NSFW: I’m On Tilt

Tilting: When you’re so pissed off from losing multiple amount of games that you play worse and worse ’til you’re so pissed you begin leaning over your keyboard screaming over every little mistake you make and complaining about gaming imbalances. [Urban Dictionary]

I don’t know when or how it happened, but I have noticed something horrific. I am bad at video games.  It pains me to type it, but it’s true. And, now that I’ve had this epiphany, I’m pissed off.


Competitive Spirit

Ever since I was a kid, I have been fiercely competitive in anything I do. Just ask my brother. Even now, with both of us in our late 20’s, we’ll still do dumb stuff that we should know better about doing, because if he can do it, then I can do it better. During his last visit we did the incredibly stupid thing of seeing who could go the fastest on a skateboard. How neither of us ended up escaped broken bones is beyond me.

That competitive spirit has followed me into video games. First we would compete against each other to get the highest score in SSX Tricky, and later on when I moved away from home, I became dedicated to being the best damned healer my World of Warcraft guild had.

When another Restoration Druid came along, I made sure I studied everything I could in order maximise my output. My mana management was impeccable and my HoT uptime was damned near perfect. He may have destroyed me during the fights where we wiped, but I was the one who came out on top when we succeeded. He was proud, and so was I, but that’s okay because I always won in the end.

Fast forward to today, and I’ve returned to World of Warcraft after a considerable break from the game, and an even longer break from raiding. I am absolutely awful. So awful, in fact, that I decline invites to run Mythic dungeons with guildies because I don’t want them to see how tragic I am.

An example of my badness happened just last night. I queued for Heroic Auchindoun so I could finish a part of my legendary ring quest. I’d never done either normal or heroic of the dungeon before, so I had no idea what to expect. Things were going okay-ish… until I Thunderstormed the tank right off the edge of the platform. I apologised profusely and quickly left party. I mean, honestly. How noob can you get?!

Let’s not get started on how long it actually took me to get up the courage to queue for the silly dungeon in the first place. I’ve gone from being the person who pugged raids regularly to this pathetic shell of a human who is scared of screwing up in dungeon finder. Ugh.


Low Self-efficacy

I know the break certainly plays a part in my lack of skills, but after reading this post on healing the masses that talks about Self-Efficacy and eSports Aspirations, I think that perhaps it’s more so an attitude thing. To quote Eri:

With those that did exhibit lower self efficacy it seems to have greater negative effects with less chances taken, less perseverance through activities and often the reluctance to even commence such activities.

When I read that, it felt like a lot of stuff just ‘clicked’ for me. I have been so afraid of ‘stuffing up’ that I only queue into things if I’ve had a few wines for a bit of “Dutch Courage”, and since I don’t really drink any more, that means I’m pretty much never queueing up. It’s like a cycle: I don’t queue up because I don’t know what I’m doing, and I don’t know what I’m doing because I never queue up and experience it for myself.

Being the competitive person that I am, I really, really don’t do well with performing poorly. So, I avoid it like the plague so I don’t look like an idiot, instead of just throwing myself back into the gauntlet.

Going back to my dungeon example, that stupid, humiliating thing could have been avoided by simply: a) speaking up at the start of the dungeon to say I was new, or b) reading a guide or the dungeon journal while waiting in queue. Low confidence or not, I did not do myself or my group any favours by not going into it prepared.


Stack Intellect!

Being unprepared is another problem I have in Hearthstone, too. I’m at a point in the game where I can make some pretty solid decks from my collection, and I’ll admit it, I netdeck the shit out of them. I was one of those people who played that Aggro Shaman list when it was a tier one deck. But you know what? I couldn’t get past Rank 14.

I can’t blame my cards when the decks I am using have been proven to make it to legendary.

A few days before my dungeon fail, I decided to ignore everything else that was important and smash out some ranked play. I went from rank 16 all the way back to rank 20. I was using a control Priest deck and I actually had no idea what to do against most match ups. It’s not like I was losing to aggro decks, either: I queued up against three control warriors in a row and lost every game simply because I could not figure out how to respond to their hand.

