Why 25 man raiding is gone, and won't be back

90 Human Death Knight
12455
04/23/2012 02:56 PMPosted by Azloran
You are NOT reading.

You are confusing "not agreeing" with "not understanding." The posts are easy to understand. I simply disagree with them.

04/23/2012 02:56 PMPosted by Azloran
The theory is that the choice of running 25 man vs running 10 man is not really a choice.

It is common parlance around here to confuse "lack of choice" with "choices I don't like."

If you wish to run 40-mans, you have "no choice." They don't exist. If you wish to run 25-mans, you do have a choice. You may not like the choices you have to make to participate with one of the 2,000 or so U.S. 25-man guilds, but that is a far cry from "not having a choice." It is simply "not having easy choices" or "not having choices I like."

If this is still confusing, you might try to actually start a 40-man raiding guild. I think you will quickly see the difference in the challenge. :-)

As for the rest, I have happily acknowledged that there are people who think they deserve "compensation" for the additional effort required to organize 25-man raiding guilds, and that they tend to focus on unique loot rewards. I simply disagree that they should receive them.

Personally, I fully agree that the two formats should have unique achievements. I think it is insane that we have achievements for eating chocolate cookies, but can't do one for, say, killing Heroic Madness 25-man as opposed to 10-man.

I don't know that separate achievements would bring many people back into the fold, but I really can't fathom an argument against having them.
Edited by Waste on 4/23/2012 3:21 PM PDT
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100 Draenei Paladin
17505
And what is your theory on that?

What does the fact that 25-mans are "harder to organize" have to do with you being unable to fill slots 23, 24 and 25? Organizational difficulty doesn't fall on the back end of your raid - it falls on the shoulders of a select few gaming masochists (I say that as one myself).

If the only problem with 25 mans was "difficulty of organization" then logically, established 25-man raid teams should be *flooded* with desparate applicants, eager to jump on board the "better" format without having to deal with the organizational issues.

But that isn't the case. People don't want to raid 25s *even if they don't have to lift a finger to organize them.*

So there is something going on besides "recruiting is a !@#$%." People don't want to do them in sufficient numbers to sustain even current levels - and current levels are tiny.
When we were recruiting in that era, a disproportionately high number of people flat out said something along the lines of "I'm not joining a 25 man guild. I have no interest in transferring to a guild that may very well die in 3 weeks." Most of them weren't anywhere near that extreme, but the general standpoint was that joining a 25 man guild was very risky. That's rather telling. 25m guilds were (are) dying left and right. Nobody wants to buy a ticket onto a sinking ship.

Note: I'd also challenge your view that 25 man is the "better" format. The only upsides to 25 man are that it's "epic" and that the RNG on loot doesn't suck as much.
Edited by Corpsetwo on 4/23/2012 3:41 PM PDT
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85 Dwarf Warrior
13030
Blizzard says it plans to offer incentive to raid 25.
I wonder what this could be, if it's purely more loot, the arms race begins anew, split achievements? they've said they don't want to split them.

The problem is, there won't be enough 25 man guilds left to create content towards if they don't act as soon as MoP coming out, and that'll just limit this game to a point it's not epic anymore.

my server had over a dozen 40 man raiding guilds and it flourished, in TBC those broke down to about a dozen 25's, into Wrath we widdled down to make 6 or 7, and in Cata. 0. 25 mans are extinct on over 100 servers, how can Blizzard downplay that in the least?
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90 Worgen Mage
15160
It is common parlance around here to confuse "lack of choice" with "choices I don't like."

If you wish to run 40-mans, you have "no choice." They don't exist. If you wish to run 25-mans, you do have a choice. You may not like the choices you have to make to participate with one of the 2,000 or so U.S. 25-man guilds, but that is a far cry from "not having a choice." It is simply "not having easy choices" or "not having choices I like."


The thing is, many people like to use an argument whereby "Blizzard should not have to bribe people to play the raid size". It is one of the strangest statements I see in the argument. Blizzard spend the entire Cata expansion bribing people to play 10 mans. They did so, because they decided to make the two raids equal in "difficulty" and they wanted good incentives for people to run the 10 man.

