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Posts with tag newbies

WoW Rookie: Raid 101

WoW Rookie is brought to our readers to help our newest players get acclimated to the game. Make sure you send a note to WoW Insider if you have suggestions for what new players need to know.

It's been brought to my attention that there are rookies of all levels. Recent columns have covered very basic topics such as instance play, group etiquette, and account security. Once you get to level 70, you'll have several options including solo play, PvP, and instance raiding. Raiding is a major part of the game, but can be somewhat overwhelming at first.

Raid instances vary from ten, twenty, twenty-five, and forty players. These instances are similar to five-person dungeons but require considerably more coordination. Ever player must work in concert to bring down challenging bosses, and they are typically rewarded with excellent gear for their efforts.

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Filed under: Tips, Guilds, Raiding, Guides, WoW Rookie

WoW Rookie: What is a patch?

Here at WoW Insider, we've had extensive coverage of changes and updates that are being tested for the release of patch 2.4. It occurred to me that many of our newer players may not know what patching is all about.

Blizzard regularly releases updates to World of Warcraft to add new content, fix problems, and otherwise improve the game. The game has evolved considerably throughout since its launch over 3 years ago. Many quests, instances, battlegrounds, events, items, and tools have been added through various patches. Clicking through the historical patch notes can be a source of nostalgia for many players.

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Filed under: Patches, Tips, Expansions, Guides, Classes, WoW Rookie, Rumors

WoW Rookie: Knowing your place in an instance

Last week on WoW Rookie, I showed you the instances you might want to run in your first forty levels. This week, I'd like to tell you more about what to do when you get there. As you level up, playing your intended role becomes more and more important. There are three (or four depending on who you ask) main roles in an instance: tank, heals, damage (dps), and crowd control (cc). The typical instance team includes a tank, a healer, and three dps/cc characters. Read on for more about these specific roles.

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Filed under: Tips, Instances, Features, Guides, WoW Rookie

WoW Rookie: Lowbie instance guide

Dungeons, known as instances, are special zones where players group together to fight tougher monsters than the outside environment. They are called instances because each group who enters them is given a separate copy of the dungeon and will not interact with other players of either faction when inside. Higher quality loot is available in instances than the environment, in addition to excellent quest experience and rewards. Today's WoW Rookie gives you a guide to the dungeons may enter in your first forty levels or so.

Instances are known in most cases by their initials. Notable exceptions will be listed below. This guide also gives suggested levels for completing the dungeons. Entering at a lower level will usually prove difficult and, at times, painful. If you do an instance at a higher level than recommended will garner little experience and rewards that do not benefit your current level.

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Filed under: How-tos, Instances, Leveling, Guides, WoW Rookie

Scattered Shots: Your first levels as a new Hunter

Every week, Brian Karasek and David Bowers bring you help, tips and advice for the leveling Hunter in Scattered Shots. For those veterans looking for high end Hunter goodness, BRK will be returning to active duty next week. This post is part of the Hunter Leveling Guide. [Also, it was actually written by Brian Karasek, not David Bowers.]

Hunters have it easy. They get a pet to hang around with and keep them company. They don't get hit that often (or at least for very long, one way or the other), and they have one of the best ways to shake off foes in the game. Furthermore, and most tellingly, Hunters can pretty much get to the level cap without ever working in a group or running a dungeon. It's our blessing and our curse, our boon and our bane. We have a built in tank that we can heal, and we're our own DPS support. What this means is that we can reach the heights of leveling in a multiplayer game, without once needing to play with multiple players.

A problem for hunters often comes there: a level 70 character is often expected to know how to do things in a group, with multiple players. And many a hunter has gone into a level 70 instance as their first dungeon run, resulting in less than optimal outcomes.

In this column, which I'll be sharing duty with one of my colleagues here at WoW Insider, I'll be discussing the Hunter class from the ground up, from a casual point of view. Starting from level 1 and going all the way to the level cap, I'll share my experience and advice, and ask for yours as well. For new hunters, I hope this column will let you avoid some stereotypical mistakes Hunters make. For old hunters, I hope this column will let you point out my shortcomings, offer your own advice, or notice some of your own.

