Friday, April 30, 2010

Lead it yourself Larísa!

Larísa wrote about her concern that 25 man raiding will disappear. And again. She writes how fondly she loves this kind of gameplay. However in her post she already mourns her lost gameplay of choice, giving up hope to keep it. I commented "As long as there are 25 people in the EU realms who want to do 25 mans, there will be a 25 mans guild [for you]." Her response was: "the problem isn’t the lack of willing raiders. It’s the lack of willing leaders. ... There might still be 25 man guilds like the one I have now around in cataclysm. But I’d dare say they’ll be much more rare. Undergeared isn’t exactly a common thing, is it?"

Yes, it's rare, but still I got in. Why? Because I run it. It is true that 25 man raiding will be more rare. It is true it will be harder to make. It is true that there will be less leaders. But why don't you be one? You could lead it!

I have very positive experience with "leading" Undergeared. There is not much to "lead". People are here because they want to be here. I can imagine that leading a "normal" guild is a nightmare. It's the common battle between employers and employees: the employees (raiders) want salary (loot) for as little effort as possible, while employers want the job done. But in Undergeared everyone is here to get the job done.

If 25 man raiding will provide no better loot, none of the average raiders will go there. Only 25-man enthusiasts will go. Leading them is easy. No reason why you couldn't do it. Especially since you have an established blog with thousands of like-minded readers. If you'd start such guild, your only problem would be "who goes to raid #1 and who goes #2".

Fight for what you want! Don't let your dreams slip away! Don't wait for others, do it yourself!


PS: if you don't understand why is it a post and not just a comment on Larísa's blog, you are beyond help.

29 comments:

Anonymous said...

Complaints like Larisa's are little more than childish temper tantrums. "My way to play is the best and Blizzard should reward me and encourage others to play my way". The underlying assumption is that *people do not like 25 man raids* and only do them because of the gear.

But the fact is 25 mans WILL still be the best rewarded raid type. Just not as must better as today (more drops per player instead of better gear). If 25 man raiding dies despite still being the fastest way to gear up, then the market has spoken loud and clear.

Maybe what Blizzard should do is make more incentive for people to 'Lead it themselves'. Provide some fluff for guild leaders of guilds who have cleared the latest 10/25 man raid (mounts, titles, whatever) and you'll probably get a few more people to give it a try.

Zeran said...

@Anonymous
I'd be willing to bet that they provide incentive for 25man guilds through guild experience that everyone has forgotten. Furthermore, 25man still has incentives (more loot, gold, points, etc.).

@the post
Good point, but I'm not sure you meant it in the way I'm interpreting it. If the better gear was the only thing convincing people to do 25man raids, then I welcome the death of 25man raiding. Why do I want to carry 10-15 muppets that don't want to be there through instances that are tuned to the point that the enrage timer is the only reason we need more than 10 people? That's right for a chance to roll against them for the dps trinket my healer has on his off spec.

Larísa said...

Cheers Gevlon! I'm kind of flattered that you suggest that I've got the potential to become a good guild leader. But it's definitely not something I'm planning for. Despite of my ramblings about what implications I fear that the upcoming changes might have for 25 man guilds, my own guild is still around and I hope we'll be for Cataclysm as well, even though I suspect that we'll have to struggle a little to fill the gaps that inevitable will come. So far I've seen no indication from the leadership that they plan to give up on 25 man raiding, thankfully enough.

I guess I have a tendency of "catastrophy thinking", planning for the worst, thinking "what if..." so I won't get entirely surprised and clueless when the lightening strikes.

The other issue is of course: would I make a decent guild leader? Maybe, maybe not. What speaks against me is the restrictions I have on my playing, not being online every day. Even though you may lead an organization from the distance, I still think it helps a lot if you're around a lot. Management by walking, even if it's virtual in this case. I just don't have the time to put into the game to do that. And besides - after leading people in real life it's actually relaxing and a very good change to be a foot soldier in game.

But you have a point though. People shouldn't be so reluctant and shy to try a leading role. It IS scary but at the same time very rewarding. You learn a ton by it. Not about wow as much as about yourself.

Narx said...

The one thing people seem to forget to factor into this as well are things like Guild Rewards from guild progression. It is entirely possible some of those rewards will not be available to 10man only guilds.

There is a lot of things we simply don't know still..

Entrak said...

Larisa: There's a difference in being a guild leader and a raid leader.

