Garalon, Enrage Timers, Raid Leading.

Dungeons, Raids and Scenarios
1. Garalon, I hate you. But it also got me wondering (after reaching enrage with Garalon under 10% countless times tonight on progression attempts)

2. Having said that, why exactly do "enrage" timers exist in normals and not just in heroics where you have to be at your A+ game to matter?

Afterall isn't heroic modes the only thing that really matters in true progression?

3. I used to like being a raid leader, but after this boss I am starting to hate what the job requires

I dont want to be a bad guy, more so I don't like having to be the one to tell someone to do this and do that to increase their effectiveness to the point that I get the feedback of why changing A to B or B to A doesn't work for them, and in such their performance is not where it should be.

Is there anything other raid leaders can tell me to possibly assist in my I guess you could say people skills, cause at this point I am one of the chillest people and I think possibly that my not instantly kicking people for making silly mistakes is making the people in my group suffer because I am not perhaps more hard on people for easily avoiding the simple mechanics.

I mean even during tonight I misclicked my intervene and backstepped into the purple circle causing a crush, this coming after just a few minutes earlier I had to criticize someone for doing the same mistake, so therefore irony crit me right in the ego.
02/13/2013 11:39 PMPosted by Mércénáryz
2. Having said that, why exactly do "enrage" timers exist in normals and not just in heroics where you have to be at your A+ game to matter?


Because it not LFR. Its intended to require something vaguely resembling a fundamental understanding of your class/mechanics.

02/13/2013 11:39 PMPosted by Mércénáryz
I dont want to be a bad guy, more so I don't like having to be the one to tell someone to do this and do that to increase their effectiveness to the point that I get the feedback of why changing A to B or B to A doesn't work for them, and in such their performance is not where it should be.


Someone has to do it. Unless you want to be stuck on garalon forever, anyway
02/13/2013 11:39 PMPosted by Mércénáryz
2. Having said that, why exactly do "enrage" timers exist in normals and not just in heroics where you have to be at your A+ game to matter?


So you don't 6 heal 2 tank the fight

02/13/2013 11:39 PMPosted by Mércénáryz
Is there anything other raid leaders can tell me to possibly assist in my I guess you could say people skills, cause at this point I am one of the chillest people and I think possibly that my not instantly kicking people for making silly mistakes is making the people in my group suffer because I am not perhaps more hard on people for easily avoiding the simple mechanics.


Depending on how casual you are, you nee to be harsh if you want things done, but if you're family friendly, you need to put up with the learning curve.

02/13/2013 11:39 PMPosted by Mércénáryz
I mean even during tonight I misclicked my intervene and backstepped into the purple circle causing a crush, this coming after just a few minutes earlier I had to criticize someone for doing the same mistake, so therefore irony crit me right in the ego.


It happens all too often, you just need to hope that johnny mcweaksauce doesn't use that as an excuse when they screw up a dozen times.
While wiping to enrage can be annoying, it's just another hurdle like any other roadblock. It's like phases on bosses where you need high burst, but just that you need a certain level of burst for X minutes instead of X seconds.

Our group spent all night wiping on Garalon tonight as well. One of those fights we should have had months ago but roster issues have plagued us to no end.
Fights can have other mechanics that function as soft enrages that would net the same effect.

Heck, the pheromone pools alone on Garalon are a perfect example of this. If your kiters can keep a tight drop alignment, you would have longer than the timed enrage, but if they are sloppy you will not. If your healers can keep up with the raid damage, why should you not be able to effectively have longer than a hard time based enrage if you are good enough to.

I personally favor having a mechanic based enrage where you slowly have less space, or the raid damage mounts to a point that it can not be healed through then have a mass instant kill if you hit x minutes of battle. To me, this seems to be a better reward system since it takes a minimum of 10 people to raid, and if you have 1 weak person, or a couple of people that are having rotational issues, and 8 people that are kicking butt and taking names, you should still be able to get it done.

IMO, Garalon and Elegon are the two hurdles from MSV and HoF that everyone has to be a) slightly over geared for, b) perfect in their execution, or c) have the proper raid mix (which Blizzard has stated and proven their intent to marginalize the need for) in order to down. Personally I feel that fights like these should have mechanic based enrages rather than instant kill timer enrages.

I have no issues wiping to mechanics, that is what they are there for; however, wiping with a small percentage of health left on a boss when everyone is alive, healers have mana, and core mechanics are not an issue is aggravating. Yes I realize that it can be argued that a hard enrage timer is a mechanic, and honestly I would agree that it is, but when a fight like Garalon or Elegon which are already mechanic heavy, I don't think it is an additional needed mechanic.
Without enrages, what, you'd keep doing Garalon and then wipe because your healers go OOM, or you run out of pheremone room?

