Thursday, July 5, 2012

Kick Function Needs an Update

We have all used the kick function in the game.  Even someone like myself who rarely if ever kicks someone has.  It is just part of the game when using the random grouping feature. 

There is a built in problem with the feature however.  It doesn't help the designers any, it doesn't help the community any, it doesn't help the players any, it basically is just a way to kick someone you do not want around regardless of reason.

There needs to be a complete redesign of the system for it to hold any useful purpose in the game.  And it can be very useful.  If the players make it useful and the company backs it up.

As it is now, it could have been useful but the player base is not all that helpful so it isn't.  There is a little line where you need to put a reason for kicking people and no one ever really uses it.  The few times people do use it what they write there is some sort of an insult, which is really not of any use.  The one and only kick I ever started I put, 2K DPS as a boomkin is not acceptable in a heroic.  In my opinion I thought that was a good reason for the kick and it was not insulting, it was just stating facts and the fact is, 2K for any damage dealing class is not acceptable in a cataclysm heroic.  You can not argue that.

In a well designed system the boomkin in question would have not been kicked and left wondering why, they would know exactly the reason they where kicked.  Lets face it, how can someone get better if they don't know they are doing something wrong.

Like someone said in comments the other day.  If a mage is running around questing, doing everything else, and never having any problems and he enters a random dungeon and is doing horrible DPS, not following appropriate group behavior, doesn't know mechanics or anything else, just kicking him is not going to help him.

If he got a message saying it was kicked because he could not understand mechanics, he knows what he needs to work on.  If he got kicked because he was doing low damage, he knows what he needs to work on.  If he got kicked because he was pulling mobs, he would know what he needs to work on.  Things like that.

There should be a new system in that requires people to put meaningful reasons for kicking people and not just saying "day stoopid", yes I have seen it just like that, isn't that ironic?

Of course with an updated kick system there needs to be something else put into the game, something blizzard seems wholeheartedly against.  They are going to need to actively take action to back up the new system instead of just making it to make people feel better about it.

As it stands the kick system is too easy, click on the name of the person you do not like, start up a kick, watch them go bye bye.  Heck, I have seen people kick people that did not deserve to get kicked by tricking people.  Ready check going up, they said in raid, the vote to kick pops up, people that don't read kick the best player in the group because the leader did not like him because he won something he wanted and would not give it to them.  Normally, no one would kick the one good DPS in a looking for raid group.  Lets face it, seeing even one person over 20K DPS in looking for raid is a miracle. 

I saw this one when I was healing, a DPS doing 43K over all and was kicked.  I nearly cried because the next highest was 18K.  That one person was basically carrying the whole raid and some person with a bug up their ass kicked them for some reason.  Good DPS, following mechanics, never said anything rude in raid, never pulled for the tank, never gave any reason to kick them, why kick someone like that, personally I think most people should be like that, we should not be kicking people like that.  We should have kicked nearly everyone else in that raid and hoped to get more like him if anything.

Enough of my story, lets get to how I think it needs to be changed.

First off, it needs to be completely and totally different looking, so it stands out, so no more tricking people into kicking people.  I know it looks different to me and you, but apparently a fair amount of players are just to click happy and never really look at what they are clicking.  Something pops up, click yes, that is the standard mentality of the game it seems.

Now to how the new kick feature should be.  It should take a page out of the new report system and gives options as to why you are reporting the person.

Here is a basic idea of some of the things I think should be options when kicking people, and you should be required to pick one of them.

- Disconnected.
- AFK more than 5 minutes.
- Not preforming the role they signed up for.
- Not meeting minimum standards for this dungeon/raid.
- Will not follow group assignments. IE: Damage dealer pulling mobs.
- Being rude/abusive in chat.
- Causing grief.
- Can not handle encounter mechanics.

And other things like that.  I am sure we can all think of a few good reasons for a kick that I did not put there.

People should be forced to pick one of those things and should be given the option of adding a comment under it as well. 

When someone is kicked, they will get a system mail that will tell them why they where kicked.  This way, they will know what they did wrong.  I think the only way for people to learn is to tell them what they did wrong. 

Just kicking someone does not do anything to teach a person.I think that when the person starts the kick and picks one of those options they should be given a line to post a comment if they wish.  After they start the kick and it goes out to others, the others would see the reason for the kick and be allowed to agree or disagree and post a comment as well.

Example of how it would work.

