This Savior of Azeroth is Exhausted   11 comments

If I had a theme song for this expansion, I’m pretty sure it would be Survivor. As we finally stop to catch our breath, I feel like I’ve just gone through nine rounds with Sugar Ray Robinson, and while he won by unanimous decision, I had the victory of being able to walk out of the ring at the end of the fight.

Raiding in Cataclysm has been an experience that has had many ups and downs for me, and as I sit here at the end of it all, I find that I don’t have as much to say about it as I thought I would. Don’t get me wrong, I definitely have a few things to say, but at the end of the day I find myself exhausted from the journey, and happy to be finished so that I can stop and rest a minute before charging into MoP. However, before I hang my gloves up for the off-season and go drink beer and shuck oysters (wtf…I don’t even LIKE oysters!), I thought I’d give a few of my thoughts on raiding this expansion.

The Biggest, Baddest, Hardest Boss of Cataclysm was Recruitment

Hands down, I think the thing that just about every guild struggled with was maintaining a roster of players capable of meeting their goals. Trying to recruit to keep up with the attrition, especially for a 25 man raid team, was a daunting task that unfortunately doesn’t look to be getting any easier as we move into the Mists. It was also the thing that killed more guilds than anything else, although I think that Heroic Rag is probably a close second for “guild killers” this expansion.

The Best Raid Tier Was…

For me, I think it was Tier 11. My only complaint with the tier was how long it was, and how little time we had to finish it out relative to its length. Ok, and maybe the over use of interrupt mechanics. But overall, I really enjoyed most of the encounters present in the tier and found the level of difficulty to flow pretty well. Even though I hated Ascendant Council with a passion, and wanted to shove a lightning bolt up Al’Akir’s ass, I found most of the encounters to be dynamic and interesting from both a healing perspective and a raid perspective.

The Worst Encounter This Expansion was…

Dude! Read like two posts ago! (I jest…) Heroic Spine of Deathwing, without a doubt. While I was frustrated with the pacing of the Heroic Ragnaros encounter, nothing compares to the tedium of the Heroic Spine encounter. Since I just posted on it, I won’t rehash everything outside of stating that I hope to never see an encounter designed like this again.

The State of Druid Healing at the End of the Cataclysm

At the end of the expansion, I’d probably grade us at a  B/B-. As our gear progressed we were a little less constrained with utilizing rejuv, but I still feel like it costs us more to have the output of both Holy Paladins and Priests, and that we were less effective, less efficient and had to work harder for the same results, all while bringing less to the table. However, being a druid at the start of T13 and working through T13 progression was often times painful and frustrating at best. It is my hope that as we see some changes moving forward that help to supplement our strengths without punishing us for them.

Killing Deathwing was…

A breath of fresh air. I know a lot of people indicate that they feel the encounter is somewhat unfulfilling, and to an extent I can agree with them and see where they are coming from, for me, however,  I was just so glad that we made it. I’m glad that, despite many struggles, I held in there and that the guild held in there and we pushed through to the end. In an expansion that almost killed us as a guild, we persevered, and I guess that what our victory meant to me was more important that the actual thrill of the kill. If that even makes sense. I’m just thankful that our team pulled together and that we have some down time and some extra time for “fun things” before Pandas take over the world. I’m really looking forward to that.

My Overall Thoughts of Dragon Soul

Unlike some other folks, I didn’t really mind the use of re-hashed scenery. I thought that most of the boss encounters were OK, but none of them were anything that will be retold in my WoW history as I recount my past glories.  I’d probably give it a B- if I had to grade it. Some of the zone is colored by non-raid related happenings that aren’t really the fault of the zone, but even setting that aside I just can’t think of one boss in the zone that felt like killing Illidan or C’thun or Princess Huhuran or Nefarian (either time).

An Observation of the expansion

I think I’ll conclude with one last observation. For me, everything about this expansion felt very rushed. I felt pushed into new content before I was ready. I felt that content came out too quickly for a large majority of the playerbase. I felt like I was moving on Blizzard’s seemingly rigid time table, which was disconcerting when it felt like a little more time was needed. And as we come upon a new expansion, with an unknown release date and a beta that hasn’t even started yet – I can’t help but ask “what was the rush?”. Would adding another month of T11 progression have been a bad thing? Would another month of Firelands have let more of those 6/7 guilds push into 7/7? Granted, I don’t know Blizzard’s reasoning for their time table, but sitting here at the finish line, I do believe that I would have preferred a little more time at the start of the race than at the end.

