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Hindsight is 12/12

Going into last Thursday night, our guild had been stuck on 11/12 normal 25 man raid bosses killed for about 2-3 weeks with only one massive, legless, pain in the you-know-what standing in the way from clearing 12/12 bosses. After getting closer and closer with each pull, we were still falling short. The clock struck 11 P.M.; raiding was supposed to be done for the night. As I was taking the long ghost flight back to my body, our raid leader told us we were going into overtime for one last pull.

If you haven’t fought Al’Akir, then let me explain it to you. Imagine the most frustrating experience you have ever had in WOW. Then change your normal quick death in that memory to a longer, slower one. Take that run back to your body and add about 30 more seconds of flight. Then add the knowledge that the rewards that await you are not even worth fighting for. This fight is a lot like the scene in Big Daddy with the kid tossing sticks at the roller skaters. You think all is fine and dandy, but before you know it you are slowly dying while spinning in midair, being stuck by lightning, and finally landing in an ice patch that takes away what ever amount of tiny HP you had left. Honestly, the fight is not the most difficult one I have done in my raiding time, however, one mess up can put you on a path of events that you cannot control, and at the end you are dead.

During our last pull, I took my eye off the prize for just a moment. I can’t recall what distracted me – probably my dog barking at me because he had to be let outside to relieve himself. As you can probably guess, I was thrown off the edge to my death. My lifeless corpse lay there watching as my guild took down Al’Akir and cleared the last hurdle before entering heroic progression (YAY!). After achievements were granted, the dead were raised and loot was handed out, (all garbage, or course), I found myself reflecting about our normal 25 man raiding experience. Here is what I came up with…

Stacking….”The new Taunt Swap” – If you go back to ICC you will recall that a large majority of the Boss fights required the MT and OT to taunt off each other to prevent death. Tanking bosses in ICC could have been done with one hand most of the time. All you had to do was watch a timer go down to zero, taunt, hit the boss, and then coast ’til your tanking partner took it back (I vividly remember eating a beef sammy while tanking through Saurfang and playing with one hand just hovering over my taunt button… you can call me bad, I call it hungry). This time around, it seems that the developers fell in love with the idea of raid stacking. Not only does every healer have some sort of heal that puts an AOE effect on the ground which gets maxed out when people are stacked, but there are plenty of mechanics where stacking in front of the boss with the MT is the right thing to do. I have to be honest, it is a little strange as a melee DPS to look a boss in the face when I am so used to staring at his ass.

WTB Better Loot Tables – Can someone please explain to me why there are about 100 different Plate DPS Leg drops across 12 bosses, and only one viable wrist? I don’t know how the rest of the classes are when it comes to loot distribution, but the overall variety is not very good. I appreciate that some slots have multiple stat variations for different classes and specs, but do I really need that many options for legs and no choice for bracers? I have never seen so much gear disenchanted this early in a raid. Seriously, go look at the loot table for Throne of the Four Winds and let me know if there is any usable gear in there. It is all trash.

Copy Cat – I am sure this is not a new thing, but this is the first time I have noticed it simply because I am in love with what the DK tier gear looks like this time around. I feel like tier gear for my class should be unique to only my class, and furthermore, it should be different in appearance from the non-tier gear available for my class. I find that some of the tier gear lost its “sex appeal” when they added tier gear for other classes and even non-tier drops that had the same exact skin or model as the tier gear. (DK Tier vs Drops) (Mage Tier vs Drops). I understand that a lot of work and time goes into developing everything for this game, but I don’t understand where the laziness comes from when it comes to this. I felt a small piece of my DK pride died when I was standing next to a Warrior who looked exactly like me. Oh well.

Raids caught the yoga craze – I love the new flex system they have put in place for raids this time around. I like how people can choose to go to 1 of 3 raids, and at the same time all be on the same level of progression. This was a change that needed to happen when they took away the ability to running a 25 man and a 10 man for the same raid in the same week. Unlike the majority, I applauded that change. The new flex system allows a raid team to be larger than 10 or 25 people because you can move people around to different raids depending on the week. This has been a huge factor in our guild and has allowed our leadership to work more people into our raids without having it lock them out of content. Also, the fact that these raids can be cleared in one 3-hour session makes the flexibility of raiding that much easier.

Here are a few more mentions of things not requiring a 5 paragraph explanation. (Thank goodness, right?)

New Loot Ship From ICC – Halfus Wyrmbreaker in BoT (Honestly, could have made the mini bosses in here do something other than die and drop epics?)

Hardest Trash – The elevator in BWD (People with parachutes, like myself, still find a way to die when trying to conquer the trip downstairs in BWD… How? Slowly float down on your parachute into the pit below with Onyxia waiting at the bottom and see what happens.)

Biggest Waste of Time – Tie between flying to BWD from the Blasted Lands and flying back from the graveyard in the Throne of the Four Winds (Yes, BWD is longer, but you only have to do it once. The flight to Throne from the graveyard is graveyard-to-dungeon trip in Cata, multiplied by the number of deaths – you do the math. Coming in third place is the Role Play before Atramedes in BWD; I liked it the first time, but come on!)

FPS Killer – Twilight Ascendant Council in BoT (I swear during phase 3 my computer starts to smoke up a little bit every time.)

Toughest Head Honcho – Nefarian in BWD (Close win over Al’Akir mostly because all of our kills on Nef have been messy and close to a wipe. When we killed Al’Akir, it was because the mechanics finally clicked and it was a very clean, easy kill. Except for me, obviously.)

Most Interesting Fight – Conclave of the Wind  in TotFW (So many things in this fight to manage and it is very unique. Video in-case you don’t know)

Most Annoying Fight – Al’Akir in TotFW (I have QQ’ed enough over this guy. I do find it strangely ironic, however, that he drops a boatload of legs for loot and yet he doesn’t have any legs of his own.)

Biggest Let Down – Cho’Gall in BoT (I was expecting a dogfight when it came to progressing through Cho’Gall… we one-shot him, and it wasn’t even close.)

Best Overall Raid – Black Wind Decent – (Well done overall. I like the variety of bosses in this place, and there is little to no trash. Also, BWD has more original fights then the rest. It was easily the most rewarding of all three when we finally cleared it.)

Thank you once again for taking the time out of your busy (who are we kidding your all avid WOW players you got nothing but time) lives. I really appreciate all of the feedback I have been getting so far and I hope it continues to come in. Once again, if you have any questions or comments please leave them below or you can e-mail me at DKTWSS@gmail.com. I am still looking for some people who want to get involved with the blog, I feel that more variety and different perspectives can and will make this site a whole lot better. Thanks again, and have a wonderful week.


  1. Tote
    March 10, 2011 at 7:19 am

    How disappointing to suddenly realize that Halfus is considered the new Lootship…. He is the only boss our guild has dropped to this moment

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