Tobold's Blog
Thursday, August 28, 2008
Aren't you getting tired at night?

I get up at 6:30 in the morning, start working at 8, leave work at 5, come home around 6, eat, and start playing. Last night I was playing World of Warcraft again for a change, and my guild was interrupting their summer raiding break with some light Kara raiding. I wasn't signed up, but they needed another healer, so I joined with my priest. Raid started around 8, and by 11 I was deadly tired. Some other priest from my guild logged on and asked for a raid spot, and I let him have mine, happy to be able to go to bed. I'm sure the other guys continued raiding past midnight. Am I the only one getting tired at night?

Playing late is certainly part of the raiding culture. Raids don't start at 6 in the evening, but rather later, so everyone has time to come home, bring the kids to be if he has any, or do other family duties. If you are unlucky like me, you live in the later timezone of all the zones covered by your server; when it's midnight for me, it's only 11 for the Brits I'm playing with. On the weekends I can sleep longer in the morning and am less tired at night, but raiding until after midnight on Sunday night comes back to haunt you on Monday morning when the alarm rings. So I really wonder how everyone makes it. Are they just younger and less tired than me? Can they all sleep longer in the morning?

One thing I'm looking forward to with Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning is that the group activities are less structured. Nobody cares if one healer goes to bed at 11 in the middle of a keep raid, it's not like a WoW raid which would stop if someone left until a replacement could be found. A public quest you can start whenever there are other people around, and leave whenever you don't want to play any more. There is no need to stay up beyond the point of exhaustion. I might be missing some 3 am keep raids, but I don't care. I need my 7 to 8 hours of beauty sleep every night!
Since I got 'older' I get much more tired at night, especially after work. I rarely play to midnight, let alone past it. But then.. I also find myself waking up a lot earlier these days too. Ho hum.
Not everyone leaves bed at 6:30.

Some people start work much later and maybe even work from home.

Some may be students, who seem to have a timezone of their own.

I am usualy getting up at around 7:00 and have no problems to raid till midnight, but i sometimes am quite happy, if a raid stops at 23:00 as other people have to leave and the raid folds.

Raiding to 1:00 or 2:00 in the morning will haunt me badly, no matter if it is a weekend or not (my daughter gets up around 7:00 no matter what day it is)

I am looking forward to the WAR playstyle of PQ's and RvR Raids.
I agree. WAR seems much more casual friendly than WoW. It's not just the end game. In WoW, so much play time is wasted just traveling from place to place. In WAR, long distance travel is nearly instant, hearths are on pretty short cooldown (I'm not sure how short, but less than WoW's hour cooldown), and you don't have to travel back to a city if you want to play a scenario (BG).

That's actually a big part of the game's appeal to me -- I can't really set aside huge blocks of time several nights a week anymore to play games like this.
I get up for work at 5 am (west coast), and normally home between 3 and 4 pm. Generally get some things done around the house then I take a nap for a couple of hours so I can game in prime time. Usually go to bed around 1 am on weekdays and end up with around 6 hours of sleep. I also normally take a quick nap during lunch break which helps a lot.
Thank goodness you've got the beautfy sleep, Tobold -- I've got my hands full with the "must prevent my body from deteriorating even further" sleep!

In all seriousness, my guild is populated by mainly adults with jobs and lives, and when 2.4 came out, we started to do Sunwell until we realised that progression through that zone would just require far too much of a committment for adults with jobs. We killed one boss and stopped doing hardcore raiding. Now we only raid 8 hours a week and focus more on having fun in game. It's helped us avoid a lot of potential burnout!
I've been tired since circa 1996, so when I started playing WoW a couple of years ago, it didn't really change much.

I have three children, and they tend not to respect my bedtimes, so I rarely get to sleep beyond 6:30 in the mornings. Conversely, it is not usually possible for me to start playing before 20-22 at night. Occasionally, I get to bed by midnight, but usually it's more like 1:30. I suppose I've just gotten used to being tired. It's my own choice, and I wouldn't dream of complaining about it.

