MMO-Champion - Flexible Raid Lock System in 4.0.1
Flexible Raid Lock System in 4.0.1
Originally Posted by Bashiok (Blue Tracker)
Almost six months ago we announced that Cataclysm raids were being redesigned to make both raid sizes the same difficulty, drop the same quality of loot, and exist in the same lockout. This evolution in raid philosophy is built on the belief that the size of your raiding group should be a choice based solely on what's more fun and enjoyable for you, and that you should not have to complete the same raiding content twice in a week to maximize your character's progression. These systems are the culmination of a great deal of design and player feedback from the last few years. With the release of the 4.0.1 patch, the new Flexible Raid Lock system will debut in Icecrown Citadel and The Ruby Sanctum.

With the Flexible Raid Lock system, instead of being locked to a specific raid size or raid group, each character will have the opportunity to defeat each raid encounter once a week. You could kill Lord Marrowgar and Lady Deathwhisper with a 10-player raid on Wednesday, join a 25-player raid to kill Festergut and Rotface on Thursday, and then lead a completely new 10-player raid to kill The Lich King on Friday. Every raid has a list of encounters associated with the zone. For example, Icecrown Citadel has twelve encounters. After you defeat Lord Marrowgar, you can open up your character's raid information dialog and see the list of encounters in Icecrown Citadel with Marrowgar marked as defeated. You may no longer fight Lord Marrowgar with any raid size or difficulty until the weekly raid reset for your region occurs.

Another key change is that if you join someone else's raid in progress, you are no longer locked to that raid after merely zoning in. Your raid status will only change when a boss is defeated, at which point it will be updated to reflect the state of the instance in which you are currently participating. So, let's say you have killed the first four bosses of Icecrown Citadel, and you then join a raid that has defeated the first four encounters, as well as Festergut and Rotface. The dialog that displays upon entering Icecrown Citadel will show that the raid has defeated 6 of 12 encounters. If you help them defeat Professor Putricide, then you would be marked as having defeated not only Professor Putricide for the week, but also Festergut and Rotface. If instead after joining the raid you then proceeded to wipe ten times to Professor Putricide, you could leave the raid with only the first four bosses marked as completed.

To help communicate to players which bosses are dead in the raid leader's raid, there is new functionality to link in chat a list of the encounters the raid has defeated. So before you join a raid, you can see what they've already defeated. If a raid leader advertises in chat that she needs another healer for an 8/12 Icecrown Citadel run, you can see precisely which bosses are still available to fight. If you were only looking for that one item from Queen Lana'thel that never drops for you and this raid already defeated her, you will know not to join that raid.

Let's look at another example of the Flexible Raid Lock system. A guild schedules three nights for 25-player Icecrown Citadel raiding on Wednesday, Thursday, and Saturday. On Wednesday, the raid defeats Lord Marrowgar, Lady Deathwhisper, Icecrown Gunship Battle, and Saurfang. On Thursday, five people cancel their raid attendance due to real life emergencies. The raid leader knows that if he cancels Thursday raiding, there's little chance they'll have enough time on Saturday to defeat the other eight bosses in Icecrown Citadel. So he splits the remaining 20 Thursday raiders into two 10-player raids. Each new raid enters Icecrown Citadel and defeats Rotface, Festergut, Blood Council, and Valithria Dreamwalker. The next Saturday with all 25 players online, they reform as a 25-player raid and enter Icecrown Citadel once more. Only Professor Putricide, Queen Lana'thel, Sindragosa, and The Lich King remain. After a tough fight, the Lich King falls and everybody celebrates. Without the Flexible Raid Lock system the entire raid probably would have missed out on a night of raiding, and likely would not have reached the Lich King.

While players can freely move between raids of different sizes in normal difficulty, there are some additional rules for Heroic difficulty. If a 10- or 25-player raid defeats a boss on Heroic difficulty, then those players may now only raid additional Heroic encounters with that specific raid. If your Heroic 25-player raid defeats the first four bosses of Icecrown Citadel on Heroic, then they may not split up into two 10-player raids and continue to fight in Heroic difficulty. You may also not join someone else's raid if they have defeated a Heroic encounter.

But let's say you are a member of a Heroic raid in Icecrown Citadel, and after killing Lord Marrowgar on Heroic you have Internet connection issues that prevent you from raiding for two nights. During those two nights, the rest of the raid kills everything. Without the Flexible Raid Lock system, you would be done with raiding Icecrown Citadel for the week. Ouch. With the Flexible Raid Lock system, you can join someone else's raid as long as they are doing Normal difficulty. This would at least give you the opportunity to earn your Justice Points for the week. If this raid attempted to switch to Heroic difficulty for Icecrown Gunship Battle with you in the raid, the raid leader would receive an error message stating that she cannot change to Heroic, because someone in the raid (i.e., you) is already locked to a different Heroic instance.

All of the new Cataclysm raids will feature the Flexible Raid Lock and Dynamic Difficulty systems, and when the Cataclysm occurs the other Wrath of the Lich King raids will also have these features. It's important to note that this system doesn't affect Heroic dungeons, they will work as they always have. We look forward to feedback for this new system after 4.0.1 is released. As a reminder, Icecrown Citadel and The Ruby Sanctum are the only two raids that support the Flexible Raid Lock until the Cataclysm occurs.

Update
One piece of clarification on questions being asked so far, although we're still compiling feedback and will work to answer some of the questions and clear up any confusion we can.

The loot system in Icecrown and Ruby Sanctum is not changing. This implementation of the new flex raid lock is only that, a new implementation of the raid lockout system we'll be using in Cataclysm. This does not change the separation of 10 and 25 in ICC, and does not change the item drops or achievements.
This article was originally published in forum thread: Flexible Raid Lock System in 4.0.1 started by Boubouille View original post
Comments 365 Comments
  1. DevilHeart's Avatar
    Basically in case of normal mode you will not be locked to the instance but locked to the boss. You can enter another raid id which has killed the same or more bosses. If you kill another boss during the second raid you will get locked to all the bosses that are killed in that instance.

    Ie
    You kill marrowgar in raid 1. Raid disbands.
    You kill gunship in raid 2. You will now be locked to marrow+gunship+deathwhisper. If you fail on gunship you will not get locked to the new instance killed bosses.

    For Hc difficulty its different. You must complete all the heroic bosses in the same instance group. If you fail to do so you are allowed to revert back to normal and enter another raid group, but you wont be allowed to switch to heroic(unless its the same instance as before).
  1. Vanhelsen's Avatar
    Uhm, ok, but it quite sucks with all that heroic thing.
  1. Wyldfire's Avatar
    Despite the fact that it's a wall of text, read the whole thing. Almost all of it is important, and you probably wont understand without the examples they give.

    On that note, great changes, but it'll take a lot of people time to get used to them and understand them. I like how everything is still just 1 kill per boss per week, yet we have so many options on how to do so.

    ---------- Post added 2010-10-01 at 04:40 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by rainCZ View Post
    tl;dr version ?
    Despite the fact that it's a wall of text, read the whole thing. Almost all of it is important, and you probably wont understand without the examples they give.

    On that note, great changes, but it'll take a lot of people time to get used to them and understand them. I like how everything is still just 1 kill per boss per week, yet we have so many options on how to do so.
  1. Zamoria's Avatar
    Yes! This is amazing
  1. Imhullu's Avatar
    So when this comes out I cannot attend my guilds heroic 25's and go to my friends heroic 10s in the same week?
  1. Ylera's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Ranor View Post
    tl;dr - R.I.P. 10man raiding unless all you do is do 10mans or alt runs.
    How did you come to that conclusion?
  1. Negai's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Ranor View Post
    tl;dr - R.I.P. 10man raiding unless all you do is do 10mans or alt runs.
    More like R.I.P. 25 man raiding, since 10 and 25 man loot will be identical in cataclysm. I welcome this change.
  1. tusker's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by draticus View Post
    I wish I worked at Bliz. The simple version of this would be "Each player can only loot each boss once per week regardless of raid size or difficulty." That is the solution I've been suggesting since day 1. This would allow people to raid with whatever friends they want, whenever they want. And never HAVE to raid more than once for the sake of min/maxing progression. They're half way there. Maybe someday they'll figure it out.
    I actually really wish this was the way it was implemented. I can see some minor issues with this though and how it could possibly be "abused" but it's not worth going into that now. Though I agree, being able to kill it multiple times but only getting badges/loot the first time would be fantastic.

