Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Completing the Puzzle

Sometimes building a raid team is like completing a puzzle.  If you have ever done puzzles however they are a lot easier.  When you get the piece that fits the spot it is always the right piece.  On a raid team that is not always true.

You can get the piece of the puzzle for a raid team.  It might have the right bevels and groves and it might fit perfectly but it is still not the right piece.  Raid teams are more complex then puzzles.  It is as if there is a puzzle within the puzzle.

My guild has gone through some changes as all do with people coming and going and quitting.  We used to have two DK tanks, one feral druid and two paladin tanks.  Both DK tanks left, the feral tank left and both paladin tanks quit playing, one to go to rift and another because of real life.  We went from a glut of tanks to scraping together enough of them.

When the expansion started we had no healers.  It was horrible, we did not even step into our first full guild raid because of that until the game was out almost three months.  Now I am left with a choice of so many healers I could field a 40 man raid with 10 healers easily and someone might still need to sit out.

The dynamic is always changing with people coming and going and people quitting or moving on to other games.  DPS, which are a dime a dozen really, is something I never worry about recruiting.  They come and they go and we never lose a beat.

At the moment we are seriously lacking in the ranged DPS department.  When the expansion started we had a killer mage and he left almost instantly to join a friend because of the new guild leveling stuff.  We picked up another mage that was quite good and had experience when we started raiding.  He moved to us because we raided less and he wanted to be a part timer.  He part timed for about two weeks and we have not seen him in a raid since.  No biggie, that is how out guild is designed really.

We seem to have a mess of boomkins, all of which could not fight their way out of a paper bag but one is beginning to shine.  Sadly as soon as he started to break 10K constantly we have not seen him since. We have one Lock, one Hunter (me) and that is it for ranged.  We have others, but they are all fill in people and part timers.  Being this expansion is so ranged friendly it leaves us in the position of making progression a bit harder but that has never turned us off.

I could easily go out and try to recruit a paladin healer and a druid healer to go with our 4 shaman healers and 6 priest healers but does that solve the problem?  I could easily go out and get another mage, hunter, lock, what have you, to replace one of the 6 DPS warriors we have, but would that solve the problem?

Who is to say really.  I know from my limited experience that we can succeed in raiding with a group that is not exactly optimal.  We have done it before and we will do it again.  If anything there is a bit of a challenge to beating a boss with a group of people that when you see them you say, how the hell did they do that.

We once downed Magmaw with two healers with horrible connections and tons of lag and only two DPS over 10K.  Would you have thought it possible?  Well, I didn't but I did not give up and we did it. We did not even come close to the enrage timer either.  Freaking awesome if you ask me.

Puzzles are fun but this puzzle is different.  I built a team that day with all the pieces that fit together but they where not the right pieces yet it still got the job done.

Sometimes you have to think to yourself what do you need.  Would another hunter fit into the puzzle better then that warrior?  Would a druid healer fit better into the puzzle then that priest?

Sure, it might fit better.  We might down more stuff and stuff faster but at what cost.  We can do it without the optimal set up so why do we need to have the optimal set up.  We will never do heroic content until we over gear them.  There is no need for the finished puzzle to look pretty, it just needs to look done.

The beauty of doing it this way is something some people might never understand.  We can watch all the videos in the world and read all the strategy guides out there but all they will ever be are ideas for us.  We always have to go about every fight in our own special way because our puzzle is not quite perfect.  Sometimes, downing a boss like that is a bit more of an achievement in my opinion.

Would I like to finish the perfect puzzle some day?  Yes.  I can wait however, as long as everyone around me is enjoying themselves, I will take them along for the ride, even if they are not the right piece.  I have more fun playing with people that have fun then I do playing with people that just happen to fit the puzzle.

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