I do regret some things though, like last night when I had just completed the "Hellfire Booty Circle" on my latest alt and hearthed back to turn in the completed quests only to find myself in Winterspring... Or that time long ago when I first tried the Battle of the Crimson Watch – we were not prepared! 7:30 in the morning, my kids came into the room: "Hey dad, let's play!". Yes, let's.
It's not just you Tobold, I feel tired because of raiding too

I get up at 7am, get home from work ~5:30pm, and although raid start time is ~7:30pm I generally start playing at ~6:30pm to get some dailies done to finance it
The official raid end time is midnight (I'm a brit)

Its not so bad at the moment because for now we're not doing any progress raids (we just got our first kills on Archimonde and Illidan, so we're farming gear for a few weeks before we start on Sunwell) so we sometimes finish earlier

During progress times though, I can generally do 2 weeks of that before I simply HAVE to sign off for a couple of raids to catch up with sleep

I think part of it is age....10 years ago when I was a student I used to play a MUD most nights until 2-4am, and still get to my lectures at 9am "most" of the time withouth feeling it !!!
You could also argue that the wow system is great because the raids actually end, and you thus got a reason to go to bed.

If there isn't such a point, you just keep playing a little bit more, and a little while longer until you actually fall asleep ;)
Personally, I think that lax scheduling is at fault, both at personal and guild level. In the past, I've been in too many raids that that go on and on because "we'll get the boss on next try" or "if we kill one more boss, we can start from there next raid". Sometimes I've even heard "Let's reclear trash and have a few more tries". Lax scheduling on guild level leads to peer pressure to stay in the raid to help your guild, and that leads to lax scheduling on personal level. And that can lead to serious personal problems.

That's not the way to go. If you need time for something, you reserve time for it and stick to the plan. If you need 7 hours of sleep and get up at 6 AM for work, you go to sleep at 11 PM. You will not sign up for raids that last past 11 PM or if you do, you let your raid leader know that you will log off at 11 PM. And you do that in advance so that he can prepare for it.

That applies to raiding as well. Burning out your raiders by stretching raids beyond their scheduled end time is not a good long-term strategy. The guild should map the times that people can reserve for raiding and make a schedule that's acceptable for everyone. And then stick to that schedule. I'm fortunate to be in a guild where a raid lasts at most 3 hours (4 on Sunday). That consistency makes it much easier achieve a balance between work, sleep, family, other hobbies and raiding.
As one gets older there is more a need for structure and a regular schedule that when you're in your twenties, I found out.

If I get off the track of my schedule (very similar to what you described) I yawning all day at work, and feel like sleeping the whole day ;).
And you are a lucky one, Tobold, I have two kids, 5 and 2, and they are both of the tripple-A variety. This morning the younger one woke up at 4:30...he snoozed a little in our bed, but at 5:30 its go time!

Lukcily they sleep at 19:30 hour - +- so I have 2-3 hours of gametime a night, before heading to be at 22-ish.

When I raided I stayed up til 23, and the morning after was always hell (im a school teacher, and I need my wits about me to survive)

In short, I look forward to WAR´s more timefriendly play, and hope its going to be good. Otherwise I can always buy WOLTK and play the Massively Singleplayer way. :-)
I don't raid and do not play WoW, but generally I try to avoid activities that would take more than 1-2 hours, or just simply avoid MMOs where a significant portion of gameplay includes long activities.

Even if I had time, I have trouble sitting at a computer playing for more than 2-3 hours at a time anyway and would have to break.
As a shift worker with no real set pattern I had to give up raiding as I could never guarantee even one evening per week.

I have given up on the fantasy genre of mmo's after being very under whelmed by the WAR beta.

