The Dark Side of WoW

Cataclysm is an amazing expansion, I have not had this much fun with the game EVER! All around the questing is just very well built. The dungeons are beautiful, the new mechanics are challenging, plenty is broke with the classes, but time will fix all of that. We even managed to down the new boss in Tol Barad in our first visit. Things are going well… well so it seems. The best thing about WoW is that is an MMO and people make the game enjoyable. Having an awesome group of people to play with makes it a wonderful experience… but the moment you step out, the moment the game changes and it turns into a very, very frustrating experience.

Blizzard decided that healing was too easy and decided to go back to making it challenging again. They are sticking by their decision of making things more challenging and while I respect that, well it has also made for some horrible interactions with people. I hear stories every day from guildies having horrible times in heroics. Even though my healer is past the gear level for heroics I stay away. I run heroics with my tank only with guildies and gave up trying to have people CC in pugs.

Sometimes you get into a group and everyone does what they are supposed to, but the norm right now is that one person will not do what they are supposed to and ruin the experience for the rest. Most people got used to the pace of chain pulling heroics during the last part of Wrath and expect that same speed out of a heroic dungeon. I think people don’t realize that heroic is not a 15 minute burn through bosses run, but a couple of hour commitment to team work and execution.

As a guild we have completed most heroic dungeons. Some people have already done them all and are even working on the achievements. I personally have stepped back and been working on reps and professions. I think that we will run a lot more heroics in the coming weeks and probably stay away from pugs as much as possible.

The anonymity of being behind a keyboard miles away makes people say some nasty stuff. Try to not take it personal and stick to your friends when running things for the time being. Its a nasty world out there at the moment and until people start to slow down in heroics, I think more and more people will find them to be a source of frustration rather than the source of sun they should be.

Guild Perks

There is way too much to talk about in Cataclysm and the more I play this expansion, the more I love it. Guild Leveling is by far the most rewarding because it is an amazing feeling when you are in the middle of playing and across your screen the entire guild gets an achievement. No matter where you are at or what you are doing you see across the screen that we as a group acomplished something that will benefit all of us. From leveling faster to having cheaper repair bills, the guild rewards are making us work as a team and made us all focus on the guild.

During the first week of gameplay I though we were going to make a push to start raiding right away, seeing that many top world guild were already done with the initial normal modes like we were conquering dungeons. Then I took a step back and saw that everyone was having fun, not just leveling but looking at those guild achievments and not being daunted by the task of killing 50K critters but just ready to kill another 500 today.

We have our crafters and miners going nuts to reach all those watermarks. We have our PvPers hunting down horde (actually we are done hunting and already got Horde Slayer). We are slowly but surely getting our raid team geared and together to start farming heroics and helping people get through the initial content, but overall we are having fun as a guild.

Initially some people had concerns about how the rewards would affect their alts. Some of the rewards really don’t kick in until you reach honored with the guild which can take some time. The thing is about commitment though, if you are commited to being a part of a guild you now have to work towards getting those rewards not just by simply showing up, but by actually doing things with and for the guild.

Everyone seems to have their favorite perk, and some are just beinging to notice. Cheaper repairs has been one that almost everyone is noticing, specially after getting into a bad heroic group. The one I am looking forward to Hasty Heart because its always nice to not have your HS on cooldown.

I really want to thank everyone that is working so hard to get the rewards we are all benefitting from and want to say AWESOME JOB guys. This game is all about the people :) and we have the best guildies ever!

A Week in Cataclysm

After a week in the post Cataclysm Word of Warcraft I have to start by being a blizzard fanboy. I did not mind that ICC was the only new content for a year as much as other people did. It became the training grounds for many players that had never raided before, including my wife. All that time spent in there made them a lot more prepared to take on this new content that is a lot more challenging but far more rewarding. The finished product feels a lot more polished than Wrath felt when it came out. I cannot stop saying, WoW. I never cared much for a game being beautiful because always find gameplay more important… but I just cannot stop flying and swimming through some of these areas and saying, this is just amazing. One freaking paragraph in, and I am already going to start using all the positive adjectives in the English language.

