Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Best and Worst of Wrath of the Lich King - Dungeons

Time to continue with the best and worst of WotLK. Today I will discuss dungeons.

Best Dungeon

1. Culling of Stratholme
Culling of Stratholme was my favorite dungeon. The way it tied in with the lore and history of Azeroth was just amazing and I just loved seeing Stratholme before its destruction. it was just one of those dungeons where you as a player felt like you had some purpose. And with the bonus boss and mount on heroic this was also one of the most rewarding dungeons ever implemented.

2. The Oculus (version 2)
I am one of the few who loved the Oculus. Why? Because it was different. it wasn't your usual run around, kill mobs then kill the boss. No here you were riding drakes! And the place was beautiful. I certainly preferred it more after the nerfs and the additional loots were introduced, making this a very rewarding instance.

Worst Dungeon

1. Halls of Reflection
I hate this place with a passion. Why? because its difficulty changes depending on your group makeup in particular what classes were present. If you were missing hunters or rogues this was nigh on impossible because a lot of tanks struggled to generate enough threat on all the targets to keep them from whacking your heals or fellow DPSers. And then you had to go through 10 waves of that stuff. Oh and when you done with those waves, YOU GOT EVEN MORE WAVES and now THEY'RE ON A TIMER!!!!!

2. Ahn'kahet the Old Kingdom
The main boss in this instance just ruins this place. Because the same applies as it does above - the difficulty changes depending on what classes were in your group. I remember attempts with Shamans and Druids and you just couldn't down their images during Insanity. Now with top tier gear it is simple of course, but you will always remember those first few weeks.

Hunters in Icecrown Citadel Guide - The First Wing

This guide is intended for hunters only. It is from a hunter's point of view and only discusses the role of hunters for each particular fight.

Lord Marrowgar
Lord Marrowgar will cast Bonespike (1 target 10 man, 3 targets 25man), impaling the target on spike. To free the targets the spikes must be dpsed down. His second ability is Bonestorm where he will Whirlwind around the room, damaging anything in his path.

From a hunter's perspective this is a straight forward fight. Stay at minimum range and group up with any other hunters. Keep Misdirects up on your tanks whenever possible When Bonespikes are cast DPS them down, that is your priority. When Bonestorm is cast try to avoid as much damage as possible by moving away, but make sure once Bonestorm concludes to form up with you other hunters again. Other than that just simply DPS Marrowgar to the best of your ability.

Lady Deathwhisper
Lady Deathwhisper will be protected by a mana-shield which will need to be DPSed down to get her into Phase 2. While her Shield is up she will summon adds at regular intervals (only from 1 side on 10man, or from both sides and the back on 25 man). These will need to DPSed down as quick as possible. While you are fighting adds she will cast different spells on a chosen add to make it more powerful. She will either reanimate them (Reanimated Adherent 99% Magic resistance, Reanimated Fanatic 99% Physical resistance)or empower them (Empowered Adherent gains a shield and an AoE spell, Deformed Fanatic gains increased damage dealt by 100%). On 25man she will also randomly Mind Control a player during the first phase.

During Phase 2 she will cast AoE frostbolts which can be interrupted and summon Ghosts whick explode to cause AoE damage.

In this fight a hunter's job will be to DPS the shield down and help down the adds, paying particular attention to any reanimated and empowered adherents. Should any Fanatic become deformed ensure you misdirect it to a tank as quick as possible and it will become your primary target. You may need to assist the kiting tank by slowing the deformed fanatic using concussive shot and frost traps. Assist in Crowd Controlling any Mind controlled targets by freeze trapping them. Also make sure you communicate if you have become mind controlled.
In phase 2 focus your DPS on Lady Deathwhisper. If you are a Marksman Hunter assist in interrupting her Frostbolt Volleys. keep an eye out for spawning ghosts and make sure to move away from them.

