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DKP and cross-class parity


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#21 Guest_alienangel_*

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Posted 31 January 2007 - 07:25 PM

Classes that need more loot... need more loot. No points system can solve that for you.

What? Yes it can. The base concept is to realize that some classes need more loot, and try to equalize the sum of what every class pays for everything they need.

Why is that necessary though? If a class requires more loot to fulfill a specific role than another class does then consider allowing them to loot more for the same price, if it doesn't impinge on the looting abilities of others. If however a class "needs" more loot just to have viable gear for different roles, I don't think it needs to be made all that cheap. When you're learning an instance, a warrior generally doesn't *need* to be simultaneously building both tanking and DPS sets. Pick one to focus on, and be resigned to not being as good at the other as people who focussed on it, or who split their priorities. When raid invites go out you're just running the gamble of whether the RL will want whatever role you looted yourself into. If you chose DPS, you're no worse off (actually still better since you have off-focus gear from previous instances) than a rogue who also lacks tanking ability.

Suppose you made tanking and DPS plate half-price in naxx, because warriors *need* both. Warrior X upgrades 6 armour slots with DPS plate, and picks up 2 piece of DN. Rogue Y on the other hand picks up 8 pieces of T3 at full price, spending twice as much points. Assume for the example that Warrior/Rogue armour isn't sharing a single token, since that pretty much fucks things up in any system. THC and Gressil drop, warrior wins due to large point margin. Why? Because the warrior used the cheap costs due to his "needing more loot" to just get the loot he really wants cheap, where as the rogue doing the same role had no such option. To counteract this you then start putting in draconian rules about what loot people have to pick up and in what order, and it just breeds more discontent.

I suppose I'm twisted in that I'm used to and much prefer bidding systems, where people decide what they want the most, and bid accordingly. If they also want off-focus gear, they're willing to wait till the people who focus on it are done picking it up, and then pick it up for min-bid (i.e. practically no cost). They earned their DKP, they can spend it however they like, with the understanding that if they gear themselves into a role the raid won't need, they won't get invites.

#22 Kalman

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Posted 31 January 2007 - 07:29 PM

Or you can implement a cheap/free off-spec system, with all the benefits of fixed pricing, where everyone eventually pays the same, but you can't game it by "only" taking the primary role loot for a while.

In other words: if you're a tank, you pay full price for your tanking gear, and nothing for your DPS gear.. as long as no DPS need it. If you're a DPS warrior, reverse it. And if you're a rogue, you pay full price for your DPS gear. In the end, everyone pays the same total, but everyone also has the capability to function to the fullest of their classes' abilities.

Bidding is not a fix for cross-class loot.
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#23 Ghostz

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Posted 31 January 2007 - 07:36 PM

Or you can implement a cheap/free off-spec system, with all the benefits of fixed pricing, where everyone eventually pays the same, but you can't game it by "only" taking the primary role loot for a while.

In other words: if you're a tank, you pay full price for your tanking gear, and nothing for your DPS gear.. as long as no DPS need it. If you're a DPS warrior, reverse it. And if you're a rogue, you pay full price for your DPS gear. In the end, everyone pays the same total, but everyone also has the capability to function to the fullest of their classes' abilities.

Bidding is not a fix for cross-class loot.

This is probably the best way to handle off-spec loot for classes that have multiple roles in raids. Even if you balanced the points out to accomodate for warriors having to take an extra piece, all that would lead to is warriors getting their main-role upgrades at a cheaper price than rogues then using the points that were alotted for the shield to get an upgrade for another slot.

The only situation I can think of where this comes short is if a shield drops thats a very minor upgrade for the tank and a giant upgrade for the dps warrior, it would be in your best bet for the warrior to take it, but with this set of rules he'd either have to pay for it or let the tank take it. Of course, the tank could be reasonable and pass it down if it was really necessary, but judging from the type of people I've come across at times, I'm not too sure if this is something you'd want to bank on.

