When Do You Know It’s Time?   5 comments

(Let me start off and put everyone’s questions at ease: No, I’m not quitting! I’m just starting conversation!)

Before the last Blizzcon, I had told Brade that I think I might be done after WotLK. I was frustrated with recruiting. I was frustrated with Ulduar. I was frustrated with the game. I had been WoWing for going on 5 years, and I was starting to wonder if perhaps I was outgrowing WoW. You know, sometimes these types of things happen, things that were fun start to be, well…unfun. I quietly thought to myself that maybe after I had knocked out Arthas, I would hang up my healing gear and move on. I mean, there are things other than WoW, right?

I had shared this with Brade as we sat on the plane on the way to Blizzcon last August.

But then something strange happened. When we got there, and everyone was getting settled in for the opening ceremony and “the big announcement” that generally comes with it, I went and hopped right into the “shopping” line. I told Brade to go ahead and sit with everyone else, I didn’t mind standing in line for my goodies alone, and took note of which items he would like. And it was while I was standing in that line, alone, that I watched the announcement for Cataclysm unfold. There was nobody there babbling about how awesome it was going to be, just me and my thoughts to think through what I had just seen. The thoughts that not 24 hours earlier had told Brade that I thought I was going to wrap it up after WotLK, and that I didn’t think I had another expansion in me.

Standing there in that line by myself, I found that the announcement had me immediately excited. There was so much about Vanilla WoW that I absolutely loved. And to get the chance to go back and revisit some of my fondest memories of the game, redone, was hugely appealing to me. I knew as soon as I saw Deathwing rip through the earth that Arthas wouldn’t be my final WoW boss experience and that I would, in fact, be continuing my WoW adventures into Cataclysm.

Now, as I prepare for Cataclysm, and yet another Blizzcon, I find myself wondering: When do you know it’s time to unplug permanently? Or if not unplug, at least take a step back? I mean, have you ever thought about going into a more relaxed and casual setting after having been a raider for 5 years of your WoW career?

As I ponder these thoughts, I ask myself some other questions. What would I do with my time if I didn’t play WoW? Would I like playing on the more casual side of WoW, where I didn’t feel obligated to log in for raids and could play more freely? What kind of social interaction would I have if I didn’t engage with WoW? I mean, let’s face it, I’m pretty antisocial. I’d probably end up like that lady with 9 cats who ate off my face in hunger while it took my neighbor to realize that something was wrong…and only then because of the stench emanating from my front door.

I digress.

What would I do if I didn’t play WoW? If that isn’t the million dollar question. And really, I don’t know! I tried to answer this by going back to what I did before I picked up WoW, and the answer is…school. And a whole lot of Luigi’s mansion (I loved that game. Can’t even tell you how many times I played through it!). I also read a lot, and visited Civil War Battlefields. And let’s be honest, there aren’t a lot of Civil War sites out here in the Pacific Northwest. But other than that, I was a pretty boring person. Not much unlike I am now.

Of course, I did other things that I miss. Things that weren’t extraordinary in any fashion whatsoever. Like cooking dinner. Sure, it seems pretty blasé, but you don’t really appreciate actually getting the opportunity to have a decent meal until you are cramming food into your face just out of necessity because you don’t have time to get anything better while raiding. I think I miss cooking, and it would probably be something I did more of if I didn’t play WoW.

But then, I also spent a lot more money when I didn’t play WoW. Largely out of boredom. “Ugh, so bored, going to the bookstore”. Let me tell you…the bookstore can get expensive!

So, I suppose the answer is, I have absolutely no idea what I’d do if I didn’t play WoW. Would I be more inclined to be more adventurous? I don’t know…probably not. I’m pretty much a homebody. Hmmm….

Playing more Casually? You know, I just don’t think that this would be a good solution for me. I’ve tried it, and there were just too many things that I missed about raiding…and about playing with Brade. I think I’d find myself getting bored. Really bored. The raid scene is where it’s at for me in WoW, so I think if I took that out of the game, I’d probably find that I didn’t enjoy the game quite as much.

Of Course then I got to thinking: Why am I even thinking about this? Because the answer seems kind of easy, right? If you are still having fun, or looking forward to things in the game, there really isn’t a need to hang it up, is there? I suppose that answer to my question would be, when it stops becoming fun. When, on a regular basis, I sit down to log in and more often than not, I don’t want to input my information.

And then, when I got to thinking about that, I don’t think I’ve ever been at that point with WoW. Sure, there are times when I’ve thought “man…I wish I didn’t have a raid tonight”, but those are often few and far between. And very rarely extend for any period of time. Sometimes I get lethargic, but the feeling doesn’t last.

So really, I guess I don’t know when it’s time to hang it all up. And in thinking on it, I don’t guess I’ll know until I know. Does that even make sense?

What about you? Have you ever had these kinds of deep thoughts floating around in your head? What conclusions did you come to?

Posted June 7, 2010 by Beruthiel in Deep Thoughts

5 responses to “When Do You Know It’s Time?

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  1. Ahhhhhhh, you are in the Northwest? I think I’m gonna cry!

    Long story short, I’m from there but we are military so I’m stuck on the East Coast at the moment. And I hate it. But WoW is what helps keep me sane as it is gives me something to do no matter how often or where we move.

    I look forward to the day we get out and settle down again. And I’ve already told my husband that when we do settle I will either drastically cut back on WoW or quit entirely. I want to have a garden, I am looking forward to biking again (there are zero good trails around this stupid part of the country). I miss camping and hiking. I’d like to get back into fostering animal rescues. So I’ve got my list ready and waiting for the day I’m able to step away from WoW. But until then it gets my near-undivided attention and does a good job of keeping me busy.

  2. I miss my crafts; if I quit WoW I’d have time to make costumes and stained glass and rugs and mend the pile of clothes in the corner. Of course, I do still sew while on flight paths, but you can’t hop up and fire up the glass grinder just between Orgrimmar and Zoram’gar.

  3. WoW is my sit down after the kids go to bed and relax time. Between work and kid actvities, I’m on the go all day. WoW is something that keeps the mind active and allows my body to relax. I can’t see not having that activity to help me wind down.

    That being said, I’m ready for another game. The problem is that there just isn’t one out there that captures my attention. I’ve been playing MMOs for 12ish years starting in 1998 with EQ. I played EQ for 5, DAoC for 2 and now WoW for 5 with a short stints into Vanguard and City of Heroes. Many of the other available games right now don’t really appeal to me.

    I like the sword and sorcery genre and I’m strictly PvE. I thought EQ was a bit too much of a grind, though I’m not bitter about it like some people were. I think WoW is a bit too easy. Give me something with a decent story and a difficulty level somewhere in the middle and a new world to explore and I think I’d consider switching.

  4. When I start getting bored of WoW, I reshuffle some time towards other activities (crafts, etc). Since my guild only raids 3 nights per week, I can be rather flexible with my gaming time. The only thing I regret is not going for walks regularly, but I know that gaming is not the cause of that… getting a puppy will enable me to go for the long walks that I’d like to take but can’t convince my husband to come along with… and I don’t trust the area to walk alone, and can’t motivate myself to DRIVE out to a friend’s neighborhood and impose on them to walk around.

    Malamute = big, and protective if their owner is actually threatened. 🙂

  5. I really don’t think there’s anything that WoW keeps me from doing. I’m also fairly anti-social. I like to play video games, read, cook (and eat), work out, cuddle with my fiance and my cats while watching movies.

    If I didn’t play WoW my other activities wouldn’t change, just the amount of time I spend on them.

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