In other news! (A random updates post.)
After an afternoon of frantic, don’t-you-dare-respawn-on-us-now-you-interminable-trash-mobs (/shakesfist!) style attempts on General Vezax, only Yogg-Saron remains in Ulduar 10.
I’m sure this will change as our raid gears up, but as things currently stand, General Vezax is a fun fight for healers. If you haven’t encountered him yet, Vezax (Insect or crustacean? You decide!) has an aura that negates virtually all mana regen. My water shield, mana totems and even mp5 are rendered utterly useless on this fight. The only way to recover mana is to stand in little pools of The Bad®, which function a little like a stacking AoE Life Tap in that they restore mana at the cost of health. Raid healing becomes a delicate balance between mana conservation and careful coordination among healers (whose turn is it to the regen?, who is watching the tank?, and who can quickly shift focus to cover roles if the active healer is knocked out of range by a Shadow Crash or forced to run out by a Mark of the Faceless?).
Still, I have to admit: once the euphoria faded, I was a little disappointed. Defeating General Vezax may well have been a raiding zen moment, but we blew through everything preceding him so quickly that there was little to differentiate the bosses from the trash mobs (other than an abundance of spellpower leather we couldn’t use. WTB tree druid or critchicken, PST.)
Even eschewing hard modes as we were, it seems like it should take more than five hours from start to finish to clear 12 bosses in a brand new raid instance — including a first kill on the second-to-last boss of the tier.
Ah, well. The Blues tell us that the glory days of TBC and vanilla WoW are well and truly over. Sooner or later, I suppose I’ll have to stop longing for another Lady Vashj and simply come to terms with accessible being just another a synonym for pushover.
For the record, I don’t think that makes me an “elitist.” I think it makes me someone who started playing one game, and now feels like she’s playing another game entirely — and isn’t quite sure that she likes it.
Thankfully, our last two Ulduar 25 raids have been much improved — not merely in terms of focus and performance, but also (and more importantly) in atmosphere and attitude. We’re currently working on Mimiron, our last obstacle before heroic General Vezax.
Thorim was actually a bit of a challenge for us. It took two Saturdays for us to figure out the right balance between DPS and CC in the gauntlet and add-management in the arena. Granted, Thorim wasn’t as hard as some of the TBC bosses that have me waxing positively nostalgic these days, but it was still nice to wipe on an encounter and have to invest some of our precious raid time in strategizing.
When this happens, our entire raid gets involved in the discussion, which is refreshing. Rather than have a raid leader call all of the shots (in his sexy, Canadian-accented voice), everyone contributes in some way — either through their respective role channels, or by offering feedback and suggestions over Vent or in raid chat. Thorim eventually clicked for us, and I’m expecting Mimiron to do the same this weekend.
It took a bit of time, but I managed to complete the Noblegarden meta-achievement for both of my level 80 characters. I also farmed up a pet rabbit for my druid alt, before remembering that she only collects birds (compulsive role-player, remember?), and a Tome of Polymorph Rabbit that my magelet can use in exactly 54 more levels.
As for Children’s Week … ugh.
I’ve never complained about a meta-achievement before — call me crazy, but I think a 310% mount should be rare! — but … someone needs to pull a Dalaran on the School of Hard Knocks. Only with more smoking crater, less Les Mis castle in the clouds. >.< Seriously. I would rather suffer through another RNG-ridden, love-me, love-me-not style quest like Be Mine! than run battleground after battleground with zero resilience and an unhealthy mix of achievement hounds and dedicated PvPers (with mutually exclusive goals and testosterone to burn).
I finally managed to win the minigame that is Click! Faster!, so Elleiras could be a Matron if she so chose — to her abject horror.
Also, I feel compelled to point out that I was an orphan for the first four months of my life, so if I want to joke about setting some Orcish-shaped pixels on fire, I should be able to without feeling guilty about it.
… Of course, the fact that I’m the only one who has attempted to make me feel guilty for an obviously tongue-in-cheek post hints that I might not be the lock4life I thought I was. /sadface
Clearly, I’m going to have to go abuse some mages to compensate.