Sindragosa’s Fall, And 4.0 Class Impressions

As of late, I have been busy outside of all things WoW, reading Blink!, by Malcolm Gladwell.  Why do I bring this up?  Well a few reasons.  First of all, it is a REALLY good book.  It is about the power of snap judgements, and how you can learn to trust them, or distrust them.  That, of course, is a very important ability for raid leaders, and raiders in general.  But beyond WoW, it is an important skill to have outside of the game.  I highly recommend this book to anyone and everyone.

Last night was our first foray into ICC after the big 4.0 patch.  Everyone was nervous.  We started fresh.  I was being overly cautious, bringing three heals for the first part of icc, when we really only needed two.  After we downed Marrowgar after only one bone storm, we all realized this was ridiculously easy compared to before the patch.  So we stormed through the first 4 bosses in 25 minutes (not counting the heroic attempts on Saurfang).

And as you guys well know, we have been stuck at Sindragosa for some time now.  It has been frustrating for the whole team, for sure.  But with this fresh sense of confidence we all agreed to go straight for her, and just smack it to her.

After three attempts (two sub 5%, one 17% because of chained ice blocks from a DC), we were all really, really stoked.  But it was the end of our normal raid time.  We have east coasters that raid with us, and it was 1130 their time.  The unanimous response, however, was that everyone was sticking together until she hit the dirt.  So we tried one more time.

I have to say that this 4th attempt was…  less than spectacular.  Yet, reading Blink! put a new perspective on how I raid lead, and how I see and interpret the info coming to me, and how I see my raiders making their decisions.

We got her down to about 18% and then we hit our first big issue.  The tank was one shot.  At the same time, one of our healers were out of place, and we had a chained ice block.  That was our disc priest, who is one of our strongest healers.  With one tank down and a healer incapacitated, I was sure we were done for.

There have been several articles about Zen States around the blog o sphere.  That time when, no matter how chaotic things get, the situation is still perfectly peaceful and calm and clear.  Maybe, just maybe, even time seems to slow just a bit.  I recognized that I was in it, sitting in that iceblock.  My raid was on the verge of chaos, or victory.  And I saw snap judgements happening.

The remaining two healers were having issues keeping everyone alive.  Health pools were dipping lower and lower across the board.  I could tell that our (formerly tree) healer didn’t have a GCD to spare to get the second tank up.  If our tank died, it was going to spell the end of us.  I called for all DPS to switch to free the healer.  Once the healer was free, they could free me.  The healer helped get everyone back up, only to have…  Iceblocks chained again.  It hit the same healer (our disco) and another DPS.  So now we have 2 dps iceblocked, a healer iceblocked, and the druid just threw a Brez out to the tank, who was in serious danger of dying again because they were stretched to the limit.

Slowly, ever so slowly, I saw the battlefield start to reorganize itself and clean up.  I was freed, and I threw my LoH on the tank.  Then I went over and helped get the other healer out of the block.  Then the final dps.  We were down to 4%.  I saw everyone get excited, and I called for vent to stay clear, and everyone focus.  And 30 seconds later, with everyone doing their well practiced job….

Sindragosa fell to the ground, her frosty heart slain by our mighty swords.   And you know what is the kicker?  We couldn’t even use any of the loot off of her.  The icy bitch had one last hurrah to fuck with our raid.  BITE ME YOU SKANK!

We will finish clearing out the rest of the instance, and then Lich King will be next.  Boy how I have waited to sink my blade into his FACE.

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I’ve already given you my impressions for Ret Pallies, but I’d like to expand on that a little, specifically for Vespers.

WAY back in BC, if you were lucky enough to play a Ret pally during its LOLret phase, judgement and seals were…  less than refined.  Every time you judged, which should have been every 5-6 seconds, you would have to re apply your seal.  It became a lesson in carpal tunnel syndrome.  Judge, seal, then whatever….

Currently, I think that the Ret pally cycle is too dependent on that CS.  The rotation is CS – Filler – CS – Filler – CS – TV (or DS if you have 3+ mobs).

You see my complaint there?  Every other button press has to be CS.  If you are lucky enough to get a HP proc from one of our other abilities, then we can knock a CS and a filler off the board.  But then that really isn’t changing the rotation.

What I am getting at is it is FAR too spammy for my liking.  Dev’s have been against spamming, dialing back every single spec/spell combo that had to spam, yet here we are, doing the VERY definition of spamming.

I think it would be FAR more interesting to raise the cooldown of CS, and give us one or two more buttons to press (can we please have consecrate back, AT LEAST, so we don’t look like every other dammed melee class?), and up the % chance to proc off of those other skills.  Net DPS gain = 0, and maybe just a *smidge* more RNG, and we don’t have to get carpal tunnel syndrome mashing the same button repetitively.

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Priest:

I am LOVING holy.  I loved holy to begin with, but with chakra (which I thought would be a PAIN to track), it actually feels like I have a little bit MORE diversity.  I can go into Tank Chakra, Raid Chakra, or… well, I haven’t really figured out how to use Renew Chakra effectively.  And yes, I did take lightwell.   I even made a macro when laying it out, so that people will hopefully use it once or twice.  ITS A GOOD SPELL PEOPLE!  JUST CLICK IN THE DAMMED THING!

I also LOVE how shadow turned out.  I can have shadowy apparitions helping with movement, and orbs moving around my feet.  I love it.  It’s the most fun I have had with the spec in a long time.  And – I can sorta share gear with holy!  I don’t have to completely regear the priest just for shadow offspec to play and have fun.  I’m not looking to top the meters, only help out and not suck when I want to play around a little 🙂

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Baby Ele Shammy

My baby Shammy was lvl 39 when the changes came around.  She was suffering from really high cast times (2.5 seconds on primary spell?  Are you freaking kidding me?!?!).  But after the changes came…  I’m walking around chain pulling.  She *feels* a bit squishier – I have to heal at every pull or at the very least every other pull – but I don’t have to drink mana every pull.  Which is nice.

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DK Tank

Alright, I have been happy with the changes so far to my main toons… but this one… I can’t win em all, right?

I HATE the new rune system.  If you think about it, I was complaining back in the day, about not having enough runes to start the fight.  DND ate up 50% of the runes, and the other 50% was just spinning up diseases and spreading them around.  The rune system artificially punished the beginning of the fight.  With 4-5 seconds of down time, I was a sitting duck if anything happened.

And now it’s the reverse.  The beginning of the fight is great.  But runes cool down so slow that longer fights are punished.  DND, spin up diseases, do a strike or two to get some aggro, and…  I’m sitting.  For 5-7 seconds.  Long enough that I am fearing if I can hold aggro.  Long enough that *if* I get a rune cooled down, or IF ruinic empowerment procs a rune, I feel like I HAVE to mash that button, no matter the state of my diseases, no matter if its the WORST possible strike in the combo, totally wrecking the rotation, because I feel like I have been standing there FAR too long.  And tanks don’t like standing.  I think this needs to be tweaked.  Badly.  I will try him in ICC tonight, but I’m a bit apprehensive as to if I can hold aggro on longer fights, especially with everyone’s dps so freaking high.

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And apparently there is a bug where projected textures sometimes show, but most of the time don’t.  Its annoying.  Please fix this.

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Oh Yeah.  And happy birthday to me 🙂

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Comments
2 Responses to “Sindragosa’s Fall, And 4.0 Class Impressions”
  1. Julie says:

    And happy birthday to you too! Agree with you about the DK tank rotation, too.

  2. vespers says:

    I was not ‘lucky’ enough to play in the lolret days (as opposed to retlol as I happily call myself now! :P), I am a wrath baby. And I see the complaint; hell, I agree with it. I don’t like spammy crap either. When GC first posted about what they had in mind for ret, what I saw in that post was nothing like what we got. I’m not happy with the rotation as is; what we had in wrath needed fixing but this ain’t fixed. It could have been, but then they added the hasted CS cooldown talent and broke the whole thing.. not that it wasn’t already broken, re: Zealotry and Hand of Light’s suckiness.

    I don’t think upping DP’s proc rate would solve the issue, though. 40% is already too high. Upping it would make our TV more random and spammy. What would help would be giving us something to make the class more skill-intensive or thinky, as opposed to it’s current highly *reactive* state.. like say, a debuff we actually have to think about applying to the target (as opposed to good ol’ Righteous Vengeance (which, by the way, I’ve heard suggested as a replacement for HoL as our mastery, which would be a decent idea) or Holy Vengeance/Censure, aka the ezmode dot) that makes another ability work/different/etc? Sure many other classes have that sort of ability, but that’s cos it is INTERESTING and it WORKS.

    Unfortunately, none of this is going to happen. We’re stuck with what we have; GC is not going to redesign our class again just because he didn’t get it right, this time.. even though pretty much every raiding ret agrees. It is too late.. we didn’t know enough about the design to complain loud enough in alpha/beta, we’re not going to get changed radically this close to release.

    You can help.. doesn’t work 100%, but it fixes the issue most of the time.. with the projected textures glitch by turning off the new ‘enhance my spell effects’ option… projected textures, even your own consecrate/DnD, seem to be way down the list of whatever algorithm that tickybox uses. Doesn’t matter for ret anyway.. we don’t have any really flashy spell effects in boss fights anymore, qq qq qq.

    My baby priest was 21 when the patch hit; she’s just pushed past 40. Shadow got a lot easier at low levels once they gave us the Facemelter at 10. I just dual-specced for holy and I’m liking it, can keep most of a dungeon run up with nothing but renew.

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