Tuesday, December 9, 2008

The humiliation of a noob jumper

I was never any star when we had athletics at school. On the contrary. Whenever the teacher announced that we were going to the sport stadium to run, jump or throw things, I shrank. I knew that meant that I’d spend hours being humiliated. Getting hurt by the high jump bar falling down at the lowest of heights, to the amusement of others. Reaching the goal on the running track in twice the amount of time as anyone else. Throwing the ball such a short distance that it wasn’t worth taking measures. Not to speak of long jump, which in my case rather should be called short jump.

I came to think about this when I was humiliated again, doing my first Naxxramas 10 man raid last week. Our guild had already cleared two wings earlier during the week and now it was time for the Construct Quarter. It turned out that there were a couple of greenish floods which you had to cross, preferably jumping, since they hurt a lot. One of them was doable, even for me. Not the first time, but since we had a couple of wipes on Grobbulus and Gluth, I got the opportunity to practice. The second flow though, was a mystery to me. Not one single time did I get over without being drained on mana as well as health. Is it doable to jump it without touching the water? I don’t know. Not to me as it seems.

Jumping platforms
But this wasn’t the Big Humiliation during this evening; the flood was only the appetizer. The horror which made me think about athletics at school was the last boss of the wing, Thaddius. Entering the second phase in the fight, you’re supposed to make a huge jump from one platform to another. Everyone else succeeded but me. And as if that wasn’t enough – I failed three times more. Everytime I jumped and fell into the water I had to make a quite long run to get to the jumpspot again. When the raid finally wiped on this first try on him, I still haven’t reached it! I felt absolutely useless.

Admitting this to a friend in the group he asked: “have you tried slow fall?” And that made me feel even sillier. Of course I should have thought about it myself. When it was time to make the huge jump I slowfalled my way over without any problem whatsoever. Sometimes it’s great to be a mage!

Still the whole incidence stayed in my mind, disturbing me. This wasn’t the first time I had been into trouble while jumping and I definitely want to improve my performance. There is no reason why I should be as bad at jumping in game as I am in real life. In real life I can blame my physical weaknesses, being pretty short by nature. In game I’m even shorter, but as far as I can tell a gnome should be able to jump as far as a long legged nightelf.

Training arena
So now I’m scratching my head, wondering what to do. I’d like to see a training ground in the game. The introduction of the dummies in IF, where you can try spellrotations and such, was brilliant. I want more though. What I’d like to see is a whole arena where I could practice for instance precision jumping without the risk to take damage and get high repair bills.

Of course it’s possible that would attract some spectators, eager for blood, willing to mock and belittle anyone who’s a bit different. But so what? Being a grown up I can deal with the fact that we all have different sorts of talents. I may not be a gifted long jumper, but that shouldn’t deter me from jumping at all. On the contrary I should jump more in order to improve. The only thing I ask for is to be spared the humiliation of practicing jumping in the raid. When going to raid I want to be on top, trained and prepared for heroic deeds, including jumping, if that’s what it takes.

Now I don’t seriously believe Blizzard will create a special arena for practicing different sorts of moves, just because Larísa is asking for it. Probably there are good places for this already, all over the game. Rivers which could be jumped over, cliffs you could jump between, what do I know. If you come to think of any place like this, please let me know!

I’d really like to keep my feet dry next time we’re doing Naxx.


David said...

The key for jumping is pointing your camera down and hitting the space bar right at the edge as you run forward. The perspective view makes it difficult to gauge your point of takeoff. You don't need to see where you're going because you can't change your jump direction or speed in midair or anything (I once made a mistake and slowfalled from a mountain in Howling Fjord all the way into Grizzly Hills!)

Siha said...

If you want some practice, may I recommend zoning into Blackfathom Deeps, the level 25ish instance in Azshara? To get past the first little trash area to the first boss, you have to execute about three fairly precise jumps. There are no deaths involved, because you fall into water, but you might find it a useful spot to train your jumping.

Andrew said...

Also, try the non-instanced version of the arena in Blades Edge Mountain.

Yes, there is a rope across it now, but you can just ignore that.

Gevlon said...

Practice in the already cleansed raid instance. No mobs, just platforms. And no observers either.

To comfort you: yesterday I had to stand by the little green globules who cross the way between Patch and Grob, to resurrect all the dead guys in the way. I can't imagine how they managed to die.

BTW with slow fall you can jump over the slime river too.

Anonymous said...

As a mage, the easiest thing is to blink over the slime rivers. It works fine. Don't think it will help in the boss fight though..

