Agro control is important to understand for anyone who plays a massively multiplayer online game such as World of Warcraft. The mechanics of most of these games are fairly simple and the for the sake of convenience rather than accuracy, the groups have been broken down to tanks, casters/DPS, and healers.
The concept of the hate list is central to understanding aggro control. The person on the top of a monster’s hate list will be attacked by the monster. Actions taken by the player can either move his name on the hate list or lower it.
Tank Agro Control
Tanks, want to get and keep aggro. Rather than controlling aggro, they deliberately seek it out. Most online role playing games give tanks one or more taunting abilities. Taunting, along with using weapons that cast spells and high damage abilities help keep the tank at the top of a monster’s hate lists. Tank classes do less damage by design to make the task of the tank more challenging and to make the caster and DPS classes learn to keep their name off the hate list.
Taunt abilities can be implemented in two ways. Taunt either moves the player’s name to the top of the monster’s list or taunt generates a set amount of hate. Normally, this will keep a monster’s attention focused on the tank, but it is not necessary to hit taunt all the time. Most taunting abilities have a cool down period before they can be used again. It is best to start out with a taunt and save it until it is needed.
Caster/DPS Agro Control
Casters are often fill a damage per second rule, but the same rules for agro control apply to casters, rogues and ranged combat classes. The last thing caster and DPS characters want is the attention of the monster. Keeping a monster’s attention on the warrior is easy. Wait for the warrior to build up hate before attacking. It is not necessary to use high damage ability every time it becomes available.
When a caster or DPS character gains agro, he should stop attacking Running to get away from a monster is not a good idea as this makes it harder for the warrior to taunt the attacking creature, and has a chance of causing more monsters to join in the fray.
Healer Agro Control
Healers should also avoid a monster’s attention, but regardless of how good a healer is at agro control, there are times in all mmorpgs when a healer simply must gain aggro to do his job. Giving heals only when needed can help reduce the chance of the healer being attacked. If the character has access to an ability that lowers his position on a monster’s hate list, it should be used as soon as the healer gains agro, if not before to keep the healer off the monster’s hate list
Learning Agro Control
“Basics of a Warrior Talent Tree” covers much of what tanks in any game need to know about agro control, although its focus is on World of Warcraft. More useful to most players however is the advice from other players in their guild and their guild message boards. Whether a character plays World of Warcraft, Everquest, Dark Age of Camelot, Star Wars Galaxies, City of Heroes or virtually any mmorpg, the basics of aggro control are the same.
Aeonsoft’s Free MMORPG Fly for Fun
There are many free mmorpgs, most of which are not worth a mention and are quickly forgotten except by their fans. There are a few exceptions to this, however, most notably Runescape. Runescape’s graphics are dated. A few newer games like Fly for Fun require the user to download client software, but closely mirror the experience of games like World of Warcraft or City of Heroes.
These games often have little to distinguish them from one another. Sword of the New World sets itself outside of a medieval time period, and there is one offering that stands out for one thing it allows all character’s to do. In Aeonsoft’s appropriately named Fly for Fun, player may purchase a flying board or a broomstick that allows the character to fly.
Basic Game Play of Fly for Fun
The mechanics of Aeonsoft’s free mmorpg are the same as the mechanics of many other mmorpgs. All characters will have to learn aggro control, the assist class replaces the role of the cleric or priest in the American fantasy games, and the mage remains the same. These classes are expanded into larger variants later, but all Fly for Fun characters start out as vagabonds for the first few levels of their career.
Although Fly for Fun is a free mmorpg, the cartoon style graphics of the game are near commercial quality, and in some cases are better than the graphics commercial online games such as Ultima Online or Pirates of the Caribbean Online.
As with many online games, the company responsible has found a way of making some money from it. Players can purchase useful items with real world money. This differs from Runescape, where to experience all areas of the game a player must pay for a membership.
Flaws in Fly for Fun
Game play is fast and the user interface is reminiscent of that of the Amiga OS, but while the early levels go by fairly quickly, fighting low level monsters takes a long time in Fly for Fun. The repeated sound that accompanies the quick weapon swings annoy the user. The music, while not great, is acceptable.
The controls of Fly for Fun, like many of its Korean competitors, need a great deal of work to make the game to navigate, but the people of Aeonsoft have done a good job for a game that they let poeople play without cost.
Many of the free Korean online games lack trade skills. Instead, players can go to NPCs with required items and have the npcs make these items for them. Fly for Fun is a downloadable and worthwhile diversion of an mmorpg and despite its flaws, and the game has a quirky charm all of its own.