I’m Doing It Wrong, and I’m OK With That

Kurn recently wrote her thoughts on 4.2 in which she railed against the VP system which provides more valor (and faster gear upgrades) to those who run troll dungeons weekly than those progressing in raids and ignoring the 5-man scene. Scrolling through my twitter feed later in the day I came across this tweet by the lovely Oestrus:

Well I’m standing on the mountaintop and saying it for everyone to hear: I’m doing it wrong!

Or am I?

There’s always this fine line between what a raid team can and should ask of its raid team and what it can’t. If my raid leader came to me and said “it is mandatory for you to cap out your valor points or we’ll give your raid slot to someone else” I might re-consider my stance on ignoring 5-mans. However, will it actually make me run 5-mans? Would I go run them just to keep my raid slot? Today, when I’m free for the summer and kinda doing my own thing in terms of research, housework, and game-play, I might.

But when the Fall rolls around and I’m no longer a lazy student taking off a summer, I’d offer to review applicants instead. You see my raid time is my game-time. 9 hours a week hasn’t always been much to me, but it’s also been bloody impossible and a commitment I couldn’t keep even when I sincerely made every effort to be there. I make that commitment because I love slaying internet dragons, but depending on the time of the year and my other commitments, it can be too much to handle.

Which brings us to our game-time. If you read Syl today, you might have noticed an article about enjoying the parts of the game that are fun. This is different for every person, but there’s 2 main areas of WoW that I truly enjoy: raiding, questing/leveling. I don’t particularly like 5-mans. Oh sure, they’re a boat load of fun when you’re lazing away an afternoon with a party of friends, but I haven’t had that kind of 5-man experience since Wrath. Even then, I mainly became involved in running a ton of 5-mans because I was an add tank, and learning to control groups of adds is way more productive (and less incriminating) when pursued against strangers and not enacted in your raid group where adds are eating off the healer’s face causing a wipe. 25 people mad at you is 100 times more scary than 4 suckers you talked into running Violet Hold… just sayin’.

When I’m killing time waiting for my raid, or just finished a nice, tight 3-hour session, the last thing I want to do is put up with shit from stangers. Ok, even on my best day I don’t want to put up with shit from stangers. That’s all 5-mans are for me at this point: my ability to put up with crap (or silence) from random people in the hopes that my experience/gear gained will be greater than the hassle that the entire experience put me through.

Before, that wasn’t so much a problem. When attunement was big, at least the people you were running the instance with generally had the same goals. Now you just get a bunch of suckers together hoping that the dungeon will get finished as quickly as possible so that the potential for shit-swapping will be drastically reduced. And this is where Blizzard expects me to farm Valor Points for my (currently) 4 pieces of gear.

Screw that. Although it can be argued that I’m letting down my team by not providing my ultimate best in gear options as soon as possible I just have a hard time buying that story. Didn’t we all read the story about Ulduar in blues? While gear is a factor in raid success, it sure as heck isn’t the primary factor in whether or not my guild downs a boss. If that was the case, our poor paladin who hasn’t had a bracer upgrade since Cataclysm released would be destroying our chances of killing Ragnaros.

Don’t get me wrong: I’d love to be valor capped every week and have all that fresh, shiny loot that much faster. However, I’m just not willing to sacrifice lord knows how much time (you never really know until you die doing it) in the nebulous hope that my dungeon group will successfully kill things and I will walk away with some extra numbers in my character screen when I can just as easily pursue an activity I already enjoy and am committed to in order to gain those same little tokens, albeit more slowly.

In the end, a single piece of gear is not going to make or break my raid team’s chances. Hell, if every member of my raid team followed my philosophy our combined 10 pieces of gear would not break our chances. Giving into the fallacy that slight gear upgrades will make or break the ability of your team to down bosses is ludicrous, and I refuse to subscribe to it. If you love those 5-mans, love getting upgrades, and want everything as soon as possible: by all means, knock yourself out and send me the link :) I love seeing people get new shinies!

Ultimately, you need to gain that gear relies primarily on your guild. I think we all have some kind of social contract with our guild, much as Wugan discussed. I don’t feel that capping out any type of points was a part of my contract with my guild, implied or otherwise. Others may very well be in guilds where capping out your valor points every single week is absolutely required and implicitly stated either in the guild policies or in an addendum (what I generally refer to as an “oh shit, we haven’t said anything about wearing tabards, make a forum post!) If you’re in the latter type of guild, damn skippy you should be busting your ass to get those valor points, because that’s the type of tyrannical guild experience you signed up for.

