Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Appraiser in a volatile market

Now, many people have taken up the glyph market... I'm going to give a quick tutorial on how to use Appriaser to get the most profits possible each time you list.

You see, the problem with the glyph market is that it is BY FAR the most volatile market WoW has ever seen.

Glyphs, for the same materials cost, can vary in price, daily, from 50g down to 1-2g easily.

Now, the first thing you want to decide is what your ceiling price, and your basement prices will be.

Say you want your ceiling price to be 400g, and your basement price to go all the way down to 0.

Now, go in, and check your undercut options. For your "market price" you will be using a FIXED PRICE, so if you set that up to be 100% over, in my example, your fixed price would then be 200g.

If you only wanted to sell above 2g then, you'd adjust the top slider to 99% instead of 100%. You can then choose how much to undercut by, I just choose 1% for simplicity. You can choose 1 silver or 1 copper or whatever if you want.

Now, you need to set up Appraiser itself for batch posting. First, you need to change each item to fixed pricing, instead of market pricing, by changing the Pricing model to use: to fixed

Then, you need to input your fixed price (remember, if you have it set to 100% markup, you want to use 1/2 your max price).

And lastly, you click the 'enable price matching' box.

You can change any of the other settings you like, but what this has done is if none of the items are listed (like in this example) it will list for 400g buyout.

If items are listed, it will undercut the lowest one by 1%.
Questions? Comments?

Monday, June 29, 2009

Flame Leviathan flash cards

Now, our guild doing 10-man, we run with only 1 motor cycle, and take the extra person and pop them in a demolisher, so the Demo's always have a passenger for speed boosts and to scoop up extra pyrite.

Rules for Flame Leviathan:

Siege Drivers: You have 2 jobs. 1, run away when you're targeted and 2, interrupt flame vents. YOUR DPS SUCKS. So stop trying to hit flame levi with your ram and do your job.

Siege Gunners: DPS Flame levi when he's overloaded, otherwise, you're lighting fires, and shooting down pyrite.

Demo Drivers: You are the dps machines. MACHINES! Your job? Run when you're targeted. If you're not targeted, get to a spot away from whomever he's chasing, and keep rolling pyrite stacks. You see, its that wonderful pyrite that does the HUGE damage to flame levi. And its not just the shots of it. Its the rolling dot-stack on him. This means you also need to be aware of where the pyrite is, and move near it so your passenger can scoop up more. Try not to get below 25, so your passenger can speed boost you.

Demo Passengers: You have three jobs, scoop up more pyrite whenever possible, speed boost if needed, and shoot down pyrite from the air whenever possible as well.

Motorcycle drivers: You've got two jobs... try to lay tar in front of flame levi, and pick up passengers. When you can't do those two things... stay the heck away from him to avoid flame jets. Your puny gun is not worth dpsing with.

That's my tips and information on Flame Levi. For me, these simple rules allow us to down Flame Levi + 2 so far, with no one dying. We might try + 3 this week.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Why is it....

You can carry 1000 arrows, 20 flasks.... but only 10 ankh's, 5 infernal stones, 5 demonic figurines.... and ONE FREAKING SOUL SHARD?

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Kologarn and Melee

A quick post for my melee friends, on Kologarn and how to do AWESOME WTF DPS on him.

If you follow my simple guide and use your uber aoe attacks (whirlwind, sweeping strikes, DnD, consecrate, whatever rogues do...) you'll finally beat those mages on the DPS meters.

Kologarn has 3 targets, his body, his right arm and his left arm. His right arm will be your constant focus, when its up, but... the important thing to realize, is all 3 of his hit boxes are stacked up on one another, and if you stand right by the tank, and face his chest, you will be in range and able to see all 3 targets without moving. You can even stand right beneath his left arm and hit all 3 targets as well.

Poorly drawn diagram:

Hope this makes sense to everyone! I am not sure if Hunters can trapdance and drop their trap right under his chest... but it might be worth a try!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Pos's guide to Flame Leviathon

There are 5 different jobs on flame levi, each with its own requirements.

Siege Drivers: Pilot the siege engines, drive 'em around to where ever you're supposed to.

