Op-Ed: A Matter of Gentility

I doubt there is anyone who comes here that hasn’t had at least a brush with the thought “I want to make a mark.”  Whether it is simply amongst your friends or between the Worlds, we want to enjoy the game and have a good reputation.  I believe it’s a noble idea, and happily admit I have plans for such things myself.  I’ve spoken with several teammates and friends on this subject.  Some are planning on making a guild/company/linkshell that will, from the start, go out and tackle the hardest things they can find.  Others are planning on learning the technical aspect of the game – sniffing out the best builds, best ways to level, all the information and contribute to the wiki so that they can share their finds.  There are a myriad of ways that people are going to approach this idea.

Myself, I hope to be able to gain and share knowledge as much as I can–just like anyone would.  However, what I really want is to help make the community better.  I’m no great hero.  Granted who wouldn’t want to be?  My opinion is that the smallest things are what can really lay the foundation of a good community in game.  Yes, there are always going to be others who are less than pleasant to deal with…  Yet I feel that there are more of us who have the desire to beat out a path of camaraderie and fun, rather than competition.

For most of us, the game will be faintly familiar just as a new town has buildings, streets, homes and a heartbeat of its life.  However, just like a new place–the objects within it are going to be different.  New people, places, jobs, interactions and recreations.  We will have the same types of people who are willing to blaze trails, gear up and get out, heal and soothe our wounds, or sit back in the party and AFK half the time.  Despite this, I really hope that we’re going to band together and make the game something different.  Not simply because of the newness of the game, but also because of our attitude to each other as well as the content.

I’d love to see an climate of friendliness that I always felt was there in FFXI to a fairly large degree continue into FFXIV.  Granted, there will be no high level players, no one who knows everything, no one who has all the best gear… but it really won’t be that long before those first few players become the people who are seasoned in the game.  I’m hoping that the elitism that sometimes comes unconsciously with experience will be put aside.  Also, I hope we can keep in mind there’s another person behind the sprite.  That’s something I believe we all too often forget.  In the end, when a new player comes in a year later, I hope that they aren’t going to be received with a condescending attitude as I’ve seen in several new MMORPGs lately, but instead will find that other players don’t mind taking a bit of time to help them learn the ropes so they can get onto their way of really enjoying the game.

So how will you approach FFXIV?  What would you like to see from the community?  What are your plans for making your mark and making a difference in the game?  It’s one thing just to play and enjoy it, but even that has an effect on those you interact with.  So, what are you going to do?