Sunday, 31 August 2014

So I was a Raid Leader

It was 9:00 pm on a Saturday Night. A crowd of people logged in for the Guild Flex raid. But there was no sign of Navimie or the others who would usually start the raid.

At 9:10 I joke in guild chat that Luxypie or Ravzz should start the raid since they have seniority (they are Hunting Pack and I am Scouting Pack guild rank).

At 9:14 I invite Luxypie and Ravzz to group without asking first. The both accept my invitation. Promote them to assists.

At 9:15 I say in guild chat that anyone who wants to come to flex type '1' in guild chat or whisper me.

And already I had made two critical mistakes that I missed until much later:

Mistake 1: I assumed Luxypie wanted to come to the flex raid that night (she didn't), but Luxy being a nice helper went a long with my assumption instead of correcting me. I apologised afterwards, but I was oblivious at the time.

Mistake 2: Morzierz (an officer) was on an alt called Moztingo. The alt has a normal alt rank and not an officer rank. I didn't notice this fact and Moztingo was invited along with everyone else who whispered me or typed '1' in chat.

After inviting everyone we noticed a problem, of the twelve people wanting to go we only had one tank (Kahrax) and 2 heals (myself and Ravzz).

After waiting to 9:20 for a solution, I queued us for SSO Wing 1 Flex (instead of the usual started with SSO Wing 4 Flex). And I found myself leading a Guild Raid for the first time in eight years.

Leading a Flex raid is simpler than a normal raid. There is no loot to deal with and no DKP/EP is awarded. So it was smooth going. We one shot Immerseus & Protectors with Ravzz solo tanking. (At the start of Protectors I said "don't' throw the thing to the healers" and forgot to add "also don't throw the thing to the tank" as well. So Ravzz ended up getting a Mark of Anguish, oops.)

We stopped Wing 1 at 9:45 we stopped there since we knew Norushen required two tanks because of the Self Doubt stacks.

Luxypie asked a tank friend Tankazz/Shadowdk to join as a second tank (I was still obvious to my first mistake at this time), and someone asked their friend Jazzard joined as a third healer. I give the Navimie preamble about the Frostwolf raid is for fun and not drama and not to say anything mean to anyone in raid chat.

We also decided since we now had the numbers to just start on Wing 4. At 10:00 we had cleared to Blackfuse.

And we wiped. Since I had no idea how belts worked I was unable to explain it very well and Gunsnßowses who hadn't done belt before didn't know how to get off the belt. I blame myself for the failure to communicate anything useful to Gunns.

Haev and Luxy take over belt. We wipe again. This time I hadn't been telling people to kill the crawlermines! Brae has to leave the raid, as announced at the start, to take the son to a comic con. Souglyy and James joined on some alts at this time.

Third attempt, crawler mines are destroyed, the belt team is wonderful, the raid kills Blackfuse! It is now 10:30.

Next we clear trash and reach Paragons! Paragons was a one shot. We didn't know the kill order, so someone googled it. I dusted off my old /run SetRaidTarget("target", 8) macro to apply {skull} to the mobs as they were announced in Vent. Some of the Paragons have very similar sounding names, but I was accused of being racist towards Mantrid for saying this.

10:50, we head down 'Rough-Hewn Passage' to Garrosh. As we head down the death tunnel, I rearrange the groups for left side/right side split. We do wipe when we accidently get two packs at once, otherwise the tunnel was smooth.

As we reach the end of the tunnel Navimie logs in. Ravzz goes DPS and Navi joins as healer. Navi then fixed up the groups I made. It is 10:59 and we do our only attempt on Garrosh for the night. We reach the last phase of the Garrosh fight but we just didn't get him down.

11:14, Navimie calls a ready check to see who wants to continue, some people need to go to bed, so the raid ends.

So some observations on how I did.

Atain Command Style vs McTacky Cooperation Style:Playing as McTacky as the raid leader cooperative and friendly and getting feedback and not assuming it was someone else's problem. During this run I was announcing things like 'Shockwave, watch your feet' & 'Crawler Mines are up' & 'move out of the fire'. Whereas back in MC & ZG on Atain I'd be no-nonsense commanding people and tunnelled in on damage meters and not the mechanics of the fights. Back in the MC days it was more about wrangling the large crowd instead of being good on the technical aspects of the fights. On McTacky during the raid today I even said 'good hustle' after the group managed to deftly deal with a pack of adds we didn't expect.

Knowing the Fights:Honestly I had no business leading the raid into Wing 4 if I didn't know things like 'how the conveyor team works exactly' or 'what order do we kill the paragons in' or how may times to we swap colours before we don't go back to the centre in phase 2 of Garrosh'? It is all well and good to say things like 'stay out of the fire', but that simply meant I knew some of the mechanics, but not enough. Luckily I wasn't stupid enough to fake it though my ignorance, and I just flat out admitted I didn't know these things. The raid cooperated, we found the answers and we got though it.

Helpful Luxy:Luxy was way helpful, more than I realised during the raid. She got us the second tank, she saved us on conveyors, used a repair bot at Garrosh. All for a raid she didn't even want to go on! I don't want to trivialise the efforts of the rest of the raid, they all came together to get I though the four kills we did and compensated for my shortcomings in knowledge, but Luxy is way too helpful for her own good!

Self-deprecation humour:I did too much self-deprecation humour at my own expense during the raid. It ended up sounding like I was fishing for complements when I wasn't. Luckily I smarted up and eased up on it in the last hour.

Confidence:When we were killing stuff I was too confidence in myself. When we were wiping I had lost all confidence in myself. I needed to be in more of a middle ground. Wipes happen and clearing mobs happens, it isn't anything special and I probably wasn't the cause of either.

What should a Raid Leader Do and Not Do?During a run with no loot, no EP, and zero drama between people, what is a Raid Leader supposed to do? Explain the boss fights? I did that poorly. Keep the raid moral up and moving forward? I managed to do that. Analyse what went wrong and create a plan to deal with it? I managed to do that.

Ghostwolf Rank:
It was suggested during the run that the Shaman be given their own rank in the Frostwolf guild list (we had a lot of shaman in the run). Then it was suggested the rank be called Ghostwolf. I don't think we'll be moving any Shaman to this rank, but that rank name was brilliant! (the existing ranks in Frostwolves are wolf based - Alpha Wolf. Beta Wolf, Hunting Pack, Scouting Pack, Frostwolf, Pup, Sheep).

I probably missed some stuff, but I am glad I didn't post this right afterwards and instead reflected on what happened. I am proud of myself of getting the raid together and got it moving ahead despite the shortcomings, but it was my own shortcomings that held us back in the end. I got everyone else doing 100% and I wasn't giving it my own best. (I'm sure I wasn't healing to by potential because I was too busy seeing what everyone else was doing!).

This isn't a cry for complements or sympathy, I think I did okay. Most of this is just me figuring out where I can improve in case I raid lead again within the next 8 years.

Most of all I just hope everyone who came had fun, which is the most important thing!

1 comment:

  1. You did well! It was actually really fun! :D