If you peruse large WoW communities – the official forums, the big gaming websites, trade channel (*shudder*) – you’ll see a common thread: ever-so-terribly leet players telling us that PvE content is easy, that if you fail on X encounter you’re terribad, that anyone with half a brain could faceroll through this stuff, et cetera.
Well, they’re wrong.
I’m not talking about the current level of raiding content – that is, indeed, pitched at a less challenging level than most, if not all, of TBC content. (Which is not to say it’s trivial – it’s certainly not, especially for inexperienced raiders.)
No, I’m talking about the blithe statements, usually made either by hardcore raiders, hardcore PvPers or disparaging ex-WoW-players, that all raiding is easy, that you can’t help but win if you don’t suck.
One of the popular measures for ‘not being bad’ is managing spatial awareness and 3D movement. Well, you know what? Those tests of spatial awareness and movement (Frogger boss, I’m looking at you) probably are trivial if you have the reflexes of a 20-year-old, or you grew up playing FPSes, console games and arcade games.
Hi, I’m thirty-three, and I avoided combat games like the plague. I never owned a console growing up, I spent very little time in arcades, and the first time I had access to a computer capable of running games more advanced than NetHack was in my second year of University. Granted, I’ve spent a disproportionate amount of time playing games since then, but they’ve largely been RPGs and strategy/simulation games because I’m not a particularly aggressive or competitive person. (Please note that ‘not competitive’ and ‘not performance-oriented’ are not synonymous.)
Frankly, I’m sick of the attitude that treats WoW like another twitch-based FPS game, and that rates these skills above everything else. If you’re going to ignore the fact that my tanking is good, my DPS is fine, or that I just saved your ass with a split-second heal, just to mock me for dying on Frogger? Kindly shut up.
(True confession: sometimes, just sometimes, I turn with my keyboard. Gasp! Yes, it’s true! Guess what? It’s never gotten me killed, and it’s never caused a wipe.)
Edit: Based on some of the comments, I should probably clarify: this is not ‘Confession of a Terribad Raider’ time, because I don’t think I am. I certainly could do better, particularly on movement issues, but I do okay. (For the record, I’ve only ever died on Frogger twice – once in a 40-man because I’d never seen it before and no-one explained it, and recently in a 10-man, purely due to lag. I’ve never failed the Thaddius jump, I’ve never been beaten by the Ledge Boss or the Pipe Boss, and I haven’t been hit by a lava wave on Sartharion since the first time I did the fight. I did, however, once fall off a ledge in Karazhan for absolutely no reason at all, which caused a lot of hilarity.)
What this post actually was intended to be – and this probably didn’t come across clearly, since I was writing it at 7am after a night of zero sleep – was expressing my frustration at the elitists who’ve been practising these skills for half their lives, who do not ever stop to think that not everyone has the same training they do.