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Category Archives: Massivly Multiplayer

Gaming with greater than 150 people at a time.

MMOs, a How-To

At some point in time as a gamer we all come across an MMO, or Massively-Multiplayer-Online game. These range in form from the adorable and addictive Worms-esque Gunbound(which I technically do not consider an MMO) to the extremely hyped and well selling World of Warcraft. Today I will go through some basic concepts that will help you excel in whichever MMO you are currently wasting your time and/or money playing.

Gunbound, watch out Trico your running out of time!

Gain wealth and prosper

When I was a newer player to MMOs I would generally blow through my gold/credits/whatever currency fairly quickly as I was leveling up. This posed a problem for me because as the levels climbed things became more expensive, and some games may have gold sinks in place at certain levels in the form of mounts or housing that you must save your gold for to access these features.

My first piece of advice is to save your gold. Sounds easy right? But it is very tempting to buy a whole new set of armor every level from the Auction House. At first it seems like the extra 2 stamina and 3 strength from buying that new shiny helm is worth the 10g but 10g times 6-12 armor pieces every level is not sustainable.

A small jump in damage for probably a large lump of gold.

Get your armor mainly from quests and instances. The developers weren’t just putting items in all willy-nilly. They generally set up the gear progression to be able to keep up with the content. Yes there are some upgrades that are random drops or craftable as you level but try to only buy one or 2 of these pieces every 10 or so levels. You will outgrow them soon anyways.

Save your money for A) Mounts, as these will help you level faster because less travel time = more killing time, and B) End game, there will be tons of great gear for you to purchase at level cap. And if you get to max level with only 50g because you bought every piece of armor under the sun only to vendor it in 2 levels you wont be a happy Elf.

Micro, Micro, Micro!

The easiest way to up your game is to learn how to Micro manage. This can be as simple as changing your keybinds for your spells in WoW, or as hardcore as learning all of the Hotkeys for Starcraft and never click-activating again.

For MMORPGs the best way to be an efficient player is to refrain from clicking your skills as much as you can. Even actions such as target select, or friendly select can be relegated to a button. If the game supports macro functions(hit ESC, look at the menu and there should be a ‘Macro’ button there which opens a new macro building window) then you should google up some useful macros. A ‘macro’ is a 1 click button that will do a complicated series of actions for you which would normally require more than 1 button press or mouse click.

The below macro screen shows an advanced macro. It makes it so the player can cast a healing spell ‘Lifebloom’ without even pressing a button, all the player is required to do is move the mouse over the ally and if the spell is not on cooldown and that ally is not at full health the spell will cast.

A WoW Druid's macro screen

So yes, rewire your keybinds so that you no longer have to click health/mana potions with the mouse. Useful keybinds players may use are Q,E,R,T,F,G,Z,X,C. These are all near the WASD movement keys and are usually premapped as things such as Crouch, or Unsheath weapon… things that don’t really need to be mapped at all.

Grab a group

Even if you are just starting out and don’t know anything about the game, let alone anyone in the gameworld, you should branch out and try to make nice with some people. These guys will not only be a friend but they will more often than not end up helping you a great deal. It’s always more fun to have people to talk to and relate to so joining a guild or playing with the same group of people from day to day will enhance your experience.

A lot of MMOs nowadays use group content to form a barrier between casuals and hardcore players. With a guild or solid group of online friends these tasks will become markedly easier, though still may require a good bit of practice.  As an added bonus the group you play with will be likely to comp items to you or trade with you for a reduced price, further increasing your characters power.

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Posted by on February 26, 2011 in Massivly Multiplayer

 

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