Heads up new readers…. it’s that time again.

I feel like starting some shit.

If you’re new, buckle up, you’re probably going to see a side to the Bear that only comes out to play when I’ve had good coffee instead of the cheap crap.

Notice I didn’t apologize. You’ve been warned.

There are a lot of great MMOs out these days, and many of them are going free to play, for a given value of what is “free” for you to actually “play”.

There are lots of new ones coming soon that look great.

Excited? I know I am! I love to see new ideas conceptualized and made real for our gaming enjoyment.

We are living in exciting times. DAMN! Isn’t this great?

Every time someone sells an idea and brings it out, we win. Maybe some don’t reach their hype, maybe some blow past all expectations. We still win either way, because our dollar is a force to be reckoned with and pandered to.

People want our money. And to get it, they are trying to figure out what we like, and they make us shiny things.

Take movies.

Do you know what we would have done if someone dropped one of these modern Marvel superhero movies on us in the eighties?

Just look at this. I am actually having minor difficulty in tracing back all the damn good movies that will feed directly into this summers The Avengers, so I can have the entire range of them ready to watch. And how many of them are just so damn good? Captain America, Iron Man 1 and 2, Thor (god, I love the Thor movie), The Incredible Hulk (the Edward Norton one), and we’re not even including any of the Spider-Man films, X-Men (I love the Wolverine movie), the new Fantastic Four films, etc, etc.

Maybe you loved some, maybe you hated some, but holy shit.

We live in strange days when someone can make a film as kick ass as The Incredible Hulk (the Edward Norton one), and it vanishes without notice. My generation had Lou Ferrigno as the Hulk for five minutes in an episode and 55 with Bill Bixby looking depressed, and we convinced ourselves we were happy with that, it was all good. Secretly, we cried ourselves to sleep with dreams of a giant green monster smashing combat gunships out of the sky and smashing the shit out of an Abrahms.

New things are great, and what we pay our money on paves the way for the next awesome thing they make for us to spend our money on, and bless them for it.

I dreamed of a tricorder when I was a kid, and did YOU see smartphones the way they are now even five years ago? Yeah, you who dropped $400 on one of those flip phones 5 years ago, I’m talking to you. Sucker.

About ten years ago, I was excited because I had a two way text pager with keyboard, and my wife could login to a website on her computer to send a text page directly to my pager. And I could type a reply back. From my pager. This was awesome technology… for about 6 months.

I welcome all the new MMOs coming our way.

I welcome the Star Wars: The Old Republic MMO, I welcome the upcoming Guild Wars 2 MMO, and I wish we could have serious Babylon 5 and Buffyverse MMOs. Bring them on.

The more the merrier, damn it.

But here’s the thing.

I play World of Warcraft. That’s what I do.

I try other games, I even buy other games, I bought Kingdoms of Amalur and I love it.

But World of Warcraft, I always come back to you. You are my one true gaming love. I have played you for almost the entire life of my son. I have written about you with enthusiasm, I have had highs, and I have had some incredible lows. I have had my guts torn apart by people I have met in this game that I trusted, and I have had my life enriched by the relationships and friends I have been fortunate enough to make.

This is the game I play. I played it yesterday, I played it today, and you know what? Forecasted chance of WoW tomorrow approaches about 100%.

Death, taxes, I play WoW.

Now, we all joke about this, it’s a concept as old as time, but here it is.

Playing World of Warcraft is just like being in a relationship.

People used to talk all the time about “WoW widows”, and how a persons obsession with WoW could consume their lives and cause their real life marriages to break up, and other things, and I’m sure they are all true.

That some of us, myself among them, feel that an addictive personality that is trying to retreat from a reality (or a real life relationship) they don’t want to face might have chosen any vehicle for escape, be it World of Warcraft, alcohol, rock music, an affair, knitting or spending all their time in sports bars with the buds is besides the point.

The concept of World of Warcraft as a relationship has been around for a long time.

But here is where it gets tricky.

I am married to WoW.

So why the FUCK is it that some people can’t seem to grasp that I can still find WoW interesting, exciting and enjoyable?

I’m married to a wonderful woman in real life. She is simply amazing. No, really, you have no idea. She IS that good. She’s a freaking badass killer angel and you do not deserve to have her DPS in your raid, she is so awesome. Plus, she does taxes, raises children, works five jobs all hours of the day and still manages to kick my ass in You Don’t Know Jack.

