A Wretched Hive of Scum and Villainy

Usually when I use the phrase in the title above, I’m referring to the official WoW forums. But today I found another place that fits this description perfectly: Looking For Raid.

My experience in LFR has been extremely limited. I’m not really the target player, and I’m somewhat opposed to being expected to do it. When Dragon Soul was released, a bunch of my guildmates ran it frequently to get their four-set bonuses quickly, but I wasn’t one of them. I would rather gear up a bit slower than run the same content each week on two difficulties (TotC, anyone?). I always considered LFR as a way to gear up alts when I’m bored, rather than something I’m interested in doing on my main.

Anyway, I haven’t done an LFR in months, but the topic came up yesterday and I decided I’d give it a go on my warrior to try to pick up a piece or two of gear. I queue up as dps and quickly get pulled into a group that is on Zon’ozz.

Immediately upon zoning in, I could see that this wasn’t going to go well. My first hint? No one would shut the fuck up. Raid chat was full of obscenities, people berating each other and stupid ASCII macros. And what are people not doing when they’re spamming raid chat with inanities? Any damage or healing! Though we killed Zon’ozz without any problems, after he dropped I was quickly reminded about one of the other qualities of LFR: loot drama. I started thinking about the groups of people who do LFR, and I think pretty much everyone can be put into one of four categories.

The people who just want it to end

These people are quiet and unassuming. They know what they’re doing, they do their job adequately, or even very well. They don’t talk down to the bad players in their raids or try to create drama. They just want to kill some bosses, maybe get a piece or two of loot, and get out of the raid before the people in the other 3 categories drive them to violence.

The Loot Whores

I’m going to go ahead and assume that loot is the driving factor for most people who do LFR, and boy can people behave badly when they don’t get it. There are the people who curse out anyone who outrolls them, and those who beg for people to trade them gear.  There are the people who roll need on absolutely anything they can, even if they’re already wearing it, or something better. There are also a number of people who feel they don’t need to put in any effort in order to get gear, they AFK or just stand around doing nothing while the rest of the group does their work for them. The worst case I saw of this was a Shaman – they had queued as dps, were in a healing spec and gear, and spent the whole time in ghost wolf with someone on auto follow. Until they were kicked, that is.

The assholes

These are the people who just like to cause trouble and make everyone else’s time less enjoyable. They spend all their time beings dicks to everyone else in the raid. They’re always sure to tell people, in the most rude way possible, how terrible they are. Then there are the griefers – like the dps who pull all the trash packs or pull the boss before the trash is clear. In the first LFR I did we had a Mage who kept blinking around, pulling everything in Yor’sahj’s room, then blaming it another Mage. The two then mages argued in raid chat through the entire (8 minute) fight, rather than doing any damage to the boss. In another LFR we had a Mage who thought it would be clever to put a portal to Theramore over the portal to the Eye of Eternity. Charming!  In the short time I spent in LFR I put 5 people on ignore because of the ignorant, offensive language they used. My report button got a nice workout too.

The Utterly Clueless

This group is what makes every boss fight take 4x longer than it should. I’m not expecting top-tier play from people in LFR, I’m really not. But I do hope for at least a little bit of effort. The damage or healing some people put out is just astoundingly bad. In the first LFR I did I managed to do more damage than all but one or two people on most boss fights. This is incredibly sad. My gear wasn’t great – no raid gear, I still had a couple of pieces of tank gear (I levelled as Prot) that I hadn’t been able to replace. I’m also just not good at melee. I see the error messages “Target must be in front of you” or “Target is out of range” pop up on my screen more often than I’d like to admit. But somehow I doubled the damage of half a dozen of the dps. A ran with a group of 4 Moonkin who couldn’t cast their way out of a wet paper bag and seemed averse to using any spell with a cast time. In one of the LFRs I tanked, the healers couldn’t switch healing targets worth a damn. Every time there was a tank swap it was a white-knuckle moment where I needed to use all my cooldowns as I watched my health start dropping and didn’t start receiving heals until I was almost dead.

