Friday, November 30, 2007


So, last night, here I am on DV, completing some warrior quest in Arathi, and the GM of Death's Advocate (the guild I ran Kara with earlier in the week) whispers me: "Come to Kara with us. :)"

Woooot Woooot! They like me; they really like me! So, log on Dax and get summoned.

The raid was still on Moroes, and I'm not sure how many attempts they had already made that night. We ended up making 3 or 4.

One attempt was an accidental pull by one of the tanks. Whoops, shackle, shackle, keep tank healed...wipe. We were pretty much ready for the pull, but it seemed like my shackle kept breaking early and wreaking havoc on the raid.

The first attempt, we tried the strat that we've tried before, killing all the adds, then jumping on Moroes. I can't remember the specifics of the fight, but I think one of the tanks went down pretty fast, and things went south from there.

Then we switched to the kill the casters, keep the melee shackled and jump on Moroes. As long as the shackles held, we could do a reasonable job on Moroes.

Just a reminder, all of the following analysis is based solely on memory and is subject to misfiring synapses, mis perceptions, ignorance, and flat out wrong information! I have no hard data to back up my views. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!

The healers can usually keep the tanks going and the shackles up.

The tanks can usually maintain aggro through the blind/gouge situations, so Moroes doesn't go after #3 on the aggro list.

One problem is running OOM during the fight for the healers. We are not to the point where we are running OOM because of the garrotes, at least I don't think we are. It seems that by the time we're dog piling on Moroes, the other priest is low on mana. That said, I have no idea what my mana level is about that time, so take that with a grain of salt! 8~P!

This is the longest fight I've ever been in, and I'm wondering if I should trot out the shadow fiend early, so I can bring him out later for more mana regen.

I use a pot per fight, but I know I need to pot earlier in order to take advantage of the 2 min cool down. I hate overmanaing, if that's a word (like overhealing....), but I think I'll have to start doing that so that I can avoid the OOM situation. I really need to get over my inherent stinginess and become more of a pothead. erm, yeah.

Another area I need to improve in is knowing who is doing what. I just realized last night that we have three tanks, not two! We have two immediately on Moroes and the third on the casters. Crap! Now, thankfully I'm not the guy that needs to unblind one of the tanks, but I DO need to know what my tank is doing and who their target is. While a Moroes Vanish means another Garrote, the up side is that the two tanks get a little respite from his damage. The add tank, for lack of a better word, gets no such breathing room. So depending on who I'm healing, that GH I was just going to chain cast might be mostly wasted because the expected damage didn't happen.

I mentioned shackling, and I'll expound on it now. Mages, I feel your pain! I will never take a mage's sheeping a mob for granted again. Even chain trapping doesn't compare to shackling, although last night I used some of the strategy in chain trapping (ct) to help with shackling.

The advantage that shackling has over ct is that mobs do not have to be pulled into it. They can be shackled in place. Also, if a shackle is resisted, I can immediately start another shackle - no cool down other than the global one. I can also reshackle early to reset the shackle timer. As I've mentioned in another post, I can keep my shackle mob targeted, so I can watch that little timer count down and reapply as necessary while still healing the raid.

The down side? It seems that on these particular mobs, shackles break early. I have not tempted fate by seeing how long my shackle will last; I always reshackle before the timer has completed half of it's duration. Even with the frequent shackling (at cost of my mana!), the mobs still end up running around for short periods, where they wreak havoc on the raid.

So, solutions?

Well, for starters, I need to look for a shackle addon that will give me a bigger indication of when my shackle breaks. That little box on the portrait isn't doing the trick; I need something flashing on my screen or a bigger box by Healbot that I can watch.

I need to employ the chain trapping strategy of moving to maximum distance from my mob to give me time for recasting shackle. There may be a down side to this if I don't have aggro on the mob, and it heads for someone else. I'll have to carefully play around, erm, check that, TEST, yeah, CAREFULLY TEST this strategy to see if it will work as I plan.

Buy some pot! I need to make sure that I have such a quantity of mana potions that I'm comfortable quaffing them without regard to saving them for OH CRAP situations. Yes, I'll have to watch the pot cool down, but in reality, I usually get one shotted, so health pots aren't a concern.

The tanks on Moroes deserve some company at the beginning of the fight. After aggro is firmly established, I need to trot out my slimy little shadow fiend and get some mana lurvin's. With this and the pots (as well as making the most of the 5SR), I should be in good shape for when the dog pile happens.

Hopefully tonight or soon, I will get the +healing to gloves (35, I think), which will raise my +healing to over 1280. I'm still making Primal Mooncloth in the hopes that I'll go to Bot or Arc and get that Whitemend recipe. In the absence of that, I hope to at least have the mats so someone can craft it for me.

Dax in Kara, AGAIN!! WOOOOOOT!!

The Group

I've decided to call our lvl 37-42ish group by an original name...The Group. So, my faithful readers, when you see this label (and maybe title, I haven't made up my mind), you can rest assured that I will be discussing the adventures of, drum roll please:

Dwarfvader - Warrior - Tank extraodinaire
Zyyro - Priest - Healing ma-chine!
Turion - Pally - DPS bad man
Bloodpebble - Rogue - DPS Back stabbin' fool
Tryna - Pally - DPS - Offtank 2 d max

Last night, we decided to start on Scarlet Monastery(SM) Library. We needed to get everyone the Scarlet Key, and the instance was a bit low level for the the two 42's. Perfect place to work on raid icon placement, kill order, sapping practice, and general game play in a group.

We had no deaths! Zyyro (AKA Myk in Africa) did a great job healing; at one point, on the way back through the respawns, we had 5-6 mobs on us! No....Deaths! 'Nuff said (Zyyro elevated to Uber Healer status)!

We tried several combinations of pulls. At the first, we tried sapping one and killing the other on two mob pulls. Too easy! We tried having Tryna(AKA Kat in Africa) offtanking a mob. Too easy! Ok, DV can tank two of these mobs, no problem. We finally settled on sapping one mob on three mob pulls, with DV tanking the remainder. We set a kill order (skull, X, Star- which was the sapped mob). We did not have planned pulls of 4+ mobs, except one where two of the mobs were non-elite.

I got most of my questions answered during this run:
How does Zyyro heal? GREAT!
Can DV tank a couple of similar level elites? You betcha!
Can the DPS focus fire and follow a kill order? Yup!
Are we alert enough to stop runners? Uh-huh!

We did such a good job that we had plenty of time to run through the Armory! So off we went to see what Herod was up to. By this time, we were clicking along very nicely. We pulled groups of 2 and 3 and easily disposed of them. We arrived at Herod's chamber without any hairy events or OH CRAP moments.

So, DV opens the door, and we gaze lovingly down at the holder of our PHAT LEWT. We were all mana'd up, and DV was about to charge in when Turion accidentally ran off the ledge. ACK! Ok, no problem, let me pop Blood Rage, get some...uh, rage, and start the Sundering. WOOT WOOT! Got aggro immediately and never looked back!

I reminded The Group about the Blades of Light whirlwind and that us melee folks need to run to the edges of the circle when he activates it. I would repeat the warning over the voice chat system when I heard it as I ran out of range. He popped it 3 or 4 times before going down, but everyone was on their game and moved. After he went down, we had already decided that all the AoE people (Zyyro w/ Holy Nova, pallys w/ Consecrate, and DV w/ Thunderstomp) would gather in the center of the circle and AoE the incoming mass of mobs. Worked like a charm! I believe Zyyro did the most damage with his AoE, but since I wasn't tracking any of the instance on WWS or some other tool, I don't know.

For PHAT LEWT, Turion got Herod's shoulders. A nice upgrade to what he was wearing; DV already had snagged them on a previous run through.

Up next? Cathedral. Look out Whitemane, we're comin' fer ya!

Thursday, November 29, 2007

My healing addons

I have several addons that I use for healing, monitoring buffs, and determining threat.

For Threat, I use Omen. I recently switched from KTM on the recommendation of several blogs and forums. I'll be watching it closely to see how it performs, but right away, I like the fact that the screen edges flash red when I gain aggro and I like the Red text message when I pass 90% of the tank's threat.

For Buff monitoring, I use CT_Buff. It's nice to see the remaining time, in minutes, of my buffs, as well as seeing a visual shrinking bar. My only complaint is, that in a raid with lots of buffers (, I hate buffers), the list gets pretty long and monitoring the buffs you're responsible for becomes more challenging.

