Archive for the ‘Crusader's Coliseum’ Category

Setting Raid Goals Redux (working ToC into your schedule!)   2 comments

A new zone, new things to kill, new shinies to be had by all!  And the same amount of time in your raid week to accomplish everything…argh.  The majority of people are not likely to be in a position where they can completely drop Ulduar from their raid schedule just yet, so how do you cram everything in?

While I don’t have the perfect answer for that, I can provide some food for thought, suggestions and how we intend to approach the content as we wait for Ice Crown.

As always there should be a few points that you should consider when setting your goals:

  • What do you want to accomplish as a guild;
  • How much time do you have to devote to your goals each week;
  • Is there a specific goal (i.e. crafting a legendary) that will keep you in a zone longer than anticipated;
  • What is your guild’s wipe tolerance;
  • What can your guild accomplish – be realistic!
  • Keep things fun.

Read the rest of this entry »

Getting Grid Ready for Crusader’s Coliseum Week 5 – Anub’arak   1 comment

Tomorrow will be the final week of normal mode crusader’s coliseum, and with it comes the final encounter for the zone, Anub’arak.  As soon as you have defeated this encounter you will have the opportunity to pursue the hard modes for the zone (I am not 100% certain that they open this week, but fairly sure).  So…let’s talk a bit about defeating the big bug!

Firstly, let me direct you over to this tankspot post.  Again Spiritus has put together his thoughts on the encounter and has linked a good video for viewing.  I would recommend that everyone head over there and read what he has to say.  Additionally, there is this video of the encounter from the PTR. 

Getting Grid Set Up

From what I can tell, there doesn’t appear to be a whole lot that you will actually need to add to GRID for this encounter.  Here is what I will probably add:

  • Leeching Swarm– This is an ability that will put a “swarm” (aka DoT) on the caster’s enemies that will leeching 20% of each target’s current health every 1 second.  It has a 1.5 second cast.  As the entire raid will be affected by this ability you may not want to add it to GRID.
    • Note that the entire raid will get this debuff and it is a percentage of your current health (but at least 250 life), so the entire raid will be hit with this debuff.
    • This also likely means that you will want to make sure that you are focusing on your MT/OTs with raid healers just keeping people with enough life that they don’t die.
      • It is actually not benefical to keep anyone but tanks at full life as the more life the raid has, the more life is leeched.  Just strive to keep your raid at about 50% health through this phase.
    • You will also need to make sure that your raid healers pay very close attention to those with permafrost, as it will be extremely important these folks get heals.
  • Penetrating Cold– This an ability that is cast by Anub’arak (I think) that will put up a DoT on random raid member throughout the encounter.  This will need to be healed through.
    • It will become increasingly important to know who is affected with this DoT as you enter phase 3, as there will already be a lot of damage that is going around that will need to be healed through.
    • If you added Leeching Swarm to GRID, make sure that this ability has a higher priority, so that the Leeching Swarm won’t show over it.
  • Unknown – There is a stacking debuff that the burrowers will be putting on your off tanks.  As of the time of this post, I do not know what this debuff is called, however it is something that I will be adding to my GRID once I learn the spell name.  As such, I would recommend that everyone add it in 🙂

A Few Notes for Healers

  • It is reported that Anub’arak dish out some beefy hits on your tank.  It will be important that tank healers are prepared for big spikes on the tank.
  • Similar to the worms, it is reported that there is a frontal cone ability that Anub’arak casts.  Be sure that when you are positioning yourself you do not stand behind the tank.
  • The burrowers that spawn will put a stacking debuff on your tanks that will cause additional physical damage to their target.  (At this time, I do not know what this debuff is called.  I will update as I find out).  Healers will need to be ready for this as the OTs will require extra heals while these adds are up.
  • Phase 3 will be a lot of healing.  Be sure that you have done what you can to get your mana set prior  to engaging phase 3.  Be sure that you use your innervates/shadow fiends early enough in the fight that they will be available to you again for phase 3.

