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ICC Loot and Performance

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ICC Loot and Performance

Post  Boman on Mon Mar 08, 2010 3:15 pm

Hello All,

I mentioned last Friday during our ICC-25 raid that we were looking for feedback on loot. Loot distribution is never easy, and there will always be situations where disagreements come up. Ultimately we do our best to keep the raid going without loot crippling us or the raid. So in this post I hope to talk a bit about our loot distribution system, loot rules, and potential changes as we move through ICC. Throughout I will have questions that we're looking for your feedback on. I will post them at the end as well, so you don't have to worry about answering them as you go.

Loot Distribution System:
We are currently using a 1 epic, 1 off-role spec system. You roll based upon the role that you are in the raid to fill normally, regardless of what your "main" spec might be. There is no intention to change this system during the remainder of WoTLK. Our attendance is stabilizing over the past week or two, but our various loot systems of the past have caused enough strife and hard feelings between each other. We also saw in Ulduar that as our progression stagnated and our players had all the gear they felt they could get with our current progression, they stopped coming. We then had to remove the loot system to attract enough PUGs to keep the raid going. That doesn't mean that it isn't sometimes painful. We've had some PUGs in ICC win some BiS (Best in Slot) items. But that is the price we pay when we don't have enough players in-guild that come regularly.

Thursday and Friday are currently considered 2 separate raids for rolling purposes. Some of the reasoning for this is because we do have a core group that comes both days, but some do not. If we considered it 1 raid we could risk losing some of those people that win on Thursday nights. Would you choose:
A. Keep it this way, Thursday and Friday should be treated separately.
B. Change it. Thursday and Friday should be considered 1 raid for rolling purposes.

Defining Loot based on Role:
We currently define Role as Tanking, Healing, DPS. I apologize to all those dps only classes that have to use up their 1 epic for any item that they want. Would you choose:
A. Keep it this way.
B. If a DPS class has an item level equivalent piece of gear for the same slot (non-pvp), they are allowed to roll as an off-role.

The general way we determine the role a piece of gear falls under is as follows:
1. If there are tanking stats on the gear (defense, dodge, parry, block) it is tanking gear.
2. If the gear has hit on it, it is dps gear.
3. If the gear has spellpower on it, it is caster gear.
4. Preference goes to primary type wearers (cloth priority on cloth...)
** The only exception to the above rules would be if we had a DK tank with us rolling on weapon(s).

There are some distinctions that we do not make:
1. Strength vs Agility to determine what class might get a piece... Meaning that just because one piece might be better for one class than another, we don't make that distinction if it doesn't fall into the earlier categorizations.

It does bring up the question of if we should be making more distinctions given that itemization will be changing significantly for Cataclysm and we'll be seeing these changes a month or so before Cataclysm is live. We do understand this issue, but also have no plans to change how we're doing loot in this regard during ICC. Loot does slow down raids, so we do want to keep the complexity to a minimum.

There are 2 other items which can sometimes be debatable. These are trinkets and weapons. I don't really have any desire to change how we handle trinkets. It seems to work well enough and I think changing it would also require a much higher degree of analysis than we want to be putting into our loot distribution. That leaves weapons. Our basic system works pretty well. The one question that has recently come up is that if a weapon would be a main spec upgrade for someone, should they be allowed to roll on it. An example:

A 1H weapon drops that would be a main spec upgrade for a tank. The weapon stats would have us call it a dps weapon. But compared to their current weapon it would be an upgrade. Should a tank be able to roll on that weapon as their main role?
A. Keep it the way it is. If something has itemization on it that we typically consider dps, it would not be a main role for a tank.
B. Change the way we handle weapons.

I apologize for the length of the post, it really is just a few questions about how we are handling loot distribution and I will summarize below. Our ultimate goal continues to be to keep our run a friendly atmosphere with as little loot drama as possible. We also want to keep the system PUG friendly, as although it can be painful sometimes it's more important that the raid keeps running. Cataclysm will be here before we know it, and I for one want to be able to say that we downed the Lich King in normal mode!

