Polygamerous Podcast
January 2011
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Randomly Difficult

I bet you are thinking I am going to complain about the difficulty of Heroic Instances in Cataclysm. Well, I’m not. I think they are just fine (well, they might take a little too long sometimes). What I am going to talk about a little is my thoughts on a certain Raid Boss mechanic. Not AOE damage or Enrage timers or elemental resistances. No, I’m a little miffed at something that changes the boss mechanics randomly, week to week. And the boss I am going to use as my Guiney Pig is Halfus.

See, in this fight there is the boss, Halfus. There are also, arranged around the room 4 shackled drakes and a cage of whelps. Each week you go pay a visit to him, 3 of these will be awake and the other 2 asleep. Based on which are awake, Halfus’ abilities will change. Oh, I forgot about his protodrake that spits fireballs and more to do raid damage all through the fight. So, depending on which drakes are the ones that are awake, the fight is different. This can range from “Difficult but not impossible” to “Wow, that was crazy” to “OMGWTF I’ve spent 1000g wiping on this dude tonight!”.

Halfus2_011311_230724If you can’t tell, I have a problem with this idea. I don’t mind learning a fight. I don’t mind wiping on a fight. What I dislike is walking into the encounter and hearing on vent, “Oh, darn [paraphrasing here for the youngsters] we got a bad group of drakes this time”. The abilities that the drakes bestow/remove/etc are not particularly balanced as far as I can tell. I’m not going to go on and on about this topic but I just feel that there are enough variables involved in most encounters already that adding this randomization is really not necessary. However, if they do want to have something like this, maybe make it change per wipe like the “trons” encounter where a different tron is up first each time possibly.

So, there is my rant. Sorry, but I just wanted to get that out there. I can understand the “excitement” or whatever you call it that can come from an encounter that does this, but it also seems to increase the amount of preparedness necessary to combat with this small random factor. What do you think?