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The Pub at MMORPG.COM  » How do you quantify PVP skill?

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  HabitualFrogStomp

Hard Core Member

Joined: 3/04/13
Posts: 172

 
OP  3/04/13 6:46:57 PM#1

In these games where mashing 3 keys in succession rapidly is somehow deemed a skill, its hard to put a finger on why some people excell at it and some people are hopelessly bad no matter how much they play. Underneath all the forum drama that many of us love to read, or even partake in, there is a obscure fascinating battle between two people or two groups of people, but how does one really determine the winner and loser of such a trivial contest? Of course the answer is going to vary from game to game, but I am purposefully ignoring that obvious fact for this topic because I believe it all comes down to one simple and largely intangible trait. 

 

We can talk about gear, class choice, and game mechanic knowledge, and thats all very relevent. But there are always exceptions to this rule, theres always going to be one guy who plays one of the worst classes, doesnt have an endless reseviour of knowledge to tap into, and doesnt have access to all the highend gear, who will stomp your face over and over again. Its happend to everyone, and its going to happen again and again pretty much regardless of the game.

 

Im a huge fan of the NFL, and I think there is a comparisson that can be drawn here, as funny as that is. Professional football is a brutal struggle, and theres just some that simply strive on that struggle and those who fold like a lawn chair. For every Tom Brady, Joe Montana, and Terry Bradshaw there are 100's of Kevin Kolbs, Rob Johnsons, and Curtis Painters. Now the latter are all mechanically sound quarterbacks, they all have tools that should in theory allow them to achieve arguably as much in the game. To even reach this level you have to put in an incredible amount of work, and its a rarity when work ethic is the failing of a profesional football player (Hello JaMarcus Russell). But what really makes the Brady's and Montana's of the world better? They hate to lose, its a gut wrenching feeling that they will carry with them for the better part of their adult lives.  

 

Its simple will, to know in your mind that you will win, you will do whatever it takes to win, that you will destroy the other guy, thats what it takes. And suprisingly so many of us just arent born with that. You DO have to be an asshole to be any measure of champion. Michael Jordan, huge asshole. And arguably greatest competitor any of us will ever see, maybe even our children will ever see. This guy would develop close friendships with rivals like Patrick Ewing and then take them apart when it was game time, he manipulated it and used it to his advantage. 

 

Its this trait that alienates the l33t speaking PVPer from his peers that makes him such a success at ruining your play time, he's a bigger asshole than you, and he's going to win, and you're going to hate him for it. If MMORPG's were entertaining for other people to watch, and they wanted to see it, these guys would be your superstars, these would be who everyone wants to see. Not some dude decorating his house, or grinding mobs to get that +5 ring.

 

And all of us do want to see it, thats why were here. I think this is the very basis of MMO's to begin with.  At least it was at the core of where they started from before they evolved into something else.

 

  Homitu

Hard Core Member

Joined: 10/01/09
Posts: 2004

3/04/13 7:01:58 PM#2

 

"Being an asshole" as the elusive intangible that truly makes the greatest comeptitors of all time is easily disproved as soon as you identify players/athletes who are at the top of the game and decidedly *not* assholes.  To stick with football, Petyon Manning.  Not an asshole.  (I love that you brought Curtis Painter into the conversation of all people btw.)  Larry Fitzgerald.  Not an asshole.  Kurt Warner.  Definitely not an asshole.  You can totally be a superstar gamer and not be an asshole.  You'll also find asshole players and gamers at the very bottom of the barrel.  

I think attitude can certainly affect performance.  That goes without saying.  But different players function differently in different mindsets.  I wouldn't suddenly become a League of Legends challenger, for instance, if I started raging and being a dick to all my teammates every game.  

As for the question of the thread, how to *quantify* pvp skill, that's exactly what ladders do.  Play a large enough sample of games in whatever game, and you'll end up at the rank or ELO you belong in.  That number represents your skill relative to the rest of the community participating in the ladder.  

 

*editted to snip the needless quote.  I kept it up as a reference while I wrote my response. 

  rommello

Novice Member

Joined: 4/12/12
Posts: 204

hallo ~_~

3/04/13 7:10:52 PM#3

equalized gear pvp with balanced classes

whoever wins has more skill

games that dont do this are not about skill just nonsense

hallo ~_~

  Axehilt

Novice Member

Joined: 5/09/09
Posts: 7213

3/04/13 7:13:53 PM#4

Step 1. Put both combatants into a game about PVP skill.  (By definition this won't be an MMORPG.)