#24 Guest_alienangel_*

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Posted 31 January 2007 - 07:39 PM

Or you can implement a cheap/free off-spec system, with all the benefits of fixed pricing, where everyone eventually pays the same, but you can't game it by "only" taking the primary role loot for a while.

In other words: if you're a tank, you pay full price for your tanking gear, and nothing for your DPS gear.. as long as no DPS need it. If you're a DPS warrior, reverse it. And if you're a rogue, you pay full price for your DPS gear. In the end, everyone pays the same total, but everyone also has the capability to function to the fullest of their classes' abilities.

Bidding is not a fix for cross-class loot.

And if you don't want to commit to being a full tank or a full DPS, I suppose there needs to be a 3rd set of prices to accommodate your own itemization desires (or you're told you need to pick one or the other)?

Bidding isn't a cure-all no, but I don't see a fixed price system with spiralling complexity being a great solution either compared to how simple bidding is. Looking back at our DKP record, the people who have more DKP are the people who have been raiding the most, and there's no apparent class bias. Who the top 10 are changes weekly as people routinely spend massive amounts of DKP for drops. Looking at DKP lists for other guilds on our server who use fixed bidding with upgrade systems, I instead see the same people being guaranteed first picking on every item that drops in current and future instances, which seems horribly demoralizing to me.

#25 Aphyrax

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Posted 31 January 2007 - 07:43 PM

You will invariably run into issues either way you go. It is not fair that a druid gets 2 sets for the price of one mage set. It is also not fair that the druid has to run around in 2 half sets because thats all he can afford, gimping him in either role.

I personally lean towards focusing on one role first. Have seperate DKP pools for roles, not classes. If a druid wants to tank he can get tank DKP. If he wants to DPS, he gets DPS DKP. If he wants to do both he gets both DKP but less of each. Yes, that means that someone who wants to play a true hybrid will have less gear for each role. But there has to be a hybrid penalty. This idea that off-spec loot is free or very cheap after the main spec loot is aquired will lead to massive amounts of drama, because due to the token system, that off-spec loot is someone else's main spec loot. And some full feral druid casually picking up top-of-the-line moonkin gear ahead of a mage is just like an alt taking loot ahead of a main.

#26 Uziel

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Posted 31 January 2007 - 07:46 PM

We are going to have separate DKP installs for each and every instance. I tried to think of everything that could arise from that and how to counter it.

If classes with 1 armor set stop running instances when they get theirs, then they just won't get a spot on the next instance.

#27 Aphyrax

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Posted 31 January 2007 - 07:49 PM

Bidding isn't a cure-all no, but I don't see a fixed price system with spiralling complexity being a great solution either compared to how simple bidding is.

I do not think that debating the merits of bidding vs fixed point system is a good idea, because it will end up on the same level as Mac vs PC or ATI vs nVidia debates. Kalman's dislike of bidding systems is well established in prior threads on this forum.

So the more interesting question, the one where we can actually make progress and thus the one we should be focusing on is how much loot a hyrbid should get compared to a pure class. Should it be <number of specs> times as much loot or should it be the same loot.

EDIT: Further, with the acceleration of loot turnover that is happening, the by far most important quality of a good DKP system is ease of administration. That was not the case when people ran MC for 18+ months, but with annual expansions, some slight mispricing is less important than the GM being burned out from spending an hour each night updating DKP.

#28 Ghostz

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Posted 31 January 2007 - 07:49 PM

For a serious progressing guild, I'd really encourage picking either dps or prot. Having half a set of tanking gear and half a set of dps gear really doesn't do your guild very good when the fights involve min/maxing. You won't keep up on damage with other classes and you won't be able to be a primary tank.

Also, I don't think Kalman is saying bidding is a "bad" system, he's just pointing out that having fully fluctuating values for all items based on their demand is not a solution to the problem that's been brought up. For instance, rogues and warriors are bidding on the same mh/oh/gun, so they all spend about the same amount on those 3 slots bid or no bid, however a warrior will always need to pick up a shield at some point, and if he has to bid against the tanks for that, he's SoL for trying to help the guild and fulfill his role in a raid.

