Every Sunday evening for several weeks now, I’ve been getting together with a group of good folks across multiple servers, plugging away at the achievements for Glory of the Icecrown Raider (25 person).
The journey has been a lot of fun, and I’ve learned a lot about how the whole cross-server raid thing works along the way.
Did you know that you can’t use summoning stones in cross-server? The trick to cross-server grouping is that since you’re all on seperate realms until you step foot into the instance, anything you try and do from outside the instance only applies to folks on your own server. Summoning Stones are not in the raid instance with you. So, summoning methods only work if done from within the raid instance, and even then, you have to be near the instance portal. Blizzard changed things a while back so you can’t just bring folks right to you if you’re deep in the dirt. You have to surface to breathe the fresh air, then pull the people in to meet you.
Works great when almost everyone has Have Group, Will Travel to summon the raid to you, though.
Good thing there weren’t any plans to take that away or anything.
Oops, oh, right. They ARE taking away HGWT. They are replacing it with… Ride Like The Wind, faster flight path travel time by 25%.
What a STUPID idea. It’s almost as though someone stopped and asked themselves, “What one quality of game life thing can we change to screw over people who enjoy playing together as much as possible? Ooh, I know, let’s take away Have Group, Will Travel. That way, instead of just summoning everyone to the raid location and getting busy having fun, we can return to the days of blowing a half hour with flying and hearthing and shit waiting for people to get there. Nothing better than standing around for a half hour waiting on stragglers, I always say.”
My suggestion is, take your Summoning Stones and stick them just INSIDE the raid instance instead of leaving them outside. Then they’d actually fulfill their functions for all raid groups, both home grown and cross-server.
What is funny is, I’m writing this without knowing if they already moved the summoning stones on the beta or not. I haven’t heard anyone really talk about Have Group Will Travel since, like, April. Maybe they just moved some summoning stones into instances and raids and eliminated the issue. Got two people in your group that can get there? Then you’re covered.
But then again… maybe they haven’t.
Aside from seeing the truck of stupid barreling on down the road at us, the Sunday night raids have been a lot of fun.
We’ve managed to get every single achievement necessary now, with the lone exception of The Orb Whisperer.
We even managed to get “Been Waiting a Long Time” on our Lich King kill last night, on our first try! I was totally expecting that to take like five tries!
We are sooo close now. Just one lone Orb Whisperer achievement left to go.
The Orb Whisperer has turned out to be the most challenging achievement of the bunch for us. It doesn’t matter how much health you’ve got in your pool when the achievement requires you to kill the bosses without anyone in the entire group taking a set amount of damage in one shot.
And it doesn’t matter if you’re bubbled, either. It only cares that you got hit with it, if the bubble absorbed some it still counts. You need to use the mechanic of the purple orbs on the Kale tank to mitigate the damage from that one effect, and handle all the other spell effects properly, period. No bullshitting around.
Having tons of DPS to burn the bosses obviously helps a lot, because the faster they die, the less dancing you have to do.
Also, having tons of health does help since you can have a much higher DPS to healer ratio in your group. On each of our Orb Whisperer wipes last night, it took longer to actually die when we stopped fighting so we could get a chance to restart it than it did to give it a real go.
Okay, are we clear now? Good.
Now that I’m a few paragraphs farther down the page, I can reveal that I was just playing a practical joke on Matty. I’ve been intending to do this ever since we started talking about doing these achievements. In truth, we didn’t even get to Lich King last night before we were done for the evening, let alone try to give Been Waiting A Long Time a shot. We finished the raid after killing the Dreamweaver.
But I was telling the truth about only having one achievment left to do. You see, what we really accomplished last night was finishing that pesky Orb Whisperer after all. :) It took us about a half hour of wiping on failed attempts before we got the coordination down, but we did manage to do it.
You have no idea how panicked Matty has been about not being there when we attempted Been Waiting a Long Time. Whisper whisper whisper. I just know that when she read that paragraph up above, the ensuing screams could be received by Curiosity, and damn the silent vacuum of space.
I ask you, if you can’t prank your friends, who can you prank?
But yes, that means that the actual and for true last achievement we as a group need is Been Waiting a Long Time – Lich King kill.
Sadly, we have come so close, only to have to take a two week break, as the Bear family will be out of town next weekend.
Some folks still need Heroic mode kills of bosses, but we can’t even get that coordinated in my absence due to the second drawback of cross-server raiding… needing to be the Real ID or Battletag friend of someone forming or inside of the raid.
To be cleaqr, you don’t all have to be Battletag friends with the raid leader. The raid leader can invite one person, convert to raid, check “make all assistants’ so everyone can invite, and then anyone else in the raid can invite people to join, even folks from their own Real ID friends list or just in their guild, no worries, no need to have one single point of failure.
Once Battletags go live in WoW, we could conceivably all share our Battletags on a forum and link up that way regardless of Bear time, but barring that, if the Bear is away, the raid cannot play. :(
Tt looks like the Mists of Pandaria official release date will come just in time to see a whole passel of people proudly plying the skies with dead drakes. I for one will salute our undead dragon mount overlords.
Once the expansion comes out, I expect to take a bit of a break as I level my Druid (as Guardian) to 90, and start my new Panda Monk,
Give it a month though, and I will definitely be looking to start up another such cross-server raid accomplishment group again. It’s been too much fun not to. Just gonna have to wait until we get settled into the gay ’90s first.
Maybe Firelands achieves and flaming bird mounts? Who could say where the whim may drive us on that fine day?
Been having a great time while we’ve been waiting a long time, my friends. Thank you to everyone that has been taking part, it’s been a blast, every single week.