MMO-Champion - Patch 5.4 - Flexible Raid Preview
Patch 5.4 - Flexible Raid Preview
Patch 5.4 will add a a new raid difficulty:

  • Bring anywhere from 10 to 25 people to your raid and the difficulty will automatically scale.
  • Works with battletags, so you can bring friends from other realms.
  • Item level of loot is between Raid Finder and Normal and loot is awarded with the Raid Finder style loot system.
  • Separate lockout from Raid Finder and Normal, allowing you to do all three difficulties.

Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Raids in World of Warcraft have a long history of not just challenging players, but changing and evolving as the years and expansions go by. As with everything in the game, we’re always thinking about what more we can bring to raiding to improve the experience for an even wider range of players. While Normal and Heroic Raids are a great fit for many, we feel there’s another gap worth filling—and to that end, we’re currently working on the development of a new type of Raid for the next major content update: Flexible Raiding.

One Size Does Not Fit All
While it’s impossible to fit every player into a neat, tidy archetype, we recognize that we could be providing a better experience to one broad category of raider: social groups comprised predominantly of friends and family, and smaller guilds that do their best to include as many members in their Raid outings possible.

During the Wrath of the Lich King expansion, the 10-player Normal difficulty served these groups of players pretty well, but the unification of 10-player and 25-player into a single difficulty effectively eliminated that niche. While Raid Finder mode is extremely accessible, it doesn’t provide smaller groups with a tight-knit social experience while progressing through the content. In Patch 5.4, we’re planning to introduce a new mode of raiding that allows us to deliver the sort of experience that we think these players are looking for.

/Flex
To fill this void, we’re in the process of developing a new Flexible Raid system, which includes a new difficulty that sits between Raid Finder and Normal difficulty, while still allowing friends, family, or pick-up groups to play together. This difficulty will be available for premade groups of 10–25 players, including any number in between. That means whether you have 11, 14, or 23 friends available for a Raid, they’ll all be able to participate.

The Flexible Raid system is designed so that the challenge level will scale depending on how many players you have in the Raid. So if you switch between 14 players one week and 22 the next, the difficulty will adjust automatically. Keep in mind that unlike Raid Finder, no matchmaking is available, so you’ll need to make sure you invite people to attend—but if some can’t make it, it’s not the end of the world (or the Raid). You’ll also still be able to invite Real ID or Battle.net friends cross-realm. Who you choose to bring and what Item Level gear they’ll need to join your merry band is up to you, too—there’s no Item Level requirement for this Raid difficulty.

Dressed to Kill
A new Raid difficulty also means a new Item Level. Flexible mode will award loot with an Item Level that falls between Raid Finder and Normal quality, and will use the Raid Finder’s “per person” loot system, specialization choices, and bonus rolls, so you won’t need to worry about bringing the “wrong” person and having them win that piece of gear you’ve long been waiting for.

You Have the Keys
We plan to unlock the Flexible Raid difficulty in wings, similar to Raid Finder, but on an accelerated timetable. This new difficulty also has a separate Raid lockout from Raid Finder and Normal difficulty, allowing you to take part in all three if you so desire. You’ll also be able to complete portions of your “Glory of the Orgrimmar Raider” raid meta- achievement in Flexible mode as well as in Normal or Heroic to earn cosmetic rewards such as an epic mount. This will allow Raid groups the opportunity to switch off nights between raids to complete achievements. Finally, taking part in Flexible, Normal, or Heroic difficulty will provide access to additional rewards that won’t be available in Raid Finder.

Getting Down to Brass Tacks
As with any in-development feature, we’re continuing to refine how the Flexible Raid system will work, and we look forward to hearing your constructive feedback from your experiences on the Public Test Realm when the new system goes live.
This article was originally published in forum thread: A Raid for All Seasons: Flexible Raid Preview started by Boubouille View original post
Comments 816 Comments
  1. Stinalicious's Avatar
    Cant believe you people saying "åhh make it for 7 or 8 instead"..if they made it for 8 someone would cry "åhh make it 7". 10 is serioiusly just a minimum for a proper raid.

    do you want 2 tanks 2 healers and 2 DPS? Too much boss health = snore-fest for healers. Too little boss health = mana never an issue, there is still *SOME* kind of requirement on how many mimimum players you need in a raid.