But if you haven’t and your gear isn’t heroic level blues, then feel free to do it wrong. You’ve got a partner in crime.

48 thoughts on “I’m Doing It Wrong, and I’m OK With That

  1. Great post!

    Though there is a social contract to being part of a raid team, WoW is a game. Sinking hours into something you do not find enjoyable to get marginal gear upgrades a little faster doesn’t make any sense to me. If I had forced myself to run heroics for badges/points all through Wrath and Cata so far I probably would have ended up quitting the game. I play video games for fun. I do not do things I consider chores. I am also of the belief that one or two pieces of gear does not make or break a boss kill.

    The comments of Kurn’s post got into something I think is important. There are different ways to improve yourself and show you are dedicated. Some people cap VP and get their upgrades as soon as possible. I don’t do this, but I do: review my logs after every raid and look for ways to improve, keep up to date on all my class changes,regem and reforge my gear to optimize it, respec countless times to improve my performance, research fights and try to put out every little bit of healing I possibly can without standing in the bad. These things take a lot of time and effort as well, but I enjoy them so I do them. I also consider these things more beneficial than 1 extra piece of gear and wish more people would do these things rather than focus so heavily on item level.

    • I'm sure that their are some guilds and teams that consider this aspect of the game a key component in their raiding agendas and do require it. While at one time (and sometime in the future) I might have subscribed to that notion, I am definitely in a time-crunch phase of my life at this time, and spending hours on things I don't enjoy that may provide a slight increase in my performance don't seem as necessary as they used to. Like you, I feel that improving your overall understanding of your class and own performance can be much more beneficial overall to the success of your team.

  2. It's really interesting to see the community's reaction to my opinions and the idea of capping VP vs. not capping VP.

    I think all raiders feel the pressure to do so.

    I don't think all raiders give in to the pressure, mostly because they recognize that 5-mans aren't their thing. I capped this week on two characters, but not because I enjoyed running the… let's see… three on the Apotheosis paladin and SIX on the baby paladin… right, not because I enjoyed running the NINE completed Zandalari dungeons that I ran (not to mention three, THREE, Zandalari failures on the baby pally!). I capped VP for two reasons:

    1) The baby paladin needs gear and is actually fighting for a raid spot in her guild. She's still an applicant and I want to make sure she gets as many upgrades as she can as quickly as she can. I loathe that I'm having to do 5-mans to do so.

    2) The "adult" paladin… well, I'm a raider and I feel that I should be capped and I feel as though I need to set an example for the guild. I killed 4 bosses (Occu'thar, Shannox, Beth'tilac and Rhyolith) on 25-man this week so I ran three Zandalari dungeons with some guildies this afternoon, which was nice (I like the people I ran with) but so boring and dull and, well, stupid. There's no reason to do the dungeons at all except for VP, so I ran the dungeons and really, didn't enjoy the experience.

    So I feel as though I should set the example since I'm the GM and all, but it's not a huge priority for me and I downright dread doing it again next week.

    I would never, ever ask people to VP cap. I would assume many would get close on their own, but demanding such a thing would be ludicrous and I would probably have a mass /gquit on my hands.

    I love that a lot of my raiders DO get VP capped. But I wouldn't insist upon it and I didn't cap last week and might not cap next week.

    I think all raiders who raid through a certain amount of content ought to be VP capped — through raids. I do not think that dungeons should supplement raiding at all. I have not run a dungeon for the sheer joy of it since Strat Undead in Vanilla. I truly loved that dungeon and adored the 45m run. But I am not a 5-man dungeon type of girl.

    So I'm not "doing it wrong" in the way Oestrus stated — at least not this week — but I'm okay with "doing it wrong", to a point. I just wish things worked very differently than they do now and I don't really have a solution in mind, unfortunately.
    My recent post World of Zandalaricraft?

