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Do you feel they're pushing the expansion too fast?

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I'm wondering how people feel about the rate at which the expansion has been going as a whole. It went live on 9/25/2012. Patch 5.1 went live on 11/27/2012, just over two months later. Patch 5.2 went live on 3/05/2013, just over three months after that, and Patch 5.3 went live on 5-21/2013, about two and a half months after that.

Now, I remember and understand that Blizzard wants to keep up with other games that are promising new content at faster, more regular paces. But this expansion as a hole is meant to have only four major content patches? If 5.4 is released around the beginning or middle of August, this will be the first expansion where the final boss is down before the expansion as a whole, hits its first anniversary. And then we rush right into the next one? The fact that the name of the fifth expansion hasn't been released yet gives me hope for otherwise, but still... I feel they're rushing to get Mists of Pandaria done and over with. And we just read that Blizzard might have pushed back Titan to 2016, and also might be reworking it from the ground up?

I took a two month hiatus earlier in the year, during which I had a realization that there's always going to be a lot of the game that I'll never have gotten to just see, much less participate in. I still haven't done Throne of the Four Winds, Firelands or Dragon Soul, much less any of the current raid content. I helped my alliance guild with a little bit of MV and HoF but I wasn't good enough to help them pass just the first boss in either.

I realize that, because I don't have the time to commit to any kind of raiding, and I refuse to put up with the game community's abusive demeanor and behavior, which precludes random dungeons, maybe I shouldn't be worried if they ARE pushing the expansion too fast. And yet, I am.

How does everyone else feel?

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maybe with Project Titan being postponed they will release a new expansion until july 2014 less than 2 years from this one.

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I felt that Dragon Soul dragged some SERIOUS ass. I think I killed those bosses 40+ times meaning I spent the better half of 75% of the year killing bosses to try to see Heroic Cunning of the Cruel drop (it never did).

This pace feels MUCH more on spot. I'm a serious raider and have raided every single week this expansion has been out. While this isn't a perfect track record, these are my number of weeks spent in each raid:

Mogushan Vaults: 24 Stone Guard, 24 Feng, 22 Gara'jal, 20 Spirit Kings, 20 Elegon, 19 Emperors (MSV was available for a good 4 weeks before HoF and ToES were available)

Heart of Fear: 16 Vizier, 16 Blade Lord, 14 Garalon, 13 Wind Lord, 11 Amber Shaper, 11 Grand Empress

Terrace of Endless Spring: 17 Protectors, 16 Tsulong, 15 Lei Shi, 13 Sha of Fear.

17-20 weeks of raiding on the first tier was a sufficient amount for many to have fully cleared the raid.

So far this tier, I've done:

12 Jin'rokh, 11 Horridon, 13 Councils, 12 Tortos, 12 Megaera, 13 Ji-Kun, 11 Durumu, 11 Primordius, 12 Dark Animus, 12 Iron Qon, 9 Twins, 6 Lei Shens (Values are weird because I sit on fights I don't need gear off of anymore)

Seeing this raid tier at 13-14 weeks already with it being the only raid available for the rest of 5.3 makes it start to lose its kick. Far more guilds have downed Heroic Lei Shen this tier than downed Heroic Sha of Fear last tier. The availability of having 517 gear going into Throne of Thunder made things easier, but Blizzard has to find a balance between not overwhelming less progressive guilds while keeping better progressed guilds entertained. Since older raids can be done whenever, they decided to push more content faster. When it's all said and done, I'm going to be pushing 20-25 weeks in Throne of Thunder which is a great change from the 40+ in Dragon Soul.

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this is a point serious raiders already finished heroic content and its getting boring again.

They will release 5.4 much faster with this type of thinking

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Your point is taken, Zagam; I guess if I was as devoted a raider as you, going through Dragon Soul for 40 weeks (was it really that long you spent in there? I'm impressed, if that's the case) would eventually wear my patience thin as well.

The thing here is, I have RL activites every Tuesday, Thursday and Friday which makes it very difficult, if at all possible, to commit to a raid team. This is especially true because of all the time I'd need to spend farming materials for consumables, in between. Even with Sunsong Ranch, it would mean a lot of supplies to bring to the table. And because of the smaller amount of time I spend in game, I haven't even finished doing the faction storylines. I've finished Golden Lotus, but that's it. I'm almost done with Shado-Pan and August Celestials, being exalted with the latter, but have much further to go with the Klaxxi and Shieldwall. I haven't even seen Isle of Thunder or the Escalation dailies.

