Greedy Goblin

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

The place of PuG raiding

If you followed my blog, you saw PS-es of my WoW progression. First week I did 5/7 normal and 1/7 HC.

Dec 13:

Dec 14:
Dec 15:
Dec 20:
Dec 21:

I haven't killed HC Imperator yet, despite serious effort to do so. But I'm not behind my "schedule", as 4000 guilds killed it, and I killed my previous bosses in the 4-5K range. I'm sure it'll be down in a week or two.

But the post isn't about my progress. It's about the lack of progress of guilds. There are 25K guilds that killed HC Kargath (first boss). 20K of them are worse than me. Look at the server I'm on, EU-Arathor. There are 101 guilds listed. Only 9 is more progressed than me, who played with a random group. If we assume 20 raiders per guild, I'm in the top 1% of the players. I'm awesome.

Except I'm doing something that is considered lowly baseline activity. "PuG raiding" is kind of a swear word among good players. This is for a reason. No PuG can compete for world or even server firsts. Coordination is minimal, dedication is horrible, you can see quits after one wipe. I haven't killed Mar'gok HC, not to mention Mythic bosses (though there is an artificial barrier here, you can't cross-realm Mythic raid for some reason). Which is true? Am I awesome, or just some baseline player?

Both! What I do is literally accessible to anyone. It's a baseline activity. If you are a WoW player who can avoid standing in the fire, you can get where I am, now. Just queue up, follow the raid leader and while failguilds are struggling with Butcher, you get:

On the other hand 99% of the players fail to do this. How can they be so bad, how can they fail where literally anyone could succeed? Why am I a shining elite among them, despite doing nothing "elite-y"? Because I'm not pulled back by morons and slackers. A WoW raid is as good as its worse member. Place Arthasdklól next to 19 members of Paragon (the world first guild) and watch them being stuck on Butcher HC forever as the "4 fun peep" doesn't stack properly, giving the other cleave team 5 stacks. (telling him to stand in the corner is considered "not having him")

I'm sure that I'm not in the top 1% of the WoW players, if we'd measure player skill in an equal setting. I'm probably not even in the top 10%. I'm sure that all the guilds that are less progressed than me contain players better than me. But they are held back by M&S. A random PuG is disorganized. Its members are mediocre - by definition. You can't collect exceptional players into a PuG, this is something I've learned the hard way, wiping again and again on Mar'gok HC. But you can easily replace useless players with a mediocre one, oneshotting everything that needs mediocre gaming skill: gear-appropriate DPS and not standing in the bad too often. This is enough for 5/7 HC and gets you trough Ko'ragh HC with some wipes. It's definitely not good enough for Mar'gok where standing in the bad just once is enough to wipe the whole raid.

The PuG creates a baseline: guilds less progressed than it are useless. Yet they exist. Socials are clinging to their useless "friends". Guilds are needed when mediocre isn't good enough anymore. When you need coordination and exceptional play. If you want to be among the best - you must be among the best and not among literally random people. But until you get to that level, your place is the PuG and not some sub-PuG failguild.

If you are less progressed than me, you are probably not less skilled than me. You are doing it wrong. You should quit the pathetic excuse of a guild you're in and join PuGs for gear and later apply to guilds that are better than PuGs! You should get used to the rule: pull your weight or get out! Yes, sometimes you'll be replaced for failures. Don't get offended, learn from it. If the group leader fails or doesn't replace failers, leave and find better. That's all you need to get to the top 1%.


maxim said...

Actually you can collect good players in a PuG by exchanging realIDs.
That requires some social activity, though.

Being Mythic-capable requires a wee bit more than just not standing in fire, actually. It also needs approximately perfect rotations for various scenarios. And in some cases, these rotations are very much attention-heavy, to the point where a player that lacks training can simply not notice the fire, while staring at the buff/cooldown that is critical to his rotation timing.

You can't really learn these skills in LFR, because you simply don't have enough time to practice them there. The only real way to really learn these skills is to wipe over and over on a single boss that is actually a progression boss for your guild.
In other words, lower-level players need to learn in lower-level guilds, even if these guilds are below pug level progress.

