Soloing in Scenarios

I think that this is a topic most of the bloggers have tried to avoid, because a lot of people consider it to be an exploit. It isn’t an exploit, but it is something that Mythic needs to address.

The issue is that, particularly as a healer or ranged dps, you can get a lot more renown or xp from a scenario if you leave your group and put yourself into an empty one. By a lot more, I mean two or three times the renown for a healer. This assumes that you are healing for roughly the same amount that you would have been in a group, the only thing that changes is that you switch yourself to an empty group.

Feelings run high about this kind of behaviour. A lot of healers don’t heal anyone running solo, since they chose not to help anyone else get more renown/xp. People who do it say that they’re healing anyway and helping the group, just they don’t have to share their scores with ‘leechers’. And things go downhill from there. There is a lot of resentment against the people who consistently solo and  boast about their boosted scores. Whether or not people will remember any of the names in a couple of months time is anyone’s guess though.

The basic place I start from is that you should NEVER penalise a character for playing in a group, ever. That’s crazy. But right now, those of us who stay with our groups to support them better (via spells like shield and group heal which are group only) are made to feel like idiots. It’s also harsh on classes like tanks who don’t really have the option.

They just need to put a cap on the amount of xp/renown you can earn solo. Put it equal to the highest score anyone else gets on the team, or something based on a similar metric. Let people play solo if they prefer, some have reported less lag, but don’t make us feel like idiots for playing more sociably to support our groups.

As it stands, it is out of hand. You can’t blame people for playing the game the way it is coded.  I am really quite surprised that it hasn’t been sorted out yet.

29 Responses

  1. it is an exploit in my opinion and anyone found abusing exploits should be dealt with. The people that do this have a CHOICE and they choose to do this knowing why they do it and entirely for personal gain.

    Tax evasion is an exploit but you get put behind bars for that. So I say if you catch them, ban them.

  2. It is definately an exploit. An exploit is the consious abuse of game mechanics to gain an unfair advantage. This is exactly that.

    Personally I think everyone on the scenario should be considered to be in the “same group” in terms of xp/renown sharing. No, this won’t mean everyone will get the exact same xp/renown as not all of the xp/renown is shared with your group but it will make splitting up groups worthless in terms of xp/renown farming.

  3. I agree, it’s exploiting game mechanics, and I’ve reported it as such. Hopefully something will eventually get done.

    It’s the wrong people that are being described as leechers, it’s the soloers that are leeching. They’re leeching off the efforts of every other person in the scenario, they’d be getting precisely 0 renown if no one else was there, taking damage, controlling the fight and so on. Seeing my own guild members do it when their own guild and alliance mates are in the same scenario really annoys me, I had hoped that people could control their own impulses for personal advancement for the sake of the people they share the game with.

  4. How is it an exploit if EVERYONE can do it with a couple mouse clicks?

    I think thats more of an oversight, perhaps you’re familiar with the phrase ‘not working as intended’

  5. “You can’t blame people for playing the game the way it is coded. ”

    Yes you can. I did and I do. There are lots of mechanics that may allow conduct that is either against the ToS or even just merely socially inappropriate.

    The chat system is working as intended and would permit me to do all kinds of reprehensible things should I have a mind.

    Could I call someone out for that kind of inappropriate conduct? Of course. That’s participating in social organization.

    Could a developer put a profanity filter on the chat? Sure. Do we then need a harrassment “filter” too or deem that conduct as socially acceptable to?

    It needs to be fixed, but conduct is always > coding. At its core, its a wetware problem that can only partially be dealt with by coding.

    The “If you can’t beat em, join em” attitude just poisons the game environment.

  6. @winner

    Not everyone can do it because there aren’t enough empty groups to go around 🙂

    Also, you are reducing your side’s chances of winning by forfeiting the benefits of group heals and buffs. You are putting personal gain above the good of the group. There is simply no way to paint yourself well in that light. It’s just plain ugly behaviour.

