So what the hell have I been doing in my absence from the MMO worlds I used to frequent, outside of the life I used to live? Well, there is no short answer, although recent posts have detailed my thoughts about various football matchups, I obviously couldn’t spend all of my time watching football, as there aren’t games going 24-7. So aside from watching football (which is a great pass-time by the way, something I hadn’t been partaking in for years, and am excited to be a part of again), and though I may not have mentioned it previously, watching episodes of Deadwood (I’m on season 3 and the show is spectacular), I have been leading a simple life.
I’ve made a lot of new friends around work because of moving to the daytime shift, and I’m fortunate to have such a tight knit group to hang out with. We put together functions quite often, and that’s included bowling nights, playing pool at one of the guys’ houses, playing darts or dominoes at any one of our houses (almost everyone in the group has a dart board and a set of “bones”), excursions to the strip club the “Hustler” for a $2 steak, and of course, nights to watch football. Most nights drinking is involved, but not always. We’ve been pretty successful at getting people together to hang out and have fun, and I feel as if when I was playing MMOs religiously, that I may have missed out on life in some ways. Granted, I wouldn’t want to trade some of the great experiences I did have, but as a whole, MMOs are better played sparingly.
Tonight I’m supposed to have some friends over to have a few brews, and then tomorrow night we’re supposed to have one of our semi-regular bowling nights. Sunday night is football night, and I have a bet riding on Green Bay to take out Dallas. Then next Tuesday we’re supposed to be making a trip to the Hustler for some steaks. It’s been fun getting out and doing more, though I can’t say my pocket is doing so well. Thankfully gas prices have come down, but nothing else has.
Yesterday I had a chance to sit down and just veg out for quite some time. I was killing time before I could go pick up my check from work, and Ted had just purchased some newly released DVDs. We ended up watching Speed Racer (was extremely lame aside from the racing and special effects), and The Love Guru(which was a complete disappointment coming from Mike Meyers). Afterwards I sat through some more Deadwood before heading off to get paid. After securing my check, I was off to get it cashed, and then I had a mission to see to. What was the mission you ask? Quite simply, to find a copy of Warhammer Online, with as little stops as possible.
I had thought ahead though. Earlier in the day I had removed some programs from my computer, and the defragmented it. Afterwards, I set about checking to see if the game would be in stock at any local stores, online. I managed to find the game “in stock” at Target. So after I had money in hand, I was off to Target to try my luck. I found an empty shelf where the $49.99 price tag was affixed. I thought about leaving to try another store, but I saw a clerk who looked like he had nothing better to do, so I asked him to check if they had any “in the back”. He checked, and to my surprise there were copies in the back. One was brought to me and a few more put on the shelf, and $50 later I was leaving the store with my copy.
I came home and immediately installed and got the patcher going. I wouldn’t play until later because I had plans to go to my Mom’s house, but I would end up playing later in the evening, and I must say: BEST. LAUNCH. EVER. Not that I have experience with the launches of many other MMOs, the only one to my credit is PotBS, and that was a p.o.s. MMO anyhow. I logged into the game with no hassle. I didn’t have any CTDs (crash to desktop). I didn’t have lag issues. The game actually defaulted to the highest quality graphics settings, even with my dated 4 year old system. I ended up dropping the settings to balanced for a higher frame rate, but still, I was impressed. I’ll be writing my further “first impressions” post at a later date.
So, I’m finding a balance. Part of the time I will be playing this new MMO, but I’ll be doing so on a much more casual basis than I did with EQ2. As far as EQ2 goes, I didn’t want to fully leave it behind, but I lost so much interest, I think it’s dead to me. I guess we’ll see what happens when the new expansion comes out in a couple months, but I doubt it will be enough to lure me back. Despite the good memories I have associated with that game, there are some bad ones as well, and with this fresh start, it just feels right.