For Healing, I use two addons that make my life a WHOLE lot easier and make me appear to be an uber

The second addon I use is Decursive. This addon places a little box for each raid/party member on the screen. If the little box turns RED, that means a left click is required on that box. If it turns BLUE, then a right click is required on the box. Now, recently, the spells changed buttons, but the colors remained the same. Currently, Dispel Magic is mapped to RED, and Abolish Disease is mapped to BLUE. Used to be the other way around, but since the left/right click is still mapped to the same color, my muscle memory is still valid.

The first addon, for Healing, that I use is Healbot Continued. I can't say enough about how important this addon is for me to heal effectively. Sure, I can click like a madman, write macros out the yingyang, and fight against my uncanny ability to click the empty space between two buttons on the casting bar. Or, I can use Healbot. I chose the EASY button.

Healbot, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways, in no particular order:

1. Healbot replaces (optional) the standard party frames with nice big green bars representing health. This is one of the nicest things about it; no more squinting at health bars to see who's dying. It also adds a thin bar beneath the health that represents mana/rage/energy and a thin red bar above that indicates who is being beat upon.

2. Healbot is very nice for soloing. As a priest, I was always casting things upon myself: PW:Shield, Renew, etc. To be able to do so without changing my targeted mob is much faster than targeting myself, casting the spell, then targeting the right mob again.

3. I love being able to keep one mob targeted while healing myself or my party. During my Kara run this week, I was in charge of shackling a mob. No problem, I targeted the mob, cast my shackle, and proceeded to heal my assignments all without clicking off of my shackle. I could see my default shackle timer right on the mob and could reshackle at 10-15 seconds on the counter.

4. Healbot encourages muscle memory healing rather than speedy mouse movement and clicking. By mapping healing spells to certain key combinations, and practicing with them, healing becomes much more reactionary and faster. Now, in order to throw that Renew on the 'lock that's killing himself, I just press Ctrl+right click on his bar. Bingo! 'lock has a Renew, and I go back to nose picking in the 5SR. (BTW, I use a Nostromo N52 gamepad and have mapped the Shift, Ctrl, and Alt keys to my pinky row).

5. Healbot places HoT and Prayers of Mending(frisbee) icons at the end of party members' healthbars when those spells are active. The HoTs also slowly fade as the spell runs it course. I can always see where my frisbee is, which means I know to recast it when that pesky 'lock gets it and refuses to pass it on!

6. I can see the whole raid and not just the people in my group. Huge! If I'm on the OT and the MT healer goes down, it's very easy for me to switch to the MT and continue healing with the same style of healing. I don't have to switch to another method of healing due to that person not being in my group.

I'm sure I'll think of other ways that I <3 Healbot, but this post is already a little novelette! If you decide to try it out, make sure you take the time to either learn the default key combos or, do like I did, remap the spells to the different key combos. Also, I've found that remapping the Shift/Ctrl/Alt keys to the column that is reachable by my left pinky makes it much easier, mechanically, to access the different key combos.

Lastly, practice, practice, practice. The hardest part of getting up to speed with Healbot is creating that muscle memory, but once you have it down, healing becomes much easier!

Bring it!!

Last night I asked one of the priests from the Kara raid the other night to give me some feedback on my performance. I asked for an unvarnished evaluation.

Unfortunately, his guild doesn't use WWS or another parser to analyze their performance, so he didn't have any hard numbers to throw down or specific instances of bad play.

He did comment on having a shackle macro, which I implemented today (Thanks Ego!!). I did tell him a little about my interface so he didn't think I was a total Which, brings to mind another blog post that I need to write...grrrr.

Overall, he said I did well. He also indicated that I had impressed several of the raid members and asked if I was guilded. Without going into much detail, I told him I was GM of a small casual guild and couldn't manage to leave just yet. I asked if I could add him to my friends, and he said yes and reciprocated. He also asked for my alts' names as I indicated I would be spending quite a bit of time on them.

It was very nice to get the positive feedback. I have a bit more confidence in being able to heal Kara, as well as attend to the additional duties that are required.

It starts...

...tonight! Myk and Kat are on board. Bloodpebble is bringin' da backstabbin' DPS. Turion is respecced for damage. And DV has a brand spankin' new breathing system.


Tonight we run the Library in Scarlet Monastery. I do believe that it will be a very easy run; everyone is lvl 36 or above. Mostly the run is to get everyone their SM Key and to work out killing mobs. Hopefully we'll figure out how many mobs DV can tank at a time, if we need to put up a kill order (it's always helpful, but slows things down considerably), and just general game play in a group with our toons.