You don't have to abandon your own guild (which you don't seem to need to do,) to participate in 25-man raiding.

It's enough to start leading raids to 25-player content on the side. After a few runs, you'll know who of the puggers in your raid you want and who is only leeching of the effort of the rest.

Soon, you'll have a core-group of raiders and you'll only have to fill up 4-5 raidspots with new random puggers.

Atleast that's how my GDKP runs goes. (Despite the fact that I'm still stuck in Thailand and unable to raid, hehe)

Gevlon said...

@Larísa: if you don't organize it yourself you'll be always at the mercy of others. If they do and invite you, you're lucky. If they don't you're out.

@Entrak: unfortunately not. 25 and 10 mans share the lockout, so if her guild goes the 10-man way she'll have to choose. Raid with them on 10 or raid without them on 25.

Theoretically she could raid with 25 non-guildies and keep the guild tag but that's completely pointless.

Andru said...

"I have very positive experience with "leading" Undergeared. There is not much to "lead". People are here because they want to be here."

That also explains why you're progressing so slowly and barely can make any raids. It's true, there isn't much to lead when you're sharing a common goal. But, again, without enough "carrots" people will depend more and more on leadership.

Andru said...

The only thing I'm concerned with is that Blizzard don't seem to realise they're mixing reasons.


I've read a quote when a Blizzard rep said: "Well, 25-mans have a more 'epic' feeling, but 10 mans are easier to organize."

That's a bad way of arguing since it's comparing subjective advantages (ie, more 'epic' 'feeling', whatever that means, I do a mental eyeroll every time I read this crap on the official forums.) and objective advantages as, for example, logistic simplicity.


Enter the rational guild leader. Why would anyone do 25 mans if 10 is easier to lead?

There must be a very good reason for that to happen. Quantity of loot? Ok, but still... Less 'raid buff tetris'? Ok, fair point.

Right now, Blizzard has to pull a rabbit out of their hat to keep the appeal for 25s.

Individual players may be swayed by personal subjective feelings, but overall, the playerbase is not.

There's a very strong argument for my point. Twinking died despite now being officially supported. While people who loved twinking still exist, the playerbase just sent a very strong fist in the face of the twink community by saying 'We are not interested in your gameplay'.

Inquisitor said...

If everyone capable of running a raid in a humane manner is too worried about doing it wrong to try, the only people running raids will be those too arrogant or clueless to do it right.

Jerk Syndrome, but for raids. See most VoA pugs for an example.

sam said...

The problem is blizzard wants small raid groups because they are easier for people to form. Unfortunately nothing in thier game design creates any more leaders capable of forming these groups.

Leaders are a resource that make the tanking healing shortages seem minor and petty.

That and logical game devs at blizzard keep expecting the "social" player base to do what makes logical sense and they never do.

Even if they do offer better gear per person I think the average hard core or logical player will take the easier to form 10 mans that drop the same loot. 25 mans will have to drop an significant amount of extra loot to be worth the extra difficulty of running the bigger guild and raids.

Spinks said...

"@Larísa: if you don't organize it yourself you'll be always at the mercy of others. If they do and invite you, you're lucky. If they don't you're out."


You're absolutely right. But still, leading raids isn't fun for some people. So it then becomes a case of how much non-fun are you prepared to have in order to raid (which presumably is fun)?

Kristine Ask said...

Anyone who have tried leading a 10 man raidingguild as well as a 25 man raidingguild will know what a huge difference it is.

The relaxed attitude a 10 man guild can have toward recruitment, attendance and performance (as 10 mans are undoubtedly a lot easier on all accounts) is hard to maintain in a 25 man setting.

"Do it yourself" is a valid argument, but don't presume that just cause you managed to get 10 people to ramble into an instance together once a week - that you could get a successful 25 man raid with equal amount of effort.

Nils said...

If you find leading a raid easy, you're just not leading enough. That's my point of view. And I also lead 10 man raids of like-minded people from time to time.

Apart from that:
Leading a 25 man raid and participating as a foot soldier are two entirely different things. If you want to be a food soldier, because that's the play style you like, you have every reason to mourn the loss of 25 man raid leaders.

If you just want to loot: Become a raid leader.

Okrane S. said...

If organizing 25 mans is inherently not fun, then it seems to me that all raid-leaders actually welcome this change.