Siege Gunners: Anti air and anti ground gunners. The anti-air can light the oil slicks on fire **this is HUGELY important, it does a TON of damage**. Probably the best spot for those who aren't used to, or don't enjoy vehicle fights.

Demo Drivers: Pilot the demo's, launch pyrite barrels for major damage when Flame Levi is stunned

Demo Gunners: Most unique position, get launched onto Flame Levi's back, probably want to ranged dps and a healer (hunters are a bad choice, though)

Motorbike drivers: 2 jobs: 1) lay oil slicks on the path of the boss, and 2) pick up the parachuted demo-gunners when they get tossed from the back of flame leviathon.

Now, you can find strats elsewhere, but I've made a diagram, the idea being, to show how to properly kite flame levi.

Now, the first panel shows the initial setup. And, in this theoretical, I'm only dealing with when a demo is picked to be chased.

At the intiial aggro, the person being chased heads to the corner opposite where you start. You'll go a tiny bit south once you get there, but thats okay.

In the second one, you can see where the Demo's should have set up, right along the kite path to his NE, at max range of their guns.

If one of them is picked, they go right to the corner, and just wait. This entire time, motor cycles are laying down oil slicks and he's getting burnt to a crisp.

As he's chasing that Demo, the other demo's slide around, behind him, once again moving to max range.

Now, obviously, this isn't perfect, if he gets stunned at a bad time or in a bad place, he'll end up chasing someone on a short side, and catching them pretty good... but, if you can keep a solid kite line, and keep running him over oil slicks, he should die quick.

When he doesn't die quick, its because he's being kited all over timbucktu in a circle because no one moves to the right spots!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Pos's guide to Valiant Jousting

I know a lot of people are having problems with the Jousting to get your valiant coins, so I'm going to make a quick and dirty guide to how I've figured out how to do it.

Step 1) Get 3 shields up on yourself. Whenever you lose one, hit that shield button. The damage reduction is huge.

Step 2) begin the match. When the match starts the valiant will walk towards the center. Let them do this, and start mashing your 3-key (charge). As soon as they are far enough away, you will charge at them and hit them for a good chunk of damage.

3) As soon as you start to charge, start mashing the 2-key (Shield Breaker), because what happens is, you'll charge past them, run in a small half circle (you may have to use mouse-look to spin just a bit to get off the Shield Break) and bam, you've got your opponent down to 0 armor.

4) get back into melee range and mash that 1-key, putting your shields back up if you need to.

Rinse and repeat steps 2 through 4 each time your opponent moves away from you, remembering to keep your shields up as well.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Blizzard Hate

I'm not one to rag on blizzard, but I'm sick of getting saved to cleared instances.

I mean, you should at least need to kill a mob to get saved, right?

Not in Eye of Eternity.

You see, I was raid leading a second group for 10-man Malygos. We had our guild leader there -- not zoned in, not going to zone in, he was saved to our previous run, and wasn't assist, wasn't raid leader, he was there to make flasks for the raid, I zoned in, so did another healer... yep. Saved.

No mobs. Nothing available to kill in the zone.

Still. Got. Saved.


Oh well, we did one shot him on the early raid. That was awesome.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Naxx Flash Cards

Naxx Boss Flashcards

This will be a 5-part post (one for each wing), and I'm hoping to ilicit a guest post from a healer to finish these off.

I'll be posting flash cards for each boss from a tanking, offtanking, and DPSer perspective. What are these flash cards? 3-4 important things to remember for each boss.

Starting off with the Spider Wing:


Tank: If you're kiting during locust swarm, strafe kite. Don't walk backwards.
Remember the timer for Swarm is a cooldown timer, not an exact timer.
Offtank: Be ready to pick up the adds, quickly and pick up grubs as needed.
DPS: Stay spread out. Anub's spikes are a directed aoe.
Melee: Back out when the cooldown for Locust Swarm is up. You don't want to be caught in that.
Switch to the adds when they spawn.
Be prepared to AOE the grubs if needed.

Grand Widow Faerlina:

Have cooldowns ready for her enrage.
Decide if you're pulling her to the adds or vice versa.
Keep her seperated from her adds so your DK and paladins can do their aoe thing.
Offtank: Keep aggro on her adds, and burn one down at a time, getting it low so it will be a quick kill once she enrages.

DPS: Stay out of rain of fire.
Switch to the add as soon as she enrages and burn it quick.

Tank: Save your cooldowns for when she web wraps on enrage.
Offtank: Don't taunt the boss. Use aoe abilities to pick up tiny spiders.
Be ready to grab the boss if the MT goes down on enrage.

Burn down the webs as people get wrapped.
Burn down spiders if you're on spider duty.
Save cooldowns for below 30%.

Haunt Clipping

I'm sick of warlocks who are affliction who don't lifetap properly during boss fights.

Yes, its your job to DPS, its also your job to lessen the stress upon healers.

So, I hear you asking already... when do I lifetap Mister Abs?

The answer is: You clip Haunt, and lifetap immediately after you finish casting Haunt. You see, Haunt is NOT a DOT. Its an instant damage spell followed by a 12 second debuff. When you clip it, your little healing ghost starts flying back to you. If you lifetap before that ghost gets back to you, it will heal you up almost to full.

So please, do your healers a favor on boss fights, and use this trick. No lifetapping 3 times and going down to 20% health crap.

Monday, March 2, 2009

10's vs 25's

So, recently I've made the foray into 25 mans more and more with a guild we've allied ourselves with. All I can say is that 25's are so much easier than 10's its not even funny.


Why do I say this?

Simple. Those who don't perform up to par don't stand out nearly as much in 25's as they do in 10's.

Its very difficult for someone to wipe a raid in 25's, its very easy for someone to in 10's.

One dead DPS in 25's is 1/16th (give or take) of your raid DPS, and in 10's, its 1/5th.

Say what you will about the raids being easier, say what you will about the fights being easier.

25's are easy. The toughest thing about 25's is herding 25 people around instead of 10.

Our guild alliance cleared Naxx 25 this week. We one shotted every boss aside from Sapph and KT, both of them, we two shotted. The only people that died on KT were melee dps who got double-chained.

Now, our healers are amazing, and we have DPS who can bring the pain... but... really, none of the fights are truly challenging. Comparing this to 10 mans, where even now, with our awesome healers, some fights, one death can mean the difference between flying through and having to redo a boss.

Thaddius is a prime example of this. If one of our top dpsers goes down, we're gonna be awfully close to that enrage timer.

"Lrn2play n00b" is not a good response. "People shouldn't die on Thadd" also, not a good response. Of course people shouldn't die, but it happens. People make mistakes. People sneeze during a polarity shift. Now, 4 people died in our last Thadd attempt on 25's, we killed him with a minute to spare.

Sarth+3D on 10's is currently the toughest encounter in the game, and Maly on 10's is considered much harder than Maly on 25's.

So, why am I posting this?

I don't want the gear difference. I prefer to run 10's, I hate that I'm having to gear myself and my guildies in 25's to finish 10 man content. Now, everyone loves 25's too, and the better gear it gives, but I'd bet, if you surveyed most of my guild, they'd much rather run 10's every week and get the same gear, than 25's. The camaraderie is better. The jokes are better.

The individual contributions stand out more. I've got the pleasure of running with amazing healers, one of whom is a priest who switched from Holy do Disc. Healing meters don't show what she does. The week she wasn't there for Loatheb, well, we almost wiped. When she is there? No one ever dies.

I like being able to pick up on things like that. Its easy to tell when someone isn't pulling their weight. Its rare when someone's individual contribution stands out on 25's (although last night, we had what might've been the greatest pickup by an OT in history on Sapphiron).

I've rambled, I wanted to make this a coherent post, but instead, I went all K on you.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Doomguard - Get it while its hot

If you're a warlock, and you haven't done this quest line, go out and do it. Right now.

Especially if you're a raiding warlock and you have a pesky mage and hunter you want to beat on the DPS meters.

Why? Because a buffed Doomguard does over 1000 DPS. ONE THOUSAND! Thats about 750 more than your average fel hunter (if you're affliction spec'd like me).

And in case people freak out, they should know that Doomguard no longer kills party members. He just does a bit of damage when he's summoned.

