I haven’t played it the entire time I’ve known of its existence though. Only a few months at a time with a long stretch in between. Although I do have to say that this game has played a huge role in my life because I met my husband on Azeroth in 2010.
There are many reasons I haven’t been as enthralled with this game as I once was. Real life tends to get in the way from time to time, and boy have we had a rough go at it since moving to Alabama. That isn’t the only reason, however.
Gone are the days of spending hours in one dungeon with the same group of people for one piece of gear that you or someone else just needed for the next 10 levels if you wanted to be any good in PvP in your level bracket or to make questing a bit easier. People would just ignore your group invites if you were on the same quest because they thought they could kill the mobs quicker than you could. (Your rudeness level has increased to STOP BEING AN ASSHOLE!)
Now, I understand the necessity for a game to evolve and stay relevant in an ever-changing industry such as this one. The fans were getting older and going to college or finding jobs afterward. They were becoming parents and had less and less free time to put into such a timesink of a game. I personally, however, feel that there needs to be some aspect of socialness to an MMORPG, because, well, what’s the point of playing an MMO if there’s no social aspect?
There are many reasons this game has had to evolve over the years, and I understand that. I just feel that somewhere in all of this they lost the way. Vanilla and BC WoW brought a sense of immersion to the game. I could seriously get lost for hours just exploring everything. It didn’t matter if I kept getting killed by random guards near the opposite faction’s quest hubs. That was part of the excitement.
Once the expansion Cataclysm for World of Warcraft came out – the entire game changed. You were no longer playing the game with people on just the same server/realm as you, but you were able to play with ANYONE on ANY SERVER. This coupled with the newfound guild leveling and perks system spelled straight up “disaster” for every social aspect of the game. I was no longer finding new friends in my leveling zones that I was blowing through. None of the group quests required actual groups anymore. It didn’t matter if that guy was a dickhead in your dungeon group because chances are that you would never see him again once that instance was over.
My playtime drastically slowed down at this release. Not because they had made things easier with the experience decrease or the stat increase. Nor the heirlooms or the fact that I could one-shot everything until level 10. The game changed so much for the worse, and I hated it.
Yeah, I was getting a shit load of guild invites. You’re supposed to be social in an MMO – that’s kind of the point. Yet nobody was chatting anymore. It was all about getting to max level as quickly as possible. The only time anyone decided to speak to you was to tell you that you sucked ass. These changes made the game so incredibly toxic and it just wasn’t enjoyable for me anymore.
Yet I continued to play from time to time. The storyline of this game is a huge deal to me. I played Warcraft 3 some (in between obsessive hours spent on Diablo 2), so I was familiar with at least some of the story. The Cataclysm story started off with a bang, but I quickly grew bored of it. It was such a huge let down after the glorious expansion that was Wrath of the Lich King.
It’s really difficult to even call this the same game it was 10 years ago. They have upgraded the graphics, they killed off important characters, and I’ve even switched factions. Legion was by far the best expansion in the last 5+ years. The stories were amazing and demon hunter is an exceptionally fun-to-play class. I tried my hand on an RP realm (Moon Guard – what!) and I’m in love with this game all over again. With the pre-release of Battle for Azeroth starting today, I’ve got to say that I’m pretty hyped on what they will be bringing to us next!
With this, I retire my artifact weapon (RIP), and will probably be back around when the new expansion hits. For now, I’m going to focus on my business and coding. I’ll find something new to fill the void in my heart!