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  • Shiro
  • Member Since Apr 21st, 2009

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The Queue: Another Tuesday in Azeroth {WoW}

Nov 2nd 2010 9:47PM There is more than just the Reinforcements mechanic at work here too.

It has a lot to do with how honor happens now, versus how it happened back then. In the old days, the honor system was based around HKs. It wasn't really a benefit to you if you were looking for max honor to go out and kill the general. It was far more beneficial to rack up the HKs by killing lots of people.

As a result, those who were BG pros would play a lot of defense in order to have the maximum number of noob targets to smack around. So the dynamic of AV was to have a small group of elite defenders and a large group of "meh" attackers. The resultant slaughter was a very good thing if you were a defender.

There was also the fact that the generals were significantly harder to kill, as were ALL the guards. At that time they had stats as a normal max level elite. This meant that you usually needed several people to kill one, even if you had raid gear (which few had who were doing BGs). As a result, in order to even consider stepping foot in the General's room you needed (not wanted, needed) to have all the towers down and to have the graveyards both in the keep area and outside of it, on lockdown.

If you didn't you would lose enough DPSers to the general's AOE attacks that you'd be unable to sustain your kill, and you'd wipe to him.

Several things changed this. The first of them was diminishing returns for honor on kills. The second was the honor system was overhauled to grant you an honor boost for actually winning AV. Remember, back when AV was a day long affair, the only benefit to winning it was more rep (which pro players didn't need) so you had little to gain from winning it.

The second thing that changed it was when the elites were nerfed. As soon as you didn't need 10 people to take a tower, things changed. Way back when, stealthing to a tower, capturing it, and holding it was a task worthy of a pro player. When the elites were nerfed, almost anyone could take a tower alone, and without the benefit of stealth. It got even worse when the generals and Lts. were nerfed because it meant that you could ignore a tower, or a graveyard and not fail miserably.

Anyway, those are the changes that I think did it, though the reinforcement mechanic did a pretty good job of really finishing it off for playing defense.

Breakfast Topic: Tank anxiety {WoW}

Aug 3rd 2010 1:49PM I completely agree here.

The attitude goes a long way. When I'm gearing a new tank I let people know that this tank is undergeared. That's a more effective thing than saying you're new to tanking. The "I'm new to this" usually tends to make people feel like you don't know what you're doing. The "I'm undergeared" says that you know what you should have, but you can still be trusted to do the right things.

Plus when you say you're undergeared it helps the healer know how to deal with you, and it helps the DPS to know what they need to do.

It's REALLY, REALLY true that the "tanking" spec that's posted on EJ or whatever forums you read doesn't absolutely always work for 5-mans. Raid tanking is about entirely different stuff. In the 5 man environment you have to change things up a LOT. I have one raid tank who stays the heck away from the randoms for this reason alone. I'll tank a PuG ToC-10, or Ony, or VoA or whatever the weekly is, but I won't do random 5-mans because I can't hold enough aggro. Could I? Sure, if I was willing to change out some glyphs and re-spec for it, but it's not worth it to me. Not when I can DPS the same content with less outlay.

Anyway, it's a great idea to take on a dedicated 5-man spec for that gear up period though. It makes things a lot easier.

And a big "YES" for the idea that it's OK to lose aggro as long as no one dies or stresses out the healer too much. If I'm losing aggro to a plate wearing DPS class with more HPs than I have, oh well... If I'm losing aggro to a squishy mage then it's maybe different. If I'm losing aggro to my healer, then I'm not doing my job.

Remember the MT mantra. If the tank dies, it's the healer's fault. If the healer dies, it's the tank's fault. If the DPS dies, it's their own fault.

Breakfast Topic: Tank anxiety {WoW}

Aug 3rd 2010 1:27PM Nothing says that you have to actually *wear* all that gear in instances. : )

I've got a great gearscore on my DPS warrior, but if I find that I'm ripping threat off of the tank, I swap sets to my low DPS set which looks fabulous (it's mostly either BC tier gear, or good looking pieces) and just do the 3k DPS that the tank needs so that we can all get done with the instance without me dying fifteen times.

Typically my first few pulls in an instance I do without any chest or shoulder armor, just to set a baseline on how much DPS I can pull without pulling aggro. If I notice in Omen that I'm not getting close, then I'll put more on. If I notice in Omen that I'm still overgearing then my BC gear goes on. You know things are going badly when I end up in my BWL gear.


