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General: Level of Difficulty - PUGs

SBFordSBFord Associate Editor - News ManagerThe Land of AZPosts: 16,649MMORPG.COM Staff Uncommon

PUGS (Pick Up Groups) are sometimes both the bane and boon of players' existences in MMOs. In her latest Pokket Says, Hillary Nicole takes a look at PUGs and her history with them over the years. Read on!

Most of my friends had quit or left me for other servers, so I was forced to PUG my way through heroics and raids, I couldn't be hassled finding a raiding guild, especially one with strict guidelines. Naturally, the group finder in WoW made it easier to find a group to run heroics with and within a few weeks I had both toons geared enough to start raiding the normal mode of ICC (Icecrown Citadel).

Read more of Hillary Nicole's Pokket Says: Level of Difficulty - PUGs.

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Associate Editor: MMORPG.com
Follow me on Twitter: @MMORPGMom

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Comments

  • jfz133jfz133 Rivere-Rouge, QCPosts: 15Member

    Pugs make you appreciate your friends more.

  • BetaguyBetaguy Halifax, NSPosts: 2,590Member

    Great read, thanks

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  • XAPKenXAPKen Northwest, INPosts: 4,936Member Uncommon

    Old PUGs:  Working an hour to form a group, getting everyone to travel there, and watching the group break up after wiping badly on the first pull.

     

    New PUGs: Grouped in 15 minutes using a tool, instant teleportation to dungeon, mad dash run through because the dungeon is now in easy mode.

     

    At least the new way produces results, but somehow it's not the same as a guild run with clued players and a bit of challenge to beat the dungeon.


    Ken Fisher - Semi retired old fart Network Administrator, now turned Amateur Game Developer.  I don't Forum PVP.  If you feel I've attacked you, it was probably by accident.  Realm Lords 2 on MMORPG.com
  • KilsinKilsin NSWPosts: 346Member Uncommon

    Nice read and very true in a lot of MMOs! Thanks

    Community & Web Manager | Visionary Realms, Inc.
    Visit our Development Website.

  • jeremyjodesjeremyjodes antioch, ORPosts: 679Member

    I loved pugging with random strangers who never said a word. after countless runs, i got wise. when you seen one of these people speak you just left because you know they're gonna piss the healer off or the tank and the group would fall apart anyways.

    I had a friend who use to cut his arms. he also played Wow and told me pugging was much better then cutting. i was blown away by that comment..

    Lichking heroics were pretty awesome. I did raid the lichking it was pretty awesome.for me Wow died when arthas died....yes i'm a wrath baby i admit it :)

     

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  • sketocafesketocafe StoupaPosts: 804Member Uncommon

    I had a lot of fun doing pugs in tbc and wrath across different servers and toons. If raiding heavily, you spend so much time with the same 10-25 people that it's refreshing to actually play wow with other people on your server.

    One of the things I hated about Cata was the death of using your spare lockout to form pugs from trade.

    Also, heyday has one a.

  • Four0SixFour0Six Missoula, MTPosts: 1,181Member Uncommon

    I was new once.

    When I first started MMOing, I didnt play the same game as all my RL friends.

    Back then I only had PUGs. They helped me learn and I made friends.

    All this, "I don't PUG.", just reminds me of a middle school hallway, and gives me a headache.

  • mCalvertmCalvert Tallahassee, FLPosts: 1,283Member

    I hate PUGS. If I cant find a good guild to play with, Ill just play another game.

  • TrionicusTrionicus Fort Lauderdale, FLPosts: 497Member Uncommon
    The trick is to use PuGs to supplement your core group. I tried to never use them to fill important roles. Once I found a good PuG member it was auto friends list or guild recruitment time.
  • XAPKenXAPKen Northwest, INPosts: 4,936Member Uncommon

    Old PUGs: Spend an hour gathering a group, travel everyone to the dungeon, wipe on the first pull, half the group leaves.

    New PUGs: Spend 15 mins in queue, instant teleport to dungeon, face roll through easy mode content as fast as possible.  k-thx-bye.

     

    Neither much on enjoyable gameplay, but at least with the new method it's productive.


    Ken Fisher - Semi retired old fart Network Administrator, now turned Amateur Game Developer.  I don't Forum PVP.  If you feel I've attacked you, it was probably by accident.  Realm Lords 2 on MMORPG.com
  • JaggaSpikesJaggaSpikes LabinPosts: 421Member Uncommon

    i love PUGs. :)

  • FadariFadari Spokane, WAPosts: 3Member

    I also started gaming with UO, EQ and AC and I do not, in any way believe that a 12 year old could have played UO under the conditions of that game.  You don't have the intellect, thought processes, coordination or even the wisdom/experience at 12 to stay alive long enough to chop wood.  Fanboy's may dream about following some young girl gamer, but keep it real.  Even your knowledge of WoW is limited. You seem to have no idea what raiding was like before dungeon finders were added to some games and thus the dumbing down of content so uncoordinated groups could get their loot.  Just be honest, tell us what you know and really experienced.  Maybe an action screenshot would help prove you were there, then again I suppose you can get those anywhere.  After you've finished an article/blog, maybe a spell and grammar check might be an idea too.

    -Lisa (a real female gamer)

    https://www.facebook.com/pages/Fadari-and-Whizbang/103668596424771 

     

    Follow PC gaming news and my adventures in many virtual worlds!

    https://www.facebook.com/pages/Fadari-and-Whizbang/103668596424771?ref=tn_tnmn

  • cronius77cronius77 Fairfax, VAPosts: 1,353Member Uncommon

    im 35 and a DAOC baby , although i did play EQ1 for awhile pugs back in DAOC were WAY different than this crap they have now with dungeon finder cross server garbage. Back then you spent time finding a group and making friends along the way and even if you wiped on something usually the group stayed around and did it right the next time. PUGS talked and chatted in dungeons back then and people actually you know played a game and enjoyed it. Come WOW and others like it , its now a bunch of young punks with smartmouths saying hurry, pull, go go go! etc . Seriously you do not know how many times I would sit back in a group thinking to myself god i wish I knew who this idiot was so i could break their jaw. But thats the mentality now, random pugs means disrespect and drama.  Dont compare SWTOR to WOW either in dungeon finder as SWTOR so far hasnt been no where near as bad as the community of wow. WOW by far is the WORST community out there for a mmo next to league of legends . TSW for not having a dungeon finder seems to be pretty decent for community pugs so far to but its brand new so we shall see. I wish the 10 mil in wow though stays in wow and doesnt come to GW2 that way i know there is a chance at a decent community.

     

  • jmcdermottukjmcdermottuk LiverpoolPosts: 976Member Uncommon

    "but there is just this level of difficulty missing when running with an organized group of players that are used to playing with one another, rather than running with players that don't know their heal abilities from their DPS ones."

     

    I think you have this the wrong way around. It's not the level of difficulty that's missing with your guild runs. It's the level of competence missing from the PUG, making it unnecessarily difficult.

     

  • TheocritusTheocritus Gary, INPosts: 3,758Member Uncommon

         The problem I always had in PUGs is that they would try to tackle too difficult of content.....Instead of fighting stuff they could handle fairly easily it was always "OK lets go after the world boss" or something stupid like that......Your group immediately wipes, people start pointing fingers, and your game turns into an incredibly frustrating experience......WHen you found a group that was on the same page as to what they could handle and who would handle what role, it could be alot of fun.

  • RyowulfRyowulf Greensburg, PAPosts: 668Member Uncommon

    I've never had much fun/luck with puds, except in pre-cu SWG.

  • jakinjakin somewhere, ONPosts: 243Member Common
    Originally posted by Fadari

    I also started gaming with UO, EQ and AC and I do not, in any way believe that a 12 year old could have played UO under the conditions of that game.  You don't have the intellect, thought processes, coordination or even the wisdom/experience at 12 to stay alive long enough to chop wood.  Fanboy's may dream about following some young girl gamer, but keep it real.  Even your knowledge of WoW is limited. You seem to have no idea what raiding was like before dungeon finders were added to some games and thus the dumbing down of content so uncoordinated groups could get their loot.  Just be honest, tell us what you know and really experienced.  Maybe an action screenshot would help prove you were there, then again I suppose you can get those anywhere.  After you've finished an article/blog, maybe a spell and grammar check might be an idea too.

    -Lisa (a real female gamer)

     

     

    *shrug*

     

    Maybe you weren't smart / coordinated / wise (seriously? wisdom?) enough to play UO when you were 12, but that doesn't necessarily mean that everyone else wasn't.  I've grouped and guilded with a few 13 year olds over the years that certainly knew what was what better than the average 20-something cement-head.  Not many mind you, but enough to know it's a non-zero chance.

