What I’ve Been Playing

World of Warcraft. Lots of it. Heaps. Tons. Stacks.

I’ve been riding the wave of obsession / apathy towards the game since I started playing; I’ll obsess over it for a few months, get bored and leave it for a few months, rinse and repeat. I was finally talked into going back due to a relatively new addition to the game, the dungeon finder.

My friends all have level 80 characters. They’ve done the instances they want to (or could get into), and they’re bored of it. I had a level 72 character, couldn’t find any of my mates to play with, had to do all the quests on my own, and couldn’t get into an instance if I tried. Got bored of quest grinding very quickly.

When I started again, I opened up the dungeon finder. Clicked “random Lich King dungeon”. Clicked “join queue”. Got straight into an instance with four similar-levelled characters from different servers. No fuss, no messing. No hunting for quests. No grinding on my tod. Opens up the “massively” part of MMO to anyone and everyone over level 15. You also get an experience bonus and a goodie bag of items (or emblems past level 70) for each dungeon you complete.

They’ve also done the same with battlegrounds. No having to wait around in your home city for the queue to fill. You can do what you like while you wait.

What Blizzard have essentially done is taken the meat of the game, the parts that were a hassle for people to do but the most fun to do, and pulled it to the top of the stew, which has nicely pushed the greasy sticky mouldy quest and LFG dumplings to the bottom of the bowl. That was a horrible simile, I apologise. I’ll try harder.

They’ve made instances and battlegrounds as immediate as questing is. In fact, they’re even more immediate than quests, cos you don’t ever have to get on a grif if you don’t want to.

So there you go. I’ve been playing WoW again for two weeks now, gone from level 72 to 76, got mostly blues, got loads of cash (well, I would if I didn’t spend it on making engineering stuff all the time), and I’m hooked once more. Yay!

(I’ve also been playing a bit of Team Fortress 2 here and there in order to practice for the practice matches for the Highlander tournament coming up, but I’ve worked out now that half an hour’s practice before the practice for the practice makes all the difference I need)

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