Greedy Goblin

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Wishing and hoping

We make plans. We set goals. We evaluate chances.

Sometimes the chances are pretty bad. The rational move is to cancel it and do something else. Sometimes the goals are desired, so despite they are un-attainable, people try to reach them. They ignore the chances and just wish and hope. This is irrational thinking.

I wrote how last time our ICC25 ended: 6/12 in 3 hours. That's bad. I also wrote the criterias of a proper boost raid that included proper amount of boosters, a full raid, replacements and all people gemmed-enchanted.

According to these, on Wednesday I organized a boost 25-man. We were 23, only 4 healers. Since there was no way that at least 2 healers just spawn, I called the raid. There was no point starting. I left the raid, along with the most experienced tank and a few others. The rest did not want to do the rational thing and go to 10-men. They stayed together and started to fill the raid from the trade chat. Since it was impossible to run 10-men, I decided to join back (as a simple member) to see the upcoming disaster first hand.

Needless to say that the raid did exactly the same thing as before: 6/12 with Rotface being killed with half raid dead and while the names changed, the damage meter was similar to the one before:

Some of the /trade people were good, the others not, but they were overall a bad gaming experience: littering the chat, "gogogo", bitching with gearscore, going afk, ninjapulling. Next day we tried to continue, but after 40 mins standing idle, we had to give up and go to WG instead.

To evaluate this raid, let me ask my trusted friend, captain obvious:
  • If we don't change anything, the result won't change either. If we did 6/12 last week and do the same, we'll do 6/12
  • 5 healers won't heal PP, especially if some of them are new.
  • /trade people [intensive drumming] behave exactly like /trade people
  • wishing and hoping does not serve as proper preparation
  • You won't find /trade people to icc25 that have already killed the easy bosses. Or not people who worth more than an empty spot.
After the wasted 40 mins, WG and VoA we still had 1:10. I started a 10-man boost raid that run over 5 bosses, the weekly and Sister during this little time. What a difference.

Before I'd explain why was this raid doomed before it started, let me point out one big positive of the guild: the people were free to do what they wanted. While the idea was silly, they were free to find it out on their own. If it was a "proper" guild, I could just order them to do 10-mans and the people would be disgruntled thinking "we could have done 25!". This way no thorns could have left.

So, on the upcoming Wednesday I'll try to organize another 25-men boost raid. If it can't start, I just leave and will go to a 10-men. If the people want another 6/12, fine. But I guess it will be even worse than 6/12 as more booster quality people will choose to stay out. I will, for sure. My reasons:
  • We don't have enough good people to run a 25-man progression raid. So boost raid is the only option.
  • Boost raid needs boosters (obvious). The only way to get them is paying them, as they have better options like joining an established regular pug that clears 8/12 every week in 2.5 hours.
  • Boost raid needs healers. 4 booster+2 normal or 2 booster+5 normal or 0 booster + 8 normal. People are new, which means they get some ticks of bad. It means extra healing. DPS is low, so bosses have more time to do nasty things.
  • We won't be able to clear 10/12, let alone do some tries on Sindy in one day. So we'll have to continue next day. We can't do that with /trade people.
  • Also, /trade people are extremely annoying even when they do their job.
One thing I'm maybe at fault about these moderately successful raids (some people called 6/12 success to my absolute surprise): maybe choosing the word "magical" in my series about the asocial behavior with peers. I'm afraid some people really expect miracle here while there is "magic" here only in the sense of the "invisible hand": good performance gets reward (booster gold, gold bid pot share), while bad performance gets punishment (-300G, removal from raid, no invite). It will obviously force underperformers to improve or leave. Simply having our guild tag makes no one better player than he was before guild inv. The feedback received from the raid leaders, raiders that will change raiders to be better. The asocial atmosphere is needed because social people don't give such feedback, they are always nice and helpful and ready to blame failure on gear or bad luck.

PS: before you'd think only unsuccessful raids happen in The PuG:
If you want to be the next, join! Just don't forget the rules.


Eenheid said...

Even though this is new information and a 'useful update,' I and most other people are bored with the amount of the pug updates. This is a situation where Less (posts) is (going to generate) More (interest in the PuG). Notice the low number of comments...

