New Blood in Paragon: Daewyn interview
Lets start with the usual introduction chit-chat: Tell us a little bit about the person behind Daewyn.
Hello everyone! My name is Mirko and I'm a 21 years old student of business and economics. I live together with Tombolo in a small apartment in Helsinki. I spend my sparetime with a big variety of games (on and offline) and I really love teamsports, though I have to admit that the latter gets way too little of my time nowadays. It's quite hard to describe your own personality so I just leave it saying that I consider myself a nice, polite and in (almost) all ways a regular young man.
You joined Paragon some time ago together with Tombolo from Inner Sanctum, a very old and well respected raiding guild. What prompted you to apply for Paragon?
I can't deny the fact that raiding with Paragon has been my dream for a long time now. As a Finnish player I have a rare chance to be part of probably the best guild in WoW and such an opportunity shouldn't be ignored. I have always considered myself a loyal player though and it never feels good to leave a guild behind, especially one that gave me as much as Inner Sanctum did. However, the problems Inner Sanctum had during the Dragon Soul and finally the decision to stop progression momentarily made it clear for me that I needed something new to fulfill my urge to play at the top.
How was the recruitment progress: what was asked and how did you ensure Paragon of your superiority?
The whole process of recruitment was actually a surprise to me. The last time I had applied to a guild, I had prepared an application which was few pages long and after that I had to go through an interview in Vent that lasted more than one hour. You can imagine how weird I felt when my whole application to Paragon took a 10 minute chat with Baltha and maybe around 20 minute chat with Sejta (where maybe 5 minutes were spent on writing in total on all sides and the remaining 25 minutes waiting for other person to answer). You could say though that this application had more than 5 years spent on it, because I believe the experience I had from WoW before Paragon was the deciding factor. There were no tricks to show my "superiority", I just stated the facts about my raiding history and short description of me as a person and the leadership decided I could be a good addition to their roster.
Did you know anyone from the guild when you applied?
I don't have any old friends in the guild but I'd like to think that I now have more than 30 new ones (Knowing the Finnish mentality, I will be reminded about this answer next 3 months!)
Have you heard any crazy stories about our members or the guild as a whole, and do you believe them?
I have heard few stories about Verdishas drinking games and now that I know him they sound totally believable. Other than that I can't recall anything crazy, everything I've heard feels totally sane to me but that might have something to do with my own sanity :)
Almost every top guild is recruiting before a new expansion to be have a strong line-up once it hits. But between now and the release there is not much to do. How does it feel to join a guild at such a point in time?
I have to say the first weeks have felt really weird. It's pretty difficult to get "inside" the guild when you are lucky to find more than 4 people online outside Wednesday and the raid time usually doesn't allow much chit chat especially when playing a relatively new class with tactics you aren't used to. It's also a lot harder to show "progression quality" during farm which might make trial (and stress as well) last longer. In my previous guild there were multiple alt runs during the week which made it a lot easier to get to know more people with smaller doses but the approach has to be a bit different in Paragon. I still welcome the chance to spend around 6 months getting to know the ways of Paragon before any progression is starting.
Is it a "strange" feeling that the first chance to really prove yourself in progress lies so far ahead, like being in some sort of void in the meantime?
I certainly have a feeling that I have to earn my spot through progression and not through farm, but I hope that I don't have to wait until summer to be considered as full member of Paragon. I just got my promotion to member rank but it's naturally not the same.
Paragon is currently going through a very low activity period, what do you do in WoW besides raiding one or two days a week?
Currently I'm trying to keep my gameplay as polished as possible, so I'm doing my best to do DS and LFR on both of my characters each week. Other than that I enjoy PvP a lot on my warlock so the rest of my online time is spent dueling, playing BGs or fighting in arena. I'm also using WoW as a chat program which means I'm online quite often eventhough I'm not always actually next to the keyboard.
You are playing a mage as your main character in Paragon but your Warlock "Alt" is much better geared, including the legendary staff. Did you have to re-roll to get a spot on the roster and how did it feel to leave the well-geared char "behind"?
That story is quite funny actually. I originally applied and got accepted as a warlock and my alts (s priest and mage) were only mentioned shortly in my application talk. However, about 5 minutes after I had finished my migration Sejta, still unaware of me having done that, asked if I could come on my mage instead as the roster and current content suited better for one. The tone of his question was not demanding at all and I was given the opportunity to play my warlock instead but I decided that I would already from the start do what is best for the whole guild and rerolled to mage, which had previously been my 3rd character and geared only for Spine progression. The truth is that I enjoy playing a warlock more and I'm a lot better playing one + of course my 5-year-old main has a lot of sentimental value so I hope that when MoP arrives, the roster will favour my warlock again.
