But Home is Nowhere

My plans for WoW took an unexpected turn today. As of 6:30PM, my alliance death knight is no longer on the Aegwynn PVP server. As a matter of fact, my death knight is no longer even a member of the Alliance on any server.  That’s right, I went for the full whammy; I pulled up roots, changed my appearance and my name, and bought a one way ticket to the horde side of Earthen Ring.

This is the kind of change that I’ve never been able to take lightly. My wife, high on the idea of babies, has been talking to me about how her nesting tendencies have started to kick in. I think I do something similar with the games that I play. I pick a server and stick with it, making an effort to establish myself there and see all the sights (battlegrounds, LFD) it has to offer. I make it as homey as I know how. But, I’ve never been able to do that on Aegwynn.

You see, when I started playing there, it was because two of my best friends also had characters there. It took me a while, too. The server was low population with forums somewhere between dying and far past dead.  I didn’t want to tie myself into the extra work that goes into playing on such a server, but, friendships being what they are, I said to hell with it and made a character.

After about three months, one of those friends got burnt out and quit. The other lasted a couple longer but, unfortunately, lost his job and hasn’t logged into the game since. My return has been empty and I’m not used to that. I like to see guild chat going back and forth. I like to see the same names pop up on my friends list day in and day out.  It makes me feel connected to the game in a way deeper than the LFD tool allows; it’s the difference between a CMORPG and an MMORPG.

I didn’t take the decision to leave lightly. I’m actually a little worried that my friend will be upset to see that I’m gone when he comes back; he’ll pretty much be in the same situation I’m in now. As 80 looms ever closer (almost 79 now), the realities of the near exclusionist and almost universally competitive guilds begin to take shape. I would imagine that when he gets back, he’ll try to find a new guild like I did. I’d also imagine that he’ll find almost all of them too demanding for the average player.

But, to brighter shores I go, and perhaps he will follow. I’ve played on Earthen Ring (RP) before and I’ve always had a good time there. As a high pop. server, there’s almost always other people around and it makes the game that much better. It also means that it will be much easier to find a guild, though I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t planning on checking out The Instance Podcast’s guild, Alea Iacta Est. Their sheer numbers (last I heard, something like 3000 members) mean that there’s a much better chance doing things with other members at any time of the day. Plus, you’ve got to love gerp.

After dropping the money on a server transfer and faction change, though, I think I’m in it for the long haul again. I love tanking, and I decided today that I’m spending my first 1000G on a PVP dual spec. I haven’t PVP’d with a melee character in over a year, so it should be a fresh experience and break up the routine of dungeon running.

As I’ve always said, WoW is a game that you have to accept as it is or you’ll always be dissatisfied. I’m not approaching WoW as the game I’ll play for the next 12 months. Maybe two. Or five. Or ten. It doesn’t matter. I’ll play for as long as I find it fun.

The whole experience has really caused me to wonder what the best route is for rolling a new character. Do you plan ahead and roll on a good server, even if your friends aren’t on it; or, do you play on the worse server and hope for the best? It’s a tough decision. I had fun playing with my friends while they were here. But now they’re not, and I’m left with the impact of my choice. Hello, Earthen Ring!

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