What does 3.2 mean for us? A guild leader’s perspective.

June 30, 2009 at 1:08 pm 18 comments

Of all the roles I fulfill in the World of Warcraft — shaman, healer, raider, recruiter, even blogger — the one I consider most important is guild leader.   I feel a tremendous amount of responsibility to those who wear my tag … not to mention the adorable, purple and blue themed Angry Totem Tabard© that recently replaced our traditional Maple Leaf.

(Contrary to popular belief, we are not changing our name to <Surreality, eh?>.  But we may take Canada Day off, since most of our American raiders are heading out of town for the weekend anyway…)

… Where was I going with this?

Oh, right.  Because I am, first and foremost, a guild leader, it should come as no real surprise that I view all of the upcoming game changes with one question in mind:

What does this mean for my guild?

Optional extension on raid lockouts

I’m not sure how to feel about this one.  As frustrating as it is to come within a few measly percent of defeating a new boss on the last attempt of the lockout, I like the sense of urgency that accompanies a looming reset.  Surreality downed Kael’thas and Mimiron on offnights, after the weeks’ raids were officially over.  If we’d had the option to extend the lockout, I’m sure we’d have taken it — but the same energy and determination that brought the guild together at the eleventh hour also contributed, massively, to our success.

I’m going to miss that.

I’m also not looking forward to the decision itself.  Do we extend the lockout for a week so we can progress through new hard-modes, even if it means losing a shot at loot from a boss we’ve already downed?  Flame Leviathan drops the best-in-slot DPS caster neck and boots, and I know there will some very disappointed mages, warlocks and shadow priests in my raid if we opt to extend.  And yet … if we’re going to make significant progress on other hard-modes or eventually unlock Algalon while raiding only 10 hours a week, we’re either going to have to pick and choose (doing some hard modes each week and forgoing others) or take advantage of the new option to extend.

My guildmembers are all adults, and very reasonable people.  No one is going to /gquit in a fit of pique or throw a temper tantrum if we end up skipping — or extending — a particular raid boss or hard-mode.  But, as a leader, I will struggle to reach an acceptable compromise and inevitably feel that I’ve let someone down.

Universal tier tokens

There will be no slot-specific tier tokens in the next raid instance, and all but the highest ilevel of T9 gear will be purchasable with Emblems of Triumph.

This is an interesting change, and one that I’m actually looking forward to since it will reduce the amount of loot that goes to off-specs or shards.  I imagine it will also minimize the impact of the RNG, marry the guild’s ilevel to its actual progression, and make farming the first few bosses of the instance  feel like less of a chore, because the loot they drop will still be useful.  (I’m assuming there’s some sort of linear progression to the Crusader’s Coliseum, but for all I know it will follows VoA’s “boss buffet” model.  There’s a spoiler-rich post on WoW.com that might shed some light on the subject, but — alas! — I can’t access it from work.)

I’m not sure yet how universal tier tokens will interact with my guild’s loot system.  We use EPGP, a ratio-based model of loot distribution that assigns a priority ranking (“PR”) to each raider that is equal to the amount of time they’ve put in (Effort Points, or “EP”) divided by the level and quality of the gear they’ve taken out (Gear Points, or “GP”).

It usually works out so that our more consistent raiders have a higher priority on new drops, simply by virtue their superior EP — but the fact that each token currently has limited usefulness means that our casual raiders are able to pick them up relatively quickly, in spite of a lower average PR.

The change from slot-specific to universal tier tokens may prevent some our more casual raiders from obtaining tier gear, or — coupled with the Emblem of Conquest change — it may have the opposite effect, as our core raiders farm the heroic dailies for Emblems of Triumph to purchase their tier tokens, maintaining PR for off-set drops like weapons, jewelery and trinkets.

BoP items tradeable for a small window of time (to others who were elligible to receive them)

I’m sure this will lead to item-selling in PuG raids.  A few of my guildmembers — brave souls who PuG’d into another guild’s Uld25 last night on alts — saw an early preview of this when a shaman in the hosting guild rolled on a ring with spellpower and spirit (!) and then nobly passed “to any guilded priest.”