It’s not just low damage and healing I’m complaining about either. So many people know nothing about the fights. The first time I fought Morchok four people died in the Black Blood. There are so many ways to avoid that. You could read your dungeon journal and learn that it is bad to stand in. You could ask somebody before the fight. Or you could just look at your health bar, see it dropping, see your screen flashing red, and run out of the goo on the ground. But people don’t do any of these things. On Yor’sahj, half the dps ignore the incoming slimes and stay on the boss, despite repeated raid warnings telling them otherwise. Switch to the Bolt on Madness? Stop damaging the Amalg on Spine? Not happening. It drives me up the wall that people come into a raid unwilling to work, unwilling to listen, but expect to be handed shiny new gear.

The most clueless person I saw was, unfortunately, a Druid. He was Feral (0/40/1). He was wearing an agility dagger with a Demonic Skull in his offhand. He had a number of pieces of blue pvp gear. The rest of his gear seemed to be anything that he happened to win a roll on in dungeons, be it a strength helm or an intellect trinket. He didn’t have a single gem, enchant or a lick of reforging.
I don’t think he ever used Shred, possibly because he never attacked the boss from behind. When I see people like this (and I’ve seen quite a few) I often wonder if they’re just trolling – I sometimes hope they are, because the alternative is so sad.

So…

Why do people put themselves through this!?

LFR came from Blizzard’s desire that everyone be able to see raid content. I’m not the target audience, but I have to ask those who are – those who don’t have the time or desire to be part of a regular raid team – is LFR an acceptable solution? Is it really worth it to spend so much time with random jerks who treat everyone badly or can’t be bothered to try?

30 responses to “A Wretched Hive of Scum and Villainy

  1. Why do we put ourselves through this? Because there’s no in-between. The alternative for those of us who know what we’re doing is to apply to a HC raiding guild, subjected to a job application and interview process considerably more strenuous than the one I went through to get my actual job, attendance requirements, a drill sergeant boss and regular performance evaluations. We’re subjected to a trial period where we can be fired at any time with no warning and no cause, and our bosses can write blogposts about what horrible people we are if we do something wrong (there are two fairly well-known and well-respected WoW bloggers who do this on a regular basis, and it’s honestly the most tasteless thing I’ve ever seen).

    /rant off
    Stormy recently posted..A Word (or Six) on Pet Battles

    • I think there is an in-between. There are guilds out there that raid reguarly without being hardcore about it. How tough the application process is will depend on the guild, but I’ve never had a raid leader who was like a drill seargent and Apoth is the only guild I’ve ever received a performance evaluation in, and generally on the healers got those. There are guilds out there with pretty casual raid environments.

    • Stormy, I would love to know who those two well known and well respected bloggers are.
      Matticus recently posted..5 Ways to Pass Time on a Saturday

  2. I’m definitely in the “people who just want it to end” camp, I really don’t mind failed attempts as long as there’s marked improvement after a strat is explained. Utterly clueless isn’t something I have issues with, I would never expect an LFRer to read the dungeon journal or look anything up before hand (I have enough people in our own raiding guild that don’t even do this) . What I do expect though is for them to read raid chat and not make that same mistake after its explained to them (given the incredibly lax performance requirements of LFR difficulty).

    On the asshole front, the most interesting I’ve run into (purposefully pulling slimes is so pedestrian) was someone that was privately whispering people telling them that someone on the same class token just voted to kick them out and that they would help that person if they voted them out. Essentially trying to clear the raid of any other person on the same class token as them.

    The loot thing I’m so glad is being solved in MoP by the new LFR loot rules. For anyone to expect anyone to trade a piece to them for any conjured up reason is just whistling dixie. I don’t find it rude for something to ask privately, maybe you fat fingered the need, or maybe you were just trying to move on but if any reason is given for wanting to keep that item then just deal with it and move on. LFR is not the time or the place or the platform for your loot council views.

    And finally is it worth is? Very much yes (especially considering the alternatives), I find the bosses even on LFR mode entertaining every once in a while, its a break from DF bosses, and is a much better environment to work on your alt’s rotations / learning to play other classes. With 25, there’s much more flex to deal with slackers or bad performers so in the big picture I don’t find it any more a hassle than DF groups.

    • I guess you’re right that it is a good environment to learn to play another class. It’s hard to equate a 40-second boss fight in a dungeon to a raid fight. But honestly, I don’t think I could take more than a couple LFRs a month for the sake of my sanity.

