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Posts with tag burnout

Ghostcrawler suggests we play other games

Boredom and burnout is a common side effect of spending too much time with any one hobby. Still, it was refreshing to see Ghostcrawler, the Lead Systems Designer for WoW, recommend that players spend some time with other games.

He points out that if you're feeling burned out, it's "not the worst thing in the world to try out some other games -- the past couple of years has been great for them."

Of course, he did take the time to remind everyone that there is more to the game than clearing raid content or completing your latest PvP gear set. There are achievements, alts, questing, and tradeskills, to name a few.

While this does indicate that Blizzard is feeling pretty confident in their chokehold on the MMO market, it's also a smart move on their part. There are already enough paranoid conspiracy theories out there claiming that the company merely wants our money, and less concerned with product quality than with elaborate plans designed to trick us into playing longer and shelling out more money.

In fact, GC said this in response to one of these inspired theories.

This reminds me of one of the loading screen tips that urges players to spend some time with their friends outside of this game as well as in it. As Ghostcrawler says, "just check back in with WoW every now and then

Filed under: Blizzard, Forums

Breakfast Topic: Raiding: How easy is too easy?

Karthis, a feral Druid from the Garona-US server, wrote a thought-provoking treatise on the current end-game on his blog a few days ago. Of course, he's hardly the first to declare the current end-game far too easy, but he brings a very interesting angle to the discussion -- namely that of the casual.

He interviews various casual raid guild leaders in his piece. These are guild leaders who, back in Burning Crusade, mostly ran Karazhan and maybe dabbled a bit in Zul'aman. They certainly were far behind the curve. But they had a dedicated core of 10 raiders who got together, faced the challenges, and overcame them. But now, even these casuals are saying that the end-game is just too easy.

One guild leader interviewed is finding that some of their raiders have gotten all the loot they need from Naxxramas and maxed out Northrend Achievements and Reputations, and, for lack of anything to do, are not logging on for days or simply letting their subscriptions lapse altogether, leaving their guild leader to make the painful decision once Ulduar comes to either refuse to give them their raid slots back or kick out their replacements.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Breakfast Topics, Raiding, Wrath of the Lich King, Achievements

Officers' Quarters: Not peons, but just as lazy

Every Monday Scott Andrews contributes Officers' Quarters, a column about the ins and outs of guild leadership.

There's an old adage in sports that's often bandied about whenever someone gets confused about their role on the team: "Players play, coaches coach." It doesn't really work for us ("Officers office, members . . . memb"?). However, it's true that officers are officers and members are members. Members can slack, but officers have to maintain, support, and improve their guild. This week's e-mail comes from a guild leader who's tried everything (short of giant hammers) to motivate her lazy officers, but to no avail, and she's at the end of her rope.

Dear Scott,

I'm a co-GM of a mid-sized, fairly stable guild that has been remarkably stable and solid over the years. We have a solid group of core members who are active, we've progressed steadily through the WoW raiding content, and we have an active social calendar as well. As far as the day-to-day business and guild harmony go, from where the members sit -- things are really great.

The problem is, our officers have been getting less and less responsive in taking leadership, and because of it, most of the work seems to be falling more and more on myself and my co-leader. And as more and more of the work falls on us, and the staff we delegated to help us with it doesn't give us that help, we are burning out badly.

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Filed under: Officers' Quarters (Guild Leadership)

Officers' Quarters: Last call

Every Monday Scott Andrews contributes Officers' Quarters, a column about the ins and outs of guild leadership.

This is it, ladies and gentlemen. In exactly one month, Wrath of the Lich King will be on store shelves. So for all of us raiders out there, the next few resets are all that we'll have to hit Burning Crusade content one last time. As one particular reader expresses, this last month presents quite a dilemma. Do you keep moving forward, scale back, return to old bosses that you skipped, or just take a break entirely?

