Raiding Tips and Preparation

Started by Shadowwolf, November 04, 2007, 12:42:06 AM

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Heres a list of some tips and prep things to do before attending a raid to make sure that you are fully prepared and ready to go if you plan to partake in them.

You're not in Kansas anymore...

I DPS, the only time I heal is myself...:
We've all probably heard that uttered in a PUG somewhere from a Priest or a Shaman not specd to heal. People walk into PUG groups most often with the rigid mindset of doing only 1 thing and nothing else. Raiding is a little different from the normal 5 person instances. A typical instance group has 1 healer, 1 tank and 3 dps/other classes. Thats the basic requirement for any regular instance and even Heroic instance. What you might be used to in regular instances doesnt do nearly enough at times to prepare you for raids aside from improving your gear and your class play skills.  Raids also dont always follow the standard 1 tank, 1 healer methodology that works for instances. thinking a 10 person raid is simply (2) 5 person standard groups meshed under one roof isnt applicable either. Many raids and encounters require class and role mixes that dont follow the 1 tank, 1 healer, 1 CC, 1 DPS, etc etc. Different bosses require a different mix of roles and classes to succeed. Because of this, there will be times you will be asked to perform a task that might seem a little unusual for your chosen class, its best to learn as much as you can, listen to instruction and follow it to the 9's.

Order in the Courtroom!
Raiding is, to put it bluntly, chaotic at times. Starting from the 10 person raids to the 25, there are often many fights that from a new persons perspective can seem chaotic and just downright free-for-alls. If you are new to raiding, its always best to start out small and work your way up. Unfortunately with BC, the smallest raid to work up in is Karazhan, and the problem with that is Kara isnt for the faint hearted. In order to achieve success, EVERYONE in the raid has to be giving it their all 100% of the time and be aware of the environment around them as well as what they need to do. From a first timers perspective, fights that are very intense and have a lot going on can seem like nothing but controlled chaos, and thats not far off. One slip up or false move can sometimes cause a wipe if the raid cant adjust for it quick enough. Because of this, it is imperative that everyone is aware of what is about to take place and be aware of everything going on around them. Things like if you need to move, if you need to maintain CC (Crowd Control) on a mob, etc are important.

The important thing is to relax and just do what you do best and are asked to do. Dont over stress, and try not to get overwhelmed. Raiding can be an intimidating thing for newcomers, its best to ease into it as slowly as possible but the game doesnt always allow that. Just breathe, ask questions and enjoy yourself.

Where are your manners?!

Who are you to tell me what to do, you arent the boss of me...:
Listening to the raid leader is of the utmost importance for success. Many times, people dont listen and do their own thing and it creates problems on an encounter or through a raid instance as a whole. Regardless if you agree with the plan, following it as instructed is important, if you chose to do something different and other people arent planning for it, it could create a mess and cause a wipe. At the same time, if you have a suggestion to improve things a bit, dont hesitate to bring it up, but do so in a tell to the Raid Leader when you arent in combat and dont bring it up in a negative way, the old saying of "you catch more flies with honey than vinegar" holds true in this case. Sending a tell to a raid leader of something like "can we try it my way now?" isnt going to get your ideas heard with open arms and will probably put you at odds with people. Just remember leading a raid is a tough responsibility and very stressful. The person doing so is burdening the success or failure of the raid based on how effectively they lead. Not approaching suggestions in the right atmosphere and time will only add to that stress and create unnecessary ill will. If you were unable to voice your opinion or suggestion in tells, make a post on the forum here. Sometimes an after assessment of things works better than trying to adjust and change things too drastically in the moment.

