Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The Forest For The Trees

You know the saying. Can't see the forest for the trees. Sometimes it's very easy to miss the big picture while focusing on the details. The following is a meandering story with a somewhat cogent point at the end. Read at your own risk.

I have a very good friend who also happens to be an uber talented mage. She can make her little gnome avatar unleash a hurt that would make deathwing himself tremble in terror. Around our guild we call her "The Nuke."

I'm proud to say that I was the person who got her and her husband in to WoW. We were co-workers and both big video game nerds and her hubby was looking in to WoW. He came over to our server and joined our guild and she followed suit shortly thereafter. That was early BC and we've all been playing together since. We've all stuck together through guild melt-downs and various other wow drama. She was a bridesmaid for my wife and her husband performed our wedding ceremony so needless to say we're a tight-knit crew.

Near the end of Wrath we had all been in a guild that had another meltdown and we migrated to a new home only to have my wife's computer die and various other RL crap keep the both of us from playing much. Our nuke decided she wanted to try a big raiding guild as raids are what she loves and excels at. With her level of skill she was easily accepted and left a trail of charred and magic scarred corpses through the end of the last expansion.

After fixing the wife's comp and getting our stuff together we came in near the end of wrath, cleared LK and got our house in order. Our nuke still wanted to stay big and although we missed her we realized that we couldn't provide the hardcore raiding atmosphere she wanted and we were happy she was happy.

We were kept up to date on how things were going in her guild and it got me thinking. They were having her change specs back and forth due to theoretical dps gains then benched her when her dps wasn't on par with their expectations. While min/maxing can be a good thing and you need a bit of it to succeed don't lose sight of the big picture.

To put a cap on the story our nuke finally got fed up with the BS and came on back to us. I know we can't give her the same level of progression she had but it is good to have old friends back in the fold. The shortsightedness of her former guild lost them a mage that I would put up against all but the no-lifers. They can suck it thought... we got our nuke back.

Now on to the point. If  EJ or some other min/max site states that X is better than Y you need to think long and hard before letting your class leads dictate required specs. If a player has a preferred spec make sure you think long and hard before asking them to change it. Aside from the fact that occasionally EJ is *gasp* wrong sometimes the gains are so marginal that it's not worth having someone try to change the way they do things. Remember alot of min/max sites are for raiders who are on the bleeding edge of content and even most of the larger raiding guilds aren't at this level.

This principle applies to more than spec. If someone has a way of doing things make sure you take the time to find out why before asking them to change anything. Sometimes you have to say "Honestly an Arms specced tank won't quite work." but you may find variations on standard specs that work really well for certain people or add the much needed "utility."

In the end it's good to keep an open mind about this stuff. Don't let EJ or any other website do the thinking for you or your guildies. First hand knowledge is the best hand knowledge.

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