Last night the frustration ended, and was replaced with joy.  The bane of my group’s existence for the last month or so lay dead on the ground after a well executed and clean kill.  We basked in the glory, and received the praise of our brethren from the other progression group, who had first killed him a month and a half ago.

I normally don’t talk greatly about progression, but I’m too proud of my guys (and gals) to not send out some well-earned kudos.  If you’re not into reading about stuff like that, you might want to skip this post…

We’ve had a really difficult time in the last month keeping the same two tanks in the raid.  The two tanks we had last night were not members of the group for our progression on any of the other bosses.  One of them had been a progression tank in ToC for us, but had taken a leave of absence from the game right before ICC came back.  Not only is he back now, but he’s become quite a leader in vent during fights and I don’t know that we would have killed LK without his leadership.

Our other tank was a recent Horde – Alliance transfer about a month ago, and has worked very hard to get his gear up between then and now.  We let him know that we wanted to try him out as one of our permanent tanks, and he studied up on the LK fight.  Apparently, he didn’t know that we had our raid saved at LK, and was quite surprised when we told him we were going straight to him.  He didn’t buckle under the pressure, he manned up, and withing 4 attempts, Arthas was dead with very clean tanking.  I’ve tanked with him before and knew he was a competent tank, but I was beyond impressed last night.

As for our healers, being able to progress through this whole expansion with the Mrs. was great.  There are very few bosses that I killed without her there, and it was really great to get to share it with her.  She’s come a long way from the noob warlock that we drug through Kara so long ago.  She’s got 2 well geared (5500+gs) healers that she’s very proficient with.   Needless to say, I’m proud.

There’s another healer in the group that’s probably the most pro healer I’ve ever met, and this guy didn’t start healing until after Wrath was released.  Apparently he really likes healing, because  he now has every healing class, and I’d take him on any of those toons.  He’s also quite funny, and the group dynamic would be completely different without him

The last healer is our switch hitter.  He’s a Shadow / Discipline Priest, and he’s not a huge fan of healing.  I’m not sure if he’s been updating, but you can find his blog in the blogroll.  What really impresses me about this player is that despite the fact that he was burnt out on healing, he kept doing it, and never complained about it during the raid.  If it weren’t for his shields, we’d have stood little chance last night.

As for our DPS, when we started ICC, there was a huge discrepancy between the damage pulled by each of the players with 10% usually separating top dps from bottom.  This started to change when a more recent addition to our guild took a freshly minted 80 Hunter and quickly turned it into a powerhouse.  I think that her addition to the group helped push the other DPS to be better.  She’s quite capable as a player and a leader, and both her input and damage were vital to our success.

Now for FailTeam, as we sometimes refer to them.  It is unlikely that anyone in a serious progression guild would have ever taken any of these three players and they would have missed out on some good players, and more importantly good people.  Each one of these players has come a long way in ICC, and all three of them have been a part of the group for its progression.

We’ve got a DK who could have just been an average DK, but he did reasearch and tweaked his spec and gear.  He tried various specs for the good of the group and when the frost changes hit a while back he became a force to be reckoned with.  On top of all of that, he’s always early and prepared for every raid.

A similar story is his Warrior counterpart, who, like the DK would have come across to most recruiters as nothing special.  This player, along with the DK, kept working hard at improving and did.  I should also mention that he’s young.  While that might keep him from getting into some other guilds that shy away from younger players, It certainly wasn’t a factor for us when he joined our guild.  I’m glad that we look at the player and person, not that age.  We might have missed out.

By a wide margin, I’m most proud of this guy.  Back in BC, and before I was the guild leader, there was a list of people “not top group with” from our server.  One of these players was described to me as the “worst player on the server,” name iharrypotter.  Well, after a name change in wrath and being accepted into Bucklers, he continued to improve, and eventually decided that being an Elemental Shaman was what was best for him.  At one point, we thought that his issues with situational awareness and low DPS meant we would need to replace him.  Well, after telling him our concerns, he didn’t let it get to him and worked hard to improve his game.  Calling him most improved might be an understatement.  You can find his blog here.

I’m proud of my team, each and every member, they’ve worked really hard, and especially as of late, and lived up to their potential, if not past it.  So, I just want to say to them, thanks for working so hard, enjoy the victory; you’ve earned it.  To everyone else, If you’ve made it this far and you’re not a player from our guild, thanks for reading about them.  I wouldn’t expect you to be proud of people you don’t know, but it means something that you’d listen to someone who does and very much is.

– Sam

25 Responses to Finally…

  1. azande says:

    Congratulations! For the kill and for the group, sounds like a well deserved end to a good journey!

  2. repgrind says:

    Wow, grats Sam! I’m really happy for all of you! 😀

    I don’t think I’ll ever get there, my group has experienced too much burnout and turnover.