As we go in and I have some experiences with the encounter, I will be sure to update what I find!  As always, if you encounter something that you feel will be helpful, please do not hesitate to let me know.

Good Luck and Have Fun!

Posted August 31, 2009 by Beruthiel in Crusader's Coliseum

Exploring The Crusader Coliseum’s Hard Mode Lock Out   Leave a comment

Daelo has provided us with some clarification on how the hard modes in the Trial of the Grand Crusader are going to work.  Per his explanation you will start your raid week with 50 total attempts at the content.  He then goes on to further clarify that those 50 attempts will carry over from one boss to the next.  As such, if it takes you 25 attempts on one boss, and 10 on another boss, you will only have 15 attempts remaining for any of the following encounters.

I find this to be very interesting, and I’m not entirely sure exactly how I feel about it just yet.  Let’s explore it a little bit, shall we? Read the rest of this entry »

Posted August 27, 2009 by Beruthiel in Crusader's Coliseum, Hard Modes

Getting Grid Ready for Crusader’s Coliseum Week 4 – Twin Valkyrs   2 comments

For three weeks we have been challenged by new content in the Crusader’s Coliseum.  As we approach week 4, it is time to start thinking about how to prepare for our newest challenge:  The Twin Valkyrs.  This fight looks to be quite interesting and fun, and I am looking forward to it very much!

Spiritus over at tank spot has again done an analysis of how he thinks the encounter is going to work.  There is also a very good video of the 10 man version embeded in his link that is work watching.  I have also uncovered this video of the encounter that is worth a viewing.

Getting GRID Ready

There are a few abilities that should be considered bring added to GRID to assist with tracking what is happening with the encounter (please keep in mind that at this point, this is mostly speculation, and that you may need to update or make changes based on your own experiences with the encounter):

  • Touch of Darkness – Will cause damage to the affected player and those around him (speculated) under the effect of Light Essence.
    • Light Essence will absorb light essence and deal bonus damage to dark targets.
      • You may want to track this so that you know who may potentially be taking extra damage from Touch of Darkness.  This may end up being information overload, however, and you may not want to see all this information.
  • Touch of Light – Will cause damage to the affected player and those around him (speculated) under the effect of Dark Essence.
    • Dark Essence – Will absorb Dark Damage and deal bonus damage to light targets.
      • Like the Light Essence, you may want to track this so that you know who may potentially be taking extra damage from Touch of Light.  This may end up being information overload, however, and you may not want to see all this information.
  • Twin Spike– I am not entirely certain if this will be a debuff on the tank, or a buff on the mob.  I will be adding it to my GRID on the first night just to be safe, as if it is a debuff on the tank, it will be important to know.  However, I do suspect that this will be a buff to the mob.
  • Empowered Darkness and Empowered Light – You may want to consider adding these to Grid to know who has what debuffs, although it looks like players are visually marked on their characters to reflect this.  I suspect that it will be more information than you need to see in your UI, and I will probably not be adding it to my GRID…however if I do, I will add it as a corner box.

A Few Notes of Import for Healers

There looks to be a few things that healers are going to want to be aware of throughout the course of the encounter, as extra healing will be required:

  • Power of the Twins – This buff will increase the damage dealt by 30% and allow the twins to dual wield for 15 seconds.
    • What this means as a healer is that your tank will not only be getting hit harder, but with more frequency.  You will want to make sure that you are aware of this buff so that you can boost the healing that you are doing to your tank.  You may also want to rotate tank/healer cooldowns for this.
  • Dark Vortex and Light Vortex – Will cause ~6000 damage every second for 5 seconds
    • The raid should be “attuning” themselves to avoid this damage, however healers should be ready to heal if a tick or so of this gets to anyone in the raid.
  • Surge of Darkness and Surge of Light – Will cause 1500 damage every 2 seconds to dark/light enemies.
    • While most of this should be mitigated via interrupts (I think!), be ready for someone to be slow and need some extra healing.
  • Unleashed Dark and Unleashed Light –  Will cause ~13000 damage to enemies within 8 yeards.
    • Tanks and healers may want to rotate cooldowns for this as it happens.  Raid healers should be ready to top off the melee after this ability is used.
  • Twin Spike – Will cause 100% weapon damage and increase damage taken by 20% for 15 seconds.
    • Another ability that healers will want to be aware of, and perhaps use cooldowns to help make healing a bit easier.

I hope that this is helpful for everyone that is facing this encounter over the next few days.  I will update this post with any changes, thoughts or suggestions that I have after I have some first hand experience 🙂

Have Fun and Good Luck!

Getting Grid Ready for Week 3 Crusader’s Coliseum – Faction Champions   4 comments

Oh boy!  This one is a doosey!  You hate PvP?  You hated that third boss in Magister’s Terrace?  That will be your tough luck, unfortunately!  The third boss in the Crusader’s Coliseum appears to be a flat out arena event, in which you must use your team prowess to beat the other team.  There really isn’t a lot you can do to prepare for this, other than to think of a general strategy (i.e. Kill/CC healers first), and be ready to deal with any of the combinations that you are confronted with, as you will never receive the same combination two weeks in a row.  Each guild will need to find their stride and what works best for them.  We will probably run 7 healers (as that is what we took for Jaraxxus), and try to heal through the DPS while we take out the healers.  One key thing that will be extremely important is teamwork, and making sure that everyone works on their assigned target.

I did find a couple of videos on the Faction Champions encounter, but they will be of limited help in preparing for tomorrow.  However, they are still worth taking a look at to see what happens during the fight.  The video in the second link shows the champions encounter towards the end of the video.

I will be focusing on the Horde NPCs, as I am a horde player, however the alliance do have their own set of mirrored NPCs as well.  Both sets of NPCs can be found here.  (Per my edit at the bottom, the NPCs listed currently are the ones that the alliance will face.  The Horde will face the mirrored alliance ones).

The Horde NPCs are as follows:

  • Death Knight –  Gorgrim Shadowcleave
  • Druid (Moon Chicken)  – Birna Stormhoof
  • Druid (Healer)  – Erin misthoof
  • Hunter Ruh’kah – with lion
  • Mage  – Ginselle Blightslinger
  • Paladin (healer) – Liandra Suncaller
  • Paladin (ret) – Malithas Brightblade
  • Priest (healer)  – Caiphus the Stern
  • Priest (shadow)  – Vivienne Blackwhisper
  • Rogue – Maz’dinah
  • Shaman (caster) – Thrakgar
  • Shaman (melee) – Broln Stouthorn 
  • Warlock – Harkzog – with felhunter
  • Warrior – Narrhok Steelbreaker

These NPCs appear to have all of the abilities that we have as players, and they use them.  They appear to be able to be contained by CC, however it would also be prudent to assume that they are equally effected by diminishing returns.  Tanks from the PTR have reported that they are “un-tankable”, meaning that they do not have a set agro table, however if their AI is similar to that in Magister’s Terrace, all of the pets are tauntable and tankable.  This is not confirmed, however, and everyone should give it a try as you are first matched up!

Also note that the NPCswill use all of the abilities given to them.  So yes, that healer that you are working down will likely receive a Hand of Protection as his life gets low.  That shadow priest may use dispersion to mitigate some of the damage she’s taking.  The shaman will bloodlust (it must be removed immediately!  Purge, Mass Dispel, Spell Steal).  The mage will sheep, and the warlock will likely banish.  You need to think outside of the box and be ready for anything.

So…the title says “Getting Grid Ready” for this mess.  Well, how in the heck are you supposed to do that?!?!  Easy!  Make sure that you have any and all debuffs set up to make sure you can see what is going on.  Some people may find it easier to use colors for all of this rather than raid icons, so that they only have to worry about “magic” “disease” “curse” etc.  However, it is going to be important that you are aware of how your team mates are afflicted!  Here is a non-exclusive list of potential maladies that I was able to think to add, I have highlighted some of what I feel may be the more important ones:

Ice Nova
Hammer of Justice
Ice Trap

Entangling Roots
Psychic Scream
Any Kind of Poison
Flame Shock
Shadow Word: Pain
Power Word: Shield
Sacred Shield

Curse of Tongues
Any kind of Disease

If you can think of anything that I have forgotten, or have any additional thoughts or ideas, please do not hesitate to let me know!  Remember to think unconventionally and creatively to deal with this encounter!

