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So there I was, fresh off a rant to a friend in Vent about what had just happened that night during what was appearing to be a common occurrence in our raids. I was frustrated (in my own defense, it was just one of those nights when nothing goes right, no matter how hard you try), and that's when it happened: The deep-down thoughts of ZOMG, how hard can this be, people?! spilled out into a diatribe on why I can't stand to run with the lot of them, since they "just don't get it and probably never will!" I named names. I pointed fingers. If there was a bridge to burn, I had brought along the dynamite for extra explosive-y goodness! I was good, they were bad, and I was there to prove it beyond a shadow of a doubt.

It was at that point I realized I had become the bane of every WoW player: the Elitist Jerk (OK, not the Elitist Jerks -- those guys and their forums are awesome). As soon as I had finished my speech, the notion of "it's lonely at the top" had a whole new meaning. Once I had out-classed my friends, they stopped being chatty with me in Vent. It was one lonely night after another. I missed them.

Elitism can strike at any time. The important thing is realizing how to harness, control and manipulate what you know into a vessel that can be used to help those around you become better at their own game.

My story ends well. Once I was able to use my powers for good, my old friends didn't hold a grudge. Besides, what's really important in the game for you? Is it the camaraderie of your friends or the satisfaction of being the best?

This article was originally published on WoW Insider.

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