I'm currently waiting for football manager live to start up, hopefully the system in place will suit my sporadic play style.
Oh, and it's certainly possible to progress in Sunwell with set schedules. The largest amount of trash in the whole instance is between the entrance and Kalecgos (and some of it is avoidable), and that can be deceive people to think that the rest of the instance is like that. There's two pulls between Kalecgos and Brutallus, no trash between Brutallus and Felmyst, and a relatively simple gauntlet (that has a normal respawn time after you clear it) between Felmyst and Eredar Twins. In addition, there's teleports to Kalecgos and Eredar Twins available. It is a shorter instance than the Black Temple.

As a shift worker with no real set pattern I had to give up raiding as I could never guarantee even one evening per week.
Yeah, I see how that can be a problem, and unfortunately I don't have any real solutions for that. I do play a trader in EvE, but not all people enjoy looking at spreadsheets.
Oh god yes.

I get up at 4:30 am, and try to get to bed by 9:30.

I can maybe raid two or three times a month. If I raid during the week I am dead on my feet the next day.

With only 2-3 hours a playtime during a day I've accepted that I will never have uber gear.

But that's ok. With a game loaded with content like Lotro or EQ2, it can take me a good 6 months to level one character up.

Conversely that's why I don't play WoW. The shitty DKP system my guild had in it guaranteed that a casual raider would never get the good stuff.
This is a big reason i can only raid one day a week. Between work and other responsibilities i would have to cut out sleep to raid more than one or two days maximum.

I wonder how people raid 4-5 times a week O_o;
For me, living on Newfoundland time ( +1.5 hours from EST ) has directly contributed to my inability to raid. When raids start maybe at 7pm EST that's 8:30 my time and I used to go tell 1 or 2 am. I notice in general there is a whole west coast/east coast divide on this subject. EC people want to start early enough that they aren't up all night and WC people want to start late enough so that they can have time after getting off work/school before the raid. I agree about the systems in WAR being more conducive to people with fluxing schedules etc... however everything seems ideal now and it remains to be seen how things will shape up post release.
Lucky for me I live in England, although sometimes it can be a pain, because the people on the continent want to start raiding earlier than I do.

People from Russia or the Baltic States must really struggle to stay awake, and I find it quite suprising that a lot of them still play on the English servers, rather than traqsnferring to the Russian ones.

What I find generally is it doesn't matter whether I go to bed earlier or later. I still feel knackered in the morning!
I don't know how much that's true about WAR. .. One one hand it may not be as bad to leave because it's not instanced and anyone on the server can come help with the seige. But on the other hand, guilds will want to plant their flag on keeps to get guild ranks. And there are definitely guilds that will be more "hardcore" and want to conduct sieges at 3am, and get their flag planted.

I don't know what will happen at 6pm-10pm if everyone is trying to siege. On one hand that will be fun. But on the other hand your guild might not meet objectives and advance its ranking as fast. At least WAR seems to have the option where you can eventually make it to max guild and renown ranks if you just grind it out over time, and don't have the pressures of instance raiding where you can only have so many and have to be these classes.

I guess it depends on what type of guild you join.
Sleep being an important item in my life is one of the many reasons I don't raid. My latest week-night, funnily enough, is my standing Civ4 game I play online with friends. I always push it a bit late because it can take several weeks to finish a game.
Tell me about it! We have a new baby in the house. I played WoW for a bit last night for the first time since he was born, and paid for it today when he decided 5:00 AM was a good time to start the day.

What I'm really wondering, though, is how married people can meet raiding schedules. I can get away with one evening a week or so where my wife is left staring at the back of my head. Even the most casual raiding guilds seem to be looking for at least a couple nights a week of play.
I have about the same schedule: 06.30-17.30 but I dont raid so i dont know the problem:) Besides, which each year i seem to be needing less and less sleep, about 6 hours right now.

Also, since i basically work with computers all day long (software development) i certainly dont want to sit behind a screen the moment i get home. My MMO playstyle as a result is best described as "ultra casual"..
This is a timely thread for me.

I need to get more sleep right now.

