Raid Charters - OverviewThe Flex Raiding Plan
Last updated January 31, 2008 @ 6:33:14AM
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Raid groups differ almost as much as the players within groups differ. A given group may be severely overgeared for a particular raid instance (badge farmers), but another group may want to go into that same instance and are just starting out (gear requirement discrepancy). Then, another group may be made up near-completely of long-standing friendships and have a relaxed looting style with each other whereas another group is a random set of guildies who should probably stick with default policy (roster and loot discrepancies). Still another group has been through Kara, and ZA, and Gruul's and want something tougher...they have a completely different set of requirements (content and gear discrepancies).
Is there a way to satisfy all this diversity?The results of the talks begun in November's "Raiding Roundtable Redux" was a concept called a "Raid Charters".
In its essence, a raid charter is the definition of what your raid is about. It spells what you're out to accomplish, when you're going, who's going with you, how often they're required to come, and how loot will be distributed. They are intended only for recurring raids and aren't necessary for a quick Kara guild-PuG (the guy running SSC / TK with the SGA doesn't need a charter for a one-shot Kara run; just make an event).
There are of course some default guidelines in these areas, but there's also plenty of room for flexibility as well. Here's a scenario of how things might go in setting up a charter.
Chartering: A Scenario
In the begining...Let's look at things first from a grass-roots group:
You've been working for several weeks now on upgrading your gear, and you really feel you're ready for Karazhan now. A number of other guild members have also been doing this. Some of you have filled in a few times with other group's Kara runs, but for the most part, they're all full. The mood strikes you, and you decide to pick up the banner of raid leader and get a few Sleepers to tag along with you.
OK. Now what?
At this point, you need to establish the goals you're trying to accomplish. This is the start of the the charter process. The entire point of chartering is making everyone know exactly what the expectations of that raiding group will be. Depending on the group, they may decide things on a general consensus among the interested members. It's also possible that a single person is spearheading things (i.e. the raid leader to be), they'll take point in defining it all before a group even forms.
Banding Together: Have charter, will raid.
Objective: The goal of Knockin' on Kara's Door (KKD) is a ground-up Karazhan raid for a group well-geared enough to start Kara. Most of the toons on this run haven't run Kara with a regular group. This run will assist in giving a more consistent group to run with on a regular basis. We're gonna be new at this at first, so no one's expecting perfection from the get-go.
Schedule: KKD runs on every Thursday night starting at 6pm server and ending at or before 10pm server. Invites go out starting at 5:30pm.
Roster: To qualify to be on the KKD roster, you must meet the gear benchmarks for Kara. A couple spots have already been filled by the original members of this group, but we could use a few more people to sign up so we have alternates as well. To hold a fixed position on the roster, you must meet the attendance guidelines (see below).
Attendance: To stay on the roster, you must attend 3 out of 4 raids in a month (if there are 5 Thursdays, grats, bonus, you only have to make 3/5). This keeps things fair to those who attend every (or nearly) every week to help us progress, but as we only raid once a week, it shouldn't be that hard to commit one night of game time on a regular basis.
Roster Openings: The following spots are already covered:
• MT (Tanksalot, Prot Pally)
• healer/DPS hybrid (Healsalot, Disc/Holy)
• DPS x2
We still need an OT/off-DPS, a backup healer, and a few more DPS to fill in the ranks. We'll try to be flexible, but we don't want so many alternates that you won't be able to come in that often.
Loot: Greens and below are all greeded. ALL blues/purples are passed on. Then, a need roll (/rand 100) will proceed for anyone who's role fits the gear. If all pass, the call then goes up for greeding it to use it (i.e. off-spec). If still no one wants, it, it'll get sharded and the shards will be rolled on at the end of the run. Everyone gets one item needed on for the evening. Greed rolls do not count.
That took some work, but that's exactly the point. A willingness to lead is going to start right from the inception of the run. If you want to lead and make an effective group, you'll design a charter that will cover exactly what your group is about from head to toe. This way there won't be anyone walking into your roster blind-sided by how things work.
Let's go over for a bit the different pieces and parts that should be a part of every charter.
Objective What are you guys trying to do? Is this a sightseeing tour where a couple further progressed people are taking some people on a field trip, unlikely to have progression, but maybe see what they’re up against? Are you already fitted out in ZA and SSC gear but wanna go back to Kara and farm some badges? Have you been in groups that have cleared Kara, but want to specifically hit Gruul’s once a week?
This is the place to document all those details. Define your goals for the group as clearly as you can so that someone joining your group will know exactly what they’re signing up for when they join.
Schedule How often will you run? Are you only going to run once a week (Friday night), and do a four hour push, closing it at the sound of the bell? Perhaps you want to run Tuesday and Thursday night, and Sunday afternoon.
