The Peter Pan approach

I’m feeling really guilty about something. I should be spending my time doing the Midsummer festival this week. After all I wrote about it last week – all excited and enthusiastic about defiling bonfires. But ….I hate it. I’m finding it so boring it’s in danger of turning me off WoW for good.

I have tried. Honest I have. I’ve killed Lord Ahune. That was ok. Nothing special but satisfying enough (like every meal I eat on this goddamn low carb diet). I then started doing the torch series. Currently struggling to throw & catch four on the trot so that’s not looking too good. But it’s the bonfires themselves that’s the problem. I’ve honoured & desecrated a few in the Eastern kingdoms but after only 4 or so I’m finding it tedious beyond belief. And when I can’t immediately find one I’m instantly in a rage.  It’s really bringing out the worst in me. I mean what a stupid place to put it in Duskwood. And to find out that the Horde one in Swamp of Sorrows is in Bogpaddle not Stonard as I thought. Aaargh. It’s making my stomach all tense! I hate it hate it hate it.

So what should I do then? Just grit my teeth & get on with it? But I can’t!!! (I’m saying this in the whiniest tone imaginable by the way.) Surely gritting my teeth is not what this game is about? Surely that’s not what I pay good money for?

Is it the game or me? Do I lack some fundamental trait that I need to be a good and worthy WoW player?  I’m starting to realise that the only thing in WoW I don’t end up seeing  as a chore is the one thing that when I first started playing I was eager to be rid of – and that’s levelling itself. I really enjoy levelling more than anything else in the game. And what’s worse- I enjoy levelling in PuGs. God what does that make me? I’m like some sick masochist. Why do I take such pleasure out of what is sometimes so such pain?

I used to think levelling was all about getting to the end goal. With my first character Terema – a Ret Pally-  I can remember working so hard to get to 70 (it was BC times). When she got there I took a screenshot and everything (did it wrong so never got to see it  but that’s another story of despair). The whole levelling experience always had  that end goal in mind – the wonderful finishing line that wasn’t really a finishing line but a doorway into the adult world. But I hit 70 just days before Wrath so I didn’t spend too long in the experience bar free zone before I was off levelling again & the same was pretty much true of 80- I think I stopped playing for awhile, and then it was Cata time so Terema was always on the go.

It is only with Seashell (& now Luxmi & finally Terema- my  Trinity of 85s) that I’m starting to  spend a significant amount of time in the  post levelling zone & I’m just not enjoying it – so I’m playing them less & less. At least with Seashell I was doing LFR and HoT dungeons regularly to get my valor gear  but even that feels like torture now so I’m not doing it. And I’ve not done a guild raid since I started training for my rowing marathon- I just can’t guarantee I’ll have the time or the energy so I’m not signing up. But I thought I’d still at least do LFR & the HoT dungeons – but I’m not.

I’m particularly disappointed I’m feeling this way with Seashell as I invested a lot of time getting all her professions up  so she could fish and cook herself all the buffs she needed. What was it all for? With Luxmi I’ve not even done that. She’s also not geared enough for LFR and can only do the older Cata heroics. The same is true of Terema. They’ve basically got to 85 and I’ve become bored of them & cast them aside – it’s like some sort of marital 7 year itch & I’m the cad in all this.

So what do I find myself doing instead? Well taking the  7 year itch metaphor further I suppose you could say I’ve cast my eye elsewhere for distraction and excitement (this is reading bad isn’t it?). I’ve basically thrown myself into the immoral debauchery of levelling a ton of alts. I have no shame.

The main focus of my attentions are:-

1. Styleesh –  my Discipline Priest. I’ve discovered I love healing as a discipline priest. She’s probably the one I want to play most often now. She’s also levelling inscription which is fun but fruitless – nothing sells on the AH.

2.  Seally – my new Night Elf Druid. Currently feral DPS which I’ve never really done- enjoying being a cat but still not that into melee

3. Frip- my Tauren Balance Druid (just got Moonkin form today as it happens – how do you play in that form- it totally blocks everything?) Might end up going Resto since I seem to love healing more than anything.

