Greedy Goblin

Monday, May 30, 2011

M&S vs ninja

Everybody hates the ninja, the one who will somehow take the loot that is not his, usually by ignoring the previously agreed loot rules. Some go even further and considers someone ninja if he press "need" on items where he is not "supposed to" despite there is no previous agreement to loot distribution.

What does the ninja do? Takes away your chance to the loot by grabbing it for himself. Of course the chance was low as the item must drop and you must win the /roll. But if the master looter gives the drop to himself and his buddies instead of rolling it, you lose that little chance. You can keep your valor points, but still, losing that 1-10% chance to loot is enough to make you hate the ninja.

What does the M&S do? Wipes the raid. No kill, no loot. You lose your chance to the loot and the valor points, so M&S causes more damage than the ninja. Yet, people rarely hate the M&S. It's "elitist". The socially accepted idea is that they are just "new", or need gear. Kicking him from that one raid is major case asshattery, while just kicking a ninja (instead of spamming /trade, writing his name to some blacklist, writing a mail to his guildmaster, logging to opposing faction and gank him) is almost "too nice".

Socials judge people not by what they do, but by their perceived intention. The ninja wanted to take away the loot, while the M&S wanted to help to get it. While the M&S obviously failed to help, it makes him a bad player, while the ninja is a bad person. This phenomenon is so strong, that one refuses to play with a ninja even if he is unable to cause any damage (because there is master looter and it's not the ninja), while the M&S gets more and more help to be able to not fail.

Of course this social thinking is objectively wrong, as we are unable to monitor someone's intentions. If someone decides to get free points and loot by being autofollow on trash and autoattack on boss, he is obviously a ninja: he purposefully harms the others to get loot for himself. Yet from the outside he is indistinguishable from a bad player. In PvP botting is widespread. The player is not even there, yet he receives honor points that his teammates gained, but he is impossible to catch as his terrible gameplay is not worse than the play of the "letz play 4 fun" guy, who is widely accepted as "casual" or "fun person".

The significant difference between ninja and M&S is how the social feel about himself. The M&S is inferior to the social making him feel superior. The ninja makes him feel defeated. Remember, the only motivation of a social after his biological needs is to feel good about himself. As long as you provide you that, you can take whatever you want from him.


Dugley said...

Although the point of the post still stands, I must point out that a ninja will lock you out of your loot for the entire week, while a M&S wipe will only take some of your time, and you still hold the opportunity to get the gear again next week.

Anonymous said...

I tell you why you are wrong. compelety wrong:

M&S wipes me on bh. I kick him, or leave raid find new raid, then try again later.

Ninja waits until after the boss is down to ninja my tier gloves, thats it I am fked. Cant do it again as I am locked out.

An M&s wastes my time a ninja steals my lockout. Thats why I avoid one and hate the other. Why I wish perma bans were introduced for ninjas.

Anonymous said...

Except as the quote goes, "I know no way of judging of the future but by the past." or "a leopard does not change his spots."

The risk/reward of playing with a ninja is not worth it. A very tiny % of the M&S are merely ignorant and may get better. But they are much more likely to reform than the ninja, thief, or botter are to repair their ethics.
There are, for a while longer, millions of WoW players; it does not cost that much to find someone else.

Anonymous said...

Players that underperform can become fully contributing members of the raid. Some are too stupid to get better, but most just need to be pointed in the right direct.

Ninjas, however, are ninjas. What makes them undesirable is not likely to change.

Anonymous said...

I think the commenters missed the point. Both m&s and ninjas stop you getting your loot, yet one is hated more. The difference lies in that ninjas just steal your chance at getting it when it drops. The important part is chance, as the loot was never yours to begin with, you still had to win the roll bid.

I made a comment in the other post about people's faulty thinking explaining behaviour the same applies here. the lockout applies as soon as a boss dies, if he drops loot for no one in the raid the lockout wasted, if a piece someone need drops they straight away see it as there's before it is even rolled on.

The truth is the ninja outplayed you, and nothing stopping you from doing the same. However, people don't see it like that the ninja stole their loot and he must be despised for that.

Alrenous said...

It is sometimes easy to infer intentions, and sometimes important. Indeed, aren't we now inferring the intentions of the social creature?

"The truth is the ninja outplayed you"

I think this is the key. The social gets to feel superior to the M&S, because they need the social's help. This is far more important to the social than any loot Blizzard could design.

The ninja makes them feel inferior. The ninja pulls one over on them. The social responds by going ballistic.

So, more than just leech, remember to always make a social feel superior. As long as you do that, they're almost completely at your mercy.

Gevlon said...

