It's always been that way of course but it's a disconnect that is slightly hypocritical. Pug groups are always constructed to hopefully be as likely to win as LFR is. This is accepted as a good thing in pugs; it's destroying the game in LFR according to some. Note that I do understand the differences between all of these raiding modes and difficulties. There's just a lot of contradictory thinking in all of it.
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My experience with FLEX. First, I'd like to note that my ilvl was around 510-515 when trying to get a group.
The first two pugs I joined were able to get to phase 2 of the first boss....with no more than half the people alive. We had vent for 1 group, no vent for another. The group that had vent did worse on mechanics, the group that did not have vent just were under geared and unprepared. Joining random groups that did not request any ilvl req I ended up getting in groups that were generally filled with people under ilvl 500, many of the key roles didnt have gems/enchants on gear. Also each group had 10-13 people. They both seemed like nice partial guilds just trying it out, and they'll probably be fine with a bit of prep work, but not week 1. I was pleasantly surprised by the lack of attitude and anger over wiping repeatedly.
The 3rd group I joined advertised a min 510 ilvl, so I barely got in, not that they checked. At first our group had 11 people, then they decided to add more, then more then more then more. It quickly filled up, and I think the mechanics were easier with more people. There was more wiggle room, more coverage of the add areas, etc. I'd say most people probably pulled their weight and there were very few deaths due to mechanics. We killed the boss on the 2nd try. We killed the 2nd boss on the second try. 3rd boss I think also was 2 tries, and the 4th boss was probably 3 tries. The group had people that could follow basic mechanics and perform moderate dps. It was fun, no one asked, and they were close calls in the end. Over time I'm sure that it will get easier as the LFR gears people. It wasn't something we couldnt just cake walk through as a pug, but the experience was much more enjoyable than LFR. Knowing we could boot someone screwing off and not have to worry about replacing them I think kept things moving. Going from 23 > 21 players was something done in stride instead of the headache of having to worry about finding replacements.
I think trying to do FLEX with 10 people isn't the best way to experience it, especially as a pug. Having more players let the raid have some give and take, though everyone still needed to perform mechanics. It also took the pressure off of having to replace people else you find yourself at a disadvantage. I'm sure there will be a sweet spot of tanks > healers > dps that pugs can be fairly successful with, but messing up mechanics caused wipes, unlike LFR.
I am very happy with the results and look forward to next week, though I certainly expect it to be more challenging.
I had fun, more people the better, ignoring mechanics = wipes, decent mechanics + moderate dps = loots
I did flex as a crossrealm pickup with a core raid group. It was the first low-pressure, semi-progression raid on new content I've done over Vent since Wrath. The conversations were hilarious, the fights were fun, and the experience was a blast. I'm sorry, I'm not interested in wiping on bosses dozens of times anymore, I've already gone through that phase and still shake my head in disbelief that they took the kind of raiding provided by Wrath 10-mans away in Cata.
There were some players off the bat who were probably expecting an LFR experience and momentarily held up the raid with needless wipes. The good news is, kicking someone out of a Flex raid only takes one vote: the raid leader. Laying down the law cleaned things up fast. (The freedom to kick players without having to replace them to proceed is immensely gratifying for some reason.) Player expectations probably need time to adjust.
Anyway, I can't imagine I'll be doing SoO with a trade chat realm-only pug anytime soon. I've been in trade chat pugs that have wiped endlessly on Oondasta, often without a kill, while every OpenRaid group I've been in for that fight has been a oneshot and a clean kill.
Although dps was non issue for us (we had half of dps died in norushen and still had like 2 minutes to enrage and stuff) we fucked up mechanics (not by a lot) and it was still a wipe.
As we were all previous raiders and had a competent raid leader we didn't have problem in second attempts, but how about the LFR people? They are just going to make same mistake over and over and die. Mechanics like soaking balls in norushen or dodging add voidzones or prison in sha is exactly the same as the normal, so if you fuck up you die. If the mechanics are same as normal what's the point of flex?
And note that this is only the first wing - which is easiest.
Last edited by PrairieChicken; 2013-09-17 at 01:36 AM.
I think the point of Flex is to teach people that mechanics are important. LFR teaches damage good. Flex lets you not worry about hps/dps as much and just execute mechanics, normal puts them both together and heroic has you turn up the dial and squeeze the most out you can.
