Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Gated Content is Good Design

This will be a three part post and, as normal for me, will be very long winded, so sit back and relax and maybe grab a drink or a smoke and I hope you enjoy my rambling.

Part 1:  The game is filled with gated content already.

The definition, paraphrased of course, of gated content is as follows.
- Requiring someone to do something to gain access to something else.

Now, in case you did not notice, the entire game is filled with gated content and people don't even realize it.  Every single person that is saying they would quit if attunements are put back in game should quit now because every step you ever take in the game is gated.

You need to be level 2 before you can be level 3.  So you are gated from level 3 by level 2.
You need to be level 32 to enter that dungeon.  So you are gated from entering that dungeon by level.
You need to be level 54 to wear that chest piece.  So you are gated from wearing it by your level.
You need to go into vashj'ir far enough to get a water mount.  So your mount is gated by quests.
You need to go deep into the quest line in deepholm to open the port to the quartermaster.  So you are gated by quests.
You need to complete a dozen or so quests in twilight highlands to open the port back to Org/SW.  So you are gated by quests.
You need to have an item level of 329 to get into cataclysm heroics.  So you are gated by gear.
You need to have an item level of 346 to get into a zul heroic.  So you are gated by gear.
You need to have an item level of 353 to get into a HoT heroic.  So you are gated by gear.
You need to defeat the four mini bosses in HoO to get to that one big boss.  So you are gated by fights.
You need to defeat a boss before him to get to him and his mini bosses.  So you are gated by fights.
You need to finish four quest lines before going into the molten front.  So you are gated by quests.
You need to collect enough marks to open different areas in the molten front.  So you are gated by marks.
You need to defeat a raid on normal before you can do it on heroic.  So you are gated by fights.

I could go on and on and on all day long with things in the game that require you to do one thing to open up another thing.  This is all gated content, this could also be called attunements because all attunements are is a gate to something.  It is an RPG game and that is how RPG games are.  They are gated by design.  No one starts an RPG and immediately goes to the last boss because that would ruin the whole concept of the game.  You need to open a series of gates to get there.

So what is the big deal about adding something else into the game that is a form of gating?  You get a quest to go to the trainer park and collect the head of billy-joe, the hand of billy-bob and the pinky toe of billy-jim before you can enter the new raid, queen azshara's hobo barbeque.

It is no different than having to be level 2 before you are level 3, or having to be 32 to enter that dungeon, or having to be 54 to wear that chest piece, and so forth and so on.  All it does is add another step to the process.

If anything, as far as PvE content goes, raiding is the only thing in the game not gated right now.  Does that really seem right?  Having no gate to get into a raid is the same as them saying, no problem, you can start at level 85.  No problem, you can have a 176 item level and join in a heroic dungeon.  No problem, you can have all the ports open, even to places you have never been before.  No problem, you do not need to be 85 to get into dragon soul.  There needs to be gating because that is how these games are supposed to be designed.

Raiding is broken basically in part because there is no gate to raiding except for level and that is just not enough.  However, gating raid content can cause some problems, as we will see in part two.

Part 2: Some times gates can be annoying.

Lets all think what life would be like if the raiding this expansion was completely gated.  You needed to do a quest line to open every raid zone and then you need to do all the raids to open the quest line to even allow you into the next raid.  Now lets play pretend that you just started the game not so long ago and just hit 85 and wanted to try raiding.

Cue the crying.  I support the crying.  I would not want to go through the hell of opening all those gates and then finding a guild that will run every single raid just to catch up to the current raid so I have no issues with anyone else that would say they do not want to do it either.  Doing old content should be a choice, not part of the raiding gate.

Gating can really be annoying when it comes to raiding if it requires you to do all the previous ones before you can catch up to the current content.  However, I do think that having the current content gated would not be an issue for anyone that actually wanted to raid.

If they made you do a quest line just for the current raid content it would be no big deal because most people do all the newly released stuff anyway as soon as it comes out which means they would open it up as soon as it came out.  If they made it something you could do solo it would be even better, so you can catch up on your own and do not have to find a guild to drag you along to play catch up.  Catching up is the biggest problem with attunements.

How often have you went on pugs before they removed the attunements for some raids and forgot to ask if anyone had the key for EoE or kara or people where not attuned to whatever it is that you where going to. 

I can't even count the number of times I went to do BWL and had to run someone through to get attuned before we could go in because they did not know where to get the quest or how to do it to open it.  Or the number of people that said, I could have sworn I was attuned to it, must have been on another character.  Attunements can really be annoying at times.  Mostly when it is old content and even more so when it is older content that you need the help of others to get attuned.

Gating the content is not the problem for most people, in my opinion.  It is gating the content too much that tends to be the problem.

If you needed to do a quest line, say something the size of the thrall quest line and then needed to complete the three HoT dungeons before being able to get dragon soul I doubt anyone would have a huge problem with it.

They could even make attunements account bound like they are doing with achievements, mounts and pets now.  So if my hunter is attuned it would mean all my other characters are as well.  This would fix one of the huge problems with attunements that people have when it comes to raiding.

