The History of Guillin – Part V
In yesterday’s post we looked at how Guillin levelled up in Outland, before joined a guild and after huge difficulties over came Karazhan. Tonight we look at the time when 25 man raiding became the priority.
Finding myself guildless after the disbantion (is that even a word? I’m using it anyway!), I wondered what would happen next. I was intent on getting to the next level of raiding but with what I perceived to be my best vehicle now gone I did wonder what would happen next. That night I travelled up to Blade’s Edge to do some Ogri’la dailies when I got a whisper off the GM at a guild called Vesper. He explained to me how they are ready to hit Gruul’s Lair and then move on to the bigger raids. I was interested, but the one doubt I had in my mind was their raids time. Being in the UK you’ll be surprised how tricky it can be to find a guild sometimes. Most guilds I see, like raiding from 19:00-23:00 server time, which is 18:00-22:00 to me. Now those times may sound perfect but considering i work 08:00-17:00, and then don’t get home until around 17:45 I’d rather not have to get home, turn on pc, and raid before doing anything else. Anyway, once again I digress. I was told that their raiding time is 22:00-02:00 server time. Whilst this seemed a bit late to me, i thought “why not, let’s give them ago”, so I joined Vesper.
The first thing I noticed was how populated the guild was. It wasn’t overly populated but seemed to have the right number of people to launch an assault on the 25 man content. I was thrown in the deep end with Gruul, not knowing exactly what I was doing I was assigned as the mage tank for the first boss fight. After a bumpy few tries, we finally got them down and Gruul fell pretty quickly and a few nights later Magtheridon followed (as soon as people remembered to click the boxes).
After about two weeks of this it was decided to go and take on SSC and TK. For those who raiding the Tier 5 content in TBC, you’ll remember that for the first boss in TK all you needed to remember to do was to, well, basically, turn up. He fell quickly, Solarion took us a few nights, but soon followed. Al’ar took us a week to kill but we managed it (was a pretty reluctant boss fight, as well, the boss is so pretty!). At 3/4 in TK we turned our attention to SSC, it was a fairly smooth path, within a month we had ourselves at 5/6 with only Vashj remaining.
Vashj … Just that name, brings back memories of incredibly long nights, wipe after wipe, over boiling frustrations and “extended breaks” during raids.All in all, it took us 2 months to kill her. We’d clear the other 5 bosses in one night then spend the next 4 raid nights banging our head against the walls in her lair. Nothing seemed to work. The strategy we tried was to create a chain of players from the steps to the towers that needed turning off with the orb. It didn’t work, you could guarantee someone would get smacked, and of course, when part of the plan goes down, some people just can’t “think on their feet”. It was then when I said “let’s just have one person at the tower that’s going to be turned off. Someone call where the orb is and I’ll get to the tower that will be needed”. After some deliberation, the officers agreed and we went ahead with it and that night for the first time we had reached the final phase, a few days later and Lady Vashj was dead. All in all I think it took us about 10 weeks to kill her. It’s the sort of time period a lot of people wouldn’t have the patience for anymore, and to be honest, I don’t think I would have the patience for it either now.
Kael’thas. Now Kael’thas, this was one of those occasions where I hated being at work. With Kael’thas we spent a month on him, slowly getting him down further and further, when one night we got him to 15% we thought “tonight will be the night!” but I didn’t see it. And why didn’t I see it? The official line was that I got disconnected, couldn’t log back on and therefore missed the fight where he died. The real line? Well you see, when you’re tired you tend to close you eyes and … Yeah, I fell asleep. Was so annoyed with myself. One of the players knew, and had a good laugh about it. Even to this day she makes sure to remind me every so often. But that little incident was merely a setback (I had to get that in somewhere!)
Actually doing our month of Kael’thas attempts, two very important things happened. The first thing was that I was promoted to officer in the guild, the second thing was that Blizzard had just removed the attunement to the Tier 6 content. As you can imagine, quite a few of the players didn’t want to keep wiping on Kael’thas when they could get easy epics off Najentus. This sparked a series of heated debates both in Officer chat and Guild chat. I took the position that we shouldn’t skip content. That we should finish off the Tier 5 bosses before we went to the next tier. Thankfully, the guild took the decision to go with that opinion. At the end of it, in hindsight, everyone was happy we did because after killing Kael, there was a massive sense of achievement in the guild.
So we took on BT and MH and I must admit, I was utterly surprised with how easy these two raids seemed to be when compared to the previous one. Even Archimonde and Illidan didn’t seem as tricky compared to Lady Vashj and Kael’thas. After a few weeks running Mount Hyjal thought I started to get bored. As a mage, trash pulls consisted of aoe, aoe, oh and did I mention aoe? The most exciting part of that raid was seeing who would get to the epic mining nodes first, not for the gems as they had to go in the guild bank, but for the grey items, which at the time gave you silly amounts of money for a grey item. Black Temple on the other hand I throughly enjoyed. I thought the look and character of the place was superb and bosses seemed unique.
Before I mention the defining moment in our Tier 6 raiding I feel i must mention that also Zul’aman appeared around this time, and thus the famous timed runs. To which I managed to snag myself the Armani War Bear (I know Blizzard are ripping off the Armani War Bear in 4.1 but it’s still a nice accomplishment). That mount I tend to use more than most mounts as it’s fairly unique in comparison …
Anyway! The most defining moment in Vesper’s tier 6 raiding, was what now appears to be the first glimpses of the so-called “Wrath” mentality in players. A number of raiders decided they didn’t want to raid anymore as it wasn’t guaranteed that bosses would die that night. So after a mini reshuffle and recruitment, weeding out those who didn’t have the commitment for progression fights we carried on and managed to get through, killing Illidan.
I never got the chance to experience Sunwell Plateau. Wrath of the Lich King was fast approaching and even with the heavy nerfs to bosses that appeared pre-wrath, Vesper wasn’t in the mood for it. And those that attempted to pug wouldn’t take me, due to the fact I was a mage, and despite the “Sunwelling of Mages” being over, the opinion still held firm with some. I’ve been back there at level 80, and it looked an amazing place, and I wish I could have experienced it at level 70.
It seems like I end these posts exactly the same way, but a change in work hours meant that I was no longer able to raid at the late times that Vesper had to offer so I took the extremely hard decision to leave the guild. Having identified a new guild (Virtus Mortis) I joined them as Wrath of the Lich King launched.
I’d like to finish tonight’s post by talking about the specs used during the Burning Crusade. For I went through so many respecs it was unbelievable (I think my counter is currently standing at 5-6k spent on respecs). I start TBC raiding as a Fire Mage, but after seeing my guild master in Hysteria, thrash me as Frost I switched. I then switched to Arcane and then back to Fire. Once I got two pieces of T5 there was only one winner. For the rest of that expansion I was Arcane.
TBC for me, will never be beat in terms of fun and overall experience in World of Warcraft. Wrath of the Lich King brought on a new mentality, the usual guild drama, and eventually a faction and realm transfer for Guillin.