Maybe You’re Just Not That Good

Alright. I typically refrain from making these types of posts on my web site because I’ve always taken a ‘my web site is not for controversy’ stand. However, this thought has been filtering around in my mind for quite some time now, and it has to be said.

VERY often in games you’ll hear the phrase “must have y piece of gear” (where y equals some random piece of ‘uber’ gear whatever that may be at the time). Since I spend most of my time in EQ2 I’ll use that as an example. In the 70-79 channel you will hear no less then 10 times a day that people are looking for those who ONLY have their mythical. Not only that, but you will hear numerous people exclaim that unless the entire group has said piece of gear, you will not be able to beat it.

My question to people who say that or think that way is – did you ever think maybe you’re just not that good at the game, and THAT is why you require those pieces of gear in your groups.

There are VERY FEW zones that MUST have a particular piece of gear to complete. There are so many other factors that come into play, and the very basic one is PLAYING WELL. I know I use the example of my group mates very often, but that’s what it comes down to. We beat every TSO instance except for Palace and one of the Guks BEFORE any of us obtained any raid gear (T3+) or mythicals. Sure, we died. We died a lot some times. We still did it, and what’s more we did it as three or four people, boxing. We did own master spells, we worked very hard on getting our characters as well geared as we possibly could within our means. Saving up coin, sharing between us when we could, buying spells for one another, using the research assistants.

Imagine what a whole group could have done. We defeated Ravenscale without mythicals, wearing T2 gear and instance drops. It’s not impossible (now Ravenscale is childs play). Sure, we weren’t about to take down Varsoon any time soon (hah) but we tried zones over and over until we found a way that worked for us. Some times that involved switching characters around, or using means that were not conventional (we used charm in the guks for example) and it sure wasn’t easy – but we have NEVER ever said – oh, you must have T3+ and a mythical and 200aa before you can come with us so we can defeat this encounter.

I think some times people have an over glorified picture of how good they are at something. Especially in video games because the game itself causes you to think you’re amazing. The NPCs shout your praise, and you’re framed as the hero. Lets face it, some people are just not any good. They don’t know their character, they haven’t done any research, they don’t know what spells to cast and when – and that is what will hold you back.

Next time you see someone LFG who doesn’t have their mythical and isn’t decked to the gills with raid gear, think of giving them a chance and taking them along with you anyhow. Do mythicals and great gear make things easier? Of course they do. A LOT easier, but what ever happened to the thrill of taking down a really difficult encounter as the underdog. Not everyone raids or wants to and you can argue the fact that “good” players will have their mythical, but that’s not always true. There are a lot of really bad players who ride the coat tails of guilds and have better gear then anything I’ll ever see. Just like there are some amazing players who are wearing mastercrafted.

Lets face it, when it comes to Fallen Earth and the combat in that game, I’m horrible. I admit it. I’m really bad and it will take me a very long time to feel like I’m any good at it. Some times, we’re just not that good, and there’s nothing wrong with that.

19 Responses to Maybe You’re Just Not That Good

  1. Daria says:

    I was hoping you could elaborate more on your experience with Fallen Earth combat. As I understand it, it is a mix of taking aim like in an FPS mixed in with traditional auto attacks that we know from MMO’s. The combat is the one thing that is keeping me from trying out Fallen Earth. I’m afraid that if it is too awkward, or too much like an FPS, that I won’t enjoy it. Thanks :)

  2. Kendricke says:

    Sure, I get the perspective that some players say “must have”. However, many of the same players saying “must have” are often the same players who really mean “must have or it will be harder/take longer than I’m willing to deal with right now”.

    It’s not about whether or not Veksar can be handled without an enchanter. However, the fact is that an enchanter virtually trivializes a couple of the encounters within the dungeon and thus becomes de-facto required. Ultimately, perception is reality and for many players, the perception is that without X class or Y gear or Z AA specs, the dungeons become that much harder. Let’s face it, when you’re already gambling on 4-5 strangers in your pick-up group, less variables you have to contend with is always a good thing.

    I fully recognize that most zones could be handled with a full group of 6 Templars with fabled epics and Kunark gear, but would that be the pick-up group I’d really want to form up to hit Lower Guk with? Just because I CAN do a thing doesn’t mean I really want to do that thing. So yes, on the rare occasions I do form up a pick-up group, I’d probably state some minimum requirements for the group (and even if I don’t state the requirements, I’d probably have such expectations firmly in mind anyway).

  3. stargrace says:

    I appreciate all of the wonderful comments – love hearing everyone and their opinions.

    One small comment, regarding those who mentioned time being a factor. While I do agree that this comes into play SOME of the time, I feel that it’s unfair to say that EVERYONE just wants mythical because of a time restriction. We know what we personally want, but not what everyone else wants.

    On that same note, the point was not that people want to rush through and that’s why they require those pieces of gear – but the line that talks about those who say you simply CAN NOT complete a zone with a particular piece of gear, which is another frequent conversation (ie: must have enchanter, must have bard, can’t do Y zone without X class).