@Dugley: I doubt if anyone is "lockout-capped" instead of "time-capped". The M&S takes away time that you could use to get gear in other ways (rep, troll HC, valor, other raid boss). So unless he ninjaed tier shoulder or head token, losing time is worse than losing lockout.

@Alroneus: very good point, I implement it into the post

Anonymous said...

I don't know what game you are playing, but most decent players that do pug do not accept badly geared, gemmed or enchanted players into their raid. And if it turns out he's a bad player despite being properly gemmed and enchanted, he still won't get an invite next time. Even in heroic 5mans, bad players are constantly flamed.

Ninjas are a whole different story, but a non-issue, since you can just report them and get your loot.

nightgerbil said...

"The truth is the ninja outplayed you"

No, no he didnt outplay me. He actively harmed me. The rogue chain sapping on an ab flag and loling at me is outplaying me. The guy 3 levs below me who is corpse camping me is outplaying me. Both are annoying and will spoil my "fun" for a bit. They arent harming me though.

The ninja takes a week of my game time and destroys it. If it takes me 12 weeks to gear up to do hmodes, he just ruined this week for me, I might as well have skipped the lockout and gone outside.

I would point out the loot itself is just a means to an end, a tool to help clear further content, but without the tools to progress I am stuck clearing the old boring stuff I have farmed and might have to farm many many more times until I see the drop again.

Ninjas dont make me feel inferior they are hurting me and destroying my game time.

Anonymous said...

"Ninja" is an abused word. If someone actually disregards agreed loot rules you can file a ticket and Blizzard will act, since it's considered scamming.

The problem is that most people just label "ninja" even with no loot rules were defined. If no rules are defined with group loot you can basically need whatever you have the chance to need, and with Master Looter who gets the loot is the ML's only and unquestionable decision.

Basically, you need to actually know the actual rules (and not your mistaken opinion about them) and make sure the ML explains the loot rules clearly. If he does not or you don't agree leave, if you agree and he misbehaves, file a ticket.

Anonymous said...

@Alrenous you make a good point however, i feel that the points you outlay are only useful if one intends to leech themselves. I personally don't want to leech off of other idiots or socials, not because of altruism, but because stupidity and bad thinking annoys me to no end so would get a greater benefit from ending it.

I made a post for the "play for win vs play for fun" article, but i'll sum it up and relate it to this one.

what should happen is that A -> B&C where A is a boss kill, B is loot and C is recognition or whatever socials care about. What happens is that some people want C ans sees that it comes with B so lust after B. however they fail to take into account that they come from A. this fualty thinking explains alot of the behaviour seen in M&S.

For the moron and slacker, as gear is soo overvalued, everything else is deemed not as important. why bother with tactics in bgs when they can wait till they get more gear, and when they get more gear and still lose the oponent is cheap. They ignore that gear came as a reward but instead see the obtaining of gear as the achievement.

Why bother improving play style when dps can be improved by getting more gear. When their dps is still lacking it becuase of bad luck, while ignoring the fact that the best boost to dps come from improving your ability to execute the rotation.

this gear frenzy is epitomised with the new troll dungeons. As gevlon pointed out blizz purposfuly made it 353 item level to give M&S and socials the idea that they are progressing without having to do any relativly hard achievemnt to carry out. also the outcry that came as a result of them making the gear epic, when it still of worse quality of raid gear, shows how much people care about gear then where it came from.

the greatest irony of it all is that they seemed to forget that the "no lifers" top guilds get their prestege from downing bosses before anyone else and that no one cares what gear they had. Moreover, by gevlons offer to do the crafting for them, and several blogs and postings, the "no lifer" part of it comes from improving skill and having to know fights back to front.

As a result the best way to deal with a ninja is to simply not care about the gear. if you don't care then their time has been wasted and they have done themselves more harm then good.

Anonymous said...

"Why I wish perma bans were introduced for ninjas."


"The problem is that most people just label "ninja" even with no loot rules were defined."

You can report a clear case of ninjaing, and sometimes what can be defined as behavior by a ninja can be justified.

Example: me on my hybrid comes healing, tank, 2 melee DPS, and lolfrostmagepvp. Lolfrostmagepvp does not follow the tactics of the fight, nor does he do any significant dmg, nor is he able to communicate in English. He joined LFD to get boosted, and the vote kick system does not allow us to get easily rid of the bugger. Or worse, he joined with a guildie who vohemently defends him. He joined that BH raid to get carried by other players who do gem and enchant their PvE gear (although he might have won TB for those very PvE players). Does this person deserve PvE gear over someone who plays PvE in a serious manner? Does a person who does not participate in PvP fights deserve PvP tier gear? To end up with it being sharded? Does lolfrostmagepvp deserve the hit ring which dropped more than me who had to heal his arse through the fight? I have a clear answer to all of these questions, but you might disagree. If you were the ML in these cases, you would be right. If I'd be the ML, I'd be right.

If you are ML, you have the final say in such matters. This is why it is important to get a ML from a reputable guild, or a reliable person. If its group loot, we let RNG decide. Remember that no matter who wins the roll, lolfrostmagepvp won since he gets gold, VP, achievement, and a good time knowing full well he is getting boosted (or working on his day time job while his bot is getting boosted). Now, if you do not trust your ML (which you generally shouldn't unless e.g. guildie; totally up to you), simply let him state the loot rules in clear English at the start of the raid, and if he does not follow them (ninjas e.g. DBW) he can get reprimanded for this behavior as well as lose his item. In LFD however, this is not possible. Which is why you see so many M&S in LFD: the geared people farming the last VP they need boosted them with their gear and/or skill. The power of the RL and ML are huge in raid. Not only in terms of atmosphere and quality of communication. Loot distribution starts at the moment the group is being formed. There are many ways a ML can manipulate the outcome of the PUGs who join simply by changing aspects such as loot rules, achievement requirements, inspecting for gems/enchantments. They're not fool proof, and don't always make sense.

If you have a save at Cho'Gall, and you want only people who have 4/4 achievement on the character with which they want to come on, you know that these people do not care for the VP or loot of the other bosses and generally come for the tier piece whilst having downed the boss at least once. The combination of these factors gives you a higher chance of getting personae who wish to zerg Cho'Gall, knowing the tactics, being experienced with their character (not necessarily role though!), being overgeared (near ilvl 359 PvE) for it. In such case a simple inspect and glance over armory is enough in my experience. Another example is reserving DBW in ICC25m. This ensures you get less melee DPS in your PUG. The melee DPS you do get are the ones who already have DBW (which was roughtly a flat personal 1k DPS incease) or don't need it for whatever reason. Since it'll be easier to get ranged for such a PUG, your overal chance to get melee DPS gear increases as well. You win both ways: you get more chance at the loot you want, including the specific loot you reserve, and the possible performance outcome of your PUG raid increases. The people who join will even congratulate you if your specific gear piece drops! NB: you can replace DBW with Shard of Woe in the next months once people will PUG Sinestra in 4.2. If I weren't the ML I'd ask the loot rules on that item as I've asked for the loot rules on incineratus at the start of BWD raids.

Anonymous said...

Another example: when I make a BH25 raid I simply invite every hunter who whispers me. Why? The class always does enough DPS no matter how shitty geared or skilled the person is as long as they are following the fight's mechanics (which are a piss). Usually I end up with 2 or 3 staying. I do the same with mages (on wednesday I peek at 5 mages), and the ones who stay are the mages who already have their tier gear. DK idem. Some classes, such as warlock, seem rather unpopular (and less faceroll) on this realm. When there is no warlock in the BH25 raid it has occured that I log my lock and come on that alt instead. Everyone wins this way: the more represented classes have a more fair chance for their loot to drop, and I have a guaranteed win if my loot drops. I've gotten an entire PvP set for my warlock. I'd never have need-rolled on these pieces if I wasn't the only lock; it actually got me into PvP on my warlock eventually collecting more PvP gear. This is not ninjaing; this is distributing the loot chances before the raid starts.

Now, to get back to my LFD example: if I see someone who is being boosted (e.g. PvP spec, does not properly gem/enchant their gear, dies in every fight) and something drops which I need, I need on it for whatever spec I need. I really do not follow MS > OS in such case. Whether this example or any of the above is ninjaing is entirely up to debate since the original meaning of ninja (literally looting someone else their kill) cannot be compared to the advanced loot systems we have nowadays. If I am leading a raid in BH25 and I clearly say at the start /rw priests mass dispel or no loot, and I see in Skada log a certain priest mass dispelled 42 magic debuffs whilst the other one dispelled none, I lootban the one who did not bother to do as I asked him to. This way, he might learn, and the other priest gets a higher chance to be rewarded for doing the job I asked him to do: dispelling. I find this works well. In VOA, I even had to state 10k DPS or no loot because so many M&S wanted to join and it wasn't worth it to inspect every single person for a quickie.

Gevlon's post didn't go into protecting the hard working raider from M&S via some of the stated examples, and none of my examples can be compared to a ML who gives himself the tier piece once it drops from Cho'Gall, after which that ML 9 other people suddenly find that person "offline". The latter person is clearly a ninja or a thief albeit of purple pixels since he stole a fair roll for those who deserved to roll on the piece based on the ML rules. Hence, he either broke his own rules, or the 9 other people were stupid to not ask for the loot rules. He is either a thief, or played with 9 (or 24) stupid people. What you can do to reduce ninjas is making sure the ML states the loot rules crystal clear, in plain written English (not on voice chat), going with people from reputable guilds, or reputable personae (build up a weekly PUG team and make it a guild ;). This way, the ninja eventually gets banned or he plays with M&S.