It's true that these aren't going anywhere, but if I'm supposed to start leveling again, from 90-95 by the time I'm ready to START...

I think my BIGGEST fear is what's going to happen once Blizzard is ready to launch Titan, or whatever the name of the next MMO is going to be. What are they going to do with WoW once the final patch of the final expansion is ready. From what I've heard, it's still possible to log into battle.net for Warcraft III, a game that's what, 11 years old? 13? But I worry about what happens when they stop development on WoW. Will it be at all possible to find groups for content I never, ever got to see? Content that will remain unsoloable? I know I won't be the only one who will be in that boat, but how many others will there be that I can find groups with? I took a HUGE risk posting on the WoW boards offering forth soloable versions of the raids once we reached the end of the game, no loot, no achievements, just go in and see the storyline. I guess I don't have to say just how frothing-at-the-mouth they all became, and how much they tore it to shreds. I knew better than to expect anything less, but... they won't even be playing anymore by that time, so what should they care that I'd still like to see the storyline?

It's been very hard for me to get a grasp of "the other side of the fence" until you posted your message, Zagam, and I'm grateful for the statistics you offered forth. I had no idea you were grinding your wheels in the mud for that long without anything else to chew on. Like you said yourself, Blizzard has to find that balance in between. My biggest worry, and I realize it probably sounds selfish, and I'm trying to be as mindful of that as I can... my particular situation is more extreme than even the majority of "casual" players as they call themselves. I'd like to be able to wish for even just a "watered-down" version of the leftovers once the main banqueters have left the table, without being so venomously hated for it.

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The top heroic raiders are a tiny percent of a percent. On our lower-pop server, the top guild is currently 3/12H. Our guild started raiding about 2 months ago and we just cleared 10N for the first time. In the process, our average i-level went from about 490 to nearly 520. We have good players, so I have no doubts we'll get some heroic bosses down, but there aren't even that many guilds in our position now as a proportion of the userbase.

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Every person's situation is unique. I passed up on my softball league in the spring because they only play during the week. The fall season plays on weekends which works out better. I also like having my weekends completely free to do as I like. Sometimes it's WoW, sometimes it's not.

Here are the statistics for progress as of last night (June 3) for any registered guild who has killed any boss in Throne of Thunder:

Jin'rokh 27020 (99.87%)

Horridon 21405 (79.12%)

Council of Elders 19234 (71.09%)

Tortos 16861 (62.32%)

Megaera 15298 (56.55%)

Ji-Kun 14317 (52.92%)

Durumu 12538 (46.34%)

Primordius 12169 (44.98%)

Dark Animus 11285 (41.71%)

Iron Qon 10479 (38.73%)

Twins 10309 (38.11%)

Lei Shen 8695 (32.14%)

So of all the guilds who have at least killed Jin'rokh, which I consider very PuG-able, 1/3 of those guilds went on to fully clear the raid instance. This also shows a good level of progression and pretty good design for a linear raid except for Horridon. Horridon and Twins should have swapped places, in my opinion. Twins brought no difficulty to anyone who had bested Iron Qon. Twins brought no difficulty for people who hadn't even done other bosses.

Now, if we looked at the Heroic stats, you'll see some varying values:

Jin'rokh: 6803 (25.15%)

Horridon: 2880 (10.65%)

Council: 1192 (4.41%)

Tortos: 2193 (8.11%)

Megaera: 999 (3.69%)

Ji-Kun: 4442 (16.42%)

Durumu: 654 (2.42%)

Primordius: 815 (3.01%)

Dark Animus: 381 (1.41%)

Iron Qon: 1999 (7.39%)

Twins: 809 (2.99%)

Lei Shen: 192 (0.71%)

Ra-Den: 162 (0.60%)

So just under 1% of guilds who have killed normal Jin'rokh have killed Heroic Ra-Den. About 1.5% are 11/13H working on Lei Shen. All of these numbers will skyrocket as we dive deeper into 5.3. The upgrading system will radically ramp up guild's average item levels. The eventual acquisition of item level 600 cloaks will speed things up. I'm predicting that closer to 3-4% of guilds will down Ra-Den before this tier is over. This would be consider the elite of the elite raiders.

