Tagra’s Tactics pt.5 – Respect and Negativity

Guest Post

Respect your Fellow Raiders.

This is a much bigger category than you might think at first glance. I don’t just mean like “Don’t make racist jokes because one of them might be that race!”, or “Don’t insult someone because they had a brain fart and died to something dumb this time.”

I mean recognize the fact that there are 24 other live (with or without lives…) people in the raid with you. You are not better than them. Your time is not worth more than theirs. It also means that it is not ok to tab out or go afk after every fucking pull, or god forbid after a wipe while you lie there waiting for everyone to run back and rez your lazy ass, because you are wasting the time of 24 other people. And it also means that it is not okay for you to watch TV while putting in minimal effort while everyone else is doing their best on an encounter.

I hope anyone leading a raid is aware enough to recognize disrespectful assholes and kick them out on their ass.

And a very important one for me…

Don’t be Negative.

I zoned into the battlegrounds the other day, and before the gates had even opened, a very familiar scene played out for me:

Newbie: Hey guys I’ve never been here before, what do we do?
Asshat: Lose.

Asshat has a lot to do with what is wrong with shitty raids. Let me explain!

The above is a battleground example, and the anonymous and random environment of BGs is basically a perfect storm with disastrous results, so it’s a great place to observe it, but if you think about it, you can see it applies to PvE raids as well.

Being negative lowers your morale and self-efficacy.  Being openly (raid chat…) negative lowers the morale of the entire raid.   If a persons self-efficacy is low, they are less likely to put effort into their actions, because they feel (consciously or unconsciously) that their efforts aren’t going to make a difference anyway.   If they stop putting in effort, then we are more likely to fail, which just confirms their beliefs… but had everyone in the raid put out 100%, maybe we would have succeeded.

The reason it bothers me so much is I had a lot of trouble with this back in the BWL days, back when consumables were a pain in the ass to collect and carry around and gold was hard to get and you needed to drink 20 different fucking potions every single wipe because there were no flasks that persisted through death.  Yeah it was a bitch and I can understand why people would try to sneak under the radar when we tried to enforce them.   What pissed me off was how when they were called out on it, they’d go “We weren’t going to win anyway, I didn’t want to waste them.”

Do you know how many times we called raids early because it seemed like we weren’t really getting close to killing the boss, but half the raid wasn’t using consumables (or putting in effort…) so we didn’t really have an accurate benchmark on how we could have done?   Do you know how many 1% wipes we had when there were negative cheapskates not using consumables?  1% worth of boss-killing consumables?   No, we didn’t win.   But we could have, you asshole.

And then the best part, my absolute favorite part… was when we did kill the boss and they were all “oh wow I didn’t think we could do it.”   What the fuck is that?  Not only are you negative before we start but you’re negative after we win?  No wonder we were plagued by shitty attitudes.

Positive results from shitty negative comments like those: … well if the raid really truly sucks, then it might end early!
Negative results: Everyone in the raid is more likely to put in less effort as they come to believe we are never going to win. Thanks for your contribution!

It’s tricky because a lot of times people make jokes (I know I’ve made several jokes about our impending horrible demise…) that they might not even realize are negative, but it can set a negative tone for everyone and take a lot of steam out of our momentum as everyone comes to think “well, we’re not going to win on this attempt either, so…”

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