Chris said...

It is easy to die on the green globdules, the "hit box" on some of them extends about 50% of the way to the next group, and at various times you can be counted as too close despite there being none near you. Best trick, bubble and run through, use paladins to clear the path for you.

Anonymous said...

The idea of practicing the jumps in the cleared instance is a good one.

However, I would love it if Blizz made a practice area for things like this. An instanced area, preferably, to reduce the mocking. :)

Unknown said...

For thaddius, keep running forward and don't let go of that key or w/e your using, when your at edge jump!

A good practice for you will be just moving forward and press spacebare while still moving.

Once u get used to that pick an area you will run around and just start jumping forward so you have a mark when to do it.

That's all you need tbh no need to go into an instance for practice. Since the gap between 2 platforms is minimal and both of them are so wide it don't matter which part you do it =P.

How did you do during Heingan btwy?

Anonymous said...

I'm stunned! So many great ideas I got!

@David: I'll try to change the angle, that's a good idea.

@Siha: I've never done that instance, guess it's since I'm allience, seems to be more of a horde place. But that's a good idea to check out.

@Andrew: never thought about that. In BE you shouldn't get much of an audience these days.

@Gevlon: thans for comforting me! I didn't do to bad on the crossing. It was fairly easy to avoid them. I'll try slow fall on the rivers too.

@Anonymous: blink! why didn't I think about that? Though as you say, I doubt it will work on the platform.

@2ndnin: oh yes when I DID die on those I thought it was strange since noone was there.

@Isisxotic: I'm glad you suppor the idea about a training area.

@Herc: bah. I died during the dance, a bit too early imo. I got the hang of it though, I think. The problem was that I turned back a little bit too slowly. If we had had a few wipes I think I would have made it, but now there were 5 or 6 guys in the group who where awesome dancers. They got him, even with about half the group dead. Which clearly shows that this fight indeed isn't any dps race.

Beth said...

I have always had trouble jumping. Wailing Caverns has one possible route where you have to jump -- I was being run through and missed it three times. But it was just my husband and our drunken level 70, so I wasn't too embarrassed. ^_^;

And I always forget spells I don't use often. On a PVP server, this is actually deadly -- I forget to root my opponent if he or she is melee, or I hit the key for Boomkin instead of Stealth.

Just roll with what you forget and try to remember next time. :) You're not a bad player unless you refuse to adapt. You kept trying and that's the point. <3

Anonymous said...

Hi There,

I found your blog via worldofmatticus and I read it everyday. I never plucked up the courage to comment until I read your latest post. I haven't done Naxx yet, but I can identify with you - I used to have a problem jumping from the rock over the railing to get to UBRS. I went there late one night and just jumped it about 20 times until I figured out a way to do it and then the next time I got an UBRS invite, I was a pro at getting over the railing and could help the people who were struggling.

Sorry I don't have any suggestions on practice jumping spots. Good luck and hope you get your practice so you can feel more confident! :)

Anonymous said...

@Birdfall: yeah, the right company is a great help when it comes to carrying the humiliation with dignity.

@Alliance Girl: oh, another regular reader getting out of the shades! Welcome and don't be shy! The readers of PPI seem to be the kindhearted sort.

Ah, I need to practice like that too. Would really love to be a jumping pro.

Anonymous said...

those slimes are evil...
I died the 1st time - ran right into one.
Now I stick to the tail of the preceding one and havent been hit again yet! - and a million wipes on the Globb dude made for lots of practise.

Anonymous said...

I feel your pain. When I first started playing, a PuG kicked me out because I couldn't judge jumps well enough to keep up. It was so humiliating.

And, what do you know, it was in BFD. That really is a good place for jumping practice if you need it. But it's in Ashenvale, not Ashzara, I believe.

Gamer Hudson said...

First day in Warsong Hold, I die in the elevator shaft...

Anea said...

You are not the only one with jumping issues. While I haven't been in Naxx and experienced that green stuff, one problem that I've always had that embarrassed me was jumping. When I was in the Wailing Caverns, for example, on my baby rogue, she had to jump those few tiny jumps, but I would get nervous, back way up to get a running start and hold my breath until I knew I had gotten over.

Even worse was in BFD when you have to jump from pillar to pillar to cross the water. The first few times I went with groups, I embarrassingly failed again and again, until after my 5th attempt, someone mentioned that you can just swim across and fight a mob around a corner, and you would practically be in the same spot. I was so glad, and ever since I always swim across. I don't know why I have such a problem, but I hate it.