Friday, March 13, 2009

GMs Flavors

Interesting thing, on Darkspear. Going down the list of alliance OS-3D Guilds on Darkspear, and their GMs...

1. Vox Radix - Protection Warrior, Night Elf
2. The Church - Hunter, Dwarf
3. Woe - Protection Warrior, Dwarf
4. LOKI - Protection Warrior, Dwarf
5. Four Point O - Protection Warrior, Dwarf
6. Ruin - Ret Paladin, Human
7. Conquest - Holy Priest, Dwarf
8. Steel Legion - Holy Priest, Night Elf

The hugely-scientific conclusion: Guild Leader personalities are drawn towards Dwarven Awesomeness.

Really, though. Half the GMs were protection warriors, and that's what really got me thinking. Many people, mostly tanks, will say that tanks gravitate towards leadership type positions. Ending up as GMs is probably a kickback to when warriors were the only tank, MTs were necessary, GMs high attendance / trustworthiness made them good candidates for MT, ect.

What I don't understand, are the healer GMs. Not that I have anything against them - but I couldn't imagine taking away thought cycles from healing / watching health bars to make important decisions. When I'm tanking, if the mob is positioned, I can let my brain attend to other pressing thoughts - my fingers may revert to 3-4-5-5 (SS, Rev, Dev, Dev) and cause me to miss things like Sword & Board procs - but its pretty safe to do on most content. Healing, though - you miss a beat, and someone can die. I suppose DPS GMs don't have quite this issue, but they too have DPS meters breathing down on them if they are using suboptimal routinees in order to keep mentally available and aware.

Now, I assume that there may be someone else making calls on the fly, and non-GM tank types may still be the ones leading raids...

... but it makes me wonder how other guild's raids go. I really wish I could listen in on more guilds raid, more often - particularly where they have a non-tank GM or Raid Leader. Any volunteers?


Darraxus said...

It depends. My old raiding guild has a feral tank as Guild Leader, and usually it was a Prot Warrior (NE)/Holy Priest (NE) leading the raids. My current one has a human Holy Pally GL and a Gnome Fury Warrior as Raid Leader.

Top raiding guild on the server has a female dwarf fury warrior as Gm/Raid leader 0_0

I agree dwarves are the most awesome.

I tagged you on my blog for another meme. GOGO.

Tarsus said...

The guilds I've been in have had a pretty good mix between healers tanks and DPS. Tanks were, perhaps contrarily, the least represented.

Though it makes sense that tanks and healers would be strongly represented. Given that they are significantly less populous than DPS, having one already "in the bag" as the GM seems to give a leg up - at least statically.

As for dwarves, I seem to recall from that survey that was being linked on WoW Insider a couple months back that tanking and warriors were both very strongly dominated by men. There's probably something deeply ingrained in the psyche of male gamers that make them like dwarves.

Pixelated Executioner said...

I've been leading a raid series for my guild since Burning Crusade. In the BC days, I started out as a holy paladin (human), and later transitioned to protection.

These days, I run as either an Arms Warrior (Draenei) or Unholy Death Knight (also Draenei) as DPS.

For the most part, my guild is pretty self-sufficient when it comes to a raid. The only time I really end up having to call out instructions is when something gets borked and we've got to adjust.

Namthe said...

Through BC our raidleader was a holy priest. These days he's still our de facto raidleader but our tank leader leads some runs, as dso some of our other officers (usuall shaman and pally leaders).

The vast majority of the time we don't need any instruction anyway - quite often I'll be the one pushing with readychecks and watching what's going on regardless of who's actually in charge.

I guess that as a guild gets used to an encounter, less instructions are needed. Each section of the raid (tanks, DPS, healers) are trusted and left to get on with their own organisation.

Vads said...

As a tank I normally have enough on my mind without trying to tell everyone else what to do as well, so I try to steer away from anything to do with raidleading. I have done it a lot in the past but nowadays I'm quite happy to have others do it, normally a resto druid or a feral one who both do a great job at it.

Being horde I don't see many dwarves .. at all really, they dont seem that popular choices on alliance either on my server, but races aside, playing a tank I've filled different officer/leader roles and seen many guilds of the raiding sort having their MT as guild leader.

There's definately something to it I think about the tank->raid responsibility->guild responsibility thing.

Vads said...

Oh and I see you're redecorating the blog Yakra, looks nice :)

Crofe said...

When I was in a guild that raided on a normal basis, our official GM was barely ever on. We had a Raid Leader, well actually more than one, so as not to get burnt out. Oddly enough, most of the time it was a Hunter. (Two of which, including me, have become Tanks).