The first of those incentives was the same item level loot. The second incentive was to combine the lockouts + achievements so there was no need to run 25 man. What proceeded after that was:

1. 10 man - "QQQQQQ We have loot issues"
- Blizzard alters the drop rates and decreases 25 man tier
2. 10 man - "QQQQQQ Legendaries too hard to get"
- Blizzard adjusts 10 man Legendary aquisition
3. 10 man - "QQQQQ Why do 25 man get more valor? Isn't it equal?"
- Blizzard equalizes Valor points
4. 25 man - "QQQQ We're dying can we get some help?"
- 10 man "Shut the !@#$ up and live with it."

^^ This is what it feels like this expansion. It may be a very different point of view from some 10 man posters on the forums, but from the 25 man raiders point of view Cataclysm kept bending over backward to give more and more reasons to do 10 man (which meant more and more reasons not to do 25 man) and every time someone doing 25 man complained we get 10 man raiders telling us to shove it and that somehow us asking for some benefits to us is 10 times worse than the 10 man raiders wanting benefits to them.

The thing is, most of the 25 man raiders just want their lives to be a little easier running the format they like doing. The slice of the pie right now has 80% of raiders in 10 mans and 20% of the raiders in 25 man. The same kind of ratio existed in reverse in WotLK and then it was considered "Unbalanced". Why exactly does the ratio in reverse now constitue "balanced" or "Fair". Is it really that much to ask that there be enough incentive to entice maybe 10 or 20% back into 25 man so we can survive as well?

The only arguments I keep seeing against bringing balance into the choice seem to be entirely selfish - that somehow giving people a better option will kill 10 mans - but after living and playing through an entire expansion that saw benefit after benefit shift in 10 mans favor, the arguments that 25 man can't have any just looks like double standards from our point of view.

This also happens to be the root cause of the arguments between the two sizes on the forums.
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90 Human Death Knight
12455
Blizzard spend the entire Cata expansion bribing people to play 10 mans. . . The first of those incentives was the same item level loot . . .

I think a lot depends on your point of view.

The idea that making both equal in terms of loot is actually making them "unequal" is, to some people, obvious, and to others, crazy.

I do see your point of view, though I don't agree with it. In my mind, "putting the better loot in a particular format" is the essence of bribery and "making the loot the same" is making them equal.

You feel the opposite, and that's fine. I happen to disagree, as does Blizzard.
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100 Dwarf Death Knight
18360
I have no figures to back this up, but my strong impression was that 10M raiding was more popular than 25M in wrath, despite having worse loot.
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90 Worgen Mage
15160
04/23/2012 07:20 PMPosted by Murdina
I have no figures to back this up, but my strong impression was that 10M raiding was more popular than 25M in wrath, despite having worse loot.


Go back a few pages, I made a very detailed breakdown on "pupularity" as determined by numbers in WotLK.
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85 Dwarf Warrior
13030
04/23/2012 07:20 PMPosted by Murdina
I have no figures to back this up, but my strong impression was that 10M raiding was more popular than 25M in wrath, despite having worse loot.


25 raiders had to do 10 man to be at all competitve, I don't know a single 25 raider who didn't also raid 10 mans. (I know they exist).

"Pure 10 man" groups were a breed of their own.
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100 Dwarf Death Knight
18360
I still think there were far more 10M guilds than 25M, because 10 man raiding is far easier for smaller, casual guilds than 25 man. But people could then join a 25 man pug (and ICC was pugged a lot more than even dragonsoul) and this would distort the numbers.
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85 Dwarf Warrior
13030
04/23/2012 08:19 PMPosted by Murdina
I still think there were far more 10M guilds than 25M, because 10 man raiding is far easier for smaller, casual guilds than 25 man. But people could then join a 25 man pug (and ICC was pugged a lot more than even dragonsoul) and this would distort the numbers.


DS will be pugged more at 35%.

ICC pugs really kicked into gear the YEAR of 30%
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90 Worgen Mage
15160
You feel the opposite, and that's fine. I happen to disagree, as does Blizzard.


I am more than happy to accept people will disagree with the statements - that is why I tend to be such a stickler for numbers. My beef with the system is that the result of doing what they did in Cataclysm, is that overall the raiding numbers greatly decreased and they put the 25 mans on the brink of being "too costly in development time".

