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2-17-2012 @ 1:22PM
I think large part of it is mentality and a small part of it as time put in. I'd say if you don't have a strict time schedule, you're definitely casual. If you're only raiding once or twice a week, but always with the mentality of "everyone on the raid team is going to play their class to the best of their ability, we're going to expect that out of everyone, and we're going to make sure that our raid time is spent on making progress," I'd say that's casually hardcore, regardless of whether they're doing normals or heroics. If they raid a few nights a week, but aren't focused on always making progress, and as long as people play their class well it doesn't really matter what spec they're playing, then I'd say that's fairly casual. It really is about the mentality. If a guild is thinking "we're going to approach this raid with a fairly hardcore mindset, but not too hardcore" then I'd say that guild is casually hardcore. Paragon-esque hardcore is progression on heroics, you do absolutely everything you can to push top numbers, and you put a significant amount of time in to raid. Casual hardcore, maybe you put in less time and you're not as strict on doing absolutely everything you can to put out top numbers, but maybe you expect to make progress every raid night, and everyone should be putting a fair amount of work into being the best player they can be. And finally, the casual mindset is not necessarily focused on making progress and pushing your character to the limits, but more to having fun. Of course, that doesn't mean that everyone just plays with whatever talents they want, and that raid nights aren't serious at all. It's more like "hey you can play whatever spec you want, we're not looking at numbers and saying that you have to play the spec that pumps out the highest numbers" and "we're not the type of guild that gets frustrated and angry at every sign of failure, we're here to have fun."And I say this without any implications about the terms casual or hardcore.
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