Also, no moron is disappointing.

Squishalot said...

Good effort by Treeston's raid. But part of me wondered whether the lack of a 'moron' SS today was partly due to his use of 'G G G' in guild chat... (no offence intended to him, just an observation - isn't that a rule contravention?)

Gevlon said...

@Eenheid: I'm sorry that my content did not reached the standard you expect. Please turn to the cassa where your subscription fee is returned. Oh wait...

Anonymous said...

I have pugged extensively in the past (well before buff to ICC, roughly when lich king was first unveiled). I had completed the first 4 bosses on 5 different characters, entirely from pugs.

My experience in getting 'trade people' with a slither of intelligence was that it required not only a check over there gear (ungemmed/unenchanted people would be overlooked) but also a short discussion with them.

They have to be able to communicate in a way that implies that might have some idea how to play. Ask them some seemingly unimportant questions relevant to their class / the instance.

I found you can read a lot into someone's character by their ability to communicate. Broken English caused by it being a second language is generally distinguishable from lazy English.

Unknown said...

I actually find it quite amusing that this time Gevlon did reserve the first post for the MotD.
No offence, but things like 'I and most other people', the obvious 'I come here for deserved entertainment', 'low comment count threat' are entirely social concepts :)

Treeston said...

Given the results, wasn't my way (running the ICC raid even if it only went 6/12) the more efficient thing to do in the end? We ended up with 6 bosses worth of ICC25 loot instead of the 0 bosses we would have gotten with going 10man.
We ended up with 12 bosses worth of ICC10 loot now even though we did not do 10man on wednesday - the same result as would be expected if we had gone to do ICC10 on Wednesday.

In the end, me doing ICC25 was responsible for having 6 ICC25 bosses worth of loot instead of zero. Besides, every member made at least 800 gold from their pot share (more if they went second on some loot) for about 2.5 hours of work, leaving them at 320 gold per hour. (plus 12 frosts)

Gevlon said...

@Treeston: you could join the regular 8-9/12 PuG instead. This raid was an unpaid boost raid to boost those whose performance is not (yet) good enough to go ICC25. While 6 is more than 0, it's less than 8-9

Frederick said...

Again, I just can't help thinking that you have massively underestimated the difference in difficulty between 25 man Putricide and 10 man Putricide - they're not even in the same league. A lot of guilds (not great ones) on my server are 11/12 Heroic 10 man, 8/12 (no Prof) on 25 man. Admittedly, I do find this bizarre, since although it's a lot more difficult, if you can go 11/12 HM in 10 man, you should be able to do Putricide on 25 man. Unless it's just true that 10 man ICC is *absurdly* easy. (which it is)

Unknown said...


Fact that a guild can gather 10 good enough people for 11/12 10HC does not imply that they can gather 25 good enough people for Putricide-25.

The mechanics of Putricide-25 does not really allow 10 pro people to boost 15 others, who have high fail percentage on various mechanics.

Even if they gather 'rather good' other 15 people, the average fail chance of 25 man raid is roughly 150% greater than fail chance of 10 man raid, if individual fail chance is small (like 1%).

Also 'the bads' (people with ~20% fail chance) have a lot greater impact on 25 man raid than 10 man raid:
- put 1 bad (20% fail) with 9 good (0.5% fail) and you get roughly ~24% fail chance
- put 2 bads (20% fail) with 23 uberpro (0.1% fail) and you already get ~40% fail chance despite 1/10 > 2/25

Of course, in more detailed model one should add fail-saving chance of the 'pro people' and other details, but still general conclusion is that same 25 man encounter is harder than same 10 man encounter for respective raid groups with similar average individual skills.

Healer24 said...

@Frederick: That's not very hard to explain. Those guilds that you mention clearly have some very skilled players who get together for ten man progression. They still need fifteen more people to fill out a twenty five man raid, and it's clear from those numbers that those extra fifteen are nowhere near as skilled as the core ten man team.

DKS said...

Everytime someone says PP is a hard fight, I cry a little.

It's the same "Sometimes there's fire, step away from it. Sometimes an add spawns. Kill the add" fight.

