Yesterday, the raid was cancelled. The usual raid leader had a few problems and was late and no one else was ready to take the lead seeing that the remaining bosses for the week were hardmode Lich King and ToGC. People spent 45 minutes duelling in front of ToC before the officers released everyone. Anyways, people were not concentrated, and heading to Ulduar would have been awful.
So we were free for the night, and bored. One of my friends, a feral druid (who happens to be a damn good player), had his ICC10 id free and we decided to go and try to do a few bosses with the time we had. I logged my tree druid, we took a few rerolls in guild, some quite undergeared, some well geared and pugged a dk tank and two other healers, paladin and priest.
I took the lead. I usually don’t like leading, especially when I heal because I need a lot of concentration for healing. With the hunter, it’s quite easy to lead, but with the druid, I need to watch the raid’s life closely… Anyway, I had no choice. My druid friend doesn’t lead, most people in the raid, seeing I’m a former officer, expected me to take charge, so I took the lead, filled the raid with the pick-ups and we were on the road.
The group was good. People were nice and skilled, even with not that good gear. The pugged tank knew tactics, our rerolls new the fights, the comp was all right even with too few ranged (Saurfang wasn’t exactly easy, an elemental shaman doesn’t kite very well…). Trash went down in a rush, my druid kitty friend likes it quick went tanking, pulling the next group when the first one isn’t dead yet (but soon to be). But bosses were well prepared, checking before if everyone knew what he had to do, checking buffs, strats and assignments etc…
We did the Gunship Battle in hardmode, with only a wipe. For some reason, old daddy Saurfang decided to aggro and throw axes to the tree when everyone was back on the Alliance ship. No need to said he lumberjaked me down pretty quickly… I don’t know what exactly happened to the rest of the raid but we died, changed a few things (put undergeared people in the canons and assigned the dps to specific targets) and won our heroic loot.
After the first wing, we headed to the plague wing. Rotface went down quickly but afterwards, one of the pugged healers, the paladin, didn’t know the fights. I had to explain and was quite happy to have my guildies as backup to add anything I would have forgotten… The guy had never seen the fight, hadn’t read any strategy guide, hadn’t seen any video, and as I didn’t check when I « hired » him, I had to assume and explain. I hope I wasn’t too painful to listen to… But people were supportive and the paladin nearly understood everything (except the part when I asked him to stay under Festergut and take the spore debuff, and he nearly died from the plague, and I feared for the tanks when he began to spew everywhere…). Putricide was two-shot, my explanations were good it seems, we only wipe because the dk tank forgot to put his frost aura back after being in the abomination.
After that, it was quite late, and we decided to kill the valkyr in the frost wing for extra emblem and go to bed but Valithria was there, pleading for our help and we extended the raid for half an hour. As the paladin didn’t know the fight, he was « punished » and I and the priest got to go into the portals and have fun with green clouds. I was very stressed. But from 2 of the rerolls we had in the raid, one was our best healadin, and the other was one of our trees, both used to do that in the guild’s regular 10 or 25-mans. Both were very supportive and we won the fight on the second attempt.
It was so fun ! That encounter is really funny as a healer. I needed a few seconds to get the trick to get the clouds, moving in 3D is not very easy for me. And I totally forgot what I had to do, aka heal the damn dragon, as I was so excited at the idea to go into the portals… So first attempt wasn’t very good : I forgot to begin to heal the dragon before going into the portals, and when I came back I realised with horror that the dragon wasn’t on my raidframe… I use my Vuhdo frames to follow my hots, even when tank healing in heroics. Of course, my Quartz is set up to show my hots but I’m not at all used to watch it, unlike with my hunter dots. It took me some time to get used to how to follow my hots and to reapply them not too early.
Here is a screen from my Wol :
And here is the repartition of the spells I used :
I used Nourish a lot… I’m capped with spell haste now, and my nourish cast is so fast ! It was just spam. I rolled Lifebloom too, refreshing the stacks just before going into the portals, it would bloom while I was away. What I basically did each time I came back from the dream was : running back to the front of the room while firing my instants : Rejuv, Lifebloom x3, Wild Growth, then cast a Regrowth, and then nourish, nourish and nourish, refresh LB, refresh Rejuv, refr… Oh shit the portal ! … cast a LB and jump in ! I realise now that I didn’t used Swiftmend once, which is baaaad ! No kidding, that was very stupid not to use it. I too often forgot that tree’s best friend…
Anyway, Valithria is really fun. Once the first minutes of stress were gone, I really enjoyed the fight. The night had not begin very well but the raid was nice, nearly everyone got some shinnies, pick-up were quite good, and learned fast, guildies were sweeties, never complaining about anything, helpful, just enjoying the run. I was a soporific leader as always, using push-to-talk because I use to curse a lot while raiding, insulting mobs and so on and people could think I’m crazy… But that makes me quite silent on TS, my voice is not very dynamic either, and I had one of my guildies sending me a tell to check if I was alright, seeing we are used to a very talkative leader. I was alright, just healing.
I really don’t like babysitting people into dungeons. I expect everyone knows what he has to do, and if not, to say it before it’s too late. I don’t like having to ask for buffs, asking the tank to pull. I like to get in front of a boss quickly, give quick assignments or let competent people do it. Basically, my usual leading is :
– Ok, lets clean the trash. (Don’t kill the melees)
– Full rebuff please, everyone knows the fight ? I remind you to yadayada (important stuff, takes 10 seconds)… Ok, who tank first ? Ready check. Pull.
Yesterday raid was nice because me, as a raid lead, enjoyed the run as much as everyone else. It was efficient. It was smooth. It was a good night.