      I haven’t looked at the new LFR loot rules, but I’m glad to hear they are improved.

  3. Jasyla,

    I just got roughly the very same Raid Finder experience that you describe on my recently level 85 dinged paladin. It’s about the least fun I can imagine having in-game, but the VP and drop efficiency is too good to pass up (assuming you’re of a gameplay optimizing mindset) if you’re still getting geared for higher level raiding.

    Yeah, the best raid finder raids serve as grim reminders of how much I prefer raiding with my guildies. The worst raid finders are like … twisted psychological experiments concocted by an evil genius.

    That Blizz thinks the current incarnation of Raid Finder is a big success is…a sobering reminder of how far my vision for the game and their’s seems to have gotten. And I consider myself no better than a “middle class” citizen in WOW’s raiding pecking order.

    I’m not sure what I’d change exactly. The idea of a third, very accessible, level of raiding isn’t inherently a bad one. I’d toy with some combination of:

    1) Upping the difficulty of LFR and Normal by about 10% over what we got at Dragon Soul release. (Yeah, okay, I just tossed a Normal mode change into the mix.) Idea would be to put the difficulty of LFR at a level where a basic level of performance from 20-22 people is required to get the boss down. The fact that it’s possible for a third of the raid to AFK (or turn in near AFK like performances) and still beat many of the LFR bosses just contributes to the lunatic asylum/deranged funhouse environment (And while we’re at it, let’s buff normal mode so that it lasts more than a half dozen raid resets before it’s cleared and on farm even by WOW’s middle class guilds.)

    2) Adding some server side monitoring for griefing players in LFR groups. Aggroing a boss, for example, while players are outside the instance or dead, or trash combat is still in progress or before a tank should result in a “on notice” system message. Doing it again within a few days should flag you loot ineligible, remove you from the raid at fight completion, and put you on a substantial (72/one week?) LFR cooldown across your entire account, and/or maybe subtract 25% of your account’s gold. Yeah, I think the penalties for griefing behavior should be fairly severe. System identified griefers can, of course, petition their exceptional circumstances, but the burden of proof/persuasion is on them.

    3) Beef up LFR gear checking. PVP gear should count sharply less (maybe 25% less) than its stated ilvl. Gear checking should be done when you press the “queue” button (not when you open the LFR window) using the best role-appropriate gear the player has equipped or in their bags. Role inappropriate gear shouldn’t help qualify you.

    4) Requiring folks queueing for LFR as healers or tanks to have the normal mode achievement for the bosses accessible in that LFR segment on some toon on their account. Yes, this means that LFR raiding will start on a delay after Normal/Heroic mode raiding gets underway (since there won’t be enough tanks/heals right away), but it does a couple things:

    a. Ensures the folks in the critical roles have some inkling of what the fight is about.

    b. Incentivizes folks to participate in (what is still largely guild based) normal/heroic mode raiding if they want to explore roles beyond basic DPS. WOW got to 12M players without declaring that every player should be able to kill every raid boss on pretty much the first day that a raid is released. Content gating and “forced socialization” requirements can easily be taken too far or done badly, but some measure of making us work for our shinies and to make in-game friends or even join guilds and play nice with our guildies is not a bad thing– it invests us in the process, binds us to our in-game communities, and makes the rewards we get for our efforts feel more meaningful. It also slows the burn rate on content…and clearly Blizz has a big problem keeping up with the content burn rate.

    5) Cutting back the ilvl on Raid Finder drops. I’d have LFR mode drop the same ilvl as the prior raid tier’s normal mode (or as the 5 man heroic content for the first raid tier.) Raid Finder should be an option for gearing up a character..one that is on par with five man heroics (which are now pretty consistently dropping the prior tier’s normal ilvl), but not one that is so clearly superior that you feel like you have to grit your teeth and do it or else you’re shortchanging yourself. The LFR environment is, lets be honest, best experienced while under the effects of happiness inducing mind altering chemicals…and that’s not the way everyone plays WOW.

    This would also permit folks who have diligently pursued at least normal mode raiding in the previous tier to ignore Raid Finder completely rather than feeling compelled to run it early on for the half tier ilvl bump.

