Greedy Goblin

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Livia's DiM

I've got a long mail with lot of screenshots from one of the ganking project members, Livia. It was written with obvious enthusiasm (with all the pros and cons of that), so I decided to compile it into a publishable story.

It all started when the then lvl58 Livia encountered an old world quest item, the Greatest race of hunters. It provides a pretty good trinket, good XP and some lore. The only problem was that no one goes to the place where it should be returned: Dire Maul library. DiM is available from lvl 56 or 57 and you can queue to Hellfire Ramparts as 57 (yes you can, I've checked it). So finding group to DiM seemed to be impossible.

Yet she queued up with another guild member, a similarly leveled resto shaman, and kept questing, hoping that enough deranged souls will choose "random dungeon" instead of Ramparts. So she waited and waited and gave up hope after some hours. Then a bug provided them salvation: a DK in the guild was asked if he wants to go Ramparts and agreed. In the second he was invited to the group, he was pulled into DiM (as they did not leave the old queue before). They apologized him for the mistake and told him to feel free to leave. He said "nvm" and off they went.

DiM is a scary place, especially with PuG retards. A DPS DK went inactive. A moonkin's favorite spell was typhoon. So they wiped. And again. And some more time. DiM is not a "modern" instance where the monsters just stand there waiting to be looted. I'm sure it shocks many "modern WoW" players, but they fight back. They patrol. They call reinforcements. They cast spells. They CC players (outrageous!!!). So some more wipes happened until the below-healer moonkin left too, leaving them only 3. The dungeon finder did not provide more players as no one queued there. They were already in for more than an hour.

Their salvation came in the form another guild-DK who was lured in with the promise of "we finish it in 5 mins and go ramps". And they really did kill the last boss in 5-10 minutes, promoting them to the King of Gordok. But the library wasn't behind the king's room. So they went searching it. It was near the entrance.

She got her trinket and was now ready to go to grind some XP and loot in Ramparts. But then one of the DK's wandered off and noticed a huge circular room. There was a blue glowing shield in the middle, protecting a huge monster, Immol'thar. They came up with the idea to kill him. It's easy to say, hard to do, as you must destroy 5 pylons. They destroyed 2 in the room and left to the outer zone. At the door, there was a boss, Warpwood. Did you know that pulling him pulls all the treants in the instance? They did not...

After they ran in, they destroyed the garden pylon and the one near the library. The last one was close. They pulled the next pack, that contained another boss, who MCs. And somehow some more packs were pulled. They broke to red. Since they were already inside for more than two hours, they kept a lunch brake, returned to the library for repairs and finished the pylon, disabling the shield:

They spent lot of time 4-manning an instance that gives about half as much XP, much weaker loot and much harder than Ramparts. Why?

That's why Livia composed her story. To prove that despite what "fun ppl" say, the guild is much more fun than the standard "hang out with freindly ppl" guild.

Well, as you know, I don't believe in "fun". Nor would I waste blog space for trying to prove socials that the ganking project and the blue raids are fun. What I saw in this story is the direct opposite of the common conception of the gamer: he wants easy rewards. There were practically no rewards in DiM compared to Ramparts, and they had tank and healer, so they could get in a second. Yet they stayed and wiped to red in order to defeat the challenge. No, you can't claim "they were social and helped a guildy to loot" as they could both give her better loot in Ramparts and also they continued after she got the trinket.

There are people out there who want to overcome challenges. To go where no men went (since BC came out). To defeat something hard, just for the action, not for rewards. Who can't be bribed by purple pixels to grind 10 zillion Keristrassas.

That's why I have no doubts that the ganking project will work, despite huge naysayer whining, that says the "-20kill death penalty kills the fun". I don't want such people here anyway. Go back to AoEing your random HC for frost badge punk! I want people who overcome the challenge of killing 20x more from the 8x outnumbering enemies than dieing to them. It's good to see there are such people.

If you prefer this kind of gaming, if you are not one of the sheep who follow the ilvl 260 pixels into any boring grind, join either the ganking or the blue raiding project.


Kaaterina said...

Your story is artificial at best.

DiM is not hard, it requires preparation. Did you not just write a long post a few days ago about the importance of preparation? I read it and agree with it. Perhaps your over-enthusiastic guild member should have spent some of that time reading on the instance before diving headfirst into an instance they do not know.

I agree that the the instance feels less streamlined than TBC dungeons, and is likely more challenging than Wrath dungeons (at comparable levels), but it isn't, in any way, that hard. (I have, on several occasions, done wings, once even in your Undergeared project. (A class-inexperienced druid.) We didn't wipe once. And I was in a random LFD. Of course, I was the tank, and I knew the instance.)

