I’ve had some things happen while playing within the guild recently, and rather than call anyone out I’d like to use them as a teaching moment. Many of you have known each other for a long time; some of us are still getting to know you and find ways to be an asset to the community, which can sometimes make for awkward gameplay moments.
As players we tend to be unforgiving of others - particularly of those outside the guild - when it comes to making mistakes. It can be easy to judge a few mistakes as a sign that a player doesn’t know a lot about the game and needs a lot of advice. But it’s more likely that each player is working through their own strengths and weaknesses and trying to get better. The added pressure of trying to satisfy the rest of a group that seems to know more about how to play your class than you do can be far more tilting than just committing errors in the first place.
I play a healer. Good healers make the job of healing look very easy when things are going well. I play disc priest, a very frequently misunderstood healing spec, that is especially punishing when it comes to frequent movement. Much of disc’s effectiveness relies on applying shields/atonement to many targets and then unloading as much damage as possible within a window to offset predictable raid burst damage (Sludgefist is a good example).
So when I’m going through my rotations, trying to watch my feet as well as my raid frames and DBM timers, and I suddenly hear:
“Hey Floyd, what are you doing way out of position?”
That does a couple things. First it immediately takes my mind off whatever I’m doing in the moment, which affects my healing output. Second, it puts me on the immediate defensive for the entire group because now I feel I have to explain what is already a complicated task so that everyone doesn’t think I’m simply not paying attention. And all in all it puts me in a really bad mood for the entire night.
So what can you do as someone watching a healer who’s out of position like that? You can say something like “try to regroup in ranged when you can,” or something as simple as “ranged regroup.” Then it’s not an accusation, but a reminder. And mentally that goes on my queue as something to do as soon as I can, while casting instant spells on the way. Because the thing is, I’m not out of position because I don’t care or not paying attention, but because my attention is stretched thin a lot of the time as a healer, and I’m grateful for that reminder.
The point is, the words we choose have a wide effect, and our words come from our feelings about each other. I know it’s fun getting loot and watching ilvl’s go up, but ultimately I play to be part of a team and push myself to improve in my role. All I ask for is the benefit of the doubt, because that’s the best guild perk of all.