Before I go into more of the love fest, lets talk about some of the bumps on the roads have been.

While the added complexity of the dungeons is truly fun and challenging, there are some mobs and some pulls that are too complex for non heroic content. I keep on thinking on the people that don’t raid but still like to go into dungeons, they almost have no chance against some of these mechanics. As casuals that raid, we are used to not only moved out of the fire, but read the buffs that the mobs have to paint the roadmap of how we are going to kill them. Hey, that thing has a mana bar and its casting healing spells or silencing our healer… kill it. A lot of people will not get why they keep on ending up dead and become frustrated easily.

Even though 90% of the quest content has been revamped to be really easy to complete, there are still some quests that are very frustrating. We play in a PvP server and the other faction does not play nice, and in some cases mob tagging becomes very, very annoying.

Tagging is the practice by some players of hitting an NPC right before you actually engage it so they get the kill. This can be done to an elite that you need to complete a quest, if the target’s health bar is gray it means you will not get credit for it.

I have personally have not been frustrated by world PvP. Even walking through a group of about 30 opposite faction members we were left alone. It seems that for the most part people are trying to level. I have heard from other guildies that some areas become simply infuriating with the ganking, but my response is simple… the moment the game is becoming frustrating, just log into another toon or switch areas. Most gankers are also cowards, so every time we show up to rescue a guildie they seem to leave, even if they were camping. I would say in most instances it has not been worth our trip, but it has been very satisfying to just drive people away from anyone wearing our tag.

Tanking has been pretty difficult specially in heroics. While there is really no more one shots due to gear, most of my deaths have come the way of oom healer (out of mana). This is a little frustrating when it happens because DPS are still thinking ICC or Wrath (burn the whole group) and ignore CC attempts or marked targets which depleats the healers mana. Most healers are also not used to letting DPS drop to conserve mana. Once these shifts (not sure it really will) I think that DPS will get the idea that they cannot tank, even if they do have enourmous health pools now.

And that is it, that is pretty much all I can complaint about… and I am starting to realize that this is becoming lenghty and rambly! So I might have to leave some of the rest for another post!

Blizzcon 2010

Before I even begin to talk about this great weekend I want to say that without the people that I got to meet, hang out and just share this wonderful experience this would have simply been a good time; instead this will be one of those memories that stays with you for the rest of your life. We were lucky enough to have 10+ members of our guild joining the festivities!

Crowd
Even though Blizzard does do an excellent job to get people what they need quickly, there are lines… tons of them. While there is a lot of stuff to do and see while there, you at one point or another will be stuck in line somewhere. The only way to avoid them is to know the schedule extremely well, but honestly I did not see any of the cool stuff (or where they gave free stuff) without a line after the opening cermonies were over. The problem with the lines behind the obvious waiting and waiting is that some or our fellow geeks have not found it important to break the stereotype and some of them still don’t know what deodorant is. It was not horrible but I am not a fan of smelling people. Who knows maybe there is a niche market there to make some quick soap/deodorant combo that can help some of this people out. Thankfully there were plenty of hand sanitizing locations all over the convention center that at least made me feel better about touching keyboards and just overall other surfaces.

Everyone that we did had to interact to in lines and just standing around was extremely friendly and it was very easy to strike up a conversation. We had a big group of people, but others would approach us and ask us questions about our guild or what classes we played. It was very cool to have people just be so friendly and willing to just have a good laugh with you.

The only other negative thing was that their announcements were not earthshattering. I was really looking forward to them announcing something big like what their next MMO is going to be about, but they kept everything very current and concentrated on the release of Cataclysm and SCII related announcements. While they did unveil that Diablo III is going to have a PvP component to it and it looked amazing, revealing what the last playable class “Demon Hunter” was going to be was about it.

