Pug Lessons Not Learned (rant)

My plan over the weekend was to put a few levels on my alt Hunter, get a heap more badges and stone keeper shards, and do some instances on my Death Knight and my alt Priest. Simple enough plan, but I did not count on the Dread-Pug-o-Fail.

Friday evening was nice and slow

Friday night was ok, in one run with some guys from an old guild (/wave Exile on Nagrand folks) we were lamenting how easy the heroics are now. We did heroic Violet Hold quickly, easily, with no deaths. The mobs and bosses died so fast it was like doing it on normal.

One mate and I lamented the easy mode, and both agreed that the new 5 man coming better bring a huge increase in difficulty. It was pretty close to be an elitist prick moment, but when you can rofl-stomp an instance that fast, you do get cocky.

Then Sunday made me humble

Again I queued up for heroic Violet Hold. Pug group this time, but they seemed ready. Most folks had a nice blue and purple mix of gear, and nobody was stacking the wrong stats. It looked totally doable.

First pull was a bit of a mess, as a few of the team were not quite ready, even after saying “r” in chat. We go through the motions, no deaths; shitty performance by a few but we continued. Portals 2-4 were ok with a slightly smoother approach and cleaner result; but the kills were still taking ages, and my average geared Shadow Priest was doing way too well on the damage meter. Then it all went to shit.

  • Just before portal 5 the Boomkin announced that he was needed for a raid and instantly de-grouped. I was surprised as I would have thought his sub 700 dps would not be needed for much except maybe a one way trip through Wailing Caverns.
  • During the kill of portal 5 mobs one of the other toons was skinning the last kills. Hey buddy, kill stuff now, yes? He did not respond when I asked if he was done.
  • Then the druid-tree healer announces that his Mom wants the computer so he has to logout. Um, wait, what? You thought the h-Vh was going to take 15 minutes?

I was aghast, and just standing thinking “great, incoming boss with 2x missing dps and a healer who only had 15 minutes to begin with”. Pug runs shit me. Had I not spent the swear jar money, there would be more coins flying into it.

So I guess I’ve not learned my lesson about pugs yet. I still expect players to be considerate, on time, and communicate. Pug players it seems are still totally too casual and do not consider it inappropriate to waste other people’s time.

I will still try to approach Pugs with optimism, but I now use a mod that tracks the toons I’ve grouped with; and allows me to up and down rank them. This means that my optimism will eventually be tempered with a statistical body of knowledge on who is a total waste of oxygen.

If I meet Captain-Boom-Less, Mr-No-Heals-Mom, or AFK-w-Skinning I will know, and drop group immedietley.

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13 thoughts on “Pug Lessons Not Learned (rant)

  1. Ah, PUGs. While they make our lives miserable, at least they do give us something entertaining to blog about :)

    What’s the mod you’re using to up/down rank people?

  2. Hey Brajana and Zupa, the mod I’m trialing is called Grouper.

    Adds folks to a table if they’re in your party for 15 minutes, and then you can click to up/down rank. You can add notes, etc. That is about as far as I’ve got, but I’m hoping it detects online status, so I can also quickly find players.

    Still early days yet.

  3. even if it doesn’t, you could just start friending anyone who gets up ranked a couple of times :)

    I’ve just been making do with a std friends list. If you are on it, I think you know how to play.

    If your name sounds familiar and you arent on it, chances are I thought you were FoF (full of fail)

  4. I generally avoid PuGs if for the simple reason that while I’m trying to be a DK tank, I know that the vast majority of players do not think DKs make good tanks.

    However, three nights ago I grouped with a player who was decent enough with her mage and we friended one another. The next night she asked if I would like to tank UP. I didn’t have time, so I wasn’t going to start something I couldn’t finish, but I was up front with her, letting her know I’ve not got much experience tanking. She said it was no problem and I assured her I’d do my best. While we haven’t rescheduled a night to run UP, I plan to do what I can and take my responsibilities seriously.

  5. I forget how lucky I am some times…

    Sure I never seem to be able find a pug on the occasions I want… but when I do need and find one, it is a rare dare there is more than one fool.

    And as you allude.. you can pretty much 3-4 man stuff these days… so one slack dps doesn’t spell the end of a run.

    Though VH is frustrating… having to repeat the whole thing for now reward due to a wipe is a pain.

  6. I don’t mind that it makes it easier to check what folks have or have not done; but its still no substitute for tracking players and rating them yourself.

    I also hate the runs which as for “link your achievement” when putting together groups. I know they do that for a reason, but its frigging annoying. An achievement link is no indication of a player being carried through content. And all the best gear in the world won’t help if the player is useless.

  7. So many people in PuGs just don’t know the first rules of grouping.

    -If the healer is drinking, you need to get your health up to max yourself before the next fight. Why would you not have food? What do you do outside of instances; just stand there?

    -If you pick tank, make sure you can tank. (I don’t mind people that are learning, but some people think that because I can’t heal through pulling aggro that *I* must be a crap healer)

    -Stay out of AoE that you can’t handle. I can’t heal the whole group at once and I will vote to kick you if you so much as THINK about blaming me. 1 DPS is easy to replace (or ignore).

    -Basically stop blaming the healer. Unless the tank is the first thing to die, it isn’t their fault. Also isn’t their fault if you run halfway across the instance to pull something while they are drinking.

    -Tank dies first: healer’s fault.
    -Healer dies first: tank’s fault.
    -DPS dies at any point: their own fault (though if the tank is only tanking 1 of 3 bosses I’d give the DPS a pass that time)

  8. Hi Katherine,
    I agree totally, and my impression of pugs has not changed.

    My prediction is that as the next batch of content is released the amount of folks doing pugs will drop off significantly.

    The casuals will drop off, the raiders will have farmed all they could, and the percentage of shit players in LFG will be proportionally higher again.

    What is interesting is that we will have a way to find a much broader range of players, but cannot retain a connection with them easily across server. It would be wonderful to be able to invite folks on other severs who are online and you know are keen.

    My tanking has generally improved since I made this post a while back, but the dps are still poor and the healers still suffer misjudgment all too often.

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