The quest line, for a level 80, is really very easy. I only died once, and that was my own doing.

Here's my brief guide:
First, go to Stormwind.
Second, fly out to Nethergarde Keep in the Blasted Lands.

I suppose you could also go to Shattrath, and then fly to the Portal and just go through backwards. Might even be quicker.

So, then you run out to the Tainted Scar, and head north, and go find Daio the Decrepit and get the two quests from him.

One which sends you to Winterspring, and one which sends you to Dire Maul.

Now, Winterspring is straight forward, so I won't go over that beyond, fly there, run south, kill mobs.

Since Dire Maul can be a bit tricky, here's Abs's guide:
You see, what you might not know is that there's a back door to DM, that's due north of Camp Mojache.

You don't have your key, you say? No problem.

Lifetap down as far as you can, and self-suicide with hellfire. Run past the door, and rez on the other side of it.

Walk right in, and you'll find the demon mobs you need to kill right by that door.

Once those two quests are done, you can head back to Tainted Scar, where the same fellow will give you one more follow up quest -- still pretty easy if you're careful, don't go pulling 8 mobs at once.

Then, all you gotta do is be very careful, find one of the guys you need to trap, and do a 10 second channel on him.

Why careful? Because you really don't want to aggro the other mobs around there, they have a ton of HPs and they'll still smoosh ya good.

Anyway, once you get your Doomguard, get some friends to summon it, it lets you do things like this:

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Malygos, how I loathe thee

We spent nearly two full hours wiping on Malygos-10 tonight. Our biggest issue being, lack of DPS in Phase 1.

Deaths were not a problem, aside from stupid tank deaths when I moved too far away from the healers a couple times ;)

All I can say, is this fight was the most intense fight I've had to do as a tank. Spacial and raid awareness is at its peak, as instead of worrying just about mob placement, I'm worrying about Sparks, gigantic dragon placement, raid placement, strafing, and threat.

We only managed phase 3 once, but its a big long learning experience, and I think we're getting closer and closer to getting that all-important phase 1 down.

Our biggest issue was stacking the sparks right on top of one another, so if anyone out there has input on Maly, and spark stacking in ten man (that doesn't involve "bring more Deathknights") please, share.

Also, we run a melee heavy raid (had 2 hunters, and 4 melee dps and me tanking along with 3 healers), is that going to be a problem for us in phase 2?

I don't know.

All these questions, yet, after a night of personal frustration, after thinking about it... we did pretty well to get as far as we did.

Each attempt we improved. Each time the sparks got smoother and smoother, and my kiting the big dragon in circles got better and better.

Maybe our overall DPS was a bit low. Maybe it was because I still haven't upgraded my titansteel boots. STILL.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Revamping the UI

I've taken to revamping my UI, right now still playing around with a few things, but here's the current setup:

Addons I'm currently using:

PitBull: Portraits, party, group bars
Quartz: Cast bars and swing timer
Elk's Buff Bars: Buffs and Debuffs
CT Viewport: Gives the nice black background on the bottom
Simple Minimap: Minimap addons
Dominoes: Buttons, bars, etc.
Minimap Button Frame: Pulls all my minimap buttons into the frame on the bottom right

And I use Addon Control Panel to manage all of them.

Now, to put all my tanking buttons in the right spots...

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Being a better tank

So, while I'm standing in one spot, speakers turned up, waiting for tiny hearts to fly over a Night Elf's head I thought I'd write a blog post.

Since I'm going to be revamping my UI tomorrow (when I finally have time), I wanted to blather on and try to make sense of all my buttons.

I've been tanking bigger and badder things lately, and I've really been trying to "use all my buttons" as a warrior. The problem is, there's 12 of them.



Shield Slam
Shield Block
Shield Bash
Heroic Strike
Thunder Clap
Demo Shout
Concussion Blow

Now, this does not include, Charge, Intervene, Heroic Throw, Berserker Rage, Shield Wall, Last Stand, Enraged Regeneration, Healing Pots, Healthstones, Trinkets, "Shoot"....

What does this mean? Why do you care?