Whilst a M&S deprives you of the kill, you also are not saved and still have a (supposedly fair) chance getting the loot you desire later in the week. There are far more M&S than ninjas, they join with guildies/friends both which makes M&S more accepted in (WoW) society. stealing is frowned upon, even in virtual games or *gasp* the music industry. Honest business is accepted while getting ninjaed means you failed. How? You have failed to obtain a trustable ML and got yourself tricked. I've been scammed in life, and I lived & learned from it. Those who don't learn and keep getting ninjaed are however morons, and whine in /2 about the fact they allowed themselves to get tricked. If they did not get tricked they would shut up and file the ticket instead, knowing action would be taken.

Anonymous said...

In the ninja case we do know, with reasonable certainty, the intentions behind the act. This allows us to condemn and ostracize the person secure in the knowledge that we are not losing anything by doing so.

In the M&S case there a number of intents which could explain the activity. Most people prefer to give the benefit of the doubt in such cases. This is not objectively wrong or flawed, it is a risk/reward evaluation: this person might be of worth to me later so I don't dismiss him entirely. Your threshold for taking that risk is much lower than most people. That doesn't make you objectively right or more rationale. It just makes you more cynical.

Jumina said...

The reason why "ninja looters" cause so much hate is the "ninja" takes not only the small % chance for drop but he takes your drop after you won the small % chance.

If something has only small chance to drop and it actually drops it means you already were lucky. And when someone steals it right under your hands its worth more than just one reset. And its more painful like to loose something you have worked hard for.

Plus you can kick = punish M&S. You can't punish "ninja looter".

pippen1001 said...

or as the famous story about the frog and the scorpion, The scorpion wants to get over the river but cant swim. So he begs a frog to take him over. But the frog refuses says that the scorpionwill just sting him. The scorpion then says why would i do that we will both die then. So the frog agrees to take the scorpion over the water. Halfway across the scorpion suddenly stings the frog, and as they both are drowning the frog asks why. And the scorpion says "its in my nature to kill you".

Anonymous said...

@Anon "I really do not follow MS > OS in such case. Whether this example or any of the above is ninjaing is entirely up to debate"

In my definintion a ninja is someone who breaks the rules and obtains loot which he was not entitled to have.

In LFG there is no such thing as "MS > OS" or "I did more to bring down the bos so I am entitled more". That's why I stressed the point that before accusing someone of being a ninja you first need to have crystal clear which rules actually apply, and not make accusations or throwing tantrums based on your (wrong) assumptions.

The fact that the current LFD rules could be perfected is a different issue.

Anonymous said...

A lot of people are making the same interpretations that has missed the point.

A ninja, a M&S, and bad luck with loot drops all amount to the same thing yet one is condemned more so then the others.

the reason everyone is stating is the intention, yet that should not be treated with anymore or any less expectations. If someone killed someone with good intentions, he still committed murder the same as someone with bad intentions.

when different intentions lead to the same outcome the intentions shouldn't matter, yet by the comments people treat them differently.

the reasoning why I have already outlined and don't wish to do the repeat it all over again.

If someone lacks empathy which we could argue is a ninja then condemning them won't make a difference, as they wouldn't care about your opinion of them.

M&S and socials do care what you think of them so it would have an affect to condemn them for their behavior. Yet because of social ideals people act in the opposite and get nothing done.

Proof? People have been complaining and condemning ninjas since before wow and yet it still occurs, despite the negative associations that comes with doing so.

Energybomb said...

A tip to avoid ninjas: before entering a pug group, CLEARLY demand a WRITTEN explanation of the rules.
If they do that and break them, a GM has the right to intervene but only if the rules are clearly stated in in-game chat.

Roq said...

Ninjaing is just a problem with game mechanics that needs fixing. No need/greed rolls = no loot ninjas. You can't rely on random internet aquaintances to behave honourably - surely everyone must know that by now.

GW2 appears to have a sensible way of dealing with this so there's not much point in outlining one here.

Anonymous said...

As people have stated before, ninjaing is something you can reliably avoid by thinking ahead and asking about loot rules. I can't really feel too much sympathy with someone who desperately wants a certain set of purple pixels to the extent of actively ganking someone who deprives him of it for a week, but not enough to ask in chat beforehand about the loot rules.

