Updated Fri, Feb 29, 2008 by Xerin
We all get confused when it comes to divvying up the treasure to all those who plunder instances or cross swords with baddies who are carrying the coveted “phat loot”. There aren’t any in-game rules that declare how items should be split up, other then loot modes which gives everyone the chance to roll for items based on certain variables. That’s why it’s good to review some generic rules that can be applied in most scenarios.
Most often you’ll find the rule to simply be “Need before Greed”. Needing an item is where you’ll, as soon as winning it, be equipping it and putting it to use (unless it’s part of a secondary set of equipment, for instance a Paladin’s healing set). Never roll need on something that gives a marginal improvement or something that’s as good or worse then you’re currently wearing.
Greed is generic for “wanting” an item. If you want an item to sell or for looks then you’ll be wanting it for greed. If an item is Bind on Equip then roll greed for it. If for some reason you weren’t suppose to have it… no big deal! You can easily trade it to someone else. If an item is Bind on Pickup then you’ll most likely want to pass, unless your group says it’s okay to roll greed on them.
In scenarios where special quest items or items used for enchants are involved then they should be needed by those who will be using them directly (are currently gathering materials or on the quest), greeded by those who may be using them in the future, and passed on by anyone who has no plans to use them. If everyone passes then a simple roll off will declare who can loot the item, often times for vendor trash or comedy.
There is only one scenario where need before greed isn’t applied and that is with bind on equip legendary (purple) items. These items are often best sold at the auction house for cash instead of used as serious equipment. Everyone should discuss it if one drops, of course, how they are going to roll for it… but everyone should have a chance at them.
In raid instances or guild groups your guild should have a set of loot rules already in action. It’s best to ask where you can view them or find out what they are beforehand so that you don’t make any mistakes when rolling on loot.
In a group that will be experiencing lots of “fat loot” drops, it’s best for the leader to pick the rules. No guide can read the mind of a group leader, so that brings us too….
Sometimes we find ourselves or others in a scenario where there is an item that our character needs more then someone else, but they win it. A fury of emotion as if the last box of sugar coated snack treats was snatched away in front of your eyes swells within and the ever longing temptation to express your emotions surfaces. One thing leads to another, the group splits up and the instance isn’t finished.
Scenarios like this are often settled by having upfront loot rules to remove any confusion as to who gets what loot. If everyone is clear on who can roll on what then there is rarely (unless someone is absolutely being mean) any chance for someone to win an item unfairly.
As a group leader, you should declare what the rules are and make sure that it’s final. If you aren’t the group leader and you’re going to a location where some “phat loot” drops then it’s always best to ask the leader to clarify the loot rules beforehand, to alleviate any confusion.