This means that not only was our size we liked to play threatened but even looking just at overall numbers they screwed up. Sure we have a system whereby people can play 10 mans or 25 mans should they "choose to" (loosely used) but from a game wide standpoint cause a reduction in overall numbers of raiders which in turn leads to issues for both guilds in recruitment.

I just don't see that as a win for either side - in fact I see that as just bad for everyone involved and why I do not like the system as it stands right now. I will say right now, while I will not play 10 mans, should we have started the system in Cata and right now raiding numbers were through the roof with 10's and it was clear no-one really wanted 25 mans then I would concede maybe they should go - and me along with it - but I don;t see that, rather I see a lot of people that cannot get into raids and so up until DS went without.

One thing people need to remember is that the 25 man casual guilds provded homes for those people that wanted casual raiding spots and that were not the best or most experienced players. These people find it hard to find guilds in the current system because 10 mans are very Clique and any failings are very noticeable. These people do not raid in 10 or 25 mans and instead make up a good portion of those people in LFR.

What I would like, is to find a why to entice those people back into raiding normal and heroics, rather than just leaving them in the LFR (not those that only want to do LFR I mean those that liked raiding but can't get into any other way).

Oh and in relation to the first paragraph and develeper time, something to think about. Before the Patch 3.0.2 came out and the nerf to Sunwell which was about 5 months after Sunwells Release you had:

3943 Kalecgos Kills which is ~ 98,575 Characters and
343 KilJaedon Kills which is ~ 8,575 Characters

So about 100k Characters in "heroic end game content".

Right now we have in 25 mans:

3041 H Morchok Kills which is ~ 76,025 Characters and
624 H Madness Kills which is ~15,600 Characters.

So we have a higher % of 25 man guilds clearing the content but we have 23% less people doing the content than we had in Sunwell. What happened after Sunwell??

Blizzard: "We see no reason to spend all that time and effort on content that only 1% of the playerbase gets to enjoy."

Well we are worse now than in Sunwell - what does that say to the longevity of this content?
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90 Human Death Knight
12455
04/23/2012 08:50 PMPosted by Virtutis
I tend to be such a stickler for numbers.

Then you really should use them a little more objectively, instead of picking and choosing things to support your viewpoint.
Before the Patch 3.0.2 came out and the nerf to Sunwell which was about 5 months after Sunwells Release you had:

3943 Kalecgos Kills which is ~ 98,575 Characters and
343 KilJaedon Kills which is ~ 8,575 Characters

So about 100k Characters in "heroic end game content".

We should probably just call that "raiding," since there was no normal/heroic split, and no 10 man options either.

Right now we have in 25 mans:

3041 H Morchok Kills which is ~ 76,025 Characters and
624 H Madness Kills which is ~15,600 Characters.

I wonder why your first set of numbers includes "all raiders" but your second set includes "only 25 man raiders." I'm guessing because otherwise your analysis doesn't hold up?

Right now, we have, in addition to the numbers you cite:

33,653 H Morchok kills on 10-man mode, which is another 336K+ characters and
2,435 H Madness kills on 10-man mode, which is another 24K+ characters.

So in other words, back in Sunwell, fewer than 10K characters reached "the end of the game." And the general population was *larger* back then, by a couple of million subscribers.

Today, nearly 5 times as many people have reached "the end of the game" (40K vs. 8.5K) and nearly 4 times as many people have killed at least one boss of the final instance (400K vs. 100K).

So yeah, it isn't "23% less people than Sunwell." It is "a fivefold increase in endgame completion."
Edited by Waste on 4/23/2012 9:09 PM PDT
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100 Dwarf Death Knight
18360
Blizzard: "We see no reason to spend all that time and effort on content that only 1% of the playerbase gets to enjoy."

Well we are worse now than in Sunwell - what does that say to the longevity of this content?

Even if you figures are accurate, there is still no real comparison between heroic DS and sunwell. Heroic is merely an enhanced version of normal DS. It cost relatively little to develop. Sunwell was an entirely new raid which most have been fairly expensive to develop. Theres no real comparison between a heroic version of a normal raid and a hardmode-only raid.
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90 Draenei Shaman
8210
I think a lot depends on your point of view.

