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Most Efficient Way of Gearing up a Guild for PvE Progression?


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#21 zeidrich

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Posted 05 January 2007 - 11:55 PM

The class distribution on their token system is so bad currently I'm surprised they haven't changed it. Having 7 sets on one token and 3 on another means that there will be raids going back for alternate sets, and yet the hunter/warlock/mage pieces will rot since they'll have their sets already.

If they make the drop rate higher for hybrids, the current distribution would be pretty good.

We've always used a bid DKP system (I know a lot of people were using zero DKP). It was a problem in Naxx to have Warriors bidding on a tank set against rogues bidding on their only set. Same thing with Druids/Paladins/Shaman bidding against hunters.

If the drop rate is NOT higher for the hybrid sets, then yes, it could potentially be pretty ugly. I know a lot of our hybrids want a non-standard set, if not more than one.

I agree to some extent funball. But on the other hand, and speaking as a hybrid, would it be fair for some classes to get 3 sets in the same amount of time as other take to get 1?

I think the problem was exacerbated pre-expansion by the fact that hybrids had 1 role in raids (for warriors it was tanking, everyone else it was healing) while post-expansion it's looking as though a hybrid's role is based on how he gears himself and how he is specced. So you can gear yourself to fit your "role" in the same time a warlock can. And assuming a relatively even distribution of classes on your raids and equal attendance, if people focus on a single set, everyone will complete a full set at relatively the same time.

If you're sticking around farming for secondary sets for your hybrids, that's when the issues come to light. I don't really find it unfair that paladins for instance are in competition with rogues who only have one set, because it's not the rogues that will be taking my spare tokens once everyone has their first set. I'd be more cheesed that I have to divide my tokens with the shaman while hunter, mage and warlock tokens are rotting.

As long as there's enough cool non-set items spread around I don't think keeping your single-set players coming around long enough to let your hybrids get multi-sets. I mean, the rogues might want to stick around to get non-set pvp gear or rare weapon drops while I'm picking up my DPS set. That and the fact that the set is only 5 pieces makes me not so worried about distribution.

Assuming a fair DKP system I'll get 1 set of my choice at the same rate as everyone else. If I want an off-spec set I will have to take it in addition to my main set, as any other class would have to. If I want to focus on a single set I will get my gear just as fast as those classes like rogues, who don't have much reason to pick up more than a single set.

Believe it or not, I'm sorry it came to this. Not really intensely sorry, but that kind of mildly disappointed, resigned sorry that happens when I see a puppy walk head-first into a window, back up, stare bewildered at it for a second, then walk head-first into the window again.


#22 Jubling

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 12:06 AM

I agree to some extent funball. But on the other hand, and speaking as a hybrid, would it be fair for some classes to get 3 sets in the same amount of time as other take to get 1?

Why not, you can't use your three sets at the same time, and you end up getting better at the entire game just like the single set classes (and not just better at raiding).

#23 Charky

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 12:25 AM

The DKP system that my guild uses attempts to be fair, while at the same time prioritizing loot to the people with the best attendance. We use a bid, zero-sum DKP systems. Bidding is done in three rounds, with a person's placement in a round dependent on the amount of DKP they have currently. We also have an attendance structure in place, that divides people up into three tiers, based on their raid participation over the prior two weeks. When people bid on an item, they also list their tier. If one player is a higher tier than another (meaning he's been more active recently), that person will get the item by default. However, due to restrictions based on rounds, someone who is a lower tier can still save points and get the item before people who have already spent a majority of their points, as long as no one of a higher tier bid in their round. I hope that made sense.

For what it's worth, we're currently on the Four Horseman, and have used this system for a little under a year. It has been relatively drama free, and has seen a relatively equal distribution of gear among our most consistent raiders. We don't prioritize any other way, but we do encourage only taking an item over another class if you are going to use it while raiding.

#24 Shik

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 01:55 AM

Systems that aim to avoid drama, and that your guild perceives as fair are a good idea.

We used upgrade prices because we considered it fair that classes performing multiple roles need more epics to do so, since in a perfect world each role is fully itemized. Things like gearing up a few tanks first was a result of co-operation, mostly within the warrior class. Easy for us to pull off we have only added 2 warriors to the guild in its entire history, and having the guildleader as the MT at the time didn't hurt.