We ding level 2, after the jump!

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Filed under: Hunter, Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Tricks, Virtual selves, Odds and ends, Guides, Classes, (Hunter) Scattered Shots

Breakfast Topic: When they are not prepared

It is very rewarding to help new players adjust to World of Warcraft. It can also be extremely frustrating. In some cases, I wonder if we may ruin players by giving them too much help, like helping a butterfly from its chrysalis.

I remember when I first started playing WoW, I made some serious rookie mistakes. For example I didn't know how to repair my gear until I was level 17 and had no idea that one should train all three talent schools. I got a lot of advice along the way, but I kept more or less to my IRL companions even in game. I never really experienced the MM part of MMORPG until I was level 60 and running Zul'Gurrub. It was exciting and exhausting, but for the first time I really felt like I was experiencing the entirety of the game.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Breakfast Topics, Instances, WoW Rookie

Leveling Mom and Dad through Zul'farrak

I think there's something so awesome about this story from Rufus on Livejournal-- his mom and stepdad have never gamed before, but they've leveled two characters up to 40, and during a run in Zul'farrak, they actually took on a whole gang of mobs, and lived.

We've talked about playing with older folks before, but that's not even the best part of this story-- the best part, in my view, is the thought of two people discovering that they can do something they never thought possible. There is definitely an accomplishment and a thrill that comes with gaming (and this game especially-- taking out trolls is always fun), and it's awesome to think that these two were able to discover that.

I did a run of Dire Maul last night on my up-and-coming Hunter, and just like that Blackrock Depths run a little while back, there were a few newbies in the group-- we had to explain tanking and aggro a couple of times, and I had to use Feign Death. But even through just the chat channel, you could tell they were having a ball running through all the demons in the old elven city. That kind of stuff definitely makes me happy this game is around.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Odds and ends, Instances

Welcome to "noob season"

I don't know if I quite buy this one, but it's an interesting idea: Jias says that this week begins a period of time in the World of Warcraft known as "noob season": all of the folks who found WoW under their tree, or decided to use their gift cards to try out "the Shatner game" are going to be rolling their first character over the next couple of weeks, and will probably have lots of questions and very little learned etiquette.

Jias sees it as a bad thing (we have to deal with noobs), but I tend to go a little more toward Neth's side of the argument: it's a chance to be veterans of the game, and to help players who haven't seen all this stuff before figure it out. Just last night, I was leveling my Hunter and decided to join a PUG in Blackrock Depths out of the blue-- for some reason, only one of them had ever been in the instance before. But being an old hand, I led them through all the twists and turns down there, and we finished all the quests through the Attunement rock (The Lyceum gave us a little trouble, but it was late, so we called it).

Will there be a few more players asking for gold or not quite clear that all tanks should be carrying a shield? Probably. But we should probably be as welcoming and patient with these folks as possible-- they'll be the same people listening on the LFG channel when you ask "LFM for Utgarde Keep."

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Virtual selves, Odds and ends, Instances

Helping newbies, errrm, noobs, errrm, nubs, errrm...

Private Hudson over at Wife Agro wrote a very thought-provoking article about new players. While on one hand he complains that the lower level areas are becoming ghost towns, he also reports that he's actually seen some genuine new players on his server recently.

I remember reading a story a few months ago in the short-lived (now deceased) MMO Gaming Magazine about one of the writers who attempted to play the original Everquest for the first time, starting from scratch. The author spoke of the attitude he got from the established high-level players and how difficult it was for him to get his feet under him when there seemed to be nobody on the server who would help him with even the simplest task because nobody believed he was truly "new" to Everquest.

Private Hudson goes on describe and differentiate between two kinds of new players, and proposes that the good of the game is best served by helping them rather than mocking them or ignoring them. We were all new once, right?

A year ago when I was on Thorium Brotherhood (before The Burning Crusade), I remember guild events where we used to help new players, where we'd give away free bags to at least try to help them minimize the number of trips they'd have to make into town. Now you can shoot a cannon off in most of those zones, or if you do see people in them they are leveling at warp speed with their eyes closed because they have done the quests so many times.

