A power-gamer's plea to the community.

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Throwaway Bob
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A power-gamer's plea to the community.

Unread post by Throwaway Bob »

Hello fellow players, staff, DMs and everyone that I may have forgotten to mention.


Firstly, thanks for being cool. Thanks for the cool server, cool custom content, cool RP moments. It’s been great.
And Secondly I rant a little. It’s about the stigma of the “powergamer” that seems to linger on this server. I suppose I am one. At least I’ve been called that, sneered at by fellow players, and even a few times called out on it via let’s say a server-wide shout by a DM or two in the shape of “bgtscc powergaming tips of the day”. I mean, it was funny. Once.

Given a rule set and a subset of additional parameters, I will attempt to come up with the most optimal solution. It is how my mind works I suppose. I will have a RP concept, server rules and regulations, game mechanics, server content and will then try to squeeze as much out of it as humanly possible. I would spend hours poring over the pluses and minuses of any and all details of a character, slowly refining it. I think of my resourcefulness as a positive trait, and when I get bashed for it, it’s as any psychologist could tell you, a hurtful experience (being called out on something you perceive as a positive trait). Especially when it is something –I- do in my free time. Usually alone. I don’t go around the server picking fights. I stay in my little corner of bgtscc and enjoy the game. I role-play with whoever speaks to me. I help whoever asks for it. I help people who are lost. I give advice when asked. I help out with quests or levelling. I hand out any and all items someone might require of me and I happen to have on hand. But I also solo bosses, farm loot, enjoy the big numbers and get excited when they get bigger on my character sheet. I craft items and sell them for profit. I even resold an item or two on the Auctions. It is a fantasy game. I enjoy the fantasy of being someone powerful, resourceful and wealthy. But I never rub it into anyone’s face. Hell, I have never even been in a pvp-type situation on most of my characters or even a conflict.

And all I ask is for you to consider what was said here before being mean to someone you’ve never met and about whom you only have your assumptions. Because I’m finding it harder and harder to log in every day. And some might even say “Good riddance, one powergamer less.” but I would suspect it’d be coming from a place of jealousy against someone who has simply spent more time thinking about and perfecting a build and has devoted more time and resources to having the stronger character. I can only hope it’d be that, because the alternative would be simple malice.


Having a mechanically oprimized character does not mean the player is bad at, or uninterested in roleplaying. I spend most of my time on the server roleplaying, if I can only find another player interested in it.


As you can likely tell by the name, this is a throwaway forum account. I won’t be looking at the post and how it’s doing. I won’t be responding. I’m not interested in an argument over the matter, I simply wished to state what I have stated and if it makes one person think twice before being generally unpleasant to another player over this subject, I would think it worth the time to write.


Thanks for reading and thanks for being great overall.
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Deathgrowl
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Re: A power-gamer's plea to the community.

Unread post by Deathgrowl »

You say you won't read this, so there's not much point in responding. But I will anyways, because I'm just like that!

I'm a little bit confused about the complaint here. I am the same way regarding building characters: I enjoy the tinkering, trying to find the optimal mechanics for an RP concept that I have. But I don't think anyone has ever really accused me of being a power-gamer (but then, I don't really enjoy the grind). Indeed, I am typically more into the deeper RP, and I optimise the mechanics to suit that RP. And I have been one to complain about power-builders as well.

So when you say that having an optimised character doesn't mean the player is bad at or uninterested in RP, I agree. But are you? What some of us find particularly grating is when people build purely for mechanical prowess and then fail to reflect it in their character. Take a fairly common example of a super sexy and always so charming tiefling with 6 charisma.Or someone who dips into three levels of cleric of Istishia for example to get evasion (water domain) and access to the Heal and Spellcraft skills (that juicy +6 vs spells) but never really RPs anything about Istishia at all, indeed sometimes doing things that are in direct opposition to the teachings of the god. Alignment choices and race choices also are part of this. If you pick a moon elf or a wood elf for your rogue/assassin build because of the extra dexterity (and strength in the latter case), but you don't RP a believable moon elf or wood elf, some of us are indeed going to find it grating.