4.  Salno -my Blood Elf  Demonology Warlock – currently hellfiring everything in sight and getting reacquainted with her minion after a long time apart.

5. Androse – Blood Elf Holy Pally – just looks so cool as a plate healer – have neglected her for far too long.

The latter three haven’t been played for months & months so I’m giving them a spring clean i.e. clearing out their bags (auctioning what I can & vendoring the rest); checking their professions and dumping what I’m no longer interested in (why did I pick skinning for every bloody character?); going to Icy Veins to find out best spec and rotation and then redoing my talents and tidying up my task bars. Then when I feel all cleaned up & spick and span I’m going in LFD and doing dungeon after dungeon until I go from rested experience to purple. Then I log that character off & log in one of the others and start again

And it’s been great fun. I’ve really enjoyed it – particularly the variation. But  what does it say about me? Do I  have no staying power? Why can’t I commit to raid gear levelling  or  the achievement grind at 85? I get bored of it all that’s clear – but should I be pushing past the boredom? But I just can’t. I really don’t want to do that in a game that’s meant to be fun. But does this in turn mean I’m like some weird WoW Peter Pan – an eternal adolescent refusing to  grow up and join the big world? Even worse am I like some ghost of  WoW – refusing to let go & move on,  permanently stuck visiting the old haunts and doing the same thing over & over again?

I hope not. I really do. I’m consoling myself with the thought that it might all mean I am wise beyond belief  (say yes  say yes) and that I’ve reached some great metaphysical truth – some wonderful enlightenment – that it’s all about the journey itself and not the end goal. That the goal is there to keep us on the road, but it’s the road itself that brings the  satisfaction. Say it’s true please…

I seem to love this road that’s for sure. In fact when I see the end in sight I’m now taking sharp detours off it to try a different road. Perhaps these detours mean I’m truly enlightened and my alts are actually a sign I’ve reached nirvana.

Maybe. But it still means I can’t look Seashell in the eye 😦


31 thoughts on “The Peter Pan approach

  1. You should never feel obligated to do anything in a game — least of all those tedious holiday achievements. Trying to “push past the boredom” will just make you hate these things all the more.

    There’s nothing wrong with just wanting to level alts, and with all due respect, I find it somewhat absurd you’d think there is. The wonderful thing about WoW — and MMOs in general — is that you can whatever you bloody well feel like in the game. If I only subscribed to the traditional view of what you’re “supposed” to do in WoW, I would have quit years ago. It’s only by playing many characters and have many different experiences that I keep my interest alive.

    Personally, I enjoy the endgame, but I also enjoy leveling a great deal, and I always need to have at least one alt on the go for when I get burnt out on high level content.

    1. It’s sort of the “am I just doing the same thing over and over again” bit that make me feel guilty- even though I enjoy it. Like reading the same book over and over again instead of trying something new.

      1. I played through the Warcraft III campaign about twelve times, I think. If something’s not worth doing multiple times, it’s not worth doing once.

        Besides, like the song says, “If it feels good, do it.”

  2. I know I’m supposed to take advantage of the Midsummer festival on my alts – but I can’t force myself to do it. I just can’t. I’ve tried, and every time it burns me out. So I don’t even try now – id rather log in and do something else, anything else, than the holiday grinds again.

    It’s okay to find these things boring. They ARE boring, in many cases. If there’s a reason to push through – something at the end of the grind you want – then it might be worth it.

    But doing it just to prove you can do it to some ambiguous “them” isn’t. I went down that road. It’ll burn you out. 🙂

    1. Yes you’re right – they are boring. And it’s pointless me trying to convince myself of anything else. Anything that requires you to find ways to distract yourself when doing it is just not for me. There – I’ve decided!

  3. Before I played WoW, I played a game which I shall not name, because I do not want to be responsible for even one extra player in that thing (if it still exists). All I have left of that game is my “self” avatar, which I use on Twitter, Archive of Our Own and also on the Redridge Chronicles.

    Basically, it was a number grinding game. You would be obliged to log in, because people could attack you while you were logged out and steal your villages or reduce them to rubble. I hated the game, by the end. I was actually up at three in the morning fighting off attacks, setting the bloody alarm clock to three A sodding M to send my resources elsewhere.