I think losing in Hearthstone makes me the angriest of all. I’m mostly cool with sucking at World of Warcraft because I rarely play it and I’m certainly not keeping up to speed with any changes and whatnot. But Hearthstone is my baby. I watch streams during the day, I organise local tournaments and I really enjoy reading about it, too. But when it comes time for me to play, I suck at it and I actually don’t understand why. I am researching deck lists and seeing how the pros respond, so why can’t I replicate that?

Perhaps it’s another self-efficacy thing. I need to load up Hearthstone while repeating to myself that I am going to absolutely stomp anyone in my path with my superior cards and choices, instead of panicking when I come across a deck I don’t know. Fake it ’til I make it, baby!

Maybe once I stop worrying about what others are thinking of me and my play style, I’ll stop being crap at the video games I love.

/rant over

Do you ever find yourself ‘on tilt’? How do you break the cycle? Share your tips in the comments below

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  • Holy crap, I am on tilt as well.
    Actually, I think our characters may have been separated at character-selection-screen-birth.

    I HATE LFR, or anything which exposes me to people I don’t know UNLESS someone comes with me to babysit – not that I need to be watched, more so that I don’t feel alone and in case I screw up they can guide me without everyone raging at me. I am almost paranoid that people will rage at me if I screw up, and I don’t want them to write my name down, or track down the guild I am in and rage at them or something equally as silly – unlikely to ever happen but I almost don’t go into anything unless I feel like I am a complete nobody and my actions can’t reflect badly on someone else >_>

    I used to be “the best healer” or so I felt at a time, but now I couldn’t probably save myself from dying as a healer.. and I am not much better as another class – it is really disheartening!

    Hence, I am clearly on tilt… I get so mad at myself for sucking at something that I get worked up about it and either get angry, or depressed. It usually is one way or the other, or angry first and then sook about it, including real life tears. I just can’t understand how I can suck so bad when I used to be quite good, and then I also add the pressure that I like to play games, I sometimes write about games – heck my name is MonPlaysGames YET she sucks at all of them… WTH. =

    Once I get some confidence in something, then I’m like YEAHHHHH shove that up your ass! when PVPing or the likes.. I almost go from sucking to being cocky which is quite a swing. I do need to have more confidence boosts though, and unless I am going to go back to raiding to learn and get better, I may just need to go and find a class I can go pew pew with in PVP 😀

    • Ha, yep, I think we were! What the hell happened, that we went from being awesome to so paranoid of getting kicked. Like, I know in my head that I really could not care less what random toons from all over the world think of me, and yet that mere thought stops me from queueing up. It’s actually ridiculous when I say it like that.

      I’ve done LFR on my Hunter and have found that to be way less stressful than 5 mans on my shaman. I think it’s a combo of her being in a guild that I don’t care about, playing a class that people expect to do noob things, and the insanely nerfed difficulty in LFR. 5 mans you cannot blend in if you die 😛

      Maybe our WoW toons need a name change?

      • I think I almost need to find a guild like I had back in Wrath, but with some slight changes to what I put up with etc. I miss running things as a part of a guild group, but even so I still prefer my bf or mates to come with me in a guild run too! I could run LFRs for days if I know the content completely, like I went into ToT forever because I knew the stuff after going through, but if it is new content, no thanks. You see, I have to go in and see a fight to understand it – that’s my learning style. Others can watch videos and read guides and sure, you can give me them and I can read/watch until I am blue in the face, but it isn’t going to soak into my brain any quicker until I see the black ooze or the red scary stuff… or green everywhere as it will be soon enough.