It's not the fact that you optimise that make you a "power-gamer". It's the fact that you do in to the detriment of your RP, or don't acknowledge the build choices you make as significant for the RP.

But if this doesn't apply to you, whoever you are, then the people who call out 'power-gamers' aren't talking about you.
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the_flame_of_anor
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Re: A power-gamer's plea to the community.

Unread post by the_flame_of_anor »

Reading this (hitherto) short thread makes me depressed. Why is this community getting so toxic??
The love of loot is the root of all evil.

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yyj
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Re: A power-gamer's plea to the community.

Unread post by yyj »

Well there's certain elitism in the community and cliques.

I think it's too obvious and it was very obvious to me when I looked at the BG discord voice chat, hearing about people complaining about other players often, which I have also seen done in private discords, making someone a pariah and disregarding the rules and meta simply to please friends and guildies.

"Oh ignore X, he is a power gamer and can't rp" or "X sucks at rping Y class" is something that you could probably hear someone say.

I personally try to play and rp with everyone, though I know I am not welcome in certain places, I am not dumb and I can read between the lines, in the end this is what makes people stop playing and why server population fluctuates.

Especially these last few days I've seen a few people walk away from here while new blood fills their place. But then I look at the constants and I cannot really be surprised that things go the way they go. You get told that there are few DMs and they have no time but then you see them running events to support their friends/guildies.

And the cliques find a reason to dislike you, be it for being a powergamer or just because someone thinks you arent a "believable elf", and this goes OOC and extends to all your characters.

People run so many hidden alt accounts for a reason, DM identities are hidden for a reason but then you look at the backstage and realized that the mask is necessary otherwise everyone will be able to tell who pulls the strings.
Last edited by yyj on Mon May 10, 2021 11:17 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Blaze
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Re: A power-gamer's plea to the community.

Unread post by Blaze »

It is factual that DMs are more dedicated to "veterans" players or guilds in general and not to new playerbase. I have no idea how the quests are assigned daily, I don't know if there is a criterion dictated by the admin but playing from 8 to 12 hours on BGTSCC for more than a month, I will have seen MAYBE 2 or 3 quests. This is a point that should be explored because the quests can lead to interaction by multiple factions, players and RP, thus expanding not only the playerbase but substantially decreasing the discontent and certain rumors that run among the server.

My 2 cents
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Re: A power-gamer's plea to the community.

Unread post by TheKai »

the_flame_of_anor wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 9:16 am Reading this (hitherto) short thread makes me depressed. Why is this community getting so toxic??
How do you get “server is toxic” from one post, one perspective?
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Maecius
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Re: A power-gamer's plea to the community.

Unread post by Maecius »

Hmmm ... I don't really like the word "powergamer" because it implies that a person is not interested in roleplay. In my experience, that's rarely the case. What I see isn't "powergamers" and "roleplayers."

Literally everyone I've run into in game recently has roleplayed with me.

Instead, I suppose I kind of see two major camps of roleplay? (Three if you count a "hybrid" camp of both styles). I'll call them "True Adventurers" and "Landmark Characters." Sometimes these two camps agitate each other, or speak ill of each other, but I think they're both necessary and I think they both bring a lot to the server.

