Most guilds out there, even if they want to raid, have gotten just about as far as… Magmaw. The vast majority of guilds haven’t gotten even him down yet.
The elite raiding core of the game may be chomping at the bit for Firelands, but the majority of us are still cooking dinner, dropping small humans at school, picking them UP from school, doing laundry, washing dishes, studying for exams, and, if we have the time, gearing for raids- to say nothing of actually running the raids themselves.
For guilds and groups that are just now starting to look at Magmaw, or have progressed only a few raid bosses into Cataclysm, most raid guides do nothing more than give you a wicked bad case of gear envy.
So for those of us who have more enthusiasm than time, can reliably expect someone to take a bio break to change a diaper, and run their dailies for points once in a blue moon, I’ve compiled a selection of indispensable real-life raid leader- and raider- resources:
1. Boss Blueprint: You’re standing in the middle of Blackwing Descent, trying to communicate to your DPS (who are assuredly not listening) that they need to go THERE and then HERE and then run THAT way when everything turns to steam, when it hits you: These damn colored floor flares are never, ever going to get your point across.
What you need is Boss Blueprint, a drag-and-drop online Strategy creator that you can easily customize and then mail out to your raid team. It’s so easy it’s stupid.
The beauty of Boss Blueprint is that you can do it at work, and then email it to your raiders, who can then look at it at work- which, as we all know, is the only place where any Real-Life Raider has time to think about strategy.
2. Deadly Boss Mods: Everyone on your team should realistically have this. I realize there are some people who get all bent out of shape about add-ons, but… c’mon. C’mon.
When you look up ‘deadly’ on Google, the first suggestion that pops up is ‘boss mods’. Doesn’t that say it all? (PS- I don’t know why almost as many people are searching for ‘deadly women’, but it can’t mean anything good.)
DBM gets you out of the bad, reminds you to stand in the good, and shouts at you when it’s time to run away. Yes, that’s right: DBM is your mother.
3. Boss Loot Lists: Everyone likes to be encouraged to raid, and what better way to encourage your raiders than to remind them the phat lewts they might get their grubby paws on if they can actually remember to make it to the raid on time?
Just go to Wowhead, type in the name of the boss you’re attempting to kill, scroll down to ‘Drops’… and mail that list to your raiders. I guarantee your attendance will improve.
As an added bonus, Wowhead lists a nice, simple strategy for each boss, as well- a guide to create that Boss Blueprint image you’ll be sending around to the group?
For your ease and convenience, I’ve linked the normal raid bosses here:
4. Email and Prosper: REMEMBER: With a group of mature gamers who have complicated lives and not nearly as much time as they’d like, email is a great way to get in touch with them. We can all read email at work. As most of us are blocked from viewing game websites, this is your best chance to get in front of your raid team when they have time to actually listen.
DO NOT put links in your email. If you want them to see anything, copy and paste it. Darned Websense, ruining our fun…!
Don’t overload them with emails, but one before each raid night is great. Include:
- The loot list, right at the top, to get everyone psyched
- A list of every person’s character name and their role, to remind everyone that they are important to the success of the team as a whole
Zacariah – Main tank (warrio)
Zoe – Off tank (bare)
Zebidiah – Healing Zachariah (disco)
Zusterke – Healing Zoe (pally)
Zoot – Healing Raid (tree)
Zounds – Ranged DPS (warlock)
Zeke – Ranged DPS (huntard)
Zabra – Ranged DPS (mage)
Zorym – Melee DPS (d nugget)
Zasha – Melee DPS (d nugget)
- A SHORT strategy (I find Wowhead’s length is good) with pictures you create at Boss Blueprint illustrating each stage or major change.
List people by name to tell them what they are doing at each stage. You may have to replace them, but at least everyone will know who is being replaced.
And when you have an entire raid yelling at a puggee to do exactly the same thing, it will- shock!- occasionally sink in.
Just because you’re not finished with every boss in the game doesn’t mean you can’t raid and raid well. You have the inestimable bonus, with your group, of having actual fun.
Wiping is not fun. Losing is not fun. Knowing what’s going on, what your raid expects from you, and where you ought to be is. As a good raid leader, your job is to make it easy for everyone to come and have fun with you.
Now get out there and take down Magmaw!