Dear Scott,

I'm currently an officer of a guild that has been progressing since forming from Kara all the way to BT, Hyjal. However with the coming expansion there's been a severe split in the guild's opinions towards raiding. It's come down to 4 differences. One, many would like to continue pushing content in BT and Hyjal till Wrath. Others would like to push towards downing Kael and Vashj before Wrath (which we skipped on our way to BT Hyjal). Then there are people would like to cut our raiding days from 5 down to 3 for many reasons to have more casual time before Wrath and the eventual push to 80 and continued progression. And finally there is the group that wouldn't mind stopping completely till Wrath hits to have some time to rest up.

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Filed under: Officers' Quarters (Guild Leadership)

Officers' Quarters: When to give up

Every Monday Scott Andrews contributes Officers' Quarters, a column about the ins and outs of guild leadership.

If you were reading WoW Insider over the weekend, you might have noticed a couple of rather depressing posts. Adam talked about when you should make the personal decision to stop raiding. Then Jennie talked about the reasons why raiding guilds break up. I might as well continue the trend, but at least I have the excuse of a reader's e-mail. Last week I addressed the problems that small guilds will face in the coming months. This week, by request, I'm going to look at larger, hardcore guilds. And I'll also examine a nasty stereotype in the community that continues to proliferate.

I am in this guild for the past 2 years of my WOW experience. This is my first guild, and my only guild so far. The atmosphere was friendly when I first joined it to join my real life schoolmates, hoping to down boss and experience content together. But a couple of drama and event took place, and my friends all quit the game which they felt was taking too much of their time. The original management when I joined all left the game due to other real life commitments and burnouts from over-WOW-ed.

So with a twist of fate I took over the role of Guildmaster. The other veterans in the guild has other reasons that forbid them from taking the helm. And so I begun my quest to reform the dying guild in the dying server. We are a guild with predominantly Asian players, but we welcome western players too. But apparently playing in a US server meant you always have to being abused at for being Asian. Some people just cannot differentiate Chinese Farmer and general normal Asian players. And so I have been working for the past 6 months trying to recruit new blood into the guild and keeping the raiders around. We finally managed to down Rage Winterchill only in the past 2 weeks, after the top end guild in our server's endless poaching of our raiders to warm their bench . . . And a few other core raiders announcing their quitting of the game soon.

And now I feel I don't enjoy WOW the same anymore. It's no longer the same for me.

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Filed under: Officers' Quarters (Guild Leadership)

The 10 Commandments of Altitis

The Waaagh blog, despite technically being about some other dirty little game, keeps churning out some pretty good posts. The latest is Syp's 10 Commandments of Altitis. I'm a recent convert to altitis myself. I pretty much stuck with one character on all my previous MMOs, with maybe one extra alt I played once a month. However, on WoW, I've been bit hard. With 3 70s, 2 60s, and 61, and various random characters in the 20-60 range, I know how the alt game goes.

A lot of the commandments are things that I myself have discovered and follow unknowingly in my day to day play, but Syp lays them out in an understandable and easy to follow format. Some of my favorite points, in no certain order:

  • 6. Go Off the Beaten Path. Seriously, just because you really want to reach level 70 ASAP does not mean that doing the STV grind for the 7th time is the awesome thing to do. I mean, I guess if your only goal is to get to 70, that's doable, but for me, trying out new quests and new zones, or at least quests and zones I haven't done in a while, is one of the joys of an alt.
  • 9. Alts can cause Burnout. This is definitely true if you think you can get away with doing dailies every day on all of your 70s. As much as you want the exalted SSO necklaces for your Hunter, your Warlock, and your Druid, don't try to grind up the rep for all of them all at once, every day. That way lies madness. I have found that focusing on one at a time, or at least alternating days, is a much better way to go about it.
  • 3. Alts deserve real names too. Honestly, you aren't clever for naming your Druid Lolferal. Sorry.

But all of the points are nice and handy, so if you're a fellow altitis sufferer, or even if you just want to catch the bug, go check the article out. It's a fun read.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Leveling, Alts

Officers' Quarters: A case of the blahs

Every Monday Scott Andrews contributes
Officers' Quarters, a column about the ins and outs of guild leadership.

