From baby raider to… raid leader?
Well, maybe not quite. But I have organised, if not provided strat leadership for, my own little Ulduar 10-man, for hardmode achieves and the ultimate goal of trying to get Algalon down, winning us the title “Starcaller”. This was a spur-of-the-moment idea after last night’s ICC and our LK attempts, when I was talking on twitter with Ose and a few other folks about titles, and how the only one I want is Starcaller. I’ve thought it was the prettiest title for a long time, and I’m sure a couple people remember me dreaming of getting it on Aislinn a good 10 months ago. But after getting Lis through Storm Peaks, and thinking on how, as someone who’s sort of accidentally joined the Dwarvish race, she probably would be extremely interested in the origins of Dwarves and the work Brann Bronzebeard is doing, I realised something else: from an RP/personal lore perspective, it’s the only title that I really need.
See, Lis is just a healer. She doesn’t need fancy titles, she hasn’t been a stand-out hero who has saved nations singlehandedly. She wasn’t instrumental in the defeat of the Burning Legion, though she played her part, and she wasn’t part of the strike team sent to bring Arthas down (though she was involved in the attack on the citadel). But what she was (or would’ve been) was someone who volunteered to assist in the exploration and reclamation of Ulduar. So, you see, Starcaller is… her title. And I want desperately for her to have it.
Anyway I’d been waffling on trying to set up my own Ulduar run because surely someone more experienced would set one up, and I’d just get in on that! But no one did and no one did, and when we were talking about titles on Twitter last night, someone told me (jokingly) that I should get Kurn to get it for me, and Kurn responded with “never going back there, but we’ve got an event planning forum! ;)”
I lol’d, as I do, and then I went “hey, y’know… we DO. And if no one’s interested, then no one’s interested, but still… it’d be fun.” So I made a post, just saying “uh, so, anyone want to run Ulduar friday and saturday, to try to get the key and down Algalon for the title?” And lo and behold… people WANTED to! Kurn gave a quick pointer on how many of each role I should plan for, and then I just filled slots.
Then, of course, I log in tonight and I’m missing a chunk of people I thought were coming. Stuff happens, though, and I rearranged – I felt pretty bad because I was planning on having O be my second healer, but then I couldn’t get hold of her to see when she was gonna be back, and I wanted to get going before people lost interest or wandered off (instead of duelling topless in bunny ears outside Ulduar – don’t ask, I have no answers), so I pulled in a guildie’s alt to raid heal instead. :/ Would’ve loved to have her there, boo. Then we were still short a tank and a DPS, so I pulled Megs in to fill our open DPS spot, and we convinced one of our guild’s paladins to tank for us. And with that, we dove into the world of Ulduar achieves and hardmodes.
Oh, what a way to kick off our night, with a couple wipes on Flame Leviathan. Our first attempt was hilarious, partially because Megs and I were both driving and had no idea what we were doing, and also because our raid healer was having problems where he couldn’t hear Mumble. We shifted around who got in what vehicle, and our shadow priest put Mumble on speaker so the shaman could hear what was going on (same room raiding, yay!), and tried again. And again. And then, eventually, we got him down.
Ignis the Furnace Master
We skipped Razorscale, preferring to go on for some harder achieves and not spend the time that fight takes, and started with Ignis, one-shotting the bastard. Easy-peasy.
I was a bit nervous about this one, for some reason, and we had a bit of an issue with our OT getting both debuffs one right after the other, but this hardmode was another quick one-shot.
And, because I’d already killed Razorscale on a weekly…
The Siege of Ulduar: Complete
The Assembly of Iron
This one gave us a little trouble initially, wiping us… pretty quickly, partially because Steelbreaker was standing on a blue rune when the debuff hit his tank, and partially because we hadn’t decided to call the debuff so that I was ready for it, since there IS a tiny lag between debuff on and it showing on Grid. But after that, we cleaned house – I’m not sure how well, because I was mostly focused intently on making sure that damn debuff got cleansed ASAP, and we did lose one of our tanks, but in the end, We got ‘em down
Two things stick out at me about this fight: 1) the Monty Python references in Kologarn’s dialogue (“None shall pass!” “Just a scratch!” “Only a flesh wound!” “I’m invincible!”), and 2) the fact that I could hardly heal because when I wasn’t grabbed up in his hand briefly, I was running away from his LASER VISION. Still, despite this, no one died (or fell off the ledge), and we killed him good.
Well. So. The first pull was messy. We were not prepared for the HUGE amount of damage the sentries would be pulling on their tank, and I was still trying to get my bearings when he died. A split second later, I died, because they pounced me. So we sheepishly ran back, I beaconed Auriaya’s tank and had our raid healer keeping an eye on his health, and direct-healed the sentry tank. A LOT. The pull felt messy again, but within seconds we were neatly divided and getting her down, and her little cats, too.
The Antechamber of Ulduar: Complete
We decided to do Hodir first because he’s (apparently) the easiest to beat on his hardmode. We had one wipe that was MAINLY because I couldn’t tell the difference between the ground and a hill of snow, apparently, but the second time around, I think we did pretty well.
So there was a bit of discussion about who would be staying on the floor and who would be going through the tunnel, and I was decreed to be the “tunnel healer”. It was a bit confusing who was going where, I think, until they realised I’d shuffled the groups around and was saying “Group 1 in the tunnel, Group 2 stays!” I’m not sure how the floor group did, except that they all lived, but the tunnel group rocked. The calls of “right!” and “left!” from our tank with the flame-shooting runic statue thingy was like clockwork, I seriously felt badass in this encounter. Beautiful. I was kind of amused to see an achievement pop up before we’d even aggro’d Thorim, but then it was all just healing – and it was still like clockwork – to me, anyway. Everyone was on their game, it was fantastic, and then there was Achievement Spam.
Freya is where we stopped for the night. We got an awesome (but very speedy) rundown from our guildie Lib, along with her very special Pancake Buff, and then proceeded to wipe VERY messily twice before needing to call it quits so people could head to bed. Which is just as well, because I needed to make a “great job guys, thank you Tikari for the fish feasts, be here tomorrow at 8.45, IF YOU’RE LATE, YOU’RE FIRED!” post in the thread on the forums, and I needed to make this blog post.
I’m just… buzzing, tonight. not only have I gotten to see more than half of the instance I’ve loved since before I even had a ghost of a chance of seeing it, but I got to see it with nine amazing guildies, and it was my raid. Yeah, Euphie and Ose did most of the strats (with Lib helping out towards the end, though she was not in the raid), but this raid is my baby. I want to see how far me and these nine kids can push it. Would I prefer it to be 24 other awesome people? Absolutely, I am in love with 25-man raids. But this is fun, too, this little rag-tag crew running through Ulduar because I made it happen. Sure, we all outgear the content. Sure, I forgot to have Piggly enchant my cloak because of the horror that was his gnome shirtless and bunny-eared. But damn, did we have fun.
I can’t wait to see what we can do tomorrow. :D