Siege of Orgrimmar mount reward

So, this thing happened last night.

This thing where I raided in Siege of Ogrimmar normal 10 with Team Wanda of the Band of Misfits, and we defeated Garrosh.

There were cutscenes and everything, there were final quest completion scenes with Loremaster Cho and Wrathion. It’s very cool, and no I won’t spoil it.

I usually don’t talk about raiding very much. Some folks raid, some don’t. Some would like to and can’t find the team or the time, others do raid and are flaming asshats and, for the sake of everyone around them, shouldn’t.

Used to be I never raided, then I raided a bit but had some bad experiences, then I didn’t raid again. At the moment I’m raiding quite a lot. A lot more than I ever expected for a guy ostensibly warming a bench.

I’m going to talk about raiding now because I think killing Garrosh on normal, a major event in current tier content, should damn well rate a mention on my blog. It’s a big deal to me.

I have NEVER in the years that I have played World of Warcraft defeated a final tier boss when it was still current un-nerfed content.

At least I hadn’t until now.

This ain’t a world or server first, but it’s a first for me, and the thrill of being a part of it on Sunday night is something that will be a favorite game memory for a long time to come.

What this means for you in the short term is now I can finish my Klaxxi and Garrosh story chapters this week. :)

I feel torn about this victory.

On the one hand, I fought as hard as I could and it was an incredible feeling when Garrosh went down. Things went so well on that pull, it felt at the time like everything was dropping right into place as planned. For a fight as chaotic as that can be on phase three, that is certainly saying something.

On the other hand… I am by far the lowest DPS on our team. My gear is not a factor. I have outstanding gear, when I look at where I am against the rest of the team, there is simply no comparison.

I’ve seen a brilliant Warlock, and it ain’t me. Summibs is simply amazing. He was the same spec as I was on the Garrosh encounter, and there is no question the difference in performance ain’t gear, it’s skill, and mine is not at the same level as anyone else on the team.

That leaves me very proud of having been a part of a major raid progression and enjoying the rewards of success, a title, a cool wolfie mount, and at the same time feeling that if I am not performing at the same level as everyone else is, then I was just carried to victory.

It doesn’t matter how hard I worked for it, or how focused I was, or how much I prepared. It’s not about who tried hardest, effort doesn’t get an A. If I can’t actually perform at that level, then someone else has to perform even better for the team to win.

I look at where we have come with these fights, and I look back on what used to be considered difficult (or at least annoying) fights like Shade of Aran or Prince Malchezaar, and it’s astonishing how far we’ve come in complexity and duration.

Paragons of the Klaxxi compared to Shade of Aran? Really? Not even close.

Every fight in the current raid tier I feel I have had to stretch, to learn, to get better and I can see improvement fight to fight. BUT. I think the fights are getting harder faster than I am improving.

I saw it with Garrosh. I could visibly see improvement every fight in how fast I can move and respond, especially when pulled into the other realm or moving in response to Desecrated Weapon throws. It’s like we’ve talked about before, PvP instant fire and manuever skills are desperately needed for this level of raiding, nothing is a ‘Patchwerk’ fight anymore, and the fights are all the better for it.

I do wonder when I’ll hit the wall in improving. I know, not just worry but know that the team can find a replacement for me pretty easy, someone that would do much better DPS. I’m sure right now the only thing preventing it is they’re all very nice, and they haven’t been looking very hard… yet. We’ve got some hellaciously skilled people in this guild, and any one of them could perform better.

I thought I was doing very well on Garrosh Hellscream, moving and responding exactly as I should in sync with everyone. Then I saw my DPS, and realized that everyone else in the team is at a higher level. They are doing all the same things, but they’re also maintaining top line damage output, or handling multiple adds and complex mechanics instantly every time.

I feel like the writing is on the wall. Sometime in the future I will hit a heroic mode where I can’t adapt fast enough, where the challenge has risen higher than my skill to overcome.

Happens to all of us eventually, but I hope before it happens to Team Wanda they are able to find someone they like as a replacement that can be an asset, and not a lead chain on the ankle of the team, dragging them down.

I know I’m old, but I’ve never felt old playing the game until now.

19 Responses to “Buttflame, Conqueror of Orgrimmar”
  1. Psynister says:

    Congratulations!

  2. Toosxyfohair says:

    That’s kind of how I feel sometimes. I’m definitely older than the vast majority of people that play WoW(47)….damn I’m getting old. I am pretty much resigned to the fact that I am just to old and slow to PvP and hate those times that I’m forced into it for some reason or other, “What a long strange trip it’s been” immediately springs to mind. Honestly that’s probably why I mostly play a healer. You don’t have to be that fast to be good.

    I don’t let it bother me though. It’s my 16 bucks a month and play how I feel like it. I don’t feel I have to be “Uber Leet”, or whatever these young whipper snappers call it these days. As long as I’m pulling my weight, which I’m sure you were, or the other people don’t care and want you there because they WANT you there, it’s all good.

    • bigbearbutt says:

      Getting old, man. Getting old.

      I ain’t too old to play video games, but I’m getting too old to do it as well as my head thinks I should.

      And my memory! I mentioned I’d left my notes on the Paragons fight at work, and the raid team started giving me shit. “What, you keep notes?”

      When you get to be my age it is 100% no shit, I can tell you all about the quest chain I leveled my druid through in vanilla Un’goro 7 years ago, but I can’t tell you which paragon comes before who in the kill order from last night.

      Except I know Korven the prime was third. I don’t know why I remember that, probably because we blew all cooldowns on it so I fixed that one in my mind.

