sei wrote:Who is the victim, here? Are the world's Timmy-the-paladins missing out on being carried by superstars who happened to roll on the wrong server? Or are you saying people miss out on the opportunity to do progression with their more ambitious friends?
The victim is the sense of community that people say is less important than progression, but literally everybody I have ever known in World of Warcraft laments the loss of, except maybe you.
This is actually a really, really good explanation of what people mean when they say capitalism is dehumanizing.
I personally gravitated towards playing with roughly similarly skilled players. I tried playing with a guild that had a more diverse level of talent. That mostly just led to me yelling at my monitor. Carrying your bad friends through normal/flex mode kills is not something I enjoy in video games.
The most effective raiding guild I was ever a part of was filled with genuinely awful people; casually racist, abusive, everything you might expect from a CoD Kid grown up. They were also really good at World of Warcraft. I benefited greatly from my tenure with them and improved dramatically, but I also kind of hated myself for associating with these troglodytes for the sake of progression, because really, how little self-respect must I have to value Blackwing Lair gear enough to sit and listen to Dior talk about Jews?
I am not going to say you are playing for the wrong reasons; that would be stupid. You are, however, playing for reasons that have absolutely nothing to do with World of Warcraft's success. The guilds I have stuck with the longest were the ones with the people I liked the most, and I enjoyed the game much more when I came to consider progression incidental. Blizzard's gotten way more money from me on account of time spent playing with LB and KVN. If the only reason you're raiding with the guild you raid with is because they are good enough at the game not to get in your way or hold you back, you might as well be playing a single-player game with scripted, immortal, inconsequential allies like Mass Effect.
Keep in mind that player obligation-schedule and desired-time-raiding also vary wildly. Realistically, playing with a few friends is nice, but I don't expect a group of friends' raiding availability/desires to match up, even in the happy coincidence that they're equally skilled and equally invested in the game.
Yes, raiding is bullshit on its face, but we aren't talking about the specific merits of raiding itself; we're talking about what happens when the game changes the rules on who you can raid with and why.
Being able to play with a larger pool of players helps alleviate both the skill and schedule gaps by giving you a wider pool of warm bodies to recruit from.
Bullshit, because just like with rural/urban divides, when the option exists for somebody with talent to leave your community for a different, better one, your community suffers even if it wouldn't be fair to keep that talented person there against his will.
This is a fine system for providing individuals with talent more opportunity, but it also commodifies those individuals and alienates them from communities that might value them as more than a purely productive cog, and basically sweeps aside everybody else. Fortunately, World of Warcraft is a society from which you can easily opt out, the threat of which leads to safety nets like LFR.
Again, the central question is "do you think World of Warcraft is a game about killing internet dragons?" Was Man Made For the Sabbath, sei?