"True Adventurers" tend to, well, play the game. If they're logged in, they're focused on playing. They're actively exploring, running dungeons, and so on. They tend to know the mechanics very well, the areas, the monsters and their weaknesses. I enjoy roleplaying with them because a) they always stop and roleplay with me if I engage them, and b) they make a quest run or a dungeon a lot more fun and much more memorable. These characters I don't often run into twice (at least not on the same character), because they're always on the move, and, in some cases, might be one of several alt characters owned by the "True Adventurer" player. But they bring a lot of dynamism to the game and really are a blast to play with, both in terms of the quality of their roleplay and due to the fact that I often learn new things about the game from them. I almost always put their character name in my Journal Notes, in the hopes that I do get a chance to meet them again (though only occasionally will I actually encounter them again, given the fact that they move around lots and I don't play often). The con of playing a "True Adventurer," from their perspective, is that they tend to get much less involved in DM events, player events, and "broader" stories or relationship webs. For events in particular, they tend to find them by luck alone, which means they usually see them very rarely unless a DM happens to notice them running a dungeon or traveling and decides to spice things up for them. These players might not feel like they're plugged into the server's happenings, and they may feel left out as a result. When they burn out, it's often because they've grown bored of the content and feel like they don't have a big impact on plot (or feel like there is no server plot, i.e., "what plot?"). The derogative name for "True Adventurers," used by people who don't really understand them, tends to be "powergamers."

"Landmark Characters" tend to be, well, landmarks. They're logged in a lot usually, but they might be surfing the Internet or watching Netflix or something in-between roleplay encounters. They tend to be found in the same 8-12 area maps, give or take, and they end up becoming very highly recognizable and largely associated with their "chosen" maps. These players aren't "NPCs," but they often have the same name recognition and visibility as NPCs. In other words, even if you've never RPed with them, you might have heard their names. They tend to be very plugged in to server events because they end up having large and extensive social networks who tend to hook them into things (essentially inviting them into DM events without their having to make much effort to get involved on their own). Alternatively, DMs may throw a plot their way knowing that they will hook multiple people into the plot very quickly as sort of a lazy way to "get the ball rolling" rather than having a dramatic attack or something else kick things off in a less subtle fashion. These characters tend to have guild associations. Players of these characters tend to play primarily this single character, and either don't have alts or rarely get on their alts. I like roleplaying with them because they tend to know a lot of the goings-on of the server storyline and they provide a sense of "stability" to the server. If you meet the same character five or six times, you start to become familiar with them and it starts to feel like the world is actually persistent -- not always changing. The con of playing a "Landmark Character," from their perspective, is that the days can sometimes blend together, the RP can sometimes start feeling repetitive or cyclical, and even DM events and player events can begin to feel like "work" instead of "fun," because it's taking a lot of effort for them to spin all the plates and keep communication channels open and deal with the large amount of RP coming their way (through other players, guilds, etc.). These players, when they burn out, often burn out because logging in is "a lot of effort," and, or, because they have become subject to accusations of favoritism or have turned into targets for gossip. The derogative name for "Landmark Character" players, used by people who don't really understand them, tends to be "campfire RPers."

Hybrids tend to kind of mix and match both styles, to equally mixed results.

For what it's worth, all three styles of player can be build-focused (or not). "True Adventurers" who end up being build-focused tend to build to survive content and maximize efficiency. "Landmark Characters" who end up being build-focused tend to build to survive PVP. Hybrids build for both.

I think at the end of the day, if you can easily identify what style you tend to lean into, then you probably already understand the strengths and weaknesses of your particular style. But I think it's important you try to understand the other style as well, so that you don't dismiss that side, and maybe can even learn to actually better engage or utilize them to enhance your own experiences.

Ultimately, however you play the game, you are absolutely contributing to this server in a meaningful and positive way, and don't ever let anyone tell you otherwise. This place is made by its players, and it'd be a much staler place if either style ever "prevailed" over the other, or if only one type of roleplay became "acceptable." The diversity of characters and players is absolutely what makes this community a worthwhile place in my eyes.
starsign
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Re: A power-gamer's plea to the community.

Unread post by starsign »

As a new player ((Just started in feb)), I'll say that the majority of players I have met and RPed with have been great. I'm not saying they all ICly love my character, but I will say that I have enjoyed the RP that has come my way. People hear the negative voices louder than the positive ones and there are lots of players here who are just down to RP and with anyone.