    I cant beleive people even bother to comment here without thinking two steps ahead. Let me tell you what will happen once 5.4 is released.

    - guilds that will do this NEW raid difficutily will probably recruit between 15-25 people. HENCE they can always raid cuz they will ahve between 10-25 people online.
    so those of you who want it scaled down to 7 or something. Just merge with another guild. Or stick to LFR/5 mans if you are THAT casual in logistics.
  1. adrii021's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Rustedsaint View Post
    this is a great idea if it was more then 25 ppl. Guild im in atm has 29 active raids that sub out between boss fights =p
    Wont you be able to split them up into 2 now?
  1. Huntardicus's Avatar
    I actually can not wait to do this now. I can raid with my IRL friends any time, and still be able to raid with my guild, excitement for 5.4 is too damn high!
  1. xerus's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Declaron View Post
    Sooo a group of 14 players for example completes normal flex, then what happens when they have to do 10-25 heroic?
    If they can manage to balance it, do it for heroics too.
  1. Bormes's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by yunito View Post
    if this the new feature that was somewhat talk about..im a bit disappointing
    How can u be disappointed when you had no idea what to expect... This is why they don't hint at stuff. You just found out this exists and already the world owes u something.
  1. lavaalamp's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Baphomette View Post
    Of course this is "the feature." They outright said some people wouldn't give a damn about the feature.

    As for wanting it to scale below 10, there are probably logistical considerations -- fights still needing two tanks etc -- that make it easier to set that as the lower bound. The whole point of this is to pug a bunch of people from trade and get better stuff than LFR.
    It's not, they said the "new feature" will cater around old content.
  1. ScottsdaleHokie's Avatar
    If this is the big surprise, then what a disappointment.

    This will bring back exactly ZERO people that have quit.
  1. Xytal's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by xerus View Post
    Worst idea ever.

    Here's how to improve it: remove 10 man normal, remove 25man normal, add flex size normal. Done.

    Screw 4 ilvl tiers, 3 lockouts and 4 difficulties.
    This is what I expect the next expansion to be. It is going to go LFR, Flex 10/25 Normal, Flex 10/25 Heroic.

    LFR hit in Cata, then went for everything in MoP. I expect this to hit in MoP, then go everything for the expansion.
  1. intrinsc's Avatar
    Excellent feature. Can't wait for this!
  1. adrii021's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Xytal View Post
    This is what I expect the next expansion to be. It is going to go LFR, Flex 10/25 Normal, Flex 10/25 Heroic.

    LFR hit in Cata, then went for everything in MoP. I expect this to hit in MoP, then go everything for the expansion.
    Now if all the scrubs could realise this and not scream SUCKS the world of warcraft would be such a much nicer place to be
  1. Huntardicus's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by ScottsdaleHokie View Post
    If this is the big surprise, then what a disappointment.

    This will bring back exactly ZERO people that have quit.
    Except it brings back people the system benefits. I don't see how you can state it doesn't appeal to anyone who quit the game.
  1. DrMcNinja's Avatar
    I'm seriously, cerealsly hoping this will eventually replace LFR aswell as eliminate the 10/25 restriction. It would allow 10 man guilds to have a bigger raid roster without the need to go 25 and benching people, aswell as giving 25 mans the opportunity to continue raiding should members unexpectedly not come/leave the guild on short notice.
  1. VanishO2's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by adrii021 View Post
    Thats your opinion? Where id LFR fail tell me that. Yea its dumbed down, but ppl were asking for a easy way to raid and blizzard gave them just that.

    And in the end i didnt say everything added to the game is great but what i did say was at least give them time to form it to something good.

    Personally i dont see anything wrong with LFR.

    What i dont do is bitch about things like you do aka i dont mind pokemon beeing in the game, i dont care about it and you know what?
    I dont even touch that part of the game, just like pvp. Its diffirent parts of the game, some ppl love pokemon and some love pvp.