Step 2. Congratulate the victor.

Simple.

All that other garbage is just an extension of the fact that MMORPG PVP is diluted by many non-skill factors.  If you're interested in pure PVP skill, you play a pure PVP game.  Otherwise you just accept the fact that skill is diluted by non-skill factors like playtime and don't take it too seriously because you're not playing a serious PVP game.

  HabitualFrogStomp

Hard Core Member

Joined: 3/04/13
Posts: 172

 
OP  3/04/13 7:23:14 PM#5
Originally posted by Homitu

snip

 Well Im originally from Indianapolis and Peyton Manning is one of my favorite players of all-time. And you know I actually had his name typed there, and I thought better of my homerism and deleted it. But Im glad you brought him up. Peyton Manning is a super nice guy, he's won a Super Bowl, I cried myself when he cried during his press conference when he left the Colts., and I love everything he's done for my city, not least of which making it football town and building us a stadium pretty much by himself.

 

But the guy spent the better part of his career getting out performed by Brady (huge asshole) Also the only year he won a Super Bowl our defense had a record breaking run of 4 playoff games. We had the worst run defense in the league that year but they actually destroyed every body in the playoffs. Still, had the Chicago Bears QB not been Rex Grossman (another Indiana native, god bless him and his small hands) they would've won that Super Bowl. Rex fumbled I dont know how many snaps in the rain in Florida, but I digress. We did not win that Super Bowl because Peyon Manning was such a great competitior or champion. In fact, Im a little more than slightly inclined to believe the words of Mike Vanderjagt and put a little stock in the possibility Peyton wasnt so sure he could beat New England in the snow in Foxborough, and he didnt. 

As for Kurt Warner, the guys lost more Super Bowls than he won, he had TGSOT, one of the best supporting casts of the salary cap era backing him. Guys a great player no doubt, but he didnt get it done against Brady either. Why you bring Fitz into this, I dont really know, he doesnt have any rings and he's a WR, not exactly relevent either way. I'd say comparing Jerry Rice to Fitz makes more sense. Jerry Rice is still talking shit and he hasnt played a down in 10 years. Huge asshole.

If anything, you just provided me with a soap box to give more examples, you didnt exactly disprove the theory. (though Im sure there are notably exceptions, there always are.)

And instanced PVP and ladders dont count for anything. These are "workout warriors" if you will. The only true measure of competiveness is open world PVP. Everything else is a tourist attraction.

  rojo6934

Hard Core Member

Joined: 8/13/09
Posts: 4543

"It is double pleasure to deceive the deceiver". - Niccolo Machiavelli

3/04/13 7:28:02 PM#6

some people dont know what skill actually is. WHen people talk about "X game requires skill in pvp" its not about your magic skills, its about player skill, hand eye coordination, agility, technique, etc. All these games that claim to be "player-skill based" and still you have to mindlessly spam 1-2-3 or clique clique clique 1-2-3 they are all the same, no brainers.

On a second note, If my character has 10 skills on the actionbar i should be able to use all 10 without needing to spam the same 2 or 3 because they are the most effective.

I think TESO will help cure that plague with the Elder Scrolls combat mechanics. I hope

 

EDIT: also, an mmo that requires player skill in combat (specially in PvP) should not be gear based. You can fight naked and still have a chance to beat a fully geared player if you know how to play. That is important.

"in peace, in sleep under the barren, abandoned soil"

  Homitu

Hard Core Member

Joined: 10/01/09
Posts: 2004

3/04/13 7:55:15 PM#7
Originally posted by HabitualFrogStomp
Originally posted by Homitu

snip

 Well Im originally from Indianapolis and Peyton Manning is one of my favorite players of all-time. And you know I actually had his name typed there, and I thought better of my homerism and deleted it. But Im glad you brought him up. Peyton Manning is a super nice guy, he's won a Super Bowl, I cried myself when he cried during his press conference when he left the Colts., and I love everything he's done for my city, not least of which making it football town and building us a stadium pretty much by himself.

