Intro to Raiding
Learning a raid typically means some deaths just be prepared for the fact. Raiding typically is “end game” content, it is not meant to be easy.
Don’t always assume you will get detailed instructions along the way so be prepared by reading the raid guide if one is available. Staying with the group and knowing your role is key. A small tight knit group of players can out perform a large group with no discipline every day of the week.
Make sure you are ready with an account on Team Speak, Vent and Mumble. You never know which chat program a raid group will use. In game sound is very poor quality and leaders will probably avoid using it.
Target Assist is essential. Make sure it is turned on in your options panel and you know how to use it. Target forwarding is an excellent option if you are inclined to shoot “through” the target assist player. Be sure to pay attention and hold DPS if they scroll though a boss that is meant to be left alone while looking for a suitable target.
Be courteous by being on time. RL happens and it is understandable. However if you have to tinkle or get a drink, try and do it before the start time or during a pause. Please don’t ask 11 people to wait for you to get yourself in order after the start time. If you have to see to an emergency ask a squishy friend if you can put them on follow. They can look after you and ensure the whole group can continue on.
Throwing a group together can sometimes be challenging. Growing your friend list can be a HUGE help to a raid leader. If the situation calls for it, ask the raid leader if you can be a Raid Assist to bring them in (remember to ask them first; ninja invites are icky).
!Important! I can’t stress this enough. LET THE LEADER LEAD. You might be tempted to jump on in with the excitement and try to lend a hand. Please don’t unless they specifically ask. Sit back and do your job and let them do theirs.
Check your traits. There are specific traits that are helpful for raiding and some that are useful for solo play. Learn the differences for your class and you will have a much more enjoyable raiding experience. Maxed mitigations are a must for the toughest ones.
POTS, POTS and POTS! Wound, Poison (no not the hair band), Fear and Disease. Make sure they are +5 above the level you are currently raiding. For example level 100 raids need pots that will cure effects up to level 105. There are two types of potions: one can cure only yourself (potions) and one cures your target (salves). Salves require you to be pretty much on top of your buddy so their usefulness is fairly limited.
Morale and Power pots. Without morale or power you are just an ugly lump. Try not to be that lump.
Food is useful in many ways. The raid leader may give everyone a chance to “eat up” before a battle that will need it. Failing that, if you hear munch munch all around you, go ahead and eat.
Scrolls. Get in the habit of using them in the raid but only one person per group. Scrolls affect your group if they are in your proximity only. Please wait until everyone is gathered together before you use them.
Tokens. These will dispel dread. Some raids are absolutely essential to have tokens popped after a death or a debuff from a boss. Dread can literally take away half your morale and make it impossible for your healer to keep up. Always have a stack of these ready and pay attention to when someone “pops a token”. It will affect your whole group but doesn’t stack so if you plan to use a token, call it out. As with scrolls, ensure you have your fellow group close by so they can share the joy (note: they will not cross fellows so only those in your group will benefit).
Additional class buff. Find out what there is available for your class to increase your damage or protect yourself. For example Hunters have bow chants and oils, LMs can feed their pets and Captains can buff their flag bearers.
Chatting the NPC or triggering the instance will always be the job of the leader. Resist the urge to chat any rings you see (it’s hard sometimes, believe me).
Know Your Place: Squishies should be no where near a mob. Be aware of where your healer is and stay nearby to benefit from the group heal effects. Tanks and heavies are geared specifically for taking damage and should be the only ones toe-to-toe with a boss. Main tank goes in front facing the boss away from the squishies and everyone else in the rear. Tanks are typically the focus of the healers so manage your aggro accordingly. Ranged DPS…stay ranged for crying out loud. Mobs can sometimes have a nasty habit of moving or zerging. Be aware of what is going on around you and be prepared to shift to a safer spot.
Follow the Leader: Unless instructed to do otherwise, nobody should be running ahead of the tank or raid leader in an uncleared zone. Things are dangerous out there, don’t be that guy who pulls a wing of baddies because he wandered off.
Who starts the fight? The leader will signal to the tank when its time to begin. Got an itchy trigger finger? Keep it off the keys. Your tanks will appreciate an easy count to 5 before you jump into the fray. This will give them time to get sufficient aggro to keep the mob on them and not on you. Ranged DPS take off auto target in your options panel.
Target Assist is your best friend. Usually a ranged DPS who knows the run will be made TA. If you stick to the TA’s target, the group will kill the mob in the appropriate order and more quickly. Imagine a Guardian trying to hold the attention of an entire mob while the group does its best to pull them off. Hell hath no fury like a grumpy Guard fighting to keep aggro from an unorganized group.
Debuffs: Wounds, poison, fear and diseases all cause you damage and are work for your healers. Get to know your debuffs and class skill for removing them. If you don’t have time to use your class skill, use a pot. Some debuffs will not only kill/stun you but it will infect everyone in your vicinity (these are usually represented by an eye above your head). Having pots quick slotted is a good idea. There is a plugin called Buffbars that displays relevant pots during a raid for easy selection. If you only choose one plugin ever, make it this one.
Corruption Removal: Bosses will get corruptions that stack and stack…and freaking stack. Each class has skills for corruption removal. Get to know which ones are yours and when it is appropriate to use them.
Interrupts: Certain mobs and their minions have specific things they will say or do (known as an induction) before they use a special skill or attack. Some of these can be interrupted and others cannot. Know what skills you have that act as interrupts. For example Thorog will rear up on his hind legs before he blasts the whole group with fire doing massive damage. If you are ready with your interrupts he will be unable to complete his action.
Learn to recognize certain attacks and being prepared to mitigate or just simply get out of the way. For example blue whirling blades around a boss will reflect any damage you deal out right back to you. You can literally one shot yourself if you are not paying attention (hint: F1 key will target yourself quickly to avoid stray shots on the boss). Fire on the ground will do massive damage over time. Sometimes you are able to side step to get out of them flames. Just make sure you are moving with the group and not the opposite direction.
Deaths: There will be some and that’s normal. If no one is dying, the content is not challenging enough. If it’s your turn to take a dirt nap, stay down and relax. Your healers are aware you are there and are calculating the best time for a rez. As certain classes are more important than others in certain situations don’t be afraid if someone else is rezed before you are. Three hunters can be dead but a key class like a tank or healer will always get the first priority. Rezing a class that has a rez skill is usually put next in line and then DPS typically gets some love. Never release unless you are instructed to do so.
THE best items in game can be from raiding. If you’ve done your part and made it to the end, it’s time to reap the benefits! Oh but wait…its not over yet. There is one very important task left to you and that’s to be kind to your buddies. Check out the descriptions and the main stats of the items (example: a shield isn’t for a mini if it has Might and Vit as the main stats).
ALWAYS let the leader of the raid open the chest.
If the chest offers a Roll/Pass option take a moment to look at each item to see if it is class appropriate for you. Often rewards are Bind on Acquire (BoA) and states it clearly in the item description. The surest way to become a persona non grata is to win an item you can’t use. So here are some rolling manners:
Roll on the small stuff and luck be with you!
Roll on class items you can use.
DO NOT roll on items that are BoA and you can’t use.
If no one wants an item that is bind on equip and you have an alt that can use it, feel free to roll on it.
Happy Raiding! If you have any comments or questions about this write up please comment below.
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