    • I think it's an overall failure of the point system to keep many raid toons current without, perhaps, all of them actually raiding. I actually kind of liked the original system which got me to the end of the previous tier's content so that I could have a fighting chance to being considered if I ever wanted to change characters during an expansion. However, I don't particularly like getting a portion of my gear from a vendor. I don't like having to do a non-primary activity to reach some nebulous number which can be reached by a nefarious system which I don't particularly enjoy on a good day.

      It's not that I'm anti-VP per se, I just refuse to admit that failing to do every little thing I don't like can really doom my raid team. If you want to do these things, more power to you! Just don't hold me to your standards or put me in the bad box because I'm not meeting your expectations about how the game should be played.

  3. /cheer
    The only expectations about how I should or should not be playing that matter to me are my own expectations and my guild's expectations.
    MY expectation is that this is a game that I can, and will, play in whatever way is the most enjoyable for me. This means I won't necessarily get valor-capped each week, nor will I particularly care if I don't.
    As long as I am living up to my own guild's expectations for preparedness, I have NO obligation whatsoever to meet the more demanding standards that people who are raiding in more competitive, "bleeding edge" type environments might expect of themselves and their fellows.

    • I just don't see the problem with playing the game at your own pace. I have every expectation that our raid team will clear every encounter on normal and HM this expansion, but we don't do it by watching our standings every day. Our schedule remains the same regardless of whether or not new content is on the horizon or newly released. Sometimes I play more hours than my flat 9 hours, sometimes not. Often, that extra time is spent on an alt so that I can bumble around and not have to meet any goals. I just don't see how that makes me a bad raider, when I am perfectly capable of hitting all my buttons, staying out of the bad shit, and pretty much staying on an even-keel with my raid team in terms of gear.

      • Aye, that's exactly the sort of thing I meant, and that I saw you expressing in the post itself :D

    • I whole-heartedly agree – the game is supposed to be fun. I refuse to put myself through pug Zul runs just for valor points; my guild does not demand it and for our level of casual raiding it is not necessary. When playing turns into a stressful, competition-driven second job, I think its time to take a step back.

  4. Not to fall back on the old cliché of social contracts, but I think what your guild has expected of its raiders in the past is the best measure of what to express in the future. If it's been a hardcore guild with high expectations about Tol Barad trinkets, gear scores pre-raid, attendance, and the like, then I wouldn't be surprised to find they expected people to be point capped. However, if it's been a more lenient guild, more casually working through content with lower expectations of its raiders, I'd think that would fit the future, too, and should only be changed after much discussion and deliberation.

    That said, I skipped my Firelands dailies yesterday. I'm not raiding at the moment and don't know when or if I will be, but after my first day of druids of the talon dailies – which I really enjoyed, I just didn't want to do them again. I'm planning a fuller post on that tomorrow, though. Great post!
    My recent post Ah, Weekends

    • I'm sure my guild would love for me to VP capped. I'd love to be VP capped. But I'm also sure that my guild isn't going to require this to be raid-ready. I'm sure most guilds are in the same boat: sure it'd be nice, but they'd rather they keep their raiders and not burn them out on activities they don't have time to do or don't enjoy.

      It's the same argument that often crops up over cookie cutter vs. modified or "fun" variations of raiding toons (frost mages come to mine). Some guilds will be dead-set against this, some won't. But it's my choice as a player whether I want to be involved in a guild that would require me to have the "perfect" spec, and it's my guild's choice as to whether or not such a thing exists and they want to enforce it.

  5. I'm doing it wrong too and I don't care. During the week, I don't have time to do dailies + run a heroic + be in time for the raid. I'd rather do a couple of battlegrounds which last less and which I can just leave without hurting the team. And during the weekends, when I do have more time… honestly, I'd rather poke my foot with a fork than PuG heroics. It's ironic, since I loved pugging in the beginning of Wrath, when everyone hated it… but I just got bored. Guild runs seem pretty far apart too, so I'm just waiting to get a couple more bosses on farm so I can cap my VP that way.

    (Oh, and I also don't do my dailies every day. The horror! My best friend in the guild and former RL is horrified by my slacking :P)

    • Well now you know you have a twin. :) Sometimes those dailies get done, and sometimes not! It just all depends on the day and my available play-time.