And I agree that what would make someone a power gamer isn't how good your build is, or even your proclivity to smash stuff ((I love to smash stuff)), but it would be not playing your sheet. Not playing that low Wiz, or Low Chr, or what have you. It would be giving a character a dump stat and then never having that reflect into your RP ever. So, if you aren't don't this then, you aren't a power gamer. You just make powerful builds. Some people though don't want to RP and just want to run about and bash things like it's a MMO, which is fine, but people will assume you don't want to RP, if you aren't giving anyone opportunities to RP. But if you just want to run about on your own and bash heads, and that's how you enjoy the game go for it my friend.

DMs tend to pick characters that are veteran or guilds mainly I think because they are leery that people are going to vanish. I would love to see a DM start like a BG Militia that only accepts characters under say level 15. Once you hit level 15 you are big boy and graduate from the militia. But I know most and I'm not saying all, Vet players who have gotten quest leads have tried to share them in a reasonable IC way. There will always be peeps where it doesn't make sense for their character to share info, and that can get annoying.

I've been in the VC a few times.. not much honestly, but I never heard anyone talk about one player being the ebil. No community is perfect, but this idea that something is "toxic" is actually "toxic". It means that you hear it all the time and assume someone is being a arse when they aren't. When you would have given someone the benefit of the doubt you are less likely to do it. Perception is at the heart of every matter.
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izzul
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Re: A power-gamer's plea to the community.

Unread post by izzul »

Maecius wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 2:01 pm Hmmm ... I don't really like the word "powergamer" because it implies that a person is not interested in roleplay. In my experience, that's rarely the case. What I see isn't "powergamers" and "roleplayers."

Literally everyone I've run into in game recently has roleplayed with me.

Instead, I suppose I kind of see two major camps of roleplay? (Three if you count a "hybrid" camp of both styles). I'll call them "True Adventurers" and "Landmark Characters." Sometimes these two camps agitate each other, or speak ill of each other, but I think they're both necessary and I think they both bring a lot to the server.

"True Adventurers" tend to, well, play the game. If they're logged in, they're focused on playing. They're actively exploring, running dungeons, and so on. They tend to know the mechanics very well, the areas, the monsters and their weaknesses. I enjoy roleplaying with them because a) they always stop and roleplay with me if I engage them, and b) they make a quest run or a dungeon a lot more fun and much more memorable. These characters I don't often run into twice (at least not on the same character), because they're always on the move, and, in some cases, might be one of several alt characters owned by the "True Adventurer" player. But they bring a lot of dynamism to the game and really are a blast to play with, both in terms of the quality of their roleplay and due to the fact that I often learn new things about the game from them. I almost always put their character name in my Journal Notes, in the hopes that I do get a chance to meet them again (though only occasionally will I actually encounter them again, given the fact that they move around lots and I don't play often). The con of playing a "True Adventurer," from their perspective, is that they tend to get much less involved in DM events, player events, and "broader" stories or relationship webs. For events in particular, they tend to find them by luck alone, which means they usually see them very rarely unless a DM happens to notice them running a dungeon or traveling and decides to spice things up for them. These players might not feel like they're plugged into the server's happenings, and they may feel left out as a result. When they burn out, it's often because they've grown bored of the content and feel like they don't have a big impact on plot (or feel like there is no server plot, i.e., "what plot?"). The derogative name for "True Adventurers," used by people who don't really understand them, tends to be "powergamers."

