My first impressions of the new LFG tool were very positive overall and I'm continuing to have a blast with it most of the time, however - I've also noticed some aspects of this new feature that I don't like, or rather certain effects that it's had.
1. Off-spec? What's that?
This isn't something that has affected me personally (yet), but it was brought up in this post on Hots & Dots and it's been on my mind as well after dealing with the new pug loot rules for a few days.
On my server it used to be that greed was the option people selected if they wanted something for their off-spec, and if they didn't intend to or couldn't use an item at all, they just passed for the enchanter to pick it up. Only if it was established early on that there was no enchanter in the group to shard whatever got left on the corpse, people would greed for vendoring, and if you wanted something for your off-spec then, you could ask to roll need on it instead.
With the new system passing has become a thing of the past - if you want something to be disenchanted, you click the disenchant option, and if there's no disenchanter in the group you'll know because greed is the only thing that works anyway. Where has this left people who want to roll for something for their off-spec? They can hit greed and have a one in five chance of actually getting the item - which shouldn't be that bad, considering that you can still trade items afterwards now, but if there's an enchanter in the group and everybody else selected disenchant, there's a high chance that the item will be sharded before anyone even has a chance to have second thoughts about maybe trading the item to the off-spec needer. You can also hit need - but only if it's the right armour type. If you're, say, a paladin interested in a piece of healing mail, you're simply screwed, even if nobody else in the party wants it, because need before greed won't let you roll on gear below your highest armour level.
Obviously the system is lacking in that regard, but I'm not sure what would be a good solution. A separate "off-spec" option that isn't restricted by armour type? With four different ways of rolling the whole thing would start to become slightly complicated though.
2. Talk to me!
I'm usually not a massive chatterbox in game, but frankly the quietness of some of the pugs I've had has been bordering on freaky. Is it that much to ask that you greet your fellow group members upon joining? Thank them for a smooth run afterwards if it was one? With some of the pugs I've had I might as well have been playing with a bunch of bots for how quiet they were. I can't blame them for not having anything technical to discuss when everything is automated anyway, but would just a little bit of friendly chat hurt that much?
It's got to the point where I desperately latch onto anyone who offers even just a little bit of conversation in my pugs. Like the warlock in heroic ToTC who complained that the new cloak he just won was ugly. "Really? I guess it's kind of orange-y. Tell me more!"
3. Remember, the other group members are people too, and strangers at that.
This is kind of related to point two, in that the new system is just that convenient that some people seem to forget that there are other human beings playing with them, not bots created for their entertainment. With the way things used to be and everything being a lot more work, people were forced to communicate at least to a certain extent. Who goes to the summoning stone? Do we have a disenchanter? Does everyone know the tactics for this boss?
When you don't have to interact with people beforehand at all, many don't feel inspired to do so later either, sometimes with quite painful results. In other words, I have yet to join a pug where anyone was way undergeared or clueless, but I've had several wipes and unpleasant experiences due to people acting like arrogant pricks and not giving a toss that the other people in the party weren't able to read their minds and might have been used to doing things a different way.
Like the other night I was healing a heroic HoL pug and we had a tank from some top raid guild with more hitpoints than I've ever seen. We were advancing a bit on the rush-rush-rushy end but smoothly. Then we got to that last room before Loken, with the relatively densly packed trash groups and patrols. Now it's pretty standard that you don't clear the whole room, but this tank was somehow trying to go about it killing as little as possible, even weaving past the patrols, and that at top speed. I've never seen anyone do it like that before because it's a pretty unnecessary risk just to save a few seconds killing that extra trash pack, and apparently nobody else in the party was used to going about it like that either - promptly we accidentally aggroed a patrol after all, then someone took one step backwards into an extra group and we wiped.
What happened next? The tank started to spout abouse about how people were clearly too stupid to avoid the mobs while we all ran back. We finished the run alright after that, but I couldn't help thinking: Was that really necessary? It would have saved us all a repair bill and some unpleasantness if the tank had just taken those extra couple of seconds to be more considerate of the rest of the party, but I guess that's the kind of attitudes you get when everything is set up for automated "emblem farming" for the individual.
Don't get me wrong, I still love the new dungeon finder, but clearly the added conveniences are not without a price.
Happy Gary Gygax Day!!
10 hours ago