Archive for the ‘raids’ Category

Guild Recruitment and benching

One of the things that must tax all guild manglement is how many balls you have to keep in the air at any one time.  For example, we cannot run progression raids without 10 players being present at the same time – we cannot run raids without ten players using toons of the appropriate type and skill at the same time.

Therefore recruitment takes place.

But after a while, it is discovered that recruitment has brought a sufficient number of players to the guild, all with the hopes of being part of the group of 10 – and yet there are only 10 spaces.  So we need to make sure that some people are happy to sit out.  And that no matter how many geared and skilled toons an individual has, they, as a player, do not get significantly more playtime than the rest of the team.

There is also the slightly tactically difficult position of wanting enough players who are more skilled than others to be in the group of 10 – in order to give the best chances of success, as balanced against getting all the players who are skilled (but possibly undergeared) to be in the raiding group so that as wide a group of players as possible is equipped to play in raids, in the event that the primary players are not.

So, benching the ones who need to take their turn so they do not hog the action and/or gear, no matter on what raiding alt, and benching the ones who are not good enough.  And there is the rub – why are they not good enough? Why is not all for the best in the best of all possible worlds?  Why is it that sometimes you have a fantastic raid makeup and others where you just want to rip the group to bits out of frustration….  I reckon there are a few distinct types that end up in a raid – and that it would be great if we admitted that we have all been one or other of these types (possibly not all, but even that is possible) and that none is generally wanted in a cohesive group:

The noob

There is a type that is not good enough because they lack experience at play, or play in the role.  This is a group that can improve, if given advice and encouragement, and possible some tips on how to hone their playstyle.

The runt

There is a type that is not good enough because they are undergeared – this is somewhat harder to judge – sometimes gear makes a lot of difference in performance, sometimes it is key to performance, and sometimes it seems that some can squeeze enormous results out of very little, depending on the class.

The Rebel

There is a type that is not good enough because they annoy, because they say the wrong thing at the wrong time, because they ruffle feathers and generally get up people’s noses – so that no matter how well they perform, the moment they do not excel, they are not good enough, because we can’t wait to point out where they got it wrong, because they have been such a thorn in the side of manglement.

The diva

There is a type that is so prominent that it is like a boil on the nose – something that catches your eye and irritates whenever you see it, and yet, do not underperform, in fact may overperform – but who somehow irritate, and who seem to upset the balance of the group – so that playing in a guild run is either manic or morose, depending on the mood of the diva concerned.

These are all types that you find in a raid, and somehow must accept them all, or refuse to embrace diversity – because no matter how much each tends to annoy, they are all part of the same spectrum – just at different points.  To refuse to allow them to play is to limit the range of experience that your guild has.  But the interesting part is to make sure that you don’t get all of them at once – that you move some to the easier content – the farm bosses, which will become far more difficult with some of the above present, and thus more of a challenge and less routine, but consequently, refreshingly difficult for those who know the ropes and could sleepwalk it…  And bench your more able players for this – reserving them for more complex fights, whether those able players are divas or rebels.  And biting your tongue again and again and again…

None of us wants to be identified with any of the four sterotypes above, and few would hope to be any of them – but we all have been, or will be at some time.  And each of us longs to be the reliable, yet cool raider who just gets on with the job – and considers ourselves to be so…

The busking, reliable one….

All images copyright Alex Williams from the babybarista website, created by Tim Kevan


Recruitment for Earthen Ring- EU

Following Korenwolf‘s post, here it is reproduced here – in case there is a difference in audience.

It seems that every time I am in town, there are numerous recruitment advertisements in trade.  And my own guild is one of them.  Unlike all the others I see, I can vouch for the friendly atmosphere of the guild – the desire that we all have to help each other out, the understanding we have when someone has a personal crisis that means they have to leave raid early, or take a raid break.  As a guild level 19, we have a large number of expert crafters, who can help you gem and enchant your gear – make potions for you, make food for you (we have both raid cauldron recipes) and generally help you put your best performance out.