     

    BTW - it's pretty hillarious to have obvious grammatical errors no more than a few sentences prior to commenting on someone else's.

     

     

  • TheLizardbonesTheLizardbones Arkham, VAPosts: 10,910Member


    Originally posted by Fadari
    I also started gaming with UO, EQ and AC and I do not, in any way believe that a 12 year old could have played UO under the conditions of that game.  You don't have the intellect, thought processes, coordination or even the wisdom/experience at 12 to stay alive long enough to chop wood.  Fanboy's may dream about following some young girl gamer, but keep it real.  Even your knowledge of WoW is limited. You seem to have no idea what raiding was like before dungeon finders were added to some games and thus the dumbing down of content so uncoordinated groups could get their loot.  Just be honest, tell us what you know and really experienced.  Maybe an action screenshot would help prove you were there, then again I suppose you can get those anywhere.  After you've finished an article/blog, maybe a spell and grammar check might be an idea too.-Lisa (a real female gamer)https://www.facebook.com/pages/Fadari-and-Whizbang/103668596424771   

    People as young as 8 have been playing MMORPG since Ultima Online. MMORPG just aren't that hard to play. Not even Ultima Online.

    I would wonder if you understand where the difficulty lies in WoW raids. It's all in the current raid content. PUGs are not completing current raid content. They're clearing the now older, nerfed content. So yes, PUGs are getting to see all the content, but only after it's been completed by the raiding guilds and then nerfed because new content and raids are released.

    I can not remember winning or losing a single debate on the internet.

  • TheLizardbonesTheLizardbones Arkham, VAPosts: 10,910Member


    Originally posted by Ryowulf
    I've never had much fun/luck with puds, except in pre-cu SWG.

    he! he!

    puds.

    he! he! *snicker*

    I can not remember winning or losing a single debate on the internet.

  • shantibashantiba Mobile, ALPosts: 28Member Uncommon

    In Vanilla WoW usually pugs I formed would stick around a while, part of this was that I was a lock (underplayed at the time) and could summon slackers to the dungeon lol. I remember spending entire Sundays slowly clearing BRD with pugs, explaining fights etc. I like pugs because you can meet amazing players as well, which happened to me a fair amount (got into my guild from pugging with 3 of em). Pugs aren't a bad thing, though I feel like they are better in a game where the world is more open, instead of queue --> dungeon ---> wipe ---> rant. People generally try again when it takes 30+ min just to get to the dungeon.

  • HurricanePipHurricanePip Sommerille, MAPosts: 167Member
    Originally posted by jfz133

    Pugs make you appreciate your friends more.

    Yup.  PUGs are great until you realize how much they suck.

     

    I wouldn't ever PUG again.  It's like playing with people that don't want to spend the time to get better, don't have the ability to get better or just don't care in general.

     

    I get that group finders are good for business.  They give players the perception that they can accomplish something, but in reality, it usually takes a couple of nerfs to content that guilds could easily complete if they put their mind to the challenge.

     

    Good article and for me personally, it outlines one of the core problems I have with new MMOs.  MMOs really need to get back to strengthing the community through strong guilds, rather than catering to the weakest players. 

     

    I liked vanilla WoW until I realized what a mindless, farmville click fest it actually was.  TBC was slightly better and didn't take very long to level up, but LK was awful.  Rift was basically more of the same and a huge mistake to play ... especially when Trion started nerfing the generally fun dungeons for pugs in 1.1.

     

    If you don't worry about it, it's not a problem.

  • PokketPokket Candy Mountain, TXPosts: 80Member
    Originally posted by Fadari

    I also started gaming with UO, EQ and AC and I do not, in any way believe that a 12 year old could have played UO under the conditions of that game.  You don't have the intellect, thought processes, coordination or even the wisdom/experience at 12 to stay alive long enough to chop wood.  Fanboy's may dream about following some young girl gamer, but keep it real.  Even your knowledge of WoW is limited. You seem to have no idea what raiding was like before dungeon finders were added to some games and thus the dumbing down of content so uncoordinated groups could get their loot.  Just be honest, tell us what you know and really experienced.  Maybe an action screenshot would help prove you were there, then again I suppose you can get those anywhere.  After you've finished an article/blog, maybe a spell and grammar check might be an idea too.

