Friday, January 8, 2010

Why I enjoy Vote Kicking

After almost three years of WoW playing I thought that I knew Larísa pretty well. I was aware of her strengths and weaknesses, I had a good picture of what in the game that makes her happy, excited, annoyed or bored and I was aware of how she would fit into a group.

Little did I know! It took the new random dungeon finder system to make me realize it. All this time there I had missed that there was a full-fledged Jerk living inside this seemingly merry little gnome, just waiting to be let out.

The transformation
Larísa the Patient. Even before the title appeared this used to be a good way to describe me in the game. I’ve always tried to look over the shortcomings of other people, focusing on whatever good side I could see in them, well aware of I too have less flattering sides. Until this very day Larísa has been the proud owner of a completely empty Ignore List. I guess I’ve just never encountered anyone who could put me in a truly aggressive mode. And of course I never dreamed of booting anyone from a group, either I was the leader or not.

The X-realm pugs changed it all. Suddenly I’m happily pushing this button that magically makes a trapdoor open in the floor, just as they did in old comics. And to my surprise I don’t feel bad or guilty about it for a second! All I sense is relief, a pleasure almost on par with some boss kills, making me happily exclaim in our guild chat: “Yay, I just vote kicked someone!”

So far it has happened twice. On both occasions the players who were kicked had key roles, as a tank respective as a healer. This probably added to the enjoyment.

You see, as a dps you’re taught from the very first day in game that you are easily replaceable, while tanks and healers should be worshiped and cuddled since they’re rare, easily offended and hard to swap out. The dps guy is a Nobody, as opposed to those Somebody healing and tanking people. If you have a Somebody in your group, you should just be grateful, compensating for whatever stupidity they show, since it might be hard to find someone to take their place.

But apparently there is a limit even to how much crap a dps Nobody is prepared to put up with. And when that line is crossed, it’s time to take action!

My vote kicks
The first Larísa initiated vote kick event took place in Culling of Stratholme. We had a sub-par tank who had given us a rather bumpy ride through the instance, constantly failing to pick up the adds, forcing us to use all our oh-shit-abilities as soon as they were up just to stay alive.

However, as we were heading down the stairs, this dk suddenly rushed away far ahead the party, aggroing a huge amount of mobs, without thinking for a second about where the healer was (far behind, out of sight of course). And as we ran in after the inevitable wipe, he did the same thing over again, not giving a thought about that the party was at half health, unbuffed and still out of sight. In my world, one error like this is acceptable, but two is not, especially not when the one who’s caused it apparently thought it was funny, judging from his lols in the party chat. I smiled as I initiated the vote kick. And it didn’t take us 15 seconds before we had a new tank. A proper one.

The second vote kick incident involved a healer in Oculus of all places. As we started the run, this guy began to ask for all sorts of achievements he wanted to do. Or “ask” is the wrong expression, he rather demanded it. The party was somewhat reluctant to obey, especially since some of the exclude-one-type-of-dragon achievements are a bit tricky and not so easily combined with the speed-run achievement. Realizing that he might not get every achievement on his wish list, the healer promptly stopped healing the tank, leaving him to die on the trash mobs. I was furious, if you can imagine such a thing as a furious pink pigtailed gnome. The vote-kick came up instantly and I didn’t hesitate for a second as I pushed the yes-button.

The benefits of vote kicking
Basically vote kicking should be something sad and regrettable, being a last resort, a measure used only in cases of emergency. Still I can’t help enjoying it, for several reasons. One is obviously that it solves an immediate problem. You have a player works in the opposite direction of the group. Remove him and you’ll reach your goals more easily without wasting your time and gold. Period. But apart from this, I think it gives us all the opportunity to let out some steam and aggression we’re carrying, either we know about it or not. It’s a bit like hitting a punching bag. And finally it knits the remaining group together. Vote kicking is a team building activity.

So now the secret is out. Larísa can be a Jerk when she has to. She even enjoys it!
The ignore list remains empty however, for some reason.


Klepsacovic said...