Hug green.

Run away from red.

If it were me, I'd simply stop inviting people who fail on PP to any raids I organize in the PuG. I genuinely feel sorry when I hear about people wiping on it.

Eenheid said...

Gevlon, you have expressed interest in propagating asocial ideas as much as possible. If you wish for this project to have maximal success, you have a vested interest in providing interesting content, and constructive feedback may well help you achieve this.

I don't mind your sarcastic response (it was funny, too :)), but some people might be caused to leave less feedback in the future as a result of such a tepid reception. It is your blog, if you want to write about how you painted your bedroom that is your prerogative, but aren't you interested in providing content that will attract more readers?

Your moneymaking tips and social commentary have obviously attracted many readers -- and your projects are quite interesting as well. However, I believe that the overabundance of The Pug updates dilutes your content's quality somewhat.

@Jana -- when people provide constructive feedback in The Pug setting, this is seen as a mark of being asocial and good, by Gevlon.

When I provide feedback on his blog using *predicted* empirical data (low comment count likely correlates with lower interest, or am I wrong?), it is now a mark of me acting socially? What leads you to believe this?

Gevlon said...

@Eenheid: at first no, low comment count does not correlate with lower interest, or at least not with lower viewer count.

Also, while I'm interested in increasing reader count, not at the cost of writing something I don't find interesting. It would be stabbing the "be asocial" idea in the balls to write what people like to see, don't you think?

nehunter said...

Why was "Undergeared" so successful and "The Pug" so bad ?

I think it's because in Undergeared DPSers had to pass a very simple test : do close to max calculated dps for your class on the easiest encounter : the training dummy

Your project lacks a real initiation process.

You are just hoping that because of your rules things will get good.

Anonymous said...

I can understand with your philosophy, you would not want the 6/12 nor consider it a success. But you have the analytical ability to understand why they do:

Waddling through a heroic with a kingslayer tank getting his frosties is not challenging game play. ( It is Blizzard training people that their skill does not matter. ) But it is an MMO and people expect that extra effort results in benefits. ( Except for Undergeared, most look at someone trying to get into ICC with greens as just someone too lazy to run heroics. Discounting the two 264 crafted or BoE AH , anyone with less than 5T9 and 4 264 PVP just isnt willing to spend the effort to get geared. )

These people got 12 (or 17) badges and probably a few some gear. They also learned a bit more about pugger failure modes which may prove useful in the future. 6/12 may not be the best outcome, but it could easily be the best outcome available to them that week. When their guild was not able to do better, how is 6/12 ICC25 any different that running Nexus for badges? Grinding isn't great gameplay, but is commonly required in MMOs.

This guild is for people who value their schedule independence more than doing content, otherwise they would be in a guild with enough competent people who commit to a schedule and progress. That provides benefits and entails sacrifices. Some of the sacrifices are that depending on attendance, you may not get a decent ICC 25 run in a week.

Eenheid said...

@Gevlon: That's not that surprising to me -- I check the blog most nights, and since I am M/S concerning RSS feeds I have to come to the blog to see what is here. Do you have stats on how many people come via different methods?

Even if I came via RSS though, when I see a less interesting article I am still going to probably read it if I bothered to check the blog -- just lots of uninteresting articles would cause me to stop checking.

I don't think that an uninteresting article would hurt the blog that day, it would only in the long run. The best metric I can think of for how interested people are is response count.

I don't think that it would be contrary to asocial principles to post what people want to read, provided that YOU, personally, are rewarded by doing so.

Getting and maintaining readers helps spread asocial principles. Since you said you want to spread asocial principles, posting interesting content is in your own best interest.

However, if doing so is less fun for you, that very well could outweigh the benefit you gain from posting more interesting articles.

Rekanos said...

I know you're against using Ventrilo for various reasons, but I believe you should rethink your stance. It's much easier to tell someone to "Run away from the gas cloud" or "Stack on green" and avoid a wipe, than it is to wipe, tell the person why they wiped the raid, and hope someone else don't do it again.

Most PUGS that I join these days have a vent channel anyway, especially GDKP ones. It's like using a typewriter when you have a computer and printer right next to you.

