Saturday, 12 December 2009

2009 - The whole year in one single post!

Oooh.. this is starting to be like a bad television program. Aired in the early evening, when decent people don't watch yet. You know.. the hour between prime time and the end of later afternoon talkshows. It all started with a post on Righteous Orbs for me: the one where Tamarind does participate in another one of those not-quite-memes. Which still has me confused - being elderly and not well educated and thus having to look up new-fangled things like Meme.

But alas... it's a good idea for a post. I always wanted a BTD anyway and besides, the questions are quite nifty. I don't quite feel like tagging anyone, though - except for the druid who was killed last night in a live-lich king accident and thus didn't get the achievement. And she only gets a link if she asks for one, knowing she'd want her privacy respected and all.

What did you do in 2009 in WoW that you'd never done before?

Good start. Easy to answer as well. I actually tried healing an instance. Twice, as far as I remember. It has confirmed what I thought I'd known before: healing is hard, tanking is easy. I am still debating if I want to do it again. Maybe on my shaman? Apparently they have very few healing buttons - how hard can it be?

What was your favourite new place you visited?

This is difficult. I wanted to say "Northrend" first, but I think we got there before 2009, so it doesn't technically count. I think I'll cheat my way around this one: The place I found most impressive was the end of Black Temple. In particular the area just before Mother Shahraz. Some instances were really quite well designed. I also really enjoyed finally being able to defeat some old raid bosses that had forever eluded our guild: Tempest Keep, Serpentshrine Caverns and Mt. Hyjal in particular - the ones where we made progress but which we could never finish for lack of time.

What would you like to have in 2010 that you missed in 2009?

Fights that require more than one tank. I have to say that I loved A'lar back in Tempest Keep. Three platforms manned were safe enough - four would probably have been overkill. Two was just not enough. I don't want to push for fights like in the days of old, where about 23 tanks were required for the four horsemen, but I rolled a tank to tank - not to switch to DPS every second day.

What was your biggest achievement of the year?

I really would have liked to put "Obsidian Sanctum with three drakes - done properly" here. However, we're still not done and haven't managed to get enough people only to try for ages. I personally found that a very challenging fight - even more so as the adds tank than as anything else, really.
My replacement will have to be a silly "Flame Leviathan +4". It was better even than the glory of the hero reward. Even though... the letter was quite nice, so it'll come in a close second.

What was your biggest failure?

I never admit to mistakes. It detracts from the tanking business. I am invulnerable, invincible and perfect in all things, obviously. However, if you promise not to tell anyone, I might let you in on a little secret. The first Ulduar raiding group we joined was plagued by a bad choice of personalities. The raid leader had handpicked them for percieved ability in the time of old 25-man raids. Some did not live up to expectations, some just never got used to the new game that WotLK proved to be. Too many had personalities that did not handle repeated wiping well (me included). The raid group fell apart in the end - and I was looking forward to cancelled raids as it was better for my mental health.

I think the failure there was two-fold. Knowing the people involved I think we could have cost the raid less people by speaking up (Basically saying: the shamans DPS is total rubbish and the deathknight is performing way below his ability). If the raid leader had kicked those two, three more would have stayed around (me being one of them). The other option, of course, would have been to not be an idiot and actually work with the people involved. Help them not suck. I mean.. my deathknight was already better so it might have been possible - with a bit of diplomacy.

Ah well.. the difficulties of a social game. I'm just glad we stick to 10-man sometimes.

What did you get really, really excited about?

I'm dragging the same dead horse out into the light again, aren't I? I'd still say Obsidian Sanctum with three drakes up. It's such an awesome fight - the group we tried it with was perfect - we actually learnt and got better on each and every failure.

He still proved to be too hard for us. And is listed as the most lethal boss for me. I somehow had throught we'd got more attempts in. But damn, I am excited whenever I hear someone is willing to give it a new go.

What do you wish you'd done less of?

I'll let my anti-social streak shine through for once. I wish I had the heart to give up sooner and tell people they are crap. I tend to think they might actually take notice and try and change something - saving me and my group a load of unneccessary trouble. I somehow doubt it, though - and I would just come over as an ass.

What is your favourite WoW podcast or blog?

I don't have time to listen to podcasts - especially as I drive to work and can't listen there, unlike some people I know. My favourite blogs - after a bit of reading around - are still Egotistical Priest and Righteous Orbs. Really a shame Ego stopped writing a while ago.

I hope both of the authors will forgive me if I say that their blogs are content-light. I mostly read them because they are truly enjoyable to read. If I want serious game information I'll wade through the elitistjerks forums, not read blogposts (usually).

Tell us a valuable WoW lesson learnt in 2009!

I did learn that the social cohesion of a raid group is more important than percieved skill. Skill can be learnt - by practise, reading up or hints. If the people like each other they are willing to listen, though, and will work even on unusual suggestions. That is worth so much more than the ideal DPS at the start of the raid.

The most amazing thing we had was basically our "Mage of Crap DPS". Raid leader as well.. so he attempted to explain his lack of DPS with the added stress of marking targets and such. However - he has since progressed to the top of the DPS meters (with figures around 6k in a 10man environment - and we don't even have the magic damage increasing buff in our raid). I mean.. we'll still call him Crap DPS all day, but that has certainly changed.

All done (I think) - time to play! I will need to find a way to get my revenge on the stinky lich king.

Hit me for 876800 damage again, will you?

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