Unfortunately, I can't get into vote-kicking. It's too... democratic. If it's not good old fashioned tank-as-leader kick, it's just not a proper kick. Maybe I just miss being able to kick people at any time; none of this "it's not been 15 minutes so I get to be a retard" crap or "you were added in to an instance in progress because the shitty party kicked someone who pointed out how shitty they are, so there are no more vote kicks available, so the prot warrior who is pretending to DPS with a level 70 quest reward and a shield; he's staying."

Fitz said...

I'm still too forgiving and patient I think, as I have not initiated a vote kick yet. I have agreed to one three times when everyone else insisted due to AFK and other shenanigans. I guess I've been lucky so far in the PUG paradise.

Or to steal from Elnia's post, I guess I haven't gotten stricken with an STD yet, but I'll keep playing the risk because I like the loot (hooray to metaphors).

Gevlon said...

"Yes, yes, show them no mercy! Give no pause to your attacks!"

Tessy said...

Hmm no, sorry, I don't think that qualifies as jerkish behaviour :P

Kicking the tank for the bumpy ride only would have been jerkish. Doing it for him deliberatly giving you a bumpy ride and laughing at you when dying is not jerkish.

The healer seems to be a more dodgy case - if he didn't sulk or say anything else in party chat about him refusing to heal unless he got his achs it is possible it could have been an honest mistake due to lag or other distractions - cat upturned his coffeee in his lap, baby woke up, mom/spouse/someone came in screaming at him, whatever.

So ok, possibly you were being a Jerk in the Oculus :-)

zetter said...

Hmm I am still forgiving a bit of this.
We had a dps type in COS again (its always this one isnt it). To be honest the person was putting out good dps and the only slightly annoying thing they were doing as a Shammy was knicking a couple of the mobs back.
The tank got a bit irked about this and comments were exchanged then a vote to kick came up I declined as this wasnt to be a hienous crime.
I didnt find it an issue the main thing I was doing was healing the ret pally who seemed determined to out heal the tank.

I think the kick request was explained in part when we finished and the tank got the acheivment "heroic COS" so was probably a confidence thing for the tank.

I think I am reluctant to kick people who are not total Tards as I know for DPS its a hell of a queue to get into the place compaed to me as a healer.


Dan said...

Outside of using vote kick to remove a disconnected player, I have used it three times; twice on tanks and once on a DPS and only once on a level 80 group.

SSB Jezi said...

Vote kicking is fantastic!

Larísa said...

@Magma: I’ve been fortunate enough never to see that kind of behaviour. The only votes for kicking I’ve seen were the ones that I wholeheartedly agreed with. I was a bit worried about abuse and bullying following the system, but I have yet to see it in reality. This doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist, only that I haven’t seen it.

: Well, the thing is probably that I’ve so rarely been in the tank-leader-position, that I enjoy my new power. It’s great for a change!

@Lath: I’ve been quite lucky I think – most CoS runs I’ve done have been excellent – well apart from the rant dimension of it – the rp/lore thing I liked to begin with is tedious now. But this CoS run was an exception.

@Fitz…. Hm… you’re suggesting that my new jerkiness is an STD, a result of too much pugging? You’re probably right.

@Gevlon: cheers!

@Tessy: there was no question about the healer – he wasn’t AFK, this was a demonstration of his power. But not even a Sombody healer has that power any more. The vote kick option is there for them as well.

@Zetter: I still forgive quite a lot I think. I’m a little bit surprised though to see that I actually can enjoy vote kicking people. I guess it’s partly about feeling some sort of power, partly about the “revenge is sweet” ape subroutine.

Hatch said...

Yes! Larisa kickin' ass and takin' names!

Personally, I think they should make the vote kick feature more robust (and get rid of the 15 minute wait completely!). A comparatively tiny number of abuses by groups of 4 guildies is vastly outweighed by the benefits of being able to kick a total idiot or jerk immediately.


"I was furious, if you can imagine such a thing as a furious pink pigtailed gnome."

