Perpendiculars of Grey

The Gree event is probably my favourite of the original SWTOR events that are still in circulation today. I don't really feel that the BBA week suits anyone other than my hunter - hopefully for obvious reasons - and I've never really gotten over my distaste for rakghouls as a concept.

I do still kinda regret missing out on the first rakghoul event, though, but since exams took priority ultimately it was a necessary loss.

The Gree event, meanwhile, is just... serene. You aren't dealing with horrific creatures or scumbags across the galaxy, but instead just seeing a bizarre research project in progress. Even the instanced boss, Xenoanalyst II, is hands-down the most pleasant raid boss in the entire game - it acts more like a laboratory professor dealing with its latest batch of test subjects and wanting to see how they react to certain stimuli than it does a 'traditional' boss, even celebrating its defeat as it still meant it gets decent research.

However, while it has been out for almost ten years now there have been a couple of things I haven't been all that invested in. Firstly, the PvP aspect. Sure, the original purpose for Ilum was this big open-world PvP planet and this is BW's attempt to pay homage to that, but I've never really been one to seek or incite fights. 

Secondly, the additional world bosses, Gravak'k and Surgok'k. Sure, I'd killed them a handful of times on Harbinger, but the times when organised groups for the two bosses coincided with my being available were very far and few between, even within my own guilds. The ability to transfer to The Red Eclipse at least meant that I was in guilds that were active and more likely to kill these bosses, but again it just seemed very rare when something actually could and would happen. 

Still, I managed to acquire ten kills of Gravak'k and nine for Surgok'k. It would have been ten for both, were it not for my abstaining in protest at my guild's actions on one such evening in 5.0. We'd killed Gravak'k and headed over to Surgok'k's cave to find an Imperial team gathering to kill it. Our tank for the evening charged in, followed by the rest of our group, effectively stealing the boss from under them. I stayed back by the entrance of the tunnel, still mounted, doing nothing but watching the Imps run past me. 

I'm sorry, but I tend to take a very negative view on actions like that.

The end-result of not focusing a lot on these aspects of the event is that I still lacked the Gray Perpendicular and Blue / Red Octagon legacy titles by the start of 2023 while many of my peers had had them for years. 

Well, finally, I have acquired Gray Perpendicular at last.

It was a bit of a weird thirty minutes, to be honest. On the Tuesday (24th), someone put in Imperial Ilum chat that they were seeking group members for a Xeno kill, and I promptly signed up. They pulled together a group of 13  including themselves in the end, and then it became very clear that the group leader unfortunately didn't quite understand what they were trying to do.

Unable to get any more than 13, they announced boldly ten minutes after the group had started that the plan was to do 16-man veteran mode for a chance at the Red Sphere. Now, veteran mode Xeno has historically been one of the hardest bosses to pug due to its DPS checks, and 7.0 ramped it up a fair notch even with higher gear now being accessible. A group of 13 stood no chance, especially as the group only had one healer and one tank.

A good number of people traipsed into the instance, assuming it to be set for 16VM, when it wasn't. They were asked to leave when a couple of the others tried and failed to enter, but the group leader still didn't set the phase even when asked. However, the ops leader never set the phase properly at all. Best guess is that they'd never learnt how to, which is fair enough I think. SWTOR doesn't actively teach you how to do such things outside of the read-only tutorials which most seem to just gloss over or forget about, so if you've never had to actively do it and only see others do it, I can understand not knowing what to do about it.

To top it all off, whether it was because the group was proving more trouble than it was worth or they just fancied doing the daily while it was there, they kept the group waiting and went off to the the Gray Secant daily. This understandably ticked off a good number of people, with at least one threatening to quit. They passed leadership over to the solitary healer (who, incidentally, didn't realise they were the only healer), and left.

So after about twenty minutes' general confusion, we remaining 12 headed into Xeno SM at last. It went well enough, although a couple of people needed to be taught about the consoles while the fight was active, and afterwards someone asked if we could go and do the other bosses. Fortunately, nobody left so we had enough to make it a feasible venture, although we acquired a thirteenth member anyway.

Gravak'k was messy, but we got it down without wiping. We did lose most of the group, though. Surgok'k was straightforward, with no deaths whatsoever, and finally... it was done. Gray Perpendicular unlocked. I'm not intending to actually use the legacy title but it's still nice to just own it, y'know. I wouldn't have made a post about it except for just the rather unusual circumstances behind my tenth Surgok'k kill. 

I do hope that ops leader managed to get into a Xeno VM group after all that without much hassle.

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