How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby knaughty » Thu Jul 08, 2010 5:42 am

As for the guides here, there are at least a couple of simple "get you started" guides - mine was decent, theck's looked good.

Both would be a reasonable spot to start for a fresh tank (if such a thing exists at this point).

For Cataclysm, I'm expecting the overall advice is going to be a lot simpler.
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Re: I need Help

Postby theckhd » Thu Jul 08, 2010 6:53 am

tlitp wrote:Look carefully at how Theck makes use of his epic verbosity, at the fine balance between epistemological considerations and heuristics. Still, in some occasions he ultimately fails reaching the target audience.

It's also a matter of determining who comprises the target audience. Posts I make in the ATC forum tend to have a very different tone than, say, the 3.3 Talent Guide or Attack Table articles, which are designed to be more like a tutorial.
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby theckhd » Thu Jul 08, 2010 7:25 am

knaughty wrote:As for the guides here, there are at least a couple of simple "get you started" guides - mine was decent, theck's looked good.

Both would be a reasonable spot to start for a fresh tank (if such a thing exists at this point).

For Cataclysm, I'm expecting the overall advice is going to be a lot simpler.


The two guides were entirely different in focus. IIRC the one linked from the menu was the talent portion of your Advanced FAQ. Mine was just an update/takeover of Dorvan's guide, which had gotten out-of-date.

We'll have to see what the Cata talents look like before we decide what to do with them. There may still be room for one in-depth guide and one overview guide.

Although this topic is headed towards a discussion the moderators and guide authors have had in the past - "How do we make sure that new viewers can easily find the information they need." The menu structure at the top of the page was supposed to solve that, but I think it needs a bit of an overhaul, with someone actively managing and cleaning it up.

For example, consider the following menu structure:
  1. Basic Training
    • Maintankadin 101 (basics of prot mechanics, aggro, etc)
    • Tankadin Glossary
    • Basic FAQ (Knaughty's simple question / simple answer version)
    • Tankadin Gear Check (rough levels for entering raid tiers)
  2. Advanced Training
    • Advanced FAQ
    • Talents and Glyphs (links to Thecks guide in Talent forum)
    • Rotation (links to Knaughty's Advanced FAQ section)
    • Enchants/Gems (links to Digren's guide in gear forum)
    • Consumables (links to Majiben's guide)
    • Macros (links to a consolidated macro post)
  3. Theorycraft
    • MATLAB summary
    • 969/FCFS Rotation Theorycraft
    • Agility vs Dodge comparison (if still relevant)
    • Total EH

The idea would be to have one well-maintained guide for each category. The Basic Training stuff would be overviews to get a new tank on their feet. Much like Knaughty's basic FAQ, it would be heavy on "do this" and light on the "here's why." Ideally, the basic guides would tell you to go to the advanced guides for more info.

The Advanced Training section would be slightly more in-depth discussion of the topic. My Talent/Glyph guide is a good example of the level of detail I had in mind. A short section on the basic build or two, followed by a couple sentences on each talent and discussion about their pros and cons.

The Theorycraft section would be for the number crunchers that are interested in the gory details.
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby knaughty » Thu Jul 08, 2010 8:33 am

I'm strongly in favour of the a Cataclysm guide structure that looks like this:

  1. Consolidated single Tankadin FAQ, flavoured as Theck suggests. 90% chance I'd be willing to lead-author it if "author team" thought it was a good idea.
  2. Advanced guide. Heavy on the "why". 90% chance I'd be willing to contribute pretty heavily if Theck was lead-author. The FAQ should lead into the Advanced Guide in a coherent fashion.
  3. Theorycraft and backing research. Read for pounding headaches.
I do think the guides need a better bit of editorial oversight, and to be written (or at least edited) as a coherent whole. The current structure is very ad-hoc.

We tried this back when the forum redesign was done, but were a bit rushed to get the "coherent" bit done, I think.

My skills (IMnsHO) lie in translating from 3 -> 1, and being able to write and edit. Don't expect me to do the research - I some Excel skills, but I'm simply not in the same league as Theck & Co.

