PvP Posting

By Shamus Posted Wednesday Jul 16, 2008

Filed under: Personal 51 comments

If I seem uncharacteristically curt in the comments lately, it’s because I’ve read a generous surplus of comments along the lines of “STFU n00berz” from other people’s defective subliterate brats, and that sort of thing takes its toll on your patience. As always, I delete the pure ankle-biting insults on my own blog, which keeps things civil but also might make my hostility seem incongruous.

To a certain extent I have to enjoy pissing off the opposition, or else advocating unconventional gameplay and opinions becomes too much dang work. Several times I’ve hesitated before posting something, thinking “Oh man, this is going to cause a pain-in-the-ass thread.” The only way to get on with this is to accept it and enjoy the fencing, pointless as it is. If I seem mean spirited, it’s because I’m dumping a lot of agitation into a post as a sort of catharsis. I’m going to continue to review WoW as I do all games, but given the popularity of the title I expect things will be a little more combative the usual. At any rate, I’ll try to have some other posts as well, to prevent this from becoming a WoWblog.

Okay. Enough of this emo crap. Onward.


From The Archives:

51 thoughts on “PvP Posting

  1. Bryan says:

    Such is the nature of the interwebs. It’s the good old anonymity = asshole formula.

    If you’re pissing off the morons, you’re doing something right.

  2. yd says:

    Bryan, the classic never really gets old – or less true, does it? http://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2004/03/19/

  3. Factoid says:

    Yeah I noticed the comment threads deteriorating a bit lately. Mostly things remain civl and well-spelled, but this is the internet after all. I’m sure all it takes is a mention on the WoW forums in a high-traffic thread to bring in the munchkins and ruin our fun.

    Personally these WoW posts and threads have been immensely helpful to me. I now know that I will NEVER play this game, whereas before I couldn’t quite be sure if I was missing something.

    Nothing to do with the nitpicks really, but seeing how defensive people are getting ABOUT the nitpicking has made me realize that WoW must have some dark and evil power. If it can take the normally insightful, well-spoken and thoughtful commenters on this site and turn them into flame-spewing vitriolic trolls, then it must be avoided at all costs.

  4. lebkin says:

    I echo Factoid’s comments about how helpful your posts about WoW (and games in general) are to me. The fact that you give us your completely honest opinion, regardless of the opposition, is why I come here every day to read what you write. Keep up the good work, and we’ll keep reading.

    Also, don’t take too many of the negative comments to heart. I think that anything negatively WoW related tends to attract supports from the far reaches the internet. I would imagine that most of the really bad comments are from outside your normal readership.

  5. balrog62 says:

    I have to agree with Factoid. I had a lot of friends and acquaintances get sucked into this game while “real life” kept me too busy and too poor to join in. Now I know that I’m not missing anything really. Best of luck to you and those that enjoy this game!

  6. Ian says:

    I pretty much agree with everyone above.

    It’s kind of sickening how people are such fanboys that they refuse to accept that WoW has *gasp* flaws. I recently signed up for the trial recently (thanks a lot, Shamus…thanks a lot ;)) and I’ve run into a number of exceedingly annoying issues just getting to level 9.

    The WoW fanboy syndrome reminds me very much of Apple fanboy syndrome. As with Apple, Blizzard can do no wrong. I don’t know how people can stand living with themselves when they worship companies like that.

  7. mark says:

    You might be missing something, but nothing that you can’t get in another MMO, perhaps you might want to try warhammer online (similar in theme to WoW, but a bit grittier and less cutesy) or champions online (successor to city of heroes, which i love) when they launch, as they’ll have plenty of people to group with and enjoy the social and group aspect of the MMO. Its hard to break into an MMO thats already established, and all your freinds that play have 70s already…

  8. Josh says:

    It’s funny how Maticus lists your nitpicks, and then with no rebuttal whatsoever… announces that s/he disagrees.

    How can a fanboy be so rabid and lazy at the same time?

  9. Tom says:

    You know how kids, mainly little boys, become fascinated with dinosaurs around age 7 or so? A psychologist will tell you that learning and mastering the arcane names and info about long-dead monsters gives the child an immense sense of accomplishment, especially if it’s something their parents don’t know anything about.

    Imagine if you came along and told that kid that you thought we should give dinosaurs more pronounceable and memorable names so more people would enjoy them. You might get called a booger-head :P

    I think there’s something similar going on with your upset WoW fans. They’ve mastered the hurdles and quirks. Removing said would make the game “too easy” in the sense that it would devalue the mastery they’ve already accomplished. So have a little sympathy.