    Anyway, they definitely mentioned months ago that they had intentions of doing something like what you refer to (can't find the bluepost atm) but I guess those plans fell through
  1. ro9ue's Avatar
    I think the intentions are good here and it's a step in the right direction - but the added heroic rules will cause some grief. We will see.
  1. Alarsen's Avatar
    What about the gear that drops?
    What about the raid achievements?
    Bane of the Fallen, Light of Dawn?
    Invincible?
    10man vs. 25man difficulty?

    Hard to believe that with such a huge post, neither of these were even remotely answered.
  1. paulie's Avatar
    If u dont need gears and just need justice points, I guess its a good way to farm it then. right?
  1. rochedo's Avatar
    Heroic thinks is to prevent ppl to do few bosses in heroic and other in normal. You can't do boat Hc then the rest in normal with the same raid. when you active heroic mode you have to do the rest in heroic mode also.
  1. Adyssa's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by draticus View Post
    I wish I worked at Bliz. The simple version of this would be "Each player can only loot each boss once per week regardless of raid size or difficulty." That is the solution I've been suggesting since day 1. This would allow people to raid with whatever friends they want, whenever they want. And never HAVE to raid more than once for the sake of min/maxing progression. They're half way there. Maybe someday they'll figure it out.
    I completely agree. Instead of being able to view what bosses are down in a raid and whether you can go, they could have simply given each player a display of what they have downed that week and then, upon entering a raid ID that wasn't their original ID, be given a pop-up warning that says "You are not eligible for loot from the following bosses in this raid ID: Marrowgar, Lady Deathwhisper" as well as giving the raid leader access to a raid UI that shows each boss and a list of people who are not eligible for loot, so that people can figure out whether it is worth it to do that boss (assuming it is skippable or you can change the raid leader and use a different, further along raid save).
  1. coocoo's Avatar
    This is a step in the right direction, though I'd still rather see what Draticus mentions, that your save simply denotes if you can get loot (including emblems/points) from the boss fight or not.
    This new way Blizzard is going to use still means that if you try to do a 10man raid and 4 people in the group already did the first boss in a weekly pug for some dumb reason, you can only take the 6 unsaved of your people to do the first boss before the others can join. Or the 6 unsaved people are forced to skip the first boss.
    But by flagging that you've looted the boss, you could take that 10man group & go from start, the ones who are already saved get no loot, and you can all continue your merry way.

    baby steps...
  1. Orinath's Avatar
    Uhh okay, I love this Flexible raid idea. I like that we are able to use it for RS and ICC. They never explained if loot was gonna change. There are some things in H10 that are a little more useful than H25 for some people (mainly trinkets). How has loot changed in ICC with this Flexible Raid change?
  1. Baltha89's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Smolderthorn View Post
    That sounds so lame.
    I agree content is played through too much but this is just meh.
    And why is that? I Hate this kind of ppl that is always complaining.

    This is an absolutly awesome change. Good job blizz
  1. arons4's Avatar
    2nd paragraph is basicly tldr version.
  1. vadera's Avatar
    what about loot from icc10 and icc25? will it be the same loot or??
    (and yes i do know cata raids will share the same loot)
  1. shokter's Avatar
    @rochedo
    you can, in fact do a boss on H then the rest on reg. The heroic restrictions, i think, are so you cannot sell yourself out as a key to heroic encounters to those who have not already unlocked them (without committing yourself to that raid group for that lockout at least). If you were to join a group to help them access lootship, for example, you would not be able to raid anymore heroics that week unless it was with the same raid id.
  1. Imhullu's Avatar
    Yeah I understand all of this for cataclysm when the raids will share identical loot and such, but right now I very much want to complete the purple colored warlock offset gear found from 10 man heroic just to have for fun, while also continuing to raid my guilds scheduled 25's everyweek until cataclysms release, and it is looking like I cannot continue to do both when this patch hits. (next tuesday?)

    Quote Originally Posted by Alarsen View Post
    What about the gear that drops?
    What about the raid achievements?
    Bane of the Fallen, Light of Dawn?
    Invincible?
    10man vs. 25man difficulty?

    Hard to believe that with such a huge post, neither of these were even remotely answered.
    My thoughts exactly.

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