Bartle Test of Gamer Psychology

I have sometimes wondered just what kind of “gamer” I am.

Clearly, the only solution is to live-blog my taking the Bartle Test of Gamer Psychology!

Would you rather:
— Know more secrets than your friends?
— Become a hero faster than your friends?

Look, I just want to have friends, and lording either over teammates seems like a dickish thing to do. But I guess… secrets? So I can tell my virtual friends, and maybe they’ll (virtually) like me more?

God, I’ve never escaped the high school mentality, have I?

On an MMORPG, would you rather be known as:
— The person with the best, most unique equipment in the game
— Someone who can run from any two points in the world, and really knows their way around.

I mean… I’d like both? In reality, these points aren’t mutually exclusive, and if we assume that getting the best and most unique equipment is a function of game knowledge, then it stands to reason that a person could very easily be both. I also recognize that I cannot — at the least, do not — put in the time to be either, and that with my time constraints being what they are, at least the second option is more believable. Though when I say that, it sounds like a copout: “I don’t have the time to be awesome, but at least I go get around the map really quickly!” So I’m going with the first, knowing full-well that I’ll never be that guy.

On an MMORPG, a new area opens up. Which do you look forward to more?
— Being the first to get the new equipment from the area
— Exploring the new area, and finding out its history

The answer is so clear to me — the second! I love unlocking lore. But wait! On the previous question, didn’t I basically agree to the first choice?

Would you rather:
— Vanquish your enemies
— Convince your enemies to work for you, not against you

Guys, it’s an MMO. Everything dies. Sure, Scramble Sensors is awesome and makes me enemies kill each other… and that works for about thirty seconds, if my Axillary power is high enough, and then all of those damn Breen frigates start to shoot me again. So kill ’em all, because you can’t ever really turn NPCs to your side.

Which would you enjoy more?
— Getting accepted by a guild/clan
— Winning a duel with another player

I want to go with the first, because I see myself as a nice and social person. But I think I’m going to go with the second. I’ve never really played an MMO enough to enjoy the guild/clan experience. I’d like to say STO is an exception, but it isn’t — I was always too low of level to play alongside my fleetmates, was never really on at the same time, and one fleetmember really intensely disliked me. So!

And also: one of my most memorable MMO experiences is from Warhammer Online when, as a lone Inquisitor, I ran into a lone Chaos Sorcerer, and I barely won the ensuing duel.

Which is more exciting?
— A well-roleplayed scenario
— A deadly battle

Again: both? I hate this test. I’m going with the second, because that one isn’t dependent on other people, nor will it probably entail reading a lot of text; at least I can bring my own backstory to the battle.

What’s worse:
— To be without power
— To be without friends

Easiest question yet. Except: I usually play alone.

Which do you enjoy more on an MMORPG?:
— Getting the latest gossip
— Getting a new item

Gossip of what? Patch notes? I like patch notes. But I’m going with the second, considering how much I’ve spent in the C-Store.

Which is more enjoyable to you?
— Bragging about it to your friends.
— Killing a big monster.

These can be differentiated? I mean, to legitimately brag, I first have to kill, right? This is a terrible test.

Would you rather be:
— Wealthy
— Popular

Going back to that “high school mentality”: aren’t these one and the same?

Which do you enjoy more in MMORPG quests?
— Getting involved in the storyline
— Getting the rewards at the end.

Ideally, both. Sheesh. But let’s go with the first.

Which would you rather have, as a player on an MMORPG?
— A private channel, over which you and your friends can communicate
— Your own house, worth millions of gold coins

I’m taking choice C — not being forced to use Ventrillo, because I’m really self-conscious when I’m talking to my computer, and also: my dogs bark. Is the first choice a chat channel? Let’s say it is, and go with that.

Would you rather have:
— Two levels of experience
— An amulet that increases the damage you do against other players by 10%.

Two levels of experience is rather short-sighted; a PvP-only amulet is useless for my PvE interests.

Would you rather receive as a quest reward:
— Experience points
— A wand with 3 charges of a spell that lets you control other players, against their will. (charm person)

Isn’t this the same question as the one before? “Do you want to get experience, or fuck people up?”

When playing a video game, is it more fun to:
— Beat your best friend one-on-one?
— Have the highest score on the list?

I like being first in Fleet Actions.

Would you rather have:
— A spell to damage other players
— A spell that increases the rate at which you gain experience points?

The second, clearly. But again — is it just me, or is the dichotomy between “experience” and “PvP” is really weird?

On an MMORPG, would you be more prone to brag about:
— How may other players you’ve killed
— Your equipment

Shichiroji: Kikuchiyo, what on earth are you doing?
Kikuchiyo: I can’t kill a lot with one sword!

Which would you enjoy more as an MMORPG player?
— Making your own maps of the world, then selling them?
— Running your own tavern?

Is either really possible?

You are being chased by a monster on an MMORPG. Do you:
— Ask a friend for help in killing it
— Hide somewhere you know the monster won’t follow

It’s going to take too long for help to show up; better run and live to fight another day.

What’s more important to you:
— The quality of roleplaying in an MMORPG
— The uniqueness of the features, and game mechanic

This test is winning; I can feel my vitriol draining away. I like good stories! But I like unbroken and fun games just a little more. But yet: I’m really looking forward to TOR‘s polish, and I’m absolutely certain that it isn’t really winning in the “uniqueness department”.

What’s more important in an MMORPG to you?
— The number of people
— The number of areas to explore

I don’t care. Games that are empty are going to die soon, so I’m going with the first. But games that don’t have much to do won’t have many people for long.

You’re about to go into an unknown dungeon. You have your choice of one more person for your party.
A wizard, to identify the items that you find there
— A bard, who’s a good friend of yours and who’s great for entertaining you and your friends

“I’m sorry, good friend, but you’re not coming!” Way to be a dick.

Would you rather win:
— A trivia contest
— An arena battle

I am incapable of either, so let’s chose the more masculine impossibility, eh?

You learn that another player is planning your demise. Do you:
— Go to an area your opponent is unfamiliar with and prepare there
— Attack him before he attacks you

Die and respawn. Hope he doesn’t grief me. Also: how the hell do you get wind of a vendetta?

On a MMORPG, would rather join a clan/guild of:
— Assassins
— Scholars

“Trouble rather the tiger in his lair than the sage amongst his books. For to you the Kingdoms and their armies are things mighty and enduring, but to him they are but toys of the moment, to be overturned by the flicking of a finger.”

On an MMORPG, would you rather be known for
— Power
— Knowledge

I am a true Baconian; knowledge is power.

Would you rather:
— Defeat an enemy
— Explore a new area

Enemies are plenty; lore and areas, not so much. There’s a uniqueness there that others might miss.

Okay, so that death march is finally over.

I am apparently an extreme Explorer, which would have been my first guess.

However, I hope my complete and utter disdain for this test came through my snide comments. I found the vast majority of these questions to be repetitive and/or revolving around a false dichotomy.

Up next: my own thoughts on the type of gamer I am.


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