    But not much. :)

  10. Ed says:

    @ Josh
    In a former career, I was a teacher in a public school. I may be able to offer some insight towards understanding the answer to your question.

    Keep up the literate and well written posts. I have no interest in WoW but I enjoy your style of writing enough to derive my 30 seconds of free enjoyment from them.

  11. Derek K says:

    As one of the local WoW defenders, I’m not offended at all. ;)

    I know what kind of vile vitrol you’re likely getting. As I mentioned elsewhere, I *can’t* read the official WoW forums. I come out of them feeling dirty, and honestly hating the game. I wonder what it was that I ever thought was good about it, and why I wasted so much time on it.

    Then I go and play, and remember that, oh yeah, it’s cause it’s fun. Those people are just idiots.

    Also, nerf frost shock.

    @Tom: Because you *would* be a booger-head. What, you’re gonna call Tyrannosaurus Rex “Bitey McBites Deadthings”? NOT COOL, MAN!

  12. fair_n_hite_451 says:

    Whenever I need a smile, I know I can come here and read intelligent posts & comments about games. And now, I’m getting double the pleasure by chuckling at the fanbois.


  13. Luke Maciak says:

    Shamus, I believe this is happening because you are getting linked on various more or less notable WoW related pages and blogs. So you get exposure to a much broader cross-section of the population. Your blog tends to attract certain type of readers – usually ones who post intelligent, and thoughtful comments. The websites you get linked from – not so much. So you are getting a massive influx of idiots from the other parts of the interwebs here.

    Also, the people who arrive here via these links see just the laundry list, and not the heaps of prise you already dumped on this game. So they go: ZOMG! DMOTR guy HAETS WoW!

    Most of these people won’t stick around for long so this situation should diffuse itself soon. :)

  14. Mari says:

    I can only imagine the kinds of crap you’re being dealt, Shamus. Keep fighting the good fight, though. For what it’s worth, you’re continuing to entertain and interest me despite the fact that I determined a couple of days ago that I’m really not interested in playing WoW, after having gotten interested by reading your posts.

  15. Huckleberry says:

    @ Tom: I think you’ve nailed it.


  16. Brian says:

    I’m a long time lurker and would just like to add my 2p worth. If it wasn’t for your comments on WoW, I wouldn’t have been interested in trying it for myself. So after 4 hours of trial and error I have my own private server set up with around 8 people playing. Job done. WoW but with no idiots. :-)

  17. I’ve been reading your blog since DMoTR. I’ve commented a few times but I’ve certainly had more to say since you’ve been writing about my favorite time sink. I’m actually rather surprised that you enjoy WoW at all. As for the nitpicks… meh, every game has its flaws. Its nice to see someone, you, stand up to point these flaws out and ask for something better. The idiots will be idiots, and if they don’t want a better game, thats their loss.

  18. Primogenitor says:

    Could someone not create a “stupidity-filter”? Along the same lines as a spam-filter, but selecting for terms such as n00bz, pw0nz, etc. Even with a “stupid folder” that such a program could “learn” as stupid for future comparisons. Sure, it suffers all the same problems as a spam filter (false-positives etc), but might be useful.

  19. wintermute says:

    Derek K:

    @Tom: Because you *would* be a booger-head. What, you're gonna call Tyrannosaurus Rex “Bitey McBites Deadthings”? NOT COOL, MAN!

    See, first it was Manospondylus gigas, and then Tyrannosaurus rex, and now it’s T. rex, in the public conciousness.

    Seriously, I’m not sure how much more simplified it can get. If you were to choose a less well-known species of dinosaur, you might have a point, though…

  20. Laura F says:

    Stay the course, Shamus. I enjoy reading your blog, no matter what you write about. I am only a very, VERY casual video gamer, yet I thoroughly enjoy every review you write.

    I’d like more DnD posts someday, though, since that’s my main interest at the moment. :) Not important. Write what you want to write about.

    Keep doing what you do.

  21. Nixorbo says:

    @Shamus: Stay the course. There is no greater calling than to torment barely literate fanboys. ::Salutes::

    @Derek K: “What, you're gonna call Tyrannosaurus Rex “Bitey McBites Deadthings”?” Actually …

  22. folo4 says:

    May these unfortunate turn of events will not see the return of the dreaded CAPTCHA!

    At any rate, I'll try to have some other posts as well, to prevent this from becoming a WoWblog.

