Dungeon Finder CTA update and addendum

Blizzard has clarified that the goody bag rewarded from the dungeon finder call to arms is going to be account bound.

The additional reward for completing the Dungeon Finder Call to Arms (called the Satchel of Exotic Mysteries) will be Bind on Account; able to be freely sent to other characters on your account once you receive it.

(Source.)

That’s better, already; it gives incentives to those who have alt tanks, or are considering leveling one, but collect pets and mounts on their mains.

That said, I’d just like to clarify the position I took in my previous post a little bit.

I’m not against this change, per se. I fully agree that it’ll help with queue times, and could even make things better for tanks and healers in the dungeon finder in the long run as more people learn those roles.

And I agree that something needs to be done to shorten the queue times for DPS.

What makes me grumpy is that this is a bandaid fix. It says “people don’t want to tank in the dungeon finder, what can we do to make them?”, rather than “people don’t want to tank in the dungeon finder, why is that?”.

The thing is, I can – off the top of my head, and without even thinking very hard about it – come up with several quality-of-life improvements Blizzard could implement to ease some of the tension in dungeon finder groups. (Note: I wouldn’t want these restrictions in place for low-level dungeons, just the higher-level ones… let’s say Wrath content and onwards.)

In no particular order:

  • Check what specs people have before they queue for a dungeon, and block them from roles accordingly.
    In other words, to queue as a healer you have to have the majority of your points placed into a healing tree (holy priest / paladin, restoration druid / shaman, disc priest); to queue as a tank, you have to have the majority of your points placed into a tanking tree (protection warrior / paladin, blood death knight, feral druid with points placed into one or more tanking talents such as Thick Hide, Natural Reaction, Pulverize); to queue as DPS, you have to have the majority of your points placed into a DPS tree (you might think this is unnecessary, but I’ve seen so many mono-spec tanks and healers queuing as DPS, either by accident or on purpose).
    This would, of course, take into account both talent specs if you’ve bought dual-spec.
  • Check the gear people have before they queue for a dungeon, and block them from roles accordingly.
    This is going to be more complicated to implement than the first idea, especially considering the overlap of stats for several classes (feral druids and just about any healing class); it might end up being necessary to check gems, enchants and reforges. Probably a bit too complicated to be implemented, really, but one can dream.
  • Splitting need rolls into main spec and offspec.
    If an item with tanking stats drops and a tank and DPS both needroll it, the tank should win it; likewise for healers and DPS. Allowances will of course need to be made for gear overlaps (spirit items are not just for healers, but there is no reason for a mage or warlock to roll on spirit cloth; feral druids of both types share armor with rogues and weapons with hunters, and a feral druid tank shouldn’t end up with higher priority on loot versus rogues and hunters – but they should end up with higher priority on tanking trinkets; and so on) as well as more hybrid items (take the axe from Altairus or the sword from Rajh, for instance – they’re good tank one-handers for a warrior or paladin and good DPS one-handers for a frost death knight or Single-minded Fury based fury warrior).
    This should probably be done internally, rather than complicating the roll interface any further, but players should obviously be notified by the system when rolls happen.

There is, unfortunately, nothing that can be done to fix the “people flinging abuse at each other” issue; although I hope the dungeon finder call to arms will lead more DPS to try out a tank or healer offspec or alt, and therefore end up respecting tanks and healers a bit more (like Gavendo says), it’s probably not going to do anything to fix the “primadonna tank” / “primadonna healer” syndrome, and might even aggravate it (“well Blizzard thinks I’m special and important enough to give me extra incentives to queue, you DPS scrubs should just shut up and be glad one such as me is here to help you out”).

But I’d love to see the above suggestions implemented. The first one, in particular, would make queuing for a random dungeon a lot more pleasant for DPS, since it would eliminate the “DPS with no tanking or healing spec decided he wanted to queue-hop” disaster entirely. Wouldn’t do anything for the gear, but considering I’ve seen people with the right spec but not-so-right gear (tanks whose only tanking items were their 1h weapon and shield, for instance) succeed at tanking or healing heroics, especially with a healthy amount of CC, it would work out better than the current system.

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5 Responses to “Dungeon Finder CTA update and addendum”

  1. I think your first suggestion makes a lot of sense and should be easy to implement now with the current talent trees, there literally aren’t any “special specs” that aren’t going deeper into one particular role.

    And when you have implemented that spec-checker, it’s easy to implement the third suggestion of putting the need rolls in two tiers (main and offspec), would just be based on your active spec and what role that spec has.

    However I don’t think the 2nd suggestion is a very neat solution. It opens up for a lot of problems due to a lot of classes having specialized gear requirements such as druids that you mention.

    Cheers,
    Gav

  2. Lujanera Says:

    This changes would be useful and good for players that are still gearing up. But, from what I understand, the shortage of tanks is most severe in max-level heroics. In other words, once tanks have geared up and stopped entering the queue, these changes will have negligible effect. In fact, it might discourage geared tanks from entering the queue in order to get offspec gear.

    At least for me, the things that make me unwilling to tank in LFD are primarily related to other players being disrespectful or incompetent. I never had a single loot problem while gearing up, though I know this does happen from time to time. What I’d really like is to have more control over the kinds of people in my group. Players with a history of successfully completing heroics and without a history of getting kicked or /ignored should get grouped together. Troublemakers should be likewise grouped together. A system like that would make LFD a lot more pleasant.

    • At the same time, though – why should a geared tank who wants offspec DPS gear get to queue as a tank to get it? That’s unfair to the three DPS who might actually need some of those items and who sat through a long queue to get into the same instance.

      I just leveled a tank from 80 to 85 entirely in instances, and am in the process of gearing her through heroics. I’ve met an incredible amount of players rolling need on tanking items against me. Similarly with a healer and healing items (not talking just about grey-area spirit cloth which could rightfully get rolled on by a shadowpriest – think about trinkets where the proc specifically mentions only healing, for instance).

      The main issue – the pervasive disrespect and incompetence throughout the dungeon finder – is a lot harder to solve, especially since it happens on both sides of the equation: for all the times I’ve been abused by DPS when I was running a heroic on my tanks or on my healer, there’s a time I was abused by tanks or by healers when I was running a heroic on my DPSers.

      The system you suggest could work, but here’s a sample problem: say there’s this tank. He’s competent and well-geared and he marks for CC. The three DPS in the run don’t want to CC. They argue and yell and complain but the healer is on the side of the tank, saying, you know it does make things easier. So they get through the entire heroic.

      At the end of the heroic, after the group disbands, the tank and the healer ignore each of the three DPS. The three DPS ignore the tank and the healer.

      And the ignore tally looks like this:
      DPS: 1 each
      Tank: 3
      Healer: 3

      It would have to be a very carefully calculated, well-executed system to not screw over tanks whose only fault was they didn’t want to bend over to demanding DPS.

      The restrictions on the vote-kick system, also implemented to increase fairness, are running into a similar problem: if you’re unlucky and run into a string of people who are genuinely bad and need to be kicked, eventually you’ll be unable to kick any more no matter what, because the system only counts kicks and can’t know whether they were justified.

      • I agree that there are some substantial hurdles to clear in terms of preventing abuse before any LFD reputation system is introduced. That said, it’s quite rare that the idiots in the group form the majority.

        I’d also like to answer one of the questions you’ve posed, Aeliel:

        “At the same time, though – why should a geared tank who wants offspec DPS gear get to queue as a tank to get it? That’s unfair to the three DPS who might actually need some of those items and who sat through a long queue to get into the same instance.”

        I can imagine at least two justifications for letting a geared tank roll on offspec loot. First, the tank won’t be rolling mainspec, so that gear is available to the rest of the group. Second, the loot the tank’s reward for providing a faster queue and, when gear is an indicator of skill, a smartly-tanked run.

        Elsewhere I have seen some fairly nasty posts about the issue of fairness. While I understand the concern, I think a more productive approach to evaluating changes to LFD is to ask “Did my play experience get better?”. Queue times for dps have gotten pretty bad; a change like this helps to reduce idle time waiting for a tank. Bringing experienced tanks back into the queue would also reduce the chance of LFD groups failing because of bad tanking. If enough good tanks enter the queue, dps could be looking at a substantial reduction in the time it takes between entering the queue and successfully completing a heroic. Everybody gets what the want — tanks get more rewards and dps/healers get better heroics. That seems good for everybody. Fairness concerns are, to my mind, like arguing over how to cut up a cake; we should, instead, be looking for ways to get more cake, even if the portions aren’t completely equal.

      • Not all DPS would be willing to make that trade, though. I wouldn’t if I were playing on my death knight, for instance (since I dislike how blood tanking plays, I’ve no intention of ever tanking on her, so offspec tanking loot would do me absolutely no good).

        There’s also the fact that DPS already feel (rightly or wrongly) that it’s slower for them to gear up due to the length of queues and the fact that there can be in-group competition for gear (something 4.1 will attempt to fix by having the dungeon finder try to avoid grouping DPSers of the same armor class together); a geared tank wanting to needroll on DPS gear instead might get a reaction along the lines of “tanks gear up faster than us already because they get faster queues, now they want our gear too? ugh”.

        (On the other hand, gearing a tank is not nearly that easy – not a druid tank, because rogues and hunters are gear competition, and not a plate-wearing tank, because you get plate-wearing DPS needrolling on tank gear just because they can, but this is more about how it feels than how it actually is, on both sides.)

        tl;dr I’m not sure geared tanks rolling on offspec loot would make anything better, because while the runs would probably be smoother, I don’t think the average DPS (or healer) would be happy with the tank taking “their” gear.

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