PS: Theck, check your PMs.
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Re: I need Help

Postby sycopat » Thu Jul 08, 2010 8:57 am

Apologies for the wall of text. I tend to ramble a bit.

tlitp wrote:The newbie asks : "Hey guys, is this Reckoning I keep hearing about any good ?". In the ATC, the answer should be : "Under which assumptions ?". Everywhere else, "You probably shouldn't bother with it".




I want to pick on this a second just because for the true "newbie" tank, raiding is the goal and not the problem. Thus the newbie has different needs than the raid tank.

Due to relative gear levels, newbies who are following advice and trying to gear correctly generally have more problems with threat than survival, and for running heroics are unlikely to ever need DG/DS, so for them a few points in reckoning is probably a more valuable use of those 3 talent points to unlock the rest of the prot tree.

This is based on my own experience but also corresponds anecdotally with Barathorns case study, to quote:

Barathorn wrote:My reasoning for choosing Armsman is it is cheap and effective and I don't need to be raid gearing yet. I need to be heroic gearing. I think a lot of tanks new to 80 might miss that very important distinction. Gear for the content you are currently working in seems to be the golden rule.



This is something that is easy to miss, but it holds true into other aspects like speccing and glyphing, and can be applied to giving advice as well, in that the newbie tank requires advice for the content they are currently working, not endgame raiding. So the answers to tlitp's example question above should be:


In basic training; "If your running heroics and need threat, it's good as a way to unlock the prot tree, but there's better places for spare points."
In ATC; "Under what conditions?"
Everywhere else; "You probably shouldn't bother with it."

I guess my point as it applies to the overall discussion is that advice going into basic guides should reflect the issues faced by the newbie tank while they are a newbie, and not the issues they will face transitioning from a newbie into a raid tank. While I feel that the guides generally do a pretty good job of explaining the concepts, many of them are slightly biased and that bias is towards preferred methods of raid progression tanking. There's nothing wrong with that, everyone is biased to some extent, however a newbie tank is only going to pick up on the bias and, if trusting, assume that the bias is valid and should apply equally to themselves.

Now I've been thinking about this a lot, probably too much, and am not sure if I'm making sense or if my views add any value to the discussion or if I'm just repeating myself so I'm just going to post it and see what others think.
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby theckhd » Thu Jul 08, 2010 9:13 am

I also think that separating the Advanced FAQ into sub-topics is a far better solution than having one all-encompassing FAQ. Even in the current menu structure, much of your Advanced FAQ is split up into component parts.

It's honestly a lot of work to keep an all-encompassing FAQ up to date, especially an "Advanced" one that carries the expectation of having a detailed discussion of every topic. This spreads the workload, as each author only needs to be an expert on one small area, and only feels responsible for maintaining that one area. In addition, it's more fault tolerant: If one author quits or disappears, only one section of the guide goes unattended, and it's easier to find a replacement (much like I did with the Talent Guide when Dorvan retired).

There's also an efficiency aspect to this model. We already have several excellent guides for some of those sub-topics - there's no point in writing a re-hash of Digren's Enchant/Gem guide. We should just link to it from the menu directly.

Which brings me to another point of contention that will have to be addressed - the Joomla interface. It was a neat idea, but it utterly failed in its calling. It's simply inconvenient to have to keep a forum post and the html code updated, to the point that many authors have simply quit doing so (if they were even able to in the first place). And it doesn't give us a whole lot of benefit over the forum interface - the two things I can think of are anchors and a properly-functioning [list] indenting scheme.

If we really want ease of use, for both readers and authors, we need to axe Joomla, or at least the article portion of it. Let the site menu point directly to forum posts, and let the authors handle the formatting and maintenance of their guide through the bbcode interface that they're already comfortable with.
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Re: I need Help

Postby theckhd » Thu Jul 08, 2010 9:21 am

sycopat wrote:Due to relative gear levels, newbies who are following advice and trying to gear correctly generally have more problems with threat than survival, and for running heroics are unlikely to ever need DG/DS, so for them a few points in reckoning is probably a more valuable use of those 3 talent points to unlock the rest of the prot tree.


