Saturday, December 29, 2007

Cross-posted from: Gathering Gamers

On my way home tomorrow morning. I didn't have much time to write today, but perhaps I'll have something tomorrow evening to take place of this.

So think of this as a place-holder. I apologize for the delay.

Actually, I have an interesting idea... perhaps I'll flesh it out in my notebook on the plane flight back. Check up on me tomorrow!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Winter Veil

Cross Posted from: Gathering Gamers

Before I say anything at all, let me say this. Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to everyone. I hope that each and every person out there has had a wonderful holiday, be it with friends, family, or even on your own. Know that no matter how many people surround you, with the spirit of the season in your heart and the thoughts of your loved ones, you are never alone.

Today, I have promised a post regarding Winter Veil. I thought long and hard how I wanted to talk about it. Did I want to compare and contrast Winter Veil with Christmas? Did I want to talk about how it is supposed to represent all winter holidays, though it clearly spoofs Christmas more than others? No, not really. It's been done, and no one's going to learn anything new.

Really, what I wanted to do was to start a discussion. Even if it's not about WoW, post your gamer Christmas (or other Holidays, of course) here. Let me know how you spent your day, or what you got for the Holidays. I'd like to know. And on Saturday, I'll reply with my own experiences.

I think I might squeak onto WoW tonight (Christmas Eve, I wrote this early), and squeak on sometime tomorrow... And send each and every one of the special people in my Guild something special for Winter Veil. I'd like to do more than just send gold, though... (I mean, no one really gives just money for Christmas, and giving a gift card is very impersonal too). If anyone has any good suggestions, I'd also appreciate those kinds of posts. =) After all, Winter Veil lasts through January 2nd. So even if you're too busy spending time with your family this Christmas and New Years, there's a little extra time to get something special in.

Happy Holidays, everyone. I look forward to hearing your stories. =)

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Guilds and Families

Cross posted from : Gathering Gamers

Well, with Christmas quite literally around the corner (and my next blog in fact falling on Christmas itself), I wanted to write some relatively Christmas-y things for the next couple. Helps me out a bit, especially since I'm now out of state with my family, and want to spend limited time on the internet (for instance, haven't played any WoW, and not really intending to log on unless I have absolutely nothing else to do while I'm here). So, next time I'll actually cover Winter Veil. For today, I want to talk about Guilds and the community that exists within WoW.

I have to say that the main reason I play an MMO is to get away from real life. I think that's the reason most people do. The best part, in my opinion, of any MMO is the community it breeds. Yes, occasionally that community sucks, but when you find a nice, warm, friendly one to make a home of, there's simply nothing in the world like it.

The guild I am in right now, Merciless, is currently my biggest online home. There are people who annoy me, sure, but there are people who are border-line my best friends. I've only been a member since early August, and only been an active raider for perhaps the last month or two, but everyone means something to me. Whether I consider them the mean old uncle I don't talk to very often, or that one awesome cousin who I would happily spend most of my time with, there's one of each. There are mother like figures, who give and take, and father like figures who spoil and punish. And I love each and every one of them, if for no other reason than that they make life interesting. XD

When I think about being with my family, too, I think about my guild a lot too. My guild is part of my life now. I have just as fond of memories with them as I do with any of my other friend, or even with my family! I find it an awesome thing that a game can bring people together that way.

I'd like to do something for my Guild just like I do for my family. There are some members I'd like to repay for all their kindness, those who really helped me get to where I am today.

I do things for my guildies whenever I can; I try to, anyway. Sure, there are nights where I feel selfish and just want to be left alone too. Sometimes I'm only on to do my dailies and then I log off to go live life. I can't dedicate myself 24/7.

Much like I can't do the same for my own family. It's a little harder for me to do so for them anyway, though; I live very far away from pretty much all my blood relatives - at least, the ones I know well.

The hardest part about having a Guild and a Family is learning to balance the two. You can only give so much time to one or the other. It is honestly unhealthy to spend all your time doing one thing, no matter how "good" that one thing may be to you. Some would argue that spending all your time with your family is a good thing... But then, if you were to do that, what would you accomplish? You're still not going to get much further than you would if you were spending all your time with your guild.

I'm not saying spending time with one or the other is a bad thing. They are both good things; it's just about balancing the good so that you're not getting too much of it. There's that proverb in there somewhere. And with the holidays here, I think it's important to spend more time with one if you have been neglecting them as of late. I've been spending my time with my family this week, and will continue to, since I only get to see them once a year. And I love it. It's refreshing.

