Yawnmaul

So last week I moved, and it was A Week, which essentially means that every single day was written off as total crap.  I’d decided that as soon as we got the internet working in the new place, I had to play WoW.  Therefore, I set myself up on a little end table (my desk had not yet been moved) and dinged my knee pretty hard so that I could try out at least one wing of the new LFR.

Nope nope, outdated.  Start over.

So last week I pretty much had a meltdown

Let’s rephrase that.

So my various families observed the holidays last week, which essentially means that every single day was devoted to things “in the real world” and not the digital.  This is me, though, so I snuck away for a little WoW time here and there!

Oh wait, it’s outdated again!

So last week was New Year’s and the Significant Other got the flu, which essentially means that every single day was

You know what, forget it.  This, children, is why you should publish your blog posts before a million things happen, because otherwise you do more things and you’ve gotta revise.  Repeatedly.

I also recently switched to a new computer.  While my four year old CPU was literally a tower of processing power at one time, it has now been eclipsed by a creation capable of showing reflections on water surfaces, and ripples on the water, and dramatic views off into the far distance, and light beams and all that fancy visual crap!  Alas, I was too excited to transfer all my screenshots at that time, so while they are not exactly lost, they are unavailable at the time of this posting.  GIFS FOR ALL INSTEAD.

Derp Derp Derp Derp Don't mind me.

Derp Derp Derp Derp
Don’t mind me.

While waiting in the long DPS queue, I pondered why you had to get a silver in the proving grounds for heroic dungeons, but not for LFR, even though incompetence would inconvenience a far larger group of people in the latter.  To me, the “natural order” has always been something like Dungeons (Normal > Heroic) > LFR > Real Raiding™, but guildmates insisted that heroic dungeons are supposed to be harder than LFR nowadays.  So now it’s more like Normal Dungeons > LFR > Heroic Dungeons > Real Raiding™.  Oh, and LFR is obsolete because of flex, or so I’m told.

How LFR Works Now After all, it requires little skill these days.

How LFR Works Now
Well, kinda how it always did.

Anyway, I was assured that the first wing of Highmaul LFR would be a total faceroll, and indeed, it was.  On the upside, there were only three bosses to the first wing, which I think is the darn perfect number for an LFR session – not too brief and therefore unsatisfying, but not too long and therefore irritating.  On the downside, the “challenge” level of LFR has been scaled to a point where even I, consummate lazy bum that I am, think there maaaaay be a problem.  If you make most things this easy,  you are guaranteed to get at least one or more stacks of Determination when the group reaches a boss that can’t simply be smashed to bits like the bosses before it (see: Ko’ragh, I haven’t tried that wing again yet).  Also, I get a feeling of “uh, wow.  Was that it?”

Kargath Bladefist
So I guess Kargath hooks some people with chains and throws ’em into the audience (I’m told it’s a random selection in LFR).  That didn’t happen to me, though, so I was bored.  It felt kind of like the Sha of Fear LFR fight, but with more testosterone and less fleeing in terror.  There were these “Flame Pillar” fiery skull-things that popped up and disappeared throughout the fight.  They’re apparently very important for interrupting Kargath’s Berserker Rush, but he didn’t target me for that, either, and I wasn’t dumb enough to stand next to them, so shape of the burning pillars reminded me of those round tube-like brushes you see in car washes.  Suddenly I was thinking of cleaning things …

How to improve: Get Kargath some shampoo and open the freaking Tiger Pits, and maybe have some tigers with blades on their paws pop out of them!  Yeah, that’s a great idea!

The Butcher
How was this even considered a boss?  I’ve met snails tougher than that!  Oh wait, he gave me loot, therefore, he is a boss.  Somehow.

How to improve: Get rid of this guy, or at least give him his primary mechanic back.  I mean, seriously, he is embarrassing right now.

Brackenspore
This one seemed more fun with the different kinds of adds spawning.  There must’ve been a handful of experienced folk present, because otherwise I cannot explain how the group went in swinging and came out alive without any stacks of Determination.

How to improve: First, add more flamethrowers.  Second, replace Brackenspore with Thok v2, and instead of mushrooms and plants appearing throughout the fight, have a bunch of mini raptor-sized Thoks show up instead.  Their bites would debilitate you in different ways!  If you got “Lose a Leg,” you’d experience a 35% reduction to mobility.  “Nomming on Your Noggin” would slow your casting speed, and so on.

I Am a Mighty Lion Thrashing All the Bosses in LFR

I Am a Mighty Lion
Thrashing All the Bosses in LFR

All in all, I do appreciate the move away from encounters where one person doing something stupid at the very start can screw the whole thing up, a la talking to Lorthie or Wrynn and beginning the Galakras fight before a tower team has been chosen (or before everybody’s zoned in).  Still, I kind of miss the LFR ToT level of challenge.  Okay, okay, I miss the LFR ToT level of challenge minus Durumu and Lei Sheeyit.  I definitely miss the snails.  I hope there’s something quirky like them in one of the later wings that gives this raid some character.

 

 

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8 thoughts on “Yawnmaul

  1. Talarian

    It’s more like there’s two paths of progression:
    Normal Dungeons/Questing -> LFR
    Normal Dungeons/Questing -> Heroic Dungeons -> Normal+ Raids

    LFR is dead-end tourist mode, it is the end point of its progression path. Heroic dungeons can be spammed until you’re at 630+ ilvl, and then you can hop right into Normal-mode raids. Sure, LFR gear can help, but if you’re clearing Normal, you’ll quickly out gear LFR in a couple weeks.

