Sportsmanship on the Border
So I went on a bit of a rant last time and had the advantage of some really clear cases where people were assholes and wrong. There’s other cases though. Some of them aren’t so black and white, or even a decent shade of grey. As an XVM sniping bastard, I can see the stats of my enemies. All 29 of them, and I can see who is good, who is bad and who (like me) is bog standard. I have my own way of deciding who to aim for and who to let live. I also have a rationale for when to sacrifice HP for a teammate (You better be purple, bub).
Every now and again you get “allies” who are the reason most players think WoT is a 1 vs. 29 game. Today we had just such a pair on one of my teams. A Centurion and a Cromwell platooned together with a combined WN8 of less than a thousand. Now let me hasten to say I was a happy, happy little tomato for a long time before I decided it was time to suck it up, quite making excuses and at least carry my weight. These guys did nothing for the first 90 seconds. With their win rate and WN8s I figured them to be bots and someone else called them out on it. They responded in chat and twitched around a little bit, heading up to the back of the lemming train that went west on Pilsen. They did nearly nothing combined they managed only 700 damage. They were out of the action until they were isolated by overwhelming enemy forces and then went down fighting, but down they went.
Were they deliberately sabotaging the team? Almost certainly not. Did they do it anyway? Ohhhh yes. First off there’s the fail platoon. This was a tier 8 match. Imagine if they’d been in a tier 10 match. The Cromwell could have been alpha’d by nearly any tier 10 TD. Right there they sabotaged not only their own experience, but that of their teammates.
Now let’s talk about their actions. I actually don’t mind people who don’t do a lot at the beginning of the game, especially in highly mobile tanks like the brit mediums. Let’s face it, the difference between a Cromwell and a T-37 is the icon over it. However once you have figured out where best to go, get there and pitch in. Your teammates have been bleeding HP not so you can hoover up low damage kills, but so you can pitch in and make a difference. I ended up nearly turning the tide, farming close to 3k damage and would have had more had I not ended up getting cornered and picked apart while these two lackwits hovered back and didn’t even distract the enemy effectively.
We lost pretty heavily so I doubt even if they’d played competently it would have turned the tide, but it would have given us a chance. By their inaction and incompetence they guaranteed an ignominious loss.
There’s other cases that happen quite a bit. I’m guilty of it myself. There’s game where I have handicapped my team while trying to complete missions. One required me to take an enemy from full health to dead in one shot. I skipped a BUNCH of potential shots early on until I found a victim that would let me finish off the mission. It hurt our team and I make no bones about it. It’s a result of bad game design in this case but was I doing it maliciously? No. Did I get called on it? No. We won.
In general I try to cajole and make friendly suggestions to people who are playing in a less than optimal manner. I know there’s people that rage and… well… that’s honestly as effective as my way in getting these tomatoes to wake up. When you run into it I suggest a more Zen approach. Realize it happens to both you and your enemies as often. Accept it and move on.