  6. "…providing my ultimate best in gear options as soon as possible"

    Many a great raider (and pvpers too) will tell you it's not all about gear. some people mistake being hardcore with having all the best gear asap – usually raiders that are just so deep, deep in their own gear and progress-frenzy, that they've forgotten what encounters really are about. they have this self-imposed pressure and compulsion and they pass that on to you. that's all it is really. we're still talking about WoW here and as long as your guild is not something like Ensidia, who need to squeeze out every last bit at all costs, you can take things a little more level-headed..

    That's where your choice comes into play: pick the sort of raid guild that suits you in terms of speed, in terms of requirements, in terms of mindset. my own guild had pretty strict requirements, but we knew that bosses don't rise or fall over one person missing a gem or not doing his dailies. that's nonsense and it's not how encounters are meant to be played anyway. you're not supposed to have all the great gear BEFORE setting one foot in the dungeon – even if with all the 5mans etc. they've obviously given people the impression that you cannot omg-do anything without farming them all first. I remember in TBC they told us how you rly need T5/T6 for upper Black Temple and then we watched the Illidan world first kill and the raid was wearing craftables and blues…LOL. that's exactly what I mean. performance is made of many things and gear is just one smaller part.

    No offense intended ot those who simply enjoy to go mad and speed into everything at once, of course – but it's not what you must do in order to be a successful raid guild in WoW. I feel really sorry for all those that are so immensely pressured to min/max and cookie cut and grind themselves into a coma these days, just so they can feel ready to kill an entry boss in a new instance. that's just the way WoW has gone, has it not.

    Kurn has a point though: depending on your guild rank, you're forced to set an example. you cannot ask for standards you don't meet yourself. but that's something for officers and GMs and personally, while I always made speed to meet most of our guild standards, I was more patient with other players. IMO it's about keeping a balance.

    • I definitely don't want to imply (and I tried not to) that I think those that are absolutely dedicated to capping out their VP are doing it wrong either! I'm afraid that no one would believe me after this post if I told them my guild has rather strict requirements and little lee-way when it comes to what we're looking for out of raid-mates; however, gear isn't one of them. Gear is an actually a fairly easily acquirable item in the game, but my needs when I'm preparing to be a raider and those when I'm actively raiding are very different.

      It's not so much that I feel personally attacked by these kind of comments, but it makes me wonder what great players we're keeping from entering the raiding game when these kind of comments are made: yes, you have to spend what you'd spend raiding getting READY to raid, but once you're raiding, I think there's a bit more wiggle room! (Unless you're a GM who refuses to be anything but a shining example to your entire guild at all times. I couldn't live up to those kind of expectations at this point of my life, hence why I refuse to take any leadership positions!)

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  8. Doing it wrong!

    Capped week one because I was bored with my husband out of town and needed something to do.
    Not capped week two because my husband came back into town and I had better things to do.
    Won't be even close to cap this week before my sister is getting married and we're going out of town.

    After that? Hopefully we start downing bosses and I don't have to worry about it.
    My recent post Helpful Hint for Druid of the Talon Dailies

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  10. I'm doing it wrong, too. This is week two of not managing to finish off my Valor cap. I really want my tier gear, of course, but how much spare time someone has to do that, and how much time *I* have to do that, are probably quite different. And there simply isn't always the option to "make time". I resent the idea that someone with more free time than me is a more committed raider by default.

    By the time I get home, feed my animals and do any other chores, organise dinner, shower, and get to my desk, I have one hour of spare time before raiding, max. That leaves very little time to get everything (dailies and heroics) done. And it's less time if dinner is complicated, or if I have other things that need to be done in the afternoon. And it's even worse when DST kicks in for the server (but not where I live) and I virtually sit down at my desk right on raid invite time. Of course, that means that I also finish an hour earlier, so I could do stuff after the raid – but that's often when I need to do things like shower and get jobs done that I wasn't able to do when I got home.

    Conversely, other people in my guild are able to play during the day, and very easily cap themselves (often on multiple characters). Unfortunately, I can't do that.

    Previously I had a lot more time to myself, but my life circumstances have changed recently and made it so that I have a lot less spare time. I don't hate doing heroics, but I find that I don't have much time to do them, and for two weeks in a row now, I have only achieved about half of my Valors for the week.

