The good and bad of LFR

I’ve had an interesting week or so in LFR.

A guild member had got a new character to 90, and he’d decided he’d like to give tanking a try.  He’d run a few guild instances and done well, and decided (very bravely) to run an LFR.  Myself and a couple of guild mates went along as moral support, and we all chipped in, in guild, with hints and tips along the way.

He had asked me for some advice prior to going in, and I said that the best advice I could give, other than to do his best, was to be honest.  When he joined the group, he should tell them he was new to tanking it and would welcome any help or hints.  The worst that could happen was that people would leave .. and it’s easy enough to get more if you have tanks waiting for them.

So .. when we zoned in, he put up a message in raid chat telling them just that .. to take it easy on him, he hoped he didn’t make a mess of things, he welcomed help.

Now .. this is LFR.  It’s pug gone mental.  You’re expecting the mentality of heroics x 5 … yet it didn’t turn out that way.  It was one of the most enjoyable LFR runs ever .. we had lots of people who didn’t say anything, which is fine, and one or two who were exceptionally helpful and gave good basic tactics of every pull.  I really should have made a note of their names .. there should be a way of giving people in random groups a “thumbs up” (or down, I guess!).  There was also the other tank.  He was your traditional “gogo” tank .. he replied to the initial request for clemency with something along the lines of “I’m gonna do what I like .. you just keep up”.   He didn’t swear .. but he was one of those that just puts your back up .. makes the whole feel of the raid rather unfriendly and aggressive.  If there was a problem he blamed someone else, if he died, it was someone elses fault …

He died on Elegon .. as we were running back in he was slating the “noobs” who had failed, and then said he would “brb .. going for pizza .. I can’t miss watching this!” … his dead body still on the floor.

Someone, I can’t remember who, said something about the now Missing in Action tank .. and a “kick” was initiated.  By several people.  Its the one time I’ve wished I was on vent in LFR .. I could almost hear the cheer going up.  Suddenly, the entire group was happier, everyone was chatting, having fun, having a laugh .. we got a replacement tank virtually straight away and got rid of Elegon with the previous tank’s remains still underneath .. and then finished the raid with no problems.  It was the most fun I’ve had in LFR for ages and a lot of others in the group commented on it.

It is a pity more can’t be like that.

In contrast .. a few of us went into the first LFR tonight … everything went smoothly .. you have the usual suspects that can’t be bothered moving (or move in the opposite direction!) on chains on the first boss fight, people stand in puddles, etc – second boss you end up with fires all over the place .. although luckily we had a couple of good tanks who were excellent at keeping the various raid damage stuff at bay .. most people outgeared the fights so it was pretty easy regardless.  I did take exception to one guy “needing” on a blue BoE drop .. but I hastily apologised once I’d inspected his gear and realised he was wearing a mix of mainly blues and greens.  Too used to people needing on stuff just to sell or DE.

Unfortunately we wiped on the last boss .. the troll guy where you need so many dps and a healer to go into the spirit realm to kill the adds there.  On the first attempt, at one point a guildee (as it happened, my OH) went into the spirit realm (he was very used to doing so as he’s one of those assigned to do so in guild Normal runs) – unfortunately he was the only one there, took tons of damage and, as he came out, he died.

I went into the next one to heal anyone who was in there, but I was alone as well .. and was quickly overwhelmed by the number of attacks I took.  The place was almost covered with adds.

Soo .. inevitably, we wiped.

A shaman who was doing fairly decent dps stated that not enough people were going into the spirit realm, which was entirely correct .. they said that only three had gone in .. they could tell that from their recount addon.

Well, I knew I had been in .. I and my OH knew he had been in .. so we both stated as such, and I said that, in that case, we were assuming he/she was the third.  They then confirmed that, however, stated very firmly that my OH was a liar and used a recount output to prove it.

We left it there for the remainder of the fight, as we wanted to get it finished, although I did state that we definitely went in, and weren’t being deceitful.

Anyway … when the boss was down, and everything was sorted, we checked this Shaman and realised they were actually from our realm.  I know it’s probably pretty sad, but we’re quite possessive of our realm, we enjoy the atmosphere and generally the people we meet there .. we weren’t expecting such hostility from, in effect, one of our own.