The problem is that you can not bring someone in on the fly.  For example, say my raid team was short a tank one day because someone did not show.  I could switch to my druid, but what if my druid never did the attunement.  Crap.  Now I need to do the quest line, run through the three dungeons, all before I can even get into the raid.  Best case scenario would be we get stuck pushing back the raid an hour and when you only raid for two hours that is huge.  All because I needed to get someone attuned to get into the raid because a tank did not show.

That is the problem people have with attunements.  But if they where account bound that problem would be no problem at all.  If my hunter did the quest line and the three dungeons then my druid would also have the attunement and could just jump right in if needed.

See, the problem with attunements was not that they where hard, but that they were annoying in many cases such as the one I just mentioned.

So while I agree we should never go back to the days of having to do all the previous raids to get into the new ones I can fully support an attunement process that is account bound for all current raids.  When a raid is no longer current it could lose the requirement for doing it but leave it in game for the people that want to do the quest to see the lore leading up to the raid.  Only the current raid would need you to be attuned.

Attunements can not only be a nice way to show the lore for the upcoming raid but it would work as a filter to the raids and quite honestly I believe that is a good thing as part three will explain.

Part 3: Gating content is a good filter.

Have you ever met anyone that wanted to come to the raid and had crap gear?  No gems?  No enchants?  Not reforged?  I'd be willing to go out on a limb and say yes.

Raids have no built in filter, they leave it all up to the raid leader to make the decision of who they invite and who they don't.   That is unfair to raid leaders in this new world of the game where blizzard is trying to tell everyone that they can raid too. 

Why should it be my job to educate everyone in the game because blizzard irresponsibly tells everyone, yes you can raid.  Sorry, I do not care how much blizzard tries to push everyone into raiding and tells them that they can raid too.  They can't. 

So instead of adding a few little gates to keep the people out of raids that really do not belong there blizzard tells everyone they can raid and leaves it up to the raid leader to tell them they can't.  That is about as unfair as you can get.  It is your game, you do the basic teaching, I'll teach advanced tactics once they start raiding.

I am not saying that everyone shouldn't raid, but I am saying there should be some sort of gate to raiding even if it is a small one.  I believe everyone has the potential to be a good raider, if they put in the effort.  Just to weed out some of the lazy players from wasting the time of raid leaders all across the game make them put in a little effort before they are even allowed to step into the raid.

Quite honestly I've taken my fair share of players along that fit those descriptions above just to fill a space.  I only took them because I really did not need them, we could have done it down a person but I figured, what the hell, give them some experience and some of that gear that none of us need any more any way.  Not to mention, you never know where that next great raider is going to come from.  Sometimes it is one of those non raiders.  I am sure every raid leader has a story of some diamond in the rough they found.

It pays off some times.  At the end of wrath we had this feral druid that had bad gear, a bad rotation, did not have any raid experience but at least he did gem and enchant and correctly too.  He would rarely if ever pull over 3K, even with 25 man buffs but it was not like we needed the DPS to do it anyway so we carried him along.  The thing is, he would have went through the effort of getting attuned if it were needed because he wanted to raid.  Those are the people that deserve to raid in my opinion.

This expansion he is a beast.  He holds top 25 on world of logs for every single fight in DS.  For a casual raid group he is amazing.  Any world first type guild would die to have him.  So dragging people along pays off sometimes.  But only rarely.  He is one of 100s of people I have dragged along.  Most still sort of suck, some might be okay but most didn't even deserve to be in a raid.  Those ones that did not deserve to raid and are most likely the ones that would not have done the attunement if it where in the game. 

Attunements would really help with that situation, at least for the rookie raid leader or lesser casual guild.  If attunements were something that could be done solo and required some actual work and time it would be a great way to judge if someone is worth the time and effort to take on a raid and teach.

See, the other people I dragged along I knew would amount to nothing.  I just took them to take them.  But the druid, he was speced correctly, he was gemmed correctly, he was enchanted correctly, he just sucked at the time but I could see he read online about his role and I knew he had potential so I made sure I always included him in everything I did even if his skills were lacking at the moment.

That is what attunements do, they evaluate potential.  It works as a filter.  He would have done it.  Those others, would not have.  He deserved to raid, they didn't.

Someone that is too lazy to do the attunement is most likely too lazy to read about their class, won't gem, won't enchant, won't reforge, won't have a good spec, won't know the fights, won't be dependable, won't know their rotation, won't do anything you expect a raider to do at the absolute minimum.  They also will most likely not want to do all those things either if they are not even willing to do one simple quest line, which means they are not raiders.

Lets face it, if someone is not capable of doing a quest line to get his character into the raid they are probably not going to be good to begin with and I believe that the game needs more filters like that built in.  Sure, as a raid leader I will still inspect people but there is nothing wrong with adding a gate to raiding being there is already a gate to everything else you do in game.  Why not add one back for raiding?