OOOO! Look at the lovely flowers over here...:
Paying attention is important. Most wipes are generally caused because 1 or more people were not paying attention to what was going on and missed instruction or the fact that the raid was pulling mobs. Some instances might draw your attention elsewhere with funny NPC conversations, nice scenery, etc, but theres always time afterwards to enjoy those things. At the same time, when the raid leader does a ready check, dont hit ready if you arent. That is the best way for a raid leader to tell if everyone is prepped for a boss encounter, or a pull, or something that requires everyone to be paying attention, buffed and ready to rock. Hitting ready, then walking off to answer the phone is a BAD idea. At the same time, hitting ready when you are at 50% mana isnt wise either. Sometimes the raid leader doesnt see everything going on so small things like that might get missed but those things even tho they are minor, can add up and result in 1 or more people dying or at worst, a wipe.

Dude! Remember that time when Jeff did...:
Keeping excess banter in chat down during a fight is a must. If the raid is fighting a boss, talking about what your dog did last night that was "sooo cute" or how you got blitzed out of your gourd the night prior at a kick ass party isnt appropriate at that time. At the same time, excess chat during an explanation of a boss fight is bad manners as well. Some people may need a refresher on what the plan is, or the plan might have to change slightly from what you may be used to because of the raid composition. Talking to your friends in raid chat while the Raid Leader is trying to explain things makes for confusion and people missing things. Its nice to have casual convo in raids, but trash pulls and between pulls is best for it, not during a fight or during explanations.

Dont wipe a raid for stupidity. Its not fun and grinding the money for repairs for them isnt fun either. People who get up in gear will have to foot costly repairs for every time they die, wiping the raid because you want to try and be cute isnt fun for anyone and just causes aggravation. If you want to wipe, zone in yourself and do it alone, dont do it with 9 or 24 others with you. Also, be aware of your positioning. Trying to creep close to a boss before a pull isnt always a good idea. Sometimes some bosses have a HUGE aggro radius and it doesnt take much to set them off. Things like pets, totems, even stealthed players who think they cant be seen can unexpectedly set off a boss and wipe a raid.

A raiding we will go...

The guild has loot rules for a reason. Its to keep raiding fair and balanced for all those in participation to help them get gear they need and want without causing discontent amongst one another or giving priority to people simply "because". Read and understand the loot rules before you join a raid, it saves the leader time not having to explain it, and it saves you discouragement and anger not having to have it explained during a roll on something. The loot rules can be found here:

Also, dont be greedy. If you have gotten 2 or 3 items already, even if its an open roll, be courteous and pass to someone who might not have. Reputation is worth more than a few less purple items.

God this is gonna cost me 40g in repairs...:
Wiping is a part of raiding. Sometimes it happens due to bad luck like on the Prince fight in Kara, and sometimes it happens because of lag or could even happen because your group is learning a new boss or learning the fight. Dont remind everyone in the raid that its costing you X gold more than someone else every time you wipe, its just not fun to hear. Wiping is bad enough in and of itself, and anyone who might feel guilty about being a cause doesnt need to burden more guilt.

Additionally, bring ample money for repairs. If you are going to a raid thats a first time for you, bring enough to repair yourself 2 times over. Your equipment doesnt need to be fixed until it hits 0% durability. The benefits dont degrade over durability loss, so if you have 1% durability on your helmet, it still gives you the same armor and stats as it did at 100%.

Also, dont place blame on a wipe. Usually people know if the raid wiped because of something they did, reminding them of it isnt a good idea. It only demoralizes them and insures they wont be performing with all their heart the next time around having to burden that guilt. Just shrug it off and pick up and move on. It happens, and from time to time, someone will make a mistake and cause one unintentionally, just dust off, pick up your weapon and move on.

2 Guards left at Halaa, gonna take it!:
Being this is a PvE server and you have to actually be flagged for PvP combat, dont do it right before a raid. This means dont squeeze in one last BG or Arena match, dont try to cap towers somewhere, or earn a quick HK from a flagged player. PvP status in a raid screws up buffs and forces people to have to wait on you. Its very rude to show up to a raid flagged. Also, Kara is neutral ground, so being summoned flagged in the middle of 20 opposing faction players is not wise. If you find yourself flagged, you can lose the status by taking a Gryphon flight somewhere before a summon.