Here you are required to DPS the Horde Gunship using the cannons on your own Gunship. These will become frozen at regular intervals by a battlemage on the enemy ship which will need to be killed to unfreeze the guns. the overlord will also summon adds onto the Alliance ship which need to be killed. Players on the Alliance ship will also be attacked by Axethrowers and Rocketeers.

Before the fight begins make sure you have a rocketpack and have it equipped, REGARDLESS if you are a gunner, jumper or just a dpser. It is always good to have one just in case.
If you are a gunner charge up the guns using Cannon Blast which will generate heat. Make sure your gun does not overheat. Aim at the rocketeers at the back as the shot will deal damage not just the ship but enemies as well.
If you are jumping across make sure you wait for the tank to jump first and pick up the overlord, then jump across and DPS down the battlemage. Then jump back and make sure you jump back before the tank.
If you are just DPSing (or inbetween jumps if your jumping, or when guns are frozen if you are a gunner), Focus your DPS on the Axethrowers and switch to the summoned adds when they spawn on the ship. wait for them all to spawn so you can Volley misdirect them to the tank, then AoE them down. Also avoid any rockets whilst on the Alliance ship.

Deathbringer Saurfang
Saurfang will channel power from his abilities, Boiling Blood, Blood Nova, Blood beast and Rune of Blood. Boiling Blood will be cast on a single target, Blood Nova is an AoE, Blood beasts are adds and Rune of Blood is a debuff cast on the tanks. Whenever these abilities do damage the charge his Blood Power. When his Blood Power reaches 100 he will cast Mark of the Fallen Champion on a random target. The Mark is DoT and when the target dies it will heal Saurfang for 5%.

For hunters and the rest of the raid it is important that all are spread out to avoid unneccesary damage from Blood Nova. keep an eye on ability timers to see when Blood beasts are going to be summoned. Place Frost traps close to the boss so that when the beasts are summoned they are slowed straight away. When beasts are summenoned they become the primary target. make sure you kite the beasts as they hit hard and charge Saurfangs Blood power with every bite. When your target dies kill any other beasts before switching back to the boss.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Serebihm, The Kingslayer

Yes!! After the early release debacle of our 1st Lich King kill We finally downed him for a second time on 25 man. Oh the relief, the joy, the excitement. On this raid night everything seemed to go oh so smooth. After one shots of Sindragosa and heroic Blood Queen we felt confident that this was the night. And sure enough, on our second attempt the stars finally aligned, and the Lich king was brought to his knees.
It was an extremely smooth kill we had only lost 1 person to Val'kyrs and 2 more to Vile Spirits. Our strategy had changed a little. Where previously we would assign groups to Val'kyrs, we would now just assign stunners and all other dps just go nuts on whatever they choose, but switch to remaining Val'kyrs once their target was down.

When it was finally time to inspect the loot, it was time to jump for joy. Having missed out on the Polearm on our previous kill due to the earlier mentioned mishap, I am excited to be the proud owner of nothing other than - Fal'inrush, Defender of Quel'thalas!!!

The rest of the raiding week didn't go to bad either, for our guild. I wasn't there due to work commitments but the guild downed Deathbringer and Blood Princes on heroic mode, meaning the guild is now 7/12 on 25 man heroic and sitting pretty at 12th overall for Khaz'goroth (4th overall for Alliance guilds). Now that the pressure is relieved and our second LK Kill is in the bag it is time to focus on the remaining heroic modes...and we shall see the Lich King again real soon!

Keep on hunting,


Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Best and Worst of Wrath of the Lich king - Raids

With not much to do ingame, and all of the new Cataclysm news very well covered by other blogs, I thought why not give my take on the best and worst of this expansion.
So without further ado...

Best Raid Boss
1. Yogg-Saron - Ulduar
This was a close one for me. Yogg-saron was the funnest fight I had ever done. It managed to balance difficulty and fun perfectly. It also brought out the best in raiders as it left little room for error.

2. Flame Leviathan - Ulduar
When Naxx was released, we were given an old instance redone. It bored people pretty quickly. So to step into Ulduar and be greeted by Siege Engines, Choppers and Demolishers it brought tears of joy to your eye. This fight was so different from everything else up to that point.

