What are yours? Personally, the following triggers red flags for me :
- He never (or almost never) responds to attempts at communication unless he wants help from you.
You can see that he is in town running around, but he doesn't respond to PMs. Never says anything in party chat except to ask for heals or that he wants an item. When he does respond, he usually acts super nice and apologetic (oh sorry man, I missed all your messages! I swear!) but right after you finish helping him, he goes right back to ignoring you. Basically, he's like the kids you knew in school who would only talk to you when they wanted to copy your homework.
Sometimes, players genuinely miss your messages because they are busy or perhaps there's a bug and he never got your message. But if a certain player somehow has a "chat UI bug" that causes him to miss your messages...which nobody else in the game has ever heard of...and which only happens when he doesn't want your help...it's pretty obvious he is doing it on purpose.
This is by far, the biggest red flag for me and almost always indicate that the player has some kind of problem (personality problem, etc). Especially if they go to the trouble of crafting an elaborate lie to try and cover it up.
E.G. The last player that I saw do this (refuse to respond) proceeded to troll a friend of mine by fake bidding in an auction (bidding using gold that he didn't have) to drive up the price for the seller. From what I understand, he won the auction, then admitted he didn't have the gold and the item went to the second highest bidder, but the second highest bid was still far higher than it would have been if he hadn't been helping the seller to drive up the price. Said problem player also tried to get rid of his reputation by starting a new character and went to the trouble of getting his IRL friends to lie that he was a totally different person, among other stunts.
- He wants help from you, but never helps you in return.
He wants help with a quest, but when you ask him to help you with a quest, he makes tons of lame excuses like "It's too far away", "I can't be bothered" or "My pool is on fire". While leeches tend to be pretty obvious and hard to avoid unless you heard about them before hand, don't bother helping them the second time round after it becomes obvious they will never, ever, help you in return unless it benefits them in some way.
Usually says things like "I don't want to help your party do a raid because I already have everything I want from it" and tries to join the biggest, most well geared guild that he can purely for the benefits and will guild hop the moment a better alternative presents itself. Cancerous for guilds as they will rob the guild storage when they inevitably decide it is in their best interest to do so.
Harder to avoid : The type that pretends to be nice and comes up with plausible excuses for never helping you. I once met a guy who would be really nice to me, but whenever I tried to invite him for a raid or quest, he would always claim to have JUST started a dungeon right as I messaged him. After the fourth time he used this excuse, he stopped bothering with it, admitted he wasn't busy and that he just didn't want to do it.
Excuses to watch out for :
-I don't want to do this raid/quest/whatever (but he's happy to do it with others that he sees as more valuable, like his guild members)
-I'm going to log off soon (but he starts doing raids for the next hour, and when you ask him about it, he makes more excuses)
-I don't have any of those mats to sell you, sorry (but he has tons of them for sale on the marketplace at a much higher price)
-Anything in general that seems far too coincidental, like "coincidentally" missing your messages every single time you message him. Except when he messages you to help him for something. Or "forgetting" a promise for the 5th time.
- He obviously doesn't care about you except for your ability to help him play the game.
E.G. You tell him that you have a headache, but he still keeps pestering you to do a raid because the party needs a healer. He doesn't see you as anything other than a tool to help him progress. He probably will not even talk to you unless he needs you to help him with something, nor will he help you with anything unless its to help you complete a pre-req quest so that you can help him with a raid or something.
Warning signs :
-Doesn't even bother to reply when you say hi to him. Even if you are in the same guild or in the same party.
-Doesn't bother to reply when you try talking to him about anything that doesn't involve his progression in the game, or just replies with generic one liners like "ok", "idk" or "yea".
-Doesn't care if you are sick, having any problems, etc. May claim to care, but usually stops responding right after. This includes in game problems like being scammed, etc.
-Usually incapable or unwilling to hold a conversation to save his life.
May pretend to be nice to you, but only while you are useful to him (This can be difficult to tell till it is too late). The most obvious sign of this is when he takes a break from the game, and stops responding to you on discord or whatever (or he totally blows you off)....until he is back and needs your help with the new content. Then he becomes super friendly again.
- He wants to do whatever he wants, even if that involves screwing other people over.
Think Leroy Jenkins, except that it isn't staged. Wants to go into a difficult raid without gear on because he thinks it would be hilarious (Look guys! I'm doing this raid while naked! LOL isn't that hilarious?!). Thinks nothing of dropping out of a raid party mid run because he was invited to another raid that he prefers. Would rather try to DPS the boss as a healer rather than heal the tank because he wants to prove that healers can DPS. Wants to bring his undergeared alt to a raid he's not geared for, because it's easy xp for him, and doesn't care that it means that the rest of the party has to do most of the work.
Usually doesn't bother to reply when people try to talk to him about it or just responds with rudeness when they try. Just doesn't care much about others.