Since DiM is out of the regular instance queue, common knowledge about it is limited. Because of it, people wipe.

This is not at all new 'news'. Remember when Loken was deemed the 'most dangeous' mob in the game in 3.0? I do. Weeks after weeks it topped the charts for the boss with the most player kills under its belt. Now, you can't honestly tell me that Loken tactics are hard, even at appropriate gear levels. Yes the boss was new, and common tactics were not known. Brann even in HoS? Same thing. (You'd think that after 3 expansions, people would know that fire hurts, right? WRONG!)

And Oculus? It's 3 skills a drake has and Oculus has been the most dreaded instance since ever since they play different from what people are used to. Malygos drake phase? Yep.

In short, what got your group to wipe repeatedly was not COMPLEXITY but FAMILIARITY. (Or rather, lack thereof.)

I'm not sure how someone can wander into an instance completely clueless, wipe repeatedly, and then claim they had 'fun', but I guess that's that. Sounds like cognitive dissonance to me. (Hey guys, we sucked, but our brains don't want us to believe we sucked, so it invented 'good feelings' from out suckiness so we don't lose our self-worth.)

If you think this comment is too 'mean', so be it. I'm just telling you that DiM isn't challenging at all, provided you don't go with a bunch of clueless players. And even if you do, it's only challenging if you're clueless yourself.

Glyph, the Architect said...

"I'm not sure how someone can wander into an instance completely clueless, wipe repeatedly, and then claim they had 'fun', but I guess that's that."

When I joined my current guild, we had a strict policy of "Don't read anything on the instance or the boss fights." It was some of the most fun I've ever had raiding. Not because of the constant wipes, but because when you finally do get the boss down, it's that much more satisfying. You get to say "We figured it out on our own and triumphed. We are better than the window licking retards who *must* go and watch the strat video to even think about succeeding."

That's where the fun is. The affirmation that you are at least halfway competent.

Armond said...

@Kaaterina: Yes, congrats, you figured out that DiM isn't hard if you're prepared. You completely missed the point, though, which was to have a challenge, regardless of whether you're prepared or not.

I'd suggest you try running heroics with a DPSer tanking just for the extra challenge, but item budget these days is so inflated you probably won't notice a difference anyway.

Foo said...

Congrats to Livia.

Kaaterina - Wow isn't hard, it just requires preparation. What Livia did was take an unusual path. Yes with more preparation it gets easier. However, when I first did Ramparts no preparation was required. Dire Maul (with the requirement to learn and 'puzzles' to solve) is the more interesting place to go.

Anti said...

"I'm not sure how someone can wander into an instance completely clueless, wipe repeatedly, and then claim they had 'fun'"

this is part of what top guilds are striving for. sure there might be only one or two guilds in the world that do encounters completely blind, and most of those do it on the test realms.

i'm not at that level but i do it in my own way. soloing old / low level content on my paladin tank. its conetent i havent ever done before. its challenging because though i outgear it i underman it.

the only problem is there isnt any upgrades in it for me. this fact will likely eventually move me into tanking 10 man or 25 man progression content. though right now i dont have the commitment to do that.

Anonymous said...

I love doing stuff like that. Not because of the wipes, but because of the statisfaction when it finally works out. I'd rather wipe 3 times on a boss and kill it then just grind three heroics.
I'm currently lvl 61 with my mage, and doing Ramparts or Blood Furnace is just no fun anymore. I'm either casting Blizzard on thrash all the time or casting frostbolt on a boss all the time. They should make stuff harder to kill, add some player cc or something like that. Now it just feels like grinding heroics.

Zazkadin said...


What they did was exploring new (for them) content. I personally think that is the most rewarding thing in this game. Sure you can do the some old stale instance for the hundredth time, or sure you can read up tactics and see twenty youtube videos before starting a new encounter, but isn't it more fun to not know what is beyond the next corner and let the game surprise you now and then?

And it's nu use to discuss whether Dire Maul is hard or not. In the learning process you make mistakes and the mistakes make you wipe. If you have learned from the mistake and ace the same encounter on the next try, that is a huge reward.

I wish I could erase my memory and do everything in this game again for the first time, because when you know what's coming, it isn't as good anymore.

I remember Dire Maul in the old days; it wasn't a popular instance back then neither, considered too hard (compared to Stratholme and Scholomance which could be done with 10 man if one wished so - and everybody wished). I needed it done badly to get my warlock steed and it took me literally two weeks before I found a group capable of completing it.

