Thursday, August 7, 2008

At last we meet, for the first time, for the last time!

I've never actually mentioned it specifically, but our guild's name is <Bleeps Sweeps and Creeps>. If it seems like I go overboard with the Spaceballs humor, there you go. We're a small guild of IRL friends that have known each other forever.

Last night BS&C and Origin teamed up for Kara. Our BS&C Prot Warrior and Hunter had never been, and it was about time. Origin contributed the other 7 members, including a Paladin MT so that our guy could learn the ropes. We didn't have a Mage or a Rogue, and the only Priest was my shadowy self. Some of the Origin guys had been once or twice, but hadn't seen all of the bosses. The players ranged from early-T5 down to our two guys, with a nice spectrum in between.

We set the expectations for the raid from the start: this was to be a learning run. We would not be moving quickly. There would be lots of narration and exposition. Everyone was expected to explain what they were doing and why they were doing it. We also fully expected that we probably wouldn't get through a full clear in one night — our BS&C guys were expecting us to split the run across two nights, and only run for maybe 3 hours the first night.

For those that want to follow along at home, the WWS report is here.

As you would expect, the first few pulls were a little shaky. Nothing memorable, just the standard first-timer jitters. Attumen went down in one shot without a hitch — only the Warlock died, as he was the most OP person there and wasn't keeping an eye on his threat. We all had a good laugh about it and kept going.

Moroes went about the same — the Hunters (we had one from each guild) had problems getting their mobs out of the Paladin's Consecrate, but we all recovered and had another one-shot. (Vanish, Shackle, Garrote, Repeat.) I have to say, I love Moroes' voiceovers. “Now where was I? Oh yes ...”

Our first wipe of the night was because our Warrior was too busy looking at his shiny new Moroes' Lucky Pocket Watch to remember that we hadn't completely cleared that first hall before Moroes. Again, everyone knew exactly what had happened even as he was fessing up to it, and had a good laugh over it.

Maiden was completely flawless. The Paladin handed over the MT reins to our Warrior, and the RL explained how to kite Maiden around to pop the healer out of the Silence. Our Warrior was completely on top of it, and had it down the very first time. Our third one-shot.

Our second and final trash wipe of the night was the pull on the way to Opera. We were handling it until we got the patrol. Everyone acknowledged that particular pull was one of the toughest in the instance, and we were up and moving again.

For Opera we had Romulo and Julianne. The RL gave a quick synopsis as the event began, and ... you guessed it, another one-shot. Yours truly, along with 2 others, forgot that you have to loot both corpses and had to run back after making it all the way downstairs for repairs.

Curator — nothing exciting here. Another one-shot.

I will say this, though, to my fellow Shadow Priests: stay on Curator. No matter what the RL says about downing the adds, don't worry about it. The RL is not talking to you. Not only do you need to work on keeping Curator dotted up, but when he goes into Evocate and you get the damage bonus, the extra punch to VE will help keep the party up as they deal with the rest. Just stay on Curator the entire fight and keep an eye on your threat.

By now we had been in for just over 3.5 hours. I checked on guild chat to make sure that our BS&C guys were doing okay. I told them to speak up if they wanted to call it for the night — everyone knew we were going to split it.

Their response? They were digging it. They wanted to finish it all.

Kara. The first hit is free.

Illhoof — another one-shot. We forgot to mention to our Warrior that Kil'rek respawns. Oops. But he figured it out and we got through it. (In this fight, fellow SPreists, do switch to the Demon Chains when they come up. Squishies go down fast, and they need all the help they can get. And, really, you'll probably only get a single MF off so it's not a waste of too much time.)


You're expecting me to say that Shade was our first boss death, right? Between the Flame Wreath and the Elementals and the Blizzard and the Arcane Blast, surely one of the n00bs screwed something up and we wiped, right?


Shade was another one-shot. No one moved during Flame Wreath. I don't think anyone got hit with the Blizzard or the Arcane Blast. A couple of us dropped because we pulled aggro on an Elemental, but that was it. The band played on and Shade went down.

Chess was the usual mass chaos. No wipe, of course. Can you wipe on Chess?

Prince, however, was our first boss wipe. To our credit, however, we had a series of Infernals that dropped right on top of the ranged party. We made it through the first one, but the second dropped only a moment after a Shadow Nova. I didn't make it out in time, and a few others went down quickly thereafter. The third took out everyone but the tanks. To our credit, we did manage to get him to 2% before we all finally dropped.

Prince to 2% on the first try! Not bad!

Instead, Prince was a two-shot. The Infernals didn't come near us the second time and we had him down.

Netherspite? One shot. Explaining the beams to everyoe that hadn't seen it (not just the BS&C guys) was tricky — you've got to see it to really get it. But get it they did. Our Warrior danced in and out of the red beam like a pro, then regained aggro after each Banish phase without a hitch. The Warlock and I got to switch back and forth in the blue beam. I do love that blue beam.

We hit Nightbane at just past the 4.5 hour mark. The clock tower in the background tolled midnight as the pull was made — it was the stuff of RP legend.

Unfortunately, we wiped on out first try, for our second and final boss wipe of the night. We didn't have good skeleton control during the air phases, and they took down first the Lock then me. The rest of the party lasted through to the next air phase, but the writing was on the wall.

The second try, however, went like clockwork. Skeletons went down with plenty of time to spare. Everyone stayed out of the Charred Earth. Misdirects kept the tanks holding aggro. Nightbane went down in just over 9 minutes. Not bad.

The final score: 8 one-shots, 2 boss wipes, and 2 trash wipes. Just under 5 hours total.

Not frickin' bad for an introductory run, I think.

Our Warrior got, I believe, 3 new pieces of gear. Our Hunter, however, was the clear winner of the night with 6 new purples. Best of all, almost all of the lot was uncontested — the rest of the party was geared enough that the drops went quickly to the new guys. We might have had to actually roll for maybe 2 or 3 items? No drama, just lots of gratz. The Origin guys got some gear, mostly off-spec, and I believe we had 10 Voids at the end of the night.

As always, Origin was a pleasure to raid with. I really can't say enough good about them.

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