So… Why didn’t I get a raid invite?

Lehy PaladinAs a raid leader, part of my job is to choose who comes on a raid and who sits in Dalaran waiting in the random heroic PuG queue.

At first glance, this sounds like a glamorous job that everyone should aspire to in the game of WoW. I almost always get to go on the raid. I can choose who comes and who stays. I have control. What’s not to like?

Certainly, there were times in my pre-raid-leader life that these thoughts occurred to me.

“I’m an awesome DPS hunter – no doubt they’ll bring me along.”

…sometimes followed by…

Stella!“Left out..? WHY?!? STELLLLAAAAA!!!

…and perhaps even followed by a pst to the raid leader asking (politely) why I was excluded.

Composing a raid, leading a raid and dealing with loot issues is not a fun job. I did not aspire to it and did not ask for it. I was offered the role by a Council Member of my guild after I took over the explanation duties on a run in which his microphone had died. It has been a steep learning curve, but there are a few things I have learned about leading a raid which I hope to share with you today.

The purpose? To explain the eternal question of why your raid leaders sometimes “raaaaaggggeeeee!” (we love you, Turbofail!), to explain why you are sometimes left out, and to otherwise seek to find reason in the bizarre behavior of raid leaders.

Issue 1 – Personality:

Raid leaders are human beings. As a result, we are fallible and subject to stupid prejudices sometimes. I happen to like certain people more than others – GASP!

I personally try to not allow these things to influence my choice of raider, but chances are this is not always the case – and not all raid leaders are so careful.

Are you always making snide comments on vent about the other DPS classes? Do you publicly or vocally take issue over not getting any heals? Are you constantly defensive (“no way, I DIDN’T STAND IN THE FIRE!”)? Do you criticize strategies without offering any constructive options (preferably by way of pst rather than in raid chat or over vent)?

Personally, I find certain behavior a “turn-off” for developing a personal bond. The items listed above are a sample. People who crowd vent with useless chat during a boss encounter are also annoying, as are people who constantly spout about how good they are at (insert your favored WoW or real-life activity here). Seriously, I don’t really care what your arena rating is if we keep wiping on Festergut because you are not running to get a spore.

Conclusion? Try not to piss your raid leaders off. Be a nice person. If you have an issue, deal with it privately with the raid leader, and if it can wait until after the raid, then even better!

Issue 2 – Composing a winning raid:

Strangely enough, and in spite of Blizzard’s stated Player > Class mentality, most endgame encounters require a mixture of DPS classes (as well as healing and sometimes tanking classes – though our focus here is naturally DPS).

Some current examples include Lady Deathwhisper, which requires a mixture of physical/magical damage classes for the reanimated adds, and Saurfang, which requires some minimum number of ranged DPS to deal with the Blood Beasts.

As such, it is not generally possible to bring for instance, 5 hunters along in a 10 man raid. Take Icecrown Citadel 10 man as an example. Given the Deathwhisper encounter and its need for a mix of physical/magical damage dealing, and assuming you have 3 heals and 2 tanks, it is unreasonable to expect more than 1-2 hunters (a primarily physical damage class) in any ICC 10 man raid. You will usually need a minimum of 2 magical damage dealing classes for the reanimated Fanatics on Deathwhisper. Furthermore, assuming you have 1-2 melee DPS (which most raids will have), where does a second hunter go? It becomes a fine balancing act.

Buffs are also an issue (though with Drums of Kings/Wild and Fort scrolls, not as much as they used to be). Hunters bring some useful buffs in the form of raid-wide mana regeneration (Survival) and Trueshot Aura (Marks). However, two Marks hunters (for example) are not adding anything further to the raid, as TSA does not stack with other similar buffs, including another hunter’s TSA. Also, with Ret Paladins and Shadow Priests bringing mana regeneration to a raid, a raid leader may consider leaving out a Survival hunter in favor of something like an Arcane Mage, a Frost DK or a Feral Kitty if the balance would benefit from this.

Sorry for neglecting you rare breed of BM raiders out there – you are special too, but I personally have not raided with a BM spec hunter any time in recent living memory 😉

Issue 3 – Gear and ability:

Assuming DPS is needed, AND there is a place in the raid for a hunter of your spec, AND the raid leader is not somehow personally prejudiced against you, then it should come down to gear and ability. Most experienced players will agree that skill > class > gear, though the recent emergence of Gearscore as a religious faction in the World of Warcraft seeks to skew this somewhat.