    And, again, it gives more incentive to pursue Normal/Heroic mode raiding– the gear gap is a bit larger…but still not so large as to render Raid Finder an insufficient tool for getting gear-ready for the next step.

    Almost all of these ideas have tradeoffs that would have to be weighed and some of these might be unworkable (I’m not sure about server side griefer checking in particular), but I think we could nudge the overall experience toward a better place with some of these ideas.

    • Baylie, I think you’ve very much missed what LFR was created for in the first place, for the large population of players who for whatever reason choose to not join raiding guilds, but would like to experience additional PvE content.

      “Upping the difficulty of LFR”

      This would just exacerbate your issues with LFR, it would make all the previously stated problems with LFR that much more likely to contribute to a failed and even more painful experience.

      “Adding some server side monitoring for griefing players in LFR groups”

      While all your suggestions and intentions of this automated monitoring are good, they would essentially open the pandoras box to being exploited for griefing. If people are already getting kicks from simple mob pulling, imagine how much more people would spend your LFR time trying to get you banned by gaming the system. In the overall picture, I’ve yet to see LFR griefers detract too much from a run before the community steps in and kicks them.

      “Beef up LFR gear checking. PVP gear should count sharply less (maybe 25% less) than its stated ilvl”

      This goes against the very reason for the LFR, to allow these people to experience a side of the game they normally would not. I most certainly would not like it if I were not allowed to participate in PvP until I’d purchased a certain level of PvP gear with justice points or tol barad boss drops.

      “Requiring folks queueing for LFR as healers or tanks to have the normal mode achievement for the bosses accessible in that LFR segment on some toon on their account.”

      Again, this is the complete antithesis of the reason for LFR in the first place. You’re saying that a person that enjoys tanking or healing and isn’t in a raiding guild for whatever reason, incompatible schedules, etc. Shouldn’t be allowed to participate in the LFR?

      “clearly Blizz has a big problem keeping up with the content burn rate”

      Really? wowprogress.com shows nearly 20% of raiding guilds not having killed normal madness and even sharper cut offs in heroic. There is such a wide skill / time / effort spectrum in this game that pretty much every single person has a different perspective on what’s an appropriate difficultly level.

      “Cutting back the ilvl on Raid Finder drops. I’d have LFR mode drop the same ilvl as the prior raid tier’s normal mode (or as the 5 man heroic content for the first raid tier.)”

      Again, would just exacerbate the problems by indirectly upping the difficulty factor. And how does it affect you that those that choose to participate in LFR get that iLvl? And also if from your perspective you’ve burned through the previous tiers content at what seems to be a too quick rate for you then you’d already be decked in heroics, not really caring for the current LFR iLvl drops.

      I think the real genesis of your issues is that you’re trying to craft the LFR experience if you were the target audience, but you’re clearly not. The LFR is there for people who for whatever reason choose not to be in a raiding guild, normal and heroic raiding is not an option for them. But LFR is also there for everyone else to use if they find it worthwhile to them. This is no different than when they introduced DF (dungeon finder), it was the same target, but useful to others that decided to also participate. Any changes have to be made from the perspective of that target audience, not us.

      • WWE,

        I hear what you’re saying. I’m probably not the main target audience for LFR. But I’m nevertheless funneled into it if I want to gear up an alt efficiently. So, yah, I have a stake in how its implemented.

        And…right now it’s not a very good experience outside of narrow cases like, “I’m channeling Heath Ledger’s Joker on this unwitting group of 24 other people” or, “I’ve found my Zen place; I’m not in a raid at all; instead I’m practicing my rotation/reactions while under 25M raid buffs in a noisy room on a boss model / raid frame that at least looks like what I’ll see later in an actual raid….with actual people.”

        Where to push/pull/tweak it to make it a little better social gameplay experience? You know, something less likely to make you hate your fellow wo/man? Yeah I’m flailing about a bit for ideas.

        While taking onboard your criticisms, I’d counter on a few –

        1) Upping difficulty would make a bad experience worse. But would it? All PUG raids have been taking down normal and, in some cases, heroic mode raids encounters pretty regularly in the past two expansions pre-LFR. I’ve participated in a fair number of runs General Chat formed runs where I didn’t know a soul and didn’t have the impression anyone else did either. And yet these runs frequently— not always, but frequently– functioned pretty well and took down much more challenging content than LFR presents.