I have a saying I like to use when I do my raider meetings.  I will not take anyone into a raid that is not prepared to raid.  I will help anyone even if they are not a great player, but only if they are willing to help themselves.

I offer to gem and enchant anyone for free, I have every profession maxed and have more materials than I could ever use even with 13 85s on that server.  But you need to come to me and ask for them.  If you are not willing to put in the effort to get better I will not put in the effort to get you geared.

As simple as gating could be, it is the prefect way to prove someone is willing to try.  To some extent at least.  If they are willing to go through the quest line to open the raid, then maybe they are worth me putting in the effort of teaching them how to raid.

While bad players will still do the attunement quests and will still be ready to raid it would surely limit the number of people that would do it and thus lower the number of bad raiders out there.

Let those people, the lazy people that do not want to do attunements, the people that do not gem, do not enchant, do not know their class, let them do the looking for raid, that is who it was made for.  They will not need the attunement for that and it would open the door to show the people that are willing to raid and willing to help themselves.

You need to be level 2 before you are level 3 so you should need to do a quest before you open the door to the raid.  I see nothing wrong with that.  I see nothing wrong with adding a gate to the only part of the PvE game that doesn't have one, raiding.

Attunements might not keep all the bad players out of raiding, but it is a lot better than leaving the door wide open to everyone.  The lazy people, the ones that just want to get carried for gear and do nothing, a fair deal of them will also be too lazy to do the attunement and will go to the forums to cry about it.  Let them cry a river.  No one wants them in their raids anyway.  If they are too lazy to help themselves, I am too lazy to send them a raid invite.

I don't care what blizzard says, that everyone can raid, they do not play the game, they do not see what I see and you see, they do not realize that not everyone can raid and not everyone should raid.  Attunements are only a tiny thing, but it could stop a good amount of those people from thinking they are raiders.  Blizzard is doing a great disservice to the game trying to convince everyone that they can raid.

End Note:  I want attunements back

Gated content is good content, it is good design.  Everything we do in the game is gated, so why not have raiding gated as well.  While I do agree that gates on old content are more of an annoyance than they are anything else, if you kept the gate requirement only for the current raid and once you get it on one character it is open to all characters I think it would be ideal.  Raiding is the end game, why is every step of the game gated except the end game?  It just doesn't make sense to not to have raiding gated.

Not to mention, it would be a great way to add story to a raid, something DS was really lacking.  A simple quest line where we get to know the characters we are fighting in the raid would make a lot of sense instead of just fighting a whole slew of nameless faceless bosses that we feel no connection too.  I didn't even care if I killed deathwing, he was not an interesting character and a few attunement quest lines could have helped with that.

I don't know about you, but I like going into a raid and seeing people I saw while questing.  It makes it feel as if I am more a part of the story.  As if I am really playing an RPG.  DS seemed more like a shoot 'em up.  A game where you just kill whatever boss is in front of you and who it is does not matter.  An attunement quest that introduced us to all the bosses in DS would have added a huge amount to the story and perhaps even made the raid appear as if we were killing someone worth killing instead of the monster of the day.


  1. If you make attunements account-wide to satisfy your point 2 about not being annoying, that would mostly kill your point 3 about being prepared. Lazy people will do the attunement on exactly one char, but not on others. Just saying.

    1. True, but the really lazy people are the ones crying on the forums that do not want to do it even once.

  2. Do you not think the endgame is gated?I mean what about DPS/HPS checks. Dont have the gear to do X DPS in X amount of time, boss enrages, you die and cant do the raid. Same goes for HPS and gear.

    So the DPS/HPS output of a player is in a sence a type of gating to the end game raids is it not?

    You can have a excellent player in ilvl 300 gear, that with a perfect rotaion still cant meet the DPS requirments in a raid. On the other hand you have a bad player with BiS and can only pull 6k DPS. again, he cant meet the DPS check of the fight. So he is gated untill they can meet that requirment.

    So i dont know if it would be the enrage timers on boss fights being the gates, or the output of players.

    1. DPS and HPS gating is "in raid" gating. The you have to beat one boss to get to the other boss gating. It is not a gate to get into the raid to start off with. Raiding has no gate to get into the raid. I can ding 85 right now and walk into dragon soul before I even go train my level 85 talent. See, no gate to get in.

      I think I have seen a few of those bad players in randoms. Never sure if they are trolling being that bad or if they have really nice friends that carried them to all that 410 gear. I beat a fully 410+ geared player on one of my hunters a few weeks back. 329 gear level, no gems, no enchants, no reforging, I did 17K on the boss, he did 16K.

      As I said, you talk about in raid gates. I mention a gate to get into the raid. Two completely different things.

  3. I disagree with a lot of what you say. Raids are gated in the same way that PvP is gated: certain skill and gear is required to succeed. I think that's all the gating we need.

    All of the gating mechanisms of the past boiled down to one thing: time. If you wanted to raid, you had to burn X amount of time before you could. Nothing about any of those attunements or keying required skill or gear -- they didn't measure your fitness to raid -- just how much free time you were willing to sacrifice.