On the other hand, though, it is true that the average terrible player is more likely to hurt you than the average ninja. Assume you're playing with an idiot who doesn't know to run away from the raid when he's the bomb on Baron Geddon. (This would be me back in vanilla.) Say there's three bombs during the raid. In today's 10m raiding environment, this translates into a (0.9)^3<80% chance of him not becoming the bomb and hence the raid not failing due do him, so alone he causes the raid to have a 20% chance of wiping.

Now, say the boss drops two pieces of loot you want from a pool of 10, of which you want one. Then the chance of your loot dropping is 20%. If a ninja rolls against you, you should get at least one other people to roll with you to deny him the loot if you shout loud enough, so the chance of him winning the roll is 34% if you get someone else to roll with you and 50% otherwise. Multiply this by the 20% chance of your loot dropping to get the chance of the ninja stealing it.

Hence depending on your assumptions you end up with less than a 10% chance that a ninja actually denies you loot given that he is in your raid. Compare this to the >25% chance of an imagined terrible player wiping the raid (which would likely cause the raid to rapidly dissolve in a flurry of "g2g", "playing with friends now bb" if you are in the average pug) and also the fact that it's far more likely for you to miss out on loot due to a bad player than due to a ninja.

I freely admit to several problems with this - probability isn't additive, and I pulled most numbers out of a hat, but I think for most reasonable numbers you'll end up with the conclusion that removing all ninjas won't increase the chance of you defeating the boss and getting your loot as much as teaching all players the obvious, need-to-know mechanics of the fight will.

As a sidenote I also doubt the claims of "bad players can learn, while ninjas are always evil". If someone hasn't wanted to become a better player in the last 200 hours he put into the game, why should you telling him he's terrible convince him otherwise when it's far more convenient for him to just dismiss you as a bad elitist jerk and any indisputable failings on his part as bad luck? (After all it's not his fault that he stood in the fire just as he was tabbing out to check his mail, that could happen to anyone.) On the other hand, you can fend off all intelligent ninjas by simply confirming loot rules in raid chat and mentioning that GMs have explicitly stated that this makes them enforcable, and all stupid ninjas can be solved by notifying a GM.

Ihodael of Darnassus said...

"The ninja takes a week of my game time and destroys it. If it takes me 12 weeks to gear up to do hmodes, he just ruined this week for me, I might as well have skipped the lockout and gone outside." (nightgerbil)

Already stated elsewhere but to stress the point: you should then consider reporting Blizzard since their drop chances are gimping you much more than any ninja.

The ninja can't take away the reliable source of income (JP/VP/etc) just the bonus source of income (loot) (and then you can learn and only be fooled by him/her once). The bad player will take away your total income (or at least will make your work harder for that same income). Like someone already stated part of the problem is that people then see the loot not as bonus but as income. It isn't. It is a bonus.

Personally? Give me a ninja everyday (even a full raid of them) which will be competent players over a bunch of not so competent players. He takes my bonus... I keep the income and progress (almost) exactly the same.

And how freaking relevant can a single drop be? Is that the one drop that will make you do HC vs not doing them? Unlikely. There are very few cases where a single drop makes such an impact of your performance (there are cases however like that... personally I would rather have better game design there too).

Most of us lack skills (and/or time and in some cases some additional conditions, like schedule to raid with equally competent players) not gear. The proof of it: the top guilds and players.

chewy said...

@Anon 11:54

If someone killed someone with good intentions, he still committed murder the same as someone with bad intentions.

This isn't true in most legal systems. A charge of murder can and is pleaded as manslaughter based on the intention. There are degrees of the crime distinguished by intent.

Sthenno said...

I'm a little surprised you compared a thief to an unproductive person and decided the thief was the better of the two. That doesn't work in games or in real life.

Most new small businesses fail in their first year. A person starting a business takes on a lot of risk. The argument being made here is basically that a person should react equally to their business failing as to it succeeding and having their accountant embezzle all of their earnings.

When you join a PuG raid you agree to take a lot of chances. You might not beat the boss, if you do win there might be no drops you want, and if something does drop for you someone else might get it. If your raid fails, if your loot doesn't drop, or if someone else wins the roll then that's all what you signed up for.

A real ninja (which are admittedly very rare these days because people don't do PuG raids on free for all or group loot) is a thief.

Brian said...

I think the attitude towards ninjas does have a social motivation, but not in a bad way.

Everyone considering the problems of A run with A ninja aren't thinking big picture. Yes, you can avoid ninja behavior, and yes, the behavior of a ninja arguably doesn't harm you in any given run as much as a really bad player. But coming down hard on ninjas is intended to discourage ninja behavior overall. Not just from this ninja, this time...but for all potential ninjas, all of the time.

Most people instinctively know that society only works to the extent that most people follow the same set of rules. Ignoring "ninja" behavior just leads to more of the same, to the point where it creates problems you can't ignore.

Anonymous said...