        I’m not sure, obviously, but I’m suggesting that the difficulty of the content is a disciplining factor in and of itself. Knowing that you can go /afk follow and return to roll on loot sets up a different set of behavioral incentives than does knowing that the only way the boss is going to give up the shinies for you to roll on is if your team *mostly* functions as a very basic team.

        2) System Monitoring and automated responses to various griefing behaviors would open up a huge can of “meta” worms — now the artful griefers would have a field day getting others to run afoul of the griefing rules.

        Yeah, I think you’re right on this. Idea STRICKEN!

        3) You can’t beef up gear checks on LFR because then it’s not as accessible.

        Hm. No, can’t agree there. Accessibility is a malleable concept, but to get any use out of it, we have to draw a line somewhere. Right now that line is drawn in such a way that someone in utterly inappropriate gear that happens to have an average ilvl >= than 372 on it can queue and enter the raid finder in…ANY ROLE their class can theoretically perform. I can queue up my baby holy paladin to tank….without even a tank spec, much less tanking gear.

        *THAT* is setting the bar too low. I’ll stick to my claim that the raid finder tool needs to perform a significantly more intelligent check on your character before opening up a role. That check should apply an appropriate “discount” to PVP gear, verify you have an appropriate spec, and then check ilvl of the gear in your possession flagged as appropiate for that spec. This would mean that, yes, folks would need to gear a wee bit more outside of raid finder before doing raid finder. Given my recent experience of going from newly dinged 85 to raid finder ready in less than 24 hours on a tight budget, I don’t think we’re anywhere near the “beyond tolerable” point as far as barriers to entry go.

        4) You can’t restrict healer/tank role access to players who haven’t completed Normal/Heroic modes as it goes against the purpose of LFR– to provide a raiding outlet for non-raiders.

        Point accepted.

        5) You can’t claim Blizz has trouble keeping up with the player base’s content burn rate when 20% of all raiding guilds haven’t finished Normal mode DS yet.

        So 80% raiding guilds *have* finished Normal mode. And I believe WowProgress’s definition of “raiding guild” is a pretty generous one….along the lines of “a guild that has members who have killed a boss in the current tier,” yeah? As you say yourself, the spectrum of player engagement with the game is enormously wide. We’re not going to come up with an answer that is satisfying to 100% of the playerbase. But I do think claiming that content roll-out is sufficiently fast because *only* 80% of a very generously defined group of raiding guilds have completed its normal mode is….targeting the content rollout pace at a section of the player base that probably isn’t all that engaged in the game at all.

        Yes, I’m sticking to my guns on the claim that Blizz has a problem producing content as quickly as even the “middle class” of the game’s raiders currently consume it. Note – the bottom quintile is, by definition, not the middle. ;o)

        6) Raid Finder must drop gear better than 5 mans or else you make raid finder too hard.

        Can’t agree. We mostly entered Raid Finder in gear lower than Raid Finder drops anyway. Don’t know about you, but my newbish Raid Finder groups cleared it as it opened up without significant problem (well, apart from the _problems_ with Raid Finder groups). In my (admittedly one person limited) experience – Raid Finder raids today wipe at about the same rate today as when Dragon Soul first dropped. I’m going to suggest that that’s because the average ilvl of the folks participating in raid finder doesn’t change much over time (and obviously also because the RF format isn’t subject to the Power of the Aspects buff.) Altering the quality of the drops from Raid Finder will have, I believe, virtually no impact on the success rate of Raid Finder groups UNLESS the quality of the raid finder experience were to improve to such an extent that people were actually continuing to run them on toons that already have a substantial number of that format’s drops (or better). Of course there are some folks who already do that, and in certain niche cases (practicing a new spec on a well geared toon who is changing rolls or testing a new rotation, or testing out UI changes) I could see doing it myself, but I don’t think that’s the majority use case.

