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Posts with tag Lockouts

Flexible Raiding lockouts and queues clarified

Flexible Raiding lockouts clarified
As with any new feature, confusion abounds around Flexible Raiding and just how it will work. Blizzard Community Manager Taepsilum took to the forums to clarify various aspects, including lockouts.
Right now, the idea is to have FR lockouts work very similarly to lockouts in LFR.
You will be able to repeat bosses, and that will actually still be somewhat rewarding, you'll be able to use additional bonus rolls, earn Valor Points, and potentially loot some shinnies from trash...

There's something unique about FRs though, I'll explain it with an example:
Let's say you join a 12man and kill the first boss, leave the raid, and join a 20man, you might have to repeat the first boss.

"Might", so how does that work?
If everyone in the new 20man raid has already killed the first boss just like you did, then that boss will not spawn.
But even if only 1 of the players in that 20man has not killed the first boss, he will spawn again and everyone else will have to repeat the encounter.
This is all pretty confusing stuff! WoW Insider reached out to Blizzard for some additional clarity on just how the raid lockouts will work, and they came back with some more information.

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Filed under: Raiding

25 man raiding and the tolling of the bell

It is time to kill 25 man raiding
I have primarily run in 25 man raiding for the entirety of Cataclysm, and I raided all through Wrath of the Lich King and even Burning Crusade in 25 man raids. 25 man raiding is where I have the most fun. I like it for a variety of reasons. I enjoy having a wider selection of classes and specs available, I generally feel like a larger raid makes a fight feel more dramatic, I dislike how empty some raids feel with a smaller group. To me, a 10 man feels like a UBRS run. These are all personal reasons, I accept that they're not universal. I also wasn't impressed the few times I went into 10 man raids this expansion - the fights always seemed much easier, we blew through bosses we struggled with on 25, clearing 10 with undergeared alts due to the extremely forgiving space mechanics of raids like Firelands and Dragon Soul on 10 man.

So please understand, I am not a partisan of 10 man raiding. I don't like 10 mans. I find that their elevation to the top form of raiding was destructive to the game, to guilds, and to raiding itself. But they are and have been for some time the primary way that people raid. I hate 10 man raids. But the time has come to accept that we have killed the 25 man raid in all but name. It's not a question of should they be removed. They effectively have been removed. You see a lot of debate on what can be done to save the 25 man raid, and the developers have addressed the issue repeatedly in the Reddit AMA and Best Buy Q&A. But you'll notice that they address the issue by acknowledging it and highlighting the issues facing 25 man raids (difficulty of logistics, higher churn rates, higher recruitment needs, difficulty of encounter movement) but that no solutions are forthcoming.

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Filed under: Guilds, Raiding, Cataclysm, Mists of Pandaria

Officers' Quarters: Guilds struggled after Cataclysm's raid changes

bastion of twilight
Every Monday, Scott Andrews contributes Officers' Quarters, a column about the ins and outs of guild leadership. He is the author of The Guild Leader's Handbook, available now from No Starch Press.

As predicted, Cataclysm has had a massive impact on guilds and guild leadership. The changes to guilds in this expansion will continue to have consequences throughout the lifetime of the game. Of all those changes, none have affected PvE guilds more than Cataclysm's new raiding systems and philosophy.

The new endgame

In April 2010, Blizzard announced a major shift in its design philosophy for raiding: The company intended to combine lockouts for 10- and 25-man raid sizes, while placing the exact same items in both. When the changes were first announced, the community -- including part of WoW Insider's own staff -- unleashed an understandable outcry. Memories of the transition from vanilla's 40-man to The Burning Crusade's 25-man cap haunted us. We worried whether our guilds could survive another monumental change.

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Filed under: Officers' Quarters (Guild Leadership)

The pros and cons of extending raid lockouts

All through Wrath of the Lich King, I raided in a hardcore progression guild for 16 hours a week. We ran 12 hours in 25-mans and another three or four a week working on hard mode 10-mans. A lot of it ended up feeling like clearing content to get geared up to clear the exact same content but with more bells and whistles (especially Trial of the Crusader, where we often ended up doing the same raid four times a week). So when Cataclysm came out, I shifted to a more casual, purely 10-man, six-hours-a-week raiding schedule with a new guild.

For the most part, it's been pretty great, but one aspect of it is that with two hours a night, three nights a week, it can be a challenge to get through the farm content fast enough to get to the new bosses, especially once most of an instance is farm content. Even when you know all the fights and can burn through them, five bosses can take a lot of time to get knocked out in order to get face time on a new boss.

One of the innovations of Wrath of the Lich King was extending raid lockouts. What this allows you to do is to skip the bosses you already have on farm by, in effect, picking up where your last raid left off. Cleared everything but Nef last week and needing to work on the new encounter? Now you can just start up with everything you killed last week still dead. What could be the problem, you ask?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, Wrath of the Lich King, Cataclysm

WoW Insider Show live on Ustream this afternoon

Over 200 years ago, our forefathers put forth a document that not only declared the Independence of one of the greatest nations in the world, but also sundered the connection between the old country of Great Britain and the new United States of America. Now, all this time later, Turpster and I do the WoW Insider Show together, and basically undo all that work those smart guys did way back when. This week we'll have an especially good one, as Adam Holisky, Alex Ziebart, and Michael "Belfaire" Sacco are all coming on the show all together. Just in case you thought they were all the same person (some sort of former Blizzard CM/blog posting/contributing editor maniac), we'll prove you wrong.

