Traveling the Multiverse

Aka Ironyca Stood in the Fire – gaming blog

Confessions from the LFD

I thought I should get it out of my system, and what better place than to alphabetically shout out that I have a confession to make, than over the internet?

First of all, forgive me, it’s an old story, but its been bugging me for a long time. I have criticized the Looking For Dungeon (LFD) tool several times, it’s no secret that I am anti-LFD (I should start a movement!). My problem is, that in order to criticize LFD, to complain about other players exploits and the shortcomings of the system and its feature as an interactive cooperative utility, I feel like I need to be free from sin. How can I complain, when I’ve done it myself?

Forgive me, I’ve exploited the LFD too. But I swear, I needed that shield for my elemental shaman! It was the best I could get at the time when the new dungeons, including Pit of Saron, where MY shield dropped, was introduced.

"Protector of Frigid Souls"

Yes I know, I’m excusing myself, I’m trying to make it sound like I deserved that shield, but I didn’t deserve it anymore than the other players in my party, I know that. I know that the LFD is like rolling a die (in many ways), it has no memory. It doesn’t pat me with mercy and hands me a care package of loot, when I’ve suffered enough RNG.

Greed drove me to it, I just wanted the shiny and I wanted it fast. You have to understand that it only dropped in the normal mode of Pit of Saron, no heroic could give me a better pre raiding shield, and few players joined the normal mode of this dungeon. Getting a group in the heroics was fast, but I often had to wait 30-40 minutes, and the shield didn’t drop often, so greed took over, I couldn’t waste more time.

This was not the only problem of this personal grind of mine. The other teammates were ALWAYS either paladins or shamans, sometimes even both. It was like being mocked, everyone (i.e. palas and shamans) knew that everyone else was after that shield.

And then it dropped, finally. Watching the rolls tick in while breaking a sweat was a moment of tension followed by disbelief. I lost. And I kept losing … to an enhancement shaman …to a paladin tank. Obsessive time spent on the armory showed them not even having a spellpower spec, THE TRAVESTY!

Enough of this stupid LFD, I’ll just gently and secretly nudge the rolling in my favor heh heh heh…

Right, gloating is bad too…

Well, I guess the core of my misdeed lies in the fact that I brought my boyfriend along on his shaman with the only purpose in mind, that we were now two people rolling for one. Heeeey I upped my chances from 1/5 to 2/5, it’s substantial if there is only one competitor.

We watched the shield drop a magical 3 times, where our coupled rolls didn’t land me MY shield.

And then a few days of trying later, it happened, we did it again, joined the LFD with our shamans, sinister motives and crossed fingers and it dropped. It wasn’t with a clear conscience I watched this third unknown shaman being screwed over by us. It could so easily have been me.

Of course, no one could tell whether it was cheating or not, we were both elemental shamans, and the winning roll was actually mine in the end. Does that make it all okay, or was I still borderline cheating? Was this an exploit of my Bourdieuian social capital ? That networks and contacts have value, and that they can be transformed into other forms of capital, fx a shiny looty shield.

We all know how much it helps knowing people in WoW and we know it’s a social game, but how often do we think about the ways our networks and friendly connections enables us to skip the line?

I skipped the line, almost. It was my intention after all. I’m still not sure if it even counts as ninja’ing. And later here in Cataclysm, I’ve found myself rage quitting several heroics because I see everyone else in the group, guilded and guilty, rolling on MY lootz, obviously to hand it over to their one needy friend. Immediately after losing the roll I go into a tantrum and quit the group. THE NERVE! I’ll take the penalty any day so that they can wait like… 3 seconds for a new dps… That’ll surely teach them… … .. …….. …. … …. ..

I guess it’s part of the game now, the social game, the networked game. Maybe I should just stop apologizing and nerdraging and step back into it.

5 comments on “Confessions from the LFD

  1. tomeoftheancient
    May 7, 2011

    As someone with absolutely no social capital I feel your pain. I first encountered this back when I was a wee naive lowbie and didn’t know people acted differently in wow than they did irl.

    I had something listed on the AH and it had a bid on it. Someone whispered me and said they just had to have it couldn’t I please cancel the auction and sell it to them. I canceled and as soon as I did they whispered, ha, ha, my friend changed their mind about bidding on that.

    I’d forgive yourself and jump back in, the alternative is becoming a grumpy hermit like me living alone in the hills of the Badlands!

    • ironyca
      May 8, 2011

      Your story is a really good example of this as well. That guy completely exploited your goodwill and then humiliated you for it, really nasty.

      But that is the whole dilemma I guess – how far do we use (or exploit) our network to get something, where someone else ultimately has to pay.

  2. Döra
    May 8, 2011

    To my mind this is where the game is flawed. Blizz constantly talks about ‘community’ but introduces stuff into the game that almost ‘forces’ immoral/unethical behaviour in order for someone to progress in the game. So over time people become used to making questionable decisions that they might not do in RL and put it to the back of their minds that there is a RL person behind the character. Plus the fact that we have to use others in our network of friends to collude in this behaviour just re-enforces this and expands it.

    I see so many real world parallels to this its unbelievable. It feels like the World of Warcraft – and the real world – has somehow lost it’s moral & ethical compass. Maybe it never had one – I don’t know I haven’t been playing long enough to know. But it feels like we are all on such a slippy slope :(

    Don’t get me wrong – I am not criticising you or anything – entirely the opposite! I have a great deal of empathy for your position on this. The fact that you have angst over this shows me that the game has not yet managed to corrupt your sensibilities and that can only be a great thing. I just wish everyone were like you – then maybe the world (and the World of Warcraft) would be a much better place and maybe you wouldn’t have been forced down this route in the first place :)

  3. Döra
    May 13, 2011

    I have a confession too. I’ve just re-read what I posted and it sounds really ranty, high handed & judgemental. I am so sorry! I really hope I didn’t offend you with the tone I took. Can’t think what came over me :(

    • ironyca
      May 13, 2011

      Hehe, no worries. I wrote it with a sort of ironic distance but yet serious with a little remorse.

      On one hand, I do feel bad about it, I don’t really like to play the social capital like that. It felt wrong for me to do it, and so in my world it -was- wrong (ergo the “confession”).

      But I also know not everyone looks at their own gaming behavior this way.
      So on the other hand, it’s just the rule of the LFD (and probably to a greater extent WoW). People will bend the rules towards the most efficient strategy and in that process sometimes cross that line we would call cheating. I think my example is a borderline case, mostly because it’s so widespread and “suitably” invisible for people.

      I completely get what you’re saying though, which is why I become so temperamental whenever I’m the “victim”.
      I guess the point of the post was to make people think about their own use of their social capital, and how it can disadvantage fx (new) players without a strong/supporting social network or those unwilling to do the same.

What's your opinion?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


This entry was posted on May 7, 2011 by in Opinion and Discussion and tagged , , , .


There was an error retrieving images from Instagram. An attempt will be remade in a few minutes.


%d bloggers like this: