WoW Jerks

Lately I’ve been noticing a huge amount of blog posts about WoW jerks. Whether it’s entitled-feeling tanks and healers, elitist dps, forum trolls who try to ruin your fun, dungeon finder horror stories, pug leaders who want us to “link achievement and have 6000 gear score, or gtfo,” it seems like people are having (and sharing) a lot of negative experiences with WoW right now. Are elitist, disagreeable and mean players a new thing? Definitely not. Are there more of them around? I honestly can’t say. So why have these stories become so prevalent? I don’t know what the answer is, but I have a few ideas.

  • Blog Wild! – It could be partly due to the sheer number of WoW blogs around right now. I subscribe to an obscene amount of blogs at the moment, so obviously I see a lot of these stories. The more you pay attention to an issue, the more examples you will see.
  • LFD tool – We’re getting exposed to a much larger pool of players than ever before. While a lot of them are pleasant, or just silently do their jobs, it tends to be the obnoxious players who stick out in our memory. This is due to negativity bias which causes people to pay more attention to negative events than positive ones.
  • The gear situation – Top-tier gear is easier to get than ever. This, along with the introduction of things like gear score mods have shifted way too much attention to people’s gear over their skill and attitude. If you start to see players as a gear score number, rather than a person, it becomes much easier to treat them badly.
  • Burn out – Something else that seems to be written about a lot lately is WoW burnout. A lot of people don’t seem to get the same amount of enjoyment from the game, some are decreasing their playtime or taking a break until Cataclysm. This can have two effects on the issue at hand. First, when people are not having fun and playing becomes a chore, they get grumpy. And when you’re grumpy, you’re more prone to being a jerk. On the flipside, if the bloggers are feeling burnt out and not having as much fun, I think they’re more likely to focus on the negative when picking their topics. Last month I had a really bad ICC 10 PuG and a really good one. Guess which one I blogged about?

Those are my thoughts. Anyone else have other ideas? Are you running into more jerks in the game lately? Or just talking about it more?

6 responses to “WoW Jerks

  1. Most of the "smooth" runs tend to be pulled so quickly that you can't really take the time to chit-chat. The LFD tool's extreme anonymity of "these people aren't on my server so what should I care?" has certainly made jerks more prevalent, and my ignore list has grown quite a bit, but I like to stay optimistic and remember the good times as well as the bad.

    As far as gear goes, before GearScore there were just inspections. Someone would look at you and say "hey, you suck," and kick you. Unfortunately with GearScore they tend to do this before seeing if you can actually hold your own (skill wise), but leaders like that also tend to be jerks regarding loot distribution and overall are not fun people to pug with (let alone tend to put gear before skill themselves, so often have no idea what they're doing anyway: bad qualities for a raid leader).

    I don't think the burnout rate is honestly any higher than in previous years. Some bloggers have come and gone, players have come and gone, but it doesn't feel any different than from previous "it's not a brand new instance" lulls.

  2. There are definitely more jerks and I love it. I don't feel at all bad when I boot them from my group for doing something dumb. 🙂

  3. @Kae

    I really haven't had many bad experiences for LFD, I just find I'm reading about other people's horror stories a lot.

    As for the burnout, maybe I'm just noticing it more because I'm a little burned out. Although it does seem like an odd time for burnout for raiders. ICC hasn't been out for that long, and people are just getting access to hard modes.

    sigh. Although, I can't say that giving jerks a taste of their own medicine isn't fun.

  4. pugnaciouspriest

    People like drama, and drama they can relate to, I realise I probably harp on my Lfg stories but the concensus seems to be that fails don't read blogs. They might read webcomics and spend off time trolling general or trade chat – we have some machivellian bloggers – I may border on being a jerk occasionly – but we don't have asshats properly represented in blogging – so we are also only getting one side.

  5. Not sure what your experience is, but I played for two years straight.

    I was one of those "addicts" and I was the #2 ret paldin on my server at on time and the number 7th overall paldin on my server.

    I had the gear and I raided with the #2 guild on my server.

    I hit my tipping point when we raided without the guild leader there and too many guildies started seriously being disrespectful. Not talking light hearted razzing. I mean full on "FU" "your a moron" to just about anyone.

    More and More the game is becoming a game where access the endgame content and actually seeing the highend content that your actually paying for has become too hard. You have to put up with too much erogance to achieve some of the more worth while achievements.

    I tried starting my own guild but you end up having to make sacrifices in membership to fill out the raids and eventually you log on oneday more jerks in your guild thna you ever wanted.

    Simply put Blizzard needs to find a way for folks to gear up and see the endgame content without having to subject themselves to those types of ppl.

    Until then I sit on the sidelines reading blogs and waiting for this game to change for the better. I am thinking of rejoing for cataclysm IF i hear news of Blizzard working an alternate to gear and content, a way "around' the jerks.

    • I've never had a guild experience like that. Whatever the level of progression, the guildmates I've had have been mostly respectful. If they aren't, they don't stay long. It's mostly people outside of my guild who I find to be problematic. I don't think the jerks are limited to the high-end raiders though.

      I think Blizzard has made it quite easy to gear up to the level required to see endgame content, but there's not much they can do about people being jerks.