 

But the guy spent the better part of his career getting out performed by Brady (huge asshole) Also the only year he won a Super Bowl our defense had a record breaking run of 4 playoff games. We had the worst run defense in the league that year but they actually destroyed every body in the playoffs. Still, had the Chicago Bears QB not been Rex Grossman (another Indiana native, god bless him and his small hands) they would've won that Super Bowl. Rex fumbled I dont know how many snaps in the rain in Florida, but I digress. We did not win that Super Bowl because Peyon Manning was such a great competitior or champion. In fact, Im a little more than slightly inclined to believe the words of Mike Vanderjagt and put a little stock in the possibility Peyton wasnt so sure he could beat New England in the snow in Foxborough, and he didnt. 

As for Kurt Warner, the guys lost more Super Bowls than he won, he had TGSOT, one of the best supporting casts of the salary cap era backing him. Guys a great player no doubt, but he didnt get it done against Brady either. Why you bring Fitz into this, I dont really know, he doesnt have any rings and he's a WR, not exactly relevent either way. I'd say comparing Jerry Rice to Fitz makes more sense. Jerry Rice is still talking shit and he hasnt played a down in 10 years. Huge asshole.

If anything, you just provided me with a soap box to give more examples, you didnt exactly disprove the theory. (though Im sure there are notably exceptions, there always are.)

And instanced PVP and ladders dont count for anything. These are "workout warriors" if you will. The only true measure of competiveness is open world PVP. Everything else is a tourist attraction.

If Peyton Manning, Kurt Warner, and Larry Fitz are your examples of losers, then sign me up for the losers bracket.  

I don't get what your ultimate argument is.  To be the very tippy top omega undisputed #1 of all time you have to be an asshole, numbers 2, 3, and 4 can all be nice guys but that's not good enough?  That just seems like a futile endeavor.  There's almost never an undisputed #1 of all time.  Just return to the Peyton Manning vs Tom Brady example.  Sports analysts debate who's better ad nauseum, with some choosing one, others choosing the other.  I'd personally take Manning over Brady any day.  I personally rank Manning as #1 all time.  (As an aside, what are your criteria for being an asshole?  I think you can hate Tom Brady for many reasons--playing for that team nobody likes, winning against the teams that you do like (although I'm a Giants fan myself, so no worries there :p), having that super model wife--but he never behaves like an asshole.  Quite the contrary, to the objective perspective, he has a reputation as a class act.)

The problem with citing one singular trait as the quality that defines excellence is that all you have to do is come up with one example where someone has that trait and is decidedly not excellent.  lol Ryan Leaf.  He's such an infamous asshole that I don't even think I need to elaborate on his story.  I hear he's serving time in a federal prison now.  

Yes, there are always exceptions, but in this case you will find an utter myriad of examples of humble players who are far better than the jerks, and vice versa.  The only conclusion you can possibly make is that this trait alone does not make the player.  

Like I alluded to in my previous post, I believe some players play angry and that makes them better.  Others peform better when they're calm and cool.  Barry Sanders baby.  Quietly walking into the endzone, handing the ball to the ref, and returning to the sideline.  

Maybe what you're trying to come to terms with is the line between confidence and arrogance.  Every player we mentioned is certainly confident in their abilities.  Some may even be arrogant.  But I don't think arrogance makes an asshole.  Jerry Rice has every right in the world to be arrogant.  He owns every receiving record imaginable.  He's one of those rare cases where his position at #1 all time really isn't disupted at all.  Acknowledging that doesn't make him an a-hole.  Not acknowledging it would just be ignorant.  

 

  Axehilt

Novice Member

Joined: 5/09/09
Posts: 7213

3/04/13 7:55:45 PM#8
Originally posted by rojo6934

some people dont know what skill actually is. WHen people talk about "X game requires skill in pvp" its not about your magic skills, its about player skill, hand eye coordination, agility, technique, etc. All these games that claim to be "player-skill based" and still you have to mindlessly spam 1-2-3 or clique clique clique 1-2-3 they are all the same, no brainers.

Hopefully you're not implying Chess takes zero skill because all you have to do is "mindlessly move pieces".

Skill is decision-making and execution.  Games don't always have lots of both (Chess has virtually no execution component, but a very deep decision-making component) although many of the best videogames do (Starcraft, LoL, and Street Fighter are all games which strongly reward both good (and fast) decision-making and good twitch skill.)

This definition seems to carry through to most things which people can be skilled at.

