Tankette’s Rambles

August 12, 2008

ZA run and thoughts

Filed under: Uncategorized — tankette @ 1:18 pm

We went back to ZA last night. It had reset so we had to start from the begining. We went in with 2 warrior tanks and had the pally tank sit out this time. Even with the 5th DPS we still seemed slow. We got the Eagle boss down within the timer and rushed over to the Bear boss. We did the pulls as fast as possible. The other warrior tank even engaged the Bear boss before people could top off on mana. Starting the fight before people were ready meant he got no heals, thus dead in seconds. I taunted and picked up the boss. I thought we would call it a wipe but our druid battle rezzed the other tank. The party got him healed and buffed in a hurry and then just in time he was readty and took over tanking when the boss went to Bear form. Other than us changing which tanks were on which form, the fight went smooth. And we beat the timer. We hadn’t beat the second timer in 6 weeks and since all the guild people left that I keep mentioning.

We decided to go to Halazzi. The trash pulls get a little easier each time and we got through them fairly quickly. We weren’t trying for the timer any more so we weren’t rushing too much. The first Halazzi fight went bad. The other tank couldn’t figure out the spot to position the boss that we always use and kept moving him all around. I was struggling just to stay in his foot print. Meanwhile I was spamming devastate without thinking about it. My devastates kept me too high on threat for the other tank to overcome. All the while our DPS was going full guns and 75% cam before I was even thinking about it. I went to grab the spirit but he was already munching clothies. I got him with us only losing one mage. The funny thing was Halazzi was chasing me around the room during all this since I still had aggro. We held on a while but we wiped. The second attempt went pretty much perfect and Halazzi went down.

That was it for the night since it was late. We hopefully go back to ZA tonight after we make our first foray (again hopefully) into TK.

Now for the demoralizing part.

I really want a Bear mount. We are getting the first 2 timers but just barely. After dropping the Bear boss I see we get another 15 minutes. I can see that if we do the first 2 bosses and all their trash perfectly that we could have some minutes left over. So, best case scenario, we have 5 minutes left over and have 20 minutes to go to Jan’ali. With practice we could probably do that. It will take some work but I can see us do that. But now I just learned that after dropping the 3rd boss you don’t get any extra time! /cry!! Just 45 minutes to do all 4 bosses??!! I just don’t see how that is possible for a T4/Badge Gear group. I’m thinking only the T6 guys are getting bear mounts and it isn’t likely I’ll be getting T6 before the expansion.



  1. Your best bet is to go Bear > Dragon > Eagle > Lynx. There’s a hut jumping trick that some use for Dragon as well as a way to use a hunter pet to bug out the Eagle gauntlet. Your own comfort with this may vary. We haven’t done ZA in many months now since we focus on BT instead, but without doing any cheating and having a non-ideal group we almost got to Lynx. (Eagle died with like 15 seconds remaining giving us 10 minutes at that time) This was in T5 gear + Badges.

    So there’s home especially if you’re willing to use the “hacky” style moves that most undergeared Bear mount riders used to get theres.

    Comment by veneretio — August 12, 2008 @ 2:06 pm | Reply

  2. I’ll reply here since you’ve already set up the discussion with your post!

    Regarding the use of Hibernate, I was wrong! The actual ability is Soothe Animal, which reduces the aggro range of beasts and dragonkin. I’d always assumed that the spell was Hibernate because our Protection paladin usually calls out to “put the nasty bear thingy to sleep”. However, I looked it up and found that I was totally and completely wrong. I’ve updated my post to reflect that.

    Apologize to your raid for me and point them over to my blog if they want to curse me out. I play Battlegrounds as a healer; I can handle it!

    Regarding gear appropriate for timer runs, we started attempting timers back when we were in a combination of Tier 4 and Tier 5, with a smattering of pre-2.4 badge gear among us. We’d typically get at least two timers and more often than not three. Now we’re in Tier 5 and a slew of 2.4 badge gear, though none of us have a single piece of Tier 6. Remember, that badge gear is absolutely phenomenal, far beyond many pieces that were available to me in Tier 5 content. If all of you are running around in that gear you should be fine. It’s just a matter of practice and figuring out what to do when.

    Things that will help you progress further into making timers?

