Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Are we swallowing the roast beef too quickly?

Once upon a time I knew a very spoiled Yorkshire terrier called “Pyret”, which roughly translates to “The Creep”. This dog didn’t settle for ordinary dog food. That was way below his dignity. He ate what his masters ate. (Here I want to point out that I wasn’t his master, so don’t blame me for his lack of proper dog training.)

Now there was one dish in the world that the creep loved more than anything else: cold roast beef cut in thin slices. He was treated with this a minimum two times a year: for Christmas and on his birthday. (And sometimes in between as well, his owners felt sorry for him whenever they had a party, why shouldn’t he be treated with goodies when everyone else was?)

I never grew tired of watching him as he was served this roast beef. They never cared about cutting it – they gave whole slices to him, which he somehow managed to swallow in one part, without chewing even once. It was gone quicker than a mage can blink. There’s no way that he could have felt any taste at all from it and many times he ended up coughing, all but choking, since he had eaten it too quickly.

When the meat was gone he always stared at his owners, unhappily, in distrust, as if he couldn’t understand where it had gone.

I can’t help thinking about “The Creep” these days as I read the WoW blogs and forums and listen to the conversation in the guild chat. Many players seem to have managed to make real life arrangements so that they can have a few days off this week. They’re planning to get a kick start levelling their mains and they’re loading up on the three necessary Cs to keep them going non stop: Coffee, Coke and Candy.

Will they enjoy it? Oh yes, definitely. I’m sure they will, in the same way as The Creep enjoyed his roast beef meals in his own peculiar manner. If possible I’d gladly join them in the power levelling instead of chewing the new content more slowly, in small chunks, as I’m forced to do, by circumstances.

But I can’t help smiling a bit at the whole phenomena. We rush like maniacs to get to 80 asap. Then we start conquering the new raid instances the quicker the better. When that is done the game will suddenly feel empty and we’ll start growing bored. Soon we’ll see the whining posts where players accuse Blizzard of not providing enough of new exciting content.

We’ll show the same facial expressions as the spoiled Yorkshire terrier – disapproving and slightly confused, wondering where that yummy roast beef, the new and shiny content, went all in a sudden.


Sonny said...


But, time willing, I'll probably still eat the roast beef too quickly...

No self control, and I want to be ready for Arena Season 5.

Devv said...

I'm proud to say that I generally savor the roast beef. I like to finish all of the quests in any given zone before I move on. I move a little slower than your average bear on purpose. My feeling is that I dropped $80 on WoW and BC combined, plus $15 a month just to log in. I want to savor every bite.

Endgame raiding will always be there. I could care less about the race to 80. For that matter, I could care less about making a Death Knight. I'm a sucker for good content. I know that probably makes me a minority, much like the guy who only watches porn that has a decent plot. But it's the way I play. And that's how I get the most bang for my buck.

David said...

10 levels is not that much. The hardest of the hardcore players will get to 80 by Sunday, if not earlier. I'm sure they will be terrible physical shape, exhausted, and burned out. It reminds me of when I was in college and got totally wasted every weekend. Does it sound fun? At the time, it did. But do you look back at it fondly? Not so much.

I'll just do whatever there is to do in-game, questing, dungeons, world pvp. Eventually I'll be level 80, probably sooner than later, but on my own terms and in a manner I thoroughly enjoyed.

Doing all the quests is the way to go! I mean, you can run into Zangarmarsh as a level 60 and throw yourself against the creatures there, but do all the quests in Hellfire first, your level 62 and its soooo much easier. Plus, you have less loose ends to tie up earlier for dungeon quests and achievements, and you get all the tasty quest items, too.

Of course you couldn't do all the quests in post-patch 3.0 - My most recent character hit level 70 in Nagrand, before hitting Bladespire, Netherstorm, or Shadowmoon Valley.

Eishen said...

Great comparison Larissa, a very good post that gives everyone of us something to think...

Now I must go to sign my payed holidays and make the supermarket order for the long busy week at Northend

Captain The First said...

And here I was thinking I was the only one taking it easy into wrath.

It's not like they announced a new expansion already... we have a year if not more to take down the content and the quicker you are now... the more bored you'll be by the time I hit 80.

But then I have always been a bit of a turtle... slow and steady wins the race, eile mit weile, haast en spoed zijn zelden goed and all that jazz...

Esdras said...

Cant help but agree and i hate the fact that so many people i know feel they need to power level so they dont get left behind.

Anonymous said...

Wrath's coming?

I will gobble... I usually do.. it will be interesting how long I can hold out.

It's funny though how we rush through the bits that are potentially more individually rewarding (questing/leveling etc) to get to the bits that demand the attention of 9/24 others, and cry about how others ruin our nights.

Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and an Awesome Wrath to all!

Michael said...

I'm planning on being 'there' for the midnight release, in all of it's laggy, kill-stealing glory. But I'm not planning on racing to 80.

I've got 2 toon's at 70, I'm taking 2 days off of work, (extra PTO) and I'm looking forward to a big huge gaming binge for that weekend. I'm gonna have plenty of time to eat my roast-beef.

Larísa said...

@Sonny: yes, I never said I wouldn't eat the roast beef I could. Though I must laught at myself at the same time.

@Devv: you should be proud! A lot fo self control there! And you will be rewarded I think.

@David: you're probably right: speedlevelling looks more fun from the outside than from the inside. Still I can't help being attracted to be a part of the insanity.

@Eishen: good luck, hope you'll enjoy your week!

@Captain the first: in your blog you've showed that you don't follow the mass mindlessly - you think for yourself. I would have been surprised if you had thrown yourself into the race.

@Esdras: yes, that is definitly the wrong reason to powerlevel - out of fear of being alone. It should be done with pleasure, if done at all.

@Gnome: I wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year too! You will be missed - as a blogger as well as a commentor. I hope you'll get a journey full of wonders and experiences and that you'll return refreshed and full of energy to the Blogosphere and Azeroth in the beginning of next year. This is not a farewell... This is a : until we meet next time.

Larísa said...

@Michael: that sounds like a reasonable, balanced approach. To enjoy the first rush of happiness when the roast beef arrives and yet being able to munch for it a bit longer than a few days.

Ruhtra said...

I must say that I will be finely dining on my roast. I want to enjoy the game to 80 this time and not the race to 80. It would be great to be able to say I am the first to have done something, but I missed so much content with BC when I raced my toon to 70 that as I watched my wife level her toon, I felt sad, because I missed so much of it. So nice and slow is the plan this time.........

At least I tell myself this. ;)

Fish said...

I wonder how the game will be tuned at 80. I personally enjoy the segment of the population that power levels to 80 and then starts theorycrafting immediately. One good thing about Wow, there is not usually ever a lack of information on things.

Birdfall said...

I plan to level to 80 with my husband. I have a few long-term goals on three characters that I've been patiently putting off until I can hit the cap -- one Reins of the Raven Lord, one Ashes of Al'ar (I have friends who want it too and agreed to let me have the first, but we'll be farming it for a few years to get everyone one--yay dedication!), and one arena team (okay, this could have been done at 70, but my druid was 62 when the xpac came out!).

I do get discouraged if I spend a lot of time on a level and don't see much change when I'm done for the day. Luckily, my guild decided to start raiding with 10-mans and make finishing all the 10s a priority before 25s. It will give us a sense of progression without rushing things.

Your writing is excellent, by the way. Even pacing, descriptive, and cohesive. I always go off on tangents and end up forgetting what point I was trying to make. ^_^;