ICC Heroic Progression Path: 2 > 9

I’ll start off by stating simply that this is a pure bitching post, so if you aren’t into complaints then you might wanna skip this post. I’d like to address what I feel is a design flaw in progression raiding in ICC. The primary question I’d like to bring up is…

“Why is Lady Deathwhisper (Heroic) the 2nd boss in ICC, but 9th or later in terms of progression?”

When ICC was initially introduced a gating system which provided a clear and concise path to tackle new content.

  1. Storming the Citadel
  2. The Plagueworks
  3. The Crimson Hall
  4. The Frostwing Halls

At the end of each wing there was an “end” boss which rewarded you with T10 tokens, which traditionally would be what you would consider the most challenging boss in that area. Progressive guilds were able to clear the whole wing and move to the next one. Guilds that were not so fortunate ended up clearing what they could in the existing wings and moved to new bosses in the new wing. An example of this would be a guild unable to kill Professor Putricide and moving to Blood Princes/Dreamwalker instead. A good move on Blizzard’s part to allow guilds to continue experiencing new content even if they could not finish a wing.

Now, many guilds are past Arthas and are tackling heroic versions of the content. The problem here is, the logical progression path that was seen in normal ICC is completely out of wack in heroic ICC. Instead you find some encounters almost verbatim to the normal version (Gunship) and other encounters which are very out of place for the difficulty that it entails (LDW). The point of this post as mentioned above is to focus on the challenge of LDW.

First off, we killed it, it was awful, it was a bitch. That being said, most guilds are taking the path of keeping LDW as the 9th boss to tackle in the heroic progression chain only behind Sindragosa and Professor Putricide. Why is it that the 2nd boss of an instance is the 9th most challenging encounter progression wise? Below I took a screenshot of wowprogress updates in the US. As you can see PP and Sind are still the most challenging encounters on heroic but why is it that LDW is more challenging that Saurfang and BQL which technically should be more challenging as the rewards are greater?

Yes, you can switch a boss to normal mode kill it and move on to other progression fights but when you’re at 8/12 and all you have left is LDW, PP and Sind you have to make a choice and LDW is generally what people go with. This essentially forces you to work on a very early boss in the instance with a steep penalty of potentially missing out on killing farm content.

For a 3 day raid guild, time and momentum is everything. We don’t have all week to trudge through content, we need to execute and make use of our time effectively. If we don’t, we run out of time and we lose out on the rewards of raiding. So if we happen to blow a day or 2 on LDW trying to progress and experience content, we’re stuck with a day left to kill 10 more bosses. Doesn’t that seem a little unreasonable? Why should guilds be penalized for progression?

That’s my 2 cents.

5 Responses to “ICC Heroic Progression Path: 2 > 9”


  1. 1 Nyctef April 22, 2010 at 5:59 pm

    I think it just happened that way. The changes made to Deathwhisper for heroic mode don’t sound that hard on paper (and they’re pretty simple on 10man) but 25man just ends up being a lot harder.

  2. 2 Nich May 25, 2010 at 6:05 am

    Ok, the top guild on my server downed Deathwhisper their first week in hard modes. It took them an hour and a half with no ICC buff.

    The reason why Deathwhisper is hard is because it has less room for error than the other fights. With the current buff in ICC, you can have a DPS be retarded on festergut and die early, and still beat the heroic timer. If you did this with no ICC buff, you would have heroic festergut probably harder than heroic deathwhisper.

    • 3 Vallen May 26, 2010 at 12:47 pm

      I will have to disagree with this as Fester itself is a lot easier than LDW regardless of ICC buff. The room for error as you mentioned is much smaller in LDW which is why I think the progression scale is out of wack here.

      Fester itself is really no different from normal mode and is purely a dps race. With a smaller ICC buff the only challenge increase is more healing and more dps, there are no mechanics that increase the difficulty.

      LDW on the other hand has new mechanics which make it more challenging than fester.

      Just to prove a point, we (Daybreak) downed Fester at 5% easily whereas LDW we downed at 10% which was extremely challenging.

  3. 4 Finwe May 26, 2010 at 1:07 pm

    My guild is just about to start ICC10 heroic modes, and I was wondering what the heroic progression path is? You gave a clear order for the hard bosses, but what about the easier ones?

    Obviously, gunship is the easiest. I’ve done that in PUGs, but what would be the next few? It looks to me like Marrowgar may be the next one, possibly followed by Saurfang (assuming the group is usually good at controlling the blood beasts).

    What order did you follow starting out on heroic?

    • 5 Vallen May 26, 2010 at 2:25 pm

      Our kill order will probably be different than what you will experience but this is the order in which we made our kills (with 5% buff).

      Marrowgar -> LDW -> Gunship -> Saurfang -> Fester -> Rot -> BQL -> Dreamwalker -> Princes -> PP -> Sind

      With ICC buffs at 20% to be honest it probably will not matter, the only things I would save for last would be PP and sind as those are the more challenging 10 man fights. Everything else should be reasonable to accomplish.


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I’m Retired!

As of 04/04/2011, I have officially retired from WOW. This blog will remain as a archived resource for those who know that CAT DRUID IS 4 FITE!

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A blog for the ramblings and thoughts of Vallen, a full time raiding cat druid from Auchindoun-US with a passion for raiding & achievements. An avid wow player since 2004.

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