Assuming you have a minimum level of gear for a given raid, then generally the raid leader will draw from experience as to your ability. Do you routinely stand in the fire? Is your DPS on par with your gear and other players with similar gear? Are you familiar enough with your class to use all the tools at your disposal properly?

Raid leaders are experienced players. They will usually see your successes or failures and get to know you pretty quickly. You will get a couple of chances, but if you continue to fail, you will begin to find yourself excluded from raids. Don’t get defensive – get out there and look around – learn to play. This blog is great, as are the eternally useful sources on Elitist Jerks, MMO Champion, etc.. Look into spec, gear choices, enchants, gems, glyphs, rotations, macro options, addons, and everything else. Then get on the dummy and practice. Practice DPS standing still. Practice DPS moving around. Practice DPS switching targets and returning to the main target. Practice recalling your pet and then sending him back in. Practice switching in and out of Viper. In short, practice all of those things it takes to be a hunter.

Other considerations:

There are some other issues that can result in omission from a raid. The most important is someone who is an ass when it comes to loot.

Arguing over loot, especially in public (over vent, guild chat or raid chat), is a surefire way to get you on a raid leader’s blacklist. It can even get you kicked from a guild in some cases. The solution? Learn your guild’s loot rules. If you have an issue, raise it privately and respectfully with the raid leader. If your raid leader is being an ass or is ninja’ing loot, perhaps you should rethink your choice of guild. However, this is actually pretty rare and ninja guilds don’t tend to exist long in my experience.

If you are left out of a raid, then pst the raid leader that you understand and that you wish them luck. Also ask that you be considered for the next raid if there is space – usually, if you have been left out simply to compose a more balanced raid, the raid leader will be decent enough to note this and ensure you are included next time.

Cheers, friends!


11 thoughts on “So… Why didn’t I get a raid invite?”

    • Thanks for that link Antigorius. He makes some very good points in that article and clearly separates the distinction between a solid DPS’er and a good raider.

      I got invited to a VOA 25 PuG last night to take on the new boss. Seems they’d failed a few times, so one of my guildies sent me a tell asking if I’d come help. I was told the fight wasn’t terribly difficult, just as long as the ranged were mindful of the orbs and made sure to them quickly once they spawned. To me, this seemed like a no-brainer, but surprisingly enough there were many ranged who all but ignored the adds in favor of the DPS pissing contest happening on the meters. Needless to say, a few of them were booted by the RL after viewing the Recount stats.

      I swear, sometimes players need to turn them off altogether if it’s that difficult of a pill for them to swallow. Saurfang is a prime example. That fight is definitely not a DPS showcase for hunters, yet we happen to play one of the most important roles in that encounter. If you’re not burning down blood beasts and laying traps, then you’re not doing you’re job – simple as that.

      Marrowgar is another good example. In my guild, if you’re not switching to Bone Spikes during the graveyard phase, then you’ll be raked over the coals publicly on vent.

      Success is not measured by DPS alone, but by the overall contribution to the success of the group.

  1. /soothe Lehyton … there there
    this is a nice article sadly i am ‘ment’ to be a raid leader too. but sadly i am at the most painful place of all … im a girl raid leader -.-
    sometimes i get comments like ‘she isnt taking me cas of the sexist jokes i made before’ … hmm wtf /care much? its always best to take top dps classes for icc my guild only does icc 10/25 ToTC25 and a ToGC10 if we feel like it everything else is free and puggable so people can gear up .. ofc we do some guild runs now and then but even then its like ‘she is doing this cas i did that’ its hard to take 5 crap dps and good tanks and healers .. isnt fair on them
    SKILL > all 🙂
    and being ‘constantly left on the bench’ go try pug some things the new hc’s have nice upgrades tbh and your guild masters shouldnt do that our guild will take 2 not so good and 3-4 good [we only use 3 healers on 1st boss] also threat …. atm im top geared in my guild i know all tacts better then the guild masters but since im a girl i get ignored : /
    my ideas are tossed to the side until a guy repeats EXACTLY WORD TO WORD what i just said 6 wipes ago : /
    i myself love to swap about memebers so unless its new content i open to take ‘under-geared’ players
    anyone on a EU realm feel like a change and rather have fun and progress look us up :p
    we are on auchindoun … we fight againts gearscore when people ask me if they are getting inv to raids they go ‘i have 5k GS! gief inv plix’ ah GS=nothing 🙂
    if you want to get invited to raid work on your gear find a imba specc for yourself remeber duel specc works wonders 🙂
    if you are dps and can have a healing specc do it 😀
    dps but our class can tank? you know what to do 😉
    it is annoying to have to play speccs you dont like *coughIHATEMMSPECC!!!’
    like for me yeah im lucky the other hunters in my guild are a butch of nabslackers -.- one of them doesnt understand english >.< i think we have like 5 and a few alts … but im the only one on time for every raid :/
    tbh i would love to quote your article on my guild site … like i said nab slackers they never understand that we are going with best setups we can and show 0 respect to officers … tbh i would love for them to shut up when the raid leader asks me to tell tacts …. /sigh one day right 🙂

