Nefarian & Al’akir

I’m still here, still playing WoW! Haven’t had a lot of time to write though, things have been busy and I don’t expect to have much time to slow down and get back to writing till May.

But I did want to mention that we finally did it. We finally cleared all normal mode content, and we have taken out both Nefarian and Al’akir over the last two weeks.

Showing off our brand new Dark Phoenixes!

Al’akir was a frustrating fight, requiring everyone to do everything right and yet balanced around the RNG of phase 1. If the gap in the Squall line is at the edge of the platform and a Wind Burst is being cast, trying to get into a good position to avoid being knocked off the platform by either spell is a challenge. Still, everything fell into place, and we managed, barely, to get our first guild Al’akir kill. Unfortunately, his loot was fairly useless and I believe we disenchanted both pieces. Ah well.

Nefarian was a lot more interesting and challenging. This fight also required near perfect execution, but it didn’t have the same RNG feel to it. Everything was predictable, controllable; it is just a matter of making it all work together without missing a beat. The only wild card is getting everyone onto those darned pillars for phase 2, though even that became trivial with enough practice. I won the t11 hat and now sport my 4 piece bonus. =)

Both kills were sort of a bittersweet moment for me, since we managed the feat in 10s groups. I’ve really enjoyed previous 10s only raids, such as Karazhan and Zul’Aman, but, until recently, my guild has focused on 25s. A kill in a 10s group, even if it was a “first” kill and the group was all guild members, didn’t really count as a “guild first progression kill” until it happened in 25s. Lately, though, the guild has been changing, fewer sign ups, smaller rosters. At first we could support two strong 10s, but even that has dropped to a single 10s group over the last couple of weeks. This time, our Nefarian kill got a screen shot and full billing on the front page.

I’m not really sure how I feel about that. It was exhilarating to get the kills, and I really think the 10s teams who took the bosses down deserve the recognition… but it signifies, to me at least, a huge mental shift in my guild. I’m not really sure where things are headed now, or how I feel about this potential change.

I’ve always been drawn to 25s raiding, having a larger social guild, the challenges of putting together all the moving parts, and the larger group feeling of accomplishment. But 10s have the attractive lure of being easier for us to organize and easier for us to manage. You can really streamline down to the best of your best players and make amazing things happen in a 10s group. Also, we are pretty much guaranteed to have enough people online for a 10s raid, but not so much for a 25s raid anymore. If we decided to officially declare ourselves a 10s guild, I’m not sure what would happen.

It all boils down to recruitment as Cataclysm settles in. A 25s guild doesn’t happen without a lot of work, and I think once May (and hopefully patch 4.1) rolls around I’ll be ready to dive back into that!!

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