  Aparition

Apprentice Member

Joined: 10/09/06
Posts: 44

3/04/13 8:00:09 PM#9

you kill me = luck

me kill you = skill

  rojo6934

Hard Core Member

Joined: 8/13/09
Posts: 4543

"It is double pleasure to deceive the deceiver". - Niccolo Machiavelli

3/04/13 8:08:26 PM#10
Originally posted by Axehilt
Originally posted by rojo6934

some people dont know what skill actually is. WHen people talk about "X game requires skill in pvp" its not about your magic skills, its about player skill, hand eye coordination, agility, technique, etc. All these games that claim to be "player-skill based" and still you have to mindlessly spam 1-2-3 or clique clique clique 1-2-3 they are all the same, no brainers.

Hopefully you're not implying Chess takes zero skill because all you have to do is "mindlessly move pieces".

Skill is decision-making and execution.  Games don't always have lots of both (Chess has virtually no execution component, but a very deep decision-making component) although many of the best videogames do (Starcraft, LoL, and Street Fighter are all games which strongly reward both good (and fast) decision-making and good twitch skill.)

This definition seems to carry through to most things which people can be skilled at.

im not implying that about Chess. That really takes a person's skill to play it well. In Chess you only move pieces mindlessly if you dont know how to play. Very different than mmos that doesnt require people's skills.

Yes, decision-making and execution. I didnt have those words in mind but i do agree with it on my first post. The mmos we have now dont require any decision making or good execution. They just require good gear and button spam. Even TERA.

"in peace, in sleep under the barren, abandoned soil"

  HabitualFrogStomp

Hard Core Member

Joined: 3/04/13
Posts: 172

 
OP  3/04/13 8:16:00 PM#11
Originally posted by Homitu
Originally posted by HabitualFrogStomp
Originally posted by Homitu

 

 

 

You didnt really argue any of the points I layed out in my post, you just kind of shifted the argument. I never made the clear distinction that if you're not the best, you're a loser. Thats just the way the greatest players tend to think, thats what gives them their edge and their drive to succeed. I didnt see Barry Sanders winning many championships either, I just saw him retiring early and kinda giving up on his franchise.

 And I think you highly underestimate Tom Brady, he's a class act for the media, all of the Patriots are except Gronkowski, and he gets called out for simple partying. But no team is more of reflection of their coach likely in the history of the NFL. And you'd be hard pressed to find a bigger asshole in the history of sports than Bill Belichek. And its widely accepted Brady is the perfect extension of him at quarterback, which wouldnt really be possible if Tom Brady was such a nice sweet guy. Perhaps using football wasnt the best thing to do, I was hoping to have this kind of discussion on an intelligent level. Since there are 52 players on the team, naturally there are going to be about a million exceptions, even if you're not the best at pointing them out. The only team I can honestly say was comprised completely of assholes was the 70's Steelers, one of the greatest dynasties in the history of sports.

I think its you who are kind of shifting the definition of asshole to fit your own criteria. Ive mentioned some of the greatest spokeman for their respective sports. Jordan, Brady, Rice. I dont see them slobbering at the mouths pounding on tubs of Gatorade, they're all real smart guys. I dont know where you got the idea that being composed, intelligent, and being a dick and winning at all costs are somehow mutually exclusive. They're not, there is ample evidence that they often go hand and hand if anything. Which was kind of the point of the post.

Just because your idea of an excelent MMORPG PVPER is someone who can not even complete a coherent sentence because they're too fuming with keyboard rage doesnt mean thats the reality. I was thinking more of a calculating way to gain an advantage than acting like a gorilla, but some people just think one way and one way only I suppose.

For the record. Charles Haley, 5 Super Bowl championship rings, most in history. Tortured rookie team mates and veteran coaches alike. One of the most feared men for what he could potentially do off the field than any other man ever. ALSO A CERTIFIED GENIUS.

I just keep pumping them out and you're still going on about Peyton and Fitz, shame.  

  Panthien

Hard Core Member

Joined: 6/07/12
Posts: 556

3/04/13 8:18:47 PM#12
Originally posted by HabitualFrogStomp

In these games where mashing 3 keys in succession rapidly is somehow deemed a skill, its hard to put a finger on why some people excell at it and some people are hopelessly bad no matter how much they play. Underneath all the forum drama that many of us love to read, or even partake in, there is a obscure fascinating battle between two people or two groups of people, but how does one really determine the winner and loser of such a trivial contest? Of course the answer is going to vary from game to game, but I am purposefully ignoring that obvious fact for this topic because I believe it all comes down to one simple and largely intangible trait. 

