I just finished watching the new documentary on the history of World of Warcraft. If you have any interest in Blizzrd, WoW or gaming in general, then you owe it to yourself to watch it. It is very well done, very heartfelt, and very open about the impact that WoW has had on the people that play it.
It got me thinking about why I play the game and my history with it. I started playing during the very first free 10 days trial that Blizzard offered, right at the end of Vanilla WoW. So, technically, I have been playing since the beginning. I started with a Druid, then a Warrior–two of the hardest classes to level at the time. The only problem was that I didn’t get it. Up till that point in time, I had only played games like Diablo II and Dungeon Siege. I played WoW like a single player game and didn’t get the MM aspect of an MMO.
I took a year off and then picked it back up. I tried to level both the Druid and the Warrior to no avail. So, after another break, I decided to roll an undead Warlock. I was still playing WoW like a single player game, but at least I got my lock to level 60. This was during The Burning Crusade, which I had not bought, so my warlock ended up stuck up in Winterspring since I didn’t know what to do next.
I finally bought TBC and tried a hunter. I had heard people talking about how much fun Beast Master was and wanted to try it out. I also wanted to try out the new races so I went alliance and leveled a Draenei hunter, my main for the next several expansions.
One day, something clicked and I finally got the whole MM part. I decided to join a guild. Actually, I decided to join the next guild that advertised in trade chat. I had no idea what I was doing…
Thankfully, the very next guild was one of the best on the server–The Red Dragons on Korialstrasz. The guild is long gone now, but it was a great home to begin with. They taught me what raiding was, dungeons, guilds, and everything that was a part of an MMORPG. I slowly worked my way up from lowly newbie that knew nothing to raid leader and top dps. In the end, the guild master went on leave and the guild fell apart. I decided to move on and joined a hardmode progression guild–Apotheosis on Eldre’Thalas.
I stayed with the guild for about six months before having to step down from raiding and eventually leaving the guild. My life was in a state of turmoil and I was having trouble juggling everything. We never got the server first we wanted, but I did have a good time and was there for several first kills. I also managed to consistently be top DPS on the Chimaeron fight.
Several years later and I am still playing. I have taken a few breaks, tried to quite a few times, but I am still here and eagerly waiting for the next expansion. I look back over the years and through all the changes and I have to ask myself why I am still playing. I’m not raiding right now, I don’t even know what class I’m going to play in WoD and yet I am still spending time in Azeroth. I think it is the community and the chance to be something bigger and greater than I am in my everyday life.
World of Warcraft gives me the chance to be a superhero and kill internet dragons with other people. I think, also, the history that I have in the game and the depth of the lore. I really feel that I am part of the universe that Blizzard has created. I love fantasy and WoW gives me the chance to live in a fantasy world. I can wield magic and be a paladin or I can run around with my pet and be a hunter or I can be sneaky and stab things in the back. But more then that, I walk beside lore characters, beside legends and help them protect a world that I have grown to love.