        To sum up– the Raid Finder *ISN’T* aimed squarely at me, but it currently occupy a place in my WOW gameplay experience…and not because I enjoy it. So, I’m suggesting changes that I think would do two things: 1) Make it something I could completely ignore without incurring a gearing penalty (ie, I could five man my way to the same level of Normal mode raid readiness just as efficiently and well) and 2) Make the experience better for all involved…at the cost of expecting folks to engage in a *little* bit more gear preparation before entering it.

        Cheers!

    • My goodness Baylie, you should write a whole post on this topic!

      I certainly agree with a number of your solutions.
      1) I’m not sure how much you could up the difficultly of LFR. It’s going to be nearly improssible to get 25 strangers to function as a cohesive raid, but I think some of the healing and damage requirements could be a little higher. I agree that having the content a little more challenging would force people to put in a little more effort on playing their role and less on being jerks to the rest of the raid.

      As for normal, I don’t know if that needs to be made more challenging. With the exception of Morchok and Yor’sahj (which could have definitely been a bit harder), I think most of normal DS was at a decent level of difficutly.

      2) I think WeWhoEat addressed this correctly. It sounds like a good idea, but it would be so hard to implement this correctly.

      3) This is the one I agree the most with. It shouldn’t be so easy to cheat your way to the required ilvl. PVP gear should count for much less than the stated ilvl. Gear without your correct primary stats shouldn’t count at all.

      4) I agree with WeWhoEat on this one. The people who don’t/can’t raid normals need to be able to get into LFR.

      5) I also like the idea of cutting the ilvl on raid finder drops. As a raider, I don’t want to feel like I *have* to do LFR in order to gear up for real raids. I don’t really feel this would affect the people only doing LFR too much. The difficulty of LFR should be balanced against these gear levels.

  4. I like to think I have a fair bit of patience – after all, I regularly join normal mode raid pugs for fun, but even LFR can prove too much for me at times. The griefers and resulting mass leaving are incredibly frustrating, and the loot drama can get depressing (or amusing, depending on what’s happening). But there’s definitely an extent to which I enjoy LFR’s antics.

    Ultraxion tanking and his trash seems to be the primary threat for any LFR group I’ve been in; if those go well then so will the rest of the instance. And then it becomes a good place to come to terms with your spec.

    There are even a few saints in these groups – once I was lucky enough to have a completely random warrior need on some tier for my resto shaman in her first LFR. That was a really nice surprise, mad props to all the people who need on things then give them to people who look like they’re trying.

    And I’m sorry, but I have to admit to being one of those people who need items for friends/guildies. LFR was a great tool for rapidly gearing new raiders up in the middle of heroic progression.

    • I tried tanked LFR once on my warrior, the first time ever tanking anything resembling a raid, and that trash before Ultraxion kind of terrified me. It was the hardest part of the raid.

      I know people need on gear for their friends. I can totally understand it, but at the same time it’s frustrating for those who queue by themselves and only have one shot at the gear.

  5. The LFR system is a hellhole that drains all the energy out of you and keeps you in this perpetual cycle of noob-ness, to this I agree!

    However, though most of my experiences in LFR has been horrible, hair-ripping trials of my patience and sanity, I appreciate it in all of its flawed glory. Perhaps I’m just an optimist but I choose to ignore the failed tank switching, the healers that barely deserve the name, the DPS that don’t know how to hit something if it slapped them in the face. But I understand that I’m being placed into a group that doesn’t owe anyone else in there a thing. I understand I’m being placed with a group that did not have to apply to enter the raid, or need to be interviewed by screening officers in a guild. I realize I am being grouped with people from all categories of skill and experience and I am okay with that.

    Trust me, I want to get through raids in LFR faster than the next guy but I turn what most view as a horrible, headache-inducing experience into one that I enjoy or at least gain something positive from. Why? Because I am thankful I was given the chance to experience endgame content. I am thankful that I am able to wear tier gear even when I did not have a guild. I am thankful that I was able to play with those few players that were kind, respectful and knew what they were doing.

    I make it a little side-job of mine to note other Moonkins, since that is what I play, who are failing or doing something deviantly wrong and whisper them on their servers with level 1 alts that I make. I write a short, polite message directing them to the forums and any other resources I can think of and log off before they can reply. I do this because regardless of whether they welcome the help or feel offended by it, at least I will know that I tried to help out a fellow player who may really just be in need of help. Everyone deserves a chance to grow and learn, yes, even trolls.

