Published on December 1st, 2011 | by Dan1
WoW 4.3 Patch: Dragon Soul Raid First Impressions
I’ve been playing World of Warcraft since Ragnaros was only in Molten Core and Tier 2 dropped there. I’ve played at a high level and a casual level with all types, shapes and sizes of guilds and roles. It’s been a great run and it was almost coming to an end with Firelands droning on and on. But then Patch 4.3 came and brought me back. The allure of fighting Deathwing was too good to pass up.
Last night Dudepile of Dark Iron took to the new raid, Dragon Soul. I updated all my add-ons (which oddly wasn’t very painful for a new patch) and hopped online. I was greeted with the knowledge that our little backwater server had the #1 guild in the world on it.
Yes, the new raid was apparently so easy, a guild called Nirvana here on Dark Iron had cleared it Tuesday before anyone else, on normal mode. They weren’t even barely better than us (we are VERY casual) in the previous tier. Either something fishy was going on or this raid was for the lowest common denominator.
We zoned in to the extremely out of the way raid portal. In the Caverns of Time, which isn’t near anything useful. Blizzard, put raid portals in nice spots, near places people go, not out in the middle of nowhere. I remember when the old Hyjal map had the Deathwing instance in it. Why couldn’t you just keep it there?
Upon zoning in you notice many trash packs, almost all of which are avoidable. Deathwing is flying around, spewing death while the battle rages on around Wyrmrest Temple. The first boss is only a couple trash pulls in and this is a trend throughout (at least through the first 4 bosses). Maybe 10-15 minutes of trash and then a boss. Dragon Soul is a well paced raid so far, something Blizzard has frequently missed on. Beyond the pacing though are some very limp-wristed boss fights. We killed the first boss on our first attempt, wiped 3-4 times to the second (due to our mistakes, not mechanics), took 2 attempts each on the third and fourth bosses. I won’t go in detail on the fights but you can watch the whole raid in the embedded video below. The fights are fun, don’t get me wrong here. I had a blast last night. But Blizzard could have made some elements much less forgiving. The raid as a whole is innovative in its narrative. You are there to help in the Siege of Wyrmreset Temple. You help each of the dragon aspects to destroy one of the bosses to break the siege and then progress the story further.
The pacing and fights are fun. The way the raid is put together is a nice change of pace from all previous raids. Some of it is gimmicky, (riding dragons into the maws of old gods, parachuting down), but not overly so. So far it is a good send off to the expansion, but Idefinitely expected more in the way of a challenge for a final tier raid. Hopefully the heroics have more to offer. The fights certainly seemed as though they had more to give. Here’s to hoping they do.
View the first half here: