We had our weekly ToC 10 heroic raid last night. My co-raid leader (a retadin) was away and we replaced him with a tank, meaning that not only was I leading the raid alone, but also I had to dps for the first time ever in a guild raid. I had only a little PUG raid experience previous to that (I'm not counting my mage raids in vanilla or shadowpriest raids in TBC - this was melee dps, and new to me).
My gear is all over the place - a mix of ilevels 200 to 232, with a blue cloak in there too - and I'm not properly gemmed or enchanted. I also run a spec with some PvP talents in for the faction champion fight. I bought an emblem of triumph ring before the raid in the hope that this would increase my dps a bit, but other than that I was very nervous.
As it turned out however, the raid was really successful.
We one-shot the Beasts, which was a brilliant start - no one got hit by the charge, and it was a really smooth kill. I was, of course, fifth (and therefore essentially last) on recount, but 3.5k dps was not too shabby. It took about ten tries to kill Jarraxus, and sad to say several of the wipes were my fault. I found it very difficult to switch targets fast enough, to manage my rage effectively, and to not stand in the fire like an idiot. One dps death usually means a wipe on Jarraxus, because you have to be so quick at taking down the portals otherwise you get overrun by adds. When we finally got him down I was so busy cheering that I didn't notice I had the legion flame debuff, and so died several seconds after the fight ended.
I was then prepared to give the champions about half an hour, just to practice but we had a really good setup and so I knew that a kill was possible. We had rogue/enh shaman/lock/mage/tree/disc priest - so no plate at all. Sure enough, five or six wipes later, we had our first kill! Some thoughts on the tactic:
- We had a prot warrior locking down the priest
- We ignored the tree to start with (excepting the odd fear and some random cc)
- We nuked down the rogue, purging the hots and using healing debuffs (I have a 50% healing debuff)
- We then killed the tree healer, then the other melee dps, then the second healer
This strategy was used because although we'd killed the tree a couple of times before, we were having real problems with the melee ganging up on people and losing people around the time of the first mob death. So even though we reduced the number of attacking mobs by 1 (by killing the tree) incoming damage was still too high to safely deal with. Once the rogue was down the amount of burst damage being put out by the mobs as a whole was a lot less, and there was less danger of losing someone before a heal could land. With good dispelling from our shaman and the two priests we could get rid of the hots cast by the tree, so aside from interrupts the amount of healing we were having to burn through getting the rogue down was not that much more than we had had to burn through on the tree.
We did not assign any CC to the mage or the lock, other than having a designated interrupter for hellfire.
We assigned some CC to the enhancement shammy, but not much. CC was a self help device - it allowed people to use it defensively if threatened.
Our strategy worked I think because the rogue is the squishiest melee mob we could have got - I think if we had had DK and warrior then we would have had more problems but nevertheless this is maybe the way to go if you get the tree healer (whose heals can be purged). Similarly, if we'd had the either the resto shammy or the holy paladin instead of the tree I wonder if we would have been able to burn down the rogue at all.
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