Officers' Quarters: It's a secret {WoW}

Aug 2nd 2010 5:23PM Like other posters, I think there was probably more going on here than showed up in the letter. I always like these sorts of things because it leads to such good speculation on what was really happening. : )

My guess?

Something similar has happened to me at least once in the past. A guild that I loved, and loved the people in had a decent group of officers. One GL who was also the RL, and two sub-officers who were in charge of recruiting/guild management.

In our case the SO and I were good members, contributed the bank, talked a lot in chat, generally willing to help people out with the stuff that other members could care less about. We had a ton of alts and crafters galore.

The issue with us was that we were too active with stuff that the GL deemed unimportant. We were running older content, helping people level alts, and the GL wanted people to work on polishing their mains and running cutting edge content.

We got branded by him as undesirable because we caused others to think that it was OK to skip out on the stuff that the GL wanted them to be doing in favor of things that they found to be more fun.

Rules were made that seemed designed to get us kicked out, and we left before they could be enforced on us. (No running old content unless you sign up to run the cutting edge stuff with the guild on X night).

That said, we *did* lose all of our friends from that guild. At least those who decided to stay. Because the GL made no secret of the fact that we weren't wanted, it was pretty much a kiss of death to associate with us. Those who did would fall under scrutiny and most who were watched, eventually, were found to do something that was against the rules. It was far easier to just stay away from us and continue to do stuff with the guild.

Sadly, I can see the GLs point in a sick and twisted way. Ours was trying to make a really successful raiding guild where people focused on their mains. The problem was that he was doing so in the middle of a casual/alt friendly guild.

In the letter writer's story, I'm guessing that the GL had issues with them before this incident and it was really a way to legitimize punishing them, or at least cutting them down to size. In good news you really are better off without this kind of drama.

Breakfast Topic: I can do what now? {WoW}

Aug 2nd 2010 8:23AM Mine is even lamer. I still fly to the old locations for certain things. When I started, you flew from Undercity down to Kargath/Flame Steppes in order to get to Blackrock Mountain. Now it's faster to take the portal to Blasted Lands and ride up to Stonard. Shaves several minutes off the travel time.

I still end up on a bat out of Undercity with the rest of the raid wondering why I'm not there yet. : P

Back when we were doing Kara, I used to go Orgrimmar to Rachet, to Booty Bay, then fly to Grom'Gol and ride north to get to Karazhan. It was a long while before I learned to wait in Shattrath for our mage to open a port to Stonard.

So yeah, I feel your pain. I still do those two when I run old world content on the weekends.

Breakfast Topic: When a character just doesn't click {WoW}

Jul 22nd 2010 2:29PM Oh gawd yes...

My priest fills this slot for me.

I rolled her only because my doofus brother in law wanted a self sufficient party and I got picked to be the healer while he tanked and my wife and cousins DPSed. She was my first 60 in vanilla, simply because we all played 100% of our play time together.

After 60, the doofus left the game, leaving us with no tank, and two of the DPS left leaving me with a healer and my wife with a DPS class. Neither of us liked our classes much, but I stuck with my healer because it was the only way I could get us into groups. Back then a healer was a 100% invite rate (especially when you were good at it), and you could bring along a DPS or two without complaints.

Raided at 60 with her, but I never enjoyed playing her. The main reason was that back then healing gear was specific to healing and didn't help you at anything else. So she could heal like mad but if she got jumped by a wolf, it was death. I ended up feeling like playing her just didn't fit me at all.

I tried getting my guild to take me on my warrior to tank but they had rules about alts. I tried three other guilds but as soon as they found out I had a geared priest, it was all over.

I finally got away from her by just letting her rot while I played a druid on a new server.

She snuck back though in BC when shadow priests became the bomb and my guild was willing to boost her from 60 to 70 and get her geared to be a mana battery. I played her then because I thought I might like the DPS role. Unfortunately it wasn't any better of a fit for me. I'm just not a priest lover.

I left her on her second server to rot again while I rerolled horde (before faction changes) on a third server. After a good time raiding in BC as a hordie, and WotLK playing as every other class under the sun, I did finally faction transfer her to level her to 80 just to be a completest (I have 8 level 80s with my lock and priest above 74 now). I still don't like playing her, but I *have* to just finish her off.

Officers' Quarters: Destructive criticism {WoW}

Jul 20th 2010 3:53PM This is a *huge* piece of good advice. You never criticize during, or even right after a raid. You make a time specifically meant to discuss raid performance and you never do it at any other time.