"Landmark Characters" tend to be, well, landmarks. They're logged in a lot usually, but they might be surfing the Internet or watching Netflix or something in-between roleplay encounters. They tend to be found in the same 8-12 area maps, give or take, and they end up becoming very highly recognizable and largely associated with their "chosen" maps. These players aren't "NPCs," but they often have the same name recognition and visibility as NPCs. In other words, even if you've never RPed with them, you might have heard their names. They tend to be very plugged in to server events because they end up having large and extensive social networks who tend to hook them into things (essentially inviting them into DM events without their having to make much effort to get involved on their own). Alternatively, DMs may throw a plot their way knowing that they will hook multiple people into the plot very quickly as sort of a lazy way to "get the ball rolling" rather than having a dramatic attack or something else kick things off in a less subtle fashion. These characters tend to have guild associations. Players of these characters tend to play primarily this single character, and either don't have alts or rarely get on their alts. I like roleplaying with them because they tend to know a lot of the goings-on of the server storyline and they provide a sense of "stability" to the server. If you meet the same character five or six times, you start to become familiar with them and it starts to feel like the world is actually persistent -- not always changing. The con of playing a "Landmark Character," from their perspective, is that the days can sometimes blend together, the RP can sometimes start feeling repetitive or cyclical, and even DM events and player events can begin to feel like "work" instead of "fun," because it's taking a lot of effort for them to spin all the plates and keep communication channels open and deal with the large amount of RP coming their way (through other players, guilds, etc.). These players, when they burn out, often burn out because logging in is "a lot of effort," and, or, because they have become subject accusations of favoritism or have turned into targets for gossip. The derogative name for "Landmark Character" players, used by people who don't really understand them, tends to be "campfire RPers."

Hybrids tend to kind of mix and match both styles, to equally mixed results.

For what it's worth, all three styles of player can be build-focused (or not). "True Adventurers" who end up being build-focused tend to build to survive content and maximize efficiency. "Landmark Characters" who end up being build-focused tend to build to survive PVP. Hybrids build for both.

I think at the end of the day, if you can easily identify what style you tend to lean into, then you probably already understand the strengths and weaknesses of your particular style. But I think it's important you try to understand the other style as well, so that you don't dismiss that side, and maybe can even learn to actually better engage or utilize them to enhance your own experiences.

Ultimately, however you play the game, you are absolutely contributing to this server in a meaningful and positive way, and don't ever let anyone tell you otherwise. This place is made by its players, and it'd be a much staler place if either style ever "prevailed" over the other, or if only one type of roleplay became "acceptable." The diversity of characters and players is absolutely what makes this community a worthwhile place in my eyes.
i find myself more of a Hybrid tendency towards "True Adventurers" most of the time(since sometime i dedicate 1-2 week for pure lvling and pure treasure hunting), rarely lean towards mild "Landmark Character" because i dont really like the spotlight. I love to support other characters storyline, and push their RP further. i also cant focus on 20 floating text messages hence when RPing in a big group, i will only speak/write when its necessary not to flood the conversation and roll RP skill when it deem necessary and not spamming it.

also the part that people dont understand mostly about me is that im not the same character when i play diffierent PC.
-when i play my neutral/non biased not wise, non charismatic melee, my PC dont judge other PC and be kind, nice and decent to each other like a beta person and dont like to take the lead other than charging blindly like a non wise person should.
-when i play my elf highborn starlight shining girl, she does despise drow while thinking highly of herself with her glimmering outfit
-when i play my charismatic main, i always try to enforce his funny and charismatic chubby and voracious food appetite presence upon others
-when i play an intuitive PC, he always put suspicion and use his intuitive nature to decipher other PC while being judgemental in his comments/who he talks to
(always RP my sheet, my skills, and never try to represent otherwise) so on and so forth based on my fickle mood and mind. . . ...

i dont understand the term Powergamers because from my understanding, the game is meant to be played and adventured.
i also never belittle Campfire Rpers nor i disturb their limelight other than to support them the way they are. (they sing, i clap and dance. they wear sexy clothes, i commend them pretty. they like sneaking, i check my pockets or ask them for shady information).

the one problem i face is when 'players change 10 alts, delete all 10 alts and then combine all their RP in one next alt they RCR'. though i believe people can do what they want to do and RCR how they like, i am afraid to interact with any X PC that i dont know if they are going to become close friends or kill the PC for the next RCR chance they get. so months of effort goes to waste and the story feels bitter to me. hence i stay far and only do my thing which in being a "True Adventurer" most of the time interacting lightly with others. kudos
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Azroth
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Re: A power-gamer's plea to the community.

