If, If, Wait, Wait

My 10-month-old daughter is sick, coughing, congested. Confused. She doesn't understand why my wife and I don't just fix it. It's impossible to explain that we would use this awesome congestion power on anyone but her. So, lots of soothing, lots of grumpy diaper changes, lots of naps interrupted by vicious choking on mucus. She finally goes to real sleep late in the evening.

Parent freedom time! However, said parents are absolutely exhausted. Need to do something before sleep, though. We're not parent-bots.

"Hey, you know what would be great?"

"No, what's that?"

"Want to do some dailies? Just to relax for a few minutes. Get you closer to that rep sword."

"That sounds good!"

Ok then! Let's log on for fifteen minutes or so and do some dailies.

Position in queue: 429
Estimated time: Calculating...

The calculated time ended up being twenty-four minutes.

Back in the days when we were sitting down for a three or four hour block, a twenty-four-minute delay was just a minor irritation. But now, we're (trying to) log on for a half-hour or even ten-minute session. A twenty-four minute wait? It's the whole thing.

This got me thinking.

Continue reading If, If, Wait, Wait

Ghostcrawler is Awesome

In reference to Adam Holisky's recent WoW Insider's post The Ghostcrawler Experiment, where the questions are:

  1. Is the GE (Ghostcrawler era) of WoW better than the BGE?
  2. Does Ghostcrawler do a good job?

I just wanted to post something quick in response. I've written about Ghostcrawler before, although I perhaps wasn't as blunt as I could have been. So, I will speak more plainly now: Yes, and I can't believe that we're even talking about this.

Continue reading Ghostcrawler is Awesome

Overview of Loot Systems

Zomgepics! The joy, the sorrow. The absolute headache for anyone running a guild. This is a followup article to The Most Successful Loot Systems.

Any system that involves large teams and limited loot (for example, PvE raiding in World of Warcraft) requires a system to sort that loot out. If your 25-person group takes down a raid boss, and that boss drops 4 items, how do you determine who gets those items? It takes time and effort to raid, and someone has to get gear before someone else.

There are many, many kinds of loot systems. However, all of the ones I'm aware of fall into three broad categories: earn and spend, higher authority, and random. Continue reading Overview of Loot Systems

The Most Successful Loot Systems

A friend recently asked me an offhand question about zero-sum dkp systems with a 25% monthly degeneration with a weird main/alt policy… and I could immediately rattle off the strengths and weaknesses of such a system, including where it could be subverted and where the likely problems would be down the road. Ok, so it turns out that I'm interested in loot systems and guild leadership.

So what's the goal of loot systems? Most articles I've seen about loot assignments is about getting the gear to the right place while being fair.

Well… yes. That's the stated goal. There's more, though.

Cassio, a guest blogger at World of Matticus, uncovered the truth in a post about assigning loot (emphasis mine):

In my guild, I am currently the raid leader for ten man raids and it falls onto me to sort out loot distribution and how to do so without causing problems that could destabilize the raid group and force us back due to people leaving and having to replace with new people.

In programmer speak, this is Step 0. You don't list Step 0 to the guild, but when designing a loot system, it should be first on your list.

Continue reading The Most Successful Loot Systems