Attack of the pet peeves!!!

It’s Thursday and I have the post midweek blahs. *runs screaming in terror*

1. If you are not the raid leader, don’t give directions/instructions. (This means you overzealous player unaware of the strat your group is using) Wait and let the person who is supposed to give out the strat do so.

2. If you aren’t the person giving out the strat and placement don’t talk over or type to people countermanding what the RL has said. (Oh this happened this week even. It made me grrr in rl. Listened to the raid lead give someone directions and was made aware another dps was giving counter directions on placement to the player…grrr)

3. The middle of a raid is not a good time to pick a pissing contest with a lead. (Man you would think as much as I bitch about people ignoring, talking over leads…that I was a lead. I’m not. Thankfully.) There is a time and place for every conversation, mid fight? Not so much.

4. Before you start randomly blaming people for why something failed, take a moment and think. The more you blame other people the more I think you are at fault. So instead of playing the blame game, play the what can we change game.

5. Hi dead person on the ground *waves* I see you have decided not to release your body while everyone else in the raid as run back. Truth is, I noticed this the last 5 wipes. Release and run back with the rest of us, the faster we are all back in action the faster that boss dies. (Exceptions will be made. I rez the hub most total boss wipes, with the understanding he is getting my soda or ice-cream as payment.)

6. My nerves can handle only so many voices coming over vent yelling at me to do different things. *eyes the overzealous raid instruction people* So when I have 4 people calling out conflicting orders, I get…snippy. Designate who is going to call out over vent and if you aren’t it, zip it! (Healers/off tanks calling out they are gripped/hot potted are exempt because the raid needs to know to pick up that role while they are)

7. Leave the QQ for someone that cares, because nothing makes me want to introduce you to ignore faster than some serious raid long QQ.

There are more peeves. But seriously if you knew how persnickety I am you would commit me so hmm…done!

Published in: on May 28, 2009 at 6:44 pm  Comments (6)  
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3 years today!

Today is my 3 year anniversary with the hub. 🙂 Excuse me while I go run cheerfully through a meadow. Seriously though, we met via WoW and still have it as a shared hobby (one of many). Just my shout out to the love of my life that I’m glad to still be waking up next to him. ( I now return you to the regularly scheduled dailies 😉 )

Published in: on May 27, 2009 at 9:31 pm  Comments (6)  

Bad Times at the Zhavi House

Nothing more miserable than being sick when you are home alone on a holiday weekend. Catch yall on the flip and hopefully this little run in with chicken will clear up.

Published in: on May 22, 2009 at 6:52 pm  Leave a Comment  

Atls? Who has alt? I got alts!

With the hub out of town and safely away from internet access *cackles* Its time to share a secret with you. I’m leveling alts again! *dances*

Don’t get me wrong I love Zhavi to bits and pieces. But as I’ve said; I like the feeling of accomplishment that leveling an alt has. And possibly because the Hub made me promise not to level my Death Knight while he was out of town. Some nonsense about leveling with his rogue or something silly like that. (Although he gives my jewelcrafting dailies a pass)

So what do we have to level? I’ve dusted off Delith the wee druid (feral spec for leveing) and gotten her to the low 40s. (Wed will see me in ZF for a speed run) and because there is only so much rest exp to go around Elisadra the char I made simply to sign a friend’s guild charter months and months ago gets to further her connection to the elements via totems. (she gets a speed run through SM Wed after Del is done)

My plan is to get Del and Eli to 80 one day and have all 3 of the heal classes that interest me covered. I hear Frendan talk about how Pally healing is just spamming one button over and over, No thank you. Besides it will give Cruzor more ammo shoot at me for not leveling Illisan when I have a perfectly good 71 hunter waiting to be leveled. The Hub reminds me I have Illisan and Pookie who are soo close to 80 and just need a little work…<.< One day my dps team will return. Just…hmmm look it’s a bird! *points out the window and runs to log into her baby alts*

Published in: on May 19, 2009 at 6:43 pm  Comments (3)  

Detangling Healing Assignments

I touched on this previously in a rant about healing meters. But it deserves greater attention than to be a mere foot note.

