Yes, I’m a week late on this. I’ve been too busy in Pandaland. Whoops!

Wednesday: Lower Heroics

On Wednesday, we decided to go for a little “back to basics” and clear as many lower heroic bosses as we could for tier pieces. And you know what, we did pretty well! With 1 wipe on Felhounds and 3 on High Command, we downed 5 bosses in one 2 hour block. High Command had the usual bomb issues of people not moving, and Felhounds we swapped a tank out after the first wipe.

Wednesday Logs

Saturday: Aggramar Aggression

Saturday we finished out the rest of the bosses and headed to Aggramar (skipping Coven, of course). Prior to that we wiped 3 times on Kin’Garoth (including one at 97%…sigh…), but we were otherwise in good shape and good spirits.

Aggramar was a surprisingly easy fight, as far as “second to last boss in the tier” fights go. We had 3 very good attempts on him, at 60% or so each time, plus a smattering of other fights. Better control over releasing of the adds, and better usage of defensive cooldowns, is required to make this a smooth experience in the future. He’s not RNG like Coven, and so is an easier fight to control and practice for perfection on.

Saturday Logs

Monday: Plowing Through Alt Night

Taking a leaf from Wednesday’s book, we decided to down as many bosses on Normal as possible. We did Coven for practice before going to Aggramar, but overall downed 8/11 bosses (no wipes!) all in one night, with both new folks and alts in the group.

Monday Logs

Wednesday: Refining Strategies

Wednesday was rough. We usually treat it as a farm day, but we struggled as a group with basic mechanics on account of a number of new faces to heroic and a number of silly mistakes. We can usually get by basic mistakes on account of sheer ilvl and brute force of will, but it became apparent that we needed more tact to down the bosses.

On Imonar, phase 1 now has a more organized strat for ranged and healers for sleep canister. We will continue to use this strategy in the future. In essence, range and healers will bunch into 2 groups. When you have sleep canister, run to the middle. When you don’t, you run away from the middle – you only need to strafe a little bit for this to be effective. 2-3 seconds is NOT a long period of time to run out of the group, so it’s equally important for the group to run away at the same time. This is especially true when we have 20+ man groups!

In between phases 2 and 3, people continually blow one another up on bridge crossings by not being careful when walking around. You really need to be careful, as this is a primary reason for our wipes.

Kin’Garoth was a struggle as well, mostly because people are screwing up the rolling purple orb mechanics. DPS all need to be standing on the proper side of the adds in the add phase. Healers will need to pay attention as well (unless you are the healer in charge of ball soaking).

When it comes to the add phase, make sure that you are¬†past¬†the add, and facing your camera towards where the balls are coming from (stand at “Blue” side, or the upper-left side of this photo). This will make it much easier to see and dodge mechanics! You can either achieve this by running past the add on your way from “Yellow” (right-hand) side, or run the long way around, passing Blue and then coming around to Skull (where the add is in the above photo). This is to prevent DPS and Heals from getting slammed in the back with rolling balls. The only people who should be towards Yellow side should be the tanks and the ball-soaking healer. Any DPS or non-ball-soaking healers on the red-cicled portion of the above image are standing in the wrong spot and could potentially cause a wipe. This will also help the healers, as people will be more closely grouped together, with nobody spread all the way back at yellow while DPSing adds.

Raid Leader Commentary: We’re going to become more hard-assy about people making mistakes that are basic and causing raid wipes. With 20+ people we need to start coming down hard on time wasters. You still get 3 chances before you’re sat, but we’re keeping a much closer eye on those 3 chances now.

Wednesday Logs

Saturday: It’s not Digiorno, it’s Destruggle

More Kin’Garoth struggles. Some of the struggles of the week were due to an up-and-coming tank who is still getting solid gear (but you’re doing a great job and learning fast, so don’t feel bad!). We swapped tanks and had an easier – albeit not¬†easy – time on Kin’Garoth, again because people are failing basic mechanics like balls avoidance.

After a one-shot on Varimathras, we decided to bang against Coven some more. We’re seeing better mastery of many basic mechanics from some, while others are continuing to get hit by daggers or fire blades.