The only ones butthurt are the e-peen leechers who just show up for the farm raid to have leet gear to afk in.

From now on: if you moan about 25 mans sharing lockout and loot, you're nothing but a leeching e-peen hungry baddie upset he can't afk in dalaran in his exclusive ilevels which he got by piggybacking on some poor raidleader who was losing his mind.

Just a thought...

Andru said...

You're always saying that a leader isn't necessary. But what would happen if you left Undergeared? The whole project would fall apart.

Spinks said...

"The only ones butthurt are the e-peen leechers who just show up for the farm raid to have leet gear to afk in."


So everyone who isn't a raid leader is a leecher?

Andru said...

@ Okrane

I don't understand.

How can you extrapolate one's skill level on the basis of what they may or may not find fun?

Viki said...

"average raiders" linking to:
http://www.wowhead.com/npc=25806

I just fell from my chair laughing...

And true, Cataclysm will provide the incentive to have big, active guild - guild talents. You will get them faster and more if you have 20+ active players than if you have only 10.

When they told us about Guild development and talents, we heard the outcry it will kill small guilds. Now they show raid changes and people cry it will kill big raiding guilds... Seriously no matter what they do someone will cry.

And yeah, most people are too lazy and don't want any responsibility, that's why we have a lack of raid leaders, or tanks, or any role that means more than just "follow mindlessly".

25man pugging might die, but you didn't just go and PUG Black Temple back in TBC?

I also don't get it how people complain "officers will take 10 best and leave because they're sick of carrying other 15 who die in a fire". First, Cata will give no reason to those fire standers to go to 25, so quality of players applying to your guild will rise. There should be no reason for you to HATE the other 15 people and want to leave them in misery and run away with "best 10".

Okrane:
"The only ones butthurt are the e-peen leechers who just show up for the farm raid to have leet gear to afk in."
I love your comment, brings some fresh air into all the discussion, where it looks like another uproar: "Welfare epics QQ WOW catering to casuals QQ I can't show off in my T2 / Grand Marshal title and get insta-awe".

The amount of people who play not to have fun but to "impress their peers", especially by some no-skill feat is disgusting. The best of the best pvpers or raiders don't do it to show off how leet they are, they want to prove themselves they can beat it not everyone around "I'm better than thou". When you talk to some of really "the best" they're more humble than your average gearscore e-peener.

Anonymous said...

@Andru

To clarify, when Okrane said "leecher" I'm sure he didn't mean in terms of skill.

He meant that these people are "leeching" off of the hard work and effort of the raid leader, which is, you know, true. Even if these people are giving 100% during the raid itself, the raid leaders are more likely to be giving that 100%, seeing as people who take the time to organize raids are typically just that much more into raiding.

Anonymous said...

Yep. That's how it is in our 10 man (strict) guild runs. Nobody who is there doesn't want to do the content. Honestly, this might make me more likely to do 25-man than before... it's self selection.

Okrane S. said...

@spinks:
The raid-leaders are the ones impacted the most by this change.

If you enjoy the 25 mans organized by others, but are not willing to lead them when your current leader is burned out with it, then yes, you are a leecher.

@Andru
The ones moaning the most are those who say: "well the best 10 ppl in my guild will just leave to make a 10man guild and thus the guild will fall apart." which simply means they know that they wont be among the those 10.

In my eyes this "I like 25 mans" cries actually mean "I like hiding in the crowd while others carry me".




Again. As Gevlon said, as long as there are people enjoying 25 mans, there will still be 25man guilds, and if you enjoy 25 mans that much, be prepared to lead them.

Taemojitsu said...

All the fire-standers have no reason to fight Mimiron or Yogg-Saron in Ulduar, so the skilled players can go there right now without having to drag along people who don't want to be there.

Cataclysm will continue this successful model.

AndruX said...

Gevlon, I completely agree with your point about Undergeared "leading itself".

I run a 10-man strict guild (well, not completely strict, I allow my guildies to run VoA25 for PvP gear and T10 to round out their set bonuses, as well as older 25 man content). Anyway, the point is, the people in my guild are the people who want to see the content, not those who need to have better gear than others just to make themselves feel better but would ultimately rather be in 10 man raids.

Everyone in my guild is there because they want to be there, and the guild runs itself. Of course I provide leadership during raids, as any leader should. We also enforce attendance requirements and have application/trial member requirements similar to any 25-man guild.

The biggest problem that I've seen from people complaining about this change is all those people who equate 10-man raiding with: Those guilds who organize events by in-game calendar only, only 1 raid per month or whatever because they don't require anything of their members, and who will pug 5 people when that one raid a month finally arrives, because half the people who signed up blow it off.

The most hilarious comment of all about this change, Larisa has made herself: "I like getting loot from 25 man raids but I have more fun in 10 mans with my clique of friends." Yeah, so did I, and so I made my own 10 man guild. It feels good to be honest with myself about what I actually want.

I for one welcome this change. Not because it will allow me to get a higher quality of loot than I currently can, but because it will greatly affect my ability to recruit new members.

Anonymous said...

@Okrane S.
"The ones moaning the most are those who say: "well the best 10 ppl in my guild will just leave to make a 10man guild and thus the guild will fall apart." which simply means they know that they wont be among the those 10.

In my eyes this "I like 25 mans" cries actually mean "I like hiding in the crowd while others carry me".
"

So much this.

Reminds me of Gevlon post about "elite servers" and their impact on the community.
Check here:
http://greedygoblin.blogspot.com/2010/01/fall-of-leet-king.html

Does this sound any bell?
"The l33t: 8-9K DPS, EJ-copy and paste talent, plays night and day. Reads what the raid leader tells him to read and do what the raid leader tells him to do blindly. He is in a topguild, brag about his l33t DPS and only the raid leader knows why he is never assigned to interrupt or kiting job."

"the l33t couldn't tie his shoelace without the raid leader yelling it to him on vent."

"Common social: his "fairly progressed casual raiding guild" that gave him some frost badges/week + sometimes a shiny, suddenly loses its raid leader, class leaders, officers, main tank and some of the best DPS, who all went to hard server. While they can recruit enough bodies, strike that they still have enough bodies in the guild, the only boss they can see is Gormok (since he has no trash)."

Gevlon hope you can make more funny & insightful comments about the socials now as you predicted it all perfectly!

The uproar shows how many "socials" are there who don't lead raids because "I don't like leading lol" and who are afraid they'll be left behind because their guild will suddenly break apart when some players realize "we don't need to carry those socials to raid", and they will be among those left. So basically they're saying "I know raid leaders think they had to carry me and want to drop me".

That's the core, they think they didn't contribute enough to be taken along, yet they desire everyone else to think they are better than the others because "25 man raiding is real raiding and feels more heroic" and whatever stupid comment they make to post-justify the real reasons. Which are "no one said bigger raids are better than smaller raids it's just how MMO started, giving us no options, so first we adapted to 40 man Molten Core, then we adapted to TBC model where 25 man raiding were always the highest tier possible, then we adapted to WotLK where 25 man gave better loot".

So the reason is "it's better because it's how it always been" it's irrational argument that lies as the base for all "traditions", "customs" and other social mechanisms. People like stability and dislike change.

People like feeling better than others too. And dislike putting extra effort if they can skip it.

chase said...

The whole if you like 25's run 25's if you like 10's run 10's, needs to curl up in a fire and die.

I run both. They both feel very different, especially as a healer.

Instead of running both, I have to choose one or the other. They have effectively halved the amount of content I enjoy.

Larísa said...

@AndruX: I don't like when people put words into my mouth. I write a lot and very quickly and sometimes it's crap, but I can't recall writing anything like that in your quote, and it's definitely not my view.

I've never ever been loot-driven. I like both the 10 man and the 25 man format. What I like about 10-mans is that it's a more optimal size for group dynamics. It's easier to have everyone involved in discussions and decisionmaking, while this is impossible in a 25 man setting, which require a more dictator-like leading or else it won't work. On the other hand I think 25 man fights ARE more epic, cooler, more grandous, whatever you say, and I sort of enjoy being a small cog i a big machinery, as Spinks wrote about the other day. If I had to choose between the both formats I'd prefer 25 man in the long run. But it's NOT based on loot.

Andru said...

OK, I've been watching the comments and reading a lot about it. I have also lead a fairly successful 25 man guild in TBC, although I dropped it in Wotlk, since it was way too much work , which would have been OK, had I still been in University.

There is something nagging at me for a while, but I couldn't exactly point out what was bothering me about this argument, about everyone wanting to do 25s but not willing to lead are 'leechers' or some other unsavory types.

