The Fine Art of Boss Kill Videos

I’ve mentioned before that, while I myself am NOT (oh dear lord not) a progression raider, I find myself somehow IN a progression raiding guild, the Band of Misfits on Azuremyst.

It’s strange as hell because you know all those stereotypes of hardcore progression raiders? Yeah, I don’t see any of that around here. Just nice folks. Friendly. Personable. Mature (well, mostly).

Certainly don’t see any asshats, and I mean ANY. Freaking weird, now that I consider it. I wonder if they’re actually pod people?

I wonder how many of you are old enough to get that reference? Soylent Green is people, damnit! /backoffthelawn, bear.

Truth is, most of the time I forget that I’m in a guild with three raid teams. People are too busy talking excitedly about achievement hunting. 

In fact, two guildies, Random and Red, spent over an hour talking about food additives, allergies and healthy eating, and I swear it almost put me off my McNuggets.

There is one thing that does serve to remind me that I am in a guild that has some serious progression raiders.

Kill videos.

Band of Misfits may quietly go about their pursuit of excellence, but internal to the guild they are very proud of their successes, and they capture that success in the creation of kill videos.

I had previously thought that boss kill videos were mostly the province of bleeding edge raiding guilds sponsored by companies with too damn much money and pretensions of formula one or Nascar racing equivalence. Something you see on MMO Champion when a world first kill happens, and other than that, not so much.

Not so!

Team Wanda has as their videographer the esteemed Lierthes, who spends hour upon hour hand-crafting each video, and then putting them up on YouTube for the personal enjoyment of the team.

I’ve been thinking a little about this, and to me they represent the new breed of digital hunter, and their boss kill videos are a modern equivalent of the stuffed and mounted heads of their kills, proudly displayed in a virtual den, fueling fond memories over brandy and cigars while chatting in vent.

A stretch? I don’t think so. Can anyone honestly say that a big game hunter spends more time planning the tools and trip for a safari than a progression guild spends working on getting a heroic boss kill down? 

Here is one of the videos Team Wanda and Lierthes has put forward on YouTube, and while it is long, keep in mind this isn’t supposed to be for the public – this is for their own fun and to capture that moment, to have a chance to relive the excitement again.

Watching these videos and admiring their high standards of excellence, one of the things that impresses me the most is the amount of fun spent on introducing the characters. I can watch those character intros and get a definite feel for the personalities involved, and isn’t that one of the hallmarks of fine film making?

This makes me wonder… how many other guilds out there do this sort of thing, and to this degree of quality and care?

It was partially meant in jest before, but there is a lot of truth to the idea that, for our modern gaming society, a finely crafted boss kill video takes the place of a stuffed and mounted head, showcasing the thrill of the hunt, the battle royale and the final victory in a lasting and meaningful way.

Plus, it’s got a beat you can dance to. 

I think it’s a marvelous idea, that we as gamers DO have our own way of taking and displaying our hunting trophies using the high technology that fuels our joy. 

You know me, though.

Taking this to the next logical step… at what point will someone become a virtual taxidermist, taking your raw boss kill footage and vent recordings, and make your finished, polished video for you to claim as your own?

For every demand, there will be a supplier.

I bet you could find someone that already advertises their services in this regard, if you looked hard enough.

My congratulations go to Team Wanda and to Lierthes for having the spirit to take their time in a raid and turn it into something fun to look back on and laugh. 

Blizzard and other gaming companies make a point in their terms of service to tell us that nothing we do or have in an MMO is our property except our memories. How much more, than, should we treasure something meant to make those memories last.

Does your guild also craft boss kill videos, or better yet event videos, just for the enjoyment of you and your guildies? 

If so, and if you’re not embarassed at sharing, why not link to one? I’d love to see it.

I know that I’ll never forget the pure amazement that came from seeing the video Herzrah made of the Raid for the Cure run from years back. Even though I was there, seeing the video brought back the whole event so vividly I couldn’t believe it.