3. Mimiron - Ulduar
Another incredibly fun fight. Mimiron himself is a funny guy with incredibly funny speeches. The fight itself allowed different classes to shine with tanks and healers needing to be at the top of their game and all types of DPS needing to be aware of their surroundings. Oh yeah, and Hunters became Ranged Tanks...WOOT!!

Worst Raid Boss
1. Faction Champions - Trial of the Crusader
I hate this fight with a passion. Not because I couldn't do well (I usually topped the meters here) but because of what it represented. I am not a PvPer so for Blizzard to put a PvP fight into PvE environment - curse you Blizzard. The fight generally was utter chaos: Stuns and CCs were on diminishing returns and the fight changed in difficulty depending on what enemies you would face. Remember getting the Warrior, Ret Pally, Rogue, Warlock, Druid healer, etc combo? It was killer. This fight was Avidly nicknamed the ToC pug-wiper.

2. Thaddeus - Naxxramas
The mechanics weren't particularly hard but still players couldn't get their heads around the positive negative thing. No what made this fight so horrible was the jump. After killing his two minions the groups had to jump off the platform to the boss platform. Problem was players with bad latency would often just run of the edge and drop in the water. The jump would make this fight harder than it should be, as too often you were short a couple of DPS or heals because they just couldn't make the jump. Oh and the whole Positive/Negative thing making BattleRezzing near impossible sucked too.

3. Blood Princes - Icecrown Citadel
I hate Blood Princes because I'm often 1 of 2 people on Orb duty, and anyone whos' been on Orb duty knows what a pain it can be. getting bounced around trying to get to an Orb just isn't fun at all and as a hunter not featuring on the top of DPS meters sucks a lot :)

Best Raid Instance - Ulduar
Ulduar was an incredible raid. The instance itself was beautifully designed and the bosses felt so different from everything else. But I think the greatest thing about Ulduar, was seeing how it all tied in with the outside world. Having done the quest chains for Thorim in Storm Peaks, and Freya in Sholazar Basin, to come in and see what had happened was special. And who can forget how fun Flame Leviathan, XT and Mimiron were... Gnome Engineering at their best - Raid Design at its best!

Worst Raid Instance - Trial of the Crusader
ToC was just boring and for a major Tier raid way too short. Staying in the same room for 1.5 hours was boring and not having anything else to do for a week just sucked. The boss fights themselves were pretty bog standard the highlight being the splattering of a certain gnome warlock. And we won't talk about Faction Champions.

Next Week - The best and Worst of Dungeons!

Keep on hunting,


Saturday, September 4, 2010

This Week's Raid and DBM

Hey guys, well another week in raiding has passed for me and my guild, and a successful one it was too. We have downed 3 more bosses on heroic ICC 25, namely Blood Queen, Rotface and Festergut. I was also very fortunate to win the DPS race on Blood Queen, being first bitten and finishing the fight with 21.5k dps sustained. Finally one up on our 2 rogues. This of course meant we got our first heroic mark which went to our trusty ret. pally Fullmetalzex. No hunter loot at all but I don't mind. I wouldn't have won the pieces anyway after using my EPGP on the boots from Ruby Sanctum earlier in the week.

One tip I want to share with you is something I noticed during our attempts. It is amazing how many useful functions in Deadly Boss Mods are not enabled by default. One of our biggest issues on Festergut heroic was constantly getting hit by Mallable Goo. I happened to have a look in DBM options and there it was: Special Warning for Mallable Goo was not enabled. After a quick enable, EVERY single Goo was announced and we could move accordingly.
Another useful function that helped us on the Lich King fight is the announce special warning for Defiles NEAR you, also disabled by default. I mean lets face it, you don't just want to know when defile is on you, but also if somebody near you has it so you can get some distance.

So if you are attempting new hard modes, or are simply struggling on a boss fight, open up DBM options for that boss and see what other hidden assists can be enabled.

Good luck and keep on hunting,