    • That’s a realy good attitude to have. And all the awful people do make you appreciate the skilled, nice people more.

      It’s also really nice that you help out other Moonkins. :

  6. The problem with the A-holes isn’t actually the act(s), its not knowing when to stop.

    On our raid team we had the joker, the guy who would pull all the oozes, or put up a port to Theramore. But he knew his timing, if we were getting full of our selves or just needed a break from the routine, then he would pull a prank. A wipe on the first pack of trash isnt a big deal, misdirecting the boss to a healer is a time honored tradition, a port to Theramore is countered with a quick Have Group summon (gonna miss that).

    LFR people though…. It’s like a bunch of sugared up 6 year olds. If one does something funny, the next says “Oh yeah, watch this” That’s the worst part of it. They just start feeding on each other to become the biggest class clown.

    • The environment you’re in also makes a big difference. When someone you’ve been raiding with for months and gotten to know pulls some kind of prank it’s generally amusing. When someone in a group of strangers pulls a prank, it’s not so funny, and I assume they’re a jerk.

  7. I think that I’m part of the target audience for LFR. However, my computer sucks. I DCed in my last LFR run (which was my second overall), and continued to DC every time I logged back in. I also had major lag issues. It was truly embarrassing. I’ve learned to not run a raid of any sort from now until I’m able to get a better computer. Oh, and my computer is about 8 years old.

    Other than that, I think that it is something I would use on a regular basis. I want to experience the content, but my IRL circumstance(s) (sans comp issues) keep me from being a part of a regular raid team. I don’t see this changing any time soon.

    While I’ve witnessed the inane behavior, witnessed some of the stupidity that is LFR; I think that it is something worth keeping. I would also make sure that people who were real raiders understood what they were getting into (the inadequacy and utter stupidity of their fellow LFRers). I wonder if people can put together 15-20 folks, and run their own LFR; using it to pug a few spots?

    I don’t know.

    Z
    Zwingli recently posted..Teachable Moments, 4yr Old Potty Edition

    • It’s definitely possible to put together a group of people for an LFR and just pug the last few spots. When it first came out, a number of people in my guild would run it together every week. I went a couple times, and it was definitely a lot mover enjoyable than going on my own. The problem, as many other commenters have pointed out, is that as time goes on, raiders, or groups in general become less likely to do LFR, leaving the clueless and the jerks to populate the groups.

  8. Hi Jaysla,

    While LFR always had a few of the annoying folks you mention, it was much better earlier in the cycle. In this end-of-expansion lull, many raiders have all the gear they need, are off playing Diablo3 instead, etc etc. Leaving LFR to a very few good players trying to gear their alts, and a very large number of goof-offs. Oh well.

    Count me among those healers who enjoyed LFR because it gave me a chance to raid at least a little during a time when my schedule wouldn’t otherwise permit. (I never even set foot in Firelands.) I met some great players and fine people in LFR. But when I went in last week, hoping for some offspec tokens for my alt … I’m afraid it was much as you described.

  9. The last time I ran LFR on an alt, she won a tier piece (which was an upgrade from a green), I get a whisper from another player who says “Listen, I really wanted that piece, would you pass it?” I’m usually pretty good about passing on loot, but it is LFR after all so I took a quick peek at what he was wearing and it was a lvl 333 item. I whispered back, listen, I’m upgrading from a green, you have a lvl333 on, I’m sorry, but I’m going to keep it.” Well that started a whole flurry of whispers “I need that piece.” “Why are you being mean?” and my favourite “We probably can’t trade cross realm anyway. Do you think we can test it? Can you just see if we can trade and I’ll give it right back?” – because apparently I’m mean and stupid.

    • Ugh, people can be shameless when it comes to gear. It’s surprising how much people can complain about that kind of stuff.

  10. Yes, Z, you can always take a partial 25-man (2 to 25 people) group into LFR and rely on the queue to fill the gaps. It is very similar to the LFD tool for 5-mans.

