Or maybe you don't, I don't know. Overall, i've had pretty good luck with pugs. Whether it be 5 man pugs, or raids, the number of good experiences i've had far outweigh the bad. Upon thinking about it more, I think the reason I feel that way is because that bad pugs tend to not last long, so it's less time wasted. Here lately though, i've come across a lot of... I hesitate to use the term "bad" pugs (and i'll explain why in a bit), but pugs that just tend to hit a wall that REALLY shouldn't be there.
The last couple of weeks, one of my guildies has taken it upon herself to run an ICC 25 pug run... The general idea is go in and knock out the first 6 bosses, and maybe hit a 7th (Blood Prince Council or Dreamwalker usually). She runs two of them for her two mains (shaman and priest) and they're after my guild's usual evening raid on wednesday and thursday nights. I have two toons as well that I raid with: a druid tank and hunter, so i've been able to make both nights both weeks. Now then, let me give you the breakdown of these 4 seperate raids.
Raid 1 8/18/10 - First 6 bosses down. Half the group bailed before Marrowgar even because we had a boomkin continue to pull... the entire room of trash and wiping us... 5 times in a row. After re-filling the raid, we had 2 people ninjalog after Saurfang... two people who won great gear pieces. (Fuck Starfall.. for real)
Raid 2 8/19/10 - No issues with trash. Destroyed first 4 bosses. 2 people ninjalogged after Saurfang (I don't recall whether they won loot or not). Wiped several times on Festergut, mostly due to enrage timer.
Raid 3 8/25/10 - No issues with trash. Destroyed first 4 bosses. Pug hunter ninjalogged after wining the Sanctified token on Saurfang. Wiped several times on Festergut, mostly due to enrage timer. Attempted Rotface once but failed for many reasons, not the least of which was because someone ninja-afk'ed and never returned.
Raid 4 8/26/10 - No issues with trash. Wiped on Gunship because one of the tanks had trouble attempting to bug out High Overlord Saurfang on the horde gunship. One person left after the wipe and was quickly replaced. Continued on to oneshot Saurfang. No ninjalogs this time. Tried Rotface to change it up.... wiped many times because our ooze kiter was horrible.
Seriously.. What is the deal with these groups, which seem to do SO well on the first four bosses, falling the fuck apart after Saurfang? In my opinion, Saurfang is the much harder fight all around than either Festergut OR Rotface. The ranged DPS have a lot more responsibility, and there's the risk of having Saurfang heal a significant amount of health if someone goes down to a mark. Now.. Festergut has a tight enrage timer, and significant raid-wide damage, but the mechanics of the fight itself are far easier. It's simple. Find a spore and sit on it when it comes out, stay away from the range if there's no spores out. The healers reading might disagree, because I *know* tanks take lots of damage on that fight as well as all the aoe damage, but the fight itself is pretty basic. Rotface isn't a DPS race so much as it is a mechanics check. Get out of the raid when you have an ooze. Don't get hit by slime spray or explosions. Not... that... hard... Why do pugs seem to have SO much trouble with these bosses?
Also.. Ninjaloggers.. Fuck you... hard... In each eyesocket. Seriously.. All it takes is a quick whisper to the raid leader. A simple: "Hey, it's getting late and I gotta bail." Even if it's a bullshit reason, it's MUCH more appreciated than just up and leaving like a tool. If you win a piece of loot and then ninjalog, you go on my guild's shit list. It's a shitty thing to do to the rest of your group and I will advise any pugs I come across that they do these things as well.. so yeah. Be warned.
To go along with my previous paragraph... if you fail to perform well with your class, then you also get "shit listed". That boomkin who starfalled the trash in front of Marrowgar 5 times pulling the whole room and wiping us each time? Yep, shitlisted. The full 251 mage, specced arcane that was pulling 3.5k dps with the 30% buff and casting pyroblasts, fireballs, and frostfire bolts? Shitlisted. The 5.3k gearscored elemental shaman in my Sarth25 3D pug that only pulled 2k dps and proceeded to blame it on the raid composition? You already know. If you don't know your classes spec well enough to perform in ICC with a 30% damage buff, you have no business even zoning into ICC... plain and simple. Saurfang and (especially) Festergut have tight enrage timers, especially in 25 man. It's not like it's hard to find information. Wowhead is amazing folks.
I'm a very easy going person and help run the raid for my guildie who sets it up. She is also a very easy going person (as well as a *wonderful* raid leader, and damn fine shaman/priest). But ICC is the big leagues. Like I already said, if you don't know your class, you have no business being in there. I know a lot of people think it's "lulzy" with the 30% buff now, and quite honestly the first 6 bosses SHOULD be pretty damn easy. Other than an occasional "whoops, I messed up" moment (which DOES happen, and is PERFECTLY forgivable provided you learn from your mistakes), there's almost no reason to wipe so much on these bosses in normal modes.
Gearscore garbage... I don't bring up gearscore often because I am often at odds with it. On one hand, if you don't have at least full t9 equivalent gear, you probably shouldn't be checking into ICC, and gearscore is a useful way of finding that out quickly. On the other hand, some people have some ludicrous requirements for pugs. Our 25's leader doesn't have a gearscore requirement per se, as long as your gear is "Good enough" to perform in there, then it's good enough for us... and as long as you're properly itemized. Now, i'll grant you... That mage I mentioned earlier... we probably could've put a stop to him if we had noticed that he was specced arcane with pyroblast, but other than that... don't be a DPS DK wearing the Glyph of Indomitability (it's a tanking trinket) and a few other tanking pieces of gear mish-mashed... it makes you look stupid and we'll assume you don't know how to play your class. If it's just a matter of a gearset getting mixed up, that's fine. We can find that out quickly enough and let you in when you've got the right gear on. But things like this would show the DK I mentioned as having a good 5.1-5.2k gearscore, but his DPS would have been shit because he was making dumb gear choices.
Now, why do I bring up gearscore? In our last ICC25 we let in a fury warrior... his name escapes me at the moment, but he was at a 4.8k gearscore. He was specced properly (as far as I know about warriors anyway), and itemized alright.. wearing gear a fury warrior should wear, but we were a wee bit concerned that he might not quite be up to scratch.. He promised the raid leader that he knew what he was doing and would perform well, so she gave him the shot. Well.. As it turns out, this guy was not lying. He was the lowest geared person in the group by a significant margin (at LEAST 2-300 gearscore points) and was 6-7th on the DPS meters in every boss fight... and on top of that, he didn't die to stupid shit. He moved out of slime sprays, he moved out of D&D. He helped on bone spikes... He did exactly what he said he could do, so if he wants to come with us again he's MORE than welcome to do so. I know the raid leader put him on our "Would raid with again" list.
Sorry for the long wall of griping, but seriously... does anyone else have this problem? I know it can't be just the group of people I come across from week to week right?
OH! As a sidenote, I did a guest blog of sorts for I Like Bubbles, which happens to be a blog run by my GM and one of our officers. Their blog is pretty funny so feel free to check it out. I might do an occasional flowchart over there when something I think is amusing crosses my mind... So... Read them... and stuff!