Hallow’s End Costume Contest


From now until midnight on October 30th, submit screenshots of your character in costumes according to theme! At the end of the submission period, we’ll hold a public vote on the website all throughout Hallow’s End. On November 1st, we’ll reveal who the winners of each category are, and who will walk away with the top prizes!

Best in Show
Pull out all the stops and show us the transmog or costume you think will impress us most!
The Urostek
Scar us with the ugliest, mish-mashiest, or gaudiest transmog you can come up with.
Racial Pride
Trolls, shine your tusks, and Elves, brush your hair – time to represent in the best outfit that embodies your race!
Cross-Dressed Class
Dress up as a class outside of your armor type! Warlocks imitating druids, Death Knights imitating priests – go crazy!
Mount / Pet Matching
Get dressed to impress and show off alongside a thematic pet and/or mount!
Officer Best
Since we don’t qualify for Best in Show, choose a favorite transmog from the Ministry of Defense officers!

For full details, including rules and how to enter, check out our Hallow’s End Costume Contest site.

Weekly Raid Roundup: Oct 16 – 22

Thursday: G’huun Practice

Thursday was spent entirely practicing orbs and phase transitions. It wasn’t until about 2 hours in that we started to have some really smooth pulls – early orb transitions, few mistakes on corruption orbs, etc.

Unfortunately, too many people were failing simple mechanics.

Interrupts

We had 25 pulls. There were a few that got screwed super early. But essentially, unless you’re an orb runner, you should be interrupting on every pull that gets past phase 1. Now, I don’t think this counts unsuccessful casts (if two people cast at the same time but one is wasted). There are also some interrupts that aren’t tracked on the above list. That being said, it’s obvious that some people were more successful in their attempts than others.

Virulent Corruption (oatmeal balls)

There’s also issues with Virulent Corruption. If you don’t run corruption out of the group, you’re going to drop it on top of people. If you bee-line for the nearest wall without paying attention to melee, you’re going to drop it on top of people. If you’re not paying any goddamn attention, you’re going to drop it on top of people. Or you’re going to get hit by orbs. For example:

Notice how 3 of the top 5 people hit are melee. More than likely, their hits are caused by people dropping debuffs right on top of them. It’s also possible that they weren’t paying attention, but we’ll give them some benefit of the doubt. Ignoring ibroke (who DCd early), and plutonic, the bottom 15 are all ranged classes. It’s VERY easy to dodge orbs for ranged classes if you’re standing out of the middle but not on top of the melee. Ranged DPS / healers who have high hit counts are spreading the debuff like wildfire for no reason at all. Melee DPS who ignore their warnings or ranged DPS who tunnel the nearest wall without communicating have hurt the group.

I downloaded a weakaura that will tell me who is “most guilty” of not dodging these things. You can get it here. I will be calling out at certain intervals who is getting hit so they know they need to improve.

Communication

There were also issues of ineffective communication. “I fucked up the orb” doesn’t help us. Did you drop the orb? Are you stuck? Did you not pick it up? Do you need someone from the ground to rescue you? Are you talking to your backup, or the group as a whole? etc. Be specific if something happens with orb running.

Wave of Corruption

In later stages we hit issues with Wave of Corruption. Some of it was simply that we had too many bodies. Others weren’t paying attention. Here is a weakaura to help you track if you’re safe or not. If the circle turns red, you need to move. If you’re a ranged DPS, don’t stand near the boss! Be at MAX range so healers can be between us and melee, and melee have room to spread.

Healthstones

Overall, healthstone usage was pretty good. Many people with high death counts also had high healthstone usage (“hits” in the 3rd column). However, there are some people who didn’t do so well. Keep improving upon this!

Lessons Learned

In general, we learned a lot on Thursday. For one, we had too many bodies on the field. That made dodging orbs incredibly difficult, and made Phase 3 almost impossible with wave of corruption. We needed to trim back. For another, our orb runners got incredibly fast and got their runs down easily over time. We ended up benching people for our next attempt on Friday. If you got benched, here are some things to remember:

  • Interrupt often! There’s plenty of casts going off. You should be able to get one cast off every time.
  • Careful running out your explosive corruption. In Phase 1, call out to melee to get out of your way, or find a different spot to drop it (ideally the former).
  • Use all abilities in your toolkit. If you have speed buffs, use them to get to the wall faster and safer. If you have a defensive, pop it when you have a debuff or sense incoming damage from wave. If you get low, pop a healthstone.
  • Be smart about ability cooldowns. If you’re an orb runner, save your movement (disengage, dash, retreat, etc) for orb running. Don’t use them when you know you’ll need them for orbs. It’s more important to call out “I will need heals” or “Watch purple side for orbs” if you know that you’re going to mess up a different mechanic.

