Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Yoink, or "Taking What You're After While Your Butt is Being Kicked"

Everyone has experienced it. You're running along, minding your own business, when a small yellow dot appears on your mini-map.

You think "Ka-ching," let out a /cheer, and head straight for it.

A yellow dot, for you non-players, is a mining or herb node. It means there are useful things that you can scavenge in that spot -- sometimes really expensive or rare things. Once a node is scavenged, it disappears for a certain amount of time and then reappears so other players passing by can get it. The time it takes to reappear is just long enough to discourage players from sticking around and waiting for it to come back.

There are a number of problems with nodes. For one thing, it often happens in a crowded area that somebody else is taking it when you get there. That always puts me in a bad mood for a few minutes -- I grumble silently at the other person and pout all the way back to the road. Because, really, you're so happy to see a yellow dot that it's a big let-down to be disappointed when you've trekked that far out.

But it just so happens that sometimes you get to the node before anyone else. You start busily clearing out the wolves and mountain lions so they won't attack you while you gather your precious, beautiful little items. You have staked your claim. That node is yours.

And then, along comes Mr. Joe Yoink, who sees you fighting nearby but not right on top of the node and, while you're busy, takes it.

Just like that. And you could kill him.

This happened to my husband a few weeks back, except that he was actually struggling with the baddies and Joe Yoink ran right on by to get the node. Didn't offer a smidgen of help. It's like a yellow dot on the mini-map suddenly turns people into children on Christmas morning, racing for their toys no matter who (or what) is in the way. Knocking grandma over if she tries to step in and hug them, breaking her hip. And everyone else is really mad while they bundle grandma up for the hospital, but the kids have their toys and that's all that matters.

Now, I know I've been Joe Yoink. We all have, sometimes unintentionally. For me these days it's not so much about getting the materials as about marking the node on Gatherer. If I see a speck of tin, I want to know where it is so I can come back later.

But that's no excuse. If someone is fighting right nearby, help them finish the monster, then watch and see if they take the node. If they don't, it's yours for the picking. Even if you really, really wanted it. We just have to suck it up sometimes in order to be good people.


  1. So... this really isn't something everyone experiences. It's mostly you, B. The feeling of total, ecstatic exhilaration when you see a yellow dot, that is. In fact, it's one of our running jokes that you are a horder-gatherer. Nevari gave up mining JUST BECAUSE you were doing it. She knew she'd never get another piece of ore with you gleefully running off to gather anything in sight. Also... I don't recall this "clearing out the monsters" thing very well. I DO recall seeing you run toward me trailing two little green slugs, expecting you wanted help killing them, only to see you run RIGHT PAST ME toward a copper node. <_< I had to chase you down and kill them while you gathered. (By the way, this isn't a criticism to encourage you to change... we like it... it's funny... and we appreciate your... erm... enthusiasm).

    As for "ninjas" - the official WoW slang for the persons you describe who "steal" mining/herbs - just remember that a lot of the people on this game ARE actually children. And people, in general, are greedy. People with total anonymity and total exemption from law are VERY greedy and VERY selfish. I haven't been able to pick an herb for the last 10 levels or so because I wasn't willing to delay the party to gather them at the lower levels. I need to spend a few hours running around the Barrens and picking Briarthorn and Mageroyal so I can start collecting the better stuff. It's irritating when someone "yoinks" my herbs, but I have something they don't - Gatherer *grin*. I can just go back to the place with 6 prime picking spots and camp if I'm really that desperate to get a certain herb.

  2. *sigh* I know the feeling. I just joined Runescape and the same thing happens on there. With mining areas, fishing spots, sheep for shearing, enemies(only one person can fight a certain enemy at a time so its hard to gain fighting experience for later), etc.
    We hates it precious...

  3. GAH! I stoop down! Mid-stoop some damn 60+ swoops in on his mount and robs me! BLAH!

    Also, this is why I love being a Rogue. Stealth FTW! No mob cleaning required.

  4. I also wanted to add that when I first read your headline, I thought you were talking about those circumstances where you find it necessary to charge boldly into the midst of a crowd of baddies to obtain a certain quest item. (I frequently do this while soloing bosses with adds -- run in, kill the boss, loot his head or whatever, then book it out of there OR die and rez at the graveyard). That concept would fit your headline quite well, I think.

  5. "only to see you run RIGHT PAST ME toward a copper node"

    I was having an irrational-girl night. ^_* Anyway, the clearing-out thing was about someone else. With Dustfire, I just Psychic Scream them and that gives me enough time to gather before they come back.


    Enemies? Dang . . . I mean, I know how frustrating it can be with people camping bosses -- especially more than one group. I was in a group of five and there was another group of six (one of them just wasn't in the party), and then this lone hunter, and the HUNTER waited for the boss respawn and hit him first, so we had to help kill everything or die, and then wait for two more respawns (we got the extra guy in our group b/c Thes didn't have the quest). It was crazy. And I was priest, and offered to res anyone who needed it, so I ended up res-ing this one guy about 4 times.

    "Stealth FTW! No mob cleaning required."

    Nice! Birdfall has tried to stealth-nab some quest items, but the murlocs kept noticing her.


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