Raid Night : Keybind Chaos in a Legendary Limbo

In my last Raid Night article I finally took the plunge and chose to forsake the mouse click.

The results have been a mixed bag of success and failure. Further, I’m not sure if I’m “doing it right,” which means I’m probably not doing it right.after enough repetition it becomes natural.

In my current setup, I have my primary spells set to key-binds on my number pad. My WASD keys are

Learning to raid on keybinds is almost like learning to type for the first time. It’s clunky and awkward but used for strafe and movement, while the left and right arrow keys are used for turning.

Yes, I said it. I’m turning with arrow keys. I know this is a “bad thing.” I’m not sure how to avoid it right now though. The simple answer is to turn with the mouse, but if my right hand is occupied with spells and the left hand handles primary movement, that means no casting while turning with the mouse.

My spells aren’t key-bound to the left side primarily because it didn’t feel as natural compared to the number pad when I tried both sets.

Those woes aside, my dps was noticeably improved when I tried out my new key-binds on Training Dummy 2.0, otherwise known as Looking For Raid. I was #1 or #2 in dps each time. I suppose that should be somewhat expected at item level 397. Most people stop running LFR if they’re fully decked out in Normal mode raid gear. It also helps, or perhaps hurts, that there’s far less movement required in LFR versions of encounters compare to Normal and Heroic.

Last night I ran with the 10 man late night group from my guild. It was my first chance to see just how much I’ve improved by switching to keybinds over clicks. The results, sadly, were not what I hoped for.

All encounters were run on Normal mode to make sure our rogue could get as many shadowy gems as possible. More on that later. Normal Morchok went horribly. My brain isn’t used to the gear shifting that has to be done when moving.

Zon’ozz and Ultraxion were my best performances by far, and much of that has to do with how little you have to move on those fights.

Blackhorn? Abysmal. Tab targetting is awful on that fight. I’m used to picking up my targets with clicks and it felt like I was much faster getting dps on that way. It didn’t help that I still feel like a chicken with my head cut off in general for that fight. When you’ve become used to doing a certain rotation of spells for long enough, the whole trick of multi-DoTing becomes challenging. It’s practically dps-ing in a different language as far as my brain is concerned.

Overall I did about as well in the raid as I would do back in my clicking days. My stationary dps was much higher, but my dps in encounters where heave movement and/or target switching was that much worse.

It’s only been a week, yet I can’t help but feel a bit down about my performance.

On top of that, I’m not sure how I feel about the current state of my raiding. We just did a full Normal clear so we could be done with it in one night in two hours. The main reason we haven’t worked on Heroics lately is because at one night a week working on a heroic can potentially slow down our rogue’s progress on his daggers.

I’ve been here before, on the other side of the equation when my group continued to run Firelands in 4.3 to help me complete Dragonwrath in 10 man content. Progression or achievements get put on the back burner when you have a restricted amount of time to raid.

At two nights a week this wouldn’t be an issue. Six hours is plenty of time right now to work on heroic progression. Three to four hours on progression, the rest on clearing Normal. At one night however, with only three hours that doesn’t leave much room to push further.

I have to be honest, I’m not currently engaged or motivated when it comes to clearing Normal content. It gets worse when I see that my performance isn’t terrible but nothing to be giddy about.

Then there’s Beta. I joined the 250,000 additional Annual Pass holders who were let into the MoP beta this week. Playing around with the warlock specs there I can truthfully say it is an entirely different beast from what I know now as a warlock.

This brings up a few questions. Is it worth it to continue playing my warlock right now? Would my time be better spent learning the new revised warlock specs so that I’m already playing them the proper way when Mists releases? Should I even raid Dragon Soul anymore if heroic progression appears to be on the backest of backburners?

There’s still much to consider over the next week or two. Presently I do think I will be shelving Rho for a while. At the very least, I’ll be switching Rho from Demonology to Affliction and playing beta as Demo/Destro. At least that way I won’t be faced with conflicting rotations and playstyles when playing on beta as opposed to normal play.

I do want to help our rogue finish his legendary, but that’s something I could do on my shaman just as much as my warlock if I work on learning Elemental.

Something needs to change though. That dreaded feeling I remember from the lull between expansions is beginning to surface.

Raid Night articles are about my experiences as a raider and commentary on raiding in general. If you have any advice, comments, or suggestions on anything I’ve mentioned today please feel free to email me at RhoWoW@gmail.com.

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