The schedule is still being worked out; we've decided on two days, but which two days is still being negotiated. I'll have to see how the wife aggro works out; I might not be able to make dinner on those days, which would up my threat(s) level. Then, in January, I'm looking at having a class on M/W that would put me home around 5:30, which would mean I might not be able to have dinner going on any of the days she works....NOT GOOD. Maybe I'll swap the class for another class that's web based. hmmmmm.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007


I jumped on Rysteranch last night to farm some motes of H2O and saw someone LF healer for kara.

OOOOOOOoooooooooo, I can do that.

PST'd the guy about Daxenos and got the ok!

Woooooooot! Dax is goin' to Kara again!

Since it was the day after the reset, Attunmen was up.

Now, I'm not entirely happy with my performance. I kept my shackle up most of the time, but let it get loose a number of (too many) times. I was assigned to the OT and general raid healing; I did a passable job keeping them healed. On Attunmen, for some reason during the middle of the fight, I jumped to the top of the threat meter by a HUGE amount. Thankfully, although Omen (just switched to this threat meter last night) said I had aggro, the boss didn't come to shmush me.

On to Moroes. We were standing outside the room by the pillars, and I got the bright idea to move to get a better line of sight. All of a sudden, I'm getting beat on by something! Crap, I aggro'd some of the guests.....and wiped the raid.


It's bad enough that I'm the PuG'd raid member doing just a passable job and now I wipe the raid. Crap.


/apologize profusely for wiping, accept the responsibility and ribbing, slam heel of hand into forehead. DOH!

ok. NOW, on to Moroes. We tried 5 or 6 times on this guy. The closest we got him was around 37 or so %. After the 3rd try (or thereabouts) we switched strategies to kill the casters first. I remember reading something about this before, but until it was mentioned, didn't dredge it up from the depths of my memory banks. We still wiped, but we seemed to get to Moroes quicker.

Lessons learned:
1. DON'T get close to the guests!!! And watch where you're going!

2. I watched the MT healer "dangle the tank" by waiting to use Greater Heal to ensure no overhealing. I believe the MT died once because of this healing method and have Renewed (pun intended) confidence in my healing method of always having a Renew on my target while keeping their health in the top 50%.

3. DON'T get close to the guests!!! And watch where you're going!

4. Shackles break early at times, and I need to have an emergency macro that puts PW:shield on me and then reshackles my target. I must keep better track of my shackles. BTW, I did reshackle around 10 seconds or so to ensure I could overcome a resist.

5. DON'T get close to the guests!!! And watch where you're going!

6. I need to reposition myself away from my shackle like I'm chain trapping just in case of an Oh Crap moment. At the very least I'll have an extra second of casting time before I start getting hit.

7. Did I mention: DON'T get close to the guests!!! And watch where you're going!

Other things that I noticed is that, although I couldn't see the other priest's +healing, I could see their mana pools and health. I had the highest amount of both between the MT healer, myself, and the shadow priest. I'm not sure what this means, other than I may have gimped my +healing for +int and +sta. Right now, my +healing is around +1250, and I'm still wearing some AH greens. I have always been reluctant to give up my other stats to add to my +healing; in fact, I've socketed gems that ensure I don't lose my other stats when I upgrade gear. I am, however, missing some enchants that could pump up my +healing by 30 or 50 points, so I need to look into getting those. Like everyone else, I hate enchanting something that I know I won't be keeping, but sometimes you have to spend the money just to get you where you want to go.

And then there was one....

I got an email from Malissa today, and she's decided to leave the guild to join Gerwintassle in a new guild. No, it doesn't appear that she's going to the guild he created with his friend. It looks like a brand new guild where her and her hubby can chill.



So, now I'll be hitting up some guildies to see if they want officer positions. I really like the idea of plurality in leadership, and I wish that I could get at least two people to manage the guild with me at the GM level. I guess I'll have to wait and see what happens.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Another idea...

Well, Turion has come up with a very good idea. He has gotten his wife and his brother to start toons on the server and is committed to helping them level.

That makes 4 people on Eastern time that have free time in the evenings; all we need is one more (or two for subs) in order to start running 5 man instances.

He is in the process of trying to get his sister to play, and there is the possiblility that his brother's girlfriend might play. Five and six.