The idea that making both equal in terms of loot is actually making them "unequal" is, to some people, obvious, and to others, crazy.

I do see your point of view, though I don't agree with it. In my mind, "putting the better loot in a particular format" is the essence of bribery and "making the loot the same" is making them equal.

You feel the opposite, and that's fine. I happen to disagree, as does Blizzard.


How is the tier pieces/person equal? (arguably the most important loot)
How is the mounts/person equal?
How is the legendaries/person equal? (consider that even at the "broken" rate of staff acquisition, a single 25 man raid would've gotten about 5 staves heading into DS, while a 10 man would've gotten about 2...consider that a 25 man has ~10 casters, and a 10 man has about 3...Then they went and buffed 10H drop rates and nerfed 25H.)

It's not making loot the same - it's making them imbalanced in favor of 10 mans.

In addition, you forgot that Blizzard needs to balance out:

- Fight difficulty (too subjective, but Blizz needs to understand that inherently, 10 mans are easier, and they need additional mechanics to challenge them to an equal degree as a 25 man raid)
- Logistics of organizing the raid

However, I'm sure we can both agree that Blizzard is never, ever going to be able to balance the last two, considering logistics is a player problem, and not a Blizzard problem. Thus, that's why I keep advocating the separate progression paths or separate achievements.

I almost want them to put make a 5 man raid difficulty that drops equal loot. Then when 10 mans die, they will understand the plight of a raid size that has every single disadvantage possible. Then you'll see that two choices, where one is tangibly better in every single way, really isn't a choice at all. Interestingly, this is the new Blizzard stance on talent points. Hopefully they see the same effect that it's having on raid formats.
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90 Worgen Mage
15160
I wonder why your first set of numbers includes "all raiders" but your second set includes "only 25 man raiders." I'm guessing because otherwise your analysis doesn't hold up?


.... What?? Please tell me exactly how many 10 man raiders there were in Sunwell and I will adjust the numbers to include them -.-

The rest of the post becomes meaningless.

EDIT: To clarify as you went wayyy off on a tangent that had nothing to do with the point, what I said was, in simple English, "that The number of people in Sunwell was unacceptably low and therefore it felt like the developer time was wasted. Right now 25 mans have less than the number of people that were in Sunwell so if the number of people in Sunwell was too small and the number of people in 25 mans is less than that, then it is not a bad logical jump to then ask the question when does development of 25 man content stop due to the same conern".

Incidentally this has NOTHING to do with 10 mans at all and I was not comparing anything to do with 10 mans.
Edited by Virtutis on 4/23/2012 10:41 PM PDT
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90 Worgen Mage
15160
Even if you figures are accurate, there is still no real comparison between heroic DS and sunwell. Heroic is merely an enhanced version of normal DS. It cost relatively little to develop. Sunwell was an entirely new raid which most have been fairly expensive to develop. Theres no real comparison between a heroic version of a normal raid and a hardmode-only raid.


I was wondering if someone would try to disregard it on that basis. I can understand the point, however BC reall was Apples to Oranges. We can only get an approximation of a comparison and the closest is the one I gave. Current DS Normals are the BC equivalent of Tier 5 as the LFR is the BC equivalent of T4 so i cannot discuss DS Normal in the same sentance as Sunwell as they have no relation.

Strictly speaking you are correct however in that current mode Heroics are just tweaked normals which requires less development time. The problem with this however is that this heroic/normal tweaking didn't actually make things better overall and as DS Normals were the worst tuned normal modes since Naxx was remade it is really hard to compare them with just about anything Raid related and get a good comparison.
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100 Dwarf Death Knight
18360
The vast majority of players have done level 10 questing content, meaning it's very popular. Let's design all content just like it and ignore everything else, because it's popular!!!


I'm not passing judgement on which is better. Its just I read some posts here which seem to claim 25m raiding was far more popular than 10m in wrath. However from my personal experience there were a lot more 10m than 25m guilds in wrath. Its just the vast amount of 25m pugs distorted the figures.

