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 » Fri Jul 09, 2010 8:11 pm

In terms of forum structure, perhaps the simplest way to reduce confusion in Cataclysm is to move my "Advanced FAQ" to the "Basic Training" forum.

Yes, it is an "Advanced FAQ" - but it's still only a FAQ! Move it to "basic", and improve to so the two guides have no gaps and do cover everything a tank needs to know to do OK as a raid tank.

If they catch the bug and want more details, Advanced Training forum with (IMO) at least a pointer-post by Theck aiming them at the classic threads.
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby yappo » Sat Jul 10, 2010 6:49 am

knaughty wrote:
If they catch the bug and want more details, Advanced Training forum with (IMO) at least a pointer-post by Theck aiming them at the classic threads.


Yes please :D

To use a current example: I'd prefer not being abused by a retridin winning Nighttime and go on wiping 5-mans as a crittable tank because "Maintankadin said new tanks should use dps-weapons".
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby theckhd » Mon Jul 12, 2010 11:42 am

knaughty wrote: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 basically sounds like the second structure I proposed. Looking back at your Basic and Advanced FAQs, this will probably work just fine. The Basic FAQ covers everything in a sentence or two, while the Advanced FAQ lays out a little bit of groundwork for why, and links to in-depth guides on each topic.

I'd be happy to co-author or maintain the Advanced FAQ in that framework. My main concern was that the Advanced FAQ would try to be too content-heavy. As I said earlier, there's little point in writing a duplicate copy of Digren's guide, nor would I be interested in doing so. However, a guide structured like your Advanced FAQ can serve as a useful middle step between the Beginner FAQ and each of the advanced articles.

I agree that both should be in the Basic Training forum.

I could go either way with MT101 and the Glossary. They could both make sense as part of the Basic FAQ, but both already exist in their own threads. On the other hand,
  1. The Glossary post probably doesn't need a lot of updating. If Majiben agrees, it could easily be incorporated into the FAQ with little modification.
  2. MT101 was going to be heavily re-written to cover the very basics of Paladins and Tanking. That might even be a little bit too basic for the FAQ. Maybe it would make more sense to divide this up amongst the Basic and Advanced FAQs according to content. A brief section in the Basic FAQ that explains Hands, Blessings, and Aggro would be all a beginner tank wants, while the stat conversions and caps would make more sense in the Advanced FAQ anyhow.
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby theckhd » Mon Jul 12, 2010 11:47 am

Also, If I'm going to be heavily authoring the Advanced FAQ, I propose we change the names to reflect that. :P

In fact, if you wanted to adopt the name "Maintankadin 101: Knaughty's Tanking Basics" for the basic guide, we could use "Maintankadin 201: Advanced Tanking FAQ" for the advanced guide.

Alternatively, "Knaughty's Tanking Basics" and "Advanced Tanking FAQ" would be just fine.
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby Vrimmel » Mon Jul 12, 2010 12:24 pm

It would also be useful with a guide on how to keybind and macro for efficient tanking, and how to make a functional UI and . I know a lot is up to personal taste on this matter, but when it comes to high end tanking this is a topic that many people think is of high significance as seen in the following links:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qBbM-MUXBEI (famous tankspot Halion HM)
http://maintankadin.failsafedesign.com/ ... =viewtopic (Screenshot of UI in guild app thread)

I have personally been guilty of failing at such things for a long time.
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby knaughty » Mon Jul 12, 2010 2:22 pm

theckhd wrote:In fact, if you wanted to adopt the name "Maintankadin 101: Knaughty's Tanking Basics" for the basic guide, we could use "Maintankadin 201: Advanced Tanking FAQ" for the advanced guide.

I'd be happy to keep the current names: Basic FAQ, Advanced FAQ.

There's already the following two links as well :D

http://tinyurl.com/mt-t102
http://tinyurl.com/mt-t202

*edit*
This, I think:
Basic Training Forum
  1. Tankadin 101: Basic FAQ.
  2. Tankadin 201: Advanced FAQ.

Vrimmel wrote:It would also be useful with a guide on how to keybind and macro for efficient tanking, and how to make a functional UI.