16 thoughts on “The Fine Art of Boss Kill Videos

  1. “In fact, two guildies, Random and Red, spent over an hour talking about food additives, allergies and healthy eating, and I swear it almost put me off my McNuggets.”

    I LIKED your guild…. Now I want to stay way. AND GIVE ME BACK MY DAMN NUGGETS!



  2. I do!

    You can find a video of mine that I’ve put online:

    This was when we were struggling on trying to kill Ragnaros. I had an idea to make a video of everyone in my raid team in an attempt to inspire people again. People were feeling very disencouraged and I hoped that the video would help people feel reinvigorated. After releasing this on you tube, we killed Ragnaros two days later, so I guess the video did the job 🙂

    I was asked to do one for Dragon Soul, so that’s in the works now since we’ve cleared DS on normal and am trying to work on heroics. I’m not sure how I’ll do the Dragon Soul movie, but I might try filming during normal attempts and uh… try not to get myself killed 😉


  3. For T11 I threw together a medley kill video of Blackwing Descent, from the PoV of me (a healer). It was normal mode, because, well, we’re not cutting edge raiders. But the guild rather enjoyed the video:

    Considering this was the 3rd? time I’ve ever thrown together any sort of video, I was pretty happy with it. Yeah, could be better, but hey, get better by doing, right?


  4. My guild is a PvP guild, so we don’t have any “boss kill” videos, but I do fraps our random/rated battleground matches sometimes and record arena matches when I can. My purpose isn’t so much for the memories (though sometimes it is) as it is to look back at matches to find mistakes made and improve on them.

    One video I did from last season came to mind as something that was more or less just for us and “for teh lulz”:
    It was meant primarily to be funny, though perhaps I’m the only one that finds it so.


  5. Hi Big Bear Butt,

    I love your comment on what “hardcore” raiders look like. I too wondered if maybe asshat “hardcore” raiders are just hyped up. I’ll have to level up fast in order to find out!


    • Like most stereotypes, this one exists for a reason. Thankfully, it’s not as bad as it once was now that the bar for entry into raiding is significantly lower than it used to be.


  6. Whoever made that should be very proud, that is a really cool video style. So personalized!

    I do videos for our guild, and while most of the time they’re just set to music, sometimes I like to incorporate our actual vent audio over music, to capture the emotion and irreplaceable sense of euphoria from a successful boss kill. 😀

    Here’s some samples of what I mean:

    Warmaster Blackhorn:


  7. As a fellow feral druid (kitty DPS) I also took a kill video on our first Ragnaros kill. Partly because it was our first kill, partly because I like to create these videos, but mainly because we did it with almost all melee DPS (just one range for the trap tripping). It’s the first time in quite a while our happy little raid force has been able to get a first kill with a melee team!

    Especially the feral druids can enjoy it here:

    Anyways, video making is fun!


  8. This post is excellent, and not because I have a press agent waiting to send you my headshots and clippings, but I adore the metaphor. It’s the emergent behavior of humans that fascinates me, and also heartens me to know there are players out there who are at their core, good folks. Are we still, at the heart of it, dancing around fires, celebrating the kills?

    (Oh, and if players could get awards for excellent writing, yours would top the charts!)


  9. Edited to replace the Ragnaros video with the Cho’Gall one, which is the one I thought I had copied in the first place. I didn’t see the wrong video was embedded until it went live. Sigh.


    • And now I see that you can only watch the ChoGall video at YouTubes website, it gets blocked from being watched on embed.

      When did music companies get this stupid? If I see the video and enjoy the music, I am tempted to buy the music. What, do they think when I want to listen to the song in my car I am going to visit youtube on my phone and stream it? MORONS.


      • That policy has been the bane of many of my YouTube videos, to the point where a few times I’ve found myself looking for alternate hosting sites for some of them. (None were as quick and convenient as YouTube, sadly.) I don’t see why they can’t just embed links or advertisements pointing to where one might purchase the song(s) in question on those videos, rather than take a crap on the hard work someone put into making the video that contains the song.


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