Daewyn's warlock is also in the guild.
For the first time in a long period Paragon did not get the World First on a final boss. How was it for you as a new member to come in at such a point in time?
Dragon Soul as a race was really a let down to me because of two things: the LFR-gear incident made it a lot less entertaining to follow and take part of and Spine as an encounter was in my personal opinion worst Blizzard has ever made. I really don't want to take the credit away from the guilds that succeeded in it because obviously it was really well deserved success, but in my own mind the rankings weren't as important as they were on previous tiers. The fact remains though that for more than 2 years Paragon has been the best guild in the world, so if anything, this one let down has just increased the motivation for the ones who are used being number 1. This is purely my own view on the issue that was built when I was a member of different guild so other opinions inside the guild haven't had any influence to that.
How was the switch from an international and English speaking guild to an all Finnish environment in a guild?
I have played most of my WoW history in Finnish guilds so it feels a bit like returning home. There are few differences when you compare international and national guilds and analyzing all of them thoroughly would require more space than one interview but I'll do my best to shortly describe the differences I have recognized.
1. Language. Eventhough the ability to communicate in English was pretty high on my previous guild, it's totally different thing to speak in your own language. People have a lot more courage to open their mouths, it takes less attention and focus to listen to what others are saying and it offers a chance to express yourself (at least in most cases) better when you don't have to choose between a word that you know how to pronounce and word that you don't.
2. Relationships and member management. In my previous guild I got pretty much taken care of during the first days and weeks, I went through multiple discussions (started by leadership) about the guild mechanics, raiding and me as a person. It was like I was forced (in a good way) to be part of the guild. In Finnish guilds I have had the feeling that due to the nature of our mentality, such things don't happen and it is necessary for the trial himself to make the initiative. On the other hand it's a lot harder to build a sustaining, deep relationship outside the borders of your own country so national guild has a lot more potential in that department.
3. Feelings. I have a feeling that national guilds can get more personal when it comes to feelings, both in good and bad ways. Of course my own view to international guilds is pretty limited, but I have a feeling that people are less likely to have both ends of emotional spectrum there. When people get angry at each other in national guild, it's a lot bigger thing in my eyes and on the other hand the feelings of joy are usually stronger, probably due to stronger bonds.
I took part of Ladans research like 6 months ago and we discussed these same things back then so if the topic itself is interesting, I'm sure you can get more detailed analysis if you poke her.
All in all I have to say that raiding in Paragon in terms of gameplay is pretty much same as raiding in Inner Sanctum; both guilds have great players in their ranks and performing your best is a rule rather than exception. I of course haven't been here during progression so can't compare those two but farm content feels just the same with dps-whoring leading to wipes, sub-par raiding setups and people playing on variable interest levels. Progression is what matters and that mentality can be seen during the farm content in both guilds.
Tell us about your gaming history?
I have been into gaming since I was a little boy so there is also a fair share of history on that department. To make it bearable to read I'll skip the offline-gaming part and go straight to the online gaming though.
My first online MMO was a game called Tibia, which I played quite hardcore for 3 years. The game was really unforgiving for disconnects though, the game developed to a direction I didn't like and in-game politics were able to make a person unable to play properly so I felt like I needed a change.
I started WoW in the end of 2006 which means I played a little bit during vanilla WoW. I started raiding during TBC in a nice, self-formed, friendly guild and as I gradually gathered more experience, I also started to desire more in terms of progression and rankings. My one year military service slowed things down a bit and it wasn't until T12 or Firelands when I actually got myself into hardcore raiding. In Inner Sanctum I learned what raiding on the highest level really means, I fell in love and realized that there is no going back. I loved my time there but as stated previously, certain issues made me forced to choose between these two options and the decision can be seen here.
What is your favourite expansion/tier/boss fight?
I loved TBC but being my first "whole" expansion I might be a bit biased here. As a favourite tier I have two options: Tier 12 which was my first tier playing on top and tier 6 which also had my favourite boss fight, Illidan.
Are you having trouble with separating different people on TS? Any hard ones to recognize?
The question should be changed to: "Are there any voices you can actually recognize?", because honestly I suck at learning peoples voices. I am currently familiar with less than 10 voices (You can guess if Verdisha is one of them) but hopefully that will change in near future.
If you had to promise Paragon's members one thing as a trial, what would it be?
I can promise to Paragon that as long as I'm raiding here, I will be answering to every single "What's your item level" or "How do I play warlock" -type of question, no matter how tired I am or how stupid the question might feel like :)