    -Lisa (a real female gamer)

    https://www.facebook.com/pages/Fadari-and-Whizbang/103668596424771 

     

    I'm not exactly sure what you were trying to achieve by posting a semi-spiteful reply full of false accusations, generalizations, and  shameless self-promotion, but I don't think it is a good way to gain more credibility ~.^

     

    I did post a screenshot. The UO screenshot in this column is mine (my character is in a black robe, on a charger, right below the name "Liverpool" - which is the name of the beetle). Plus, I have uploaded screenshots of UO in my profile. And, actually, I've put together a nice little gallery of a few old screenshots from games I have played over the years http://imgur.com/a/WrVZv.

     

    I find it disappointing that you're so quick to judge a fellow gamer based on their age and gender... especially considering you're the same gender. I've played games with plenty of gamers that were under 18 and, while some were mediocre at games, there were quite a few that were actually pretty good, if not better, than myself and others. The great thing about teenagers gaming is they have more time to learn the game than most adults do... therefore, they have more time to get better at it, get more gear, level faster, etc.

     

    Perhaps next time before you falsely accuse a fellow gamer of lying or not being "real", you should take the time to follow or get to know the person, see what they are like, check out their other sites. If you're too lazy to do that, then perhaps you just shouldn't say anything at all.

     

    Pokket

    Youtube: PokketProductions | Twitter: @Pokketsays | Facebook: Pokketsays
  • iceman00iceman00 Westland, MIPosts: 1,363Member

    As someone else said, it isn't that the game is "less difficult" when you play with people who know what they are doing.  It is that most PUG's are just that freaking bad.

    In the end, we all have relied on PUG's from time to time.  Unless you are just that lucky that the core people you play with always play at the same time you do.

    Me, last MMO I played was POTBS.  I played for the low pop factions most of the game.  So in the end, you had to PUG if you were doing quests or pvp/rvr, there was no way around it.  It really gave me an insight into various different aspects of the game, and helped me adjust tactics with my regular group accordingly.  I loved rolling around in the "A team" 6 man combos we would put out there, but PUG'in it up provided a fun experience.  You also learned how to measure talent.  When you saw someone doing it right, I'd friend them and look for them again sometime.  Hell, several of them ended up wearing the guild tags.  The guild I was a member of I was brought on originally out of one giant PUG that essentially handled fights the way the Freebirds handled wrestling.  (Real old school there!)

    In any game I advise at least 10-15% of your playtime being spent pugging.  If you get all butthurt about losing pixels every now and then, you really need to quit being such a wuss.

  • iceman00iceman00 Westland, MIPosts: 1,363Member
    Originally posted by HurricanePip

     

    Good article and for me personally, it outlines one of the core problems I have with new MMOs.  MMOs really need to get back to strengthing the community through strong guilds, rather than catering to the weakest players. 

     

     

    Right now MMO companies are still trying to make games for the widest audience possible.  That by nature precludes focusing on strong guilds and community relationships.

    Why this is always praised as a sound business move I will never get.  There really is a "by trying to please everybody you please nobody" effect.  And we've seen it with a lot of MMO releases lately (TOR I'm looking at you.) 

  • HrimnirHrimnir Qeynos, COPosts: 1,597Member Uncommon

    Pugs are only crap nowadays because of two reasons, auto group finders, and easy content.

    I know you played UO, but if you had played EQ you would understand that pugs/raids were a TOTALLY different ballgame.

    Basically EQ went like this:

    1. Leveling was very long and at times difficult. Unlike modern MMO's, screwing up while soloing an equal con mob could easily and quickly result in your death, and the loss of 45+ minutes worth of XP.  Because of this, by the time you reached even the middle levels, the game itself had weeded out the truly bad players, and by the time you reached "end game" (that term didnt exist then btw) the game had weeded out the majority of the mediocre players.  There was a safe bet if you grabbed someone for a group they at least knew how to play their class and role at an acceptable skill level.

    2. Because groups/raids, etc were so hard to get formed and going, people didnt dink around.  Spots were hard to come by so people actually coveted them and didnt do common things you get now like rage quiting, random unannounced 20 min afk's, etc. When you had to wait 30min to an hour on a list for a group (or longer) you didnt screw around with that potential group spot.

    3. Also, due to long leveling time, you had a real honest to god community on each server, i'm sure this was the same in UO.  People grouped with each other a lot and got to know who was good, who was ok, who were d-bags, who was cool, etc etc.

    "The surest way to corrupt a youth is to instruct him to hold in higher esteem those who think alike than those who think differently."

    - Friedrich Nietzsche

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