Regardless, I’m weary, glad for the rest and so very proud of our team!

Posted March 19, 2012 by Beruthiel in Achievements, Cataclysm!, Raiding

11 responses to “This Savior of Azeroth is Exhausted

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  1. The time table comment is an interesting one. I too felt rushed, we couldn’t get our 10man staff before DS was out (took us about a month more of clears), I believe it was only mathematically possible (if you had max drops every boss) to get the 10 man staff like a week or two before DS was out. But on the other hand, just before both T12 and T13 had come out we’d have a bunch of our not so dedicated raiders stop showing up, no longer interested in putting in time on heroic mode, and we had to struggle with even getting enough to fill the raid, much less make any progression progress.

    So maybe blizz had some insight with those “new kills stats” they so often referred to when discussing the reasons behind the content nerfs. If a large proportion of the raiding base was stalling out, they would have to feel the pressure to release the new content lest people leave wow for another game and maybe never come back.

    • I definitely felt rushed. I don’t know their reasoning and certainly didn’t have their stats. But I did find it interesting when Brade and I were talking last night about the 14 bosses being released at MoP launch – and observing that we got about the same amount of time for the 13 bosses in T11 as we did for the 7 in FL, and the 8 in DS (although, we are likely to end up with more itme in DS).

      I just hate feeling rushed, especially when a tier is so long!

  2. Congrats to your raid team Beru! <3 I agree with a lot of what you have to say here, especially about the "rushed" feeling.

  3. Congratulations for sticking with it! Ever since I read your post on being so tired of recruiting and leading a guild I’ve been hoping my GM/RL doesn’t feel like that… we haven’t had major issues with recruitment, but I can’t understand how he stayed so cheerful during those endless Rag and Spine wipes…

    Personally, I can’t wait to kill Madness (Spine went down last night, finally!). I need to relax for a while, otherwise I really see myself asking to become a social member. High-level raiding is fun, but God I hate those 4 hours raids that end past midnight. This (soon to be) Savior of Azeroth is looking forward to some nights with the Amazing Race instead of dragons :)

  4. I felt T11 content and speed was just right. For a casual raid group we got our Shattered World titles before the big nerfs came into play. T12 was a big disappointment in that respect. We did not manage to kill Raggy normal before Blizz decided to nerf it all to the ground, and even our subsequent progress to 6/7 just felt like we were marking time.
    By the time T13 started, we were overgeared for normal modes, something which has never happened in all the years I have been raiding. Facerolling the first 4 bosses in one evening was startling, and we got to kill Deathwing in only a few weeks. Even so, we had barely started killing heroic bosses before Blizz started once again with the nerfs, and to me the decision to nerf every single boss was such a poor decision. Does Morchok really need any sort of nerf, in normal mode or heroic?

    If Blizzard feel people were not making fast enough progress, then they should have looked at their awful loot system, at least in 10 man, because the ‘one Tier token + one other random loot drop’ is probably the worst reward system I have experienced to date. Also, in a Tier where legendary Rogue daggers are available, is there any justification for Deathwing dropping rogue daggers (and on one kill we had 2 of them drop, no kidding). People like loot rewards, and they don’t like nerfs. Let’s have more of the former and less of the latter come Pandaland. Filling half my slots with VP purchases is unfulfilling.

    Grats on your title! Only a few weeks ago you were in such a low place, I’m glad you have something in-game to be cheerful about.

    • Thanks! Things are definitely looking up :)

      As for the T11 content, part of the problem with it is that it was released during the holiday season, so you had to navigate life during Christmas and New Years, which ate up about a month of time. Additionally, if you were pushing heroic content, you had 26 bosses to kill, in the same amount of time you got for the 7/14 in Firelands. That is just a lot of content for such a short period of time. I can’t help bunt wonder if some of the guild burnout a lot of people saw was because there wasn’t a lot (or any in some cases) of down time between T11 and T12 for most folks. I remember killing Heroic Ascendant Council the Thursday before the next patch dropped and being relieved that we were able to “complete” the tier before Firelands.

  5. Congrats! Enjoy your down time and one night farms!

    I remember our first kill – ‘Oh thank god it’s over’ was said and many heads nodded in agreement.

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