It came from the PUG: Ding! Just going to train, back in a few mins!

One of the new functions which came to WoW along with the random dungeon finder was the ability to teleport in or out of an instance once you are in a random group.

So, for example, if you are in a random instance and one player has to leave (or is booted), the rest could port out and chill until a replacement was found, if they so choose. Or if someone manages to go to an instance without any arrows or reagents, they can port out and get some and then instantly port back.

Now don’t get me wrong, this can be handy, but there was a time when people were actually expected to be prepared before they got an instance group together. And once they were there, they were expected to stay in the instance until the group split up, even if they did get a nice drop or gained a level. It didn’t always happen – there were always people who dropped the group as soon as they got what they wanted, which of course can still happen.

But the phenomenon of people deciding unilaterally to just pop out of the instance to enchant their new drop or train their new skills is a new one. And it drives me nuts. What exactly is wrong with people that they can’t just wait until the end of the run?

I was in a run this week with an alt who is nearing 80. One of the other players in the group hit 80 on his healer. And immediately, it was, “Off to train, back soon.” *bamf* An instance run is like – 15 minutes. Give or take 10 mins while the guy realises that he was in the middle of nowhere when he’d entered the instance, but doesn’t bother to inform the rest of the group in case they boot him.

I think I rather miss the days when people just stayed in their goddamned instances until the run was finished. Just a teeny amount of commitment to the group, not a lot. Your training can wait, you were good enough to finish this run when you came into the instance and you still are.

It narks me in raids as well.

We run three hour raids, with a 15 min break in the middle. That leaves two perfectly viable timeslots if someone really really wants to wear their new shiny drop as soon as possible. You either wait for the break or wait for the end of the run and then go get it enchanted up. Most people do this. But occasionally you’ll get someone who absolutely must go and sort out their upgrade immediately right now or they will explode. No, you will not explode. When I was a kid, and being taken shopping with my grandparents, if I was good I was sometimes allowed to wear my new shoes straight out of the shop on the way home. Now I am grown up I usually wait until I’m home to get changed. I don’t care how excited some player is about some new item, it’s not worth holding up everyone else just so you can wear it RIGHT NOW.

You didn’t need that item to finish the raid. It will be just as nice next session. Or at least you can wait for the break. I wish our raid leaders would put their feet down collectively on this one.

Why am I still talking when there’s linking to do?

  1. First up, a mind-boggling colour based optical illusion. (I’m thinking this won’t work too well if you are colour blind)
  2. And on that note, ablegamers.com have been posting up some great interviews recently. Check out this discussion they had with Timothy Cain (lead designer of Fallout) and Mitch Ferguson (lead systems designer who worked on The Sims Online) about the future of MMO gaming, it has some real gems.
  3. One of my favourite newer blogs, standing at the back in my sissy robe compares his experience in PUGs to .. err.. his experience in pick up bars.
  4. Ixobelle helps out with the best healing macro you’ll ever need for PUGs.
  5. syncaine eyes up the problem of how to introduce new players into old games. Why do we force alts to regrind , and what about the new guy?
  6. Copra is also puzzling over the problem of how new players can learn to group when old players won’t teach them, may mock them, and may just exclude them. As a social player, I want games to make it easy for players to group, not foster elitist barriers which prevent them!
  7. Brenda Braithwaite thinks about what it is in games that makes us happy. Is it the purple loot? The other rewards? Or are they just steps on the path towards happiness?
  8. John Walker@RPS asks why we can’t just teleport in MMOs. It works fine in Free Realms and Guild Wars, after all.
  9. What does it mean to be unique? Why do we all want to be special? And how can you really sparkle in MMOs? Larisa has some deep thoughts and some smart answers.
  10. Suzina discusses a recent experience in LOTRO. She joined a guild with a few friends, and because her clique is so tight-knit, she feels as though they’re slowly taking over. I’ve seen this phenomenon also, and as a guild officer, I’ve always been a bit reluctant to invite a large group of existing friends for that reason.

Also, a gratuitous Harold Ramis link where he discusses why it’s more difficult to make funny videogames than funny films. I had such a crush on Egon as a teenager …. (then I grew up and found a cute, funny, geeky guy of my own to marry :))