Unread post by Azroth »

the_flame_of_anor wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 9:16 am Reading this (hitherto) short thread makes me depressed. Why is this community getting so toxic??
I don't know how toxic it may be as I tend to limit some of my own ooc exposure to a degree so I stay somewhat relatively focused, yes some have variations of tolerance thresh holds. Some may pop off a moment then say "I need a break" which is fine, anger is within us all. On my end, there seem to be fewer grudge holdings than there were in the past. Some may be warry in case it may crop up again, or cautious out of necessity in short; forgetting the mistake, taking the lesson from it all. I have on my break been in and out of various games in the past year or so, and seen far worse and far more destruction, while at the same time very constructive in some cases and or places depending on the environment.

And learned quite a bit in between on various things myself. As a rule of thumb, however, nowhere is flawless, always have to consider the human, can't fully rely on systems and expecting it to work perfectly as you still need humans to operate the machine, so to speak, if you get my meaning.


And as Maci said, there are some pretty good folks out there who do well on both fronts at the same time. And as Maci more or less hinted, they are great for advice and bouncing ideas for, builds, and other mechanical questions off of too.
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I am fine with most RP. But will not tolerate the example reasonings of attempting to kill off my PC's out of fear and speculation alone or just because they didn't do nice things to you. Have a valid RP reason. We are adults, let us act like it.
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Re: A power-gamer's plea to the community.

Unread post by the_flame_of_anor »

TheKai wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 12:55 pm
the_flame_of_anor wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 9:16 am Reading this (hitherto) short thread makes me depressed. Why is this community getting so toxic??
How do you get “server is toxic” from one post, one perspective?
First, those were two posts I read, not one.

Second, why do you assume I draw my conclusion from just this one thread? Why don’t you do a forum search to see how many times “toxic” and its synonyms and related themes have been mentioned in recent times?
The love of loot is the root of all evil.

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Re: A power-gamer's plea to the community.

Unread post by The_Sorting_Hat »

Mhm, I'm with Anor on this one... It was gettin a tad... severe lately. Don't get me wrong, plenty of great moments, but of late... a tad severe.
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Re: A power-gamer's plea to the community.

Unread post by Wolfrayne »

A community is always going to be divided when the server isn't sure what it wants to be. Its a medium RP server where you do/don't have to interact with anyone and where IC/OOC mixes quite often.

You have separation because some people want a traditional D&D RP experience while others want to play the game like a game or an MMO. When you try to make everyone happy nobody is happy. People segregate in to groups and decide who they will and wont spend time with. Throw in other problems like level or monetary differences and things start to get really messy.

Then you have the problem of favoritism, I know we don't like that word here but it exists if we acknowledge it or don't, people gravitate to people and groups they like which is why the same groups always seem to be part of everything. Because why wouldn't they?

A DM makes an announcement for a small group of people in an area and suddenly people are showing up out of the woodwork for no real reason other than "i dont want to miss out" but that causes more problems and it becomes another hack and slash murder fest. The Dms dont like this or they want to do something with a smaller group and instead we end up with the same groups of people "hoarding" events.

We are creating our own toxic environment.
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Re: A power-gamer's plea to the community.

Unread post by Kiran »

Personally, I only roleplay as it gives levels faster so I can go and bully low levels in the graveyard and PVP them. Don't need a strong build if the people are only level 1-5 I find!
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Re: A power-gamer's plea to the community.

Unread post by Steve »

Kiran wrote: Wed May 12, 2021 6:42 am Personally, I only roleplay as it gives levels faster so I can go and bully low levels in the graveyard and PVP them. Don't need a strong build if the people are only level 1-5 I find!
The Server definitely needs more hazing. Lol. J/k.
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