    Ironically the only gating mechanism that is some kind of measure of your fitness to raid is the one you don't want -- having done the previous content (and for the record I don't want that either).

    Ultimately gating is just a price in time that you must pay before doing the content. That price used to be very high. You sound like you think it should be low, but still have a price. I don't think you make any compelling argument about the *advantage* of making players pay that price, rather you focus on how it's not that bad if done right. Why not no badness at all?

    The key here is that they've never successfully been able to build a skill check into the game -- gating does not improve the quality of raiders. So why waste the time doing something we don't want to? What's the advantage of it?

    1. I would love to see a skill check but I don't think they would ever be able to effectively make one. So I choose the next best thing. A time check.

      A small quest line to give a little lore behind the people we are about to fight is not a bad thing. Lets even say that at worst it takes an hour. It is a small gate that at the very least shows someone wants to raid and develops the story.

      Gating is good design.

      We have gates all throughout the game except when it comes to entering a raid. Why not have one there too?

      Once in the raid the bosses work as a gate one to another. But you can hit 85 and walk right in, even if you are unprepared. So there is no gate to entering raids.

    2. I don't think you understand the point of being able to do something and being able to complete it.
      Just because you can doesn't mean you are capable of doing so. Also raids are gated, by what you deem to be so. You have to be 85 to get in. And since you showed examples of that for dungeons, as being gated content. being 85 to get in to a 85 raid is no different.
      So by that logic you used, what you are saying is already not true.

    3. @Buleburry

      Good point, but as I said in the post gating for 85 is not enough. Maybe I would just like to see more gating.

      Heck, I would just like to see more story development and attunements are a great way to do them.

      Not to mention, 85 is a fair gate for T11, where is the gate for T12 and T13?

      Just 85 is not enough of a gate.

    4. By all that is fine, but, you dont make up the whole population that plays WoW. I'm sure some people agree with you but, attunements just dont do anything. Adding attunements arent going to stop clearly not ready raider to do X raid because they just dont have the skill to do so.

      Gating for raids are guilds, and if you choose to do LFR/PuGs you are knowing accepting the fact that not every person is ready to do that raid.

      The way attunements work and how you want them to work are just two different things. Attunements were meant for slowing content down, not a means to prove you are ready for anything.

    5. @Buleburry

      And what exactly is wrong with slowing content down?

      Is it that important that you get into that raid 1 hour faster?

      This is probably the biggest argument I would say. Why are people crying that they consume content too fast and have nothing to do then in the next sentence say they do not want attunements?

      The "no to attunement" argument makes no sense. It is basically a "no to extra content".

      I would gladly accept more content.

      And in my opinion, there should be no attunements, outside of gear level, for LFR because that is for the people that just want to see content. So let them see it.

    6. No attunement does not mean 'no to extra content'. It means no to a mandatory condition barring me form doing the thing I enjoy most (raiding). It means I'm not gonna look at it like doing a quest because I choose to, it means I'm doing the quest because I can't do the raid without it.
      I don't even look at quests as extra content tbh. I look at dungeons and raids as extra content. Because I find questing dull and it doesn't really appeal to me as an mmo-player. I like doing stuff with people and quests are hardly a group activity.
      And if you actually do the attunement (in its entirety) a group activity then you already make the attunement too hard. For a new player it would be disheartening if he doesn't have friends to play with or friends capable of helping out.
      And mandatory dungeon running doesn't mean extra content.

    7. "Nothing about any of those attunements or keying required skill or gear -- they didn't measure your fitness to raid -- just how much free time you were willing to sacrifice."

      The Master's Key attunement had you play level 70 five-man content, while the Blackened Urn required you to do parts of heroic dungeons. If you could do that, you were ready for Karazhan/Nightbane. It was a decent check. The point Ge's trying to make about attunement quest lines could easily be applied to heroic dungeons such as, for example, the Icecrown trio or Hour of Twilight.

      "Also raids are gated, by what you deem to be so. You have to be 85 to get in. And since you showed examples of that for dungeons, as being gated content. being 85 to get in to a 85 raid is no different."

      Actually, is IS different. Raiding is the pinnacle of group PvE content and nothing before it helps in any form of preparation. The Cataclysm heroic dungeons at launch caused an absolute stink because there was absolutely no learning curve before you hit them. Repeatedly mashing Mortal Strike was enough to get you to 85 and through the laughably easy dungeons during your ding search.

      Attunements can help to fix a busted learning curve, more fairly introducing new players to raiding.

      "By all that is fine, but, you dont make up the whole population that plays WoW."

      Funny how that gets trotted out when someone is arguing against another player who wants something. You don't want gated content for any reason, we get that. Many players would like attunements to give more reasons to kill bosses than loot, and to experience a higher depth to their endgame PvE.

      The difference is that the anit-attunement people whinge about not wanting to waste any time whatsoever and just won't budge, while those who like attunements are willing to debate the topic meaningfully so that some form of it can be brought back.

      Ge's not the whole WoW population; neither are you. Why should the whole WoW population bend to what YOU want rather than what Ge or other supporters of attunements want?