    Unfortunately, appealing to an individual’s sense of decency isn’t going to work when some people simply don’t have one. Mythic need to fix this soon.

  7. It’s my favorite topic again. Hey p@tsh@t, how you doing buddy?

    It isn’t an exploit, but it is something that Mythic needs to address
    Finally someone else that sees the light. Your totally right spinks, it’s not an exploit. It does however promote solo grouping, which isn’t good and Mythic needs to find a solution to the problem asap.

    A lot of healers don’t heal anyone running solo

    I remember you saying those exact words in the comments of one of my posts. What made you change your mind?

    They just need to put a cap on the amount of xp/renown you can earn solo
    I have to disagree with you on this one. The answer is not to nerf, but to change how the contribution system works entirely. Players should be rewarded for group and individual effort. They should be rewarded for contributing toward the objectives of the scenario as well (i.e. running a flag, healing the flag runner, killing people who attack the flag runner).

    It’s the wrong people that are being described as leechers, it’s the soloers that are leeching.

    Some truth in that. Group members can also leech. It’s very easy to activate a keyboard macro and remain in the starting area safe while leeching off the efforts of your group mates. I took a screen shot of someone doing it. I’d be more worried about these kind of people, than solo groupers if I were you.

    Also, you are reducing your side’s chances of winning by forfeiting the benefits of group heals and buffs
    This is my major concern about solo grouping. Mythic really need to fix it.

  8. Crimson: Personally I do dislike it, I was just trying to write a more balanced article to explain why I thought it was an issue without bringing my personal bias into it.

    re: exploit. I changed my mind on this because Mythic have had plenty of time to comment on it or hotfix it and they haven’t. They were quick enough to throw in fixes for the fast AE levelling. But they haven’t addressed this. So I conclude that they don’t see it as an exploit.

  9. I am also interested to know what Mythic’s official stance is on solo grouping. I am worried that they have chosen to remain quiet on the issue because:

    a) they can’t fix it easily
    b) there is a greater problem (i.e. leeching), and solo grouping is providing a solution to it.

  10. I find it exceptionally selfish and kind of irritating. Of course, I come to the table as a tank and therefore have nothing to gain by soloing. I also come to a PUG (and to be honest, even a non-PUG) scenario without much expectation of being healed. I run around a bit, charge when necessary and die a lot. Sometimes I pop potions. Mostly I just die a lot. It can be effective but I don’t go crazy with rage if I die a lot. I expect it and I know healers are usually healing -something- even if it isn’t me.

    I just think that people who see the individual gain over the group gain/fun as being a bit pig-headed and mostly just feel sorry for them – I mean, we’ll get to level/renown cap -eventually- and if you are going to take things so seriously that you have to throw a mini-strop for the 15 minutes max that a scenario will take and insist on the me-me-me route then, well, a bit sad really.

  11. Well Crimson, they’ve just made their first foray into commenting on it, by tweaking the renown for healers.

    But not the xp for solo dps.

    I really hate the fact that people go solo in scenarios and I don’t like the designed ability to move into a ‘hidden’ group (through selecting ‘more parties) so people don’t notice it as quickly. It’s encouraging people to play a broken system. In a game that is all about grouping and realm benefits.. it sits uneasily.

    As Spinks says, I also feel somehow lame that I don’t do it. Everyone says it’s no exploit, it’s just using what the game has given me – I’ve had it suggested to me a number of times by others as a way of still healing the groups, but from outside them. I just haven’t ever been able to bring myself to do it. It seems wrong.

    I don’t really understand why they need so many groups in scenarios anyway, Unless it’s designed for small and big scenarios alike and they didn’t want to scale the number of groups to the number of people allowed in (not that I know of any 9-group scenarios, but maybe it’s on the cards, or during city sieges or something).

    blah blah, I’m rambling! Don’t like it, glad we’re all discussing it.