Apparently some of your readers fail to read patch notes.

@ the Anonymous who things Sinestra will be puggable in 4.2.

The nerfs only apply to normal mode content. Sinestra's mechanics are too unforgiving for any pugs with the appropriate gear. Try again in 1-2 more tiers.

Anonymous said...

@chewy I understand the different legal charges but that is not the point. The point is is that whether someone kills someone as they threatened their family or someone kills someone because he doesn't like them. They both saw the victim as a threat and disregarded the fact that they were a person.

the key difference should not be intent but rather how they think afterwards. the "good" person most likely regains empathy, whereas the "bad" person doesn't not.

We should be looking at the causes of their behaviour not their intent, as that is only an in between stage, between thinking of something and carrying it out.

Anonymous said...

"In LFG there is no such thing as "MS > OS" or "I did more to bring down the bos so I am entitled more"."

In LFG there is Need before Greed with the social consensus being MS > OS. It is generally frowned upon if you do not follow this, but it is not an offense which can get one banned. This, and other social consensus on loot rules, blurs the discussion between a person who ninjas and gets reprimanded and someone who does not follow one or more social consensus of loot rules. Both of these types of loot disagreements are referred to as ninja, but while one is an offense according to Blizzard's written rules (forum post), the other one is not.

Blizzard will make BoE -> BoP in 4.2, but they do not allow us to kick M&S easier or implement some kind of MS > OS system. See:

The current system favors hybrids: Druids, Paladins most -> averages for Priest, Shaman, Death Knight, Warrior-> and Hunter, Rogue, Mage & Warlock least. I've seen paladin tanks needing on both retribution gear 'for their off spec' as well as needing on holy gear 'for their off spec'.

As a result, enchanting is a good profession for a druid or paladin. Even more so for a druid or paladin tank, and especially in the first days of 4.1 with high demand and price for maelstrom crystals. I believe this is also why we see so many paladin bots.

"And how freaking relevant can a single drop be? Is that the one drop that will make you do HC vs not doing them?"

There are exceptional drops which are hard to get. Tier pieces, exceptional trinkets. You simply want a fair chance getting the loot, and it usually requires some effort. If it would not require some effort, you'd already have the loot, or you've been uncaring or extremely unlucky with loot drops and/or rolls. A drop like Shard of Woe has a big impact on your spec and performance, and so does T11 4 set bonus. You do make a fair point: if you stop caring about your performance increase, and start having a serendipitous mode of operandus, you will feel less down when you don't get the loot (did not drop, lost roll, got ninjaed, did not kill boss due to M&S). After you killed a boss for the umptieth time this can get quite difficult to keep up. Personally, on an alt, I can easily feel this way. On my main, not. This is why on my main, I raid with my guild. My chances of getting the loot I want is higher because we have less M&S than the average PUG, because the chance of a ninja is slim (loot council consisting of reasonably smart people), and so on. I have to say I have not received certain pieces of gear because of "MS > OS", and had a few arguments about this, but these have been all fixed and are minor compared to both the drama I endured in different guilds, PUGs, as well as the drama I read in the comments outlined by others here.

"The ninja can't take away the reliable source of income (JP/VP/etc) just the bonus source of income (loot)"

If you still need VP for your MS and OS you have been slacking past months. There is no reason you should still need VP for either your main spec and off spec. My main is a druid and _I_ have been slacking in terms of obtaining VP _yet_ have a full T11 set for MS _and_ OS _and_ even have a set for tanking requiring a simple respec + 3 different glyphs (rendering a total cost of: 33 + 3 * 10 gold). The only use I see for VP right now is the BoE boots. On my realm, they don't sell well anymore.

Anonymous said...

"Most of us lack skills (and/or time and in some cases some additional conditions, like schedule to raid with equally competent players) not gear. The proof of it: the top guilds and players."

Indeed. Personal and/or group skill. The top guilds advanced quicker due to combination of effort and skill (using the same gear as you did, but getting further). Some M&S convince themselves it must be effort (you no-lifers!!), but this is only to make themselves not feel like a bad player.

"@ the Anonymous who things Sinestra will be puggable in 4.2."


No, not right away, and not by the average PUG, but you'd be surprised how far some PUGs get. The PUG lead by top guild on my realm had progress 8/13 on 25m HC. That was a few weeks ago. I know only normals will be nerfed, but remember that in 4.2 people will be running around in next tier gear. That itself is a big nerf. When I raided with that PUG in WOTLK trinkets and HC tier pieces were reserved to regulars. To become a regular, all you had to do was show up and perform. Everyone can verify this information. Simply look up "Immersion PUG" on Google.

Jenna said...

"If you still need VP for your MS and OS you have been slacking past months."