Being able to play their upcoming games was probably the most organized and what you could do in less than an hour. Everthing else that was related to a line felt like a ride at an amusement park, minutes upon minutes of waiting for just a 45 second thrill.

Now lets talk about the awesome. 95% of the people that dressed up really put months worth of effort into it. It was amazing to see the dedication some people put into their costumes. I thought this was going to be just a handful of people that knew what they were doing and lots of bad rushed jobs, but no; there were some serious costume makers there doing actual leather work and complicated things that were just jaw dropping. I think 3 of them were actually provided by blizzard and they were simply amazing, but the fan made ones really showcased dedication and sometimes humor. I would say that surprisingly the costumes were my favorite part of the convention.
Diablo Witch Doctors
Jay Mohr has been the host of Blizzcon and appearently last year he was a little under the influence of alcohol which he made fun of saying that he was just simply nervous and not drunk. The first night was the costume/dance contest. You do get to see most of the costumes up close from just walking around and they love to have their picture taken, but if you want to really see them all you must attend this event where they all get to walk on stage. The problem is that some of the get ups are quite elaborate and get heavy and toward the end of the night you could see some of the people having a real hard time moving on them. Nobody from the costume contest actually tripped on stage which was amazing to me.

After that part of the show finished the dance contest started and it was a riot. Basically every in game race/sex combination has their own dance emote in World of Warcraft. You type /dance and they characters go to town. Well now the humans behind the strings get to show their ability to move themselves with some comical consequences. I could seriously not stop laughing during some of the dances and some of the performances were just genious. The whole night was without incident until a kid who was getting really into his dance (and getting some amazing hang time to his jumps) actually ruptured a ligament. I am happy to report that he is “all good” and was at the convention the next day.

The next thing on my favorite list was the PvP tournaments. To see some of those people battle it out in front of an audience is amazing. Their level of skill at the game is just unreal. I was glad to see one of the North American teams make it so high in the later, but Asia simply dominates when it comes to competitive gaming. I would say that it is one of the things you should not miss!

Loyalty & Respect

“The greater the loyalty of a group toward the group, the greater is the motivation among the members to achieve the goals of the group, and the greater the probability that the group will achieve its goals.”
Rensis Likert

“When you are content to be simply yourself and don’t compare or compete, everybody will respect you.”
Lao Tzu

While the patch is being downloaded and people are going on about the builds they are going to use for the remainder of Wrath I am in the mood to look back. As a guild we have accomplished quite a bit. We managed to raid 25 month content with various degree of success. We managed to kill Arthras before 4.0.1 in our small little server. We also managed to stay together and I blame lots of loyalty and a bit of respect.

One of the side effects of having a guild that is able to actually do current content is that other people think you are trying to compete with them. Furthermore you get people that want to come into your group and make it about competing with others. We managed to not buy into it, and I made my ignore list that much longer. I was amazed when people were interested in discussing with me the policies of our guild even though they were never in it (nor plan to be in it.)

Overall the drama has been very little over the last couple of months and besides the people that left to hardcore raid (and in reality most of them were never truly Saints to begin with) we have kept our membership pretty intact. Even some of the people that tried horde for a bit came back. Our only problem now is that we have too many people that want to raid and get stuff out of 25 while there is a difference between it and 10 mans. Ah, but today a big percentable of that goes away with the flexible raid lockout and the capability of farming for gear not by going to get frost emblems but simply doing heroics! Badge farmers rejoice!

The reality of the sucess of our guild is that as a group we sacrificed many personal aspirations for the good of the group. Sure some people might have felt left behind here and there, but overall anyone that put in the time and the effort got to raid current content and kill bosses. Now new content promises to give us a lot more to do and having everyone be on the same level to start getting new lootz will make for interesting adventures to come.

