WoW_Ladies: Girl Gamers of World of Warcraft

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New Raider Advice
masquedwriter wrote in wow_ladies
I am a member of our core raiding group. We are a primarily social guild with a small group that wants to do raid progression. I am having two problems and I would love some advice on how other people deal with these.

One: How do you deal with it when you mess up? I am my worst critic and I want so much to do a good job for my guild and am truthfully a little intimidated by the people in the group who have raided before. When I mess something up I feel REALLY upset and beat myself up about it even when no one else is upset. I have a really great guild leader and we're not at all about making people feel badly but when I screw up it tends to make me feel defeated and sensitive. (I know these aren't great qualities for a WoW player. Does anyone else ever feel this way? How do you get past it to just continue?)

Two: Raiding takes WAY more stamina than I expected. By this I mean that it is exhausting to keep working on the same raid (sometimes the same boss) for 2-3 hours. I notice that I start to get sloppy and tired toward the end of the raid because I'm unused to the prolonged period of concentrating on such mechanic heavy content. How do you stay focused and bring as much energy to the raid and you did at the beginning?

I really appreciate any advice on these subjects. Thanks muchly :)

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It's hard not to beat yourself up when you mess up. It's really best to focus on making sure it doesn't happen again even if it stings to mess up in front of the group. Sometimes if it's a repeated frustration I have to sleep on it and consider what to fix the next day.

As for the energy? Well... For one I'm ADHD so energy when I'm in a swing of hyper isn't difficult. X) Otherwise you have to get used to it and caffine helps. I like redbull but it's probably not healthy how much I drink. It doesn't hurt to take a nap beforehand if you're tired too. You're really unlikely to be just as energized at the end as the beginning though. A good, friendly group helps this; If your guild/raid group can maintain a happy atmosphere, you're more likely to keep up the energy. (This is speaking as a semi-casual raider.) I've noticed that anger and negative attitudes is the biggest energy drain in our raids.

Seconding this. Breaks do help, but I find that at the end of the night, I am completely and utterly spent. And if we're wiping on the same boss repeatedly, I get sloppier as I get more tired.

I guess you can try practicing on things that require intense focus in bursts, see if you can increase your stamina... or see if a nap beforehand will help.

Yeah I forgot to mention breaks. Chain afks are bad for morale but having a nice five or ten minute bio or food break really helps keep everyone cool. Chain wipes will pretty much always suck. :( Elegon ughhhhh! I'm so exhausted after a night working on him. This is more of a thing to bring up with your raid leader but: If you're in a fairly casual raid group, it helps to take the bite out of chain wipes to try another instance another night. Even if you're failing just as bad there, it breaks things up. :P (First boss of Heart of Fear is easier than Elegon on that note.)

Yeah, I might try to take a nap before the raid. that would be a good idea. I take medicine that makes me really tired so a nap would probably help keep me going. My server is a different time zone so it's a bit earlier for most people than me.

I haven't played this expansion, but I can give you advice on both parts from a seasoned raider.

1. I felt a lot like you in the beginning -- especially when I, uh, kept wiping the whole raid on Serpentshrine Cavern trash in my total noob days. Mistakes help you learn. If you make a mistake, use it to figure out why you did whatever you did and get better. Sometimes it's something like "didn't move out of the crap on the ground", which means it's time to work on ways to better see it or improve your reaction time. Some of it isn't seeing something happen in time. All of these things will come with more raiding, and trust me -- even the most experienced raiders screw up. A lot. Watch boss videos on tankspot or somewhere before you raid to get an idea of what you're going into.
The best tip I have in this area is don't deny it -- don't say "it wasn't me!" because that is the most annoying thing ever. Rather say something like "It was me, how do you figure out when X is happening?" People are likely to offer you advice because 1.) it makes them look super cool and put-together, and 2.) helping fellow raiders make fewer mistakes helps the whole raid progress faster.
Your raid group sounds cool, but if they ever berate you for this, or say hurtful things that make you feel bad because you stood in purple crap, it's time to find another group.

2. Take breaks. It is exhausting, but most groups will build in breaks every hour or something for their raiders. Use those. I don't mean use them to sit and look at loot on WoW, but actually get up, walk around, do some simple exercises, cuddle your pets, whatever makes you focus a little bit better. I used to institute "mandatory ice cream breaks" when I was raid leading. ;)
Another thing that always helped me was having an upbeat raid playlist on Spotify playing. Queen was always a good choice, so pick music you really enjoy and which keeps you awake.