    Why do you even bitch about lfr? Arent you raiding normal or heroics? Really dont get it
    I guess you could easily go and back track some news posts from MMOChampion and blue posts from Blizzard. They've got all your answers about "why LFR failed" covered. From Killing guilds groups, going into killing social aspect of a Multiplayer game (social! shocking!), passing by not letting ppl see the stuff since it's all about "GO GO GO GO YOU TARDS!!!" and not correctly preparing for normal raiding.

    You're saying it's "bitching", wich is not, and by the way, crying out about "bitching" is one of the lowest things someone can do, showing their lack of arguments. (finishing with "arent you normal/heroics?" is even worse).

    Guess we reached the point were we can say wotlk ppl are just thinking of it with "rose-tinted glasses" and pure nostalgia like classic/tbc players. Raiding there wasn't all that happiness and perfect. There was bad players just like there are now. Pugs failed a lot in 10 man mode ("perfect" pugs were mostly, guess what? Formed from 25 man raid players trying to get specific itens from 10, because, we need to be honest, things were worse then since 10 and 25 mode had diferent loot, not only diferent ilvl. So you could have your BiS trinket in 10 instead of 25 for example). And almost all 25man pugs failboated before saurfang (4th boss) in icc for example.

    ToC's faction champions anyone? Anubarak? Ulduar crazy bosses? Yeah... real easy and pug fest... hahaha
  1. adrii021's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by ScottsdaleHokie View Post
    If this is the big surprise, then what a disappointment.

    This will bring back exactly ZERO people that have quit.
    Always nice when ppl that work at blizzard reply to threads.

    ohhhhh waiiit you dont work there.
  1. ImpTaimer's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by adrii021 View Post
    People need to stop bitching, clearly this isnt set in stone regarding the terms. This is just the start of a new thing added to raiding. Meaning this will evolve to even better things.

    Maybe their goal is to get a Flexible normal and heroic raiding envoirment. You guys dont work at blizzard so you dont know this.
    Stop bitching and give blizzard at least a couple of months before you yell THIS SUCKED.

    Let them put this into the game the way they need to and eventually they will do alot of good with it.

    Internet nowdays is all about bitching and moaning without even TRYING it.
    People bitch and moan so stuff doesn't get set in stone, genius.

    You do understand that if we have to try it, it's already set in stone, right?

    There's only two scenarios left at this point: Waste resources to abandon it, or waste resources to alter it.

    This is what happens when companies use "focus groups" instead of the opinions of their actual customers.

    (focus testing groups)"Let's make this feature then ask if people like it." VS (customers)"Let's ask if people are interested in this feature then make it."

    Fuck focus testing groups.
  1. Azrile's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Alayea View Post
    Same here. I want to get the same item level rewards from Normal so much, but when Blizzard used Looking For Retard as an excuse to up Normal to "where it should've been" (or so it's claimed), guess what? That really laid the hurt on raiding in general, even more so than the Cataclysm changes had. And this is their solution? To add yet another difficulty tier with sub-par gear as usual?

    Thanks for nothing, Blizzard.
    that is ironic.. right... a person complaining about not being able to clear normal modes calling LFR people retards...
  1. Coronius's Avatar
    I think the amount of difficulty levels and different kinds of raiding are starting to get out of hand. But maybe that's just me.

    Either way, this won't make me resub. Good thing if everyone else likes it however.
  1. prwraith's Avatar
    Frankly I'd be happy if they moved away from the model they have now. Where mechanics matter way way more than gear. Ie someone who isn't in the greatest gear can still dominate a fight.

    Gear should make an encounter easier and quicker but not prohibitive to newcomers who play at a higher skill level.
  1. Awkilles's Avatar
    I only thing i would change is: should have lockout with normal and heroic
  1. adrii021's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by ImpTaimer View Post
    People bitch and moan so stuff doesn't get set in stone, genius.

    You do understand that if we have to try it, it's already set in stone, right?

    There's only two scenarios left at this point: Waste resources to abandon it, or waste resources to alter it.

    This is what happens when companies use "focus groups" instead of the opinions of their actual customers.

    (focus testing groups)"Let's make this feature then ask if people like it." VS (customers)"Let's ask if people are interested in this feature then make it."

    Fuck focus testing groups.
    What are you on about ? Its not even in the game lol. How can you be so freaking SURE this is a bad idea genius?
    There is a difference about bitching and moaning and giving constructive feedback.

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