I've noticed quite a few discussions - both here, in guild, and on mumble - asking various questions which I've been waiting to talk about for some time. I wanted to bring them up when WoD got closer, but more and more folks are talking about stuff... so hey, I'll jump the gun a little bit.
Also, if you bring in new people, this thread will serve as a nice little 'mission statement' for any raids I run. Feel free to point 'em here.
I kind of "wound up" as a raid leader, and I'm not really sure how. Because of that, I never got to have a discussion about my approach to raiding. I'm going to take a chunk of this post to do that:
First off: I like raid leading, it's a lot of fun, I have no problem. However, I did kind of seize it, and I never got a chance to say - if anyone else, anyone at all would prefer to do it, please don't hesitate to say so. I don't want to be the asshole hogging all the fun.
Second off: There aren't very many requirements that I make of people, and I'd like to keep it that way. I don't want to give anyone a bad taste by withholding loot or whatever based on attendance or performance or something like that. I don't want to exclude people who want to come, either - generally if you want to raid with us, then (barring extreme gear discrepancies), I'll put you in. If you want to quit, or take a hiatus, go quit and take a hiatus. We'll miss you, and we'll anxiously await your decision to come back (you KNOW you will), and there will be no hard feelings.
I can run raids this way because the group of people we have is not a selfish one. People are willing to share loot when rolls send it their way, assist the raid by taking on more responsibility, raid when they're not super-feeling it so the rest of us can play, or read ahead on fights. I will never make it a requirement to do any of these things, because I always want you to have that safety net - if you feel like shit on raid day, you don't have to show up, there are no consequences for you.
I also realize that this is abnormal. It's an easy system to take advantage of, and it only survives by having genuinely good people attend.
Third: In light of the second point, and with WoD on the horizon, I wanted to bring up a request - If possible, I should like very much if you give some love to your off-spec. We lost a few people all at the same time just before we were about to start heroics, and it damn near tore the guild apart until WoD. Thankfully, @Celsh stepped up and geared up a new toon in the space of a few weeks, I had my tank set geared by accident, and we met a few pugs willing to fill dps and healer roles. It set us back probably four or five weeks (which in turn made morale dicey), but the offspecs are what saved us.
So please, PLEASE, while gearing up this expansion, pay some attention to your offspec. Keep an eye out for OS pieces, keep your OS addons up to date, know the rotations and tricks for your OS... so that if someone feels like it's time to take a hiatus, or someone feels sick for raid night, you can step up to the plate. We will of course make every effort to make sure you run your favorite spec, but... lemme tell you, it feels good to be the person that can fill any niche.
There are no bad ideas. We appreciate any and all information you have on a fight. We appreciate better strategies, interesting plans, whatever. We also value knowing what went wrong. Please call out any errors you see, and expect your errors to be called out as well. We've been doing this for heroics, and it works WONDERFULLY. Most importantly, though - do not take any of it personally if you are called out, and don't be unpleasant if you have to call someone else's error out.
Rolls rule. If you guys want to switch to a loot council or something, that's fine, we can do that - but if rolls rule, guests don't get left out, people whose schedules can't handle being there every night still get some love. Just be good about it - this goes back to the general raid philosophy of 'be good people.' Nobody will ever pressure you to give loot up. Someone might say 'that's a huge upgrade for me,' but there will be no pressure. However, you will be thought of as a kind, generous, thoughtful human if you DO give loot up for what you perceive as the greater good. But always remember - it is YOUR CHOICE, and nobody will give you any trouble, or think of you poorly if you keep the piece. Your attendance is allowing that loot to drop in the first place, and anyway we're here to play, not to purple up.
3. We run a voteskip method (this is only really applicable for heroics). If you are sick of running a boss on heroic or want to skip it for any other reason, you can whisper me that you want to skip the boss - swap it to normal, down it, and move on. When more than half the raid votes to skip, we'll move forward. Alternatively you can voteskip in a public channel, but the option to do it privately by whispering exists - for obvious reasons.
- Please overcommunicate attendance. RSVP if you can (we use a google calendar system), and if something comes up and you can't make it, text me, email me, grab me on google talk, whatever - it all goes to my phone. @Ryder is awesome about this - I get texts when he's going to be only five minutes late!
I'm sure I missed some stuff, just let me know!