02/13/2013 11:39 PMPosted by Mércénáryz
I dont want to be a bad guy, more so I don't like having to be the one to tell someone to do this and do that to increase their effectiveness


Then you don't want to be a raid leader.
First of all, Garalon normal is harder than Garalon heroic. Let me just toss that out there for the sake of enjoyment.

I'm in a similar situation as yourself usually (even down to the same class and spec). You don't want to be the guy who overly criticizes but you want to improve the raid performance at the same time. It's a tough call to make and it's something that experience can only handle on a case by case basis. However, there are some general rules to follow when raid leading during tough times in progression:

1. People expect problems to be called out more frequently. Use this to your advantage! You can get specific. Look at logs after every wipe, analyze-- take the time to figure out EXACTLY what went wrong (the first death may not be the first problem). This has the added benefit of adding minor breaks in between pulls to let people relax without making them forget the encounter.

2. Know your raiders. I have a couple guys that I can throw insult after insult at and it only makes them play better. There are also raiders who do not perform better when they are openly criticized. It helps no one to treat everyone equally in this regard. It might make people feel good but it won't help down a boss quicker if a player who gets frustrated quicker is... frustrated.

3. Take frequent breaks. This isn't something you'll see in the Top 10 World guilds but anything beyond that, you'll see it used well (we're World 32nd for the sake of reference, so it works in high ranks and all the way down to that 1/16N guild!) Every 5-6 pulls, take a 10m break (5m breaks, in my experience, tend to rush people and actually don't let people relax).

4. End on as good as note as possible. We don't kill every fight we tackle in one night. Or the second night. We had a pretty bad time on Heroic Spirit Kings, for example, and we had to call our nights despite not downing it. Remove as much frustration from this scenario as possible. Try to leave a couple easier bosses up and transition to them. If you make excellent progress on Garalon but still missing the enrage timer by 30-40s and it's close to the end of raid, call it early!

5. Prepare, prepare, prepare. We are lucky enough to have some great strategists in our guild. But you might be surprised to know that almost all guilds have at least one to two people who have a flair for seeing the difficulties of a boss come untangled. Don't be afraid as a leader to ask for help (at the appropriate time). You will not always know the best way to do a fight.

6. Evaluate your raiders. Take the time to analyze what they are doing. Post logs for scrutiny. Make sure every piece is enchanted and gemed. Encourage weaker players to do more research.

7. Execute. By and large, enrage timers are not DPS checks despite what most might imagine. They are there to make sure you understand mechanics. Many times we have hit enrage on a boss when we are so off the enrage timer we don't see how it will be possible. But it always is. For example, our first wipes on Garalon at enrage were between 30-40%. Was our DPS that terrible? Of course not. As we learned the encounter, we got more comfortable. And with that comfort level, we were able to increase our DPS. We saw that killing a leg 10s before another respawned was a waste of DPS. That leg should die JUST before the next one spawns which, in turn, means you were putting as much DPS into Garalon himself as possible without missing the mini-DPS checks.

8. When all else fails, talk to others who have done it. Except for those racing for world firsts-- everyone has a predecessor. There are videos and logs and people that can provide invaluable tips to improving the encounter. Use everything!

Edit:
Let me add this since you mentioned the irony of calling someone out and then screwing up yourself.

As a raid leader, everyone will notice your mistakes. It will almost never go unmentioned. It's your raiders way of letting you know that you're not perfect while also keeping you in check. You have to get passed that and keep up with your job. You causing a Crush does not mean you don't call out the next guy who does it. It's neither of your jobs to cause a Crush but it definitely is your job to encourage others to avoid it. Stopping your duties because you feel scrutinized only causes you to make a second mistake: you stopped leading.

Want to cut this problem off at the pass? Call yourself out. Beat them to the punch. Say what happened quickly (after the fight, of course), apologize for the mistake, then move on. Set the example for how others should respond in the same position. Hearing excuses is A) very annoying, and B) not productive to solving problems. Every person can come up with why it isn't their fault. Don't let excuse making become the dominant form of communication in between wipes.
Also, let me add this as well: you don't need to hear why people died mid-pull. If you listened to our raids and heard a trial start to explain their death, you would hear me yelling "Shut up!" pretty quickly. Now, that language or its delivery might not be appropriate for your guild or raiding environment but you can usually convey the same feeling without being as mean about it.
02/13/2013 11:39 PMPosted by Mércénáryz
Is there anything other raid leaders can tell me to possibly assist in my I guess you could say people skills, cause at this point I am one of the chillest people and I think possibly that my not instantly kicking people for making silly mistakes is making the people in my group suffer because I am not perhaps more hard on people for easily avoiding the simple mechanics.


