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Newbie Guide: The Guides to Leadership

[Amorphist | Aracno | Dubbeltje | Endy | Explicit | Purge | Sepe]



So there you are, standing before a large cave. Sword in your hand, shield in another. A little scared, but very excited. The cave looks too dark to enter alone, and you could use some help and company to enter with you. But how to get them, and how to keep them happy?


The Party - Target

An accepted fact is that there are three different forms of parties: EXP, Explore
and EQ. Let us first discuss how those parties differ, and what the different
parties are trying to do.

The easiest to form and the most common type of party. The target is to gather as much exp as you can. The only thing which means a lot in this party is the EXP/min/mbr number. If it's high, everybody is happy. The party will hold together, and nobody will want to leave. In many cases when people should leave to go to school, work, or somewhere else, they opt to skip their activity to be able to keep doing good exp.

- Explore
Propably the most exciting type of party. You are actually learning something new on your own. During explire parties your goals are to try to solve quests for future use, find new exp monsters, or just check out new areas. It's often quite hard to get people to attend to explore parties. One good thing is that you can do it with only a few members, or just 'hire' people to solve part of this problem.

- EQ
This is where good and bad party leaders will be sorted. The place where legends are created. The general idea is to kill monsters which carry equipment, solve hard quests and dice the equipment gained between yourself and your party members.


EXP party - 'The show must go on'

One player said "An exp party isn't a 100m run, it's a marathon". You can grasp the basic idea of an exp party from that statement. A first time party leader might have trouble finding members. You just need to gather together some sort of party. It will become easier to make a party after you have proven that you can do exp. A lot of exp. You know that you are a really good exp party leader when you get like 20 different players telling you "are you making an exp party? take me!" right after you log into the mud.

Usually no extra communication is needed in these parties, people tend to know what they are supposed to do and they do it. Just keep an eye on players so that they won't go idle for long periods of time, which usually winds up dropping the rate.

An important thing which the leader should realise is what makes an exp party fail. Common cases include: Another exp party running at the same time as yours, key members leaving, or people getting pkilled while in your party. A good leader can usually prevent these things from happening or work to minimize such problems.

- Dropping rate due to another party
Usually an exp party leader runs and kills the same monsters over and over, not learning anything. If there are many exp parties going on, a party with a poor leader will lose a lot of their exprate, and everybody will be unhappy. This often results in the premature end of a party. A good leader knows more monsters and runs faster to keep up the pace. The most important thing then is to find monsters faster than the other party. In many players opinion, there are enough good monsters to kill for any amount of parties running. It's just matter of finding them.

- Key members leaving the party
This can be prevented by keeping that player especially happy. Inform when you are leaving from a fight with a monster. Inform when you need something special. Tell jokes. Ask if he or she needs to go train. Ask how long he or she can play, and try to get a replacement before that happens, so if they must leave, you can switch members without interruptions.

- People getting pkilled
That's a little harder to prevent. One thing is not to invite people who are currently in the middle of a pkill war. Another way is to prot those people who are going to be killed, so that it's a little harder them to be killed. If people are killed anyway, then just get them ressed and try to continue. Try to get members to attack the pkiller on sight. Even with all these precautions, a persistent pkiller can still end parties which are not working together.


Explore party - 'To boldy go where no man has gone before'

For many players this is the most entertaining partyform. Your goal is to go solve some quests for future use, or just go looking for new monsters to kill. In many cases you can do this without a party, but many of the harder quests need additional firepower in order to be solved. Also, usually two brains are more efficient than one, when you need to solve some of the more crazy syntaxes. What makes you good a explore leader? There isn't really a definition for 'a good explore leader'. All you need is to be able to solve quests and use your imagination. One hint can be given here: Make notes. This helps you next time you continue to solve the quest or you are going through that quest.


EQ party - Where the legends are made

1) The basic idea of EQ-partying

Most people do EQ because they need eq to be able to play better. Some do EQ because they want to kill different monsters. Some do EQ because they want to simply show to everyone that they can. It is accepted that most efficient leaders are born from people who want to show everybody that they are the very best.

What makes you very good leader then? In short: being able to kill the monsters, but in the end it is so much more. Before you can kill the monsters you need to create party, make it to work, keep it together, and finally find the monsters to kill.

2) Different types of people

This is one of the steps where good eq party can often go bad. There are many different player-types, and the leader should be well aware of the boons and banes of each of those player types. Not all players are fit to be placed in any role.

- Needers: People who are short of eq or really want do eq generally. These will be happy to kill any monsters. They are often one of best types of players for eq parties. They really try to make the party be a success. You will find that they are mostly willing to take any role in the party. Typical line: "Please! Let's kill anything!"

- Lazys: People who tend to put minimal effort into eq parties. If these players would be assigned key roles in parties, it will usually result in a much poorer party than you would imagine. Most players are lazys in eq though, and only few players really try to do their best all the time. These lazy players could be great assets, if only they would be correctly motivated. Typical line: "What? I was supposed to do what?"