Edit; To the poster above:

So the more interesting question, the one where we can actually make progress and thus the one we should be focusing on is how much loot a hyrbid should get compared to a pure class. Should it be <number of specs> times as much loot or should it be the same loot.

How do you classify people though? Warriors have 2 viable roles in raids, so if you cut the price of all items they take in half... whats stopping a warrior from going picking a spec and getting their full set at half the price of a rogue? Half price also means twice as fast, so you'd be looking at a warrior with a full set of gear at the same time as a rogue with half a set, given equal attendance.

#29 Guest_alienangel_*

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Posted 31 January 2007 - 07:53 PM

Fair enough, I'll shut up. Reading the initial post I should have caught on that the thread was aimed at fixed bid systems specifically.

#30 Guest_alienangel_*

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Posted 31 January 2007 - 07:59 PM

If a warrior commits to be a pure tank and never takes any DPS loot in your system, what is he going to do when he is called upon to dps? This isn't players wanting tons of loot for their e-peen, they NEED it to do their job in the raid.

At the risk of continuing the derail: the warriors all have DPS (and Tanking) gear from older instances to fill in short-term holes in their kit. Particular to our guild, we've only ever had 2 warriors who commit to pure tanking, and they are admittedly fairly useless in a fight we don't need 2 tanks. One or the other will always be tanking though, I don't think we've run into any fights where not even a single warrior tank was useful. The rest all spread their points in various distributions between tanking and DPS gear depending on what pieces they needed to upgrade the most.

#31 Brando

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Posted 31 January 2007 - 08:01 PM

We're doing what Kalman noted earlier. The player chooses their primary path ie. tanking for warriors or enhancement for shamans. For the warrior they pay nothing for their non-primary path gear but only once the warriors that have it as their primary path already have the gear in question.

Some classes will obviously be recieving more overall loot than others but it shouldn't be a big issue.

#32 Kalman

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Posted 31 January 2007 - 08:07 PM

And if you don't want to commit to being a full tank or a full DPS, I suppose there needs to be a 3rd set of prices to accommodate your own itemization desires (or you're told you need to pick one or the other)?

It's not about what you think you are. It's about what you do. No third set of prices is necessary; there is only one price on an item. If it's your role, you pay that price. If it isn't your role, you either pay a fixed small price (e.g. 5 DKP in a system where typically items range from 100-250 DKP) or nothing at all.

And here's the other point: I don't give a shit if you want to be Resto Bob, Feral McGee, or somewhere in between; if you are primarily healing in a raid, you need to pay healing prices. If you're mostly in cat/bear, you pay cat/bear prices. If you are tanking 90% of the time as a warrior, you pay tank prices. If you are DPSing 90% of the time as a warrior, you pay DPS prices. If you're DPSing 90% of the time and think of yourself as a tank, you have a self-image problem; your problem is not my problem. My problem is how do I account for most efficiently gearing you to be able to perform your primary and secondary roles without making anyone unhappy about it.

(In addition, this is NOT a discussion on spec; you can be feral-specced and still be an effective healer, and indeed you may still primarily be healing. As such, you need to pay full on healing gear, and get your off-role gear at reduced prices. This is to prevent something like a druid who primarily heals saying "OMG I am feral", taking healing loot at reduced price, which will cause resentment amongst other people who are doing the same thing he is, but don't have the option of reduced price on minor upgrades. Yes, this situation has come up.)
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#33 Ghostz

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Posted 31 January 2007 - 08:08 PM

If a warrior commits to be a pure tank and never takes any DPS loot in your system, what is he going to do when he is called upon to dps? This isn't players wanting tons of loot for their e-peen, they NEED it to do their job in the raid.