My previous post about raid leaders not wanting to get saddled with 25 man raiding is correct, but unfortunately, incomplete.

There are two types of games. 'Sandbox' games, like EvE, where players are encouraged to design their own difficulty (the game is as simple or as difficult as you want it to be), and 'Theme park' games like WoW, in which the burden of design falls on the game designers.

What's the point? Well, each game has attracted a certain demographic. 'Sandbox' games draw people who like freedom, 'Theme Park' draws players who like depth.

Conditioning the playerbase if you will. Small wonder then when a playerbase who's conditioned to 'theme parks' is suddenly told something that basically equates to: 'Go and make your own difficulty-raid 25s for no reason at all'. Their response, and my opinion, the correct one is: "No. YOU conditioned us to like to be spoon-fed content, YOU give us content or WE quit and go to someone who provides it."

Raid leaders were the rare persons who enjoyed the rides provided by 'theme park' game, but would rather have a hand in doing it. It's all the same for a raid leader whether they're doing 25s or 10s, from a subjective point, yet 10s are easier.

Then, why would a rational raid leader NOT do 10s?

Given half a chance, everyone will gravitate towards the simplest solution. Given no other incentive, raiding 25 will, simply put be irrational. And while individuals will sometimes behave irrationally, the playerbase, by and large, will behave rationally.

This means, that, given no further incentive, raiding 25 will become akin to: 2-manning leveling dungeons, twinking, undergeared, raiding vanilla/TBC content, and other types of 'free-invented difficulty' gameplay. Which, from the point of view of a 'theme park' game, is irrational.

I'm sad to see 25s go. Not for any reasons above, but from another point. Given the apparent trend for increased cellularity of the playerbase, it begs the question.

"Why bother with social gaming at all? Why not just make raid dungeons tuned for solo play?" After all, forcing the argument a bit, you can apply the same reasoning as the transition from 40 to 25 and from 25 to 10 to a supposed transition from 10 to 1.

I know, I'm commiting an informal fallacy.

Where does, however the transition from a MMORPG to a MORPG begin? If this is a successful business model, why don't we drop the MO part for good and go back to single-player CRPG?


To sum up. 'Theme park' conditioned players don't want to 'design' the game. They want to 'PLAY' the game.

Taemojitsu said...

Andru --
The introduction of the 10-person alternate format in WotLK and the attempt to push 10-person raids as a respected progression path in Cataclysm is driven by a simple idea: people want to play with their friends, and it seems that for many people the number of close friends they have in an MMO is closer to 10 than it is to 25 (or 40). On the other hand, the number of close friends that most people have in an MMO is probably closer to 10 than it is to 0. The conflict with the change is that while people want to play with their friends, raiding seems to be based on the idea of the absolute power or difficulty of a challenge at a particular point in a storyline/progression, instead of the relative challenge of how well you must play to accomplish something. (With game-defined challenges such as "Achievements" compared to player-defined challenges such as "Not forcing everyone to spend 5 hours watching Youtube videos" a separate issue probably mostly involving the social environment and emergent community values.)

Is "playing with friends" the objective of the game?

AndruX said...

@Larisa: I'll apologize if I took what you said out of context, however, that is what about 90% of people that don't like this change are complaining about...

If you're interested in raiding 25 man content for fun, find 24 other like-minded people and enjoy not raiding with people who don't like it but do it just for loot.

This category may even include your friends within your guild, but you will soon form bonds with the new people you play with. To loosely apply an analogy from real life, do you stay in a job because of the fear of the loss of co-worker friendships, even at the cost of furthering your career? Or do you realize that when you get a different job, you will gain new friends there to replace the old.

To each their own, and all that. My happiness comes not from getting access to better gear, but access to better players. I have a strong feeling this change will make people think more highly of 10 man guilds, and my guild is the only current 10-man strict guild on my server that raids as often as the average 25-man guild (and makes progress). This puts me in a pretty nice position when Cataclysm goes live.

When I started my 10-man guild, I came from a fairly well-progressed (4/5 ToGC pre-3.3) 25-man guild. I sure wish I could have had some of the players from that guild, but they made it clear to me that they wouldn't be interested in missing out on 25-man quality loot, even though they weren't having a lot of fun in the raids nor did they like the majority of personalities in the guild.

So I've made new friends, and I don't even miss the old guild after a few months, though I had been a part of it for over 2 years. I have no doubts others can do this too.

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