    p.s sorry for my superomega babbling 😡

    • Hi Korro!

      Wow I’m sorry to hear this 🙁 Keep your chin up. Not all guilds are prejudiced against the ladies – my guild loves our girls 🙂 Shout out to Poetry, Sryah, Mel, Darnicia, Callipso and the multiple others I am forgetting 🙂

      Keep on truckin’ – good players, like cream, always rise to the top 🙂


      • dont be sorry just means i get to go nerd rage now and then xD tbh ill link a vid of one of our raids imma not the only nerd ranger!
        we are lame like that 😡
        and watch the green bar thats my arggo -.- idk why its that high but for the love of god i hate warriors

        and yes we do tend to talk about useless things during raid a DK was a belf then hes been orc for about 3-4 weeks now and a officer just noticed you may lol 🙂

  2. love the article and share your pain Lehy. In my guild I’m the only one capable it seems of making the hard decisions on who to take and who to leave out, and I get allot of crap in /w for it and in one or 2 cases in /g. But I take it on the chin and then demonstrate why I took the people I did by running a successful raid, I base my choices mostly on actual ability rather then anything else so yeah the skill>class>gear is bang on. All I wish is that people understood that I want to take them ALL raiding but unfortunately cant and someone has to make the horrible decision where the axe falls

  3. “Sorry for neglecting you rare breed of BM raiders out there – you are special too, but I personally have not raided with a BM spec hunter any time in recent living memory”

    I was in our weekly TOC 25 last night.. A guildie wanted to bring one of his friend, a BM hunter. Luckily for him our GM and officers aren’t idiot that judge everyone by gearscore.. I really was excited to see how he would do DPS wise.

    He did very well! Pulling 7K DPS! So yeah, BM is a raiding spec! ^^

  4. Another thing I neglected to mention in my article above – and this is important – are you generally on-time for a raid? Do you sign up for raids, and then not show up?

    You can imagine how raid leaders respond to this issue 🙂


  5. I find articles like this (even though I’m BM spec’d and not in a raiding guild) really depressing. If I was in a raiding guild (and spec’d in a “raiding spec” for hunters) and was constantly left on the bench because of things like class composition for the raid, it would be terribly frustrating. The thought of putting in all the time and effort to be ready to raid come “go time” (i.e. having plenty of epic ammo, flasks, food, etc.) only to be told “Sorry but we gotta have 2 magic classes so we only have room for 1 hunter and its not you” would really grate me.

    That being said, if I WAS a raider, I’d find this article helpful in terms of helping me deal with the whys and the what-fors of being left on the bench. Nice job.

    • Hey Lawman,

      Ideally, if a guild is properly composed, and you are a capable and easy-to-run-with player, you won’t be left out that often. If you are *constantly* left out of a raid because of composition reasons, then you may be in a guild with too many good hunters (I know you are not raiding at this point, but hypothetically speaking…).

      Most guilds have strengths and weaknesses – hence guild recruiting messages citing strong needs, lesser needs and closed classes. For example, my guild, on the Muradin (US) server ( currently has two excellent Rogues who have been with the guild forever, and with almost 100% raid attendance. We have three excellent Paladin tanks (well I’m not “excellent” – perhaps two excellent and one half-reasonable) who also have first-class attendance. Chances are, if you were a Pally tank or a Rogue, wouldn’t be a great place to apply right now.

      However, if you were a Boomkin, or a Feral Kitty, or a healer of any flavor… please apply! 🙂

      Otherwise, if you are constantly left out for *composition* reasons, it may not be *composition*, but some other reason… and yes, it sucks to sit out constantly. If this happens, consider other guilds with a greater need for hunters 🙂



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