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Patch 2.3: Twinks become gods

David Bowers

As you know, in patch 2.3, many of the previously ho-hum mid-level dungeon drops are set to actually become useful, worth the trip you make to go get them in the dungeon (in most cases). Overall, this is a blessing for players everywhere, either starting out with their first characters, or leveling up long-forgotten alts.
Twinks, however, are going to become a much greater nuisance than they were before. Some of their old items are going to be upgraded by default as the new patch comes in and the old items all around the world get replaced with the new.

New twinks, however, will have the privilege of setting their sights on the best of the best items for their particular class and level bracket, putting an even further distance between them and other players who just want to enjoy a bit of PvP as they level up. This is particularly true with new low-level epics such as the Deadman's Hand which, at level 29, seems designed to be the pet dream of twinks everywhere, regardless of race or class.

Does Blizzard intend to support twinking? And what's the whole point of twinking anyway?

A friend of mine once encouraged me to make a twink once, one of a series of mage and priest quadruplets that would run around destroying everything in Warsong Gulch. We all had a lot of fun figuring out the best items and gearing up for our battles, and while it was nice to get a small taste for power rush those people running around battlegrounds with the very best epics at level 70 must feel, the greatest fun for me came when my friends and I worked together against other teams with their own twinks, who tried their best to win against us and gave us a run for our money.

I always felt a bit sorry in cases where the Horde players felt so frustrated that they would just hide somewhere with the Alliance flag and try to drag out the match as long as possible without even trying to win. It was as if they felt so powerless against us that they had to lash out and annoy us somehow in order to have some kind of revenge.

My mage and her sisters have since leveled up, and are no longer very involved in twinky behavior. The experience left me with a feeling that, while I understand people's desire to be as powerful as possible, it's still better for everyone if people settle for whatever gear they can reasonably get at their level, perhaps stay at the highest level for their bracket until their rested XP is full, and then move on to the next bracket, leaving new champions of the field to come along and take their place.

If the battleground matching system actually worked all the time to keep levelers fighting levelers and twinks fighting twinks, then I would have no problem with it, but as it is, the existence of twinks, and now their further improvement with patch 2.3 tends to prevent people from enjoying the lower-level battlegrounds as much as they could.

Nonetheless, it's clear from Blizzard's comments that they don't intend to get rid of twinking altogether. As Drysc says:

I think the biggest draw is that it's a unique challenge to build a character with a very specific constraint. You might find better balance or more simplistic enjoyment from limited abilities and talents. Finding the perfect item for a specific slot and figuring out how to get it while gaining the least amount of experience possible so as not to pass the level you're attempting to maintain. It's a different way to play the same game, and you can essentially reach the "most powerful your character can get" type of level without really needing to socialize.

There's obviously the sort of... I don't want to call it a god complex, but wanting to be powerful or invulnerable. I think as it's become more popular that's less of a draw, or maybe more of a deterrent at least, as you're more likely to face other twinks now than you may have before.

Some do legitimately like to face other twinks, it's similar to having premade characters, there's no real individuality of gear in most cases, and so it comes down to personal ability in playing the game. I don't think any of them would deny that they also enjoy killing a non-twink in a shot or two though.

It's a metagame of sorts, taking the rules and boundaries of the game and constricting them further to create a different and/or (usually) more challenging goal.
What do you think of twinks and the improvements they're getting in patch 2.3? Do you fear to ever enter the battlegrounds with an alt again, or do you find that twinks don't bother you as much as one might think?

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