After discussing alternatives for BC, we stuck with zero-sum fixed price because the transparency does a lot to avoid drama. Things that are strictly used for raid progression and nothing else like resist sets just get allocated, usually at no cost.

It can be tough in a guild that friendly. We started out a casual RP guild, and gradually changed direction as the core membership established itself, and key leaders decided where they wanted to go.

One thing you always need to keep in mind with raid loot, is that often Fairness and Effectiveness are opposite ends of the spectrum. You have to try to find a balance between the two that your people can accept. Thats why you get so many different answers on such a topic, since everyone has their own underlying assumptions on where the balance should be.


The basic concept of most efficient is easy. Tank gear to MT and offtanks first, DPS gear to raiding DPS classes, Healing to primary healers etc. The trick is deciding how efficient you want to be, whether you pull back slightly and make exceptions to keep people happy. For example giving a cloth +dmg shoulder to a healing priest that pvps thats 30dmg better than anything he has, vs it being a 4dmg upgrade to a warlock? Only one of those choices strictly helps actual raid progression, unless raiding is the only thing your people ever log on for, they usually like to see upgrades in other areas.

#25 Fimbo

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 02:02 AM

Thank you for some excellent replies. Certainly some food for thought.

To give a answer to the question of guild make-up:
The Guild started with a group of RL friends who played together on beta, some were experienced EQ Vets some used the game as a chat client were they zapped stuff.
Obviously after spending some time at 60 and having only enough players to run UBRS, or start to try wiping in ZG when it first opened became frustrating for the... more focused players. Those who wanted to see more of the raiding content; but whom didn't want to leave the social network they'd built up by joining a random raiding guild.
(It should also be pointed out that the average age of the guild is somewhat higher than average in WoW in general, maybe around 30; we have a high proportion of the fairer sex, and there was/is a perception that outside the bounds of the guild most other players were... well - 15, loud and obnoxious...)

We tried guild alliances, but although it gave us limited success, it ended as our allies grew large enough to run MC themselves.
Eventually we opened to wider recruitment, but for a long time the attitude of being a smaller F&F guild remained (indeed still linger in corners) and we got the numbers to beat Raggy in the middle of this year.
Even with recruitment though the guild is not huge by some standards. Around 100 level 60s, but many not regular players.
Frankly we struggle for 40 players regularly (especially for wipe nights ;)) 20/25 however is much less of a problem so we are very pleased with Blizzard's decision on lowering the raid numbers.

We remain committed to embracing social players, the boyfriends or girlfriends who just want to come on for a few hours a week, chat with pals, kill some turtles and make some mooncloth - wow is great for that - and we all know that the basic solo game is not a difficult one in the slightest. But a difficultly for us has been trying to set standards and expectations for the raid game that differ so muchfrom our normal free-for-all anarchic commune :). In TBC we plan to deal with this somewhat with by having a social rank and raider rank. It was some suggestions on the most effective way of loot distribution within these 'raiders' that I was seeking and have received. ty.

As a final note we currently run an opening Bidding DKP system, and it has caused much drama i'm afraid. :( With some people following the "spirit", and some turning out to be loot whores (but the rules don't say the hunter can't outbid the rogue on the epic dagger etc). Issues of cross-class loot (few druids vs say many mages on the Staff of Domination for eg) have also plagued us with drama...

Anyway - sorry if that was dull ;)


For me - I think the responses from Nork:

I expect that the first part of the expansion will be a return to the 'golden days' of WoW. Looking at the crafted items and the items available from non-raid sources (Heroic instances and such), [/snip]
...you should focus on the 5man zones and crafted items.

and Cathela,

[This is a really good point, and I think it's going to be even more true in TBC, because the gap between 5-man and raid gear will be much narrower there than it currently is at level 60.

I think the best thing you can do in the short term is get your guild up to level 70 and running the endgame 5-mans as efficiently as possible. [/snip]

are most illuminating. I think perhaps we've been too hung up on the tiered armour being the be all and end of of PvE progression. Progressing in 5man and crafting sounds great. TBH for me the part of the game i enjoy MOST is five manning with people i know and like and trust, so the chance for meaningful progression in them does sound like a return to the 'golden days' to me!


