Epic Gems, Raid Gear, and the Raider Attitude

The story I’d like today is from a few months ago and dates back to patch 3.2, when ToC was progression – but I was reminded of it when I read another blog post about raiding and the “raider attitude” towards gear, enchants, and consumables.

A Story of a Mage

One day my hard modes 10 man was short a ranged DPS, and my RL decided to bring a friend of mine, a mage.

This mage is a very close real life friend of mine who I had recently convinced to join my raiding guild. He started raiding with us and, while short on gear, impressed everyone all around. He was very smart and played well. He certainly pulled his weight DPS and RA wise, and I know my RL was pleased.

That’s why he was invited to our 10 man when we had a slot for ranged, despite the fact that he was very new. The RL knew he would be smart, target switch, and perform well regardless of gear.

We did exceptionally well in ToGC 10 – in fact, I believe that was our first Anub 10 hard mode kill. He went home with a bunch of new gear, including a heroic 245 weapon. Now, that might not be impressive anymore. However, this was back in 3.2, and my guild doesn’t raid ToGC25. So, ToGC10 gear was the best & most impressive stuff anyone in my guild was wearing. He was pretty pleased to pick up all the gear, and was extremely thankful and loved coming along with us.

After The Raid

Several days later, at a 25 man raid, I inspected my friend to admire & compliment his new gear. That’s when I saw this:


Please ignore the crappy screenshot, and note the gems.

He’d gemmed the staff and much of his new gear with non-epic gems. /cry.

I whispered him and told him he should put epic gems in his gear, and he said something that threw me for a loop.

“Why?”

… what?

Why Epic Gem when the not-Epic gems are “good enough”?

His argument: the epic gems are so expensive, the non epic gems are almost as good, and he was in the top 10 on dps in our 25 mans – so clearly he wasn’t doing anything wrong!

I was about as nice as I could be, and I didn’t try to have a fight with him about it, but somehow it turned into one anyways. He is one of those very confident people who has trouble admitting that he’s wrong, and I usually let things go if I find myself faced with someone like this – especially when it’s a friend.

But in this case, I was so thrown off by the difference in our attitudes towards gearing that I just couldn’t wrap my mind around his argument. He wasn’t short on money, after all, and he was turning into one of our more promising raiders. I wanted him to wear the very best because that’s just what raiders do.

The conversation ended when he got really defensive, and the discussion somehow morphed from “I think you should use epic gems if you intend to raid” to “You take wow too seriously, chill out.” And that’s a conversation I dropped, right away.

That staff is still gemmed with non-epic gems. He doesn’t raid anymore, but I pulled that screenshot off the Armory today for this blog. I guess I never convinced him.

The Aftermath

This is a situation where I was torn between my dislike of conflict- especially with a friend- and my devotion to the game and to doing things right.

As a friend, I started to feel crappy right about when he got very defensive. As a raider, though, I was shocked beyond belief that he had raided with us for a while and yet felt so differently than I did about gearing for raids.

We aren’t a progression guild. We are a casual guild with a core of hardcore players. But that makes it even more important for the players who do know what they are doing to bring their very best to every raid – the right gear for the job, the right spec, the right gems and enchants and consumables. I thought this was just a baseline given.

I was so stunned to see someone – just as new as I am (we were leveling partners and leveled to 80 together) – have such a vastly different attitude towards gear.

Getting something wrong or forgetting something isn’t the same as simply not bothering to do it in the first place! And then, arguing it’s not necessary to optimize because things are fine the way they are…

Sigh.

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About The Author

Tankadin Errant is a blog written by Anafielle, a paladin tank on Drenden - US Alliance side. (Armory)

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