fill the roster.

Attumen - one shotted
Moroes - two-shotted (not sure what happened, but oh well)
Maiden - one-shotted
Opera - ewwww, we got Oz, but we two-shotted it
Curator - two-shotted (the first time, the healers weren't well-positioned - it worked much better the second time around)

Then one of our hunters' internet dropped out, it was late and so we decided to skip the Shade of Aran for now, and go to Chess and call it a night.

I got some new shiny bracers, to replace my old-still-rather-shiny ones.

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Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Kara from the Backseat

While we are on vacation and I am computer-free, *zul still has his computer, as he was originally here for work. After we arrived at our little cottage-by-the-sea (on five-acres of fruit-growing trees and bushes), we discovered it had internet...and not even dial-up. Yay!....and darn!

Well, we noticed a kara run starting up on Tuesday and Hunzul had not yet gotten to set foot I encouraged him to sign up. He did, we planned our day around his run starting at 4pm our time and at 3:45, invites went out and he was ready.

This was his first run...and my first chance to see Kara without the pressure and distraction of healing it.

It was fun, despite having difficulty seeing the screen due to my angle. Admittedly, after Attunmen, I mainly only watched during the boss fights. It was admittedly kind of fun to see the fights from another perspective and without the pressure of trying to keep folks alive. Also, particularly as I was watching Hunzul's first run, it reminded me a bit of my first time in Kara.

Despite watching from the backseat, I tried *not* to be a backseat driver, distracting or harassing Hunzul while he tried to enjoy his first run. I thought he did quite well, despite a couple of mistakes (which he talks about in his post).

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Friday, November 30, 2007


On Friday, November 30, Deressy headed into Kara for the first a raid for the first time, completely clueless as to what to expect.

Fishbane, the guy who took her to Black Morass to finish her attunement, was the raid leader and main tank. The first few pulls were a bit shocking, as we worked our way in to Attumen. Despite all the scary stories I had heard about Kara, I was clearly in a group that knew what it was doing...Attumen down, Moroes down, Curator down.

Despite that I was brand new, and not even a member of the guild (yet), I got some nice loot to take home: Forest Wind Shoulderpads, Gloves of Dexterous Manipulation (for my dps set), Harbinger Bands, Ribbon of Sacrifice and the Signet of Unshakable Faith.

Saturday, we went back. Maiden down. We went to the opera and quickly finished off the Big Bad Wolf. Finished chess. We started on Nightbane but one of our healers had to go a bit early and another player kept getting disconnected.

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Remain Resto or Respec?

Having leveled resto from Day 1, I have had many an opportunity to run instances - they were sometimes the easiest way to gain XP as well as a good opportunity to meet new folks. PUGS R US. With a few exceptions, I have been in some awesome PUGs - I find that letting folks know up-front the PUG rules/expectations works really well.

So I managed to get all the way to level 67 without a spec-crisis. I was on travel (you never know how hotel lag is going to be) and was vehemently asked to heal for a PUG going to Sethekk Halls. I'd never run that instance before, didn't know anyone in the group, but was assured it would be cake - we were running with two prot warriors. Well, it wasn't cake. We managed to inch our way to the last boss, despite my plethora of problems - pulling aggro, occasional lag, and general unfamiliarity with the instance.

However, we couldn't down the last boss. After several wipes, I was typing out a suggestion that they might be better finding another healer (my lag wasn't preventing the healing, but I couldn't seem to get out of the boss's AOE in time) when I was unceremoniously kicked from the group. Ouch. I would have gladly left on my own and was just suggesting that very thing.

At any rate, the experience was demoralizing and I lost confidence in my ability to heal anything. I stayed away from instances for more than two weeks, finally only agreeing when Dorchah, a shadow priest and good friend of mine, insisted they needed me. I was quite tempted to respec to something (anything) other than resto. The problem was, I generally really enjoy healing and the challenges it presents.

I stuck to getting Kara-attuned and running dailies for a while. A few weeks later, still hesitant about my spec and my direction, having achieved all but the Black Morass step of Kara-attunment, I was running dailies up in Og'rila and grouped up with some folks I hadn't met before to get banishing over with quickly. Oddly enough, in that one short session, I ended up with two invitations to join raiding guilds.

One of those guilds, Ásgård, took me down to Black Morass and helped me get attuned. Then they proceeded to invite me to run Kara with them that night. Keeping in mind that Essy is my main (not Deressy), and really I wanted to join a raiding guild with *zul so we could raid together, I was hesitant to make any sort of commitment until he and I had discussed it and he'd had a chance to get to know the guys from Ásgård and decide for himself.

Lucky for me, the guys (and gals) from Ásgård are a quality bunch and were happy to have me run Kara with them for a couple of weeks while the *zuls got to know them better. As you've probably noticed, not only did I not respec, but I joined Ásgård as did Hunzul.

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