Now, I have to ask you.

I’ve been married to this amazing woman for over ten years. I have come to know her very well. She still has the capacity to surprise me, and she is still endlessly exciting to me, and yet we fit together so well. I know her moods, her attitudes, her outlook on life. We are a team, and she is my best friend.

So, do you people come by the blog and wonder why I haven’t gotten bored with her and dumped her for something more interesting because by now we must have run out of things to say to each other?

And yet, I’ve played WoW for fewer years than I’ve been married to my wife. It has grown as we have, expanded (my wife, let me point out, has not expanded over the years in any way except emotionally. My butt has, but she most emphatically has not. )

So, can you please finally grasp the simple concept that some of us HAVE THE CAPACITY TO BE HAPPY IN A COMMITTED RELATIONSHIP AND DON’T NEED TO DUMP OUR CURRENT LOVE WHEN A HOT NEW MODEL COMES ALONG BECAUSE ITS SHINY AND NEW.

I love my wife, can’t imagine a world without her. Just cannot do it.

I also love WoW. I love that, as long as I’ve been playing it, and as incredibly comfortable the knowledge I have of the game, it’s rules, the underpinnings of the gameplay and the vast world of lore gives me, I STILL find something new and fresh or changed and rediscovered all the time.

It’s the wonderful video game hobby that I know so well that still manages to surprise and delight me.

I love my wife far, far more than I will ever love a video game, even WoW. Let me make that clear. This is a comparison to make a point, not a comparison like they are emotionally equal in my life.

The point being, I have the capacity to enjoy being in a relationship.

I get asked, and I see comments all the time from people wondering “How is it that you’re not bored yet? Everyone else is bored, your creating that new alt is another sign that you’re bored, you’re supposed to be sick of WoW by now, how can you continue to play that tired old boring game?”

And I keep wondering to myself, “How is it that you can’t grasp the concept that someone may actually ENJOY playing a game that they have known for many years, have grown very familiar with, have developed years of wonderful memories with, have explored and grown so used to that logging in is like returning to visit an old friend that is still your best friend?”

And I still get to make new characters and discover NEW ways of playing this game! Un-be-lievable.

If you can’t conceive of how someone else can play the same game for years and years, if the very idea somehow offends you…

In the immortal words of Jeff Foxworthy, MAYBE THE PROBLEM IS YOU.

Please, play your other games. Have fun. I know you will like them, because they are damn good, and getting better all the time.

But please, stop acting as though I am the crazy one for still enjoying the game I’m playing.

Let’s just agree that we do not understand each other and leave it at that, okay? I won’t ram my game down your throat like it’s the one true game to tie and bind all the rest, and you don’t come here and act like every time I mention something irritating me in WoW that day that this is one more sign why the entire game sucks and only stupid people play it.

Deal?

I like trying other games myself, I’m always keeping an open mind, maybe the next great video game love of my life is out there waiting to be found. Maybe Cassie will try one, love it, and tempt me to come along and keep her company.

Maybe.

I really don’t think so, though.

Just like my relationship with my wife, I cannot imagine playing another video game in the same way that I have loved and still love playing WoW.

Someday, WoW will be shut down. Maybe even when Blizzards new MMO comes out.

And when that day comes, I will be one of those people you read about, 12,000 people left on one consolidated server on a 15 year MMO running an operating system that isn’t supported by Microsoft anymore, and you’re saying to yourself, “Wow, people still play that tired old game when all these new ones are out? Geez, what is wrong with them?”

And I’m good with that.

42 Responses to “WoW is like a….”
  1. Greysmoke says:

    Right on, Beardude.

    Me, I’m taking a break from WoW for the moment. I know I’ll be back. Heck, I’ll probably be back as soon as some more Mists of Pandaria info comes out! (Please don’t let them ruin the lady pandas…) But y’know what I’m playing for change of pace?

    Everquest.

    The original.

    I’m even pretty much ignoring the new newbie zones to play my Iksar in Kunark and struggle through all those horrible unfriendly quests. Grinding mobs for XP. Battles that take minutes rather than seconds. Why? Nostalgia, mainly. EQ was my WoW before WoW, the game I always came back to, again and again. I was never a raider, never reached max level, and I never really cared.