And, there are already some guildies that play in the evening that are in the thirties and would probably be willing to sub if necessary.

So, what is the idea? Run the 5 man content like a Raid. Set a schedule, farm instances, get the teamwork thing down. If nothing else, we would have a premade team to run all the 5 man instances including Heroics. With a little luck, we could transition to 10 man content when our guild is a bit bigger.

I do have quite a number of questions:
So, has anyone out there done anything like this?

Have you had a 5 man team that has stuck together from VC to ST and beyond?

Is it even possible to balance leveling with running/farming instances?

What kinds of issues might pop up (other than the usual loot drama)?

In reference to my earlier whine, this might just fit the bill. Dwarfvader is chomping at the bit for his phat lewtz, and Turion is coming along as a healer. With the addition of 3 DPSers, I'm hoping we could just live in instances. Of course, we'd have other days to work on professions and the like. The biggest part of this is to get everyone used to group play, set expectations for timeliness/readiness, and GET SOME PHAT LEWTZ!!

So, anyways, I'd love to hear from both of my readers on this if you guys have had any experience on this subject!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

One of these days.....

....I'm going to get a clue.

I respecced DV last night to follow Brigin's recommendations for a protection warrior. I really need to research talent points BEFORE I start spending them! Of course, I realize that my game play might differ from Brigin's, so I expect that I'll respec at least one more time.

I also decided to swap out some +str and +agi for a whole lotta armor and +sta on my gear. I kept the old pieces just in case the new ones don't work out the way I hope. Turion respecced also last night to focus more on healing, so tonight should be interesting as we try out the new combo.

Speaking of last night, Turion and I ran with a lvl 25 rogue guildie for a bit in Wetlands. We totally pwned some Orcs and Raptors! I pulled about 5 or 6 at a time and had a BLAST!!!! It was soooo fun to just wipe them out! Of course the mobs were 4 or so levels below me and Turion, so we weren't in any danger. But....MAN THAT WAS FUN!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007



OK, I have to whine; I started whining about Gerwintassle leaving, and now I'm gonna whine some more.

I am GM of a small, casual guild. We have 3 level 70's, two of which are mine. Soon, we'll have another level 70, which is owned by the OTHER level 70 (Mykell).

4 70's and two owners.

The next person to probably hit 70 (Kat) is married to Myk.

Problem? Myk and Kat live in Africa, which is 5 hours ahead of Eastern time and pretty much squashes any Outlands instance runs with the guild during the work week. Grrrr....

'nother problem? I got my first taste of raiding last night and....I liked it. I really liked it. Even though I didn't get any loot, I was happy as a clam. I would really like to raid on a regular basis, but I would have to leave my guild to do so.

'nother problem? My marriage would take a serious hit if I didn't manage the aggro that resulted from raiding, if I could manage it at all. My wife was NOT happy when I informed her that I was in Kara and insinuated that I would like left alone..../feign death.


The real problem is that I think I could get a slot on a raiding team. Neya has already indicated that he could pull some strings.....that's what makes the situation so....tempting. When I had no hopes of getting on a team or didn't even know what Kara was, I was just fine with fiddling around with my professions and my alts.

Now, I find I really like instances for the teamwork/loot/fun aspects, and my guild is built around casual play. I've even started, as I mentioned, doing run throughs for guildies in hopes of helping them level faster.

Well, I'm not looking for advice or anything, I just had to whine....



So, last night, Dwarfvader and Turion were questing away in Wetlands, when Kandiltu whispers me about going to Kara. "Wha?? Huh?????" was my reply.

I get excited, DV gets excited cause he thinks HE'S going, and then Kand clarifies: We need Dax.

DV is crushed, but reluctantly makes his way to the inn to drown his sorrows in a Flagon of Mead.

Meanwhile, Dax is jumping up and down and squeeing like a little schoolgirl. "I'M GOING TO KARA!!!! I'M GOING TO KARA!!!!!!"

So, after I calm down, irritate my wife, and sell/repair, I accept the summons!

We had quite a lengthly discussion on taking down Attunmen the Huntsman, and how the respawns will happen in pretty short order. I get the star as my shackle target and the main tank as my healing target.

And....we're off! Horsies are pulled and made into glue! I keep up the MT and my shackle with no problems. I reshackle every 10 seconds whether it needs it or not. We have no deaths and are actually 1 minute ahead of the group's record time!

