In the upcoming content Patch 5.4, Blizzard will be introducing a new raid type into the World Of Warcraft called Flexible Raiding, designed to provide a better experience for casual and social players.
Flexible Raiding is being implemented to bring smaller guilds into raiding, removing the 10 and 25 man restrictions currently in place for Normal and Heroic raids. In the new mode, raid difficulty will automatically scale depending on the number of players in a raid group. There will also be no Item Level requirements to join in with the fun, its yet another way Blizzard is attempting to bridge the cap between the core and social players of the World Of Warcraft.
Loot dropped during a Flexible Raid will be of an Item Level between Raid Finder and Normal quality, and “will use the Raid Finder’s ‘per person’ loot system, specialization choices, and bonus rolls” to dish gear out to players. Players worried about having yet another set of loot and bosses to farm weekly should be aware that the Flexibe encounters have a seperate lockout to LFR and Normal difficulties, meaning players can tackle all three if they want to.
“[A Flexible Raid] will be available for premade groups of 10–25 players, including any number in between. That means whether you have 11, 14, or 23 friends available for a Raid, they’ll all be able to participate.”
“The Flexible Raid system is designed so that the challenge level will scale depending on how many players you have in the Raid. So if you switch between 14 players one week and 22 the next, the difficulty will adjust automatically. Keep in mind that unlike Raid Finder, no matchmaking is available, so you’ll need to make sure you invite people to attend—but if some can’t make it, it’s not the end of the world (or the Raid). You’ll also still be able to invite Real ID or Battle.net friends cross-realm. Who you choose to bring and what Item Level gear they’ll need to join your merry band is up to you, too—there’s no Item Level requirement for this Raid difficulty,” read the post.
Blizzard is yet to announce which Raids will function with the new mode, though there is always a chance it will function for older raid bosses across the expansions – with scalable difficulty bringing new challenge to some of Warcraft’s classic encounters. While that’s fairly unlikely, at the very least Flexible Raid mode should mean smaller guilds will always have the opportunity to tackle current content – even if that integral healer is called away from the Throne Of Thunder and lost for the night to real life.