Once I get back, I'll try to balance my real friends and my online ones a little better. That's my new year's resolution. After all, once I graduate, there are some of these friends that I may never see again.

But don't think I'm going to forget about anyone! Not a single one! Everyone I know has a place in my heart, even if it may not be large dedicated part of it. Everyone will get their gift some way or another, even if it's just a Merry Christmas or an AH item they've been watching for or a run through some instance with their alt. Something for everyone.

Because it's the spirit of the season of giving, and of love. And far be it from me to break tradition.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Women in WoW

Cross posted from : Gathering Gamers

Well, I had a lack of questions headed my way again this time (though I did get one, so we'll answer that first before I chew into my topic for today).

acurrier of Gathering Gamers asks:

While I haven't noticed it on my server, do you find that the morons tend to congregate around one or two classes, or are they more or less evenly spread?

Thanks for the question! What I've noticed is that depending on what class I'm playing, I notice the "morons" more acutely from different perspectives.

For instance; as a Tank, I'm more likely to notice a bad DPSer or Healer. Mostly because I'm watching threat on others as well as myself. If someone is pulling aggro, it's what I'll notice first.

As a DPSer, I'm more likely to notice a bad tank or fellow DPSer, since I won't be watching the healer all that much myself and focusing on my own DPS and threat.

As a Healer, I'm more likely to notice a bad tank or a bad DPSer rather than a fellow healer, because I'm more concerned about doing my job and doing it well.

...Now that I look at my answer, it's the same each time. You'll find a moron DPS more often than any other role; but that's largely in fact due to the sheer amount of DPS classes/specs vastly outnumbers the healers/tanks. So I guess my answer would be that DPS is most likely to have morons, simply because there's a large population of them.

For the sarcastic answer: lockz r OP b/c thay take no skillz 2 play n thay shuld feel bad, lollerz.
(I do honestly find a lot of dumb warlocks than anything else, but that may just be my server.)

I hate typing like that.

Moving on, I haven't gotten to work on any of my more thought out guides (and will likely get that done over my real Christmas Vacation where I don't have work to worry about), so today is another slew of generalizations and gender studies. Again, here's my disclaimer; I'm no expert, I'm not a women's studies major. This is all from my own experience, and thus the following are my observations.

So here we go.

Over the years I have been a gamer, I have always broken down the other few women gamers I've found into four categories (that more often than not criss-cross and overlap) mentally, some of which irritate me, and some of which I don't mind at all. I find that these carry over exceptionally well in World of Warcraft, so here's my experience with it.

The Stereotypes:

- "The Mom." This is your maternal instinct-loaded female gamer. Whether she is actually a mother or not, she will still act as one, desiring to nurture the others in the group, or obtain a position of power in order to have the ability to nurture. More often than not, they will be focusing on being a healer of some sort, and likely to either be a Guild Officer, Guild Leader, or Raid Leader. Generally, they'll also be the middle-man in any fight, acting as the neutralizer. After all, no one wants to make "Mom" mad.

-"The Girlfriend/Wife." This is your "I'm playing because my significant other told me to" type. They may or may not actually enjoy the game, and the primary reason they are there is because either their loving male companion wanted to include her in his hobby, or they got so curious about what was keeping him up during the long hours of the night they decided to try it out themselves. There is nothing wrong with this; it doesn't matter how you start a game so long as you continue to enjoy it. The problem is when they cross over into another realm (see below).

-The "Real" Female Gamer. These are the ones you meet at conventions that are hard-core into the games, love the games because they're games, and got into it because they thought it looked like fun. They have no motivation other than it's their hobby. So they're doing whatever makes THEM happy, and it really has no impact on anyone else. A bit selfish perhaps, but at least they're having fun.

-The "Fake" Female Gamer. Here's where I get irritated. These are the ones whom I've met more often than not that play games because they like men, and men like games. They have little to no concern for the hobby itself; it's just an easy way to make yourself look like a "holy grail" to the male gamer community. These are the ones who make me sad; yes, it's nice and all to meet a guy who shares your interests. The important part is that he's actually sharing YOUR interest, and you're not "sharing" HIS interest just because you're interested in HIM. There's no point in doing something that's supposed to be fun if you don't actually enjoy it.

