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New ICC wing (Plagueworks) unlocks this week!

So, now that the holidays have finally come to an end (I’m flying back today – Monday the 4th), it is time to focus on Icecrown Citadel raiding again.

With the end of the holidays comes a new set of bosses. The total number of bosses in ICC is being increased by 3, as the Plagueworks wing opens “soon”! MMO-champion has a description of boss abilities, and loot lists for the new wing, with Rotface, Festergut, & Professor Putricide.

There are a couple resto pieces, and a couple moonkin pieces. How do you tell the difference? Well, moonkin pieces have crit, and the resto pieces have haste. However, moonkin may need some haste pieces, and once resto hits the haste cap, they can pick up crit pieces.

Now, if you are a resto druid that is really attached to one-hand weapons, there is a haste 1-hand mace (Lockjaw) that drops from 10-man Rotface…. so stop taking the moonkin crit weapon off Marrowgar! There is also  Trauma, a neat healing weapon with an interesting looking proc (but no crit OR haste), that comes from 25-man Rotface. There are haste pants that drop from Festergut 25-man which are good for resto druids. Rotface 10-man also has a haste necklace for resto druids. Putricide has a haste belt which should be a good upgrade for resto druids. At this point, my resto set is above the haste cap for resto druids, though I could definitely use some spellpower upgrades for some of my weaker pieces.

For moonkin, the leather drops from Rotface are both crit pieces (head & chest), though you would want to keep your T9 or T10 set bonuses if you can. This wing is definitely more exciting for resto than for moonkin – though there may will also be some good cloth +hit pieces that would be worthwhile, too. Moonkin could probably also use Putricide’s haste belt or one of the other haste pieces just to keep at (or above) the 400 haste rating soft-cap. There may also be other goodies that I missed in my scan of the loot lists. Graylo hasn’t yet posted his “best in slot” loot list yet. It’s likely that you’ll still need some stuff off the first wing of bosses still.

My guild had a slow couple weeks because of the holidays, but I’m ready to have some fun conquering content once things get back to normal this week! Good luck everyone!

Posted in Moonkin Balance DPS, Patch 3.3 WotLK, Restoration Healing Trees

TN Roundtable recording available now!

Hey guys, I ended up on the Twisted Nether Podcast Roundtable last week with Mike Schramm & Greyseer (and of course, Nib & Fim as usual).

The recording is now up, so if you missed it, you can now listen to the recording at your leisure. Think of it as an early Christmas present from us. :)  In the podcast, we talked about the 3.3 patch and stuff.

Here’s the link to the TN podcast post.

Enjoy & Merry Christmas Eve!

Posted in Druid - General, Patch 3.3 WotLK

The calm between storms

We had a fury of 3.3 information get released a couple weeks ago, but the “new” has just about run out with what has been released. I already see a ton of PUG pets running around. Most people have had a chance to see the new raid dungeons, or 5-mans (depending on their style of play). They haven’t yet released the new Arena season.

The “gating” in Icecrown Citadel means that there are gaps of time between PvE content releases for wings of the raid dungeon. This means that guilds have a limit on how much time they can spend in the raid if they are successful at taking down the first four bosses right now. Also, with hard modes not being released until after we kill Arthas, the guilds can’t work on hard modes, either. This slows down some of the information released, like boss kill strategies and such. Since the holidays are going to interrupt raid schedules for the next two weeks, the timing is actually good.

We’re also in the start of the holiday season where there will likely be fewer new announcements of content & class changes, and fewer days that people can spend raiding in the first place. The second wing of ICC won’t be released until after the holidays, since even developers and QA staff are likely allowed some holiday vacation time (they are human, afterall). We didn’t even have server maintenance today, so I’m pretty sure that the remaining 3.3 bug fixes will come slowly (keep jumping when you typhoon?).

It’s likely that things will pick up “soon” after the holidays, over the first couple months of the year. There should be big Starcraft things on the horizon that should have an impact on WoW (like the cross-server/cross-game chat they plan to implement). I haven’t been following the Starcraft stuff too much, since it’s actually not a style of game that I’m any good at, but I would expect the chat features to be implemented when SCII comes out, and not delayed until Cataclysm for WoW, so that when people are off playing SCII, you can ask them to log in for your WoW raids.

Cataclysm is the next big thing on the WoW horizon, and I expect to see Blues on the WoW forums starting to release more official information on the next expansion in the early part of next year. The hunter & warlock changes seem to be the biggest class changes, but I expect all the classes to undergo huge major talent tree changes.

“Gating” seems to mean that there’s a lot of hurry up & wait built into the game, which means that there is also a lot of feast or famine for bloggers like me, who rely on new & interesting things to be happening to fill post content. The new “gated not grindy” philosophy seems to have come into the game in terms of gating on boss releases so that we have to slow down and wait more, rather than being able to just push through all the new content. Having to wait to see Arthas also builds some artificial anticipation, which used to happen naturally when it took even the best guilds several weeks before they cleared through all the bosses.

