Life in Group 5 – A Resto Shaman Blog
A resto shaman perspective on raiding


August 3, 2012

Wherein I Make a Point About Delayed Raid Release


There is a common argument when it comes to raid nerfs, and it’s actually one that I agree with—the value of your kill, at whatever time you make it, shouldn’t be impacted by the people who come before or after you. This is to say, my accomplishment of killing HM Rag stands on its own, no matter how many players kill it. Likewise, my kills of HM Spine and Madness aren’t less important to me because someone else came in and triumphed over those fights with a 15%, 20%, or 30% nerf to content. And while I do believe that rankings provide some (arguably flawed) indication of aptitude, I think what they provide a truer, better reflection of is players’ priorities.

Nonetheless, every time the topic of content nerfs comes up, some “hardcore” elitist jerk/troll will step up and claim his prestige is threatened by other players treading in the same footsteps. To which more reasonable and sane minds will respond with the argument above—your enjoyment of the game shouldn’t be impacted by other players’ priorities (ie: the guy who kills something later maybe doesn’t spend as much time in game as you and needs more help to accomplish something on his timetable, and that’s okay, to a certain extent).

So, when the recent delay to raiding was announced, as a feature of the new WoW expansion, Mists of Pandaria, it was again the “hardcore” set that raised issues and cried foul. It was seemingly the same objections raised once again, about fire and brimstone and threatened epeen. At first, I was moderately annoyed at the suggestion of delayed raid release—I greatly dislike raid gating because of its discordance with the spirit of a game that lets you dictate your own pace. And when it was later confirmed that raids would be delayed a week after MoP’s release, and a little more derision was aimed at “hardcore” players, I couldn’t help but think that maybe a lot of people were missing the point.

A week delay in raiding isn’t going to make or break anything; the effects will be marginal. No one, (I hope no one), is saying otherwise. Those rushing to 90 might get a couple more hours of sleep, but they’ll still fill their days the same way they would have otherwise, grinding rep and heroics for gear. (I’ll be one of them). And instead of the race starting Tuesday night, it’ll now simply start a week later. But the sentiment behind that delay is what rings so hollow in a game that champions choice, and it is what I wanted to bring to light today. Because the argument as to why raid content should be available on Day 1 can very simply be boiled down to:


Look at that first paragraph. Look back at the bolded, underlined, capitalized phase above. Now back to that first sentence. Now back at the one above. That’s right—they’re the same. They’re both arguing for open and accessible content where YOU dictate the pace.

If that’s the standard, then it should apply to everyone. Even the elitist douchebag who takes the week off and subsists entirely on energy drinks and pizza rolls so that he can get a kill on Day 6 instead of Day 8. His kills, his choices, his priorities should have no effect on you.



  1. For my guild (two nights a week, killed 6/8H pre-nerf, killed 8/8H with nerf disabled), the main issue is that first tiers of expansion packs are completely different from subsequent tiers.

    Instead of being ready with your heroic gear from the previous tier with enchants/gems/maxed professions/stockpiled consumables/etc, you have to…

    1. Level up
    2. Raise your professions
    3. Farm consumables
    4. Grind heroics for gear
    5. Raid

    How much time you can dedicate to steps 1-4 shouldn’t have an impact on 5, and it doesn’t in every single tier after the first of the expansion. While this doesn’t matter to the top world guilds, it very much matters to guilds like mine which are still in the top 500-700 world.

    “Be efficient with raid time” and “Dedicate loads of time to level, skill up professions, grind heroics like crazy, and farm stuff” do not go hand in hand.
    Balkoth´s last post ..It’s Been Quite a Journey (8/8H)

  2. I really like the idea of not throwing all the content at us at the same second. However, I really dislike this solution because it will highly encourage people to level their second / third room and be ready with gear / max professions on all for when the progression race starts, and instead of being primarily about getting 25-30 chars optimized for a given encounter, then you can play with 40-50 chars effectively stacking more optimal classes for a given encounter. Which I am not fond of on any level (Which will mean that I will most likely be playing my druid instead of the broken-hardly-any-issue class generally known as shaman.
    Zherman´s last post ..Thoughts on restoration shaman on beta.

