Archive for the ‘raiding’ Category

Patch Notes 2.4.2: VOID REAVER FIXED, void reaver alarm FTW

Friday, April 25th, 2008

Void ReaverTHANK GOD! A patch is on its way. Official notes are up. And the biggest news of all, void reaver is fixed so that his arcane orbs produce combat log announcements.

This is so important. Here’s some background. Since patch 2.4 launched void reaver stopped announcing his orbs. He also stopped turning towards players whom he was targeting prior to launching an orb at them. Since you only have about 3 seconds after an orb launches to get out of 18yrd range from the orb’s detonation point, for guilds working on ssc, and just starting TK, this was the death knell of their t5 shoulder farming - my guild for instance. We were pretty good on void reaver’s 10minute timer, but, we were’t pulling it off if we lost 3 or 4 dps half-way through the long fight.

The key to taking down void reaver on EZ-mode is a little mod called void reaver alarm. It announces when and where the orbs are coming. It also gives a crystal clear display on a palyer’s ui showing exactly how far away they are from the future detonation point. Unfortunately, it only worked based on combat log announcements, which got all messed up in 2.4

To make a long story short, Void Reaver becomes a mechanical wuss again because combat log announcements for arcane orbs are coming with patch 2.4.2, allowing a void reaver alarm fix. Woot.

DORA bloggers recruiting, SSC/TK, open, A-PVP

Friday, March 14th, 2008

VR down

Hey, keep your eyes peeled for more than one blog entry today, as a recruiting thread is certainly somewhat self-serving. If you’re a regular reader who’s dared to venture off of the blog into the other sites in our web-family, you’ll realize that The Raider’s Progress is the blog arm of the Defenders of Raider Art, guild empire, largest, one of the oldest, most accumulated play-time, guild on the Demon Soul forums. We’ve got our original leadership wholly intact as well, cuz we keep da drama-pimp hand strong! Actually, it’s because we’re a community first and foremost, and an up-and-coming heavy hitting raid guild to boot.

Right now we’re looking for RAIDERS. In particular we need class diversity, shamans in any way, shape, or form, a kickin shadow priest, a nasty DPS warrior, etc.

We’re in SSC/TK. We killed void reaver on our first night on the second try. We’re retiring Gruul except for pick-ups and odd runs here and there. We have 3 active kara groups balanced between old-timers and ppl we are trying to gear up. But in particular we are looking for ppl post-gruul. If you’re one of these classes/specs mentioned you could be directly plugged into our core group.

8pm EST raid starts, Tue, Wed, Sat, (maybe moving the wed to thur.).

Mage Corner: How to Sheep

Friday, March 7th, 2008

Welcome to Mage Corner! Your first stop for all the news to print about mages of all shapes, specs, and sizes! I’d like to spend a little time each week in this section of our blog discussing different aspects of playing a mage, whether it be grinding up to 70, picking professions, theorycrafting your way to DPS dominance, or anything else a little Intellect may inspire! Enjoy!

Today’s Mage Corner is about an often overlooked skill for mages, but a skill that is extremely useful when mastered. What is it, you ask? How to sheep, of course! Now I know, I know, all you mages are saying, “What? Gimme a break - you don’t need to know anything special about sheeping, you nubzor.” But hear me out - there really is an art to it. The two problems mages run into when sheeping - sometimes without realizing it - are the following:

  • sheep getting broken and not resheeped in time, one-shotting three healers before the mob is resheeped, and…
  • sheeped mobs ending up in a troublesome location, often getting hit by an AoE slipup if they’re right in the middle of the fray, leading the situation back to point number one - broken sheep one-shotting healers before they get resheeped.

The easiest way around both of these problems is with smart macros and a well-setup interface.

UI Setup: I use Xperl for my UI, which among a ton of other useful settings, offers a wonderful focus target. I set up my focus target to the right of my actual target, and make him a little smaller. The main perk of having my focus target like this is that I get visual confirmation that he’s sheeped (by the little sheep image in his 3D target image screen that Xperl offers), and I can see his buffs/debuffs (like the sheep icon, or a rogue poison, which lets me know who to yell at.) Here’s a cut of just my toon target, my actual target, and my focus target:

Here’s a snapshot of the sheeping bars in action. The third bar over is my target’s target; in this case, our MT. My focused target, the sheep, is the fourth one over.

Here and here are two full size version of the screenshots those came from, so you can get a better feel for how it looks in full screen. I’m not insisting mages use my exact same UI setup (although noticehow clear and uncluttered it is? mmm…) - but whatever you choose to do with your UI setup, just make sure that you’ve got a nice, clear focus target window; it’s necessary for making full use of your macro, which brings us to….

Sheeping Macros:

Now for sheeping macros, it really depends on how kookie you want to get about it. The macro I love is in fact two macros, one to focus and one to sheep, but I like the confirmation that focusing your own sheep allows. It requires just a little more awareness when in the fray, but I think most semi-awake people can handle it, and it’s what I like. There are also hundreds of much more complex variations, which I offer you as well, so you can try both options and pick your fav.

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Mage Corner: Crunching the Numbers with Theorycraft-O-Matic

Tuesday, February 26th, 2008

Welcome to Mage Corner! Your first stop for all the news to print about mages of all shapes, specs, and sizes! I’d like to spend a little time each week in this section of our blog discussing different aspects of playing a mage, whether it be grinding up to 70, picking professions, theorycrafting your way to DPS dominance, or anything else a little Intellect may inspire! Enjoy!