I think the error is assuming that a new tank is necessarily interested in heroics. A far larger proportion of the population is raiding nowadays than in previous expansions. I suspect that the people most in need of advice are the players making that leap from heroics to raiding. Screwing up a little in a heroic, while frustrating, is fairly low-consequence. You're probably using RDF, and you'll likely never see those 4 other people ever again. On the other hand, if you're screwing up in a PuG raid or a guild trial, that can have serious consequences for your chances of getting invited back.

In addition, you really don't need a guide to run Wrath heroics. You need to know some basics about the class, all of which are identical for raiders. You need to know what spells to cast, roughly what gear/gems/enchants you should be looking for, and what the essential talents are. Reckoning is certainly better in heroics than it is in raids, and better in some circumstances than others, but it's not going to be the same quality as, say, Divine Strength. In the grand scheme of things, whether you take Reckoning or not is unlikely to make a huge difference.

It may not hurt to mention this sort of thing in the guides, but you have to be careful not to add too much bloat. Something like this would probably be fine:
"You need to spend 3 points somewhere in the early prot tree to advance further. Many raiders will take DS/DG for the potent raid cooldown, some like Divinity for the extra survivability, others will take 3/5 Reckoning for extra threat. For heroics and tanks just starting out, the threat bonus from Reckoning is arguably the stronger choice."

Even that's a bit wordy, but I wouldn't want anything too much longer than that in a beginner guide.
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby Chicken » Thu Jul 08, 2010 12:02 pm

It's not possible for guides on the forum, but otherwise I've always liked guides where the basic information is all that's listed, but there's an obviously clickable area which will expand a more detailed explanation on the subject.

For instance the simple explanation might simply say that the optimal rotation is 969 along with a short explanation of what that means. At the end you'd have a clickable portion which will expand, without changing the page, into a more detailed explanation of why it's optimal. That way someone just looking for a quick answer on what the optimal rotation is can find this information quick and easy, and if he then wonders why it is the optimal rotation, they can dig a bit deeper for more information.

In essence the thing here is that you have a guide with just the basics, with the detailed explanation hidden but a click away, and with the guide just continuing below the detailed explanation if you want to read more of the basic guide after reading the detailed explanation.
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby sycopat » Thu Jul 08, 2010 12:08 pm

In response to theck,

While I think you underestimate the number of new tanks likely to want advice for heroics, (perhaps the number is smaller currently than it may have been, but they do exist.) I do agree that there is no real need for a specific guide to heroics, and did not intend to give the impression I thought such a thing was necessary. I just think that a few lines on the subject may be helpful for balance, even if it was no more than a single sentence. E.g.;
"Tanks likely to be heavily outgeared by party members(e.g. newer tanks running heroics/lower tier raids) may want to put more emphasis on threat while gearing up than tanks at the endgame."

Placed correctly (e.g. into a discussion of basic threat mechanics) I think something like that would just help newer tanks figure out which other pieces of advice are most useful to themselves regarding speccing/enchanting/gemming, (after all advice on threat sets, specs etc. already exists in the relevant areas and is, I imagine, likely to remain in future iterations in some form) which would hopefully then lead to them realising that the example "threat" spec that selects reckoning over DS/DG is more appropriate to their situation.
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Re: I need Help

Postby Barathorn » Fri Jul 09, 2010 1:02 am

theckhd wrote:I think the error is assuming that a new tank is necessarily interested in heroics. A far larger proportion of the population is raiding nowadays than in previous expansions. I suspect that the people most in need of advice are the players making that leap from heroics to raiding. Screwing up a little in a heroic, while frustrating, is fairly low-consequence. You're probably using RDF, and you'll likely never see those 4 other people ever again.


I honestly think we need to give easy to follow step by step generalised guides. We can answer questions that are specific to a single situation as and when they happen then.

My experiances from a gearing perspective recently tell me its pretty brutal out there as a Tank trying to go from dinging 80 into heroics and then raiding because the older raid content isn't being run for upgrades and the gearscore required for ICC10 is in general barely reachable from the gear available readily.

