This post has the potential to unleash rage and drama in those that read of it. You’ve been warned.

Nooo….. it’s not about the new BOE Blizzard store pet. Well, not MAINLY about the new Blizzard store pet.

As Steven Brust might say, one word on the new pet.

It is a pet. It will be in the Blizzard store. When you buy it with real money, dollars, euros, yen, what have you, it comes to you bind on equip. You can trade it. You can presumably wrap it in that pretty wrapping paper and mail it to a friend.

You can sell it for gold on the Auction House.

Yes. A Blizzard-sanctioned method of turning real money into virtual gold. You pays your money, you gets your in-game gold. And, depending on pet prices on your server, you takes your chances.

My comment is; so?

A few years ago, I’d probably give a shit. These days, the only victim I see is the account hacker that wants his virtual gold to be the only option you have to buy with your real money. And really, screw The Hacker.

The only point of interest I have in the project is to see how much your $10 will eventually be worth in virtual gold, based on the demand for this pet by people who don’t want to spend $10 of their own real money to get it.

My wife is one of those folks who will pay 20,000 gold for something, and that’s okay, but she already pays $15 a month in real money on the game, be damned if she’ll pay more. And more power to her.

I’m sure your opinion will likely differ, and thus, drama potential one.

But no, that’s not the potential drama I really wanted to talk about.

I was reading Officers Quarters on WoW Insider tonight, and a comment Scott Andrews made touched off this little fireworks ‘splosion in my brain housing group.

The Raid Finder is not just for the guildless. Guilds can also take advantage of this new feature in several ways. The first and most obvious is that it will allow your raiders to get practice time on bosses for your own normal-mode raids. Since you don’t get locked to the instance using the finder, you can see the mechanics ahead of time and still raid with your guild in the same week.

I read that, and for a moment, the aforementioned fireworks went all ‘splodie. Then I felt my brain actually jump the track (over the shark, most likely) and spin aimlessly for a little bit. I failed my SAN check, I tried to disbelieve the reality of the text I had just read, but I rolled a 1. Epic fail.

Scott clearly has spent some time thinking about this topic, and already internalized this, but I’m slow and I’ve been busy.  So maybe I’ve missed the discussion somehow on my feedreader. It’s possible, my feeds have been whittled down to a bare smidgen.

Is Blizzard really just about to release a tool that hardcore raiding guild officers will be able to use to require their members to raid hour after hour after hour in ‘does not count’ practise sessions to fine tune their performance before attempting a boss fight in a raid ‘for reals’?

And nobody has said squat?

Sure, I know that the loot drops won’t be as good as a ‘for reals’ raid, and I know that it will be easy peasy lemon squeazy mode, but it’s still the bare bones of the real raid, and as the game progresses, it’s still a tool that will continue to grow with the patches and expansions.

How did this slip under the radar?

If you were an officer in a hardcore raiding guild, and your guild was shaky on the mechanics of movement, target prioritization or mechanic flow for a particular boss encounter, are you telling me you would NOT have your raid members get in a few hours practise where it won’t count against your weekly attempt?

I’m sorry, maybe nobody cares anymore, but it wasn’t that long ago that players in hardcore raiding guilds were complaining bitterly about having to run both 25 person raids AND 10 person raids every single week in order to maximize their possible loot drops and point/token earnings. I believe quality of life and balance between game time and real time were becoming factors.

This may not be in quite the same ballpark, but it has the potential, in the first few weeks of any new raid, to be even worse. That raid team that really, really, REALLY wants to smoke the raid bosses first week… well, how many hours are they prepared to spend running the raid on what will be, for all intents and purposes, Practise Mode?

True? Not true? Molehill that just looks like a mountain?

You tell me.

16 Responses to “This is a drama post!”
  1. Tsudrats says:

    I agree with you.

    Sounds suspiciously like another mechanism that enhances the insidious culture that already exists … the one that I think of as ‘What do you mean you are not prepared to spend the equivalent of 2 out of every 7 days online????????????’