Practice these mechanics on Mondays and you’ll be AOTC ready in no time.

Thursday logs

Friday: AOTC, Mythic Taloc, and Heroic farm

G’huun

We trimmed the group from 27 down to 20 and found much smoother sailing. Not only did fewer bodies mean fewer people to avoid in Wave of Corruption, it meant fewer balls to dodge from Virulent Corruption. It meant that those who were average or worse on mechanics did not cause cascades of mechanical failures on everyone else.

As a result, we downed G’huun in two tries.

We had 10 people left alive at the end, and everyone was alive going into the last phase. That’s extremely important for a successful attempt! Our first attempt, we lost 2 healers in the bloodlust phase, which meant 2 healers down for the worst part of the fight. We’d gotten it to 7% and so knew we had a kill on our hands anyway.

Mythic Taloc

Riding the high of our earliest AOTC to date as a guild, we decided to go run after Taloc.

Taloc was basically a cakewalk. He has one new mechanic worth talking about, and a group that can communicate effectively has no problems dealing with it. We merely loosely grouped middle (rather than tightly stacking as in heroic). When it came time to move the damage out, there was plenty of room to spread in all directions and for non-affected party members to find safe zones.

Needless to say, we killed him too – in one go.

This was the guild’s first kill of a Mythic boss while the tier was active. We’re incredibly excited to climb the rankings!

Killing G’huun and Taloc embedded us at #1 Horde on the server and #14 overall on the server. Downing 2 bosses will bring us to #9 overall; downing 3 will bring us to #5 overall. We’re really looking forward to showing everyone what the Ministry of Defense is capable of!

After we killed Taloc, we returned to Heroic. We blasted through the normal bosses as much as we could, dragging through alts or people who might not otherwise qualify based on ilvl. We one-shot everything, and ended before Zul, a bit early – 15 minutes wouldn’t be enough to clear trash and get a look at him, unfortunately.

G’huun Heroic logs
Mythic Taloc logs
Heroic Taloc logs
H Mother – Zekvos logs

Saturday: Guild LFR

Ok, so, nothing to say about LFR. I don’t keep logs or anything. I won’t go over it in detail. But I thought it nice to point out that we were 23/25 slots of MoD people this weekend in the LFR queue. Guild LFR is a lot of fun, you should join!

Monday: Alt Night

Alt night was, as usual now, a total breeze…until we hit Mythrax and G’huun. Mythrax had too many people clumped too close together. There’s no reason for rdps to be standing anywhere but MAX range. Also, be sure to interrupt often! We’re watching. G’huun we had people practice orb running for the first time. In the end, too many people struggled on alts to learn it, so we went with 3 groups to get it done fast. However, we want everyone to be able to do it, because we never know who will be around for Heroic in the future.

Mythic and Heroic: New Schedule

Due to our success in AOTC and Mythic Taloc, we’re starting a new raid schedule.

Thursday: Mythic
Friday: Heroic (starting at Fetid if possible)
Monday: Heroic Taloc & Mother, Normal Fetid+

Mythic is capped at 20 people. As a result, we have to be pretty tight on invites for now. Heroics will continue to simply be “whoever qualifies”.

There are two potential paths we can go from here.

First, we can run 2 groups: a mythic group and a heroic group. We can have Mythics thursday/friday, and Heroics can run whenever the group decides.

Or, we can run two Mythic groups alongside one another.

At the moment, we have 32 Vanguards. Whether we recruit up to 2 full mythic teams, or simply have a heroic team and a mythic team running concurrently, is entirely up to the group.

If we get enough interest in running 2 full mythic teams, we will have to recruit our hearts out, because that means 40+ names (in case some folks can’t make it, we need fills). On a low pop server such as ours, finding 40+ mythic raiders will be a challenge!

But…the Warlords are up to the task of fielding 2 Mythic groups. We’re still running heroic fridays to gear up those struggling in the 360-range that can’t quite get up to 370 yet. The current Thursday Mythic crew will get as much knowledge and gear as possible on all members before splitting between teams, so they can share the wealth of knowledge and make up for any small mistakes made by those who’ve yet seen Mythic mechanics. Eventually, we plan to run Heroic on monday alt nights (regardless of ilvl) and start doing Mythic twice a week. Hopefully this won’t take more than a few weeks to achieve.

