Some Personal Stuff
I feel like it has been pretty noticeable that I have been in a bit of a funk for the last few weeks. When this happens I tend to extract myself from the world until the passes, which isn’t necessarily the smartest thing that I can do. However over the years I have done this as my coping mechanism, because I am always afraid I will snap at someone when I get moody. For a bit yesterday I was wondering if my magical happy pills were not longer working, but then my wife asked me something. Was my low as low as it has been in the past… and to be honest no. Normally the world would be crushingly oppressive, and instead I just felt sort of permanently bummed out. So I guess maybe things are working just fine, they are just filling in the valleys so that the lows are quite as low as they would have been otherwise.
Yesterday was one of the more stressful days that I have had in awhile. We had someone patch a server and due to a conflict between the Windows Update Service and MacAfee that we have seen numerous times now… it caused a process deadlock that ended up taking down production services for hours. This was stressful in so many ways, because while there was nothing I did to cause it… there was also nothing I could really do to help it either. It was another department with another manager… and another set of priorities responsible for the fault and the fix. So when I came home… I was at an extremely low point. However my wife and I went out to dinner, and then as the evening went on I started to feel better about the world. It was like peeking out of a fog to see a lovely day behind it. I guess in the grand scheme of things… if all of my low spots are like this from now on… I will count myself lucky because while it sucked, it was manageable.
Bahamut Is Down
One of the struggles in game is that I feel like I am caught between two worlds a bit. It has taken longer than I expected to get the Monday night raid group pieced together and ready to do Heavensward content. As a result we have been focusing on trying to get through the Final Coil of Bahamut, and made some significant progress. Last week we were just shy of forming a group, so going into Turn 13 last night… we were all rusty. However it feels like we got our bearings more quickly than normal and made a few adjustments. Previously I had been tanking Bahamut at the twelve o’clock position which seems the most obvious place to drag him as you are running in… and do the traditional drag the boss while running thing. Instead we swapped things up and I drug up back to the six o’clock position we entered the room at. This allowed Ashgar to pick up the adds significantly easier and also allowed the DPS to burn them down faster.
The real challenge however was like always… we suck at dive bomb phases. However in spite of the fact that you ultimately have to deal with something like five divebomb phases, they seemed to come together more smoothly than we were used to. Essentially you have to find Bahamut, and move out of the way while also moving out of the way of Twintania that comes barreling through immediately after him. I think we only made it through two or three of these phases completely clean, however we did manage to rez the few players that got pushed into a wall. I am constantly impressed at still how difficult of a fight this is. Sure this is expansion old content at this point, but I am damned happy to be able to say I have defeated Bahamut, and I have a title and a minion to show for it. Paragon to a really spiffy White Mage Cane as a result, and part of me wants to try and muster the troops to do this more often so that we can farm the really awesome weapons for folks. I have to say… the most stressed I have ever been in Final Fantasy XIV is trying to find a way to survive Ahk Mourn. On the positive side… Alexander turn 3 has caused me to get really good at timing Holmgang.
Last night was a significant night because not only did it see us beating Turn 13 of Final Coil of Bahamut… but it also saw us officially starting this expansions raid content as a group. I love the Wednesday night group, and I am enjoying what is happening there… but there is something extra special about getting the Monday night group into Alexander. While Kodra, Grace and I are parts of both teams, there will always be something special about my first Final Fantasy XIV raid group. So it makes me happy that this week everyone was up to 170 and several were considerably beyond that… even though it took a little bit of cheatery to get Ash’s paladin in the zone by wearing some strength jewelry. We only really had time to do turn one of Alexander, but we came really damned close to oneshotting it. Had we not started freaking out because we thought we were coming up against the hard enrage… we absolutely would have downed it in the first try.
On the second attempt everyone felt more confident and we pushed the dps so much harder than before. The awesome thing about coming in on a Monday is that several of us were already capped on Alexander pieces for the week which meant pretty much all of the newish folks walked away with something spiffy. I look forward to coming in next Monday and clearing all four turns of Alexander, and getting everyone their freebie accessories. From there maybe some Bismarck and Ravana? It makes me happy to feel like I am making forward momentum with both teams. The only thing that frustrates me a little bit is that I feel like we should go back and do Turn 8, which is the turn that Monday night skipped to start work on Turn 9. So maybe next week I can talk people into doing that so that we finally can close the book on the Coil of Bahamut. I don’t want to sacrifice getting people through Alexander for it, but I would love to be able to say I have beaten each of the turns. All in all it was a pretty great night, not just for the raid victories but for also clearing away the fog that I have been dwelling in.