Apparently the evidence is against me, but I think ranged DPS make the best Raid Leaders. They stand back and can see more of the fight normally and react to things. If a Ranged DPS slack, you lose a little DPS. People aren't going to die, though you might hit an enrage timer. Whenever I raid, I can't help but make comments over vent when I see people standing in [random environmental damage source] / doing stupid stuff.

Aleathea said...

Yakra, I recently discovered your blog when Veneretio highlighted several of your posts. I have played a Prot Paladin for several years, and recently leveled a Prot Warrior to learn about tanking from the Warrior perspective. Your blog is an excellent source of information and I greatly appreciate the work you put into your posts.

I have noticed a distinct correlation between the position of tank and raid or guild leader. Our GM is a prot warrior, and two of our three Raid Leaders are tanks.

I noticed a distinct difference myself when I switched my main from a dps Shadow Priest in BC to full time Pally tank in Wrath. I am now leading raids ... something I never imagined I would do ... and the strangest part is that it feels natural.

Great blog, definitely looking forward to learning more from you in the days ahead.

Chad S. said...

Darraxus - I'll get to that Meme in time.

Tarsus - Interesting thought about the "leg up" bit. I'd wonder though, how many tanks started guilds so that they could be the defacto tank, however?

Pixelated - I'd really, really love to hear what a "leader-less" raid went like. If your group is as self-sufficient as the image I have in my head, thats rather amazing.

Vads - Thanks :) Now if I can only get the banner on the front to center...

Crofe - The evidence is hardly large enough to be against anyone. I defiantly think that the view of the whole battlefield is a boon for ranged DPS (esp. since tanks stare at demon crotch most of the time).

Aleathea - Very glad that you found me here! Vene did me a great service by highlighting me like he did. I'm glad that your finding the things I've written to be so useful. Best of luck to you as you continue on tanking, and leading raids - it certainly is an amazingly fun and satisfying experience!

Kadomi said...

I have led raids both as protection warrior and as resto shaman. The big advantage as healer is that simply by standing in the rear, you can tell a lot better when people are not standing where they should be, etc. I am still shocked at the amount of people standing in void zones I saw in my first raid as shaman.

As tank I usually see that big blob in front of me and am relying on others to call out bad positioning and such.

In my guild, very few people aside from those who play tanks either as mains or alts want to assume leadership roles. We have one healer main who likes to lead, and a warrior of either arms or prot flavor is her main alt.

Also: male dwarves are icky! ;)

Sir Nicholai said...

My (rather large) guild is headed by a Prot Orc Warrior, so that would seem to generally agree with your premise.
Also, I was the Raidleader for my guild through 10 man Naxx (it was a couple weeks before we had enough for 25 man, and the GM lead those), and I thought my position as a prot paladin was a pretty great position to lead the raid from. Being the tank mean you are able to control the speed of the tash pulls (very fast, in my case) the main boss pulls, and position the fight where you want it.
Like you said, I'm able, during a fight, to slip into my 96969 rotation (pally's version of what you were doing) and call out for people to move, switch targets, blow cooldowns, etc.
Also, on many of the fights, I'm able to control the action or direct bosses places (Running on Anuberak, draggin the Grand Widow next to a worshipper to sacrifice it, blowing cooldown on Maexxna's web phase, taunting the horsemen, etc). I also was greatly helped by the fact that I was playing with my roommate as co leader in most of the raids. He's a great healing priest, and I could always ask him what happened when a wipe went down if I couldn't see, since he was mostly watching the health bars, he usually had a good idea.

Note: Trying 10man 4 horsemen with 2 paladin tanks before we had a single target taunt was painful, although we did get it to work with a triangle of taunts involving our dps warrior.

Catz said...

My guild leader is a Resto Shaman. He used to play a protection warrior for a few months back when we were in Karazhan.
He's got awesome skill with organizing the guild, has some hardcore raiding experience as Resto/Ench shaman and is generally a nice person.
But, as you mentioned in your post, in fights where he really has to focus on healing, and other healers won't do the job for him (Malygos, Sartharion+, Kel'Thuzad, Sapphiron, Patchwerk) he tends to lose the view of what is going on. Sometimes he does not see who died or if a boss got enraged, and is surprised that a wipe occured. Once or twice, he called a wipe on Teamspeak after he died while we were still able to continue. Sometimes he can get a hint from his girlfriend, who plays a lovely feral bear or kitten, so it makes it a little easier.
I on the other end play a dps warrior, and I can not imagine how a melee dps could lead the raid. Sometimes even the positioning requires lots of attention, and watching the GCD is simple, but challenging :)
I think the best Raid Leader would be offtank or caster dps.