We /scoffed at the move in guild chat.  What’s next? my boyfriend speculated.  Priests rolling on tanking shields and then passing to “any guilded paladin”?

It won’t be allowed in my guild.  All loot decisions will follow EPGP, and anyone caught selling or trading items will be /gremoved.  (Not that I expect this to happen, of course.  The closest thing we’ve had to loot drama since our crazy tankadin de-guilded — mid-SSC! — has been me complaining about losing Vulmir, the Northern Tempest three weeks in a row.  Granted, it’s off-spec for me … but I lost to another resto shaman, an ultra-casual enhancement shaman and a combat rogue who, together, raid less as melee than I do.  >.<

Of course, karma smiled on me the very next week when the Golden Saronite Dragon dropped from our first hardmode Flame Leviathan kill … and lo!, not an enhancement shaman or mace-rogue in sight!  Suffice it to say, I won’t be crying about Vulmir anymore.)

Paid faction changes

WTB Holy Paladin, PST!

No, really.  Our sole Healadin is in five-piece T8.5 and substantially all of our spellpower plate is going to a Death Knight’s holy set.  (Surely, Tirion will redeem him someday.  /cough)

Surely, I can lure just one of you humans or dwarves or spacegoats to the Dark Side!

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Entry filed under: WoW. Tags: , , .

An open question about PvE to PvP transfers (and a hitherto unpublished rant). Sarah Palin resigns to concentrate on her WoW blog.

18 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Light  |  June 30, 2009 at 2:26 pm

    Extensions on raid lockouts: good for guilds (we tend to do ours Sunday night. Yeah, it sucks.) bad for PUGs (oh, did I lock you in? SO SORRY)

    Universal tokens: I can see this as a problem for large guilds, as alts and casuals might get shoved out over mains and people who come more. Change the loot rules?

    BoP trades: oh, the ninjaing that is going to happen in PUGs now.

    I thought the intent was to make it easier for casuals. :) PUGs are going to be destroyed by dishonest people now.

    Reply
  • 2. Jacob  |  June 30, 2009 at 4:11 pm

    We’ll have to see more information about extensions, but I don’t think you’ll be able to lock other people in:

    - If I PUG a raid, myself and a lot of other people get saved to a particular raid ID.
    - If I choose not to extend my raid ID, then my personal raidinfo resets at the weekly reset, and I am not linked to any raid IDs.
    - If someone did choose to extend their raid info, the old raid ID is saved and that other person is linked to it… but I’m not linked to it.

    A design like this would make much more sense. If you extend your raid info, you lock yourself into last week’s raid, but you have no effect on people who are trying to get free of last week’s raid.

    Reply
  • 3. Elleiras  |  June 30, 2009 at 4:20 pm

    That design does make more sense. It also has some interesting implications…

    Hypothetically speaking, a guild clearing Ulduar through the Antechamber could save an alt to a particular raid ID, extend the alt’s raidinfo and then use the alt to sell the ID to another guild — perhaps one that is working on the Keepers on hard-mode and isn’t interested in “wasting time” on any of the earlier bosses.

    Reply
  • 4. Betty  |  June 30, 2009 at 4:56 pm

    @extended lockouts
    I notice in the screenshots there is a “remove extended lockout” button, it may only work until the new lockout starts but it would be interesting if you could extend your lockout by 1 day then remove it and do a normal clear that week also.

    Will certainly be interesting for progression races.

    @tradable BoPs
    I predict that this will change the loot rules for a number of guilds – the loot master will take all the items themselves until the end of the night. Once you’re done raiding for the night you distribute it. Means people will have to stick around for the entire raid but may speed things up a bit, or at the very least stop people passing on an item so they can roll on one that may or may not drop later.

    @universal tokens
    I don’t see this being a huge change, just means that once everything is on farm and new people are recruited they can gear faster

    @faction changes
    Sweet, means we have a larger pool of players to steal from.

