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The Core: Paragon's Devai

Article originally posted on Manaflask

Welcome to a new series of interviews with players from top guilds, focusing on the main raiders that form the core raiding group of the guild. These are the mainstays, the guys that always get invited to the raid and that the guilds count on when it comes to World Firsts. They're usually veterans that have been with the guild and game for a long time, but there are exceptional players that get on that list really fast. So let's find out a little more about them, and we start with DREAM Paragon's Devai.

Main: Hunter Devai
Alt: Hunter Devaiz and Warlock Devastatik


Tell us about yourself a bit.

Yo. My name is Niko, I'm a 28 year old geek and I live in Finland. I'm currently graduating from a University of Applied Sciences. I always loved to play games (I think I started to play games at the age of 13) and it hasn't changed even though I have aged a lot. I guess some things just stick. Gaming is basically one of my hobbies along with running, gym, and watching TV series.


What's your WoW history been like so far?

My wow history... it's a long one. I started to play in the early beta of wow and have played ever since. My first guild was also a full Finnish guild called Grim Sight Clan, gaining notorious reputation by killing Kazzak multiple times in a row despite other guilds' efforts, after which we were renamed by the good people of Daggerspine to Grim Kazzak Clan - which is more like the proper title to the guild as we had around 12 Benedictions when all the other guilds combined had like 1... There were some inactivity problems and we merged with a Swedish guild called Perfection, and after a while had one other guild joining in. After that we became Beyond Redemption, which got the world 5th kill on Kel'Thuzad in Naxx 40!

Anyway, after completing Naxx I felt like it had been a nolife year for me, because I coudn't really do anything else than go to work, take a 2h nap afterwards, play until 3 am, and repeat for weeks. I decided to "quit" wow.
One month after that Burning Crusade was released and I was like, okay, maybe if I level up my char and play casually... lol f**k that, everybody who has played this game hardcore knows that's not gonna work, and I joined a guild called Knockout which was the same core as GSC had (my friends). After a while we merged with another Finnish guild called Sauna, which marked the birth of Paragon. And here we are with same core group I started this game with (which is the group I play other games with too, my friendz!).

I played a priest in the beginning and rerolled a warrior in BWL. Since the start of Cata I've been playing a hunter.


What do you think makes you a good raider, why are you a core part of your guild?

There are many aspects of good raiders. I think one part of being a good raider is to have a good game eye (I've also played other games like cs competitevely). I'm also doing my homework by analyzing s**tloads of logs to improve my gameplay. I also have a good reputation in the guild, which makes the raid leader trust me and give me important jobs on some encounters. And one of the most important things is that I'm always there if I'm needed. I organize my stuff so that I can play when it's needed (in some cases it means skipping school etc). So essentially I'm one of the core members because I'm skilled, I'm always there, people trust in me, and I prioritize my guild thriving over other stuff.


What was your favorite moment in WoW?

It's a really hard question. I think there are a couple - like Naxx 40 KT kill was awesome, Anub'arak 25hc kill was our first world first and I screamed, I cried, I smashed my table and I ended up drinking... but on a serious note I think I was MOST relieved when we killed rag 25hc, because I thought Method was just about to kill the boss. I can't really say which one of those is THE favorite moment - I guess they all are.


What was your favorite boss and favorite raid?

My favorite boss is definitely Ragnaros 25HC. It's one of the best designed bosses around and it was challenging as hell. That's the way I like my bosses. A note on HC Raggy: we actually thought that p4 was more like an RP phase, that the NPCs would help out a lot and it would have been a walk in the park. When the truth hit I was like "no f**king way in hell". That was an absolutely jaw dropping situation, and I'm always gonna rember that!

My favorite raid as a whole is Ulduar. There was so much going on in there, great bosses and great scenery, and a HC-only boss too, which was fun.


What are the best and worst features of your main class?

The worst features of my class for now are definitely the deadzone (can't sit on raid group and enjoy the AoE heals) and no PROPER survivability CDs, even though they did add 30% damage reduction on dete... a bit too little bit too late. And pets on the new encounters tend to bug sometimes. In some encounters, for example Madness of Deathwing, I needed to intervene our tanks with my turtle pet every time the impale was about to come. If I screwed up, the tank died. So I needed to play 150% while others could sit back on their chairs and do their normal thing... even though it's great that you can do that as hunter, at the same time you're under a lot of stress because of it. :) A double edged sword! And the best feature is definitely to able to be at long range, so you can see whats going on in the raid, and providing good damage, good utility, and a variety of buffs that you can bring to the raid. And I absolutely love the hunter play style, it's just perfect for me!


What would be the single most important thing about playing your main class well?

Too hard a question! I'd say probably focus management.


What are your favorite games outside of WoW?

Guild Wars 2, Dota 2 / HoN, Diablo 3, and the Dragon Age series. I can't really single out a favorite.


Would you say DS was a successful dungeon overall (regardless of the drama surrounding the WF race at the start)?

I think the overall score I'd give to DS is 2/10. In my opinion the instance is just plain bad. Only two good bosses which are Yor'sahj and Gunship. I love the new graphics, details and epic stuff, and basically this instance didn't have any of that. All of the models were already in the game and they even managed to snatch Dragonblight from Northrend, which was the zone I hated most in WotLK. And all the hype about how they are going to make Deathwing so epic blah blah blah. I basically feel I didn't even fight against Deathwing at all. I just fought against a bunch of bloods, amalgamations, and some tentacles, and in the end of Maddness you can hit him couple of times on his chin... Really ?? Anti-climax anyone?

What are you most looking forward to in MoP, aside from raiding?

Basically the only thing I do in this game is raid.. so lets say camping the outdoor raid bosses 24/7. JK! Let's say the challenges then!


What do you think about the new talent system, both in general and specifically for your main (and maybe alt) class?

I think the talent system is one of the better things in MoP. You can have more variety on your talents and you can change them on the fly, which is huge. For hunters the talents look great at the moment. There is a healthy mix of mobility, utility, and damage in them. I love the fact that you can take specific talents on specific bosses without going to Orgrimmar to respec. And a loooooong waited silencing shot on every spec! Also pets get a new talent system which is a great call from Blizzard. You can basically respec your pet to be DPS / utility / tank. You can have tank cats or DPS crabs which is fun. :) But pet families still have their own "signature" skill. If your raid needs some buff or debuff, you can spec your pet to and bring the buff/debuff without losing any dps!


What's the biggest change coming in MoP and is it good or bad?

The game is going to stay the same, with only some tweaks here and there. Most of all I like the talent system which will increase the depth of your character. I like also that they removed some of the "useless" spells. For my class I love the fact that they removed the deadzone, and some other tweaks too, and oh, the 87 skill is actually usable and fun too! :) I'm not really into camo at all because I dont play pvp..


Would you say raiding (and the game in general) is going in a better direction or not and why?

In the beginning of Cataclysm there were A LOT of top guilds whining that three instances at launch is a bit too much. Nobody wants to have two months of progression. I guess they didn't listen to people and are making another expansion with three instances at launch... That's definitely something I didn't want to see, but it's their game and they can do whatever they want to do  with it. Can't really say anything about raids yet, because I haven't done any of them. :) I think it's a bit of a letdown that we need to kill Garrosh as the final boss of the expansion. Doesn't sound that epic or interesting to me at least. I'd say the game in general is probably going to a better direction though, because Blizzard has way more time to focus on improving the game instead of reworking whole old world, like they did in Cataclysm.