    I'm not a hardcore raider anymore, but I count myself as a serious player, one that tries to improve as much as I can – the thing is, though, that "as much as I can" simply has to allow for my current life circumstances and the fact that I only have pockets of free time in which to do *everything* that I want to do in WoW. Even my weekends, which used to be 16+ hour WoW marathons, are now very full and I find it hard to grab chunks of time to be able to enjoy the game.

    I think it's a very narrow-minded view that if you're not capping, you're not a committed raider. I wouldn't be able to commit to joining a hardcore guild because I *don't* have spare time to cap myself, realistically – but I know that, and that's why I don't apply to top guilds. I play to my capacity. Sure, if I WAS in a super hardcore guild, it would be cap or GTFO; but I don't automatically count myself as a baddie because I am not getting that cap each week. I do what I can with the time that I have. Other people have more time – good for them. I don't get home early in the afternoon and have extra hours to burn.

    And despite counting myself as a serious and committed raider, I don't have any issue with occasionally wanting to do things in the game that in no way contribute to raiding success. You have to relax sometime. Yeah, I get that for some people, raiding (and raid prep) IS their relaxation – but that doesn't necessarily make them better raiders than people who like to mess around on an alt, do some PvP, or rack up some achievements.

    As much as I enjoy raiding, it's not ALL I want to do in the game. If it's all other people like doing, then they can apply the "must min-max or else" thinking to themselves, but I like to get the occasional achievement, play an alt, or make some money. I can't (won't) devote 100% of my time outside raiding to grinding for raiding – that won't end well. And with my current schedule, if I wanted to cap everything, that is what I would have to do – spend most or all of my downtime doing heroics and dailies. Come home, cram in some heroics, get into a raid, go to bed, go to work, repeat.

    (cont)

    • Also, all of this leaves absolutely zero time for blogging or enjoying the community. I am writing this from work.

  11. I think others have hit the nail on the head when they say that it's all relative. You could easily criticise people who say "you should cap or you're doing it wrong" by finding ways that they aren't going all-out.

    Not spending all your free time on the PTR to practice new bosses or changes to your class before release? Doing it wrong. Not up at 4am on patch day to get ready to play immediately? Doing it wrong. Not spending 4 hours a week sifting through logs and analysing what you could have done better? Doing it wrong. Only raiding 3 days a week? Doing it wrong. Only raiding 4 days a week? Doing it wrong. Only raiding 5 days a week? Doing it wrong. Only raiding 6 days a week? Doing it wrong.

    Not taking the day off for a patch release? Doing it wrong. Not taking several days off for an expansion release, to level ASAP and start grinding gear? Doing it wrong. Only raiding til 10? Doing it wrong. 11? Doing it wrong. Not raiding older content on weekends to help gear up alts for min/maxing group composition? Doing it wrong. Going to bed at 10pm when you could spend another hour or two in BGs and Arena to hone your skills and improve your situational awareness? Doing it wrong.

    You could be doing more!

    (And I hadn't even considered that I should be running heroics on an alt in order to save my main's valors by not using them to purchase the BOE bracers.)

    There's always something more you could be doing for yourself and for your team, and when you start adding up the above in terms of time investment, everyone has to draw the line somewhere and live with the fact that they're not doing *everything* they possibly can. They might think they are, and that this makes them better than others who are doing less, but the reality is that they could still be doing more.

    We should be doing what is required and expected of us, plus more if you want to push yourself to be better – but not judging others for being able to do less. Because somewhere out there, there's an even more serious/hardcore/committed raider, tut-tutting at you for only raiding X days a week for Y hours, when you could be doing so much more.

  12. First of all… I could have sworn you were in my Google reader, but then somehow you were not!!! How can that be? Blog reader fail! This has been rectified. :) Good thing I have Beru to point me to things that I should be reading. /sigh.

    Second of all… I am also doing it wrong! Hooray! Kinda related, but in terms of the Firelands dailies, the other night I only did a couple of them. At first I felt guilty. But that quickly passed and soon I felt naughty… in a good way. Like I knew I was doing something wrong, but I was grinning that I did… like a kid who stole a cookie from the cookie jar.

    Finally, you may be "doing it wrong" based on someone else's opinion… but its really just that (as much as they try to argue its law or fact). You're doing it right for youself, which is all that matters. Your experience in game does not match others, and to those who use this to question your dedication to raiding, or your guild, or your interest in bettering yourself, I say screw you.