I bet I can out DPS you any day of the week!.
Aggro control is important on raids. Maintaining aggro on the tank for both mobs and bosses keeps from wiping the raid. Playing your character to try and maximize your DPS without paying attention to your threat is going to get you killed, or worse yet, someone else killed. Healers have a hard enough job to do on raids and dont need to have the added pressure of keeping a Mage who has less armor than a snowblower alive because they felt compelled to try to top the DPS chart. Programs like DamageMeters, Recount, SWStats, all have their value in helping you see where you stand amongst others on the damage chart so you can improve yourself, being number 1 on that chart at the cost of your own life gets you nowhere and always remember, you cant DPS if you're dead. Dont make the tanks job harder trying to keep the boss or mobs off you because you want to mash every offensive spell button you have without pacing yourself. Its also wise to wait for aggro to be established before starting your DPS routine. If you arent sure how to know when its safe to DPS, on trash mob pulls, counting to 5-7 after you see the tank hit the mob is a good way to give the tank time to build up aggro. Bosses are a little different as each boss is unique on how it tracks and handles aggro. Usually the raid leader can give good insight as to how long you should wait per boss, typically with a Warrior tanking, you should wait for 5 stacks of Sunder Armor on the boss as a safe bet. Theres plenty of DPS that needs doin, cool your jets and take it one mob at a time one cast/shot/swing/slap at a time.

Honey, we forgot to pack the camera before we came...

I'll have to do the solo buff on you as I didnt bring enough reagents...:
Bring ample reagents to the raid you plan to attend. It doesnt hurt to buy extra, for a 10 person raid, if your buff spell costs 1 reagent per, bring 20-40, you should know ahead of time if you are the only one of your class, so if you are alone, buy and bring extras. Priests and Paladins get the shaft with this as they have multiple buffs per raid. If you are a priest or pally, bring 80-100 for a raid as a precaution. Even if you dont use them on that raid, youll need them later so its not a waste.

Also, Buffing isnt a privilege restricted to those in your group only. Work it out with others of your class as to what groups you will buff and what groups they can to avoid wasting reagents buffing the same people and to make sure everyone gets buffed. Being stingy and keeping it to your group only just hurts everyone else. Raiding is a shared experience, and that includes expenses, dont be cheap.

Anyone got a pot or 5, I forgot mine?:
Bring plenty of pots and other consumables. For a typical 10 person raid like Kara, 15 Mana or Healing pots should be standard. You might not use them all, but its better to have them with you in case you do. Same for foods that buff, scrolls, sharpening stones, etc, anything you would use to help your character, bring plenty of.

My armors red, anyone got a repair bot?:
Repair up before a raid. That includes all your gear, if you have 2 sets of gear for dps and healing, make sure its all fixed before you show up. Nothing slows down the schedule more than showing up to a raid with damaged items and sustaining an unexpected wipe where some of your items are now unusable.

If anyone has anything to add I may have missed, please feel free to do so. Hopefully this helps people not that familiar with raids who want to start enjoying them.
Come to the darkside, we have cookies.
"A flute with no holes is not a flute, and a donut with no hole is a danish" - Chevy Chase as Ty Webb in Caddyshack
"Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind."- Dr. Suess


I agree with all of that, especially changing playing style on the needs of the raid is a must. Anyone who has known me for the past god knows how long, can vouch for a fact that i didn't like healing, as a principle. Hell, i didn't even have any healing gear till i hit 62 cos i was stubborn. But after being asked to heal from 5-manners to ZG/AQ and the like, i learn t that healing is fun... You may have to think a wee bit more (and trust me, it hurts to think...) but its worth it when you can say that you helped pull a guildee from the brink of death in the nick of time. Its an ego boost to say the least.

QuoteOOOO! Look at the lovely flowers over here...:

I've been known to let my attention wander quite frequently, but thank god no one here likes to rip ANYONE a new one, as i might have several new ones. Basically, don't get bored, if you do, crank out some music through a stereo, or media player with headphones to stay awake/alert.