I think we will have the gear section covered pretty well, we probably need a 'failsafe' talent spec guide to run alongside Digren's and Yappo's guides possibly using the maintankalevels structure? That way everything in basic training and the gear forums fits together and is easily understandable.

For example,

What maintankalevel am I? Ah so I need to be working on this gear and using this spec.

That way the guide will rarely need updating.

On the other hand, if you're screwing up in a PuG raid or a guild trial, that can have serious consequences for your chances of getting invited back.


Indeed. I completely agree.
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Re: I need Help

Postby theckhd » Fri Jul 09, 2010 6:41 am

Barathorn wrote:I think we will have the gear section covered pretty well, we probably need a 'failsafe' talent spec guide to run alongside Digren's and Yappo's guides possibly using the maintankalevels structure? That way everything in basic training and the gear forums fits together and is easily understandable.

For example,

What maintankalevel am I? Ah so I need to be working on this gear and using this spec.

That way the guide will rarely need updating.

I'm not sure that organizing everything by maintankalevel is a good idea, if that's what you're suggesting. I think it works pretty well for gear and gems, because those have reasonably fine granularity over the course of an expansion. With talent specs, the difference between tiers of content comes down to a few points at best (Reckoning or not? SoCom or not? Crusade or SotP?).

That said, it wouldn't be hard to include a "maintankalevel" section in an advanced guide (i.e. my Talent Spec guide for example) that includes a brief discussion of spec variations for each of those levels. As a simple example:
"Level 1: Since you're clearing heroics, consider speccing Reckoning with your 3 optional points and get Seal of Command in Ret. For heroics, these two talents turn you from a mild-mannered tank into a DPS beast that mows down trash packs. You'll get more glowing praise from DPS players about your awesome threat generation than you'll know what to do with."
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby theckhd » Fri Jul 09, 2010 7:46 am

knaughty wrote:I'm strongly in favour of the a Cataclysm guide structure that looks like this:

  1. Consolidated single Tankadin FAQ, flavoured as Theck suggests. 90% chance I'd be willing to lead-author it if "author team" thought it was a good idea.
  2. Advanced guide. Heavy on the "why". 90% chance I'd be willing to contribute pretty heavily if Theck was lead-author. The FAQ should lead into the Advanced Guide in a coherent fashion.
  3. Theorycraft and backing research. Read for pounding headaches.
I do think the guides need a better bit of editorial oversight, and to be written (or at least edited) as a coherent whole. The current structure is very ad-hoc.


Knaughty and I have discussed this in private messages and agreed to collaborate on this sort of Beginner/Advanced structure for Cataclysm. The tentative agreement is essentially what I've quoted above, with him authoring the majority of the single, beginner FAQ, and me coordinating/authoring the advanced sections. There are some details to iron out, however, and I think that rather than an individual discussion between Knaughty and I, a community discussion involving all guide authors would be more appropriate.

First, let me repeat my (slightly altered) vision for the overall guide structure on this site:
Theck wrote:
  1. Basic Training
    • Maintankadin 101 (basics of prot mechanics, aggro, etc)
    • Tankadin Glossary
    • Tankadin FAQ (maintained by Knaughty, simple question / simple answer version, links to advanced guides)
    • Tankadin Gear Check (outlining the "maintankalevel" system)
  2. Advanced Training
    • Advanced FAQ? (See OOB #2 below)
    • Talents and Glyphs (Thecks guide in Talent forum)
    • Rotation (revamped version of Knaughty's Advanced FAQ section, by Theck or another volunteer)
    • Enchants/Gems (Digren's guide in gear forum)
    • Consumables (Majiben's guide)
    • Macros (Macro guide in the Addon forum)
    • Consolidated Gear Guide List (Barathorn's list, linking to the different guides)
  3. Theorycraft
    • MATLAB summary
    • 969/FCFS Rotation Theorycraft
    • Agility vs Dodge comparison (if still relevant)
    • Total EH
    • WoW Combat Mechanics (expanded version of "The Attack Table")


Note that this is not a final, complete list. We can add or subtract guides from the Advanced and Theorycraft sections if we want to.