As you reply to the questions, feel free to just free form your answer and say what's on your mind. We would definitley appreciate your input on the noted items, as they are the ones that have generated recent questions or concerns. The current plan is to finalize for this weeks raid, though we may end up extending that. We'll certainly announce on Thursday/Friday how things are going.

QUESTIONS:

1. Should we keep Thursday and Friday as separate raids for rolling purposes, or combine them and call it 1 raid.
A. Keep it this way, Thursday and Friday should be treated separately.
B. Change it. Thursday and Friday should be considered 1 raid for rolling purposes.

2. Should we keep rolling on weapons the way it currently is, or make a change for tanks who would use the weapon as a main role upgrade.
A. Keep it the way it is. If something has itemization on it that we typically consider dps, it would not be a main role for a tank.
B. Change the way we handle weapons.

3. We don't make distinctions for healers when weapons/items with lots of spirit drop, should we?

4. In general, are there other changes we should be making?

If anyone has any questions or would like to talk more in-depth about any of these items, or items not on the list, please don't hesitate to contact any of the officers from DisturbedOnes or Silver Hammer. We'd be happy to have a conversation about it.

There is give and take in any system. We have healers that are more limited in main role gear than dps on what they can roll on, but we have dps that are more limited on off role gear that they can role on. We have Best in Slot items for classes that another class can win. The list I'm sure goes on and on. Ultimately though, we don't want to be bogged down by a complex loot system. We want to keep the raid friendly, fun, and progressing as much as possible.

I do want to say one more thing. I truly enjoy everyone that we raid with, and I appreciate the committment that many give to our raids. But as we saw this past week on Festergut, even with great execution we did not have the dps to down the boss. There are some people in the raid that can and should be doing better based upon their class/gear level. If you are not spending even just an hour a week watching a video for the fights, reading up on your optimal rotation, and practicing on the test dummies to improve, then you are contributing to the raids inability to get down the newer bosses. I am a main spec tank, and I was not happy with my dps as an alt-role on that fight. I intend to have it fixed. For those that do not, I apologize ahead of time but we will need to bring people on Friday nights based upon their ability to put out more damage. If we can execute a fight well and still not have the boss down, that is a fixable problem and I am doing a disservice to the raid if I do not fix it. So this week I will start asking officers to talk to certain members if they are performing low so that there are no suprises. We will absolutely give you a chance to fix it, but you have to want to. We can offer resources to help, but ultimately it's a decision you'll need to make. Our original requirement when we started ICC was 4k dps. I believe that number has to be higher. We are not asking people to be the top DPS. We just need to be able to have enough to get the bosses down.

Once again, thank you for any feedback that you can provide. Everyone should be proud of our accomplishments both past, present and future. We couldn't do it without each other.

Thank you,
-Boman

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Re: ICC Loot and Performance

Post  rachetguy on Mon Mar 08, 2010 7:51 pm

I vote for keeping things as is. Mainly so we can grab a pug and hopefully keep them with us to complete a 25 man roster.

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Re: ICC Loot and Performance

Post  Nezrathii on Tue Mar 09, 2010 3:06 am

1. I choose A to keep them seperate at the very least until we have 24/25 of the same people every day cause even though it is the same raid the change in the people changes our chances of killing bosses and it is an incentive to get people to come both days.

2. I think we should change it because what will work for some classes doesn't for others and unfortunately blizzard is constantly changing what will or will not be needed or used by classes. For example, mages actually get a good use out of spirit because of the glyph of molten armor that converts 20% of spirit into extra crit so if things with spirit on it then get placed as only healer items that denies the usefullness of it for mages. Not that I generally go for things with spirit but I will use what I can get and make as much use out of it as any other.

I equate the usefullness of agility to tanking to the unification of healing and spell dmg into spell power- used to be healers and dps casters had to get seperate items for their roles but now its the same thing for both so why should we complain if some weapon with agil and stam etc is better use for a tank.

I believe if a person puts enough personal time into investigating what specific gear will benefit them - the rest of us should not complain simply because we are not used to it.