    As far as I can tell, LFR is no longer meant as a step into raiding (though I did run it to practice dodging fire on Twin Ogron, for example), and Blizzard did a lot to ensure that active raiders don’t need to run LFR since that was a huge complaint last expac (thanks to the Legendary quests). Without those active raiders playing in LFR, you’re left with a population that has little experience for the most part, and making LFR even remotely difficult would probably kill LFR entirely.

    On the other hand, go try wing 2. It actually is a bit harder than wing 1 is. You actually need more than one healer.

    Reply
    1. Prinnie Powah Post author

      I didn’t use LFR back when Dragon Soul was a thing, so my experience of it is about 80% MoP content and 20% SoO stuff. I did Real Raiding from the tail end of Throne of Thunder through a bit of Siege. At the time, LFR struck me as the social or casual player’s version of raiding – it was something above dungeon level that still required some amount of skill to complete (looking for RAID, after all), but mechanics had been simplified of necessity to make it possible to complete with strangers. Sure, Lei Shen LFR groups could give me a serious headache, but unlike Real Raiding, I didn’t need to be on hand three days a week, three hours every night. I could leave if I had to or drag along poorly geared friends if I wanted without compromising group progress.

      Now, the “level” LFR sits at comes across to me as “big dungeon with more relevance to the plot.” Maybe I need to get into flex, because I feel like there’s something missing. Real Raiding is still available, but I don’t have the time right now for progression. LFR still suits my schedule, but I feel as though it has almost no mechanics to learn and adapt to (unless you are a tank). I did start the second wing the other week, although I didn’t finish it. Got through the rock guy pretty easily, mostly by running around, smashing as much crap as I could. Got through Twin Ogron pretty easily, mostly by running around, smashing as much crap as I could. Trash, smash smash smash. Got to Ko’ragh. The group threw themselves in and tried to smash as much crap as possible per usual, but lo and behold, suppression fields adds WTF is going on here are these mechanics? Daed! It was like the existence of mechanics was a SURPRISE because they hadn’t really been there before.

      (Did anybody complain about the PvP requirement for the MoP legendary? Gawd help me, I hated that part so much, so so so much. Every time I was in one, the actual PvPers would complain about our presence there ruining things for everybody.)

      Reply
      1. Talarian

        Everybody complained, to the point that Blizzard effectively promised to not include a PvP component to the Draenor Legendary.

        Imperator (Wing 3) is a step up from Wing 2. Certainly not hard if you have any raiding experience, but hard enough that groups wipe on it pretty regularly.

        Have you considered using the new Custom Group Finder tool to get in on Normal raids? It’s actually pretty good, though requires a little more work than say, LFR press a button, get in raid. But I’ve seen other guildies have some success there.

        Reply
  2. khizzara

    See, the thing is, you are actually too skilled for LFR. No no! Don’t laugh! The things that you want are things that are found in the higher difficulties.
    – Tigers coming out to play? Why, hello, Mythic Kargath, nice to meet you!
    – The Butcher is actually a pretty tough DPS and healing check on normal and heroic (and probably Mythic, we haven’t tried him yet) assuming you don’t completely overgear him.
    – Brackenspore… ok, you got me here. There are no mini-Thok’s to be seen, though there are adds. (Are there adds in LFR? I don’t remember.) And it hasn’t seemed too hard on normal/heroic, as long as the flamethrowers don’t overheat and people are good about using the mushrooms. But let me distract you with my next point which is…
    – It’s too bad you weren’t with us when we tried heroic Butcher the first week. Not for the butcher himself, but for the piggy trash right before him. They have a charge that used to one shot people. It was AWESOME. And on heroic there are TWO of them, not just one! We had really hoped that they were going to be the snails of this tier, but alas! Blizzard nerfed them to the ground. 😦

    Reply
    1. Prinnie Powah Post author

      It’s not that I’m LAUGHING, it’s more that I just want to cling to the sheer flexibility that LFR provides in comparison to Real Raiding. I can do it whenever I have the time and feel up to it! There’s no letting people down if I feel tired and don’t want to play that night, for example. No letting people down if I have a blonde moment and forget that we’re starting at 6:30 EST not 6:30 PST. Okay, sure, so nobody cares and that can be depressing, but … CONVENIENCE.

      … I do wanna see the tigers though …

      The Butcher is probably crying in his soul because he’s so embarrassing in LFR. The poor fellow’s all like, “all these people will NEVER KNOW MY TRUE GREATNESS!”

      Yes, there are adds in LFR! There’s the one that does the decay thing that people ignore when they shouldn’t, and there are the shoot-y ones that people ignore when they probably shouldn’… actually no, they can probably ignore MOST of those. I’m not entirely clear what the purpose of the flamethrower is in LFR other than awesome, as there’s no creeping moss-like-horror to beat back.

      In hindsight, I am kind of amazed that Blizzard never nerfed the snails.

      Reply
      1. khizzara

        Well, the nice thing with the flex tech being used for both normal and heroic is that we can bring up to 30 people with us. So as long as you were DPS, and as long as you geared enough for heroic (since we don’t have any reason to run normals anymore), we could probably just drag you along for the ride on the night we clear heroic. (Currently we’re just clearing heroic on Tues and spending the other 2 nights on Mythic.) So if you couldn’t make it, or had to be late for whatever reason, it wouldn’t matter because the instance would just adjust itself to your presence or absence.

        If you wanted to join us for Mythic that would be trickier, since that IS more of a commitment, but as it is we have more players than raid spots, so we’ll be rotating people through anyway.

        Reply

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