On prioritisation i expected more people to say "yes we do this...", it was certainly the "impression" i was under about "hard core" raiding guild (anyone killing bosses in Naxx for us!) the fact several people have said they are in Naxx and not doing this, perhaps just asking people to be considerate on occassion of the tanks and healers, sounds like perhaps a better way of working - it'd certainly suit our guild 'nature' more. I will take this point back to our round table for further rumination :).

#26 Rareform

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 09:19 AM

Expansion changes aside (tokens etc), it sounds like your guild is currently struggling on the decision of being a friendly hang-out place versus being a raiding/progression driven guild. I'm on a backwater server, but in the farthest progressed Horde guild and we had to cross that bridge a long time ago. It definitely changed the guild design and operations, as well as some folks leaving and new ones arriving. But I think making that decision of "what are our goals" helps clear up some of your issues. We're now a raiding guild, but we have a Friends & Family rank for those casual folks. They come to ZG and alt runs, but when it comes to progression, it's very clear who is expected to show up, and those people do (so you don't have cancelled raids on those "wipe nights").

We don't push a required spec, rather we find folks that like the spec's we need. Our DKP is zero-sum; however, we add dkp for raiders on progression nights. I think the biggest thing with loot is that people need to use a bit of common sense. Our items are priced up front and heavily discussed. It also flags early issues (like SoD or HDI ring for druids) where folks can readily point out value (especially on the pure-play vs hybrid classes) or a "we must prioritize this". It's a lot of up-front work before tackling a new encounter, but then it's completely out of the way until the next instance.

I think the "don't put all your eggs in one basket" point is extremely key. You truly never know when someone might have some epiphany or RL concern that makes them post on your forums "sorry, but I'm leaving the game". If you're going to have a MT priority gearing, best be sure they are committed to the guild and game. When it works, it works great, but don't set yourself up for a full raid group minus the one key guy with the gear.

Really the big keys are to use liberal amounts of common sense, rid yourself of gear-drama concerns as quickly as possible, and just work with your members on what you all want to do together.

#27 Khalan

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 10:55 AM

One other thing to consider: do people -deserve- loot priorities?

For example, let's say you have an MT and an OT - the only ones prepared to spec prot, let's say. They're both lazy and turn up in lolvalor expecting to be just handed tanking gear because "IM MT LOL TY FOR MIGHT". Is it reasonable to try and say to your guildies "Well he's the MT, nevermind he hasn't spent any time in an instance since he hit 60 because he's been PvPing" or somesuch? It's much easier to justify loot priorities to people who run guildies through everything, farm like mad for consumables, etc.

The example is slightly improbable but still, I remember people (happily not DPS classes) turning up to MC when we were still learning it wearing the Undead Cleansing set and demanding (under our idealistic "whoever needs the upgrade most gets the item" loot system) to be handed T1. And the app wearing that same set who informed me that he didn't need to farm for gear because "i think wen my guild is doing zg/mc and having epics its waste of my time to run strat or school".

And just to back up the "all your eggs in one basket thing", yes it's another anecdote. We had a really solid MT who joined as the friend of a nice hunter who ended up not raiding much. A truly great tank whose only purpose with his character was to spec prot and tank, and whose attitude to PvP was "if I'm doing it, I walk forward doing auto-attack until I fall over dead". He was notoriously a bit of a dick at times but usually a nice guy and prepared to run anyone through anything just for the fun of it. The ideal MT in every way and we stacked gear on him all the way through ZG and early MC.

The problem was he was cybering some girl who turned out to be practically bipolar. She was the sweetest thing to everyone and admittedly a good healing druid, but had a really nasty streak and verbally abused a whole bunch of the officers including myself (at the time GM and often raid leader). Eventually things came to a head and I booted her out. Our MT followed her, taking every single tank drop to date with him.

The moral of the story: cybersex is evil. Also, even if your MT seems unlikely to burnout for the usual reasons, keep in mind (especially in an F&F guild like yours) that they might force you to make a difficult choice if a close friend or significant other turns out to be a psycho.

Sorry, that was rather rambling.
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#28 Thelyna

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 11:03 AM

I was in another guild on another server that prioritised it's loot to the MT. One MT quit the game, they prioritised loot to the next. That MT quit and joined another guild further in progression. They then prioritised loot to the third MT, who quit the game. At that point, the guild fell apart.

Don't put all your eggs in one basket.

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#29 Buch

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 12:48 PM

this post could have seen some real benefit from a spell checker.