At that point it will be very fast to gear up your alts, your friends, and new recruits to Mythic level. We can continue to swap team members around as needed. There won’t be an A / B team situation if we can avoid it.

Of course, this is all up to you guys. Not everyone wants to be a Mythic raider. Not everyone will have the time or ability, which is fine. Mythic takes quite a lot out of you – it’s more of a tedious grind than anything else in the game. On the other hand, Mythic is exciting and there’s a sense of pride that comes with it.

We’ll focus on what the group wants to do and how we can go about those goals on Friday.

AOTC celebration!

For those who haven’t heard, Ministry of Defense downed Heroic G’huun last Friday.  It took us less than two months to get through heroic – a first for the guild. The same team also downed Mythic Taloc, which is our first Mythic kill while a tier is still active. (More information on the future of Mythic raiding will come later!) Needless to say, the guild leadership is incredibly proud of all the hard work and dedication our raiders have put in.

Mount Raffle

As Urostek mentioned, those who were present for the kill were entered into a raffle for an in-store mount. Initially Plutonic won, but he passed, and the prize went to Tusker. Congrats! Tusker chose the Grinning Reaver:

We’d like to acknowledge everyone who was present on our G’huun runs, whether they were practice runs or in on the kill (marked with *):

Tanks: Telann *, Ripblade*
DPS: Bighoss, Urostek*, Cynna, Ibrokewind, Lineda*, Plutonic* / Avarkus, Kamáhl*, Psychoshift, Quetzie*, Nighteld, Orektarg*, Nekoluna, Judäsprïest, Harmesi*, Foxxiê*, Jibbles*, Sheeked / Sheekey, Tusker*, Zextol*, Wendal*
Healers: Harvesting, Miatreeleafa*, Treeson*, Rwandarousey*, Bellelina*, Corignis*, Grimmshock*

10,000 Gold Raffle

As a thank-you for those who ran and practiced with us but who were not in on the kill, I ran a separate 10,000 gold raffle which excluded everyone who was present for the kill.

Ibrokewind (aka Dotsmoredots or Furrybuddy) won the “sorry you missed it” raffle.

Everyone on our team is an important contributor to our success. Whether you miss a boss kill because of real life circumstances or because you’ve been temporarily benched, we still value your contributions. We are a team! And of course, we fully expect that all of you who missed our first kill will get AOTC with us in the future anyway!

Potential Raiders

If you are looking to get into raiding, now is an excellent time.

This Saturday we had an almost entirely full guild run of LFR (23/25 were MoD). Guild LFR is a good time for those who have never raided, who want to try a new spec, or who simply want to hang out in Discord with us goons (: If you’re tired of wiping on Zul trash or MOTHER transitions, Guild LFR is the place for you! Guild LFR starts at 2pm PST / 5pm EST, and runs until we finish all 3 wings (usually 1.5-2 hours).

We run Normal Uldir “alt night” every Monday, which currently has an ilvl requirement of 340 (but honestly, if you’re around 335, I won’t tell anyone…and since I handle invites, it’ll be our little secret!). We skip normal Taloc and MOTHER, which gives us just enough time to finish out at G’huun before it’s time to call it for the night. Alt Night starts at 4pm PST / 7pm EST, and lasts for 2 hours.

Fridays will continue to be Heroic. Heroic has an ilvl requirement of 355. We may end up skipping Taloc and MOTHER to give us more loot from bosses we have seen less of (Zul, Mythrax, G’huun). Currently, the plan is for Fridays to act as a way to buff up our “undergeared” Heroic raiders, who are stuck in that 360-365 rut that is hard to climb out of. (Eventually, monday alt night may become Heroic night, as we will be able to blitz though and quickly “carry” anyone who needs gear up to a Heroic level regardless of their current gear.) Heroic starts at 4pm PST / 7pm EST, and lasts for 3 hours.

Thursdays are Mythic. As Mythic raids are capped at 20 people, we will have to be pretty picky about the Thursday team – for a few weeks, anyway. However, we currently have 30 Vanguards. We’d LOVE to fill out our roster with two full Mythic raiding teams, which means 40+ people. We do NOT plan on running “A Team” and “B Team” mythic comps. No one on the MoD raiding roster should feel that they got “stuck” on the “unsuccessful” team, because both teams will be successful. Stay tuned in the next day or so for more info on what this means for everyone who has an interest in Mythic raiding!

