Tuesday, February 5, 2008

053: Oh dear

Back in late summer one of my best friends decided she wanted to try this WoW thing. I lent her my old vanilla-WoW guidebook and explained at length about the different classes, races, specs, etc. I instructed her to try leveling at least a couple different class/race combos to level 10 so she'd get a better feel of the differences, and then focus on whichever she liked best. I walked her through the first five levels on a human warrior and a night elf priest, stressed the importance of repairing continously and taught her the gear basics. Then her trial ran out. Life was busy so she didn't come back to WoW again for some time, though I'd ask her every now and then if she was planning on returning.

Christmas arrives. Said friend is very pregnant and can't move around too much so her boyfriend gets her, among other things, a pre-paid card. Unfortunatly this was around the same time my attunement took place and I began hardcore raiding so I wasn't able to play alongside her anymore. We kept in touch through whispers though, and I answered various questions as the weeks went by. She crawled her way through the levels slowly but surely and I was happy to see her ding 20 on her priest last week.

Yesterday we had an off-day from raiding and out of the blue she whispers me and asks if I'm busy. For once I'm not, so I send my baby hunter over to Ashenvale so we can quest together. As I arrive I inspect her of course, and I am horrified at what I see. The poor thing has no clue, of course, and how is she supposed to, really? It's not like this game is easy - we've all been there at some point.

She's weating about 3 greens, all below her level, a pair of blue gloves from Deadmines and the rest are vendor-whites. She's very proud that she's bought all new items from the vendor recently. Oh, and she's disc-specced, with 5/5 in both the first talents.


I tell her to not move an inch and send out a distress call to my friends. 2 minutes later she's safely tucked away in my old guild and I've hopped on my baby rogue to summon her to Westfall. Mr Rogue, he of level 70, runs us through Deadmines. It's slow moving, as I explain with each drop whether she can us it or not and wether the stats are any good for her. I should have made her write it down. The mysteries of the need/greed system are unravelled for her, bit by bit. She explains that last time she was there she had no idea what was going on, at all. She'd been whispered by some random person, invited into the PUG and summoned. She had no idea where she was, or what to do. She was the healer in the group and she knew how to heal, but nobody took the time to explain anything to her. At all. By the time they reach the Goblin Foundry they tell her she's useless and kick her from the group.

My very pregnant, very homronal friend had a little cry over that one. Oh the poor thing. I felt so ashamed that I hadn't had the time to babysit her little character more and teach her the ropes.

After the boost was over I took her to Stormwind, made sure she got the flight paths and then had her respec Shadow. I told her where to put her points and showed her how Mind Flay works. She was most impresssed and declared it her new favorite spell, as it 'looks much cooler than Mind Blast'. Then she had to go. I picked up some items off the AH and mailed them to her with strict instructions to swap them out with her last remaining whites.

It's nostalgic, as I said to Mr Rogue during the DM run. We've all been there, but how much do we really remember? I can vaguely recollect not being able to figure out how to swim underneath the water surface for the life of me, until I finally asked a friend around level 30 or so. There was also something about not being able to locate a cooking trainer even though the guard insisted that he was in that building. Nobody told me there was a back room! I'm sure there were a million other little things that I didn't understand or did wrong, too, but they've all faded with time.

A part of me is envious as everything is new and exciting to her. When was the last time I discovered something new in WoW, after all? I bet she wishes she knew her way around already though. At least she's got my old guild now.


BigBearButt said...

Oh, I've been there! I feel so bad too, that is horrible, to find out that someone you introduced to the game is hurting from not knowing how to get their chracter running smooth.

My wife started playing relatively recently, so I've seen it first hand and up close. :)

Good for you for taking her under your wing and helping her have more fun!

/emofire said...

Oh god, I remember when I didn't know how to get under the water.

I also remember grinding mobs to get enough gold so I could buy new gear from the vendor each level too.

For the times when I've tried to introduce someone to the game I try to explain all that I can but often times I worry that I'm shoving too much information at them and they're just boggled and never going to remember it.

That was really sweet of you and your guildies! Hope she sticks around.

DPSMewMew said...

The water thing was a mystery to me as well! Sometimes it would happen and I'd be underwater and swimming and very excited but it'd always be accidental.. I couldn't figure out how to do it on my own! I was also around 30 when I finally did.

yunk said...

I remember buying all white gear, and not even having a helmet.
Yeah without anyone to tell you it is hard, I got lucky a few times pugging and people explained things. Back then at least there were a lot of new players and you could ask in general and get help. Now if you ask in general you get laughed at, or worse no one is even in the zone to help. There's a guild on Kirin Tor.. forget the name starts with T, but that's mainly what they do: hang out in starting zones and help new players.

Some of the best moments in the game are when you help someone, I remember reading a story by this guy who helped someone. Later he got a mail in game from the other character's father, about how the kid was about 8-10, and about to quit because everyone was mean to him, and just this one experience of meeting a nice person really turned it all around for him.

In my LOTRO guild whenever someone reaches a level where they can get the next tier of crafted gear someone yells "makeover!" in chat and everyone drops what they're doing to craft them a new suit of armor and weapons. ("blue" for their level in Wow terms).

HolyWarrior said...

I also remember not being able to get under the water.

I also leveled my paladin to 60 as Holy thinking I was there to DPS and healing was an off-talent!

Vendors must have loved me too!

And I was a "keyboard turner" and a "clicker" for an embaressingly long time (read: level 60s)

To my credit though I did master macros very early and made some very annoying healing macro's that annoyed people lots :P

Tsukikoh said...

So nice of you to help her out like that. ^-^

I do remember being there, it wasn't even that long ago. I spent way to much time running around without even knowing how to talk to people on channels until someone showed me.

And now I'm helping a friend start the game. I think he's picking it up faster than I did. ^-^

Alex - aka Firelight said...

/blush mode on

When i started leveling my paladin i didnt realise there was anything else than the Holy Tree to spend talent points in!! >.<

1-60 was Holy! Then i started raiding!

Anonymous said...

Those were the days... I don't think I even understood that you could Buy useful stuff from the AH untill about level 20 too - and lol @/emofire I drowned the first time I went in the water.. ( it was funny looking at all the other bodies floating in the water in the start up area.. I had to 'practise' swimming

Marcela said...

I was the biggest noob for the longest time. I had never played a game of any kind ever, so I really was starting from scratch. I didn't have anyone to show me the ropes, so I know I was just like her, walking around in whites and maybe a green or two. I don't even think that I knew what talent points were until level 20. Flights paths. Continents. There's so much more, haha.

Pummra said...

I kinda miss those days when I was totally clueless, when every waterfall was worth exploring, when every little cave was an adventure. Oh well, back to Kara. :)