And we raided uphill in the snow!

My raiding career started with Karazhan and continued with Gruul and Magtheridon and a little of SSC before Northrend opened up.  Last week I was reminiscing about Burning Crusade raiding, and talking with my family about some of the things that vanished from the game after Wrath dropped.  I was thinking about some of the things that we dealt with then that the newer generation of WoW players has never seen…

Wait for 5 Sunders! You young’uns don’t know what it was like!  Back then, tanks didn’t generate infinite threat!  Rogues didn’t have Tricks of the Trade, and even a hunter misdirect only gave the tank a small head start.  So when the tank pulled, we all stood there twiddling our thumbs while we waited for the warrior tank to get Sunder Armor to a 5-stack.  Only then did DPS open up.

And for that matter, where did Warrior Tanks go?  In BC almost every main tank was a warrior.  Druids were considered by many to be sub-optimal and paladins were usually used for fights with a lot of trash to group-tank.  Now that AoE rules the day, warriors have faded away…

Threat was such an issue!  We always had to watch Omen like a hawk to make sure we didn’t pull aggro (and before Omen everyone used KLH Threatmeter).  To help us out, every DPS depended on the paladin’s Blessing of Salvation.  This pally buff reduced threat by 30%.  It was removed when Blizzard re-worked paladins in Wrath.  Without it, in BC rogues would have been threat-capped in most fights.

I remember when we did only triple-digit dps!  I mean, look at this combat log parse from a Karazhan run sometime shortly before Wrath dropped…

I did 827 dps overall (with a whopping 1200 on Shade of Aran)!  Our whole raid did just over 3000!  Wrath has increase my dps by almost a factor of ten!!! Talk about overpowered!

We all know that crowd control has been lost in the group-em-up-and-AoE situation now.  Ah, for the days when you couldn’t do that.  I still remember the Moroes fight… using every type of CC at our disposal to control his minions while fighting the boss.  These days, every now and then we still use polymorph or freezing traps in certain situations.  But whatever happened to Shackle Undead?  Do priests even have that on their button bar anymore?  Considering how much undead we’ve seen in Naxx and ICC you’d think that there would have been at least one shackle sometime!

The first really, really good player I ever played with was a guy named Martholomew.  He was a hunter and he knew his class forward and backward.  When we ran heroics back in BC, he was a one-man crowd control machine through his use of chain traps.  Locking a single mob down, double-trapping, and even triple-trapping while the game mechanics briefly allowed it were all in his repertoire.    Do hunters ever learn that skill now?

For rogues, we specced for combat daggers and we liked it!  That’s right, we actually had a button for Backstab! Can you imagine?  I raided as assassination for much of BC, until combat daggers became superior enough that I was forced to make the switch for the benefit of my raid group.

And raiding rogues often specced far enough in the Subtlety tree to get Dirty Tricks.  Since sap was an important part of crowd control, having that extra range on sap was very valuable.  Now that we don’t sap, we don’t need that talent anymore.  [bonus to really old-timers who remember when this was called Improved Sap, and without that talent you would break stealth when you sapped things]

AoE?  Not for us rogues!  You rogues that have fun with your 15k dps using FoK on trash packs.  Spoiled, you are!  Back in the day, if we did pull a pack of trash mobs (like the ghosts before Moroes) the mages and warlocks and hunters went nuts while we sadly wished for a shorter CD on Blade Flurry, or we used bombs.

How about Picking Locks?  Back in BC it was used for more than opening lockboxes.  In Shattered Halls, a rogue with lockpicking skill could open a door and bypass a hallway full of slimes.  And while everyone else had to do long quest chains to get the key for Karazhan and Shadow Labyrinth, us rogues could just pick those locks and open the doors ourselves!  Inside instances we would find locked chests that needed a rogue to open them!  Ah, those were the days.

As a non-raiding aside, in BC your epic flying mount was actually useful.  I could fly from end-to-end of Outland faster on my epic flyer than I could on the taxi gryphons.  Not so much in Northrend.  The taxis get me to places just as fast.  So why spend the gold on the epic flyer?

As for gear… all these emblems – Heroism, Valor, Conquest, Triumph, Frost – are crazy!  Back in BC we had one kind of emblem, and it was Badges of Justice.  You actually had a gear progression that made you work through all tiers of content.  None of this “I just dinged 80 and jumped straight to T10 level stuff with my Triumph Emblems” nonsense.  In BC you had to get your gear from Karazhan to do Gruul, and you needed gear from Gruul/Magtheridon to do SSC.  The Badge of Justice items got you geared quicker but they didn’t make you skip entire tiers!

