(Party) leaders and why you should respect themBy: Gamh posted at Jan 17, 2008 4:39 am
Although I like soloing, I do join the odd party here and there. One of the reasons I like soloing is that I HATE being the leader of a party, or being made the leader of the party. Leaders have the worst, and most thankless job in all MMORPGs.
Everyone who plays MMORPG on the odd occasion will know how it is for people to find tanks or healers. That job is made more difficult by the lackluster, or entirely absent in-game system for finding members. In which you can only spam the shout channels just to find that one guy/gal with the right job to fill your party.
Even if you have a good system for finding members in the game, things are not made any easier by the scarcity of either job in the game world. Being a tank or a healer are again, difficult and thankless job, because whenever a team member dies in a party, general consensus is that it is either the healer's, or the tank's fault. But that is another story for another time. Scarcity of tanks and healers means that they are always in high demand and hence it is always harder to get any of them. If you get either one, but couldn't get the other, you could always count on him or her leaving the party later. (“Thanks for the invite but I have another invite from a party that is lacking just a tank/healer”). And they are right. They have/feel no obligation to keep staying with you while you scour for another member.
Things are made even worse when your members don't seem to want to get their asses off the ground to help you find other members to fill up the spot. They would gladly go AFK during the search for other members and miraculously “come back” just when you just got the last spot filled in. They are more than happy to leave the job of finding members to the leader. Even if the leader gets the party going, members are sometimes hard to deal with, and always complaining (too little exp) etc, and it is usually the leader who gets himself/herself put in a bad light.
A good leader requires a lot of knowledge of how the in game combat system works and consider which job combinations in the party are the best, which area is best to hunt in for that particular level range etc. He or she needs to be able to keep the party together, operating at their peak and tell members what to do to improve their performance and whatnot. I can probably do all that, after I familiarized myself with how the game works through websites and forums.
The true reason I shun leadership of a party is that I believe that besides getting the party together for experience points, a party should be fun and enjoyable for all of the members. I don't usually start parties unless I have a few friends that I am familiar with who are available and want to join up for a party. That is because by my own judgment, those guys/gals are cool and should be able to get along with each other. A party should not only be communicating between themselves on the strategies, but also chatting, and building a relationship henceforth. That is how you make friends that you can get along with. The best parties that I have are made up from my friends that I happened to know when I am in a pick-up party. My friendlist is made up of people whom I enjoy partying with, not people that gave me great EXP. And I also believe my friends should know my other friends as well, just like you would introduce your RL friends to each other.
I understand why and how hard it is to start a party. That is why I respect each and everyone person out there who has the initiative and courage to start and lead one. For everyone who reads this, I hope that in the future you would look at your leader in a different light. Even if he/her clueless about where to go to hunt what, respect him/her, for he/she did something you didn't. He/She started the party and made the subsequent Experience points party possible.
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