Dec 072011

by Elearic

Are you an Elitist Jerk with no life, or a scrub noob with no skills? It seems that for many, that question can be answered by your opinion of damage meters.

Most of us that have played MMO’s for years can give countless examples of a damage meter being used by someone who, let’s just say, hasn’t reached max level with their social skills. They try to grab aggro from the tank, they post the meter every time they happen to be on top, and they attack your play style, gear and rotation. They want to kick you if THEY think your damage is too low. My personal favorites are the players that pad their dps stats by nuking every harmless critter in the instance, or using aoe’s and CD’s on trash mobs, just to get that boost for overall damage.

On the other side, are the players who use damage meters as an analytical tool. They want to see which rotation works best, who is using interrupts, overall activity level, who was hitting the right target, and a variety of other useful stats. They constantly monitor their own rotation and build, trying to squeeze every last bit of dps out of their character. They collect and analyze this data in order to fine tune both their own contributions as well as that of their teammates, with an eye toward progression. Many players will even privately whisper someone who is struggling and offer to help. Maybe they need one more piece of gear, a change to their rotation, or a slight respec.

What do you think? Are damage meters necessary tools used to fine tune your performance in your favorite hobby? Are they a tool that allows players to conquer more challenging raids because they help players maximize their characters potential? Are they simply a means to force people into cookie cutter builds and rotations that eliminate personal choice? Do they promote elitism while providing no overall benefit to you gaming experience?

[poll id=”2″]

  26 Responses to “Damage Meters: The Great Debate”

  1. Nice article for a elitist jerk ( joking here )

    Ok this is a awsome debate while my personal opinion is that DPS meters are NOT needed to take on tough content. There have been some good arguments made on how it can help a person. Far to many times though these meters promote elitism and just bring down the game. After hours of debate on this subject I have swayed to the point that I would accept a DPS meter that ONLY the player could see and then he can reach out for help from his fellow guild.

    Who knows maybe with more debate I can we swayed to not be so negative twards DPS meters but I have always been on the bad end of these meters so I am extremely against them . Maybe we will have a better community in SWTOR than in WoW were I had horrible experience with meters and add-ons.

    Good writing Elearic keep up the good work and always stand your ground when you think you are right 🙂

  2. I so hate hearing about damage meters, I can see where they can be a good thing, but I play games to have fun, enjoy the good times with my friends and guildies, and relax. I do not play games to play with spreadsheets and try and squeeze that 1 more dps out of my character. If you like doing that go for it, just leave me out of your figuring

  3. I’m a tank, so damage meters only matter to me when people abuse them and become reckless in order to top the charts. If you’re pulling things off me in order to top the chart then you’re doing it wrong. Cut it out or I’m going to stop playing aggro tug-of-war with you and just let you have the boss/trash mobs/etc. I’ll take it back when you’ve had enough.

    Now, if you use it as an investigative or educational tool then that’s fine. Unfortunately that’s usually not the case, however.

  4. Great write up!

    I am in agreement with Wildfires. I think they can be helpful, but more times than not they are used to promote an elitist mentality.

    I have been called a “carebear” type of gamer, but honestly whether it is damage meters or various add-ons…who is the gamer looking for that “crutch”? I think playing the game as it is, requires a player to pay more attention and think more on what CC or AoE etc needs to used.

    Again great article! 🙂

  5. i think if you want to be #1 then it will help out and shows who is not pulling there wait in raids

  6. Elitism sucks in a casual guild system, It can cause a lot of chaos in guilds. The care bear side(republic) will need a lot of help on the pvp style, So they would need this tool.”Lol” Evil will turn upon itself, PvP. Hate when they compare Swtor to wow. Panda`s really?

    Maybe the poll should be, Elitism vs Casual player?

  7. I use them becouse I like being #1, and only like grouping with the best. It is a tool for me to see if some one is being pulled…Becouse I dont wait to be on the same fight for 4 or 5 hours a day, day after day or week after week. I want to get in and out of the raid as fast as i can ……So DONT WASTE MT TIME.
    Go all out or just dont go at all…
    My raid. My rules. My way
    If you dont like, Don’t ask to group with me becouse i will not like grouping with you

  8. I’m playing Republic and a casual player and do not want this tool. 😉

    I’m trying to understand how rankings got in MMOs. You can tell who is pulling their weight in raids/pvp events etc. without a damage meter. It is not always because they stink either, maybe they are new. We all at one point have been the newbie…like myself I still am LOL!