Unlike some of the other guilds, we are happy to have you as a social member whilst you gear up – and if you show potential, you can apply to be a raider – when your DPS/tanking/healing skills can stand the current content we are working on.  If you have never tried raiding, but have the attitude that you pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and get back to the fight, then this would be an ideal place to start out.  We have comparatively short raids, but we seem to accomplish a fair amount in the time – our raiders learn quickly, and we hope you would too.  We like to respect one another, and we hope that you would like that atmosphere too.  Here follows the recruitment message

Immune to Psychology is a small friendly guild on Earthen Ring EU (Alliance side) with both a social aspect and 10-man raiding focus.  We need you to help us with beating up the big and the bad of Cataclysm.  Raiding on Wednesday, Friday and Sunday nights.

We are recruiting all roles but especially need melee and Healers. We are looking for skilled raiders who are committed to progression, know their class and always strive to improve. Cataclysm raid experience is helpful but not essential so long as you can show a knowledge of your class, practical application and have gear which is ready for raiding at the current level.

Raiding Schedule

Invites at 20:15
Pull at 20:30
Finish at 22:00 on Wednesday and Sunday, 22:30 on Friday
(All times given as server time)

Websites and other stuff

Check out our website for more information, policies and our application form

Categories: cataclysm, raids Tags: , , ,

Talents & Glyphs – Game – World of Warcraft

Talents & Glyphs – Game – World of Warcraft.


Although I have now signed up with a main spec of shadow, I still think about healing as holy – and wonder about whether I have made the right decision to leave it behind in this expansion.


Which is one of the reasons I read about Derevka (Garona US) at – and am thinking about updating my holy spec and glyph choices.


He seems not to have abandoned the use of Prayer of Healing yet – even though it is the sort of cast you use earlier in a raid tier, rather than later, where it doesn’t see quite so much use (people know where not to stand, and instinctively move out of fire before it is cast etc, and fights take a shorter amount of time. etc etc)

I don’t want to forget all I learned about holy healing – after all, I did it for about a year or so – and let my offspec slide into uselessness.  If I do that, I might as well have a PVP spec as offspec – they would see the same amount of use…

There is good news on the guild front – potentially more raids – which pleases me, as I am a 2-3 raids a week, every week sort of raider – less than that means I lose concentration/focus.  And means that my raiding experiece falls behind where I think it should be.  I’ll admit to being one of those people that sees a debuff dodging fight a few times before it sticks in the subconscious enough to be good at a role – I never was one for sight-reading at the piano after all.


So far, I have been to Baradin Hold twice – kills both times – first time was a first kill – much running around madly…

And Magmaw – as DPS.  The tactic of all players bar tanks together in a melee group, and one player at ranged really worked for the positioning of the column of fire – we managed to DPS down the adds, even with mind sear being nerfed.

Three priests in 10 – so three Hymns of Hope – all required.

And it felt like a solid kill.

Next was the Tron Council  – by the end of scheduled raid time,  I thought we had got the rhythm down – now we need to pick it up and do a little more and we are there.  Target switching needs to be slightly more focussed – but otherwise good – we were regularly at 50% with good healer mana, but it seemed to slide a bit round about boss number 7 – Arcanotron seems to be the easiest – and having a regular dedicated interrupt on the big damage casts is also helpful.

Categories: cataclysm, dps, raids, Squishy Tags: , ,

The Pink Pigtail Inn: I dinged 85 and went straight to Naxx

18/12/2010 1 comment

The Pink Pigtail Inn: I dinged 85 and went straight to Naxx.

Inspired by this post, I logged a suggestion on our guild forum, and we went and downed Marrowgar in record time…

And collected our points.  And what do points mean?


I am renewed!

Slightly disappointing to note that the Chakra: Renew will be disappearing in cataclysm – but understandable, since I always did like renew for its ability to stick on a player going out of range, and its *beat the lag*  ability.