Problem is, lower-level guilds tend to be unaware of this mission of theirs and impede this goal by doing all sorts of stupid things. So an alternative place to learn the raiding ropes would be very much desired :/

Anonymous said...

You claim it is the goal of the game to clear the content. but maybe for social guilds with friends it is their goal to complete content with their team. it is another nice experience to clear or archive things with friends. even if u know some are not so good. its still a very good experience if you finally manage the kill.
A lot ppl are not playing mmo for clearing content but for its main reason. social content.
You should try not to play every mmo solo

Gevlon said...

@maxim: I understand that a oneshot-heroic farmrun isn't the place for practicing for Mythic. But wiping because others do stupid is neither. Simply get heroic gear and apply to a low-mythic guild and wipe with them.

@Anonymous: if one wants to socialize, he can. But why do you have to raid with them? Chat with them if you like them on Facebook.

Ryanis said...

Because success with "bad" players is more rewarding.
Being good is not difficult. Helping the other progress is.

Anonymous said...


you still dont understand the point. why are MMO existing? Then you could make a SOLO game and meet in facebook chat. So you can roflstomp those nasty NPC and you are not any longer dependant on any other social interaction.
it is a teamgame.
ever played a teamgame in reallife? with friends?
DId you kick out good buddys if they seem to lack some skills? even if you have the best fun with them? and they make the gaming experience a great time? maybe it is not the best gaming experience just to clear content?

Gevlon said...

@Ryanis: helping M&S progress is indeed difficult. It's also very unrewarding and frustrating, the opposite of fun, because the M&S don't want advices, they want freebies. Telling them to fix their rotation will only make them defensive.

@Anonymous: of course I played team games. Until the team captain refused to replace "friends" who held us back.

Anonymous said...

@Gevlon, different players have different goals and diffferent expectations, so they have different reason to play the game.

Taking your team game experience as example: the team captain refusing to replace friends is not automatically wrong. Was the goal of the team to "progress" as much as possible? Then you are right. But if the goal of the team was to have fun with friends, he was right: sacrificing the friends would have gone against the primary goal of the team in the name of a secondary goal.

Some guilds don't exist to make progress, they exist for people wanting to play together, and most would rather have less progress than less social interactions with friends.

This means being in the 10th guild of your server could mean everything or nothing. Overall is likely a good position, but among the guilds seriously interested in the progress race is likely in the bottom tier.

Anonymous said...

So if you're doing something everyone can, and other people seemingly haven't, perhaps the issue there is that nobody wants to do it.

Let's face it, raiding is boring. It is, like most of WoW, a grind. I play in a guild because these are people I like to hang out with. We meet up out of game to go and see a movie, watch ice hockey or just have a night out on the town. I couldn't really do that with a pug.

At the end of the day most people play for the enjoyment of playing, only a small minority take it so seriously as if it's some life changing achievement to kill a bunch of bosses. I'm sure there's a whole variety of ways to get yourself to the top if your only goal is to be "the best", just most people really don;t care about that.

Anonymous said...

Just utilise laziness of blizzard in scalling raids to kill imperator hc:

Ryanis said...

I'm talking about personal satisfaction, not in-game reward.

"Telling them to fix their rotation will only make them defensive."
=> It probably depends how you ask them. If you make them understand that they will become better by following your advise/rule, most will follow. Some people understand fast... if you explain them long enough :).

Gevlon said...

I get that people want to spend time with friends. I just don't get why they waste their time raiding then?! Just hop on skype and chat!

Druur Monakh said...

@Gevlon "I get that people want to spend time with friends. I just don't get why they waste their time raiding then?! Just hop on skype and chat!"

Welcome to Humanity. Our socializing includes, but is not limited to, doing pointless things apart from chatting together, for the sake of doing pointless things apart from chatting together. IOW, your understanding of socializing is as limited as your understanding of winning a game.

