Let's face it – even if your primary motivator in raiding
is hanging out with your friends and making progress through instances, it
feels good to get that upgrade you've been needing. And on the flipside, seeing
that upgrade you've needed for moths pass you by for the eighth time can be
frustrating. If you are finding that you and your core raiders are having more
of the latter feelings than the former, it may be time to re-evaluate what loot
system would be the best fit for your raid team. In roughly the order of complexity and officer
intervention, the most prevalent options are:
- Suicide Kings (SK)
- Loot Council
I have not included the pure wish list option despite it
having been one of the most successful loot distribution systems I've
participated in. My 40-man guild used it for BWL and AQ. We consistently had
the same 40 people week-in and week-out. And after some officer abuse, locked
down the ability to change one's wish list. The maintenance of the wish list
Excel spreadsheet was onerous and time consuming. And bringing in new people as
a guild is midway through progression in an instance could results in a lack of
parity in loot distribution.
Full discussion after the jump.
A small Master Looter enabled step up from using the
in-game need/greed system for loot distribution. This system seemed to rise in
popularity at the end of Burning Crusade when Kara PUGs/alt runs became an
every day occurrence. All players interested in an item /roll 100. The Master
Looter gives the item to the highest roller. Overall, works best if you truly
have a casual guild, and an ever-changing raider base.
Some – but not all-raids using this method limit players
to 1 main spec and 1 off spec item per raid. Off spec rolls are sometimes done
as a /roll 200.
Your casual raiders who can only come to raids
every one in a while appreciate having the opportunity to roll on any item that
catches their eye in the raid. Everyone has the same random chance at obtaining
drops. Can quickly gear up new raiders. Limits officer responsibilities to just
handing out items to high rollers.
Your core raiders who come every week may
consistently lose out on items by having to roll against a revolving group of
new folks who need everything week-after-week. Inability for those core raiders
to gear up can hinder progress. Debate over whether or not it is fair for
someone in their first raid to get an end boss drop over a core raider can set
your guild forums aflame for days.
Mod-based round robin style loot distribution system.
Everyone /rolls for their spot on the list. Top person has first dibs on any
loot that drops, and so on down the list. If you take an item, you move to the
bottom of the list and all other persons in attendance in that evening's raid
moves up the list. Anyone not in the raid stays in their same spot. Works best
for casual guilds or alliances that have a fairly set group of players.
- If a raider does not participate for 4-6 weeks, they are dropped to
the bottom of the list. This is referred to as "decay" and keeps
players from returning from an extended absence and taking loot from
progression bosses they did not help make their way to.
- Some guilds separate the tier gear from non tier gear lists to keep
players from passing by non-tier upgrades.
- If working on multiple instances at one time, can create additional
lists for each instance as well, thus keeping someone who has only done farm
content from walking off with BiS pieces over the regular raiders for that
Turn-based loot distribution. List tends to turn over
rapidly. Since it's mod-based, the officers do not have much manual management
to do. Can post the list to your forums or other players may synch up the mod
with you to additionally keep track of where they are.
If the person administering who got what is not careful,
you can accidentally shift players down the list who should not have been
moved. Players may pass by upgrades because they are holding onto their spot
for a coveted item. Players can come back from several months absence and grab
a key item (like your first tier chest from an instance), leaving your active
core raid team fuming. Excessive bottom feeding can become the norm, with a
recently "suicided" person taking home an entire night's category of
Dragon Kill Points, known commonly as DKP, assigns points
for showing up on time, downing bosses, and working on progression attempts.
these points are then used to bid on items that drop. Can be partially
automated through a variety of mods.
- Zero-sum DKP with all items that drop having a set price
you must pay to buy them.
- Half-DKP with any item you want costing half your total
DKP. This rewards frequent raiders while still making it possible for a new to
the raid payer to obtain items their first night.
Your core raiding group will not lose out on items to
first-timer raiders. Concrete connection between amount of time given to the
raid and the possible rewards. Can help stem the grabbiness of items people are unlikely to use.
New raiders may feel as though they will have to spend
months raiding before obtaining any items. If you don't have decay or reset DKP on new instances, returning raiders can walk off with your best progression upgrades.
Possibly the most personally subjective and
player-intensive method of loot distribution, Loot Council relies upon a
pre-set group of people, typically officers, to decide whom should receive each
drop. Many folks absolutely love this setup, while others would prefer to chew
on glass than to be a part of this system.
May be combined with a wish list wherein the players
indicate their Best-in-Slot or most wanted items from the instance.
If items are awarded based on appropriateness for the
class and degree to which it is an upgrade, the raid team should be improving
as a whole, and there should not be much wasted gear.
May reward players who haven't spent as much time gearing
up over players who come every week and have worked on
crafting/heroic/badge/reputation gear. Can be hard for officers to be objective
– or be perceived as being objective — when assessing who should receive an
item. See also the many LJ posts RE: "The RL's GF got every item that
dropped in our raid last night."
For Further Reading:
None of the DKP systems are perfect– I know there must be more hybrid systems out there and hope to hear from folks on what they're using.