I thought I’d seen it all.
At least, I thought I’d seen every darn thing people could do to throw me a curve ball in this game.
Last night I was forcibly reminded that I am a casual player, because I’m sure every other tank has had this happen to them before, but I was totally without a clue when it happened.
“When WHAT happened?” I hear you ask?
Well, let me tell you a little story… [grin]
So there I was, in Karazhan again. This time, it was gonna be different. Group 1′s main tank Joppers was going to spend the week straightening Group 2 out, and he had plans for us. Big plans.
“We’re going straight in to Attumen, then we’re going to take down Moroes and after that we’ll take down Maiden.”
Pretty bold plan for one night, considering he’d never run with Group 2 before. A Group that still has yet to down either Moroes OR Maiden due to what I like to call ’10% issues’*.
I was pretty excited though. Seeing as how none of us had any prior experience in Kara, having someone along to drive us forward that knew how the flow should go could make a massive difference.
So in we go, and from the first it is clear that the tank is going to have none of this ‘coddling the casters’ crap. He does a quick run down of what he expects, Blue Square for ice trap, star for shackle, x for off tank (me), Moon for fear, burn such and such down first, etc. Then he says “Everyone when you need mana get it on the run and stay on your toes we have a lot to get done and I’m not sitting around”.
BOOM! With that the first pull begins and it’s just pull pull pull after that.
Attumen was downed in about 21 minutes from entering the instance, and I had a blast the whole way. As a main tank, I usually pretty much stayed bear and did my thing.
But here I had a clear agenda. The main tank was marking, and if there wasn’t a red X, then there was no off-tanking. That meant that when the tank started a pull, I could be in cat form and gear for DPS on the tanks’ targets, switching to bear only to grab broken traps and such, or shift into caster for spot heals and innervates, etc. I got to actually feel like a versatile class helping out all over the place. Lots and lots of fun. ;)
Like I was saying, we downed Attumen in record time. We were gratified to hear that we pretty evenly matched Group 1 for time to progress to this point. Then we got the next surprise, as instead of heading for the ballroom, the main tank said we’d be taking the shortcut through the pantry to Moroes. Shortcut? Okay, cool.
Well, I don’t know that it was shorter, but it was fun to do something a bit different.
We blasted through at top speed, and it was great seeing the Group come together. The main tank was pushing as fast as he thought right, and the group rose to the challenge. He clearly expected everyone to be on the ball and do their own jobs without coddling. There was no babying, none of the “Is everyone sure you’re ready?” stuff that I tend to do. He treated everyone with respect, with the expectation that they were mature and skilled enough to do their jobs without being told, and most of them responded by damn well doing them. I was amazed and gratified. If there was a pull he thought might be difficult, he’d stop for a second to caution us that so and so would hit hard, and to be on top of things, and he’d pop a Ready Check and then boom! off to another pull.
Things were going so well, that before we knew it we were at the first pull from the chamber where Moroes and his dinner guests reside. That doorway is guarded by two stewards, and the main tank warned us that they hit hard, and he marked a red x and skull, then pulled. I dutifully shifted to bear with bear gear, grabbed my x and dragged his ass off to the side so everyone could see the skull clearly.
Now it was at this point that something went wrong. I don’t know what, but people started panicking as if there were a horde of adds or something among the casters. As far as I could see, as I spun my views around, there were still just the two stewards. Then the main tank went down and all holy hell broke loose.
I still don’t understand what happened to cause the complete panic that I heard on Teamspeak. It’s not as if we were strangers to wipes or uncontrolled chaos. Our previous runs should have taught us to be adaptive and prepared for the worst.
At any rate, when I saw the main tank go down, the skull he was tanking broke for the casters in a straight line. I Feral Charged, picked him up and spun him around on me. Seconds later he died and I still had my original X on me.
Absolutely no worries, right?
YES, there were a couple players dead. But we had three paladins, me and a resto druid, and a priest. We had so much rezzing power that we ALMOST could wipe scores of times and jump right back up.
And thats when IT happened. IT.
Let’s recap… a couple players down, including the main tank, and one steward well and truly focused on me.
Well, what happened next is partly my fault. I still do not know by heart the moves and special abilities of every mob that I will be facing in Karazhan. If I did, I would have reacted a lot faster to find the reason for what happened to me, and I could have fixed it before it was too late.
This is what happened. As I began lacerating the steward to keep aggro firmly rooted on me, my buttons stopped responding, and my movement keys and mousemove stopped responding, EXACTLY as happens when stunned.
And here is where I made my critical error. I assumed that the steward could stun, and had stunned me, and that it would break in 3 seconds. And instead of looking away from the action to check the timer that should have been counting down stun duration next to the minimap, I kept my eyes on the screen, spamming my growl hotkey in anticipation of the stun wearing off so I could stay right on top of things.
And stun didn’t wear off. And still didn’t wear off. And as I waited and waited it STILL didn’t wear off. And I continued to wait in growing panic as the mob finally took off from my still, unresponsive form, and went to go tear the group a new one. And I could only watch in horror as it took down every single other player, and then, instead of coming back after me, it left the room to go back where it came from!
I just couldn’t believe it! I still stood there stunned and unable to move… except, now that I wasn’t surrounded by spell effects of casters and swipes and special effects and heals, I could see there was some sort of glolden glow around me… almost like…
And someone announces in guild chat that they DI’d me so I could rez the group after the wipe.
Someone… cast Divine Intervention on me… without saying a word in Teamspeak… so I could rez the party after the wipe… when we had a soulstone up…. and when we HAD NO WIPE INCOMING!!!! I was on top of that one lone mob so hard it wasn’t even funny. It took FOREVER for it to break off of me and go after the rest of the party.
At this point I gently put my headphones down, and swore bitterly at the screen for two solid minutes.
After getting the swearing out of my system for the moment, I calmly went looking through the 20+ buff icons in the upper right portion of my screen… and sure enough, there was the Divine Intervention icon, with a timer showing about two minutes left.
I gently right-clicked it to shut it off, just as I could have if I’d been smart enough to know that it wasn’t the mob that stunned me… it was one of my own teammates.
Honest to god, that is the very first time ever that anyone has cast Divine Intervention on me, as the main tank, in the middle of a fight, no matter how bad things looked. Ever.
I remained calm as I typed into my friends’ chat channel, to my buddy Jay, who was on the run with me…
“Someone DI’d me in the middle of the fight when we were in no danger. That is SO going in my blog.”
* 10% is a phrase from my Marine Corps days.. back then we took it for granted that we Marines were the ‘best of the best’**… but that even among our ranks, there was that “10%” of worthless asshats that would never do anything right if they could help it. From boot camp on, anytime we’d talk about a situation where one person screwed it up for the rest of us, that person was a ‘ten percenter’, or the situation would just be referred to as, “Well, there is always that 10%.”
** Of course, we also took it on faith that the Navy had 40%. ;)
Just kidding, folks. Just kidding.