And there'll probably be fireworks as well: we'll be talking about faction changes, the changes to raiding in patch 3.2 (including the extended lockouts and the new universal armor tokens), Blizzard and how they're dealing with raiding exploits, and oh yeah, something called Cataclysm. Plus, we'll answer your emails and chat live with you on the our Ustream page. It all starts off at July 4, 2009 3:30 PM EDT. We'll see you there.

Oh, and next week, since both Turpster and I will be out of town (for summer vacation, of course), we'll have another special midweek show for those of you who can't tune in on the weekend. Thursday, July 9th at 6pm Eastern, we'll have a live show going on, so mark that on your calendar and we'll see you then as well. Both shows will end up on the iTunes feed as usual, but if you want to tune in and listen live, please do.

Filed under: Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, Instances, WoW Insider Show

Why Blizzard is splitting normal and Heroic modes off on their own

So now that a lot of the dust has settled from the big 3.2 patch notes bombshell last week (and before it gets all stirred up again by the PTR starting up), let's reflect a bit. Specifically on the fact that unlike all of the instances in the game so far, the Crusaders' Coliseum will let you run it four different times (in 10-man and 25-man normal, and 10- and 25-man Heroic) every raid lockout period. We talked about this on the podcast: that's a lot of running the same content. But Zarhym replies with what Blizzard's thinking on this is. Currently, when you go to Ulduar, you have to decide as you go whether you'll take on the bosses' hard modes or not, and once your decision is made, that's it for the week. But with four different modes, running normal won't lock you out of Heroic, and vice versa. You've got the options to choose from.

I still think, though, that this is more of an experimental release on Blizzard's part, rather than a full rethinking of the way dungeons should be done. The Coliseum isn't an instance like we've ever seen before (though Vault is probably the closest) -- it's supposed to be extremely modular, and it's very much a patch-specific release rather than standard content like Naxx or Ulduar. We'll have to see exactly how it works, but my guess is that Blizzard is testing the waters with this and the other raid content in Wrath. Chances are that if for some reason this doesn't work out (will we eventually see raiders running all four modes every week, and finding the content much more repetitive than Blizzard planned?), the idea of simply having hard modes on bosses rather than lockouts probably isn't completely abandoned yet.

Patch 3.2 will bring about a new 5, 10, and 25 man instance to WoW, and usher in a new 40-man battleground called the Isle of Conquest. will have you covered every step of the way, from extensive PTR coverage through the official live release. Check out's Guide to Patch 3.2 for all the latest!

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Raiding

The pros and cons of raid IDs

Freya recently posted a plea on the forums: Please, Blizzard, get rid of raid IDs. Raid IDs were put in the game as a way to make sure the best loot in the game didn't flow freely: rather than just running endgame raids over and over (and over), Blizzard put a hold on just how much one player can run them. If you get saved to a raid ID, you're usually out of that raid until things reset on Tuesdays.

But there are lots of issues -- at this point, agrees Zarhym, it's too easy to get saved to a raid. It's lame to jump in on a PuG where you do one boss and then the group breaks up for the rest of the week, and it's even lamer to have your raid ID ninja'ed by a few folks who decide they want to disband the group early. The mechanic is important to keep around, though -- if you think it's too easy to get endgame gear now, just think what things would be like if people could run Naxx or OS daily or even hourly.

But the actual saving is an issue, and one that the developers are working on -- they're planning on making it so that you would only be saved to an instanced when it's partially or even completely cleared (though that too would likely spread a little more loot around than wanted -- people would run the instance until the last boss and reset it to do it all over again). We'll have to see how this pans out.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Blizzard, Instances, Raiding, NPCs

Doing away with raid lockouts

Over on the Subcreation forums, Alcaras calls for the death of raid lockouts in a well-written plea to the Blizzard devs. He makes some really strong points-- he calls raid lockouts (or raid cooldowns, as I usually call them) just fake barriers to keep players playing, and lampoons Blizzard for keeping people from playing together the way they want to. Keeping players confined to just one raid per week helps contribute to "the Karazhan Mistake"-- guilds are split, whether they like it or not, and gaps are created between the folks who can raid one night and the folks who can't.

The point of raid lockouts is simply to keep raid farming from happening-- guilds could farm Gruul over and over again, or run into Serpentshrine, down Hydross, and just keep it up for the whole afternoon, picking up Epic after Epic. But as Alcaras points out, guilds already farm-- the 5mans (including Heroics) are already farmable, and no on is arguing that Heroic gear is too easy to get. Plus, things are getting pretty silly-- some groups are running three or four Karazhan groups weekly. How much more would they really run it if lockouts were removed?

Of course, eventually, Alcaras will get his wish. Blizzard has a habit of eventually tuning down and opening up the lower dungeons-- that's what happened in UBRS (originally a 15 man dungeon), and Scholomance (originally a 10 man dungeon). Sure, it likely won't happen anytime too soon, but eventually, Karazhan is going to be nerfed, and the lockdown removed. But I tend to agree with Alcaras, at least for the first few high end raids-- the only real consequence of opening up the lockdowns is that more players would get to experience raiding content more often, and in my mind, that's a good thing.

[ via Tobold ]

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Guilds, Instances, Raiding

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