Attunements!  You youngsters missed out on attunements completely!  They did get rid of the attunements before the end of BC, but a lot of people went though the steps anyway.  If you don’t know what that is… they made you do a huge quest chain just to be allowed to step ito the raid!  Here is the attunement chain for Black Temple… its sixteen quests, some of which require you to be in 25-man SSC, TK, and Hyjal Summit!  If you didn’t do that whole quest line, you couldn’t even enter Black Temple no matter how good your gear was or how progressed the rest of your guild was.

Two words… Flame Wreath!

What do you remember from BC raiding?


16 Responses to “And we raided uphill in the snow!”

  1. 1 Sadesor
    March 5, 2010 at 10:27 am

    A the good old days of finding a locked chest in an instance! How I miss my Mana Tombs Runs! One of the few things in the game that really, truly felt “Roguish” was sneaking in there all alone opening the chests and making a clean getaway with all the loot. Wish they would bring the chests back…..

  2. March 5, 2010 at 11:33 am

    *wobbles out on her cane*

    I’m with Sadesor I miss Stealth runs…Sethekk Halls for our Dungeon shoulders. Having to wait around for everyone else to get geared up enough for US to get gear because ALL of our upgrades were on end bosses.

    I will say that ICC has made me happy in that it has traps in it that only we can see….reminds me of Blackwing Lair….

    Can’t say I miss blinding powder or having to get regents to make poisons though…I guess there are some nice things about progress…

    I miss attunements….I had the Ony attunement down to where I could get a guildy through it start to finish in 3 hours…escorting Windsor was a right of passage….

    These young whippersnappers don’t even know why we get all teary eyed at what they have done to our beloved Bolvar.

    *whips our her hanky to blow her nose*

    Good lord! If I am not careful they will turn me into Jaina Proudmore!

    *wobbles off*

  3. March 5, 2010 at 12:04 pm

    I miss insane fights like Maulgar.

    Okay, we need a tank on Maulgar and a tank on Blindeye. Then we need a Warlock to MC Olm’s felpuppies to tank him as well as a backup tank, just in case. We need either two hunters or a doomchicken to tank Kiggler. And we need a Mage to tank Krosh (hope you brought some stam gear!).

    Oh yeah, and we need to spread out across 5 corners of the room to do this right. Ranged, you have one kill order…melee, you have a different one.

    There are actual healing assignments for this fight!

    And for the love of everything that is holy, don’t botch the pull or we wipe horribly in seconds and have to do it all over again.

    Also, I miss my outrageously high Armor and Stamina compared to other tanks…

  4. March 5, 2010 at 12:17 pm

    How about heroics that took 45 mins to 1.5 hours to complete but still only had 3-5 bosses. Heroic MGT where mobs could hit for upwards of 5k on the tank which was 1/3 of their health.

    Chain potting mana potions as a healer or caster dps.

    Having to run normal dungeons to get a full set of blue gear just to be able to enter kara or start heroics.

    BoP max lvl profession epics.

    Doing every quest or farming to get gold before daily quests were created.

    The Guild breaker trying to progress past 10 man raids into 25s

    Out door raid bosses.

    And how bout sap only working on humanoids.

    Oh and I do remember when you had to have sap talented to not break stealth. Rogues would have to sap then sprint away while the tank /cc picked up the rest. Good times…

  5. March 5, 2010 at 2:01 pm

    I actually really miss the crafted poisons. Sure, it’s more convenient to just go and buy them from the vendor. But brewing the poisons I used felt so rogue-ish and unique.

    Blinding Powder was gone by the time I started, but I don’t miss Flash Powder for Vanish.

    And–off the topic of Rogues–my guild uses Shackle in ICC all the time.

  6. 8 Adam
    March 5, 2010 at 2:37 pm

    Ah, Moroes, what a fantastic fight. I still remember the first time we finally got him down. The yells over vent were awesome to hear. It was such a sense of achivement.

    Now we have, ‘achivements’.

  7. 9 Thimble
    March 5, 2010 at 3:20 pm

    Psh. Noob. You had tokenized tier gear. You had emblems. You had blessings that lasted more than 5 minutes. And you didn’t have the soul-crushing monster that was Vael, annihilating your raid in no time.

    I kid, though I have to say, I’m really glad I’ve played this game since “Vanilla”. It gives a tremendous amount of perspective, and any time I start to think about things that I miss about the old game, I think back to playing my warlock, and farming up 3 bags of soul shards before the raid just so I could summon everyone in and get healthstones for half the raid. And I shudder.

    I DO dislike the “Round ’em up and AoE” style of the game nowadays. I really don’t prefer it, because it means you almost don’t pay attention to what you’re fighting. What’s missing is knowing the abilities of the different trash mobs and figuring out a kill order and CC plan. I liked that. Now the trash in every instance loses flavor since they’re just a meaningless bunch of mobs. The 5-pulls in Pit of Saron are almost a throwback to what used to be, but they’re still too easy to AoE and don’t really threaten the tank’s survivability. I like that the developers want to make AoE pulls risky for a tank in the future. I think they’ve probably learned a lot from this expansion, and it’s been a good time during the learning process. Here’s hoping Cataclysm keeps the good, gets rid of some of the bad, and introduces something new to evaluate.