Warriors have a TON of buttons to press. I can't speak for the other tanking classes, but sometimes, it gets a little overwhelming.

So, here I go trying to reduce things down a little bit:
Heroic Strike is for (single target) boss fights. Cleave is for trash. So I swap those on my hot bar.

I want to improve. I want to do more DPS while I'm tanking these bosses. My threat is plenty high for the DPS I run with, but I still want to jack it up even more.

Ways I can improve:
-Use Concussion Blow. I basically use it as a stun on trash now. Never on boss fights. This will change.
-More Heroic Strikes. I try to hit it for every melee swing, but I miss quite a bit. I can get better at this
-Less devastates, more other threat moves. I should use shockwave every time its off cooldown.
-Keep Commanding shout up more. I'm terrible at this.
-Keep Demo shout up. Why do I keep Thunderclap up no problem, but always forget Demo?

If anyone has suggestions on keyboard layout, macros, etc that they use for tanking for all these buttons, please, feel free to share.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

KT. Down. Dead. Kaputz.

Yeah, its 10 man, yeah, it took us 4 wipes to get him down. Yeah, it sucked having 5 melee in the raid on that fight.

But, we did it.

Once again, as raid leader, I'm immensely proud and sold on our group's success. We're not a hard core guild. We don't raid for 4 hours at a time. We just plug along, we have fun, we banter -- but raid time is raid time.

People concentrate, bunker down, ask questions, remind me when I forget stuff (like - stay out of the red swirling circles of doom)

When we downed Sapp (with no bugged Raid ID like last week... srsly!), my guildies overwhelmingly wanted me to have the first Maly key. It surprised me. I'm just glad it didn't go to Boon.

He's evil.

I've got a bunch of posts in my head, that I need to write. Including some tanking insights, and some raid leading insights.

Hopefully I'll post more regularly with the coming days.

Right now, I'm thinking I need to revamp my UI. Fun times!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Naxx, Naxx, Naxx

3 wings down. 1 to go. We got to Gluth for the first time as a guild, and rolled through everything else for the most part.

Iceravens took to tanking like a lab to water. He was as worried as a certian hunter was her first trip into Karazhan.

We found a pugging DK and dragged him into the run, and then into the guild, and he helped out with strategies, ideas, suggestions on the bosses we hadn't done yet. The toughest was the four horsemen, which was more of a "lets get used to this mechanic" much more than a "Gosh we suck and can't do this".

I'm so happy to run with my guildies, its always refreshing, fun on vent, and relaxing (well, aside from the finger cramp I got while kiting Globulous backwards for 10 minutes).

Basic suggestions for the fights that I found helpful:

-Four Horsemen-
- if you're running with a paladin tank, have him /focus the other tank, and have a macro /cast [target = focus] Righteous defense

Only _after_ that goes off, the other tank will need to taunt his mob on the switches.

If you are the kiting tank, turn 'run' off, and walk backwards constantly around the room. Its a good pace for kiting him at, and it allows your melee dps to get a few hits in on him and avoid the poision clouds as well

Melee dps should concentrate on the slimes, period. Ranged stays focused on Glob.

I got the uber tanking sword, Iceravens got the Shield, Neshura looted all of Four Horsemen... and other people got other loots too!

So, Grats me, and Grats KoU on 11/15 in Naxx!

Oh, and... how come the mobs can ride horses but we can't? HMMMM? DOUBLE YOU TEE EFF?

Friday, January 9, 2009

Heigan, Hunters, Hit Capping

Kvasira's post made me wonder about hit-capping again. I mean, I know it's important, and I'm told I should stack it above everything else, but ... how much am I really missing by missing? I wanted to do the math myself.

Looking at the web stats, I can calculate the following --

Even with a draenei in the raid, I missed 1.6% of my auto shots. 0.1% was mitigated, but let's just ignore that, because it's too small of a percentage to work with. This means, since I landed 317 shots, 5 of them missed. Average damage was 859 on non crits, and 1682 on crits (14%). This means I missed on average 3694 non-crit damage plus 1177 crit dmg.

For my steady shots, I missed 0.5%, with 0% mitigated. This means out of 201 shots, 1 (JUST ONE) of them missed. Average damage was 1167 on non crits, and 2571 on crits (18%). This gives a probable damage for this shot of 1173.

