If the best team uses a hard to get or unobtainable pet should it be in the guide? Absolutely. Some people actually have those and that's awesome for them. I mean how cool is it for someone with one of those pets to see that they can use it against some tamer to totally kick its ass and own it because they have that special, rare pet.
That said, when the best team for a tamer uses a pet like that, then we just need to add the next best team below it.
Rendigar wrote:I don't know about the rest of you - but finding all the various strategies in 8 to 16 pages of responses to guides and general posts and trying to decide which is better was (and is) a pain in the neck.
Well, that's what happens when a thread continues long after the originator has stopped updating it. I can only imagine that at some point you will stop updating this one and some brilliant new strategy will sit buried on page 12 instead of getting updated into the first post
Rendigar wrote:I think the most difficult part here would be deciding what level of risk constitutes "better RNG". In my own experience missiles miss far more often than they should and if a dive misses (1 chance in 5) then you are aborting and restarting.
I've always felt that there are many strategies whose average time does not match the reality. Its usually the best case scenario, where everything goes right. That's why there is no substitute for actual data. During 5.3 I began collecting (when I would remember) turn data for every tamer fight with the goal of getting 20 data points. If I wiped or aborted, the rounds spent on that attempt were added to the rounds of that kill to try to represent the real time investment required.
A rather extreme example, of this was the Zandalari/Chrominius strategy for Wastewalker that was advertised as a 14 round kill. I tried it out 6 times and got kills of: 15 14 14 14 21+10+8+14 19+15. So, at first it was working wonderfully, just as advertised. Then I found out just how wrong it could go if the rng went against you and wiped 3 times tyring to get kill number 5. I don't recall if the 21 could have been a smaller number if I'd been smarter about aborting earlier, but my 6 kill average for that strat was 24 rounds. At that point I decided to switch to a more reliable strat, one that would take 19 rounds on a "no bad RNG" run and in reality delivered an average of 20.35 rounds over 20 kills.
A nicer example to look at would be the data I had for the Zep/Chrominius strat for Moruk:
17 18 20+18 18 17 18 18 17 17 17 18 18 18 16 17 17 17 17 19 1+18 == 18.55
This shows one wipe on kill 3 and an abort on the last kill which (somewhere along the line) I decided I'd do whenever the first missile hit (goo basically did no damage so didn't even have to repair). Now, I know I've had more than one wipe on Moruk with that strat, they just weren't on days when I was tracking kills. Still, it shows that while not a slam dunk, the strat was pretty consistent as the data shows.
So where am I going with all this you're probably wondering. Even before the 5.3 guide was spun out of the 5.2 thread, I've felt that what we needed was not a top level post containing a guide with a single strat for each boss, but more of a menu, a compendium of strats. For each tamer, there would be a small list of possible strats with each line listing the average rounds, perhaps the number of trials used to get that average (or some other way of indicating confidence in that average) and the pets used. Fastest strats would be listed first. The user could work down the list until they saw one that whose pet requirements and also see what pets they would need if they wanted to get faster.
Right now, these would have to be links to individual posts which kind of sucks. I've seen some sites with BBCode that supported a Spoiler tag where the contents are collapsed and hidden and when clicked a quote like section appears under that line containing text. Something like that could be a very good way of letting users work through the various options. The one advantage of links to spoiler tags is that the ability of the strat writer to edit their work if changes later need to be made. Hmmm, what we really need is a spoiler type tag that can be set to point at another forum post and when clicked grabs the contents of that post and sticks it into a spoiler section when the user clicks Show and can later be collapsed and hidden if the user clicks Hide. Quintessence! You can get that added to the site right?
One thing we could get from that kind of approach is that the top post would be more community owned, managed by Admins. As the 5.3 thread fell out of date, it would have felt kind of wrong to ask an admin to go and make a change to Phraide's guide with such and such a revision. Because it was his guide, even if many of the strats had come from the community. With where I'd like to see things go, it would be more a person posts the new strat in the thread and an admin updates the first post with the link to it.
Ideally we could crowd source average round data - a person could try out someone strat for a while, post their results and the admins could incorporate that into the top post's listing of the strat. There are multiple cans of worms to deal with around the whole average rounds to kill issue, but something like it is needed to maintain any kind of quality control of the list and keep it meaningful for people rather than just turning into a list of every possible team every person has ever used on that tamer (even if it failed 3 times out 4 and took 40 rounds to finish).
At one time I was thinking it would be cool if everybody could, on their profile, set up what their teams were for various tamers. So a user who could click on Moruk and the sight would show all the teams users had set in their profiles for Moruk ordered by how many people had that team. So, the most popular team basically is first. Of course the 2 problems with that kind of approach is that most popular does not equal the best and that you usually need additional instructions to accompany the choice of team. I'm only bringing it up, I guess, because ultimately the form we're working in, forums and guide posts, is in some ways holding us all back.
Well, that's probably enough blathering from me for now; should have gone to bed hours ago. To anyone who actually read the whole thing you have both my condolences and gratitude.