“What drives people towards a specific faction and class?” That’s a question we received this morning in an email from one of our readers.Â It’s a very good question and one that is extremely topical right now with the results of WHA’s class poll.Â I talked yesterday about why the Destruction faction (realm) sounds more appealing, but how about classes?Â Several factors can influence a decision on which class to play: Looks, story/lore,Â mechanics that influence playstyle, perceived playstyle, popularity, capabilities of the class to perform solo or in groups, etc.Â While story/lore, looks and popularity can be factors, I think the big ones are the factors that directly influence how a character is played.
No one wants to play a class that is weak or one that even sounds weak.Â There are people out there who enjoy playing the underdog but that is entirely different.Â People are most driven towards a specific class because of their playstyle and the character’s solo/group and pve/pvp abilities.Â Â If I only play for short periods of time I might want a class that solos well and on the flip side if I have lots of friends that I play with I may want to pick a class that brings something to the table in groups.Â If my main goal is to pvp then I’m not going to pick a class that sucks in PvP.Â These things are fairly common sense and I would be surprised if anyone out there disagreed with them.Â So let’s go a little deeper; what drives you toward a specific class or faction?Â What factors influence your decision?
I really like well-rounded characters.Â For as long as I can remember I have never picked a class that is only good in PvE or only good in PvP (on purpose, heh).Â I thrive on the ability to choose how I want to play my character however I wish each and every time I log in.Â One trick ponies are only fun the first few rides.Â Next on my list is the character’s capability of performing a defined role.Â I probably choose supporting roles more often because I’m very much a social gamer.Â I love grouping and contributing on wider scale.Â I retake the Bartle Test every time I switch games and it really helps me to understand where where my mindset is at.Â Here are my most recent results:
SKAE players enjoy teamwork and cooperation, but feel that the main challenges of a virtual world come from the other players rather than the environment. They enjoy forming groups and alliances that will pit themselves against other players–and they gain the most satisfaction when they defeat organized groups of other players. When they aren’t playing against other players, they enjoy all of the social aspects of the game.
Breakdown: Achiever 33.33%, Explorer 33.33%, Killer 66.67%, Socializer 66.67%
If I’m going to be a healer I don’t want to be the second or third best healer (regardless of how well I play) that will get passed up for another class that performs the role better.Â I will of course factor in other abilities that the character brings to the table, but if the devs have botched class balancing and made characters that are simply inferior to others then I will not play them.Â And lastly I look for a class that sounds fun; I know, vague right?Â I want to have “cool” abilities that will make gameplay more dynamic than simply swinging a sword or throwing a fireball.Â What ELSE can the class do?
I’m really looking forward to playing the Shaman class in Warhammer Online.Â Shamans personify practically every quality that I seek in a class.Â They are given choices in specializing which allow them to focus on offensive magic, healing magic, or debuffing magic.Â Their spells are a mixture of heals, dot’s, nukes, and other creative spells.Â From “hands-on” reports the class can solo well and obviously it’s going to be an ideal grouping character.Â Shaman and all healers in WAR for that matter are given great means of being offensive characters and not just healbots.Â I won’t have to slide into one role as a Shaman; I can perform many functions and still be useful.Â And lastly, without a doubt, Goblin are the coolest looking race out there with a strong sense of lore.
How about you?Â Why do you play a particular class or race?
Special thanks to Tyk for the reader mail. 🙂