The new Looking for Raid (LFR) loot system is slowly becoming a widely talked about topic. It’s different and greatly disputed for what can only be described as ghastly. The original LFR loot system was not without its faults, but the new system (which also applies to World Bosses) leaves the player with a lack of accomplishment or feeling of reward. By lack of a feeling of reward I simply mean this does a small gold return seem like it’s worth your time?
One thing to quickly point out is that the new Mogu’shan Vaults (MSV) LFR is much more difficult than the LFR version of Dragon Soul. This may be a response to how short it has been live, but the coordination required is much higher for Mogu’shan Vaults than Dragon Soul. So far in my trek through MSV the bosses have felt much more difficult and fulfilling.
In the old LFR loot system each boss would drop 4 pieces of loot randomly from each boss. If there was gear you needed then you would roll against others who needed it. Also, with this system if a healer and a DPS rolled on a spirit item the healer would receive a 100 point bonus to ensure they beat the DPS rolling on gear for their alternative spec. The biggest problem with this system is it did not differentiate this type of system for tier gear. If you were a priest that was running as a priest healer but you needed gear for your DPS spec you could roll for any tier piece all on an even playing field with everyone else available to roll for that piece. With this type of system people who already had the piece that dropped would then roll hoping to win in order to barter or trade for other drops they might lose later.
In the new LFR loot system after downing each boss everyone receives a bag of loot. This bag either contains a small amount of gold or gear from the boss’s loot table. If you do dailies you can get an extra roll by using your Elder Charms of Good Fortune. Using one of these tokens will either give you an extra chance at gear or more gold. The system automatically decides who gets gear and who doesn’t and it decides what gear you get as it applies to your class. The worst part with this system is that there is no evidence of others getting gear and you must rely on faith that someone did. When you run through a six boss raid and don’t see any loot popup at all this can be awfully discouraging.
The reason for this change was simple in that people were rolling on gear they simply didn’t need in order to make deals with the rest of the raid. It became a barter system as opposed to a loot system. Being increasingly frustrated with rolling on loot and losing to someone who had either no need for it or tried to bribe something else from you established a lot of animosity towards these players.
Both of the systems are flawed. On one hand you may almost never win gear that you see every boss and on the other hand you may almost never see gear period. The new LFR system fixes the old system but creates a whole new argument for the new one. The truth is that World of Warcraft players will probably never be satisfied, but I propose a simple solution: Revert to the old system while implementing it in a way that if you have already won that piece of gear then you cannot roll on it again. The system could take into account whether you are running as a healer or DPS and allow you to roll on tier pieces this way. This would ensure that no DPS can roll on Healer gear or Tanks on DPS gear.
This will create an even playing field, allowing you to roll on gear you need, actually seeing loot drop from a boss, and all the while getting rid of the pesky barter system. None of the LFR systems are perfect and each has its flaws. The one I have laid out creates easily the best case for all players simply running LFR to gear up.
Bobby Barr is the Editor and Webmaster at HordeNation.com. We run articles on games such as World of Warcraft, Guild Wars 2, and Star Wars the Old Republic. Follow us on Twitter, Like us on Facebook, and check out HordeNation.com.