I'm working on a pair of posts (involving how I started blogging and the importance of 5% in heroic raiding) but decided to give myself a freebie here in the meantime (started as a small comment I was going to leave at Clockwerk's blog but it kept growing).
Was reading Clockwerk's recent post on lockouts and had some thoughts in response to both his post and the current comments. Probably best to read those first.
Lot of talk lately (including comments of my own) on Theck's idea of Cumulative Loot -- which is something I wrote a post on a while ago as well. With the changes to loot (primarily allowing master loot for Flex (aka Normal in WoD)) this opens up new possibilities and brings up new problems.
Instead of personal loot for the cumulative loot (which most guilds would want to avoid as traditional drops are much more efficient), theoretically could just have a Mythic boss flat out drop the gear for Heroic/Normal/LFR as well. Presumably that loot could be /rolled off pretty quickly or given to priority people if that exists -- less wasted loot and would only take an extra minute or two per boss.
Could arguably not include the LFR drop if Blizzard is so convinced it'll be irrelevant so quickly for Heroic and Mythic raiders.
But even that causes issues because there's an incentive to clear it on Heroic first with 30 people for the best chance at a rare trinket or whatever dropping and then doing 20 people with Mythic.
Part of the problem is that I don't think anyone sees a perfect solution.
Default has us running at least 2 lockouts a week for a long time, most likely 3 for a bit, possibly even 4 on the first tier.
All below (personal rolls) doesn't allow master looting and if the gear is trade-able encourages stuff like bringing 15 hunters at a time to get that agility trinket for the hunter main.
All below (master looter) takes extra time per boss (not a massive issue but it may slow down less efficient groups) and still encourages to clear the place on Heroic with 30 people first rather than just doing Mythic.
All of these solutions have at least one major flaw in them.
Let me go ahead and toss another idea into the pot (which also is not perfect)...
What if only the top two lockouts you've done reset?
Simple as that.
Say you do half the tier on Heroic one week in addition to clearing on Normal. Next week, only Heroic and Normal reset (plus Mythic since that was never locked). LFR is not available since it's three levels down.
Or say you're working on Mythics and kill a few bosses. Next week only Heroic and Mythic reset -- Normal and LFR are locked. In general, you can never kill a boss for loot more than twice per week -- and in some cases can only do it once (if you're 75% through Mythic you can only kill the last boss on Heroic).
So what are the advantages?
1, you're limited to two lockouts per week, which is an improvement over three or potentially four.
2, you still have to kill the boss multiple times for the people complaining about "free loot for no effort" or whatever.
3, since you have to kill the boss on the specific difficulty, you're free to kill a boss on Mythic first if you wanted with 20 people and then still bring 30 on another day for Heroic -- avoids the problem mentioned above with wanting the largest group possible for master looter.
But I said it wasn't perfect -- what are the catches?
1, the first week of raiding you'll clear Heroic and Normal -- meaning both will reset for the second week. On the second week you'll clear Heroic, Normal, *and* start Mythic. That's three lockouts. Now, assuming you can kill Mythic bosses then Normal will be locked for future weeks but that technically is a violation of the "two lockouts max" rule.
2, there's potentially a disincentive to move up in difficulty. Let's say you're in a guild that wants to try Mythic. If you try Mythic and kill a single boss, you're locked out of Normal entirely. Only get full Heroic plus one Mythic boss. Some groups may find they prefer to farm Normal for a few more weeks and would thus delay Mythic progression until they don't care about Normal.
Now, one could argue that if you're capable of killing at least one boss on Mythic then you SHOULDN'T really be worried about Normal gear and getting a few pieces of Mythic gear will help more long term than another clear's worth of Normal gear -- or at worst you might be in that "problem position" for a week or two and thus it's a very temporary thing. But I felt it was worth mentioning, at least.