Good Luck Everyone and Have Fun!

edit!  So…I am a total noob (what else is new?) and the faction champions listed above are indeed the “Horde” champions.  What I failed, in grand fashion, to realize is that those are the champions that the alliance will be challenged with, not the horde 🙂  I will update the alliance champions to my list tomorrow!

Posted August 17, 2009 by Beruthiel in Crusader's Coliseum, Grid, PvP, Raiding, Strategy Planning

Getting Grid Ready for Week 2 Crusader’s Coliseum – Lord Jaraxxus   10 comments

Tomorrow the Coliseum will be opening up its second boss for its challengers to encounter.  This one is the fel warlock Lord Jaraxxus!  Similar to last week’s encounter there is very little information out there about the big guy.  However, I did unearth the following video of the encounter: Lord Jaraxxus Video.  The video itself is in German, however one of the guys over at Tank Spot did a cliff’s notes translation of the commentary so that you can read that to get a general idea of what is being said throughout the video.  There is also a fairly nice walkthrough of the video by Spiritus over at tankspot that is worth checking out.

EDIT:  I stumbled across another video today from a priest’s perspective, that is also worth watching to give you another feel for the encounter.

From the video, reading the commentary, and studying the abilities of Lord Jaraxxus, there are a few debuffs that are going to be important for healers to add to GRID before entering the Coliseum this Tuesday!

  • Incinerate Flesh– This is going to be a BIG one for healers to be able to track.  The debuff will go on any member of the raid and will “absorb the next 60K healing received and decrease damage dealt by 50% for 15 seconds.  If Incinerate Flesh is not removed before it expires it will cause a burning Inferno”.
    • What this means, as far as I read it, is that the target needs to receive more than 60k in healing (I do not think they will be taking damage during this time, but I’m not certain) over the 15 seconds to avoid spawning the burning inferno.
    • This means that you are going to need dedicated raid healers to drop bombs on this target every time Lord Jaraxxus casts the ability onto a member of your raid.
  • Fel Fireball– Inflicts fire damage and an additional fire DoT on the target for 5 seconds.
    • I am curious if this spell can be interuppted based on it’s cast time.  However if not, people will need to stay spread out, and this damage will need dedicated healers to handle the damage.
    • Note…this can be interuppted.
  • Leigon Flame– This will hit a target causing a ticking fire damage (I think), and this target will need to move away from the raid to kite their fire away.  Regardless of if extra heals are required, raid leaders will need to know who if afflicted with this debuff.
  • Touch of Jaraxxus and Curse of the Nether – Will inflict ~4,000 shadow damage for 12 seconds and cause nearby players to be effected by Curse of the Nether, which inflicts ~4500 shadow damage for 15 seconds.
    • I suspect that this can be, and will need to be, decursed from the afflicted target.   This will again require people to stay spread out so that this doesn’t bounce to nearby players.
  • Spinning Pain Spike and Spinning Spike– Leaps to an enemy, grabs them, and causes physical damage equal to a percentage of the target’s maximum health.
    • Again, another ability that is going to require raid healers to be on their game with fast heals.

* UPDATE:  From my experiences last nigt Incinerate Flesh and Fel Fireball showed up perfectly in GRID, which are the most important.  However, even though I set the others as debuffs, I did not get them to show in GRID.  I don’t know if he never cast the curses, or if I mispelled the debuffs, or the debuffs have unique and different names.  I will see if I can’t tweak it a little more and will update the post as I get them worked out.  Did anyone else have any luck with getting any of the other debuffs set up in GRID?

Good Luck and Have Fun!