    8. "Because I find questing dull and it doesn't really appeal to me as an mmo-player."

      Thanks for that gem, I'm still laughing.

    9. @Zellviren

      Nicely put. You make some really valid points like the lead up to kara. And I love the smash mortal strike to 85 and then get thrown into a heroic. I said that a long time ago in a post. I can't agree more. The game does nothing to prepare people and then just throws them to the wolves to attempt to learn. There is no curve and that is a reason something is needed as an extra gate, to make that curve less extreme.

      That comment was a gem. These types are games are all about questing. Without questing there would be no such thing as an MMORPG.


      Mandatory dungeon running at least means someone has some sort of clue what "difficulty" is.

      Someone can start the game today, hit 85, and join a LFR group with gear they got off the auction house. Never ever having even stepped into a dungeon never the less a raid.

      Do you really think they should be there? Do you really think they are capable of being there?

      Hell no.

      80% of the people there, that have been in dungeons and have been in raids have no business being in there so surely someone that has no clue has no clue does not deserve to be there.

      To steal a statement from Zellviren, they will get in and spam mortal strike and sorry, but in no world of gaming is that skill level acceptable for group play.

      Mandatory runs might never fix the problem, bad people will still get through, but it surely will limit some of those people from making the trip to the raid world.

    10. In order to obtain the gear which qualifies a player for LFR off the AH, an example of yours I'm explicitly singling out, an amount of gold must be earned to purchase gear that pushes your gear level to 372 or higher to hit LFR with zero dungeons or attunements. Given questing alone from 80 to 85 earns roughly 3-4k with another 2k in mats. That's probably generous. You get around 5k from 70-80 counting mats and maybe half that from 60-70. 1-60 gold is even less so 18k is a reasonable expectation for pure leveling gold at 85.

      Assuming 2k for a 378 epic, that's around 9 slots filled with 378. With the hopeful 346 quest blues (333 being the more likely) you hit a 368 gear score. This is discounting the fact that you can only fill a handful of slots with 378 or 397 BoEs. Summarily, extra work to qualify for LFR is mandated to qualify. It might be minimal, but no less effort than a level capped quest chain or a couple lucky HoT drops.

      In other words, your base case doesn't exist. To get a character from 1-85 without putting any effort to become LFR ready, it won't be LFR ready. Running one HoT dungeon makes it, but that still mandates entering a dungeon. Other than PvP, it's not possible to be LFR ready without putting extra effort into gear which qualifies as a gate since it exceeds the base case.

    11. Perhaps my views are tainted because I know how to work the auction house. I'll admit that. Making gold is not as hard as it used to be.

      It would take a fair it to gear up but assuming you are on the average server and depending on your class you can gear up with some PvP gear and other PvE BoEs for in the range of 20K.

      I know I hit 85 on one of my character and because I have every profession and lots of mats I was LFR ready less than 1 hour after hitting 85. Not saying it was right, I did cheese it with 2 PvP pieces, but it can be done.

    12. But the fact that you abused previously readied characters shows that the effort to complete a BoA attunement had already been done. In the same vein as quest chain through some dungeons with a tank only to swap to a healer class you leveled in a DPS spec, it doesn't show anything the second time around. Any attunement system that would have a genuine impact on the aspect of "proving" a concept of difficulty would basically have to be spec specific.

      With that in mind, I would say gear requirements aren't that outlandish despite the PvP cheese. I would say the only real limiter should be diminished iLvl for resilience gear to compensate for the missing PvE stat.

    13. I believe their intent with mists is that PvP gear will be at a lower item level, that should solve that end of it.

      I think that is one of the biggest problems, making any attunement something that would actually be a proving concept. If attunements are nothing but a quest, that doesn't even give background lore, it would serve zero purpose.

    14. @Zellviren
      Not sure what you're laughing about. Is it my English or the meaning of my statement?
      As for English, it's a valid expression (first google turned up
      As for the statement itself, I have around 220 days played on my main out of which most are spent doing dungeons and raids. I play an mmo for content that requires more players and I see questing only as a means to an end. And I don't enjoy them. I leveled through dungeons only even when there was no random dungeons system.

    15. I can't speak for him but I think what he meant is that quests are part of the MMO genre.

      To some extent, it is the biggest part of the genre, bigger than raiding, bigger than PvP, bigger than anything else they have ever put in game.

      So saying it does not appeal to you is fine, but it is funny that the main part of the game does not appeal to you. Because wow is a MMORPG and not just an MMO. This means, the quests are the heart beat of the game.

  4. You get a quest to go to the trainer park and collect the head of billy-joe, the hand of billy-bob and the pinky toe of billy-jim before you can enter the new raid, queen azshara's hobo barbeque.

    I just wanted to say that this would be the most awesome attunement ever. That line actually made me laugh out loud.