Unfortunately, the Attunmen strategy has to be explained to us newbs, and the record doesn't

For the healer, this is a pretty simple fight. Only the MT and Off-tank should be taking damage, so, hopefully, healers will only have to heal one target. During our run, Midnight got away from the OT for a sec and caused some damage, but nobody died. Once the two became one (eeeeeewwwww), the MT got aggro easily; then it was just a matter of keeping him healed while the DPS burned him down. And, down.....he.......went! There was much rejoicing that the newb priest didn't screw up the whole thing (mostly by me), and the RL distributed the loot. Kand got something, I can't remember. I got a badge of Justice.

As we made our way to a quest turn in for me, a nice green "of the Physician" hood dropped. I indicated to the raid that it would be an upgrade for me and could I pretty please have it? The raid graciously allowed me to grab the piece of trash and wear it on my head!

So, next was Moroes. We went back to the entry, up the stairs and started pulling mobs. We had a couple of deaths - one due to the AoE mage that the healers didn't watch. Whoops! She didn't drop any loot, dang!

We made it to Moroes, cleared the room, and discussed strategy. I got to be on shackle duty and healing MT. We positioned ourselves and shackled just as the pull happened. Both shackle targets were shackled in place, and Moroes was exactly where we wanted him. Good start!

From there, things went south. I got off the reshackle, but Moroes decided that my reign of terror should come to an end and one shotted me. Needless to say, my shackle was free and contributing to the raid's demise. A wipe was called, and everyone ran out of the room to reset the boss.

After rezzes and buffs, we tried again. This time, my shackle was resisted right off the bat, but I quickly applied it again to incapacitate the mob. This time the fight didn't go as well; Moroes must have remembered me from last time, because he one shotted me again after the Vanish. A wipe was called.

We had time for two more tries. The next time looked a lot like the first and second tries. Kand made apologies due to having to leave after the third try. The raid tried to figure out why I was getting Moroes' attention, and they decided that some heavy duty healers were in order. Kand and I thanked everyone for allowing us the chance to be part of the raid and hearthed out.

So, a little Kara experience. /sigh....I need better gear.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Guild news

Well, Gerwintassle, our prodigal leader, has left again. This time, he left to help a real life friend start a guild. This is the same psycho friend that was GM of the initial guild that he, Mal, and I were part of.

I'm not optimistic about that guild's chances of survival. The GM, for some reason, just can't seem to hold it together. So, I'm sure Gerwin will be back, sooner or later.

I'm pretty disappointed, though. The Iron Ring is starting to get some of the guildies to Outlands and a Ramparts run wasn't too far off. With Myk and Kat in Africa, evening Outlands instance runs are out of the question. Weekend runs can be put together if Myk jumps on his warrior as tank.

It's a bit frustrating to take the step back that results from Gerwin leaving, but on the plus side, I've gotten a burn to help people in the guild get gear/quests/xp to accelerate their push to Outlands. This help includes running people through lowbie instances (guildies only!) and escorting people through the Hellfire Penn quests. I know I said I didn't like doing that, but, jeez! it's lonely in Outlands.

So, anyways.....

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Dwarfvader makes his presence known

And Van Cleef and Arugal are dead because of it.

Saturday morning, Turion and DV were going to two man VC, but an acquaintance was on, so we invited him - a mage. And at the entrance there was a hunter and a shammy that wanted to join up. Sure, np. We were then officially overpowered for the instance, but what the hey!

Almost immediately I find out that the hunter has not been reading BRK and is, indeed, a huntard.

Growl left on? Check.

Pet on aggressive? Check.

Meleeing? Check.

Sending pet in BEFORE I go in? Check.

Rolling NEED on the Cruel Barb (one handed nice sword that DV needed) AFTER just getting the sweet +7 agility polearm? Check!

I was one steaming little dwarf. But, we easily downed Van Cleef, and we all went our merry way.

Later that evening, I was helping Turion with his Pally quest that sends him into SFK. We were going to two man it to the courtyard, but Kandiltu jumped on his priest and we three manned it.
Getting to the courtyard was pretty easy, and I got some good experience tanking. Kandilto got some good tips on healing. And Turion got his quest item. So, we stood around and figured we'd see how far we could get.

The butcher, no problem. Turion got the green blade from him.

