This Last Add
I started playing World of Warcraft in March 2010, and I’ve been playing continually since then, with the longest break in between lasting a total duration of 3 months. I came back to WoW about 3 weeks before the release of Cataclysm because a couple of friends had started playing again. I thought it would be fun to come back and level a Paladin alt, see Azeroth again before it finally changed forever.
It started out just playing for an hour or so a night after work, and I was quite content with this as I found it a great way to unwind after a laborious day at the office. It stayed like this for about a week and a half before I noticed that we were playing more and more each night. Fortunately, it didn’t have any effect at work as I managed to get a promotion in the meantime.
Eventually it came about that we were playing for 4 – 5 hours a night, and taking up pretty much all of my evenings, I came home from work, locked myself in my room, and descended into the World of Warcraft daily. After around 3 weeks I had levelled my Paladin up from a 16 to a 67, with my total time played sitting at around 3 and a half days, which I think is fairly quick. I also managed to get my engineering and mining both up and over 300, and constructed my very own helicopter mount.
At this point, the release of Cataclysm was imminent. I was aimlessly wandering around Orgrimmar on December 6th, and everyone was very excited for the release of the latest expansion. Up to a point where people were wishing each other a “Merry Cataclysm” in trade. By now, I had become quite disgusted at the level of enthusiasm some of my peers were retaining. I call them peers because I have to, at no point did I want to be associated with people who can get so worked up over a video game, but I have no other choice.
I didn’t get Cataclysm on day-release, however I did have it pre-ordered, but due to heavy snow I didn’t receive it until a day after. Admittedly, I was excited to see the new environments and see the large scale changes that Blizzard had implemented. I had even planned on using my Saturday off to start levelling my Main. I enjoyed levelling and I managed to get to an 82 fairly easily. But, a couple of my friends were now level 85’s. One friend had played for 22 hours straight just to level up to 85. I thought this was pointless as I think endgame is monotonous and bland, I don’t see the point in grinding for days, weeks, months and in some cases years on end to get the best gear just so that Blizzard can systematically release new expansions and render my hard work and effort redundant.
The Saturday I had planned to play to WoW all day turned into me deleting all of my characters, and tasking myself with quitting an addiction to World of Warcraft. I did this at the spur of a moment and was very proud of myself. The last thing i did was delete all of my armour, give away all of my gold and finish the game my way. My final quest was to rid myself of a year of waste and make sure that my WoW infection couldn’t survive into 2011. My reward would be a renewed growth in my social life, that wouldn’t be spent, sat in front of my computer, killing Murlocs and trash talking.
World of Warcraft is neither a bad game, nor an evil game. It’s the perfect video game for millions of people. It enables people to dissociate themselves with the monotony of life, assume new roles and responsibilities: Tank, healer or DPS. Fashion new career enterprises through in-game professions and achieve online notoriety for achieving ‘Realm First! Level 85’ and so on.
Please be warned, this game can be harmful and addictive if not managed properly, the monthly fee makes you feel that you need to play it as much as you can to get your money’s worth. Ignore this. Make sure you can achieve things in RL too, reward yourself for doing things: Showering, cooking a meal, buying some new clothes. Anything that can better your life in RL should be rewarded. Use WoW as a reward. Not as your life.
I’ve been off it for only a week, but i know that i can get over it and move on. Writing this has helped me and I hope it helps others too. People who i now would like to call my peers for wanting to be associated with them, not for the reason I mentioned above.
Quitters never win. Winners never quit. WoW Winners Quit.
Thanks for reading.