    * Avoid all unnecessary mobs: If it’s a patrol and you know it won’t get you later, skip it. We tend to hit the two trolls that pat between Bear and Eagle, but ignore the two between Dragonhawk and Lynx. The two bears can be skipped. Avoiding extra mobs in the trash to Dragonhawk is a must. Keep an eye open for any torch-wielding patrols, root then when they appear, and burn them down immediately.
    * Keep drinking to an absolute minimum: Drinking is time wasted. You have some flexibility and don’t be afraid to drink when you have to, but don’t stop to drink after every pull. Use Innervates, drink a hell of a lot of potions (as a Holy human priest with my Earring of Soulful Meditation I rarely have to potion — I think that I used two in our last bear mount run — but I know that my paladin healing counterpart brings two stacks of potions and the Balance druid even more!), and take advantage of trinkets and abilities that allow you to regen manner quicker. For example, I like to use my Earring of Soulful Meditation after a boss when we mount up and move. I get awesome regen then while moving so that I’m ready for the next pull. Also, since my regen is so high, it means that my healing paladin counterpart can drink while I solo heal.
    * Use your mounts everywhere! Almost the entirety of Zul’Aman is outdoors. Use your mounts every moment that you can and it makes sense.
    * Know the shortest way to go: The optimal boss order for bear mount runs is Eagle, Bear, Dragonhawk, Lynx. However, know also where to go. Go left past the huts to the Dragonhawk to get the shortest route. Cut through the hut and swim across the water when going to Lynx. Little things like that can help you cut down on the amount of time you waste when you’d rather be fighting bosses and getting a mount. If you need further explanation, I’ll throw up a movie or something to show you.
    * Optimize your group for a mount run: Since you’re not in Tier 6 you have much less flexibility in group composition. Our most effective runs have been with two tanks (one Protection paladin since that means little requirement for crowd control), two dedicated healers, and six DPS (with one capable of healing as needed). Our DPSers typically include two to three caster AoE classes and a minimum of two classes capable of interrupts. Having a healing capable of healing multiple people (shaman or priest) helps a lot, too. Since we have a Holy priest (me!) on every run, typically the other healer focuses on one group while I can Prayer of Healing the group I’m in when needed. That happens a lot when we come up against the trolls that speed-cast fireballs at the entire raid.

    It’s an absolute pain when you first start out. We had been doing full runs of Zul’Aman for months with two to three successful timers before we decided to make our bear mount group. However, most of us appreciate the challenge now that we’re at the point where everything below twenty-five man raiding (and even some of those!) are just too easy. And the bear mount is worth the hassle!

    Let me know if I need to clarify anything or if I buggered up again.

    Comment by Cynra — August 12, 2008 @ 2:35 pm | Reply

  3. Thanks, Vene, for the ideas about the bugs. I am not above using them if they haven’t been fixed in a patch by now.

    Cyrna, huge thanks for all the info! I’m laughing at the Hibernate vs Soothe Animal deal. I was arguing with 2 raiders last night about it. They will get a kick out of knowing they wre right and I was wrong. More importantly, that trick will save at least 30 seconds.

    We have yet to try running with only 2 healers and 6 dps. That will help some I’m sure – if we can stay alive. We have a holy priest that comes to every ZA run. Should he be CoH? The second healer would probably be a druid although we have pally and shammy healers available.

    I think one of our problems is we are just going by who signed up to make the raid instead of pre-selecting the group.

    Comment by Tankette — August 12, 2008 @ 3:57 pm | Reply

  4. I find skipping the water and hut jumping faster after dragon-hawk to lynx.

    Halazzi is tauntable, there is no reason the other tank can’t keep up. Use this if the other tank is a druid (let them MT it and you go full avoidance) to allow them to battleres.

    Comment by 2ndNin — August 12, 2008 @ 4:12 pm | Reply

  5. For the record, I’m a Spirit-obsessed priest with Improved Divine Spirit. I have never specced for the Circle of Healing talent and I’m blissfully content with my role as the raid’s “Spirit priest.” It’s a little niche that I’ve made my own and even without Circle of Healing I’m usually top healer (though I blame a lot of that on my limitless pool of mana. My god, how I adore Spirit!).