While Scarpia was ranting/posting a week or two ago about Warcrafter, a new and newly popular character ranking tool, he brought up the raiding mages ultimate DPS number cruncher: Theorycraft-o-Matic. Theorycraft-o-Matic (TCoM) is an incredible number/spec/dps crunching tool designed by Lhivera on which you can import your toon’s stats from The Armory, and then get readouts of exactly what type of DPS you’d be doing depending on spec, rotation, buffs, and any other number of things. You can load multiple spec and subsequent DPS/spell rotation calculations side by side, and dare to compare for yourself as to which setup will lead to the highest performance in instances and raids.

Let’s get right to it - first thing you have to do is import your character from The Armory, and your relevant stats should pop right up. If your armory page has your toon captured with a blank slate as far as buffs are conserned, then feel free to select whatever buffs you’d like to see considered when calculating your DPS. Just be careful not to double up if you’ve already got a buff up on your armory page, or you won’t get accuratenumbers; if you logged out and still have AI up, don’t select it on TCoM, or it’ll be counted it twice and throw your numbers off.

Spec ListAfter you’ve got your buffs and stats all figured out, pick your spec. Now, TCoM only offers nine options for specs, but if you’re serious about raiding and you know what’s good for you (and your DPS…and your entire raid group…) you’ll be one of these specs anyways, so it’s no biggie. I’m
looking forward to doing a spec breakdown soon, but for now lets just leave it at this: if you’re past kara now and still raiding in a PoM/Pyro spec…you just just shouldn’t. Use TCoM to compare your numbers in the exact gear you have now, and you’ll see that even though your feel-good mana pool will be smaller and your base +dmg number will be smaller without Mind Mastery, but you’ll still pump out 200+ more DPS by being deep fire. If deep fire (a 10/47/3+1, although 10/44/3 is really the base) isn’t your thing, or if you’re so pro that you’re ready for an Icy Veins/Deep Fire Spec (2/47/11+1 - not as mana effecient as deep fire, slightly more DPS…), that’s ok. Deep frost is not as good as deep fire DPS-wise, but it can be an OK second choice for raids. Arcane specs? Only if you’re decked out in T5+ and have the stats to back it up, but even then, with the Lightning Capacitator and Mystical Skyfire Diamond nerfs, it’s not as great anymore. But please please please, don’t show up with PvP-wacky home-brewed hybrid specs for serious raids! They aren’t raiding specs for a reason…

Anyways, after you’ve selected your spec, you get a ton of numbers below your stats, breaking down what different spells and spell rotations do. Lets break each section down: (more…)

2.4 badge loot: better than t5

Saturday, February 23rd, 2008

warrior 2.4 badge reward chest

I’m just about toast with all the 2.4 patch notes. I remember back in the day when a patch would just land, and I’d be like, “WTF, why the two hour download.” And Voila! Black Temple arrives. What the hell is that? Heh. Such innocence, naievete…and now all that has changed thanks to you,the demanding readers. Thanks. Thanks, a lot. *scoff

One thing that I had overlooked considering the new patch was badge gear. The last set of badge gear to have landed was nothing special. There were a few interesting gaps filled for some classes, totems & idols, a dodge cloak, etc.. But the expensive 60 and 75 badge cost of the bigger new items made them unattractive compared to slightly worse kara drops. In retrospect, the reason for this has to do with timing. Most guilds are well into kara progression by now. Many have it on farm. The type of items that we saw in the 2.3 patch were waists, gloves, boots. For the most part, these are things that people have. People are drawn to spend badges on expensive items when they are key upgrades, not just incremental upgrades from already good kara loot.

Enter 2.4. Not only is the gear of solid t5 level, but more importantly, the types of gear will fill the gaps for most post-kara raiding players. The danger is that the gear is accompanied by weapons, which I have already heard 12 year old wowers freaking out about. DONT TAKE THE WEAPONS. They are amazing but 150 badges when people should be prioritizing the most key upgrades, namely chest pieces. And here is why.

As an example, how many warriors have you seen going into gruuls with everything purple except for their chest piece? A TON. The only great chest piece in kara is off of nightbane, probably the last boss your guild puts on farm. By the time nightbane is on farm you probably should be moving into 25 mans in a major way and easing off of kara stuff. The way the timing tends to work, warriors often end up getting shafted on chest pieces. Non-tailor clothies have a similar problem.

In addition to solving the awkward chest itemization problem, this gear also makes it possible to keep things moving in your raid progression. Honestly, this was most likely blizzard’s intention by creating chest piece badge rewards. The bosses that drop 25 man-worthy chest pieces are Mag, and Keal’thas (aka, the guild destroyer). Some guilds skip mag until they are well into SSC, other skip him entirely. T4 chest pieces are just not worth the amount of effort that it takes to farm this disproportionatley difficult boss. Then there is keal, who is supposedly so difficult that your guild will probably only kill him a few times before moving into Hyjal. Either way, a handful of your raid at best will see their t5 tokens. Badges now impinge upon that awkward difficulty to get good chests, and allow you to steam-roll past these bosses confidently.

So how good is good. Lets directly compare a few key loots with their t5 counterparts.
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