Flex said...

Even more obviously, Kaaterina, is that a hunter who was wholly goal- and cost-benefit-oriented could have simply found a generous social to unlock the library for them (or is it not even locked any more? I don't know), ran in and handed in the book.

But where is the satisfaction in that? Livia experienced some old content which will very likely not be there after Cataclysm. It can't easily just be aoe'd through (in vanilla sub-epic gear) like so much post-vanilla content can. Back in vanilla, Blizzard engineered that content to take time, because players who progressed too fast would run out of things to do.

There is a lot of such content and a player who doesn't just face their time in the game as a grind, but something to explore, might just find it quite an adventure.

Chewy said...

I agree with you for a change. The value you gain is directly proportional to the effort it takes, regardless of the material rewards.

Ask any lottery winner, has it actually made them happier or just given them different worries ?

Gareth McCumskey said...

I have to agree that doing an instance with NO knowledge can actually be a lot more fun than having read all about it in twenty different ways. I personally like surprises (which is why I have created a Horde Warrior to allow me to experience the content on the other faction I haven't seen yet). Being able to go through Vanilla WoW and get a "OMG thats so cool" moment sure beats Hellfire Ramparts' linear run through trash and bosses.

I actually wish Blizzard would create more instances like DiM just so we have something with a bit more complexity and interest.

Azzur said...

Ok, first an introduction to put everything in context. I'm 11/12 ICC10 having reached the Lich King (hence killing Sindragosa) prior to the 5% buff. I'm not elite but I estimate that I'm top 15% - 20% which would put me as an Aristocrat raider (a term coined by someone whom I can't remember).

Do I compare myself against others? Definitely! I want to clear content before they do. Do I love new shiny purples? Yes, very much!

I farm Frost badges everyday. Why? To get the frost badges for gear upgrades and for arena (2v2 is 1700 rating. Again, not elite, but certainly upper level).

Do I consider running heroics fun? Yes. I constantly challenge guildies / pugs to run them as fast as possible. Some timers:
Gundrak = 6 mins.
HoL = 12 mins.
DtK = 10 mins.

Do I enjoy making money off the AH? Somewhat yes.

Do I consider farming pets / mounts fun? Yes.

Do I consider low-level content, old world dungeons fun? No.

Do I enjoy ganking people? No.

The point I'm making is that everyone has their own definition of fun. For instance, Kaaterina thinks that wiping repeated in DM is no fun. But Livia thinks that it is a challenge and hence it is fun. The issue I have is that Gevlon is portraying his own "path to fun" as the best. Grinding, vanity items, etc are all considered M&S. In the end of the day, choose the path that you enjoy the most and don't look down on others.

Kaaterina said...

I want to tell everyone to stop living in the dream-world where you think that top-end guilds do not prepare.

They do. They run test realms. They know all previous encounters back-to-front, such as when a repeat element is added to the fight, they have a good idea what to do to defeat it. They read blogs. They spy on competition. They know their classes inside out. They have very good reflexes, positional awareness which were trained through god knows how long.

Just because there's no strategy available when a boss is new does NOT mean that top-end guilds do not know what they're doing. (Or walk in a boss encounter completely clueless.)

Even moreso, top-end guilds run their fight not only by wiping repeatedly, but in their own forums, with large theroycrafting threads, brainstorming ideas and discussing it.

There is no sucessful top-end guild that I know of that WILLINGLY ties their hands and feet by not taking advantage of every bit of superiority that they can gain. (Short of exploiting which is counter-productive. Bans are not conductive to first kills.)

So, let's just leave the whole 'top-end guilds do not prepare' misconception behind us, shall we?

Reading tactics is the most accessible form of preparation. If people fail on this, how on earth are they expected to behave competitively at any level?

Remember, Gevlon, you're running a PvP experiment. Setting hurdles for yourself and overcoming them is good when you compete against yourself.

It makes absolutely no sense to tie your hands and feet in competition with another. If your guild cannot get past the 'cheapness' of preparing for an PvE INSTANCE, then I can imagine the outrage you'll face when you ask them to do something like, I dunno. Read on other class strengths' and weaknesses, what runs in the meta-game and how to most effectively counter it.

Gevlon said...

@Kaaterina: what you mostly miss here is the ability to adapt. PvE is repetitive, so reading up, watching videos will make it much easier.

PvP is much more surprising as players are not scripted and you surely have to adapt.

Going to an instance without reading up tests someone's ability to adapt. It's therefore challenging and "fun" (how much I hate this word).