I agree with everyone thing in this post.


P.S How was your Halloween everyone? We don't celebrate it here in Oz, and thank god. Having little mongrels knocking on my door for candy, i may just find my dad's shotty to give 'em a trick or two =p.


Ty for this, Shadow! Very helpful writeup and funny too. :Bat:


QuoteDont wipe a raid for stupidity.

but... but... meh :(

great write up, only one thing to add:  BE ON TIME. 

nobody wants to wait for you to haul your slack self over to the instance.  Be fully repaired, stocked with consumables, flasks, reagents, and your Vargoth staff AT THE INSTANCE 10 minutes before the raid is scheduled to start.  Kara is a long haul, wasting time at the start sucks.  If you're dashing home from work to slip into kara, consider logging off at the instance the night before, ready to go.

PS I lied, got two things to add.  bring vargoth.


Quote from: LastDyingBreath on November 04, 2007, 01:44:08 AM
QuoteDont wipe a raid for stupidity.

but... but... meh :(

great write up, only one thing to add:  BE ON TIME. 

nobody wants to wait for you to haul your slack self over to the instance.  Be fully repaired, stocked with consumables, flasks, reagents, and your Vargoth staff AT THE INSTANCE 10 minutes before the raid is scheduled to start.  Kara is a long haul, wasting time at the start sucks.  If you're dashing home from work to slip into kara, consider logging off at the instance the night before, ready to go.

PS I lied, got two things to add.  bring vargoth.
Seriously, on the SL heroic we had on Friday we couldn't down murmur, we reanalized the strat we were using, popped all 5 Vargoths and he went down easy!


Yea, Shadow forgot about the Vargoths. It is of the utmost importance. Other important things: Noggenfogger's Elixer, Halloween Costumes, Throwable pumpkin heads, and Piccolo of the Flaming Fire.


Another time related topic.

Some boss encounters begin with the trash mobs around them.  Engaging the trash mobs starts a respawn timer and unless the boss is downed before the timer's up the trash will start to respawn.  Best to get all bio, snack, drink or whatever breaks before starting a raid or during planned points in the raid.  Sometimes its unavoidable but should be avoided if possible.


QuoteP.S How was your Halloween everyone? We don't celebrate it here in Oz, and thank god. Having little mongrels knocking on my door for candy, i may just find my dad's shotty to give 'em a trick or two =p.

LOL!  :One_eye_ghost: Good to know  :P
oo and my halloween was great thnx   :D

P.S great post by the way to see GM that actaully cares if the guild fails or succeds  :)
Music is a moral law. It gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, a charm to sadness and a gaiety and life to everything. It is the essence of order and leads to all that is good, true and beautiful.


Great post! Now that we're starting to do a little more raiding, it's important that people are prepared for them! Thanks for taking the time to write this, Shadow.


yes, great post already starting to try and prepare for kara,and havent done a raid as of yet,but want to know my place, and be the most help i can be when the time comes. :D


Another tip:

Fill in your sockets!!!!
If your gear has sockets, put gems in all of them! You can buy green (uncommon, not the color of the gem) gems for 1-2g from the AH if you don't want to spend the 30-50g for the blue (rare, not the color of the gem) ones.

[item]Solid Azure Moonstone[/item]  9 stamina (that's 90 HP), usually for sale for 1-2g
[item]Solid Star of Elune[/item]       12 stamina (that's 120 HP), usually for sale for 40-60g


Additionally - don't forget to bring booze!


I have stacks of all uncommon (green) gems if anyone needs some. No need to hit the AH if I'm available.


"Impossible odds, mentally unbalanced foes, cramped quarters for a good punch-up... and people say Iest has no night life."
-- Cerebus

"I don't know what effect these men will have upon the enemy, but by God, they frighten me."
-- The Duke of Wellington