In looking for raid a person signed up as a healer, for the fast queue most likely, and is playing the role of damage dealer.  A kick starts up and the person chooses the option not preforming the role they signed up for and adds the comment priest in shadow spec refuses to change to healing spec.

It would now go to vote with the reason and the comment for everyone else to see.  They would all get the following options.

Yes to the kick, I agree with the kick reasons.

Yes to the kick, but for other reasons.

No to the kick, I do not agree with the kick reasons.

Each option would leave a place for comment to the person voting as well.

Now the idea that the person would know why they were kicked comes into play.  They would realize that people where not just being jerks kicking them, there was a valid reason supported by the system.

Now what if we get this situation, someone starts a kick in a normal cataclysm heroic, the starter ones, and picks the reason not meeting minimum standards for this dungeon/raid and puts low DPS.  You could choose no and put as a comment that 8K is fine for a random cata heroic.

Now, blizzard would have to start collecting the data from these kicks and using it to adjust things as needed.  This is where the whole thing hangs on them.  We all know how blizzard hates to do something that might actually benefit the community and the game as a whole.  They fear they will lose subscriptions if they actually enforce their own rules but I say it is time they start thinking about enforcing their own rules instead of letting people run all over the place like children left at home with no babysitter.

If someone keeps getting kicked for signing up as a healer and not healing, they would lose the right to tick the healer box for a month.

If someone keeps trying to kick people saying they are not doing well when they are doing just fine, they will lose their ability to start a vote kick for a month.

If people keep getting kicked for under performing, griefing, or being rude, they would lose the ability to queue up for a month.

All things like that.  All things blizzard would need to actively support and do, because no matter how often we kick it means nothing without some support from blizzard. 

It would help the game if people would not be allowed to get away with abusing the system and the people that use it.  For those people that get kicks for decent reasons they would now have a note in their mailbox with the reason for the kick that all the people agreed on.  They would not see the comments, that would be for someone at blizzard to get more information from to assign the penalty, if need be.

My idea might not be the best idea because it requires good information from the community and I have very little faith in our community but the bottom line is I would like to see the kick function updated.

I think the key points of a good kick feature would be...

1) People can not abuse it kicking people that don't deserve to be kicked.
2) People can not abuse it by doing what they want forcing people to kick them.
3) People that get kicked should know why.
4) Blizzard should take an active stance in kicks.

Perhaps if blizzard actually gives a crap about the community when someone gets kicked for under performing they can provide them with some links that they can go to so they will learn how to play better instead of just entering the queue again and hoping for a group that will either carry them or has kicked so many people like them they are not allowed to kick any more.

The way it is now, bad players will never get better, they will always blame the people that kicked them for being bad.

Griefers will continue to grief because it is fun to them and will just queue up again to grief another group because they know nothing will ever happen to them.

People that kick people for no good reason will continue to do so just because they do not like you or you might roll on something they want or they think people need 20K DPS for a normal cataclysm heroic dungeon when 8K is fine.

The kick system is useless the way it is.  There is no real penalty for the people that abuse it or no penalty for the people that deserved to be kicked that abuse it.

Either way, my idea for a redesign or leaving it as it is, nothing will ever get better unless blizzard actually starts to play an active role in moderating the community.  Which I doubt will ever happen.


  1. I agree wholeheartedly that the vote-kick system needs a redesign. I like the idea of a drop-down menu to choose a list of reasons from, and agree that it should be mandatory, or the vote-kick cannot not proceed.

    I don't like the idea of Blizzard doling out punishments based on vote-kick data, however. It just seems too big-brotherish for my tastes.

    If I can be totally honest, I've only ever used the vote-kick to kick people calling for vote-kicks in LFR.

    1. I understand the fear of big brother but something needs to be done and the fear of big brother is the way to do it.

      If someone gets kicked for griefing the group and continues to get kicked for griefing the group but nothing ever happens to them they will not stop, they will continue getting the kicks out of doing it.

      Like it or not, those people need to have the use of the tool taken away from them if they are ever going to learn.

      If there is no consequence to their actions then they can keep doing randoms and ruining the experience for everyone and they are part of the reason many people, myself included, are starting to actively hate this game.

      Love the game, hate the community.