Oh yes I can. She'd be bright red, vibrating, and making growling sound that constantly escalated in pitch and volume. How adorable!

Anonymous said...

I have initiated a vote to kick twice. One was a DK tank that couldn't hold threat and died on every big pull in H-PoS. I dialed my DPS back to less than 2.5k and he still couldn't hold threat. He couldn't even keep threat of the healer (which should be trivial for a DK). When he starting bitching at the healer we kicked him. The next tank was a warrior with almost 50k hitpoints.

The second was a hunter in H-PoS that was doing 1k DPS and only had one trinket equipped. When I asked him about it, he had just spent all his money on dual spec and couldn't afford a trinket. Great choice--now the guy had two DPS specs and sucks at both of them. /kick

I actually got kiced once from H-HoR. We were chain wiping at the entrance while LoS pulling. We were marking targets and was threat capped at around 3k DPS. I got kicked because "my DPS was too low." I was doing almost 40% of the groups DPS, even while constantly threat capped....

G-Rebel said...

Every vote kick I've agreed to has been legit. Someone disconnected or even asked to leave (yes, asked, how polite is that?). But I have witnessed a couple times (before being able to click yes or no) that someone was kicked because they made a mistake. To me that was petty and immature.

Only a hypocrite demands perfection. Alas, it's still a fine feature when put to good use. Many will abuse any tool you give to them, but I think most I've ran with favor prudence over rashness.

Walgierz said...

Never votekicked anyone, but my fingertips itched for this more than once.
As for mostly-guild groups, I simply leave them immediately if I want anything out of dungeon drops.
I rather wait off 15 mins than risk getting kicked for rolling on something someone else wants.

Miss Medicina said...

I have hovered my mouse over the vote kick option many many times... but I still can't bring myself to click it! One day soon I'll be "Jerk" enough to do it too... I feel emboldened by Larisa's ability to do it!

krizzlybear said...

I for one am not hesitant to kick a player for just being a complete asshole. Some doucheknight from the Whirlwind battlegroup whined obscenities at me in a random HoS pug because I was specced Frost. FFS, it's just a HoS! One Sojonir and 7k dps later, I laughed at him and added him to my ignore list, seeing as it was pointless to kick at that point. Best feeling ever, however.

Eus said...

(Stands up and applauds) BRAVO!

gnomeaggedon said...

She's got the heart of a Warlock I tells ya ;-)

I can hear the cackling from here...

It's nice to be able to clear the rubbish from the group, which doesn't include those that are just 80 and making their way in the world.

I wonder if votekicking douchebags breeds more douchebaggery

Kromus said...

I never had trouble with the old system, so not so fussed about this.

Its good if the party leader is an arse but if your the party leader i'd prefer a clean boot.

Cipri said...

Yes, thank god for vote kicking.
Helped out group get rid of a prot pally in a DPS spot yesterday that spend half the fight healing instead of 'DPS'ing. Not that our 245+ geared healer needed the help or anything...

Orcstar said...

Knockbacking shamans, druids or mages are not a minor nuisance to a tank, they are a big deal of frustration to the point that it feels like the person doing it is doing it to grief you. Look, I'm a good tank. I pull the mobs, turn them around and I face the party. This way my party is safe from any kind of cone, damage abilities cleaves and if one breaks loose I can easily correct it. Then comes mister shaman with his knockback. Result: I can't hit them anymore and on top of that the mobs are now hitting me from all sides instead of my back. Why oh why does someone deliberately want to make my life harder? Why? Seriously, tanks should have skill, that when cast cancels all knockback effects a friendly player can do for the next hour or so.

On the note of votekicking. I have used it once to get rid of someone calling me a c-sucker in his own language. Luckily I had guidlies who could translate because behaviour like that is unacceptible.

Larísa said...

I’m not sure about the 15 min thing. The risk is that you would chain-kick tanks and others until you got the exact group composition you preferred. And the idea about the random dungeons is that you can’t bee too picky – you’ve been compensated already by extra emblems and damage buff… But yeah, sometimes it’s very tempting. So I can understand it from that perspective too.

