Question: When do you Call a Wipe?

Keeping the post really short today. Whether it’s in a 5 man, a 10 man, or a 25 man, I’m curious as to under what circumstances your raid leaders call a wipe.

Does it ever frustrate you when your raid leaders do?

Does it annoy you when they should and don’t?

For the raid leaders, does farm versus progression content impact the times you call wipes?

I’ve called snap wipes when we lose 2-3 people in the opening minute of a fight. I’ve called for a continual push even when we were down a half raid.

What’s your take?

Matt Beats Game, Epic G String Drops

Matt Beats Game, Epic G String Drops

Er, did I say G String? I meant bow string.

thor

Here’s a few choices screenshots leading up to and including the kill.

WoWScrnShot_110208_205921

At this point, we’re down to 3 healers. Cheever just ate a real big Armageddon. Stupyd just died (Angel wings on the right). Luwin and Sthirteen are still alive. Both of whom are severely taxed and drained.

Thankfully, Lang (our MT) is still in good shape. Our Ret Paladin is still alive. We have enough momentum from our remaining players to carry over and finish him off. We started him today at 3:30 PM PST. We spent all night on him. It stretched on until around 8:50 PM. It was to be our last attempt regardless of what would happen. It always seems that on milestone bosses, it boils down to the last attempt.

I wonder why that is. I guess it’s desperation kicking in.

WoWScrnShot_110208_205926Here we are just a bare millisecond after we tip him over. The game registers the kill, my UI says he is still alive with 0.3k health remaining. The achievement system just kicks in.

I really want to take the rest of the week off. I doubt I’ll get that chance. My Guild leader was absent today. I entered the raid instance as raid leader. Clearly that must’ve affected the loot table.

Recount shows the DPS of the current fight. I didn’t set it to show overall. Caim was on orb duty as was Rackham. Big props to the two of them for handling the the Shields so well. Benchwarmer tank Hassai stepped in today and did a phenomenal job on acquiring and holding the Sinister Reflections.

We’d gotten to the point where we would bring Kil’Jaeden down consistently to phase 5.
Then down to below 20%.
Then down below 10%.
Then below 5%.

Until we finally punted him back him back into the ground where he belonged.

WoWScrnShot_110208_210337

Burning Crusade complete. 02/11/08.

By the way, if you notice, you’ll see that we only have one mage. We could definitely use another one heading into Wrath. 

Sadly, the realm forum thread I created has already been trolled. Why do people hate me so much? :(

Now I can Heal in Style

Cowl of the Avatar

Does it not reek of complete and utter awesomeness? I finally got my Cowl of the Avatar! What good timing too since Carnage will no longer be running SSC as much anymore. We’re going all in on Kael.

The T5 helm now brings me up to having 3/5 T5. I also picked up another item to replace my Ribbon of Sacrifice. From Lurker, I managed to collect Earring of Soulful Meditation (it’s the class trinket at the T5 level). I lose a slight drop in healing (a whopping 7) but if I manage to remember to activate the Earring, I’ll gain 300 spirit for several seconds to further increase my longevity in combat. Combine the earring with Pendant of the Violet Eye and I will be able to sustain myself for a long time.

Before and after effects of Earring of Soulful Meditation

Yikes that’s a substantial increase!

Your Tank Died. Want to Know Why?

Here’s the story. You’re healing a raid group on a boss like Nightbane. Things are going steady and smoothly. Then your tank drops from 80% to0. WTF just happened?

No more will you wonder why.

Enter Recount

Ladies and gentlemen, allow me to introduce to you Recount. It’s a diagnostic mod that has a ton of features and tools which can help track an assortment of information and display it graphically or output it as text. It keeps track of information like:

  • Damage done
  • DPS
  • Healing done
  • Dispels (what you dispel)
  • Dispelled (what you’ve been dispelled by)
  • Deaths
  • Interrupts
  • Ressers
  • Activity
  • Mana, Energy, or Rage Gained
  • CC Breakers
  • DOT Uptime
  • HOT Uptime
  • Spells Used

Tracking Deaths

This is the main reason why I use Recount. If I can determine why my tank or assignment died, then I can take measures to prevent it from happening again. There’s also this "peace of mind" factor. By knowing why my tank died, I can either accept responsibility or say that there was nothing I could’ve possibly done.

Recount death tracking in raid

Take the above image as an example. Chamelion is one of the tanks for Gruul and he died. Within the space of 2 seconds, he went from 90% to 0%. From this image, I know that Chamelion absorbed almost 17000 damage under half a second. It would’ve been very difficult for healers to react that quickly to that kind of damage. I have the peace of mind knowing that there would’ve not been anything for me to do (PW: Shield and a Prayer of Mending would’ve been eaten).

Do I have your attention now? Good. Want to learn more about it? Keep reading. However, there is a downside (scroll to the bottom).

Usage

Let me show you how to use it. It’s fairly intuitive (for some). I’ll start with the Death tracker. This is one of many different possible windows that you can switch through.