Depending on how many prot warriors you have, I'd have to say that this is probably going to be a pretty rare scenario in 25 mans. We went through the entirety of Naxx with 4 prot warriors, 3 of which were usually online and in the raid. I'm pretty sure thats more than most guilds, and there were very few fights in which they had to take off their tanking gear and put on dps gear. The only ones that come to mind off the top of my head are Loatheb and Sapphiron, one of required gear that was mostly crafted. That leaves Loatheb, a fight for which a prot warrior isn't of much use, geared or not they'd probably be replaced by another class before the boss is farm status.

In most cases its the other way around, dps warriors have to put on some tanking gear and pick up an add. In those cases, their gear usually isn't that big of a factor. The job can be done with gear that's outdated for those slots. Ie, BWL gear should be enough to offtank pretty much anything in Naxx. That can be compared to instance blues being good enough for offtanking the first tier of raid content released.

#34 Aphyrax

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Posted 31 January 2007 - 08:13 PM

So the more interesting question, the one where we can actually make progress and thus the one we should be focusing on is how much loot a hyrbid should get compared to a pure class. Should it be <number of specs> times as much loot or should it be the same loot.

How do you classify people though? Warriors have 2 viable roles in raids, so if you cut the price of all items they take in half... whats stopping a warrior from going picking a spec and getting their full set at half the price of a rogue? Half price also means twice as fast, so you'd be looking at a warrior with a full set of gear at the same time as a rogue with half a set, given equal attendance.

We are still working on the details of the system, but what I have in mind is something like this. Players classify themselves. There are 3 pools: DPS, tanking and heal. You decide how to split your DKP. For a resto druid with some DPS ambition it might be 70% heal 30% DPS.

Then we use bidding. Bidding helps this system immensely because one feature, good or bad, of a bidding sytem is that the lesser loot is typically disporportionally cheap. That is, an item that in a fixed point system might be only 10% cheaper could easily cost only a quarter of the points since the competition for lesser loot is typically minimal. That way, hybrids, even though they do not get discounts on their second set, effectively still get a good amount of loot for the off spec. They just do not get the best loot, and honestly (and please note the class in my profile) they should not.

The advantage of the system is that players are not pigeonholed like it happened a lot in the past. You classify yourself, and you also have to compete based on that. If you are a priest and put 80% of your points into DPS be prepared to compete with warlocks for raid spots. It also tells the guild how much of each role you have. In the past, there was a strong connection between class and role, but now that is not the case, so the guild needs to know how many healers they have, not how many priests/druids/pallies/shamans.

A player can change their point allocation, but only infrequently. There are some more wrinkles but they are beyond the scope here.

Another advantage of the system is that once I got off my ass and wrote some simple tools for it, a raid will take less than a minute to input. All you need to do is copy a file to a directory on the server and done. No manual processing will be required. As I said above, to me that is more important than getting every single facet of the system right.

#35 Dakous

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Posted 31 January 2007 - 08:35 PM

I like Kalman's thinking on the issue, I will be advocating a declared role with last-priority discounted off-role system. (But then again, I'm Feral McGee).

I liked a system a previous guild I managed used (that might be why I designed it), which was inflationary but zonal DKP. If something isn't working, there's effectively a reset every new raid zone anyway, so you can tinker with numbers to noone's lament (there's carry-over for populating the new zones for a few kills, so vets have some incentive, but can't lord over newer members new kill loot). Not directly related, but if people start finding a way to game whatever system you do come up with, "Hey, guys, we can fix this in [new-BWL], without disrupting the standings at the moment."
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#36 Fellwraith

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Posted 31 January 2007 - 09:04 PM

At the risk of continuing the derail: the warriors all have DPS (and Tanking) gear from older instances to fill in short-term holes in their kit. Particular to our guild, we've only ever had 2 warriors who commit to pure tanking, and they are admittedly fairly useless in a fight we don't need 2 tanks. One or the other will always be tanking though, I don't think we've run into any fights where not even a single warrior tank was useful. The rest all spread their points in various distributions between tanking and DPS gear depending on what pieces they needed to upgrade the most.