Healed the hole of ICC10 with a druid on Wednesday as holy – and was utterly distraught to find that my mana regen has been nerfed.  Unfortunately, I was picked up by a valkyr whilst suffering from infest (which I could not heal myself through ofc) and died as they kicked the valk in the nadgers – on accepting my res, I buffed myself with the standard 3 buffs and was distraught to find mt regen seems nerfed – I can no longer recommence healing from the dead.  I even triggered my ice sliver and my fiend (who I still havn’t named – calling him Fiendy is really uninspired) and still was OOM.  Completely OOM.  That kill has to be closest kill in history – our other healer died, the spriest was stuck in the sword, the purple spirits were not killed and sploded on the tanks and melee and the last thing left killing Arthas was a warlock heroicly tanking and the last gasp of my renew ticking (empty blue bar, helpless, woe).

Dear Gods, if this mana regen is working as intended, Cataclysm will be painful.  I am overgeared for this content – I should have mana to spare and then some…

OTOH, we saved the dwagon in record time.  I was not the only one healing her, natch, but still.

Effective Raid Leadership: Theory X and Theory Y | Blacksen’s End

Effective Raid Leadership: Theory X and Theory Y | Blacksen’s End.

Reading this made me wish I had attended the lecture so I could explore the theory slighly more deeply – one of the greatest rewards about WoW apart from killing internet dragons is watching the group dynamics of a guild or raid group – who motivates whom and how – what the atmosphere is.

Motivating people to do what you would like them to do is a real skill – in the workplace, you have the motivating carrot of salary/promotion/payrise/praise and the stick of demotion/work starvation/dismissal – and more subtle versions of the stick so as to avoid litigation…

In a social arena like warcraft some of these factors really do not work – unless the individual has really no perspective of the place of a computer game in one’s existence…  Essentially, playing a computer game is something that is done with one’s spare time, for enjoyment – as contrasted with work, which is the main focus of an adult’s waking hours, which provides the finance for the roof over your head, the food on the table, the warmth of the house, and all the other slightly less essential pleasures of life, like telephones, televisions, holidays,l books, collections…

So, how to balance the guild?  If you have a guild that is friendly and social, but which does not feel like running dungeons/raids, and that is something you want to do, then perhaps a guild change is good for you.  Similarly, if you have a guild that centres around PvP and that is not your thing (or vice versa) then again, the guild might not be for you.

But the huge challenge is running a guild that does run raids – because then it is all about making 10+ people’s wishes come true – something which it is beyond the power of the individual to achieve in themselves.  All raiding is like this – which is why PuGs so seldom work, and fall apart often at an early stage.  And if a guild is reduced to one person running raids, setting them up, raid leading, preparing flasks, then the pressure on that individual can become unbearable – the pleasure they should themselves derive from playing a game can be negated – wiped out and put into deficit.

So how’s it done?

Short answer – lots of people can’t get it right – and lots write posts on it, some think it is a version of carrot and stick (method x) and guided liberal method (method y) or mixture of both.

I tend to fall on the method y – which relies, in my interpretation, on 1-5 people who motivate and praise, and very rarely censure, but who encourage all (minimum 10) to realise that their continued efforts are needed and appreciated, and that their continued commitment is needed so that all can benefit – so that each individual gives (time, effort, patience) for the benefit of the group – which sometimes that individual may not even be part of, but without the continued commitment to which the group itself will not exist.  Call it enlightened self-interest, if you would.

In a PuG, there is no such thing as the abstract idea of the Group – except where all the individuals have their abilities and self-interests coinciding.  Which is why when it gets difficult,  the PuG tends to fall apart – which is why progression content is impossible in a PuG – no-one can be on the cutting edge of raiding with people who lack that feeling of cohesion and determination to make it work, for the greater good of the group.

How to get that feeling of enlightened self interest in the heart of every raider on your team though?  Not solved that yet – except to say that the traditional workplace methods are less that completely effective – the stick/carrot approach has less weight.  If leading a raid is like cat herding then there’s something that has gone very wrong.  Because the only thing that herds cats consistently is food.  If they are hungry.

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