So we have...

  • Auto Shot: 308,597 done, and 4871 that I could have gotten if I were hit-capped.
  • Steady Shot: 284,060 done, and 1173 that I could have gotten if I were hit-capped.

Now, what my Cheeky's (now Shandara's) spreadsheet tells me by modeling my gear and buffs from the exact raid setup I had then, is that Poached Northern Sculpin will buff my pet DPS by 5 and my hunter DPS by 12, as opposed to using no food at all. My pet was useless in the Heigan fight, so let's ignore the 5.

My time in the fight dps'ing was 706 seconds. My DPS was 928. Adding 12 dps to that and multiplying by my time in the fight gets me 8,472 that I could have gotten by eating AP food. Getting to the hit cap gives me 6,044, or 8.5 dps that I could have added.

  • Eating cheap BC Hit cap food: 8.5 dps increase, or
  • Eating mammoth 60AP food: 9 dps increase, or
  • Eating expensive 80AP food: 12 dps increase

So missing only 1 steady shot and 5 auto shots in a 14 minute fight is roughly equivalent to 60AP lost!

Once again, the clear conclusion is... get ye to your hit cap, hunters. A little bit of hit is worth a lot of DPS.

(The postscript is, hug your local draenei.)

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Naxx, Initial excursion

In case you couldn't tell by Neshura's awesome posts, I finally made it into Naxx with my guildies. Had an absolute blast. Rolled over the first two bosses in the Spider wing and then came to the "HAY POS HOW GOOD IS UR GEAR?" boss.

We wiped 5 or 6 times, and then finally got the evil Spider down with just a Ret paladin and a Hunter still alive.

Our biggest problem was, of course, the web wraps when she was enraged. 6 second stun when the mob is hitting me for 8k a swing is a tough thing to live through. I can manage once, by blowing cooldowns, but when the second one comes, I'm all but dead.

If anyone has suggestions, please, post them. We ended up needing 3 web wraps to down her, one I cooldowned, one I got Hands Layed on me by a ret pally, and the 3rd one I died.

I realize our raid dps may be a tad low overall, but, its amazing how smoothly everything else ran, except for this one thing. What it came down to, wasn't our raid, wasn't who we had in there, wasn't our dps, wasn't our healers.

It was my gear. As the main tank I need better gear. So, plvl my gear, please.

I was sitting at almost 33k hp raid buffed, and it shocked me how quickly I went down.

Had druid and priest hots rolling on me at all times. I suppose I could have her bubbling me as well.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

The 10 Dancing Princesses, aka Downing Heigan in Naxx-10

I almost ran my boots off last night learning the Heigan fight in Naxx-10. We probably wiped the fight eight times over two hours before I got the hang of it. Nobody bothered much with buffs or consumables. Only two or three people in the group had ever seen this fight before, and not all of them stayed alive either. 

The gist of the fight is that there are cracks in the floor that dribble out a poison field; at any given time, roughly 75% of the room is poisoned, and there is a small safe area with no poison. Every three seconds, this "safe" spot moves, and you have to move with it, because the poison kills you. It's very tough to explain, which is why you should read the strategy guide and watch the excellent tankspot tutorial video series on Naxx

Now, I play video games just like someone who didn't grow up playing any video games -- I mean, unless you've seen me shoot teammates in the face repeatedly during console gaming, you might not believe that I am a truly bad player. My reflexes are slow, I'm pretty clumsy and non-athletic, and I usually feel like I'm all thumbs whenever I'm playing a game. 

That said... guess who was still alive when we downed Heigan? If you said, "Everyone but you, nesh?"... INCORRECT. Also, you're a jerk. (Partial credit though. Iirc, I got a rez partway through. The healer was ignoring Rule #1 below.) If a crappy player like me can get through the Heigan fight, you can too.