Yeah, I had an incident tonight at the end of raid where I got really sloppy and didn't notice a debuff on me that, er, hurt the people around me quite a lot. So I brilliantly ended up wiping 1/3 of the raid like a total noob.

I have a really great guild though. My guild leader was even like (because we'd wiped on this boss all night and everyone was a bit frustrated by this point) "we're not calling people out here" and we talked about the mistake privately. They're really great people which is good because I don't know that I'd survive in some of these groups xD

We don't really take breaks on our runs. Most people don't want to stop in my group. I might bring up to my leader that I'm going to need at least a five minute break to stretch my legs and maybe get a breath of fresh air.

I have a policy with myself about not denying mistakes. Even in 5-mans, if I mess up I say that I messed up. I have no problem taking responsibility for my mistakes.

Thanks for the advice.

My guild will sometimes takes a mini-break while doing raids. Gives us time to run to the restroom, grab drinks, recharge. It also helps that we have fun doing it and try our best. Don't be too hard on yourself. You'll get the hang of things. ^_^

I can only offer similar advice to everyone else,

1) If you are worried about your mistakes - it may help if you speak privately with you raid leader afterwards and say "I noticed this happened, or I accidentally did this - how do you suggest I avoid this in the future" See if they can offer any advice. Alternatively speak with others who have the same role as you (eg if you are DPS) find out what they do to avoid similar mistakes.

If you find that you are not noticing debuffs or similar raid mechanics, try altering your UI or moving warnings around so they are more obvious to you. Mods like DBM or BigWigs will give you warnings for debuffs on you etc - and said warnings can be adjusted in the config to make them more obvious - put them right in the middle of the screen or somewhere where you will see them immediately. Make them big, make them flashy. I've always had issues with tunnel vision while raiding and missed a lot of warnings until I put them where I had no chance of missing them.

2) Keeping yourself hydrated etc is important too. Keeping water at hand so you make sure that you have plenty to drink (I have a jug and a glass I always keep on my desk, especially if I am planning on spending a long time on the PC) I also find that having small snacks like some sugary treats or biscuits or crackers or similar also helped to keep my energy up.

It may also help to research some simple stretches you can do in your seat during run-backs etc (auto run/follow can be your friend) to help ease the discomfort of being in the same place for long periods of time.

That said, I would suggest bringing up with your raid/guild leader about having a mandatory raid bio/rest break halfway through, it doesn't have to be long, 5-10 minutes is fine, just to get away from your PC and stretch out. Do you have regular guild/raid meetings? That might be a good place to bring it up, or given how nice your leader is, maybe mention it to them privately. It may be that others in the raid are in a similar situation but aren't sure how to bring it up. Concentrating on thing for 3 hours or more is a lot of ask of a person. Some people might have no problems on sitting in one place staring at a computer screen for such a long period of time, but others might find it difficult - it's important for the raid to work in a way that's comfortable for everyone in the raid. If you are having troubles - bring them up and see what happens.

1. Know that everyone messes up. Even the best players will mess up. We always laugh at it because it's inevitable. Just own it and go with it. We end up with lots of inside jokes (it's not a raid until the rogue dies, huntard pull!, nice fishing pole, healing in pvp gear - no wonder my spirits low, do you have an off-hand equipped?, etc). I was forced to turn my helm graphic on during DS because I wore my cooking hat for almost a whole raid once. So yeah, it's gonna happen. If it's a boss mechanics issue more than a stupid moment, research is the best answer. Watch vids (Fat Boss guides are really good this tier), do LFR (for what it's worth, most mechanics are ignored), read strats and come prepared. Have DBM or Big Wigs and maybe GTFO (I don't know if it's been updated and I don't use it, but I know people that swear by it if you have slow reaction times). Know that with experience it gets easier.

2. Breaks are good. We take at least one 5 min break in our 3 hour raids. If we're doing a progression boss and spending an entire night on it, we might take more. Even if people want to push through, the raid lead has to judge if everyone is getting sloppy and needs a breather (and everyone does, it's very noticeable as the night goes on during progression). Even if it's just 2-3 mins to stand up and stretch, run for a bio or grab a drink refill, getting up is good! Most of the time our attempts after taking a break are better than before the break. Also, once your stress goes down about #1, the stamina needed will go down as well.

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