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Posts with tag wiping

Are we getting less tolerant of wipes?

Are we getting less tolerant of wipes
Blizzard Community Manager Nethaera and MVP Crepe have both weighed in on the official forums on the notion of wipe aversion. The jist of Crepe's original post is that they feel the community has become less and less tolerant of wipes. WoW players don't like doing things where their characters die. Crepe gives the specific example of LFR, saying that after a wipe players will just drop group, and that three wipes was the death knell for almost any LFR group.

And there's definitely truth to that, why after all did Blizzard introduce the Determination buff if not to try to coax groups to stick together? Alas, it can sometimes work against the group, I've seen players zone in, see three stacks of determination, and immediately drop group again. They weren't even there for the wipes, they have no idea what went wrong or how it happened, and yet they can't take the idea of being in a wiping group.

Yet, while players continue to drop group on wipes, the complaints continue that LFR is too easy, that it's sucking the life out of the game, trivializing it at every turn. Blizzard can't win, with LFR at least, it's both too hard and too easy. Every time a new tier comes out, as just happened yesterday, the Community team is besieged with players railing against the difficulty of the new tier. So what's causing us to be less and less tolerant of failure?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion

Breakfast Topic: Do you enjoy wiping?

OK, I'll admit that headline was perhaps an overly blunt way to phrase this particular question. Let's try it again: Do you enjoy the actual process of progression raiding? Plenty of raiders claim to love pushing progression, but I'm not sure all of them enjoy fumbling for a strategy and dying and racking up mistake after mistake and death after death as the night wears on. I know some players do, though. I know that because I'm one of them.

I love a good wipe. There's an art to it, after all. I love the process of running back to the raid site, mulling over what went wrong. I enjoy the frantic whispers with other players ("Did you see what happened right before the boss rose up? Do you think if everybody moved apart right then that we could avoid some of those issues?"). I relish that moment when the creative thinkers tentatively offer up some harebrained maneuver (most certainly not something already laid out on any strat site or YouTube video) that turns out to be solid gold. I've even enjoyed wipes caused by players having problems with their execution; as long as they're improving with each attempt, I'm totally cool holding their hand along the way.

I'll admit that there comes a point in a night of wiping when patience wears thin and it's time to call the raid. Still, that doesn't mean I don't look forward to the next opportunity to puzzle and manhandle my way through new content with a group of guildmates and friends. (All of this assumes a group of known friends; I don't know of anyone who would enjoy wiping in LFR mode.)

My fondness for wiping uphill five miles through the snow is probably not one that's shared by the majority of the playerbase, but I've been wrong about these things before. Who here loves to wipe? Do we have any odd birds here who, even more than the thrill of victory, enjoy the process of picking up the pieces of an encounter and trying them again in a different configuration?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

Officers' Quarters: Meter padding mayhem

DPS rankings from world of logs dot com
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 from No Starch Press.

Ah, meter padding. It's an age-old tradition dating back to Molten Core. Vanilla raiders will remember the Core Hound packs between Lucifron and Magmadar. You had to kill them all within a certain amount of time or they would begin to rez each other. That meant the hounds that were "dead" could still take damage. Rather than finishing off the last few, some DPSers would simply spam AoE on the pile of dead bodies -- meter padding at its finest!

This week, a raid leader asks how he can get his DPSers to stop causing wipes by padding the meters in Dragon Soul.

Hi Scott,

I was recently promoted to raid leader in my guild and while I consider my guild to be fairly good, we do have one fairly serious problem. The good old meter padding. We initially managed to kill madness and spine at the 5% nerf, but since then blizzard has increased the nerf to 30% and when we have to ask our dps to simply stand around and not attack, they simply choose not to listen which sometimes leads to a wipe.

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Filed under: Officers' Quarters (Guild Leadership)

Breakfast Topic: What caused your first Cataclysm death?

This Breakfast Topic has been brought to you by Seed, the Aol guest writer program that brings your words to WoW Insider's pages.

One of the great things about expansions is all the "firsts" we get to experience. For example: my first 310% flight speed, my first time flying in the old world, my first archaeology artifact -- there are so many fantastic things that come with an expansion! However, there are also some rude awakenings. I was surprised when frost came back as a mage leveling spec. I was also taken aback at just how quickly I perished when I tried to take on more than one mob. Let me paint a picture for you.

Here we have this overconfident fire mage coming into Mount Hyjal for the first time. She grabs some quests and heads out to kill some fire elementals. She tags one, and puts Living Bomb up. It proceeds to make a lot of elementals angry with her. She shrugs off the multitude of fiery beings heading her way -- "I'll just AoE them down." That doesn't bode well. Slowly, her life force ebbs away, she gets weaker and weaker, there's a darkness coming over her, and then she's just ... gone.