Also, LFR wasn't for pugging; it was for random groups. There's a big difference. Pugs are much more organized. When selecting players for a pug or when deciding to join a pug you can look at things like achievements and gear levels before the fights even start. If someone in the pug isn't pulling their weight you can /kick them without needing to vote, and you can replace them with whoever you want. People seem to be confused about the difference between pug and random. They are not the same thing. Flex was designed for pugs (and friends and family guilds), and LFR was designed for randoms.
Obviously, of the people who can't commit to a raiding guild (the large, large majority of the WoW player base) and are therefore unable to do Normal Modes, some don't want to have nothing but dull-as-dirt LFR to do for gear and progression or hope that some guild will randomly have a DPS spot open.
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Do flex with people you know and maybe guildies. Have a jolly good time. Problem solved.
Give it a few weeks. Once people get an idea of the bosses in an environment where you can't fail (LFR), as well as a bit more gear, random Flex groups will become more bearable.
Right now you have undergeared people, with no idea how to play, no idea what the bosses do and no idea how to act in a group where they can be kicked by one person. It's going about as well as I can expect. Right now it's more for guilds to do when they would have done a quick gearing LFR night, or for guilds that can't handle the same bosses in normal mode.
This whole thread is just a bunch of elitist comments.
I've grouped with quality players for both flex and lfr. I dont even know how you can complain about people that you select. Dont select them if they are less skilled than youd like.
Not like flex actually requires skill or anything.
I had a flex pug on my 515 tank alt yesterday. We had 20 people, 2 tanks, 5 healers and failed hard on the first boss. They kept wanting to do this strategy one of them had come up with (who was 1/14 normal) because he was the expert where they sat in only half the room and ignored P2 adds on the second half, whcih anyone who knows the fight knows will nuke the raid for about 700k when all the adds hit close together. So each transition phase 10-15 died. I tried reasoning but he kept shouting at us that he'd killed the boss and he knew the tactics (I didn't bring up I was wearing Liberator of Orgrimar title) and just left after a few more wipes to the same thing.
I decided to start my own one instead with a 515 ilvl req (though may have been too low with the island items) and keep the numbers low at 10 as this seemed to downscale the mechanics to much more managable numbers when your healers are shaky. We stomped the first boss pretty easily though healing was a bit dodgy towards the end, great. The second boss though... I don't know if it's an inherent problem with pugs or just this group but they couldn't follow the simple instruction of DPSing the marked adds. Had a shadow priest doing great DPS but he just hit Rook or the caster the entire fight refusing to switch to anything. We had about 5 wipes to adds being up too long (and people not throwing the mark to the tank) and then I called it because it was too painful.
I think pugs can work fine on it if you know your class and listen/follow the raid leaders instruction, but if you're just going to treat it like LFR, ignore the mechanics and do whatever you want you're going to most likely fail unless the rest of the group are carrying you. I dread to think how they'd have handled Norushen orbs or moving on Sha. In future weeks I'm just going to make sure I catch the guild run.
Adding extra raid modes with diffrent difficulties in order to make raiding more plausible for everyone is the worst mistake ever for PvE.
Blizzard continues to feed the below-average players by making every raid mode easier. Lower ilvl loot isn't encouraging anyone to strafe higher to normal for better loot, because the ilvl is too similar. People can roughly do the same dps as ppl with HC/normal gear. Why invest more time in higher difficulty raiding if you can be nearly as good as those raiders by completing a mindless lootfest version of it?
Flex mode could've been one of the best things yet if it would be as difficult as normal.
Farming on the isle yesterday when someone in chat linked A Vision in Time Quest and asked where they had to go for it (Quest text says use The Vision in Time inside the Siege of Orgrimmar). When someone said "Inside the siege of Orgrimmar he said thankyou, he got a lot of grief from other players and ended up swearing at them, so if he was trolling he didn't do very well.
Anyway, point is that I don't know how people get this far in the game when they don't even read what the game tells them so I have no doubt that Flex raiding is just as bad as LFR..
Raiding once followed a similar pattern, but today it's truly "noone gets left behind", and even the easiest of challenges are so difficult for people they either give up or complain (because they know that they'll eventually get their way if they complain enough).
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