    My recent post How could raid bosses incorporate new ways of healing?

    • Totally forgiven. I think I still have you under retired in my folders even though you've been back for awhile :) I'm honestly surprised how much other people care about what I'm doing (and how my guild should feel about my ability to raid because of it!)

      • The tricky thing about saying that a serious or dedicated raider needs to do X is that its all relative and "seriousness" is a continuum. As long as there isn't a disconnect between the members with the expectations of the raid or the guild leadership, what does it matter?

        What bothers me most though is the judgment… saying that folks who don't cap VP are not "real or serious" raiders or that they obviously don't want to bring their best to the raid. People's interest in what they choose to do with their in game time are different, as well as people's time availability due to real life commitments are different.
        My recent post How could raid bosses incorporate new ways of healing?

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    • I think it's awesome that you can make the time to even be able to make raids regularly! <3 My Aunt has five kiddos, and she was always short on time.

  14. this is total bullshit, because not giving a shit about how many vp you have is slowing your guild's progression rate, yes it can be argued that gear isnt everything, but you can also argue that if nothing else, gear helps you kill shit faster, the healing will be better which means less wipes, the tank's mitigation will be better which means less wipes, the dps will be better which means less wipes, all of that added together means less time spent on new content which means faster progression, all lower gear does is make everything harder for everyone, and by not caring about your vp youre just saying fuck you im too lazy to make all of your lives easier, it would be one thing if ur questing, by urself, where your actions only affect you, but in a raid, which is a team effort, your actions affect the whole team, which means its not just about you anymore, its about the team

    • Of course that is one argument, but I don't think gear > than any other efforts I make towards my raid team. My position is that there are not enough hours in the day that I can do everything that would be beneficial to my raid team, so why get so caught up in one of the activities that I find the least desirable?

    • @Nativewonder: By the same logic you could also argue that you are holding back your guild if you don’t cap valor points Tuesday afternoon (before doing =any= raiding that week). However I’m willing to bet that the vast majority of raiding guilds don’t take that approach. I agree with Keeva, there’s always something more everyone could be doing.

      Hard mode progression raiding guilds generally do not have gear holding them back, it’s errors. One error often ends up wiping the raid. An extra 6 ilvls in one slot isn’t going to make a whole lot of difference.
      Skill > Gear.

      For the record: As someone who raids with Windsoar in a hard mode progression raiding guild I can say with absolute certainty that her gear is not holding anyone back.

  15. I'm doing it right personally, but I'm perfectly aware that it's not easy and/or fun.

    It's my own personal choice, and I'd rather shoot myself in the foot than force anyone to valor cap, even as a Raid Leader or GM.

    I'll try to HELP people find a good time to do a dungeon or two, but it has to be of their own will. Otherwise, they're just polluting their fun.

    So guys – do it wrong and enjoy yourselves. The crankiness isn't worth the loot.

  16. I will approach this from a different light, although I do agree pugging heroics is shitty, and something I have stopped doing. (Something most raiders will stop doing shortly)
    This has been a relatively easy decision for me as we killed ragnaros last week, that combined with TB even after sitting out for domo, already got my trinket from our first kill, left me 20 points short of vp.
    For any real “hardcore” raiders there will be no reason to get VP capped, there will be shortly nothing pressing for them to spend vp’s on.
    Pugging in my opinion is going to become more painful, this is what will lead , in my opinion to blizzard putting the crafting embers on VP vendor.

    My two cents

    • I doubt they'll switch 'em to a vendor since they're already BoE. I know my guild has bought a few since we had so many players who the boots/bracers were an upgrade.

  17. I capped the first week, got about half the points last week and will cap on two toons this week [with luck]. So eh…

    But anyway, as a GM myself [of a casual guild that raids], I DO expect those who raid or with illusions of raiding to run an instance or two a week at least and most people do. I have a handful that cap – ironically mostly people in our ten man raid. There are more who run randoms as they take a notion – some pug, some put together guild groups.

    What frustrates me are the ones who refuse to do randoms, refuse to help anyone else, then show up for raids and expect to be handed epics.