I'm not saying it's the only skill needed. One should have the other, preparation. I'm not trying to ignore it, nor I suggest people to go unprepared everywhere. But you ignore adapting skills completely, claiming that "adapting is needed only by unprepared" which is equally stupid as the opposite "reading for a GAME lol I have exp I can do anything rolf"

Kaaterina said...


I'm not dismissing anyone's fun.

If the story would have read: "We DELIBERATELY went without reading strategy into DiM to challenge ourselves". I would have no beef with that. In essence, they're creating their own difficulty level.

Gevlon has posted his solo/duo content for some time now, and I've never had any issues with that. Fair enough, whatever floats each's boat.

But the self-righteous tone in which Gevlon preaches against 'ilevel 260 farming' all the while as portraying a party of clueless people as a POSITIVE example, well, let's just say it makes my rage bar fill.

I, also, have killed Sindragosa prior to the 5% buff. I don't need to be preached at how my play style lacks validity while a positive example is given of a party behaving in the most unprofessional way as possible.

Gareth McCumskey said...


I don't think Gevlon is saying people shouldn't know their class. No matter what you do that is a prerogative. There's no point doing anything without knowing the class you play.

And like Gevlon mentioned, if you are doing a repeatable, predictable, and scripted INSTANCE, you can set yourself a challenge by consciously saying "I am not going to read a strat on this because I would like the challenge of beating it on my own".

If you are a progression guild where the challenge is "I want to beat other guilds to completing this", then your goals are totally different. Your challenge isn't working out your own strat but to beat everyone else to it and therefore you will read up and watch vids and discuss and theorycraft, etc etc.

I think it boils down to the fact that running old content for the first time is not challenging if you read up; these instances have generally been nerfed and most low-level players are way overgeared for them. Doing something to add some kind of challenge to an encounter is not a bad thing and not artifical at even worst!

Kaaterina said...

I never claimed that adapting is needed only by the unpreparing.

Adapting is needed, sure. But is a 'superior' layer of skill.

Preparation is a necessary and sufficient skill to be sucessful at this game.

Adaptability is a skill needed to be 'better' at the game. But you don't need to be 'better' until you're good enough. In fact, you can't even begin being 'better' until you're good enough. ('Good enough', another concept introduced by you.)

To do good in PvE, you must know what you're doing. If you're faced with the unknown, follow what people who are adaptable are doing. (Preparation)

To be better in PvE, you must know what you're doing and have flair when faced with the unknown. (Preparation & Adaptability)

If you're only adaptable, but you have no idea what you're doing, you're being carried. Sure, you might improvise here and there and you might be totally brilliant and possess phenomenal intuition, but sooner or later you'll run out of luck or inspiration. And when that happens, you'll fail. And if you fail on something that could have been avoided had you been prepared then you'll have a very angry and very wiped raid.

In PvP same thing. If you're fighting M&S, you don't need to be the god of PvP. You have to know your class AND their class better than them. (Preparation).

Adaptability only comes into play when you fight other prepared and adaptive players.

Azzur said...

But the self-righteous tone in which Gevlon preaches against 'ilevel 260 farming' all the while as portraying a party of clueless people as a POSITIVE example, well, let's just say it makes my rage bar fill.

I tried to say it, but I think you said it better. This is the issue I have with the post.

If people want to grind for shiny new purples (which may be fun to them), that is their choice! Have fun with whatever is best for you. Just don't look down on others!

antaria said...

the DM's is a dungeon i'd estimate not even 30% of wow's current population has finished (all 3 that is)

did you know that the trinket that turns you into the other faction drops in the arena in the middle there?

i used to have a lvl 1 alt in there to check if the rare spawns that drop em were around

since on my server it used to sell for about 1k in BC (havent really checked the WOTLK prices, but it cant be worse i'd immagine)

Gusztav said...

This is one of the best posts I've ever read here, even though it's not Gevlon's doing mostly, even if it's "silly" (considering most of us are goblins here with great in-depth knowledge of WoW).

It was good to read that the 4 of you (or 3? I lost track) had fun that no ilvl200+ overfarmed, boring, casual-friendly content can give you probably.

Zazkadin said...


I guess you are the kind of person who studies the manual before unpacking a new piece of electronics, while maany here are the kind who start pressing buttons to see what happens.

Dorgol said...

I'm going to have to agree with Kaaterina here. If they had gone in blind specifically for the challenge, that's great. But failing at a level 60 instance with 4 people (including at least 1 overgeared DK) isn't a sign of "skill".