    1. I am glad you got a kick out of it. I thought it was funny myself.

  5. I would certainly like Blizz to make more questlines to help expand the lore.

    However, I don't think they should be mandatory. The people who like quests and like lore will do them anyway; the rest will do them if required but otherwise, they'll skip them. Also, I agree with the others when saying that completing a solo quest or grinding an attunement does not show that I am ready to raid (it just shows that I have too much time on my hands...).

    I do think it would be reasonable to force players to do LFR before Normal/Heroic or have a minimum iLvL for Normal. LFR requires 372; why can't DS require 378 or 384? At least those are preparations for raiding.

    1. Oh hell no please. Do not force people to do LFR before doing the raid on normal. I would quit raiding and quite possibly quit the game too if I were not capable to get a full guild group to do the LFR. Make a 10man LFR and then maybe I can get behind that.

      Have you been in a LFR lately? They are harder than the normal raids because they are filled with people that either do not know how to play or are not willing to do their best or subscribe to the "its only looking for raid" mantra which makes it even harder than it should be. LFR should be removed from the game, it should not become mandatory.

      "I agree with the others when saying that completing a solo quest or grinding an attunement does not show that I am ready to raid (it just shows that I have too much time on my hands...)."

      Exactly, absolutely correct, finally someone hit what I was getting at.

      If someone does not have the time to do one quest line to get into the raid, they do not have the time to be a raider.

      If someone says that doing a quest line is too much work then reading a strategy is too much work.

      If someone says it would take too long then raiding will surely take too long also.

      If someone says that is a boring annoying grind, then they are not cut out for raiding, which is just a boring annoying grind to get one freaking piece of gear to drop for 30 weeks and it never drops.

      That is exactly why there should be attunements, because they are grinds that show someone has too much time on their hands.

      It doesn't show if they are good, it doesn't show they know how to raid, it doesn't show they can make a standardized raid schedule, it doesn't make them a raider. You are 100% right. But what it does do is it shows that they actively want to raid and are willing to put in some effort to do it.

    2. I just did an LFR Monday night actually to help a guildie who just came back to the game. The group wiped on Spine once but otherwise they did ok. 10 man LFR would probably be worse than 25 since there'd be less margin for error. I also think that LFR is a great introduction to the raid bosses; I think you should do the easy mode before graduating to the harder difficulties.

      I'm just going to have to disagree with you about attunements though. I agree that there should be a 'hard' gate to entering the raids but I don't think it should be an attunement.

      If I'm going to bring you on my raid, I want to see that you went through the effort to get sufficient gear/enchants/gems, not that you spent an hour to do a quest. The gear grind takes far more effort and shows more commitment to raiding. That's why I feel that an iLvL or some other gear-based restriction would be the most appropriate (not to mention it's the easiest for Blizz to implement).

      This is anecdotal but recently, we had a kid who mostly did pvp that wanted to raid. We told him to get pve gear by running HoTs and doing LFR and we ran him through several HoTs. He didn't have the patience for it and went back to doing pvp. He would have put in an hour to do a quest if that's all he needed to do to be 'eligible' to raid but he wasn't willing to run a bunch of HoTs and some LFRs to get the gear that was required for raiding. The attunement in this case would not have helped filter him out from entering a raid.

    3. In the end the raid leader inspecting someone will always be one the true gate to raiding. If we do not like what we see, you do not get invited. Simple as that. At least for me it is.

      I try to be nice about it but I tell them, no gems, no enchants, no invite.

      I have not ran looking for raid in months. I listen to other guild members complain about it now. I quit after 6 wipes on the blood boss because no one wanted to switch because "its only looking for raid" and they did not grasp the concept that the healers where only looking for raid capable healers and could not heal three bloods hitting so we kept wiping.

      That mentality belongs nowhere in the game. I personally think anyone that ever using the term "its only looking for raid" as an excuse for not doing mechanics should be banned from ever entering a raid again. Okay, not really a lifetime ban, but you understand how I feel about the attitude of players in this game now and one of the reasons I think LFR needs to be removed from the game forever. It teaches people to be bad players.

      While we do disagree we basically agree. You said exactly what I said except it seems you have an issue with the word attunement. But you do agree, your own words, "I agree that there should be a 'hard' gate to entering the raids but I don't think it should be an attunement.

      Attunement is a hard gate to entering raids.

      So we do agree, we just do not agree on the wording of it or implementation of it.

      As for your last part... then the attunement needs to be long enough to weed out the players like that, the ones that have no business being in raids.

    4. I disagree with the gear item level requirement.
      Here's where you are looking at it wrong: dungeons do NOT have a minimum item level requirement. Yes, they don't. We did Cataclysm heroics at the start with pieces of ICC gear still on. We just made a group and flew in.
      Only RANDOMS have an itemlevel requirement. And why? Becuase by ensuring a minimum item level, Blizz is sort of making sure you don't get an impossible group you could never finish the dungeon with. Same with the looking for raid thing.

