A cycle of continuous withdrawal and addiction

So there, I’ve finally done it again, another year have gone by and I am thrown back into the well again.  What do I mean by that?  Well, it really much means that I can only see one part of the world, and think that this is the only world that I will live in and live with.  But all the philosophy aside, I am talking about my on and off again relationship with World of Warcraft.  After 6 years of this game even I wonder to myself sometimes how I can go back to it, but how can I not when people around me constantly tempt me?  When my brother constantly insist that the game is “different”, much like how people say each version of the iPhone is different.

All the login screens of the expansions

Growing up with WoW since my high school days, I’ve always never realized everyone’s motivation in playing it, and after the recent lecture about people the things people do to achieve and obtain a virtual character, it just struck me again.

Character selection screen

I think it really comes down to what are the qualities of a good online RPG, but I think if we are to list all of them we can go all day.  Because let’s be honest, one can only fit so many things into a game, and the reason behind the successes of many games are hugely due to their execution and their appeal to the need of modern gamers.  On the topic of WoW, their execution methods are practically ever-changing, so much to the point that it doesn’t even feel like I am playing the same game I did a year ago anymore.  Quest interactions, quirky references to movies and other games make the game stand amongst so many other old-school RPG’s out there.  Such techniques really separate you from being you and REALLY into someone else at times.  Because honestly, who would want to level a character from 1-85 being the same person?  I mean sure you get stronger, but at the end of it all you are just…you.  But what makes it different in WoW is that while you are forced to follow that law, it attempts to throw you into the role of an actual hero of a nation, an actual achiever of the race, and not just a high-leveled fighter in the community.

Players waiting for a once only world event - opening of the gate to a new raid dungeon

I think on that fact alone, it is how the game still gets users to pay 15 dollars a month, and certainly, it is worth every penny to the people who appreciates it.  Comparing to the initial beta and “vanilla” versions of the game, that 15 dollars would only grow in value.  Sure there are expansions you have to buy to keep up with the content, but if you are to spend so and so amount of money every year on games  that run the same way every time you turn it on, why not take a leap of faith and see where 15 dollars a month can take you?

I guess despite all that, it may seem unfair that I don’t even talk about what the game has to offer, and to be quite honest, I myself am not sure how much more the game has to offer.  You want dungeons?  You have them.  You want shiny armor and weapons? You certainly have over 10 million of them.  You want to adventure?  You can do so with up to 40 or so friends.  Or maybe you just want to run around town, dance around and party?  You can too with all the right clothing.  The point is, it is unfair to brand a game to be not fun or not entertaining based on whether certain things YOU like exist in it or not, it really is how many people it appeals to with the amount of things it has.  Certainly if something about it captures the audience, that in itself is a fun factor of its own.  Now am I saying that there are no flaws in games then?  Certainly not, WoW definitely has its flaws, but then again flaws are all subjective to each person like how qualities are subjective to each person.

But all of this comes back to why I am even talking about this game…the technicalities behind it or whatnot.  Then at this point, you can already conclude that the game REALLY is essentially just a click, auto-attack till death type of RPG.  But really, you can only do so much with a mouse and a keyboard.  As for things that make it stand out amongst other games in terms of gameplay and controls is that you are never really done the game.  What I mean is that the game does not END at the game but goes on in other mediums, for they be other games, books, movies, shows, or comics.  It even goes to the point that “playing WoW” is no longer playing a game, but its…a way of life…a feeling.

So there’s my rant and thoughts on WoW…do I actually like the game?  Not really.  But can i quit playing it?  Definitely not.


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