I did Dire Maul West (what you call the Library) in a 3 man group (DK, Ret, Lock) just a few weeks ago. We started with 5 from LFD, but two people left for no reason after 2 pulls.

Tree boss? Easy.
Ghost boss? Easy.
Pylons? The only "hard" part was the AOE mana burn (which could be avoided easily).
Hunter boss? The RET Pally was able to heal it.

LFD finally replaced our missing two members just as we were clearing to the two Pylons around Immol'thar. So it was 5 of us who killed Immol'thar and the Prince.

It was FUN, but it wasn't really challenging. We saw maybe one wipe the entire time. And that was with THREE people.

I'm glad your guildies had "fun", but they would have done the entire instance quite easily had they bothered to do 5 minutes of reading. Hell, the hunter could have probably made it into the Library SOLO, and that would have been a bigger challenge.

Ratshag said...

Eh. I see Death Knuggets. I see folks in Outland gear. Basically, I see a group what ought to be able to smack an old world dungeon up one side and down the other, even short a person, if they'd bothered ta read up on it fer ten minutes on wowhead. I's glad they had funs, although obviously not so much fun they was willin' ta go back (or try they hand at Strat or Scholo). But you see this sorta thing all the time in leveling guilds. Is hardly evidence what yer guild is gonna rock at world PvP when everyone is 80.

Klepsacovic said...

Challenge and easymode epic chasing are not exclusive. Nor are exploration and easymode epic chasing. Or arenas and easymode epic chasing. It's a bit world and there are a million things to do.

This weekend I decided to go see what I could solo in Karazhan. It was fun and had some challenges. Gave no useful gear. Earlier in the day I did a random heroic for badges. Before that I worked on a rep grind.

People do mindless tasks and people do challenging tasks. To try to judge them based on what they're doing in a given moment is working with very limited information.

Draturg said...

"Did you know that pulling him pulls all the treants in the instance? They did not..."

...But as we realised, we instantly adapted. The other DK went into frost presence and tanked half the trash while I tanked boss + other half (total trash amount = maybe 20 strong mobs). We killed the boss and got the trash down to about 40%. Even though we wiped, I liked the challenge it gave us.

Kaaterina: Success is a relative term. When it comes to Gevlon's project, success is defined as "100 000 scalps". Being a good pvper is vital, therefore preparing for battles is also vital. You're right there.

But when it comes to having fun, "success" is when you have fun. If preparing kills some of the fun, then it lowers your chance of success.

And since we are versatile players, you can't say that "people who don't prepare for DiM will never prepare".

Also, squishing us with the "clueless" stamp seems rather ignorant to me. We knew our classes ect. What we didn't know was: "What's around that corner? What happens if we pull this switch?" = encounter-based knowledge.

We were a group of skilled players who spent hours clearing an instance. The only difference between us and endgame-raiders was our subjective definition on "success" and the concequences of it.

Anonymous said...

"PvP is much more surprising as players are not scripted and you surely have to adapt."

I am so tired of seeing this fiction invoked by people looking to dismiss PVE and promote PVP challenge.

Unless you are a mindless retard (and therefore likely to die to anyone who isn't), PVP is absolutely as scripted as PVE.

There are only 10 classes, each with a very limited number of possible, powerful pvp abilities. The PVP game is not very developed and if you have even a shallow understanding of class abilities nothing another player does in PVP forces you "to adapt". Either a player plays his class "well" (meaning the widely known optimal way) or they play it like a moron.

In the second case, there is obviously no challenge. You can auto-attack some people to death while they stand there and slowly decide what they should do next.

However, the first case is also not challenging. Sure, the outcome may be uncertain (I would argue that this is due more to relative latency, relative gearing and in the case of "world pvp" group size, class match-up, and surprise), but the only "skill" involved is knowing what the other player can and cant do and how you can and cant counter those abilities. It really is no harder or more organic an experience than PVE. Anyone who has done "competitive" pvp knows it's just as grindy and scripted as the most mundane PVE content in the game. Anyone who thinks otherwise is fooled by their own poor play into thinking that their are "intangibles" present in PVP that make it "dynamic".

Kaaterina said...

This is ridiculous. Ok, here we go:

Stop telling me that 'fun' is a goal. That's obvious. 'Fun' is subjective, and different people find different things fun.

This is not my complaint, and not my point.

Challenges are boolean. You set a challence and you either overcome it, or not. Simple.

However, an 'a posteriori' definition of challenge smells like cognitive dissonance.

If you set your challenge to 'have fun' and then proceed to do the noobiest things on earth, you cannot say that it was challenging just because you had fun.

