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Interview with Mionee: Soloing Raid Bosses
30/5/2017 em 18:22
Mionee of soloing fame has been at it again with recent solo kills of Emerald Nightmare and Nighthold bosses. We think it's cool when people find their unique way to have fun in Wow that's off the beaten path, so in addition to highlighting recent solo kills, we also asked her a few questions about her hobby!
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What was the first fight you soloed - I remember wayyy back in the day lots of news about you in Wrath Naxxramas killing bosses.
Can’t really pinpoint a fight in particular, but the first time it became really serious was doing Karazhan on my DK during the first week after the release of WotLK, while still wearing blues on nearly every slot. Moroes, Shade of Aran, and Prince were all difficult to outheal in their own right at that point in time, with Aran needing frost resist gear (you know, the stuff supposed to be used on Sapphiron that you never used), and Prince needing to redirect Shadow Word Pain on pets by summoning them at the correct times. It was still very rough and basic, but that’s when I went from just doing my own stuff in my little corner to actually dedicating myself to it, documenting it on a blog etc (which eventually became a youtube channel).
What drew you to soloing hard fights?
I’m the kind of person that like pushing a challenge, and honestly it’s just fun to not rely on anyone. You could ask friends or guildies to come help… but why? There’s something satisfying in knowing that you can actually beat X or Y all alone.
If you die while soloing something, it’s your fault, for better or worse. Feels bad when you mess up over and over and can’t beat something. Feels good when you get it right. WoW bosses have little RNG in them. The most RNG you’ll encounter most of the time is just your own crit luck, so you can’t really blame anything but yourself.
In a real raid setting, even if you do mess up sometimes, it’s not always your fault (rarely, hopefully!), so even if you wipe for an entire night on a progress boss, at worst you’ll just think “i wish someone would stop dying in p1 every other attempt”. If you spend an entire night wiping trying to solo something, well… you’re going to blame yourself for 4 hours, for not interrupting, for positioning wrong, for not doing enough dps, for using CDs wrong, for getting distracted, for being greedy and dying as a result, for … anything that goes wrong really.
And as masochistic as it sounds that’s precisely what drives me towards soloing things. Blaming others is lame, having noone to blame but myself and getting to play better is cool.
What's the hardest in terms of mechanics and which boss took the most time to learn?
The boss that took me the most effort was Flex Garrosh at the end of MoP, in the last week before the WoD release. I think I killed it the day right before the Blizzcon that happened at the same time. That fight was extremely long and could go wrong at any turn (25 minutes, killed it in 24min 53s iirc), had a difficult dps check (p1 in particular, but the fight in general was barely on the limit of what was doable DPS-wise).
Garrosh also let me express my creativity in terms of strategy. In order to beat the little sha adds, I had to leave a Farseer from p1 alive, Dark Simulacrum its Chain Lightning cast, and use it on the adds, repeating that around 15 times while dealing with all the other stuff happening at the same time. It also had a lot of execution requirements, such as reacting to Xuen procs that could mess up attempts by killing adds in an unwanted way, positioning axes correctly to not run out of space, resetting the dot while squeezing as much dps as possible, CD management because it was a pain to outheal the high stacks of the dot before each whirlwind, and of course the Dark Simulacrum thing mentioned above. It was a great fight.
What's next on your "To Solo" list?
That’s classified! (No but really I don’t really know, Il’gynoth?)
How has the legendary system/artifact weapon changed soloing?
I didn’t feel like it changed soloing much one way or another. I play a class that doesn’t have any particularly good legendary so that probably affects my opinion of the system.
The one thing that changed soloing the most was the introduction of an absurd power creep between extensions, back in WoD. There is also an absurd power creep *within* extensions, which started in MoP. These changes, along with the streamlining of class toolkits, affect soloing a lot more than anything else really.
As an example, it took until MoP for the best soloing classes to solo Lich King 25H or Yogg-Saron 25 with no keepers, the prime bosses from WotLK aka 2 expansions earlier. It took full MoP raid gear to barely solo Madness of Deathwing in 10 Normal after a lot of attempts. Nowadays, we are in the first tier of Legion, and most WoD bosses can be soloed on Mythic difficulty somewhat easily by most tanks.. let alone 10 Normal. Even Mages are already soloing Mythic Archimonde. Of all classes.. Mages… needless to say, the power creep between expansions is absurd now, which shrinks the amount of interesting targets to solo by a large margin.
How do you think DKs and DH's compare when it comes to Soloing? You've been doing more on your DH - are they better than DKs?
I’d rather skip this question, because idk anything about DKs anymore lol
I know you love a challenge - do you think of ways to make solo fights even MORE difficult? Like limiting ilvl or disallowing certain pieces of gear?
This is actually something I tried to push when it came to the soloing community a few years ago, but noone else was really interested so I gave up. I wanted to do speedruns of certain instances, and to take note of the lowest ilvl recorded to solo certain bosses. The soloing scene is super small though so it never took off and I lost motivation.
Do you play other hard solo games like Dark Souls? Or does the challenge of doing it in an MMO make it even better?
I’ve never played Dark Souls, but I always play my games on the hardest difficulty available, yeah. I like to play Touhou (a somewhat well-known Japanese shmup series), and, well, most players who start that game begin by playing normal mode and going up from there, but I started straight up in Lunatic difficulty when I began. *shrug*
The fun of doing it in a MMO is that those things are usually not intended to be done solo. A single-player game, no matter what, will always be intended to be done by a single player one way or another. MMO mechanics, not so much. Sometimes there’s nothing particular you need to do (or *can* do), but sometimes you can figure out weird ways to deal with things. A MMO is also much more prone to weird things happening, with so many spells and interactions between npcs, abilities, etc.
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