Remember, this game isn't just for raiders. The PvP season never ends until the next patch comes out, so there are always teams jockeying for the top 0.5%. You've got tons of side quests, reputations, and a VERY friendly alt system to keep you entertained from a different perspective. LFR has been made more accessible than ever before, the PvP system has been revamped to be more friendly to newcomers, and there's really no penalty for trying anything. I feel the 2-3 month pace per patch is VERY awesome. I know I might be in the small minority, but by the time 3-4 weeks have passed, I've exalted each rep, completed each quest, and have begun working on heroic bosses. Depending on difficulty, the time needed to down a tier varies, but 3 months is a very solid amount of time to be given before nerfing it to make it more accessible.

Remember, if you feel overwhelmed, Icy-Veins has guides written about all events, patches, and current changes so if you take a small break, you can always read up on what's changed so you know the best direction to take when you come back!

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I'm not that serious raider and I only have 2 HC kills. In fact, if I had the possibility I would gladly go more serious. But I'll have to take a few weeks break when university starts and during my summer job. Anyway, even if I am not a serious raider, I'm pretty bored already in the game. Now challenge modes give me things to do, but that will not last long and most of the serious raiders have done them as well. HC scenarios... please... I'm pretty sure I could solo them. Maybe not for the bonus objective, but yes....

So all in all I think the pace is pretty good. It is NOT mandatory for raiders to finish HC progression before the next patch. I mean... People are expecting too much from themselves. HC raiding is only meant to really hardcora raiders. And even if next patch comes, you can always do the older raids with your guild or through openraid.eu easily, with the upgraded gear. Just for the title, or the achievement. :)

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My guild only raids 6 hours a week (2 days * 3 hours a day), and both our 10-man teams are 2/13 atm. One is working on Horridon, second on Iron-Qon.

I don't think I'll see Ra-Den before 5.4 goes live, but well... 6 hours a week was never meant to be full heroic clear.

And yes, what Oltier said — not much to do apart from raiding, if we don't count arenas and pokemon battles Posted Image

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Guilds who have Cleared HC in previous content are starteing with a higher item lvl in new Raids. And because they have more skilled players and better equipment at the start they will clear new content even more faster and then ask(yell) for new content. While NHC Guilds start with lower itemlvl and less skilled players.

My Guild started with avaradghe 500 in ToT and we hit average ilvl of 517 just bevor 5.3 relese.

It is logic that better players with better gear feel that the new content is to easy while other guilds are wiping endlessly on the 2nd boss.

What i want to say is this: I understand that Zangam and other players are waiting for new content. But when PTR starts i fear every week, that the new Patch will be released and we have not downed the current NHC content. Thats stressing.

Maybe heroic gear should be scaled to nonheroic values for new content. Then the progressraider would have a more challenging new content and the nhc raider wont feel like an idiot when he reads that the server/eu/world first for the endboss is just 3 weeks after release.

I hope anyone is getting my point. ^^

Edited by Ungestuem

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I do get your point, but keep in mind, that these guilds do not really care about gear. Remember at start of MoP? The highest possible ilevel was 463. The top guilds cleared MSV undergeared without any problems. For the top guilds you mention, it doesn't really matter what gear they have. They are just experienced and professional raiders with much free time. Even if their gear is scaled down.. Would that really make a difference? Maximum one week I'd say.

You also have LFR for a long time now, with bonus roll fail protection since 5.3. It should really be not too hard to gear up for normal.. ^^ And if you have the gear, but you're still wiping you should really find the weak chain in your raid, because no matter what gear you have if some people don't know how to play optimally with their class.

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I have to agree, they are coming out faster then any expansion before, and I've been here since vanilla, but I'm kind of enjoying it. My problem is my computer blew up in December, then the screen on the loaner went dead in Feb. That has left me two months behind and I'm having hell getting my factions up, but we knew that this expansion was going to change the Horde forever. I have to admit after years of us killing the dark iron, them being the hero group for the alliance dwarves is an interesting twist as well. Theramore obliterated. Dark Spears in open revolt. Syl and Lothamar gunning for Garosh as well. And all the Titan stuff in panda land used by the Mogu makes me wonder if we are not going to see the return of the Titans by the next expansion, as Ulduar and a couple others we have already had to shut down extinction projects from the Titans. 4 chapters in an expansion have been typical, but that doesn't mean Blizzard can't change the formula and have 5.5, 5.6, or even 5.7 and people still going wow. I figure the next expansion will be announced at Blizcon making this one faster then BC to Wrath, but we'll see.

