Archive for Ulduar

What’s New?

Posted in World of Warcraft with tags , , , , , , , , , on November 10, 2009 by Randul the Dwarf

It’s been too long since I posted.  I’m turning into one of those bloggers who is inconsistent with my posting.  I don’t like that, but the fact of the matter is, I blog from work and work is nuts this time of year.

Raiding

I did want to give a little bit of an update on what’s going on with me in-game these days.  My guild is farming Trial of the Crusader & Onyxia for mad lewtz, just like everyone else.  There is a very small minority that wants to try Trial of the Grand Crusader, but I really don’t think we are ready for it.  Don’t get me wrong, I want to try it!  I just think we will fail and have some very frustrated people on our hands.

I don’t mind wiping in a raid.  Obviously I like downing bosses and wiping is not as enjoyable, but it doesn’t bother me.  It doesn’t make me mad to wipe on a boss, as long as we are progressing.  There are people in my guild, however, who will stop showing up to raid nights if we wipe too many times.  This is why I am hesitant to go after TotGC, especially without our “progression group”.

With our progression group, I think we’d stand a chance.  We have the dps, the healing & the tanking to get the job done.  Unfortunately, our progression group is MIA right now.  The reasons are good, I’m not blaming them.  New jobs, family issues, etc…it’s just that without our best raiders, we aren’t getting TotGC down anytime soon.

Speaking of our progression group, we’ve stalled out on Yogg-Saron in Ulduar.  Not because we can’t beat him, but because we can’t get the people online to even try.  It’s frustrating, but it’s something we need to deal with.

PVP

On the pvp front, my gear is coming along nicely.  My 2v2 partner and I passed the 1350 hurdle that had been haunting us for a while, and finally got our relentless boots.  We took a small step back this past week and didn’t do so hot, but everyone has their good weeks and bad.  We’ll bounce back and get over 1400 soon.

My current gear setup is as follows:

  • Set Pieces:  4/5 Furious, with the Deadly Helm
  • Cape & Neck:  Furious
  • Bracers, Belt & Boots: Relentless
  • Rings:  Deadly & Wintergrasp
  • Trinkets: Resilience/AP on use & AP/”pvp trinket” on use.
  • Ranged:  Some stupid gun from Ulduar

It’s not bad, I should get my Furious helmet next week.  Hopefully we’ll be getting an 3v3 team going to get a few more points each week.

Leveling

The last thing I’ve been doing lately is leveling my wife’s Hunter Frona.  As of right now she’s about 1 bubble into 79.  I think my wife is going to start playing her now so she can get reacquainted before she starts running heroics & raids at 80.

It’s been alright, but I don’t think I’m going to level my hunter now.  Beastmaster is undoubtedly the most efficient way to level a hunter, but it’s also pretty boring.  Serpent Sting, Arcane, Steady, Steady does not a fun rotation make.  Sure, I’ve got some cooldowns in there, but they aren’t that exciting either.

I think the next character I level will be the Shaman.  I’ve got him to 35, only 5 levels till an epic mount & dual wield.  Yeah, he’s definitely next.

That’s what I’ve been into lately.  Hopefully I’ll have some interesting things to write about soon, rather than just an update post every now and then.

 

Advertisements

Vezax Down

Posted in World of Warcraft with tags , , , , , , , on October 14, 2009 by Randul the Dwarf

Last night was Tuesday, which means the Dinner Goat Ulduar Progression Team (D-GUPT, yes I made that up just now) burst into Ulduar with one thing on our minds, clearing this joint.

Well, we didn’t.  HOWEVER, we did make progress, which is the goal of the team.  Last week we downed Mimiron and got two attempts in on Vezax.  I like the way that works out for us.  It allows us to get a look at the boss and then come back the next week and rofflestomp them, which is what we did.

Vezax took us three tries last night.  On the first one, I noobed out and missed the vitally important interupt that I needed to hit.  We lasted about 30 seconds.  On the second attempt, we hit the enrage timer.  We just lost too many dps to Shadow Crashes and we healed him too much with his Mark of the Faceless.

Third time was the charm though, as we got him with around three minutes to spare on the enrage.  Considering our highest DPS pulled aggro off of me and went splat within about 10 seconds of the beginning of the fight, that’s pretty darn good.