This reminds me of the time in BWL where the 2h sword was rolled on by a hunter- not because he was being a douche but because he had actually put the time and effort into figuring out what items would benefit his class and lo and behold it was something suprising to others around him that sparked a major debate, but irregardless of our predjudices it allowed him to up his dps output just as the items nowadays will allow our tanks to up their tps even though our stereotyping has us consider these items to be dps ones.

3. As for this question I believe that we all roll on the things that we know we need. I don't believe that any person who would raid with us has a misguided belief that a hunter should be rolling on spellpower items or that a caster would roll on items with strength and so if there is any question about people rolling on a specific item that doesn't seem to fit our stereotypes then we as a raid should simply ASK them why they are rolling- if they tell us that that specific item is an upgrade as far as research has shown them then I believe that their roll should be counted and not ignored. Only if they can not give a proper response as to why they want a specific item should someones rolls ever be ignored I believe.

4. In general communication is the great unifier. We as a group should strive to communicate with each other better. Yes loot takes time, but what takes more time is replacing someone who has become fed up with a lack of being taken seriously or answered when they ask questions. I have seen many, many people over my almost 5 years at wow leave guilds because noone is answering their questions or letting them know whats going on.

Actually my girlfriends mom said something pretty cool lately that I believe relates to us as a whole because in my mind we are all volunteers dedicating our time towards the same goal of fun and progression. She said, "It takes 3 seconds for a volunteer to become a volun-told-ya-good-bye" And thats really all it takes for one of us to become frustrated with whatevers happening and move on so as I said communication is key.

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Re: ICC Loot and Performance

Post  Iceforged on Tue Mar 09, 2010 8:15 am

Sorry to derail this thread.

I will be unavail this Friday and Saturday for our raids due to college overnight camp(gah) and other stuffs.
So hopefully u'll get a dps which is l33t like me to cover... Ha!

Boman just need to practise trust me. You raid as tank all the time so you don't clock enough dps hours(lol im saying it like its a job) .

Rend > MS > Execute > OP . Bash for 15 mins on a LEVEL 60 dummy . The level 60 ones are best as they accurately simulate rage generation in raid environment. If u happen to get Needle Encrusted Scorpion which drops in Heroic FoS... put those 2k stone keeper shards to good use and gem 20 ARP til u have 52% arp so that the trinket will take you to 100% XD


Damn softball injury too.... my shoulder hurts... T.T

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Re: ICC Loot and Performance

Post  Ozmademos on Thu Mar 11, 2010 10:47 pm

I agree with Nez on all his points. I'll further cut and paste my original post to this:

So, after tonight's thing in ICC25, I feel it's pretty important to talk about how we're itemizing gear. At the moment, my understanding is that we're making as few distinctions as possible to not overcomplicate things. I agree that is the best policy. As I understand it, gear type (cloth, leather, etc) is probably the most general means to itemize, and it goes to those people who's primary gear type it belongs (cloth for clothies first, mail for mail-wearers first, and so on).

Next after that is to see if the armor either has hit or defense. An item with hit will go to the dps first, and an item with defense will go to the tanks first (an item with both defense and hit being considered tank as the primary stat incase the item has both hit and defense). Weapons are generally considered to operate under these same rules.

Now here's where is starts getting less black and white and a little more grey... armor items not having hit or defense. At the moment, these items are rolled for openly between the dps and healers (and commonly not for tanks), BUT not considered priority to either.

And here's where there's some more greyish area... weapons without defense or hit. At the moment, these items are (again) rolled for openly between the dps and healers (and, again, commonly not for tanks). But, there's an issue here.

We're softly prioritizing (or commonly prioritizing) certain items but not others. A cloth item without hit, but lots of spirit and crit, isnt particularly going to a dps or healer. Both are equally viable to get the item, so long as they are actually a clothie. No one disputes this (thankfully), and it keeps things simple. But, a dagger or mace with spell power on it is going to a caster over a melee. This doesnt have anything to do with a person's being a clothie or plate wearer, and it doesnt have anything to do with defense or hit. It's a caster/melee distinction, and it might go to a priest just as likely as going to a druid or paladin. Just as an item without spell power is going to a melee. But, which melee?

