Wednesday, December 10, 2008

San da'floor, pain ta'house, wax on wax off, wipe a'raid

Having cleared out Naxx-25 with one raid night left in our weekly schedule, Conquest set our sights on Malygos.

And, with the clear of Naxx being relatively straight forward, not quite easy, but also not quite hard, we walk into Maly with uncertain expectations.

The Wiki and Bosskillers guides are both lengthy and wordy. I learn best by doing, and not so much by reading, so this was confusing as hell. Even the available videos left me confused. But, lets zone on in and give it a whirl, and see what big boy raiding is all about.

3 hours. 20 attempts.

That might seem like beating your head against the wall, and it kinda was, but with each attempt, we get a little better and a little better.

Overview of the fight:

Phase 1

Pew pew. Frontal cone is deadly, so stay out of it. Periodically, Power Sparks fly towards Malygos. Kill the sparks before they hit him. When you kill a spark, there will be an aura on the ground in the spot the spark died. Stand in that aura for 50% additional damage output. Effect can stack.

Periodically, Vortex will pick everybody up in the air like a tornado and scramble you all over the map and then drop you in a pile.

Phase 2

At 50% health, Phase 2 begins, so get ready for the fun. Here's my take on Phase 2....grab your ankles and prey your healers are awesomesauce. Along the way, make sure you stand inside the Magic Shell shields. Don't forget that they fade very quickly, so you're constantly running to a new Magic Shell.

You're not fighting Malygos in this phase, you're fighting adds. One type of adds is on the ground. Kill them first. The other type of adds is up in the air on flying discs. Kill them second. When a disc guy gets killed, his disc falls to the ground and can then be used by a member of your team.

Phase 3

After all the adds are dead, you head into Phase 3, arguably the most annoying phase. The ground falls out from under you and you land on a dragon vehicle. So you're not using your normal toon's capabilities, you're using stupid fireballs with stupid DoTs from your stupid dragon vehicle, or stupid heals with stupid HoTs from your stupid dragon vehicle. Randomly, he'll blast 3 players, and your stupid dragon vehicle has a stupid shield effect you need to activate. And periodically, there will be a cloud of nasty static energy that you need to move out of (move out of the fire, so to speak). The cloud isn't stupid, its just nasty.

Honestly, not a big fan of Phase 3. Visually, you have no reference points with which to determine your positioning and range. In addition to Malygos, any of the dragon vehicle quests or daily quests with dragon vehicles just feel so random. Your camera can't zoom out far enough to really see the battlefield, random laser beam effects hit you from random directions, the flight movement is kludgy, the game mechanics are unfamiliar and not in a fun/original way, but rather in an annoying/hacky way. But I digress.


In case you couldn't tell, we did actually make it to Phase 3, which is pretty sweet. Maybe 7 out of 20 times, made it to P3. Our best attempt had him at about 23% health when he enraged.

Despite my stupid attitude towards the dragon vehicle, the overall fight and the overall experience of progressing steadily through learning P1, then learning P2, and pushing into P3 was incredible. Had to run a heroic dungeon just to calm down before bed.

Some key things I/we learned....

1) P1 Coordination - Its vital to coordinate the positioning of where dead sparks will land. It is possible to stack the dead sparks resulting in 50% increased damage output, PER SPARK. The times we had 2xSpark Buff, the team delivered incredible damage. The enrage timer is aggressive, and this is clutch. Also, save your DPS cooldowns for when you've got 2 spark buffs.

2) P1 Pet Glitches - More on this in another post, but suffice it to say...Hunters, recall your pet after each and every Vortex. You can send her back into battle immediately, but make sure you remember to recall after Vortecies.

3) P2 Magic Shell - The shields decay quickly and new ones pop up. You will be moving quite a bit during this phase. You need to also be delivering damage to lots of chaotic moving targets. This phase took tremendous focus and concentration to just survive, let alone kill the adds. Use a Main Assist to ensure focused fire through the chaos.

Visually, this phase is overwhelming, the screen is flashing, neon stuff is spraying all over the screen, and your toon is barely visible through the Magic Shell. Take some happy pills, IRL, before heading into P2.

4) P3 Daily Quest - Word on the street is that Blizzard gave us the ability to practice for P3 outside of a raid environment. There's supposedly a daily quest called Aces High! near the Nexus that has you riding the exact same stupid dragon vehicle as the one in P3. Will have to investigate further.


We're so ready to kill this guy. Need more practice as a team stacking up the sparks to burn through P1 faster. Need more practice as individuals keeping concentration through P2. And everybody needs to do that daily to figure out WTF is up with those dragons.

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