Apr 5th 2010 5:43PM Okay, long time low-level BG'er here. I'll tell you why I started, and why I (mostly) stopped.
Back in the day, gearing out a 19 or a 29 and doing WSG and AB was all about a rep grind. Getting both factions to Revered at those levels was a whole lot quicker than facing the preform nightmares at level 60. Meanwhile, rep was all you needed to purchase some top-end gear upgrades from both factions each 10 levels as you finished your way to 60. There were like 3 or 4 *epics* you could buy at 60 with that rep you farmed along the way, and this was back when epics really meant something.
A side effect of this nonsense was that those who engaged in it found the low-level battlegrounds a lot more enjoyable than the preform-riddled end-game ones. Those who claim that twinks are folks who can't handle end-game BG's are somewhat correct in this regard. Any non-preformer who looks back on level-60 BG's with fond remembrance is either lying, insane, or both.
"Twinking" as we consider it today began in earnest around August of 2006. People were either bored with or uninvited to play the end-game content, and started min/maxing their low-level toons with crazy gear and enchants. Regular players started to really notice the difference, and twink hate started to take root. After BC came out and the gear grind started all over again, many players continued to play their twinks because they were mostly immune to the gear grind. It's fun to have a few toons who are as "done" as they can be; safe havens of periodic fun amidst the treadmill that became of end-game raiding and arena. The treadmill continues into Wrath, with new upgrades released nearly as soon as most people achieve the current ones.
Another major aspect of twinking that kept people playing was the community. Much more so than end-game pvp, players would often see the same names on both sides of the match. Many friendships evolved from frequent pvp encounters, and communities were established to set up matches. Creative means were devised to hold arena tournaments, and our ventrilo server was usually full of players who'd drop their dailies at a moment's notice to set up some 10v10 preform matches.
I rarely play my twinks now, mostly because Blizzard has done a pretty good job of providing a variety of ways to enjoy end-game content. The end-game environment now is vastly different than the level-60 end-game that gave birth to twinking in the first place (with the possible exception that WSG and AB rep are still painful to grind at level 80, not that there's any gainful reason to do so any more).
The class and mount changes also went a fair way to killing off the fun of twinking. Changes to hunters and their pets led to a *severe* class imbalance especially at level 19. Travel form and ghost wolf at level 16 led to a lot more shaman and druid representation, to the tune of entire WSG matches consisting almost entirely of hunters, shaman, and druids. Many long-time twinkers argue that mounts ruined the 29's and 39's brackets. As many of these changes happened close together, it's erroneous to assume that only the non-XP change contributed to the death of twinking.
I enjoy my 80's more than my twinks now, so I choose to spend my time in end-game. Others still enjoy their twink battlegrounds on the various battlegroups to which they've migrated. Again, Blizzard's done a pretty good job of allowing the game to be tailored to a variety of tastes and interests.
Oct 1st 2009 2:10PM Here's hoping for my chance!
Thanks so much for the contests -- I never win, but it's fun to try.
May 19th 2009 4:52PM Thanks again for the chance at cool loots!
May 19th 2009 2:55PM Regarding the MacBook -- I also had issues with Dalaran until I upgraded from 2gb ram to 4gb. Now I zone in and out of it instantly.
What's weird is that my wife's iMac and my son's Mac Mini both have 2gb of ram and they don't have issues with Dalaran, so I'm guessing the issue is fringe. WoW often consumes 1800mb memory according to ps, so 2gb must be just a little bit short on the MBP.
Feb 3rd 2009 3:32PM Any hope of you providing wowwebstat (or similar) output for this super kitty of yours? I want to be cat; I've always been cat; I like playing cat -- but I do 700 more dps as a boomkin, single-target. I'd love to compare my output percentages to his to see where I'm going wrong.
Let's not even talk about AoE... I still do more AoE damage with bear swipe than with cat swipe because I can spam it, even when I'm not tanking. Meanwhile, boomkin AoE goes even further, topping the charts of all the AoE classes.
Add all this to the fact that ranged dps is preferred over melee dps for so many fights, and we kitties are going to need to get significant buffs to make the spec viable in raids.
Jan 23rd 2009 6:48PM You misinterpret my point. Perhaps "dead" was the wrong word, as 19's is certainly as popular as ever with the folks who are out for a straight gear advantage (ie. young teens, folks without the patience or ability to play at 80's, etc.). 19's is the easiest to level to, easiest to gear for, and has the highest benefit from level-60 enchants. Of course it's popular.
I know this because my children love the 19's for these very reasons.
What's gone is the desire to play an off class like a mage or a priest, play the class well, and turn the course of a game. What's gone is the desire to finish a toon's rep or honor grind to maximize it's potential, as these aspects of the game have been superseded or no longer exist.
Now I see an abundance of hunters in mediocre gear, freshly 19, with no idea how to actually play a hunter well, conquering the battlegrounds by simply being obscenely OP by virtue of glyphs, new talents, and new pet abilities.
Mind you, hunters were always annoying, but you could count on a bunch of fiery rogues in the mix. Now all the kiddies are rolling with the hunter bandwagon, and it's 5-6 opposing hunters per game.
If anyone in Blizzard had a goal to end 19's twinking without actually taking any direct action, the most efficient way would be to make one class so crazy OP that everyone will roll one and the game becomes boring for those to seek something other than straight gear advantages. Perhaps this is what happened.
Jan 23rd 2009 6:11PM Doesn't matter; twinking at 19 is dead anyway.
I spent a good bit of time in the 19's bracket back when MC got boring, and then a bit more when SSC and TK got boring (we didn't get too far into BT/MH). I've logged my 19's once or twice since Wrath, only to find battlegrounds dominated by monkey glyph hunters. It's ridiculous.
I've gone the whole gamut from rep grinding back in the day (now gone) to honor grinding for banners (now easy to get with account-bound honor tokens). I've done epic 2-hour 10-v-10 twink matches arranged in battlegroup forums and on PTR's. I've been at the top of the list of folks calling twinking fun.
Now I can't stand it. Hunters, hunters, hunters. RIP 19's, I'm not sure what I'll do when Naxx-25 gets boring.
Dec 17th 2008 11:58AM I believe the arena point requirements were added to address honor leeching and AFKaving in battlegrounds. When I join a battleground, I want to win the game and maybe have a bit of fun in the process. It's not fun when I spend the entire game arguing with a teammate who wants to lose the game as quickly as possible because it's worth more honor and faster badges to lose three games than to attempt to win one.
Adding the arena requirement removes the incentive to ruin everyone else's battlegrounds for days at a time. You can no longer just AFK your way to a full season set in a few days, since arena points are only issued once per week. Furthermore, you get fewer arena points if you legitimately suck at PvP.
No more free rides means I can get back to the business of actually enjoying my leisure time.
Nov 26th 2008 11:15AM This has been broken since waaayyyyy back in beta. Some suspect the bug is intentional, or at least intentionally overlooked, at this point.