Seeking and Disseminating Information in World of Warcraft.

Tanking in raid.

Tanking in raid. Information Seek and Disseminate

The information loop is constant in virtual worlds, these loops are often more apparent than in real life yet many of the same feedback loops exist.

There is a constant seeking and disseminating of information, the photo I posted is of me in a raid.  This is a great example of how players need to be constantly seeking and disseminating information.  The amount of people alone means that everyone has to work together to defeat the bosses and ads that would cripple and destroy a group of lesser numbers. Although my interface is not vanilla. It still shows, if not ads to the experience, I am running a few add on programs in this, the ones seen are middle left, (coloured bars) that represent how much damage has been done by the top players in the raid.  My second (visible in this photo) mod is located underneath the enemy icon on the top left, beside the bright green boxes.  I use this shows me what characters are getting aggression and being attacked.  Lastly, I have an add on that increases the amount of action bars (the bars that hold my activatable skills) that I have, allowing me to use more of my available skills than the vanilla load out.

As a tank I am constantly watching these bars, constantly seeking information from them and understanding what they mean.  The tauntmaster addon (located under the enemy tab on the top left) for example.  I am constantly seeking information from this.  If the bars are grey, then no one has aggression.  Aggression is basically the amount you piss off an enemy.  Piss them off enough and they attack you.  Once the grey bars get in the oranges it means that they are close to being attacked, once they are red it means they are being attacked.  As a tank, it is my job to minimize the people getting attacked by trying to get as much aggression (piss everything off the most) as possible.  This way the healers have one person to heal and it is much easier.  Once the bars are red in colour I need to taunt their attack off them.  This is a great example of seeking and disseminating information as it would otherwise be very hard to know if people were being attacked otherwise.

Every character is constantly monitoring their skill bar.  This is located in the bottom middle of my photo.  These are your available actions; my skills can be instants, or use my resources.  So before I activate a skill I need to be aware of how much mana/energy/rage/runes I have and if the ability I want to skill will have the resources to activate. This is shown in two ways, on the top left is my icon.  It displays a lot of information, health and resources being the two most important.  I am constantly seeking information and monitoring these things to allow me to carry out tasks in game.  The skill bars along the bottom tell me when a skill is activatable, allowing me to look less often at my icon.  The little picture represents a skill, when the picture is in full colour and in whole than it means that it is ready to be activated.  When the picture is not complete than it means it is on cooldown.  This is a perfect example of human to interface (non human) interaction, or, seeking and disseminating information.

There are many many many more examples in the game and even within this photo.  However it would being to be very redundant for me to explain them all.


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