| Mail |
You might also like: WoW Insider, Joystiq, and more

Reader Comments (60)

Posted: Aug 24th 2011 8:11AM KDolo said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I'd say skill is a combination of twitch and wits. You can have all the twitch response in the world and it won't do you a lick of good if you don't know what to do and can't think on your feet.

Posted: Aug 24th 2011 8:16AM (Unverified) said

  • 3 hearts
  • Report
Guild Wars has always done a great job with skill-based pvp, and I think this is the definition of it. Skill isn't open-world, where a bunch of a$$-hats gank others with their "1337 93@/' ", it is judged when all other things have been made equal, and you just rely on your own abilities and wits. That separates competitive pvp from a joke.

Posted: Aug 24th 2011 7:08PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@(Unverified)

I disagree. While Guild Wars may level the playing field by providing more controlled situations than your average open world PvP, it is within these non-controlled encounters where true creativity, tactics, and on-the-fly reactions come into play, where the players have to adapt to constantly changing situations with several different variables.

Of course, fights are more often than not unfair. Yet, it is only through challenge that we really grow. Those who are capable of succeeding in situations under such conditions develop their skill in far greater ways.
Reply

Posted: Aug 25th 2011 2:56AM NeverDeath said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@(Unverified)

Completely agreed. Giving players preset situations that are reliable and dependable is exactly what I don't like about arena-style PvP. It's boring and only creates an illusion of "fairness", because really unless you are playing the exact same class+talent build as someone else, with all of the same gear, it isn't actually "fair" regardless of the number of players on each team or that you all start with full health in an area you know very well that is more or less symmetrical. Mere balance differences between specs and how they apply to competitive play can be the deciding factor, diminishing the requirement of player ability in favor of spec capability in those situations.

There are just too many variables to ever call it a "fair" fight, but I have always considered games with more instanced PvP than open-world PvP to be PvE-centric games, because open-world is the only place where everything is absolute chaos, and you can either take the heat, or you melt. Anything less will never test your limits or your own competence (since teams are generally made of more than one person, where your teammate might be an asskicker who carries you or again, any one of an infinite number of variables).

I define player skill as a harmonious convergence between three primary factors (in no specific order):

1. Player awareness
2. Player knowledge
3. The efficient application of that knowledge + awareness

It's basically the same thing that makes anything successful. You *know* that trinitrotoluene is explosive. You are then *aware* that you must make a fuse long enough to give you time to throw/place the explosive without blowing yourself up and to be careful as it may sweat, as to avoid blowing yourself up. Then you must successfully aim/place the charges in order to *efficiently apply* them to create a desired effect.
Reply

Posted: Aug 24th 2011 8:16AM HiroProtagonist7 said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I'm not sure I like the wording - players are 'forced' into action based combat in as much as I'm forced to play F2P games.

I guess one plus for skill based gaming is that you can't buy skill from an item shop. That may be the problem.

Posted: Aug 24th 2011 8:20AM Laurs said

  • Half a heart
  • Report
Twitch and reflexes has nothing to do with it. It's all about knowledge and a bit of dexterity (and knowing to use all your keybinds properly).

I don't honestly care what anyone says, at the moment, you can't find anything requiring more skill than E-Sport WoW Arena (or even top rated, 2500+ play). Also, in before the gear arguement regarding WoW Arena, when you're able to compete at the top level you, as well as your oponents, already have the best gear, not to mention at tournaments you get premade chars with the best gear you need.

Posted: Aug 24th 2011 12:54PM Apakal said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Laurs

WoW is far too systematic to be considered real skill. You have set comps and set strategies to deal with every comp. 9 times out of 10, its no different than a PvE encounter. You know what your opponent is going to do, they know what you're going to do, and its just doing the same dance, over and over again, and pillar humping the whole time... Big deal.

Not to mention the huge disparity between casters and melee, how absolutely terrible Blizzard is at balancing anything, and how absolutely flavor-of-the-month class choice is. Skill doesn't mean nearly as much as what the choices you made at the character select screen. In no way is WoW the top e-sport.
Reply

Posted: Aug 24th 2011 2:30PM (Unverified) said

  • 2.5 hearts
  • Report
@Laurs
"you can't find anything requiring more skill than E-Sport WoW Arena"
Best laugh I've had all week, GJ.
Reply

Posted: Aug 24th 2011 3:02PM Laurs said

  • 1 heart
  • Report
@Laurs

Well, of course people won't agree, because let's face it, people like to hate the best and the biggest. It's similar to supporting the underdog, only backwards, you hate the champ.

