The one thing I hate in DIKU-style MMOs more than grinding, more than the level cap gear-reset, more than content gating is quite simply bonuses. I hate bonuses because there is such a delicate balance between the growing player stats and mobs stats up the leveling food chain that the bonuses have to appear to be insignificant.
Take one of the best crafted jewelries in Lord of the Rings Online right now, the glowing aureate band. It has a bunch of strong stat and morale bumps, along with a stepchild bonus to parry rating. +124 parry rating is about the equivalent of 0.33% more parry chance. That means that statistically speaking a player will parry 1 out of every 300 attacks made against him or her. It seems petty. Was adding the additional parry rating the item dev’s attempt at a joke?
I have to constantly remind myself that while the parry rating on that one ring is nearly meaningless, it will add up to the 9% parry chance I usually have. This goes for everything though, and I find myself become a piecemeal character creator rather than looking at the whole. When I compare new rings to the ones I currently wear it is done with a microscope instead of looking at the whole of my character. This one has +84 parry rating with +88 morale, and this one has +124 parry rating with +184 morale. I just have to force myself to ignore the fact that an extra 40 parry and an extra 100-or-so morale is a good thing even if overall it gives me a 0.1% greater chance to parry and the ability to take an extra 1/3 of a hit from a level 60 mob.
I have a feeling that World of Warcraft’s exponential power curve does not face this problem as greatly as Lord of the Rings Online’s logarithmic one. But, this is still the heart of the DIKU: advance and win by any meager advantage possible. If eating food before a fight gives you a 0.25% greater chance to crit, then eat the food. That one in four hundred crit might have saved the day after all.