    So much for ‘work – life balance’

  2. Siobhann says:

    Molehill, unless Blizzard is stupid enough to limit attempts again rather than gating. Hardcore raiders will smoke the raid finder version in a couple attempts. Look at how easy the PvP raids are. That’s what Blizzard considers PUG difficulty. These guilds don’t typically even find normal mode raids that hard. It’s the heroic modes where they get stuck. Now, if Blizzard is stupid enough to limit hard mode attempts again, that’s where things might get ugly for the hardcore folks but frankly who cares? It’s like 0.001% of the player base. I mean, who cares if Method spends 40 hours a week in the Raid Finder and gets their hard mode kill one lockout sooner? They will have a new tool to meet their objectives and it’s up to them to manage member burnout. The rest of us will be gleefully gearing up in PUG raids and not grinding so many points in dungeons we’re sick of.

    • Tsudrats says:

      mmm good point. I’d half forgotten until I logged for yet another dungeon how tired I am of them as a grind. If there was something truly random about them them maybe it would be more enjoyable than a means to an end.

  3. Rohan says:

    The truly hardcore already have a practice mode: the Public Test Server.

    The rest of us have another practice mode, it’s called “wiping”.

    I really doubt that doing the raid finder version will help any but the weakest guilds. Maybe in the very first week, to get a general idea of mechanics. But generally, an hour of wiping on the boss will help a lot more than running the RaidFinder version every week.

  4. Theanorak says:

    I’m inclined to agree with Rohan and Siobhann

    If your guild environment is so far at that end of the scale, then you probably already have equivalent “requirements” — raiding the PTR, having an equivalently geared alt (of the same class?) to allow for more practice time, etc etc.

    For everyone else, it’ll be no different to VP capping: if you don’t want to do it, don’t be in a guild which requires it.

  5. Gameldar says:

    One example I’ve seen of hardcore raider’s use of the Raid Finder (Darksend on the Forum Junkies podcast in this case) – was that he’ll run the Raid Finder to be able to get his 4 piece bonus earlier – the stats might be woeful but the raid cooldown it provides would be worth the stats loss for progression. I guess I can see many top end guilds using the Raid Finder for that early on, but it’ll peter out.

  6. Kolan says:

    BBB,

    An interesting point. However as mentioned the “hard core” will probably not use it. Maybe the almost there will. Probably won’t effect me as I seldom raid anymore but might be good to get a look at some of the new content.

    On a side note my lovely wife has entered the blogosphere. If you get a chance have a look at http://tailoredhabitat.blogspot.com/

    It is not WoW related but any support or advice you have for a blogger starting out would be appreciated.

    Cheers

    Kol

  7. Solitha says:

    I agree with the bear on this one.

    I actually did post to General as well, but it seems to not be an “issue” for whatever reason. It wasn’t all that long ago we were forcefully limited to one downing per boss per week, because Blizzard didn’t like us feeling we HAD to run the content on multiple difficulties to stay competitive.

    And yet here we go back to multiple difficulties. Not only that, but the gear from RF will be higher than the new heroics. Thus, to be a “good little raider” you’ll need to basically do nothing other than Dragon Soul, either in a normal-mode raid with your guild, or in RF if you get passed over.

    As epic as the raid sounds, I can easily foresee the fastest content burnout ever.

  8. DarthRegis says:

    I tend to agree with the others that this will unlikely affect this hardcore raiders.

    If I were to focus on the negative effects, I would say it would most likely have a negative impact on the semi-casual/semi-dedicated raiders. Not quite hardcore league, but the type of guild that might push ‘x’ of 7 regular mode. Where they’re forced to “farm” the LFR tool to practice more and more on the bosses they can’t quite get down.

    With that said, I still think this will benefit more people than it will be a detriment to. The guildless, the small guilds who can’t get 10+ people online at any given time, the people who don’t quite have the gear/skill to be raiding normals, or whatever other reason they may not be able to raid.

    In regards to the pet, my feelings are very simple: If, for whatever reason, you don’t like it; don’t buy it. In game or with real currency.

  9. Berry says:

    I don’t think hardcore raiders will use it as much, I don’t believe there will be hardmodes available and if you have killed a boss using the LFR that week, you won’t get to roll on loot. And just for practise on the strat I think they use the PTR much more than the LFR later.

