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How to be an Adult Gamer: The Musical

Older female gamer talks (whines) about video game-related...things. News at 11.

Author: StoleTarts

Achievement Hunting: A Time and a Place for it AKA OMG, Can We Just Kill the Boss Already?

Posted by StoleTarts Thursday January 21 2016 at 4:02PM
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This story begins with a PUG.

I know. That’s a terrible way to start any tale, but this is the truth of it.

As someone with several alts, I know what it’s like to be undergeared and struggling to get through certain aspects of the game. My new Warlock is a prime of example of, “WTF am I doing?! Halp!” While not everyone goes through this when making a new character of a class they’ve never played before, and if you are one of those people then know that I hate you, those of us who do aren’t always in the mood to spam for achievements when just trying to get the daily bonus for doing a random group things.

In this instance, I was on my alt with a bunch of random people with DPS meters as low as mine. It’s a terrifying situation to be in when you know you’re terrible and everyone else is as bad. Still, we managed to get through to the end earning whatever achievements we would have earned just for defeating the bad guys anyway, but the final boss called for several deaths and full wipes to earn.

Despite a written protest, my pleas were ignored and wipe after wipe, we failed to earn the special sound effect and gold letters splash across our screens.

Out of both frustration and what I felt like time wasted, I left the group.

While my reaction may have been childish, I do believe that there are times and places for achievement hunts. They can be good fun or quickly turn the dynamic group feels into something sour and salty. Some things are better off planned ahead or a pleasant surprise rather than constant trial-and-error failings.

Then again, PUGs are the poster child for being a necessary evil in MMOs, providing us with rewards for our suffering. The question is if what you get at the end if worth the price you have to pay in sanity points.

Role-Playing: Except When You're Not

Posted by StoleTarts Tuesday January 19 2016 at 7:42PM
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I consider myself a digital roleplayer.  

What does that mean exactly?

Well, it means that I do not live-action roleplay (LARP), cosplay, or play tabletop games.

In short, I only roleplay online with other people who are also online.

Now, if those other people roleplay in the different other various forms out there, that has nothing to do with me. I don’t ask or dig too much into the personal lives of my fellow players. I try to simply enjoy the characters we make, from good to bad, and to that end, I also draw a hard line between fantasy and real life.

The reality though is that there are many of those out there who do not. Many people escape into a fantasy realm and enjoy it more than their actual lives. They take characters as simply extensions of the person behind it, believing that every emote, gesture, and story-driven personality is as real as it gets. They fall in love, get their heartbroken, become angry, emotionally-invested, and even driven into fits of rage.

In my years of roleplaying between forums, online chats, and in-games, I’ve seen it all. I’ve seen one-sided crushes complete with actual jealousy of character relationships to two people having a a very real affair, cheating on their spouses who also played the game under the guise of roleplaying with someone else. At one point, I’ve even been caught in the confusion of a being a male IRL since I typically make male characters and those having to break the news that I was not single, interested, nor had a penis that wasn’t detachable.

While I can’t find complete fault in the lonely and looking, I do have a peeve when people take a character I create and believe their terrible or overly joyous personality is a mirror of my own self. Recently, a complaint was made to an officer in my current guild in regards to my foul-mouthed, pirate-esque brat stating that I was both overly rude and insulting.

My response was that I clearly was in-character and if they couldn’t make peace with that,  then we shouldn’t play together.

Not that my character wasn’t rude or insulting, but it breaks my creative little spirit when other roleplayers have this…how should I put it…unapproachable type of attitude. When they have played a mighty hero for so long that they believe themselves to be the standard and those of us playing bad guys, thugs, or in my case, pirates, are beneath them.

That we should rewrite our creations to fit into their bubble.

F*ck that.


How to Return to World of Warcraft...Assuming You Ever Left It

Posted by StoleTarts Tuesday January 19 2016 at 2:32PM
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There was a blog post on this site not too long ago that stated, you can never return to World of Warcraft.

That’s silly, I immediately thought. Sure you can! You just download, fork over your payment information after laughing to yourself how long ago your last subscription was, reminisce about all of those long, sometimes painful, hours you spent raiding and grinding, purchase your subscription once again AND the last one to three expansion packs, then dive right in after using your character leveling token!

Course, then I realized they didn’t meant it was physically impossible, but an entirely new challenge altogether. That’s right, if you missed the last few expansions, you basically get to skim over the story as to what happened: A king returned to Stormwind, a little boy prince is now uncomfortably hot, and Thrall had about five different hairstyles along with a cluster of babies.

No, not with Jaina. She’s still salty about that too.

Okay, so it’s more like going to your high school reunion! Awkward? Sure, but then you have a few drinks and realize how you’re in a much better place than you were back then. Maybe. Hopefully.

At least our characters have separated toes now.

While certain aspects of the game are fairly new, the learning curve has been reduced to accommodate players both new and returning after a long hiatus. Wowhead is still a thing, so don’t feel overwhelmed or frightened by an expanded world and revamped skill sets. You will still run into the same universal Warcraft truths of broken classes, glitchy maps, and some crafting skills being just so much more lucrative than others, but it’s also these things that will make you feel right at home.

Broken boss? Have a good laugh and remember how common that was back in your day!

Worthless talent tree? Who hasn’t been there before?

Too much junk collecting in your bags and bank? Let me tell you a story about when hunters used to have to carry weapon specific ammo.

While it is true that you can never really return to vanilla WoW, it also kind of never left in the first place.