I’m sure you’ve all heard about Blizz’s planned change to 10 and 25 man raids for Cataclysm. If not, scoot over here real quick and check it out.
I’m fairly certain… nay, 99% sure this means my guild will never run another 25 man again come Cataclysm. Even now, we are forced to fill the last few spots in our 25-mans with pugs, not to mention we currently have only one 25-man ICC raid day scheduled per week, and about 3 separate 10-man ICC groups that run throughout the weekdays as well. Hello 10-man cliques! Hello fewer buffs (and as a result, lower DPS numbers overall)!
The other thing I’m afraid of with the new system is a repeat of what happened at the beginning of BC raiding with Karazhan. You’d have the group of guild members that would level up to 70 very quickly and begin running Kara, only to get far ahead of everyone else in the guild on progression and not want to wait around for everyone else to level up to move on to 25 mans. This is essentially the effect that broke apart my original vanilla guild Restrained Chaos and reduced us to forever circling the revolving door of Kara, never able to get enough geared people to run 25-mans as our more accomplished and impatient members continued to leave. That could happen in Cataclysm – the people who level to 85 quickly and start raiding will have a progression jump on their slower guildmates and will not likely want to sit around waiting for everyone else to catch up in order to progress on. Having experienced this once, I’m none-too-excited about the potential prospects of it reoccuring.
If there’s one thing I’ve learned over the past 5 years, it’s that wow players (well, most of them) are inherently lazy and will typically go for the path of least resistance… and that will most definitely be 10-mans come Cataclysm. How will 25-man guilds teeming with players survive? I’m not so sure they will.