You don't have to be a tyrant to be an effective raid leader but you can't be soft either. When we have an issue to a raider we won't scream at anyone and we won't call you out in front of your piers(this pertains more to "Your SW:P uptime is 50% and it needs to be closer to 100% than people screwing up general strategy, strat issues should be discussed aloud). We will come to you in private (usually with evidence from logs when possible) and explain that you need to pick it up. If you can't pick it up we will replace you. All our raiders know its nothing personal but at the end of the day we play this game to kill bosses and with that in mind it wouldn't really be fair to the team to let one persons inadequacies hold us back.

02/13/2013 11:39 PMPosted by Mércénáryz
I mean even during tonight I misclicked my intervene and backstepped into the purple circle causing a crush, this coming after just a few minutes earlier I had to criticize someone for doing the same mistake, so therefore irony crit me right in the ego.


This happens and its one of the things thats tough to get used to. I find that admitting your mistake and moving on is really the only good option. We all make mistakes but at the end of the day as raid leader it is your job to correct them. The fact that you have to correct mistakes does not mean you will never make them and thats just something you have to get used to.

02/14/2013 06:27 AMPosted by Xpariah
2. Know your raiders. I have a couple guys that I can throw insult after insult at and it only makes them play better. There are also raiders who do not perform better when they are openly criticized. It helps no one to treat everyone equally in this regard. It might make people feel good but it won't help down a boss quicker if a player who gets frustrated quicker is... frustrated.


Strongly agree with this and think its something that many raid leaders over look. Help the thick skinned ones by challenging them, help your softer members by hand holding.

02/14/2013 06:27 AMPosted by Xpariah
You will not always know the best way to do a fight.


This is another reallity that for many is hard to get used to. In a perfect world where we were all robots and did everything perfectly there probably would be 1 stratagy to rule them all. The reality is none of us are robots and many times the best strat for one guild will not be the best strat for another. In my guild we have a few of us who work on stratagies and we often times don't agree about the best move going into the fight but we just throw all our ideas out there, try them and adjust as needed.

Adjustment in general is a fine line you must walk. You don't want to reinvent the wheel every time you pull a boss but at the same time you don't want to bash your heads against something that isn't going to work for too long either. Identifying whether or not the problem lies within the strategy or its execution is an important skill. For instance take OPs situation, you keep hitting garalon enrage at 10%. Are you 3 healing it? If so are you getting to enrage relatively cleanly? If that's the case guess what, you need to 2 heal it. Yes it may be rough, yes it will put more stress on your healers but if you are executing correctly and still coming up 10% short time and time again you need to find a different place to come up with that 10%.
GARALON!

what a beast! when it comes to raid leading you have to carry a certain demeanor. i bull!@#$ with my team endlessly, and we joke and fool around, but i have it established when its time to fight all fun stops and its about the fight at hand.

Garalon, not sure what your strat is dont think you mentioned it. we have 4 kiters who switch at about 20 stacks. we usually do two healers and two tanks. we have dps free to go HAM. burn the first 4 legs if possible then after that its just the two legs near the middle and then the body until boss is dead. once boss is about 15% we do not do anymore switches. we have one of the tanks do a clean pick up and hold it for the duration of the fight.

stay positive and keep encouraging your team, every pull teaches you more and gets you closer to a kill
I like Garalon and much prefer it to fights like Bladelord that have a lot of RNG or flaky mechanics.

Garalon is pure execution - if you screw up it's on you. There's no random stuff spawning in random locations or random debuffs on random players.

Anyway, enrage times are a good thing. Without tight enrage timers healers would just carry the whole raid all the time.
Every tier always has pure dps races. It's just a different kind of challenge. If every fight was stone guard like, with lots of mechanics but dps isn't a worry, there'd be very little reason to learn your dps rotations. Raids basically test you on as many aspects of skill as possible. Thats what makes them hard. Stone Guard for example is a tank fight with some don't stand in bad mechanics. Spirit kings an extreme version of dont stand in bad. Amber shaper a "can you do an odd, unusual, mechanic". Sha of Fear, can you be perfect for a long time? Grand Empress heal check plus add management.

Only thing I think is a problem with Garalon is, with the bosses that drop 496 ilvl gear, there's only 2 you can farm if you get stuck on Garalon. (Obviously people were downing Garalon in 470 ilvl gear about but for the casual guild the available gear can be a problem) Gear in most cases naturally nerfs content. Just with Garalon there isn't much gear to farm if you can't get past him for whatever reason. The thunderforged gear in 5.2 should actually help with that problem for whatever is the dps race boss.
02/13/2013 11:46 PMPosted by Postonforums
2. Having said that, why exactly do "enrage" timers exist in normals and not just in heroics where you have to be at your A+ game to matter?


So you don't 6 heal 2 tank the fight


This.
There aren't too many fights with hard enrage timers, I don't think. Elegon, Gara'jal, Garalon have them. Will is soft. Ta'yak is technically soft I think but it can't really be survived through so that's middle ground I'd say. You could try and pop uber-defensives and finish off the last percent or two.

