time, anything but time

One of the discussions I see round the area is in regard to raiding.  Non-raiders say something to the effect of, “I have a life, or want one, and can’t spend all my free time on the computer.”  And the raiders typically respond to the effect of, “Only the bleeding edge need to be wedded to the computer – I have a life.  Just get a group that only raids a couple times a week.”  I’m going to insert myself into this mess.  Before I do, let me reiterate where I’ve been.

I’ve done hardcore – five nights per week of raids.  That, by the way,didn’t last long, but I’ve been there.  I’ve also done several casual – three, two, and even one raid mandatory per week.  So I think I’ve got a round value enough to have an opinion – and perhaps a bit of a reality check.

The casual raiding did not eat up as much of my life as the hardcore raiding.  It still eats up a lot of my life.  Let’s reality check, shall we?

The raid itself requires four hours – more is not atypical, but when we see these discussions that’s the amount of time that shows up, so we’ll use it.  Add one hour for pre/post work – picking up the last few reagents, purchasing the gems for the most recent drops, etc.  Add four hours – at least – for mat or money grinding.  Add another four for badge run – instances or kara if that’s on farm – to supplement your gear.

And we’re up to 13 hours for the single raid.

I am a black belt.  I go to three hours of class a week, and do at least an hour a day most days of maintenance.  I do LESS for my martial arts work than is “minimal” for the LEAST casual raid.

This is not necessarily a bad thing.  But it is a reality check.  Quite simply, most raiders I’ve met – even the “causal” – do at least 20 hours a week on the game.  20 hours with a select group of acquaintances and friends every week.

In other words, both sides of the discussion are “right”.  Yes, it’s only four or eight or 12 hours of actual raiding – a piffle.  But it’s 20 (or more) hours of WoW a week.  If you’re planning on raiding, congratulations – it IS a part-time job.

Dear Raider – a casual player is probably playing 12 or fewer hours per week.  When he tells you raiding would take up too much of his life, please do not belittle this reality.

Dear Casual player.  20 hours per week of convivial association is not every waking minute.  When the raider tells you she can do other things as well as work and play wow, she is right.

Dear both – it is, as with all things, a matter of subjective preferences.  13 hours of physical labor is nothing for some, and jawdropping for others.  The same goes for just about everything.  An hour of fishing bores me to tears, while for others it can be done for days on end with no difficulty.  You may take that as in game or “real world” play, the truth remains the same.  Please do not belittle others for having a different priority of what is “fun”, and how much they’re willing to devote to it.

But, go have fun.

~ by Kirk on June 16, 2008.

8 Responses to “time, anything but time”

  1. Sorry but your math is nuts. Adding farming time for each and every raid is like adding the time it takes you to fill gas for your cat for every time you drive to your martial-arts class.

    Furthermore you can farm dailies for 1 hour and get enough gold for between 1 raid and a week of raids – it depends on your gear and how much you wipe. So your 13hours per raid is way overkill.

    Badge farming has nothing to do with raids, you shouldn’t even add the time there. Either you have the gear to down Void Reaver or you don’t. The time it took you to get your uber healing mace is not relevant.

    I would say 4 hours per raid + 1 hour prep + 1 hour farming per raid is fair. So 6 hours overall per raid.

  2. I do 4 hours per raid + 1 hour pre raid + 1 hour prep + 2 hours farming. So two days of raiding a week gives 16 hours associated with raiding.

    I also do outside pvp and instances to get better gear but I would still be doing that if I wasn’t raiding so it doesn’t seem relevant.

    Also I am curious. To the raiders that only raid “twice a week”. Guilds advertise this often but then post multiple raids on a calendar week. I would assume there is still a certain amount of pressure to raid even in a casual setting.

  3. First – not “per raid”. I can see where you got that, but… no. But I’ll need to split it out. Part of it is per raid, part of it is over the week of need.

    1 hour is enough – is all the gold you need and everything you need? wow.

    I fish for an hour because the buff food I use (golden fishsticks and blackened sporefish) is never on the AH. An hour will give me about a stack – or what would be a stack if I could combine the two.

    I use – depending on where we’re going – two flasks of chromatic wonder or 12 each elixirs (assuming two deaths) of a mix of Draenic Wisdom and mageblood and mastery. That’s an hour of dailies all by itself. If it’s a raid we’re still learning, I will use more.

    I enchant and/or gem my new gear – which I tend to get every two or three runs. Some are fairly cheap – 20 gold for mats and I’m done. Some… Spellsurge isn’t too bad, I can get the mats for a couple hundred. And then there are the gems. I happen to like using epic gems like the Royal Shadowsong Amethyst. 450-500G – or 15 badges.

    Which brings me to the last item. Badges. If you’re not farming badges FOR YOUR RAID, you’re hampering it. You’ll be needing nether vortexes for some outstanding gear. You should be using epic gems at every chance. 15 badges each. I will bloody well count the time it takes to get stuff that makes me a significantly better healer for my raid, and badges is one example thereof.

    So let’s see. An hour of fishing, and and a half to two hours of dailies for repairs and other supplies, and a half to full hour of running around pre-post raid to actually purchase and repair and such. That’s at best three hours, probably four, PER RAID. Add the general support that I consider a weekly activity – four hours of badge-gathering and another 2-3 of hours of dailies.

    If you do one raid, that’s 4 hours (nominal) for the raid, and another 3-4 hours of raid support, for 7-8 hours for each raid, per raid. Add the 3-4 hours for kara badges and the 2-3 hours of weekly support (ie, regardless of number of runs) for 5-7 hours on top. 7 to 8 plus 5 to 7 for a single raid is 12-15 hours. Two raids a week? 14-18 hours plus the supplemental.