    This works really well for a couple of reasons. First off, Improved Divine Spirit is a boost to both caster damage and healing. This benefits our Protection paladin, mages, warlocks, priests, shamans, and basically every class that possesses a caster bar. This also helps them regen mana quicker after combat when they exit the Five Second Rule, thereby reducing (however little) the amount of time that we end up drinking.

    Furthermore, the healer that I am typically paired with (though we had a different one for our most recent successful run and he had never even completed the entire instance before!) knows how I heal. He knows that when the entire group takes damage, I’ll Prayer of Healing to give us a quick boost in health, meaning that he can focus on the other group or top someone off who has far less health than Prayer of Healing provides. He knows that I’ll have Prayer of Mending up and Renews on the tank, so he can focus on other things. He knows that my mana regeneration is high enough that I can continue healing through fights while he takes a ten second break to drink. He also knows that he can focus on single-target healing while I Renew people who have taken damage but don’t need a direct heal to top off.

    Our synergy is awesome and since we more or less know our classes and what the other person will do we can get away with not having Circle of Healing. And, to be honest, based on my playstyle I think that having me spec for Circle of Healing would gimp us. But it’s a matter of preference.

    I’m ashamed to admit that I’ve rarely grouped with Restoration druids outside of a 25-man setting, which means that I’m not quite sure how that would work out. I think that in our case I’d end up switching roles: I’d become the single-target healer that topped everyone off or focused on the tank while the druid kept those lovely rolling HoTs up. I think; my knowledge of the class (as evidenced by the earlier mistake!) is severely lacking and I haven’t quite been in that situation. However, I can’t see at all where having a druid healing in the raid would be a liability. I’d still try to make sure that some sort of class capable of multi-target healing is around. It’s an asset that I rely on heavily but being able to heal five people (and that’s not even including pets) for around 4,500 simultaneously while relying on my target to heal the other group is something I love having when it’s needed.

    And not having a steady group will be painful when you’re first trying to go. As I’ve already pointed out, the synergy of our raid allows us to know what each person is going to do before it happens. I know that our Protection paladin is going to rush ahead and engage mobs while I support him. I know that our Balance druid will be rooting the scouts as needed. I know that my warlock will be lifetapping occasionally and that sometimes I’ll need to cast Power Word: Shield on him even as he gets a Renew because I don’t want him taking splash damage and dying. I know that our rogue and shaman will be interrupting heals and potentially painful spells, thereby minimizing the amount of mana we need to expend to heal and reducing the amount of downtime we require to drink.

    Having a core group of raiders makes things so much easier. We typically have eight or nine regulars, with one DPS slot that we occasionally find open due to real life-obligations or unexpected things occurring. We’ve always switched between a Feral druid tanking and a Protection warrior. This past week we were down a healer, but he managed to work pretty well without too much guidance (and damned well for having done his first ever full run of Zul’Aman!). However, having nine other people there who had familiarity with the fights and didn’t need guidance on what to do helped a lot. In fact, we’ve all commit ourselves to running this raid with this group until every person has a bear mount of his own.

    We’ve been trying to run another raid Wednesday nights in addition to Saturday nights (lovin’ that three day reset timer!) in order to get people their mounts quicker and hopefully rotate more people in eventually, but it’s a poor evening for me and some others. That raid is typically less successful because they just don’t have a regular group. I’m going to try and make this Wednesday’s raid on heels of our most recent success; hopefully we’ll be looking at another bear mount!

    Comment by Cynra — August 12, 2008 @ 6:37 pm | Reply

  6. I am pretty sure the priest that runs with us is specced like you for the improved divine spirit. I am thinking that if we go from 3 to 2 healers the second healer will be a resto shammy for the chain heals.

    I am actually hoping to get 2 ZA groups going that would both look something close to this:

    1 Warrior or Druid Tank
    1 Pally Tank
    2 Healers (shammy and a healer with HoT’s)
    3 DPS with AOE
    2 DPS melee with kicks for Malacrass
    1 DPS Hunter for tracking humanoids and tranq shot on Halazzi

    Our challenges are that both Pally Tanks are not as well geared as we’d like, only one Druid and she’ll be healing in one group and the other group will get the holy priest, no shadow priests in the guild at all. Our strengths are each group will have a strong warrior tank, all the healers for both groups have 2000 bonus heals or better, well geared DPS.

    Comment by Tankette — August 12, 2008 @ 7:00 pm | Reply

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