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Posts with tag raid

Why raiders and multiboxers are overestimated

Do you want to raid Do you multibox
Recently, Blizzard Lead Systems Designer Greg "Ghostcrawler" Street tweeted the following:
This was something of a surprising tweet. Now, of course, there are several subjective notions in there, but it merits some discussion nonetheless. Firstly, what is considered the forum posting or tweeting community? It seems that this would simply be those who regularly contribute to either of those venues, putting it simply, and indeed those with whom he is in regular contact. Do you consider yourself part of either community? And why does that community overestimate the number of people raiding or multiboxing, if they do at all?

Confirmation Bias

Confirmation bias is a cognitive science term, that describes a human tendency to search for, remember or interpret information in such a way that it confirms one's own preconceptions. A fine example of this is the "everybody thinks X" idea, which crops up a lot. If you believe that, for example, frost mages don't have enough burst, you might seek out other opinions that support your own, and partly ignore the clamoring crowd who assert that frost mage burst is out of control. Confirmation bias is particularly prevalent on the internet, where it's almost always possible to find another opinion that supports your own.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion

The false memory of WoW's difficult past

The false memory of WoW past
Vanilla raiding was not mechanically more difficult than current raiding. In fact, in terms of encounter difficulty, raiding in World of Warcraft has never been as challenging to remember and execute as it is right now. Fights like Lei Shen, Twin Consorts, Iron Qon, and Durumu ask players to learn mechanics and execute awareness at a level rivaled only by fights like Mimiron's Firefighter mode. And I'm not even talking heroic difficulty for those fights. Yes, it was often harder to get 40 people together, I'm not disputing that. But that's not design difficulty, that's social difficulty. The argument that WoW was objectively harder back then is beyond absurd.

I was there for all of those raids. I've raided in vanilla, in BC, in Wrath, and in Cataclysm. I've done hard modes and heroic modes since they were introduced. I'm neither the cutting edge progression raider nor someone who raids occasionally for fun -- I've been everywhere from a raider pushing for realm firsts to one leading a semi-casual 10-man while tanking. One thing I can and will say with absolute certainty is this: every single expansion to World of Warcraft has increased the complexity of the raid design.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, The Burning Crusade, Wrath of the Lich King, Cataclysm, Mists of Pandaria

Depths of Uldaman: Why we should go back

Depths of Uldaman Why we should go back
I wrote a KYL this week talking about Uldaman, and one thing became clear to me very quickly - there's a ton of things we haven't done in Uldaman yet. We barely explore the place at all, really - the Map Room we find during the dungeon clearly shows many, many more buildings than the few we actually explore, and it's telling that the Reliquary dig and the Explorer's League digsite are half the length of the Badlands away from each other. Furthermore, the long Wrathion quest chain makes it clear that there was a lot going on in Uldaman - the Eye of the Watchers used to purify Wrathion's egg comes from Uldaman.

Uldaman is often referred to as one of three Titan cities along with Uldum and Ulduar, but unlike those two it has barely been explored due to its position buried beneath the Badlands. It's possible that the original Uldaman complex reaches as far as Khaz Modan (both Gnomeregan and Ironforge are settled by beings that would have traced their descent to Uldaman, and the troggs flooding into Gnomeregan are escaping from Titan vaults that are part of the Uldaman complex) which would mean that its size rivals the Storm Peaks Titan complexes that were part of the Forge of Wills inside Ulduar or the vast Uldum ruins.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, Lore, Mists of Pandaria

Ready to storm the Throne of Thunder

With patch 5.2 around the horizon, one of the things I've noticed in my guild is the energizing effect of the incoming content. Our flagging interest has been restored - we're even killing new heroic bosses that we hadn't gotten around to with recent events getting in the way. If there was an opposite to a sensation of impending doom, patch 5.2 has it in spades. An impending sense of hope and optimism? Whatever it is, it's real and I'm seeing it everywhere I turn.

Being the kind of person who usually flees from hope like a vampire flees from a subprime mortgage (they prefer to buy outright, those crafty vampires) I find this experience confusing, baffling, and a little worthy of study. I don't recall so much excitement for a patch in recent memory. So what's got everyone so excited about patch 5.2?

Dinosaur mounts.

