The Root of All Evil
In real life it’s money. In World of Warcraft, it’s shiny purple pixels. MT has 31 active raiders, each of whom have multiple alts. Add another 5-10 social members who occasionally fill in. Add another 7-10 who are playing swotr. For a game that hasn’t seen the likes of 40-man raiding since 2006, That’s a lot of people. With that many people, there is going to be a personality clash, or a disagreement, or a total of 10 pages across 2 threads in our forums of a healthy debate about loot.
MT’s loot policy is about as clear as it can get, for the most part. There is always going to be something weird that comes up to muddy the waters. That’s where it’s left up to the Raid Leader/Loot Master’s discretion. There’s also going to be someone who disagrees with the loot policy. No system is infallible, and as the leader of a raiding guild, it was my job to come up with the best policy for our raiders. My motto is that I can’t please everyone all the time but I can piss off everyone all at once. Greater Good of the Guild.
My philosophy on loot distribution is simple: a drop needs to be distributed in the best way to help the guild progress. With this philosophy, raiders put the needs of the guild ahead of what they want personally. For the two years MT has been in existence, this has worked very well. I have built our loot policy around this philosophy. After all, what good is it if one person gets completely geared out? They’re not soloing any raid bosses at the current tier level. They just look pretty. That person would see we’re not progressing, so he’ll likely leave in search of better loot. And take all the guild loot he won with him. Well gee, that doesn’t help us now does it?
With this philosophy, you would think that we would have a Loot Council system. In theory, I think this would work really really well for us. Our members have a lot of trust in leadership that we will do the right thing. In practice though, I could see problems. There’s the potential for needing to justify every decision. There’s the potential for someone being held accountable/blamed/yelled at because someone may not agree with the decision. There’s the potential for drama. This is what happened to <Blood Red Skies>. That’s how I inherited Guild Leadership. Over Loot Council Drama.Yuck.
You know why our current system works? Because we do use loot council, even though we officially don’t. Everyone is loot counseling each other. Something drops, people roll. The rollers are inspecting each other. “Damn you’re still rocking those troll shoulders?? Give it to that foo!” The only “enforcement” that goes on is if someone already won something that night, it goes to the next highest roller. I recruit players and raiders that agree with MT’s Guild > Individual philosophy. That’s why it works so well.
Those 10 or so pages of loot discussion on our forums was healthy. It was healthy because it was civil, no trolling, flaming or rotten fruit was thrown. No rage quits, no ninja transfers in the middle of the night. We’re all adults, and we were all able to act like adults. It made us take a look at our system to see if it was flawed enough to consider changing it. It made me take a look at what’s written in our policy to see if I needed to clarify anything. That policy has been tweaked and updated as the guild needs arose. In the end, what we have is what works.