Okay, not really. But it felt like it.
Baleroc, the 5th boss in Firelands, is a healing fight. Healers heal DPS who are standing by shards. Healers get a buff from this when they heal the tank with THEIR debuff.
Lots of rotations, lots of swapping targets, lots of “omg omg omg” moments.
I’m pretty sure that, in the 18 wipes that led to our kill on Try 19, every member of the raid group, those in the raid and those out of the raid, had probably thought “omg, I’m going to find where Kurn lives and wring her neck with my bare hands.”
Healers too? Healers ESPECIALLY, I’m fairly sure.
It was a long raid night. Every spare moment I had, I was refining the strat with the healers, I was explaining stuff, I was double-checking reasons for deaths…
And people were antsy as fuck. I love my guild, I really do, and I don’t blame any of them for being all “GO GO GO”, if they aren’t healers. There was a LOT of downtime. Usually, we’re in the mid-40% for “active” in the three hours of our raids, but Thursday night was brutal with just 32.4% activity. We spent under 60 minutes actually fighting stuff. Granted, we have a 7m break, we ended 10m early, that sort of thing, but MAN, it must have sucked for those who weren’t doing a whole lot aside from waiting for the damn healers to finish refining the strat.
It also must have sucked for my healers.
We tried three main strats:
1) Heal every group for 30 seconds. (Tanks/melee/ranged) Problem: First Decimating Strike would almost always kill the Decimating Strike tank if there were no healers with Vital Spark/Vital Flame on him — which there generally wouldn’t be for DS if it was at the start.
2) Heal every group for 30 seconds, but offset the first swap by 15s or so. So after the shards come out, heal people for that first duration (assuming a 2 person/shard strat, which we had going) and then swap to your next group. The problem here? We got HOPELESSLY lost and confused once the DPS had the whole rotation thing figure out and we had no idea who to heal for the second round and it was like “crap, this is just too confusing”. I honestly think this is the best method, but I absolutely need to write everything down longhand before the fight if that’s the case. I got confused with times and durations and it also got weird with shard spawns.
3) Ultimately, we pulled in a 7th healer (we’ve 6-healed everything thus far in Firelands) and he was our buffer. He started out on the tanks with me and another healer and we went back to the 30s duration for everyone without any offsets. Second pull with 7 healers = dead boss.
I still think everyone was thinking… oh, how did Jasyla put it? That’s right, “uncharitable thoughts” about the healers, about each other and particularly about me because they could almost certainly figure out that my talking to the healers is what was taking forever. And the healers were probably not fond of me for changing the strat drastically a couple of times.
But, the boss died. The guild is 5/7. We got the Share the Pain achievement without trying. And we learned a LOT about how best to work the fight. I feel good about the kill, considering we had an OS tank tanking (but he was a Blood DK so it was almost better than our regular tank lead tanking it!) and considering it’s the middle of July. Summer slump? HAH. Two new bosses in less than a week! (Now I’ve jinxed us. Sorry, Apotheosis. :P)
So, while it was a challenging night, a long night for all, it ended with a kill and hopefully people will forget that they briefly daydreamed about tracking me down and killing me in my sleep. Or worse yet, intercepting and poisoning the rotisserie chicken I order on a regular basis. (Even more dastardly, the healers probably would have poisoned PUDDING if we didn’t get him down!)