Saturday, 14 June 2008

Raid Leading

For a while now I've been a raid leader within my guild. I've been given the Karazhan, the Gruul's Lair and the Magtheridon's Lair farm runs. I've also been asked to focus those raid spots on 'mini-raiders' (our rank name for people who are Karazhan/Gruul geared, the rank above being 'raider' for the Serpentshrine Caver/The Eye geared people) to get them up to the rank of 'raider' as fast as possible. Now, this poses a few problems for me. Firstly, our 'mini-raiders' are normally that rank for a reason (in a guild that has been clearing Karazhan with three groups a week, before we started to focus on SSC and TK, and which contains numerous people who will run heroic content, they have managed to stay under-geared): Either they are brand new to raiding and thus need to learn how to do their DPS rotations/threat generation rotations/healing class style or they don't have the time or inclination to raid or instance and get properly equiped for it. We do have some mini-raiders who are that rank because they've only just been accepted into the guild and haven't managed to get a raid yet and are working hard, through heroic instances and such, to gear themselves for the challenge they will face, but these mini-raiders are, to my perception, in the minority.

Also, I want to clear those instances. That means, generally, not taking a whole bunch of totally green rookies. It means taking at least five of our A Team players (I normally try to take a tank who is proven to be able to tank Prince and Nightbane, ie me, two healers who are either capable or on the verge of being capable of healing the instance between them, and two damage dealers who can reach or exceed 1k DPS). These veterans aren't there for gear, so it increases the opportunity for gearing up everyone else there. Sadly, I normally can't fill the last five spots with mini-raiders. There's rarely enough of them signing up for raids, so I have to take raiders who just want the badges (or coerce raiders who don't want anything into coming).

Now, once in there the more experienced raiders have very little patience for tactics discussions. They know how it's done, and they just want to get it over with. Understandable, since Karazhan isn't the most titilating of instances. Of course, if we want our mini-raiders to actually learn what they need to do then they need to be told what is going on so they can learn the fight, learn whatever skills it might be teaching so they can transfer those skills to the later fights. Should they ever get there.

Being a raid leader involves a lot more juggling than I thought it would when I took the role. I had this vision of herds of people who wanted to do raids signing up for them, me picking from those who signed up and always making a good enough team to clear Kara, while gearing up our mini-raiders so they could join us in the more interesting content. It's really not working out like that. I'm often having to scrape for a last tank, another healer, some more DPS who will be able to pull us through, etc. Out T5 level guild has recently failed to clear Karazhan, twice. And it's getting to the point where it's just humiliating for me. I find myself hoping that very few mini-raiders sign up so I can take a full compliment of vets and get the place nuked in three hours or so. I hate follow up runs, really do, and we have no time on the calendar for them anymore. Sunday is my Karazhan run, Monday and Tuesday are SSC or TK nights and then we're reset and on to Gruul/Maggy on Wednesday or Friday, another SSC or TK night on Thursday, Saturday and Wednesday are for ZA... so there's no spare time to get a mini-raider, two-run-requiring group through Karazhan.

Woe is me? I guess. I just feel sorry for the mini-raiders who are trying and may not actually get to progress because of the small amount of time they are given to raid in. Which is why I suggested maybe giving the Karazhan raid leadership to a mini-raider who could then schedule Karazhan runs on the nights that the raiders are in TK or SSC, get a full complement of mini-raiders together and start to learn the fights as we had to, working as a team. I think our mini-raiders would actually really benefit from this. Instead of being dragged through there, learning nothing and not actually participating on the fun that is damage meters and competition between almost equals, they would be pulling together, learning to communicate, finding out how their 'oh crap' buttons worked and when to use them, etc. However, this idea is doomed to failure, most probably. We don't really have the tanks or healers at the mini-raider level to cover runs while SSC or TK is happening. We have a lot of mini-raider DPS, but not much in the tank or healer flavour.

Le sigh.

No comments: