Stranger In A Strange Land

It’s been a difficult couple of days for me, I’m still dealing with the grief and uncertainty that comes from leaving my friends and guild behind to go to a new server. Unfortunately it’s the mid-week lull in raiding so I have nothing really to distract me from those thoughts either. I left my realm to have more to do on off-nights, and this first week is just that unavoidable painful transition phase where I can’t pug anything on my main because the new guild does it all, and none of my alts who I will pug with on off nights are on the server yet because it’s silly to pay $75 to bring 3 raiding 80s to a server you might not be able to stand once you actually get there. Some might ask the seemingly obvious question of, “Why not just transfer your alts to a bigger realm and just leave your main with your friends and guild?” Don’t think I didn’t consider that, but there would have just been something immensely frustrating about PuG-clearing ICC25 every week on an “alt” when my friends and guild are stuck on the Festergut enrage. Ultimately it was about scheduling. It would have been very hard to find a guild where I could send my main to do 25m hardmodes but still have 2 common raiding days (tuesday and sunday) free to run 10mans with my friends on my other ICC10-ready paladin tank. Even if I could have somehow worked that out, I don’t think they would have been happy with me and it wouldn’t really be any better than it is now in terms of hurt feelings.
Even though the World of Warcraft is identical cosmetically no matter which realm you play on, each realm has its own relatively unique atmosphere. It’s still the same Dalaran, but I’ve never seen so many people at once, not in major cities during peak hours, or at 8-9pm on tuesday night raid stones. Going from a server of 7,000 people to 28,000 is one hell of an adjustment to make. Not a minute goes by when someone in trade chat isn’t forming a raid for an ICC clear or rep-run. Thank god I’m not a quester by nature, I can only imagine that Chillmaw spends 23 hours of every day waiting on his respawn timer. This new server is like 80% horde, I think I’ve seen three or four alliance in the three days I’ve been here (not counting Wintergrasp). I went to Wintergrasp, and I felt sick. We owned all the siege workshops and we had 5 catapults just parked outside their one remaining graveyard and they were just wiping people out as soon as they popped. It was kind of funny to see some alliance with 20 stacks of tenacity, outnumbered 10 to 1, one-shotting some horde people with their +400% damage, but they didn’t have a snowball’s chance in hell of anything beyond picking off a few hordes, not even a moral victory. There were, like, 7 of them as far as I could tell. They had no hope of capturing any vehicle workshops, no hope of doing any damage to our outer walls, no hope of completing any quests besides “Slay Them All”, I can’t even understand why they bothered to show up for the battle, since they could just kill NPCs after the battle and have it count, and they wouldn’t have to die 30 times. I felt dirty. I didn’t even attack. I just sat there, mounted, and watched this depressing alliance massacre. It wasn’t fun at all and I left feeling bad. I come from a server where alliance has an approximately 7-to-3 wins advantage in WG, but here, it’s 10-0 horde. It’s going to be insanely convenient when Toravon comes out because we’ll be able to plan an all-guild run for our free epix of Tier10.251 and T10.264 as well as free relentless and wrathful gear, and for attempting Earth, Wind, and Fire (as difficult it will be now that Archavon now has another half a mile between him and Koralon that you have to kite…), but just for “competitive morale” I feel like I’m tripping a retarded kid, beating him with a stick, then walking away laughing. I feel like a criminal. For those of you on high pop servers, with a faction chokehold on WG, whether Alliance or Horde, how do you deal with this? Minorities, why do you keep showing up only to be graveyard camped? Majorities, how do you have any fun at all shooting fish in a barrel?