I'd like to see more 25m normal mode raiding. There's just so many factors against it unfortunately.
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100 Draenei Paladin
17505
In addition, you forgot that Blizzard needs to balance out:

- Fight difficulty (too subjective, but Blizz needs to understand that inherently, 10 mans are easier, and they need additional mechanics to challenge them to an equal degree as a 25 man raid)
10 mans aren't inherently easier. Blizzard is perfectly capable of tuning each fight so that the difficulty is relatively even between 10 and 25.

However, going off of Blizzard's history, encounters that "split up" a raid (Conclave, T11 Nefarian P2, etc), or ones that require specific jobs or ones that take players out of the equation for a period of time (Conclave, Sinestra, Sarth3D, Sindragosa, etc) are usually harder on 10 man. It's Blizzard's job to take action to make sure that those fights are comparatively easier from other perspectives (ie: numbers, or a lesser reliance on those "splitting" mechanics) in order to make the fight difficulties relatively similar.

Similar arguments can be made for 25 mans in different scenarios.

04/23/2012 10:37 PMPosted by Virtutis
.... What?? Please tell me exactly how many 10 man raiders there were in Sunwell and I will adjust the numbers to include them -.-
My problem with your argument there is that the definition of "end game" is not the same across both expansions. For TBC, participating in end-game content required you to be in a 25m guild. Right now, particpating in end-game content just requires that you be raiding hard modes. There's no restriction on whether those hard modes are done on 25 man or 10 man. Many people are perfectly happy raiding "end game" on 10 man.

I will agree with you in saying that we're getting to the point that 25 mans seem like a waste of developer resources. Maybe not a waste per-se, but an unwise investment.
Edited by Corpsetwo on 4/23/2012 10:59 PM PDT
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90 Worgen Mage
15160
04/23/2012 10:46 PMPosted by Murdina
The vast majority of players have done level 10 questing content, meaning it's very popular. Let's design all content just like it and ignore everything else, because it's popular!!!


I'm not passing judgement on which is better. Its just I read some posts here which seem to claim 25m raiding was far more popular than 10m in wrath. However from my personal experience there were a lot more 10m than 25m guilds in wrath. Its just the vast amount of 25m pugs distorted the figures.

I'd like to see more 25m normal mode raiding. There's just so many factors against it unfortunately.


What you are getting confused by is that virtually every guild that was capable of running 25 mans, also did 10 mans in guild which was in addition to the pugs that did 10 mans. This would make it seem for a large part of ICC that every man and his dog were doing 10 mans and would seem more than the number of 25 mans.

On top of that, because 25 man has 2.5 times the people, 2 x 25 man raids would encompass the same amount of people as 5 10 mans so there were less "Raids" of 25 mans. You can see this in the numbers for WoWrprogres.

Oct 30, 2010
Lord Marrowgar (25): 43468 (75.77%)
Lord Marrowgar (10): 53653 (93.52%)

So talking about numbers of >Raids< then strictly speaking there were a significantly higher number of 10 man >raids< and that is where the confusion comes in. The thing is if you extrapolate it to see how many characters participated in each format you get:

Lord Marrowgar (25): 1,086,700 Characters
Lord Marrowgar (10): 536,530 Characters

Now even if you were to consider that every guild kill on each format has wholly unique characters (obviously not going to happen) you have also twice the number of characters in 25 than in 10.

You were concerned about PuGs skewing the numbers but remember that for a new guild kill to be registered, there needed to be sufficient members of the same guild to have killed the boss on the same day for it to be counted (at least that is how it was supposed to work) which means PuGs wouldn't have messed with the numbers to that large an extent. In fact, just to get the two "equal" you would have to assume that none of the 10 mans were pugs and that half of all the 25 mans were pugs - and that was as I said just to make them equal.

Unfortunately they do not show any indication that 10 was more popular.

On a side note, once again these numbers illustrate why I am so vocal about the issue of raiding numbers. These numbers were taken 6 months after ICC was released. Today, ~ 6 months after DS Release these are the current numbers, side by side with the previous:

Morchok (25): 4734 (94.19%) Lord Marrowgar (25): 43468 (75.77%)
Morchok (10): 50122 (89.49%) Lord Marrowgar (10): 53653 (93.52%)

Now I do not care which side of the fence you are on, I do NOT see improvements there, I see great big whopping steps backward and so far no one has been able to tell me why the current system is better.
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