I hope everyone is enjoying their time in Eorzea, now that we get to be here on a regular basis! We are nearing a month now, since the game launched, and I have to admit, I’ve been far more focused on playing lately than doing any writing, so I’ve been falling behind on this series a bit.
Because of the large amounts of people in game, now is the time when our actions and attitudes define who we are as an overall community. Its very important that we get this right in order to promote the kind of community that we all would like to be a part of. This may require that you adjust your perspective a little, get creative and focus a little outside of our own norms.
We all get out of this adventure what we ourselves put into it. Never forget that.
Today’s building block to create a positive community is simple communication!
Occasionally I find that the most vocal of complainers, seem to suffer from a bit of a logic failure. This past week, I overheard a conversation in chat where someone was complaining publicly about their party members in one of the later dungeons.
They went on, and on, and on. All about how “this person” wasn’t doing “this” and “that person” was standing in the wrong place, and how stupid their party was.
When I hear that kind of talk, I generally always pose them a simple question….
“Was the mechanics explained at the beginning of the fight? Did you tell people what they should expect or what they should watch out for?”
The most annoying answer I receive:
“No.. they should know, they should have looked it up by now…”
This generally initiates a private behind the screen eye roll on my part. Personally, I really dislike playing with people who have this attitude. That is not the response of someone who actually participates in a party with the intent of working together to achieve anything.
Maybe its because I enjoy the actual social aspect of an MMO, but I like working out challenges WITH my team members. My best memories have never been when we’ve waltzed in, gotten loot, and waltzed out, but rather when we’ve had to collectively work together and “try” as a team to accomplish something. This might mean time spent in failed attempts, but it really is so much more satisfying to work things out with your party. We communicate, figure out holes in our strategy, and adjust to fill them together and try again. This may mean you end up doing something a little out of the ordinary, but that is part of the fun involved in rising to the challenge.
Personally I see the “they should already know” attitude as a major personal downfall in a party member. These people don’t typically participate as “party members”, but rather as barely present automatons just carrying out “X” motion at “Y” time. These same people are typically totally oblivious to the fact that no matter how “good” they perceive themselves at being at their respective job, that “them being good” isn’t actually the challenge that is presented before them. The actual challenge is successfully working as a team member, and they themselves fail in that regards.
Good party members put in effort to support the party they are currently in. Part of that support means you may have to actually “work together” through adjusting plans and sharing knowledge with other party members. To be effective you need to communicate and have an agreed strategy. If you “can’t be bothered” to share your experience with your party members, then you aren’t facilitating success. Its a little crazy to not support a successful run, yet expect one.
Einstein once said that a sure sign of insanity is “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”. If you keep having issues with pick up groups, or even LS / FC groups.. then maybe its time to look at what the consistent ingredient has been. Is there clear communication going on? If not, then can’t you initiate it?
Upon failure, if there is never that inkling to even consider the part you yourself played in that failure, then you are a weak link. Sitting there subjecting others to complaints about “how bad this healer/tank/DD is” is the easy way out. Often times, it doesn’t really make others look bad, it makes you look bad, and people do remember your critical comments.
If YOU are a party member worth any grain of salt, the question shouldn’t be “who” is “failing” but “what” is leading up to it, and “why” it is happening. Is everyone even on the same page as far as understanding the strategy? For that matter they even reading the same “strategy book”?
Wither you want to believe it or not, there are very different strategies out there for the same fights. Not everyone looks up everything. Even when they do, the fact remains that people have been successful doing very different things. It might be that some always take out adds first, while others ignore adds. Some position things differently. Some have the opinion that you must take 3 tanks in order to survive, while others can have 1 tank and be just as successful if not more.
If no one speaks, people will just go with what they know, instead of what the agreed strategy is for “this team”. This is the leading cause of tension, and frustration in party groups. A simple lack of communication.
So next time, before subjecting your poor party members / LS/FC/voice chat mates to your annoying rants on how “crappy” of a party you found. Maybe put that pointer finger away, and actually fill the roll of a team member to your party at hand. Communicate and at the very least make sure that people are aware of the strategy and mechanics.
In general your ability to overcome a challenge has far more to do with your own adaptability and synergy with the current party you are in. Personally I’ve done fights with a certain strategy that worked well with one group, but miserably failed with another group. It became clear we’d need to adjust and try a different tactic in order to be successful, and then things were fine.
Different parties have different strengths and weaknesses, no two parties are the same despite their makeup, because people are different and they play differently.
This doesn’t have to be a negative thing. A team can only be as strong as its weakest link. While some may disagree, the weakest link is generally not the team member that isn’t familiar, but rather the team member who has forgotten how to be an actual “team player” and help support their group.
It is possible, Its always better when we actually actively participate in being a team member.
Communication is key!