    Do what’cha like, more power to ya. :)

  2. Klepsacovic says:

    It’s all about the aging. WoW is not the same it was when you started. I doubt your wife is either. It changed, she changed, and you changed. But you and your wife, seeing as you’re still happy, changed together in a complimentary manner, filling in for the other and not changing in major ways that destroy the relationship. If you were married to someone else, maybe they’d not change quite the same way, or fit quite as well in the first place and end up as a worse fit over time.

    For some people, they changed and WoW changed with them. Others changed and WoW changed against them. And then there are the constants of the relationship which are always there and always be there. If those aren’t there in the first place, then any change can disrupt an already unstable pairing.

    • bigbearbutt says:

      Here is the thing, Klep.

      Not to pick on your comment, but the whole point of my post was to highlight that however someone else may feel in their relationship with the game, coming to people who are still in a deep, fulfilling relationship and acting like we are crazy or are wrong to keep doing it is offensive.

      I don’t argue that you and anyone else has a perfect right to feel however you feel. Of course not. What I argue is that however you or someone else may feel, stop coming into my house and acting like I’m crazy and stupid for feeling that way.

      You aren’t in love anymore. We get it. But what you don’t seem to get is that we’re not you, and just because you have fallen out of love, it doesn’t invalidate the existence of love itself.

      What your comment sounds like is a person who had a happy marriage, and somewhere along the way felt betrayed by the other person, accusations were made, the relationship fell apart, and there was a messy divorce. Now, the person goes around to his happily married friends telling them, “Dude, she’s probably cheating on you behind your back, you may think you’re happy now, but you just wait, there will come a time when she turns on you too, she doesn’t really care about you, she’s only with you as long as she’s getting what she wanted from you.”

      It’s always hell being friends with someone going through a bad breakup, and expecting you to be on their side.

      • Klepsacovic says:

        I didn’t mean to sound like the bitter guy who got tricked. I was hoping to make things neutral, that one person or game changing isn’t bad, but just change. The analogy wasn’t meant to be infidelity, but appearance or hobbies.

        If anything, it’s the bitter ones who are wrong, the ones who either picked wrong in the first place or were too rigid when natural changes came along. Let’s compare that to aging: people age, and so do games. Some people, despite thing being exactly what they should expect, cannot handle thing and dump the person or game.

        • bigbearbutt says:

          I know, but as someone said… I think we have taken the analogy too far.

          • Klepsacovic says:

            In the latest issue of Azerothian:
            Bored with your MMO?
            Ten HOT Tips to Bring the LIFE Back to your Gaming Life
            10) We know it’s naughty… but that’s why! Try turning with the keyboard.
            9) Transmogrify… as each other.
            8) Try a new add-on, if you know what we mean.
            7) But seriously, your healing UI sucks and not in that way.
            6) AoE Grinding
            5) This was funnier in my mind and I’ve run out of ideas.

          • bigbearbutt says:

            And yet, as soon as I saw what your first line was, I started thinking the SAME things…

  3. Karegina says:

    Preach on Bear Dude!! This is exactly what I think. 7 years and going strong :D

  4. Neil says:

    “For some people, they changed and WoW changed with them. Others changed and WoW changed against them.”

    Klep nailed it on the head. I can still fire up the game and play around for a bit, and I guess it’s fun enough that I’m okay with it hitting my credit card every month, but – at least for me – it no longer has that special spark that pulled me in back in 2007. But I know some people who are playing just as hard as ever.

    I’m glad you’re enjoying yourself, though! It’s refreshing to hear a positive voice in the sea of negativity that is WoW blogging lately :)

  5. Bristal says:

    Totally agree. And can’t wait to play on that last server with all the die-hards. Think of the amazing guilds there will be.

  6. Gnomeaggedon says:

    Are you sleeping with my WoW?

    I’ve been meaning to ask for a while, I mean there are so many similarities between your WoW and my WoW, and being on opposite hemispheres, it’s possible WoW is keeping up a relationship with you while I am at work, and vice versa.

    Could WoW be cheating on both of us?

    Well, if WoW is… it has enough for both of us.

    There’s a rumour going about that I love punk from the 70’s & 80’s more than any other music, even 30-40 years on… someone once did ask me to leave the music behind, but it didn’t last.

    Don’t leave your/my WoW until you are ready, you will know when that is, until then, make sweet, sweet WoW!

