MMORPG Gamers Handbook - Part One
Musse Dolk is a 2nd year game student from Sweden. As a part of his studies, Musse created the MMORPG Gamers Handbook, a fantastic basic resource that introduces new players to some of the terms, concepts and etiquette of MMORPG gaming. Today, we present part one of the guide. We hope to also present it as a full .pdf download in the near future.
Massive multiplayer online games have a growing percentage of the games on today’s computer market. Each game has its unique set of challenges but there are also similarities where general game play strategies and recommendations apply. The MMORPG gamer’s handbook provides practical suggestions to players for how to work well in a team-based environment. Many misconceptions in MMORPGs are clarified and players learn the most effective ways to improve their cooperative game play.
There are a lot of good spoilers and guides out there for massive multiplayer online role playing games (MMORPG). Most of these are game specific and go down to the core in both the games system and fast advancement within the game. So why add another guide to the bunch?
Over the last few years I’ve played a lot of different MMORPGs and in every one of these I discovered that players new to the environment and the multiplayer game concept in general had the same kind of problems. There is quite a big gap between experienced players and new ones, even with all the guides and spoilers out there telling you exactly where to go and what to do.
One common problem is that many of the experienced players rarely have the patience to deal with newcomers, so they tend to get left out and sometimes get very hard critique for their limited knowledge. The spoiler guide ends and the player are suddenly out there on her own without really having had a chance to learn. This is especially true to games where it is easy to go solo.
The spoilers out there all offer great help on advancement. But for the most part they do not give general advice on how to play efficiently together with other players. That is where this book comes in. It is not supposed to be a replacement for any other guide out there. Instead, it supplements them by giving players general guidelines to follow that should be suitable for most MMORPGs out there. This book will point out the most effective practices of team play and steer you away from potentially dangerous ones. It will be a knowledgeable hand to guide you along the way and help you quickly become an experienced MMORPG player.
However keep in mind that there will always be exceptions to anything written here. It should be more looked on as guidelines than rules. Adapting to unexpected and unfavorable situations is part of being an experienced player. It is also oriented towards computer-oriented opponents and will not work against other players. If you are a new player, I do not recommend trying to learn everything at once. It’s often easier if you read up on one thing at the time, practice that for a while then moves on to next part. When you feel that you have a good idea of how to play your own primary role, read through the others for better cooperation and understanding while playing with them.
3 Character creation
The first step in any MMORPG is usually to create your character. Many times there is a wide variety of races and classes to choose from and I recommend you to do some research about each of these before you start, just to get a rough idea about them. It’s a good idea to find one from start that suits your play style and fills the role you want to play in teams with others.
3.1 Class archetypes
There are four common archetypes when it comes to group coordination. Most classes are suited primary for one of these roles or a mix in between them.
Basically a tank’s job is to get beaten up. You’re the wall between the weaker members of your party and the angry enemies you are fighting. As a tank you focus more on being resistant to damage than actually dealing it. A common mistake is to focus too much on your attack power, which makes you less efficient for taking damage. However you cannot completely neglect your attack power either. In many games, the more damage you deal the more likely are the enemies to attack you. This may differ from game to game, it’s important to find out how this works in the one you are playing.
3.1.2 Damage dealer
Your job will be to kill off enemies as quickly as possible. This is not as easy as it sounds. Do this too fast; and monsters will get angry on you instead of your tank. Remember that you are never the one who should take a beating. Many make the mistake of doing too much damage too fast. The trick is to find the sweet spot where you do max damage without making the enemies run for you.
A healer’s job will be to keep everyone alive. Some make the mistake of focusing on damage, which may result in not having enough power left to keep their group alive. Remember that your primary role will always be healing. A healer without mana many times leads to a dead group.
3.1.4 Crowd controller
A crowd controller is someone who takes care of enemies that the group is currently not fighting, usually by putting them in a sleeping state rendering them unable to fight. This is not an easy job; you need good reflexes, the ability to adapt to changing situations and an overview of the entire battle to keep track of who needs to be put to sleep in which order.
You should always choose a race that you feel comfortable with, since you will most likely play it for a very long time. Appearance and role-playing reasons should always be of priority. It usually does not matter which race you have chosen in the long run for a specific archetype. Having that said, there are things to take in to consideration when choosing races. The first thing you should have a look at is if there are any racial abilities in your game. These are usually more valuable than statistical values of your race. In most games you can easily get stats from gear, but these abilities are often unique.