  3. Orvillius says:

    Congrats! While I’m younger than you and Toosxy I feel the same way as I’m trying to get myself back in raiding shape. I can tank respectably but when I try to DPS anymore I’m just not up to par. I struggle to make sure I’m positioned where I need to be, to avoid all the exciting ground effects and still keep up a decent amount of time on the boss, pounding its butt or sides in.

    • bigbearbutt says:

      I think melee is part of the difficulty curve. Things that are bad are so much harder to distinguish when you’re in melee.

      I sometimes wonder if I went ranged from some inner feeling that I needed those extra seconds to see the bad shit coming so I have time to get out of it.

  4. Mama Druid says:

    First of all, congratulations & your lock looks amazing! ;)

    Secondly, what an interesting observation – fights are getting harder, more technical, with each expansion as the player base ages and becomes less technically able to keep up.

    Without knowing actual statistics about the player base’s average age, I’m assuming it’s older than it was when the game was released. Those of us who have played on and off or consistently since the beginning have aged (almost) 10 years!! I think it’s possible to extrapolate from what we think we know that there will be a time when the player base’s declining skills and the increased encounter difficulty converge and WoW blows up.

    That will be the end of it.

    Thirdly, what do you think would have happened if the raid’s dps was the same as yours? Would Garrosh have fallen?

    • bigbearbutt says:

      No, if the rest of the raid had my dps we would not have won. Great point. My dps was in the 192k range while the rest of the team started at 230k from what I saw and went up from there.

      And like I said before, this isn’t a gear issue, it’s pure skill. If I’m on multiple targets I can blow them up all day long, but single target on the run is falling behind. All I can pin it to is suboptimal cool down syncing and pisspoor incinerate management. And bad Havoc use age.

  5. Therellian says:

    I hear what you’re saying BBB. I’m 46, an engineer with long-ish hours and a family to cater for after hours. I’ve not seen the inside of a normal mode this tier, I think flex is about my level these days… Which I’d love to do Fri or Sat night (being the only nights I don’t have work the next day, so I can stay up…), but they seem to be party night for the younger players, who only want to raid during the week when they’ve got nothing important to do… only study or such ;-)
    Anyway, congrats on the win. And you weren’t being carried, you were mentoring (as befits your long experience), which always cuts into your own time and performance ;-)

  6. CSelf says:

    Congrats BBB! It’s a great feeling completing a current raid tier. I’m 51, lordy where did the years go, and twitchy game mechanics are something I also have a tough time dealing with. A “get out of the fire” addon, and smart focusing has helped…but I’m never going to top the DPS or healing meters and I still die to the fire at times. I keep getting invited to raid…so I still go and have fun.

    I don’t know your guild, but I do understand this…raiding in WoW is a social game, and sometimes, playing with the “person” is more important than squeezing out a higher % of DPS. One night raiding in Cata, my guild master wanted to set out because his DPS wasn’t high enough in his opinion….the entire group of folks on vent said…hell no…your going to be there for however many times it takes us to kill this boss. He’s just that kind of a guy. We wanted to raid with -him-. Not because of his uber-leet-DPS numbers, but because of the person he is. He is a friend, not just an avatar on the screen with pretty numbers floating over his dwarvish head.

    I have a hunch that your raid team sees you as a friend, and friendship is something that’s precious to have.

  7. Rowan says:

    Congratulations on what I am sure was an Epic Victory for everyone involved. As others have said, your wisdom and good company were far more important than any damage meter can show.

  8. Yorgi says:

    Well done on killing Garosh

    I am 47 and I have to admit I have notice my performance just isn’t as good as some of the other members of my guild and as much as I blame it on gear etc I know it’s due to me being a little bit older/slower than last expansion.
    On the plus side, we’re doing Flex and I’m not the lowest so what the hell, as long as it’s still fun and I’m not letting anyone down I’ll carry on.

  9. datominator says:

    Congratulations! I, too, have felt the slow march of time on this old body’s reflexes (44). I could see the handwriting on the wall during Cataclysm (my last normal mode kill was Arthas in Wotlk) and ultimately stopped normal raiding – haven’t done anything beyond LFR since then, but am content to just see the material at my own leisurely pace. As the player base continues to mature, perhaps Blizzard could consider some innovative future boss mechanics – things that might stump players in their 20′s but would be right in our wheelhouse: future big bad boss 1 can only be vanquished by managing his teenage angst, or future big bad boss 2 has to be downed via a checkbook balancing mechanism, etc, etc. ;)

  10. Theodoxus says:

    We old dudes, need Bullet Time – where you can flip a switch and everything slows down and we can avoid effects on the ground. Even with DBM beeping in my ears to get out of the bad, it sometimes takes 2 or 3 ticks before I twitch out of it.

    I appreciate the effort by Blizz to shake things up – but sometimes, you just enjoy some of the boss mechanics and wish they’d emulate them more instead of inventing new and increasingly frustrating ways to defeat us.

  11. […] little while back Big Bear had a post about getting old. I so know what he meant although I’m not sure if it’s worse to remember better times […]

  12. Hokahe says:

    44 and right along with you all. (/salute to fellow Vets this Monday)

    Used to be a time (not so long ago, or maybe it was…?) where I was proud of being in the upper group of damage done and lower group of damage taken.

    Thank you to all you older add-on code writers for GTFO, DBM, spell flash etc…

    /target what everyone else is targeting
    /cross fingers
    /pray nothing spawns beneath me

  13. Andrew says:

    In you defense, how long again have you been really playing a warlock?

    It took me a year and a half until I really felt like I had “arrived” as a shadow priest. Just keep at it, and I’m sure you’ll get to that point where it starts feeling really good.

    One of the things that really, really helped my game was Brawler’s Guild. getting to Rank 8 back in T14 really taught me to react much better and stretch myself to the limits. Maybe give that a try?

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