    Now if you do more raids a week you start getting a degree of quantity efficiency. That is, you wind up doing less support per raid on average. At 5 raids a week, you’re down to about 6-7 hours per raid. And you’re almost certainly not doing badge runs. So maybe a couple of hours total for extra.

    But I believe I’ll stand by my 13 hours a week to do the job you’re supposed to do for raiding once per week. In fact, I’ll ask you – not to tell me, but for yourself – to track your own hours played. No, let’s be smarter because you’ll find yourself saying, “Well, here I was running through XXXX so it didn’t count.” Instead, try this. For one week only, raid plus two hours (one each farm and prep) per raid. That’s what you said you needed. Don’t borrow from others – support your raid. Any enchants and gems and buff food and so forth are obtained during that hour.

    Betcha you find you’re a wee bit short.

  4. I’m on raiding hiatus as of next week. I’vc been promising myself i’d cut back on WoW, well I have pretty much. THis is what I used to do. Get up in the morning, early. Do dailies on one char. Do dailies on another char. Screw aroud for another 1-2 hours. Then go to work. Get home, immediately login for raid or whatever. Play all night. I was playing something like 8 hours a day every day of the week. Even I realized that was insane. So i set it up so I can’t play during the day weekdays. So no dailies for me. That cut my time to half. But then i was doing the whole raiding thing (2x a week BT, 1x a week something else).

    This week, i spent some 6 hours playing my alt trying to get gear (70 druid), saturday and until 3 am on sunday. Sunday I was pretty busy, played 40 min during the day, ended up not being able to do some work b/c of it. Sun night raid plus maintenance, 5 hours. Monday, tried to do the 4 Champion of Naaru heroics. Got two of them done. Tonight, BT again, will try to get home early to do some of the stuff required to get the BT trinket. Tomorrow, with friends, but may login to see if i can get into the SSC raid or something. Thur probably Mag if we can get it together, or a heroic for Naaru. Fri, probably nothing, my wife will kill me. Sat, ditto. Sunday, BT again.

    After that! I’m on hiatus. I probably wont play my raiding hunter much. I really look forward to not rushing home to play 5 hours straight without dinner or any sort of exercise. YOu give up an awful lot when you raid, but there is a ton of peer pressure and it’s fun, so its hard.

  5. I’m never going to belittle anyone for not having time to raid or anything; even “casual” raiding is definitely a commitment. Just to set a block of time aside for nothing but playing a game a few times a week is a burden not everyone has the freedom to take upon themselves. I still find your minimum time estimate to be too high, however.

    12 hours a week, max. That covers everything you _need_ for 3 nights of raiding, which is definitely enough to make progress. You just have to be disciplined about taking it easy (oxymoronic, I know), and stop thinking of all this extra crap you do as necessary. There’s always a tendency of players to put that little extra work in, and a tendency for others to feel like they owe it to their teammates to do the same. And truly, I believe there’s something admirable in that–it’s not like you are an idiot for wanting to perform at the highest possible level. But if you get a group of good players together who will agree not to accept these extra burdens (or put them onto others), you can cut a lot of time from your schedule. I’m not going to claim that creating such a group is simple, but it is definitely doable.

    All that badge/gold/consumable farming is NOT necessary for success. It is necessary for succeeding _faster_. I am serious. 12 hours or less, that is my literal time /played every week. I never take anything from anyone. I do my job very well. I am not hampering my raid by not farming badges, because we agreed not to do that to each other. We succeed, and on our own terms, not yours.

    I applaud you in your decision to take a step back; ‘play for fun, and don’t play when it’s not fun’ is my rule. If you ever think you want to come back though, try to see if you can find people to raid with who want to take things easier.

  6. I’ve been feeling burnt out in the last couple months so I log on for raids only. The only thing keeping me playing right now is raiding. And the people.

    It seems I do that in the spring each year. And I’m tired too. Going to bed at 11pm feels really late some days.

    Our guild raids 8.5 hours per week over 3 days. Invites take place 30 minutes before start time and I log on to the game 10-15 minutes before that to repair from the previous raid and replenish my consumables ( I have enough gold that I don’t need to farm).

    So you can add 45 minutes * 3 raids a week to my 8.5 hours of actual raiding. I spend 10 hours and 45 minutes or less a week in WoW. But it’s a pretty intense 10 hours during which I can’t get interrupted. I totally understand how this can’t work for everyone. Especially the whole going to bed at 11 twice a week and midnight on Fridays.

    So the things that keep my subscription active are raids and the people.

    My husband let his account run out over a week ago. He hasn’t given in yet but I’m not sure how long he’ll last. He took my priest out yesterday and did a few dailies with her. He doesn’t raid and really has no reason to keep playing beyond the people and that’s not quite enough on its own.

  7. I see you’re a black belt. One of the things that I sacrificed to wow was my capoeira classes :(.

  8. this is why i stopped. It wasn’t the raids, which I liked, it was everything else. People say “oh it’s only 1 hour of dailies” but I challenge them whether they actually timed their dailies. Especially on a healing class anything but the few non-combat dailies take a long time, usually I’d stretch any combat dailies into 2 days. Sure it’s still better than it used to be, but the truth is I hate that part of the game.

    You know what I like to do ? I like healing. I like grouping and healing. I don’t like spending 2 hours of grinding for every 4 hours of raiding. So I did it less and less until finally I stopped. I do what’s fun for me.

    It’s too bad there’s not a game where you can do the grouping without the farming in between. Say a raid where no consumables are allowed, no enchants, you just use your skill and the items you find by raiding. That I would still be doing if that were available. After all, if that’s the fun part, why not give us more fun and less grind?

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