Strategy Guide for “Trial of the Naaru: Mercy”

This a post I wrote on my guild forum to try to help people in my raid team do this quest: Trial of the Naaru: Mercy. (In 2007).

It’s not just me who thinks of Shattered Halls as the “original” Challenge Mode. It’s a comparison that comes up time and time again, to pretty much anyone who’s been WoW seriously for long enough to remember that zone (up to and including the designers who made Challenge Modes, who have cited Shattered Halls as an inspiration). My recollection is that a SH clear with the best time (saving all three prisoners) was distinctly harder than a Bronze at a typical Challenge Mode. It was probably more akin to Silver, when you take into account that mechanics were somewhat meaner back then, but the timing didn’t emphasize the “race” aspect as much; you mostly just wanted to clear without wiping.

Talking about this just now I remembered that, since I was the raid leader of a somewhat serious progression guild in those days, I had strategy posts on the guild forum about everything, including the Trial of Mercy (which was needed to attune to Tempest Keep until they did away with that in later patches). I thought people might find it interesting to see a description of what that zone contained. For now it’s a straight copy of the notes I made to try to get guild groups through the zone, no edits at all. When I have more time I might elaborate further (also, skimming my long strategy posts for each boss in original Naxxramas gave a burst of nostalgia; it might be interesting to make a post out of those somehow).

Without further ado:

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The Glorification of Abuse in 50 Shades

Recently, E.L. James gave an interview in which she brushed off concerns that 50 Shades of Grey glorifies abusive relationships, and implied that anyone who is concerned simply doesn’t understand BDSM. This part in particular has upset many readers:

James says she “freaks out” when she hears people say that her book encourages domestic violence. “Nothing freaks me out more than people who say this is about domestic abuse,” she says. “Bringing up my book in this context trivializes the issues, doing women who actually go through it a huge disservice. It also demonizes loads of women who enjoy this lifestyle, and ignores the many, many women who tell me they’ve found the books sexually empowering.”

You can read the whole thing here.

In addition, she’s been blocking people who raise abuse concerns on her twitter feed and referring to them as trolls. In response to this mess, @50ShadesAbuse has been recently created to raise awareness of E. L. James’ failure to realize that touting her book as a realistic manual to finding the perfect relationship is misleading and potentially dangerous. A lot of people could stomach the phenomenon of this book’s popularity better if it were treated as fiction instead of a realistic, safe, or healthy model.

Unfortunately, that feed’s creation has also unearthed many rabid and often contradictory defenses of 50 Shades. You should read Jenny Trout’s excellent and calm rebuttal of all of these arguments.

This brings me to the point of my own post. I’m often lightly snarking 50 Shades on Twitter and here, but haven’t fully laid out what bothers me so much about it. There’s a danger of sounding redundant with so many recent excellent blog posts out there, but since E. L. James uses her clout to silence people who voice their opinions, the more awareness raised, the better.

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