About me

I play a paladin. These are my ramblings about what's going on with my character Denethal in the game.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Constructive feedback or flinging knowledgable insults and hoping they will stick?

Many of you have probably been the victim of todays topic.

"Knowledge is power. Educate yourself" is an expression I'm found of. But if you already got knowledge about a topic and someone tells you out of the blue that your knowledge is wrong, without any proper explanation, what would you do?

A game is often not just straight forward; atleast not the mmo's we're playing. We got a variety of different races, classes, roles, gear and even playstyle. Even chess contains nuances of how to play the game. And most of the time, there will always be those who are more knowledgable than you are about something. Even if they are wrong about things.

Todays post over at Gevlon's, more notable the moron of the day part at the bottom of his post, illustrates this quite good. We have someone that apparently knows about how the warrior class functions and that player is telling the one who doesn't know, to use an ability, in this case to apply Sunder Armor to the target.

Seems like a straight forward and easy to understand message, doesn't it? Except that when you look at the description of Sunder Armor, you can and should easily understand why the player does not apply that debuff.

"Sunders the target's armor, reducing it by 4% per Sunder Armor and causes a high amount of threat. Threat increased by attack power. Can be applied up to 5 times. Lasts 30 sec. "

Ok, so it will reduce the targets armor by 20% with all 5 stacks up and running. But the underlined section would have put me off using it. And infact it have done so on my warrior that I'm leveling. And while I'm leveling, I'm not going to use it much, except when doing quests solo. Purely by the fact that most tanks I've come across can hardly keep the mobs on themselves when I get into the fight, due to heavy aoe. That, and fights not lasting long enough to get a full stack of sunders up anyway.

It's a tank ability, pure and simple. Nothing indicates anything else while you are leveling.

So let us go back to the message to the warrior. How would you have reacted when told something so blatantly stupid (to you,) as to apply a high-threat ability? With no explanation given? It's like telling a retribution paladin to buff himself with righteous fury. It has GOT to be a joke. A bad one as such.

The message received was a direct insult towards the warriors knowledge of his own class. An insult that the player sending the message apparently hoped would replace the warriors knowledge of his class with this newfound and enlightening message. What the warrior probably thought was that this player wants me to commit suicide.

This is an example of how people look upon themselves as superior over other players. This knowledge should be basic knowledge and you can't be arsed to explain why. Only problem is that it's not constructive feedback, it's simple flinging of monkey poop.

I'm not saying you shouldn't feel superior in knowledge over other players if you infact are, but if you can not project your knowledge in an understandable manner, then your knowledge is useless for other people. It's only usable by you and despite how much knowledge you got, you'll only be portraying yourself as an asshole or idiot.

The bi-effect of giving away knowledge in an insulting way like that, is that the receiver gets mighty defensive. And don't deny it, you would too. Atleast until you've been explained why you should do something in a spesific way.

Does this mean you should not give of your fountain of knowledge? Not at all. There's such a thing called "Constructive feedback". I made a post a while ago which will show you the difference. If you're going to give someone some advice, you should do so in a manner that they will understand the differences between what you're telling them to do and what they are doing.


  1. He did not mention high threat. He just said he is not tank. He had no idea what's going on, so there was no field to start an explanation. You cannot salvage such idiot.

  2. Is it that simple, Gevlon? He did mention that he's not a tank, so clearly, he's thinking of the "high threat" part of the ability itself.

    The message he received is all too easy to perceive as an asshole whispering you some random crap that will only get you killed.

    If the 2nd response had been "Don't worry about the threat, it's not an issue" or something like that, it would have taught him something instead of just adding to insult or "joke on him".

    While we both probably agree on that he should have gone read up on how to raid as a warrior, it's not something everyone does. Many prefer to figure out stuff on their own or simply to ask in the game.

    I'd say both the person who told him to use sunder armor without giving any explanation as to why and the warrior are both slackers and even perhaps morons.

  3. I am not 100% sure, but it's very possible that mr.moron doesn't care about sunder threat at all, he just resents doing anything beyond 3-button fury rotation.
    By the way, any fury skill is making more threat than Sunder Armor. Sunder Armor only has built-in fixed threat (450 points if I remember right), as it doesn't do any damage. Any of 3 fury skills strike for 8+k damage these days, and with 30% reduction (20% from being in berserker stance and 10% from talent) this translates into 5.6+k threat apiece.

  4. To be honest, I found it pretty clear that he considered Sunder Armor a pure tank-ability with his response.

    After all, there is nothing while leveling that indicates anything else.

    On a sidenote: I looked the warrior up on wowarmory.com and yes, he is indeed a moron. He should know better. :)

  5. Just because an ability tooltip mentions high threat does not mean the ability is tank only. Heroic Strike is also a "high amount of threat" ability, according to its tooltip. It is used by all warriors as a rage dump, both while leveling and in instanced content. Warlocks have an ability with a similar tooltip, though they do not have the option to queue as a tank and, in general, make poor tanks.