Inevitably, I see ridiculous statements like this. How about those who just hit 85? So on and so forth. The discussions here are usually good, until we get to blanket statements like this that believe EVERYONE plays the game at the same time/pace.

As to the main topic - I have the ability (and often exercise it) to kick a M&S BEFORE he ruins my run. The ninja tends to ruin it when it is "too late" to do anything. That's why I dislike "ninjas" more than M&S. There's very little warning before the ninja pulls one over on you. The M&S typically comes with SEVERAL warning flags.

chewy said...

@anon 19:27

If it wasn't the point why did you use it to illustrate your case ?

In your new example intent still exists, intent to defend ones family or intent to commit unsolicited murder.

I understand that you're trying to separate behavior from intent but one doesn't negate the other. Your previous post stated that intent doesn't matter whereas it clearly does, otherwise why would legal systems consider it as mitigation ?

The previous contributors who highlighted that intent should be considered hadn't missed the point, intent is what distinguishes the ninja from the M&S. You can argue that behavior should also be considered and I wouldn't disagree but you can't dismiss intent as unimportant or missing the point.

Azuriel said...

People rage more at "ninjas" because they are unexpected. You can recognize a M&S from far away, and know what to expect from them. A ninja looks just like any other social player, until suddenly you win the lottery (e.g. loot you can use drops) and the ninja "steals" the lotto ticket on your way to turning it in. By definition, you never know a ninja until they take the loot; if they called dibs on the piece of loot ahead of time you could bargain, drop raid, or decide to still raid as though the loot will not drop (even if it does).

Re: Intention, whether or not we can ever objectively know someone's intentions is irrelevant. If the police catch a guy sneaking outside your house with a flashlight and a set of lockpicks, a consensus by a jury can be reached as to the intention of the man. If intentions are entirely unknowable or unassignable by others, the word itself loses all meaning.

Jen said...

"The ninja wanted to take away the loot, while the M&S wanted to help to get it."

I do not really agree with that statement.

The M&S i carried (and yeah, i'm bad) are most likely ninja looter or not really social according what you say.

Several times i totaly carried M&S (i'm saying it again, i'm bad) and the only loot i needed, they ninjaed it without regret.

And they were obviously not wanting to help any raid, just get the "epiclootlolbecauseit'sbetterthanwhatihave" (their dps never got better with the gear though)

Anonymous said...

@chewy My point this whole time has been this "We should be looking at the causes of their behaviour not their intent, as that is only an in between stage, between thinking of something and carrying it out".

The reason I chose that example was because it showed that their intentions didn't matter as they both lead to the same outcome. The reason for different sentences is not because of their intent it's because of the cause behind it. I f a man kills his daughter to protect the honor for the rest of the family his intentions was good but his faulty thinking is the problem and so is going to get a harsh sentence. If a schizophrenic killed his daughter during an episode their is no good intent but the cause was out of his hand so is prob going to get a lighter sentence (relative to the first guy).

I could use smoking as an example, to illustrate my point. if you prevent a smoker from having a cigarette you prevent him smoking, but you haven't prevented him from intending to smoke. the second he gets a hold of a cigarette he will smoke. If you want to stop him from smoking at all you must look at the causes of his intent, and remove them. e.g. if he is addictive then cure his addiction, or substitute cigarettes for patches. by removing the cause for intent you stop the behaviour.

This is the reason why prohibition doesn't work as all your doing is prevent the action not the intent. this is because intent is only an in between stage, between thinking of something and carrying it out.

This is why it is stupid to condemn ninjas. you are merely preventing them from the act of ninjing, not from the desire to. hatred only works if the reason they want to ninja is to get loot for respect, if not then people waste their times complaining.

Cyrell said...

I'm with the ninja here.

If you don't agree to loot rules in advance, then it makes you the "M&S".

If you agree to loot rules in advance, and he still takes the item, that doesn't make him stupid. He probably just doesn't agree with the loot rules and has no other way of getting the gear he wants, because the loot rules are just arbitrary scrub bullshit anyway.

Go raiding with your friends or suck it up. The only thing that says someone "can't" take the loot, for whatever reason they want, is when the "need" button is disabled by Blizzard.

Anonymous said...

"Inevitably, I see ridiculous statements like this. How about those who just hit 85? [...]"

Most likely we're from different realms, but it is ridiculously easy to get VP capped every week which is the easiest way to get good gear allowing you to perform better with the same set of skills. If it is your main which just hit 85, then you've been what I call slacking. You have not played the game from the start of the expansion. Try again in 4.2. Putting effort in getting a lot of VP at the end of a patch is unwise since soon you'll get all the ilvl 359 for free (with JP) anyway. Why bother? Earn gold instead. If its an alt, why would you care? If it was earlier in the expansion where people (including M&S) weren't running in full ilvl 359, and VP boots were still worth something, yes, then I'd agree that VP are still worth a lot. Right now, not anymore.