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Some of us "elite" raiders don't beat content and clamor for more immediately. I, for one, thoroughly enjoy smashing content farming it in hopes of obtaining my full BiS gear. It's also fun to change specs, play alts more seriously, or dive into PvP and get slaughtered by the hardcore PvPers. While some of the "elite" raiders might cry they want more, I can assure you that sentiment is not shared by all of us.

I cannot define the word "elite" hence the quotation marks. I'm not sure I consider myself elite at 11/13H and in the #46 US 10 man. Some may see it that way. It all comes down to personal preference and how you see what you and your teammates get done.

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Thank you for your answer Zangam. One question. What do you think of the difficulty in ToT NHC ?

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NHC = non-heroic? Difficulty is relative to your group and furthermore by your composition. To me, normals were not difficult. The reason I changed guilds at the beginning of T15 was because Heroic Horridon was 'difficult' for my group. My new guild found Heroic Horridon very easy.

In regards to fight mechanics, Jin'rokh, Ji'kun, and Twins are embarrassingly easy. I'd put them all in Tier 1. Coincidentally, they are all 3 of the easiest heroic modes.

Tier 1 normal bosses: Jin'rokh, Ji'kun, Twins

Tier 2 normal bosses: Council of Elders, Tortos, Primordius, Dark Animus, Iron Qon

Tier 3 normal bosses: Horridon, Megaera, Durumu, Lei Shen

Tier 1 could be cleared by any organized PuG that had previously cleared all of T14. The mechanics are trivial, the enrage timer is loose, and the damage is relaxed.

Tier 2 could be described as mildly complex. There are mechanics you MUST master or your group will suffer, but most of the fights have one mechanic like that such as Stone Breath interrupting on Tortos, Ice Beam and Cinders handling on Megaera, surviving the storm on Iron Qon P2. Most of these have no crazy DPS requirement, but the mechanics have to be handled.

Tier 3 could be described as moderately complex. Horridon has so much going on with a pretty steep DPS requirement that many guilds break up on this boss. Megaera is pretty rough on 10 man non-geared healers. Durumu goes without explanation, but there are many mechanics to worry about here including a no-mistakes-allowed mechanic. Lei Shen requires some moderate amount of prior planning and execution.

Overall, I'd put Tier 1 on par with MSV, Tier 2 with Terrace, and Tier 3 along the lines of Heart of Fear. I'm lining them up that way due to most guilds' lack of success on Amber Shaper and Empress Shek'zeer during progression but success in Terrace of the Endless Spring at the same time. Heroics are a whole different monster. Each group will have difficulty on certain bosses, but everyone will learn to hate Dark Animus and Lei Shen on Heroic. Megaera sucked, too (from a 10 man perspective).

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Zagam, may I please refer to your words for a perspective of a casual player?

There are bosses you can outgear, others cannot be.

You put Horridon and Megaera into t3 — certainly reasonable if you do them undergeared. Once dps have gear, they can pew-pew adds and Horridon (heck, my guild kills Horridon BEFORE 4th door is open, ad completely ignoring Jalak — that's how much ahead of a timer you can now be on normal) with, quoting Method's rogue, "both hands in pants". Dodging mechanics is not tough when you dont have to care about dps.

Same goes for Megaera — with overgeared heals a player can literally stand in fire. I remember doing an LFR run with guildies when 5.2 was released, and we tried hard to kill AFK guy dropping fire right under him / kiting ice through him. It took almost 3 minutes or so.

On the contrary, some of the bosses you marked as t2 cannot be outgeared — Dark Animus be the example. Unless all players fully realize where they take their add / when it should be taunted off and killed etc, wipes are likely. No gear will change that (Much like H Will of emperor — pugs on openraid have great problems killing him even in current gear).

My point is, some bosses can be sweetened by gear; others remain awareness / execution check.

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Horridon is made simpler by gear, yes, but I'll argue that all bosses are made easier by gear. However, not all bosses REQUIRE gear. You asked my perspective about normal raids. I'll assume that most groups still doing normal modes do not have the gear to simply overpower fights while still struggling with others. If you have the DPS to beast mode Horridon without thinking about mechanics, then you should be putting your focus elsewhere such as Heroic mode.

I don't care how geared your healers are, no one is standing stacked for a 5th Rampage while being in Cinders or the Ice path. You still need to execute the mechanics or you can cause a wipe/restack.

