[T&A] Return To Azeroth

Monday, October 27, 2014

Almost a year ago, the single worst villain the world had ever seen was apprehended. The balance of power shifted, and a new and better leader rose to take his place. And all of this was possible because of the countless heroes who risked life and limb to lay siege to the villain’s lair, fighting their way through formidable defenses and unspeakable foes, to finally confront the fiendish Warchief and destroy his tyranny once and for all.

Or so we thought.

The villain has escaped and found his way back into the past of his homeworld through dark alliances. His goal? To turn his already dangerous brethren into a nightmare unlike any world has ever seen, and then unleash them on the future world he came from.

And it’s up to me to stop him.

The worlds are Azeroth and Draenor (which will be known as Outland in the future). The villain is former Warchief of the Horde, Garrosh Hellscream, and the game is World Of Warcraft.

That’s right – after an almost year long hiatus, WoW has drawn me back in with the promise of a new expansion, and a continuing story from where we left off as of the last Raid in Mists of Pandaria with the arrest of Garrosh.warlords-header

See, I have a rule with any game. When I find myself playing every day because I feel I have to, or because it’s begun to feel like a chore rather than fun, I stop playing the game until it feels like playing it would be fun again.

I had gotten so into the daily and weekly grind of running LFRs, of mount and pet hunting, of just general endgame work…that it became actual work. The game wasn’t fun anymore. Every time I soloed an old boss only to have them not drop the mount or pet I wanted, that meant I’d be back tomorrow or next week, depending on the lockout. It wasn’t fun – it was a job.

And I already have a job – several, actually, though they may not seem like jobs in the traditional sense. I’m a writer, I’m an artist, and I’m good at what I do. But I need to be able to take breaks from my work – to play games and relax in my off time. And when a game starts feeling like a chore – or worse, actual work – then it’s no longer a break.

But the approaching expansion has changed all that. I bought a month’s subscription to see if maybe I was ready to come back – and I was. The game is fun again. And if I needed a nudge from the universe that now is the right time, with the stat squish and item tune-up leading into the new expansion has made it possible for me to solo more bosses than ever – and on my first solo of one of the old ones that I used to do every week, one of the two mounts it can drop, dropped. I was thrilled.

So I’m back in Azeroth with my 3, soon to be 4, level 90s, and I’m preparing for the journey to level 100. I’ll see you all on Draenor!