Friday, May 16, 2008

Familiar Territory

Dominion's raid was slow in forming last night, as it seemed quite a few of their regular 'core' people were no where to be seen. About 8:30 Vlad made the call to farm SSC instead of going to either MH or BT. You could feel a sense of urgency the entire raid.
I'm very familiar with SSC, but not at all familiar with how Dominion does the pulls and bosses.
One of the running jokes in MK was for someone to say in vent 'I think you can outrange the spore quake' after losing a couple of people to the Collusus after he did a Spore Quake. Dominion takes no such chance and has everyone stay at max range except for melee DPS.
We had filled the raid with 5 tanks. 3 Prot Warriors, 1 Feral Druid and 1 Prot Paladin. That was way more tanks than you need for the majority of the instance, so often times, Vlad would run out of tank targets before she ran out of tanks.
I was put on add duty for Hydross. This was a slight issue because since I had been the Frost Tank for MK, I only had Frost resist gear, and didn't have any Nature gear. I had read on MainTankadin that many of those guys did adds in straight stamina gear, so that's the route I went as well. Due to the number of tanks we had, each of us only needed to worry about 1 add. I didn't have any issue either picking my add up or staying alive. I whispered the Shaman who was healing me to ask if he had had any problem keeping me up and he told me it wasn't an issue.
We plowed on through Lurker's trash, which is executing the same pull 6 times over. Dominion puts Rogues on the Technicians, and pulls the Honor Guard far back. I kept an eye out for any loose mobs, and cleansed some Holy Fires, but for the most part, I was pretty extraneous on this trash.
We moseyed on down to the Lurker and set everything up. I assisted one of the Warriors in picking up a Guardian, but again I wasn't really needed. At this point in the evening, I was feeling pretty down. It's one thing to know you don't need to MT all the time, it's another to not be needed at all. I was feeling almost mercenary.
Then there was the moment she expressed concern over putting me on a Coilfang Serpentguard. These are the Naga in the first pull on your way to either Morogrim or Leo. They have a spell reflect, and an aura which reduces armor. I got the impression that Dominion thinks Paladins are somewhat more fragile than Warriors or Druids, which could have explained some of what had transpired.
I assured her I had tanked them all the time in MK and it wouldn't be a problem. This was the only comment I had made all night. I realize I'm still in the stage of needing to prove myself and earn the trust of the raid. Once I've earned their trust I can ask to take on more, but during this initial period, I simply need to show I can do the job I'm tasked with.
We pulled the two Serpentguards well back and away from the other mobs. Since we were well away from other mobs, I used Consecrate in my threat rotation. I was most surprised then when I saw an additional mob in my Consecrate, which was promptly blamed for breaking the CC. What was overlooked was that I was tanking the formerly CC'ed mob and the Serpentguard without issue. Nevertheless, I didn't renew Consecrate once it ended and allowed the mob to be resheeped.
We turned towards Leo's room instead of Morogrim's. We went through the trash to Leo. It was interesting that the same pull that had given MK trouble, was also one that had given Dominion trouble in the past. Players were reminded to watch their tab targeting and to be aware of their surroundings. We made it through the trash without any major problems, some players died, but we never wiped.
I was back in the familiar position of playing Frisbee with Leo. We lost two people to the Channelers AoE Mind Blast. We recovered enough to get the attempt moving. I was tanking him where MK tanked him, which wasn't where Dominion tanked him. I moved him down, but we lost a little DPS time in the process. It seemed like every other time I'd shield toss, the bloody thing would miss. I have about 6% To Hit with my gear and talents. I never got Inner Demon. We managed to get him to the split. Then somehow (I was too focused on my own task to see) we lost a couple of healers, and slowly began losing the raid.
I'm not sure if the Lock Tank went down, but I started getting hit by Chaos Blast. Chaos Blast plus Leo's melee was enough to make me go splat. Leo enraged and finished off our raid.
We regrouped and got back to him quickly. Nothing changed in our strat, but our execution was better, except that we lost one of the Prot Warriors to Inner Demon.
"I'm terribly sorry, but we must kill you now."
That last 15% is still very chaotic, and intense. We killed him and he dropped triple Champion! This must have been some sort of anomaly in the space time continuum because as we all know the only time a boss drops triple tokens, it's triple Defender.
I threw in a bid, and watched 3 other bids go down. I know I'm the FNG so I'm thinking my chance at a token is about zero. Turns out that one of the guys who bid was in negative DKP, and I was not, so I'm now the proud owner of my T5 gloves!
Yes, we are on the brink of Azgalor and T6 gloves, but those puppies are going to go for mucho DKP, and I'll have my T5 from now til then, whenever then might be.
I could have had these gloves after MK's progression kill, but I opted to not bid since I knew my departure was imminent.
We started pulling to Fathom Lord whose trash consists of about 6 single pull Colossi. Vlad (Guild Master and Raid Leader) started rotating the tanks through, each of us taking a pull.
I was determined to put my threat through the roof. I hit the wings, threw my shield and began to run back to the hallway where we were tanking them.
Shield Miss!
Ugh. Just not my night. I had a little trouble getting him turned away from the raid and ended up putting him in a wall, thereby line of sighting the casters and hunters.
Just batting a 1000 here.
We get him down, but I wasn't at all pleased with my performance.
For FLK, I get put on the Hunter, while the Feral is tasked with picking up the pet. I had always heard Ferals were excellent choices for the Shaman, but since this was farm content I wasn't going to question it.
I grabbed the Hunter and dragged him back to the tank spot. The mana drain was rough but between heals and a mana pot, I was fine. FLK was a one shot, and wouldnt' you know it, he dropped a Frayed Tether of the Drowned. I'm thinking there is no way I'm going to get this since I just go my T5 gloves.
It turned out that I was the only one in the raid who wanted it. 
So I managed to come away with two pretty good upgrades and completely wipe out whatever DKP I had earned Tuesday and Thursday.
After the Raid, Vlad explained she is in the process of trying to figure out who the tanks for Dominion are going to be. I've pretty much got the Paladin Tank position locked down, but there has been some shuffling of the Warriors.
By the end of the night, I was having fun, and while the names are still pretty unfamiliar I don't feel quite as out of place anymore.
I hope we don't take quite as many tanks in future, as it's going to be tough on whichever tank is left without a target. It's probably easiest on the Feral since he can bust out some decent DPS in Cat. I do hope that I can convince Vlad that she can stick me on any target where she'd stick a Warrior (except maybe those stupid Robots on the way to Void Reaver that have that big blast that needs to be spell reflected). Yes, I excel at AoE tanking, but it's not all I'm capable of. It's fine now, but if it's still this way in a month or two, that is going to start getting to me. Vlad gets most of her information on the ElitestJerks forums. I haven't been on there much, so I'm not sure what the prevailing view of Prot Paladins is there.
It's still really tough when I see the MK guys in Shat, sort of like seeing an ex-girlfriend you dumped. I hope that after some time passes, I can reestablish some friendships over there like I did with Heroes.


Gothyelk said...

Terrific read. I'm glad that you are finding success in your new home and grats on the shiny new gear. :)

Wildhermit said...

Sorry about your rough transition but I can understand. I have been on both sides of that coin and really still have no idea how to best proceed.

Grats on your new gear.