Raid Leading 101: The Basics

The following information is provided in order to help those interested in leading events. It is by no means an attempt to be comprehensive, nor does it hold itself up as either the right or only way to go about these things; it is intended merely as free advice. I've tried to condense everything down to keep it simple, so that this can be used as a checklist of sorts.

Table of Contents

  1. R is for Requirements

  2. A is for Assignments

  3. I is for Instructions

  4. D is for Division

R is for Requirements

  1. The first step in putting together your raid force is determining what is required, in terms of both force and equipment, and whether or not you can muster it. When assessing force, ask yourself these questions:

    1. What is the minimum force of raiders required? (Healers? Tanks? CC? High-DPS types?) What is the minimum level that should attend?
    2. Is there particular equipment (clickies? EB items?) required?
    3. Are certain resists required? (MR/FR 100+ gear?)
    4. Are there any key personel or roles that are imperative? (Rogue to get through a locked door?)

  2. When you have an idea in your head of what's required, it's a good idea to start a channel, announce your intentions and say that you are "assessing force". Tell your raiders the minimum levels/equipment, and encourage them to join the channel. As they join the channel, using /list #, you can measure the expected attendance against what you've estimated as your minimum and decide to proceed or not.

  3. If any special loot rules will be used or any items reserved, now is the best time to make it clear.

A is for Assignments

  1. Once you've decided to proceed, you need to ensure that all the critical duties have people assigned to them. Delegating skilled people to the right task greatly reduces your own level of distraction and stress. Don't micro-manage. Some key assignments to consider:

    1. Tankage: Main Assist, Secondary Assist, Tankmezzers, Rampage Tanks. Optionally, assign a "Tank Commander" to sort and rotate these positions as necessary for you.
    2. Pullers: Assign a puller or pullers. Optionally, assign someone to be "Pull Team Commander" and let them sort out pulling amongst themselves and the other available pullers.
    3. Healers: Assign someone to be in charge of healing/curing. Ensure they know the enemy details. (Rampage? Flurry? AE?)
    4. CC: If you are expecting a particularly difficult or complicated crowd-control scenario, you may wish to assign someone to organize the crowd-control amongst the mezzers.
    5. Master Looter (s): You may wish to assign someone else to loot, to again reduce your own overhead and free you up to focus on other tasks.
    6. Herald: You may wish to assign someone to take tells from other guilds, respond to camp checks, and deal with all "outside distractions".

  2. When announcing assignments (and other important instructions), it is always a good idea to announce them at least twice, to make sure everyone sees the message and it isn't lost amongst spam, tells, etc. People you've assigned likewise need to make any of their instructions clear, and if they are not, you may need to prompt them.

I is for Instructions

  1. Now that everyone is assembled and ready to proceed, you need to provide instructions on how to go about achieving the goal. Some key information might include:

    1. Travel methods: Sneaking in with invisibility, or fighting?
    2. CC method: Single-tanking with mez? Twin-tanking with AE allowed? Multi-tanking with people assisting their own groups?
    3. Enemy: Are they mezzable, charmable, snare-able, rootable? Do they run? Is the boss mob slowable? Does it rampage? AE?

  2. Providing as much information as possible to the raiders helps them better prepare for what they are facing, and also helps to instill their confidence in the Raid Leader.

  3. When giving directions for movement:

    1. Check that everyone is ready to move.
    2. Describe where you will be moving. Use fixed (north, south, east, west) directions in preference to relative ones (right, left) whenever possible. Use lowercase lettering. Speak in the future tense. E.G.: "When I say, we will be moving down the hall to the NORTH, and taking a left to head WEST to the next room."
    3. Once you've established where you will be moving, be very clear on when to move. Use uppercase. E.G.: "Follow me - MOVE NOW."

D is for Division

  1. So you've bested the enemy! Excellent. Time to divide the spoils, and then let people go home:

    1. Sort out the loot according to whatever loot rules are in place.
    2. Ensure people using expensive components are reimbursed (or will be).
    3. Ensure everyone has a way out of the zone. (e.g. Teleport, TLs, etc)

Every Raid Leader takes some time to "find their groove", developing necessary habits and standardized procedures, but with experience, Raid Leading becomes both easier and more rewarding. At the same time, Raid Leading, because of its hectic nature, will likely always remain an intense and sometimes exhausting exercise. Pace yourself accordingly, and be sure to get plenty of relaxing "me time" between excursions.

Good luck.

Frackus Everburning
Agnostic Erudite Arcanist
Founder of Seofon