Okay, there's more to it than that, or the dinomancers with their dinomancy (and yes, I would love to play a dinomancer) or the chance to wipe out the Zandalar once and for all, which as a Hero of the Zandalar Tribe I'm a little conflicted about. A lot more, actually. But those things certainly don't hurt.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, Lore, Mists of Pandaria

Oondasta has the best loot table in the entire universe

Therapsid Scale Gloves. With this one drop, Blizzard has found a way to get me to level my shaman again. This and much, much more have been found by the fine folks at Wowhead on the mighty Oondasta's loot table, much of which has similarly interesting names. There's the Overcompensating Chain of the Alpha Male, the Carnotaur Battlegloves, the Breastplate of the Iguanocolossus and more. There's also the Reins of the Cobalt Primordial Direhorn, for those of us who like riding in style.

If you know me, you know I love all things paleontological, but especially therapsids. I'm so excited that I would go camp Oondasta right now if I could. Well, okay, I would badger my guild to go camp him. So go over to Wowhead and check out the full list of Oondasta's goodies.


Mists of Pandaria is here! The level cap has been raised to 90, many players have returned to Azeroth, and pet battles are taking the world by storm. Keep an eye out for all of the latest news, and check out our comprehensive guide to Mists of Pandaria for everything you'll ever need to know.

Filed under: News items, Raiding, Mists of Pandaria

Patch 5.2 PTR: Primordius

Patch 52 PTR Primordius
Your raid will run into Primordius in the later stage of the Throne of Thunder. Poor Primordius seems to be a saurok of some sort. The Dungeon Journal indicates that this is the chamber where the mogu first created or modified them. Check out the Know Your Lore column that Matt Rossi wrote a while ago about the subject.

I always thought these guys were annoying. Now you've got another chance to put one of the main saurok fellas to rest for good. Expect to be overwhelmed the first few times you try this. It'll end up being a little confusing simply because of all the different abilities, buffs, and debuffs involved.

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Filed under: Raid Guides, Mists of Pandaria

Patch 5.2 PTR: Crushing the Council of Elders

Patch 52 PTR Crushing the Council of Elders

Thought you saw the last of Gara'jal in Mogushan Vaults, did you?

Yeah, so did I. Mogu'shan Vaults was merely a setback!

The Council of Elders is the third encounter in the Throne of Thunder. I surmise it's the whole leadership of the Troll empire right there looking to stop your raid team from progressing any further into the compound.

As you can guess, this encounter is the first council-type encounter of the raid. They'll have to handle the various abilities and spells that the Council is dishing out while slowly whittling them all down. They don't have a shared pool so you do you have your work cut out for you. Now there are going to be a ton of things going on but your raid should be able to pick up on the different abilities without too much of a hassle.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raid Guides, Mists of Pandaria

Patch 5.2 PTR: Durumu the Forgotten

Patch 52 PTR Durumu the Forgotten

I can't remember the last time I've fought a beholder. The earliest ones were seen during Burning Crusade right? The last time would've been on the prisons of Tol Barad. It's a giant eye which shoots laser beams and Durumu isn't an exception. I would have never guessed Lei-Shen would keep one of these around. This encounter specifically is going to stress on your raid's capabilities to think and move on their feet.

Anyone else hate fighting giant, floating eyes?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, Mists of Pandaria

Why would a top guild not use loot council?

Why would a top guild not use loot council
A blog post over at World of Matticus caught my eye earlier this week. It's called Why a World Top 10 Guild Doesn't use Loot Council and tells a short story of how our own Matt Low was surprised to find out that a top guild didn't use loot council. While interviewing a potential recruit for his guild Conquest, the applicant explained that his guild used DKP for loot distribution because loot council had proven too time consuming.

Matt goes on to conclude that if you're racing for a world first, you probably wouldn't want to waste your time distributing loot of all things. A fair point, seeing as top guilds often get kills within hours of each other.

I myself have never been in a world top 10 guild, but having been in several competitive US guilds I've seen my fair share of loot council and DKP. Regardless of the system my guild was using, we were always expected to make (and sometimes post) a list of our best-in-slot gear before the start of a tier. For DKP, this was to reduce the amount of surprises in bidding and help us all get an idea of who needed what before we snagged an upgrade. For the more common loot council, this let the council put together a master list to decide who should get what first. But which one was more efficient?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding

Patch 5.2 PTR: Meeting Megaera

Patch 52 PTR Meeting Megaera
Megaera is the fifth boss in the the new patch 5.2 raid instance Throne of Thunder. Some of the players who have witnessed this boss have deemed it "Magmaw 2.0". The story of Megaera is a tragic one. Lei Shen took a young cloud serpent, turned it into a multi-headed hydra, then stuffed it somewhere in the depths of Lei Shen's throne. She's actually not that far off from Tortos. Those two should hang out more often.

