State of the Jesters: Entering the Emerald Dream

It’s official, raiding has been suspended until the next raid tier. I tried my best to keep it going but with turnover higher than normal and the constant wipes on Zskarn, it was felt we were doing more harm than good. A few players ended their trial and a few of our veterans wanted to take some time to play other games for a bit before returning for Emerald Dream. It sucks because we only killed Sark once and those of us who patiently waited on the sideline won’t have a crack at it. We’re currently at a roster of 22 , and I’ve been diligently looking for players. I have to be honest and transparent with them during our trial conversations about where we’re at raidwise. Many of them understood the situation we were in. Since I’m recruiting specifically for the next raid instead of for right now, this opens up the recruiting pool significantly. The recruiting communities seem to be a little more subdued at the moment with not as much activity going on, but I suspect that’ll ramp up in the next few weeks as players are looking to return. This feels like the precursor to Season 1 Vault of the Incarnate all over again. The plan is to bolster our ranks back up to 27 to 30 players or so. We finished US 300 in Aberrus, but my projection is that we’re going to drop down to US 400 – 500 range for the next tier. If you’re looking for a raid team (or community), come check us out!

In a change of pace, we did schedule one of our raid nights to step into the PTR though. There was a weekend where normal Emerald Dream was available and we all had good looks at some of the boss abilities and our own class changes in a raid environment. Without anyone around to take that mantle internally, I’ve had to start designing the raid playbook for all of the bosses. I’ve got the movement and major abilities diagrammed and what the overall strategy is. The next step is to put together a draft of healing and raid defensives but we can’t do that just yet until Viserio’s comes out with a new sheet. We have around 6 or so weeks to prepare and get as much information put together. Once that’s done, we schedule one of our raid nights for a film review day where we sit in Discord and go through all of the encounters with PTR footage, maps, and other important parts for the briefing. We started doing this back in Vault and Aberrus and felt that it was effective with player preparation. They still have the ability to go through raid material individually, but some players tend to learn well in a group environment on a Discord call and it lets us all ask each other questions or highlight key moments in an encounter that need to be more thoroughly explained.

Aside from that, there’s still a lot more housekeeping we have to do.

  • Raiding road map: This usually falls on the GMs shoulders here. We have a better idea of this after the first week where we lay out what nights are for normal, to heroic, and when we start mythic raiding along with when reclears should occur and when we start raid extensions.
  • Loot council: Right now, it’s a loot dictatorship and it’s all me! But I’m not smart enough to figure that out on my own which means appointing new members. We can’t do this without…
  • Loot wish lists: We use for this but it isn’t updated for Emerald Dream quite yet.
  • Raid Plan: Where I’ve been doing the bulk of our playbook design. About halfway there, but still missing some information.
  • Defensive CDs: One of our trials volunteered to take a crack at this once it’s released.

Guild administration is challenging stuff but satisfying when it works. I wish I could clone myself a few times to help with everything that needs to be done.