Here we are in our post-tier interviews and it's time we visited yet another No.1 guild, this time in 10 man with DREAM Paragon. We talked to GM Seita about the recently ended progress race, the everlasting 10/25 man debate and how things are shaping up for the future.
You finished yet another tier at the top of 10 man without any real competition. At this point, do you feel like you're playing just for the fun of the game, or do you still feel some competitive drive to finish up in firs place?
We are playing as hard as ever, the lack of real competition in 10man hasn't affected our play in any way. If anything, we are now more focused on what we are doing and less focused on what the others are doing, when we were doing 25man we were always aware what classes the competition is stacking for a certain boss or what talents/glyphs etc they are taking to see if we are missing something.
Method has taken up your spot in the 25 man race and you're the top 2 in your respective categories. How do you feel about the "overall" World First debate and how much does it matter to you to get a boss before the top 25 man guild?
There is no "overall" World First race, but as there is no real competition for us in the 10man category we do follow the 25man race and it's just a "fun thing" if we can kill the bosses before them, but not something we strive to do or that's really important for us.
How did you feel about the length of this particular tier? Especially compared to the three shorter progresses of tier 14?
This tier lasted 11 days of hardcore progress raids which I think is pretty close to an ideal length of a tier for us, maybe 12-15 days would be ideal.
Do you even keep track of some of the guilds in the 10 man race and what's happening with them? For example the skipping of Council, Megaera and Dark Animus?
Someone is usually checking wowprogress between corpse runs, so we are aware if people skip some bosses. But for us it doesn't really matter if some random guild is skipping the harder bosses and killing the easy ones first.
How do you feel this tier did in terms of bosses, their difficulty and how different and/or fun they were?
This instance was the most fun/the best instance since we have been playing on 10man. The overall difficulty was good, if the easier bosses would have been more difficult, Dark Animus balanced from the start, Lei Shen a bit more difficult and no Ra-den this would have been close to perfect raid instance.
It seems the difficulty on the sort-of-endboss Lei Shen was pretty well tuned, not only in 10 man but even between 10 and 25. The boss has gotten a lot of praise and even mentioned in the same breath as Ragnaros, Firefighter and Yogg 0. What's your opinion on him and where would you rank him in the overall scheme of WoW endbosses?
It's hard to compare a 10man boss to the 25man bosses we have killed in the past as our 10man lineup is a lot better than any 25man lineup we ever had. It was the best/hardest boss we have progressed through on 10man.
How did you deal with figuring out which platforms you were going to level up to deal with the mechanics through the rest of the fight? Did other combinations end up being much harder or were they a possibility too?
Our combination was the only one we even tried the last phase with. We first wanted to handle P1 then 1-transition, then P2, then 2-transition. When we started the fight we had other combinations in mind than the one we ended up using, but when we were good enough to reach the last phase/think of reaching the last phase, we had a better understanding of what platforms to choose for the last phase.
You basically refused to take a killshot for Ra-den, care to elaborate as to why? And in general why do you skip the majority of bosses in terms of killshots?
In general if we kill an easy boss mid instance, we just mount up and rush to the next boss, we don't care about taking screenshots at that point as we see no "value" for the screenshot. We did take a killshot of Ra-den (with 9 people, lappe went offline instantly when the boss died) and as I said to you earlier we were just so disappointed on how the boss actually ended up dying that we didn't bother uploading the shot.
The great Lei Shen vs. Ra-den debate - which do you think was the "real" endboss?
Lei Shen is the true endboss of the instance and I don't see how anyone who has killed Ra-den could even debate this. Ra-den is the bonus boss gone wrong.
On Ra-den overall:
I earlier mentioned that Ra-den was disappointing/a bonus boss gone wrong. I'm confident that none of the western guilds killed Ra-den the way Blizzard intended it to be killed. You can skip some of the mechanics of P1 with a "clever" tactic, it makes P1 a lot easier and because guilds have already killed the boss using this tactic they won't be fixing it, the "balance" of the Vita/Anima phases in P1 was way off too. Because of the "clever" tactics you can get to Phase 2 with far less stacks than you should be having which makes P2 kind of a joke. No one was excited after we killed the boss using this strategy. After we switched to our kill strategy it went from a gear check where you can fail to just play 100% safe, overall dps isn't important, just focus on bursting and the boss will die.
How do you feel about limited attempts bosses in their most recent incarnation? Does it make sense to have a boss after the "endboss", as Blizzard have stated?
If you are going to have limited attempts on a boss it should be after the end boss or an optional boss where you can go anytime you want. There shouldn't be any bosses mid instance with limited attempts in which if you fail you can't continue clearing the instance. This time the bonus boss was after badass last boss Lei Shen and there was a public misconception that Ra-den is the true endboss of the instance. I think limited attempts can work for a bonus boss and bring more interest to the farm raids, if after the farm you can go and see what your new shiny epics can do this week compared to last week, but everyone would have to take the boss as a bonus boss, not a real boss for competition for the "victory" of the instance.
Where would you place Throne of Thunder in the overall WoW raids ranking?
It's up there among the best instances.
What's your opinion on the Twins nerf in 25 man to bring it in line with 10? Do you think that the two even should be roughly similar in difficulty on a boss-by-boss basis?
It's impossible to balance the game so that any boss would be the same in difficulty for 10/25man. You can have easy bosses for both or hard bosses for both, but they may be easy/hard for different reasons as the encounters are so much different for 10/25man. "Everyone" keeps talking about the Twins 25man nerf, most people don't talk about how some of the bosses were harder on 10man and no one even knows what prenerf Dark Animus 10hc was like. For prenerf Dark Animus it was impossible to 2 tank it, you needed 3 tanks in 10man, then they cut the damage the Massives were doing by 50% so it could be handled by 2 tanks. 10man was getting the same number of teleports as 25man too, it was so bad that we even contemplated skipping the boss because we had no idea how long Iron Qon/Twin Consorts would take and how long until the boss would be nerfed. Needless to say no one killed prenerf Dark Animus on 10hc.
Take us through the timeline of your Lei Shen attempts, the strategies, the weird attempts, and whether you thought that it wasn't doable at any point.
We were making steady progress the whole time, at some point we switched the healer comp so we could have the monk taunt&dps and switched in another warlock to replace the elemental shaman. This is about how it went, might be missing a couple of steps.
1. Pop everything on P1 so you can get through without giving any tower an extra level.
2. Practice the first transition on normal mode, you can't rely on luck that the right people will get Helm of
Command/Static Shock (10man was getting 2 Helms, then they nerfed it to 1 later)
3. Execute the tactic for the first transition on heroic
4. Think which ability we want to have on P2
5. Pop everything on P2/Figure out the balls so we can get to second transition
6. Execute the same transition tactic and think which two abilities we want to have in P3
7. Figure out how we can do the last phase most efficiently
8. Figure out how we can save everything for the last phase (=giving two towers a level in P2)
9. Execute everything we had practiced.
Are you looking forward to the final raid of MoP? Has ToT given you hope that it will get even better and was it a step in the right direction for WoW?
This tier was a lot better than the last one, the last tier could have been really good too if they would have just made it a single streamlined instance with 9-12 of the best bosses of the 16 and balanced it accordingly. We are not yet looking forward to the next tier, we need to get our roster sorted out first as we need to replace 2-3 players and then we can start preparing/waiting for the next tier.