Names have been obliterated to protect the innocent. The subject we’re about to tackle is fraught with misconceptions, half-formed opinion and occasionally a self-satisfied, self-serving attitude that’s both completely unjustified and (in the worst cases) completely silly.
We’re talking gear score vs. skill. Here’s the typical trade post: “LFM 25 ONY MUST HAS MIN 2500 GEAR SCORE OR DON’T PST KTHXBAI”. Practitioners of the gear score philosophy know only numbers, and believe that given enough gear, any scrub can handle any sort of content. Much to the chagrin of the evident multitude of acolytes to this laughingly false idea, they’re wrong, and I’m going to use a couple of methods to illustrate this fact.
What we can learn from the NFL Draft.
I may lose some of you here, so I’ll keep this brief, but I’ve learned that using multiple types of examples to illustrate a point can be helpful.
Let’s quickly discuss 3 quarterbacks: Peyton Manning, Tom Brady and Ryan Leaf. You most likely have heard of the first 2, even if you’re not a big football fan, the last guy, maybe not so much.
Peyton Manning and Tom Brady are two of the better (if not the best) quarterbacks in the game today. Peyton Manning was drafted #1 in his draft class, no one else was picked ahead of him, he had the highest “gear score”. Tom Brady was picked #199 in his draft class, so 198 guys were picked ahead of him, his “gear score” was terribad. Ryan Leaf was picked #2, right after Peyton Manning, same draft class, they went 1 and 2. Ryan had an unbelievable gear score, and was almost picked ahead of Peyton.
Here’s where I make my (now lengthier than I would have liked) point: Tom Brady and Peyton Manning are two of the best, Ryan Leaf is out of football fighting addiction to painkillers, has been indicted for burglary and is basically of very little use to anyone. These guys were picked based strictly on their “gear score” coming out of college, and it shows that just because it looks like you have all the tools on paper, real world application of said tools can be a little more difficult to pull off.
Okay, let’s move on quickly, that may have been a stretch for some of you, but think of it as broadening your horizons a bit, it builds character.
Let’s discuss an example from the last VoA 25 I PuG’d.