  7. This is my second family. This game is my stress relief and my enjoyment and an undisputed part of what I am. There is no escaping this.

    I have always been here :D

  8. BlackDragon says:

    As always BBB, your post describes my relationship with WoW… maybe even beyond =)

    I’ve played EVE Online a while back but left because I found it either too repetitive (mining and mission-running) or too brutal (lost my missioning Arbitrator to some pirate players). Way before that I played Ragnarok ONline but left when it became too saturated with bots. Wanted to try Star Trek Online once it went F2P but it won’t run on my comp.

    These days, I’m with WoW. I do dailies on my alts and still trying to complete the RF T13 on my main Ret Pally, I go farming for ores and skins, and on the rare occassion where I got plenty of time, I kill Alliance in TB. And I still find that I’m not bored with it. Maybe I just found my comfort zone =P

    …oh, I do have an affair with World of Tanks. It doesn’t affect my relationship with WoW – both of them are agreeable with each other ^_^

    • bigbearbutt says:

      I’ve heard really good things about World of Tanks, but it is so hard to find time to get into something as deep as I’ve heard that game is, being a GOOD tank simulator. That implies I’d need to, like, learn something.

  9. Eryius says:

    Well said Bear. I also don’t understand why people keep complaining about something they still play. Cause all of those people, they still play. I have the same kind of feeling with all 3 Blizzard games tbh, Warcraft, Starcraft and Diablo. I will play them all, for a long time to come :)

    And I’m always excited about the changes Blizzard makes. They somehow always keep things interesting :)

  10. Maddy says:

    This SO true.

    From times to times, my fiancé asks me: “Aren’t you bored of WoW yet?” But that is because he doesn’t enjoy every part of the game.
    He mostly only likes PvP and old raids. I love everything, and I do mean EVERYTHING about WoW. Yes, even Archeology and Fishing.

    Just as you couldn’t share your life with a person you didn’t love for everything they are (and I’m not saying they have to be perfect, just perfect to you, if that makes sense), you could’t love a game as long as it exist if you didn’t like everything about it.

  11. Navimie says:

    It amazes me how the old bear hits the nail on the head, telling you things you didn’t know you knew. I have never quite figured out how to put into words why I don’t get sick of WoW, but after reading this I know why.

    Thank you Bear, for enlightening me. And making me feel like I’m not crazy for loving this game for so many years.

  12. BearlyDeene says:

    You know a good community blogger when said blogger can literally reach into your head and pull out information. I had a conversation with a fellow I know who moved to star wars when I tried that game out. Not exactly like this as the language was a bit more “colorful” but close!

    Been reading this blog for a long time, just recently started commenting. Your blog is a great spot to read.

  13. Xew says:

    Every day, I log into SWTOR and feel happy, running around with my lightsaber, killing beasts and man alike – and garnering more DSPs to woo my little dark side girl. And I’ll jump in my ship and do some space missions (so exciting at first, so f’n boring now – like going on the same Disneyland ride for the 40th time in the same day).

    Then, I log out and load up WoW to do dailies on my main and craft stuff for the weekend raiding… and it’s like “ahh”.

    I don’t know why Blizzard can make a game that runs flawlessly, with no graphical hiccups, at a high FPS, and even with the classically “cartoony” look to the world, it’s just… better. You’d think other gaming companies would be able to at least get their engine to that standard before shipping… so far, none that I’ve tried, have.

    That’s my primary reason I keep coming back (the year long deal also is helping me – I’m paying for it, might as well play) but I don’t dread loading the game, like I did with a number of other titles…

  14. Aralosseien says:

    Right on, BBB. I am 100% with you on this. I know that’s not a wordy, furthering-the-point comment but that was so good that I HAD to say so :D

  15. Charity says:

    I don’t get sick of WoW either. And I don’t raid, which seems to be the only way anyone else I know stays interested. Yes, I’m on hiatus because of a new shiny at the moment, but I have never thought of cancelling. I still have a lot to do — achievements to chase, other classes to level, etc. I’ll swing back around to it once the shine wears off the new thing. I always do.

  16. Cat says:

    I’m not particularly interested in the Star Wars MMO because it’s Star Wars, but oh man, oh man, now I really, REALLY want a B5 MMO. o.O Thanks Bear.

    I’m eagerly awaiting http://fireflyuniverseonline.com/ too.