    And people cheated. They would create multiple accounts, and have those secondary accounts send the resources to one, which then grew very fast. Which led to new rules being introduced that seriously hindered your ability to feed your troops if you sent them off to defend a friend. People would play on each other’s accounts. Then, they introduced real money transactions for fast growth, and that was the final nail in the coffin. I hated it, hated it with a passion, and still, from a sense of being unable to desert your friends, you’d play on. Why? As one of my friends put it: Stockholm syndrome.

    If there’s one thing that game taught me, it’s that you really have to quit doing something if you’re no longer enjoying it. Otherwise it becomes work, and work is what we play games to get away from.

    1. That game sounds horrendous – and the fact you needed to get up at 3 in the morning….. The day I do that in WoW it’s over! I wonder if it is still going? Glad you’re out of it now.

    2. Ha, I’ll bet it was Evony! (or one of its clones)

      My wife was addicted to that game for a while – up all hours farming, creating accounts to spy on rival alliances, sending armies off to destroy or defend castles. People (who could ill afford it) ended up paying 1000s of dollars to purchase resources – in a free-2-play game! The fact that people could destroy your stuff while you were offline was just insidious – to rub salt into the wounds you could pay the company real money to put you in “Vacation Mode” if you had to be away from the game for an extended period. Vacation Made made your in-game possessions immune to attack but you also couldn’t play. Imagine paying a company to NOT play their game. 0_o

      I refused to join her in the insanity and eventually she asked me to block the game at our router – she knew it was bad for her/us but didn’t trust herself to go cold-turkey on willpower alone so needed it gone from our internet completely.

      Then we found a form of crack we could both enjoy – WoW.

      1. It was not Evony, my Lord, but from your description it’s similar enough. Basically, nobody ever got good at that game without cheating. I got sucked in because some of my friends from the Netherlands were playing when I emigrated, and it was a way of keeping in touch. For that, it wasn’t too bad, though the in-game comms sucked full mightily and we all retreated to IRC and external fora.

        What made it suck so incredibly hard, and gave the attacker such an advantage, was that you could send off your troops on a six-hour march at six, at the other end of the map. If you had a tiny little village, and you didn’t want all your troops to be slaughtered by an army of thousands, you had to send them away just before the attack hit. At midnight.

        I checked, and the website is still up. They’re welcome to it. There’s no way I’ll ever actually log on on it again. What kept me there were my friends, and they’re no longer there.

  4. I don’t do anything I don’t like to do, well most anything, I want that ice chip from Ahune. I think there are probably a lot of us Peter Pans. I have lost interest in almost every character that got to 85, I’m not happy unless I have a low level taking another trip through Azeroth.

    1. Glad I’m not on my own! I do feel guilty about the 85s though. Can’t help it. Just logging one of them on now as I type to see if a change of spec (from elemental shaman to resto) will give her a new lease of life!

  5. I feel ya! I think the level to 85 and stop is a sign that you’ve been playing for a while now. My experience is identical to yours; once i’m at cap I get the wandering eye ; ) sue me! I see no reason to grind if I don’t enjoy it. Hope you have a great time on your Alta. : )

  6. I just barely been playing wow for a year; the Midsummer Fire Festival marks my year date, actually. I have only one 85, and a couple alts stuck in the 60’s, and a few even lower than that. I love my 85, but I find end game material horrible. I’m the ultimate soloist at heart! I hate pvp, hate dungeons, hate the stupid little recount DPS that always puts me in last place. But I love my 85. So now I work on my holiday achievements, and work on my Loremaster achievement with her. Essentually, I’m still leveling my 85 with quests, but not getting any xp for it! I’ll probably die when I finish all the starter zones (working my way backward on the Loremaster).

    But for the Midsummer festival, I use that to work on my guild rep, and I keep three windows on my laptop going at the same time. One, wow of course. Two, wowhead showing the alliance fires, and three showing the Horde fires. I flip back and forth to find all of the fires, and I stop to gather archeology and ore as I’m traveling. It passes the time. Anything’s better than fishing.