For one, I am not you so how do I know you had fun? Maybe you're lying. Maybe you're covering for the fact that the alternative is far worse for your ego than 'harmless fun'. Maybe you didn't find it fun at all, but in order to not look the complete fool, you erected the facade that you had fun.

Secondly, even if this the case, fun is not quantifiable. You can't say: "My fun is more funner than your fun, nyah nyah." Therefore saying that you acting like a fool in DiM was more fun than grinding heroic badges is simply ridiculous.

But anyway here's my beef with this article, in concise points.

1. 'A posteriori' definition of challenge. A goal, or a challenge has to be set before the act is actually attempted. Otherwise, you're moving the goalposts. 'HAHA. I didn't take my Tears on Archimonde for extra challenge! I wanted to see whether the raid can heal through soul charge!" <----- Moving the goalposts, 'a posteriori' definition of challenge. Spot the fallacy!

2. Comparing apples and oranges. In light of 1. Gevlon redefined 'fun' as 'challenge' and proceeded to compare the lack of challenge of badge farming to the 'challenge' of the moved goalposts.

3. Comparing apples and oranges, redux. Comparing an end-of-expansion instance with a start of expansion one? Good job! News just in. Magister's Terrace is harder than Utgarde Keep, Stockades is easier than Mana Tombs, and Halls of Reflection is definetly harder than Deadmines! Read all about it! (Comparisons made at their respective, relevant levels.) Bear in mind that expansions are NOT played only by end-of-game players from previous expansions, they hopefully draw new players in. This is why there's a difficuly seesaw of instances. DiM, MGT, HoR are end-of expansion instances tuned for knowledgeable players in end-game gear. DM, UK and Ramps are balanced for clueless players in questing greens. (often mismatched).

Yaggle said...

Instances requiring "preparation" is a big turn-off for me. You should be good at playing your class, that is how you should prepare. If your character is doing a new instance, there should be no preparation other than remembering to bring your equipment and reagents. When you look up proper strats for the boss mobs you will face, how did your character know these things? Until they develop a way to make random dungeon layouts with many random boss mobs and drops possible throughout, it's rather silly for your character to be going in for the first time and yet knows the exact things to do in order to be victorious. "Preparation" in WoW right now is really "Look up on internet and memorize", and that's not a game, not a "fun"(sorry Gevlon) game at least.
I predict the next hugely successful MMO will use random dungeon layouts and it will be a much better test of skill and also much more enjoyable. And there will be much rejoicing around the world. Also some crying from the real M&S.

Gevlon said...

@Kaaterina: the definition was not a posteriori. They could leave with positive self image after the library. Livia could claim that she got the loot she grinded for, the others that they were "helpful teammembers". Yet thay stayed. The choice was made already knowing that the instance is hard without reading up. They could also choose to read up.

I'm not claiming they went into the dungeon for the challenge. But they found it inside and it kept them going.

Also you are preaching to the choir here with basing the "fun ppl".

Coeur-de-fer said...


Frankly, I'm a bit confused. First you seem to take issue with failing to read up on the instance. Then that's an acceptable way of creating an additional difficulty level, akin to soloing and duoing instances. But then you didn't like Gevlon's tone; he made snide remarks about your method of play, so it's back to being unacceptable.

If I want my crossword puzzle from last week's newspaper (one I never got around to doing until now) done as quickly and painlessly as possible, the solution is right here in today's edition. I think, however, I'll opt for the unprofessional method and slog through it on my own. Maybe I'll take a peek if I really get stuck. Maybe.

Very little of WoW requires more than preparation and human resources management (arguably the most difficult aspect of the game, but I digress). Dire Maul can reasonably be assumed beforehand to be of considerably less difficulty than a 1600 arena match or Firefighter. Diving in headfirst is not an unreasonable method of injecting a bit of excitement into what otherwise becomes a sleep-inducing exercise. If the content could reasonably be expected to provide a non-trivial challenge even after thoroughly preparing oneself, then I would mostly agree.

On a slightly different note, some of the "everyone needs to be nice to everyone" comments here are simply precious. I really wonder what draws some of you to this particular blog, given the regularity of derisive and inflammatory content.

Purplezorlak said...

@ Kaaterina

I disagree with you bashing people for not preparing for an instance. I don't like to read prior to an encounter, because I find no acomplishment on using other people's recipe to a fight. Let's be honest, WoW is not so difficult that you can't overcome a fight if you don't read and watch a zillion videos on a fight before doing it, basically by not standing on the fire you have 80% of every fight in your pocket.