  17. Mannyac says:

    I understand your feeling. Very similar to why I keep on table top gaming after almost 40 years. I love it. Hell I’m still playing the Evil Overlord in the third (and final) incarnation of a table top game in Florida. A state I left in 1994! And running a game here in Richmond.

    And I would come back to mmorpg’ing in quick second for a B5 game

  18. Riegnman says:

    I’m with you. I bought SWTOR and played it for about a week and when I quit my son said, “didn’t you like it?”. I told him that I did but if I was going to waste time on a game, it was going to be a game that I had wasted so much time on already.

  19. Synna says:

    Well said. My relationship with WoW may be a bi-polar rollercoaster, but… I will be back to level a panda monk to at least 80.

    My simple answer to the same “Why are you playing that old….” *shrug* is fun.

    Every couple years I play Anarchy Online and GuildWars 1 for a month or two. Old and dated doesn’t mean unfun. Especially if there is someone to play with.

    Hell, Chess is still fun too, and it is like a thousand years old (ok, 500 for mostly modern Queen’s chess).

  20. Thomas says:

    I feel exactly the same and pretty much in the same manner as you John, former Marine been playing since my son was born and it was my stress relief than and is now. I have been married for 11 years this Saturday so I know what it is to be married to a lovely women but still play this game. It is all about constants in our life. I dont live in my home state of MN anymore so I am away from my friends and family so I think we have very similar parrallels when it comes to our free time. I played SWTOR and World of Tanks and they both are great and different games but I always came back to WOW. It is all about being happy and this game makes me happy so why go somewhere else.

  21. DRAGONRAY says:

    You are GOD! This post is exactly – EXACTLY – what I feel for WoW.

    Aside from having a husband and not a wife :)

    I have also tried SWTOR and it is enjoyable for the most part, but whilst my husband plays SWTOR I inevitably end up logging into WoW and feeling more at home and relaxed than any other game.

    It has me, hook, line and sinker.

  22. Dortrine says:

    I think I might understand why some people are mean about people who are still in love with WoW.

    Some of us who have fallen out of love miss the relationship dreadfully. I know I do. I read this blog, and watch all Lore’s WoW videos, and look items up on Wowhead, and use WoW analogies in conversation… But I can’t log in anymore, because being around the MMO I used to have such a wonderful relationship with just hurts.

    Some people react to pain with bitterness. Not only do they envy you your close and ongoing relationship (as I do) but they’re -jealous- as well. Because they are unhappy, they can’t stand to think anyone else can be happy.

    I’m very sad for me that WoW and I aren’t in love anymore. But I’m sadder for those poor people who can’t just accept that the end of a long term relationship hurts, and take that pain like a Tauren, but have to spitefully attempt to make everyone else as miserable as they are.

    Thanks for listening.

    Dor

  23. Summerrose says:

    Thank you for this post.

    My son keeps asking me why I still play WoW and I could never figure out the “why” to give him a good enough answer. Sure, I’ve tried a couple of other games with him but always ended up thanking him for letting me try them out and went back to WoW. My son gave up WoW quite awhile ago and keeps asking why I’m not bored with it yet. Just like someone mentioned earlier, the only response I could think to give was I wasn’t done yet (too many more things to do).

    Now I can read this post to my son and tell him, “This is why I still play WoW”.

  24. Max says:

    Interesting post. I sometimes write with a passion…but later I realize that the passion was partly to help convince myself of something.

  25. […] Link from Hippyelf:  http://thebigbearbutt.com/2012/02/22/wow-is-like-a/ […]

  26. […] BBB wrote an excellent post defending his ongoing love of WoW against those people who seem to not just be burnt out on WoW, but feel the need to be aggressive […]

  27. Somnar says:

    It’s nice to see someone else playing with this passion, sometimes I think I’m weird and settling for WoW. I’ve actually just rolled a druid for tanking and am leveling him with my wife, who fortunatley decided to return to WoW finally… Anyhow, glad I came to your site, druids have always had an awesome community and I’m looking forward to perusing and learning more from y’all!

  28. Matty says:

    There is a cross-dressing rogue out there who feels the same way about me (and I love him for it)–and now I am inpsired, and perhaps can write an honest post about some things that have been simmering for a bit.

  29. Honorshammer says:

    All I ask if you give people who have chosen another ‘wife’ the same respect.

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