måndag 27 augusti 2012

World of Warcraft and me

The first time I played World of Warcraft, I thought it sucked. This is not very strange, since I was playing a pirated copy on a self-hosted server; so I had no mobs, no quests and absolutely nothing to do. So I shut down the game and declared that World of Warcraft sucked.

I held that opinion until a few weeks later when a mate told me about the pirated servers. They where a heap of trouple, you had to run a special patch level, change settings and onward and when you got to the servers themselves, they did not always save your characters progress. Most offered instant 60 - but that was not what I was after. I wanted to play the damn game.

So I ended up buying the game. I got a taste for more, and besides - it was cheap by then. I raised a Paladin to lvl 16 and that was it. While I had fun in the game, it had come late in the game cycle, and I soon put it away. I bought a time card just before The Burning Crusade was released, and played a Human Priest, named Jolinda to level 42, but I did not last longer then 30 days there too.

And so I forgot about Azeroth. I tought I was done with the game, but in reality, I had barely begun.

It was not until I quit school that I gave the game another go. My mates was playing on a RP-PVP server, a style I always wanted to try. And so I ended up on Sporeggar. Considering what my characters would be famous for later, it is ironic that my first character was a Blood Elf Mage. I had known Mages to be fast levelers and that was what I cared about.I wanted to see what the endgame in World of Warcraft was like. At level 10, however, my mate decreed that he wanted to roll a Mage and asked me to roll something else. I was pissed back then. I really was, and was on borderline not wanting to oblige him; but I did. I do not remember why, but I think it was because I wanted to roll something none of my mates played.

The result was a Troll Warrior.

I do not to this day remember where the name "Ganjola" came from, but I think it was off the word Ganja, especially as his roleplay mixed with his Herbology profession made it easy to joke around with what he was smoking. And he became a steady companion with me for a longer time then I would ever imagine.

With Sword and Board, he ventured into Azeroth. First in Eversong Forest and the Ghostlands, then onwards to Kalimdor and the battlefronts against the Night Elves. He would also travel to areas where powerful enemies lurked, merely for the excitement of it. And he was not alone.

His allies where the Thunderwolfs, a strong clan with a leaning towards the traditional values of the Horde, considering Elves and Undead to be unworthy of the honor that is the Horde.

Tanwoola, Troll Warrior
 Kasa, Aital, Saadi, Grothak, Malko, Thistill, Hitochi, Blockhead, Thulgan, Trician, Stormtoe & many more. They, more then anything in World of Warcraft what was made me stay. That is the thing about MMOs and something I think more game companies who want to make a succesful MMO needs to learn. A MMO is all about making new friends and enjoying stories, quests and RP momoments (or for that matter, world PvP) with them. My most enjoyable moments to remember are still the RP

The Thunderwolfs was no longer around when Wrath of the Lich King came upon us, but most of the players where. Some others where gone, moving to other servers or quitting the game entirely. It is probably accurate to say that I got addicted to WoW. Many claim to have become this; and even more claim they think the game is shit now.

Let me tell you, the game was never that good for us to sucker us in. It was always the people, the wonderful, awesome people in the game. Hell, I fell in love over the game once. It ended in misery and tears during her two week visit in Sweden, but I still remember that jolt of excitement when she offered to drive to Denmark to meet me.I also visited the wedding of two others I met in the game. I actually went to Norway and I do not regret it. They are truly awesome people, and the manner in witch I met them does not change that.

Nomea, Troll Shaman.
Sometimes I miss those days. Most of the other time, I do not. I still play World of Warcraft from time to time but not with the same intensity. There is a moderation to it, and it goes in cycles, just like all the other games, and no game ever since have made me go those crazy shedules I could have during the worst of my addiction. There where days when I woke up at 10, would do the Daily Heroic, have breakfest, do my dailys, then do whatever I was supposed to do during the day and then return for the raid during the evening.

Tomorrow the Pre-Pandoria patch will hit Azeroth. Once upon a time, I would have been so exited I would not be able to wait until I could go to sleep. Now, I am not even sure I will try it more then just log in and see if anything has changed.

Azeroth will however always have a place in my heart, for good and bad, for the people I met, and the Gnomes I sacked. To say I do not regret a second of it is wrong - but without World of Warcraft, I am sure my life would be worse off.