Continue reading

Why I love Raid Extension

Posted in World of Warcraft with tags , , , , , , on October 7, 2009 by Randul the Dwarf

Raid extension rocks.  There, I said it.  The hardcore elitists can call me a casual and talk about how they had to clear a raid in a week, while walking to school in the snow…naked…uphill both ways.  That’s fine.  Maybe my guild is casual, but that doesn’t mean we aren’t good.

Thanks to raid extensions, we’ve been able to designate Tuesday as progression night.  I’ve talked in the past about why we need progression night, so I won’t go into it too much here.

If you look at it from a time spent standpoint rather than a weeks spent standpoint, we are doing quite well for ourselves.  We’ve had Ulduar up through Hodir on farm for a long time, but a casual schedule (with casual attendance policies) and new content caused us to stall on Hodir.  Sure, we’d beat him before, but we weren’t consistant and we’ve never beat anyone past him.

In the last 3 weeks we’ve spent approximately 6 hours raiding Ulduar in 3 sessions.  In the first session (2 hours on a Saturday) we cleared up through Hodir with a group of alts.  In the second session (2 hours on a Tuesday) we one-shot Ignis, one-shot Hodir, two-shot Thorim and two-shot Freya.  We’d seen Thorim once and had never seen Freya before.  I count that a success.

In last night’s session, we got Mimiron down after four attempts and put three solid attempts in on Vezax in 2 hours.  I have every confidence that we will down Vezax in our next session and either down Yogg Saron or put forth some serious attempts with him following the next week.

If things go as I suspect, we are looking at a 10hour clear of Ulduar for the first time.  Is that really so much worse than how long it took a guild that raids three, four or even five times a week to clear Ulduar for the first time?  I doubt it.  Yes, my group, as a whole, probably outgears 10-man Ulduar a bit.  Not a lot, but some.  That’s an advantage, to be sure, but I still think that we are accomplishing a lot by clearing this joint.

It’s taken us a while to get this far, but the reason for that is pretty clear.  We are casual.  We have real lives and can’t raid one instance multiple times each week.  We raid ToC, Ony & we farm the first half of Ulduar on alts.  That leaves that one special night each week to clear a raid that, to be quite frank, everyone hasn’t cleared.  In fact, according to wow.guildprogress.com only 25% of the players on my server and 30% of the players in the world have got to where we are.  For a bunch of “scrubs”, I’ll take it.

So congratulations to Jamason, Hoofz, Lissik, Beatris, Pandoora, Bigbeast, Lunityc, Koffka, Ailleyna and of course, me.  We downed a new boss last night, and that’s an accomplishment.

Changing the Raid

Posted in World of Warcraft with tags , , , on October 1, 2009 by Randul the Dwarf

Last Saturday we took what basically amounted to an alt raid into Ulduar.  On the surface, this seems like a fine idea.  Getting alternate characters gear and getting newer raiders experience is never a bad thing…right?

Not necessarily right, no.  Here’s our guild’s problem.  We have about 17 or 18 folks who want to raid 10-man content.  The good news is, we rarely have more than 11 on who want to raid at a single time, so if we have to sit someone it’s usually just one person.  The bad news is, we spend a lot of time raiding content (Ulduar in particular) that we haven’t mastered with alts/newer raiders so we have trouble progressing.

Continue reading

Ironsoul versus Edge of Ruin

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on August 7, 2009 by Randul the Dwarf

I’ve been seeing people getting to my little corner of the blogoverse (blogosphere is so cliche) by searching for information on how the new 5-man Heroic Instance Trial of the Champion”s 2-handed axe Edge of Ruin stacks up to Ironsoul, the 2-handed mace out of Ulduar.

The short version:  Edge or Ruin is WAY better for Arms, but slightly better for Fury.

However, for those who like stats and facts, I’ll throw those down as well.

Ironsoul (iLevel 219)

  • 3.50 Speed 2-Handed Mace
  • 594 – 892 Damage
  • 212.3 Damage per Second
  • 2204 Feral Attack Power (who cares?)
  • 105 Strength
  • 126 Stamina
  • Improves Critical Strike Rating by 69 (1.50% at Level 80)
  • Increases your armor penetration rating by 84 (6.82% at Level 80)

Edge of Ruin (iLevel 213) These may not match what is on wowhead.  According to commenters on wowhead, Edge’s stats are bugged and these are the correct stats.

  • 3.50 Speed 2-handed Axe
  • 594 – 892 Damage
  • 212.3 Damage per Second
  • 121 Strength
  • 97 Stamina
  • Improves Critical Strike Rating by 62
  • Increases Armor Penetration by 76

There you have the basic stats.  So how do the two compare?

