Let’s play a quick game I’m going to call “What’s the MMO protocol?” I’m going to describe a situation and let you vote on what should be the protocol to follow.
So last night I queue up for a random dungeon in RIFT, and quickly get placed into one as damage (in RIFT, of course, you can swap between roles, and I have DPS, heals, and support on deck). When it puts me into the dungeon, I see that my party is very far away and most of the dungeon is cleared. To me, this isn’t a good sign, because it usually means that someone quit or was kicked.
Whatever. I run all the way to the end, where the party is about to tackle the last boss. On the way, two of the members are ripping into our support person, telling him that he should be using such-and-such skill with that build and why wasn’t he and did he kill puppies as a hobby you heartless monster? Another not great sign. Silently, I dare them to say something, anything about me.
We head into the boss battle, take him down, and a mace drops with nice stats for Clerics. There are three Clerics in the group, myself included. It’s an upgrade to us all.
So what’s the protocol on rolls?
Did you vote? I’m honestly curious. I rolled on the mace, of course, and won it. That really cheesed one of the guys off, who went on a long rant that I shouldn’t have done that because Mr. Tanky wanted it more and I had just joined.
My thought was, so what? They needed me for the fight, I filled a position, and I earned a shot at it. I didn’t ninja it. It’s not my fault if the dungeon was cleared already. And while I do try to exist peacefully with other players, I’m not going to roll over for a bunch of angry puggers.
It just made me think about how players have all these unwritten protocols that they assume everyone should follow, and how none of those rules are the same.