Friday, January 27, 2012

LFR Needs New Loot Rules

When looking for raids loot rules where announced it seemed like it would be a nice step in the right direction.  Tanks would get a bonus to their roll on tank gear, healers on healer gear and DPS on DPS gear.

Very nice in theory but there were some problems with that.

Seeing a rogue win the bow is a heartbreaking moment for a hunter.  Seeing a hunter win the two handed strength sword was heartbreaking for a DK tank or DPS plater wearer.  Seeing a DK win the polearm could make a bear cry and who would ever want to do that to our cuddly fluffy friends.

To fix this situation they decided to give items labels based on classes it was intended for.  The bow is now hunter only.  The two handed sword is correctly labeled for warriors, paladins and death knights. The polearm is now for druids and hunters only.

One might ask why was it not like this to start with and they would be right to ask.  Why wasn't it?

While the changes have been made to make a step in the right direction, the loot rules that where intended to be are still not working correctly.

Some labels cross each other and once again, just like they implemented the loot system without thinking about it, the loot system is showing the error of its ways.  It is not working as intended.

It was intended to give a bonus for tanks, healers and DPS for their respective roles.  Only druid tanks get the short end as their tank gear is also a rogue and cats DPS gear, so no bonus for them.  Crying bears are not nice to see, but sadly they get left out.  Even if I do play a bear I am willing to accept that, really have no choice.  Everything else however can be fixed.

As it stands now, the two handed sword can still be won by a shield tank.  Why exactly is that?  I'll explain for those that do not know how it currently works.

The sword is labeled as a tank weapon, because it is for DKs.  It is also labeled as a DPS weapon, because it is for warriors and paladins.  So both tanks and DPS of those classes can roll on it and get the role bonus.

The system does not recognize that a protection warrior can not use it.  He in not in the role he should be to get the role bonus to his roll.  If he wanted to get the +100 on it he should be arms or fury.  However, being DKs can use it for tanking it also has the tank flag on it meaning it is now a tank weapon, so his role as tank now gives shield tanks the +100 erroneously..

The mistake here is that they do not check spec, only class, and assign the bonus based on that.

It is the reason you see moonkins winning agility gear with the +100 rolls.  It is labeled DPS and they are a DPS.  The game is not smart enough to realize that he is not the right type of DPS.

There are also a few cases where the designers just made flat out bad ideas when labeling items.  The healer off hand does not include shaman as being allowed to roll on it even if shaman are indeed capable of using it and it might very well be a big upgrade for them depending on what they went in there with.

They claim that it was not intended for shaman to wear off hands, they should wear shields.  Not sure about you but if you made the game and it was not intended for them to use it then why give them the ability to do so?  Either remove the ability of restoration shaman to use off hands or let them roll on it.  Simple solution right?

Another error in the system, while we are talking about shaman healers, is the healing bonus to shields.  As there are only two types of healers in the game that can wear shields, holy paladins and restoration shaman, this should be a really easy one to pin down.  Label the item for paladin and shaman use only, which they did, and then apply the +100 healers role roll bonus if you are one of the healers.  Simple correct?  Nope, not for blizzard, retribution paladins get the +100 bonus to their roll as well on it.  Talk about doing things half assed.

So before we even step on to other new loot rules we need to address the whole rolling problem to begin with.

They need to look at spec as well as class so rolls are more appropriate.

Only DKs get the two handed roll bonus when tanking and not protection warriors and paladins.

Cats can not win intellect trinkets, rings, etc. and moonkins should not win agility trinkets, rings, etc. even if the items are labeled DPS, they are not the correct DPS type to win them.

Just because a retribution paladin can equip a shield they should not get a bonus to any shield be it tanking or healing.

All these things can easily be checked by looking at the spec.  They changed it too look at the class, now they need to do more.

Now, repeated loot.

They are addressing the problem of people winning two of the same item off one boss.  Again, why was it like this to begin with?  Bad design once again, you can't tell me a company that has people smart enough to make this game has no one with enough brains to ask the question, what happens if someone wins both.  So there is no excuse for it going live this way other then bad design.

Outside of that, there are some problems otherwise.  I know one of the common complaints is someone saying, but they already have a tier token.  Sorry to shoot you down, but having one already does not means you can not use another one.

My warrior can use two, my shaman can use three, my druid can use four.  Who is to say I do not respec all the time and actually play all four roles on my druid?  You can not limit people to a you have one, you can't have any more on tier tokens. Sorry, you just have to suffer through bad luck like me and basically win them in the real raid like I have on my hunter.

