The Race To World First has become one of the biggest things in esports as thousands of World of Warcraft fans watch their favourite guilds attempt to be the first to take down a raid's final boss. It all gets very exciting when numerous guilds get down to the final boss and go through hundreds of pulls and suffer numerous wipes before finally taking it down.
Pulls? Wipes? Well, if you're unfamiliar with World of Warcraft or raiding, then a lot of the terminology used may leave you scratching your head as you watch streams.
To combat your confusion, we've listed some of the things you might hear during a raid (as well as their meanings), leaving you free to enjoy these races.
Illidan/Draenor: Specific to the Eternal Palace raid, these are the realms (or servers) that the guilds Limit and Pieces play on, respectively. WoW realms are usually named after people or places within the game.
Pull: The 'pull' is the point when the boss is engaged, usually by the tank. It's also often used interchangeably with 'tries' or 'attempts.' Eg. "We can squeeze in three more pulls before the end of the raid," or "You had how many pulls on Jaina before you killed her?!"
Pull-timer: The timer that counts down (usually from 10 to 0) signalling when the tank will engage the boss. Many, many raid leaders have pulled their hair out when a raider has 'accidentally' pulled the boss before the tank. Why is it needed? In a fight where every ounce of damage is needed, It gives players the chance to prepare, such as pre-casting any lengthy spells as well as...
Pre-pot: The use of a combat potion before the boss is engaged and the player enters combat. This is so important because these potions have a 1-minute cooldown before they can be used again but that cooldown isn't triggered if the player is in combat. Using a combat potion one or two seconds before the boss is engaged means the cooldown will trigger and another potion can be used during the fight.
Adds: Additional enemies that might be encountered during a boss fight. They may be present at the start of a fight or may join at any point of the encounter. Generally speaking, adds should be dealt with quickly to minimise disruption – unless there's a specific mechanic that requires them to stay alive.
DPS: This stands for 'damage per second' and is used to either talk about damage output or as a name for the damage-dealer role. For example, "Oh wow, Sarah. Your dps is fantastic tonight," or "We're going to need three more dps in this group."
Combat/battle rez: A skill that allows a player to be resurrected while in combat. It's unique to certain classes but regardless of how many players with the ability are present in the raid, only two 'charges' will be available on a lengthy cooldown.
Release: When you die, you can 'release', which sends you to a spirit graveyard and you then have to run back to your body (where you died) to resurrect. Inside a raid, this is slightly different – you resurrect at a certain point within the raid, often at the entrance. Running back to the boss can take up valuable time that could be spent on progress, so often a combat rez will be thrown on a healer just before a wipe, allowing them to resurrect where they are – once the boss resets – and resurrect the entire group.
Cooldowns: When used in the plural, this refers to empowering abilities that buff the player's damage or healing for a short time, and usually come with a 2-4 minute cooldown, depending on the class and spec. On raid encounters, it's important to time these for the most optimal usage such at the beginning of the fight when the first combat potions are active.
Lust/Bloodlust/Heroism: This is a raid-wide cooldown that increases all players' haste by 30% and is a huge boost to damage and healing. This is usually timed at a crucial part of the encounter when a dangerous phase needs to be burned through quickly and is usually lined up with players' individual cooldowns to see the most benefit.
Externals: This refers to external cooldowns, abilities that benefit someone other than the caster. You'll often hear tanks calling for an external which means they're about to take a big hit and need a damage-reduction ability cast on them by another player – usually a healer.
Personals: This refers to personal cooldowns and, more specifically, personal damage reduction cooldowns. These are usually used on specific hard-hitting mechanics or heavy damage phase to make less work for healers.
CC: Short for Crowd-Control. CC'ing a target basically means it has been held in place and prevented from doing damage for a short duration, whether that's a short-term stun or slow, or a more lengthy Hex or Polymorph effect.
MC'd: Mind-controlled. Some bosses have the ability to mind-control players, turning them hostile and preventing the player from having any control over the character. A Shaman's Tremor Totem can remove the mind-control status or else other players will need to damage the MC'd player down to low health to break them out of it.
LoS (line of sight): This is something that is usually done to move a boss or group of adds to a better position. Breaking line of sight with an enemy – by standing behind a wall or around a corner – should mean they can't target you with ranged spells. Instead, they'll need to move to a position where they can see you in order to begin attacking again. This can be useful if tanks want to reposition the boss.
Weakauras: An add-on that can track many things within the game, including skill cooldowns, buffs, debuffs, and boss abilities. Weakauras can be built or customised to perform a variety of functions
Bigwigs/DBM: These are add-ons that track various aspects of raid encounters and give on-screen timers for upcoming abilities and phases.
If the world first race has got you curious about what it takes to become a Mythic raider, you can check out our tips right here.