Orders of Business
  1. The Basic Training section - I don't think there's too much to talk about here. We already only have one major FAQ - if you look at the stickies we have now, this is what you get:
    -Maintankadin 101 (Winchester, to be adopted by Theck)
    -The Attack Table (Theck)
    -Consumables (Majiben)
    -Glossary (Majiben)
    -3.2 FAQ (Knaughty)
    Winchester's guide is out of date, and I've been meaning to re-write it. But it seems silly to write a guide that covers the same material that Knaughty's FAQ covers. Especially if we plan on collaborating. Instead, it seems more logical to make the 101 article an overview of the basics of paladin mechanics and tanking. Stuff like, "Here's how seals/blessings/judgements work," what aggro is, what different stats do, and a basic reference for conversions and other important numbers people might want to find.

    The Consumables article makes more sense as an "advanced" guide in the menu structure since it's specialized (it can stay in this forum, of course). The Glossary makes sense to keep. The Attack Table gets demoted(!?) to theorycraft, which means I can expand it a bit if I want to, and move all of the quick-reference stuff to the 101 article.

    Knaughty's FAQ would then be the "Basic" FAQ that people go to for answers, just like it is today. Simple things like "What seal do I use," "What's the basic tanking rotation," and so forth. He and I would co-author that, though it would likely be mostly his baby.

  2. Advanced Training - one guide or many? - This is something Knaughty and I haven't completely discussed. I believe his initial intention was to have one all-encompassing Advanced Guide. We could certainly do this, if we wanted to. I posted a number of reasons why I think a distributed model might be better.

    To make the distinction a little clearer, here's a graphical explanation. The distributed model looks like this:
    Code: Select all
             Basic FAQ   
             /   |   \
            /    |    \
          A#1   A#2   A#3

    Where Knaughty's FAQ sends people directly to the far more specific subtopic guides. As an example, he'd link directly to my Talent guide, Digren's Enchant/Gem guide, and so forth.

    Knaughty's model would look more like this:
    Code: Select all
             Basic FAQ
                 |
                 |
            Advanced FAQ   
             /   |   \
            /    |    \
          A#1   A#2   A#3

    In other words, Knaughty's FAQ gives the short-and-sweet version. He links to the Advanced Guide, where I discuss each section in slightly more detail, giving answers to some of the basic "why's." I then link to the more detailed content guides, like Digren's guide.

    Either model would work, of course. What we need to decide is which one serves our purpose better. If the Advanced guide is too content-lean, then it serves little purpose. If it's too content-heavy, it risks duplicating the work of the detailed guides (or contradicting them if it's not kept up). If it doesn't exist at all (as in the first model), then we need to make sure that both the Basic and Specific guides are appropriate, so that readers don't get frustrated (i.e. too little info in the Basic Guide, but the content guide goes right over their heads or TLDR).

  3. Responsibilities of authors - We should talk about what we expect of authors. A great guide will contain information and advice for both raiders and players who only see heroics. It'll also get that advice right, even if the author isn't part of one of those demographics. For a good example, look at Digren's guide. He actively solicits advice from Mel and other high-end progression tanks about the decisions they make so that he can make sure he's giving the right advice for that section of the population. That's the sort of attitude and effort I'd expect for a guide to be on this list. Simply writing down what you think about something doesn't make for a good guide - it's the testing, revision, and collaboration that adds the polish that makes it useful to other players. While I'm not sure we can put down hard-and-fast rules on this, I think it would be good to figure out who makes the decisions about what articles get linked and what don't.

  4. Editorial Oversight - This is something Knaughty brought up in the quoted section at the beginning of this post. With a single Advanced FAQ, I'd have the editorial oversight necessary to fix things and keep it in good shape. Obviously, I don't have that control over other people's guides (nor am I sure that I want it). But it does bring up a good question about how much editorial oversight we want to have over guides that are linked from the menu. Should there be a "revisions" process or committee to help give the guides a consistent tone or style? It might be easier to discuss this if Knaughty could expand on what exactly he had in mind with this thought.
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby yappo » Fri Jul 09, 2010 12:30 pm

Being somewhat of a middleman here I still remember being very, very green.