Our guild is positioned right where we want it. We are big enough to not be ganked and camped, and we still know each other by first name. We will be leveling professions and helping each other wonder the world of warcraft after the Cataclysm. It feels good to have such a great group of people together with a high sense of respect and loyalty for each other. While some might argue that its just a game, we have created a very strong community :) with even our own BoondockSaints baby on the way. (Gratz Evan and Daniel).

We have a couple of months of doing lots of finishing up titles and getting used to our new talents and rotation, but most of all becoming a even better team of players that are always willing to help each other achieve goals. From finishing a tough quest, to killing bosses, the Saints are here to enjoy this game to the fullest!

Second Group of Kingslayers

Kingslayers

The epic battle between Arthas and the BoondockSaints continues. Yesterday, after our amazing Cubby kitty DPS called for just one more try before we called it for the night, we downed him. It had taken us a lot of wipes, more than I would like to remember or pay for, but it was all worth it. We got something a lot more important out of the process than the Kingslayer title, teamwork.

Before I recount the downing of The Lich King I want to share something with you. Recently, a couple of our younger players decided to give hardcore raiding a try. One of them was up front about his desire which I fully supported. While it sucks to have any player leave your raiding group for greener pastures, I think it is great experience for people to see how hardcore really feels. After killing The King last night I got a whisper. The pastures were not greener, the hardcore raiding is too much, and he was wondering if he could come back to raid with us. I said “of course, you were honest with me about leaving and the door is always open for people that communicate their intentions.”

He stated that we do just the right amount of raiding, and even though we don’t raid as much as hardcore people do, nobody feels forced to raid like he is feeling right now. He also said that our family atmosphere is just where he feels at “home.” I replied “well, let me know when you are ready to come home.” I added the following: “The Lick King kill tonight felt awesome because I as able to hear my wife scream out loud in excitement and kiss her while congratulating her as a new Kingslayer.” What feels more amazing as a raid leader is that we accomplished it without having to “OMGNERDRAGE” on anyone and stuck to positive criticism through building the skills of this new 10 man group.

Also, before we continue to talk about the kill, I wanted to thank all the people that helped this group through Sindragosa and many LK attempts. Star, Moon, Froto, Berim, Mel, Juanca, Isa, Jess, Leon (on I think everyone of his toons) and many others made it possible for this second group to get there, and I think they are ahead of the curve on being part of the third group since they have clocked some “flight time” hours already.

Here was our raid composition:

Tanks
Rextor – Prot Paladin
Theydrin – Blood DK

Healers
Hollogos – Disc Priest
Killerkain – Holy Paladin
Stanker – Resto Shaman

DPS
Cubby – Kitty
Mime – BM Hunter
Partygirl – Ret Paladin
Stompx – Elem Shaman
Trizilla – Destro Warlock

For the first LK kill I was a part of, we worked on the fight for about a month. We worked on that fight sometimes 4 days a week and the group was pretty consistent. Our healers for that fight were the same classes except that we had a resto druid instead of a paladin. This composition felt a lot easier for the initial phases and a lot more hectic for the later ones.

DK tanks rule this fight because of their “remote” AOE add gathering ability so necessary for many of the phases. If your group has not felt the pain of adds turning around one shooting people or silencing your healers, you have to give tons of props to your tanks.

DPS was actually too high for some of the phases, and as crazy as that sounds the 30% buff now makes this fight a little harder to time properly. You DPS too fast in the initial phase and you might end up with too many adds. You DPS too quickly and you will pull aggro from the tank not so much when he is tanking the LK but when tanking the adds. Our DPS quickly learned to actually stop DPS altogether during some periods of the fight. Its nice to say “guys slow down the DPS” instead of “we cannot do this we just don’t have enough DPS.” You guys do amazing damage.

Most of our wipes came in the toilet bowl frustration filled ability called Defile. The only way to get past this is to practice and get everyone to do their job. There is really no other way to do it. Even if you have a 12K DPS in the fight, when your lose one person you pretty much call it a wipe unless you are in the final phase.