Now, as I said, these are all nice generalizations. I have met some of each that only fall into one category, and I've met some of each that fall into 2-3 of the categories. I count myself as a "Real Mom" gamer, even though I'm not a mother in reality. I enjoy nurturing others and being in a position of relative leadership, although I often do it in unconventional ways because it's how I get the most enjoyment out of the game. I have met more "Fake GF" gamers than I'd like to admit (especially when I spent a few years working in a hobby shop), and it makes me sad that people take advantage of my hobby for something as petty as socialization (which, if you think about it, is kind of ass-backwards to begin with when you realize it's gaming and most of us are socially retarded anyway =P ).

What's the reality? Well, when it comes down to it, it's ultimately unfair for anyone to generalize female gamers as much as it is to generalize male gamers. We're people; that's what it is. No matter our motivation to play, we have a reason to pay the $15 a month like everyone else, and one way or another, whether it's related to the actual game itself, we are enjoying ourselves doing it. Maybe it's even better that some who aren't in it for the game do so; after all it's making someone else happy. And if my ethics class supposedly taught me anything (*gigglesnickersnort*) it's that sometimes the overall good in a measured instance can outweigh the overall bad. Sometimes you have to "suffer" for someone else to be happy.

I'm not saying that you always should, or that those who "use" the game for their own needs are right. I'm just saying that they do and I'm not going to try to give them crap for it. Partially because it's futile, but also partially because I'd be hurting my own case. I'm here to play the game and enjoy it.

Why have others ruin that for me?

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Player vs Class Competency

(Cross-Posted from: Gathering Gamers )

While I didn't receive any questions ;-; this week for what I wanted to be a Q&A session, of the one comment I received, it was a compliment.

Basically, the person said I was the only competent tankadin they had ever met, at least by the measures of my post. Apparently, what I had written was thorough enough to show that I knew my stuff.

That got me thinking about what I decided to make today's topic instead of a Q&A session (Which I still want to do, so please, keep thinking of questions to ask me!). I decided I'd talk about Players vs Class competency.

Whenever I'm trolling the WoW forums, I usually stick to three forums total: the Paladin forums (of course), the Rogue forums (my closest WoW buddy is a Rogue, so I try to keep up on their changes too), and the General forums (mostly 'cause I get a laugh out of it on occasion).

I spend, naturally, most of my time on the Paladin forums, and I notice a very equal amount of a) seasoned, knowledgable paladins (of all specs), b) newbie paladins asking for advice in a generally polite way, and c) noob paladins which cause most other classes to tell all paladins to DIAF.

Of the other classes that come to our boards to visit, I tend to notice Shamans being the most courteous. I see more topics started by full level 70 Shamans complimenting us on our skill or our perseverance in dealing with the slowness Blizzard has taken to make our class fully functional (and not just made to heal-bot). After that, surprisingly, I tend to see more Rogues than anything else.

The largest complainers on our board seems to be Warlocks and Priests (especially Shadow Priests), the two of which we have more trouble against in PVP in anything else.

I find this interesting, because this says to me the whiners are only there to supplement NOT buffing us (even if there is a valid problem), because they're afraid to actually have a class that can, zomg, beat them one-on-one. Priests don't have any problems against other casters (from my limited experience), and Warlocks... well, I won't get into my feelings about Warlocks. *coughOPcough*

I've derailed a little bit; so what does this have to do with player versus class competency? Well, it's the generalization that you run into one, maybe two, of a class who is a total jerk or a moron, and instantly the automatic response is the assumption that ALL of said class is a jerk and/or a moron. I rarely talk to any of the warlocks in my guild; is this a subconscious level of thinking in that they're all jerks or that they all play an easy class? I'm not sure. I made friends with one warlock in my guild (as we were running a weekly Karazhan together). He changed my opinion. I still thought Warlocks were a tad overpowered, and while he did have a mean streak against the Alliance (I'm on a PvP server, so to be honest, most of us gank when possible because it's very much a gank-or-be-ganked kind of game at that point), he was the first person in the guild to give me a real chance to be a tank. He was the one who helped me pave my way to where I am now. He has since left the guild (and the server), and while he will be missed, I will forever be grateful to him for what he did.

I think, from anyone's perspective, the jerks on your server are immediately the class that you know you can't beat. For Paladins, its warlocks and (shadow) priests (I don't think I've ever had a Holy Priest try to gank me, though I bet it would be great fun from my perspective XD), and the occasional Hunter. (Or maybe that's just for me). For Rogues, its... well, just about everyone except the really squishy casters. For Warriors, its Hunters and Warlocks (from what I remember from playing a warrior). I think this sentiment is particularly emphasized on a PvP server, at that. You level up being ganked constantly by certain classes, because they know they can beat you. I never felt too much anger against Rogues, because even if they were a few levels higher than me, I could usually kick their asses. Same with Warriors.