This is something we havent dicussed.

At the moment, a melee weapon without hit or defense has NO priority one way or the other between tanks and dps. So, should we make that distinction some other way? I dont believe so in any way shape or form.

****We arent prioritizing a spirit spell power weapon to a healer, and we arent prioritizing a crit and haste item to caster dps.

****Thus, right now, we shouldnt be prioritizing a melee weapon with agility or armor penetration to a dps any more than we should be prioritizing a strength weapon to a tank. Again, there are certain items in game that are tanking items, but have dps stats on them like strength or expertise. Let's not split hairs about these minor stats.

This would be perfectly in accordance (and probably alot more clear) if we had a DK tanking. DK rarely if ever use weapons with defense. Most will use a 2hander, which generally is prioritized to dps. But, we wouldnt tell the DK 'tough luck' they wont be getting that upgrade, and we wouldnt tell a dps 'sorry man, but he needs that to tank'. If anything, we'd just roll it out and let it go where it may.

As such, anyone looking into gear upgrades will see that most weaponry upgrades for tanks in ICC are those one-handers with agility. Why? Because, ICC doesnt rely on mitigation for tanking as much as other raids. Instead, the focus is on armor value (gained from agility) and stamina (which are, for the most part, comparable to the mitigation weapons with strength). And by this point defense is a moot stat. There's so much of it on the gear itself, that there's no need for it on the weapons; let alone the dodge and parry, which are also less valueable than armor (according to all credible sources on tanking).

So, then, I'll say lets not mess around with how our system is set up! Or at least keep it consistent between raids and raiders for the sake of fairness. And on a personal note, I'll say that the sword that dropped tonight with agility was rightly passed to Drag. NOT because it had agility. NOT because it had armor penetration. Because it had hit. And items with hit go to our dps (as the general rule above stats). However... there IS a weapon from the Gunship battle with has agility, but it does not have hit.
As such, in all fairness, and in order to keep consistent with how we have things set up now, and to prevent shady secretive prioritizing of certain stats at certain times, I'd say that both the melee and the tanks should be considered on equal footing for weapons such as this; the weapons without defense, without hit. Weapons that (to be perfectly frank) are an upgrade for any good tank who knows their class and the nature of raids at this level. DKs arent the only tanks who should be rolling on the agility weapons (without hit). It is only fair, and it is only consistent with what we've been doing thus far.
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Re: ICC Loot and Performance

Post  Boman on Sat Mar 20, 2010 8:46 am

So the more I think about things - and yes the events of last night contributed to these thoughts - the more I think that maybe a few adjustments are warranted at this time. I would recommend the following:

1. Anyone that would use an item as a "main role" item is eligible to roll on an item (with restrictions such as our usual hit gear isn't main spec for healers...)
2. Anyone who loses a roll and feels that the winner should not have won that item may request a loot council. (trinkets and weapons only. all other slots strictly follow our normal rules and the loot master makes final determination)
3. A 5-minute break will start, and the loot council will discuss the complaint and determine the winner
4. At the end of those 5-minutes, the loot council's decision will be made. In the event that the council cannot come to a decision, the loot master's will make the final decision based upon the rules as they understand them.
5. That decision is final.

I know that some are against the concept of a loot council. As you consider this, the idea would be that the loot council is rarely used. If it's used on a weekly basis something is wrong.

Your thoughts as always?

-Boman

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Re: ICC Loot and Performance

Post  Daargo on Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:32 pm

Loot Council is a good idea, as long as the Council understands all the individual class and spec mechanics. Make sure the Council has equal representation between SH and DO. Also, set up a grievance system to prevent any impressions of Loot Council favoritism.

The idea of allowing the loser of a roll to openly contest it is a very bad idea, IMO. Let them make a private (and I mean PRIVATE) inquiry to a Council member and let the Council discuss it in PRIVATE. Letting the roll losers openly challenge the rolls is opening a big fat pregnant can of pain in your ass, in my opinion.

