Changes, History and a losing a life long friend.
After the big debacle of an event which I like to now call “the breaking of the classes” also known as expansion launch I have spent a bunch of time pondering my main character.
When I got to level 100 I felt very under whelmed by it. I was dying every few seconds, I didn’t seem to be able to do much damage and overall my much loved main character Hugebloke seemed very lack lustre.
I went through a process of re-glyphing, optimizing using websites and add-ons and double checking my rotations as all to no use. I finally come to the conclusion that my class was broken and I just simply would not enjoy playing that character anymore.
For the first time since launch day of burning crusade I was not enjoying playing my class and it hit me pretty hard. Within the first week of the Warlords dropping, I had come to the conclusion that I would have to mothball Hugebloke and move onto another character to find that enjoyment that I so much craved for.
The night I came to this conclusion, I was heartbroken. Now this is the bit were my crazy really starts to shine but here goes….
I felt like I was losing my best friend. A member of my family or perhaps even a small piece of myself. Pretty much every day for the better part of a touch over 8 years I have logged into the game and spent time doing what ever I do as Hugebloke. It became apparent the more I thought about what was going on that I have indeed developed this weird emotional attachment to my character and I’m actually ok with this. After all, Hugebloke really is/has become like something out of one of my favourite movies. He has much become a “residual self image” or a digital representation of my physical self. (5 points if you get the reference).
Now that may not make a lot of sense to others but if there is even one person out there that understands what I’m talking about then my job is done.
What I’m talking about is the projection of my physical self into the digital world. My character has taken on the personality traits that I have given him over the years. He has a circle of friends in server of people that know him and recognise him. They remember the dumb shit that I have done or the amusing antics that I have got up to. They remember the conversations and have entrusted my character with their most trusted secrets.
My character in a way really has taken on his own life. All be it controlled by me via a keyboard and mouse but you get where I’m going with this.
Hugebloke has become the representation of the adventure that I haven’t been able to go on in my real life. He is my escape into an alternate world that has sometimes been needed to get away from reality. When I battled crippling depression, Hugebloke was an acceptable way for me to still interact with other characters. I would forget that they were other people controlling the characters and would interact with them as the characters they were thus alleviating the stress of dealing with people. When I was injured and could barely walk let alone leave the house, I was still able to log in and go on these amazing adventures with my friends. I can log in and be the social butterfly chatting to everyone and anyone I come across or I can sit quietly on a lake and fish from a lake without saying a word to anyone. I took part in the million gnome march to protest warrior changes back in vanilla, I died amongst millions as Azeroth was infected with the blood plague and then again years later with the zombie plague. I defeated dragons, demonic night elves and possessed former paladins of the light and many more amazing memorable moments.
Hugebloke really was a means for me to experience all these adventures be it solo or with friends.
So the thought of putting him up on the shelf and moving onto another toon just broke me. All those adventures and friends, people recognizing me from prior guilds or that one dungeon run 5 years ago because I made such an impact. I was confused and hurt by these changes as it was the first time I have ever not felt like playing that character. I honestly felt lost and didn’t know if to start playing another toon or stop playing WoW all together. All the hours and achievements that I had spent or earnt. Would I have to start all again? Would I have to build new street cred on another toon? Would the game ever be the same again? Would I be the bitter old man and point blank refuse to start fresh, spending the rest of my days playing WoW on a cardboard box with a crayon drawing of a computer and my character in the main street of Stormwind?
I guess the point of this all is to say that it’s ok.
It’s ok to have an odd emotional link to your toon. Society might think your nuts but I don’t.
I understand what its like. While I know allot of you will be sitting back think…this dude either needs to cut back what he smoking or share that sh*t around. But I know there are a few people out there that share my feelings on this and understand what I’m talking about.
I think that is the real nuts and bolts of why I love world of Warcraft so much. The fact that I can get so into a character and feel so much pain at the thought of losing them.
Well played Blizzard, well played.
Share your thoughts on this piece or ask me to cover another topic, id be happy to oblige.