As we’ve discussed before, my guild is currently 10/13 in the heroic version of T11 content. It has been quite the grind. However, last week as we went to kill all the bosses we’ve had on farm for quite sometime we couldn’t help but notice how much easier all of the bosses seemed to be going down. I’d love to think it’s because everyone was on their A-game, but in all actuality the content was just made easier for raiding community out there. For all those who haven’t been strolling around such sites as MMO-Champion or the official WoW website Ghostcrawler felt so passionately about the changes he addressed them directly in his latest blog post entitled “Raid Progress.” The whole thing was a decent read; however, I loved his main argument which was:
- I chose to use the word “progress” in the title for this blog quite intentionally. We think progression is the key to players having fun. When groups stop making progress, the members get frustrated. When individuals feel like they are stuck, that’s when they start to lose interest. I don’t think it strictly has to do with the flow of loot being shut off. A big part of it is the sense that as you climb up that mountain, you are getting closer and closer to the summit instead of just sliding back down to base camp at the end of each day.
It really shows Blizzard is looking at their player base. While the top end raiding guilds were able to have the progression race with the glory of knowing they did it when it was hard, now more casual players can experience content at the end level as well. However, for our less progressed readers it is important to realize that though the encounters are nerfed, they are by no means a cake walk. Now more so then ever proper raid preparation will really set apart the guilds who go far verses the ones that sort of fizzle for awhile just to end up not getting much done. A common question I receive is exactly where would one go to get advance knowledge of fight encounters? Well up until a very short time ago I would of told you the same thing everyone else would of, “Well tankspot of course!” That is no longer the case and I can say with pride that there is no better place to get your strats and first looks at encounters then LearntoRaid.com more commonly known as L2R.
Recently I had the privilege of going through a very quick back and forth with vodka officer and rogue, Killars. While Killars is a co-founder of the web community L2R he wants to stress before we get into everything that while vodka encounter videos are used in the strategy discussion that happens on L2R, L2R is a project maintained by both Killars and Kinaesthesia, a vodka healing priest. The guild itself has no direct connection to L2R and questions on strat videos or anything on L2R’s website should be directed to the website’s forums and not vodka’s guild forums(A mistake I made when I first went to find someone to speak with from L2R’s admin). Now with that out of the way we can get into the meat of what Killars and I had discussed about his project, L2R:
- Q: vodka has become synonymous with top end raiding, when did you decide you wanted to take that knowledge and feed it back to the raiding community?
- Killars: When I first joined vodka I had always been impressed by their quality of video in terms of editing and music which I later learned was mostly due to Kinaesthesia’s brilliant work and vision. After some time of realizing Kinaesthesia deserved more support and more of an opportunity to show his editing skills we got together with one of my friends “Blackquantex” and began brainstorming an idea of how to go about making something of it all. We felt the WoW community severely lacked a source for high quality videos and that we could build a website around Kinaesthesia’s vision, my dedication, and our friends website skills etc. to fill that void. We knew it would be a lot of work, a lot of which is still on going, but we’re dedicated to providing the best content and we hope to really build the site to being the #1 source for video tutorials and more.
I personally have grown up as a raider watching Kinaesthesia’s videos, for anyone who hasn’t gotten the chance to watch one I highly suggest going to L2R or on you tube looking up vodkaguild. When I learned he would be applying the same editing techniques he uses in his kill videos to the strat videos I knew right away L2R was going to be a quality source of material to help younger progression raiders out.
- Q: Most people relate L2R with Tankspot, how do you feel about this comparison?
- Killars: I’d be lying if I didn’t say we don’t look at Tankspot as our competition. They are doing almost exactly what we would like to do, but we intend to do it better. Every great idea has to start somewhere and they’ve done a great job so far with Tankspot. As for the comparison of our site compared to theirs I don’t really think I have a fair answer to that. I obviously have bias opinions of my own and from L2R supporters, but I don’t know what the overall consensus is, I’d hope it was in L2R’s favor though =P
Back in Wrath if you researched a fight you had to of heard of Tankspot, they were everywhere. However, in cata the frequency of the videos has gone down quite a bit. There’s still the need for knowledge on raid encounters, why not trust vodka members to teach you the methods they used to achieve their status in the raiding community.
- Q: As I’m sure you’re aware there has been a recent blanket of nerfs hitting most of the heroic versions of T11 Boss encounters. How do you feel about these nerfs in regards to other guilds now being able to push further in their progression efforts, when they’re killing a version of the boss that’s easier then the one you had to go against.
- Killars: A lot of these fights felt unfinished and in some cases over-tuned. I just recently had a chat about this with a friend from Paragon about Atremedes in regards to what the hell the devs were thinking when they released that boss nearly unchanged from BETA. There have been many many changes to these encounters since we first progressed on them, far too much to talk about in detail. If I had to make a blanket statement I’d say I felt most of the nerfs were well timed and semi-necessary. Simply put, the majority of players cannot kill bosses I guess they should be nerfed after a period of time. WoW isn’t built for just the super hardcore player base so I’m perfectly fine with nerfing content well after the progression race has ended so a larger base of players can see the content.
Killars said it best, “Simply put, the majority of players cannot kill bosses I guess they should be nerfed after a period of time.” I love end game raiding and my guild does very well, but I still remember looking in trade chat for a Karazhan pug in hopes of getting some kind of gear just so I could have the hopes of entering SSC or TK. The fights we’re rough back then and they relatively stayed that way. Now Blizzard realized they don’t just want 5% of the player base seeing all content and they’re doing something about it. You can’t really complain about that.
- Q: So which boss in this content patch did you find most enjoyable progression wise?
- Killars: Tricky question! V&T I liked a lot personally as I developed a strategy to use a Subtlety spec for the fight where the 3 Rogues we had at the time played a vital part in killing the boss without having to be responsible for interrupting something (FINALLY!!!). I have to also note Cho’gall as it was a very well tuned boss that led to a very exciting kill.
As you can see readers even our brothers in energy bar, rogues. Think its ridiculous that there’s kick duty on pretty much all these fights!
- Q: Any quick tips you could offer the fluiddruid readers in regardes to preparing for their heroic mode progression?
- Killars: Well obviously the best tip of all is to go over to Learntoraid.com and watch our amazing videos! Hahaha other than that I’d say everyone needs to have far more discipline when raiding new content. Raiding in Cataclysm has been about avoiding damage taken and executing fight mechanics correctly more so than ever before. Learn all the fight mechanics, master them, then you can begin to pile on the copious amounts of pewpew that you’re dying to unleash. As I often half jokingly say “I guarantee that if everyone stays alive for 10 minutes the boss will be dead”.
You heard the man, get to learntoraid.com and start seeing what you’ll need to prepare yourself now that the first wave of “nerfs” are done with heroic content. Any half way serious raider will tell you that the fight begins long before you first pull the boss. The very first step is educating yourself about the encounter ahead of you. This post was important to me not only did I want to take the time to show you we have an awesome community here to help everyone learn and adjust to the changes within our spec and class, but also we need to help one another to get the most out of this game from a PvE standpoint. I can make forum threads and blog posts about encounters from a feral standpoint, but when it comes to the 25 or 10 people in your raiding coming together to get that boss kill I really suggest you take the time to see what Killars has done for us on L2R. As always if you have any questions feel free to leave a comment or pm me on the forums and lets all take a moment to give a big thank you to Killars, for taking the time to discuss this other web-community with all of us, I know you got a lot on your plate and it was an honor getting to discuss L2R with you.
Until next time