Posted August 10, 2009 by Beruthiel in Crusader's Coliseum, Druid Healing, Grid, Raiding

Getting Grid Ready for Week 1 Crusader’s Coliseum   12 comments

After an hour or two of exploring the patch, we threw 10 people together and went into the 10 man version of the Cursader’s Coliseum. After a few pulls, we put everything together and netted a clean kill, with the trickiest part working out what to do with phase 2. I will likely do a write up after we see the 25 man tomorrow night, but honestly everything that you need is in the post Matticus did, and is linked in my post below.

I did, however, want to give you a quick heads up on what you may want to take care of in Grid before your first venture in to see the Northrend Beasts!

  • There is a GRID update, it’s not on curse as of the time of this post, but the most recent version can be found here.  It was updated roughly 5 or 6 days ago.  I downloaded this before our 10 man raid tonight, and had no noticble errors while running the instance and GRID worked perfectly, as far as I can tell.
    • As a side note, if you are a Deadly Boss Mods user, you can download the newest version (also not up on curse as of this post) here.  The site is slammed, so if it is down when you attempt to grab the download, just keep randomly checking it.
    • Another note for those of you that use X-Perl.  You will find that you have a ton of errors.  You can grab the update (you got it…not on curse yet!) here.
  • There are a few key debuffs that you will want to add into GRID for the first encounter in the Coliseum.  My preference is to have my debuffs shown as the center icon on GRID.  (Kae has done an  excellent walkthrough on adding debuffs to GRID, if you need assitance with adding debuffs). 
    • Impale – This will be a stacking debuff on your tanks that will do periodic damage on the tank during the Gormok portion of the encounter.
    • Burning Bile – This is a debuff that will be placed on members of the raid during the Acidmaw and Dreadscale portion of the encounter.  Not only will these people need some extra heal love, but non-healers will need to be aware of who has this debuff so that they can cleanse themselves of the paralytic poison!
    • Paralytic Toxin – This is a debuff that will be placed on members of the raid during the Acidmaw and Dreadscale portion of the encounter.  These people will also need a few extra heals, but it will be important to know who has this debuff so that they can pair up with a party member afflicted with Burning Bile to remove it.
    • As a side note, it may be beneficial to set up Arctic Breath as well, as those afflicted will need extra heals, however I did not try this tonight, so I do not know if it is worthwhile.

Hopefully that helps everyone just a little bit!  Good Luck and Happy Healing!

edit: This warning was just posted by Ice Dragon.  Do NOT visit curse at this time (none of my links above are to curse).  Apparently one of their banner ads has a keylogger in it.  Wait for an all clear before returning to curse.

edit 2:  Has anyone found an update for Bartender4 yet?

Posted August 4, 2009 by Beruthiel in Crusader's Coliseum, Druid Healing, Grid, Healing

How Matticus Saved My Sanity (aka Helpful Info on Northrend Beasts!)   5 comments

You all remember my panic from yesterday, right?  Well, since the patch hit today, I’ve decided to embrace it and take the bull by the horns.  I started searching for anything and everything that I could find regarding the first encounter in the coliseum, in my attempt to prepare for my raid to face the Northrend Beasts tomorrow night.  (If the servers are stable, I imagine Monolab will go into the 10 man for some exploration tonight).

I read through all of their abilities many times and started making notes on potential ways to deal with them, adding questions I had on what I read, and different things that might be worth attempting.  There is a surprisingly small amount of information on the encounters currently available, which makes the strategy planning part of the raid kinda fun, but puts my OCD self very much on edge.

And then I found this (spoiler warning, don’t click if you don’t wanna know).  If you have not discovered it yet, I would whole heartedly recommend trekking over and giving it a once over.  There is some wonderful information available, with healing advice, to give you a jumping point on the encounter, as well as a video of the encounter (which is rare!).  I certainly will be sharing it with our raiders before tomorrow night!

Dear Matticus, if you make it over to my small corner of the world, I would like to say thank you so much for putting the time and effort into putting the write up together.  You have no idea how much calmer I feel after having read your thoughts (and realizing that I was spot on in some of my thinking, and not so spot on in others!).

Good Luck Everyone as you enter the Coliseum!!!