I agree they should be there - I put short sections on both in the Advanced FAQ, but they were never fully developed.
theckhd wrote:I'd be happy to co-author or maintain the Advanced FAQ in that framework. My main concern was that the Advanced FAQ would try to be too content-heavy.

Don't worry, I'll smash tastefully edit the answers down to an appropriate length for an "advanced" FAQ, honoured co-author!
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby knaughty » Mon Jul 12, 2010 2:30 pm

Basic FAQ on Keybinds:
Q: Should I click or use keybinds?
A: OMFG, use keybinds! See Advanced FAQ and Keybind Article for details.
Q: Really, it matters that much?
A: Yes. The most important playstyle change you can make is to switch to a good set of keybinds.
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby Marblehead » Tue Jul 13, 2010 8:35 am

knaughty wrote:Basic FAQ on Keybinds:
Q: Should I click or use keybinds?
A: OMFG, use keybinds! See Advanced FAQ and Keybind Article for details.
Q: Really, it matters that much?
A: Yes. The most important playstyle change you can make is to switch to a good set of keybinds.


I would like to disagree with that. There isn't such a thing as a best playstyle, for the sole reason that anyone's opinion is heavily biased on this matter.

On the other hand, it's generally accepted that keybinds are easier to use as a tank, however that doesn't mean that clicking is inefficient. Successful click-tanking needs a lot of practice and a specially customized interface, therefore is not recommended for new players, but it's always a matter of personal preference. I agree that some classes with attacks on next melee (like Heroic Strike and Rune Strike) or manually placed AoE spells (like DnD and Volley) need a bit more effort to be played at their best with clicking, but it's definitely doable.

To be clear, I'm not talking out of my head here. I've clicked 11/12 ICC10 HM and 4/12 ICC25 HM kills. I know that I'm not convincing anyone yet, cause we all saw tankspot's Halion25 hard kill video and how that underperforming palatank got his achievement. For this reason, I think the following image speaks for itself (link for consistency):

Image

(for the record, most of the above have been achieved only by switching one or both trinkets, while the only piece of gear that I have and is 277ilvl is the rep ring)

Don't get me wrong. I'm not saying that clicking is better in any way. Clickers use keybinds sometimes, just like keybinders click on their action bars occasionally. I would just like for people to refrain from doing comments like "z0mgfWTFr0flc0pterclick3rn00bz0r", especially when advising new players. I don't think it suits the mentality of these forums.

Bottom line, I think that an experienced clicker can perform at the same level as an experienced keybinder. And no, I'm not considering myself a pro, and yes, I do mistakes while playing.


Just to be safe, in case knaughty's post was more on the humorous side, I apologize for overreacting and getting offtopic, but the other thread got me rather irritated with the generalization of every clicker being de facto a bad player.
Last edited by Marblehead on Fri May 20, 2011 1:45 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby Arcand » Tue Jul 13, 2010 8:46 am

Honorably said.

The argument generally goes "clicking is suboptimal and knowingly playing suboptimally is inexcusable". Outliers like you seem to be, who play "suboptimally" while performing at a superb level, aren't usually considered. (And if a keybinder can be found who outperforms you, the crowing will ring across the land. ;) )

I hope we end up with a nuanced message like "If you are a clicker, it is likely that keybinds would improve your performance and we recommend that you try to switch. However, there are clickers whose performance is absolutely excellent."
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby Meloree » Tue Jul 13, 2010 9:23 am

Arcand wrote:Honorably said.

The argument generally goes "clicking is suboptimal and knowingly playing suboptimally is inexcusable". Outliers like you seem to be, who play "suboptimally" while performing at a superb level, aren't usually considered. (And if a keybinder can be found who outperforms you, the crowing will ring across the land. ;) )

I hope we end up with a nuanced message like "If you are a clicker, it is likely that keybinds would improve your performance and we recommend that you try to switch. However, there are clickers whose performance is absolutely excellent."