Here are some Do's and Don'ts for downing Heigan (hunter-biased but applicable to everyone):

Practice running back and forth between safe spots before you start the fight. Drop smoke flares, repair bots, or whatever works, to mark the safe spots. Run between them. Recognize them. Know them intimately. Try that about 50 times.
Practice running back and forth between safe spots after you start the fight. Don't think about healing, or dps. If you are the tank, some minimal amount of threat generation is good. Just expect that if you haven't done the fight, you've got some practice wipes ahead of you.
Turn on Deadly Boss Mods or Bigwigs. If the timers are too distracting, fine, but you want to make sure you are fully prepared to change phases, and you don't want a teleport to catch you by surprise. Do not expect anyone to let you know when the teleport is about to happen. See Rule #1 below.
Run in a straight line. Every movement of the mouse, every button press, every single wasted movement is a chance to screw it up
Practice the flip. It's an endurance event with laps, you're Michael Phelps, and when you flip to run the other way, it needs to be flawless. When you've done the flip 150 times in a row, muscle memory will kick in during the real thing.
Bring MM hunters to the fight. Wolfinme, you're the new definition of awesome. And not just MM hunters... elemental shamans. Or ret pallies. Every class can contribute to this fight, but there are some fights that are just made for the massive single target dmg builds.
If most of your heals are instant cast, run with the tank and melee for all phases. You need the practice. If your heals take time to cast, you'll need to stand on the platform. 
Have a plan for how you are personally going to manage the transitions. Here's how my 1-to-2 plan went: "At the 20 second timer, refresh Serpent Sting regardless. Make the most of 18 seconds spamming Steady Shot, blow any cooldowns that are left, in case I die in the upcoming running phase. As Serpent Sting goes off, stop Steady Shot'ing, just a few seconds to the Teleport now. Watch the boss, re-position the camera so that I'm looking at home plate. Mana is low, pop Viper. A few autoshots while I'm running in Phase 2 will help me out. BAM! Teleport. Run to home plate. Reposition the camera again so I'm looking straight along the path that I'll be running. I'm far enough from the boss, I can see the second safe spot, wait for the green wall o' poison to pop. Now RUN!" Your plan will have nothing to do with anyone else's plan. Pretend the other people are just non-aggro adds. See Rule #1 below.
Tank the boss a little under halfway from the platform to the wall. You want to be within range of the ranged DPS, but you don't want the ranged healers and DPS to be stuck in the Spell Disruption aura. That means there is an invisible band running across the room about 15 yards wide that you need to keep him inside for Phase 1. 

Use Aspect of the Cheetah or any other running buff. The fight is synchronized to normal run speed, and when you are doing it right, your whole team is running in sync, independently (if that makes any sense). Plus, if you throw Cheetah on too early, Heigan's AOE dmg will daze you and you'll be slow to get to home plate. If switching to kitty form is second nature for you druids, fine, go ahead. You'll be doing a lot more stopping and starting though.
Try to run around the edge of the platform to minimize the distance you have to travel. Heigan's AOE extends further out than you think. Yes, math is great. No, dying isn't. 
Bring a pet to the fight and expect it to stay alive. BM Hunters (like me), you're outta luck. Suck it up. I got one Bestial Wrath out of my passive dino before Phase 2, where the poison dropped the pet while she was on auto-follow. Maybe you can get a second Bestial Wrath off, if you can debug Heart of the Phoenix, but don't waste time on a pet rez, and don't waste time futzing around with pet controls. Maybe there's a technique I didn't think of. Mention it in the comments.
Stack up on the tank and try to follow him or her. For one thing, you can't see your toon in the crowd if you're a shorty, and you will inevitably say, "Where's my toon?", stop running, and bam... poisoned. For another, there's video and network lag between you and the tank. See Rule #1 below.
Expect to learn the dance the first time. When you die, say to yourself out loud, "My mistake there was: [ ] running too fast, [ ] running too slow, [ ] trying to heal, [ ] trying to cast, [ ] trying to pot or bandage, [ ] answering the phone", etc.
Heal anyone except the tank in Phase 1. Everyone else needs to learn Rule #1.
Heal the tank in Phase 2. You need to learn Rule #1.

The only rule that matters in the Heigan fight is Rule #1: You are on your own. 