My OH, because he was rather indignant of having being called into question, whispered the said Shaman to say that he wasn’t happy about being called a liar and that he definitely had been into the spirit realm.  The Shaman replied very dismissively, basically stating that they were right, but they would agree with him, just to get rid.  “Whatever makes you happy” was the quote used.  Oh .. and “little boy” …. haha .. he was even more annoyed about being called a little boy ..

My OH did the only thing he could then, and simply put the Shaman on ignore.  At which point, the Shaman started whispering me!  She (for that’s what I later discovered she was) told me that I should rein in my little boy and that she knew he had been lying.  I did not give away the fact that I actually spent the raid sat next to him, and could see both mine and his monitor, but I was polite and said that, as I knew for a fact he wasn’t a liar, perhaps her addon was misleading her?  She stated that it wasn’t, it was correct, and that it showed everyone who had been in the spirit realm and caused damage .. and that he hadn’t.

Now I don’t know why this was .. perhaps it was because she was in a different phase and it therefore didn’t track out-of-phase damage, perhaps, as they seemed to be suggesting, two totems were up at once and one of them was in one, the other in the other realm – perhaps it failed to track that.  I don’t know what was possible/impossible.  All I know is that this particular person, after a smooth LFR run and then one wipe on the final boss, felt the urge to assign blame, to check her addons, and to thrust that blame at the first person available .. indeed, one of the few who had actually had the temerity to state that they were trying to do the boss using the correct strategy.

I had a pretty long conversation after that with her … not throwing blame or swearing (on my part, anyway) .. I know she swore at least once as I have the “naughty word filter” up, at which point I commented on it and stated I couldn’t read such words so she might as well stick to proper ones.

I suppose most people would probably have just pressed ignore, or report, or had a slanging match .. but i was (a) curious to discover WHY she had thought he had lied and (b) why she had been so aggressive and persistent about it ever since.

She told me that she hated LFR, she had never had a good experience in them.

I asked her why she did them then?

“Valor Points” was the reply …

“but you can get them from dailies, heroics, scenarios … if you hate LFR so much, why do them?”

“because LFR is quicker, and tanks always shout at me in heroics for pulling aggro”

“well, perhaps if tanks are always shouting at you for pulling aggro in heroics, you should stop pulling threat? … after all, it is probably because you outgear the tank, and the tank has no way of “over-gearing” you suddenly, so the only other option is for you to rein it back a bit”

“but then I wouldn’t be able to use X and Y spells so much … ”

“well if you enjoy tanking so much, perhaps you should roll one … our guild is always looking for tanks, feel free to apply!  Just make sure you do actually apply WITH a tank character 🙂 “

“but I enjoy pulling threat off the tank, it’s fun … ”

“in that case, we don’t want you applying to our guild .. we prefer people who consider others and know how to play their role”

I then finished our conversation stating that we were simply rather shocked that someone from our realm was so immediately negative of someone else.  She stated that we shouldn’t be so surprised .. at least 50% of the realm was made up of horrible people …  I just said I was really sad for her, that she had obvious met an awful lot of the wrong people and been really unlucky … but that if she went into random groups expecting everyone to be really horrible and acted accordingly, she would generally find that people would react in exactly the same way back to her.

In the end, rather than being upset and angry about the whole situation, I just felt sad that someone could play an MMORPG and yet find the majority of people they encountered “horrible”.

Strangely .. writing about this particular person brings another lady to mind who was fairly similar.  I don’t know if she felt the same way about the realm in general, but she spent some time in our guild and, on good days, was a very nice person .. chatty, funny, helpful.  However, she was also a “glass half empty” type of person … in game or in real life … she often started talking in either guild chat or whispers about stuff that annoyed her.  Initially people would try to see the positive, cheer her up, show her the “glass half full” side of things .. but at the end of the day we all log into the game as part of our relaxing “after work” time … if we logged out feeling more stressed out than when we logged in, then it wasn’t working.  And that what was happening with more and more regularity.

I know that people like this exist .. I have personal experience of it, indirectly .. but we only have one life to lead (depending on what views you have!) … you have the choice of either going through it miserable or happy.  Personally .. I choose happy every time.  I realise it isn’t possible to be cheerful ALL the time .. but why not make the effort?  I find that, if you make the effort to be happy, even if you’re not .. it tends to be catching and soon more people around you are more cheerful .. which cheers you up.  It’s just like yawning 😛 *yawwwwwnnnn*

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