The Benefit of Death
I get asked all the time about different aspects of the warg. People wonder how they should trait or if a skill is worth using or whether a particular buff is worth buying. All these questions are actually different ways of asking a very fundamental question: how can I be a better warg? It’s a simple enough question and there is an equally simple answer to go with it…
Ok so I am sounding a bit zen like so let me explain.
Enter the Gods
You are probably wondering why I recommend that you allow yourself to die. After all isn’t the idea to kill the other guy? Haven’t I banged on about how you should always try and escape? Well yes, on both counts. However, dying serves a very useful purpose for us wargs … it teaches us humility.
Consider that freep for a moment. You know the one, every server has him. He’s the Burger who doesn’t venture outside Glan Vraig without a full array of survival/escape skills ready to activate. He’s the Champion who pops Sprint if you so much as brush up against him. He’s the Hunter who hits DF if you so much as look at him the wrong way. He’s the Black Arrow who will happily pew pew from a distance, but turns and runs without helping if you are attacked. He’s the Guardian who pops Pledge if you happen to bump into him. In short he’s what is commonly referred to as a ‘star hugger’.
It’s not just about protecting a big fat rating though, although that is part of why these people play the way they do. No, it goes deeper than that. For a long time the freeps have been as gods in the Ettenmoors. The original design of PvMP was that a creep was not the equal of a freep and that is still in evidence today even as we slowly move towards a situation where a creep is the equal of a freep. Because of that long disparity in power many freeps have become used to being the dominant force in an engagement. For those people having their toon die is not just a defeat, an unlucky encounter, or a case of que sera. No, it is taken more personally, it is taken as a sign that they are a poor player and have failed.
It isn’t just a game for those people. They play it safe to avoid death because death equals personal failure for them. They make it personal and come to believe that not dying is just as important and, for them, fun, as actually PvPing and killing their opponents. In other words they start to believe their own bullshit.
Contrast that with the player who seizes every opportunity. The player who takes the risk and goes for the kill. The player who stops to help someone being ganked. The player who charges back into the fight even though his ‘big skills’ are on cooldown. It’s not so much that these players don’t encounter the bullshit, it’s more that they don’t actually give a shit. They want to play the game and that is what it is for them: a game!
Dying regularly reminds you that there is always someone out there who can beat you. It makes you realise that what is important is playing the game and having fun, not trying to hide in a corner in case someone bruises your ego. A death every now and again gives you a taste of humble pie and the more you eat the more you stop caring. It isn’t a personal thing then, it’s just something that happens and that frees you up to focus on the part that is important: the fun.
I’m not suggesting that you go out of your way to get your toon killed, more that when you know you can’t win you fight to your last breath and accept your defeat with good grace. A click of a button later and you are back in the fight. Don’t be one of those players who desperately clings to a high rating as if it actually mattered. If you earned that rating by actually going out and slogging for it then great. If you got it by leeching off the efforts of others or running like a little girl then it really means nothing for you, it’s like a beggar wearing a rich man’s clothes.
We’re a sneaky class. We creep around in the shadows and we pick off the weak. We use underhanded tactics. We frustrate our enemies. We often escape from a fight if we know we can’t win. In short we are cowards. We might be cowards, but we don’t have to be pussies.
Remember the motto: You are a warg. You are awesome. Your brothers are wargs. They are awesome. Act like it.