This is a derail, but it's worth pointing out - protection warriors can dps now. Add in 10 talent points plus some very good dps talents in the later stages of the protection tree and they are no longer jonny useless when asked to kill something. I have the best thunderclap (13 rage, 20% slow), my execute costs 3 rage less than the MS-hybrid guy (so I will outdps him sub 20%), and I have the best damage per rage talent when I shift to an offensive stance. My dps set is going to maximize +crit and then some combo of +hit or +block (depending on whether you go dw or sword and board). It's not quite tanking gear, but I can grab +block or +hit tanking gear and that will help me dps. It isn't like wow 1.0 where I needed a hybrid spec or gear to actually prove my worth.

My point to the derail - I don't know if people really have to pick up 2 sets of gear if they're a warrior anymore. The same can be said of most other classes. If you establish that someone is specializing in a particular playstyle based on their talent selection, their gear selection should reinforce and leverage those talents. When you get down to it, the feral druid isn't making any better use of resto set gear than I am of dps plate. Getting the specialized hybrid classes another set of gear isn't critical to the raid's success.

What it does do, is add to the raid's flexibility. I can see some value in that, but you could also make the argument that you shouldn't be forcing people into suboptimal roles for the duration of an instance (for one or two fights, maybe a wing, sure). If it's farm content, then you can have the protection warrior take a night off and dps - but he doesn't need cutting edge gear to do it.

#37 Evalara

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Posted 31 January 2007 - 09:19 PM

If a warrior commits to be a pure tank and never takes any DPS loot in your system, what is he going to do when he is called upon to dps? This isn't players wanting tons of loot for their e-peen, they NEED it to do their job in the raid.

Personal experience shapes our opinions of this to a great degree. 9/10 of the warriors my guild has ever had have been rogue-wannbe lootwhores who wanted two huge piles of purps yet never wanted to actually tank anything. When raiding on my warrior alt I considered "needing" two sets of gear to be a privilege rather than a burden. So I don't see how rigging the system so hybrids get twice the loot for the same price is more "fair" or desirable in any way.

#38 Ultramax

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Posted 31 January 2007 - 09:25 PM

Perhaps you should work on the problem of having a bunch of shitty warriors. Rather than screwing half the players in the guild who have more than 1 set of raiding loot.

#39 Dakous

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Posted 31 January 2007 - 09:38 PM

Perhaps you should work on the problem of having a bunch of shitty warriors. Rather than screwing half the players in the guild who have more than 1 set of raiding loot.

Are you suggesting that one can't engineer a DKP system that solves all of society's ails? Surely with the correct formulae we can summon Azathoth from beyond the Outer Wastes and rain down sufficent loot to appease everyone. I'm fairly sure that the first step is bringing a donkey to market.
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#40 Kytrarewn

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Posted 31 January 2007 - 09:38 PM

Perhaps you should work on the problem of having a bunch of shitty warriors. Rather than screwing half the players in the guild who have more than 1 set of raiding loot.

I've seen the worst extreme, a warrior who wanted to PvP, but was also the guild's main tank. Granted, he did have pretty good attendance, and he was a very good tank.

However, there's no reason for the MT to pick up the first: Untamed Blade, Drake Talon Spaulders, Breastplate of Annihilation, Master Dragonslayer's RING (DPS), Chromatically Tempered Sword (So he'd have an offhand for his thunderfury when he decided to be Fury instead of Prot while PvPing), Chromatic Boots, etc. while the mainly-DPS warriors were still using Arcanite Reapers and pre-Raid gear.

There definitely has to be at least some focus on what your main raiding role happens to be.

My last guild had a loot council. People would decide to put the gear where it was most warranted/useful, from a council of ~ 10 people.

This worked pretty damn well, but there was still a bit of veiled resentment at supposed favoritism. From what I can tell,there's really no good way to go about it other than setting up multiple DKP pools and working from there.
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