My First Raid in Seven Months


Last night I was invited to go with S9S (good friend’s guild that I’m trying to join) to Ulduar.  They know my situation.  They know my gear is just now at the point of being semi-ready for 10-man raids (the serious ones) and that I had never been.  The message I received was something like: “Hey Keen, want to go to Ulduar?  We have 9 and we would like you to come to get some good loot”.  I did a double-take, seriously.  Someone wants me to come on their guild run…to a decent raid… so that I can get loot?!  Uh, heck yeah I want to go.

They basically told me that they’ve been doing it a while now and that they’ll give me a quick run-down of each boss from my perspective (melee dps) and that if I have any questions to ask.   Sure enough, they gave me great (and quick) explanations.  It was like diving head-first into something entirely new.  I found myself having to call upon the oldschool raider skills that I had not

Big Giant guy
Big Giant guy

used in years.  For the new readers, my Raiding experience (in WoW) is Molten Core to AQ40, which includes BWL, AQ20, ZG… all of them for a long long time on multiple characters in 40-man raids.  I was the raider leader for all of them for 2 years so it’s safe to say that I’m not new to the raiding scene, but I felt like I had never raided in my life.

It took about 20 minutes to get into it, but after the first boss I felt like a veteran.  We rocked the place killing … I lost count… a lot of bosses.  I upgraded to a nice 2h mace and got my tier shoulders.  That’s huuuuge for me.   I was shocked how smooth the loot went and how friendly and willing to share this group was — not even my raids in 2005 would have taken noobs and people we just met and given them gear (we felt we were sooo hardcore back then… Looking back I was an idiot).

Ulduar is a lot of fun.  The beginning starts off with everyone in siege vehicles fighting a large army of … dwarf peoples and big golem giant thingies.  Okay, so it’s all a blur now but it was fun.  The first boss is even fought in these vehicles.  The whole thing felt

Thorim's Arena after we smoked him
Thorim's Arena after we smoked him

really intuitive (I was the siege vehicle turret).  As you work your way in deeper the fights are nice and involved.  One boss had a heart fall out of him that we had to DPS all while watching to see if we had to run away or destroy these robots walking towards him.  Another boss was a huge giant and it was my role to dps his right arm then his head.  All of the boss fights grew more involved and harder as we went in, but we rarely struggled.  My favorite boss that we did was Holdir with Freya coming in close second.  Those fights are really chaotic feeling until you understand what the goal is, then it feels like a well-oiled machine.  Jumping onto snowdrifts and avoiding the ceiling falling are just examples of the fight dynamics.  Good times.

Okay, so I’m not a hardcore raider or anything but I had fun and I’m proud of myself for not noobing it up.  I had the second lowest number of deaths and pulled more DPS than I thought I would (~2.5k) given how often I got squeamish and would back away from bosses to avoid things I didn’t recognize.  We’re going back to finish it up (couple more bosses) on Saturday and I’ll get to go again if there is room.

WoW’s PvE content – the actual content – has always been fun.  Ulduar is no different.  I liked it.  I want to go back. I hope that I get to see more content like this before the game’s failings catch up to me.

  • “That’s huuuuge for me. I was shocked how smooth the loot went and how friendly and willing to share this group was — not even my raids in 2005 would have taken noobs and people we just met and given them gear (we felt we were sooo hardcore back then… Looking back I was an idiot).”

    A great guild, a true community of caring sharing friends, can make all the difference for any game. Glad to hear you finally got to experience that in WoW. 🙂

  • Great to hear you’re enjoying WoW again.

    I’m currently levelling a drood alt, enjoying the old areas before they’re changed by cataclysm forever

  • My first experience in Ulduar was with a ‘friend’ of mine, who got some good geared people together. And we smoked 5 bosses. Got some nice loot too. Some elitist fag was being annoying. So we had to find some replacements. In the end we didnt kill more. And in my second attempt at Ulduar we never got the first boss down hehe. Even accidentaly startd it in hard mode with 4 towers up :D.

    Id return if i could raid. But the guild i was in was suffering from summer draught like mad. So meh. Ill try and find a better one at 3.3 / 4.0.

  • There’s no doubt that WoW offers awesome PvE content. And again it’s one of the reasons that I’m looking forward to Cataclysm so much. If Blizzard can introduce a new supply of great content from level 1 onwards, then the game is gonna be a lot of fun.

    Also gotta say Keen, your Undead DW DK looks awesome! 🙂 What weapons are those?

  • Oh, keen. you’re back on the pipe again. well, i shouldn’t really say anything, i resubscribed on thursday.

  • Lord of the Rings online announced ANOTHER expansion coming this year, didn’t mines of moria just release less than a year ago? Increased level cap etc.. makes it seem like everybody wasted their time getting the lvl 60 gear.


  • Ulduar is a very good and enjoyable raid. It’s not piss easy as Naxx, and it’s not as hard as Sunwell… Overall a decent raid with fun boss fights, very little trash mobs and good loot. If you go in there with a good group, it is indeed very good fun. Also make sure you try out the hard modes Keen, they add another layer of excitement. Need the proper gear though.
    Enjoy yourself in there, I stopped with WoW just before summer, but I can still understand what you like in there! 🙂

  • “not even my raids in 2005 would have taken noobs and people we just met and given them gear (we felt we were sooo hardcore back then… Looking back I was an idiot).”

    We all were man. Some of the things I did when I was a competitive raider is just an embarrassment. The sad thing is I was one of the nicer ones too! I have seen the worst in people over this stuff.

    Retirement can’t be sweet! These days I just want to play with nice people instead of owning! (Of course you can do both too)

  • Your experienced are a nice counterpoint to mine, I found Ulduar boring, with every boss boiling down to “DPS HARDER” when the place first came out, most of their gimmicks were easily avoidable and thats when I felt my burn out.

    I quit the game at around the same point we were learning kologarn, so I didn’t see the later bosses unfortunately, who may have been more interesting.