Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Alts and Guild Experience

I've been busy with my main and alt (Paladin and Warlock) and have been having a lot of fun with them, both in PvP and PvE - but I kind of want something completely different lately.

For a while, I was thinking about playing another game on the side and there are some very good and solid games out there, and if I wasn't playing Warcraft, maybe they would hold more appeal to me, as I love exploring a brand new world from scratch, but I miss my Warcraft friends way too much (even if just on Battle.Net) so I log back into my server, but then, I think, I've been missing the Horde lately something fierce just for a change of scenery.

Another part of me wants to roll up a new class (Priest or Shaman) and race (Forsaken or Troll) from scratch on an anonymous server. While I enjoy having a leveling partner, I also really enjoy solo leveling as it lets me chase quests or stories as I want and not worry about what my partner wants, and I can keep leveling or stop as I wish. But since I'm thinking about doing this anonymously, why not do it in another game? Most of the advantages of re-rolling in Warcraft are lost when I roll on a new server with no heirlooms or guild or friends and another game (which at this point would either be Rift or LotRO) would be a lot more interesting and new.

I canceled my LotRO account after a couple of months last summer (only made it to level 30 or so) and I canceled Rift after the first month after I hit level 20 (and I did enjoy it though not as much as LotRO) - but I find that I keep thinking about WoW in these games. Last summer, I missed my friends, but with Rift, I felt like I should be working to level up my guild and not "wasting time" in this other game. That was a really strange thing to think of - that any time I am in an MMO and not helping level my guild - I feel like I'm doing something wrong.

Guild experience is just so important for a small guild like ours (we should hit 13 this weekend but that's far, far behind most other guilds at this point) - that it really feels like a very important thing to pursue. It really hampers our recruitment as well, when we don't have a Level 20+ guild and hitting those marks doesn't seem like it's optional - it seems necessary.

One of the big changes Blizzard wanted to implement in the game was to minimize the reasons for logging in every day - and they have succeeded on an individual level to a great extent. I think they just need to equalize PvP and PvE a bit - for example, Conquest needs a weekly cap from BGs and not a daily 25 point cap. I get my CPs from Arenas, but people who aren't running Arenas do need that cap removed.

Anyway we're getting there - the game is becoming a bit less log-in-every-day-or-you-fall-behind and that's good. However, guild experience is still a gigantic, daily slog for smaller guilds. The new 7-dungeon, 1-raid-boss, and 3 rated-BGs challenges are a help to smaller guilds catch up - but despite that, I still feel like I have to log in every day and contribute experience.

Maybe this is a personal thing, maybe as an officer in the guild, I have a huge investment that the rest of the players don't have, but this is actively keeping me from playing other games or alts outside of my guild. I'm sure this is a personal thing for me, and not a wide-spread issue with the general player-base, but I think there is at least some of this kind of feeling spread among the player-base, particularly people who are concerned with the progression of their guild or hungry for the perks and rewards that higher level guilds offer.

I guess, where I am right now, taking a break from Warcraft every now and again or even being logged into a non-guild alt is something I would enjoy. But it's not an option I get to exercise due to guild experience.

5 comments:

  1. On this point I disagree. If you cease to have fun and the play becomes a job, it's time to quit or at the very least take a break. Understand WoW models gamification on the largest scale because it wants you to percieve End Content as being the only goal. Even if you are completely goal orientated you still need to take time away regardless of the gaming model.

    Asides from this, the guild's progression is not solely your responsibility. It is up to every memebr of your guild to contribute one way or another. In time, you will still get your guild lv experience, it just naturally happens over time.

    Remember always to play the game for enjoyment, don't make it your job. Your self worth and your self image are not directly tied to this game. If you base those on your returns from wow, your gonna have a rough time of it no matter what. Go take a break, as an officer you have worked hard and deserve breaks so the game doesnt burn you out completely. If you are worried about officer responsibilities, one of two things needs to happen, the GM needs to lean a little less on you or recruit more officers to share the burden. You can't do it all on your own.

    Just my two cents on the matter.

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  2. I think you hit on a couple of good points - though reading back, I think I completely missed making a point, which was that this is my psychological state regarding the game, not my logical state.

    Which is to say, I understand your points, and agree with them, but psychologically the game has had an affect one me, that is making me log in regardless of my desire.

    I enjoy the game when I'm raiding or competing in Arena. It's the tedious guild achievement and experience chasing that I have come to loathe, and I guess your point that I don't need to try to make 1000 flasks alone (or whatever) is a good one.

    We could probably use another officer in the guild. It's a conversation I need to bring up with our membership very soon, I think.

    Then I won't feel guilty about rolling an elf Bard and roaming around Rivendel for a little while! :)

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  3. The DSM IV, the manual medical professionals use to diagnose disease has seven addiction criteria...

    Tolerance - if you aren't doing it, you think you should be.

    ""I felt like I should be working to level up my guild and not "wasting time" in this other game.""

    Withdrawal - Physical or emotional, from not doing it.

    ""but despite that, I still feel like I have to log in every day and contribute""

    Difficulty controlling your use.

    ""any time I am in an MMO and not helping level my guild - I feel like I'm doing something wrong""

    Negative consequences.

    ""another game (which at this point would either be Rift or LotRO) would be a lot more interesting and new.""

    Neglecting or postponing activities. In this case, playing another game.

    ""hitting those marks doesn't seem like it's optional - it seems necessary. ""

    Spending significant time or emotional energy.

    ""maybe as an officer in the guild, I have a huge investment ""

    Desire to cut down

    ""even being logged into a non-guild alt is something I would enjoy. But it's not an option I get to exercise due to guild experience. ""

    According to the DSM IV, if you have any three of the things mentioned, you are addicted to your drug of choice. You have demonstrated having all seven factors. Always remember, its only a game, you should never feel like you HAVE to play, if you do..stop.

    I am not, by any stretch, being preachy...One of those games are evil bla bla bla types. I have played, and still play WoW, but I have broken that 'addiction', feeling like you need to log in every single day. Good luck!

    Garimon, Eonar horde

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  4. Thanks for your post Garimon - I don't know if I agree with all your points, but I do agree that I needed to cut down, and I have.

    For the last couple of weeks, I've not logged in other than when I need to for raids or other planned activity and it has helped.

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  5. Sunshine is a good thing, in small doses! Go take your girl to a movie, or pick up a different hobby and play with it, like crafts or woodworking.

    Garimon

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