        I think what I am missing most of all is the nostalgia and the community I had when I started playing, well at least when I started to know my toon and how to play. Having friends help farm primals for my frozen shadowweave and me helping farm fish or cloth or whatever was needed in return to help someone else out. I am sure those guilds still exist and that there is a lot of them, even some of the random ones I join seem friendly and helpful, but I just /NEVER/ fit in wherever I go. I feel like that awkward person who makes unfunny jokes and if my BF or mate are there, I feel like I am that 3rd wheel to conversations or just brought along because I’m the DPS’ missus… and I shouldn’t feel that way and I am just in this forever funk haha. Partially it is because I haven’t found my niche since healing as a Holy Pally in Wrath. I went to my lock and did well once geared but for some stupid reason I expect myself to outperform people when I am in greens /because I can do better than I am doing./

        I pretty much don’t bother doing 5 mans now unless I am with people I know. That’s even as DPS now because I am that worried about being yelled at. I am old enough to know this shit shouldn’t matter but for some reason it just still does – fear stops me from doing a lot of things and I just can’t understand why I am worried about it when half the time it is unjustified. This is my little comfort zone and I’m staying RIGHT HERE.

        I got all excited about Holy Pally and how it looks come Legion, so Blizz better not ruin my excitement or hurt my feels, because I am super relying on this helping me ‘come back’ on WoW. If not, I honestly don’t know what I want to play or what I’d do. Maybe I should just throw away all worry and be a Bear Tank, cause bears… I don’t honestly know. 😛 Now if only Legion would hurry up……………

        • I think chasing the nostalgia has been a lot of my problem, especially when a lot of my close friends left the game. Nothing has really compared to my old guild, but if I’m perfectly honest, I haven’t really *let* any other guild compare because I just keep to myself.

          After reading this post, one of my friends from twitter has invited me to their super casual raid tomorrow. He told me not to worry about researching or worry about what I’m doing, because apparently fun is the number 1 priority — and they love the chaos of learning on the fly. I’m still shitty my pants about it though! haha. Definitely going to give it a try.

          I’ll get back to you on how it goes, and perhaps I can convince you to come along next week? We can be partners in derp together! 😀

          PS. YES. Legion needs to get here ASAP. While I’m not sure I’ll be sticking with Ele Shaman simply because I am TERRIBLE at it, some of the other classes I’ve seen Disco play in the Alpha look amazing. The shadowpriest rework looks nothing short of brilliant, regardless of what all the Spriest/boomkin diehards are crying about 😛

  • Kay

    All of this is another reason that I’m not a fan of MMOs. They just aren’t a game suited to me. I’d say I’m pretty average at video games, but the idea of having to ‘perform’ with a group of probably strangers just makes me want to run away and hide. Especially because in many situations the people can be huge jerks. Not all, obviously, in fact when I was playing WoW I met loads of nice people. But in general, it just added to my lack of fun. And if I’m not having fun, then I don’t bother playing because for me, the fun is why I play!

    • Aye, fun is definitely the number one important factor. I think I was very spoiled in my earlier days of WoW, because I started in a guild of the nicest people in the universe, and then when I split off on my own (They were in the US, I’m Australian: that meant raid times were at 8am my time, and no-one was on during my evening, which got to be quite lonely!) I was surrounded by a bunch of RL mates.

      Now that they’re all gone and I’ve become a massive chicken, I’m petrified of being ‘yelled at’. But I really, really miss the feeling that comes with beating the odds and getting a new boss kill surrounded by people whose company I enjoy. Since leaving that aspect behind, I haven’t really enjoyed MMO’s at all either.

      I can definitely understand why it’s not for everyone! I would say RPG’s rate lower on the stress department, but after my rage at trying to play Dragon Age: Inquisition, I know that’s wrong, too 😛

      Thanks for stopping by! <3

  • gamerwife

    I know I’m garbage at games, which is why I don’t really delve into the MMO world, but for me it’s more about whether or not you’re having fun. Which I guess the whole spectator thing blends into because I can be happily sucking at a game on the couch, getting frustrated, but still determined, and then Rick will waltz up and start telling me what to do and I’ll just freak out, toss the controller and walk away. I know I suck, no point in you telling me the various ways in which I am sucking.

    • Ugh, there is nothing worse than having someone tell you what to do. I was playing Rocket League with my husband the other day and he did an okay job of holding his tongue, but in the end seeing me miss the 50 millionth goal because I hadn’t gotten the hang of steering yet got the better of him and he tried to ‘help’. My frustration meter went through the roof and I quit playing not long after.