So, I posted what was intended to be a single commentary article on pugging dungeons for new players. In essence, a little disclaimer as to what a pug is and its inherent dangers as a warning to the uninitiated. Well, a few thousand pugs later and I find my hand forced in doing a follow up. Part One can be found here.
So, a little etiquette goes a long way. Seriously…A LONG WAY! There are some simple guidelines that you should follow based on your role: Tank, Healer, DPS, ALL PLAYERS.
- Check with your healer prior to pulling ANYTHING. DO NOT rush in straight away, simply ask in party chat..”Everyone ready? Heals, are you ready?”
- Wait for mana. Seriously…Healers use MANA, wait and see if they need more. If they are anywhere below 50% ASK before moving.
- Wait for quest and gathering work to be done. These dungeons have quests and some folks do have gathering professions they are working on. While this tank may be your 10th alt and you dont care about that stuff, the other players may be playing on their very first toon!!! Be patient here.
- If you intend on pulling multiple targets, TANK THEM ALL! You cannot round up 6-8 mobs and then expect no one to use any AOE. In fact, rounding up multiple is the express invitation to USE AOE DPS.
- If you have CC available to you in the party, use them when appropriate. Mark the targets with the standard symbols, and your party should know what to do. If they don’t do anything, then simply and politely say so..”I’m marking targets for CCs: Poly=Diamond, Hex=Triangle, Shackle=Star, Trap=Square. Kill order is Skull then X.” Again, some of your party might be new, educate them on the standards we all have come to know.
- Do not run ahead of the party, especially the tank.
- If you are low on mana, SAY OOM! Let them know!
- Be sure to heal all the players, not just the tank. This includes hunter pets if you are able.
- DO NOT RUN! If something barrels down on you, do not flee for your life. Say in party chat…MOB ON ME! Make a macro, something. Running away just makes it harder to control the mob in most instances.
- Watch your LOS. Be sure you can SEE your healing targets.
- If you pull aggro, you own it dammit. You have abilities to lower your threat, use them.
- If you do pull a mob, and cannot drop aggro, run TO the tank! Do not run off like a fleeing little girl. Bring the mob back to the tank and let them grab it.
- Don’t go off pulling mobs and acting like the tank*
- If you are a dps plate wearer, don’t start tanking because you think the tank stinks. You queued up as DPS, came in labeled as DPS, play a DPS. If the tank is bad, educate them**
- Don’t roll NEED on tanking gear unless you ASK if you can roll for off spec, and the TANK expressly says its ok.
- Be nice. Seriously…be nice!!! It’s not hard! I get that some players like to joke around with offensive language and such and you and your friends don’t take it negatively. BUT…It’s a PUG. These are NOT your friends! Would you walk into a restaurant and randomly start throwing racist, sexual, or otherwise offensive jokes at some stranger? If your answer to that is “Yes I would” well, you’re an idiot and those actions will catch up to you eventually when someone does something truly offensive to you like putting you in the hospital. Most of us who are semi-mature and mentally stable would not do such a thing. Set a good impression. The best pugs are in fact usually fairly quiet, or the chatter that happens is non offensive androgynous banter. Take note of that.
- If you queued for a random, see it through to the end. Don’t queue and leave after the first boss because it didn’t drop your item. Just keep running it and finish the job you started!
- Roll NEED on appropriate gear! Don’t be the level 80 Hunter rolling on leather agility. You want mail agility dammit. Don’t be the Healing pally rolling on cloth gear, yes we know there are some great stats there…but if there is a caster let them take it! Don’t be the tank or rogue rolling on a ranged weapon with a hunter in the group.
- BE PATIENT!!! This bears some serious repeating and enforcement…BE EFFING PATIENT! Despite what YOU may believe…dungeons are not a sprint. They are not intended to be run through as fast as humanly possible. It is not a race. There is no prize or extra goodies for finishing it faster. If your intent is to get through dungeons as quick as possible to chain run them and level fast….get a guild or set group to do it with the intent purpose of speed running. If you do random pugs know that people are LEARNING! Some are learning a new class, a new role, some are learning the game still and on their first toon! They are trying to look at drops and determine if they are an upgrade or not. They are leveling a profession as they go along. They are looting everything for money, for drops, for materials, etc. You may have run this dungeon 4 times and completed the quests, but not everyone has. They may need to pick things up, be mindful of this.
You saw the asterisks above right…RIGHT?! Elaboration ahead…
*Hunters pull. Really, we do. We can pull mobs from further out and then bring them right to a tank and drop our aggro entirely. So if you are a Hunter and you don’t know how to pull, learn this skill. If you are a tank running with a hunter who does (Hey, Quori can pull anything to the tank with flawless ease of execution), then let them do it. Trust me on this one. Stand on the traps and just spam what comes your way. For hunters learning this, be aware in some cases the tank hates it. Be mindful of the group dynamic and go with the flow.
**Educating someone is NEVER yelling at them that they are an idiot and doing it for them. They cannot SEE what you are doing. They have no clue what buttons or skills you are using. Example…as a Prot Warrior, I was having trouble building aggro on multiple mobs early on while leveling.
Someone simply asked me…”Are you hitting Rend > Thunder Clap > Cleave as your rotation on an AOE mob pull?”
My reply was “No.”
“Ok, well there is your issue…use that. You have talent points that spread your rend to all your TC targets. It will get enough threat that you should hold them and not lose them going forward.”
“OH! I didn’t even realize that’s what it did. Wow, I’m a noob! Thanks!”
“Sure, no problem. Hey man, we all have to learn at some point. Lets give it a go.”
Educating someone is clarifying if they know the “right” or standard way of doing it. I have rolled in a dungeon with other hunters and seen their dps lagging far behind mine…I’m talking me doing 2-3k in my mid 60’s and them doing 500-600dps at the same level. I check their gear, their spec, and see what is up there first. Then I may comment, “Hey hunter, your dps is really low – you’re specced as BM, but I haven’t seen your pet go red at all…make sure you are using all your abilities to max it out.” Or they maybe are specced Survival and I see they have no points in Serpent Spread or never drop any traps…”Hey, you might want to add points into SRSpread and be sure to drop traps on each fight. All the mobs are affected and it will proc LnL for you!” Again, educating is easy and involves suggestions and constructive criticism that are done with kindness and respect; not meanness, humiliation, and offensive slurs.
Pugs runs are only as good as WE make them. Players who are learning will only learn what WE teach them. Try to practice some if not all of the above. It’s truly not as hard as you might think!