Thursday, August 21, 2014

#10Years10Questions: Part 3

#10Years10Questions is brought to you buy @AlternativeChat. Answer these questions yourself at her blog. Oh, and if interested, here's Parts 1 & 2
7. How long have you /played and has that been continuous?
I've logged about two year's played time across all of my characters, and yes, that has been continuous. The amount of time I play each week tends to ebb and flow with life, but I've had a consistent, recurring subscription since 2006, and I can't remember going a full week without logging on. 

I know, that might seem excessive, but it's been a source of enjoyment since I first picked up the game and I don't regret the time I've spent. Not at all. Even when I add up all of the money I've spent on the franchise (subscriptions, server transfers, faction changes, expansions, shop items, and Blizzcon trips), it's an amount I can justify, especially when considering what I feel I've gotten out of the whole experience. 

8. Admit it: do you read quest text or not?
I do, though this wasn't always the case. In Vanilla and the Burning Crusade, I didn't have a good sense of the overarching story, partially because I wasn't paying close attention, and partially because I was oblivious to the deep history of the franchise and how it related to the events of WoW and its first expansion. 

Wrath of the Lich King finally pulled me into the story and I began to read all of the text quest, and have made that my habit the first time I level through new content. I have not yet gone back to finish the Cataclysm quests they added to Vanilla content, though I intend to someday. 

I'm absolutely stoked for Warlords, and as wacky as the time-travel stuff can get, I think it has the potential to be one of the best stories players have seen.  

9. Are there any regrets from your time in game?

Part of me wishes I would've gotten into the social aspect of the game a little earlier than I had, especially when it comes to Vanilla and BC, but overall no regrets that nag at me. WoW in its infancy was a one-time thing, now long gone. Though I was an active subscriber at the time, I didn't have a grasp on everything that was going on. I wasn't aware of how special it could be, and how special it would eventually become.

I've made some bad decisions with unforeseen consequences that may have affected some of the people I played with, but I'd like to think I've learned from those and apply that knowledge moving forward, in game and in life. It's amazing how guild management can parallel management in the real world.

Oh! Also, I abandoned a quest in the Hand of A'dal line during the Wrath of the Lich King expansion to make room for other quests before I knew what I was doing. Then they removed the ability to earn that title from the game. I totally regret that. 

10. What effect has Warcraft had on your life outside gaming?
It's definitely broadened my perspective on life, believe it or not, mainly through the people I've met in-game and throughout the community. Truly, they are more diverse than my own close circle of friends. So there's that.

In college, it helped me prioritize and learn to manage my time.

Then there's the challenges in managing and communicating effectively with a group who have allied together, while the motivations and desires of those within may vary wildly. There's always so much to learn and apply elsewhere.

I've learned a lot about group dynamics; about how five seemingly innocuous words can be interpreted on a spectrum; how something not important to me can be the most important to thing to someone else and how no one has to be wrong in the matter. It's helped me hone my communication and critical thinking skills. 

Leading raids taught me to first know my stuff before getting into the thick of things, to be alert and aware in a rapidly-changing environment. To make snap-judgement decisions in a stressful situation based on all the information you're able to glean over the course of a second or two.

Most importantly I have met life-long friends through this game, friends who won't disappear like their characters will the day servers go dark.

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