Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Tanking the weekend

Welcome back from your long weekend.

Those of you who had a long weekend.

And those of your who are coming back to...something.

Umm...hi again.

So anyway. I actually didn't WoW as much over the weekend as I usually do. Had a lot of other stuff going on. Most of what time I did spend in-game was spent working on my Gnome Warrior, steadily tanking my way through dungeons and leveling her towards the cap.

Friday afternoon into Saturday evening I pretty much flew through the levels. I went from 13 to 35 in that span, even after taking most of Saturday afternoon off to watch the second and third Pirates of the Caribbean flicks. Most dungeons yielded a level, if not two. Most of the groups I ran with were pleasant, if not entirely experienced. It was smooth sailing all the way through. For the most part, I was having fun. And even when I wasn't, I was at least getting rewarded enough to make it bearable.

Starting Sunday morning, things changed. I don't know if it's because it was starting to get a little repetitive, because I was starting to get into dungeons that I was totally unfamiliar with, because people were just set in their bad habits, because all the pleasant folks were spending time being with other people instead of playing WoW, or just coincidence.

Around that time I started ending up in Scarlet Monastery and Maraudon a lot. SM has always been very compartmentalized and Maraudon has become so segmented from it's "winginization" that any one section is over in a blink. That, combined with the climb in experience needed to level slowed down the dings a lot.

And it seemed like every group I got in was just cranky and impersonal. Every time I enter a dungeon, the first thing I do is greet everyone. Usually short and simple. "Hey," or "hey, all." In the earlier dungeons I got responses and sometimes we'd even banter and converse through the dungeon.

In the later ones, by the time I'd finished typing, the DPS has generally already pulled for me. No one would respond at all and the whole run would be done in silence.

Mages and Hunters seem to be the most impatient. Probably because they have ways of saving themselves when they pull and I choose not to pick up the mobs. As soon as that whole pack starts going for my healer, I grab them.

In one SM:Armory run, every time I pulled the Hunter would run ahead, pull the next 2 or 3 groups, bring them all back towards us and Feign Death.

I had a Scholomance run where a Warlock declared he was able to tank. He was booted after causing two wipes (only instance so far where there's been wipes) and killing himself three additional times.

Generally every run includes at least one person that refuses to attack my target, if not all the DPS. Ferals, I'm sad to say, seem to be the worst offenders in this regard.

I can see now why when people start hitting current-expansion dungeons, they have unrealistic expectations of how they should be run and are general poor performers. I don't want to go so far as to say the low-level dungeons encourage bad play...but they certainly don't punish it.

So far I haven't been called a bad tank (probably because I'm not) or had any real negativity directed at me (because I just do my job and wait for the run to end when it gets unpleasant). But the whole experience has become decidedly unfun and I just haven't had the motivation to queue.

Between Sunday and Monday, I only gained another 8 levels. Granted, given the amount of time I actually spent playing those two days, that's still not bad at all. And 30 cumulative levels over a 72 hour span isn't too shabby given that I pretty much only played mornings and/or nights over most of those three days...nothing in the afternoons.

I think I'm going to give it a solid rest for a few days and then make a push to get to Outland. If it gets better, awesome. If not, I may forgo the whole level-by-tanking-dungeons thing and fall back on questing. Not that I'm excited about the prospect of questing Outland and Northrend again, but at least I won't have other people ruining that for me.
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