Nils has been trying to work out ways that the Looking for Raid feature might work. Let me just start off swinging and say that I don’t understand at all why Blizzard is putting this system in. Because it is not going to work, it is only going to be a giant clusterfuck. The only benefit that I can see from this system is that it will contain all the random droolers in the one area.
To give you an idea of how it will function, think back to when you did the raid bosses in Wintergrasp or Tol Borad. I’ll talk about Wintergrasp because I only did the Cataclysm version a couple of times. The raid dungeon in Wintergrasp is the Vault of Archavon. In it there are 4 raid bosses. There is no trash. The bosses are located at each end of a grid shaped in a cross. The fights are so simple and easy to understand that voice communication is not required even on a 25 man raid. Whenever you did these fights after winning Wintergrasp you could be assured of a completely random set of players in the raid, much like what a LFR group would be composed of.
The only reason that these bosses went down was due to their inherent simplicity, not due to the raid itself. The first stumbling block is the position of raid leader. Good players understand that someone needs to do it, and also occasionally lead themselves, so they empathise with the player who is leading the raid. Thus, they cooperate, offering suggestions when needed but for the most part doing their job and staying out of the way. As a raid leader, every player that you don’t have to devote time to and worry about is a shining light in a dark system. However, morons, (or socials or trolls or whatever you want to call them), have the automatic response of wanting to challenge the leader every single time they come into a raid. Their attitude is one of, I’m not going to accept you as a leader until you prove yourself to me. The consequence of this is that the leader wastes a great deal of their time placating and attempting to win over the morons, just so that they will operate within the raid. Added to this they believe that they are a unique and special sunflower and that only they, the moron, knows what needs to be done in a certain fight. The result is a chaotic mix of 18 random morons saying what needs to be done all at the same time, a raid leader who is publicly going mad at the chaos, and a handful of good players standing back and waiting for the usual social chaos to sort itself out so that they can, you know, raid.
And all this on a single server, where your behaviour can still in some small way effect your server reputation. Make it a random cross-server function and you can expect the behaviour to be like, well like using the present dungeon finder tool, only on a much bigger scale. The fact that Blizzard wants to make this available on 25 man raids is either extremely optimistic or an example of complete denial.
Here is an experience of a player using the LFR system on the Public Test Realms as a raid leader, which I have cross posted from the Official Blizzard Forum on the subject:
… When we first reached the boss, I typed out roughly 2000 words of text explaining the fight and asked for volunteers to soak the orbs. Zero responses followed, so I asked my four friends in the group to help. However we still needed 2 more to help so I began to whisper individuals. Problem was, you can’t seem to whisper people off server at the moment on the PTR so this was getting annoying. I continued to ask for volunteers but instead people were just talking to each other and ignoring me. Soon after, a hunter’s pet charged in and pulled the boss and 4 people left and 4 people DCed forcing me to kick them, which took about 20 minutes to get them all out. After we get another set of players I started typing out another 2000 words and this time actually had some volunteers to help with the mechanic. Had one guy the whole time filling up chat saying I didn’t know what I was talking about and telling others to not listen to me… essentially just greifing… but the vote to kick UI informed me that I had “initiated too many party kicks.” so we tried again despite that fact.
We did better this time, had a few people actually stack on the crystal, but this time people that I didn’t designate to stack also did and left the group without much healing or enough stacked to split the dmg optimally. Eventually the tank died, and 8+ people left/dced leaving me back at the beginning of this story.
The raid leader has no authority at all. The concept of a raid leader in the current build of the game is to command respect and lead the team through the mechanics. However, when there is no reason the player actually has to be accountable for their actions there is no reason they have to listen to the leader. This coupled with the fact that a person leaving actually causes more trouble for the raid they left than anything makes me never want to queue as a leader again …
Why would any sane person want to do this? The answer is that they won’t. If Blizzard’s aim is to have the LFR tool as an actual feature which will make the game attractive then it isn’t going to work. If the aim is, as I mention earlier, to keep the retards in one place this will only be effective as long as there are good players to attempt to lead them. In other words, it will only last in the short term. So what’s the point of LFR? I don’t know, you tell me.