The main phallacy, if I may be so bold, is that we tend to forget that tanking content is a moving target. Now I have the mentality of a tank, which is based on thick skin, but not all beginning tanks come equipped with that.

I recall asking for data on certain heroics, February or maybe as late as early March 2009, and, in much politer terms, were told that we don't do that crap any longer. The wording was in reality more in line with tactics sections already having been written early December 2008 and thus needing no updates. By May 2009 those sections were already hopelessly outdated.

I have since moved onwards, and contaminated myself with this oversight to the degree where I've never given a thought to writing a guide on how to burn down five-man heroics in the best way given today's reality. By now I'm deliberately making an arse out of myself in order to put the light on a different way of thinking when it comes to gearing for 'non-dangerous' raid-content even if said content is still progression for a lot of tanks.

I believe we've come to road's end for WotLK, and thus any plans for revamping/bettering how we advice those interested should aim at Cataclysm.

Knowing I'll never tank true end-game content, I'm quite willing to fill in the middleman point of view. I can't know for a certain that overgearing progression content will be a major part of Cata, but as I'm a stubborn bastard I'll likely come as close to the definition of the pugging maniac as is possible, and as long as I enjoy tanking I can promise you the bsatard's point of view, to keep you awake if nothing else :D
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby Barathorn » Fri Jul 09, 2010 1:54 pm

Theck, I really think it would be a massive plus to have a 'basic gearing' section in the basic part of the guide you propose. This could be very easily tied into Digren's guide? If that is what you are suggesting already forgive me reading it incorrectly.

What I honestly think [as I believe you may?] Is that basic training should encompass all elements of basic training including gear. it makes sense to me to have all of the basic training 'requirements' in one place so that there is zero confusion for anyone new to this site. It also looks a lot more polished in my opinion.

If I could for a moment go back to an earlier quote by you?

theckhd wrote:I'm not sure that organizing everything by maintankalevel is a good idea, if that's what you're suggesting. I think it works pretty well for gear and gems, because those have reasonably fine granularity over the course of an expansion. With talent specs, the difference between tiers of content comes down to a few points at best (Reckoning or not? SoCom or not? Crusade or SotP?).


These few points might not seem much but they make a huge amount of difference to new tanks. I have learned this the hard way during my case study. I think we might want to look at this as a definate thing we can improve upon for guiding tanks new to 80/85. It doesn't have to be 'wordy', a single sentence can explain why these are the best talents to have potentially.
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby knaughty » Fri Jul 09, 2010 7:59 pm

I contacted Theck direct because his involvement would be key to engaging my personal enthusiasm.

Sort of a case of "No Theck guides in Cata would mean no Knaughty FAQ". Thus, I asked him if he'd be up for co-ordinating them with me.

He's in, so I'm in.

I'd like to fold the "Basic guide" into as few posts/threads as possible for Cataclysm. Everything is going to be a bit simpler with the new mechanics. I've agreed with Theck for us to co-author the basic guide with me taking lead - reverse roles for the advanced guide. I'm also more than happy to get significant input from other authors for the basic guide, and to provide attribution: EG: Gems & Enchants subsection: "Thanks to Digren for his contributions to this section"

One of the things I'd most like to achieve is consistency of tone & format. This will work best if we have a couple of people acting as editors and collation points.

