Sunday, August 11, 2013

Don't Mind Red, He's Got a Headache

I finally started group content with the kids.

Since they only have one account that they share* between them, the best we could do alone was a 2-man instance.  Luckily for us, The Old Republic has a perfect introduction to an instance with The Esseles, a 2-person Flashpoint designed for L10-12.  No other players in the area, no competition to complete a Heroic 2+ first, and we've got plenty of time to finish without rushing.

The Esseles has the bonus of being one of the best of The Old Republic flashpoints for story, so I knew that'd keep them attracted as well.

So, I pulled out the Old Man, reacquainted myself with how to play a Scoundrel (aka "get up in people's grill and blast them from behind with a shotgun scattergun), and sauntered off to take a trip to Coruscant aboard the Esseles.

My oldest had the first run, and to be honest, that was the smoothest of the bunch.  I told her straight up to let me maneuver into position first, and then backblast to start the fight.  Typically I'd end up taking out a regular enemy, leaving Corso to round up the Strong and/or Elites for us to attack afterward.  While the fighting went well enough, I had to explain the TOR method of choosing who gets to speak in a cutscene**. There was also the little matter of me playing the Old Man as more a devil-may-care type than my original Gunslinger, so I got to see some wording out of him that I ordinarily wouldn't ever see out of Dalaak.***
I heard a "Daa-aad!!" from upstairs more than once, but I shrugged it off.

But there was one problem:  the Esseles crashes at the end on our desktop computer.  Ironically enough, not the laptop, so I was able to restart SWTOR and get back into the Flashpoint before it ended, but still it was quite annoying.

Next came my son, and he was just as wisecracking as I was, but he reserved it more for the group chat. He was a bit overeager at times, but luckily it wasn't too big of a problem.

But my youngest....

I told her at the beginning to let me lead.  I told her that during the flashpoint, too.  Several times, in fact.  She's ten, and I know she can read.  But she still kept running ahead, running the wrong way, running into a boss fight before we cleared out the trash, and in general acting more like someone half her age.

Finally, her behavior caught up with her.  She ran off the edge of a platform and disappeared into space.

I said a silent prayer of thanks that SWTOR flashpoints still let you do that, whereas you're hard pressed to do that in a WoW instance.

"Now," I said as she respawned, "Will you cut it out?"

"Oops," she replied.

"If you pull stuff like this in a regular instance, people will let you die to teach you a lesson.  It's called 'You yank it, you tank it,' and the real tank would get really pissed off at you for this.  Behave better, and let the person who has been here before do the leading."

After the lecture, she shaped up.  I'd rather she get the lesson from me than finding herself vote kicked or being the reason for a wipe.

She also learned that --as a Gunslinger-- her abilities are best when behind cover, whereas my Scoundrel is built to get in the baddies' faces.  She saw me at work and tried to imitate it, but I explained that her best abilities, like the Charged Bolts' bonuses and other assorted goodies she gets in her talent tree, are made for long distance.

By comparison, these runs ended better than the Hammer Station run I had the other day, where the Commando Healer didn't heal and the tank would rush in before I could CC a droid.  By the time the Healer began to get the hang of things, the tank decided we weren't going to live through the first boss**** and dropped group.  In spite of my encouragement, the Healer dropped too, and then after that so did the other DPS.  These people were too willing to throw in the towel rather than try the hard work of actually making it through an instance slowly, grinding out a victory.

Maybe they could have taken a few lessons from some kids.

*My rules.  I get to control the MMO accounts --LOTRO and TOR-- that way, and I also keep track of any activity within the toons.

**TOR has each person select an action and then a random (virtual) dice roll determines who gets to speak.

***I decided to have the Old Man play dumb with Beryl toward the end of the class questline on Taris. Kind of unusual for a guy who flirted with Grand Master Satele Shan in the closing cutscene to the Athiss Flashpoint, but I've decided that I want him to pursue a romance with one of the female companions later, so I want to minimize any repercussions later.  Sometimes it helps having done the Smuggler class story before.

****Nobody had the ability to pick up the canisters, so he decided he'd rather drop instead of actually, you know, TRYING.


  1. Sounds like your youngest might be cut out to tank since she wants to be the first on the scene!

    Reading this makes me want to check back into SWTOR but I've left for so long I'd have to start over or die a lot relearning my class.

    1. I don't doubt that she's to tank on the mind, but she still has to learn to pause and figure things out. I don't want her succumbing to Leeroy Jenkins Syndrome. ;-)

      I still bounce back and forth between games, but I still sub to only two: SWTOR and WoW. Right now I'm just waiting for 5.4 to drop so the next PvP tier is released, so I don't waste my Conquest badges.

  2. I do love how much thought you put into teaching your little ones how to behave in a social context online. :) If only all parents cared this much...

    1. Well, they've occasionally asked me about things like Facebook, and I've consistently said that they're not ready yet. You have to be emotionally mature enough to handle the drama that comes with social media --and MMOs certainly qualify as social media-- and in my opinion they're not ready yet.

      I think that they will be ready (the oldest one, anyway) in a couple of years, but I'd prefer that she join FB after her high school years and when she goes to college/university. She won't have to deal with all of the crappy drama that seems to follow teenagers around.