Healing assignments

The art of assigning healers (cat herding) is a difficult one, often plagued by healers who wish only to perform their preferred role. Note: I said preferred, which is not the same as best. In the previous discussion about heal meters I mentioned someone will repeatedly ask to be given a specific assignment to pad the numbers. Ulduar is a new beast, your numbers mean nothing if your assignment is dead. You could be top of the charts and if the tank is dead off the bat, what does it matter? (yes I am sneaking in a mini rant)

Thursday, WW had a particularly difficult time in Uld. Ever one eager to fix the problem, a few days later I sat down with our resident combat log guru and asked him to go over it with me. (and got him to volunteer helping me understand them to boot! I think I will pressure him to do a blog post about it.) Looking over the logs he had a simple question for me. “Why aren’t you MT healer?” I know (another previous rant covered this very topic. Notice a pattern?) It’s a question I’ve pondered but given that I am often on spot or raid heals and can do a pretty good (not fabulous) job I don’t buck it. Also the healers have been doing a round robin for assignments, and I’m sure at some point when it was my turn I gave myself raid heals. (no I don’t like rocking my heal boat mid raid. Afterwards? Sure thing) Also I wasn’t the only one he did a double take on. You remember Frendan (if not go read my post on this fab pally healer) he was on raid heals most of the fight instead of the MT too.

Ulduar damage isn’t Naxx damage; it’s bigger, meaner, and spikier. Its time to dig deep healers!

The classes you assign are going to be based on what you have available to you. If you have not holy priests and 5 pally healers then you are going to have to make do with what you have. But below is an overview of what role each spec excels at.

MT healers:

Pally healers- this is where they will shine especially with big heals like Holy Lights. Beacon of Light on an OT and this is a pure win. (Yes, I am talking to you Fren. You are pure win)

Disc priests- Shields, damaged absorbed is damaged not needing to be healed. While Penance is a big heal, it is also changed for smaller bites per heal. Flash heal is our other bread and butter heal. My recommendation is to always pair with a big hitter. Also with Weakened Soul you won’t be keeping shield up constantly (with the hits tanks are taking its going to get used. To help out your raid (hello 3% raid wide mitigation) keep yourself and/or the OT shielded as well.

Druid- I like the hots, hots, hots. Even if the druid is focusing on raid heals, tossing some hots on the MT is a great way to help stabilize the spiky incoming damage to your tank. Talents and glyphs can move a resto druid from raid heal to MT heal and back again. Please communicate which you are to make assignments smoother.

Raid healers:

Holy priests- CoH, Prayer of Healing need I say more? (Incase you said yes) holy excels at stabilizing groups fast!

Shaman- Lazer beams of heals! Best for tight groups ala melee. But on fights like XT where you have 3 tight groups they are king as well. Their weakness is when everyone is spread out (thus why melee will always love them)

Druid- as stated above a druid can talent/glyph to remind us why we considered them king of raid heals (before those shammys came to take the name)

Truly any of the raid healers can pick up MT heal duty in a pinch. Particularly with the changes that Bliz has made to the classes. This is meant simply as a general outline for use to make assignments go a bit faster.

Being healer lead is a thankless job with a herd of cats scratching to get their favorite catnip toy. Communicate to your leader (after the raid usually) if you have questions about why you get a certain assignment. Watch your cross healing (to reduce overheals and wasted mana). And don’t go scratching your leader if you don’t get put where you want. They have more on their minds than keeping you happy with milk and treats

Published in: on May 18, 2009 at 7:16 pm  Comments (6)  
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The Prominence of CC returns

We’ve spoiled our mages, our hunters, our druids and our rogues. We have let them run wild in a dps land where tanks will hold a room and they need not worry about crowd control. CC in 5 mans? Perhaps if you have an undergeared group and even then I don’t recall a time I’ve seen it done. CC in Naxx? *laughs* Noooo. CC in…I think you get my point. Otherwise I’ll continue with the broken record of where you don’t see CC.

CC doesn’t return until Uld. *dances* That’s right! I like CC! I said it you can hate me now. *waits for the rotten fruit* Its not that I don’t like seeing my dpsers up on the tops killing to their hearts content. Its just…*looks around to be sure the mage is out of the room* I like it when you know there are little fluffy animals running around a raid looking cute. And it does separate your dps into the skilled or drone categories.

Imagine if you will a disc priest with single minded determination to kill (heal) her targets to death (life) looking across the room to the computer next to her and notice the mage looking…nervous. Why in the name of all that is holy is the mage nervy? Oh well its Ignis and he has to do more than DPS! Something about breaking molten brittle things or something along with the Boomkin (oversized chicken) rooting adds.

Usually I don’t pay attention to the raid directions that don’t pertain to my role (mostly because we are giving out last minute heal assignments and I do have to pay attention to that instead.) Tuesday was different I listed and realized I want to see the rest of Uld really bad. We cc the adds in Ignis (rooting totally counts)and the trash in Antechamber (random polymorph macros for the win!). Watching the hub keep his target sheeped…made me happy. It certainly reminded me to be aware the roles others play in the raid.