  12. @arbitrary
    Renown gain for healers definately needed a nerf. Healers were the most efficient class for gaining renown by far. The patch didn’t state that they nerfed renown gain for solo healers though, so I’m not sure how you see that as Mythic’s comment?

    Also I should point out that I’m really against solo grouping. I just don’t like the current contribution system. It would be nice to be able to stay in a group without splitting everything x number of ways. You should be rewarded individually for your contribution, as well as for a team.

  13. Wotcha everyone,

    Spinks is right. It’s not an exploit. It might well be an unforseen result, but it’s definately not an exploit. However…

    It *is* shoddy play.

    Mythic have put in plenty of systems and procedures to actively make group play easier to find, and easier to join in. Scenarios are a case in point – you have to choose to leave a scenario group.

    But by leaving that group, you are choosing to leave the collective effort of the scenario. You are deciding that rather than help your fellow players, your comrades in arms, all you want is the points. Well, if that’s what you want, fine. You’re not forced to group, and you’re not forced to help out those players on your side that might benefit from a helping hand, both in experience points, and renown. They’re not leechers. They’re players.

    I’m also not forced to help you out. By healing, or attacking whoever is attacking you. I don’t have to follow you around, and keep you alive. If I find out you’re more interested in min-maxing than in playing to the spirit of the game, then you really are on your own.

    And not just in that scenario. To me, you are a non-person. Because that scenario isn’t a points farming exercise. It’s part of the overall RvR war effort. And that’s the game I’m playing.


  14. @badjawa

    But by leaving that group, you are choosing to leave the collective effort of the scenario
    I disagree. You don’t need to be in the same group to contribute to the collective effort of the scenario. I could be a solo group healer and still keep everyone on my side alive. I could also run a flag and contribute to my side winning the scenario.

    People seem to have the idea that just because you are in a separate group means that you are selfish and don’t want to play as a team… I can’t begin to explain how wrong this perception is. I should point out, that by default there are two groups in a scenario (assuming no one changes groups). If you choose not to heal people on the other group, then it is you who are being selfish and not contributing. There will always be people playing along side you who are not in your group. Everyone contributes, regardless of which group they are in. Unless you are a leecher, which is my primary concern atm with sharing XP and RP within a group. The contribution system needs to be leech proof or else you will have people with marcos leveling their chars while afk.

  15. Wotcha everyone,

    Crimson Starfire, I think your definition of “collective effort” is different to mine.

    I’m not going to start arguing semantics because that’s really, really boring, and I’m not interested in improving my legalese to the extent that I could start drafting resolutions for the United Nations. However, whilst you were mentioning keeping everyone alive and running flags, you forgot to mention how your group buffs and heals work. If they’re that rubbish, why did Mythic bother to put them in? And what about the group buffs of those in the group you just left?

    Never mind that Rank and Renown gain are a part of the collective effort. Whilst you’re healing, and flag running, and killing, you are sharing that with the rest of your group. Maybe I’m soft in the head, but I get a kick out of that. I’m part of a team, and if I have a good scenario and do well, then I’m sharing some of my luck with those members of the team that perhaps didn’t do so well (for whatever reasons). This will average out over time, but the important thing is that it means we’ll *all* get to play with the cool renown rewards, and if that happens sooner rather than later due to our collective effort, then that’s a Win for everyone.

    And at no point did I mention not healing the other groups in a scenario. They are a part of the collective effort too. I am talking about those players who choose to leave their group in a scenario, because the points are what matters most. If the points didn’t matter, then they would stay in the group. Declaring that other people in the group *might* be “Leechers”, or that by leaving the group you are stopping them, is a bit rubbish really. The only way to make a stand against people taking the piss is by making it socially unacceptable.

    Sometimes people are going to be stood in the spawn point for excellent reasons. Maybe it’s a family issue. Maybe their dinner is burning. Maybe the phone has rung, and they’ve stopped playing for the duration of the call. Maybe their eyes have stopped working due to the amount of time they’ve spent looking at the screen. Branding them all leechers is tantamount to branding all kids who spend their evenings hanging around street corners “Knife-Wielding Hoodies”. Maybe they’re stood there because they have nowhere else to go. Maybe they’re good kids, socialising.

