- Leading a raid can be like herding cats, but by the graces, they're your cats. - Stylean Silversteel, TCG
Raid groups are a way to have parties of more than 5 and up to 40 people, divided into up to 8 groups of up to 5 players. The terms "raid" and "raiding" primarily and traditionally refer to PVE raid-specific instances and zones. As party leader, a player can convert their group into a raid group by accessing the "Social" Panel, selecting "Raid", and choosing "Convert Group to Raid." From then on, any new players invited to the group will join the raid group (up to a maximum of 40). This requires at least 2 people (IE a party). A person alone cannot form a raid group.
While in a raid group, players do not receive credit for completing quest objectives unless the quest calls for a raid. Players also receive an experience reduction for any mob killed while in a raid group. These are to prevent players from creating very large groups in order to complete normal quests or other game content intended for parties of 5 or fewer. This experience reduction is simply that the usual "group XP bonus" is not applied while in a raid group.
Many instances requiring a raid are also subject to a raid timer.
In Mists of PandariaThis section concerns content exclusive to Mists of Pandaria. This section concerns content that is not yet released.
Coming in Patch 5.4, a new Flexible Raid tier of difficulty will be introduced roughly between Raid Finder and Normal mode difficulty. It will scale bosses and drops for varying group size from 10 to 25 players. More details will be known when it is available for testing on the PTR.
In CataclsymThis section concerns content exclusive to Cataclysm.
In Wrath of the Lich KingThis section concerns content exclusive to Wrath of the Lich King.
In World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King, all 25-player raids are also available to complete with 10 players. This is so that more players will get to see end game content. Even the Lich King encounter is available as a 10 player raid.
Raiding as end-game content
Raids are designed as activities for people whose characters have reached the maximum level. As the game does not permit further increase of skills, or introduce new abilities, the only avenues remaining to enhance a character lay in "better gear".
Almost all raid events and bosses require that the raid members have particular levels of gear and skill, expressed as dps, damage mitigation, and/or healing ability. In addition, a majority of such bosses also require the group use particular, sometimes unique tactics. While occasionally those tactics mirror those used by smaller groups, they often require things that smaller groups simply don't have the diversity to do.
Given these unique requirements, most raid boss encounters require some amount of practice to defeat. Sometimes the peculiarities of a boss encounter are such that being vastly overgeared/overlevel will not permit the raid to ignore the designed tactics.
Raiding guilds are guilds that devote some or all of their collective time to playing in raid instances, defeating (or practicing to defeat) raid encounters. They have the advantage of being able to get to know the abilities (or lack thereof) of their various members, and adjust their tactics accordingly. They also have a shared investment in the success of not just that raid, but future raids as well, a feature that "pick up raids" lack.
Raiding guilds often use additional measures to enhance their chances of success, notably Voice_over_Internet_Protocol software, and particular addons that provide timing, threat, and other services not available in the base WoW client.
Raiding guilds and time commitment
There is some academic discussion about the concept of raids as they currently are designed in major graphical MMOs, primarily centered on how much of a player's time they consume. A typical World of Warcraft raid can take 3-4 hours once the group is able to complete it, and can take much more time over many sessions to get to that point. Basically, that it can take up as much of one's time as permitted. Generally, though, practical considerations (work/school schedules, fatigue, etc) will place limits on how much time a group spends raiding.
There are, of course, extreme examples, such as a Final Fantasy XI raid that lasted 18 hours before they decided to quit.. World of Warcraft mitigates such long boss fights by adding enrage timers to bosses to ensure that a single fight does not last too long.
Given the amount of time involved to be successful, there are some game developers and academics that feel that raiding can be a focus for obsession, impacting a person's ability to care about real life goals and accomplishments. Players should be aware of these factors when deciding if they want to get into raiding or to what extent they want to get into raiding.
Starting a raid
The leader of a party can convert the group to a raid by clicking the "Convert to Raid" button in the Group window. At this point it becomes a "group of parties" with up to 8 parties, each with 5 characters. The leader of the raid can drag characters between groups to move them to different parties; typically, this is done to achieve some strategic goal such as distributing shamans and paladins to share totems and auras or warriors with rogues for Battle Shout (note that this is no longer needed in current patch). The leader can promote other characters, which gives them the abilities to invite and kick from the raid and also use the broadcast raid warnings (using the "/rw" command).
See Raiding for newbies for further details.
- Main article: Raid AddOns
There have been many mods produced specifically for raiding.
- Level 70
- Level 60
- Level 70
- 10 and 25-player
- Level 85
- 10 and 25-player
- Vault of Archavon (faction needs to control Wintergrasp Keep)
- Chamber of Aspects
- The Eye of Eternity
- Ulduar (3.1.0)
- Trial of the Crusader (3.2.0)
- Trial of the Grand Crusader (3.2.0)
- Icecrown Citadel (3.3.0)
- Level 70
- Level 60
|Maximize Performance and Attitude while raiding|
- Flexible Raid
- Instances by level
- People in your Raid (silly)
- Raid AddOns
- Raid Finder
- Raid world markers
- Raiding for newbies
- Raiding guild