Saturday Logs

Monday: Back to Basics and Heroic Lower Bosses

On account of our colossal screw-ups, we opted to dive into Coven before doing Aggramar. It was disheartening even to see seasoned raiders¬†continually getting hit by daggers and blades in even normal Coven. It’s one thing to get caught out when there’s a Storm on heroic, but there’s no excuse for heroic Raiders to be caught out in normal. Sadly I don’t have logs for Coven as I got a later start before joining the raid than I intended.

Aggramar had a minor “oopsie” moment with tank swaps again, and then was downed easily. Argus was one-shot, too! We then took a quick break and decided to down heroic Garothi and look at some of the other lower heroic bosses as practice and loot chance. Unfortunately, we only took down Garothi due to some gear-checks on heroic Hounds, but that’s ok. Alt Night is all about learning, and we’ve definitely seen progress!

Monday also saw the promotion of Symderella to Raider rank, as well as Treeson fast-tracked to Raider rank (Treeson was formerly on Bloodscalp, but transferred to join the¬†cool kids on Aerie Peak). You can check them out on the Raid Team page! I’ve also added Symderella, Treeson, and Qwaylas to the Wow Audit Spreadsheet¬†to help them track their gear and progress.

Monday Logs

Other Thoughts

In order to make things easier for Zextol, the raid leaders are going to be splitting up more of the chores and tasks that he has been handling previously. Quetzie will be the primary point of contact for Raid invitations and pre-raid questions (think qualifications, rules, confirmations, etc). Telanlan will be the Loot Master in all senses, dealing with not only Master Loot distribution but also personal loot trade rolls – you’ll be whispering him, not Zex, when you have a piece of gear you don’t need. Foxxie will be your general point man for more targeted questions about fight mechanics, class rotation, talent choice, and more.

Of course, none of the raid leads are locked into a particular role. Sometimes Telan may take over invites, Foxxie might have a better grasp on loot needs, and Quetzie is known for routine fight analysis. Overall, this is done to help Zex be able to focus more thoroughly on calling timers and explaining mechanics while also giving him more down-time before raid and in between fights to catch up on Real Life business.

Finally, always remember that if you have a question or a concern, you can contact any of the Raid Leads or officers within the guild to help you resolve the situation.

Also since I didn’t have a relevant meme for raiding this week, please enjoy this gentle reminder from our priests:

“Saturday night progression we will be SKIPPING Coven and attempting Aggramar. Aka watch the posted videos in discussion and PM a raid leader if you have any questions.” – Zextol

Can I get a hell yeah?

And congrats to Symderella for making Raider this week! You get to be part of the Raid Team page, have more money to spend on repairs, and access to Raider tabs. There are a number of other potential raiders “on deck” for promotions soon, so be sure to keep your attendance up and you’ll get to be part of the team, too!

Wednesday: Heroic Farming

Wednesday was a generally successful run. We downed 5 bosses in relatively quick succession with one another before banging our heads against Kin’Garoth. We almost 1-shot High Command due to sheer numbers, but we do still need to manage our bombs better. It gets hectic on the second loop through.

Kin’Garoth, of course, gave us some trouble. DPS need to be smarter about moving sooner. Those assigned to purple add also need to remember to switch to red in the second add phase.

Regarding the Master Loot changes, you can see updates to the Rules & Regulations page with a clarification on Master Loot for tier bosses. We’ve also made a few other changes that retain the heart of the rules, while paring down excess verbiage.

Wednesday Logs

Saturday: Heroic Progression

Kin’Garoth was a big struggle for us again. It’s important for tanks to use proper mitigation¬† and save cooldowns for those big hits of Forging Strike. Thanks to Grim for taking over as the healer on ball-duty!

Varimathras was a struggle as well. Tank swapping became an issue. Remember, DBM timers are likely to be off – you can’t trust them entirely. Communication with the other tank is crucial.

We ended the night slamming our heads into Coven again. This boss is becoming a combination DPS and RNG check. Please practive Heroic Coven in your downtime!

Raid Lead Comments: Please keep the comms clear. We’ve had 20+ raids multiple times now, so commentary during fights is absolutely problematic. We’re going to start coming down on people who keep talking even when told to be quiet. Tanks need us to be quiet unless it is a Raid Lead making calls! If you are not a Raid Lead, do not make calls or talk over the raid leads unless directed to do so.