    I can understand that people are in a rush, don’t want to be put out of their way, or take the time to be nice to a stranger when they’re just trying to accomplish their personal goal in their allotted time restraints. That still doesn’t mean it has to be the norm, or that we can’t all take a little time to remember when we too were that small person begging for a group because we couldn’t play with the big boys yet.

    As a side note, personally, I have T4 and my mythical (on a few characters now) so I’m not coming at this from the underdog point of view. It’s just something that weighs on my mind every single time I see one of those looking for more messages in channels.

  4. Hehe, the one that always gets me is..”great, you’re myth’d, not too bad gear…oh, you don’t have blade chimes.. :(“. Funny thing is whenever I get asked this or my group start putting restrictions on what kit is required, I just leave.

  5. Kendricke says:

    I don’t disagree with you. That said, the vast majority of players who request minimum-gear requirements are doing so typically for the following reasons:

    1 – If you’re looking for random strangers to fill out your group, a minimum gear requirements is a quick “resume”. In the real world, some of the best project managers I’ve met don’t have their PMP certification. However, when you’re weeding through X number of resumes for a new project manager, the PMP certification is a quick way of whittling the pile down. Sure, you might lose out on some great project managers who don’t yet have that cert and absolutely some of the guys who have their PMP are barely fit for the position, but it’s as good a standard as any to use. A mythical (or any other gear standard) may not be perfect, but it’s as good a standard as any to use.

    2 – Sometimes it’s not about meeting minimum standards. Sure, any pick-up group can hit Scion of Ice with little worry about failure – mythicals or not. However, there’s a HUGE difference between a 5,000 DPS group and a 30,000 DPS group. It’s not about “can we do X zone?”, but rather “how fast can we do X zone?” Do you want to be clearing Scion in 20 minutes or 45?

    3 – For some players, minimum gear standards don’t respresent your skill at the game so much as it might your dedication to a particular character. After all, why try hitting Lower Guk with a group of fourth or fifth generation of alts when you can blow through two or three dungeons in the same amount of time. Sure, it’s possible that you’re able to pull down near maximum DPS with a character you spend 1/8th of your online time with, but the odds don’t work out in favor of such a theory. Remember, we’re talking about pick-up groups here, not static groups of friends or guildmates. The people asking for groupmates don’t know you and may not even care to know you. They have a goal in mind and an expectation of how much time that goal should take.

  6. tuvogg says:

    The “Lets get through the instance as fast as possible” thing has of course just been bolstered with the introduction of the speed achievements. And a word of hope to D.G Most groups will look at a Troub as a buff bot even though we both know this isnt the case. Because of this it is extremely easy to get groups at level 80. I was invited to Guk:OS and POF by groups who knew my equipment sucked.

  7. Threllgar says:

    Well not sure if having a mythical means anything but I was in a DF group with a defiler with mythical and the player just did not know how to heal. Tank was a Pally with T2 armor and we couldn’t kill the end guy. Finally after the healer ranted about our DPS not being good enough, she rage quit when we told her that she should try hitting a healing button.

    Seriously DF run that took over an hour? That is not fun at all

  8. Ysharros says:

    “My question to people who say that or think that way is – did you ever think maybe you’re just not that good at the game, and THAT is why you require those pieces of gear in your groups.”

    Amen to that. I don’t know if this holds for games like WoW, but I’ve certainly seen it in EQ2 and while I’m not max level myself (nor ever likely to take part in that kind of content), I *have* seen quite a few more fighty-inclined friends do just fine without having specifically X, Y or Z gear.

  9. Caladwen says:

    I see a lot of this on LDL as well – “MUST have mythical, MUST have tier 2 or better”. As long as people are nice and the group is fun, that’s pretty much all that matters to me. I don’t group with the “gear snobs”. Great post!

  10. shadowgeist says:

    killerp solo healed my gimp bruiser through palace. That poor pickup we took was probably thinking “hmm when is the best time to “go ld” … but we still won.

  11. Magson says:

    I’ve been a bit “spotty” in my ability to play for the last year and a half or so. Were this not the case, I’d probably have all 12 of my toons to 80. As it is, I have 3 toons to 80, 3 in their 70’s, 2 in their 60’s, and the others are 50 or higher.

    When I do play, I generally focus on my lower toons anymore, especially now that the AA slider’s been introduced. Quite fun to do all the EF and LS quests with 100% aaxp on — those things fly up then ;-)

    As a result, my 3 80’s are “undergeared.” Even with that, I never seem to get any complaints that I’m not pulling my weight in any group I’m in. Of course, I also never even try to join a group advertising for anything other than generic “chanter” or “dps” or whatever either. I’ve found those are the ones willing to just have a good time. When they start saying they’re only looking for “mythical this” or “mythical that” — even if I had a myth I wouldn’t join. I play to relax and have fun, not try to be as uber as possible as fast as possible. My “farthest” toon along is 80/146 with epic fabled weapon. Armor is 4 pieces of T1 and 3 other fabled pieces. Jewelry is a mix of RoK/TSO Legendary and fabled. It’s not “uber” but it’s not bad either. It’s sufficient to have fun with — and that’s good enough for me.

