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October 29th, 2012, 04:54
I think Turbine made a big mistake introducing hard and elite streaks. It means people won't drop down to hard or even normal on certain difficult quests. If you're on a 5 elite streak it means you get +50% XP for doing elite in addition to +80% for first try elite and XP tomes / pots.

Let's say you do a difficult quest on normal. That means you lose 50% XP on the quest you're doing. Worse is that you lose the streak so you lose 50% on the next quest, 40% on the quest after next until you've done 5 elite quests to get the streak back.

So the consequences for dropping in difficulty on a tough quest is so bad that people just do elite for their first time play through. If you see normal or hard runs now it's people repeating quests for first time normal and hard bonuses.

If Turbine had removed the elite streak then I think people would be more inclined to do quests at a lower difficulty. E. g. we could have run Xorian Cipher first on normal or hard to re-learn how it worked and then do it on elite for favor. Since we didn't want to lose our streak we decided to try it on elite.

Our groups are more powerful than average PUG groups so we can get away with that, but pug's often wipe because they're forced into running at a higher difficulty than they're capable of.

I also see plenty of times where people joining a group try to argue to bump the difficulty up to elite. I don't feel like running a quest for the first time on elite because you can easily mess up and then you wipe. On normal you can learn where the traps are, which monsters to fight, how the endfight is etc. You can recover from setbacks and still beat the quest.

I saw a thread about the reason for less PUG's being formed now. One reason is the dungeon scaling. It means it's easier for a strong TR toon to solo the quest with a healer / rogue hireling than being in a full group. So the best players will tend to solo or play with their friends. They won't risk being in a pug.
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