Now let's talk about PUGs. For those of you who don't know what a PUG is, it's a Pick Up Group, or one that you throw together with complete strangers to accomplish a common goal (be it a hard quest/5-man instance, which is more common, or a raid, which is much less common). PUGs, I believe, are the single biggest source of misinformation. Most of the idiots and jerks run with PUGs out there, because they can screw over their party members with no sense of obligation or fear of getting /gkicked. This is where the ninja looters, dumbasses who don't know their own class, or insufferable know-it-alls tend to hang out. I really hate PUGing, particularly at 70. Before then, I had fewer problems (beyond LOL Paladin tank, /kick), mostly because I was willing and able to heal the lower content (Survivadin spec FTW).

I have met countless person after person who /tells me "Wanna heal this?" and I immediately respond with "Sorry, I'm not a healer." Usually, they stop talking to me. This is only because I stopped replying "Sorry, I'm a tank," which usually gets an "LOL" or a "Paladins can't tank," and then I argue with a complete stranger for about fifteen minutes because I either have nothing better to do, or I'm just in that kind of mood. I was pleasantly surprised last night when I got a whisper of "Excuse me, are you a tank?" After I blinked several times, I replied that I was, and was asked to link my gear. Given that I'm in almost full Tier 4 at this point in time, and I think I have a total of three blues left, I was immediately asked to tank Heroic Shadow Labs. If it wasn't so late and I didn't hate the instance so much (dear god, how I hate it), I might have gone along, but I was happy that they were actually actively seeking a paladin tank, and told them good job, keep it up.

I wonder if they ever found another one to take; SLabs honestly only is worth doing with a Paladin tank, and Heroic, only with exceptionally geared individuals. But I digress.

This whole post has been kinda garbled and tangential, but what I'm basically trying to say is that the reputation of a class is always, ALWAYS based on the individuals that play it. Because Warlock seems to be an easy-mode kind of class (at least to basically function), more people play it, and therefore, it's likely more unknowledgeable/jerk-off players populate it. Paladins and Hunters are honestly the same way, and I hear there are a lot of jerk-off Rogues out there too (I've just never had a huge problem with them). What anyone, everyone, need to remember, though, is that each class has its good players and bad players. Each game, for that matter, has its good players and bad players. And some players are better at some things than others (for instance, I blow monkey chunks at PvP, but I get daily compliments on my ability to tank).

Long story short, never judge a book by its cover. Avoid mishaps by Armory-ing people before you invite them to group.

Next Tuesday, if I have enough questions, I'll proceed with my Q&A. If not, well, I guess I'll just have to surprise you all again. =)

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

The Rundown – A comparison of Warrior, Druid, and Paladin tanks

(Cross-posted from: )

Since this seems to be the biggest issue with most uninformed people out there, I decided to put off the guide I had been planning on releasing today (Tanking 5-mans) and release this first. In addition, I’m moving up a couple of shorter topics so I have more time to dedicate to fuller, more comprehensive guides (One that takes you through all of K arazhan, for instance).

So what this is all about is that I’ve noticed that most people seem to think a tank is a tank, they hold the big boys, get the crap kicked out of them, and let the rest of the raid do all the work.


There is a time and place for all three tank types to be used equally, and there are situations where one type is flat out better than another. So here, I’m going to break down the three classes that can currently tank (Warriors, Druids, and Paladins), and list both their strengths and their weaknesses. This is as researched and objective as I can make it without having fully played either other type of tank myself, but from the opinions of others who have. It’s mostly a compilation, I claim only the amalgamation of the information.

So enough big words. Here we go.