      For your normal raids, raid leader takes people. Maybe I am an extremely unlucky person, I don't want to wait 2 months to have a minimum 384 iLevel from dungeons and LFR to be able to enter a raid. Raid leader knows who I am, knows what I can do. I did DS 6/8hc on my 373 iLevel tank a couple of months ago because my main tank was saved. Problem? Then why restrict me, seriously? If the group believes they can handle a raid with whatever they have, with people with low item level (or anything else for that matter) why restrict them? It lies only in the raid leader's decision and it should *never* be changed.

    5. @James

      I agree. I have seen people in all 397 gear that I am sure are not skilled enough to get through a 5 man heroic. Gear means nothing, skill means everything. Gear only shows what someones potential is.

      Some things are restricted by gear to some extent. If your gear level says that absolute maximum DPS you can pull is 18K and the boss requires 24K you are not ready for it. So gear can be restrictive. But like you said, if the others can make up for it, no biggie, 18K really isn't that bad when everyone else is doing 40K.

  6. Your point that someone who has 'no time' to do an Attunment has no time for Raiding is of course accurate, but I think that the basic problem is, again, that the game is more and more targetted on people that don't really like MMORPG's (anymore) or understand them.

    For example, there's a big lament at WoWinsider about Blizzard providng a bonding moment to those who didn't want to pay someone else (= a form of interaction with other players) for their Resistance Gear. Somehow, making people willingly do stuff together, time and again, that doesn't harmfully impact others is nowadays something bad.

    It also makes you wonder why those players stuck with Vanilla or the game showed growth if it truly was as awful as they like to make out now, as the main reason why people stick to MMORPG's throughout Expansions - having invested a crapload of time in their characters - dind't apply yet as people were in reality just starting out.

    It basically boils down to that old chestnut: it didn't matter that Raid content required extra effort, as most people weren't (and aren't) into raiding to begin with.

    'Only 1% saw Naxx' is far less dramatic if also in Vanilla only about 2% were truly interested in Raiding, for example.

    Conversedly, with two factions and ten (nine) classes, just the Class Quests alone provided plenty of replayability for those who like(d) Questing and being in a virtual world filled with adventure and opportunity.

    But I guess 'progression' is all Raids being brought down to its apparent essentials, a shed with a Boss dropping coupons. Truly a magical age.

    1. It's just that there's more focus on MMO rather than on RPG. You're saying me wanting to get faster into a raid with my friends and talking on teamspeak and making strategies on forums is targeted at people who don't like MMORPGs. So doing quests alone is more in the spirit of MMORPGs? I only remember doing 3 quests in all that required a group not couting dungeon quests (in over 3000 quests done). I lean towards thinking that Blizz is doing it better now, making the actual MMO content (raids, dungeons) more accessible. I will never look at quest as MMO content, just RPG content... and dare I say I don't fully read all quests? How many people do? As I said, focus is on the multiplayer part not on the magical story development and I think it's doing it right. I don't come to WoW for immersive story, I come to it for the other people I enjoying spending time with.

    2. @James

      I believe the exact opposite. I believe that as soon as blizzard started caring more about the MMO part the game, the game started going downhill and statistics back my opinion up.

      Since the release of dungeon finder and subsequently raid finder, the game has been on a downward spiral subscription wise and community wise.

      While subscription wise as a fact you can look up for yourself, community wise is my opinion but you would be hard pressed to find many that would disagree with my assessment that the community has become worse since the introduction of the anonymity of the "finders".

      You like to raid. I like to raid. Both of us would rather spend more time in a raid, on a voice chat, working out strategies and beating the big baddies.

      The only difference between us, my guess here only, is that I play to enjoy the game in its entirety and the more I get out of it the better, you play to get purples as soon as you possible can.

      I do not know you, but that is what your statement leads me to believe, you raid for gear, which is what you have fun doing, whereas I raid for fun and would prefer having a fuller experience in the game than just raiding alone.

    3. Your statements are insulting tbh. (Repeating myself) I specifically stated 'I come to it for the other people I enjoying spending time with'. From where have you deducted that I play for purples? I play for the people I play with, we work towards progress and at the end of it we have our kill and happily go out drinking or whatever. If I wouldn't have the social aspect of the game, I wouldn't be interested at all in WoW. THAT is why I'm a good player, because I'd hate do disappoint people and therefore I give my best. I respect my raiders friends just as much as any other "real life" friend.
      There are many types of players out there, don't label me unless you know me.

    4. It was not meant to be insulting. I did say you where a good player I just said I felt you went after things for a different reason, and that reason being loot. Sorry if you took it that way.

      I do agree with you on the letting people down point. It is the only reason I have not quit this expansion. Even if only two people in my guild are real life friends the friendships I made in guild keep me there. I feel as if I would let people down if I quit, so I keep playing even if I've lost nearly all joy I ever had doing it.