If you haven’t raided before, you will need to read the Rules and Regulations (required for normal and heroic, not LFR). I also suggest reading the Pre-Season FAQ from our pre-uldir launch meeting, though some of that post is now outdated.

Weekly Raid Roundup: October 9 – 15

Thursday: Heroic Farm, Zul

Heroic is becoming more of a cakewalk on early bosses. We went from struggling on MOTHER and Fetid to 1-shotting both!

We have a new strategy for Vectis (discussed last week) and it worked beautifully. Omega vectors aren’t stacking as poorly (though we could still improve upon it) and everyone can reach the boss. Healers are always within range…etc. It’s also much easier to step away if you’ve got too many stacks.

On Zek, we had a very late wipe on account of add spawns, a problematic orb, and pain donuts. Whoops. let’s just forget that ever happened. That being said, he was otherwise unproblematic.

We got a good look at Zul this week. He’s a problem in phase 2. Previously we’ve been sort of skipping the tank mechanic on Normal based on big DPS and general survivability, but it’s obvious that we won’t be able to skip it this time! We had issues of focusing the wrong mobs (or focusing the boss), poor interrupt rotations, issues of stunning the hexers far away, etc. In general we worked to clean up performance and got a 9% pull in.

Raid Lead thoughts: DPS (especially ranged DPS) with low damage on crushers and hexers will be benched. We have a ton of incidental cleave and don’t need to be focusing the crawgs at all, and any ranged DPS tunneling the boss is simply costing us too much. Ranged should almost always be focusing the Crusher when the tank runs her away from the group, because that will ensure that she gets DPS’d down by the time a second Crusher can spawn. We also learned that FoN/Treants work well at taunting crawgs away from DPS or tanks out of the main group when doing mechanics, but generally fail to hold aggro/die too fast in the middle of the AoE shitstorm on top of the boss.

Monday Logs: 1, 2

Friday: Zul and Mythrax

The night was interesting. For one, Zextol was not there to lead, which meant that Quetz and Foxxie were on crackdown “no fun and no bullshit” mode for the night, heh heh. We were determined to get Zul down and make Raid Dad proud! Fox and Telann were on tank duty for the night, which meant that we had 2 raid leads in tank position to nail down the mechanic and hopefully pass the knowledge on in following weeks.

Zul

The Warlords spoke a lot the previous night and before the pull about strategy, dos and don’ts, etc.

Add DPS:

We noticed, looking at the logs, that some high-output DPS were at the bottom of the charts Thursday for priority add (hexer, crusher) damage. Folks were given a general warning, and I’m happy to say that everyone took it to heart and improved! I like to give credit where credit is due and will name Jibbles as an example of an excellent raider – he listened to the leads and went from low damage on priority adds Thursday to literally topping the charts at just utterly destroying Crushers on Friday. This sort of modification has a butterfly effect throughout the raid –  he didn’t die to Crawg damage early on, so he was continuing to pump out big damage the entire fight; tanks were taking less damage, healers were keeping mana for longer, not blowing big defensive CDs early, etc – meaning better chance at a kill in dicey end phases.

Hexer Stunning:

We’re running into some issues with Hexers being stunned (rather than silenced) halfway to the boss, making it hard to cleave down. Please – save your stuns for when Hexers are casting the otherwise uninterruptible Congeal Blood. Otherwise, allow those with silences to interrupt Bloodshard and allow the DKs to drag them in. If you continually stun them halfway to the boss, you’re wasting a lot of cleave damage and drawing the fight out much longer. You’re also wasting a stun that could be used on Congeal Blood, which is a much more important cast to interrupt.

Minions of Zul:

Blood Elves and Priests can both purge these effectively; if you’re not purging, you’re hurting yourselves and the raid. DHs especially benefit from purging, so be sure to be on the lookout for these little guys!

Pool of Darkness:

This is everyone’s job, and requires effective communication throughout each phase. If you’re a melee character and you see an unsoaked pool nearby, stand in it and call out for a ranged person to replace you. Don’t leave until your replacement has arrived! In phase 2, those with immunities (like Paladins) should be at the ready to soak a pool that winds up in blood. Ideally this doesn’t happen because the raid is stacked mid and the blood is along the far edge…but we all know that ideals aren’t reality. Paladin shield, mage ice block, hunter turtle shell, and DH netherwalk are all immunities for this situation.

Tank Swapping:

Ideally, the tanks point Zul away from the raid in the middle in Phase 2. They swap at 2 (or 3?) stacks, and drop the blood right on the edge when the debuff drops, then run back in and take over for the other tank. This allows the DPS plenty of space behind them to run to the edge when affected by the fear, without running across a blood pool.