    By playing a scenario solo, you are not sharing in the experience and Renown gain. I find that to be a definition of “selfish”. Maybe I’m wrong.


  16. @ Crimson
    “People seem to have the idea that just because you are in a separate group means that you are selfish and don’t want to play as a team… I can’t begin to explain how wrong this perception is. ”

    It is being selfish, as far as i’m aware every single class gets a group buff, mind you i’ve only played a white lion, warrior priest and bright wizard, plus I know that archmages and runepriests have them too.
    If you are not in a group then you are not sharing that buff, you are making your “team” numerically worse off.
    I don’t think people think you don’t want to be part of a team as that is the way you get renown, being selfish and not playing as part of a team are two seperate issues. Infact i saw one numpty put himself solo jump a bit and then get 12 renown and 0 xp, for a 15 min scenario.

    On a side note, how does renown work for healing is it like 2 or 3 per tick? when 2 or 3 is divided by 6 then its still 1 to each group member and 1*6 is more than 2 or 3, therefore more renown would be generated and benefit your team, therefore taking renown for yourself over your team is pretty much the definition of selfish.
    If you are scared of jumping macros then just ask people to move with you to another group as its likely the jumper isn’t paying attention.

  17. If you leave my group I can’t give you buffs, I can’t give you my group heal and I know that healing you, keeping you alive will allow you to earn yourself more xp/renown that you refuse to share.

    The team will suffer for it, is that my fault as a healer that does not want to heal solo people or the soloers fault for not wanting to share with the group?

    I would like this to be fixed somehow, but until then I just won’t heal solo people. If they die enough alone they might decide they can earn more if they join the group.

  18. If you remain in the group the incentive is to do nothing that risks you dying so you can continue to benefit from the xp earned by the rest of the group. There is a lot of leeching within groups going on. It sucks to get a kamikaze kill on a healer and see the rest of the group but not you get xp.

    Of course if I go solo to dps I’m then leeching off everyone else who is tanking/ccing etc. I pretty much only do this when its obvious most of my group wants to hang back and let someone else do all the work and take all the deaths.

    Oh – and healers – make sure you have the first 2 scenario groups up on your screen so you can heal both. Being ignored by a healer in the other group is pretty annoying.

  19. I think there’s a strong incentive not to die anyway, to be honest. Even if you were soloing, you’d be out of the fight for however long it took you to get back (so less renown/etc).

    I wonder if this was part of the reason that healing gained more renown in the first place. To make up what you lose by being dead so often.

    And I’d like to thank everyone for avoiding personal attacks in this discussion. It’s a really interesting topic, though.

  20. I am getting so sick of repeating myself, it’s really not funny. This will be my last reply on this thread. Badjawa, Fhel and Dexton. Please read my first comment on this issue. You will find that I also dislike solo grouping. I want everyone to be in the same group so that we can share buffs. What I don’t like is splitting XP and RP x ways. It opens the door for leeching. I know, I know… the player may be idle legitimately… but I can guarantee that once a sure fire way to leech is found, people will use it. They will abuse it so much that scenarios will no longer be fun. You can argue all you like, it will happen. Seriously, I don’t want to hear another reply arguing that sharing is not leeching. I know that it’s designed not to be, but there are people in this world that live for game exploits. Sharing XP and RP is like an all you can eat buffet to exploiters.

    *Yes nerf solo grouping.
    *No don’t share XP and RP evenly within a group. It promotes leeching. A new contribution system is needed.
    *People who don’t help others in separate groups make me sick

    I won’t be changing my mind on any of these points, so don’t bother trying.

  21. @ Crimson

    Okay I’ve read through your posts again and I think I got the wrong message.