How many times did you die? Here you go!

From top left to top right, you’ll see several different icons. There’s icons that show horn, gear, page, xpage, left, right, and the X.

Horn: This controls output properties. You can relay information into Guild chat, officer, raid, party, say, current target, player name, or special channels that you are in (custom channels). Using the top slider, I can control how many people to report in whatever channel I like. Note that I can only do one chat channel at a time. I cannot broadcast in Guild and Officer chat simultaneously. If I want to broadcast in both, I’ll have to do them one after the other.

If I want to whisper to a certain person, then I check the box next to "whisper", type the name on the bottom, and press report.

Window where you can choose which channel to output information

Gear: This opens the detail window of the particular tracker that you have open. Each tracker has it’s own specific set of options. I’ll write more about this later.

Page: You can control which chunk of data to look at. Here’s a screenshot below. I can include cumulative data up to the point where I’m at, echo the current fight, or examine individual encounters.

The window where you can choose which part of the fight to look at

Xpage: This button resets all information that you’ve collected up to this point.

Left/Right: Using these buttons, you can cycle through the different windows.

X: Closes the Recount window but it still tracks data in the background.

Death Tracker in Detail

The death counter here allows you to track the amount of times that players have died. Not only that, it can show you why they died. Press the detail button (looks like a gear) brings the following window up. On the left side, I can choose which mob killed me. On the bottom, I can filter what kind of information I want to look at. In this case, I’m looking at any information that’s relevant to me EXCEPT for Heals. From the timeline, I can see that it took me about 14 seconds to die from Akil’zon.

Tracking deaths in Recount window

You can also select which deaths you want to echo and display. Pressing the little horn icon lets you echo what you have in front of you to whatever channel you want (See above).

Anyway, there’s simply too many features in Recount to be covered in one article alone. Over the next week or two, I plan to break down certain features of Recount that apply to us healers and officers. Maybe I’ll skim the rest.

The Bad Thing About Recount

I’m going to copy and paste the author’s own words and warnings about Recount.

Warning – Recount can use a decent amount of memory at default settings due to saving of DPS and other stats every second. These can be disabled if not used in the options under filter by unclicking checkmarks under the stopwatch. Memory usage though shouldn’t effect your performance though.

In other words, it’s a HUGE resource hog. Try it out and see if you can handle it. If you notice yourself lagging a lot during Raids, disable it immediately.

Download Recount:

Curse.com

The Problem With Enchanting: Part 1 (Demand)

The problem with enchantingI was reading one of Tobold’s latests posts on enchanting and I just had to write a response. You can imagine my amazement when he wrote that he is one of the few 70′s who runs around without any major enchantments on his gear.

Why?

Because enchanting your gear is one of the most expensive things you will ever undertake.

The gear selection and vast selection of raid instances are at the point where you could replace a piece of gear you got today with one later on in the week.

So herein lies the dilemma. Why spend copious amounts of money investing in enchants for some item when it might be replaced later?

It’s like shopping for computer parts. You could upgrade your memory now or wait and watch it drop in price. You never know when a better deal might come along, right?

Let’s take a look at the price for 81 Healing to weapon. WoWecon.com reports Large Prismatic shards having a price of 19G (Ner’Zuhl has ridiculous prices with 25+G).

Primal Life: 10 gold x 8 = 80G
Primal Water: 20 gold x 8 = 160G
Large Prismatic Shard: 20 gold x 8 = 160G

That’s about 400 gold spent just to increase your healing by 81 on your weapon.

Obviously, your weapon is the most expensive piece to enchant. Factor in bracers, gloves, boots and your chest and watch the costs double or even triple on some servers. As raiders, I’m not sure what we spend omre of our money on: potions and flasks or enchants (or even jewelcrafting).

With costs like that, you want to ensure that your gear pieces that get are here to stay. I’ve had cases myself where I got an item one day only to replace it the next. What sucked the most is that I had the original item enchanted before I got the upgraded piece.

Knowing When to Enchant

Get the most out of your enchants! It should be an investment on gear that you know you won’t replace for a while. Typically, I follow the 4-week rule. If I know for certain that I’m replacing this item within 4 weeks, I won’t enchant it.

Start reading up on boss drops. Know which boss drops the items that you’re looking for. Calculate the probability of you getting an upgrade. Remember that not only does the encounter have to drop the item for you, you may need to compete with other players in your Guild for it. If you’ve got the most DKP, then you’re set since you can either bid a high amount or get first option.

Great example: Your Attumen bracers drop for you but you’ve been steadily collecting badges for better bracers anyway. You figure you’ll easily obtain the amount of badges you need within a week. Therefore you shouldn’t enchant your Attumen bracers.

Matt’s Philosophy: Assume what you want from a boss isn’t going to drop and enchant your present ones. Be the best player you can be statwise as that will help the Guild more in the long run.

Be prepared to pass on an item because your enchanted gear is better then that unenchanted piece. You can score major brownie points and save precious DKP if you pass it off to someone else.