It's been a week of doom and gloom for WoW 25 man raiders as the equalisation of raid loot between 10s and 25s suggest that a significant number of players will drift to the smaller format.
I'd like to talk about some of the positive things 25 man raiders can do to help their guilds when Cataclysm launches.
1) Be positive. 25 man raiding is dying becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy if all of the 25 man raiders go around saying 25 man raiding is dying.
2) Recruit. The best solution to a numbers drain is to find new keen people. I've always preferred to recruit from people I pug 5 mans with - you get a good sense of a person after a few runs. Even if you don't have the power to invite always be looking for people who would improve your raids.
3) Reduce overheads, part 1. Running a raid can be an absolute blast but it can also be really draining because of drama. So bite your tongue on a few issues so as not to burn out your management. Really, would you rather bitch about not getting the dagger and not raid any more after your guild crashes? If loot is misassigned discuss it calmly.
4) Get more professional. Start getting to raids on time, with consumables, and having checked the strategies (if you're in a raid guild that uses offline strategies). If you know you'll be getting home minutes before the raid get this organised the night before and log off at the raid entrance.
5) Reduce overheads, part 2. Don't backseat drive. A lot of times on bosses the raid leader will experiment. being told it's not how Tankspot does it isn't helpful.
6) Be patient. The new expansion will see a core of people hitting 85 fast then running 10 mans. They do this because they don't want to waste a lockout for a week and don't have enough max level people yet for 25s. If you're the 14th person in your guild to 85 it will suck for you because you'll have missed the A team. It will only be for a couple of weeks so don't emo-rage quit and drama bomb your guild just because you miss out.
7) Reduce overheads, part 3. Don't roll on stuff that isn't for you, roll 100-100 or roll more than once. If your guild rolls for loot it's really really annoying to see 12 rolls, one of which is bogus.
8) Consider stepping up. Raid leading has its bad sides but it is awesome fun too. A lot of people feel I couldn't do that. Well, I'm telling you, you could. Maybe not as well as someone else but a hell of a lot better than nobody. You don't need to know strats, know how other people's classes work or any of that. Just use a lot of common sense, discuss stuff you're not sure about with your guild but after discussing it make a firm decision.
9) Thank your raid leader. Appreciation is usually the reason people run raids.
10) Consider rerolling. An expansion is a great time to change your class. See my earlier post about loot distribution. In short if you roll an Alliance Shaman you will get a 25 man raid spot.
11) Consider changing guild or server. You probably won't have to but if you're willing to do so you will be able to find a home.
Good luck to all the 25 man raiders out there! I've no doubt that Cataclysm will be a lot of fun for you.