 

We can talk about gear, class choice, and game mechanic knowledge, and thats all very relevent. But there are always exceptions to this rule, theres always going to be one guy who plays one of the worst classes, doesnt have an endless reseviour of knowledge to tap into, and doesnt have access to all the highend gear, who will stomp your face over and over again. Its happend to everyone, and its going to happen again and again pretty much regardless of the game.

 

Im a huge fan of the NFL, and I think there is a comparisson that can be drawn here, as funny as that is. Professional football is a brutal struggle, and theres just some that simply strive on that struggle and those who fold like a lawn chair. For every Tom Brady, Joe Montana, and Terry Bradshaw there are 100's of Kevin Kolbs, Rob Johnsons, and Curtis Painters. Now the latter are all mechanically sound quarterbacks, they all have tools that should in theory allow them to achieve arguably as much in the game. To even reach this level you have to put in an incredible amount of work, and its a rarity when work ethic is the failing of a profesional football player (Hello JaMarcus Russell). But what really makes the Brady's and Montana's of the world better? They hate to lose, its a gut wrenching feeling that they will carry with them for the better part of their adult lives.  

 

Its simple will, to know in your mind that you will win, you will do whatever it takes to win, that you will destroy the other guy, thats what it takes. And suprisingly so many of us just arent born with that. You DO have to be an asshole to be any measure of champion. Michael Jordan, huge asshole. And arguably greatest competitor any of us will ever see, maybe even our children will ever see. This guy would develop close friendships with rivals like Patrick Ewing and then take them apart when it was game time, he manipulated it and used it to his advantage. 

 

Its this trait that alienates the l33t speaking PVPer from his peers that makes him such a success at ruining your play time, he's a bigger asshole than you, and he's going to win, and you're going to hate him for it. If MMORPG's were entertaining for other people to watch, and they wanted to see it, these guys would be your superstars, these would be who everyone wants to see. Not some dude decorating his house, or grinding mobs to get that +5 ring.

 

And all of us do want to see it, thats why were here. I think this is the very basis of MMO's to begin with.  At least it was at the core of where they started from before they evolved into something else.

 

Short answer..

If you defeat someone your class/gear is Overpowered, and when you get defeated its  "skill

 

  Theocritus

Apprentice Member

Joined: 7/15/08
Posts: 3541

3/04/13 8:24:41 PM#13
Put me down as one of thsoe that does very well in PVE and terrible in PVP...i jsut dont have any itnerest in killing other players and I ahve never had that mindset....On the other hand, I know people that absolutely thrive on PVP, and if it ruins someone else's gaming then all the better......In my experience I jsut never found PVP to be on equal footing...it seemed like I was either at a huge disadantage levelwise or gearwise (or more often both)......PVP has never been my focus in any game and I never really put in 24 hour shifts trying to be the best geared or highest level to win......I always put my best efforts winning in sports or other ventures in RL and could care less about "winning" in video games.
  HabitualFrogStomp

Hard Core Member

Joined: 3/04/13
Posts: 172

 
OP  3/04/13 8:33:55 PM#14
Originally posted by Theocritus
Put me down as one of thsoe that does very well in PVE and terrible in PVP...i jsut dont have any itnerest in killing other players and I ahve never had that mindset....On the other hand, I know people that absolutely thrive on PVP, and if it ruins someone else's gaming then all the better......In my experience I jsut never found PVP to be on equal footing...it seemed like I was either at a huge disadantage levelwise or gearwise (or more often both)......PVP has never been my focus in any game and I never really put in 24 hour shifts trying to be the best geared or highest level to win......I always put my best efforts winning in sports or other ventures in RL and could care less about "winning" in video games.

Theres no shame in that, at all. The vast majority of the human race would and will be just like yourself, and its very rational.

Its a different sort of competiveness that drives certain people. For example, There Will Be Blood....I think Daniel Day Lewis captured the persona perfectly. His character was obviously successful in what he did, but it was also an almost spiteful compelling need not to see anyone else succeed which is what made his character. He said as much in his own words.

Yet for the majority of the movie he appeared pretty rational, and many of us would like to be like him. To have that instict. Its what drives the 1 percenters who hold 99% of the wealth, in a way.

  dmm02

Novice Member

Joined: 11/23/06
Posts: 24

3/04/13 8:37:05 PM#15

your entire arguement is that if you are the best or better than someone you are an asshole...  Is every single olympian an asshole? is every player on a NFL championship team an asshole?  are you an asshole? no well then you must suck is you basic arguement

does a bear sh*t in the woods

 

the trait/gene/instinct you are refering to is not "asshole" why not read some articles on human psychology and do alittle research suprisingly enough this has been studied and youu are wrong...

