I thought it’d be ages before I found a new raid team. But that might not be the case as we draw closer to Alphascape raiding with 4.4.

Former Team

My team prior to this always felt sort of temporary at best. There was really just one person there who I knew, and while I’m endlessly grateful for their friendship the rest felt kind of like NPCs. I’m sure they’re all great people, but I couldn’t really connect well with them. Between that and my burnout, I didn’t want to even login to FFXIV. When you’d rather do anything but play the MMO, that’s a good sign you should consider not playing the MMO for a while. Or maybe change something up about it.

Accommodations and Oranges

I’m the type of player who enjoys chasing “oranges” on FFLogs. Pushing my upper limit on encounters and improving is what really makes them enjoyable to me. Yet, doing this with friends is what makes that enjoyment worthwhile. Mostly because, of course, you’re playing with friends! And also partially because friends are much more likely to try new things and put up with you scaring them to pieces. PUGs don’t really care much for finesse nor uptime strategies.

Friends are usually willing to make accommodations, especially for those who are breaking away as their top DPS in the team. It’s a give and take though–DPS can’t always push like crazy either because they’d overstress the healers and if your tanks suck you might end up tanking. Good teamwork, communication, and analysis is what allows for some of the more crazy stunts to be done. So if I’m acting like a total idiot around you in raid, that’s a good thing–it means I trust you and your skill.

Mechanics vs. DPS

I never understood leaders who split these apart. Like, sure I can understand this well enough for lesser experienced players. “Focus on the mechanic so you don’t make a mistake on it and wipe us.” Okay, sure that’s fair… but this is progression. Progression is literally the period of time where you can make stupid mistakes to learn the timing on things, or if it’s castbar based or animation based. How many people can stack in that with what level of mitigation, do I need sprint to dodge this thing, so forth? And people who are above me even would read this and think, “You can make stupid mistakes and still clear quickly, it’s so easy!” much like how I’m wondering how people can’t both handle mechanics and DPS at the same time.

Ant told me once, “It’s so easy to get oranges. Just have decent gear for your job, and hit buttons. Bam, instant orange.” As someone who has a few oranges under her belt… no! I’ve had to bust my ass for those in almost every case. But that goes to show you a stark difference in individual skill and group coordination–the difference ends up as vast as an ocean.

Difficult Uptime

Early on during Deltascape Savage, I was trying to explain the basics of uptime to some of our DPS. All I could really tell them in the short time I had was, “Attack while you dodge.” While that’s a drastic oversimplifcation of how to handle both mechanics and DPS simultaneously, it also is what works best. If you’ve practiced your rotation enough, you’ll be able to perform it and adapt under pressure as minute changes need to be made. If you constantly test the limits on the boss of range, speed, angle, direction, etc.–you’ll know when to move and how to move. When you combine these effectively, you can then adapt your rotation based on how you need to move and then… bingo! Uptime achieved.

New Team

The person who invited me to this new raid team is actually someone I played FFXI with years back. It’s pretty wild because when he and I met, I was 100% closeted even to myself. He was even a founder of Fail Brigade, and over the years has helped me out with his own advice in regards to both raid and guild leadership. You can probably attribute a fair portion of me calming my organizational tendencies to him. And another bit of that to Aud on allowing me to express them in healthy ways instead, but I digress.

The current team has, as of this post, PLD, AST, SCH, Caster, and SAM. We played a bit tonight to get the PLD stretched out a bit. Getting a few more Byakko EX clears in was fun! So far everyone seems amicable and at least able enough to work together. And the goals generally all include clearing this raid tier. So who knows? Maybe I’ll get to secure a tier after all! As for my personal goals with a raid… I’d really be okay with this:

Happy adventuring!

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