In any endeavor, you have to have a hierarchy which will have to have final authority, and allowing open challenges will weaken this. Control must be maintained.
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Re: ICC Loot and Performance

Post  Ozmademos on Mon Mar 29, 2010 11:12 pm

The loot council idea for our ICC25 sounds good, but I doubt it will be very effective. Right now, control of the loot is almost exclusively in the hands of TSH... I forsee contested items being discussed and disagreed upon more often than consensus, and Kindring will be dividing loot (even in this loot council) however he sees fit to do it. I will say, he's a nice guy, but he isnt familiar enough with class mechanics in general, I believe, to make the best guess where loot should be going; this being shown in at least two contested rolls in ICC. Items were simply handed away based on the fact that they rolled highest, even when it was brought up that it didnt seem very fair (to the other officers and Silver Hammer people); no discussion until after the fact.

And by then, it's too late.

The loot council addition to ICC now would just be a hinderance and eat up the valuable time we do have, since ultimately a decision has to be made, and that decision will be Kindring's.
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Re: ICC Loot and Performance

Post  Boman on Tue Mar 30, 2010 8:55 am

From my point of view, I feel that loot distribution has been fair based upon the rules. One of the hardest parts of being loot master is to distribute based upon your interpretation of the rules regardless of how you feel about it. And regardless of how others may react when you do. Which is why we try to keep the loot rules as simple as possible - even though in doing so some items end up going to people that would not be the "best fit" for that item, and others may not get to roll on an item that would be a "best fit" for them.

-Boman

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Re: ICC Loot and Performance

Post  Nezrathii on Fri Apr 02, 2010 2:24 am

I don't necessarily agree that it becomes too late- previously yes absolutely but with the new system in effect of being allowed to trade soul bound items up to 2 hours after recieving them - things can be resolved if there is an issue- our own example was of the trinket that was passed three or so weeks ago- while of course this is not ideal- it gives reaction time while not slowing down the progress of the raid itself -people not standing around waiting for loot distribution but allowing for hand offs if mistakes are made - which to be honest we are all human and we make mistakes- yes it is easiest for the loot master to simply follow the rules of handing out items to the highest roller because that is what keeps people moving in a dungeon- people tend to just stand there waiting if theres any kind of delay in loot distribution. this doesn't negate the need for some type of loot council but rather enforces its need in my eyes. Because to me, the loot distributer needs people watching their back just incase something stupid happens and better for certain people to be doing this than everyone in the raid crying out injustices which slows down the progression of the raid.

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Re: ICC Loot and Performance

Post  Ozmademos on Tue Apr 06, 2010 11:31 pm

While I do understand that gear can be passed between players now. It's a little harder to say after the fact, that the loot master made a mistake; now, that person needs to give that item to the other player. Suppose they dont want to give up the item? Suppose they throw a fit? We kick them? Either way, it becomes that person's choice whether they want to give up that item, not the loot coucil anymore. And, if they choose not to give up the item... well, that's a sticky mess that costs even more time.

The point I had hoped to make with my eariler reply to this is that we already do 'discuss' gear, or at least have that opportunity to do so. As a matter of fact, that discussion happens between the people who understand gear itemization and those who do not. But those people who do not understand gear itemization are precisely the ones who have the final say in where loot gets distributed. The armor pen trinket passed recently from a ret pally to a dps warrior was done without a loot coucil by the players themselves after some line of whispers that might never fully be disclosed. They asked the questions to people, made the comments on their own, and came to the right decision without any officer telling them they had to. But, the fact remains that the trinket was still passed beyond all my questioning to Boman and Kindring, because that person rolled highest.

I dont think it's right to just hand off gear to the highest roller. I will never accept the RNG as the final say in who should get a piece of gear ever so long as I ever play this game.

Ideally, I would want to see Kindring as the "Raid Leader" and Boman in charge of loot distribution. I'd know then, for my own piece of mind, that someone would second guess person's roll (or question it in the very least) to ensure that whatever the item is, we dont "distribute first, ask questions later" as a general policy.

As someone having his questioning of certain people rolling on certain items totally ignored... I'm a bit skeptical that suddenly people will have an open ear for discussion about loot.
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