    “*No don’t share XP and RP evenly within a group. It promotes leeching. A new contribution system is needed.”

    I picked the above cause i think discussion can happen on this, why don’t they just split it up evenly between people who contribute at least 3-5% to the renown earned in the scenario? a bit like how PQ contributions are factored into gaining bonus’ on the loot roll.
    Its a bit hard to tell if that would work because we don’t know how the contribution system works I suppose.
    But i think being even handed to the scenario group while excluding leechers is preferable, as it would be impossible to make sure everyone gets a fair xp/renown rating in a scenario for their effort.

    For example as a white lion my damage will vary widely in a scenario depending on whether i get healed or even if we have a front line. I get less damage than archmages and tanks if we are losing or facing a team of tanks and medium armour types, where as I see healers on losing teams still pushing 40k of healing.

    Its an issue that i don’t think can be resolved by individual contributions simply by how the game works.

  22. I think instead of dividing XP/RP evenly, they should divide it according to a player’s proximity to a map objective.

    eg stone troll crossing. If you make a kill that is too far from the bauble, you get something like 10% of the XP/RP. Kills made within X radius of the bauble get 100%.

    Additionally, points should be given for picking up the bauble and running around capping the points (currently, you get nothing for this, apart from siphoning XP/RP from your comrades who are killing).

    Similar idea can be applied to all the other scenario maps.

  23. That idea was typed out ambiguously, sorry. I meant to say that any time XP/RP is divided between a group of players, the players closer to an objective should get a bigger slice of the pie.

    Also, if this system were in place XP/RP may as well just be divided across the whole scenario, regardless of which group you’re in, which would eliminate the solo grouping problem.

  24. […] “Soloing in Scenarios” @ Book of Grudges – Short and plain, but we here at WAAAGH! agree 100% […]

  25. @Melf – the problem with that idea is that you are forcing only certain tactics, while penalizing other equally viable tactics. In your example, if I’m camping their spawn, to kill of their reinforcements or at least slow them down, I’m helping the FC directly, and the entire team for that matter. Yet by your system I’d be penalized. Changes yes, but not changes to that make the situation worse.

    One point I don’t see in this thread is this: What if your entire group is ‘leeching’? Playing naked for the tome unlock, being just incompetent (healers that won’t, DPS that doesn’t, tanks that just die without doing anything of worth, making no attempt to do the things that win the scenario – like flag/point capping), actually leeching (so what if its an RL emergency, log out, takes two mouse clicks – if you can’t do that, you shouldn’t be risking your family in RL by being on a computer). Been in groups like that were I was the only player getting kills, tossing out heals, buffing, actually trying to win. Why should I be supporting those players, when they won’t support me?

    Overall, I think the system is flawed, the rewards should be given for activities that support winning the scenario, based on the activites that directly gain your side points or keep the other side from gaining points. When I run the flag in Phoenix Gate, I get lousy rewards since I’m not doing the things the game awards points for – mindlessly killing in the middle. Or when I stand silent and bored on flag D (and so unrewarded), to fend off that annoying stealther that keeps making solo runs for the flag. Mythic needs to address this in all the scenarios, and I’m puzzled why this wasn’t done during beta.

  26. I used to call them out in SC chat and remind everyone to not heal or protect that person. But yeah, that is a little bit in your face and I dont want to spend my time being “Scenario Police”.

    Now, when I see someone off in a group solo, *I* join their group, and if I have any friends with me, I get them to join it to. If they move to another one, we follow. I refuse to let them go solo and will just keep group hopping with them.

    Maybe someday they will get the point.

  27. […] players etc. This, in turn, has lead to rather a hot button issue, leaving the default party to solo in scenarios, a somewhat thorny problem. It’s not AFK-leeching or anything, you still have to […]

  28. […] to them (other than actively *not* trying to target and heal them).  I had decided early on, when this was first noticed, to not heal anyone who did this.  I knew, though apparently wasn’t […]

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