-Most versatile. Warriors have the largest selection of abilities at their disposal. Not only that, but they often have more than one ability that functions similarly (stuns, disarms, silences, etc). So if one fails, they have another to try. This makes them easily usable for just about any situation.
-Spell Mitigation. Warriors are the only ones who have an outright ability to mitigate spell damage. (Paladins have a flat percentage they don’t take, but it’s very small, and Druids just have the hit points to deal with it) Between Spell Reflect and having a higher overall percentage of damage resisted, Warriors are the only real choice for spell-heavy fights.
-Best Single-target agro generation. Warriors, overall, will generate the most agro against a single target. Generally, they are the preferred tank for most raid bosses.
-Take the least damage overall. Warriors have the highest flat percentage of damage just not taken. Druids have next to none besides armor, and Paladins trail behind by about 4%
-Easiest to gear. Warriors probably have the best itemization, as they’ve been the most viable tank for the longest amount of time. It’s a matter of waiting for something to drop or grinding the right rep like any other class, where as both Druids and Paladins have to jump through a couple more hoops.
-Best OS (Oh SH!T) buttons. Warriors have the best abilities to bounce back from potentially dangerous situations.

-Cannot handle many adds. Warriors are not built to handle tanking more than two, maybe three things at the same time without an incredible amount of skill and some luck. Even then, I doubt too many people could tab between 5-6 adds to keep agro on them all.
-Easily Crushable against fast-melee bosses. A Warrior’s shield block has fewer charges than a Paladin’s Holy Shield, causing them to be more vulnerable to crushing blows against quick-melee bosses (such as Prince’s phase 2).
-Slow Initial Aggro. This means your DPS starts later, which can be important in timed fights.
-No direct raid utility. All warrior direct buffs only affect people in their party. While useful, they don’t last very long, and odds are they won’t be as frequent to keep it up if they have ten other abilities they need to be juggling in a fight. (Their indirect buffs, like sunder for instance, are very useful, but not part of this category).
-Vulnerable to disarming. A disarmed warrior is severely gimped in comparison to a disarmed Paladin (who can still fully function), or a druid who can’t be disarmed.
-Generate the least DPS. Warriors generate the least amount of DPS in comparison to their Paladin or Druid companions. Much of their agro comes from flat abilities, not from actual damage.
-Difficult to play. Warriors have many more abilities to sift through than a Paladin or Druid, requiring a greater knowledge and extent of training to master.


-Mass HP. Druids just plain have more stamina than Warriors or Paladins. They also have less stats to gear for or worry about, so they can itemize for stamina easier than the other two.
-Mass Armor. Same reasons for Mass HP.
-Best Dodge Formula. Druids receive the most benefit from Agility to Dodge, and their Dodge is almost always infinitely higher than any given Warrior or Paladin. Therefore, when something is mitigated against a Druid, he always takes zero damage.
-Deal the most damage. While tanking, a Druid will pump out more total DPS than either a Warrior or a Paladin, as most of their threat is derived from flat damage.
-Best Off-Tanks. Period. Druids have a slightly lesser reliance on Rage to generate threat, and can easily off-tank any encounter. In addition, they can easily off-tank from a DPS perspective (kitty form) while in their tanking gear, and easily swap to a tanking position should something happen to the primary tank.
-Best secondary role. A druid tank who is not in a tanking position offers the most in a different role, given their spec. Since their DPS and Tank tree are one in the same, they can make a gear swap for DPS and perform leaps and bounds above a Warrior or Paladin in a secondary role.
-Good raid utility. Druids offer all their normal Druid spells to the rest of the raid, including Mark of the Wild, Thorns, and in extreme emergencies, innervate and battle-resurrection.

-Always Crushable. Druids cannot parry or block, and thus lack the capability of becoming immune to Crushing Blows.
-No overall avoidance/mitigation. Druids have armor and HP to make up for this lack of mitigation, but a string of crushing blows or heavy hitting spell damage will still take one out.
-Oh SH!T button is weak. I don’t even know what the Druid OS button is. Someone please enlighten me.

-“Frontloading” capability. Paladins start with a full “blue rage bar,” and can open up any fight with a heavy spike of threat, allowing DPS to start quicker.
-Least likely to be crushed. The Paladin shield ability (Holy Shield) has more charges and lasts longer. Specifically, against quick-melee bosses, Paladins have the highest probability for survival.
-AOE tanks. They are unique in the sense that they are the only tank that can effectively tank several mobs at once. In theory, they could hold agro on an infinite number of mobs, due to their reactive high-threat damage.
-Wipe Recovery. Beyond a druid’s once every half-hour resurrection, a Paladin can always resurrect others after a wipe. In addition, if too many healers or DPS has died, the tank can opt to Divine Intervention a remaining individual with a resurrect ability.
-Ranged Taunt. Paladins are the only tank with a ranged taunt ability, as clunky as it may be.
-Excellent Raid Utility. A Paladin’s Auras and Blessings are always welcome, if not ultimately desired, in any raid.