Yes, without reading you end up wiping a couple of times, but hell, I have a few tens of thousand gold pieces, I can afford the repairs, and as I'm not buying a bike, I think that repairs is a good use for the money.

As it has been mentioned before, the WoW world is big enough to fit everyones likes and dislikes. People going into an instance with no previous knowledge are entitled to do it, just because they enjoy doing it.

I have never studied for a fight, except in the cases where i'm going with a group that requires me to do it. If I went without knowledge of a fight when I was asked to read about it would make me an M&S, because I'll end up annoying and getting carried by a group of people that wanted to do things one way, not my way.

I think that the preparation that has been mentioned before is more about knowing your class and having enough knowledge about the game (don't stand in the fire. If you're not the tank, don't stand in front of the boss, etc) to be able to analyze and overcome the situations that you find in your way.

For example in my first time in ICC with lord marrowgar, it wasn't hard at all. You go in there, look at him and say, woah, that's a big mother fucker, I'd better get behind him and slash his ass to pieces. Then the bastard starts releasing blue smoke farts, and I don't like to stand in other people's gas, so I get out of it. Some piece of bone comes out of the ground and impales some guy in the ass, I click the bone, oh I can target it!!! then I fucking beat the crap out of it, friend is OK, back to big guy. Big guy starts doing whirlwinds, I know I kill people when I do that, and this mofo is 200 times bigger than me, I better run the hell out of his way!!! oh and don't get in the gas!!! He stops, we hit him again, rinse and repeat, big guy dies, woohoo, loot time.

Fuck I rolled a 1 again...

Shifttusk said...

@gev - I appreciate the fact that you can see the good in trying out things that challenge one's ability to learn rather than their ability to repeat the same ation over and over in hopes of some reward. While dilligance is a vitrue, its generally the virtue of what you call the m&s and what I would call the soon to be replaced by a robot IRL. Unless you do something akin to what I see you doing which is being diligent in finding new challenges... if that makes sense.

@Kaaterina - as many other posters are saying I think you are missing the point. Of course preparation will make anything easier. Having instructions how to do anything makes it easier. Ultimately though anything that is easier by instruction evnetually becomes the work of a machine. If all you can do is accomplish things that you prepare for, you will ultimately be replacable. Those who create and adapt are harder or impossible to replace.

The point you are missing is lets say some hacker destroys every recorded instance guide, class guide and video of wow being played. Then Blizzard somehow obtains now the right to kill anyone who records this information. The person in this post upon reaching level 80 would try and figure out and eventually would figure out how to defeat xyz dungeon or how to beat xyz class in pvp. The average M&S who can only now get gear by facerolling HC content being carried by others and gear would sit around in dalaran, cry on the forums untill bliz gave them free 260 epics.

You can argue that there is no situation like this but it matches up exactly to some of gev's talks on economy. Where a person doing subpar in a job is now jobless because noone can pay him to leach on in this job and cannot addapt and find new work. Once again facing unemployment the person in this post would probably relish the challenge of learning a new trade and succeed.

Placed alone on an island an M&S would perish, the person in the post would find fish and coconuts to eat.

Drathas said...

The world first guilds wipe repeatedly in the test realm, they walk into those encounters completely clueless, wipe, and have fun. There is a difference between clueless players (that group had some) and groups of players that want a challenge.

Those that want a challenge are the type of people who don't like the endings of movies they are going to see ruined for them, or who don't buy a game and a strategy guide at the same time. Because if you did that, you could save yourself $70 and just watch a video of someone completing the game on youtube.

A long time ago someone named Richard Bartle compiled a test to figure out what kind of video game player people were. Out of 200% various aspects of games were listed in order of importance to the player. For example I am a KAES (Killer, Achiever, Explorer, Socializer).
An interesting read.

Kaaterina said...


You didn't read the tactics on one of the easiest fights in ICC then claim all fights are the same? And than you'd get past 80% of the fights? Really?

Ok, do the same thing on say... Mimiron. Or... Freya. I bet willy-nilly attacking adds got you far through F+3, right? Or Lady Deathwhisper. Or Yogg-Saron.

Past content is less forgiving. Archimonde. Not knowing wtf you're doing=wipe. Gorefiend. Same. Bloodboil, same. RoS, same. Mother, same. Council, same. Kaz-rogal. Guess.

Just because you can get by with knowing the basics on Marrowgar and Rage Winterchill does not make you any kind of authority on adaptive raiding.


Congratulation, you posted a strawman argument!

Here you go.

"Adapting is needed, sure. But is a 'superior' layer of skill.

Preparation is a necessary and sufficient skill to be sucessful at this game.

