Wednesday, June 07, 2006
Addiction to Real Life ®
One of the recurring themes of journalists reporting on Everquest or World of Warcraft is how the "addiction" of these games makes people fail their grades, neglect their families, or lose their jobs. But of course the number of people for who the game becomes so important that they ruin their real life over it is tiny. So today I'll talk about the far more likely reverse situation: People putting Real Life ® first (where it belongs), and neglecting the game for it.
Summer is coming, and at least over here in Europe this will have a big effect of World of Warcraft. Lots of players are students, and all over Europe this is a time for exams. Then in 2 days the soccer world championship 2006 starts in Germany, drawing lots of people away from their computer monitors and towards a TV screen. And then the summer holiday season starts, where due to the generous European holidays people are often away for 3 weeks or more. A beach in Spain isn't a good place to play WoW. During the summer people play a lot less, and especially raid guilds are hit hard and can't keep up their raiding schedule.
On my server the most uber guild on the Horde side just disbanded. Some people left for Real Life ® reasons (don't know in how far Summer is to blame). That in turn had a negative effect on the plan of the guild to kill the final boss of AQ40 before Naxxramas goes live in the next patch. In frustration the hardest core of the hardcore, 9+ players, left the guild and rolled an Alliance character instead. They will join the most uber Alliance guild on the same server, get powerleveled, and undoubtedly be quickly on a full raiding schedule again. With the core gone, the rest of the guild just fell apart. Another guild drama, this one started by Real Life ® priorities.
We are all addicted to Real Life ®. If we neglect it for a while to go raiding every night, it has the nasty habit to kick us in the behind sooner or later, shattering our virtual dreams. And that is a good thing. World of Warcraft is just a game, and your job, your studies, your family should always have preferrence. And there are days when even a beach or a soccer match is more important than killing some raid boss.