World of Warcraft LFR Improvements

Wowcrendor has a great video on LFR summed up. He only spends 30 (or so) seconds on the topic (which is a parody) but he’s managed to capture part of the essence (or rather frustrations) of LFR. While I do think LFR has been a positive boost to World of Warcraft, it still stinks of pugs and all the problems associated with pugs that Blizzard has yet to address. Here are some obvious issues:

  • Starting encounters prior to having a full raid. Some of the lower encounters do not require a full raid group but the thing at the end is it doesn’t hurt to have everyone available.
  • Staring encounters and then leaving. Basically, your ninja pull.
  • Griefers on encounters like Morchak where extra mobs are ninja pulled and wipe the raid.
  • Ninja looters that take items for (hostage) trade.
  • The ridiculous wait times. Mostly on healers, who occasionally are the ones starting the encounter then leaving.
  • Guild groups that need on everything and prevent others from obtaining any loot.
  • The DPS kickers.
  • The DPS penis insecurity (IRL) meter.
  • The AFKers/DCers who do nothing but ninja need on everything when the encounter is finished.
  • The loud mouths who won’t shut up no matter what (especially Mondays).
  • Roll composition enforcement.
  • Impatient people.
  • People who just don’t cooperate nor listen whatsoever.

I think Blizzard is partly fixing the looting aspects, which is great in the upcoming expansion. Honestly, that fix is required at this very minute because it’s such a severe problem. I don’t know if it’ll fix every problem but I like the fact that looting will become more “personal” in LFR or raiding in general. That said, the other problems are equally severe and need to be addressed. Here’s a few solutions to the ones above:

  • To resolve the ninja puller situation, I suggest making encounters be initiated only by the leader of the raid. If a person has a little flag above their head, they better know what they’re doing.
  • Encounters cannot be started prior to a full group. Once a full group is available and an encounter is started, people should not be able to leave until a wipe or until 3 minutes have passed. I mean, if you’re “in combat”, then you shouldn’t just be able to mystically teleport back to your home.
  • Kill recount. Seriously. It has no business in LFR. It’s becoming Gearscore 2.0 and we all know that Gearscore destroyed WoW during Wrath of the Lich King.
  • Enforce a minimum DPS/healing/action type of thing for looting. This can be calculated on through some averaging of abilities that one can use for an encounter. That way people aren’t just sitting around and doing little to nothing and then receiving loot. This might also address part of the issue of people complaining about lousy DPS in encounters. Even if the DPS isn’t great, you won’t be able to kick people for being undergeared. But you can kick people for doing absolutely nothing.
  • A pull meter. I have no other way to describe it but there needs to be a way to recount which people enacted a pull. The problem about encounters like Morchak is that you have excess mobs that can be pulled. Either get rid of them, make them unattackable, or define some mechanism to indicate which player intentionally pulled them.
  • More flexible raid encounter compositions. They said queuing up as a DPS was better than before (in comparison to LFG) but I think that’s only compared to the time of tank queues. The real problem I’ve seen is that healers are never in abundance. Although PVE Scenarios are supposed to address the whole group composition problem, raids definitely need to be better thought out so that people don’t fall into one of three categories. And if it still is the case, then permit the types of people required for LFR to be more flexible. For instance, why not provide some mechanic to offset the lack of healers?
  • Permitting cross realm joining for battle.net LFRs. I like what they did for LFG so it would be nice to see this feature implemented with LFR as well.

Now, the other issues are more psychological issues with people. I don’t know anything outside of my idea of enforcing some sort of preferred personality type of grouping that will resolve this problem. Obviously, you have battle.net email addresses you can exchange, but because people are together for a brief time, there’s little expectations set where people can create a setting to better know each other. Maybe there should be a tavern inside the game where people from different realms can get together and chat and exchange email addresses.

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