: ouch. That kick of you sounds silly. Reminds me of the event Krizzybear at Frost is the New Black recently described.

@G-Rebel: I have yet to see it abused personally tbh. So far the two kicks I’ve seen were very well deserved.

: interesting that you leave mostly-guild groups. I like to see them, because often it means a much smoother run.

@Stupid Mage: you can add people to it but you need to use special commands or do it before they left the instance, clicking on their portrait. However I haven’t even tried. I guess I never lose hope about people, wanting to believe that they’ve learned their lesson and improved to the next time.

@Miss Medicina: yay, go, go, go!

: the revenge is so sweet. Try the vote kick as well – for someone who deserves it ofc – and you’ll enjoy it!

@Eus: thanks!

: hm… I don’t think so tbh. Either you’re a douchebag or you’re not. I don’t think my votekicking of them will make them get any worse.

Carra said...

It's a lot more obvious if a tank or healer are fucking up. When they do you'll wipe.

Noticing a bad DPS is harder. Most heroic bosses can be done with tank/healer and maybe one DPS. If you have one DPS who dies quite a lot and doesn't keep up with the other DPS he'll just slow you down a bit and not wipe the party.

xor said...


"It's a lot more obvious if a tank or healer are fucking up. When they do you'll wipe."

What I find more unfortunate are the DPS that kill the group without even knowing it. "friendly fire" in recount tells the story, but most dps have it set to "damage done" or something equally useless.

As a druid healer I've encountered dps that fail to stop during Mirrored Soul (FOS). They will focus fire the boss when it's on me (or another party member), and then scream about fail healing when I die.

I've also had the same issue with Overlord's Brand (POS). A lot of dps don't seem to understand that the red beam that joins them to the tank is a damage link, and all damage they do to the boss will be passed to the tank (making my job 2x harder because now I'm healing boss damage on the tank +1 DPS damage on the tank).

The worst part of all this is getting kicked from a group for "fail healing" when the dps don't stop at the right times. It's very easy to blame the healer when they can't/won't heal through stupid.

Unfortunately these are "stupid checks" that Blizzard adds to make encounters more challenging, but all it really does is create opportunities for bad dps to blame the tank or healer for their mistakes.

I just roll my eyes and quit the group, or take the kick and put them on ignore if it gets out of hand. You'll never get those people to admit their mistakes. They're too busy dishing out criticism to hear anything you have to say.

Cantique said...

I was pugkicked because I got lost after a wipe and everyone ran back in ahead of me and I couldn't find the group. At the very beginning of the run I communicated that I was unfamiliar with the area but did the group have time to listen? Being unfamiliar with a place happens to everyone at least once. Because of that I will never vote to kick someone for being lost, I will do my best to find them and get back together with the group . . .

I have voted to kick someone once. They came in, sat down and went AFK. What is the deal with that? So we had to wait for the ability to kick and find a new dps. That sucked.

And about DPSers that deal "friendly damage" ... again lack of communication. I did not know that Mirrored Soul thing. No-one mentioned it. Nor did I know about the overlords brand. I learned something here. Too bad the lack of communication in pugs is so prevelant.

I honestly think there should be a "comment box" for the "Kickers" so the Kickee can at least get some feed back as to what they did wrong and maybe how to correct their issue.

I don't like to kick, because I know what it feels like to be kicked.

Chastity said...

On the Oculus run:

I hate, with a burning firey passion, people who insist on going for achievements in instance PuGs.

It always goes the same way.

[achiewhore]: [On the Rocks] ;)
[rest of group: silence
[achiewhore]: dont brake the frost tombs
[rest of group]: silence
[dbm]: Prince Kesseleth Engaged
[dbm]: Frost Tomb on imthehealer
[imthehealer]: Hlep! I am dying, break me out or we will wipe!
{frost tomb takes 4500 damage from Temitope's Heart Strike}
[achiewhore]: u bunch of noobs! i sed dont brake tombs!
achiewhore has left the group