Define not only the days you’ll run, but also the times so that people can see if it fits with the schedule IRL.
Roster Is your roster going to be completely open, first come, first serve for each role by a given day of the week? Do you have just a handful of people starting up the run, but you can’t fully flesh out the roster with your friends, so you have 2-4 open spots for people to fill in, but then the roster will be closed? Maybe you happen to have a bunch of hardened veterans that all know exactly what they’re doing and wanna go sweep and clear every week for badges.
Think heavily on this so you’re not slamming the door in someone’s face who’s just eager to come along an help.
Attendance If you have a fixed roster of any sort, can someone get booted off the list because they hardly attend? How many raids and over what period do they need to consistently make? If they can’t make it, can they keep their spot if they have someone sub in for them?
Roster Openings Say you’re in that second group above and you’ve got a few openings in the group. List here exactly what roles are filled and whom they’re filled by. List also what roles are open and need to have someone take them up.
Loot By default, the looting rules are the same as Sleeper Cartel’s Standard Looting Guidelines. If you want something modified to that, justify the reasoning behind your rules, and make sure all those agreeing to your charter are in agreement.
Oh I'm only a bill, yes I'm only a bill...err...a charter.
Initially, when the concept of chartering was developed, the planners decided that there would be an approval process for every charter. The completed charter would be sent to a Raid Coordinator (or a body of Coordinators) and they would just look over the charter to make sure there wasn't anything blatant in there that was against the guild's policies.
Example A looting plan where the RL makes all the decisions on who gets loot. No say, no random rolling. RL likes one cloth DPSer over another, they get the loot. Something like that is against the principles of this guild.
Now that the charters are more of an option rather than a requirement for a guild-sponsored run, the approval process no longer applies.
A band of fools: Post-charter life.
If you have decided to draft and post a charter, do your best to follow the rules which you put forth. You have defined what you're about, so just stick to it.
We're not going to go all Big Brother on you to make sure you're following your charter to the letter. Just as you would define loot rules on a PuG run, the charter is your guide to handle any disputes that may arise at a later time.
Knockin' on Kara's Door...all growed up.
There's no way that your n00b Kara charter is going to cover the entire lifetime of your run. You'll be able to at least plan for what's going to be necessary and set for you to clear up to Curator, but it may alter once you reach him. Once you clear the instance regularly (in whatever time period that takes) and you're ready to move on, there will be an entirely new set of gear and possibly other aspects that will alter on your run.
Minor details to roster (people quit the game, stop raiding, etc.) aren't a huge issue to a group if you can find someone to fill in and accept your group's rules. Changing from requiring two raids a week from one, or upping the gear requirements significantly is a big change however. Likewise, moving on to an entirely new instance (KZ --> ZA) may also necessitate some definition changes to your original charter.
When changes like this are needed, you may wish to redraft a new charter. Again, the original intent here that something like this was to be a requirement should a group change drastically, but now it's more of a suggestion. All you'd be doing is ensuring that ever member of your group knows exactly what the goals of the run are and what's expected of them personally.
Simply tweak what needs tweaking on the charter and place it up as an article again. Again, this is only necessary for big structural changes to the raid's organization, not just for small roster changes. Just ask yourself: Could this change cause ZOMGDrama later?
When it came down to finding a solution for the raiding needs in "Perenolde's Ten Ton Social Juggernaut", we needed something with structure, but also something that was flexible. It needed to be something that gave opportunities to the membership, but didn't hand them a raid spot. It also would need to be something that would highlight the leaders of our guild that we know are lurking in the shadows.
It's our belief that Raid Charters cover all of these features. Guidelines are given to what things you need to plan out a raid group, but a many of the nuances of the group are up to your raid members. You're able to decide if a raid is all Sleepers, completely open, closed, partially closed, and even include non-Sleepers if we're short on a given role (or your buddy needs a raid group). Above all, the chartering process culls from SC those who are really willing to take charge and lead a group just by critically thinking about what the needs of the group may be.
Go forth, and seek thy purplez!
Frequently Asked Questions, or..."Err...umm...Darias, what about...?"
OK, you probably have some questions still. This is a lot of stuff to assimilate. This was a lot of stuff to plan. We were bound to have missed something.
NOTE: Based on the decisions of the "Raiding Roundtable Redux", a raid charter is NOT required in order to have a recurring raid group. The guild's leadership staff highly suggests you do just so that everyone in your raid knows exactly the goals and direction of your group.
That said, if there's something glaring you have a question about, please don't hesitate to contact a member of guild leadership and we'll update this section and/or you with the answer.