What is the value of normal players? (rant)

I’d love to put some “uber-hardcore-1337” gamers into an exam and give them an essay topic:

Players that are not hardcore still add value to Warcraft. Discuss.

Most would not even get into the room, and those that did might suffer under the tyranny of pen and paper. 🙂 There is no way you’d give them a computer, as they’d just start logging in, or trolling the forums about it. But in all seriousness, the opinion and total subjectivity of what is normal performance, and who should get access to what content keeps coming up. The 3.2 token drop change only fueled the fire.

We’ve (the work wow’ers) chatted about this a while back at lunch, and they noted I’ve made some pretty extreme statements around performance expected from fellow guild-mates and other players, and I’ve sworn out loud many times when confronted by somebody that does not meet my standards. Shamefully. And then I probably don’t meet the standards of hardcore either. Probably the hardcore players would find my Priest a joke, and be hard on Mortigen’s progression. I’d be a token screen breather, and relegated to farming silver in the backwaters of Arathi Highlands.

From now onward (or until the next ass-hat drooler pug wipes us on simple trash in VH) I’ll try to ponder and absorb some thoughts on Normal players. And lets call them normal players, as calling them casual might be implying that they don’t really care or commit to gaming seriously.

So a few mantras and thought that I’ll keep foremost in my mind about normal players:

  • a normal player is an ok thing (repeat this while doing circular breathing)
  • they are more tolerant of the mistakes of others (in other words cool and relaxed)
  • they might make a few mistakes themselves (still learning or juggling RL too)
  • they are not elitist jerks, and might still have an interest in improving their game play
  • they are willing to sacrifice being on the cutting edge of content in favour of other life choices

Lastly why do I like them so much? Because I am one.

My real life takes precedence over WoW regularly. I kind of like the fact that I can geek it up and still have social skills, a full time job, and a solid relationship. But damn me, I really love WoW too. Death Knights are 100% solid fun (please don’t roll one, we’re full), and the small percentage of things that Warcraft does not do right is totally blown away by what it does right. Especially so for normal players.

So beyond proping up the financial side of WoW, and providing an ongoing whipping boy for hardcores, what do they provide to you?

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