Tuesday, May 20, 2008

[General] Dissecting WWS for fun and profit

Another night against Kael. We did make progress, but we were somewhat hampered by having neither of our fire resist warlock tanks signed for the raid. That slowed things quite a bit when dealing with Capernian. Still, we are making it through the weapons fine at this point. It's just dealing with phase 3 that's the real issue. We did get one good try at phase 4, and the fire resist set against the phoenixes was excellent. It seemed a lot easier to tank one away from the melee and from Kael and the healers than it was to kite it, and the damage I took didn't seem particularly bad.

What I'm going to do now is check out our WWS for what happened last night, and where we can improve. Kael'Thas isn't any kind of DPS race; while good DPS is important, the most important thing is to execute. It's an encounter designed to make a person freak out at every turn, and there are plenty of things that each player can do to wipe the raid. So looking at how much damage a person did, or how much healing a person did isn't that useful. Instead we'll look at some common problem areas and who may need to improve.

For instance: I didn't put on my fire resist set (yes, the one I talked about working on) prior to one of our attempts. It didn't end up wiping the raid as the fire resist is useless against conflagration and we didn't end up getting to phase 4, but it would likely have wiped the raid when I took too much damage from the phoenixes. You can't swap gear during the fight either; there's no time when you're out of combat. So you absolutely need to do it before you engage. That won't show up in logs, but I did want to mention it just in case I'm coming across as not having made any mistakes.

First up, Thaladred the Darkener. He needs to be avoided at all costs in both phase 1 and 3. We did stellar in phase 1, but he killed a lot of people in phase 3. Looking at the breakdowns, we can see that dragonstryke took the most damage from him. That's not that big of a deal however; this is over time. What is a big deal is people taking those huge hits. In the second try, Ghillie took a giant hit which killed him. Baelor took one in try 6, and juliand, dragonstryke, kixsty and holypm took a few large ones in that fight too. In try 7,scelyde was nailed hard, as was Juliand. In 8, it was holypm, Invincibull and Aedarg.

Tries 9 and 10 were our best. No one was hit for more than 7k damage, and that went to Juliand and Dragonstryke. That's pretty good, and what we need to do. What's also interesting is how many melee you see there. There's only two ranged on the entire list (kixsty and holypm). Other ranged did take hits, but those were survivable. Part of that makes me think that melee needs to stay away from Thaladred. Thaladred does need to die fairly quickly, but if he turns and kills a melee or three we're simply not going to have enough damage output to get to P4 cleanly.

Another example is the Cosmic Infuser. Our best try was try 10; in that, the infuser only got off 5 holy nova heals. By comparison, in try 9 it got off 11 holy novas and 3 heals. That was a difference of 125k healing. This is something that I think we improved on tremendously as the fight progressed; the interrupts became great towards the end and the weapons went down smoothly, and tries 10-12 had no heals and only a few holy novas.

We did a lot better on avoiding Devastation as well. I was the designated tank for it, and in some attempts I was the only one that took damage to it. In our best attempt I had thought Tarts died to it, but it appears that he did fine and probably used it to get some mana back via spiritual attunement.

What's bothersome to me is another observation by Silena that she was getting hit by the conflagration effect or the arcane confusion effect even though Neoto was using it. In the logs this appears to be the case as well; in our last attempt she gains the mental protection field, then 30 seconds...ah. It has a duration of 30 seconds. So whoever used it to give it to her must not have used it in that time. This means that we need to get better at spamming the field, having it macroed into regular used abilities, and using it all the time. We see that happen in try 12, where she is affected by the field it but it doesn't hit her again until 2 minutes later; by then both her and her target are dead. Looking at his log, it seems like he didn't use the field enough. Why that's a problem: because the field works weirdly. When you turn it on or move into range of someone, it overwrites any existing field. If you die, turn it off or move away, the old field doesn't come back into place. It's very easy in that fight for someone with the staff to move in range of someone, overwrite their shield and then move away. That's why it's important for everyone to constantly spam the staff ability. (actually, after looking at the log again it's clear what happens; the remote toy happens about 15 seconds before Silena gets aggro, she fails to heal Neoto, Neoto dies and then someone else comes in with a staff. So the staff was either not being used or Silena was not in range of its use).

I'm curious if others have had some specific issues with this fight and how to deal with them.

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