It all goes back to situational awareness does it? That’s my theme this month. CC reminds me to be aware of the mobs in the area a bit more than I normally am. That means you DPS, remember not to attack with aoe abilities when there are cute cuddlies wandering the battlefield, stun swirlies above their head, roots holding them in place, etc.

And now some words for the mage hub.

“As a mage it never gets old to hear sorry thought it was a vorpal bunny really…..sigh”  –Fid

Published in: on May 14, 2009 at 10:09 pm  Comments (2)  
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The One Skill Every Raider Needs

Don’t Stand in the FIRE! or Situational awareness (but I like the more dramatic don’t stand here)

I know it seems silly, almost elementary. But thinking on your last raid how many times did you hear a Raid Lead yell (or say in an awesome Aussie accent ❤ Tay), “MOVE out if the fire”? No, its not always fire, but the concept is the same; something on the ground is going to get you killed. Let’s take a deeper look at the Move mechanic in Northrend raiding.

We can all admit Naxx has made us lazy raiders. We don’t have to worry about mana so much, there aren’t a lot of move mechanics. The ones that do exist are pretty obvious (ok well if you have DeadlyBossMod or other boss mod AND you should).

Thadius: Debuff shows when your polarity shifts, assuming you paid attention when your raid gave out which side to be on and which way to move (every raid I’ve been on uses the counter-clockwise movement) then you should be fine. It’s all about paying attention to debuff (postive and negative). Again I love DBM for the loud noise and alert I get for this. Remember to stack! More buff when you hug the person next to you (+30 dkp if you actually emote it! 😉 )

Four Horsemen: In the back you’ve got to watch the giant black (or grey) void zones.

Saph: you have to move out of the ice shard blizzard. Not too difficult as it moves around the room semi slowly.

Eye of Eternity:Malygos is a little different you have two MOVE moments to worry about. Phase 1 sparks, this will go contrary to what we are used to. That’s right we want you to stand IN the sparky on the ground. Then in the Drake phase we want you to NOT stand in the sparky. Sparky dead on the ground? Good. Sparky floating towards you making you hurt? Bad.

Sarth +3, the mother of all move fights (to this point at least). Flame walls + small blue void zones = movement fun for all! This is one fight where I like to have my max distance and spell detail down! There isn’t a lot to say other than MOVE immediately when the waves come up, to a safe spot. MOVE immediately if you are in a void zone. There is no “Oh let me get this spell off” no you move and you move now. The void zones go on until you get the drakes down, after which you get a break from the zones and just have to worry about the flame walls (which should be manageable). My only big suggestion with this Move, don’t stand near the sides. You won’t have as much reaction time to the walls if you do.

Now that I’ve covered content (I hope) most of you have seen, it’s time to delve into Ulduar. I’ll be going over only the fights I have actual experience with.

Razorscale: It’s BLUE fire and I love it. Our sentinel tank stays in the center and manages to keep the fire concentrated there, only Mach and I (the disc team as I like to think of it) handling the move. Still the fire doesn’t always like to cooperate with the center so keep your eyes peeled. Remember Blue= Move.

XT: The Tantrum throwing robot likes to toss out debuffs to mess up your DPS parties. (Bliz knows DPS likes to sit in one spot and just go wild.) Light Bomb: will make you do damage to everyone around you…MOVE away from everyone (DBM has a range tracker that helps /range and then right click the ranger to set it to 15 yard). Gravity Bomb: a lovely little debuff that will pull those around you to you for the bomb. We like to designate a particular place to move to example: If you are the Melee underneath XT run straight back. Range is split on the left and right sides and runs further to their respective sides. So when I am on the Left side I run 15 yards or so away to the left away from everyone.

Ignis Trash– Move away from the glowing cyclones of bouncing death. I ignored this rule to heal once. The damned thing bounced me in the air, did damage to me, bouncing me in its path. Don’t learn the hard way just move.

Antechamber Trash: Red runes on the ground = move. Yes they can be healed through. But trust me healers aren’t going to be happy you can’t manage to see a glowing red run under your feet. (no hugs to the person who gets told over vent to move and refuses)

Kologarn: Laser beams of DOOOM. Two laser beams will shoot out and move towards each other. Whoever they meet up on has the beams, AND (you guessed it) MOVES. Not only do the beams want to kill the person under them (thus why you are running for dear life) they cause rubble to jump around them damaging people nearby. This takes the moving to a new level as you can’t just run willy-nilly you have to move FAST and so that you aren’t putting the lasers near your friends (and healers thank you). As a side note: DBM will announce you have the Lasers if you are getting splashed by the rubble, even if they aren’t directly targeting you so please keep an eye out to be sure you really are the target.