Do you go out of your way to still attempt to be helpful? Or is there no point in wasting time on low level players when most of them are just re-rolls? How do you balance your availability to your own in-game goals with the task of welcoming new people instead of turning them away?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Odds and ends

Breakfast Topic: Best advice for a newbie

Instance portalI'm sure we've all had this problem. You've got a friend who's just picked up the game and suddenly you're hit with a barrage of questions. What's the best class? What's the best race? What do you mean I shouldn't play a Night Elf priest? (No insult to Night Elf priests in the audience -- but you have to admit it's not the best race/class combination.) And once they do manage to create their first character and explore the newbie zones, you're in for another round of questions. What sort of weapon should I use? How do I add buttons to my hotbar? What do you mean my rogue shouldn't focus on intellect gear?

Ah, newbies and their endless supply of questions. But I'm sure we were all there at one point, and so I'm asking you -- for the benefit of all players who have ever had to help a new player get started -- what's your best advice to a newbie?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics, Features

"Welcome to the endgame... noob."

Overheard in Orgrimmar: "Welcome to the endgame, noob."

Not the warmest welcome a new level 60 might get, but perhaps an appropriate one. Upon hitting 60 (or perhaps even 55+), and encountering endgame content, one is in an interesting position. The content is new, but so many players are familiar with it that there's often little tolerance for those who are learning.

This seems to be a particular problem within the PuGs I've encountered. Usually, the players within them assume you've done everything to death before -- that you understand the abbreviations and common tactics. This isn't always the case; from battlegrounds to instances, everyone's new at some point. If grouped with someone who doesn't know what they're doing, here's a plea on behalf of the anonymous noob: bear in mind it might be their first time.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, WoW Social Conventions

Breakfast Topic: Explaining to newbies

As is my wont, I've been helping a couple of brand new WoW players get addicted lately, and it's been interesting. One comes from a heavy MMO background and is fairly happy to be left alone and get on with it; the other is a console FPS gamer who has needed a lot of hand-holding.

In helping the latter, I've had to answer some questions which might seem commonplace to any WoW veteran but can be confusing as heck to newbies. Why is the run from Darnassus to Ironforge so unfriendly? Why do animals routinely carry weapons, armour and food, whereas humanoids with no known economy carry cash and cloth? Why does the pattern of night and day follow real time, so players who only have time at night never see places in blazing sunlight? How come a cloth armour merchant can repair my pointy sword? Why, if Alliance and Horde are sworn enemies, is there even a mechanism whereby they can't attack each other?

Some have easier answers than others -- we're not on RP servers, so coming up with plausible explanations isn't too taxing. However, it's almost like introducing a child to a new world. Things which we take for granted can suddenly seem strange and quirky. Obviously, a lot of the less-logical gameplay choices make the game ultimately more fun, if less realistic; what are the weird questions you've been asked by newbies (apart from "gief gold pls")?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

Breakfast Topic: First loves

How many characters did you go through before you settled on one to take to 60? Is your first your only character, or have you hopped from class to class and race to race before you felt comfortable?

The first character we create can hold the fondest memories; we made newbie mistakes together, we learnt the game and explored the world. On the other hand, sometimes mistakes made as a newbie can have far-reaching effects; especially if that high-powered guild leader is someone we accidentally stole a mob from who still bears the grudge. Unlikely, but there are times we wish we could rewrite those first bumbling steps, go back and give ourselves all the expertise we have now.

My first character was, maybe predictably, a Night Elf. I chose a Druid because shape-shifting sounded unbelievably cool, and after a few nasty experiences with spiders and getting lost in Teldrassil, I made it to Darnassus, then undertook the pilgrimage to Ironforge. After leaving the character there for months so I could play around with everything else the game has to offer, I recently dusted her off and it's a lot of fun coming back to that very first creation, even if it does mean dealing with a bank full of rubbish and extremely ill-suited equipment.

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

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