- Elitists: Players who only want to kill the toughest monsters, and whine constantly if the party is killing anything less than Lucifer. An annoying bunch of players, but they do usually know their job. Although do tend to underperform on small monsters. These players usually don't want to be assigned to do any shitty jobs in EQ. For the most part, people should avoid this type of guy. Typical line: "That monster has crap. I'm not killing that"

- Complainers: A player who really will complain. Obviously this is really annoying. They will find things to complain about no matter what the leader decides. Either it is going too slow or going to fast, wrong prots, wrong pref, wrong monster, too late or too early start... the list goes on and on.

- Knowers: Players who really know how things should be done. Most knowers have been a leader of an EQparty before, or have been in several good eq-parties. Those who know how to truly play are a great asset for a party. However, you should distinguish real knowers from 'so-called-knowers'. These wannabies usually tout information which has been chatted on the mud-channel and is either bad or just plain stupid.

- Activist: People who do extra stuff and not just sit and wait. A party leader should really love these guys. Their small actions might reduce the total kill time enormously. Extra stuff like removing scars, helping the healer or protter, checking stuff relative to the mob or quest... These guys are honestly worth of their weight in gold.

You can find many other types of player if you give more thought to it.

So.. The idea is to place needers/knowers into keyroles in you party, because underperformers will cause harm and are more likely to leave the party before the agreed time. As you can see, no worth is mentioned here. It's elitist crap that you need this or that much worth to be able to do something on the game. The same goes for wishes. A crap player is crap player, even (s)he would have highest worth and most wishes possible.

3) Creating a party
When selecting members for a party, the leader should gather players who are able to play at a given time, who want to do eq, and who agree to follow the leader. Also, the leader should try to select people, whom (s)he are comfortable with and get along with. If a leader should choose between a 50G worth, 8+8 wished Elitist and Lazy player or a 2G worth, unwished Needer, it should be easy for them to choose... Although one brings an immense power boost, that boost will vanish in an underperformance. Also, players should recognice that the party leader doesn't always need to be the tank, but it helps in many cases.

3) Communicating - yell, Yell, YELL, _!* Y E L L *!_
The leader should be an insane, maniac, relentless yeller, and dictator. A party should always have one commander, and it is not supposed to be a democracy. It has been tested many times and seen that only dictatorship works well in the end. This is why you should avoid complainers in a party. Usually a leader need to tell, beg, carry, whine, yell, bribe, order, ask, and threaten other members to do like the leader wants. In most cases even this isn't enough. A good leader knows how to communicate with different people. Some respond good to tells, some with blatant yells. Another important thing which a good leader knows is to tell the party how they are supposed to act when approaching the monster. When party members know how to act, no stupid things should happen. And last, remember, capital letters are your friend. A line which leader will become quite familiar will be: 5 p' PF ON !!

4) Small hints
Last be not least, this chapter gives a leader some hints on how a leader can raise the party's power level with a few small actions and little things that are important to know.
- Timeconsuming: EQ parties tend to be very time consuming. Players should be able to play 4-10h without interruptions and should dedicate time for that.
- Extramembers: It is always nice to have backup members if someone can't come to play at given time.
- Watch your party's hp/sp: It is no use to stand in front of an aggressive monster if all your members are dead or out of sp.
- Activate players when outside: Make mages cast small ac-prots, Clerics remove scars, Druids do moonbeams, Healers harmonious barrier people, the abjurer refresh the tank's prots, the tank reset berserks.. All these small things affect the overall performance.
- Yell: Party follow, prots, target, going in...
- Change tactic: Not every monster can be killed with the 'in-blast untill out of sp-out' tactic. A leader should know how to make the party act right at the monster. For example, change bard songs, prots, the order of vulns, and whether to blast after vulns or right on entry. Every guild offers small tricks which are usable in eq. Just learn them.
- Listen: Listen what others have to say. They might have some good ideas, although this might be in contradiction with being a dictator, it is encouraged to listen the opinions of others. The final decision should always be yours.
- Party kick: You can always kick player out from party. Nobody is invaluable. Nobody.
- Know when to fold: Sometimes it comes apparent that a monster is more tough than you thought it would be. At this time you should cut your losses and move on to another monster. You can always come back later when you are more prepared.
- Take breaks: Sitting 18h nose to the computer screen is not funny. You should take small breaks. At the very least inbetween monsters.
- Have fun: Remember this is game and supposed to be fun. Legends are born in eq-parties. Many people know some dude who soloed Lucifer, some dude who party teleported a whole party from Lucifer, the player who killed the first Zotha
and so on.. Who knows, remembers, or respects people who only did lots and lots of exp? - RL Parties: Remember to have fun in RL also. Lots of players tend to forget that there is also that Real Life mud out there which is also fun to play.

NB: This text was edited for grammatical clarity at the request of Sepe by Melkpak on 04.01.2005. All personal ideas and content contained within this essay originate from Sepe alone.

[Amorphist | Aracno | Dubbeltje | Endy | Explicit | Purge | Sepe]

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