Back in the day, my brother, Fog, was a level 60 druid. I was a few levels behind, probably around level 45 or thereabouts when he dinged 60.
My brother was poached, if you will, from our little guild (Fated Heroes) and joined Tempest as they began to progess through Molten Core.
He was asked two things:
1) To level first aid to 300.
2) To respec to restoration and heal.
I was angry with him for leaving us, particularly as I had just freaking joined the guild because he was guilded in Fated Heroes. Yet at the same time, I knew he was going to be doing more than just “instances”, which I was still getting familiar with, to be honest.
One night, he called me up and told me that he and his guild were going to try to kill the last boss in the raid. Some quick googling revealed that the name of the boss was Ragnaros and that he had a million health!
This blew my mind. Suddenly, I understood why 40 people were required to kill the boss.
I read more about Ragnaros and how to get to that raid instance and kill him and that’s what turned me on to raiding and researching attunements and all that jazz.
In Vanilla, the little guild that could, Fated Heroes, spawned Majordomo twice. And… that’s it. Well, we cleared ZG and half of AQ20 and we cleared all the way up to Majordomo Executus, but we never killed him. We never killed Onyxia as a guild. And forget BWL or AQ40 or Naxx.
I did get my Rag kill on Kurn, though, through a pug group I managed to get into with many of my guildies. We went through and Lucifron and Magmadar had never died more easily. On to Gehennas and Garr and Geddon. Then Shazzrah and Sulfuron and Golemagg, and finally, finally, I got to see the Majordomo Executus fight.
And then, we moved, all forty of us, down from Domo’s perch, along through the caverns of the Molten Core, to finally face Ragnaros himself.
During the second Sons of Flame phase, one of our guildies, a fury warrior, challenging shouted the Sons and then fell through the floor. He died, but he took the Sons with him. And then, Ragnaros died, dropping his hammer and leaving several very happy Fated Heroes behind.
On Thursday, August 4th, Apotheosis downed Majordomo Staghelm, bringing us to 6/7 25-man Firelands.
Naturally, we had to pull Rag, even just once.
We walked in, cocky, overconfident, happy and pumped up with adrenaline after downing Staghelm for the first time. The trash wrecked us, initially, but we didn’t care.
And then, there was nothing left but Rag.
It was just one attempt on him, but we got to the first transition phase before wiping to the Sons of Flame hitting the hammer.
I had a grin pasted on my face the whole time. It seemed as though we were on the verge of completing something we had started in June of 2006. Never mind that half the guild wasn’t part of Fated Heroes. This was us working our way up to Ragnaros, the Firelord, and actually making an attempt on him. At last!
I was giddy after the wipe and the end of the raid. I knew we’d get this down in the coming weeks.
Sunday night is when the work began.
I’m going to say this now and I’m making sure it’s written down so that I don’t forget this: This is an amazing fight. Hands down, Ragnaros is my favourite fight of the expansion. This is better than Chimaeron or Nefarian. This is better than Heroic Halfus and blows Throne of the Four Winds out of the water… air.. fire.. something.
Ragnaros is an amazing encounter and I haven’t even seen all the phases yet.
Our best attempt tonight was our last attempt, where we managed to bring Rag down to 40% and spawn the second transition phase. Granted, half the raid was dead at that point, so we ended up dying to the Sons of Flame hitting the hammer, but we got there.
I almost want to recruit the fury warrior to challenging shout the adds and fall through the floor. But not quite. ;)
40% after 15 attempts and 3 hours. I know the most challenging transition phase is the second one and I know that we have a lot of work ahead of us with Living Meteors, but this is a great encounter that pairs teamwork (adds, hello?) and personal responsibility (why HELLO, Lava Waves, how ARE you?!). To fail at either the teamwork portions of the fight or the personal responsibility portions of the fight means certain failure.
I’m sure I’m going to spend several hours cursing Ragnaros’ name. I’m sure I’m going to spend several hours cursing the names of various guildies. I’m sure I’m going to beat myself up over missing a stun or hitting a Lava Wave or letting a tank die.
But for right now, for tonight? That is one hell of a fun encounter and I cannot wait to spend another night on it.
When he dies, because he will certainly die, I know exactly what it’s going to feel like. I’m going to feel as though it’s the fall of 2006 and we’ve successfully gotten 40 people together to go in and smack Rag upside the head. We only even had a full 40-man raid twice in Fated Heroes, usually running around 30-35 people (and one night, 27-manned Gehennas!), but, by golly, we did a lot of what we needed to do.
So when Ragnaros dies, it’ll feel as though we put together a full 40-man raid and finally succeeded at what we had set out to do.
Only, it’ll be even better, because it’ll be with Apotheosis; this group of people who occasionally drive me a little nuts, but mostly made up of people whom I admire, respect and care for.
Yes, it’s us, many of whom ran rampant through your precious, hallowed core many years ago. We’ve come to defeat you, in your own realm. For you, it may be too soon… but for us? It’s long overdue.
PS: I think it would be really nifty if killing you gave us Hydraxian Waterlords rep. Just sayin’.