The noble in the dining room, no problem. I forgot who got his mace.

Mr. Pally in the chapel, no problem. I got his sweet shield.

Odo, the blindwatcher, no problem. I forgot who got his belt.

Then, after the bridge, I d/c'd. Crap. It took about 5 minutes to reconnect, and in the mean time, Turion called it a night.

So, by the time I was back, it was just me and Kandilto. O....K.....We figured we'd see how far we could get. We did real well with pulling and didn't get in over our heads. Kandilto was able to shackle some of the mobs, so that helped out greatly.

Ferris (or whatever that big wolf's name is) went down pretty easily. And we took care of the VW's. Then, took care of the wolf master's dogs, but wiped on the wolfmaster. No problem, we were beat down from the dog fight (lol) and figured we'd be able to take him at full health/mana. Well, we were wrong. We wiped two more times; we just didn't have enough DPS to kill him before he summoned too many adds. So we called it a night.

On Sunday, we got another group together and cleared the instance. DV got the noble's ring and the Meteor Shard for loot!

Don't I look fancy!

Dax is about to be prancing about in his new clothes; he just hit 375 tailoring yesterday, and on Wednesday will make his last two pieces of Primal Mooncloth for the Primal Mooncloth Robe.

Let me tell you those last 5 points for tailoring can be nerve wracking. It takes approximately 120 netherweave and 12 Arcane Dust to make 6 Imbued netherweave bolts. Add 2 netherweb spider silk and a rune thread to make either a robe or a tunic and HOPE you get a skill point, as the recipe is yellow!

Dax was VERY lucky. First one gave a skill point. Next one, gave a skill point. Third one.....DIDN'T GIVE ANY POINTS!!!! OH NO, HERE WE GO, I'm going to make 10 million of these stupid things before I even reach 374!


/Send Rysteranch out for more netherweave.

Start again. Third one....GAVE a skill point! Yay, do a little Hamster Dance. Fourth one....GAVE a skill point. Woot! Jump up and down like a little school girl.

Fifth one......should I make you wait, you know, draw out the suspense and bury the result in a wall of text so that you have to read the whole thing before you find out whether or not I was successful. I don't know; I mean you are my faithful readers and I would be a sick Nut Job to alienate you like that. One the other hand, it would be wickedly funny....I'm not sure why, but I think it would be. Hmmmm, well, I guess I won't do that to you; you deserve better than that! After all, you put up with my shenanigans and what not. So, NO, I'm not going to do that!

Um, where was I? Oh, yeah! FIFTH ONE!!! GAVE A SKILL POINT!!!!!!!!!1!ELEVENTYONE!1 WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOT!!!!!! Just sit there and glory in being a 375 tailor.


Saturday, November 10, 2007

Details, not deheads....

Here's a little rundown of the Shadow Labs experience from last night.

Kandiltu was on tanking duty (he's a pally); we had another pally healing, a 'lock, a shadow priest, and Rysteranch, a hunter on DPS. Everyone in the group was level 70.

We decided to do a full clear, so we worked our way clockwise around the first room. Not much to report; I was on chain trapping duty, so I couldn't crank out the DPS that I would have liked to. About halfway through the room, we figured out that we didn't need the trap, but we stuck with it anyways.

Fast forward to the "Fun Time" room, and the first pull was one of the four armed instructers. Well, one of the groups of....erm.....worshipers(?) decided to come with her. Whoops, wipe. Thankfully, we all died in the room before, so nobody was stuck out of rez range. On a side note, the SP had an addon or a macro that said something funny every time he rezzed someone - I've gotta get that for Dax!

So, after we cleared the room, except for the ogre, we buffed up, sucked it up, and engaged the boss that I think is the hardest in the instance - Blackheart the Inciter. Everyone ended up dying, except Kand and the healer. I ran back to help out and got there just as the ogre died, and Kand died shortly thereafter. There was much loling, high fives, and rezzing.

We wiped once on Vorpil because the SP was not sure of the tanking strategy. The first time, the strat was to go south, then north, then south again with the teleports as the delimiter for changing the direction.

The next try, we switched the strat to go North first, then alternate. This strat worked much better, first because everyone was on the same page, and second because the void walkers were all stuck back in the hall after the teleport. We killed him after the first teleport! I'll definitely have to rememeber this strat the next time I'm in there.

