Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Blaugust Day 19 - Paying it forward in MMO's

Something happened to me today in Eve Online that I felt might make an interesting post. Eve is notorious for its unforgiving community, people that would rather rip you off or blow you out of the sky rather than give you a helping hand, but I'm here today to tell you that is not the whole picture.

Today, I learnt more and was offered more generosity than I've had in my almost 6 months in the game, all thanks to one fellow gamer who just loves to give back. Not only did he advise me on a new fit for my mission running ship, but he taught me about Jump Clones, Augmentations and even offered me a ship I've not yet been able to afford to buy.

Now I've been veteran of LOTRO for 5 years and when I first started, I got similar help. The community was such, back then at least, that more experienced players were willing to offer tips and guide new players through their first steps and beyond. In return, as years passed, I did the same. I've helped countless people through the Legendary Item system, taught complete newbies how to tank or heal and crafted more suits of armour and weapons than I care to count. Last year, I rolled characters on a second server, Landroval, where I acted as mentor for a ton of new players as part of the Coursera course on MMO's. I still play with that group and I see the ones I taught passing on the knowledge to newcomers, paying it forward.

This, to me, is what makes an MMO so special. You can teach someone to play a game, as I might teach my daughter to play Snakes and Ladders (as I did last week) and have in impact on their memory of the game. I was surprised to find it in Eve, given the reputation, thought we should all remember, we're all human behind our keyboards, after all.

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