Unknown said...


Phrases like 'I and most other people' have nothing to do with constructive asocial feedback.

Pulling the mythical 'other people' into the scene has about the same weight as 'experts say' in a MSM article, which does not mention a single real name of an 'expert' or any verifyable data sources.

You simply don't know what do 'other people' think or whether they are bored.

That's why such means of presenting opinion are entirely social, because mentioning 'other people' or 'experts' makes the presenters opinion 'stronger'.

Just an 'I am bored' is good enough for expressing that you are left in a subjective emotional state called 'bored' after reading this post.

Also the comment count does not relate overall 'interestingness' or 'entertainment-level' of a blog post/article. Especially in a blog, where hardcore M&S comments like 'first!!!' and 'lol wut?' are filtered out.

A contraversial post, which is filled with tons of provocative NLP, that emotionally attacks some minority or touches other 'socially painful' thematics, can produce hundreds of comments, if not filtered.

In the same time a well formed informal post that explains some idea in simple terms can often produce just a real life /nod or /agree reaction from reader without the need to post a comment.

nightgerbil said...

@ Treeston. Hey grats for the 6/12. I was wondering if any other leader would emerge to match gevlon. A little of my enthusaim for the pug died when i read how he aborted the last 6/12 run. Last week my guild wiped 6 times on hc saurfang(25). It was silly, its a boss we have on farm. When we lost people on rotface and fester as well (no oneshotting a boss with 5 people dead on hc isnt a success) our raid leader declared we werent ready for hc pp and we dropped it on normal. Notice he let us wipe. That for me is the big advantage of the guild I am in right now, with 36-40 raiders all signing for the raids, with afker/underperformers replaced between bosses and with no "memory" held over. I screwed up a few weeks ago, ninja'd pulled the bloodqueen. After we downed her the /w came I am replacing you. Last week I got distant land heroic, 2nd Bis pole arm for a survival hunter and did 6 bosses inside Icc before I was rotated out to give others a shot. I love being in a strong guild that can take a wipe, that will point out errors, help me to learn and only hold mistakes against me if I keep fking up.

I looked for treestons blog couldnt find it. Gonna work more on my hunter though. I think the Pug might well workout if a few more develop and it ceases to be the "greedy goblin show" just waiting for gevlon to burn out to end.

Anonymous said...

I don't understand the point of the PuG if you won't just PUG two healers to make a 25-man raid happen. You run GDKP, right? In my experience, many good players love GDKP. There are multiple GDKP ICC25 runs on both factions of my server every week. Mine has done as well as 10/12, and I know at least one has done some Heroic modes (other than Gunship).

I also find that PUG people in a GDKP run tend to behave better than PUG people in a 6/12 /roll PUG, especially if you state ahead of time that you will kick people for poor performance or bad behavior. And as you know, recruiting replacements to a GDKP run is much easier because you are essentially offering the replacement free gold (equal to 1/25th of the existing pot when he joins).

I really don't understand this booster idea. GDKP inherently has the booster thing built in. Just run GDKP ICC25s and PUG the last couple spots if need be. That's what I do every week, except that my "regulars" aren't my guild - they are people who started out as Trade PUGs who wanted to join a GDKP run. We've done as well as 10/12, and usually do 9/12 (when we get PP but not BQL). In a bad week, the payout is still over 2k for 3 hours of raiding (we've done over 4.5k twice).

Seriously, Gevlon, you need to reconsider why you have surrendered the inherent advantages of GDKP. I feel like you have advocated GDKP in the past, but have made running successful raids a lower priority than this guild experiment you have going on.

One last thing - if you are going to call off raids that have 23 good members, don't bother forming them. Let Treeston or someone take the reins for 25-man raiding. Again, you could have added two healers from Trade and probably had a successful raid. Instead, you call it, and some of your best raiders log off. You say that you are just one of many raid leaders, so prove it. Don't sabotage the raiding opportunities of others.

Gevlon said...

@Fedaykin96: GDKP has NO inmplemented booster's gold.