From time to time it seems like most guilds go through a period where the officers just sort of lose interest. For whatever reason, they reach a point where they can't find the motivation anymore. This week's e-mail is from a guild member frustrated by her officers.

I'm in a "casual" guild where casual means we don't have any military policies about raiding. However, we do raid Karazhan and much of the guild is interested in some light progression at least along the 10 man instances (and heroics).

My guild, I am a member, not leader or officer, is suffering the blahs. From my perspective it seems like we have a few issues. The guild leader has lost interest in the game and doesn't log in much and the officers pretty much run the guild in lieu of the GM. However it seems like the officers are kind of burning out too, but don't really want to turn over any of the power to people with more interest.

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Filed under: Guilds, Officers' Quarters (Guild Leadership)

The life cycle of a WoW player

As with anything on Daedalus, one of their most recent articles was a fascinating exploration into the deeper psychology of playing an MMO. The article of fascination this time deals with the player life cycle in an MMO like WoW, and indeed he primarily uses examples and quotations from WoW players to build his argument.

Daedalus believes that nearly every player will fit this cycle in one way or another, and each step in the cycle has some variables within it that seem to include the majority of the player populace. For instance, when we first start playing the game, we begin for one of two reasons; either we are interested in exploring a new world on our own, or a friend introduced us to the game. Personally, I fall into the second category, as it was a dear friend that introduced me to the game. The general progression of the player life cycle and he sees it is this: entry, practice, mastery, burnout, recovery.

While I can admit that nearly every player will go through the first three steps, I wonder about the last two. Does every player burn out at some point during their play of the game? The article mentions burnout in various cases, grinding, social obligations, rerolling, so I suppose the answer is yes. I have myself gotten so tired of playing the same zones over and over that I run my new Blood Elves to Brill just for a change of scenery. The trick I suppose is finding that hook that brings you back into the game, and usually that hook is friendship. For those tired of raiding, tired of responsibilities, just being able to spend time with those you have connected with in-game can be the true motivation to keep playing.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves

Player burnout and the next expansion

Hardcore Casual has a post up about his reaction to the news being released about the next expansion. As a player who left WoW, he's not impressed.

Burning Crusade's effect on Blizzard's game was gigantic-- player who'd left came back in droves, and guilds and players who hadn't been playing together for a while all of a sudden found themselves online almost every night. And even out of the game, it had a huge impact-- Wowhead, the argument could be made, rode the wave of Burning Crusade, and it led them to their sale.

So the question now is: will WotLK have the same effect? HC says no-- he says Hero classes as hyped were much cooler than the way Death Knights are being implemented, and that the next 10 levels doesn't appeal to him. They do appeal to his father, he says, and there's no question that lots of players are interested in the next expansion. Who wouldn't want to fight alongside and/or against Arthas? This expansion might get players to connect with this universe in a way they haven't since they played Warcraft III.

Or it might be too late. Even Blizzard realizes the player base is headed for a rough patch-- they've started the Scroll of Resurrection program to bring straying players back with bribes. The game itself is far from over-- there is a significant core audience who still love this game (including myself), and can't wait to see WotLK. But the fact is that WoW may have peaked with BC. Even if there is a nice peak coming again with Wrath of the Lich King, all indications are that it won't be as high as the first expansion went.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Expansions, Wrath of the Lich King

Healer Psychology

As a healer myself (with two level 60 priests at my disposal), I find this post discussing why so few people have a desire to play healers to be rather interesting.  The favored theory, by both the original poster and subsequent responses, is that staring at health bars isn't very exciting and playing whack-a-mole with the health of your party members  just isn't very much fun.  In my case, I find the importance of the healer role to be the exciting part - your action (or inaction) has a very real impact on whether your party lives or dies.  However, perhaps I haven't played the class to the point of burnout yet, which seems to happen to many healers at some point or another.

Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Priest, Shaman, Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves

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