  2. I agree as well. You make some good points, and ultimately this would help those players (hopefully) become better. The only problem is I never see Blizzard doing this, because they don't want their paying player base who get kicked repeatedly pissed off and stop paying. But in effect, not doing anything at all is making lots of players, like myself, frustrated and not want to do LFD or LFR anymore and in some cases quit, like myself (for several reasons). Well you'd have to point a gun to my head to run a LFR anymore

    1. That is why I don't like running them any more either and is one of the reasons I have nothing to do late in the expansion. The fear of running into "those people" keeps me from even entering the queue and taking the chance as often as I would like.

      A little note telling people why they where kicked would be nice.

  3. Excellent post. The kick system really needs an update to be sure.

    I did chuckle at this:

    "My idea might not be the best idea because it requires good information from the community and I have very little faith in our community"

    I know exactly what you mean!

    1. It is a bit of a sad feeling isn't it?

      I've seen so many "day stoopid" remarks in kicks I have completely lost faith in the community.

  4. Your system would be better, though I have my doubts wether the input on the comment bit would change much from the present, unhelpful one. The 'big brother vibe' I have mixed feelings about, personally I'd say Blizzard has a responsibility to monitor its game (better) and some functions just don't work at the moment (and EU-specific factors like e.g. Cyrillic names reading like ????-???? to English Clients in BG's don't help, either).

    OT: seems pipe-dreams can sometimes come true, we've got Blue on the EU (e.g. about why Heroic Raids need to be nerfed etc. , might be interesting to read )

    1. That was a good read. I just jumpped from blue to blue and read a few bits otherwise but it seems like the mod was trying to explain as best he could. Sad part is it seemed like most of what he said went straight over everybody's head.

      The comment part might still be a problem of course, but at least now they need to select a reason as well as a comment. So if you can't figure out what "piuygog" means in the comment you at least know what they want to kick them for.

  5. While I like this idea, I think the one potential snag that might come up is the time factor -- that people wouldn't want to take the time out to write up even a few words (or click a few options) when initiating the reason behind a kick (or blocking it). Sadly, we've become such GO GO GO rush junkies that taking even a few seconds out to breathe isn't allowed. :(

    1. I figured that myself. Hence the reason for needed to pick something from the drop down to even start the kick. That way, if people at least picked something, even if the comment field is empty or useless gibberish the reason for the kick would still be there for the game to do something about. Like sending the person a link to learn how to play their role, or about the fight mechanics, or acceptable group behavior.

      In my opinion, putting "day stoopid" and kicking them and them never knowing why is the problem with the system. If someone had to put that they where not performing their role well and then still added "day stoopid" at least a mail would be sent to the mage with links to mage sites that teach rotations.

      It might not be great, but something is better than nothing and sadly blizzard usually like to go the nothing approach to everything.

  6. Agree it does need updating. Agree that it probably never will. Honestly not sure they could impliment something with your perfect ideals.

    The dropdown menu is an option. But it is easy to pick anything just to get rid of someone. And we all know there are people out there that will do that.

    Unfortunately, it is an imperfect system right now. But then we live in an imperfect world. There are people out there that just want to cause trouble. I don't see blizzard coming down hard on the people that are in the wrong.

    I wonder sometimes if when I report a play for cheating/language/whatever, if anything actually happens. Would be nice to know that the player has been disciplined in some way.

    I think we just have to put up with the bad parts with the community. I was kicked the other day from a LK dungeon I was healing because I got aggro twice! Once from trash before a boss and from the boss when I ress'ed myself (while the trash was still up). Had to get a BR after that. Couldn't keep myself up and everyone else. Got kicked for that. Sigh.

    But there are good examples too. Had a tank that was polite and talkative. Waited for a DPS to get back after he went AFK for 1 min. Was very nice.

    You know what. I will remember that person longer than I remember the people that kicked it. We can only all try and improve the community. Then the kick systme shouldn't be needed as much.

    1. The biggest problem is that there are so few of the "good" people out there and the "bad" people are way more vocal in groups.

      I've seen many people that I would consider "good" people that have just been pushed to far and have switched to the dark side.

      They got sick and tired of people doing poorly in LFR and winning everything or people just not trying that now they don't either any more.

      No matter how "good" someone is, if all they see is bad around them it will change them sooner or later.

      This is why blizzard needs to step up. They are letting this happen to their community. The "bad" people are slowly converting the "good" people or the "good" people are just quitting. I've seen so many guild members quit this expansion because of the community.

      They just gave up on the game because they felt the game gave up on them. And you know what? I can't blame them.