* /roll is a terrible loot system where your reward chance is directly proportional to the badness of your gear. The more upgrades you can get the more drops you can /roll. If we assume that in a properly organized run (where lolkids and ungemmed str hunters are not invited) better gear means better performance, reward is inversely proportional to performance.
* in normal gold bid, the gear is sold for gold, so the gear winner do not "win", he lost in gold what he won in gear. Of course it's not always true, in lack of competition you can get items below their value, but let's take the ideal case. The gold is distributed equally, everyone gets the same. So the reward is unrelated to performance.
* using boosters gold method, the high performers (boosters) get bonus for their high performance. Of course it's far from perfect as it's binary (you are a booster or not) but it's an acceptable first step.

Also, I can't call a raid as anyone is free to run one. I just don't bother to go another 6/25 and boost for free while suffering /trade people's behavior.

Aljabra said...

"It's much easier to tell someone to "Run away from the gas cloud" or "Stack on green" and avoid a wipe, than it is to wipe, tell the person why they wiped the raid, and hope someone else don't do it again."

You did happen to read the reasoning for the "no ventrilo" rule, didn't you? Because you just told the exact reason for it being here.
True, it is way easier to just tell someone or even everyone what to do at the moment they need to do it. It does really boosts the raid perfomance - to a point.
Point being the moment people stop thinking for themselves and wait for you to tell them, what is required of them. In fact, some people tend to start from that point.
In my old guild I was "the voice of the Ventrilo", that one guy, who somehow knows the encounter and tells others what to do next (our RL had eternal problems with the background noise, and was limited to typing things in between battles), so I do know, what happens, when the raid is on some easy, long time farmed boss, and the voice in ventrillo comes silent (as it's obvious, that this fight is well-known by the raid and by this time everyone know, what to do next, and it's really hard to keep talking for 4 hours straight).
It is a wipe, what happens then. Nearly inevitable wipe, and as silly, as wipe can be. People lose focus, they can't think, as they never had to. They become remote-controlled units without the remote control. Best ones is the ones, who can just stop and do nothing, worst ones is the ones who just start to do random things or repeat the last command they've heard. And, what's worst, even the best of the raiders are not immune to this, if you raid with someone issuing orders during the fight, you grow to depend on it, and what is really the worst part, it gets you even if you the one, who talks. You go silent and suddenly you don't know what to do next.

So, it's best to keep it off. Those, who can learn, will learn in silence even better, then when they can skip and just listen. Those, who can't, won't, but who need them anyway?

Magpie said...

If you are often finding shortages of either tanks and/or healers, have you considered offering gold to guildies that play a healer or tank roll during a booster raid? Much like the job market place, increased pay is required to land applicatants with skill sets that are scarce.

For example if you are paying boosters 100g/boss, perhaps offer 150g/boss for each designated tank or healer booster. And 50g/boss for (non-booster) participants.

And if you end up having an excess of tanks/healers, you could conduct a open/closed bid process whereby the most cost-effective players are selected.

Eenheid said...

@Jana: fair enough.

...Maybe I was aware of that fallacy of my argument and am just trying to convince Gevlon to post stuff more interesting to me...

Anonymous said...

Gevlon - When I say that GDKP already inherently supports boosters, I mean that everyone already gets paid, and there are often people in the raid who perform excellently and need little gear (if you need a bunch of gear, you're not boosting - you're raiding for gear, like everyone else). Those people generally experience a net inflow of gold.

I understand why /roll sucks; that's actually why I started my GDKP ICC25 group. I wasn't dying to make a bunch of gold, although my gold has gone from maybe 16k to almost 50k (just from raiding for a couple months), I just wanted to escape the stupidity that is /roll.

If someone comes to a GDKP run and "boosts" by performing well and not getting any gear, then they get a bunch of gold. If someone gets boosted then presumably they need gear and are bidders. If they got something (which is likely in a 9/12 run), then depending upon which and how many pieces, they may have a net outflow of gold, even after they get their split of the pot.

So the "boosters" get a nice chunk of gold and the less-geared people likely get some gear. To me, that is a pretty good system without having to make it less elegant by adding the booster's gold concept. And you avoid the potentially dramatic situations arising from declaring who is a booster and who is not.