Don’t panic, my friends. I’m not planning to leave WoW.
I have been thinking, though, for some months, that I am not happy with my WoW situation. Pinning down exactly why I’m unhappy is a little trickier, so bear with my while I do some thinking out loud, as it were. Pardon the bullet points, they help me think, really, they do.
What I’ve Been Doing Lately
- I’ve been running in the OLRG on either Gurdrid or Breige, depending on my tanking confidence. As much as I am encouraged by Matty and others in the OLRG, I do not want to be the weak link as the tank. But I do have Breige, and I do love running with the Old Ladies in whatever role I take. After all, sometimes xp sponge is a worthwhile goal, is it not?
- I recently completed my Jeweled Onyx Panther, which was a huge effort and time suck thanks to 6 fully working farms, four cooldowns I was managing, and trying to earn money on the side.
- Scenarios/Heroic Dungeons for JP. I want to get a few heirloom sets completed, so when I do level new characters, I can take all the expensive items instead of the ones good for my class/spec. Not to mention XP boosts.
- Not playing as much WoW. I know I go in spurts, but this past week I logged in on Saturday for OLRG, and not again until last night for the guild raid.
- Guild “raiding” We’re doing old school raids for pets, primarily.
Looking at this list, the only one that really requires me to be a part of Higher Authority is the guild raiding. And that’s not strictly a truth. I could continue running with the guild on those runs whether or not I’m actually there.
Why I Haven’t Been Logging In
I think I haven’t been logging in much for a few reasons:
- Almost all the time when I log in, I’m the only one in the guild on… except on Wednesdays and occasional Saturdays.
- I just did a huge push to complete a project. While satisfying, it usually takes me a couple of weeks to recharge, and figure out how to focus on the next thing.
- My guildies, let’s face it, are not at all WoW knowledgable. This is a casual passtime for them, something they do when there’s not much else going on. They like seeing new content, but they aren’t going to come up with ideas for killing Kael’thas so we can try to get A’lar. They aren’t going to ask to see a raid I’ve not thought to take them to. They let me run the show, and come along for the ride. While this is not a bad thing for them, it means I have to do all the work of coming up with places to go, ideas for trying to down a boss with an annoying mechanic, etc. Conversation about WoW is me telling them things. I rarely, if ever, hear of something from them that I didn’t know.
- I have been busy outside Azeroth, spending free time with my wife, who is now going to school full time on top of the full time job, so that free time is premium.
It would seem, then, that what I am missing in my Azerothian life is, as Tome so eloquently put it when talking about why she started her blog in her Twisted Nether Interview, “people to talk to about WoW”.
What I’d Like to Do
This is kinda important, because what I am doing and what I want to do are clearly not identical. So, let’s think about this, shall we?
- Kill All the Things with other people I know! PuGging has its place, sure. There’s plenty of overgearing, but it’s almost like playing group content solo with 4 NPCs.
- Maybe actually relearn tanking/healing. A lot of my tanking lacks are made up for in the <2 minute boss fights in old raids, and I haven’t healed a dungeon since level 65 or something.
- Flex Raiding. I’ve been a fairly successful LFR hunter so far, I just might be ready to move up to Flex. My schedule might even allow for a two-day normal raiding team. But only maybe.
- Cool things that require all the professions to do without gold output.
And look at that list, lots of things that being in a more active guild would definitely encourage. I can still do that last one on my own anywhere I want, but the rest of them? Definitely a worthy endeavor.
A Change of Scenery?
My dear wife, because she does this for me, asked me why I don’t consider transferring servers to somewhere that I know an active player or two. I could keep my ties to Higher Authority either by leaving an alt there, or via Battle Tag. I have 11 characters on Ysera, 10 of them in Higher Authority. It wouldn’t be a horrible difficulty to do the move, now, would it? And so, I started to consider it.
- If I choose well, I can revitalize my WoW time, get to do some of those things on my wants list. Maybe finish the Legendary Cloak quest line.
- I wouldn’t be the sole idea generator for Things To Do.
- I wouldn’t have to screw around with the guild bank.
- I wouldn’t log in to no one in the guild.
- I might meet new cool people, just by being willing to type /g. That’s safe, right?
- I wouldn’t be guild leader any more.
- I wouldn’t be guild leader any more…
- An outlay of $25-$150 in moving my level 90 toons. More if I want to take my complete dwarf collection with me.
- Sonaira and Shoryl wouldn’t be on the same server any more
- I might lose touch with my Higher Authority guildies, or even hurt their feelings if I leave
Yeah, ok. So the money thing, while a downside, doesn’t have to be in one chunk, and I can spare $25 periodically. And I’ve lost touch with other players because they or I have moved on to enjoy playing the game more or stopped playing entirely (obviously, not me with the stopping)
The More Things Change, the More They Stay the Same
There’s tons more to do in Mists of Pandaria than any expansion previous, especially for the casual player. The problem, though, isn’t what there is to do. It’s that I started playing WoW as a social game, and I would like to return it to that type of game for myself.
One of the other things Sona and I have discussed is that Higher Authority isn’t the guild in my head. The guild in my head is… well, it’s kinda the OLRG, to be honest. A group of people who don’t judge, but have fun. Who tackle things together, but also individually. Who are sometimes quiet, sometimes thoughtful, often funny, and above all, wonderful people to hang out with. That’s not an environment you can create without careful curation – and even then, it doesn’t always work out that way.
Higher Authority is a quiet place these days. We’ve got more players that haven’t been online in six months than we have toons that have (and consider… 6 working farms…) Higher Authority is not the place I want it to be, and it’s not a place that I can make better by myself. My options seem to be to recruit all of my lovely friends to my guild, or move to where some of my lovely friends are. The more I write, the more I think, the more it seems that it’s time to move on.
Now the question is: Where?