    It wasn’t long ago that I was a PuG raider in mostly PuG raids. The important part isn’t just patience, it’s the understanding of what LFR (and LFD) actually provides: a relatively efficient and easy way to see the content and grab loot. It is a casual environment meant for casual play. The fact that many players go to LFR for upgrades they use in their main raids is unfortunate and hopefully the new loot system fixes that problem.

    I feel bad for Stormy if he can’t find a guild/raid environment that suits his play style. In Wrath I was in a casual raid where I didn’t have to app and I didn’t have to ignore the baby who started crying in the middle of a raid. Casual Normal and even Heroic raiding is out there.

    • I guess it is pretty easy and efficient when you think about it. It does provide the chance at a lot of loot with relatively little time investment. I’m just not able to ignore the jerks in the group, which there can be a lot of, which makes it seem like a lot more effort than 5-mans.
      Jasyla recently posted..A Wretched Hive of Scum and Villainy

  11. First off …Hi Jasy! I miss you! =D

    Anywho, I thought LFR was good for about the first few weeks it was out to get my alts some gear. I also took my main in there to get 4 pc quicker and some pieces to hold me over while I got the normal or heroic version.

    However, after a few weeks LFR started getting worse and worse, I assume because less people like me (taking their mains to get filler gear, and decent players on their alts) no longer had use for it. I think it is an easy way for people without a guild or people in a very casual guild to see the content without having to put in hours of effort, but without the good people to carry the clueless and those that don’t care it is extremely frustrating and no longer fun.

    • Hi Moxy! I miss you too :)

      I don’t think I got any LFR gear for my main. I really didn’t want to raid the same content on the same character multiple times per week.

      You’re totally right that LFR has gotten worse as time has gone on. I also found that the time of day I ran it made a difference. The couple I ran during weekdays were a lot worse than the ones I ran in the evenings.

  12. The biggest problem with LFR wasn’t apparent in the first month or so it was available. At that point anyone who raided seriously, was also running LFR to fill out gear gaps, gear something for main swapping, trialing new raiders before the main raid, etc. In essence the first month or two LFR was full of Raiders. Now people are bored. Those who have cleared the content gotten their 400+ average ilvl aren’t doing it anymore. If their guild has called a raid break or are just 1-night farming, those folks aren’t in the LFR. They are on beta, playing other games, finishing achievements, etc.

    My last venture into LFR was to test a new computer out. I was just going through the motions, not really paying attention until Yor. Then when I saw yet a third set of oozes reach the boss (yep all three), I started checking recount. Well over 2/3rd of the dps were pulling numbers barely acceptable for regular 5mans. Myself and one other healer were doing 30-40% of the healing each on every boss, one tank was afk in a corner. Chat (which I actually turned off, except raid warnings months ago) was full of people yelling and complaining. The target audience for LFR has largely stopped running it as well. They saw the content, got the gear and are back to doing other things. The folks who could carry the raid have long quit. So now you have the worst of society outside of prison tormenting the few stragglers and those who just want to finish out one more alt. At this stage of the expansion, there is no fixing that. LFR at this stage is attracting the griefers and trolls who are angry they cannot be carried with their auto attacks. Pre-LFR these people wouldn’t last past the first trash pull of any PUG, but now we have to put up with them. I don’t think there is anything Blizzard or any of us can do to keep these people out of LFR as any regulations or tightening of requirements would also keep out the audience LFR was designed for.

    • It is hard to balance things to require a certain level of performance without excluding the people the it’s meant for. As for the trolls, I make sure I use my report buttons liberally in hopes that will weed the worst of the griefers and jerks out of LFR, and the game in general.

  13. LFR is a lot like LFD used to be…

    Timing is everything. Go early in the week, and this late into the tier you probably want to avoid the whole thing. Why? Well, the more serious folks generally go earlier in the week (so they can use their upgrades in their main raids) and by now they’ve all got their upgrades on 20 alts and are done with WOW until MOP.

    Who’s left? All the crazies.

    • LFD has never struck me as nearly as bad. At least at max level – I’ve had terrible experiences in low level LFDs. I think it may just be a matter of numbers. There’s a limit to how many bad people you can run into in dungeons.

  14. I read this, laughed because it’s true, then proceeded to torture myself by running 3 alts through LFR.

    Needless to say I’m mentally scarred now.