    • 10 Sadesor
      March 8, 2010 at 10:39 am

      Yes at one point you could do it in Mechanar and Auchuni (sp?) Crypts. The Devs “fixed” the Mechanar chest so you couldnt do it anymore at point though.

  8. March 5, 2010 at 5:02 pm

    @Thimble – oh, I know of the ordeals of raiding in vanilla. I played in vanilla, but I got to 60 shortly before BC dropped, so I never got a chance to raid. Got all attuned for Ony and MC and then never got to go. I had a lot of ex-raiders in my guild, so I heard all the stories…

    @Squelchy – I don’t miss the crafted poisons. I was disappointed at first when they got rid of them, but now I prefer this way.

    @Saniel – I DO miss the max level profession BoP items. It gave me a reason to level my professions. I wore the crafted LW items well into my raiding career in BC. And Maulgar… fun fight, but Moroes was my favorite.

    @Sadesor – I never tried the stealth runs, although I had heard of them. Couldn’t you do that in Mechanar too?

    • 12 Sadesor
      March 8, 2010 at 10:42 am

      Yes you could do it in Mechanar and Auchini(sp?) Crypts as well. The Devs “fixed” the Mechanar Chest so I could not be stealthed anymore though. The Mana Tombs were a HUGE money maker back in the day. Every run had 2-3 chests that had a minimum of 7g plus a green or two and more often that not a BoE blue or a Blue Gem. you could finish a run from start to finish in like 8 min easy and make like 50-85g a run. Much fun and Gold was had!

  9. 13 Argathne
    March 6, 2010 at 4:09 am

    The thing i remember most at 70 was Kara. It was one of my favorite raids I had been in (BWL winning against it) But the Opera boss. Now THAT was fun. I remember getting the Big bad wolf my first time in there. Not knowing the mechanics 100% I got turned into a Gnome randomly. I was confused. So i check my stats and notice my armor is 0 and the boss is aggroed on me. As a Reaction i bubble but sadly it goes off late. But even from that death that fight just always makes me smile. No matter if its at 80 etc. Even though Kara is lame now due to mount farming. 🙂

  10. March 9, 2010 at 3:34 pm

    Dying on the trash before Moroes at least once every week… Damn AoE and low health pool. Always followed by… Sorry Gnine the bubble was coming… When we didn’t have the Pally I knew I was going to die, just depended how many I took with me… Rogue mopped up.

    CC was a badge of honor. I got /ginvite purely on my ability to poly and maintain the poly. DPS – important, CC – essential.

    Poly in Kara… How I wished I could take up the slack on Moroes. People got a crash course on CC and kiting there if they had never used it before.

    6 weeks trying to get Moroes down once. 2 weeks trying the next etc. Bosses didn’t go on farm for ages.

    Heroics were mini raids. They were raids for people that couldn’t find 10 people. It wasn’t until the PvP & Badge “welfare” glut that they started to “become” trivial

    Hunters on Curator… well before Curator. We placed bets on whether the Hunter would pull Curator before the was was cleared. Made a lot of money.

  11. 16 Dreadheart
    March 28, 2010 at 11:25 pm

    I just came across your site for the first time today and really enjoyed reading this article. My friends and I have been reminiscing about the good ol BC days lately. Everything you and your commenters have mentioned are things that I really miss from the game.

    I especially miss CC and challenging heroic dungeons – I didn’t mind spending an hour or more in them, we always had great fun because there was a real sense of achievement upon completing them. Even just a clean mob pull felt good in some of those instances.

    I definitely miss proper raid progression – I think this helped make the game feel epic and vast. I didn’t make it to sunwell in the end, but i did get to Illidan. The fact that I didn’t see sunwell didn’t bother me because it allowed for the feeling that there was still so much to do in the game.

    Emblem gear is rediculous in wrath (as you mentioned). Having a single badge currency with staged release of gear worked in BC. I don’t think tier pieces should be available through emblems – they are the reward for people participating in successful raids. Further, in BC there were several raid instances that dropped the same tier of gear – I really liked this. It meant that there was variety of content at each tier level and as a result, less chance of getting bored… I was never bored in BC!

    The game used to be challenging in every respect – not just raid bosses (though they were more interesting back then too). Beating a challenge is what the game should be about. The reward was knowing that we won, despite the odds, and loot was the bonus that allowed for progression onto harder content. I don’t like the philosophy of rewarding everyone with the best gear available for doing very little – it takes away from what playing the game should really be about, which is beating the challenge and progressing through an amazing world full of danger.

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