[WoW] The raiding dropoff in MoP

I think it’s approaching that time in the expansion where I get a bit burned out on raiding, notwithstanding having a great guild and raid team. I can tell this because I was getting quite frustrated at being the nominated turtle kicker (I promise this makes sense if you know the encounter) on Tortos this week. (Fortunately we’re taking a week or two off due to people being on holiday and then we have a guild meet coming up so I’ll probably be back to normal after that.)

Or maybe it’s just a frustrating role that no one really likes. Who knows?

Well actually, Zellviren has been collecting stats on normal-mode raid participation and has put up a long and detailed post on MMO-Champion about it. To summarise: raid participation in normal mode 10 man instances has been steadily dropping off since Wrath. Even with the surge in subscriptions that came with MoP, fewer guilds killed the first boss in Mogushan Vaults than the last boss in Dragon Soul (last raid in Cataclysm) in normal mode 10 man. He also collected data on a boss by boss basis to show which have been the main roadblock bosses in MoP for these raiders.

I know the main roadblocks for us were Elegon and Garalon so it’s no surprise to see large drop offs associated with both of them, but the numbers also show that after hitting those walls, a lot of guilds seem to have given up on raiding. He concludes:

“1) This is the first time we start to see massive jumps and “brick walls” appear in normal mode raiding. Elegon himself puts paid to more guilds than the entirety of tier 13.
2) The Heart of Fear is a one-instance wrecking crew. Of the guilds that started the expansion by managing to defeat the Stone Guard, it’s managed to kill over 58% of them.
3) The ‘attunement’ for Heart of Fear is bypassed, allowing more guilds to kill the Sha of Fear than killed Grand Empress Shek’zeer.
4) 75% of the final tier instance was less punishing than Amber-Shaper Un’sok; the Heart of Fear accounts for an average mortality rate of over 7.6%.”

In Throne of Thunder, only 25k 10 man guilds have taken out the first boss in normal mode. Ghostcrawler did comment that counting the number of guilds wasn’t a great way to measure progress (I interpret this the opposite way he does and wonder if it’s because hardcore players might have multiple alts in different raid guilds) but agrees that fewer players have made an attempt on Jin’rock 10 m normal than on Stone Guard in the earlier tier.

Then Horridan (which admittedly took us several weeks of attempts) filtered out another 5k, that’s 20% guilds which killed the first boss still haven’t killed the second.

Well, it makes me feel better about our current progress, even though we’re not one of the elite 7k who killed Lei Shen on normal. I was tempted to put elite in ‘’ but really what else can you call it?

Basically, the current endgame model doesn’t seem to be working. Yes LFR will have soaked up all of those raiders but does LFR have the stickability of raid encounters which each might require a month or more of effort from a guild to clear?

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16 thoughts on “[WoW] The raiding dropoff in MoP

  1. For my realm the DPS LFR queue is also at least a 30 minute wait with a high probability of joining a broken raid. Right now WoW end game looks fairly non-functional.

    • Yeah, I mean granted we are now getting into Summer which is tradionally a slower time for raids, and it might vary a lot depending on which day of the week. But … yup. I wonder how effective the legendary questline has been at keeping the more progressed raiders (but who haven’t done the last couple of ToT raids in normal) in the LFR has been. I know it’s the only reason I still run them.

      • > we are now getting into Summer

        That must be a British thing. I don’t think someone from continental Europe feels the “getting into Summer” at the moment…

        I doubt that the “copious sunny days” are a problem for WoW at the moment. :-)

      • As a friend of mine from Sweden says, “Summer is when the rain is slightly warmer”.

        I wouldn’t know about it though, I live in South Europe and currently we’re at 26 – 32 oC with no rain in sight.

    • With MOP, Blizzard made an effort to offer more end-game options than just raiding. I’d expect raiding activity to drop off. For instance, I’ve seen a fair few players doing the quests in the barrens.

      Personally, my guild cleared normal MSV when it was current and that was pretty fun. Just the other day, I ran MSV in LFR on an alt and it was odd. I mean, it feels like an old raid now so I wonder who these people are. If they’ve been raiding this content the whole time, it’s no wonder they’re burned out. I haven’t been playing the end game, haven’t seen any of ToT; I’ve been leveling. Dungeon queues have been quick and the players decent. With CRZ, there’s even some competition for quest items. Sooner or later, I’ll probably get around to ToT but I’m finding other things to do too.

