Disconnectors: Internet Impaired or Pug Menace?

I went on my first pug raid in quite a while: a full Kara clear with my mostly-battleground hunter. It was decently fun; Kara's a good time although by now I've spent entirely too much time there. This being summer and all, the raid chatter tended to center around genitalia and bodily functions.

Over the course of the 3.5 hour run, a total of five of the ten initial raiders left during the raid, every one of them by disconnecting without warning.

Continue reading Disconnectors: Internet Impaired or Pug Menace?

Raiding does not mean Skilled

(Related post: Max level does not mean Skilled.)

There's a class of player who feels that their status in the raiding game means that they're Right. They label other people noobs, and the silly thing is that people believe them. "I have this awesome item, you don't, therefore I know what I'm talking about and you don't." This frustrates me a great deal.

My guild recently brought in a new recruit. Her main is a holy priest, just like me! I'll call her Mary. She was very personable, online a lot. She had raided a lot in the original WoW, all the way through AQ40, which I've never seen. She had taken over a year off from the game, and in her return was looking for a more relaxed playtime requirement while still playing at a high level. A perfect fit!

Continue reading Raiding does not mean Skilled

Max level does not mean Skilled

(Related post: Raiding does not mean Skilled)

World of Warcraft, and every game like it, is really two different games. I first read this thought at Penny Arcade (can't find where because their search function is weak). Basically, you have the levelling game where you start at L1 and then play until max level (currently L70), and then the game that happens after the levelling game, which is filled with group activities of all sorts as you improve your max level character.

Continue reading Max level does not mean Skilled

Officers should all have Tanks and Healers

(Related post: Take the Group Role)

The following statements are all true for raiding guilds:

  • The health of a PvE guild is dictated by its ability to progress through the game's content at the guild's expected rate.
  • Groups and raids live or die based on being able to assemble, launch, and progress. A successful raid has all three roles (tank, heal, damage) filled to sufficient levels.
  • The ratio of tanks/healers/damage in a typical successful raid is something like 2/3/5.
  • The ratio of tanks/healers/damage in total available, raid-ready players on my server (and I have no reason to think this is unique) is along the lines of 2/3/25. I just made these numbers up, but this is what I've seen. You can always, always find another damage-person to come along.
  • Officers are invested in their guild's continued existence and success.

The logical sum of these points is that officers of PvE raid guilds, even casual ones, should take up the roles that are most needed to keep their guild raiding, namely tanks and healers. Even if the character is not their main, they should have an alt ready to step into one of these needed roles should someone decide to retire from the game, lather up with crazy sauce, or just hit the next stop on the progression train.

Continue reading Officers should all have Tanks and Healers

The Downside of Endgame Guilds

I've been reading Tobold and Potshot lately. They're talking about loot and game design as it relates to endgame guilds, specifically guild hopping and progression problems due to it. I haven't seen a decent explanation of the problem, but as a guild officer/leader I've seen it in action twice now, once with the original WoW endgame and now with the TBC endgame. I don't have a solution, but I can frame the problem.

For me, the most fun time in WoW is right after an expansion hits, when there's limited collective endgame exploration. All the content is new and fresh, then I find myself grouping with not just my long-term guild friends, but also my friends who left to get on the progression roller coaster. It's glorious! This is what the first two months of TBC was like.

Then, endgame progress starts to happen, and a tiered system begins to form.

Continue reading The Downside of Endgame Guilds