    Reply
  • 5. Abi  |  June 30, 2009 at 10:56 pm

    I look forward to paying to transfer my 70 space goat mage to the horde side instead of leveling my 40 blood elf.. and then not leveling them anyway. It’s the principal, dammit!

    Reply
  • 6. *vlad*  |  July 1, 2009 at 4:55 am

    No Belf Paladins? I would have thought the Horde were inundated with them!

    Reply
  • 7. Orgauth  |  July 1, 2009 at 7:47 am

    Holding BoPs until end of night probably isn’t feasible, particularly if they follow the 2-hour model they’ve already implemented on items bought with “alternate currencies” (i.e. Jewelcrafter’s tokens, Cooking awards, Tier tokens, etc.).

    Selling Raid IDs? Check. Pad the guild bank via alts selling the ID. More loot dramas in PuGs? Check. Steering clear of those now. Universal tokens. Less sharding, less hoping the “right token for the right slot” drops – but more butthurt in guilds that have a herd of drama llamas.

    Reply
  • 8. leah  |  July 2, 2009 at 1:05 pm

    most belf paladins on horde side are either ret or to lesser degree prot. :/

    we have exactly 4 main spec holy pallies in our guild right now. one is MIA, one is dealing with some real life issues, one just came back to the game so is somewhat undergeared and we just recruited one literally last night. so until last night? we had one holy paladin in our raid maybe every other week?

    I’m not sure why either – pally healing is a lot more fun nowadays :/ (I have a holy paladin alt :P )

    Reply
    • 9. Elleiras  |  July 3, 2009 at 8:29 am

      This is definitely true of my server, too. We have one consistent holy paladin, and would love to pick up another — but all of our healing applications are from shamans, priests and druids, and all of our paladin applications are ret. Meanwhile, substantially all of our spellpower plate drops go to DE … :(

      Reply
  • 10. Abi  |  July 2, 2009 at 2:26 pm

    Completely off topic but I’d added the Warlock Q&A in its entirety per your request =)

    Reply
    • 11. Elleiras  |  July 2, 2009 at 2:26 pm

      I -adore- you.

      Reply
  • [...] Fel Fire looks at Patch 3.2 from the perspective of a guild leader. [...]

    Reply
  • [...] Fel Fire looks at Patch 3.2 from the perspective of a guild leader. [...]

    Reply
  • 14. nosecrusher  |  July 2, 2009 at 4:50 pm

    I was a PUG in a 25-Naxx last week and rolled on the Tier shoulders. Unfortunately, I came in second. The high roller, though, had just won some shoulders on the previous boss (I’m a druid, he’s a DK). So the ML said he couldn’t have both. The high roller tried to give them to a guildy, but the ML passed them on to me. Class act all the way.

    I’m not sure how the teir tokens will work out. On the one hand, I like it because folks can pick and choose and each token will always be put to use.

    On the other hand, there will never be a point that the Worlds Worst Roller (and there is one in every guild) can finally get their tier peices by default since everyone else has it already.

    Reply
    • 15. Abi  |  July 3, 2009 at 7:02 am

      There are some great loot systems that aren’t roll-based but I guess if you’re pugging it that’s out of the question.

      Reply
  • 16. Rik  |  July 3, 2009 at 12:16 am

    How can you complain about losing the roll on Vulmir? My guild has been clearing Ulduar since it was implemented (well with the exception of Yogg), and that frikkin mace has yet to drop only once for us. Seeing people elsewhere get this for offspec makes me want to tear my eyes out.

    Rant over.

    Reply
  • 17. The Daily Quest: Ain’t no silverback girl |  |  July 3, 2009 at 3:06 am

    [...] Fel Fire looks at Patch 3.2 from the perspective of a guild leader. [...]

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  • 18. Dick van der Velde  |  July 3, 2009 at 3:37 am

    I’m not worried about the ninjaing a lot… raid mostly with guild and when joining a pug I prefer to have master looter anyway…

    Reply

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