  2. My gut feeling about the answer to the last question, is that less players are inclined to want to turn up for scheduled raids, it’s a case of been there, done that for far too long, and a greater portion just want to log on whenever they want and see the content without too much fuss and preparation and commitment and repetition. As for ‘stickability’, I’m so past that concept in MMOs, I play whatever I feel like in that moment, though I tend to hang around in a game a few weeks each time before moving on. It probably ends up being less social, which is why I’m hoping for cross-game communities to become more prevalent.

  3. I have to admit that LFR really removed a lot of the impetus for me to raid. Last raid I bothered to Glory was Firelands. My guild kept going for a bit before slowly dying out a few months ago. Now that you can see all the content in LFR, why bother to keep gearing up? In previous tiers, we keep grinding content so that we can do well on the next tier, and we do challenges and achievements to keep from getting bored. I know some players raid for competition and stuff, but I always raided to see and experience the content.

    Don’t keep up as much lately about the newer tiers. Sounds brutal. Are these bosses as hard a brick wall as Kael was?

  4. Also it must be pointed out that Blizz is using LFR instead of traditional 5-mans for raid gearing. If you’re seeing the same bosses in LFR vs. normals, then why do normals if you’ve seen the story? Obviously, raiders don’t look at it that way, but enough people do for there to be a dropoff.

    I’m starting to think that the Blizz strategy of abandoning 5-mans for the rest of this expac isn’t coming back to bite them somehow. Raiding seems to be becoming more exclusive, rather than less so.

  5. At this point I don’t even remember how many years it’s been since I first raided Kara. Tier 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13. Flasks. Fish feasts. Loot drama. First kills. Wipe the raid. Wipe it again. Wipe it again. Guild breakup. Recruiting. Raid cancelled because not enough people showed. Sat out because too many people showed. More drama. More flasks. More feasts. Your spec is no longer viable. Reforge. Re-gem. Re-enchant. I’ve been there. I’ve done that. I’ve bought the shirt.

    Before this expansion, I decided I was done with organized raiding. I’m not the person I was six years ago, and WoW isn’t the game it was six years ago. I’m no longer interested in dedicating multiple multi-hour blocks of my time to playing repetitive content with 9 or 24 other people, and the game no longer punishes me for not doing so. I expect there are plenty of other players who just plain feels that after X number of years of raiding that they’ve bought the t-shirt as well.

  6. I think it has more to do with LFR than anything else. I suspect the vast majority of people who were raiding were there because it was the only way to see the end game content and when given a choice between dipping into things occasionally for a couple of hours on your own schedule and the enforced multi-hour ‘TONIGHT IS RAID NIGHT’ Bataan Death March that is organised guild raiding, most people are going to pick the former.

    And frankly, if you’re not some sort of wilting flower who freaks out every time someone gets annoyed, LFR is a fun, fairly mellow experience, especially compared to raid guild drama.

    • Yes. This is one of the things I was referring to when I said that the game no longer punishes me for not participating in organized raiding. In TBC, if you didn’t raid, pvp was the only alternate way to progress you character. Now there is LFR, pet battles, achievement farming, and transmogging, to name a few.

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  8. I’ve been thinking a lot about this one myself. I don’t think its LFR that’s stopped me from raiding. I really dislike running LFR as it quite literally sends me to sleep. I am actively seeking out organised raiding and events in other games, because I love the social element of raiding. I miss my WoW buddies a lot. So why don’t I raid? For me, raiding takes too much commitment in WoW. The commitment needed has increased since I was hardcore. As the commitment required has gone up, I have raided less. I don’t have the time to put in to achieve the success I want in WoW and there’s nothing in the middle for me to do. I tried PvP early this expansion and found the same problem.

    That’s about as far as I’ve gotten. Its probably not the whole story but I find it quite hard to figure out myself. There is something just missing in the WoW experience for me right now. Maybe its the lack of innovation compared to other MMOs. Maybe its just me!

    • You may want to reconsider pvp. All players were given resilience baseline in the last patch (40% I think?) to help non-pvp geared people compete. I have no idea if that would help you to enjoy, just thought I’d mention it.

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