    As for the pet: Blizzard is a money making machine, that’s all it is and has been for a while now. I ran around laughing at everyone who got the lion flying mount and I will run around laughing again and again. And Blizz got me to a point where I will not even think to buy Diablo 3 even though I really really was excited about it. Somebody said in a forum that he doesn’t understand why people are so angry and that Blizzard only gets into the “virtual online business” that gold farmers inherit now to get their share and that this step is only natural. Well, I still think that buying pixels you don’t even really own for real money is bullshit. As long as they don’t sell items that actually have a use in the game I won’t say anything (just the laughing part) but this tradeable-goldmaking-pet is something where they start crossing a line.

    • Fangtastic says:

      I believe that while you can only get loot from LFR the first time you run it in a week it also has no impact on doing it the normal way.

      So if you did a raid using LFR and then went and did it with your guild, you would get loot from both. You would see loot drop in LFR. If you ran LFR again, you’d see no loot drop. Likewise, after LFR, if you did the raid the normal way, you would see loot drop off the boss (different, higher ilvl loot) and you’d get saved to the boss so you can’t fight the boss again the same week and thus can’t get (normal) loot off it twice.

  10. Ngita says:

    Molehill, as rohan said the ptr is the real practice server . A hardcore guild walks into raid finder. The poke the boss once or twice and it falls over dead. As practice its meaningless.

    Now casuals, they probably don’t have any sigficant amount of Heroic firelands drops, They will get upgrades from raid finder and will be well advised to do both. In addition they wont have spent time on ptr. But guess who keeps asking for the return of seperate lock outs for 10 and 25 on D&R forums…

  11. Fangtastic says:

    I too think this will have little to no effect on guilds that do not have trouble clearing normal mode. Guilds playing at that level do not induct people who find it difficult to move, not stand in fire etc. That being the case, they’d see little to no value in practice in the RFD raids as the RFD raids are easier than normal mode raids.

    Now if RFD allowed you to turn on heroic mode then I could see those guilds wanting to practice in here.

    As it stands, I think this tool is excellent and here is why:

    1) People who couldn’t raid before because of their work schedule or weak server community (some servers just don’t have very many good players available for pugging raids – Aerie Peak Horde is an example) now get to raid.

    2) People who run pug raids on their servers can now ask puggees to link their RFD achievements before taking them on. This improves everyone’s fun as it ensures everyone coming in has a basic understanding of how the fight works.

    3) People are new to the game or not very skilled get to play in a low pressure raid and develop their skills. 25 mans are generally easier for each individual than 10 mans are and people don’t feel like they’re being put on the spot as much with 24 other people to blend in with.

    4) ALTS! Between the new 5 mans and RFD, it will be easy and fun to gear up alts.

  12. I agree with the others who feel that this will not really be much of an issue for the hardcore guilds. They’ll likely plow through normal mode dungeons right quick, and spend all of their time thereafter trying to finish hard modes. If anything, maybe they’ll use it to help gear up alts that they’re bringing up, but beyond that I don’t see hardcore guilds using it as a practice tool. I’d just assume most guilds would go through normal or hard mode and use the existing lockout to get practice where it’s needed. What Mr. Andrews says is theoretically possible, but I don’t see it happening. For most guilds who decide to do a run together through the raid finder, I suspect it’ll be as a relaxing change of pace more than anything else.

  13. justJulienne says:

    mountain. real life mountain, not a mole hill at all.

    I spent hours gathering grinding researching and watching videos before each raid just so that we could go in with a group that were only half prepared. if our raid leader had been able to assign us to having to “practice” before we could perform I foresee a number of issues to include culling raid groups from the practice sessions.

    and… as a person who refuses to be party to raid guilds and the never ending grind for 5 more points of dps or a sexier voice in vent or… well… whatever culling tactics might be used, I have to pug all of my raids now and find the concept of running with raid guilds on practice mode to be a novel concept, and look forward to the challenge that might honestly be much easier and less painful than herding 24 cats into a pin and getting them all focused on the mouse at the end of the gate at the same time.

    I guess time will have to tell. as with all things WoW and MMO, there are always gains with the losses and losses with the gains… and if you can’t sort them out then kill ‘em all and let their Gods sort them out.

    peace.

  14. Tsudrats says:

    I know you like to slay internet dragons so thought I’d leave you one to slay

    http://www.drawastickman.com/

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