I don't think anyone has said that you can't click fairly effectively. There is a spectrum of ability level amongst clickers, much like of keybinders. There are good and bad clickers, and good and bad keybinders. However, the upper bound performance threshold on keybinding is significantly higher. A good clicker may well be better than a bad keybinder. A good keybinder will have a higher performance threshold than is possible from clicking. In a tank-and-spank, the difference is minimized (but still exists), but anywhere there's a lot going on, keybinding will tend to widen the gap - you can't click and mouseturn, for one - you can't click your rotation while positioning your pointer to pick up an add - you can't click your rotation while manipulating the camera effectively. You can't click your rotation while lining up a mouseover cleanse/bop/hosac.

With all due respect to Marblehead, his list of ranked parses isn't very useful or illustrative. The vast majority of parses are from normal-modes in 10 and 25 - content that top players haven't done in months, and did at much lower buff levels. Parses aren't necessarily all that useful anyway, tank parses are often a better test of a healing crew than a tank, to begin with, because one necessarily gives away survivability for tank dps.
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby Marblehead » Tue Jul 13, 2010 10:57 am

Meloree wrote:I don't think anyone has said that you can't click fairly effectively. There is a spectrum of ability level amongst clickers, much like of keybinders. There are good and bad clickers, and good and bad keybinders. However, the upper bound performance threshold on keybinding is significantly higher. A good clicker may well be better than a bad keybinder. A good keybinder will have a higher performance threshold than is possible from clicking.


Yes, none said that you can't click effectively (i.e. getting the job done), but many implied that a clicker can't reach in any way the performance levels of a good keybinder. That the best clicker will always have worse performance than the best of keybinders. You said that keybinding has a higher upper bound performance threshold. In my opinion, the threshold is one and the same for everyone. It's more possible to reach the threshold with keybinds, but it's not unattainable by clicking. My point of view is that the best clicker can play as good as the best keybinder.

Meloree wrote:In a tank-and-spank, the difference is minimized (but still exists), but anywhere there's a lot going on, keybinding will tend to widen the gap - you can't click and mouseturn, for one - you can't click your rotation while positioning your pointer to pick up an add - you can't click your rotation while manipulating the camera effectively. You can't click your rotation while lining up a mouseover cleanse/bop/hosac.


All these situations can be easily overcame by a clicker as well. First of all, as we all know, every ability has a 1.5sec GCD, which is more than enough to an experienced clicker to click anything on the screen other than their abilities. Mouseturn is rarely used, cause it's faster than strafing only when you need to go to the opposite direction, which means that the mob you were hitting will be at your back anyway. Camera manipulation is rarely needed as well, if you have the camera distance at max, covering the majority, if not all, of the room. Furthermore, the main rotation's abilities are always keybinded near the movement keys, so even if it takes more time to do something of the above, the rotation never stops. For picking up adds, there's an "art" called tab-targeting (I can tab-target the first shambler by pressing the tab key only once) and whenever there are many adds to forbid successful tab-targeting, I'm sure most of us can click on a mob in less then a sec, and there are always the keybinds. As for the mouseovers, clickers tend to use grid+clique with many indicators, so lining up happens during the GCD.

Meloree wrote:With all due respect to Marblehead, his list of ranked parses isn't very useful or illustrative. The vast majority of parses are from normal-modes in 10 and 25 - content that top players haven't done in months, and did at much lower buff levels.


Ok, you have a valid point there, but if you go to the link above the pic, there is another ranking at the bottom of the list, which is rank 189 in Fester25HC, where I was wearing full progression gear (reminding that the only 277ilvl item is the rep ring), except the strength libram and switching to 251ilvl gutbuster with berserking when not tanking. Also, I didn't manage to line up AW with neither heroism or berserking buffs.

I'm not trying to boast, but ranking in top 200 without trying, in the first (and only so far) kill of that boss, while clicking on an average 10fps environment, was quite a feat. I know it's a static fight and I wish that my guild was more progressed to have more examples.

Meloree wrote:Parses aren't necessarily all that useful anyway, tank parses are often a better test of a healing crew than a tank, to begin with, because one necessarily gives away survivability for tank dps.


I definitely agree on that. A movie is far better evidence. You've given me a reason to make one and I'll certainly try to at some point in the summer.
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby Chicken » Tue Jul 13, 2010 2:43 pm

I'd actually say that for both approaches the key lies in optimizing things. The best keybinders typically change their keybinds so that they have a lot of potential abilities in easy reach, and ensure that their frequently used abilities are the most easily reached. The best clickers I'd expect to take a similar approach, the difference is that instead of changing their key layout to achieve this, they instead change their UI layout.

