I have been thinking about this question a lot lately. Why am I playing this game instead of doing something else? Is it the people, the gameplay, the raiding challenges or is it the purple pixels?
Some days it is all about the people. A real life friend (Andrew) got me hooked to this game. He bugged/begged me for months to come play with him. I managed to hold him off for almost a year. To be fair the first part of that was him trying to get me to play Final Fantasy Online with him before he switched to WoW. At the time I didn’t understand why he wanted me to come play with him so much. I know better now.
I used to listen to him and his friends talk about in game experiences and I felt so left out of the circle. They were all raiding in TBC and excited over the things they were seeing and doing. It made me want to be a part of it.
When I was first hooked I spent an inordinate amount of time just looking around and learning about the new world I was in. I made so many characters. At one point I had two gnome warriors (I know, I know) who were identical except for their hair color. Each day that I would play would see me playing a different character. I didn’t want anything to do with a guild. I was under the impression that guilds were nothing but hotbeds of drama. That they told you how you had to play and you were left with no personal choices in the game. No I couldn’t tell you where I got these ridiculous ideas from.
Andrew finally got me convinced to join his guild. At first I joined on my rogue Tristianah. Yes at one point in time I liked playing a rogue. I like to think of this time as being innocent to the world. I had no idea about stats, rotations or even what I was really supposed to do. I would start each fight by pulling the mob to me using my throwing knife. Stealth? I didn’t know how to use it other than to pick pockets. I was very unhappy to find out I couldn’t pick the pockets of guards in the cities. At that time I had no idea whose pockets I could actually pick. Ahh the early times. Anyway, I joined up on my rogue and then immediately stopped playing her. I had suddenly decided I wanted to play my druid. Ok so now the druid got invited to the guild. A week later, bored. Oh look my hunter! Boom, another guild invite. It went on like this for quite some time. The only character I kept out of the guild was my paladin Jacquebear because I had made her my bank toon. It wasn’t long before I was listening in on their vent while they raided in Kara. Right then I decided that I wanted to raid with them. They sounded like they were having so much fun. I knew that I was missing out on a lot just from all of the laughing everyone kept doing.
I have since become part of the raiding team. I am an officer and raid leader. I have said it before and I will say it again: I have amazingly awesome guildies. We might not be the top guild on the server (#81 for 10 man progression, out of 83 >.>) but damn if we don’t rock at what we do. The current content is kicking our asses, this is true, but I have full confidence that we will be able to beat it. Each time we go into ICC we get better and I am not just talking about gear. We have a solid core of about 6-8 raiders and each time we raid we just get better working with each other. I cannot wait to take down the Lich King with these people.
On the other side of the pond, as it were, are my horde guildies. I am still very new to these people, but they have made me so welcome and it makes me wish I had moved a toon to play with them sooner. Del and Orange were the first to befriend me and have helped me so much it is just mind boggling. Zambra and Tel were the next two to really make me feel welcome, even though Zambra DPSes with his wand on his warlock. On Sunday when everyone else was raiding ICC, it was just Tel and I left in the guild not raiding. He helped me out in Nagrand with all the PITA group quests. Tel thank you so so very much for your help! Zambra is totally awesome because he gave me a bunch of really expensive enchanting mats to get the last few old world points I needed. I seriously cannot thank you enough for that and I will repay you for the mats! I am still a bit too much in awe of Arioch and Soth to talk to them much, but they have been nothing but nice when I have. All the other guildies (Zug, Arvash, Dozzer, Pie, Sorak and many others who I can’t remember their names >.>) have been easy to talk to and joke with. The knowledge that should I get camped by an Alliance jerk; I would have people willing to come kill him over and over again, is warming to say the least.
Just a warning to any Alliance on Drak’Tharon that read my blog. If you kill a nub blood elf warlock in the guild Shadow Rising, Zug will come hunt you down. If you aren’t scared of Zug, you should be. My Alliance characters on Bloodhoof are scared of Zug. That should tell you something. Chuck Norris is a flower compared to Zug.
Even though I have wonderful guildies, even they aren’t the main reason I play. Sometimes I just have to get away from them for a while. I used to “escape” from Bloodhoof by playing my blood elf warlock on Undermine. Now she is on Drak’Tharon in Shadow Rising. I can still “hide” from Bloodhoof on there, but then where do I hide from Drak’Tharon? Sorry not going to tell you.
Yes World of Warcraft is a massively multiplayer game, but that does not mean you HAVE to be playing with people all the time. There are too many other things that can be done solo. Hell just ask Darth Solo all about it. Recently he has started to play the non-solo part of the game, and I for one think it is great. There needs to be a balance.
So yes, the people are a reason why I play, but they are not the only reason. Tune in tomorrow for the next part of why I play WoW.