The following numbers are in a buffed environment.

The top-end damage & dps are a wash…no winner.

Edge of Ruin gains 16 STR over Ironsoul, for a total of 32 Attack Power.

Ironsoul gains 7 Crit and 8 Arpen over Edge of Ruin.

You could have looked all that up yourself though.  You want to know which one is better!  I have to give the edge to…the Edge, by a large margin.

The reason is that Axe Spec is just better than Mace Spec.  With Axe Spec & Edge of Ruin, according to Landsoul’s spreadsheet over at EJ, I’ll do 127 more DPS.  That’s a lot.  Axe Spec is just plain nasty.

For the Fury warriors out there, the difference is much less noticable.  Edge of Ruin edges ironsoul by about 5 dps.

So there you have it.  Screw Flame Leviathan, go get the Edge!

***EDIT***

My previous statements on the stats of Edge of Ruin were based on what I was seeing on the comments of wowhead.  As it turns out, these statements WERE correct, I just wanted to show proof.  http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/thread.html?topicId=19110292473&pageNo=1&sid=1#6 The short version for those that can’t click on blizzard forum links…Edge is 219 and has been fixed, the tooltip, however, may not be at this time.


The quest for a new 2-hander

Posted in Player vs Player, Raiding, Warrior, World of Warcraft with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 29, 2009 by Randul the Dwarf

I’ve been splitting my time about 25/75 in WOW lately.  25% of the time, I raid.  The other 75% of the time, I pvp.  I’ve got what I consider a pretty solid starter set going.  I’m 5-piece Hateful gear, Deadly neck, cape, wrists & boots and Wintergrasp belt and trinket.

The only PVP upgrades I’m missing at this point are rings, one trinket and my weapons.  I say weapons half-heartedly because when I say weapons, I mean my ranged weapon.  Sure, I’d pick up an Arena weapon if I managed to get my rating that high, but for now I’m just itching to get my hands on an Ulduar weapon.

Fortunately, my guild is currently downing three bosses in Ulduar who drop 2-handed weapons for me, two of which are on “farm status”.

Ignis drops Relentless Edge.  Relentless Edge is a polearm, which is not necessarily a bad thing, but it lacks the STR of other weapons in favor of pure attack power.  This wouldn’t really matter to me in Arena, as I don’t have a pally partner to give me kings.  This thing comes with a crapton of crit, but the speed is a little fast and the topend damage isn’t nearly as high as others.  Still, this is a solid upgrade over the Destroyer.  This weapon would probably be my last choice of upgrades, if I got to choose.

Flame Leviathan drops Ironsoul.  Ironsoul is the easiest Ulduar weapon to get because you have to get by Flame Leviathan just to have a chance at any of the others.  Ironsoul is also a very solid upgrade to my Titansteel Destroyer, packing Armor Pen and a whopping 131 more topend damage.  It loses some AP from Strength, but it has more Stamina and CRIT, which the Destroyer sorely lacks.    Ironsoul would be my second choice of Ulduar upgrades.

Hodir drops Stormedge.  This would probably be my first choice of upgrades.  For PVP, it’s probably not QUITE as good as Ironsoul, but I’m really itching to switch to Axe spec and get that 5% crit chance & damage.  With Axe spec, this thing moves ahead, as the 5% crit would definitely be more than the crit from Ironsoul.  It’s got STR, Stam, Armor Pen & hit.  Hit is usually not the most heavily weighted stat in PVP, but the fact is I’m a little under the 5% hit cap on Randul, so it can’t hurt.

The good news is, I have access to these weapons.  The not so great news is that I’m second in line to pick them up.  (Third if you count hunters for the polearm)  A guildmate is still using the Collosal Skull-Clad Cleaver and DPS is his main raiding spec, so he’ll get dibs over me.

HOWEVER, once one of these drops for him, I’ll be swooping in and getting the tools to take my Arena team to a new level.  Speaking of my arena team, my partner & I went 9 – 1 last night and broke 1,000 rating.  We stopped while we were still fresh, but we weren’t showing any signs of slowing down.  The one loss we had was truly a fluke.  A hunter disengaged, I charged to get the killing blow and he just happened to disengage on top of the pillar in the Orgrimmar Arena as it was going up.  There’s no possible way he planned that.  RNG strikes and kills.

On a side note, as I said above, DG has killed Hodir.  Thanks for playing, please come again.

