Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Where Have all the Raid Leaders Gone?

I am my guilds raid leader but not exactly because I want to be.  I do it because there is no one else around that wants to.  There are reasons why I was asked to do it over others in my guild when I was given the position.

There are the standard things you expect from everyone, not just a raid leader.  Be there for all raids, be prepared for all the raids, be on time for all the raids and be good at what you do.

The reason they decided to ask me to raid lead is because I did something it seems a lot of people don't do.  I watched the fight, I read about the fight and I comprehended what I was watching and reading not only from my personal characters stand point but from all standpoints.

It seems that the average good player, yes I said good player, I am not talking about people that are bad.  Bad people are just that, bad.  The average good player knows how to gear, gem, enchant their player.  They know how to maximize their abilities.  They know when to use cooldowns and how to get the best out of them.  They still do not know the fights outside of how it effects them personally.

That, in my opinion, is the job of the raid leader.  It is to tie all those good people together into an effective group and understand the differences of the fights from the different perspectives.  I try my best but sometimes it feels like the most lonely job in the world.

There are two medium level guilds on my server looking for raid leaders through the worst possible method, trade.  I am looking for a co raid leader.  One of the top guilds is always changing their second teams leader because they can not find a good one and another gave the raid leader position to a friend of mine that used to be in my guild so I know that while he is knowledgeable and a great player but he is not dependable.  He only shows sometimes.

Why it is that there are no raid leaders out there any more?  After the other night I realized the deep need to find someone else to step up and be a co raid leader.  After I DCed they tried one more attempt without me while waiting for me to come back just so people could learn the fight mechanics more.  I like that.  When I did not return after that second wipe they just called it a night.  I do not like that.

When I got on I asked how things went and it seems the first attempt when I DCed it went pretty well.  They said I did not die until I got hit by a slime, which was the 4th construct to become active.  If you ask me, it is pretty impressive that I lasted that long not even being there.

When I asked why they did not just drag someone else in and continue.  I am only a DPS and while I might be a good DPS we have plenty of members that are part time raiders but can easily be pulled in to do 12K-13K which is not bad at all for a part timer and more then acceptable for the boss we where on.

The answer I got was sad actually.  I was told, I am the glue.  Without me they do not run.  When I left, no one had the desire to move on.

This could be thought of in two different ways.  One could be that any success (or failure) we have is all because of me as it seems I really do control everything or it could mean we are in for a world of hell when I can not be around because people depend too much on me. 

Good for my ego?  Sure.
Good for the guild?  Hell no.

I immediately said that no guild is one person.  They should still run without me.  They should still down bosses without me.  They should not need me.  I fill a position to help the group but I am not the group.  I am only a cog in a much bigger machine.

When running raids I have a great deal of fun.  I have fun even if we wipe over and over.  I have fun because I like doing it.  If I am the glue then it is now a job.  I am no longer showing up and running the raid because I want to and I have fun.  I am now doing it because I have to.  If I don't they do not run.  I don't think I am personally able to handle that.  I do not want my game becoming work.  Once I have to show up it is now work even if I am having fun doing it.

I've been looking far and wide for someone to take my place or assist.  I would rather be a co raid leader or a vice raid leader if you will.  I am mildly knowledgeable about all classes and I have helped nearly every person in our raid team with their spec, rotation, gear, etc.  They come to me for advice because they know I read a lot and am full of useless information because of it.  I do not mind that at all.   I would do that even if I where not a raid leader. 

Maybe that is why I was given the job.  Now to find someone else that I can give the job to so I don't have to play the part of the glue.  I do not want to be the glue.

One guild member is always calling me Boss.  I hate that.  I am not the boss, I am just the guy that babbles about strats on vent because I have too much free time and read a lot.  I am just one part of a team.  I am not the boss.  Never have been, never will be, never want to be considered as such.  So he says, okay Boss.

Whenever I talk to people I try to feel them out to see if they have raid leader potential.  None ever do.  Even the slightest hint that they might need to lead a raid they start making excuses why they would be bad at it.

I only know about my class.
I only study the fight to see what I need to do.
I am not sure if I can be there every raid night.
I'm not a good speaker on vent.
Many others...

I became raid leader because I felt someone needed to do it and they asked me and I figured I would help.  Why are there not many like me?  My server is seeing the pressure of raid leaders going bye bye it seems.  Could it be Cataclysm burn out already?

I can't understand that.  There is no difference between Cataclysm raids and other raids before it.  It might be hard once you step into in but you wipe a few times, you learn the fight, you put it on farm.  Just like every other raid that came before it and just like every other raid that will come after it. 

If there is one difference with Cataclysm raids that I noticed it is the dependency on one person in so many fights.  It seems as if a lot of the fights are designed to be make or break on if one person does their job correctly or not. 

From a Hunters standpoint Magmaw is all me.   If I do well, we down it.  If I mess up, we don't.  For old time players that will not be much of a change however.  While I was not around I heard about the stories of MC and needing a Hunter for tranq shot or it was a wipe.

Back to the point however.  Why are so many raid leaders quitting and why does no one else want to be one?

Just yesterday I saw someone spamming trade looking for raid leader for BoT then gtg.  What?  You assembled a group and no one can lead it.  This scares me and if I were in the group it would scare me even more.  That was not the first time I saw that in trade either.

It was also not the first time I experienced that either.  Last week I was messaged by a friend in one of the top 3 guilds on the server asking if I could come and raid lead for a TotFWs run.  I would have loved to really but that is the one raid I have never stepped into this expansion.  

I know it.  I could lead it.  I won't be a leader for some people outside of my guild.  Not to mention, having not done it, I would not feel comfortable leading a group of people that have all completed it already.  Sad, 9 people from the top guild that have all completed it asking someone that has never done it to lead it for them.

It does go to show you how far reached, at least on my server, the raid leader problem goes.  When a group that is 12/12 and in heroic modes already asks me to be a raid leader for a guild run things are really getting bad.

I always said there was a healer problem and there was.  As time went on and people started getting gear the healer problem seems to have fixed itself.  My guild has a lot of them now.  Sure, almost all part timers, we are a casual guild, but when you have 2 mains, 2 dual speced and 4 part timers for your healing core, you are in a good spot.  A lot better then when we needed me healing on an alt.

The raid leader problem however seems to be going the other way.  It was not a problem when the expansion started but seems to be becoming one now.

Two months ago I was stressing out about healers.  Now I need to work on getting another raid leader.  Or at least getting someone to step up should I not be around.

I never want a run not to happen because I was not there again.  There is no excuse for that.  I am just a player like everyone else, one person in a large group.  A raid should not depend on my attendance.

In business we have a saying.

The fastest way to get yourself fired is to make yourself indispensable.

There is a hell of a lot you can read into that.

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