A most interesting thing happened tonight… We have only five active players with level 85 toons. Those players have been working together and doing level 85 instances on Sunday nights. Tonight marked our first attempt at a heroic instance. Now, one of the toons may have actually run some heroic PuGs, but for the most part, we’re green on these toons. And it reminded me of my first Molten Core run back in Vanilla.
We started with Heroic Deadmines. And no, we didn’t complete the instance. Our tank has about a 2 hour threshold for being able to hold up the pressures of tanking. I’m good with that, the heroic mechanics don’t make melee dps a cakewalk by any means. All that said, we started out our evening to discover our hunter didn’t have the item level to actually get into a heroic. So, we admit, we fudged the numbers. He was, after all, only a couple points shy. He also happens to be our most instance/raid experienced player, having a main who is actively raiding in another guild.
So here we are, going along in deadmines, and we get to Glubtok. And we wipe several times. Each time, tweaking our plan. Step one – let phase one take longer, save our cooldowns for phase two. Step two – learn where the fire wall spawns so we can get positioned better. Step three – learn that our tank needs to not be on the boss during phase two. Step four – manage to put it all together and down the boss. While at the same time earning the achievement Ready for Raiding. All five of us. Does that sound like raiding to you? Does to me.
We are doing progression dungeons. And in their own way, they are just as challenging as raiding, and just as rewarding from the gaming perspective. Sure, the gear’s not “as good”, but that doesn’t mean that the gear isn’t better than what we have. Besides, I’d hate to see situations where I want Sona’s tanking gear because the primary stat is so much better than my current gear that it’s worth taking on dodge and parry. Not that she gets any tanking gear out of deadmines.
We one-shotted Helix, but I think that the work we did on Glubtok actually assisted with that. There was chatter as things happened. We had started to really work as a team, in absolute terms. We only got one attempt at the Foe Reaper, which was not successful, but I learned important things about the mechanics of being the one in the reaper getting rid of adds. The video we watched even said we should expect to wipe a few times while the person doing the vehicle gets used to the mechanics. So we shall see.
And another thing – I was just reading over on Officer Chat about owning your mistakes, and he’s absolutely right. If folks own their mistakes, whether it be poor positioning, not being able to see to get out of the crap on the floor, or learning that there really is line of sight in the room, we learn. We learn to adapt, or how to recommend better positioning, or the signs to watch for to make sure we do or don’t do something. Or even what the tank should be focusing on. We learn, and we get better, and we don’t get frustrated with that one player who seems to always die. Because we know why.
And if you ask me, that’s what progression is all about. It’s not about better gear or in game achievements. It’s about learning to work together to succeed. With that definition of progression, then we’re doing progression dungeons.