So my guild tested out AQ on the PTR this week and we were a bit underwhelmed. I have some feedback I’d like to share and I hope it will be taken into consideration.
The changes to Skeram are interesting, but flawed.
Clones spawn extremely far apart. There is no decent central location players can stand to prepare to fight the real Skeram.
Only one player at a time is affected by the eye beam. In a raid of 40 people, many of which are nonverbal, this is a problem.
Skeram and his clones are so tall that you can’t see that a raid marker is up without individually targeting each one or angling your camera uncomfortably high and swinging it around until you find one with a mark, even if a player affected by the beam marks it fairly quickly.
There is not much to do for any role during this fight. Unique encounters and those that require certain roles are welcome, but almost nothing is going on here - clones are not tankable, almost zero raid damage is going out, and you can’t dps until you identify which target is correct AND run to it. Most of your time is spent swinging around your camera, looking for a raid marker that probably isn’t up, and hoping you can hit Skeram before he disappears, which appears to keep him in place for a little longer.
I have a few recommendations for making this fight a bit more enjoyable:
Give multiple people access to the eye beam buff and provide a better way to mark Skeram. Maybe we could use a pet bar similarly to the way the orb is utilized for Razorgore in BWL. Once any of the players uses an ability to mark the correct mob, everyone can see Skeram’s outline/glow. If an incorrect mob is marked, instantly teleport and scramble the clones. I like the random aspect, but I think giving only one person the eye beam is odd.
Require that these mobs are tanked and spawn them closer to each other. This will give tanks something to do and allow dps to reach the real Skeram faster.
Buff clone damage a bit and give them their earth shock abilities back so that healers can participate in the fight.
I think other equally acceptable changes could be made, but I don’t think the fight should remain as it is.
It’s difficult to say much about the other changes, because…Well…There don’t appear to be any. Boss mechanics through Huhuran remain the exact same, with the difficulty options merely adding annoyances throughout the fight. We played on the “Madness” setting, which I can’t find any information on - is this meant to be the easiest or the hardest setting?
Either way, all it did was add uncertainty to the fights. Will I be able to tank this mob? Nope, I got swatted by a tentacle with zero warning. Will my heal go off? Nope, swatted by a tentacle. Can I finish this Shadow Bolt cast? Swatted. In a good position? Not any more.
What I’d prefer to see is some sort of indicator before the tentacles spawn so that you have a chance to avoid (or at least prepare for) being smacked around. Right now it’s just random and frustrating and it does very little to add enjoyment to the fights like the BWL overhaul did - I don’t expect AQ and Naxx changes to be as numerous or difficulty spikes to be as high as they were in BWL, but I do wish there was something more interesting than “oh yeah tentacles everywhere, get swatted noob!”
We weren’t able to test past Huhuran due to tentacles that continuously spawned following that encounter (not sure if it was a bug but we reported it as one). Visc is also difficult to test since we don’t have engineering on the PTR. Maybe there are some unique twists to Twins and Ouro that we were unable to see, and I really hope post-Twins trash has been adjusted, but these are my thoughts so far. I’m still looking forward to AQ, I’m just a little disappointed if all we’re getting is added frustration to a raid that many people already dislike - we need to keep as many guilds around as we can and I’d rather not see people quit over AQ!