First-kills feel dang good, don’t they? We’ve had 8 bosses down in Ulduar so far, but we definitely want to get more keepers down and progress. Seeing new content is pretty exciting, even for casual scrubs like us!
On Saturday, we mowed through Flame Leviathan, XT-002 Deconstructor, Kologarn and Auriaya, all clean one-shots with no difficulties whatsoever. The only stressful moment was when one of our druid’s rez macro went haywire and she kept announcing midfight that she was rezzing me, then herself, then the other tank healer. Heart attack time! I wasn’t dead, was I? Hee. I was pretty pleased that I finally listened to Veneretio and re-bound Heroic Strike to mousewheel. 2.1k DPS on Kologarn, 25% done by Heroic Strike. It is weird to see Devastate up there. I decided to help melee DPS with sunders on XT’s heart, which led to 36% of my damage coming from Devastate that fight. It’s time to re-write my old tank priority chart to include the new and improved Devastate.
We then did Hodir, and had a heart-breaking 12% wipe killing our streak of one-shots. However, as we’re still struggling on him, that was already an accomplishment. Lots of people (including me being bounced around by an icicle like an idiot) got flash frozen, every single time someone got frozen, and I guess my lecture that people needed to step it up helped, because we all got the Cheese the Freeze achievements for no Flash Freeze victims. That kinda felt good as raid leader!
We had enough time for a couple of tries on Thorim. I was gauntlet tank, my partner tanked the arena as bear. From the start, it was easier than our first visit to him, with a lot less arena mobs from what I hear. Gauntlet tanking was fast-paced, and fun. On the try where I did the pep talk that we would first get him into phase 3, we actually did, which also felt good, after the wipefest of the previous raid. Unfortunately, people, including me, were getting tired, and I could feel it wouldn’t happen, at least not on Saturday.
On the second day, we always start with Razorscale as way of warmup, and what a warmup it was. We got A Quick Shave, getting her grounded permanently the second time she landed. Admittedly, she had just tossed us back when she hit the magic 50%, so it was indeed close! Also, I had amazing 73% avoidance in that fight, which is such a sweet thing to see. All my recent gear is very parry-heavy, so I have just about the same distribution for dodge and parry right now. Sweet!
Off we went to Thorim, and started with a misunderstanding in the gauntlet. The second time, we pulled it off flawlessly in the gauntlet, got him into phase 3, our gauntlet boomkin arrived just in time to battle-rez a healer, and we took Thorim down. Not that difficult once you survive phase 2. I think this will be a farm encounter soon.
We then headed to Freya, and I was really unprepared for the trash pulls. There is a lot of trash there, oy. After a few mispulls, we figured it out and soon made it to Freya. I was tanking Freya, and uber-pally was on adds. We had big trouble with the elementals waves who kept coming back. I think at one point we had three waves of adds up at the same time, it was that bad. The Detonating Lasher and the tree waves were no problem, but the elementals need some more work. Nevertheless, the team pulled it off and just as I died a second time on Freya, they brought her into phase 2. She got picked up by our paladin, and they killed her. It felt eerily familiar to the Icehowl kill, with me kissing the floor and the rest of the raid doing the job. It made this firstkill a bit bittersweet for me. I will elaborate more on this tomorrow, I think, today I want to be all happy and uplifted as I should be.
We’re extending our raid ID to get some shots at deeper Ulduar. We have four bosses left standing: Ignis, Mimiron, General Vezax and Yogg-Saron himself. It’s a tough decision to make. Extend the raid ID and risking little to no loot for the raid, or starting fresh, doing farm encounters and having the risk of having to call it before you can do new bosses. We would have had time for one or two tries on Mimiron yesterday, but that would have been it. Tough call. I might change my mind and remove the extended lockout again. Needs some discussing. General consensus seemed to be to extend it.
I’ve been excited about Cataclysm and 3.3 news. I think we’ll actually have cleared Ulduar by the time Icecrown drops, so the timing is great. I don’t know yet if I want to invest much time into the filler raid TotC, because the idea of the Faction Champions encounter is such a turn-off.
Overall, I am just super-proud of my guild this week. We’ve been to Ulduar five times now. Less than 30 hours total, and we’re 10/13 in Ulduar. We’re pretty damn good.