Thursday, April 16, 2009

Ulduar is up, Servers are not ...

... not up to the task.

Yes, it's been a long time you didn't have a rant post on this blog. Today will be one ...
Yesterday was patch day in EU. Ok, I know, we all know too well the catchy "Patch Day, No Play !" But don't tell me you were not eager for Ulduar and didn't want to try it right away, from the number of people having answered the poll (to the right of this very site), and even if few have, a large majority of raiders want to raid Ulduar.

Patch time was extended in EU, it is usually until 11am, it was announced to last until 3pm. As said on WoW Insider, we all expected it was to include in the EU patch release the maintenance that already was added to the US real during the night ...

So my guild had a small team-speak meeting in the evening and we made two 10-Man groups and went to Ulduar. Our idea was to keep it to 10-Man at first, have fun with that size, and then go to 25-Man hoping for new challenges. Why do we do that ? Because we hope to keep the content interesting a little longer like that. Ulduar is big, but it's only one instance, and once we'll have finished it we all already dear the long wait for the next raid instance.

Both groups entered Ulduar around 9:30pm (GMT+1). Both groups downed the Flame Leviathan pretty quickly, with the "mandatory" achievement to not have used the trick to stun it ... when you don't know the switch is destroyed by the air missiles, there is no chance you activate it :P
The fight is fun, really easy, but we did it in normal, 10-Man, without any tower destroyed, so in its most easy incarnation. Let's hope it'll be a little more interesting in the other modes. But all in all I4m not that interested into a vehicle fight, so I don't care.

Now, we arrived at the crossing and the choice for Ignis/Razorscale/Deconstructor. It's strange how little trash there is in this part of the instance ... not that I'm fond of trash, but there is 0 trash to Razorscale or XT-002 ... it feels empty. I hope there will be more inside Ulduar itself.
We went for Ignis, because it was looking like there could be some fun trash, and we pulled the flame giants at the entrance. Ok, let say these babies hit hard, and have a bad aoe stun/silence. We were surprised, we wiped. And then things got ugly ...

Two of our members were out of the instance. One had to go visit the angel, his corpse being too close to the giants, one had a dc and relogged in ... Dalaran. And in front of the instance were ... 200 people waiting to go in, because the raid instance server was full (I'll post a picture tomorrow of the crowd at the raid entrance, but it looks like the picture on this WoW Insider article) ... yes the raid instance server was full ! We didn't have any message, as when you can't go into an instance since Blizzard patch about that. But the behavior was exactly the same, loading screen, waiting for 2mn without the loading bar moving, returning in front of the raid instance entrance.
Nice ! Happy !

We made two tries on Razorscale with only 8 people, one dps warrior respecing to tank on the fly, and only 2 healers ... first one wasn't too bad, we nearly got him to 50%, second one wasn't as good, I got flame bombed 3 times in a row (for more than 7K each) and died after 30s of fight.
Half an hour later, still impossible to enter Ulduar ... we stopped there.

So not even 2 hours of raid, simply because the servers were not up to the task. There were no lag, oh no ... simply because Blizzard decided to limit the number of raid instances on their servers ... and so limit the number of people who could play the game, as simple as that.
Add to that the instability and numerous people crashing out of Ulduar (we were lucky we only had that happen 4 times and the 3 first were able to come back). Looks like this is a problem everywhere, as reported here.

I'm saying servers stability and size is going to be what I'll rant about for the next weeks ... and lag has already been an issue in WotLK for months, thank you Blizzard but limiting the number of players to solve lag is not going to make happy customers.


  1. Wow that stinks that the server got in the way of further progression. Sounds like what you saw was fun though, at least. I can't wait to get in there tonight.

  2. Yes, the instance itself looks like a lot of fun, I'm going to post some news about that.
    Server stability though is going to bother me a lot, once again we had several mass dc last night, which each time results in a wipe, which is not fun ...