I stare at my screen. Did that really just happen? Did I seriously just die to my first Cataclysm mob? I quickly look around the room; awww crud, yes, my husband saw that. Well, that's a bit embarrassing! I then take some time to see what the other mages in the area are running as. "Ahem, well I guess I'll go spec frost now ..."

I'm curious where and when the rest of you saw your first Cataclysm demise. Was it due to overconfidence or a wrong spec? Did you make it without dying until your first dungeon?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics, Guest Posts

Officers' Quarters: Pitchforks and torches


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 from No Starch Press.

Wipes are a fact of life. Everyone wipes. How you deal with these situations can be crucial to your guild's success. Some guilds cultivate an environment based on blame, where everyone's first thought after a wipe is, "Who messed up?" Sometimes, it's easy to figure out who is at fault: Someone with a spore goes the wrong way, or someone gets mind-controlled by the Blood Queen after failing to bite his assignment. When it's not easy to figure out, some guilds use a different strategy for assigning blame. Here is one such case:

I have a real dilemma.

I'm an officer, one of six, in a semi-serious raiding guild. We have 30 core raiders who raid with us, and one of them until recently was one of our druid healers, and the issue surrounding him is my dilemma. A little background information on the guild, since it is relevant, is that we have a strict rule involving loot due to some people in the past who have abused our requirement for Vent in that they wouldn't use it, or they'd log in but leave their headsets off. This caused a lot of problems with wipes and caused the officers, GM and co-GM to agree that a rule would be made that was you must be in Vent and actively listening at all times during a raid in order to be eligible for loot. This is what caused the initial problem.

The player of this druid healer I mentioned before applied to our guild and told us on the application that he is deaf.

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Filed under: Officers' Quarters (Guild Leadership)

We Have a Tabard: Hang up and raid

Looking for a guild? Well, you can join ours! We have a tabard and everything! Check back every Friday for Amanda Dean talking about guilds ad guild leadership in We Have a Tabard.

I've been having a blast raiding since Ulduar was released. It's been a joy learning new fights and getting more and more bosses on farm. I understand that learning new fights in raid encounters takes time, but once a fight is on farm the only thing more annoying than healing preventable damage is wiping because someone wasn't paying attention.

Just like distracted driving can cost lives, distracted raiding can cause wipes. In most cases the time for tank and spank is over once you walk in the portal to a raid. The encounters require players to be prepared and on the ball. Not only should officers lead by example when it comes to raid awareness there are a number of things that can be done to improve attentiveness:

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Guilds, Raiding, (Guild Leadership) We Have a Tabard

Breakfast topic: How do you learn tactics?

I was never one for these tabletop strategy games or D&D but thanks to WoW I have become quite a tactician. Tactics are so integrated in the game that they come into play figuring out how to down Hogger without aggroing too many of his numerous minions, to sneaking through hostile territory and avoiding NPCs who want to kill you all the way to confronting KT in Naxx or Ignis in Ulduar. The latter is especially true, Ignis is a nightmare where a knowledge of tactics is life or death. When your raid leader asks if everyone knows the tactics and you all nod heads and mutter yes, it's not actually courtesy, he or she is trying to figure out how many people will survive long enough to down the giant er ... giant.

Once upon a time all you had to do to learn the tactics was play. Wiping on bosses and the depression of death, failure and repair bills can be a great motivator. At the same time, there are few unique boss fights in WoW. They all follow some kind of pattern and sometimes phases are even borrowed from other mobs. Others, such as Shade of Aran's Flame Wreath go down in lore and legend, even getting their own ever-so-catchy (nay beautiful) theme tune. I challenge anyone to move after having heard that (I even have that in iTunes and would play it just in case my raid forgot. No one ever did.).

So I wonder, constant readers, how do you learn tactics? I can read WoWwiki, for example, until I'm blue in the face but because of the weird way my brain is wired (don't ask), the only was I can truly learn tactics is in the fight itself. Yes, there's YouTube, there's the pre-boss-fight sit down where the raid leader does a run though the fight because no one bothered to take ten minutes to do some reading up. What methods do you use?

Filed under: Guilds, Breakfast Topics, Instances, Raiding, Bosses, Wrath of the Lich King

Ready Check: On wipes and wiping



Ready Check is a weekly column focusing on successful raiding for the serious raider. Hardcore or casual, ZA or Sunwell Plateau, everyone can get in on the action and down some bosses. It's not easy, though...

Wiping. That wonderful process whereby your raid becomes nothing but a pile of corpses, and you have to pick yourselves off the floor and start again. It's an essential part of raiding, whether you're dying to well-known content or progression bosses, and some people are even rumoured to enjoy it. However, repeatedly wiping on something for various reasons can really lower your raid's morale, and presents an interesting problem for any raid leader.

Let's take a look at the problems and challenges arising from wipe nights, or even a failed try or two at something on farm.

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Filed under: How-tos, Raiding, Ready Check (Raiding)

The Care and Feeding of Warriors: Learning how to wipe



The Care and Feeding of Warriors would like to pretend to be an exhaustive and comprehensive overview of warrior issues. Unfortunately, they're letting Matthew Rossi write the thing, and he's equal parts obsessed maniac, egotistical loon and occasionally informed poster. Proud pappy of three level 70 warriors, we think he may have been dropped on his head a lot as a child. That would explain why he enjoys playing the class that gets hit all the time.

Playing World of Warcraft is supposed to be fun. I know I play for enjoyment. In the past I've done so through PvP, although I was never as much of an enthusiast as some warriors. Lately, I've gotten back into raiding, mostly because I have a lot of experience tanking and I found guilds looking for a dedicated prot warrior. In the short time that I've been with my new guild, I've gone from tanking A'lar in blues and greens to gearing up in Karazhan and the lairs of Gruul and Magtheridon respectively. These 'loot runs' aren't progression, and so they feel less 'real' as a tank than Zul'Aman, Serpentshrine and Tempest Keep do (Kael and Vashj are all that stands in our way now) because they lack that one crucial element that sets aside 'real' progression tanking.

Wipes. They lack the endless wipes. We wipe in ZA, SSC and TK because we're still learning them. For some reason, I've come to associate real progression in raiding with wiping over and over again, watching incremental progress as people come to understand the fight. From the first time I killed Nefarian, a fight that took us several days and quite a few wipes to master, I seem to have been hard wired to accept wiping as part of the process. If you want to kill the bosses you have to die first. As a tank, one of the harder lessons you'll ever learn is in dealing with this expensive and often personally aggravating necessity of raiding. You have to grow a thick inner skin, not allowing the setbacks and odd quirks of a particular fight (A'lar won't move platforms, Tainted Cores aren't being handled fast enough, people are grouping up too much on Shatters) to frustrate you or cause you to start pointing fingers at people.

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Filed under: Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Instances, Raiding, Bosses, (Warrior) The Care and Feeding of Warriors

Warriors kill 99% of PUGs

Hey it's been at least a few days without a patented "Mike Schramm Troll Post," so let's go at it. Xylox over on the forums says that if a PUG wipes, 99% of the time it's because of the warrior. He says it's the hardest class to play within "a group environment," and that if you're a warrior who thinks you don't have to be prot and you don't need a shield to tank, you're the reason your PUGs keep wiping.

Now, I don't know if I'd go all that far-- my warrior has tanked plenty without being specced protection, so that's definitely possible. But he does have a point-- a shield is just plain necessary for tanking. If a tank doesn't know how to keep aggro, isn't ready to take damage or pull mobs off the healers, or thinks taunt is a damage spell, the group is in trouble.

Of course, most players aren't so nice to Xylox-- they say that though warriors do need to know what they're doing, so does everyone else. If a warrior can't keep aggro because the DPS is clueless, or doesn't get heals because the priest is in shadow when heals are necessary, it's not his fault. And still other players say that the reason lots of warriors don't know what to do right away is because tanking is one of the only skills in the game that you can't learn solo-- you've got to have a helpful group to teach you how to do it the first few times.

No one actually calls Xylox out for posting like he's the warrior master on his level 10 Shaman (that's what I'd do), but the thread really does provide some interesting thoughts from both sides. Bottom line: the best way to keep from wiping is to make sure everyone in the group knows what they're doing. All should be responsible for aggro control, all should know where to target DPS and when, and everyone should play their part well. It's true that an unskilled tank can be the first to mess up a group (because if she can't hold aggro, it's over right then and there), but everyone's got to do it right to get it done.

Filed under: Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Instances, Classes

WoW Rookie: Soulstone and you

As a priest, pally or possibly a lower level shaman, you are often bestowed with the responsibility of a soulstone, giving you the ability to self-rez. And as we all learned from Uncle Ben in Spiderman, with great power comes great responsibility. If you have never had the chance to be on the receiving end of a soulstone, it is easy to make a rookie mistake. While it is by no means complex, there are certain do's and don'ts that aren't always obvious. With that in mind, here are some things to remember if you are given a soulstone...
  • If you are new to the soulstone business, odds are your warlock is too. If you have never played a warlock, you might assume that when a soulstone expires some kind of elaborate fireworks display appears in the warlock's UI, informing them that the group is screwed if they wipe if he doesn't conjure another stone. Without a proper mod, this is not the case. Odds are your new level 21 warlock friend doesn't have the fancy mod. So pay attention to your soulstone, and when you see it expire, or a minute or two before it expires, let your warlock know in party chat or in a /whisper. Your lock will usually appreciate it.

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Filed under: Paladin, Priest, Shaman, Warlock, Tips, Instances, Features, Guides, WoW Rookie

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