Thinking back on it, we only had one true wipe in the final phase. We had arrived at it before with one player down, even during some of the earlier attempts but the second time we all got there alive we downed him. The timing of the Valks and positioning of where you drop the defile is what makes second phase a roadblock for most raids.

As a team we pushed through many obstacles and adjusted the strategy to serve the group. We started to back each other up and take responsibilities during the fight. In the end the execution felt almost “easy” because we had been preparing so well for it. While there is certainly a little luck as to who gets picked up by the Valks and also who goes into the sword, we managed to work our cooldowns to maximize not DPS but survivability.

I still don’t find this fight “easy mode”, even with a 30% buff. It still requires a lot of teamwork and plenty of skill in every single position of the raid. Again, this accomplishment feels amazing, not just because the end result of getting more people in the guild with the title, but because we did it as a group of casual raiders that don’t have world fame aspiration, nor even fame in our own server. We just want to have fun killing bosses and accomplishing things to share with our guildies that will ultimately strengthen our guild. Today, I am extremely proud to be BoondockSaint.

Guild Management

When I started playing WoW I never imagined that the social interactions of a multiplayer game would translate so closely to real life situations. I have played multiplayer games online for years, but the communities that are formed in WoW are above and beyond even the groups of players that I used to have LANparties with. When it comes to guilds, the similarities between running one and running a company are hard to ignore. Everything that I have learned in management courses applies directly to guild management, and vice-versa. The things that I have learned in the game have also given me insight into managing people and even hiring.

Today’s topic will revolve around the creature we see running around Dalaran with a gear score that puts them “above” us mere mortals, the “hardcore raider.” For this discussion I want to define a couple of things. I consider myself and most of our guild casual raiders, and I put us in that category for the following reason. While we do like to raid and get the phat lootz, to us it is more important to have a peaceful and drama free community than to put up with rude and elitist attitudes. (see Friends > Loot.) I also define a hardcore raider as someone who’s goals in the game revolve mostly around raiding and progression.

WotLK has made the game more accessible. Ask a player that has been to MC when it was current content and he will tell you that the game is now easy. I personally find this a wonderful change because I think that as a consumer we should all get to see all of the content. Games have had a way to enable hard modes for a while and WoW in the past seemed to only allow some people to reach that level. Now raiding seems more accessible to the masses with hard modes and special mounts available to the more dedicated and skilled players. I think that is a good method of offering content, instead of not letting 90% of the players see the end game.

One amazing phenomenon I have observed is that when for whatever their reason (lack of time, weird schedule, family obligations, burnout) hardcore raiders end up in casual raiding guilds. We provide them with the flexibility of not having to show up to every single raid, and still be somewhat competitive. I can only assume than when Cata comes out this will be less appealing to them because what we provide for them for the most part is numbers. Filling up a 25, where the phat lootz are at right now is not easy for a hardcore raider that cannot make the time commitment most progression guilds expect. The interesting thing is how similar these group of people are to consultants in the real world.

Consultants for the most part are people that have a very specialized skill that is needed in a company but not necessarily a full time position. Because of their knowledge they are well paid, but the company wants to get their services and cut the cost as soon as possible. That is also the main reason casual guilds will ultimately take a chance on letting hardcore raiders in. They want the knowledge and the experience they have to help them enter the raids they also want to accomplish. Many consultants will train people in the companies they visit to perform some of the tasks they do, and in guilds it is the same. DPS goes up, strategies are laid out, healing teams seem to work better because of the expertise they bring to the table.

Like in the real world, there are good and bad consultants. I have seen that consultants fall into 3 groups.

Experienced Consultant – They have been there, done that and priced themselves out of a permanent position.
Temp Consultant – They have the knowledge and can consult but would like to be hired on.
Bad Consultant – They like the money consulting offers, but don’t have the experience or expertise to do it.