Dark Animus absolutely can be outgeared. I know a group last night who zerged him in Heroic mode by ignoring the adds and tunneling the boss. This can be done in normal mode as well. With sufficient gear, you can spawn Dark Animus, Bloodlust/Timewarp, and burn him. Without gear, proper dancing of the adds will be much more likely.

Gear won't help you survive the Obliteration beam nor will it allow you to pick up multiple red puddles on Primordius after you've been transformed. Gear won't help you survive a tornado in P2 of Iron Qon, but it might give you the DPS so that you only worry about one tornado in P2. I can argue that gear has made all of the 11 heroic bosses I've downed trivial but it's really a combination of the extra throughput on top of the fact people aren't making learning mistakes anymore.

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areanu you are refering to normal/lfr and I think Zagam meant heroic.

Horridon after you break some dps threshold becomes very easy but before that it requires perfect coordination on heroic mode.

Also Zagam your grouping is far away from people are actually advising to do in heroic progress.

I am not hc expert but as far as I can tell (5/13 experienced):

Tier 1: Jinrokh, Jikun, Iron Qon

Tier 2: Tortos, Horridon, Council

Tier 3: Megaera, Lei Shen, Durumu

No idea about Twins, Primo and Dark Animus. This is all from 10man perspective.

Regarding normal mode, T15 is far easier than T14 was. After Horridon nerfs it is pretty easy to get up to leishen. Of course some latter bosses are very easy (twin consorts) and could be swapped with some previous once but there are no fights like Garalon/Amber Shaper.

And kind of off topic, Zagam what progress you recommend in ToT HC?

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No, I was referring to normal modes as if you weren't overgeared for it. Heroic modes are a different monster. Scroll up in thread to see records of guilds' success with certain bosses. Higher percentage of guilds downing a boss typically indicates it's easier than those with lower percentages of guilds downing them.

In regards to heroic tiering:

Tier 1: Jin'rohk, Ji'kun, Twins

Tier 2: Horridon, Iron Qon

Tier 3: Primordius, Megaera, Tortos

Tier 4: Council, Durumu

Tier 5: Dark Animus, Lei Shen, Ra-den

Jin'rohk, Ji'kun, and Twins are very simple in the change from normal to heroic. Horridon and Iron Qon have some minor changes, but nothing drastic. Prim, Meg, and Tortos are healing checks with some moderately steep DPS checks. Council and Durumu are heavy mechanic checks, DPS checks, and healing checks. DA has a TON of mechanics and Lei Shen just hurts like hell. Lei Shen is an extremely strict DPS check (2 tanks, 3 heals, 5 DPS) or a strict healing check (2 tanks, 2 healers, 6 DPS).

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Yea but if we look at the % and they are different from what you are posting.

Council is 6th (Tier4) , Megaera 7th (Tier3), Primordius 8th (Tier3), Twins 9th (Tier1)

People normally go from first boss to last. Thats why successful kills aren't really good measure how easy the boss is.

You are saying Twins are super easy, I think I will do some research and see if its actually better to do it instead of council as 6th progress boss.

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I'm doing Tiering based on difficulty, not based on how you should approach them. The raid linear meaning you can't go and do Twins progression and then come back for Council. To get to Heroic Twins, even though I think it's easier than Heroic Horridon, you need to beat Heroic Horridon or risk losing out on that progression that week.

TL;DR: The order of the fights you WILL do is not equivalent to doing them in increasing difficulty.

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Most groups that raid 2-3 days a week, progress only 1 boss per week. So even if they manage to kill 11th boss they wont go to 2nd one since there is not time usually.

Most guilds used linear progression since there was not enough data regarding latter bosses. Thats why you see more and more topics regarding progressions path. I am also in guild that raids 9hours per week and we rarely have enough time to progress on 2-3 bosses per weak. We are more middle of the pack than 'elite' ;)

Since you have better experience 11/13, I was wondering how would you rank the bosses from easiest to hardest so that some other guilds can acutally use that to get some easy kills before they tackle the harder ones (which would be easier when you get some heroic items from previous bosses :))

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Jin'rohk < Ji'kun < Twins < Iron Qon < Horridon < Primordius < Tortos < Council < Megaera < Durumu < Dark Animus < Lei Shen is my opinion. Of course, we don't use a Paladin tank which trivializes a lot of stuff. Comp dependent, for sure, but that's how I felt in terms of overall difficulty.

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Not managed to read the entire thread but I think the pacing has been ok.

The last patch of Cata killed off a lot of players due to the ridiculous time it took to roll out the new expansion, my only hope is they don't do the same again.

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