    Shamus, did you get any other games during your month-long stint at World Of Warcraft?

  23. Divra says:

    Just wanted to tell you that I’m with you all the way, Shamus. Tell the subliterate brats the uncomfortable truth. Your regulars are here and cheering for you.

  24. Tom says:

    @Derek K “What, you're gonna call Tyrannosaurus Rex “Bitey McBites Deadthings”?”

    I was thinking “Bossy.”

  25. Alexis says:

    @Josh: it requires you to examine your own position and admit parts are wrong. No one likes admitting they’re wrong. It can take me an hour, even two, to unravel angry defensive thoughts enough to write a semicoherent comment.

    Both sides are being lazy and making sweeping generalisations, often on matters of which they have no personal experience. It wouldn’t be the internets otherwise. Cue Factoid…

    @Factoid: Dark, evil power? Like a tool of Satan? Or football? Any group of 10 million encompasses a wide spectrum of humanity, those who comment on blogs tend to be the more fervent. The link was widely broadcast and I’m sure there were comments from passing visitors.

    I met my friend L through the game. She’s a Norwegian schoolteacher, although she just took some maternity leave then went on holiday so I’ve barely seen her for a while. She’s off to China today, to adopt a child. My friend G also happens to be Norwegian, she’s visiting some Austrians we both raid with in Graz while attending a choral singing competition. My friend T quit the game a year ago because he wanted to spend more time with his girlfriend and work on souping up his Mini.

    I don’t think they comment on blogs. I don’t think they even read many blogs. They’re lovely people I’d never have otherwise met, who you will never meet because you’ve made a gross extrapolation.

    http://tinyurl.com/2cuxwn – did you mock him?

    Note I’m not advocating you try WoW. If you don’t think you’d enjoy it, that’s fine. Just… dark, evil power? Like srsly? One step more before I win by Godwin’s.

    [this comment probably took an hour and you can see how successful I’ve been at de-angrifying it :p ]

  26. James says:

    Why would you let stupid comments from stupid people bother you? At the very least, you should be happy that it is retards who disagree and not intelligent people.

    I love WoW and have for 3 years. I disagreed with a few of your points, or at least understood why some of the mechanics in place exist. It just didn’t seem to be worth arguing over since they largely fall into the realm of preference.

    I really hope you get into raiding. I’d love to hear your opinion on particularly hard boss encounters. they can be incredibly tough challenges in co-ordination and player skill. Given that we share the opinion that harder does not equal deeper, I’d like to see what you think.

  27. Alexis says:

    @James: seconded, I really pray Shamus lasts long enough to get into the raid game. I imagine he’ll have some choice words about trash respawns *snicker*

    I’d like him to tackle Netherspite particularly. It’s a fun fight and so incredibly artifical. Nothing maps to real world concepts, you either accept it for what it is or walk away.

    I believe Blizz intentionally varies the flavour of challenge between bosses. The spectrum is too rich to be mere chance. Vashj rewards more dynamic groups, Kael’thas those that can flawlessly execute a plan, Archi favours self-control, Patchwerk sheer numbers. I think one of the Naxx bosses, I never went, had a room with lots of different colours on the floor. TWISTER! Aka “lets see if you can all move independently while still dpsing/healing”.

    Damn I love raiding new bosses.

  28. DPhantom says:

    Background of my gaming habits:I mostly play FPS titles, but in WoW I RP because I don’t enjoy the number crunching necessary to be competitive.

    Actually, I’ve got to call the first shot in this against you Shamus. Let’s go back to your progammers at the beach story. It seemed to me that it was a pretty thinly veiled analogy that RPers make art(Buddha Sculpture), PvPers make junk(Useless pile of sand). *Anybody else get this? Maybe I’m seeing things* This was the first shot in the flame war, and completely discounts the time and effort some players put into maximizing their character.

    Shamus, as this site’s only article poster you need to be careful about the precedent of tone that you set.

  29. Insanodag says:

    I don’t usually comment on this blog, but I am an avid reader. Personally, I think it seems like this whole WoW Nitpick thing, was just a case of short attention spans by the more virulent commenters, who immediately responded to a perceived threat to their alpha-geek status by making sure that anyone who tried to devalue their particular 733t skill set would be shouted down.

    @DPhantom: I don’t think that the example used by Shamus was one of PVP vs RP. After all, from an RP point of view, a Night Elf seeing sentinels being slaughtered by a Horde Tauren should from a RP standpoint immediately attack the invader. I think the message could best be understood by referring to that other great Fear the Boot maxim: ‘Don’t be an @ss!’

  30. Derek K says:

    @Tom: Okay, forget T. Rex. Let’s talk about Raptors. ;)

    (That will tell us who the true dino-geeks are)

    @DPhantom: There is that sort of tone. It’s pretty clear from the analogy that Cliffy B is doing it wrong.

    And if this were a non-biased reviews site, I’d be pissed.

    But really, it’s this guy, that has enough time to write about stuff, that we (mostly ;) ) enjoy. So he can bias it however he wants.

    Note that several of the first posts basically said “Yeah, I’m Cliffy B, even with that.” ;)

    Besides – Will Wrights always think they’re the best and greatest, because they *make* stuff. Oooooers.

    From my PoV, Will is kind of an idiot. “Oh, no, let’s play volleyball, but we’ll both stand on the *same* side. Isn’t that revolutionary? Mmmm? Aren’t I clever?” (Insert Marvin the Martian voice as needed).

    If you say “Let’s play Volleyball” you play freakin’ volleyball. If you say “Hey, let’s see what kind of games we can make up on this volleyball court” that’s different. ;)

    It’s like he asked Cliffy to go to the beach and hang out, and then after 5 minutes, he wanders off to go play in the sand for hours. Some friend.

  31. Shamus says:

    folo4: Just picked up Assassin’s Creed. (PC) Other than that, nope. It’s been all World of WowCraft every night.

  32. Dev Null says:

    @mark: Don’t think I’d get too hyped up about Warhammer Online just yet – seeing as they’ve removed 3/4 of the planned content before release. Which is a shame, because everything I’ve heard about the bits they _have_ finished sounds pretty good, but its had the guts ripped out of it pretty badly…

  33. Shamus says:

    DPPhantom: Will and Cliffy were each portrayed as they are seen by the other side. Will was a dink who wanted to play scoreless volleyball. Each of them was trying to have the sort of fun they liked, which resulted in playing wrong. Everyone on the same side of the net is no longer volleyball. Full-contact sandcastle building is nuts. Neither of them understood each other.

    Which is exactly what’s been going on with MMO’s since the beginning. One side is trying to compete, and the other build, and each of them wants the game to suit their playstyle.

  34. Nixorbo says:

    @Dev: Cutting 4 classes of 24 and 4 capital cities of (couldn’t tell you) makes your exaggeration seem a little exaggerated.

  35. Davesnot says:

    This dinosaur thing is interesting.. actually, Tom.. I think the proper analogy would be.. Shamus is proposing to change the name of Bitey McBitesthings (flaws of WoW) and call it Tyranasaurus Rex (Wow fixed)…

    This is called learning from our mistakes.

  36. Justin says:

    Addressing the overall aggression: It’s your blog, man. The stuff I don’t want to read, I won’t. That said, I do enjoy your writing style, and even when I disagree (which isn’t particularly often), I can appreciate a well thought out counterpoint.

    Also: people who use n00b as an actual insult aren’t cool except with others of their ilk.

  37. SolkaTruesilver says:

    Cannon to right of him,
    Cannon to left of him,
    Cannon in front of him
    Volley’d and thunder’d;
    Storm’d at with shot and shell,
    Boldly he rode and well,
    Into the jaws of Death,
    Into the mouth of hell
    Rode Shamus Young, swell.

  38. khorboth says:

    OMG! teh n00bs should STFU!

    ur blog is teh roxxorsest and if they dont see it they should go back and hit things with sticks cause its all they evar be gud at!!!11!!1 any1 who says ur blog sux is the 1 who sux and must be gay!!!!11!!! u rite betters then teh 13yo n00bies evar will!!11!1

    (Yes, a little part of me died inside when I wrote that. It’s all for the sake of comedy, though, and if a single chortle is heard, I hold the price cheap.)

  39. Joshua says:

    I certainly chortled, khorboth.

    On-topic, I’m all for the slaughtering of trolls and fanboys, but seriously, WoW is getting old (for me, as a reader).

    I’m thinking, maybe, something else for a while? Like, a review of Assassin’s Creed, or Super Mario Bros, or something of that sort. Or other forms of hilarity and/or information/opinions.

  40. Eathanu says:

    Nothing but respect for you, man. I’m glad someone besides myself found that WoW was absolutely nothing like the perfect messiah sent directly from the heavens on a platinum chariot by God Blizzard himself that people seem to make it out to be. I played for about an hour, and that hour was more than enough of that.