It was very eye opening to see that hardcore raiders also fall into these same categories when they come into a guild.

Most hardcore raiders that end up in a casual guild have done the content and come ahead of where the progression curve the guild overall has. They are very helpful because they have put in the “wipes” to learn what needs to be done. They offer valuable tips and their contribution to the raid in general is amazing. They will be top DPS, amazing tanks or can single heal fights if you lose people. I consider them all experienced consultants and they will be with your guild until their situation changes and they can get back to the hardcore raiding they really enjoy. They might be wonderful people, but for them the game is about raiding and getting titles, gear, achievements and making friends is secondary to them.

The raiders that I compare to temp consultants are people that for one reason or another got a taste of hardcore raiding (spouse, friend, a guild) and became good at it. They eventually end up at a casual guild for the same reason as those above and like the social aspect of a casual guild. They bring a lot of positive things into the table and might sacrifice that shinny carrot of progression for being part of a guild. They are the most likely to want to become a full participating member of a casual guild and make a home there. I think cata will be the prime time for these folks since you can make a hardcore 10 man inside of a casual guild and be successful. In the current content cycle a 25 hardcore inside of a casual guild is a very difficult thing to accomplish specially in a low population server like ours.

The bad consultant is also the bad hardcore raider. They are either extremely good and elitist thinking they are better than anyone else in the casual guild, or have had a taste of raiding without any real accomplishment but come in with “stories” to back them up. They are the most dangerous to your casual guild and even raid because they will turn casuals off raiding completely if they are not managed properly. The really good ones at the game tend to constantly talk down to others and chastise them for not doing their job. They are the ones constantly pointing the finger at someone so that they are not discovered as really non raiders because they don’t know basic game mechanics like focus targeting or staying out of the fire. They end up in a casual guild either to become a big fish on a small pond or dragged into it by a friend from the groups above. They will be unhappy and want you to change the guild to fit their speed.

Raiders can be part of a casual guild for a period of time as long as they understand that the core of the guild is casual and they are willing to compromise. Like a consultant they need to understand that they are there to bring expertise and become part of the team, but if they want it to be permanent they have to buy into the company’s culture or not become permanent. You can get a lot of them if your guild wants to see content, but you have to be ready to do damage control because they will rock the boat directly or indirectly. Any manager will tell you that bringing consultants in means that their job becomes more difficult because if they don’t keep a close eye the project will not advance.

As a guild leader always keep your goals clear and your team working together. Make sure that your officers buy into the idea of having a group of people come into your guild with raiding aspiration or you will end up alienating some of them. Also remember that its impossible to make everyone happy and any time you add people to your guild either by recruitment or merger personalities will clash. Just make sure that as a leader you have clear vision for your guild and don’t be afraid to change it if most people want a different direction. In the end everyone pays for their own game and they are part of your guild out of their own free will. Just don’t forget to have fun.

Friends > Loot

If my math is correct, and under the assumption that Progression = Loot, then Friends > Progression. Many wonder how a little guild of friends that were not particularly great at the game became what the Saints have become now, and the answer is we made friendships. We made friendships outside and in the game and ended up with a whole bunch of really helpful people and also some amazing players. Our motto is and will probably always be that we care more about someone’s character and behaviour than their skill at the game.

I was reading WoW[DOT]com’s article about guild splits recently and the theme was very familiar, progression happens, people feel left out, loot drops, people get jelous. I recognize that we have lost players in the past for the same situation, and its not that I don’t care about losing players because I do, its dissapointing, but in reality if they care more about a piece of digital loot or title or achievement than the fun we have raiding or laughing in vent, then they are really not what we want for our membership.