Anyway, have you ever heard of the Lernaean Hydra that Hercules killed as a part of his 12 Labors? Like the hydra in that story, when one of Megaera's head is destroyed, two more heads will then spawn in it's place. Her body takes damage that's equal to the head's maximum health.

Bad news? You can't seal off the heads when you kill one.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, Mists of Pandaria

Patch 5.2 PTR: Taunting Tortos

Patch 52 Taunting Tortos
Who would've guessed Lei Shen kept a pet tortoise in his caverns? This is one of the bosses available for testing in patch 5.2's Throne of Thunder raid. Tortos isn't an ordinary tortoise. It's a massive tortoise with a bunch of mini ones behind him. Naturally, what's a cavern without some bats around for good measure, right?

Out of all the encounters tested, this ranks high up there on the fun scale. How often do you get to punt turtle shells around?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, Mists of Pandaria

Patch 5.2 PTR: Shocking raid preview of Lei Shen

Patch 52 PTR 1 on 1 with Lei Shen
This is it.

This is the final battle of the Throne of Thunder (excluding Ra-Den, of course). It's just going to be you and your party against Lei Shen. I'm telling you, this guy has many different ways to fry your raid. I haven't taken on a boss this technically complex since lady Vashj or even Yogg-Saron. Lei Shen has multiple phases along with intermissions in between them.

Read on about the different ways you can wipe!

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, Mists of Pandaria

Patch 5.2 PTR: Jin'rokh and Lei Shen raid testing announced

Patch 52 PTR Jin'rokh and Lei Shen raid testing announced
We are in for a treat. The testing schedule Jin'rokh the Breaker and Lei Shen have been announced. Jin'rokh is currently the first boss of the instance while Lei Shen is the last boss. Not sure what the relation is between Jin'rokh the Breaker and Jin'rohk, The Great Apocalypse (if there is one). As always, your gear levels won't matter for the purposes of the PTR. What you're wearing will scale up accordingly to help with testing. Here's how to get into the Throne of Thunder. For previous bosses tested, you can check out Olivia's take on Horridon or my impressions of both Horridon and Iron Qon.

Raid Testing Schedule - January 25
On Friday, January 25, we will be testing two more raid encounters in the Throne of Thunder.

Each encounter should be available at approximately the listed times below for all Public Test Realms.

Jin'rokh the Breaker - 10 Player Normal
10:30 PST (13:30 EST, 19:30 CET)

Lei Shen - 10 Player Normal
16:00 PST (19:00 EST, 01:00 CET)

As always, this testing schedule is very fluid and subject to the realities of a beta environment. We might have to change the time of a testing session, change the boss being tested, or cancel a test entirely, due to bugs, server hardware issues, etc. This is particularly true for these early tests as we are still nailing down overall patch stability. Keep an eye on this forum for the latest information, and thank you in advance for testing and providing feedback.

Important Testing Notes

Q: How do I get into the raid zone?

A: At the northeastern edge of the swamp on the Thunder King's island, there is a Shado-Pan camp in a small cave. A sewer grate in this cave will take you directly to the zone-in point for the raid zone. (As more of the island unlocks, players will be able to access the main gate directly.)

Q: What gear do I use to test the raid?

A: As we did for Beta raid testing, we will be scaling players' gear inside the raid in order to facilitate testing. Gear will be scaled (up or down, as appropriate) to item Level 502 for the purposes of testing Normal modes.


Filed under: News items, Mists of Pandaria

Patch 5.2 PTR: Staring into the face of Iron Qon

Patch 52 PTR Staring into the face of Iron Qon
The first question that crossed my mind was is this guy pronounced Iron Con or Iron Chon? I think it's the latter, but I don't have a clue. Anyway, Iron Qon is one of the last few bosses in the Throne of Thunder before you can challenge the Thunder King himself.

After experiencing a few wipes, the current iteration of the boss abilities just seem overpowered. With any new boss, there's always that slight chance that we're not doing it correctly or that it's bugged. Usually, we assume that we're doing it wrong. But after repeated attempts and trying a myriad of assorted positions and strategies, nothing was working. We had a hard time putting a serious dent on that first flying quilen. The furthest we progressed was no less than 60% health.

Not exactly promising, right?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, Mists of Pandaria

Patch 5.2 PTR: The horror of raid boss Horridon

Patch 52 PTR The horror of Horridon
You know what's worse than fighting a giant dinosaur?

A giant dinosaur with cannons. I don't know what those Zandalari trolls have been up to, but they're outfitting these lovely and peaceful dinos with weapons of war with the aim of unleashing them on us. Are we just going to stand by and let them trample all over us? Nope! Not one bit!

Read on!

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, Mists of Pandaria

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