Larisa over at the Pink Pigtail Inn has been getting her knickers in a knot over people demanding the achievement before being accepted on a run. She is correct in saying that this is completely ridiculous. It’s the old chicken or the egg question, which came first? You need the achievement to get in the group but you cannot get the achievement without getting in a group … The really silly thing is that it is in effect a useless way of identifying people with potential for your PuG, as an achievement can be easily obtained by ghosting through a run. I remember the first time I ran VoA – at this stage it had three bosses and a guildie asked me if I wanted to come. It was a 25 man group and I was in the top 5 on the damage meters. The first boss went down and I got an achievement. And the group erupted, with a bunch of them demanding that I be kicked. Which is beyond ridiculous. Needless to say, the group leader laughed in their face, rightfully linking recount and the fact that I did not die unlike some of the group who were demanding that I be kicked. We went through the whole run with me getting achievements left right and center. Each achievement was like me rubbing their face in it. A deeply satisfying run.

But I think that this habit of demanding achivements and gearscore is good as it lets players with half a brain cell identify a group that they would be better off not going with. In a way it is a very accurate method of identifying fail groups before you get involved with them. If they demand this then you can confidently ignore the request to join the group, even if you have the achievement. There is the argument that having this as a barrier to entry means that the raid has minimum requirements and thus will have a higher chance of success. I call bullshit on that theory because there is no effort required in weeding out based on gearscore or achievements, so how will this lazy method of discrimination ensure that the raid leader is putting in the effort in other areas? I did a fair bit of raid pugging back in BC and we did pretty well without gearscore or achievements. I remember trying to get into a PuG for Karazhan, (my favorite raid of all time). A good friend and I hadn’t been in there before – we joined a PuG and then immediately admitted that this was the first time for us but that we had read up on the bosses and strats. Then we were promptly booted. So we tried to find another PuG, same thing – we got in and admitted that we knew bugger all. This time the raid leader said that he’d check out how we went on the first boss, and we went fine. We got through most of the raid that run, and had a fantastic time as well as pulling our weight. I like to think of that raid leader of the second PuG as someone who puts in the time, who makes reasoned choices based on his own deductions. I like to think of the other raid leader as the type of person who today would be using gearscore and the achievement system to make his decisions for him.