Thoughts on the Deserter Debuff

Wow, go figure, I start up a blog with the intention of posting at least once a week, and I forget it exists for a month. Go me.

So in a recent patch, the random dungeon “deserter debuff” (which you get for leaving a random group “prematurely”) has been extended from 15 minutes to 30 minutes, in an attempt to keep players from immediately abandoning a group if they get an instance they don’t want to run.

While I appreciate the fact that this is a problem, especially when it’s the tank or healer who drops, I’m not entirely sure that extending this debuff is necessarily the way to go. I mean, a good number of those people have MULTIPLE lv 80’s, so they could easily fill the time by logging onto ANOTHER toon to queue until the debuff on the original wears off. Not to mention that there are legitimate reasons for leaving “prematurely” – if you get a group whose tank pulls without warning anyone and overpulls, and the healer can’t keep them alive more than 30 seconds, which leads to a wipe in the first MINUTE of being in an instance… I don’t want to be in that group. I don’t want the repair bills from being in that group and I don’t want the frustration of dying again and again on trash mobs. But I have to stick around for five minutes or so just so I don’t get the damn deserter debuff, which usually puts me in a bad mood and makes me not want to deal with queueing again.

Now, I realise that situations like that (yes, it actually happened a couple different times) are much rarer than people going “oh, shit, I don’t want THIS instance” and leaving the group, but it’s frustrating for those of us who don’t have the energy to deal with idiocy of the masses to have to wait 30 minutes to queue again, especially when we’re DPS – the abandoned group will be on their way in a couple minutes tops, but I’ll be waiting an hour before I get in another group.

My complaints on the extension aside, it’s probably the most effective way to harmlessly penalise and discourage people from abandoning a group because they don’t want to run the Oculus again (even though I freaking hate that instance…), and will probably, in the end, keep things relatively balanced.

I still hate the queue times, though. Damned DPS classes being so common…