  3. Stunchy

    The delay will impact me in no way whatsoever. On the one hand, I think it is cool to see the race for firsts when a new expansion is launched because there is much more to the race than the more typical content patch races. In a normal content patch, a bunch of highly trained race car drivers all line up at the starting line in similar, high performance vehicles, and race to the finish as soon as the gun goes off. With a new expansion, those same race car drivers are thrown onto a factory floor and told to first build their race car and they may begin racing as soon as they have constructed a car they are comfortable with. As a spectator, both variations of the race are entertaining to watch and I am disappointed that one of these race formats is being eliminated.

    However, I throw out one other perspective. While I am pretty much a libertarian, and believe that mature people should be allowed to make their own decisions, I also know that this game is played by many children. It is not Blizzard’s job to act as a parent, but perhaps it shows some level of responsibility that they are trying to help prevent putting children into situations where they are tempted to make bad decisions (skip school, skip sleep, don’t study, don’t go to sports practice, etc…).

    I have no idea if this would really work that way. Kids will probably spend crazy hours leveling alts or anything else that is new in the expansion, and maybe the change really does nothing to create a better environment for children. I’m just throwing this out as a possible reason to see the delay as a good thing.

  4. masith

    It seems the suggestion implicit in your statement is; if you do not wish to power level to 90 and grind heroics asap then don’t because it shouldn’t matter what other players are doing. For any guild aiming to be competitive this is as false a choice as the classic don’t like the nerf then turn off the buff argument.
    While it’s nice to make the claim that the value of a kill isn’t determined by those who come before and after it the reality is that many players are competitive whether it is for world 1st, server 1st, faction 1st or even just to beat your guilds biggest rivals. This competition is part of the pleasure that many people get from WoW and certainly isn’t restricted to the hardcore.

    Staggering the release of the raids allows guilds like mine who aim to progress but at a top 1000 level not a top 100 level to avoid many of the issues that expansions have created in the past. The social pressure on players to take time off work and play as much as possible to get ready for raiding is intense and in the case of many guilds quite out of whack with the limited hours many of them usually raid. Suddenly it is assumed that if you expect to be in a top 2000 guilds you will put in the hours that are normally only expected of those at the very top.

    Personally I have always enjoyed the race to max level and will certainly be doing it again this time around despite the staggered release of raid content, but as an officer I am quite glad that I won’t have to push people who don’t really have the free time to do it to play at quite such a frenetic pace.

    • Mark

      Well I suppose that Vixsen isn’t very competitive then tbh. Because, as you hint at, if you are competitive, you care about what other players do and want to do better than them. If, such as Vixsen appears to be saying, you don’t really care about what other players are doing, you don’t appear to be very competitive.
      In the second scenario, one can still perform admirably, but now you’re probably getting your motivation in a slightly different way, wherein you just want to perform as good as you can, REGARDLESS of what other people do. Which probably means you’ll still push your limits even when the competition is virtually null.

  5. I’m pretty super competitive and I’m happy with the gating plans.

    Limits like gating heavily benefit limited-hour raid groups like myself since we are more efficient in a smaller amount of time than equally progressed but 4 or 5 night guilds. Damn straight I’m fine with it.

    I was QQing a little about the gating before I found out about the timing. I thought (incorrectly) that Blizz would stretch the raids out for months, leaving us bored waiting for the next one. But this is about a month of gating. That’s completely fine with me. All it does is put us ahead.

    Is anyone complaining about this? I’ve only heard people (and many of my friends are equally or more hardcore than myself) fairly satisfied with it.

  6. shammypie

    An update for shaman: we’re going to make Healing Rain cheaper and heal for a lot more. We are going to make Chain Heal heal for slightly more.

    did we win the lottery or something?

  7. ” An update for shaman: we’re going to make Healing Rain cheaper and heal for a lot more. We are going to make Chain Heal heal for slightly more.

    This made me smile however I fear it is more our consolation prize considering how I feel on the beta. With healing tide totem being number 1 in many of our spell breakdowns . it feels pretty substandard to have another 1 click then passive ability do much of our job for us.

    Back on topic I’m oddly in favour of this ” raid gating” selfishly it will me us to replace our rogue with an off-spec healer monk and have him gear to not be a burden for the start of raids , as healing officer that’s one thing off my mind .

    As a counterpoint in a situation with no gating , raid finder drops as soon as raids become available … people kill every boss 4- times in two weeks before heroic progress really kicks in .. great for gearing as you power passed the instance gear’s ilvl this for me is a massive shame i love gearing my char in instance blues to try and get ready for the first tier of an expansion it happens so rarely and so good for raider motivation / cementing a guild together.

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