I get it. The whole blogsphere gets it. WoW is a MMO, which by nature would dictate that it be a social game. I’ll admit that if it hadn’t been for group quests and early 5 mans, I probably wouldn’t be where I am today. In fact, I am sure I can place the blame for my WoW career squarely on the shoulders of our resident elemental shaman.
See, five years ago, I was the epitome of a WoW noob. I tried to run from Darnassus to the Eastern Kingdoms – and I figured the port HAD to be on the East coast of Kalimdor. Who would sail around the Northern tip? Somewhere along the way, I met some merry fellows, and we banded together for some great times. This led to joining their guild, my introduction to raiding, and my eventual budding as a MT/OT and Raid Leader.
The rest, as they say, is history.
I’m willing to try
I won’t lie, when I role into the LFD system I’m strictly there for my 2 Frost Emblems, and whatever shards/etc I can get on the way. Half the time I don’t even bother looting, as I’m working on keeping Divine Plea up and have to chain pull. I don’t care if the DPS is 1k or 5k, because unless we’re in HoR, I should be able to do enough DPS for everyone. Yes, it will be slow, but when you consider that freshly dinged 80 heroic groups were doing 4k as a group – my 5k+ while tanking will cover it.
I do however, make an attempt at civility. I say hello to the group, figure out who’s healing (I only use Grid, so the healer debuff doesn’t show – I wonder if there’s a way to do this), and hit a couple of quick macros.
“Hi, I’m Amathalanea, and I’ll be tanking for you today. My preferred method is to chain pull, however if you need a quest item, mana break, etc., please speak up early (i.e. before the pack we’re on is dead). I’m happy to slow down if needed, just please don’t ask me to stop as my shield is on the move”
“%Insert Healer’s Name%, please let me know when you’re set, and we’ll be off”
If someone else starts chatting, or if something profound has happened to me that day, I’ll speak up. I’m generally more talkative on my DK, simply because I’m a fresh 80 in all BoE epics and blues. I know there will be problems, so starting off nice can’t hurt. I figure it’s better to be up front about what they can expect – because my DK certainly doesn’t tank at 4k DPS.
Civility does not mean “I’m your friend”
There are limits however. Much like healers have their own rules you have to live by, I have my own tanking rules. Start pulling for me, open up with a string of racial slurs or general idocy, or tell me that I’m not in tank gear (Yeah dad, you told us) – and I’m much less inclined to stick around, and you can forget about achievements.
Personally, I think the achievements are great in dungeons. I recognize some are more difficult than others – like “Less Rabi” or the drake voids in Occ. This is why you have a guild, or a friends list. Hitting up a random group to do these for you is, in my opinion, entirely selfish. It’s even worse when you’re still sporting dungeon blues, and are obviously a freshly minted 80. Yes, I’ll help you get some badges, and won’t care that you’re only doing 1k DPS. No, I won’t wipe just so we can try “Less Rabi” again. I actually had a Paladin DI me while tanking him after we missed it, hoping to wipe the group. Fortunately for us, this wasn’t our first rodeo. We did have to wait an extra 4 minutes before we could kick him though.
I suppose it’s those kinds of folks – the ones who expect to take advantage of your good-natured personality. If the Red Proto-drake was a 310% speed mount, I’d be much more inclined to help someone. It’s just a regular mount though. I don’t see any reason to get bent out of shape over not getting the achievement.
Do it on your own time
In the end, it just comes down to my distinct dislike for folks that expect to be carried though content, and then ask for you to go that much further. It’s like picking up a hitchhiker, and them getting mad that you didn’t buy them lunch on the way; especially if they don’t follow the rules of the road.
As an example, my DK hit 80 this weekend. I leveled as a dual-spec Blood DPS/Tank, and spent my instance time learning the way of the DK tank. I know it’ll be different when everyone opens up at the first sight of a D&D with every AoE in the book – but at least I’m trying. I also dropped about 13k on world BoEs, crafted 245 epics, etc. I have no doubt that the iLvl 200 epics I bought will be replaced in a week or two – but at least I’m not walking into a dungeon expecting to be carried by the healer and DPS. The only thing I didn’t splurge on was epic gems – and that’s only because none of our JCs were on at the time.
So the long and the short of it is – we can be social; and I’ll even help carry your stuff along the way if you at least pretend to act like a decent human being. Treat me like some kind of Sherpa or worse (because at least a Sherpa is human) some kind of tank NPC who’s just there to do your bidding, and we won’t have a very long relationship.