Bridge Refresher Course
With all my recent posts about World of Warcraft, you would think that I had switched allegiance entirely, but this is not the truth by any means. Right now it is new and shiny and I am attempting to claw my way to a reasonable foothold of raid preparedness. That said I am still very much playing Final Fantasy XIV, and for the last few weeks we have been pulling together “raid” content on Monday nights. We really want to see the new Ultros fight, but unfortunately Thalen still had yet to do Battle at Big Bridge, so last night we started the evening off knocking that out of the way. It made a rather nice high point to start the evening on since that fight is so amazing. The majority of us are Final Fantasy V fans, so seeing the fight is like watching the bridge fight play out in that game.
The strange thing is that as many times as we had run it, I had never actually tanked it. Not that there is actually anything to tanking the fight. For the tank at least it is as tank and spank as they really come in Final Fantasy XIV. The only challenge was the various adds between the two phases of the boss, and even then it is was only because we have some extremely overgeared dps for the fight that just melted them. While I attempted to hold aggro it was pretty much futile. In any case it knocked that out of the way so that hopefully this week the folks that needed it can catch up on the Hildebrand storyline and get ready for Ultros. I would really rather do that fight for the first time as a guild, so we can have the experience of figuring out the content on the fly.
Angriest Red Ball Revisited
Turn Five of Binding Coil of Bahamut has been looming over our group for some time. I have to admit there has been a sense of fear about it, because in truth it has been content than killed many a static raid team on our server. It is the notorious gatekeeper to turn 2, and there are many folks that have cleared one through four never to actually manage to get in a turn five kill. The fight itself just has this insane array of mechanics that are almost impossible to memorize before going into the fight. Since it had been months for us clearing the first four turns we opted to start with those as a fresher course. Overall it went nice and smooth and we burned through the first few coil instances getting the folks who had not been there realm exploration achievements. I managed to get the Heavy Allagan chestpiece to go with my other two pieces of Allagan gear.
When we downed turn four after a few baubles here and there we decided to use that momentum and push us forward into a couple of attempts at Twintainia the boss of turn five. There is a lot of stuff to focus on during this fight. However we did manage to get to roughly the halfway point in the fight after a couple of attempts. I mark this as pretty damned good progress, and a pretty good night overall for us to down Big Bridge, four turns of coil and make that much progress on five. I feel like as a whole we have way more confidence in regards to our success chances at turn five. It is no longer this looming and scary target that we have not actually experienced. Folks talk about it with so much frustration and reverence, but I feel like we can totally down this. Now after seeing the fight I also feel like I have a far better point of reference for doing my own research in the coming week.
Up Too Late
After our evening of raiding in Final Fantasy XIV, I popped out and got into World of Warcraft in an attempt to find a group to run Auchindoun with. Much like there was a legendary cloak chain in Pandaria, there is a legendary ring one in Warlords. The first phase is actually relatively simple and only actually requires that you run Skyreach and loot and item off the final boss. This nets the player a really nice ilevel 640 ring for there troubles, which is a much needed gear level boost for getting into content. The next steps require you to clear four heroic dungeons, gather up a silly amount of apexis crystals and then complete a solo event of sorts. Last night I was up to the final step in this sequence which requires a trip into Auchindoun to loot an item off the final boss. However there was another player that required one more “core” the step before Auchindoun, so I agreed to run that heroic first before we ran the one I actually needed so that both of us knocked out the final step at the same time.
The end result was that I ran two heroics back to back and did not actually make it to bed until almost 1 am. The other result however is that other than 100 apexis crystals and a solo event, I am really super close to the next step in the ring quest chain. As a result in theory I should be able to knock out the 680 ring before we step foot into Molten Core as a guild tonight. I am really looking at venturing forth into Molten Core, it has been years since I last experienced the raid “for real”. I remember there was a time where a “good clear” took about three hours of my life. I am hoping we can manage to do it in a far shorter time. That said I have prepared myself for the potential of it taking that long if not longer. I know we are going to try and go into it with as many tanks and healers as we can so that we can potentially control the pace of the run. If everyone other than a handful of dps are with us on voice chat… hopefully things will go more smoothly. In any case hopefully at the end of the night I will have a spiffy mount.
I’ve always had a soft spot for animals. In this age of global strife and suffering, I’ve become rather accustomed to it… but the moment that Sarah MacLachlan animal charity video plays on the television… and it is like a sucker punch to the gut. There has never been a time when we have not had several furry children, and each of them is unique and special. This morning I am thankful for all of them that have shared our life. Presently we have four cats, which I think officially qualifies us for “crazy cat lady” status. Our eldest came home with me years ago on a Thanksgiving day, so this time of year is all the more important to me. She is getting up there in age and has many issues but I am so thankful for each year we have with her. In addition to our cats we also have two amazing ferrets, that are both as sweet as can be and are always clamoring for our attention. They both know exactly what it takes to get daddy to play with them, and they are the source of many delays while getting ready in the morning. Animals enrich our lives in ways that I cannot fully account for, and this morning and every morning I am thankful to have them.