World of Warcraft: Flex vs LFR

My friend’s guild has invited me to several Flex raids in the Siege of Orgrimmar. So far, we managed to get down 7/8 and will be doing Nazgrim next Monday. I’m pretty excited. The guys have been a lot of fun and it’s been a great learning experience. I only tried the first part of LFR and decided to keep my neck out until the bug with Narushen was fixed. In doing both, I decided to write my thoughts out on the current situation.

I have to say that Flex is really cool…but only if you have a connection that will help you do Flex. I have a friend who is a decent player but doesn’t have a connection (outside of myself to my friend’s guild) and that somewhat prohibits him from getting into a Flex raiding group. I think the lesser difficulty level helps to create a mind set that other people are able to join and not feel the pressure of having too much responsibility. Sure, there is a carry job that certain members have to perform, but at the same time you feel that you’re contributing in some way.

My friend, who heads his guild, mentioned that he sees Flex as the route that Blizzard should ultimately take towards raiding where the difficulties of encounters adjust according to the number of people. You’d still have segments of difficulty such as LFR, Normal and Heroic but at the same time you wouldn’t be forced into depending on having everyone in one spot. Instead, you can pull people in as needed and use each segment as a learning ground to help you into the next level of challenges.

Unfortunately, you still encounter scheduling problems with people. Tanks and healers are still a premium and not everyone can raid on a daily basis. Not to mention taking normal and possibly heroic modes into account. So there’s a lot of problems with regards to the time issue, especially those trying to min/max their toons per week.

Thus, the LFR aspect still needs to exist. From what I’ve seen so far, LFR closely mirrors what happens in Flex. So I kinda think they’re a good match for each other. I like to fine tune myself on fights in LFR because I have more options to do LFR on my alts compared to Flex. I think seeing how better LFR groups handle certain strategies and dealing with mechanics with different toons allows me to get a good perspective on the encounter. For instance, Sha of Pride isn’t much different between Flex and LFR. So having taken my warrior and paladin through it allowed me to experience the fight a few times and give me a good chance to really understand how things work.

Strangely, I do feel a little more pressure to perform in Flex than in LFR since I’m the one being invited. I hate being carried but feel as though at the moment that I’m not contributing as much as I can compared to LFR. I think LFR is good in the sense that you pretty much are out for yourself so you’re not really trying to be a team player. I tend to do better in those environments because I like being self sufficient.

In terms of the fights thus far, I have to say that the Narushen and Sha of Pride fights have been pretty decent. Part 2 is still up in the air and pretty chaotic by comparison. Dark Shamans can be a bitch as a melee but I think it’ll take time to get used to that fight. I think the Nazgrim fight will be a challenge from the accounts that I’ve heard. In general, it’s not so bad right now. Can’t wait to see the rest.

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