Now, what you can disagree with is the definition of 'slacking'. I assume, yes assume, that people want to get into HC raids in 4.0 and 4.1 hence I call it slacking because getting ilvl 359 gear is the easiest way (besides knowing your class and rotation) to fully clear the content including the 2 harder end bosses Al Akir and Nefarian. Once you've done that, you can get to the HC raids. Don't want to put effort in getting ilvl 359 gear? Again, no problem. Don't get VP, get JP-capped, and wait till 4.2. Then you start HC raiding. Exactly how Blizzard designed it, btw. They want us to play the current HC raids in 4.2. Hopefully, you cleared the normal content by the time that is released, or you basically missed raiding on your main in patch 4.0 & 4.1. Since all mains are ilvl 359 geared, the nerfs to the normal raid content primarily concern alts.

The current Need before Greed system is still quite flawed. Here is another flaw a guildie of mine had to endure yesterday on his priest whilst leveling. It isn't big, but its been existing forever. A DK cannot need on intellect plate, but a mage can need on spirit cloth. Why does Blizzard allow this type of ninjaing? Spirit is useless for a mage. Out of combat they eat cookies. In combat they use mana gems, evocation, and mage ward.

"If a schizophrenic killed his daughter during an episode their is no good intent but the cause was out of his hand so is prob going to get a lighter sentence (relative to the first guy)."

While I believe this to be true remember we're not all in the same jurisdictions. In my jurisdiction I'd say a lighter sentence while on the other hand also a higher chance to get involuntary commitment. Which, at least where I'm living, is very hard to get out of alive hence suspects avoid to get that sentence like the plague. They'd rather sit longer in jail.

"This is the reason why prohibition doesn't work as all your doing is prevent the action not the intent. this is because intent is only an in between stage, between thinking of something and carrying it out.

This is why it is stupid to condemn ninjas."

This is why prohibition _alone_ doesn't work. This is why jail time _alone_ doesn't work. You have to put time and effort into the subject to make sure they don't repeat the same mistake.

How do we cure the ninja? Currently, we report him to Blizzard who takes away the loot, and gives him a penalty. He wasted his time and effort to scam other people, and he is reprimanded for his actions.

Perhaps we should make his loot pink when it was ninjaed. He can keep it, but in his inventory and character it'd look pink. Everyone would recognize the ninja as a ninja. Or we make the loot so easily available that everyone has it, so its not cool to ninja it anymore. Sounds fun, both wouldn't work well though.

Sthenno said...

Comparing shunning ninjas to prohibition is ridiculous. Prohibition didn't work because people at large didn't agree with it. Laws against theft work pretty well because most people agree that theft is bad.

Rules against ninjaing work pretty well too, which is not to say they eliminate it completely.

BBQ said...

To me, the difference between ninjas and M&S are simply that ninjas are prone to bans whereas M&S are not.

I'm probably a social, but when someone ninjas my loot, I just take down the names of the ninjas and the other people in my group and make a report.

I must confess that I am more tolerant of M&S, provided they are polite. Perhaps, as you say, it helps me feel superior to them by helping them out.

Stubborn said...

The more I read about your definition of "socials," the more I think that there's another category here that's being missed by your labeling.

The play-for-fun and play-to-win page you've written I think does a better job of describing some basic differences in play style, but I feel like I fit none of your categories (which is the point of my entire blog). I certainly play-to-win. Some things I do feel are "cheap," but usually I just implement them myself, and I'm certainly a fast learner, a researcher about my class and boss strategies, etc. So clearly I'm not a "social."

However, I certainly have more sympathy for "socials" than you do, making me seem like a social, though that doesn't mean I like to play with them; one of the guilds I quit was because my buddy had spoken to a rogue who'd asked for help with her dps for two hours just to find her leveling her fishing on an alt the next day. However, I don't think they shouldn't be allowed to play the game the way they want; I just don't want them interfering with me doing the same. I realize this exact overlap is why you feel the way you feel.

I'm not sure what you'd call the group you're in, or how broad the borders of that group are. I know we have Ms&Ss, and I know we have socials, but what are the other categories? Some posts on this topic might be interesting.

Also, it's ridiculous to say that we can't know people's true intentions (which I agree with) but then to blanket the motivations of all socials into one short phrase - unless that's the sole definition of a social - people who play to feel good about themselves - in which case a lot of other assumptions that you've made about socials have to be reconsidered.

How about a post solely on defining these otherwise amorphous categories? Or perhaps there's an old one from before my time you could direct me to?