There are some items however that should be unique so you can not have more then one.  Things like Maw.  The only class that might actually have a use for two is a priest but even at that the only real difference might be a reforge.  One is enough.  No healing class needs more then one of them so it should be unique.

This would also allow people to actually start winning them as off spec.  Once all 6 healers have it, if they can not roll, other people that rolled need on it but did not have the role bonus can actually start winning it.

Actually, most weapons should be unique.  Just the raid finder version of it. We do not want someone winning the Maw in raid finder and then not being allowed to get one off the real raid because they have it already.  Make raid finder only limits on the items.

For hunters, mages, rogues and warlocks it is just a matter of reforging, every thing should be unique there for them.  Nearly all weapons should be unique, or at best a limit of 2 as some people like using 2 of the same weapon.

Adding something like this would greatly increase the likelihood that the loot gets around.  I was in a run the other day where someone said, this is the 9th one of these I won lol, and someone said, then why roll on it.  They said, because if need lights up I roll and if I win someone I already have I vendor it.  When asked to let people roll for it he denied and was promptly kicked.  I gladly clicked yes when it popped up, I do not like people like that.

The people that play this game are the biggest problem with the loot system.  It is not blizzards fault.  It is the players fault.  As the players are basically part of the content then blizzard needs to do what it can to fix the problems the players create, such as the loot problems with the LFR.

If the player base consisted of decent, honest, fair and intelligent people then the original loot system the LFR was released with was perfect the way it was.  Being a large, very large, percentage of the player base can not claim to be even one of the four qualities I mentioned above, that is why it is blizzards job to play baby sitter.

Like it or not, while it is a player created problem, it is blizzard fault for not addressing it soon enough.  The game is not new, they should have known what their subscriber base was like and should have taken steps to stop the problem they knew the players would create before they had the chance to create it.

It is time for better LFR loot rules, no doubt about that.


  1. Definatly agree with what you are saying. Just as a note they have said their roll system is somehow seperate enough that it doesn't get enough info to make these decisions currently. For example a players class/spec isn't known. Only can they use the item and their role to know if they should get a bonus.

    They claim real fixes will be coming in MoP and right now they had to do cludges with the class restrictions on items to force them to be unusable. Hopefully they are taking good notes and we'll see a much improved system in MoP.

    1. I read that as well.

      I think the simplest fix would be to judge, for bonus purposes, spec and not class. Just because a class can use everything doesn't mean the spec they are currently running in can.

      Anything that keeps moonkins from winning agility items, ret paladins from winning spirit shield and shield tanks from winning 2 handers and stuff like that, with the bonus to their rolls is a good start in my opinion.

      I accept that this is a test run but all the evidence is there that something needs to get done. MoP is still in development, so lets hope they use this information and make it work better in MoP.

  2. You're spot-on when it comes to how the loot criteria should work. Really, it's a no brainer that they should differentiate Feral DPS gear from Moonkin gear. That's just silly.

    I do disagree that gear should be unique, though. My Death Knight is specced Frost/Unholy, and I cannot simply just use the same gear for each spec. I actually need difference pieces because the reforging/secondary stats are completely different. For example, I have two pairs of the same Valor Point boots, two pairs of the BoE bracers, etc.

    Yes, it is a matter of reforging, but if I have to go back to town and spend 10 minutes tinkering then I might as well just be respeccing, which defeats the whole purpose of dual spec IMO. Having to do this makes it impossible to go Frost for one fight for its abilities, then Unholy for the next fight for AMZ, etc - at least, not without making the rest of the raid wait around for me.

    1. Perhaps Limit 2?

      There has to be something in place that keeps people from needed on stuff for the purpose of just keeping it from others.

      Admittedly, even if there where a limit 1 it would not be fool proof. If someone has the 397 version of something they can just as easily keep needed on the 384 version of something to keep it away from other people.

      Like I said, blizzard an only do so much because the players are the problem, not the system really. They should do something however. At least get the spec part right.

  3. I remember being positive that they would use specs to assess the roll bonus instead of class/role and I'm still surprised they didn't switch yet. I understand that it's more complicated to fill about 22 checkboxes (some specs can share gear even if their stat priorities are different, they still use the same type of items) instead of 13 (10 classes, 3 roles) - but it seems to me that to fill them one still needs to figure out the specs' "checkboxes" first (otherwise it's quite error-prone).

    1. It is actually quite surprising that when they said they where adding role bonuses they did not add anything that actually checked role.

      Makes me wonder what is going through their mind sometimes.