  3. Banibaq says:

    It was great to finally have you guys enjoy the oh so sweet taste of being kick-ass. While you guys were counting down his last couple percent, I jumped up from my seat and paced back and forth as far as my head set cord would allow it. It was pretty intense just to listen to it!
    Again, awesome job!!!! You guys had it coming for a long time! Enjoy the next challenge of doing hardmodes =)

  4. nimbs says:

    Congrats with the kill. With your older posts in mind, no doubt you’ll be satisfied 🙂

  5. Anslym says:

    Thank you, thank you. You forgot to give props to a person who is well deserving. You! Without you helping us all along we would have never gotten him down.

    Just as a side note: Just to put into perspective how bad I was . . .and still am. I finally told my guild last night about my little issue. I down Lich King with the Default UI and my only addons being recount and DBM.

    Well anyway great fight, and cant wait to start on hardmodes.


  6. Thimble says:

    Anslym: I have to tell you, I consider that to be a sign of ability, actually. Too many addons nowadays are playing the game for people. DBM tells you plenty enough to get things done, and then it’s up to the player to make it happen. Well done, I say.

  7. samueltempus says:

    I’ll add that while i run a plethora of addons, most of them are cosmetic. Bartender 4, SexyMap, and Shadowed unit frames come to mind

    My non-cosmetic addons, with the exception of DBM, do nothing for raiding that the default UI doesn’t do. I just have relocated things so that I don’t have to look at every corner of my screen at the same time. That’s a hefty task on a 22in monitor. 🙂 I’m certainly not a proponent for addons that play the game for you.

    Maybe I should do a write up on my UI (like the one I promised about a year ago…..)

    – Sam

  8. Lyndiana says:

    Grats! When Boe turned on vent and I heard you counting down, I let dinner burn to come in and listen! I was whooping and cheering for you! I’m so happy for you all! It is indeed very well deserved, and you have definitely earned it. Not only because of the work you’ve all put in over the past few months, but also over the years that the guild has become what it is, bringing in such great people, helping several along, and making it possible for such a group to do such a feat! I’m so proud of and happy for each of you! /cheer!

  9. Cilice says:

    Thank you Samuel.

    Two months ago I was horde side, struggling in ToC, with nothing to my name to differentiate me from a million others, I was riding the coat-tails of other people to get in on any raiding at all. Before I found the bucklers I was a day away from my subscription running out, with no real desire to renew it.

    It was my most fortunate accident to be dithering around outside stormwind that night, where the bucklers found me. Getting on vent with you guys instead of going to bed was an extremely lucky choice.
    Two months later I’m part of an amazing group of raiders, having achieved things I wouldn’t have believed myself capable of and gained memories I wouldn’t trade away for anything.

    I look forward to progressing with you all, and thank you for putting up with me as I learned what I needed to know.

  10. samueltempus says:

    The learning curve must not have been too steep if you learned it in 4 attempts. 🙂

    – Sam

  11. Ger says:


  12. alti-theist says:

    well done!

    i’ve been following your recent posts with increasing incredulity as your group’s progression has flawlessly matched my own. when you posted “head-banging” my group was in the same position – several weeks of attempts with progress but always a fail by P3 for greatly differing reasons each time. now you post that you downed LK on the 19th meaning you probably achieved it on the 18th and my guild finally got their LK kill on the same night!

    i’m sure there’s many guild or raid groups who have gone through the same process but the fact that the timing matched so closely has made your posts a very interesting read for me.
    congrats on your progression and thanks for the blog.

  13. Bezurk says:

    Big grats to you folks 😀

  14. Vikt says:

    Congratulations, happy to see you guys overcome The Lich King. I particularly like the way you thank and praise your guildmates, really selfless and great thing to do.

  15. Cowburner says:

    One step for man, But a Giant Leap for the FailTeam™.

  16. samueltempus says:

    LOL burner, now that was funny.

    – Sam

  17. Bokino says:

    By the way im younger then Cow

  18. samueltempus says:

    no wai. Your voice sounds significantly more manly than his….

    Anyway, I totally didn’t know that, and I guess it’s never come up. Besides, you really do sound older than Cow. Just goes to show that the people who recruit adults only could be missing out on some matur…er…good players. 🙂

  19. PVE Rogues says:

    Just wanted to say gratz on the down 🙂 Keep up the nice blog.

  20. Stalkuren says:

    Although I didn’t know it at the time, getting into Bucklers is by far the best thing that’s ever happened to me. Now, finishing the game’s content with a group of people I consider to be good friends is more than enough to convince me.


  21. Banibaq says:

    ^ this guy has killed the LK on two different toons, in two different groups and has probably another 2-3 toons geared enough to fight him yet again. I find this quite impressive XD

  22. samueltempus says:

    By this guy Bani means Stalkuren, he’s that Pro healer guy I was referring to.

    – Sam

  23. Kestrel says:

    Go go group 1! It was an awesome night. One of those accomplishments in a game you actually remember. I’ve had a great time playing with everyone in the group 🙂

  24. Ger says:

    I’ve taken your previous posts to heart and have actually decided to try raiding with my guild again and be proactive in helping people improve rather than let it frustrate and defeat me. Your comments about “failteam” especially hit home. Thanks for that.

  25. PVE Rogues says:

    You’re about due another blog post, get going! XD

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