Sunday, March 27, 2011

How important is a Leader?

The group I raid with is full of very knowledgeable, intelligent, great players. When we first started raiding we started with the opinion that we really didn't need a raid leader. It was only a ten man, and over half of our group had done raid leading for the guild before, so we just kind of thought that we would all be okay with watching our own timers, and I guess just assumed someone would make the decision whether to, for example, release that fifth drake on Halfus. We were kind-of right. For the most part our progression hasn't been hindered by our trust in each other to take care of their own things, however we have been very lucky in the fact that we seem to have all fallen into our own roles on what specifically we each do for each fight. I have to some extent been working on the strategies before the fights. I really like watching boss kill videos, and trying to pick out all the little things guilds are doing to succeed and where they could improve. Bazain has been great with calling out timers a head of time, and yelling at people to get their heads out of their...respective places.... when we've been goofing off too much. Green is just an overall loudmouth that fills in where someone is needed. Pixelated has a very strong personality in that he will call ideas out in the middle of the raid, or yell that something isnt' going to work, he's great at adjusting on the fly and communicating that to us. And of course everyone helps out between wipes on helping to adjust our strategy, explain what went wrong from each other's perspectives, and step up when we need an extra set of eyes or one of our usual people has to tunnel something so hard they can't pay attention to a specific mechanic. Having said all that, the focus of this post wasn't really on OUR situation, but on where I see a break down.

Friday, March 25, 2011


Just a quick post here. I have pretty much always had my Paladin as a tank. I haven't found it to be overly difficult to play, and the practice that I was getting leading our alt runs during ICC was helping me to get - I dare say - pretty good at it. With Cataclysm brought changes, but I'm happy to say that I have started raiding with him and I am getting pretty confident with him again, including using my CDs effectively and learning when to use my holy power for what. I've always been pretty if-y on using my Hands (Salv, Freedom, etc.) but I think I am getting a bit better with them too! Unfortunately, the masachist that I am, I have been slowly building him a holy set...

Thursday, March 24, 2011

A Look Back, and Updates!

I looked back at some previous posts over the last few days, specifically at I Don't Heal; I stand there and Regen!. This post was very...down i think is the right word. I know that I mentioned that I wasn't QQ'ing or anything of the sort just presenting my situation, however it still came off a little...I like the word down - so I thought I would update a bit on what I have experienced.

10/25 Difficulty Split

When Blizzard announced in Wrath that they were going to have 10 and 25mans dropping the same iLVL of loot, there was a LOT of noise about it. In response Blizzard made a ridiculous number of posts trying to assure people of their intent to make the two raid sizes more of a preference to the guild, rather than any sort of strategic choice. In theory this means that they were intending to make both 10 and 25mans of equal difficulty in terms of the fight itself, and excluding the logistics of running a larger raid. Originally Blizzard intended to reward people for their logistical effort of having 2.5 times more people in a group by awarding more loot PER PERSON. There was again a lot of noise about this, and eventually Blizzard backed off of this idea, going back to making the raids identical in nature, with absolutely no difference between one and the other, besides the number of people you bring (of course anyone that knows much about probability understands that having more pieces in total drop means a higher chance of seeing those elusive 5% drop rate items, knew I would get called out on that if I didn't mention that now!). So how did Blizzard do as a whole on making the raids balanced?

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Response to my response...

Okay so it's a little conceited to respond to your own post but honest the last post I did "Problems with Linear Progression" started a bit of discussion in the comments. I did think up a few points related to this topic while reading Rillfane's post that I also wanted to touch on, so here it goes:
Thank you to everyone that responded, I had a very strongly opinionated response to the contrary of my post, and I'm quite happy to see those as well!

One interesting thing that Blizzard did with ToC and ICC was they made the heroic gear from ToC better than the normal gear in ICC (iLVL 258 vs 251). This is something that they seem to have turned their back on in Cataclysm (Firelands gear from the list I have seen is higher iLVL than heroic Bot and BWD), however I think it's very important for a few reasons. (OMG not another list...)
  1. Blizzard has stated that the heroic modes are designed for progression "high-end" guilds, which means that they don't expect your average PVE player to clear hardmodes, and in fact hardly even see most of them, as they should only be clearing endgame normal mode bosses slightly before the release of the next tier. Unfortunately (or fortunately depending on your view point), they have gated heroics by requiring all normal mode bosses to die first (at least in that raid). This means that guilds like Paragon, Method, etc. still must spend a week clearing normal modes, which for them isn't that huge of a deal, but for guilds not QUITE as hardcore they may spend multiple lockouts getting there. I see the style of iLVL done with ToC and ICC as being a good way to allow those progressed guilds to get into their preferred level of raid a little faster, give them a gear boost so that if they were in heroics to start with, they can get there quickly again.
  2. I see this as a bit of a hybrid between the linear raid style and the "gear reset" (as it was called in one of the response comments), while it doesn't mean you have to climb from the very bottom rung of raids all the way step by step to the top, it does mean that there should always be two tiers of raids that stay quite important all the way through (again, think about all the Solace of the Defeated, etc. that were farmed once ICC was already out).
  3. It allows those guilds that worked really hard to get the handful of heroic bosses down to feel like they had more of an achievement by giving them an advantage over those guilds that up and decided to start raiding at the end of the last tier/beginning of the current tier.
Is my view skewed? Absolutely, it's my blog, not a newspaper article (which are SUPPOSED to be impartial, even though they rarely are), however I really see that the fully "on-rails" raiding scheme does more to punish new players that want to raid, by leaving them with the "entitlement-sloths" than it does to reward hardworking progression guilds.

I really do appreciate all comments, even if I do pick on some respondents :P As a final response to the response to my response (lost yet?) I really want to ask: How do you expect a new player to learn to raid if they are stuck in "Naxx" with all the "entitlement-sloths" that don't know how to/aren't capable raiders?

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Problems with "Linear Progression"

I started to respond to a post one of the bloggers I follow made, and then realized my response was going to end up as long as her post...So this seems like a better alternative: Asilwen this post is for you!

For those of you who don't want to read the post, basically what I got out of it (so this may not be the intended message), Asilwen states that she liked the BC style of raiding involving keys, attunement and the basic need to do the raids in order, even near the end, in order to go on to harder raids. I see many problems with this, and while I think they have been presented by a number of different authors (Weekly Marmot by Tankspot, Blizz Blueposters, and probably a ridiculous number of others) I decided I would post what my perspective is.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Boss Strategies

Well with 4.1 coming out in the next few months seems like a perfectly terrible time to start releasing Jubilance's strategies for each boss, I'll be working on these when I have a spare bit of time, which may mean I won't get very many done before 4.1. Don't forget either when reading these over that "no plan survives contact with the enemy" (-Helmuth von Moltke the Elder), so while we may say these are our strategies, it seems likely they change within the first minute after the pull, although they should last longer the more practiced we get with them.

How Important Is Your Community?

I had an unusual weekend. Normally my schedule dictates that I not be online much over the weekends (and given the proximity of exams, 2 yesterday, and 3 over the rest of the week, I probably shouldn't have been...), but this weekend I found myself online quite a bit. The most striking thing for me? My guild seemed to be deserted! Now don't get me wrong, we had our usual Alt-aholics, and the few people that don't ever seem to log off (that's right Mr. My-Boss-Lets-Me-Play-From-Work, I'm talking about you!), but there were very few others on.