I mentioned this before elsewhere but I had a period of approximately two months in my life where, due to medical reasons, I was incapable of using one of my hands, thus 'forcing' me into playing as a clicker. With my original UI, which was definitely not built for mouse usage, that lead to a terrible loss in effectiveness. While my keybinds were set up pretty tightly, my action bars were anything but. What I ended up doing eventually was set up 3x3 blocks in various parts of my screen, typically at points where my mouse would not be far away from the action, both to make it easier to move out and target something, as well as to make sure my eyes didn't stray too far; the blocks in particular were also made such that they were close to the kind of action they focused on. Abilities I used on friendly targets I kept close to my raid frames, while threat building abilities were kept closer to the center of my screen. It worked fairly well after some practice, and I suspect that I'd get about the same efficiency out of it as out of my keybinds if I'd continued practicing it (Mostly due to the fact that in the end WoW has it's 1.5 second global cooldowns, if it did not things would be different).

The one downside that approach had was that it did eat up more screen real estate, but there's likely ways around that as well. Normally you have the use of both your hands after all, which can definitely be used to condense the amount of action bars you need even more. Even if you're not used to hitting keybinds, I suspect most people can easily hit shift or control, and it's easy enough to configure bar mods to switch pages upon pressing either of those, heavily reducing the amount of visible buttons you'd need.

It did help making me view my UI in different ways though, even now my UI is designed in a way so that different parts of my screen are devoted to different tasks, meaning that if I look at any part of my UI, any other information I need about that part is in the same general area.
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby Vrimmel » Wed Jul 14, 2010 5:33 am

On a tank and spank fight without doing any raid utility actions, clicking will actually be more effective for me, since I am physically able to click faster than I am at pounding my keyboard, but as soon as I have to help the raid out in any other way than doing my rotations/using cooldowns, it loses a lot of value. On the tankspot video, the problem wasn't only him being a clicker, but him being bad at it too.

Btw to meloree: I watched one of your videos on youtube, and I saw you had a rotation macro which changed icon depending on what was the next spell on the list. How do you do that?
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Re: How to help a new guy: Discourse on Instructional Design

Postby theckhd » Wed Jul 14, 2010 5:40 am

Vrimmel wrote:On a tank and spank fight without doing any raid utility actions, clicking will actually be more effective for me, since I am physically able to click faster than I am at pounding my keyboard

I'm not sure I believe that. For the same reason that I'm certain you'd be able to type faster using the keyboard than the Character Map in Windows. Even with a click-optimized bar layout, you still have to move the mouse and click. With a keyboard and a key-optimized binding set, you don't have to move your hands at all, meaning you can be moving a 2nd finger into place to hit the next ability while a different finger is hitting the current one. Or if you're smart, you keybind things such that you don't even need to move off of your default hand position.

<edit> Actually, there's one set of people I can see clicking effectively: old-school Starcraft players. Some of these guys are insanely good at moving their mouse and clicking. I knew a few of them that played WoW in vanilla, and iirc these guys were capable of well over 100 APM (actions per minute). You really only need to beat 40 APM to be able to click every ability in your rotation.

Disclaimer: that 100 APM figure likely includes key bindings, as in Starcraft you could use the keyboard shortcuts to give commands. But you'd still have to click for any movement/attack command, so I think it's reasonable to assume that at least half of those actions were clicks, which still puts them over the threshold of "good enough to click competently."

Vrimmel wrote:Btw to meloree: I watched one of your videos on youtube, and I saw you had a rotation macro which changed icon depending on what was the next spell on the list. How do you do that?

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

Postby yappo » Wed Jul 14, 2010 5:56 am

Another thing that would be of use (if the code-base for the forums allow it in the first place) is to physically move out of date data to an archive for historical use. That way those of us picking up ancient information referred to in other venues (official forums come to mind) are able to point out that the information is indeed out of date.

Examples would be the explicitly pre-3.3 gearing threads in Gearing.
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