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So awful, it was awesome

Everybody’s got pick-up group (“PUG”) horror stories.  If you’ve played WoW for any length of time, and grouped with total strangers to try and get a quest or instance or raid completed, you’ll quickly start building a list of tales of woe.  If nothing else, PUGs should make you feel much better about yourself, I think…after all, since you’re smart enough to be reading this fine blog, obviously you are a top-notch human being in general and WoW player in particular, and do not deserve to group with people so stupid that they have to put a sticky note on their monitor to remind themselves to breathe.

But even the best of us–and I–sometimes have to PUG.  And last night, I ran across a doozy.

I was on my hunter alt, and wanted to run the daily heroic, which was Gundrak.  Now Gundrak isn’t the easiest WotLK heroic out there, in my opinion.  Slad’ran (the poison snake boss) has wiped me more times than I care to think about; even with excellent players and a top healer in T7/T8 raid gear, his Poison Nova can throw out more damage than we can power through.  The Drakkari Colossus is a pain-in-the-ass pray-your-and-your-healer’s-latency-is-low movement fight.  Even Gal’darah, who’s pretty straightforward, will gib a strong tank if the tank has a brain fart and doesn’t get out of whirlwinds.  (Don’t ask me how I know this.  Please.)

But, against my better judgement, I joined the LFG queue for it anyway.  And a couple of minutes later, I got a whisper–“h gun?”

Let’s see.  No complete words, all lowercase, and this on an RP server.  I feel a winner of a run coming on.  Eh, toujours de l’audace, dude, what the hell…”Sure!”, I replied.  I immediately found myself in a group with the group leader (a boomchicken), a warlock, and a male human paladin–obviously the tank, since he had over 40,000 health–named…Hotbox.

Ohhhhh yeah.  The stench of quality is overpowering with this one.

I flew for Gundrak while the leader druid rustled up a healer (another druid), and the five of us headed inside.  I was immediately greeted with Blizzard’s lovely new feature…the “ZOMG are you sure you want to save to this instance??!?!?11?” dialog box.  Hmm.  That’s not supposed to happen.  Well, we were all a bit confused by this, but all of us accepted and thus saved ourselves to that heroic Gundrak instance.  And down the stairs we went toward Slad’ran’s area.

We got to the entrance, ate a Fish Feast, and the paladin “Hotbox” pulled.  Without warning.  Two groups.  Hoo boy.  A frenetic and confused fight ensued in which the warlock and tree died, but we got both the trash groups.  The resto druid popped (yay soulstones) and started rezzing the warlock…as the paladin pulled more trash without saying anything.  Ugh.  We four-manned the trash, got the warlock back in…and then the tree said, “no boss.”

We looked.  Slad’ran wasn’t in his alcove.  We walked over to the alcove and saw that the alcove bridge gizmo had been activated.  In fact, all the gizmos had been activated, the bridge to Gal’darah’s ramp was aligned, and had the trolls and rhinos in position.  That meant that Slad’ran, the Colossus, and Moorabi were all dead.

Now people started getting pissed.  The critchicken who had the “hat” denied vehemently that he’d been in Gundrak that day, as did the rest of us.  And yet somehow, we were looking at an instance where the trash was up, but the bosses weren’t, the worst possible combination.

So the rest of the party started jumping off the ledge into the water.  I was last because, of course, I had to dismiss my pet.  In that period of time, people started getting eaten by the fish.  A clusterfuck ensued, resulting eventually in us getting to the ramp with two more deaths, to which the group leader said, and I quote exactly, “lol.”


We formed back up, buffed, and fought our way up the ramp to Gal’darah’s area…

…and he wasn’t there.  His bodyguards and their rhinos were.  But he wasn’t.

The paladin pulled the rhinos (without saying anything) anyway, and nearly died because we were all too busy going “wtf?!?” in party chat, but we got them.  A ferocious argument ensued where the boomkin protested his innocence and swore he hadn’t been in Gundrak for at least a week.  Hotbox also said he hadn’t been in Gundrak for at least a week.  The other two said it had been longer than that, and I hadn’t had my dwarf in there for literally a couple of months.

So there our tale ends.  Hotbox (!) the male paladin, plus the other four of us, all hearthed our separate ways, probably to never see each other again except amidst the bustling crowds of Dalaran…or in the LFG tool someday, God forbid.  I had a pittance of silver and a locked instance with no way to score the two Triumph badges I wanted.  Either somebody was lying their ass off, or had gotten tricked, or we had a bugged instance.  And it was 25 minutes of my life that I’ll never get back.