Adaptability is a skill needed to be 'better' at the game. But you don't need to be 'better' until you're good enough. In fact, you can't even begin being 'better' until you're good enough."

And the robot thing is populist nonsense. You must not prepare because robots will replace you! Oooh, scary. Someone watched too many SF movies.

Those who adapt but do NOT prepare are a liability. They're a loose cannon, just waiting to blow in your face when you least expect it.

As to your other point. I've never, ever , EVER heard of someone who couldn't find a job because they couldn't adapt. That's just social-speak for: "QQ, I didn't prepare enough for the interview, and I didn't know what he'd ask of me nor what I was supposed to answer, so I'll just shift the blame away from me (not preparing) to something that I can't control and is essentially an innate trait (not adapting)."

To put it into WoW, I've never seen ANYONE, EVER be declined an application for a guild when much effort was put in their application. Regardless of the tier of gear they're in. (As long as it's properly chosen, of course.)

And to your 'hacker' post. Sorry, they guys who prepare would still do better. Different kind of preparation. They'd learn calculus. They'll crunch numbers, on paper if need be. They'll find other like-minded people. They'll run boss scenarios on paper. Why am I repeating this, I thought I posted this in my second post. Don't you guys read, or something?

While the only adaptive people will run into the instance and wipe repeatedly, saying 'bad luck, lol' after each wipe.

Ulv said...

Playing WoW for the challenge is what most people actually do.

It's just that teh challenge level is different for all.

Last night a group of guildies took out very undergeared alts into ICC10. My warrioir, one of the tanks, was in ilvl200 Epics and blues. GS of 3800. Others were similarly geared including a Holy Priest with 8 or so hours played at 80!

We achieved our goel for the evening - cleared the first zone with a few wipes on Saurfang.

On our mains we blast through this content as the simple badge farm it is - 30-35 mins from first pull to deciding plague, frost or blood.

Gevlon - I get the idea of your challenges. They keep the game fresh.

Shifttusk said...

@kaaterina -

I think before you use a logic fallacy to decry a post you should be more sure on its meaning.. A straw man is when you change your opponents point slightly so you can prove it wrong. I never even stated your position because. I merely think you're missing something in your analysis. Your actual conclusion that all you need to succeed in wow is preparation I would agree 100% with. That and some fine motor skills. My only point is that being prepared only has it's failings. Just as being adaptable without any knowledge base (being prepared) also has some failings.

Initially you are saying that being prepared is the only skill needed for success in wow. When I place your prepared folks in a situation where preparation is no longer possible you state the best and brightest prepared folks will learn:

<< Sorry, they guys who prepare would still do better. Different kind of preparation. They'd learn calculus. They'll crunch numbers, on paper if need be. >>

So great, they will learn/adapt new skills to prepare them. Oh wait. To elaborate this is a fine example similar to a straw man. To prove that you are right you are altering your position to make it defensible. I'm sure there is a more acute logic and reason keyword for this but essentially you are subtly changing your position to gain validity (reverse strawman maybe?). I think we need to more clearly define "prepare" and "adapt". Preparation is not problem solving through data analysis. Being prepared in wow, the required skill you are defending, is learning a precise list of steps, and repeating with no planned change for a predictable result. So long as you follow instructions and perform within x standard deviations of the norm, you will receive xyz. Adaptability is the skillset of n being able to observe and react to a new situation, gather your own data, apply rules of nature or god or whatever and extrapolate and create a solution to the problem. Ultimately the adaptable individuals are the ones who create process steps that "prepared" people use to perform the same task at a later point, but they first adapt and learn them..

I think we're basically arguing shades of grey. You equate the best at preparation to what I think the rest of us are calling adaptability. I think mainly this has to do with identifying yourself as someone who prepares. I don't think that being prepared is mutually exclusive with being adaptable. You can read strategy guides, then be asked to run a different instance you did not prepare for and be adaptable and have a problem solving mindset. Obviously this combination status is the best place to be. Like you said an adaptable only person would have a very limited knowledge base at first and would literally need to charge in tons of times to develop a working solution. They would assuming a long enough life span solve the problem. A prepared only person however would have no set of instructions and unless someone intervened they would never pass a new situation. That's my only point. Adaptability is a more valuable skill only because of this difference.

Anyway thanks for the debate. It was actually a good brain exercise which is rare for the morning blog read!

And about the robots. Anything fully defined in a set of instructions can be automated. We only lack the ability to implement robots that can perform certain actions at a cheap price. It's merely an engineering problem before nearly all repeatable tasks are no longer viable sources of employment.