Dark Revelation

If you have yellow (star) marker, run north. If you have orange (condom/shield/nipple) marker, run south. Star = north star = run it north! This way you’ll always be running to the correct spot.

Otherwise…good job! We’ve been lock-gating to the boss at the start to save pull time, and lusting between 45 and 43% health based on add placement / spawns. After trimming a few underperformers, we started getting him into the 20% range on each pull, until we finally – by the skin of our teeth – pulled out a kill (with 18/22 people dead).

Watch our successful Zul kill from Bloodlust onwards on Miatreeleafa’s youtube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tQGnRGQQH6g&t=6420

This kill tied us up at 6/8 for the #1 Horde spot on the server.

Mythrax:

Facing Mythrax felt a lot like facing Fetid after MOTHER. It was a vacation! The strategy between normal and heroic didn’t change much. One noticable change to our strategy is to stack DPS and Heals on top of one add, and leave 1 tank, heal, and 1 DPS with many interrupts on the other add. this meant the add swarms would be close together for cleaving and not having to chase them across the room.

We had a few decent pulls, but got overwhelmed and died shortly after the add phases got heated. We then changed our strategy slightly: rather than blowing all our 2-3 minute DPS cooldowns at the start of the fight, we used them during the first add spawn phase. This allowed us to decimate the large adds quickly, and the cooldowns were back for the second add phase (and lust). This is similar to our approach to Kin’Garoth in Antorus: use cooldowns on adds. Literally the moment we changed to this strategy, we got the kill.

For those keeping track…we’re now the #1 Horde raiding guild on Aerie Peak.

Friday Logs

Sunday: Bonus G’huun Practice Night

On account of having a G’huun lockout, we wanted to practice and get a feel for him. Mostly, we spent the night working on getting orbs in incredibly fast. Basically, we should have the first 3 orbs in by the time the first troublesome worm add spawns. We’re focusing more heavily on our solo orb runners and getting them to be fast and efficient with their dunks. A few folks are still struggling, but we saw great improvement both in solo runners and in the teams of 2. We had 2 fights where we got all 6 orbs in.

I’m providing the logs as a courtesy, but I don’t expect folks to look at them too hard for DPS. Be aware if you ran into oatmeal balls. Watch the replay for positioning errors. Make sure you got any kind of Dark Bargain stack. Etc.

G’huun logs: 1, 2 (please ignore the dungeons, as I forgot to turn off WCL. Whoops.)

Monday: Alt Night

I got us another no-taloc no-mother lockout (as evidenced by the above log for G’huun). It worked out well, as once again we killed G’huun at juuuuust under the 2 hour mark. Ideally we’ll be able to do a full clear in 2 hours soon enough, but this works well.

We had 1 wipe on Mythrax because people were not interrupting adds and were not focusing down the big adds. DPS was spread too thin. Once we fixed that issue, he went down easy.

I give props to Harm for tanking his first raid with us and doing a great job alongside Rip. We also welcomed a few newcomers this tier, and had several people on alts (and of course, someone asking if I have an alt. HAH. Meme.) or on different specs than normal. Corig proved he can heal or DPS and the rest of us are total scrubs in comparison.

Orb running went relatively well, with some newcomers soloing successfully their first time with us and getting their first look at the strats for doing so (Widrick on DPS, Nari, and Tusker were all first-time solo runners with us). Others were quick on their feet to react and save stuck orb runners, which is just what we’ve been looking for.

Monday Logs

Going Forward

G’huun

This week, Deathhoss was kind enough to save a G’huun lockout, so we’ll be starting on him Thursday. After we down him (I have faith in us!) we can go back into regular heroic, or look at Mythic Taloc.

Mythic

Soon we’ll start looking at Mythic in general (how pumped are you guys to do Mythic raiding?!), but the warlords have to figure out where that leaves heroic in the mix. Zul through G’huun drops a ton of good loot for a lot of specs, which is why we tend to skip taloc and mother on alt nights. Whether we look for a similar heroic lockout without Taloc and MOTHER, or whether we simply clear as far as we can, is uncertain. We don’t want to stop doing Heroic entirely, as there are still many good rewards, and that would presently leave a large gap between “alt geared” and “mythic geared” players. We will also be coming up with ilvl requirements for it. In the meantime, consider pugging bosses on Heroic that you’ve missed during the week, and keep running M+.