I balmed my wounded soul by wandering off to the Pig and Whistle in Old Town Stormwind for four hours of the best RP I’ve had in many a month…culminating in a raid by the Stormwind Guard, two near-arrests, three strained marriages, a couple of damaged friendships, and one of the Wildfire Riders’ red-haired paladins telling another of the Wildfire Riders’ red-haired paladins to go fuck themselves, while the third of the Wildfire Riders’ red-haired paladins stood there and shook her head in disbelief.

What’s two Triumph badges in comparison to that?

14 responses

  1. Verdus

    Ouch. I’m glad your follow-up RP was good, because that instance run sounded like it was really aggravating. Any time you see the “instance in progress” warning, just run. They’re lying, they’re idiots, maybe both; just run.

    November 11, 2009 at 15:21

  2. Verdus

    On a completely separate note, that many red-haired paladins in one place at any time is clearly OP. Nerf Wildfire Riders, IMO. 😛

    November 11, 2009 at 15:24

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  4. This is why I always try to respond to the “ZOMG are you sure you want to save to this instance??!?!?11?” dialog box with a “Hell no!” unless I’ve been made aware of the partial (or complete) clear beforehand.

    Saying “no” and getting things clarified after the fact is far easier on the blood pressure than saying “yes” and getting saved to a cleared instance. =P

    November 11, 2009 at 20:59

  5. I personally do the same as Gryphonheart… Survival instincts always lead me to say “no”, exit the instance and clarify with the group the exact status. If it smells a bit fishy I just go look for another group… After all, lots of players look for tanks (I know you were playing you hunter alt, but still.. ^^)
    Thanks for sharing anyway, I’ve had a good laugh thanks to you 🙂

    November 11, 2009 at 22:18

  6. I had this happen myself. Only one of our group said yes, but that still left her locked. All the bosses were gone. In this case we knew just where to slap the blame, though, because we had four long term friends (two couples all of whom were at work all day) and one completely random person. Want to take a guess at who saved us? And we all firmly learnt our lesson about saying no.

    Sometimes I think people don’t even know they are saved. How? Because they share their account with friends and family. I’ve seen that happen. I’ve got no sympathy with that either. All I can offer is a /hug.

    November 12, 2009 at 04:57

    • That’s what I’m thinking happened. I think it was legitimately an accident on somebody’s part. After all, there’s no reason to intentionally drag four people back into an instance where all four of the main bosses are dead.

      November 12, 2009 at 06:26

      • Verdus

        Other than the smug, pre-pubescent, malicious satisfaction of knowing that you’ve cost someone their shot at top-level badges for the day? Griefers do lots of crazy shit.

        November 13, 2009 at 03:04

  7. Erk, what a waste of time – I guess it was probably an oversight rather than actually malice but, still, the dungeons you’re saved to *are on the calender* so it’s pretty hard to know how you could drag four other poor souls into a saved instance. Sigh.

    Blizzard says: Just say no 🙂

    November 12, 2009 at 07:38

  8. philselmer

    Thankfully, you can actually check to see if you’ve been saved by typing /raidinfo. If there is ever a question about someone being saved, always let the group know that they can indeed check.

    November 12, 2009 at 12:42

  9. Ritch

    I applaud your patience. I would have raged eloquently on that ill-named buffoon after the second bad pull, and then left his presence.

    On a different note, I certainly hope you’re not one of those involved in those strained marriages. Those situations never turn out properly on conclusion. ^_^

    November 12, 2009 at 18:33

  10. I almost wonder if this is was a bug. Last night, my guildmates all were ready to run the daily Heroic (Utgarde Pinnacle) and were greeted immediately with the same “want to save?” popup. Vent exploded with five voices mocking everyone “ok, very funny, who is saved”. I trust my guildmates and we all went back outside to reset it, in hopes that something odd happened. We re-entered the portal and the party was in three seperate instances. Myself and our mage, the tank by himself, and the others in a THIRD apparently bosses-still-there instance.

    We came back outside, all dropped group, and re-formed under a different leader. Then, proceeded to clear the place and get our badges, but even then the second boss (Palehoof) was not there. First one was, as was the other two at the end, but Palehoof jsut never appreared. c’est la vie!
    But initially,

    November 13, 2009 at 14:07

  11. So far, my most memorable PUG has been with a warrior tank who I rolled against for DPS pants at the end of normal DK. I was on my DK, she is DPS, and they were DPS pants. I won the roll. A couple people dropped group and left since we were done, but the warrior just started going OFF about how I ninja’ed them. (F this, F that, all caps, etc.) Okay, I was level 74, you were level 72, and you weren’t high enough to wear them anyway. The funny part was I replaced them in like 2 levels (or less). He also promised to kill my mom for real. Uh huh, go do your homework, you 15 year old loser. Fortunately, one group member was from my server so we had a good laugh about it afterwards.

    March 1, 2010 at 15:45

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