I had a very amusing conversation with someone from a “top” raiding guild where they pretty much believe that what they have to offer is “diamonds” compared to the crap we offer. I do realize that we cannot compete with a hardcore raiding guild when it comes to progression because we are casual, but in reality we have never measured our guild by its ranking on some site. Its cool to get the accomplishment, its cool to have killed a boss before everyone else, but in the end its just momentary e-peen that is erased when the next content is released and someone else gets to it first.

We are not shooting for hardcore raiding, we are shooting for progression but not for the sense of accomplishment and the fact that we got there. Our pace being slow does not bother me at all. I have RL friends that play this game, specially from the Michigan crew of people I know, they are in high and medium pop servers and have been farming ICC for months now. Some of them have reached the pinnacle of this expansion on 25 mans, some of them are just harcore on 10. All of that will change quite a bit in the next expansion when the loot tables will be the same no matter how many people you enter an instance with (or at least I hope it stays the way they have hinted.)

That said, if you want to be at the latest heroic content in the game and you have the computer, connection, time and skill that it requires to raid hardcore, our guild will never be at that level. We value joking around, or rolling for blame after a wipe more than tirades by everyone about how much so and so sucks. We do have very good players that sometimes get frustrated, but then they turn around and help whoever needs go sharpen their skills. Its a true community, not perfect, but good enough to still be together through its various bumps.

At the face of people wanting to become hardcore raiders and join other forces someone brought up the point of loyalty. That hits that topic right on the proverbial head, a lot of the point on staying in a guild is loyalty. At the same time, we do have to remember that this is also a game that for some people is about “beating” it and completing a personal goal. Some people want that now! and they don’t care that the game will lose a lot of its flavor once those goals have been completed, and in my oppinion its a tastes a lot less sweet when you get those goals with a bunch of people you could care less about.

The thing that makes me the happiest and most proud about our guild is that it truly has been a team effort. Its not that everyone listens to have I have to say, but that the spirit of a guild that helps each other out with not just raiding skills but quest, professions and mats has been kept alive. Everyone that comes in, likes what they see and adds their little grain of sand to the huge beach that has become the BoondockSaints. With time I have come to understand that this is not my guild, not even Moon, Star and my guild, but everyone’s guild. That is what has made it strong, and that we value friendships in game more than we do loot or progression will make it that we are here to see an expansion come out and experience it as a true online family.

Back to Killing the LK

The summer is finally letting us have our raiders back! and with that comes 25s again, which seem to make the most people happy. The thing that is making me happy though is our second 10 man. Our first is picking back up and doing hardmodes on 10, but the second one now has pretty much all of ICC minus LK on farm status.

We are now working on the second group of Kingslayers. The fight is the same, but with every little change in raid makeup there needs to be adjustments and I love it. Progression raiding is a lot about being able to take wipes gracefully and get people motivated to try again. The awesome thing is that I am the one that has to stop people or they will keep on trying all night! We have an awesome group of motivated people.

We are now past the transition phase with this group and read to start working on defile!… oh darn defile.

It might take a little bit of time to get everyone to learn the fights and their roles, but I am looking forward to getting more BDS Kingslayers walking around. I am also looking forward to getting a new boss down on 25. Blood Queen is pretty close to hitting the floor permanently!

Ruby Sanctum 10 Man – Down

We actually completed RS the same day it came out. I tanked the clearing of the trash and then healed the initial attempts at Hallion but wanted to go to bed. The group stayed and picked up a couple of pugs and cleared it that night.

We have been pretty busy with ICC but decided to do another guild only attempt this week and even did some hard mode attempts when I forgot to switch it back from doing hard modes in ICC. We cleared the trash in one night and last night came back and actually killed Hallion.

We now have about 4 tanks that know the fight well and while it might not be completely farm status because the trash can be challenging for some groups, the content is now under our belt.

We now have 3 solid 10 man groups going every week and have taken 25 to kill the ugly brothers and blood council. Summer is a hard time to put raid together but we are going strong and this week will concentrate on more LK kills on 10. Darn it, I totally forgot to take a picture!