  12. d.g. says:

    I 100% agree!

    My Warden has her mythical, but only since the beginning of summer. She has 4 pieces of T3 and a few decent pieces of fabled jewelry, but nothing spectacular because I rarely raid. So, I *can* get groups with her, thankfully. BUT. My Troub just hit 80 last week, and I am slowing working through her epic quest line right now. She’s wearing all T2 except her helm, which is T1. And the rest of her gear is junk, of course … and how long will it stay that way? Who knows? I haven’t even *tried* to get a group for her (other than guild groups) because I fear rejection before I’m even invited, or even worse, being booted once the group has a chance to inspect me. So how exactly am I supposed to improve her gear, if I can never get a group? I may not be the best player in the world, but I know that I’m competent.

    I have mentioned to my husband about a zillion times that I am so glad there will be no more mythicals (unless I’m missing some information about the new expansion) because I’m tired of so many people (myself included) being excluded from groups and raids because they (I) don’t have one. Sadly, though, I think this trend will continue … if not with mythicals, then with something else, whether it’s set pieces or whatever the new expansion introduces. I guess I’ll have to cross that bridge when I get there.

    Judging a player by his/her gear is completely unfair … it doesn’t take that much skill to farm 50p for a VP update, and I’ve grouped with some really amazing people in bottom of the barrel gear because they don’t have time to belong to a hardcore raiding guild. It’s like judging a book by it’s cover …

  13. kaozz says:

    It’s something you see very commonly in a lot of games these days. It’s actually sad to see this mentality in so many games.

  14. RickC says:

    I play on AB and what I gather is people request certain gear/myth/etc because they want to finish it in the least amount of time possible and move on to another zone or log off for something else. I don’t think it has much to do with not being good. For a small percentage, sure but more so, in any pug i join, the words “hurry”, “lets go” and those kinds of things are commonly thrown about.

    Alik, they probably had the that feeling of “win” the first time they finally beat the zone. You can’t keep having them feelings time and time again thru AoB, DF, Scion, RR, etc. After a certain amount of time its just about getting thru fast and taking a newly leveled 80 with non-optimal gear/spells will slow it down.

    Now, that being said, I’ll add I’ve probably done less than 20 TSO instances total so I’m not one of those “you must have the best gear” types. I’ve not even stepped in any of the Guks. I took a break for a long time after TSO came out. I came back a few months ago and don’t know the strats to any zones, any fights. I have my myth on both level 80’s, and decent pur gear but i don’t do pugs because people think I suck because they don’t take the time to tell me what special attack the mob has or when not to hit it or whatever despite me asking before a named fight. Then when I inevitably mess up on the first try, they rudely explain the fight to me. Of course if I was a friend or guildmate, laughs would be had and those same people rude to a stranger would be understanding.

    So, yah, these checks for gear and all that are just for speed purposes. My old guild (casual raiding) even had posts up on the forum for people to put their times up for runs thru the Kunark instances and try to one up each other. I imagine they have the same for TSO these days. Anything, including explaining a fight or taking an undergeared person thru would slow down the dps and that person is generally not welcome if they are a stranger.

  15. Pete S says:


    Great post! Thanks for putting this out there!

  16. Mythokia says:

    The sad thing is that most people are not even willing to try at all. They want a no risk group, or ‘non fail’ as it is known in gaming nomenclature. I’ve seen people that barely have their myths for an hour and are advertising for myth-only players for their group. Did having their myth just made them blind to the fact that they themselves were able to accomplish much even prior to them obtaining their myths?

    Get a taste of luxury, and they forget what t s like to be without.

  17. Ferrel says:

    Amen Star. I am tired of seeing people claim you need full tier two armor and a mythical to do kunark. It is redicilous. I with you here completely. My gear is pretty bad since I just for back but my groups magically get stuff done. People focus too much on numbers and not enough on skill.

  18. Alik Steel says:

    Nice write up.

    I think it’s the the failures that makes the victory sweet. If you win every time, Then what does a win really mean? And yet that is what most raiders want. Sorry to say this. but I agree with you. You don’t need all that uber stuff, and that means that you will fail to make the kill every time. BUT That’s the point of the fight’s. It all ways feels as if you really have done something when you win, While every one is saying, You can’t win like that.

    Keep on rocking the boat.

    Alik Steel

  19. Scopique says:

    Thank you for saying this! I wholeheartedly agree. I think it shows that too many players are looking for the “I Win” button in these games by making all of these off-the-wall requirements. Sure, no one likes to fail, but if reward without risk is your thing, then you might as well stay in bed all day.

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