Tobold's Blog
Saturday, December 13, 2008
My first Naxx raid

... happened over two years ago, at level 60, but at that time we only killed some trash. So last night was my first "new" Naxx raid. We killed Patchwerk on the second try, and Noth on the second try too. That was a guild first, and the first try on Noth only failed because we hadn't realized there was a door, and managed to lock out 2 raid members. We spent the rest of the evening on several wipes at the 4 horsemen, but I don't think we have the optimal strategy for that one yet. Do you split DPS in half for Thane and Rivendare, or do you put more DPS on Thane to kill him first? When switching, do you only switch tanks and leave the groups in the corners, or do the groups move with their tanks to minimize meteor damage? There are a lot of alternative strategies floating around for this encounter.

Anyway, I would say that my guild is pretty much typical for a raiding guild, not casual, but not Nihilum either. And for us the difficulty level was just right. Bosses don't drop on the first try, everyone needs to learn the various dances of where to stand and when to move, and killing a boss for the first time feels like an achievement. I could even see how more casual guilds would struggle with some encounters. So personally I think Naxxramas is well done, with a good design of difficulty level for the first raid dungeon. And it's big, so even if you visit it repeatedly you're not always on the same sequence. I like it!
You have to split your raid members evenly because of the necessity to switch to the other Boss midfight.

We had a Warlok and a Moonkin tank the two horsemen in the back and a Paladin standing on the stairs healing them both with bacon of light.

The rest of the group was split evenly und killed the meelee Horsemen (Thane and Rivendare) first. Every three Marks we would switch bosses by dragging them to the door and taunting them off each other. Then we would drag them back to the corner. Rinse and repeat until the meelee Horsemen are dead and then just kill the other two.
We, being the truly average Repent of EU The Maelstrom, are doing the following for the Four Horsemen (Naxx 10). We're sending one Tree Druid / Holy Priest to either Zelik or Blaumeux, and a ranged DPS to the other, the HoT healer keeps them both up and they swap every 3 marks. We send 1 tank and 1 healer and half the remaining DPS to each of Rivendate and Thane and when the swap comes the tanks run to the centre and the DPS stays in the corners, the pocket healer moves enough to be in range of the tank. This works well enough and as long as the healer is quick you can let the tank eat one meteor on the way back to the group. When the front two are done we put one tank and healer on one of the back two and all DPS, one tank, rest of the healers on the other and swap every 3 marks again. And we wait the marks out on the front to back transition. OK it's not FAST but it's smooth and easy and last night we did it with 9 people...
"Do you split DPS in half for Thane and Rivendare, or do you put more DPS on Thane to kill him first? When switching, do you only switch tanks and leave the groups in the corners, or do the groups move with their tanks to minimize meteor damage?"

We split the DPS in half for both Thane and Rivendare. When the tanks switch have the DPS run with the tanks at all times. This is basically to reduce meteror damage and it means you can keep an eye on the retards (if you have any) within your raid at the same time. Doesn't matter which you kill of those 2 first. Once one is dead the other will drop pretty damn fast and then you can move in to mop up the other 2.
"...and a Paladin standing on the stairs healing them both with bacon of light."

FYI, if you try this, be sure to use the hickory-smoked bacon of light. It makes a difference.
make sure you dont use Irish bacon!
i prefer bacon of light
lol bacon

but yeah, these were my first attempts at 4 horsemen, and we basically did what people are saying here... back two are jsut ranged dps with heals (we did 25 man, so each ranged had their own heals), and front two groups were split 50/50. at three marks everyone switches (taunt on the run, fun!), and commences until another 3 marks.

lather, rinse, repeat.
when the swap comes the tanks run to the centre and the DPS stays in the corners
When the tanks switch have the DPS run with the tanks at all times
at three marks everyone switches

Looks like two votes for the whole group switching, and one vote for only the tanks switching, with the DPS/healers staying in the corner.
My guild has currently downed 6 bosses in Naxx. While not bad, they are certainly not storming half the place in one night. Plus they are doing Naxx-10, from what I head Naxx-25 is harder, relatively.

So I would say the myth of WotLK raiding being too easy was just that, a myth. Naxx was too easy for a very few top end guilds, many of which cleared Naxx at level 60. But they are the only ones finding it "too easy".
One more vote for switching the whole group - that's worked well for us in both 10 and 25 man at least.
By switching the whole group, melee will be able to DPS the horsemen during transition.
It's also safer for the meteor, though we usually do switches right after one has landed.
I notice a lot of times when Naxx is discussed people refer to those who have done it in the past and therefore supposedly have a big advantage.

By my reckoning only an extremely small part of the current player population has actually experienced Naxx. It's not really that relevant either whether you experienced it before or not. My guild cleared Naxx 10 and Naxx 25 man out within a few days and few if any ever made big footsteps into Naxx in Classic WoW. Nor did we spend more than 4 hours a night in there.

Raiding has really become a whole lot easier and I a for one love it. I just want to see the content, maybe grind it a few weeks, then in 1-2 months from now call it quits and go play some other fun game until new content is added to WoW. That's a whole lot healthier than the horrible brick wall bashing of Sunwell.
I totally agree with sveral. I will be able to beat the game without loosing my life. This level of raid content is much healthier and since Naxx is full of fun fights it's all ok. The gear does flow a little fast but in the end what it really means is I will have time to finish naxx and do some, arena, bg's, questing, and still not play 8 hours a day.
My take on the difficuly....

So far my guild has killed 9 naxx bosses (10 man)...Spider and Plague wing cleared, And at the end of last nights raid we had 1 go at Thaddius before we ran out of time...none of us had done naxx before not even at level 70 so all the fights are new to us....

We've one shotted 2 bosses (Noth and Pathwerk) and other than Grobbulus who took us a fair bit of time, no boss yet has taken us more than 3-4 wipes to learn....
This is a guild of people with no pre-3.0 raid experience outside of kara and 2 bosses in ZA, so hardly the most hardcore of people....yet we're still learning the fights pretty simply (we have raided together for a long time though so on the whole the teamwork bit is very good)

Its fun at the moment, and the difficulty level is fine, but my concern is that assuming the rest of the bosses fall in a similar amount of wipes, we will "run out" of content within a couple of weeks...

Time will tell I guess...but with the difficulty level I've seen so far (Naxx and 5 mans inc Heroics), I expect to have the game "on farm" before the new year.....6 weeks after tbc we were 6 weeks before we even got 10 people kara attuned !!!

Not necessarily worse, but with the same people, clearly easier !
Our guild had success (10-man) in putting all the melee in the front left corner (with Thain) and keeping it there. Tanks would run to each other and hand off bosses and we'd then begin work on Rivendare. Tanks seem able to split the meteor damage between themselves if one comes down while they are handing off bosses. We downed the bosses on our fourth try - initial failures were due to problems with the two bosses in back, apparently you need to tap them after switching, not just get in range.

In all, Naxx has been fine in difficulty level so far for an intro raid. Very few gear checks, much more dependent on coordination and movement, which makes for very fun fights and teaches new raiders some important fundamentals. That said, I agree with Scotty and do hope Ulduar and beyond step up the difficulty a bit, as many guilds on our server will have either the 10-man, 25-man or both on easy farm well before 3.1 comes out.

I think Heigan is going to become one of my all-time favorites (I'm a rogue, so I get to spend the whole fight dancing through the lava).
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