Continued Benching

We’re still benching some people for low DPS, or letting them squeak by. If you’ve been benched more than once, please feel free to reach out to us. We’ll try help you get your damage on track, but make sure to check out this post first.

Promotions

Congratulations to Lillithh and Choochoobear for making Vanguard for the first time; congrats to Kamahl and Pickpocket for re-earning their Vanguard status. Check ’em all out on the Raid Team page!

Heroic G’huun

For those who didn’t see: We went 7/8 on Friday!

As stated on Discord the other day, on account of this we’ll be looking at Heroic G’huun at 4pm PST / 7pm EST tonight. We want to get a sense for how the different phases work, so we’ll probably be at this for a couple hours. If we down him, awesome – if not, we’ll have plenty of experience for raid this week!

(I have been so busy I didn’t think to post this until today. Whoops!)

Weekly Raid Roundup: October 2 – 8

Thursday: Heroic Progression

This week we started our usual schedule: 2 progression days and 1 alt night.

Taloc was a return to messy execution of basic mechanics. Not enough tight grouping, people were too close to the edge on the elevator. The kill was still messy, but we downed him in 2 attempts.

MOTHER is one we can see that we are getting stronger every week. We had a really good first pull that fell apart on the 3rd room crossover. Our second attempt saw deaths due to interrupt problems. Our 3rd attempt also saw a lot of people dying to sanitizing strike, but we persisted, since so many had already made it to the 3rd room. We need to work out our strongest AoE interrupters to cross in the first group to save time on pulls. The timing of crossings is generally getting much better. Raid Lead thoughts: Demon Hunters, moonkins, and other AoE stuns should be high priorities for groups 1 and 2. We accidentally had a warrior with a ST stun in once. Whoops.

Fetid saw one near miss on the second attempt, but in general, DPS are not switching to the adds soon enough. We also had something going on where the tanks and DPS were just taking huge outputs of damage. Maybe it’s a tank positioning issue? Maybe DPS are standing too close? Once we got the damage mitigated reasonably, we were able to kick him down. DPS did reasonably well switching to adds.

Zek’voz was a great fight and the RLs are proud of how we took him down. We had an early mishap with eye beam-donuts crossover causing some deaths, but the next two attempts were great. We’ve got a rotation down for caster adds andthe little bugs aren’t so bad as long as you prepare for them. We’re finding the orb is really hard to track, however. Raid Lead strat comment: We’re going to be spreading out as much as possible in P3 to be able to see the ball dropping. Ideally, people who are closest should be going for it – but we can’t afford to lose our top DPS (who are most likely to be mechanically sound and watching for it) to the debuff. We want some of our bottom numbers to pick it up to start, and our top numbers to pick it up after. Also try not to run too fat past the boss when you have the debuff about to expire. We chased a lot of melee who ran to the wrong far side of the room, costing us precious time on a very close kill.

Thursday Logs

Friday: Heroic Progression

By contrast to some others, Vectis was a walk in the park. We had a decent starting pull of 50% and downed him next try. In the future, we will be triangulating in spots around the boss rather than in an arrow pointing at it, especially if we’re melee heavy. Also, please rearrange and pay attention to debuff locations, and don’t move if you have omega vector stacks. Also, take a look at this graph, select the 3 “omega vector” from the “ability” dropdown at the top. If your name is either very low or nonexistant between all 3, you’re not taking enough debuffs. Hopefully our new strat will make it easier to share the love.

Zul was a stone wall, as anticipated. He is the second DPS check we’ve run into (Fetid being the first) and the second mechanics check we’ve run into (MOTHER being the first), but the first combination of both we’ve hit. We need to be on-point with interrupts. We need to be on-point with Crusher focus. We need to mitigate our aggro on Crawgs (sorry, Jibbles).  We need to clean up the transition between phases 1 and 2 (which fortunately became easier with bloodlust). This is the second boss we’ve benched people on and we will be benching much sooner than later in the future. Unfortunately, too many people is going to make the next 3 bosses incredibly difficult. We’re also going to be rewarding good mechanics more often than not. A person who is interrupting a lot and who is CCing a lot is more likely to remain in the fight than a person who is not, because the person with low DPS but high mechanics is making the raid easier for everyone (and therefore making it easier for everyone else to DPS). A person focused solely on their own numbers wipes the raid.

That said, we made significant progress every pull. We’re proud of how the raid worked together and can smell a kill this week.