Ok realy manners cost nothing. Im sorry but a reply like that is disgraceful. For one you cant comment on his spelling when your gramma is none existant. In future I advise you to make sure your own post is flawless before picking some one up on an entirely readable post.
Manners do cost nothing wether your helping some one or not, did it occur to you that English may not be his first language?

edit: Clarification

#30 Tecton

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 12:49 PM

Prioing loot is silly, more so now that class roles are less well defined in a raid sense, and as well described above, is more likely to hold your guild back than help it progress, especially in the kind of guild the OP described, which is probably going to face a large helping of drama as they take the steps to become a progression guild.

#31 Oaken

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 02:19 PM

One other thing to consider: do people -deserve- loot priorities?...<lots of examples of drama>

All the things you describe are not loot priority issues. They are guild management issues. In other words, no loot system in the world will fix a guild that is as dysfunctional as what you describe.

#32 Khalan

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 02:21 PM

One other thing to consider: do people -deserve- loot priorities?...<lots of examples of drama>

All the things you describe are not loot priority issues. They are guild management issues. In other words, no loot system in the world will fix a guild that is as dysfunctional as what you describe.

In retrospect, you're right. Excuse me for talking complete crap.
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#33 Kaubel

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 04:03 PM

this post could have seen some real benefit from a spell checker.

While your post is a shining example of how people need to capitalize the beginning of their sentences.

Irony = time off from posting here.

I've been trying to concentrate on studying for my Proof Methods test tomorrow, and all I can think of is your hotness, radiating out from the pixels on my monitor, seared straight into my neurons.


#34 Igni

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 04:46 PM

Along the lines of gearing up a guild, how difficult are the heroic 5-mans? Is it as difficult as a 45-minute Baron run? Is it as difficult as 5-manning Onyxia? Is it as difficult as 5-manning Loatheb?

Is it one big gear check? Is it a skills and group coordination check?

And where does it fit in the progression? If you're skilled, you can take it on when you first reach level 70? When you have the full Dungeon 3/blue PvP set? Or should you only attempt them once you're fully geared in Tier 4, fully enchanted and loaded with potions?

Also, how are the rewards handled?

If anyone has a link to a post that already has this information, that would be great. I did a search on "Heroic Instances" but didn't turn up anything that useful.

Thank you in advance.
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#35 Anias

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 05:20 PM

I'll make a post on it, I've done most of the 5 mans in beta on heroic. Also, for those of you who like to cross your t's and dot your i's, there's resist gear in them thar hills.
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#36 Plea

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 05:31 PM

Honestly, loot priority means little to nothing unless you are a hardcore guild at the very top of content. My guild, which I've been with since we started on MC, is currently on Emps, with Spider wing in Naxx cleared. We have never, ever done loot priority, with the slight exception of asking (not demanding) that our rogues consider passing t3 tokens to tanks first. It's an honor system that trusts that people will be careful when choosing loot and not constantly bid on things that could be better used by another class, but that hasn't stopped us from having several Shadow Priests with 400+ damage, a pair of well-geared Feral druids, etc. If it wasn't obvious, we don't force spec, either. Forcing either gear or spec is indicative of not trusting players to think for themselves as to what would be best for their own and the guild's long-term goals and gearing and speccing to match. Have good players who are there for the game, not the purples, who are willing to look up boss fights, addons, and consumables, and the rest will follow - and you'll have a happier guild to boot.

I would really love to be in a guild that has no loot rules ever, but people taking/passing for the good of the guild. Never happened tho.

#37 Bury

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 06:46 PM

The class distribution on their token system is so bad currently I'm surprised they haven't changed it. Having 7 sets on one token and 3 on another means that there will be raids going back for alternate sets, and yet the hunter/warlock/mage pieces will rot since they'll have their sets already.

On top of that -- and I just realized this reading one of the posts above -- the classes are split in such a way that it's easily possible to get boned in one of your three raid needs (healing/tanking/dps) with an unlucky drop distribution.

1. Warrior/Priest/Druid. That's two of your three tanking classes (including the class that's arguably meant to be the primary tank) and the two strongest healing classes. If you don't get many of these, you're likely going to be hurting for both tanking and healing.