That doesn't make your stance wrong, per se. But it also doesn't make it right.

Btw, while your WoW screenshots are impressive visually, you should explain why they are valid to your point. Not everyone in your readership has played WoW or its brethren, nor intends to do so.

You want to bring a controversial point across? It is up to you to make it relatable to your varied audience, not the other way around. Unless of course you're satisfied with preaching to an echo chamber of yes-men.

Anonymous said...

Tbh, I have not stepped inside a dungeon in WoD, let alone a raid, due not to bad PuG players, I am very used to them in the last however many years of healing and tanking PuGs, and they make it...interesting..and you get to see how good you really are at healing or tanking ;)

No, it is the "I blame anyone but me" people who put me off dungeons and raids 2-3 expacs ago. If I screw up the healing, I will say that it was my fault, I expect the same of DPSers

Anonymous said...

I run a guild and have been watching this closely. I agree you have to get rid of the bad players ASAP as they just make attempts more toxic. I would be interested though in knowing do you call from a collective pool of previous players and how many? How many yours a week do you raid?

Basil said...

Hitting up facebook and skype to talk is a form of pure socialization, however people have their fill of that eventually. "Doing something together" is subject to a higher threshold before people get tired of it.

Social guilds raiding together are more like a group of people going for a run than a group of people going for a race. You are essentially racing past these joggers and telling them that they shouldn't be running at all, they should just have some pure socialization activities instead.

Anonymous said...

661 ilvl -what you have- should be more than enough ilvl to kill Imperator HC. We had an avg of 650 on our first kill. PuGs seem to require 660. We easily boost our alts on Imperator HC, one shotting it.

The point you made though, is that a lot of people simply suck at gaming (some of those are M&S, some are just bad because their awareness sucks because of their UI, cause they're on heroine, or cause they had a concussion during a real life game, ...). Explode some mines in P1 and then stand there in complete awe how the healers are OOM. They must be shit? No, the healers are not (unless they are spam/sniping). Our healers had 645 ilvl when we killed this boss! You need to just follow the mechanics, and then this boss is easy. Your fines (or other form of punishments including tracking who sucks) are excellent to push people into the right direction.

"Place Arthasdklól next to 19 members of Paragon (the world first guild) and watch them being stuck on Butcher HC forever as the "4 fun peep" doesn't stack properly, giving the other cleave team 5 stacks. (telling him to stand in the corner is considered "not having him")"

Oh that's odd considering Arthasloldk has been boosted by guilds for a fee. I have boosted this type of player in various content patches, ranging from 200k to gold cap for boosts. I know people who can barely do Mythic who have gotten gold cap from boosting Garrosh. On Mythic (or old HC) Arthasloldk tags the boss and dies, gets his achievement/loot/mount, and we get our gold (payment in advance, of course). IOW what you wrote, is untrue. A bunch of good players can definately carry a bad. Or a few mediocre. The recent Blood Legion drama with Artemishowl tends to confirm this as well. notice the spreadsheet.

The MMO Champion thread is bullshit. You don't bring more healers. You kick out the people who stand in the traps (WHY carry such morons? I cannot understand), you bring healers who don't overheal and spam like crazy idiots, and then you kill the boss by following the rest of the mechanics [don't pop mines, don't stack with fixate, focus heal certain people, tank move out with debuff and/or raid moves a bit, install BigWigs for Branded, some WA and such help, and don't stand near tank or stand on top of each other when the waves come in P4, focus on add in P3 and pop DPS CDs in transitions]. It is not a difficult fight by a long stretch if you got 660+ which is what PuGs seem to demand.

HC and Normal have the advantage you can kick out anyone. The lower plateau is 10, the upper is 30. The rest is arbitrary. In Mythic you need exactly 20, so you cannot kick you must replace. In HC and Normal you can kick.

Anyway, what you are trying to prove has long been proven by OpenRaid PuGs. There's quite some bad PuGs there, but also quite some decent ones and a few good ones. In order to get into the good ones though you need to do some abacadabra.