Reviews

Reviews: Highmaul Raid PT.2


For those of you interested in the update for raid progress we’ve got the text over here and the videos over here. I have my moments during the raid but as it stands I’ve stubbornly chosen one of the weakest classes to push. But push him I’ll continue to do. Auroht was my first character when I came back to wow back in Burning Crusade and remaking him from scratch has been incredibly rewarding and fun. Now he lives on in two different servers.

Today we finished the second wing of Highmaul. Where the first wing is mostly average (with the exception of Tectus who is quite a lot of fun) the second wing is a non-stop awesome fest. I love it. I realize that’s kind of spoiling this review early but lets get into the nitty gritty.

Them fire effects!

Them fire effects!

Twin Ogron (herein called the Twins) is one of my favorite fights in the history of World of Warcraft. It’s exceptional in so many ways. I suppose we’ll start from the beginning. This is a mechanics heavy fight. That’s not a bad thing by any means. Basically each of these characters has a set of moves, the most important of which being highly predictable, that can be largely avoided if you pay attention but will wipe your entire party if you don’t.

This fight demands that people pay attention and if they do it rewards them with a beautiful fight that is both fun, intense, and somehow simultaneously relaxing. The Twins are big and menacing to boot which is a great addition. The fire effects look awesome, the mechanics requiring between ten and twenty people to simultaneously run away or funnel in is fantastic. It’s like watching birds or sardines. I’ve got nothing bad to say about this fight. If I had to choose a raid fight to be stuck with on any given day this would easily be it. Exceptional in every regard and just a big hoot.

Nekked Raid Time!

Nekked Raid Time!

Ko’ragh is a weird fight for me. It drops absolutely nothing that I need but I STILL find myself liking it. Unlike Brackenspore which has a few things I need and I loathe. Ko’ragh is a bit similar to the twins in respect to its demand for attention. If you kill spawns a second too soon you could wipe the party. If a person steps one inch too far forward you could wipe the party. If someone misses a single orb falling from the sky you could wipe the party. If someone stands between the tank and their hidey spot during the tank debuff you could wipe the party.

It’s crazy intense and I love it. This fight has a lot of wonderful dark color palettes too if you are into aesthetics (which I am). Ko’raghs weapon looks awesome, his backstory is neat, and the interweaving of all the abilities in this fight are just spot on. We wiped on him a LOT before we got it down but man was it rewarding. I never once was upset when we died. He’s cool. Not Twin Ogron cool, but real cool. I like this fight a lot and it sounds like it only gets cooler on Mythic difficulty.

He's dead and I'm nekked. Nobody call the cops.

He’s dead and I’m nekked. Nobody call the cops.

Imperator Mar’Gok has been on our todo list for a few weeks now. We’ve all worried about it because the stories have been intense. Even the guys at Icy Veins didn’t finish a tutorial video for it because by phase 4 they had been wiped. Admittedly we were doing it on normal but those guys are (presumably) cream of the crop AND they were doing it on the beta where you have access to the best gear.

This fight is great. What I find interesting about this fight is that it is about as long as the Deathwing fight (which is about 15 minutes) but at no point in this one do I want to smash my skull onto a curb. There are four phases in this fight with two intermissions. There are spawns that do raid wide damage, mines that do raid wide damage, jumping bombs that do raidwide damage, etc etc. Shit gets “cray” as the kids say.

We nearly one shot this boss. That might sound like a criticism but it isn’t. Over a half hour of preparation went into explaining this to everyone and if you watch the videos you’ll find that we were handling the mechanics beautifully. Mar’Gok is intimidating and his moves are all incredibly flashy. Each hit really stings and the use of both skills and even something like jumping or running set it apart from prior bosses. I quite liked the Thunder King for similar reasons. This fight is so much better than the Hellscream fight from Siege of Orgrimmar that it isn’t even funny.

I pray that this is what we have to look forward to in future instances. Mar’Gok could be better in some regards but that knowledge is more a tickling at the back of my mind. I can’t find the flaws at this time. There is just so much going on. So many mechanics and instances where people need to be paying attention.

This is why I like the new raids over the old raids. Having Molten Core available with the recent 10 year anniversary was a great idea. Because it showed just how far the company has come. I hated…absolutely hated doing Molten Core with people. It wasn’t because people had gotten worse over the years but more that Molten Core was lazy in almost every regard. I don’t think it was lazy when it was first built, it was just what they knew at the time. But these days that raid just looks pathetic. Its nothing but grinding through mobs and trying to outrun the damage. There is nothing to dodge or to mitigate. You have maximum fire resistance and you do maximum DPS. It’s a thoughtless raid and I can’t fathom ever wanting to go back to it.

If they ever rebuilt Molten Core with their current knowledge I’d love to see it. I’d like to see what the new talent at Blizzard can accomplish.

Highmaul is a good raid. The second wing is bordering on great for me. If they could do some touch ups to fights like Brackenspore I think the whole thing could be just gravy. From what I’ve read the mythic version of Highmaul makes almost all of the fights cooler. Painfully difficult, but cooler.

Twin Ogron
Ko'ragh
Imperator Mar'Gok
Final Thoughts

Overall Score 4.4