One of the perils of reading the blogs of other tanks, and well-geared Icecrown-raiding clear-it-all-on-tuesday-even-the-new-wing tanks in particular, is that it removes some of my motivation to write about my own experiences; especially when they go in and clear 25m content and we get one boss down on 10m. It just feels like I’m left out of the “having something of value to add” party. I haven’t spent a great deal of time thinking about posting ICC10 trash strategies. I’ve spent probably 20 hours+ killing Marrowgar trash because of that 8 hour day I spent grinding 16 runs to get me from Friendly to Revered. Just like in my academic work, I’ve gotten so close to the material I can’t even bear to think about it anymore. I just want to do a brain dump and get it out, but it can only come out at the speed I can think and type, and it’s just too painfully slow for me being forced to relive something I’ve done so much. Bosses are the same way. No one needs me to tell them my Marrowgar strat or the intricacies of Rotface ooze kiting. Others have done it first and just as well as I could or better, so I don’t feel compelled to add anything other than a sense of “hey, I seem to be the only one not posting about it.” So in that sense I feel inadequate or lazy, but it’s just not something that really seems worth doing, especially at this point. Don’t come running expecting to see my posting a Blood Princes or Blood Queen breakdown either.
I will tell you about one thing though, I FUCKING HATE ATTEMPT COUNTERS IN NORMAL MODE. For those of you who have had no difficulties killing Putricide in the first week, and even less in the 2nd week, you can all fuck right off. I know we’re all supposed to be “quality over quantity” and “quantity” raiders just don’t deserve the respect of “quality” raiders, but there is nothing more frustrating than a 1% Putricide wipe then being told “sorry, you don’t get to try again.” What the fuck made Blizzard decide this was a good idea? From a lore perspective, perhaps it makes sense. From a gated-content perhaps it makes sense, but from a FUN perspective, they have gone and fucked this one up right good. I do appreciate they bumped it up to 10 attempts instead of 5, but fuck you right now for calling my determination to throw my face against it till I kill him any less worthy of praise than your “quality” raid attempts. It made sense, and I was certainly tolerant of this in ToGC, but this is fucking NORMAL. In ToGC we spent no more than 5 wipes on any boss except faction champs, and it was around 50 attempts before we killed Anub for the first time. That was fine. We never ran out of attempts because we spaced it out over 3 weeks. In fairness, it did take longer than it perhaps should have to get our shit together and manage the Putricide encounter well, but after the first week and 10 attempts, where all we could do was get him to around 60%, the second week we went in on attempt 1 and almost one-shot him, dying around 14% the first time we saw Phase 3 and it was because people weren’t paying enough attention to some of the mechanics and got themselves killed, but it was a vast improvement over all previous attempts so we were confident. On the 5th attempt, he killed our tank when he had 80k life left, healing for like 400k immediately. There are a number of mistakes we made that attempt, which, had we not made them, would have lead to a victory, but we did make them, and wipe we did. As someone who was one of those mistake makers, missing 3 separate raid-saving ability uses (Lay on Hands, Hand of Sacrifice, Taunt+Divine Protection), I don’t begrudge our shaman for mis-clicking his blood lust in phase 2. I fully consider our failure solely my responsibility, so I am exceptionally furious I was not allowed to atone for it with an eventual victory. We basically squandered our last 5 attempts with some individual poor play and some bad RNG (the biggest thing was that there was always a slime up during the p3 transition and having to take DPS off the boss to kill it, or the times it actually managed to hurt us, made p3 success virtually impossible), but having the choice for further attempts removed from me is machine-gun-totting, go-postal-in-the-blizzard-offices inspiring. But mostly I’m mad about it for 2 reasons: this was the last time I was going to raid with my friends, and I wanted to go out on a high note. More than anything this is going to haunt me for weeks, not being able to share that with them because I know that for both their raid and myself, we are going to down him next week and it is not going to feel nearly as special (had we won, we would have been Horde first too…). Second, he’s probably going to get the parry-gibbed nerf-bat when the next wing comes out in three days and killing him is going to feel trivial. Way to go Bliz. -_-

One Response to “Stranger In A Strange Land”

  1. FYI – We beat the Festergut enrage last night!


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