On Being New

28 Jan

Pike has a great post up to help new hunters get started.  I think she should be commended for it.  Right now is probably the worst time *ever* to start playing World of Warcraft and unlike most of us who have just been wasting time and Internet bandwidth complaining about new player shortcomings, she’s actually taken the time to try to fix the problem.

It made me think.  I’ve poked some fun at new hunters (and hunters that should know better…and myself) on this blog.  Most of it is meaningless, the typical drivel  you get when a lazy writer needs to come up with a blog post and can’t think of anything better to do than make fun of something.

But making fun of something ignores a simple point.  You can complain about the state of new players (while studiously ignoring  your own failings) or you can do something to make things better.

For some bloggers – the solution is to instantly point out “failure” and follow it up with a link to the WoW-Armory profile of the offender.  Now short of some very rare cases, I hate this.  It’s douche-baggery of the worst kind in my opinion and for those of you that disagree – we’ll just have to agree to disagree.

The problem is.  I think it’s starting to be one of the only way some people truly learn.  There are a lot of players that will probably ignore Pike’s post.

After all,  they know everything.

Yet you add in some targeted, personalized humiliation and put it on the Internet.  Wow.  folks suddenly pay attention.

As much as I might hate the whole e-bully nature of these kinds of posts I can’t help but recognize that they’re effective.  Hell – I’ve been in the military for 15 years – I can still remember very basic lessons being taught to me (quite profoundly in fact) through mass punishment and humiliation.

But that doesn’t mean it’s the best way.

Something I’ve always appreciated about Pike’s writing is that where so many of us devolve into snarky bitterness when writing about the game and the people who play it, she can manage to maintain an attitude that is both positive and helpful.

We need more of that, in game and in real life.


2 Responses to “On Being New”

  1. Nora January 29, 2010 at 15:06 #

    Great insights, and advice. I think I said somewhere else, there’s roughly 10 complaints for every compliment, at least in American society. I also heard once in high school that 90% of all conversations are based on complaints or mockery. Pretty sad commentary.

    Definitely food for thought, and good things to think about for those of us in a position to help and teach! Thanks.

  2. Pike January 29, 2010 at 22:08 #

    I’ve been thinking lately, I should write more posts directed towards really new hunters. Just when I thought I’d written everything, I’m still running into newbies in PuGs…

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