  9. There is nothing wrong with being new and I just don’t want a new player to hold me and 19 other guild members back from doing what we love to do, there are guilds out there that are good and willing to help out new players in the game. me or my guild is not one of them. and I would like to say if your new the meter can help you out by decisive telling you, what you did wrong and what you did right, so your game play will be more pleasurable .
    just because your new, and I will not let you join my guild or my raid. This is not saying your a bad players everybody is new to MMO at one point in time. you could become a better player them me and after your better them me, I will use the meter to see what I’m doing wrong vs. what your doing right so I can become a better player with out slowing my raid or guild down. And them I will be requesting you to join my guild because your better them me
    It is just a tool to help everybody.. that’s all Jason

  10. IGN pays me to be the first and i gave them how it was done. i use then all the time

  11. If used in the right way they can help out the raid your on

  12. I didn’t vote because I didn’t like either of my two options. And I think you wrote about the option I would have voted for, but didn’t put it in the poll. I vote C: I use them analytically, but don’t abuse them.

    I think there is a place for them, but it’s not a necessity. Knowing what you’re capable of and learning to do something better is always good, but you don’t have to be prickish about it.

    I’ve been the guy that is off on his rotation or spec and I usually ask players I know and trust for help, how can I do things differently and better. I’ve gotten some great feedback and I’ve learned to give it to others (when requested) as well.

    Alas, there are the Elitist Jerks out there, that REQUIRE you be flawless and those idiots loose all understanding of what these games are for… FUN and ENJOYMENT. Ridiculing someone for a bad spec (in their opinion) or not topping the damage meter, is pure snobbery. I avoid these players whenever possible and so should you.

  13. As a raid leader, they’re a useful diagnostic tool to help work out where we’re having problems if a given encounter is giving us trouble. However, I’d be just as happy with a combat log that could be subsequently parsed to extra DPS numbers. Not necessary to have it real-time via an in-game interface, though that is certainly more convenient.

    Ultimately, any issues that arise from DPS meters are social. “That guy”, if he isn’t spamming the DPS meter (and it’s a rule that whoever spams the meter will have been highest on the last fight), would be trolling in some other obnoxious way. At least the DPS output is objective data!

    As far as forcing people to play their best… well, the alternative is that players can be terrible and have no way to even realise that whatever they’re doing isn’t working. Isn’t it better to know for sure how you’re doing, rather than having to guess?

    Perhaps the best compromise would be for an in-game damage meter that shows only your personal DPS. That gives you the feedback to know how to get better if you choose, without any ability to be griefed by others. I’d still like that out-of-band combat log parsing, though!

  14. I’ve played content where I had to analyze my damage output and we had to know how everyone was doing because the content was stupidly over-complicated. I did it, but I didn’t enjoy it or the mindset that came with it. I would just as soon not have to run a meter or see the epeen that goes with it.

  15. I see damage meters as a double edge sword, on one hand it could be used as a tool to help new players to the game to find new combination.

    On the other hand it could be a source of great pain and misery to those players who get laugh at by the elitist jerks who only care about being the best of the best in PVP and Raiding.

    Either way they are not necessary to play the game.

  16. HAHAHAHA THIS AGAIN!!! LOL, i really don’t care if they are in the game or not. I will do enough of my own research to figure out what the best way for me to maximize my DPS and don’t need a meter to help me… This does mean reading up on patch notes etc and follow the “FORUMS” gosh forbid!

    Hopefully when I raid, I will raid with like minded people and the meters won’t be an issue. I’ll know if I’m not pulling my own weight…

    Elearic, did you not get enough info last night??? LOLOLOLO 😀


  17. Welcome to CRR, Elearic! Great article. Personally I’m torn on DPS meters. When used as a tool, they can be a great help. When used by tools, they can be pretty annoying.

    As a healer, I’m looking at the healing aspect on these meters. I’ve been in guilds where my HPS was as important as the DPS. Frankly, now I’ve left all the hardcore raiding behind, I’m happy if we beat the boss and people are alive. Also since moving over to tank healing, it’s pretty obvious if I’m doing my job. Tank alive? Job done.

    Thanks for the awesome article! I’m looking forward to seeing more.