To Theck's proposal:


Theck wrote:
  1. Basic Training I'm happy to develop this entire section as a single thread. I think that the first three should be a single post at a minimum - the "maintankalevel" idea is very good, and could either be in that thread or split into a separate thread
    1. Maintankadin 101 (basics of prot mechanics, aggro, etc)
    2. Tankadin Glossary
    3. Tankadin FAQ (maintained by Knaughty, simple question / simple answer version, links to advanced guides)
    4. Tankadin Gear Check (outlining the "maintankalevel" system)
  2. Advanced Training
    1. Advanced FAQ? (See OOB #2 below)
    2. Talents and Glyphs (Thecks guide in Talent forum)
    3. Rotation (revamped version of Knaughty's Advanced FAQ section, by Theck or another volunteer) Happy to write the Cataclysm rotation guide
    4. Enchants/Gems (Digren's guide in gear forum)
    5. Consumables (Majiben's guide)
    6. Macros (Macro guide in the Addon forum)
    7. Consolidated Gear Guide List (Barathorn's list, linking to the different guides)
  3. Theorycraft
    1. MATLAB summary
    2. 969/FCFS Rotation Theorycraft
    3. Agility vs Dodge comparison (if still relevant)
    4. Total EH
    5. WoW Combat Mechanics (expanded version of "The Attack Table")



theckhd wrote:4 - Editorial Oversight - This is something Knaughty brought up in the quoted section at the beginning of this post. With a single Advanced FAQ, I'd have the editorial oversight necessary to fix things and keep it in good shape. Obviously, I don't have that control over other people's guides (nor am I sure that I want it). But it does bring up a good question about how much editorial oversight we want to have over guides that are linked from the menu. Should there be a "revisions" process or committee to help give the guides a consistent tone or style? It might be easier to discuss this if Knaughty could expand on what exactly he had in mind with this thought.


There's a couple of aspects to "editorial oversight" that I think are important:

The first is "coverage" - the current guides overlap and have gaps because they were put together in an ad-hoc basis covering things that people think needed to be covered that the particular person was interested in. A coherent plan to try and cover everything, once will be a lot better than six people writing guides on the (overlapping?) things that interest them.

The second is "coherence" - a largish piece of work simply reads better if it has been written with a single style guide in place. My Advanced Guide was planned as a single piece of work, and while it was never completed to the degree I'd like, it demonstrates the point I'm trying to make.

yappo wrote:I believe we've come to road's end for WotLK, and thus any plans for revamping/bettering how we advice those interested should aim at Cataclysm.

There are definitely issues with the current guides and areas where they are outdated. I don't see a lot of value in fixing the problems and I'd prefer to spend my time on making sure the Cataclysm guides are even more awesome rather than fixing Wrath guides.

I have done a quickie update to the basic guide to make it 3.3 compatible. I'll have a quick look at the advanced guide as well.

There was also a good point made many moons ago: My "advanced guide" isn't all that advanced!

Rather than worrying about the difference between these two:
Code: Select all
         Basic FAQ
         /   |   \
        /    |    \
      A#1   A#2   A#3


         Basic FAQ
             |
             |
        Advanced FAQ   
         /   |   \
        /    |    \
      A#1   A#2   A#3


How about this proposed structure:


  1. Tanking as a Paladin.
    • Knaughty's Tanking Basics: Similar to my Basic FAQ but with sections added on Maintankadin 101 and a Glossary. A "read this" post for the Mage who just re-rolled tankadin. I'll either try and cover levelling as prot, or find a good single post from someone else to point at. It will cover the basics of prepping for raiding at level 85.
    • Knaughty's Tanking Next Steps: Similar to my Advanced FAQ, but with all sections completed (probably needs some help, Theck's agreed to contribute). It still in "FAQ/Guide" format, heavy on "what do do" and light on "why". Enough coverage that some could read it and be able to raid-tank for an average raiding guild not shooting for tons of hard modes. Each section of this guide links to of of the threads in the Advanced Training section. Theck to assist (co-author?) on linking this detailed guide to the individual threads in the Advanced training forum.
  2. Advanced Training Single topic threads covering each section of my current "Advanced FAQ". Theck to moderate/coordinate? I won't be writing any of these.
    • Topic complex enough to need a full thread of it's own.
    • Another one.
  3. Theorycraft
    • MATLAB summary
    • 969/FCFS Rotation Theorycraft
    • Agility vs Dodge comparison (if still relevant)
    • Total EH
    • WoW Combat Mechanics (expanded version of "The Attack Table")
This isn't the "Offtankadin" forum. My MoP FAQ: http://tinyurl.com/FAQ-5-0
- Knaughty.
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