Props to Wyte for coming to lend us a hand on heals and for killin’ it in spite of being “undergeared” and not having joined us previously. Thank you to the PUG who put up with our many wipes for so long as well.

We welcomed Tiv as a new Raid Leader and Lunzzul as a new Raider. Congrats to you both!

Saturday Logs

Monday: Alt Night, Lots of New Faces!

Monday was a big raid for us – 23 people! Lots of new or returning faces, which was great to see.

Garothi Normal has Decimation issues, but was otherwise an easy kill. Aggramar and Argus we each wiped once. Agg had an initial “whoopsie” for tanks, but after understanding the mechanic, we took him down easily. Argus wiped us once and we took him down the second time. Raid Lead Comments: please be paying attention to the markers on your head. Match them to the marker on the ground in Phase 2. Please move the buffs in phase 1 to the right, and move blight to the back.

Next we tackled heroic Garothi. Raid Lead Comments: Please move Decimation out of the group. DBM is a great tool, but only if you bother to use it!

We actually had¬†three legendaries drop on Monday. Most notably, Zextol got the Amanthul’s Vision trinket.

Monday Logs

More Info for Raiders

We’ve got a number of new things posted this week on the site to help our raiders!

First, we have a new Raid Attendance management system. Take some time to read about what it means and how we track your attendance for Raider status.

I wrote up an in-depth look into Warcraft Logs for DPS (though I suggest tanks and healers reading it, too!). This will help you determine the proper talents, trinkets, and rotation to increase your output.

We’ve updated the Raiding Rules and Regulations¬†so please take a look.

Finally, we have a few Website Changes that include a new Raiding sub-menu to make the raid-related pages easier to navigate, and added a Roster to show off our illustrious Raiding Team. I will be tweaking these two features for the next several days to improve their use.

Made 2 changes to the website today – one functional, one fashionable.

First, I’ve added a new submenu to all Raid-related pages. The raiding homepage, NEW Raid Team page, Raiding Rules & Regulations page, and the Raid Attendance page are all easily accessed from one-another. When you’re on a non-raid page, the submenu disappears to conserve space.

Second, and more exciting, I’ve added a Roster page. This page has a small badge for each Raid Lead, Raider, and their Alts. Raid Leads have red backgrounds (just like in Discord), Raiders have orange background (like in-game and in Discord), and alts have grey backgrounds.

Different classes have matching color names, avatar border, and ilvl text. Clicking on a character’s image will bring up a full view of their transmog in their class hall. Clicking their name will bring you to their WoW Armory page. Hovering over the items will show you their name, stats, etc.

Now, our Raiders have an extra incentive to maintain their status – and up-and-comers have an extra incentive to keep coming.

(Note: This page may load slowly from time to time as a result of API calls to Blizzard servers. This is normal.)

Over the weekend I updated Uro’s transmog on the About the Ministry of Defense page, and added Telanlan and Foxxi√™. They now have access to the site to post content of their own.

I continue to try to push out quality of life changes and add new, useful, and fun features to the website for the guild. If you have an idea or a suggestion, fill out the Feedback form and let me know! Is something broken? Submit a Bug Report!

We took some time to tidy up, clarify, and trim down (yes, trim¬†down) the Raiding Rules & Regulations page. We’ve also added a new section on Master Loot for Tier Bosses and made mention of new website features.

Make sure you read over the rules. The heart of the rules remains the same, but it’s always worth going back and making small changes to the verbiage over time.

Just to get everyone up to speed, Tiv was promoted to one of the Raid Leaders tonight. He joins Zextol/Ryzin, Quetzie, and Telanlan as the raid leader team. If you have any questions or concerns regarding raiding, please contact them. This includes questions about how you could perform better, questions about raid add-ons, questions about getting started with raiding… anything regarding raiding in general.

Also, congrats goes out to Lunzzul who was promoted to raider status as well this evening.

Most of the time when we raid, someone ends up running a Warcraft Log (WCL) for us. We’ll paste the link in the #raiding-logs channel and discord, people will glance at their parse number, and move on. But WCL is an amazing tool that can help boost your damage and survivability, if you spend the time to dig around in it. Today I’ll dig into how read the charts to improve your DPS. For Healers and Tanks, you’ll want to pay attention to Method 1¬†to see how your talents and trinkets stack up with others. Otherwise, feel free to take a nap during today’s class.

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