So, I’m going to be raiding someday soon™.
My Hunter is a max Jewelcrafter/Alchemist, so naturally I checked wowhead to see what the new Cauldrons were like, where to get the recipes, what materials would be needed, etc.
I didn’t find any cauldrons at all. It looked… it looked like each player would need to have their own specially-made Flask, with a 1 hour duration. Each flask takes some Mists herbs plus 1 Golden Lotus. Yes, each.
Spread over four hours of raiding, that would be 40 Golden Lotus per raid night for Flask buffs… minus the ones I wouldn’t need for my Alchemist mixologist buff.
Forty Golden Lotus? Holy shit.
Seeing that led me to go check into Raiding Consumables for Mists of Pandaria in general. Maybe I was missing something.
I sure as heck read back over it now.
There seem to be no Cauldrons. You want to raid with a Flask buff, you’ll need your own.
There are “Feasts” that the whole raid can eat and gain benefit from, but the best stats come from single-use food, not Feasts.
Even the most cursory glance at Raid Food shows that the mats each bite will take are immense.
It actually looks like Cooking mats were designed to consume all of the produce your farm can generate… meaning that if you want to make your own max quality food, you’ll need to do your farm every day, too.
Of course, if you’re using your farm to generate produce, you’re not plating Songbells for Spirit of Harmony.
This feels like severe culture shock.
Notice, I’m not saying I don’t LIKE it. I’m just saying this is gonna take some mental readjusting.
In Burning Crusade, each raider was responsible for bringing their own consumables, and damnit we had a LOT of them to bring.
In Burning Crusade, if you wanted to be as buffed as possible, you could bring with you Food buffs, Flasks, Scrolls, Sharpening Stones of various kinds, geez I can’t even remember it all anymore.
It felt like too much, but at the same time it felt good to have made the effort to be totally prepared. Does that make sense? It felt to have gone that extra mile, to have brought every conceiveable buff with you, it showed you really tried to be the best you could be..
At the same time, back then the mats were too expensive for one person to realistically supply the entire raid every raid night without going off the deep end. So everyone brought their own, OR would make arrangements to pay someone else/provide mats to someone else that could make raid buff stuff for them. And usually give them a tip.
The key there is, even if someone didn’t bring their own, everyone in the game acknowledged in some way that they were responsible for bringing their own shit to the party. If they didn’t it was their own fault. Same as if they came without having repaired first, or enchanted weapons and armor.
Northrend changed things up some, and by the time Cataclysm came around, most temporary buff items were dead and gone, and we were left with two: Flasks and Food.
Then those were made easier as well, A single-crafted Cauldron could supply an entire raid with Flasks, and a single-crafted Food could provide the whole raid with spec-specific buffs.
Instead of every player responsible for themselves, it became obvious that one person was expected to be able to supply everyone.
Now, maybe your group chose to pool food materials and cauldron materials, different people would bring flasks to feed the Alchemist, various people would fish to provide the mats for Feasts, but it was a HUGE shift in responsiblity.
Now we’re going back to individual responsibility?
So, what do we make of this?
It sure as heck looks like the materials for Flasks are gonna take more resources that one person should realistically be expected to provide alone every week… if this system were staying live the entire expansion.
Let me rephrase that.
I, as the only current Alchemist in my raid team, have no intention of spending time every week farming 40 Golden Lotus by flying around herbing, for the next year, so I can provide the entire raid team with Flasks for the night.
Last night, in order to see how much I would have to farm to reach that goal, I flew around for over two hours on my Druid in Kun Lai Summit, farming a tight route of ever-refreshing Snow Lilies.
I gathered massive quantities of Snow Lilies, probably 5000 gold worth easy if I hadn’t been Milling ’em. So I gathered mass quantities… and then consumed mass quantities.
In all that time, I got 3 Golden Lotus. THREE.
Okay, so there are more ways to gather Lotus than herbing.
I tested the Revered Tiller Enigma Seeds, planting ten as a test in my garden. Out of 10 planted Enigma Seeds, I got 1 Golden Lotus. Which is nice, but over a week doesn’t come close to 40.
Now, if I were to plant Songbells for Motes of Harmony, you are guaranteed one mote per Songbell every day. You can purchase 3 Golden Lotus with one Spirit of Harmony at the vendor in your faction-specific place in the Vale.
So, best case, say I spent 7 days a week planting 16 Songbells, harvesting them specifically for Golden Lotus and no other reason. I could get 1.6 Spirit a day, eleven Spirit of Harmony a week plus two motes left over. That comes close to what I’d need, 33 Golden Lotus. Close, but still no 40 Lotus Cigar.
You know something? I’m Transmute specced, and it’s come in very handy for Primal Diamond tranmutes, I’ve procced quite a few extra. But I bet if I were to be Flask specced, or if I had someone who was do the actual crafting, we might hit that 40 goal.
Good lord, I’m exhausted writing about it, let alone doing it every day! Holy crap! I am seriously questioning my commitment to raiding at this point.
This coupled with the way individual food buffs are more powerful that the new feasts leaves me thinking that Blizzard expects everyone to just start taking responsiblity for themselves, and the Banquets are meant for LFR kinds of situations or Heroics.
Or… alternatively, maybe this situation isn’t meant to last.
Are things the way they are right now because Blizzard wants the effort and commitment of crafting these food and flasks to be a challenge specifically aimed at progression raid teams racing for Realm Firsts?
Will we see, a few months down the line, the return of high level Cauldrons and Feasts for use once the competition for Realm and World Firsts is behind us and the time-challenged start getting ready for raids?
I don’t know, I haven’t been keeping track of any conversation about consumables in WoW. There might be reams already written about this, and Blue Posts, and it’s just passed me by.
I do feel kind of wierd. Like, I remember being here when the expansion came out, and I do have a level 90 Druid, and yet it feels like I have no idea what’s going on in the game.
I blame Pet Battles.
If you’re really committed to getting progression raiding accomplishments, I could see food and flasks simply being set up as one more challenge to test your commitment. What I can’t see is the system staying that way long term for everyone in the game who has come to love raiding, if that IS the current goal of consumables.
For all I know, this is just the way things are now.
I’m serious, I don’t want to say I lack commitment, but I can’t see farming 40 Golden Lotus every single week. I just don’t have that kind of time. I work a paying job all day, you know?
People bitch about having to do dailies, but there is an end goal there. Once yuo hit exalted, you can STOP.
I’m sitting here saying I just don’t have the time to farm raid mats, let alone do dailies on top of it.
Sure, short term I’ve been doing Tiller dailies… on one character, every day. Plus farming. NOTHING ELSE.
I cannot see doing farming, long term, every day for the rest of my game time to be raid ready. ‘
In the words of Cassie, I do not want to play a game where I feel guilty if I don’t log in to do my chores. That’s why we quit playing Animal Crossing, we got sick of having to log in every day to pull weeds.
As things stand, this is just the cost of raiding. Making that commitment in time to make the flasks and food.
Six months from now? Yeah, I don’t see maintaining that kind of momentum.
Now, if only the Agility food was bacon-based. And if my computer had smell-o-vision. Then maybe we could talk.
Sorry, Emeril. Had to say it.