2. Mage/Lock/Hunter. All dps here.

3. Paladin/Shaman/Rogue. Seven sets. Two healing classes and one tank class.

The only real saving grace is what was mentioned above: The level 70 5-man gear is vastly superior to level 60 5-man gear relative to the raiding gear at each level. Still, this could be painful.

IMO, Warriors/Priests/Druids tend to need the most gear, Paladins/Shamans/Rogues tend to need the next most gear, and Mages/Locks/Hunters tend to use only one set.

Coincidence? If set#1 drops more often, I think this system actually isn't that bad.

#38 Igni

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 06:51 PM

I'll make a post on it, I've done most of the 5 mans in beta on heroic. Also, for those of you who like to cross your t's and dot your i's, there's resist gear in them thar hills.

Thank you Anias. I'm sure this will be of benefit to many people.
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#39 Evan

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 11:43 PM

Honestly, loot priority means little to nothing unless you are a hardcore guild at the very top of content. My guild, which I've been with since we started on MC, is currently on Emps, with Spider wing in Naxx cleared. We have never, ever done loot priority, with the slight exception of asking (not demanding) that our rogues consider passing t3 tokens to tanks first. It's an honor system that trusts that people will be careful when choosing loot and not constantly bid on things that could be better used by another class, but that hasn't stopped us from having several Shadow Priests with 400+ damage, a pair of well-geared Feral druids, etc. If it wasn't obvious, we don't force spec, either. Forcing either gear or spec is indicative of not trusting players to think for themselves as to what would be best for their own and the guild's long-term goals and gearing and speccing to match. Have good players who are there for the game, not the purples, who are willing to look up boss fights, addons, and consumables, and the rest will follow - and you'll have a happier guild to boot.

I am going to echo what Nisu said.

I think if you want to see more progress you should be less concerned with loot distribution and focus on some other things.

I suggest looking into having players who play well, pay attention, research encounters, come with consumables, not afraid to use consumables, and a good raid leader. I also suggest trying to have more than enough good people instead of the perfect amount if they all happen to show up. You have these things and more bosses will die, giving you more loot to distribute as your guild sees fit.

I have been in a few guilds now. Some of them have failed and blamed loot distribution/lack of geared players in the raid for failure and some of the guilds went on to kill more bosses. The biggest difference I saw between the guilds was not the quality of loot on the players, it was the quality of play and the willingness to use consumables to overcome the lack of stats. You get too militant about loot distribution and it can create drama which usually means you lose players and that hurts a lot more than spreading out loot a bit more between happy well prepared players. Gearing up certain people before others won't magically kill bosses.

#40 Thelyna

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Posted 07 January 2007 - 04:29 AM

The class distribution on their token system is so bad currently I'm surprised they haven't changed it. Having 7 sets on one token and 3 on another means that there will be raids going back for alternate sets, and yet the hunter/warlock/mage pieces will rot since they'll have their sets already.

On top of that -- and I just realized this reading one of the posts above -- the classes are split in such a way that it's easily possible to get boned in one of your three raid needs (healing/tanking/dps) with an unlucky drop distribution.

1. Warrior/Priest/Druid. That's two of your three tanking classes (including the class that's arguably meant to be the primary tank) and the two strongest healing classes. If you don't get many of these, you're likely going to be hurting for both tanking and healing.

2. Mage/Lock/Hunter. All dps here.

3. Paladin/Shaman/Rogue. Seven sets. Two healing classes and one tank class.

The only real saving grace is what was mentioned above: The level 70 5-man gear is vastly superior to level 60 5-man gear relative to the raiding gear at each level. Still, this could be painful.

IMO, Warriors/Priests/Druids tend to need the most gear, Paladins/Shamans/Rogues tend to need the next most gear, and Mages/Locks/Hunters tend to use only one set.

Coincidence? If set#1 drops more often, I think this system actually isn't that bad.

Except they should have split it the other way, for example Warrior/Mage/Paladin, Priest/Lock/Shaman, Druid/Hunter/Rogue. As it stands, the mages/locks/hunters are going to be done first and then have no reason for coming back. This is assuming equal drop priorities.

And just as a sidenote, starting from Judgement, I have a healing gear bag, a DPS gear bag, a NR gear bag and a FR gear bag (and two bags of consumables), with tanking gear going in on top of the DPS/healing stuff. That's more than most priests I know (our priests don't pack NR), and as much as any druid/warrior I know.

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