The one thing that has lost more players from my guilds was raid leaders calling people out for doing something wrong on vent during raids. There is nothing that makes you just not want to do you best more than when someone points out the one thing you just did wrong when you know you just did it.

My advice:

Create a time for your raid members to be evaluated. I called mine "pump my healz" or something similar. Basically it was a chance to evaluate healing logs (WWS or otherwise) and look at a specific healer during a specific fight to see if there was anything that could be improved.

I used the sandwich scenario described above. Started with a general "hey, look what boss we got down this week" then described the healer in question, their gear loadout, their spec, and looked at improvement points. Then at the end I would go through all the awesome things that they did during a particular fight.

Sometimes it took a while to find the good stuff that they did, and sometimes I had to look for a while to find a fight where they did *anything* good, but if I took the time I could find one. That way they felt like I wasn't just being critical, but rather I was pointing out their performance to the guild.

Then the thread was open for other healers to comment, and we'd all go over the performance with a fine toothed comb. It was a given that if you were rude or mean during one of these threads, you'd get your forum account locked.

We did a different healing team member each week, and no one got a free pass. I'd make sure to put myself up for critique about once a month (more than anyone else) so that people would feel like I wasn't just picking on them. Plus, within a couple of months anyone who looked back at the history could see what we did, and know that we weren't just being mean to them.

I was always surprised at how well this worked to improve my own Heals, not to mention the Heals of others.

Nonstandard loot systems in WoW, page 2 {WoW}

Jul 19th 2010 12:07PM Right you are. It was a 20 man which made the 9 to 11 ratio even closer. I remember the nine really well because they started up their new guild together and I remember thinking that nine people would never make a raiding guild work. : )

Nonstandard loot systems in WoW, page 2 {WoW}

Jul 18th 2010 11:23PM Here's the rebuttal that I hear on the need/greed from my raiders...

OK, so I go on your raid every week for the good of the guild. I've attended the past 10 ICC runs. I've got bad rolling luck. I roll every time and get outrolled for the stuff I want. I ran 10 ICCs and got no loot.

I'm on my 11th ICC and we've got a new guy with us. Everyone else is geared except for me and him. The first boss drops something I need and I get outrolled by the new guy.

Now, you'll say "oh well, unlucky". I'll say "Hey, why the heck should I raid with you guys when I go every single week and have nothing to show for it. There are other guilds where I'd get some kind of reward because they use DKP so the same lucky B@stards don't get the loot every single week" (huffs and puffs)

That's why most guilds hate N/G. Because you'll lose that guy who raids every week but rolls bad to a guild that has a more "fair" distribution system.

Nonstandard loot systems in WoW, page 2 {WoW}

Jul 18th 2010 11:19PM Here's the worst system I've seen... Discuss:

The guild has a forum set up for loot picks.

You get to pick your three top pieces of loot in priority order

These pieces can be from any instance, raid, whatever.

When an item drops, the RL calls to see if anyone has this as #1 on their list. If you've got it as a #1 you get to roll. If multiple number ones are there then you all get a roll.

If it's won, then it stops there. If no one has it as #1, then the RL asks if anyone has it as #2. So on and so forth. This continues until we check for #3 and if no one has this item listed as 1, 2, or 3 on their list then it's open to rolls from anyone regardless of spec class or reason.

This bit doesn't seem so bad thus far.

The bad part came about when they announced that in order to make the system attractive to their "hardcore" players, you can change your loot rankings at any time that you're not in a raid.

Thus, if we're raiding one instance on Thursday and another on Friday, you can change your loot rankings on Wednesday night to contain just loot from Thursday's instance, and then change again on Friday morning to contain just loot from Friday's instance.

As if that wasn't enough... If you won something it was your responsibility to change your list after the run. Some of our members weren't that hardcore, and just set up a list with their dream items (and wondered why they had to roll against 5 hardcores every time they got a chance to get it), and would remember to check it out like once a month. Thus they'd lose out on the chance to roll on almost everything that they'd like to use while those who gamed the system got all the gear they wanted within weeks.

The system left play when those who gamed the system got geared fully with everything that they wanted within a few weeks and then decided that they didn't need to raid any more. Eventually most of them moved to higher tiered guilds and the guild died off because the casuals who didn't update every day lost interest in raiding because they never got anything...

Anyone else ever see this one?