When I was a little Tierless I spent hours outdoors with my friends building forts. Once we built them we defended them! We would even gather resources and supplies, make weapons, and set traps. It was endlessly fun.
I used to play capture the flag with my friends. We would run around for hours hiding, sneaking, defending, and trying to capture one anothers flag. If you got caught you might end up in “jail”. The craftiest among us always found a way to sneak out.
As a young boy I organized my GI Joes into raiding parties. I’d gear them up for the mission then spend the rest of the day running them around, getting into battles, killing stuff, and taking over bases!
Once upon a time in a childhood far far away I’d dig out my toy Sword of Omens, summon my powers, and set out in search of a dragon to battle. Along the way I would fight all manner of demon and beast. From Orcs to Cobra Commander to Shredder to Darth Vader himself I’d go hacking along until I bested the mightiest dragon in the galaxy because a child’s mind knows no limitations!
If I could I’d still be in my little sandbox digging away, only stopping to get that annoying grit out of my shoe, looking for Dragons and making forts. MMORPGers are a unique lot. I like to think that unlike so many other adults we never lost that sparkle in our eye, that dream in our head, the creativity that allowed empty yards to become epic dungeons and old dead trees to become impenetrable fortresses. We didn’t grow up, we just changed the format of our play.
We moved from our yards, playgrounds, and fields to our computers and we made MMORPGs come alive with the single greatest gift humankind has ever been granted, the thing that set us apart from the other animals, the thing that has taken us from the darkest depths of the oceans to the dark vastness of outer space, our imaginations!
At some point we got lazy. A dark cloud formed above our heads. It put our imaginations into a state of hibernation. We paid for our tickets and mindlessly moved from ride to ride like zombies. Shiny things were the flesh that we craved. Time passed and the cloud grew. Before long hardly anyone could remember the days when imaginative light filled the skies. We were content to be fed like cows at a trough.
Then one day far far away a speck of light shone on the horizon. What started as a sliver grew into a blazing ball of rage. A movement was born and started to spread. The cloud has been shrinking, the light has been growing, imagination is coming back to the genre!
The other day I was walking along when I felt an annoying grit in my shoe. I didn’t dump it out, I smiled and kept on walking.