-Mana/magic dependent. This is a problem against enemies or bosses that are immune to magic, can silence, or can mana-drain.
-Poor Off-tanks. Paladins do not generate nearly enough threat to be good off-tanks without being over-geared on spell-damage, as most of their usual threat is reactive damage from being directly hit.
-No single-target taunt. This sucks. It really, REALLY does. A Paladin needs to be able to front-load damage on an enemy to “taunt” off a fellow tank. Their only two “taunts” will not work at all in this situation (as one will pull off multiple targets, and the other causes all enemies to go to the next person on the agro chart, which isn’t always the paladin).
-Tanking Buff can be dispelled. While a Warrior’s Defensive stance is static, Righteous Fury can be dispelled, and it’s a very expensive spell to cast. This can cause a severe mana-drain for a Paladin tank.
-Take slightly more damage. Where as Druids have straight armor and the hit points to take blows, and warriors have a higher damage reduction, Paladins have nothing to compensate for having only 6% damage reduction.
-All abilities on GCD. All of a Paladin’s abilities, with the exception of Judgement, are on the Global Cool Down. Paladins require a higher amount of ability micro-management than either Druids or Warriors.


Here’s the short version:
Warriors – General preferred MTs, most versatile.
Druids – Best OTs, most HP/Armor
Paladins – The best multiple-mob tanks.

This is not to say that any of the other tank types can’t function in those other roles; they can, and quite effectively so. But what a good Raid Leader or Guild Leader for that matter should know is that there are times and places where individual tank types can rise to the challenge above others and be given the chance to shine. And hopefully, if they possess the basic knowledge of how all three function, they’ll know when and where those situations arise.

Next post! (Which WILL be done on Saturday, come hell or high water) I want to answer your questions! Send me your questions via Private Message or even just replying to this post, and they will be answered! Anything posted on Saturday before I start writing (likely in the morning, around 10AM Central) will NOT be accepted. So please send me your questions! They don't even have to be about Tankadins; Anything WoW related will do, though do remember I know next to nothing about Druids/Hunters/Warlocks/Shaman, and my knowledge of the other classes beyond that is limited (though I know a bit about Rogues, Warriors, Mages, and less about Priests). I'll also answer any questions you have about myself, but I will try to keep it on-topic about WoW as much as possible. =D

See you Saturday!

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Female Tanks - The Rarity

(Crossposted from )

I felt it was time to address another gender studies topic, so today is about how finding a female, and actual female, behind the role of a tank is a rarity, and analyzing why this may be. May I forewarn you that everything further is entirely personal opinions and observations; this is not a research paper, it's a log of my thoughts. So don't expect any fancy pants citations. =P (I do enough of that in college already.)

I did want to do some research, but I simply haven't had the time or the ability to. What I can say is that in my guild, I am not only the only tankadin, but I'm the only female tank. I have never run across another female tank in game, though I am sure that they are out there. I'll likely revisit this topic and do a little polling on the WoW forums,, and perhaps in game on my server (and maybe a couple others just to average statistics out). Either way, I think it can be assumed in most people's experiences that the population of female tanks, is very low.

Naturally, this means what do I actually see women playing? Healers and DPS, since that's all that's left. If I think about the people in my guild, I can think of two female shaman healers, one mage, one warlock, there used to be one hunter and a second warlock who have left... and if there's any more, then I'm either unaware of who is in reality female, or they are alts. If I want to use those as (skewed) statistics, then out of a population of seven total (including myself), 14% are tanks, 29% are healers, and 57% are DPS.

Again, I know this has to be skewed, as many of the other women I see posting on the forums (who say proudly or at least generally admit they are in fact female), are healers in some way (or at least a class that can be a healer). I would wager a guess that statistics wise, it should look a little more like:

50% of women are healers
40% of women are DPS
10% of women are tanks

Again, I don't really have stats to back this up, it's just a wide generalization.

Why would more women choose to be a healer over any other class? Is there something more appealing to it to women, or is it something that the male counterparts they may be playing alongside request them to do? How many of these women play healers because they were asked to, not because they chose to? How many of these women play healers because they enjoy healing, and if that's the case, why do they enjoy it?

