This public service announcement is brought to you by an angry tree.
If, like us, you are currently working on the Lich King encounter, you should be aware a of a few stealth changes that were made to the fight:
1. Raging spirits now spawn instantly. Yes, instantly. As in immediately after a target has been selected. As in while your tank may be silenced from a scream and can’t taunt the instantly active spirit.
2. There is more time in between transitions between the phases of the fight. (i.e. the stage takes longer to build; endless winter takes a bit longer to clear away).
And now I am going to rant a little bit.
My guild has been working, and making solid progress, on this fight for quite some time now. We have spent several raid nights exclusively working through the encounter and are damn close to snagging up a kill. To make a significant change to the mechanics of the fight this late into it having been released is bullshit. I’m sorry but we’ve been working this damn fight for 3 weeks now, we have LEARNED the thing and just needed to clean up our execution. And now it’s been changed.
But that’s not even my biggest gripe.
The change was made in stealth. No announcement. No Blue Post. It just happened.
We went into the fight last night in high spirits, with high hopes of walking out with a kill, only to wipe in phase two our first two pulls. The very first raging spirit killed 3 healers before the tank realized it was out loose, having expected the person with the spirit to bring it to him like normal. We wrote it off to something buggy occurring and came back. But the second pull the same exact thing happened. At this point, our raid had to acknowledge that it was clearly a stealth change to the encounter.
But our raid, which had a 1% wipe last week, were frustrated and thrown by the change. I mean, if we had read about it and gone in expecting it to happen, that is one thing. We could have said “ok, they changed this, let’s see what’s different”. But to have the fight changed in such a manner, after spending so much time on learning it, completely blindly was fucking frustrating. I was frustrated to the point of wanting to log out, or put my fist through my PC. I tried so hard not to yell at my raid, but my frustration was clearly apparent…and only fed the frustration of the raid. It, quite frankly, was poor leadership on my part. But for christ’s sake, I want this asshole dead, and my emotions and patience were not in check last night.
But after the raid had finished, and I had calmed down a bit, I realized my frustration was misplaced. I shouldn’t have been pissed at my raiders; I should have been properly pissed at Blizzard. Of our 9 pulls last night, at least 5 of them were lost to realizing the fight had changed and just trying to figure out the new mechanics. Hell one of them was lost going into phase 4 because the platform now takes 10 years to build and we had made our usual call of “burn LK” to push it into Phase 4, only to have valks pick people up on the transition…that didn’t happen when expected. Yea…at least now we know not to do that again.
Our one pull for the night we managed to push into phase 5, we were down at least 3 people from raging spirit spawn issues in phase 4…and had used all of our available battle rezzes (and we run with 5 druids!) and by this time people were just completely frazzled, with me leading that list. I mean sure, we had three pulls that were just complete shit that were completely on us. I’ll admit that. But the frustration that I felt, and I’m pretty sure a number of others felt, from having the encounter changed and going into it blind was there, and it tainted our raid.
And that isn’t even the end of my frustration!
Do you know why the encounter was changed?!
The conjecture from those on the official forums (because Blizzard still hasn’t said dick about it) is as such: people were abusing mechanics of the fight by having those targeted with a raging spirit SS’d, and those people would go kill themselves in the remorseless winter, thus preventing their spirit from spawning at all.
Ok…I get that you didn’t like the exploit, Blizzard. But there were about A MILLION BETTER WAYS TO FIX THE FUCKING PROBLEM! Ways that wouldn’t have been as detrimental to those still learning the encounter!
Here are a few: Have a raging spirit spawn from a person when they die, thus circumventing the exploit; or have the raging spirits spawn immediately, but not become immediately active, giving the tanks a little more grace in picking the adds up.
Hey! Those changes might not have had such a significant impact on people still LEGITIMATELY learning the fight! However, as it is, we get the one by which the raging spirit rampages about killing your healers before the tank has a chance to pick it up! AND IT WAS COMPLETELY UNEXPECTED! Any other change may have taken more programming, but it wouldn’t have so drastically have changed the encounter for those who have put in the time trying to learn it.
I find it grossly unfair to punish the whole for the poor actions of the few. And I think it is an extremely poor decision to have made this change, as it is currently on live, completely unannounced and this long after the fight has been active. We should have at a minimum been advised that the mechanics of the encounter had changed.
My only hope is that some polish is added to the change to make it a bit closer to what we’ve spent hours already learning. If not…well just hope and pray that you tank doesn’t have any latency issues and is on that spirit like stink on shit in the 1ish second they have to pick it up before it starts owning your raid.
At least on Sunday we won’t be blindsided.