There will always be people that say, for example, Fifa takes no skill, play PES, CoD takes no skill, play *random FPS here*, this sucks and that sucks. But at the end of the day, the majority rules, and as far as competitive PvP goes, WoW Arena is second to none, with Guild Wars and EVE as close second and third.

But bash me all you want, so far the MLG pretty much confirms what i've just said.
Reply

Posted: Aug 24th 2011 4:26PM Apakal said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Laurs

Being the biggest doesn't qualify you as the best. WoW had its moment in the sun for sure, but as of late, they've done nothing but falter (even going so far as to admit that Arena probably should have never been in the game) and being forced, yes forced, into making radical changes to try and stay abreast of the competition. Fortunately for them, most of that competition is still in the works, but even so, they're slowly bleeding subscribers and the inherent level of discontent is palpable. It doesn't take professional analysis to clue in on what the future holds as the competition thickens.

You've made nothing but unsupported claims. Of course MLG is going to support WoW because MLG is a business. They need advertising dollars and sponsorship money just like anything else and they're going to get that by appealing to the largest crowd. That says nothing of the current quality of the title, rose-colored glasses and all.

When you boil down WoW PvP to what it really is, while there's an inherent degree of skill that seperates the really good from the decently good, at the end of the day, the skill required to be competitive is not that high.
Reply

Posted: Aug 24th 2011 4:51PM HiroProtagonist7 said

  • 2.5 hearts
  • Report
@Laurs
If you can macro a whole fight, there isn't skill involved whether there's tab targeting or not
Reply

Posted: Aug 24th 2011 8:23AM kasus20 said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
player skill is how used u are to the game. the perfect aim is instinctively urgent at any fps game. so it is on rts games with tactical thinking.

so its based on player itself.

yeah that is skill

Posted: Aug 24th 2011 8:41AM Malagarr said

  • 2.5 hearts
  • Report
@kasus20

That's actually not a bad comparison. I remember my old NetMech 95 days. It took knowing how to lag shoot to be able to even hit your target. Imagine, most of us were playing on 24-33 kbps modems. You ad to lead your target 4-5 mech lengths at times just to be able to hit them because lag was so bad.

So you definitely have to know the mechanics of a game to be skilled at playing it.
Reply

Posted: Aug 24th 2011 8:33AM Dezyne said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Skill is that je ne sais quoi that determines a players success or failure after all random elements and progression systems have been removed.

Posted: Aug 24th 2011 8:36AM Jepu said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Skill is a very broad term. In gaming context I'd say that a skilled player is the one who succeeds better than an average player in some game-related task, provided that both have exactly the same tools at their disposal.

Whether "better" means that the skilled player is faster, gets higher scores or does the stuff in a more aestethically pleasing way is another question though.

Posted: Aug 24th 2011 8:37AM Dril said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Seconding KDolo's idea of twitch 'n' wits.

Reactions, situational awareness and ability to think on your feet are one part of it, and class/ability knowledge, encounter knowledge, a reasonable tablespoon of common sense and just general intelligence are another.

Most people I encounter generally lack the latter section, which is surprising in a way, because a lot of people seem to be able to drive without blowing themselves up at every opportunity, but in MMOs it seems people really do leave half their brain at the login screen.

Posted: Aug 24th 2011 2:34PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Dril Perhaps this is due to the lack of penalties for dieing or loosing. You can start all over again without any penalty at all in most mmo's or multiplayer games as a whole.
Reply

Posted: Aug 24th 2011 8:37AM Malagarr said

  • 2.5 hearts
  • Report
Merriam-Webster's defines skill as, " the ability to use one's knowledge effectively and readily in execution or performance".

So by definition, skill is about knowledge, not reflexes. Hence, games that incorporate twitch based mechanics don't involve skill. They may, however, be said to involve talent, where talent is defined as, "the natural endowments or a person; a special, often athletic, creative or artistic aptitude".

Wow...can't believe I just wasted the last five minutes looking that up...I have mad debate skillzzz... ;-)

Posted: Aug 24th 2011 8:49AM Mikkhail said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Malagarr +1 for Webster Definitions ... and I happen to agree ... knowledge of your class and the classes you are facing and calmly executing your offense and defense (keeping your wits) against that class is going to win you the majority of battles against the masses that tend to madly start mashing keys when you hit them.
Reply

Posted: Aug 24th 2011 8:50AM Dezyne said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Malagarr

If you read that definition again the words "ability to use" and "effectively and readily" apply to reflexes, all the knowledge in the world won't help you if you miss the opportunity to use it. So by definition, skill is about knowledge and can include reflexes.
Reply

Featured Stories

Engadget

Engadget

Joystiq

Joystiq

WoW Insider

WoW

TUAW

TUAW