Gruul Downed

This past weekend, just a few hours after returning from vacation, we had a scheduled Gruul’s Lair run.  Turns out that we were a few folks short on the signups, but we were able to pull together a nearly full raid by bringing in 4 folks from friends lists.  Getting started nearly 30 minutes late, and already a bit worn out – I was hoping for an easy start to the evening.

The first High King Maulgar attempt wiped when one of our Shammy tanking hunters got beat down jsut after the pull.  Our second attempt had a our mage-tank get a resisted spell-steal – he died quickly, and I called a run out.  At this point we were joined by two other guildies – one who had been running late, and another that usually doesn’t raid, giving us a full group.  The third attempt went beautifully, with all 25-members standing at the end.

The hunters did make one change in dealing with Kiggler.  They had been having problems with loosing LOS on him, and then getting beaten down once he closed to melee range.   Clearly positioning was the issue here, but other attempts had seen him moved to close to the rest of the group, where is AOE caused problems.  In the end, simply waiting a beat on the pull made the difference.  We start the pull with my tossing my decapitator at Maulgar – with MDs hitting the Priest and Warlock moments later, and the mage-tank opening up Firehand.   By letting Kiggler turn to me, and toss a single lightning-bolt my direction, his hunter-tanks were able to position themselves up against the wall, and never had trouble with him moving again.  Worked like a charm.

So, loot was handed out, and we moved on to Gruul.  Again.

This week, I had already planned to exert a bit more control over positioning.  I set up the groups to each have at least one healer, at least one melee (were *very* melee heavy this week) , and several casters.  Each group was given 20% of the room to spread out in, with the healers being in the 20-25 yard range, and the range-dps casters being further back.  Previous attempts on Gruul had seen several people dead before we got Gruul to 50%, primarily due to Cave-Ins and Shatters, so the goal here was to start spread out enough that we might have more luck.

The first two attempts ended with my going down before Gruul hit 30%.  However, the 2nd attempt most of the raid was still up at that point, so that was a huge improvement over previous weeks.  The 3rd attempt saw Gruul at 16% before I dropped.  The issue on all three attempts turned out to be that I wasn’t getting post-shatter heals quickly enough.  As per our norm, the steady-state parts of fights are fine.. it is those little transitions where everyone has to choose where to focus there efforts that we had issues.

It was starting to get late, and we were at risk of loosing a few people due to the time — but everyone agreed to go one more time before calling it.  We refocused the healing a bit, and I reminded everyone that after 8 growths, nearly all the heals would be on my off-tank, or myself.  Even with loosing a warlock right at the pull, we got Gruul down.  It was a bit iffy at the end, I (screwed up and) took a crushing blow at 5% – leading to 2 hits in 2 seconds that did more than 22k damage, with another 8k blow following 4 seconds later – however, the healers covered for me, and we got the kill.

I’m hoping that this weekend we can repeat that success.  We should have much closer to an all-guild run, which will make me happy, and I’ve noticed that the 2nd kills tend to go much easier.

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