    • As a GM, I can understand that position. I'm from a guild that would definitely expect me to go buy a 35k pair of boots if they were an upgrade, so VP capping is not an unrealistic goal. However, I've been ALMOST capping just from raids, I'm not online that much outside of raid time, and frankly, my guild UNDERSTANDS. If that's the case for me, and many others, what's it matter to you and your guild?

      I'm not encouraging people to piss all over their guild's expectations, I'm simply sayin' skill > gear and raiding with the right folks > raiding with the folks with a lot of time on their hands.

      • I wasn't weighing judgements on your situation or your guild. I was giving my perspective as a GM for my guild.

        • However, you did mention that those who didn't cap VP in your guild you viewed as "expect[ing] to be handed epics." Do you really feel that gear acquisition outside of the raid (assuming that your players are reasonably geared for your progression content, i.e. they raided T11 and are now going into T12) is that much more important than their execution in raids or the right attitude for your team?

          • Um, no.

            I have people who want to raid who refuse to gear themselves, refuse to practice or learn how to play, refuse to even read the fights and yet show up and expect to raid doing 5k dps. Those are the ones who "expect to be handed epics". If you're reread my first post, I in no way make a direct [or any intentional] association between capping VP and "expecting to be handed epics"

            There are plenty of players who don't cap who are doing appropriate dps/tanking/healing with what they have.

            In fact my expectation as laid out in my first post was that "I DO expect those who raid or with illusions of raiding to run an instance or two a week at least". An instance or two is nowhere near capping. Perhaps I should have added "or make some effort in some way".

            I expect people to put forth an effort. Whether that effort is grinding VPs and gear, or helping others do so, helping gem/enchant gear, making epics for others, making cauldrons for a raid, cooking food, or a very minimum of reading the basics of the fight(s) we're going to do, I still expect to see some effort.

            Showing up, ungemmed, unenchanted, with some easily replaceable greens/gear not appropriate to spec, not having read the fights and with a bad attitude is just inconsiderate and rude. That kind of entitlement is what I said annoys me and what I see becoming more and more common.

            I honestly don't appreciate the attitude I'm perceiving here that expecting my people to make some kind of effort is unreasonable. In my opinion, not making an effort is really and truly "doing it wrong". Not capping Valor as a raider? Unless you have a sorry attitude [ie: the one I state in the previous paragraph], you're probably actually doing it right.

            • I am not trying to attack any one else's way of life, merely explain my own reasons, and find out how important capping is for others in relation to other raid activities. I'm not condoning people showing up without appropriate gems/enchants/flasks/food. I'm not condoning people who have gear that is entirely inappropriate for the instance level to be making no effort towards improving their own gear. I made the assumption, perhaps falsely, that most people who raid give a shit, and that saying "if you don't VP cap you're doing it wrong" was over the line. VP capping for some players is an easy and enjoyable activity. For others, its a task that takes up more time than is available for them during the week. I don't think VP capping is appropriate for every raider, but I definitely admire, and applaud the people who have the time and make the effort.

              Hence, my confusion about how not VP capping led to people who don't make any effort whatsoever. It seems I've got your back up a bit, but I was honestly trying to clarify whether you really felt that this one activity gave you a good indicator as to the raid-worthiness of your raid members.

              • Being in a casual guild, I get all types. I've got raiders I suspect will leave us to go "more hardcore" eventually to people who don't even understand what raiding is and we've had to teach. Some of those find it suits their taste, some don't. I've got a "must cap Valor points nao" druid friend and several people who still don't have a valor point to their name.

                Valor points are actually less of my concern than practice for some of the people in their desired role. I have a few people musing over going healing. They have all 346 ilevel gear for healing or better but haven't run a random of any kind as a healer – guild group or no.

                I completely agree that capping Valor points is not for everyone. Heck, it's not for me every week. And I'm insanely glad they put in the 7 runs per week rather than one per day. I never could run one every single day… too much else going on.

                How we tell if someone is raid ready varies. We've discovered a lot of talent in our retro runs. Sometimes we're short one person and we'll pull in an unknown and see how they do.

                The negative attitudes are actually quite few… but the few… ugh.

          • And no, gear acquisition can make up a minor amount of what someone lacks in skill but skill is the much larger factor. I believe my hubby did the math that Gear is 10%, Raid buffs is 30% and Skill makes up the remaining 60%… I could have my numbers off there.

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