    Good luck, and just remind yourself about that protodrake!

    1. Working backwards & doing all the quests for Loremaster is something I’ve thought about doing. It’s a good idea. Good luck with the Midsummer festival! I’ve decided to sit it out this year now…but maybe another time for that proto drake!

  7. Festivals is where an investment on a 2nd monitor pays off. Finding bonefires while you have the wowhead map open on the second screen really makes life easier 🙂
    Of course if you want the thrill of exploration this is not for you, but at times you just want to get things done…..

  8. First of all: Icy Veins guide to the Midsummer Fire Festival really helps tracking down every single bonfire; they even have them in the most convenient order. You could listen to music, to a podcast or even watch TV if you’re feeling bored while you fly.

    Second: if you still like the game, WoW is full of things to do besides raids and PvP: achievements, pets, mounts, AH (yes, it can be fun! especially if you with a theme like for example Pet Shop), (even more) alts, RPGing, etc.
    And if you like really questing, Lorekeeper is made for you.

    Third option: just wait for MoP to release! Sometimes it’s good to take a break and come back refreshed and perhaps a bit nostalgic.
    Furthermore, MoP will have even more stuff for us all to do: pet battles, unlimited dailies many of which tell a story, chellenge modes, scenarios, growing your own farm etc. etc.

    If you don’t feel like playing, then don’t! You will play again if and when you feel like it again.
    Azeroth will be there waiting for you. 🙂

    1. Thank you. I am enjoying the alt levelling & I think Loremaster might also be a good idea. And you’re right about MoP of course. I think I just need to not feel guilty about levelling yet more alts (which I enjoy) and not devoting enough time to my 85s.

      1. There is nothing to feel guilty about… they’re all your children, aren’t they? 😄

        Jokes aside, remember it’s your game. You’re supposed to do whatever you feel like doing! It’s your playground, your castle, your home away from home! Have fun with it! 😉

      2. I like that- they’re all my children! That’s really nice. I’ve embraced everyone’s advice recently & just tried to only do in game what I’m enjoying. As my next post will show it means that aside from my Disc Priest I’m also knocking healing on the head – too much stress!

  9. It’s definitely two games in one; the levelling game, and the end-game. For me I absolutely hate the levelling game, but I love the end-game ie raiding, and if I’m not raiding I’m off doing some crazy achievements.
    But, I don’t see anything wrong with getting to level 85 and deciding to start again on another character, if that is what you prefer. If the end-game isn’t for you that’s fine. Don’t feel bad about it.

    1. You’re right of course. It just feels a bit like Groundhog Day- but I guess if I’m enjoying it (and each alt benefits from my experiences on the other) what’s wrong with that. Having said all this just healed Lost City of Tolvir on my 85 shaman- so perhaps there is some end game hope for me after all!

  10. A bit late to the party, but do what you want in the game. You dont have to raid or PvP or anything else you dont like. Leveling alts is a legit way to play. On my main server, I have 8 level 85s an 83 and an 82. Play in the style you like, not in the style other people would like.

    You may be suffering from the same thing I am….the end of expansion blues. It happen with every expansion without fail.

    Also, on the note about glyphs not selling, it is one of the markets that you have to camp to make anything.

    1. Yes as you say levelling alts is a legitimate way to play – I’m just going to enjoy it. The fact is I’m not really enjoying a lot of the end game- but in small doses it’s fine – so I’ll just do that. Yes I can imagine that with glyphs you have to really play the market carefully. I just chuck them all on whenever I’m on & hope for the best!

  11. Talking about “late to the party”… Umm, mind if I lick that empty plate over there? Those crumbs are still good, aren’t they?

    First off, no, there’s absolutely no reason why you should feel guilt, remorse, or anything for not doing every silly holiday!

    That being said, I think I enjoy leveling as well. 8 85s, most of them quest-leveled (one is Loremaster), one PvP leveled, and one dungeon leveled. I re-did the flames on 2 or three alts of mine for guild rep, and no, it’s not terribly exciting. On the other hand, flying and riding over all the zones again – it does bring back memories, I remember areas pre-cataclysm, and overall it can be quiet, nice, and peaceful. Well, except for stealing the flames 😉 Even then, as I found out this year, Disc-Priest don’t care. See, I’m friendly, just want to say “hi”. You know, horde/alliance relations? Please don’t hurt me. I’m not hurting you! See this bubble? Thanks for not hurting me! But you look mean, all of a sudden, and I must leave.

