Sanctum of Domination LFR, Part 1

In my last post about Shadowlands LFR, I said that I'd spent about one and a half hours queueing for the first wing of Sanctum of Domination on a Sunday but gave up on it when the eventual attempt to form the group failed due to too many AFKers. On the following Friday, I spent another half hour queueing before giving up again, as I didn't feel like spending all afternoon waiting around.

The next Sunday morning I got lucky with a quick pop while I was checking on my mission table as usual. I liked that the first two bosses of Sanctum's first wing were both enemies that I'd actually encountered as a solo player before instead of random baddies. I also liked that the Terragrue, very appropriately, lived in a section that looked like a Torghast wing and involved anima powers. Also true to the Torghast experience, I got punted off a ramp to my death while we were clearing trash. On running back, I nearly ran straight into the Terragrue itself but managed to stop myself just in time. It was only then that I realised that the group wasn't actually going straight for the boss but rather doing a lap around the platform first, presumably to gather all the anima powers from trash.

Despite of having read the correct dungeon journal entries in advance this time, I was still a bit confused about what was going on at the start, and so were a lot of people from the looks of it, as nearly half the raid died early on. Once things had stabilised we managed to make it through the rest of the fight without any further issues though.

The Eye of the Jailer was fun with its "dodge the beam by swinging around on chains" mechanic, because that sure hadn't been in the in-game adventure guide! Fortunately it was very obvious what was going on though, and it was easy enough to keep up by simply following the more experienced players' lead.

The fight with the val'kyr was the most confusing, with a lot of deaths, and at one point I thought that we were going to wipe for sure as everyone's health kept going down while the boss was hardly taking any damage and people were typing "move her, move her" into chat - apparently the tank had positioned the boss in a bad place for a prolonged period of time. Somehow we still prevailed in the end, and I saw lots of people get the achievement for completing the wing for the first time, so I evidently wasn't the only noob. The only annoying thing was that I had died close to the end, because every time I had previously tried to revive other people after a boss fight, I had been too slow as someone else had done it faster, but naturally the one time I died, nobody else bothered to revive anyone and we all had to run back.

Also, this is as good a time as any to mention the "LFR pet peeve" I'm developing already. There is some sort of toy that turns players into random dungeon/raid bosses and makes them spout voice lines from those fights, and I've decided that this is the modern equivalent of the bloody train set from Wrath, because you just can't get them to shut up and it gets extremely annoying after a while when a lot of people in the raid do it. It was particularly noticeable for me in the val'kyr fight because I was trying to listen to the voice lines of the actual bosses we were fighting for relevant cues, so having these random shouts from old bosses come at me from three different directions was super aggravating.

I did not immediately queue for the next wing after that because there was something else I wanted to do, but I did come back to it a bit later and thought I was lucky when I once again got a pop within only a couple of minutes. Of course, then I loaded into the second wing with one boss already dead, and this time I decided that I wasn't going to waste time on half a wing just to then have to re-queue for the missing boss afterwards, so I just dropped group and ate the deserter debuff. Better to do something else for half an hour than to deal with more avoidable queueing.

When I logged back in after the debuff had run out, I re-queued and had to once again wait for over an hour for things to get going. I used this time to get the last few skill points in Cataclysm cooking and fishing, and also levelled my Burning Crusade fishing a bit. Just as I was once again starting to get a bit bored of the whole thing and went to put some lunch into the microwave, the queue popped. My husband teased me that I should've just done that sooner, because obviously queues only ever pop if you go to get some food, visit the bathroom or whatever. Fortunately I didn't actually miss the pop in this instance; I just had to ask my husband to please get the food out of the microwave for me.

I died again on the first boss in wing two, Soulrender Dormazain, and was once again somewhat annoyed that reading the in-game adventure guide hadn't really prepared me for what was happening, as I was one of many running around like a headless chicken while the boss did some sort of AoE, not sure whether I was supposed to just heal through it or what. It was only after I lay dead on the floor and had a chance to observe what was happening from a less frantic position that I realised that there was a pattern to the AoE that you were supposed to avoid. But hey, at least spending most of the fight dead on the floor gave me a chance to actually eat my lunch.

There was a cut scene at the end of the fight which I watched, and when it ended a lot of people had already moved on towards the next boss. A few others were behind like me though, so I still had someone whose lead to follow, but as we ran, some random damage attacks kept flying through the air and nearly killed us. They seemed to originate from the trash pull the rest of the group was fighting at a distance and whose attacks appeared to have an insane range... when we finally reached them, I did die from the damage.

Remnant of Ner'zhul seemed more straightforward to heal, and I was pleased that I never fell off the platform. Now Painsmith Raznal, the last boss of the wing, was something else. Some people commented on how the whole LFR experience was harder than mythic now, and that back when this content was current people were actually able to complete it much faster than now, even though we were ostensibly way overgeared for it. At least the tanks seemed to make a good effort at communicating what needed doing.

Then the fight started and it was mayhem! My husband was once again amused at my various exclamations of dismay as I found myself having to dodge spiky balls, spikes coming from the ground, and then both at once. Also, the boss had this one move where he throws his giant mace at one of the tanks, and I just couldn't get over how ridiculous it looked to watch that oversized weapon fly towards the draenei in the corner and then bounce off his head with a light "plonk" sound. This was without a doubt the most intense LFR fight I'd done up to that point, but I would say it was also the most fun - because while it was intense, it was at least very obvious what was going on and what needed doing, which definitely hasn't been the case for all the previous fights I'd experienced this way.

For the next queue break I decided to test the limits of Blizzard's AFK tolerance and put myself in the queue before going away from my computer to do some exercise. When I came back half an hour later I was pleased to see that I hadn't been logged out, but then dismayed to see the that the UI claimed that after over half an hour in the queue, I was supposedly still the only person in the entirety of Europe wanting to do Sanctum wing three on a Sunday. I mean, what? I disconnected and reconnected just in case it had bugged out. After a while it looked much better again, with multiple damage dealers and healers showing up alongside me, but then it temporarily reverted to just me again. Definitely an odd thing to observe! I waited for another hour and fifteen minutes after that, but after a total time of two hours in the queue for wing three alone, I gave up again as it became too boring. To be continued I guess.

1 comment:

  1. I've decided that this is the modern equivalent of the bloody train set from Wrath

    "OH NO I BROKE IT!!!!"

    I HATED that. So yeah, I know where you're coming from.

    Nobody for Wing Three? On a Sunday? That's.... odd.