My theory is that the majority of female healers in the game are healers because they were asked to become healers, not because they wanted to be. I could very well have ended up as this exact example; the first role I was asked to fill was that of a tank, simply because we had few tanks. When that was remedied, I was immediately asked to become a healer instead. When the Paladin class was made available to the Horde, I was asked to become a Paladin, but it was not clear what role they wanted me to fill other than "Paladin." It is likely, though, I would have ended up specc'd Holy and never have even thought about tanking if I hadn't been so damn adamant about it on my own. (Incidentally, I'm glad I made that choice. =) )

In addition, most of the male healers I know play healers because they wanted to, not because they were asked to. Some people in general do enjoy the thrill of keeping someone safe and alive; I feel the same thing, just from a different perspective (I protect by being the person taking all the damage; I keep others alive by being the protector - all seemed very paladin-like to me). DPS seems to be a much more aggressive instinct, with the desire to pump numbers as high as possible, doling out the big damage and reaching prestige from that perspective.

That being said, is healing a maternal role, and therefore generally delegated to female players? And is tanking a masculine role, and therefore generally delegated to the male players? Females, traditionally, are the nurturer. I can understand why they would become the healers of the world; they care for others around them, and are therefore responsible for others' well-being and health. Males, traditionally, are the protectors and providers. I can understand them donning plate and stepping out in front to prevent any harm from coming to his woman, or his children, or his fellow comrades. All very stereotypical, but also understandable simply from a generalized historical point of view.

The role of DPS seems to be the only one that doesn't have a particular gender to it; it's simply destructive. Really, it's the antithesis of both other roles, though the game doesn't function without it. DPS is one of those things that confuses me; I'm never really sure if I enjoy it or dislike it. My two other favorite classes besides Paladin are Rogue and Mage (both undeniably DPS). I enjoy the stealth aspect of being a Rogue, and there is admittedly a little enjoyment in the whole backstabbing part of their functions (call it my sadistic side). Mage I really only like because I've mimicked one of my favorite and highest level D&D characters every time I've made one; beautiful but deadly, and on the inside, rotten to the core. Again, a very stereotypical character design, but it's one I've come to love. There's always an odd sense of entertainment that comes from lighting someone up. But again, that kind of hits the sadistic side of my personality; so is DPS only that? An extension of our desire to harm others?

Since I've already mentioned my take on DPS, let me re-outline the other two roles from my perspective:


I love tanking. I love the challenge in keeping the monster in my face and away from my friends. I love the idea that I am protecting others, a role I've always felt I'm never going to get to experience anywhere else - after all, to anyone who simply visually perceives me, I look like a little girl who needs to be protected (I'm 5'3" and weight less than 110 lbs; just the other day when I was getting carded at a grocery store, the clerk told me I looked 14). But I'm stronger than that, and being allowed that opportunity through a game is a treat for me. A taste of what I can hopefully one day do on my own. I guess I have more paternal instincts than I previously assumed. I can understand that; I grew up around two elder brothers and I'm daddy's little girl. I'm very tomboyish.

In antithesis, what is it about healing that I hate? I don't really know; I just find it boring. I would sit back and relegate myself to healer any time before level 70, simply so I could progress myself. Every time, I found it rather boring. I prefer being in on the head-to-head action. Somehow, even though I know I'm in one of the most important roles as a healer, I just don't get a sense of satisfaction out of it; I feel disjointed from the encounter. I hate it even more when I'm healing while still specc'd Prot simply because someone else is the "better tank" for the situation; because now I'm neither optimal, nor really contributing. They could be doing this just fine without me, and if I stood and did absolutely nothing, the odds are no one would notice until the healing charts were posted. That leaves me with a sense of dis-accomplishment (if that's a term, but hey, I'll use it anyway); I prefer leaving with a sense of "Hey, I did this and I did it right" rather than "Hey, I did this and I don't know if I did it right because they probably didn't notice or care."

Or maybe I just prefer being in the spotlight, being needed and wanted. Maybe it's a sense of belonging for me, of knowing everyone is happy for me to be there because I'm part of the team, and I'm important, loved, liked, whatever. Maybe it's for a sense of social security, even if it's in something silly like a virtual realm.

Beyond that, it might even be that I just like being unique and different. That sounds about right; after all, I'm an actor, right? And we're all full of ourselves. =P

I guess what it really comes down to is playing what you want; and everyone's tastes are different. It just happens to be interesting to note a pattern in relation to gender; that's really all this analysis is about. So even if I'm a little strange and go against the grain, it's not going to stop me. I love what I do, and I probably always will. Same goes for everyone else.

And really, I wouldn't have it any other way.