    And, of course, my little bank-alts. I decided that they deserve their mounts at level 20, and I’m almost there on my second banker, thanks to the dailies. The problem is, the other banker is about 24 now, and I still can’t stop torch-tossing-juggling for more XP. So if you ever see a shaman at level 85 with level 10 gear and a fishing pole, that’d be me 😉 Or a disc-priest with only heritage gear and nothing else…

    Enjoy the game your way! Sometimes try something new, but if you don’t like it, drop it 🙂

    1. Yes you’re right – I should at least try something but if I don’t like it I should not feel guilty about dropping it. What’s it like to level through PvP by the way – never done that.

      1. Let me say that I used to have a hate-hate relationship with PvP. Most of my toons were leveled on a PvP server, with geared and higher-level people popping out of nowhere and killing me while I was trying to peacefully quest, mine, or herb. To the point where I gladly transferred to a PvE server where a few of my real-life friends re-rolled or transferred to.

        At some point I decided to dust off that warlock of mine who was created to give my friends a guild signature. I remembered that locks were pretty hard to kill so I thought I’d give it a shot. I chose “Affliction” (kill ’em slow) because I noticed that they do a lot with dots that also don’t give my position away. For instance, there’s no trail of blazing light to follow. to find the source of the hurt 🙂
        Now, that play-style isn’t everybody’s forte. You don’t just blow enemies up. I’ve had it happen quite often that my foe killed me, I waited for the friendly angel to rez me, mounted up, rode for a bit, and saw a “KILLING BLOW” pop up. Yes, your dots can tick *that* long.

        A lot of things will help if you want to level in PvP. Heirloom gear is very powerful – assume that your enemy has it, so should you, just to level the playing field some.
        They recently changed the level brackets to “fives”. It used to be “tens”, i.e. they threw everybody between 10-19, 20-29, 30-39 etc. into the same battleground. Needless to say, the difference between a level 21 and a level 29 is HUGE nowadays. Now it’s 15-19, 20-24, 25-29, etc., and that really helps. You might stand a chance 😉

        You will die a lot. You will make very little gold. You will gain very little guild-rep. You will get highly frustrated with your other players for various reasons. The battlegrounds don’t change (WSG is the same now as it was years ago), but for some reason every few levels the majority of people seem to forget the most basic concepts. You might be able to expand your vocabulary of insults by a significant margin (even though usually it boils down to the same five simple ones)

        On the other hand, it can be fun. The XP gain is quite comparable to instances, while leveling you can get all kinds of nerdpoints (err, achievement points), and with the excess honor points that you’ll have, you can get all the PvP mounts from the PvP vendor – there’s one of each racial mount in a PvP outfit, basically.

        The other nice thing is that you can just sit down, do a few battlegrounds, and are never really invested in “having to” finish a 2-hour dungeon or similar. I would say, though, that “gear” is a very significant factor.

        If you choose to level a healer through PvP, people will most likely love you and be easy on you. It’s hard enough to find a healer in a battleground, so every little thing helps 🙂 On the other hand, being a healer means that you have the biggest target circle ever invented painted right on your back. From what I understand, PvP healing challenges you to heal while staying highly mobile – and possibly heal mousing over the targets rather than using healing addons.

        I’d definitely say that this is a “try it and toss it if you don’t like it” idea. It also depends a little on your relative level within those brackets. If you’re “24” in the 20-24 bracket you’ll live longer than at 20.

        Yikes, I get wordy… feel free to not display this comment and just keep it for yourself 🙂

      2. It’s a great comment- makes me really tempted to try it on my Disc priest. Did a bit with my arcane mage & got quite into it for awhile but then stopped. I quite like the idea of not having to commit to a full 2 hour dungeon & that sort of thing. Sounds good. Be interesting to try it as a healer,

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