On your own, by yourself, no one should be paying attention to you, no one will heal you, don't heal anyone else besides the tank. If you get a little bit of aoe dmg in the teleport switch, don't worry about it. It won't kill you as long as you keep moving. Use a health pot if you are nervous. If you get distracted by something stupid like bandaging, you'll die. Your teammates won't die if they are doing the dance correctly, and they will die if they aren't. You can't do much about that as a healer, because you need to stay alive to keep the tank alive in Phase 1. That is the only exception to Rule #1. 

Yes, if you're a hunter, you can leave autoshot on during Phase 2. It won't hurt, it will help if you have to pop Viper, and turning it off would be one more thing to worry about while you are trying to move. If you find it distracting, turn it off during your phase switch prep.

If you are a healer, you're going to ignore all my rules, and maybe one or two people extra will survive the fight because you are a totally awesome healybot, and that gives them a little more practice on the dance floor... but you healing them is a crutch, I tell you! A CRUTCH! They'll start to think someone cares, that some sweet pure angelic healer loves them and cares if they die, and what they really need is a green slimy poisonous smack in the face. Healers, look inside for your inner lock, and practice your evil cackle.

I survived the Heigan fight when I stopped doing the Don'ts and I started doing the Do's. When we got him to 30% and I realized that I had "gotten it", I popped a flask and started getting serious about DPS in Phase 1. It was fantastic fun and I can't wait to do that fight again. 

The Heigan fight now replaces Blackheart the Inciter as my all-time favorite boss ever in WoW.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Hello! And Heroic Halls of Stone

Posolutely invited me to guest blog here, and while I don't have much to write about in WoW, occasionally I do feel the need to vent or chatter about specific events in the game.

First off... this is me --

Neshura. Dwarf, hunter, beastmaster, always and forever. I have a gorilla named Daffodil and a dino named Petunia. My pets are always named after either flowers or horrifying diseases. With that out of the way....

Tonight, we ran another heroic, new to me: Halls of Stone. Now I've only been to Halls of Stone on regular once before. This seemed just a touch more difficult. For one thing, the tank hadn't been there. Not Posolutely, but our guild's other tank, Balendin. I pounced on Balendin the moment he logged in and berated him til he agreed to come along. "But I haven't done heroic Halls of Stone!" Haha... "Neither have I! Neither has the healer! It'll be fun!"

I wouldn't say that I lied, as I was fully expecting that it would be fun.


We wiped at least 15 times if not more. We one-shotted the big rock boss, the Gruul's lookalike who does the shatter. The other bosses though.... ouch. 

Maiden put us all to sleep and then killed us, over and over. We finally got her down with just a few people still standing. Balendin worked the hokey-pokey trick of jumping into the black circles to get the dot that would cancel the sleep spell, and after he got the hang of it, it was just enough to get us through that boss.

At the Tribunal, I stood on the stairs and dropped frost traps to pull mobs into consecrates, but we still died. Wave after wave of angry short dudes pummeled me and Petunia -- we died a good bit, even though Bale was tanking and Iceravens was offtanking. Around the fifth or sixth try, we all died--again--right at the end of the last wave. The mobs went straight for Brann Bronzebeard, but he somehow managed to pull off his "computer hacking" and they despawned before they ever touched him. So, we finished that boss AND got the achievement -- even though everyone was dead. 

Our pug warlock had to leave at that point, so we headed out to summon a guildie mage. Aaaand... died in the respawns. Complete wipe.

We cleared the mobs, and headed for the last boss. Spell-stealing the lightning shield made a HUGE difference. The adds weren't easy, they had about 26k+ health each, but with a mage and a hunter both on add duty, we one-shotted the final boss.

It took about two hours, and it felt like it was twice as long. But we all learned the fights pretty well from doing them over and over. I do prefer the shorter instances offered by wrath -- a slog in Burning Crusade was a 3 or 4 hour affair. I can survive a 2 hour slog, but after that point, my eyes start to go crossed from too much time at the computer.

I was starting to feel like I was doing pretty well on getting starter-geared for raiding, until heroic Halls of Stone. Now, I feel like a n00b all over again. No loot for me tonight, but some loot for guildies, so yay.

Now, it's time to go do my evening meditation on "Why Do I Always Forget To Put Petunia Back on Passive".