  Kurtz13

Apprentice Member

Joined: 1/07/04
Posts: 42

3/04/13 8:39:11 PM#16

- You become better through practice - the assholes, generally speaking, would practice PvP more, as they'd be comparatively less interested in the social/crafting etc aspects of the game. 

- Furthermore, I would assume that the younger crowd leans more towards agression (PvP). This younger crowd also just happens to have more disposable time, which gives them another age in the game.  

 

 

  BitterClinger

Novice Member

Joined: 11/19/12
Posts: 203

2014 Watch List: World of Warships, Wildstar Online

3/04/13 8:41:37 PM#17
Originally posted by HabitualFrogStomp

Its simple will, to know in your mind that you will win, you will do whatever it takes to win, that you will destroy the other guy, thats what it takes. And suprisingly so many of us just arent born with that. You DO have to be an asshole to be any measure of champion. Michael Jordan, huge asshole. And arguably greatest competitor any of us will ever see, maybe even our children will ever see. This guy would develop close friendships with rivals like Patrick Ewing and then take them apart when it was game time, he manipulated it and used it to his advantage. 

Its this trait that alienates the l33t speaking PVPer from his peers that makes him such a success at ruining your play time, he's a bigger asshole than you, and he's going to win, and you're going to hate him for it. If MMORPG's were entertaining for other people to watch, and they wanted to see it, these guys would be your superstars, these would be who everyone wants to see. Not some dude decorating his house, or grinding mobs to get that +5 ring.

 

I agree with your analysis, for the most part. I do agree that the "best of the best" have a certain confidence about them that borders on arrogance, but I separate them from the most common pvp RPG gamer.

For me, the best pvp gamers I have ever played against are the turn-based strategy wargamers from Operational Art of War, Hearts of Iron, and other wargames. The second best level of PvP gamers I have played against are WOW Arena players.  The absolute lowest level, scrub-league of PVP gamers I have played against were Ultima Online players.

The truth is that there is not that much difference between the top tier raiders and the top tier pvpers, in terms of "hours of commitment" and general drive to "be the best" (ala elitists jerks). The true separation is between those who possess the skill and acumen to excel at pvp or raiding, and those who rely upon UI gimmicks or an endless supply of n00bs to fulfill their gameplay.

Top Games Played JAN 2014: World of Warplanes, Guild Wars 2, World of Tanks

  uidCaustic

Novice Member

Joined: 7/15/11
Posts: 148

3/04/13 8:44:34 PM#18

1 - Get off the computer.

2 - Join a branch of your countries military.

3 - Survive combat with a confirmed kill.

Until then, you're playing a video game, and no-one of importance cares about your "1v1 rankings omg!!!11oneone", nor does anyone of importance find you "skillful".

  HabitualFrogStomp

Hard Core Member

Joined: 3/04/13
Posts: 172

 
OP  3/04/13 8:49:16 PM#19
Originally posted by uidCaustic

1 - Get off the computer.

2 - Join a branch of your countries military.

3 - Survive combat with a confirmed kill.

Until then, you're playing a video game, and no-one of importance cares about your "1v1 rankings omg!!!11oneone", nor does anyone of importance find you "skillful".

So one can only prove ones worth through fighting for ones government and killing a complete stranger who is also fighting on behalf of his government.

Interesting....I never thought of it that way before. What a worthy way of spending ones time, killing complete strangers IRL rather than on a computer that is.

  whisperwynd

Novice Member

Joined: 2/22/06
Posts: 1335

Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the priviledge to do so as well.

3/04/13 9:20:29 PM#20

 It's a good premise, as pvp is competition of a different sort than your football comparison yet still number those who wish to squash the opposition. Otherwise, why be in it in the first place?

You probably won't see many peaceful pacifists engage in pvp type games, but as human nature being what it is, they most likely number in the minority. lol

 I believe that for those 'assholes' to be great, they do have to have those criteria you wished to 'set aside' like knowledge of the mechanics, game abilities etc or maybe the ways with which they can exploit them, because it's in that drive to know as much as they can to then use any and all advantages possible. 

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