Tank Fight of the Week: Auriaya

Posted in Raiding, Tank Fight of the Week, Tanking, World of Warcraft with tags , , , , , , on July 22, 2009 by Randul the Dwarf

Time to come back with a new Tank Fight of the Week.  This week I’m going to talk about Auriaya, as I feel I finally have enough experience with her to give a good walkthrough.

Abilities

Auriaya has:

  • Sonic ScreechA Sonic Shockwave that deals 60125 to 69875 Physical damage to all enemies in its path.  The Shockwave damge is split between all targets in its path.
  • Sentinal BlastA massive blast that inflicts 3500 Shadow damage and increases Shadow damage taken by 100% for 5 sec.
  • Terrifying ScreechThe screech strikes fear into the hearts of all nearby enemies, causing them to flee in horror for 3 sec.
  • Guardian SwarmTargets a player to be assaulted by the Guardian Swarm.

Sanctum Sentries have:

  • Savage PounceA savage pounce that inflicts 2775 to 3225 Physical damage and an additional 2313 to 2687 Physical damage every 1 sec for 5 sec.
  • Strength of the PackThe presence of other members of the pack increases damage done by 30% to all members of the pack within 10 yards.

Feral Defenders have:

  • Feral EssenceEach essence increases the damage dealt by the Feral Defender by 50%.  The Feral Defender can revive itself at the cost of one of its Feral Essences.
  • Feral RushCharges an enemy, dealing Shadow damage and interrupting spell cast for 6 sec.
  • Feral PounceThe Feral Defender pounces the target stunning them for 4 sec and inflicting Shadow damage every 1 sec.
  • Seeping Feral EssenceThe Seeping Essence of the Feral Defender Inflicts 4500 Shadow damage every 1 sec.  (aka, bad stuff you do’nt stand in, occurs on death)

The Pull

First thing’s first, you have to nail the pull.  She’s not like other bosses where you just charge in screaming or use a ranged attack to pull, no sir…not this chick.  Whoever pulls this chick better not be the person who gets hit first or they are gonna die all over the place.

You see, Auriaya has two kittens (Sanctum Sentries).  They are cute and all, but they have some serious leaping and clawing ability.  If you are far enough way from them when they aggro, they pounce and you bite the big one.  The idea is for the puller to either transfer the aggro (via Hunter’s misdirect) or not be in LoS when they pull (via Death Knight”s Death and Decay or Shaman totems).

sampson-1

The pull is easiest with a hunter.  We have everyone stack up on the tank (see my fine art illustration) while the hunter goes out and misdirects to the tank.  The cats and Auriaya come screaming around the corner, but when they see the person they have aggro on they are too close to pounce!  Good news.

auriayapic

As the tank during the pull, my job is to live and get snap aggro.  As they are running towards the corner I am hitting shield wall and blood rage so I can immediately thunderclap and start beating on them with my normal rotation.  My job, once things stabalize is to keep Auriaya on me while the Pally tank holds the kitties.  The DPS kills the kitties one at a time and, for me at least, it becomes more of a tank and spank with a twist.

Other methods we’ve used to pull are the Death Knight dropping Death and Decay to get aggro while the Pally drops concecrate on the group.  The bad guys get aggro on the DK, but when they move into the Concecrate they get aggro on the Pally.  I’ll usually taunt Auriaya while the Pally keeps the kittens.  The craziest method we’ve done is to have the Paladin bubble himself and walk around in plain sight of the cat lady like he’s lost.  They aggro on him, but can’t damage him because he’s bubbled.  So they come looking for someone else to eat, which is supposed to be me.  This works because once they get to him and see they can’t eat him, they look for someone else, but everyone else is too close to pounce.

The Fight

Once things have stabilized and the first two Sanctum Sentries are down, I pull Auriaya out of the corner and put her back to the stairs she just came up to get to us.  At this point in the fight my responsibilities are fivefold.

  1. Don’t die.
  2. Hold threat.
  3. Keep her from standing on/near the Seeping Feral Essence.  (Bad stuff that is black and round and you can’t miss)
  4. When she casts Terrifying Screech use Berserker Rage so she doesn’t fear me.
  5. After using Berserker Rage to not get feared, interrupt her Sentinel Blast.

That’s it folks.  The hardest part of this fight is most definitely the pull.  Once you get the pull down, your job is to not get feared and interrupt her Sentinel Blast.  That’s why I am so awesome for this fight.  I never get feared, thanks to Berserker Rage and I can always interrupt thanks to Shield Bash.