We then proceeded to wipe on the next pull. Kand pulled the first two guys, but for some reason, the next 4 pack came running as well. No problem, we'll just die. After that, the trash came in manageable groups of 4, and we smoked 'em. Well, ok, truth be told, I died a couple of times due to resisted traps or trap cooldowns, but I didn't break my own trap, so I count it as a win!

Murmur......I am so grateful he's at half health for this fight. Of course, Blizzard could have just filled up his health bar with his current hit points, meh. Anyways, everyone got reminders of pulling back pets on the arcane explosion and spreading out. Well, I forgot to pull back PuddyTat and on the second arcane explosion, he was dead. Bad for us, no Ferocious Inspiration for the extra damage. We gave it a valiant try, but we succumbed to death's grasp.

The second try we remembered to pull back our pets on the AOE's, and Murmur went down like a dawg! Got my sonic spear (sorry BRK).

Then we wrapped up the run by killing the Kara key frag elemental and congratulated each other on a good run! One frag down, two to go (and a little BM run).

BRK's gonna be mad....

Just a short post. Rysteranch made his first official visit to Shadow Labs and came away with three completed quests, a key frag for Kara, and.....yes.....Murmur dropped it......a SONIC SPEAR!!!! WOOOOOOOOOOT!!!! FIRST TRY!

/whisper: Don't tell BRK we got it on our first try. He'll send Hobbes after us and will probably resist our feign death.....

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

BM and I'm not talkin' bowel movements

Last night, Dax begged Neya to get on his uber warrior Trilogy and run Black Morass with him. Neya agreed! Wooooot for me!

Kandiltu, the Pally, was on also and was willing to go as well. We were joined by MSN, warlock, and Brolean (or something like that), hunter.

To tell you something about Trilogy's tanking abilities, you should know he on the Kara farm team for his guild and regularly goes and sees Gruul (and kills him). I believe he is solidly T3 gear with some T4 stuff thrown in (sheer speculation on my part). So, how many times did I pull aggro? 3.

1. I was running around with the group before the big event, clearing stuff, and aggroed a stealthed panther. I brought said kitty to the group which promptly snuffed it.

2. I was merrily healing away at some portal, and the boss decides he likes me. Before he can take a step toward me, Tril has him focused back on the nasty tank, and he forgets all about me.

3. Some whelp thought I'd be tasty - Faded and didn't hear from him again.

That was it. 18 portals, and I only drew aggro 3 times. Now THAT was nice!

My healing technique for this instance is becoming my preferred technique:
1. Frisbee the tank and keep a Renew on him. Anytime the frisbee jumps to a toon that's not getting hit, I throw it back to the tank. This kept a good deal of aggro on the tank and saved me some big heals.

2. Renew everyone else when they start taking damage. We had an off tank in Kandiltu, so I had to watch both him and Tril for spike damage. But for everyone else, I don't believe I had to throw a Greater Heal their way during the fights.

3. For this fight, I drank after every portal and didn't run OOM. I threw out my shadow fiend on the last boss and drank a pot just to make sure I didn't run out, but I never really was in danger of going OOM.

No phat lewtz to speak of, but I did get some sort of large shard. Oh, yeah, and I got a key.

The key.

To Karazhan.


Thursday, November 1, 2007

Headless Horseman dies again....and again....and again....

Sorry I didn't post this yesterday, uh insert flimsy excuse here.

So, on Tuesday, a friend whispered me and asked if Rysteranch could help out on the HHM. Well, I'd never done the holiday event, so I said SURE!

The group was trying to THREE man him with no success, so more DPS was needed. Luckily, that's what my hunter can provide (and quite a bit at that). So, we summoned the dude and wiped.

The adds are a problem on the third cycle of killing the head, and it seems that if the group doesn't get the job done on that cycle, that the wipe occurs. One of my problems was finding the head to DPS it, but the rogue said to target off his target and things would be much better. So I did. And they were. HHM went down like a big dawg. And again. And again.

Three times in a row we killed him, and everyone but me passed on the epic flying brooms. I started to feel guilty, but they all assured me that they had brooms out the whazoo. Cool. I also got a nice sta/att ring.

Then, later in the evening, Dax went with a pickup group. We struggled a bit, but downed him twice before people had to go. Dax got a broom and a nice healing ring.

Fun times! Last night was too laggy to try anything, so I just went to bed.