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Loot Policy Discussion
((OOC Hat On))

I realize I'm relatively new to the tribe, so I may not understand how things are done. My impression is that the leadership usually welcomes open discussion about potential policies, so long as we can conduct it maturely (and I have no doubt this tribe can!).

That said, I thought that maybe we could benefit from a discussion of raiding loot systems. I heard Tae mention that we would be switching to one, soon, and I haven't heard any mention of what type of system it might be, or why we would be switching to it. Regardless of the decision, I imagine there are a lot of folks interested in contributing their opinions.

I'll get to the punchline: I'm generally against such loot systems. Not because I won't benefit (I believe I would), but because I think they are the biggest contributor to raid "burn-out," far above any other factor. Secondly, I don't believe that such systems would greatly benefit the members of Ironsong. I'd like to outline why.

Loot systems such as DKP and weighted rolling are meant to:
1. Encourage participation in raids by rewarding consistent attendance with loot
2. Prevent "unfair" situations where long time raiders are usurped by newcomers for loot that they want
3. Provide a "progress meter" so that raiders can know how close they are to winning their next item.

All of these seem like very good things, on the surface. But we should consider their other implications:
1. Punish members who miss out on raids, creating an artificial pressure to attend each and every one -- regardless of actual desire to attend. This is a very real effect that I would challenge anyone to disavow. People burn out on raids when they can't afford to miss one, even if they'd rather be doing something else. ANY loot system aside from unweighted rolling has this effect, and it can be quite severe depending on the personality type.
2. Make it less likely for first timers to win loot that they want. This doesn't seem terrible, but I would like to ask why, as a tribe, we care about doing this? I certainly don't feel bad if a new tribemate wins an epic instead of me. I would be disappointed, but still happy for my tribemate. Furthermore, simple probability dictates that if I raid more often than someone else, I will -already- have a much higher chance at winning my loot than said person.
3. Makes people feel that, once they've collected all their gear, there is no reward left. Why collect loot points if you don't want loot?

I've read Kosath's statement about wanting to avoid raid burn out and I agree with him, entirely. We aren't a raiding guild and we want to enjoy each of our raids as an adventure with our tribesmates. I think a loot system will quickly dismantle that and replace it with a more competitive system that isn't in the spirit of the tribe.

Are we really in need of encouraging participation? Do we really care who gets the loot, among the tribe? And is loot the only reason we would ever venture in the core, or against Onyxia?

Finally, I just want to say, I'm not trying to be difficult. I won't be a stick in the mud, regardless of what decision is made. I just feel that this is an important enough decision to be made with the input of the whole tribe. Also, I wasn't sure if this belonged in the "Raiding Review" forum, or if that one was reserved for actual raid coordination, so I left this in general.
Ah, i see we need to post the new system very soon to help alleviate such concerns. Your points are well founded Elyana, and I agree with them all. I was once a part of a DKP system in EQ, as well as a loot council before it, and pure random rolling here. We've had quite a bit of discussion about this among the officers, but we always welcome suggestions.

That said, I'll let you know first and foremost that we will not be using DKP or a point system. As you said, we are not a raiding guild, and I want people to be on our raids because they actually WANT to be there, not because they feel they have to be.

What we will be using is a weighted roll system. The details will be posted shortly, but it will only apply to molten core, and will adjust your minimum on your roll by 10 for every MC run you have been on where you have not received an item, until you win something. Meaning 1 week with nothing, you /rand 10-100... second week, /rand 20-100, and so on until you win something, then it is reset.

A great deal of probability mathematics went into this, and it does come out to be well balanced. First timers still have a chance to win, but those who havent gotten anything in a while have an even better chance, while still maintaining the random factor. It also makes for less pressure to be there every time.

Anyway, I hope that helps clear things up a bit. I would ask that if you have questions about the specifics of this system, that you hold them until the rules have been formally posted. Thanks,
Kosath Whitehorn
"The Tribe is my weapon.  I am their shield."
That sounds quite reasonable, Kosath. Thank you for the prompt response! I wasn't hoping to force your hand, as far as posting the rules are concerned. I completely understand the need to work out the details before opening it up for the rest of us to discuss.
The main reason for a loot system change in Molten Core specifically is because there is little inside the Core that rewards players for their time besides loot. Zul'Gurub has various quests, constant faction gain, special events, /and/ rather nice loot for its place in the content progression of WoW. Molten Core, while deeper into the progression, is a more primitive zone and really just has bosses and loot. The one quest series within is merely a tool for gaining the ability to summon Ragnaros at the end of the instance.