  18. No thx for meters, but next poll should be is 13th for early access a good idea?

  19. What about support classes? If I am a dps class specced out to help the raid or party, how will the leader know?

    If I am a Juggernaut dps, and spend points in Sundering Armor… it will help everyone elses dps, but mine will suffer because of the points spent there instead of on more dps.

  20. In regards to the article; from my experience there are more elitest jerks than there are helpfull hobyists. Or at least they are the most vocal by far and through their bad attitudes and exclusive antisocial behavior, ruin the game experience for everyone.

    I believe meters can and do help, but for me, the cost is too high. You can play the game perfectly fine without them and if it happens to make it a little harder for a raid leader to spot the rotten egg in the bunch, so be it.

    Perhaps we’ve come to be too dependant on them.

  21. I just voted Yes and it’s 33-32 now. I guess that says all about how split the community is. The actual question was do I like damage meters? And yes I do but I don’t mind if they don’t make any in tor. Some indication of my performance would be helpful in case im doing something awfully wrong but in most cases in other mmo’s like LotRO i’ve had no need for it – its a group effort working together to get the shit down.

  22. Damage Meters are a neat novelty device , but anyone using it to decide whether or not I can play with them can go on my ignore list. I play for fun, not to be some numbers nerd’s math problem. Personally the less UI the better for me, I like to be able to actually watch what is happening in the game and that’s already hard enough trying to watch ability cooldowns and resources….don’t want any other number crap to look at.

    Might as well play one of those old text games if the numbers matter so much. I’d rather my character look good and have cool animations than ever really care about my Dumbass Power Score (DPS). On second thought, I want lots of DPS “Donuts Per Second” 😀

  23. Real nice post. I always play DPS and always use a meter but I never even tell any1 I have one as I use it to make myself better. So I say we should have one.

    But I see why people are against them as if a wipe happens in a pug (and even in some guilds…) idiots start calling people.

    Great idea to have a one for self/guild though. Would be nice if could be done.


  24. Nice topic. I for one enjoy having the DPS meter in place and I would like to explain why.

    As written earlier, it can be used as a tool to analyze performance and is beneficial to a progressing raid team.

    This does not mean that I’m not tired of the elitist mentality.

    Like any tool or item created by human hands, it will always be misused by individuals that have the social intelligence of a dingle-berry. The fact is, we are not thier baby-sitters. Nor should we tolerate thier behavior. There is more to advancing the goals of the raid team than just how much DPS you can pull. It’s called team-work. Healers as well as DPS need to monitor thier aggro thresholds as well as maintaining tactical awareness during encounters. I’d rather have a team-player that understands thier role in the group than have someone that has UBER DPS. It’s the leader’s job to make sure that thier team is ready for the encounters and coordinates everything so the DPS/healing/CC’s/interrupts and all that goes with it are up to par. Having a dps meter is an invaluable tool. Every class and role have strengths and weaknesses that should be exploited and improved upon respectively. It’s called team-work. If you have the social apptitude of a cantelope, well guess what….You aren’t pulling your weight in the team.

    Simply put, you won’t stop idiots being idiots, but you can decide who and who is not worthy of your time when it comes to having fun in the game. The real issue is not that the DPS meter is the problem, it’s the people causing problems that are the cancer in MMO’s.

  25. Meh, I take them or leave them. In my experience they have caused more problems than they have solved though.

  26. +1 Sose

    Data is never good or bad, the way it is used is. I voted I love them, even though of course I do not reach the fanatism displayed by the option. As a casual player enjoying theorycrafting this tool is very valuable and can clarify a fog about who helped and who slacked. Of course, kill the boss, have fun, everything’s fine, peace and love. Everybody knows that winning is not a matter of DPS, it’s a matter of team play. If I save my healer by taking the aggro because the tank is disabled and i end up dead, i saved the group, I am a good dmg dealer (even though my dps would be very low).

    The problem is when your group struggle to get this boss down that suddenly, everybody starts wondering what went wrong. DPS meters are an interesting analysing tool that won’t tell you who is good and who sucks, but it will definitely help you doing it. It will help you noticing the improvement of your team mates, and show you how little changes in your rotation for instance, change your effective damage output.

    So everybody hates elitist jerks, but one should not forget that hating jerks do not mean hating their tools. DPS meter is a great tool, and /ignore jerks should be enough for having fun and being tight on timings and rotations. No need to get into an MMO to realize that Jerks are more visible than cool guys. Look around you and be honest guys =)

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