    I’ll stick to Ragnarok.

  41. TickledBlue says:

    Don’t let it get to you Shamus. The fatal flaw with user generated content on the interwebs (including comments) is that less than 10% of the audience participate and those that do are generally those with a strong opinion one way or the other. So for every small minded, poorly thought out, accusatory post there’s another 9 people like myself who are just quitely nodding away to ourselves at your insightful point of view and entertaining writing style. Keep up the good work!

  42. NobleBear says:

    @ Shamus: I’ve enjoyed your game analysis a lot. I like hearing a break down of why something works or doesn’t.

    While I would hope you would leave up valid disagreements in the comments that also assumes you’ve received any recently. I fully support blasting bad comments like Crazy harry, that just sounds like good, cathartic fun.

    @ khorboth: I chuckled quite a bit.

    As for PvP, I find its easier ignore Will when he’s being lame than Cliffy when he’s being a jerk. The difference to me is that one is having their fun at my expense.

    I tend to view MMOs like a grade (primary) school playgrounds at recess. Lots of people playing around, some having fun running around, some choosing to make their own games, some playing on the jungle gym provided in the environment and so on. Then there are the bullies people who think its fun to horn in, beat up on you, take your toys and when you object, your told by these people that its your problem and then get more of the same.

    If having that view makes me too thin skinned, so be it.

  43. Factoid says:

    @Alexis: Ok, I went out of my way to avoid naming names when I wrote my post, but the fact that you’re getting SO defensive over a sarcastic remark speaks volumes about the accuracy of my comment.

    Do I honestly believe that WoW has dark and evil powers? Not so much. It was a joke, and I think you’re probably the only one who took it seriously.

    An hour writing a response to an obviously hyperbolous and sarcastic comment on another person’s blog? Sheesh…lighten up!

  44. Factoid says:

    @Mark: I might actually give Warhammer a try if they give it a two-week demo. The RvR premise is interesting to me.

    i’ve tried a couple MMOs and what you say is true…coming in too early or too late is often a deal-breaker for enjoyability. I came into UO years after launch and hated it. I went into the Eve Online beta and it was awful because the community was too small to get the economy working…and WoW is dangerous, life-destroying crack that will suck all the earth into a black hole, consuming all and bringing about the end-times.

    Aww crap, there I go with the hyperbole again. ;)

  45. andy says:

    Woot! Another message of support for Shamus, I always enjoy your posts. For the record, I think I am a ‘Will’, but sometimes like to compete…

    And here is another pearl of wisdom from penny arcade:
    sure WoW != Xbox360
    But online, I think the principal is sound…

  46. Derek K>

    When I hear the word “raptor,” I get childhood flashbacks to my experiences watching the Jurassic Park on the VHS:

    “What part of Deinonychus do you people not understand?”

  47. The Lone Duck says:

    This is the only forum I consistently post on, for the reason Shamus states. (I also occasionally post on kotaku.) Simply saying that stupid people are stupid seems like a waste of time. While it can be fun to poke a stick into an ant hill, what do you gain from it?
    Our opinions are judged by our conduct. If I enjoy PvP, and explain why in a rational way, that reflects on the PvP community. If I enjoy PvP, and say STFU to any “n00b” who denounces it, that also reflects on the community. As it stands, most of the community consists of social cripples who take pride in poor spelling. What can you do? After all, stupid people are everywhere, driving cars, watching sports, discussing politics. The words may be different, but the thoughtless disregard for understading is the same.
    When you stare in the abyss, the abyss stares into you. Careful Shamus.

  48. Jeff says:

    As for PvP, I find its easier ignore Will when he's being lame than Cliffy when he's being a jerk. The difference to me is that one is having their fun at my expense.
    This is true. It’s easier to ignore something talking faux-Shakespearian and staying out of combat because “his character wouldn’t do that” than someone trying to cave your skull in with an axe. While you’re busy saying “thou” and “thee”. ;P

  49. Kevin says:

    Hey, thanks for saying so. I appreciate you taking the time to address it. Upward and onward!

  50. hotsauce says:

    Regarding nuking idiotic comments, it might be amusing (albeit difficult from your end Shamus) if, instead of deleting them, they were sent to a “dungeon” where the rest of us could point and laugh (but not post replies; don’t feed the animals). It would be like a zoo. “And this, children, is the rare ‘you’ve-defeated-my-argument-using-
    accuse-you-of-stupidity’ breed of troll.”

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