Years ago realized I could not keep a regular raiding schedule with the responsibilities of work and a family, nonetheless, I constantly find ways to burn the midnight oil.

If its not WoW its something else.

Coincidently, it is WoW again. I reactivated my account a little over a week ago from being inactive since early February.

Last night, I reactivated my wifes acct too, so I could use her character to run my lvl 39 twink through Uldaman for BoP drops.

I am physically exhausted today and I went to bed before 1am...

It's my own damn fault!

It's tough though. Late at night after the kids are in bed is the only time to play. A better man than me would make sleep a priority.

Maybe I will trying being that "better man" for a while.
Alternate weeks I am up at 5am but home by 2pm but if I try to game after 11pm I really struggle.

I think it comes with age, Tobold. In 1996 I use to play Meridian 59 through the night until early am, something I wouldn't dream of doing now.

WAR will fit my unpredictable game playing hours down to a tee.
Yes, sleep time comes for me much earlier than most I play with. And is probably the reason I have not ever shown much interest in raiding.

There will always be someone who says this isn't the case for them -- but in my experience, most raiders are not the average working adult w/families, hobbies etc. I do not believe for a second that the top raiding guilds have much more than students (college and high school) in them.

Dailes are about as hardcore as I can get. :)
When I came to WoW from EQ2, I was such a noob I did not realize servers matched real-world time zones. EQ2's Norrath runs on its own accelerated schedule. So like an idiot (in hindsight) I settled in on Shadowsong, only to discover after I made friends and found a great guild that it's a "West Coast" server. I, of course, live on the East Coast. There was a time when I managed to attend 7pm server start 10pm for me raids, but no more. It was hard enough to function at work on little sleep, but now I'm in graduate school as well as working full time.

So I entertain myself by doing dailies, and my boyfriend and I are leveling chars using the totally hax refer-a-friend program, neither of which are time locked in anyway. I miss raiding, and my guild does make an effort to schedule earlier Kara raids on occasion, but the "good" Kara group starts later, and our new efforts at 25-mans are on Monday night at, you guessed it, 10pm my time. I could switch servers, but since I play WoW for the community more than anything else at this point, I figure I might as well stay, enjoy the company of people I like, and forego raiding. For now. =)

oh and @baldrake, the way a lot of guilds get away with it is they have couples play, if they can find them. husband/wife pairs playing together avoids spouse aggro altogether.
Yeap that is one reason why I can't wait for WAR. I raided in EQ and WoW for many years, and I am just over the forced 6-hour a night raid deals. It's just not a lifestyle I want to follow anymore; and having a game with open RvR and a huge guild to run with, where people can log in and join at any time and leave when they need to, is completely awesome.
as a student who cares about his academics more than gaming, my raiding goes from almost nightly during the summer to being a very rare occurency during the school year. Its just not possible to put forth my best work, raid with my guild(kin in lotro), and still have time to sleep.
At the ripe old age of 27 (I know, I know, you're all laughing...) I already notice that I hit a wall earlier where I feel like my body is begging me for sleep. I used to be able to stay up until 2-3 AM with few repercussions. 4 AM used to be a marker of a party night, now it's more like 2 AM. Lately it's been more like 1 AM, actually. It's harder for my body to shift out of my usual 12-8 sleeping cycle.

On the plus slide, I'm slowly needing less sleep total, even if I seem to mostly be getting it back between 7-8 AM. Ah well.

And yes, I'm thrilled that the meat of WAR's game play doesn't require scheduling like WoW.
In the end it comes down the player and what he/she cares the most about. If your guild has a keep and it's under siege will it be any different or easier than having to leave a raid group before it is finished? In PVE you can always pick up where the group left of last time. RvR is not so forgiving.

Makes me wonder if you will see siege tactics involving simply surrounding the keep and waiting for enough defenders to go to bed
Ever since the birth of my son, I',m always tired!
For having mostly daytime classes, college students are remarkably good at being nocturnal.
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