Iron Council: Room of the Runes. Tanks will have the most to worry about in this room. Stormbreaker has a lot going on with him with his Fusion Punch and healers are going to be all over the dispel and healing. But when he puts down the giant blue glowing on the ground, tank it is time to move your buff self to get him off that rune. Blue run = tank death. He is going to hit you too hard too fast for heals to save you (not just because I find he tends to do them in tandum with the Punch). Then for everyone else you have to watch the big green rune of death on the ground (with a name like that you know you don’t want to be inside it). Overcharges mean get your buns away as well. This sort of reminds me of Sarth +3, multiple movements needed to get away from the pain and stay alive.

Overall Blizzard has keep with the notion that there will be no sitting there doing nothing but pewpew. Situational awareness is key to victory. Look for the ‘fire’ and move. Not only are you saving yourself, you are saving a healer’s mana

Published in: on May 7, 2009 at 8:32 pm  Comments (6)  
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Does Discipline Still Sparkle?

There has been some chatter that Disc doesn’t sparkle like it once did. So lets take a closer look at what makes Discipline priests sexy still.

Shielding is sexier now than it was before. But honestly there is so much to shielding we are going to have go go over it in depth!With Soul Warding, Renewed Hope, Borrowed Time and Rapture there is a lot going on for you to toss some shields out during the group or raid.

  1. Improved Power Word: Shield– For 3 talent points you get an increased 15% effectiveness. I find that pretty substantial for our shields. More damage mitigated is less damaged needing to be healed. (and who doesn’t love that?)
  2. Soul Warding– IPWS is a gateway to this very nice talent. First it reduces the cooldown by 4 seconds and then it reduces the cost by 30% (though the mana cost is being nerfed soon *sigh*) But even still our shield is now easily spammed and cheaper to cast, making the spamming viable. So its all win to me. Coupled with the increase in effectiveness it makes shielding very sexy.
  3. Renewed Hope– This is to me a stroke of genius talent at 2 points. First, you get a 4% boost to crit. on Flash Heal, Greater Heal, and Penance if your target has the weakened soul debuff (and if you are MT or OT healing they really should have it almost all the time). Second, when you cast shield you 100% to reduce damage to your raid by 3% for 20 sec. For 20 sec you reduce damage to your entire raid.
  4. Rapture- When your shield is completely absorbed (IE it all gets eaten by damage) you get mana back! (while I liked the old version, this is still a mana giver and really does feed into their image of Disc being the shield masters) If it does get completely taken you will give your target; rage, mana, energy, or runic power all based on their class. This is a great offset to the old warrior complaint that preshielding them, kept them from generating rage ergo generating threat.
  5. Borrowed Time– First is the spell haste component, an additional 25% haste to your next spell cast after Shield. Second, is the lovely additional absorption to shield, a full 40% of your spellpower. (Yum!)

Pain Suppression does reduce their threat by 5% but in with the changes that have been made to threat I haven’t had a problem throwing this on the tank yet. For the meager sacrifice of this 5% threat, your target gains 40% damage mitigation. As a side benefit they also get a 65% chance to resist dispel. (great for pvp not so much for pve) While it only lasts 8 secs I can confirm it has saved my tank many times (Sarth +3 and Razorscale)

Divine Aegis creates a little glowy bubble around the target. (Yay! for more bubbles.) This one is worth 30% of the crit. heal you land on your target. More damage reduction is all win to me.

Grace, stacking up to 3 times for 15 seconds increases all healing to the target by 3%. What triggers this tank loving spell you ask? Why our favorite heals of course;  Flash Heal, Greater Heal, and Penance. This is great, not just for our own spells to be more effective, but makes the most of another healers spells as well.

Power Infusion, I think of this as the priest innervate. When cast on yourself or another it is a 20% spell haste and mana reduction! Lets think on this a moment. We make our spells cost us less and cast it faster? Yes pleass! I’ve used this with a holy priest and druid for a Kel’thuzad kill. It was yummy to them for sure.

Improved Flash Heal is a talent meant to prove to us more that we are all about fast spells. (you know in case the  hasting talents didn’t prove it to you already 😉 ) It reduces mana cost and increases the crit. if your target is on his way to dead (aka 50% or below)

Well, yes our heal numbers might not be where the holy priests are. A druid may beat me out on the heal meter every fight. But you know what? Looking back over the disc talents I really do think we still sparkle. Remember our bread and butter is shield. If you are on Main Tank or even off tank heals keep a shield on them. Its a beautiful buffer for splash damage, glyphed its a nice small heal as well. Embrace the changes to Disc. Embrace your inner bubble!

Summary? We sparkle like diamonds baby!

Published in: on May 2, 2009 at 8:18 pm  Comments (9)  
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