Don't think I've ever seen any other boss enrage so I dunno about them.

Also,

02/13/2013 11:46 PMPosted by Postonforums
So you don't 6 heal 2 tank the fight


Just keep pushing on Garalon, you'll get him sooner or later. Unless half your raid is severely underperforming, but in that case, is an enrage timer really what you should be complaining about?
A raid leader should not be criticizing his raid. He should be helping his raid and offering strat guidance and tweaks.

Looking at a log and seeing, say a warrior, on garalon getting on 5% of damage from cleave you can approach this in multiple ways:

criticizing him:
1. You only did 5% of your damage from cleaves on this fight? How did you only manage that? Do you know that cleave is great for this?

helping him:
1. Warrior, try hitting cleave a bit more often when you're in the green circles. Its tricky but if you position yourself properly behind the legs but in front of the purple circle you'll get a double damage hit on the leg and a regular damage hit on the body.

We just got garalon down last night for the first time. We were hitting the enrage timer consistently 1 night. The next night we just sucked and could barely get 1 full circuit of kiting in. Then last night we went in fresh, starting hitting the enrage timer and made some tweaks.

We started the pull from a different spot to help set up garalons frontal cone so it was less likely to happen in a corner. We actually pulled dps off the back leg that is along the wall. Our tanks were having problems staying in range while kiting. We had all our dps burst down the front right and rear right legs then had all ranged go on the body. By this time the front right leg respawned, melee would kill it and the back right leg would respawn, melee would kill it. then the front right, etc.

We saved hero for when the ranged was focused on the body. Less movement for them, a steadier rotation and no time lost after the leg dies going to the next. I figured the minimal amount of time people are actually on any given leg, heroism was being wasted.

Being a raid leader does not mean you are a babysitter micro-managing your raiders. Don't criticize them, help them. Offering suggestions. Its a fine balancing act you walk.
02/14/2013 07:19 AMPosted by Latree
stay positive and keep encouraging your team, every pull teaches you more and gets you closer to a kill


I agree with this. I was a little flip in my first response. (just gotten into work, hadn't had coffee.)

Sometimes raids have bad nights, too. Normally, Wednesday for me is go over to HoF and kill the first four, maybe have a stumble or two on Garalon and WL, then practice on Amber Shaper. Last night was a bad night though. Multiple wipes on BL. Wipe after wipe on Garalon. Didn't even get WL down. Not fun ...

But keep feedback open. Wiping sucks, but what sucks more is wiping and no one being able to point to something that went wrong or could be done better. If you keep criticism on the constructive side, though, people will be more likely to bring up ideas. For your Garalon attempts, maybe that'll be increasing or decreasing the number of kiters. Or changing who kites. Or who tanks. Maybe you have some DPS who are unsure if they should be attacking legs or body.

Don't think of the Enrage timer as a wall, but as a goal: "OK, we have 7 minutes and 15 seconds to kill this bad-boy." You will get better and better, until that enrage timer stops being the goal, and then you've got it made. Before our first down, we kept hitting enrage. Last week though, I thought everything was going poorly. I heal and kite, so I don't pay attention to Garalon's HP. We'd had a mistaken pheremone pass, and someone even ran under his body. Thought we were through. I'm gasping for Mana, desperately waiting for CDs to come up for use ... and then Garalon died ... at 6:20. Almost a full minute left. Hooray!
have your tanks switch to dps spec. not joking, thats what we did, and now we down the boss way before enrage. same strat as your using, just have your tanks go dps spec...
Good luck op. That fight is a nightmare.

02/13/2013 11:39 PMPosted by Mércénáryz
2. Having said that, why exactly do "enrage" timers exist in normals and not just in heroics where you have to be at your A+ game to matter?


I'm always asking this too. On some bosses the enrage timer doesn't even matter, on some of them it does and it just makes the encounter overwhelming.
Good luck op. That fight is a nightmare.

2. Having said that, why exactly do "enrage" timers exist in normals and not just in heroics where you have to be at your A+ game to matter?


I'm always asking this too. On some bosses the enrage timer doesn't even matter, on some of them it does and it just makes the encounter overwhelming.


Enrage timers give raiders a sense of urgency. As mentioned above, if there were no enrage timers, raids would just bring a ton of healers and a handful of DPS and spend half an hour killing a boss, which trivializes encounters. If you didn't have a timer hanging above your head, you wouldn't be motivated to play your class efficiently and there wouldn't be any pride in downing a boss because the qualifying factor would be "can everyone stay awake for 20 more minutes?".

Besides, I think most people love the way the blood starts pumping fast when you're seconds away from berserk and you get your first kill.

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