This past week I ended up participating in some more raidtesting along with a quick run of a Mythic+ dungeon as well as some quick addon development. I finally ended up getting frustrated enough with the healing experience on the beta, and ended up seeking out and fixing the couple of errors I was encountering with Clique in order to be able to actually play the beta with sensible keybindings. The fix was actually rather minor which I’m happy about since I’m not overly familiar with the Clique codebase and since it means I get to test the new expansion properly, though it does mean I’m sligthly frustrated to have waited so long to give it a shot since all these problems could’ve been over ages ago. To be fair, during the fixing I was relying on reports from other people regarding what changes Blizzard has made to the API which might not have been available as easily at a earlier point in time, so maybe it was so easy because I ended up waiting so long to fix it.
The dungeon we did was Halls of Atonement and it ended up rather surprising me with its ease especially since I was still figuring out the keybindings at the time. To be fair, we did not end up managing to complete the dungeon in time and seemingly the only affix that was active was Fortified even though it stated it was a +10 dungeon so maybe all of the scaling was completely broken but still. If it was indicative of what a +2 will feel like come release with some heroic blues it all seemed to be in line with expectation.
The past week I also participated in all of the raid tests, rather than just the one I had participated in the week previous, and well, the new raid is looking rather nice. Sure, there are tuning problems and bugs but that's what we're there for.
The most fun boss of the bunch so far to me seemed the Council of Blood, I liked the flair of the intermission where you have to participate in the dance since from the little story I've played so far it felt like it fit the theme of the place perfectly. Beside that though, the fight did feel rather hectic and I'm really curious to see how it ends up on mythic since it already had so many things going on—maybe this is one of those cases where we only get the numbers tuned up and no real additional mechanics. I might be biased though, since it's the only boss in testing these raids so far that we have actually killed.
My definite least favourite boss of the bunch was Shriekwing, which seems to be the first boss of the raid—gets a bit confusing at times since there is actually another bossfight that takes place in the same room and you just get ported to the correct boss anyway. There was an annoying tendency on this boss for people not to be in line of sight of me which is understandable since it plays such a huge role in the fight and dodging out of the boss' line of sight at the correct time is crucial, but it does make for a very annoying experience as a healer. Luckily, this is the first boss of the raid so it will probably be trivial anyway but those reclears could get a bit annyoing. The second phase also seemed like it could be interesting, the boss basically went into a rage which you needed to wait out where it took almost no damage and periodically did a sonar pinpointing people which you had to hide from.
The other two bosses, Huntsman Altimor along with the Stone Legion Generals, somehow felt a bit more bland though still fun even if the Huntsman once again introduced the twist of there occasionally being an add that needed healing instead of just being able to focus on the raid. This is probably also partially due to the bugginess and tuning of these two encounters, so final judgement is as always reserved until mythic.
For this week I also took the opportunity to test out holy a bit more again and I have to admit it does feel rather good to be playing the spec again even if I at the same time feel it is probably not the most sensible choice. It all does still feel rather weak and I don't have nearly as much time to dish out damage as was available in Legion but there is still a familiar comfort to it all. To be fair, it's probably also the better choice for new content where the damage patterns are still rather unknown.
All the returning abilities have made it a bit more interesting to figure out what is the optimal play in different situations as well, so that is a welcome change.