As a reminder, getting benched on a boss because of DPS does not count against your attendance for the night and does not bar you from coming to raids in the future. The only thing lost from being benches is the potential for loot from a kill, but if we down a boss without a low DPS the chances are higher that we’ll down it with them the next time.

Congrats to Jibbles and Wendal for hitting Vanguard! Wendal is also a Gladiator, so he’s extra involved in Guild events.

Friday Logs

Monday: Alt Night

What is there to say about alt night? We had a lot of people gearing up their new characters for the first time. I secured a lockout with Taloc and MOTHER already down, and will likely do so again in the future. We downed all bosses (in spite of some messes) by the end of our 2 hour time limit. Mythrax we had DPS issues on adds. G’huun saw problems with inexperienced orb runners, but that’s OK! We want as many people as possible practicing orbs on this fight.

If you’re interested in coming to alt / normal / boss farm night, make sure to talk to a Warlord! (that goes for Heroic, too!)

Congrats to Qwaylas and Ripblade for hitting Vanguard!

Monday logs

Other thoughts

Downtime

There is still far too much downtime between pulls. Wipe -> “What went wrong?” -> try again. RLs will try to be better about asking pointed questions and members should be prepared with their own, rather than general questions.

Healthstones

There were 14 wipes on Zul. Try to improve your Healthstone usage next week. Yep, I’ll be watching. Which reminds me…

Weakauras

IMO if you’re not using WeakAuras you’re making your life more difficult. I posted a writeup on how to track different kinds of cooldowns or buffs, and even one that pops an ideal time to use a Healstone. Read about weakaura setups and come at me with questions!

DPS Improvement

I’m going to post this again because I’ve received good feedback. If your DPS feels low and you’re not sure how to fix it, check out this handy post! Just check out the real reviews from real, satisfied customers!

Lowered Guild Repairs

A note from Urostek:

As some of you might have heard, Ministry of Defense has spent over 500,000G on guild repairs since the release of Battle for Azeroth. This is unprecedented in this guilds’ history. There has not been an expac release, to my knowledge, that has had such involvement by guild members and playtime and repair usage. However, the current rate of guild repair expenditures is not sustainable. Partly because of changes Blizzard has made (by eliminating the Guild Perk: Cash Flow and by increasing the general costs of repair), guild repair expenses have gone up. A lot. Because of this, the guild repair amounts have been reduced by ~50% the past few days for all levels of membership. Hopefully this change will ensure a situation that maintains the ability of the guild to have repairs at a fair level for all… members / vanguard / gladiators / officers / etc. Hopefully, you all have fun in the guild and have found the people you have met here to be enjoyable, fun, and a pleasure to be associated with! I know I have! I want to thank all of you for making the guild the success it is.

New Vanguard requirement

Because of the insane costs of feasts and cauldrons and the fact that they’re provided for free, we’re going to ask Vanguards (and officers who raid) to donate materials to the guild each month. You can always donate more, but we request a bare minimum. This is a MONTHLY donation, so it shouldn’t stress you too hard, and you shouldn’t need to purchase anything. Each month there will be different things on the list, and we may adjust amounts depending on what we need or how hard it is to come by them (for example we’ll likely lower the flasks next month).

List of donations

You only have to sign up for ONE spot; if you choose to donate extra, you don’t need to sign up for it. Try to spread the signups around as much as you can. Once you’ve mailed your donation, the officer who received it will check off that you completed it (do not touch the pink columns yourself).

Rated PvP Meeting Tonight

Reminder that there is a Rated PvP meeting tonight (at the regularly scheduled PvP time; 5PST / 8EST) and if you’re interested in Rated PvP you should attend. It covers a few new rules, attendance information, future plants, and event information. If for some reason you can’t attend, please talk to one of the PvP Officers.

Thanks Hoss!

Hoss (Deathhoss, Bighoss) is one of our PvP Officers and is taking on some extra duties by updating the events calendar on the website for myself and Lunzz. This information shows up on several pages in addition to the Calendar page. I’ve added him the the About Ministry of Defense page (and rearranged the page a bit to represent those who add the most on the site). You likely won’t see Hoss’s name a lot, but it’s thanks to him that we’ll have a list of events on the website that accurately reflects the activities we have going on in game.

Making a Basic Weakaura

There’s always been a lot of questions about how to get started with Weakauras. It’s one of the most versatile plugins available, but can be incredibly intimidating to work with for the first time!

In this post I’ll walk you through making a few different types of weakauras: One that tracks a buff duration, one that tracks an ability cooldown, and one that pops up an icon for Healthstone usage when you’re low health.

