Thursday, February 08, 2007


Last night, amidst the wonderful vista that is Netherstorm in Outland, Gorth finally 'dinged' 70. It was late, so I received a light smattering of 'grats' and then settled into the knowledge that my month long journey of discovery had come to an end ... and the new endgame was looming before me.

However, the question that was preying on my mind was not where to start with this new challenge, but whether I want take part in it at all!?

As I have been questing my little head off, I have been watching in the background as my guildmates take part in a neverending series of instance runs and reputation grinds to get 'keys' - and these keys allow access to other instances which are harder and then more keys and more instances. You get the idea?

I have had no desire to instance during The Burning Crusade at all. The ridiculous dichotomy of the druid has hit home hard. I have levelled as a pure feral form and I am death on four paws. Its fantastic. However, when I have to shift over the healing I really am a stand-in medic at best. To become an effective group healer again, I would have to return to Restoration spec and that makes all of the wonderful fun I have had disappear. I'll readily accept that I am a far better healer than I am a tank or a dps player but still... returning to the tree and losing my wonderful damage potential makes me sad.

The schedule is another thing that I simple cannot find myself getting enthused about. The idea that I would put whole evenings aside to run dungeon-after-dungeon to get eventually incremental increases in the equipment my avatar wears seems .... well, ridiculous! I've been there and done that. I've dedicated countless evenings to the pursual of items like the Staff of Dominance or the Cauterising Band. Even then, the acquisition of the items was always less important than the fun and frolics that was being had with the people I was playing with.

Sadly, my increasing feeling is that 'AFK' is not really a fun and frolics guild. The people in it are great folk, and really good players but therein lies the problem. There's a certain degree of focus, a certain tenacity and a certain level of expectation within the guild that increasingly doesn't seem to match the way I feel about playing the game. I certainly don't want to be holding a spot in a guild with such high endgame aspirations if I cannot dedicate myself to matching those aspirations. Thats not fair on the people in the guild or those that wish to join it.

In the end however, it also comes down to time and how I spend it. I have a lot of things on my mind at the moment, namely work-related nonsense. I need to look closely at how I use that time and how I make it work for me. Is spending four evenings challenging to get one upgraded piece of equipment in a computer game really what I want or need at the moment?




Anonymous said...

It was inevitable that IIDAFKO would be a highly focused, end-game challenging guild.

Your Jedi powers should have saw that coming.

I'm still in two minds about the endgame myself, while I like to challenge the game, and the equipment is just a way to do that, the levelling and seeing new zones aspect of the game has sort of reminded me how good that can be (it's particularly good how they've done it in TBC).


Anonymous said...

Well done there Neil, I hope the druid conundrum resolves itself for you, I also know the Animosity druids have the same dilemma regarding feral/resto.


Anonymous said...

Oh and if you are ever doing an instance and need a rogue feel free to give me a shout...


Anonymous said...

You're comments actually leave me at a loss as to eachly what the issue is. Is it?

a) you enjoy Feral and don't want to respec Resto as it's dull, and thus don't want to lose that enjoyment.

b) You're done the item grind thing, it's old hat to you now after a full year of raiding MC and you'd prefer to do something a bit fresher and newer?

c) You're guild commitments are a demanding drain on your limited precious relaxation time?

By the sounds of it, it's all three.

By the very nature of MMORPG's, it's a never ending grind. What you did in MC, in one way or another, is exactly what you'll be doing in the endgame for the entire rest of the game.

I think my only suggestions would be:

a) Try something else in the game which allows you to keep the things you enjoy (being Feral), allows you more management of your time, and make even less guild commitments. Try Arenas or PvP or something.

b) It's a game, and it's the nature of the game. Take a break, a WoW sabbatical, and see if that break recharges those Warcraft Batteries. You've been playing practically NONE-STOP Warcraft for 2 years now, practically since the Euro-launch, surely you've earned a WoW Holiday (or, more to the point, surely your Wife has!) If it doesn't, and if after a few weeks you return and the feeling just isn't there still, hell, it's a game, not a lifestyle! (I think someone had something vaguely like that in their sig. once....)

c) Change guilds. This may from me sound like a comment thats might be tinged with something else: but it isn't. Find a guild which raids once or twice a week, has a bit less of a seroius atmosphere, and they'll let you remain feral in instances/raiding. This would allow you to not feel pressured in your guild to commit, not feel that you're taking up someone elses spot, allow you to keep the things you want in the game, and more importantly, hell, you only lose guild chat, you have a huge friends list of AFK-ers still, and I'm sure if they have a spot free you'll still go along to their raids.

All in all, I'd suggest just taking a break for a little while. Take a two or three week holiday from Warcraft, recharge and see what you want at the end of that break.


Anonymous said...

Four evenings a week. Four! My god man, think of The Burning Wheel masterpiece you could contruct with that time!


Vodkashok said...

To Dave:

Yes, it's all three. The thought of becoming a dedicated raid healer again after being freed of the shackles and roaming in my feralhood makes me shudder with dread. The thought of doing that in the repetitive and methodical instance environment 'wasting' my time chasing items more so. Time is always going to be a factor and that leads me nicely to

To Ian:




Anonymous said...

You have hit some of my problems right on the head there too.

For me, WoW is a time sink. Its something to do, when theres not alot else going on. With my impending return to work, and the possible impending creation of a female section of Bobs life, he's wondering whether he needs the time sink. I would much rather sink that time learning to drive so I can visit Fiona more often.

There is the total failure of my class to inspire me. The hunters new toys are distinctly meh! Infact, the hunter is distinctly meh!

Now lets add the raiding.

So, Bob did the MC->BWL->AQ40->Naxx grind. I've seen all three, I've done the gear thing, and you know what, I don't want to do it again, because I know 12-18 months down the line its gonna happen all over again.

As for the date. I got home this morning, no we didn't, neither of us want to rush into anything because we've both been burnt before and want to make sure than both of us know what we want and what we're doing. I do however, think I like her quiet alot, and she apparently likes me too. Which is good. I shall also defiantely be seeing her again.

Anonymous said...

That was Bob

Anonymous said...

Well, WoW is a time sink, it tends to go like this for me:

I play role-playing games because I'm too lazy to write fiction of one form or another, and I play WoW because role-playing games don't happen often enough and are less convenient. This is despite the fact, what I get out of WoW is not what I seek at the gaming table, but it's true nevertheless.

I think that pretty much sums it up.

I will probably will take part in the new endgame, or I'll give it a go anyway. See how it goes, but yeah, I'm not really up for any intense, life consuming process.

And good luck with the relationship thing, Bob, whoever you are :)