  7. Let's see... it's not that I (for example) don't want Attunement Quests because I'm lazy it's just that I think it sucks.
    I HATE questing. I hate it with a passion. I had to do quests to get Therazane enchants. I had to do quests to unlock Hyjal for Molten Front to get 365 neck. I had to quest to get Thrall cape. I had to quest Molten Front a whole month (!) every day to get a trinket.
    But you know, I didn't actually HAVE to, I just felt that it was mandatory from where I'm standing to get the best possible gear I can get on my own so I don't gimp my raid team because I'm 'lazy'. But I didn't enjoy it. Molten Front was especially excruciating. But you know, if you looked over my gear you would've noticed the effort I had put into grinding for my gear (crafted, quest, rep rewards).
    So add in another quest line and requirements. Sure, I'm gonna do them, but there's a limit it might hit, I might just decide that being forced into several things I don't enjoy is getting way too bothersome. And that attunementwould be mandatory to boot. I think Blizz wants to make the experience feel less mandatory in any aspect (even in use of talents etc).
    I don't know, I just think you're not looking from all angles at this. I just hate questing and grinding so much yet there is so much of it. I love raiding so much that it trumps the inconvenience, but, as I said, you just might hit my limit if there's too much hindering me in getting where I want

    1. "But you know, if you looked over my gear you would've noticed the effort I had put into grinding for my gear (crafted, quest, rep rewards)."

      Ding ding ding... we have a winner.

      This is why attunments or something of that sort are needed. The people that want to raid, the people that want to do well, the people that care about being the best they can be, those are the people that will do it.

      Like it or not, you are one of those people.

      Most people, people that should not be raiding to begin with, won't do it.

      So adding the attunement gate just means that instead of me inspecting you and seeing someone that really cares, the fact that you can enter the raid proves that you really care.

      I personally would not allow certain people to raid if they did not have the pieces from the molten front because if they where too lazy to do super easy quests to get them, I am too lazy to invite them to a raid and gear their ass up.

      Being you did that on your own, without being forced to, you should be on the side of attunements, not against them. In your own words, you did them because you should do them to be the best you can be.

      The game needs more raiders like you. Attunements would never fix the problem, but it sure helps a little.

    2. I find myself agreeing with many things James said and while I can't speak for him, I have my reasons to dislike excessive gating and the reason why I like to call it the "fun tax".

      First, nobody has asked (there may be a yet here) for the gating to be completely removed. People are asking for it to be reduced and I consider that a good thing and as far as I can tell, it is something WoW has done in the past. Keep in mind that nearly all gating I've seen in MMORPGs is time-based and doesn't relate to skills needed at endgame. Of course, even easy leveling helps a bit but the diminishing returns hit soon and making the gating longer has little effect on players' abilities to perform in endgame.

      Second, as you said, the gates can be annoying. And often are. Personally, I feel I walked in the snow both ways uphill (and a real hill - the vanilla WoW hills wouldn't pass for a hill in Netherlands) when I used to play Ragnarok and used to spend about 3 hours getting mats and making potions (I had access to guild's best brewer and one of priests with gloria so I helped most of the times) but unlike many, I do not wish others to be forced to do the same. One of the reasons I switched to WoW was that I saw the 2-min CD on potions. (As you can probably guess, RO had spammable potions.) And there's one thing all the farming did and one thing it did not, the former being making my character better at WoE and the latter being making myself better - although with Gloria buff lasting less than 30 sec I would be able to press dead man's button like a pro if I was an engine driver.

      The problems with implementation of gating in many MMORPGs and the one you seem to propose are:
      - time-based gating is not effective at teaching and actually reaches a skill plateau quickly; skill-based would make sense but it is not common at all
      - group content causes synchronization problems; if only a single or few players need a group attunement done, it eventually ends up with many players having to do them over and over again

      I am opposed to attunements and I think they should be changed before they are considered. How? Make them relevant, make them potentially soloable and make them more fun and less of a tax. (Although I agree WoW did a lot well on the third point.)

    3. You make some valid points. I am a grinder and even I do hate too much of a grind or a repetitive grind. Neither are fun, even for someone that likes to grind.

      I might not have the answer or even a solid suggestion, but I do think there needs to be something implemented, even if it is solo based. No one should just be able to just jump in and play at end game level. You do not start playing baseball and go immediately to the yankees, you start at rookie ball, then single A, then double A, then triple A and maybe you can make it to yankee stadium some day. Not like that is the idea example because I do not like the idea of having to run all the old raids to do the newest one, but I do like the idea that you have to show you have made some sort of progress before you try to get to the end of the story.

      Not sure if I said that well, seems a little contorted, but maybe you get my point.

      Something should be done but sadly the one thing I think should be done never could be done and that would be a real true proving ground because it is hard to judge "skill" in anything like that. So even if they could make something like that, it might never work.

  8. Gating is good.
    Kudos to the pros, who finish first.
    There are the 2nd tier players, however, who copy the first and then lord it over the rest - as though they were 1st tier.
    Anything that gives us all a chance to progress at the same time, without dumbing down the content, has to be positive!

    1. I'd say I am 5th tier. lol

      I usually do not do heroics until after the nerfs start because I would rather just blow through normals because I know the nerfs are coming.

      But just because I am not a top tier player doesn't mean I should want to take something away from them just so I can have it too. I'm happy to wait.

      Seems like I am in the minority there for sure.