As a result, while we have been very successful in Zul'Gurub and against Onyxia because of the natures of those zones without any special loot system (though there have been those who expressed their dislike for raiding without one even in ZG), it is unlikely that people (even Tribemates) would maintain long-term enjoyment of the zone without weighting the loot a bit over time.

Let me pre-empt a few common concerns about loot systems.

1. Our system does not punish first timers. Most raids do not even allow first (or sometimes second) time attendees of a raid to roll or bid on items. Our system permits any Tribemate a chance to roll, though their odds may or may not be as great as others at winning a particular item. Also, regular attendees are more likely to already have particular items, increasing the chances that a repeat drop may be defaulted to a newer attendee.
2. Our system does not punish those who cannot attend regularly. Some systems involve a degree of roll decay or point inflation (though not all suffer from this problem). Ours does not - weight earned by a Tribe member will still be there if they can only attend from time to time.
3. Our system /does/ reward those who regularly attend and makes it less likely that someone with bad luck on rolls will go long periods of time without ever getting any nice loot. While loot might not be the only reason to raid it certainly is fun to get sometimes.

It's nice to think that most of the Tribe is happy regardless of who wins a certain item. I think that is ideal and I hope it is as true as it has always seemed on our raids to date. Nonetheless we would be remiss if, upon entering and making headway into a zone that doesn't already provide constant incremental rewards in the manner ZG or AQ does, we didn't create for the Tribe a suitable system to supplement the existing rewards of the zone and distribute them in a manner fair to all.

In ZG, I have always said when I won nothing on a given week, "Well, I'm happy the Tribe got some loot, plus I got faction and some quest items."

In MC, there is no fallback unless we create it, so we have. "I'm happy the Tribe got some loot, plus next week I'm rolling /rand 11-100." (Kosath was very slightly in error in that regard. The normal /rand 100 is actually /rand 1-100, so +10 each attended raid is 11-100, 21-100, 31-100. Please, others reading this thread wait for Akora's post as this is not intended as a summary or introduction to the system, just a reply to Eylana's question and a pre-emptive strike against certain fears people might have.)

Of /course/ we should focus on doing this as a Tribe, enjoying ourselves, and working as a team together. Tthe reason we are able to make this loot system something /not/ strict and raiding guild-ish is that it is all-Ironsong, and we should be proud of that. Loot drama is not something any of us want for Ironsong and we have never truly experienced it.

"She is a soothsayer. She’s a mystic. She is a witch doctor, able to see into people’s hearts and minds. She’s also touched by the elements." -Naomie Harris
Loot Drama? Well, there was that time you got the twill shoulders I wanted, Tae.

Seriously, Elyana, we do encourage Tribe to bring out any concerns they may have.
The final draft of the Molten Core Loot rules are being reviewed by the officers corps right now, and my aim is to publish it on the Tribal Totem for member viewing by Wednesday 4/5.

As we progress to bigger instances with greater loot, we must remember that Ironsong is a Role Playing tribe first and foremost and not a HardCore Raiding tribe, and we want our loot system to reflect this.

Please keep in mind that the officers have put in a lot of work to provide a loot system that we feel will best benefit all members of the tribe. We have taken our prior loot experiences coupled with officer and member input to craft a loot system that fits Ironsong.

Once the loot system is published please feel free to provide your input and comments to an officer or myself.
Vote Akora for MA!
The loot method proposed by the officers was turned down in light of one I proposed. All loot findings will go to your Champion, Efluvia, for processing first. After that she will determine who is best fit to receive each item.

Bribes will be accepted, but not publicly.
Thanks from all of you who've been kind enough to reply.

I appreciate the insight into why the officers thought a loot system was necessary, Tae. That's what I was hoping to get, out of this. I certainly understand your counter-argument and it helps to know the background on why the decision was made.

:twisted: Now to see what I could possibly bribe Fluvie with...

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