I’m currently traveling to California to see my parents for the holidays. My mom and uncle play WOW, so we’ll maybe play on low level alts together (since I’m not on their server anymore). I spent all Monday either on airplanes or sitting in the airport (wishing for RL teleportation). My first plane got delayed 2 hours (meaning I missed my first connection and had to get rescheduled for less convenient flight times, delaying my arrival by at least 5 or 6 hours). All the east coast airports have been really bogged down with snow and stuff, so I’m lucky that I made it all in one day & didn’t have to sleep in an airport somewhere. Good luck to anyone else that has to fly out over the next couple days!

My guild plans to cut out our Thursday raiding night during the holiday weeks, since we don’t want to raid on Christmas Eve or New Years Eve. We actually still have 25 people signed up for Wednesday’s raid for this week, which is nice. We’ll still also have enough people to run the 10-man with at least one group (but I can’t do the Sunday raids while I’m with my family).

I plan to spend some of break working on my guides (especially my leveling guide).

So, enjoy your calm between storms, since things should be picking up again in the New Year.

Posted in Patch 3.3 WotLK

Sarufang 25 Strat for My Conspiracy guildies

So, my guild killed Sarufang fine with two 10-man groups over the weekend, but we never got a night of attempts last week because of disconnect problems and other things that pretty much wiped out the equivalent of a whole night of raiding.

So, today was our first attempt on 25-man. We had about 15 people standing at range (Ranged DPS & healers) and about 10 people in melee range (tanks & melee DPS).

We started out trying to do a standard “misdirect to the moonkin” strategy, which seemed to go horribly because the moonkin NEVER had aggro on anything. I’m not sure why, but most of the time, the adds just ran around all over the palace and was not as neat & organized as the strategy guides everywhere said it should be. Hunter’s Miss Direct to the kiting target should be using multishot (to get initial aggro on them) and distracting shot (for the focus target) the adds to the target. Rogues TOT can also be used to generate threat for the ranged group. However, using rogues is more risky because adds on the melee are bad.

So, we tried switching to this new strategy that I’m going to describe below. I’m going to say now that it’s not a conventional strategy, and that I usually NEVER write strategy guides. We also haven’t killed the boss yet with this, but I needed to draw pictures to explain what I was trying to say over vent.

Conspiracy’s Righteous Fury Strategy for 25-man Sarufang:

First, we have a healing paladin with Righteous Fury standing in the middle of the ranged groups. Then, we have ranged with knockbacks (moonkin, elemental shaman, mages) close enough to knock things back. With a line of hunter traps & earthbind totems to slow the mobs down, the mobs shouldn’t (in theory) reach the healing paladin all that often.

Here’s what the room setup looks like:

  • The room is sliced up into “pie pieces”.  Ranged is put into pairs of 2 people who stand on top of eachother.
  • Each pair of ranged/healers stands in their own pie piece and the pair stays > 12 yards away from other pairs as much as possible. You can move anywhere in your pie slice (forwards & back), but as much as possible, avoid moving into other people’s pie slices.
  • In the figure below, the Red is the boss & melee & tanks.
  • The Pink circles are where healers stand. The middle pink circle is where the RF pally Threat Target stands.
  • The green circles are where Ranged DPS with knockback stands, so they’re close to the RF pally target.
  • The blue circles are other DPS pairs, still close enough to reach the adds.

Pie_Slices

The Add Phases:

  • Pally healer with RF is the focus of threat generation, and only moves when he has to move to avoid the adds.
  • Melee & tanks stay on the boss & avoid using any AOE abilities when the adds are on the platform with them.
  • Ranged DPS needs to focus target off the person assigned to be the assist target. Ranged DPS needs to ONLY use single-target damage abilities, as otherwise you are pulling aggro off the intended targets. The adds are also resistant to AOE damage, so your AOE won’t do as much damage as your single-target spells do. You can also stun, root, or otherwise help with locking the adds in place so they aren’t running around.
  • Ranged DPS should make a focus macro or something if you need to. Here are helpful commands:

To set someone as the focus:
/focus Lissanna

To attack that person’s target the command is:

/Assist focus

Picture 2: Add focusing Picture

  • The Blue square in the middle is where all the frost traps & earthbind totems should be focused on slowing the adds.
  • The pink Circle is where the RF pally target will start. Hunters can Miss-direct to the pally target.
  • The green circle knockback groups can bounce things away from the pally target. They may need to (one at a time) move between the pally & the adds if their knockback is shorter ranged to target them, but then they need to move back to the green circles.

AddFocusing

I’m not recommending that every raid group try this, but it seems to be working better for us, and I wanted to write this out to make it easier for my guild & raid leaders & everyone else to “get”. We should (hopefully) have the boss down Thursday night & I’ll edit this with changes or adjustments we make as things go along. If you guys have suggestions, feel free to post comments.

Posted in Patch 3.3 WotLK, Uncategorized

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