Continue reading

Weekly Raid Roundup: Sept 25 – Oct 1

Thursday: 8/8 gr8 r8d m8

No, I’m not sorry for the lame meme. Not much to say about Thursday, though. We 1-shot everything except for G’huun!

MOTHER only had 1 death, to the wind flames. Overall, people were much smarter about using their defensives, and our healers were much more able to boost HP losses after a wall crossing. We had a full raid group once again, so this was an even more impressive feat.

Fetid was our fastest kill yet, at 2:19. Not even enough time for a full DPS rotation!

Vectis is still causing issues with Omega Vector. Nobody died, but people are being too stingy about sharing stacks. If you get over 5 stacks early, step out so someone else can take over. Likewise if you’re under 5, step in! Later we’ll comment about having 10 stacks – again, if you’re over that, step out; if you’re under, step closer. People are creating too many problems for healers by avoiding stacks or letting some player soak too many. Tusker had 48 hits from Omega Vector. A number of people only had 6. This is a problem, especially moving forward into heroic.

Zek’vos was another good run. With only 1 DK, we struggled a bit to get adds in, but coordination on the part of the monks and druids made cleaving the caster adds simple.

Zul was one of our strongest kills yet. We had an excellent balance of add cleave and boss damage, and the boss was moved relatively well in phase 3. Things got a little hectic before and after a tank death, but we took Zul down pretty fast after that.

Mythrax is still suffering a bit from boss-tunneling and lack of interrupts. If you’re not casting any, you’re not coming into Heroics in the future.

G’huun was frustrating. We had a 0%, 36k HP wipe on him. What’s truly frustrating is the number of people – SEVEN – who did not use a healthstone. Imagine 7 people living for an additional, say, 4 seconds. Do you think they could contribute to another 36k damage? Absolutely.

If your name is on the top of that list, but not in the list beneath it, ya done fucked up A-a-ron. It’s a good idea for everyone, regardless of presence on the list, to get yourself something…a weakaura, an addon, I don’t care – that blips that you need to use a healthstone when you go beneath, say, 50% hp. That will get you into the habit of using them routinely.

Thursday Logs

Friday: Heroic Progression

Taloc was the cleanest we’ve had him on heroic. We had very few deaths and everyone moved well together during the elevator phase. However, many people have some low DPS output. Consider whether you should change up your talents or if you’re positioning yourself effectively in the boss fight.

MOTHER was much smoother than last week. We’re starting to get a system down for moving between rooms most effectively and when to start transitioning. People are being smarter with their use of defensives, too. Consider taking extra healing talents, defensive azerite traits, etc, during this boss fight. Staying alive in rooms 1&2 outweighs DPSing!

Since we missed a kill pic last week, enjoy our kill pic this week!

Fetid Devour is a huge DPS check. Our strategy is to only kill 1 of the 2 eggs available at a time. Killing both just wasn’t feasible at this time.  This was also the first time we’ve had to bench underperformers to get through a kill, which should be an eye-opener to a lot of people. However, we managed to get him down within 2 tries after the benches. No kill pic again…whoops.

Zek’voz looks like a VERY doable kill. Instead of clumping and having eyes run out (because people and latency make it unreliable) we spread wide in a crescent for eye beams (cheers to Treeson for the idea!). Then we group back together for adds and other mechanics. We got him down to 10% in 4 pulls and could easily have had a kill if we didn’t bungle add management in the last phase. We raid leads will have to be a bit more aware of Zek’s health and the health of adds so we don’t push phases poorly!

Friday Logs

Raid Changes

Starting October 4th, we’re requiring 355 ilvl for heroics. We may even implement a DPS minimum since frankly, ilvl is easy to acquire given M+ runs, and it’s not a determination of skill. Ideally, you’ll also run with us on normal before heroic, but that’s also not a requirement (yet?).

Speaking of normal, alt runs on Mondays are starting back up. These will be 2 hour runs rather than 3. These will not count against your attendance for Vanguard, but they will count for it, so attending one can only help you. Depending on interest, one of the raid leads might get a lockout so we can skip MOTHER and Taloc and get right into the interesting bosses. Reminder that you’ll see need to follow all the rules & regulations for raiding!

LFR continues to be a success on Saturdays. A lot of people are learning the basic mechanics and we’re all having a good time. Zul trash is easy when you’re this coordinated!

DPS Megapost

If you don’t read this post I might pay Blizzard to delete your characters.

Promotions

Congrats to Neocide, Rwandarousey, and Tusker for making Vanguard!