I remember now so fondly of why I stuck things out with my Paladin.
I started the game so long ago, and even with a near-year absence, and some dull spots in there, I remember why I got hooked to this game.
The absence was brought upon by real life coincidence. My re-entry of the game was brought about by a combination of boredom, a fond remembrance of the game and a lack of any real “contenders” in the industry (this of course is my own personal opinion, though I read most of my fellow [former] EQ2 players’ blogs and notice that most are either playing multiple MMOs at once, or just playing ones that aren’t EQ2).
Anyhow, I’ve been concentrating almost solely on my Paladin since my first month back has begun. I’m planning to take him straight to 80, without utilizing the new AA slider, because I’m confident that I have enough solo quests in front of me (being not half through ROK, and not even started on TOS) to max out AAs without worrying about the slider. I’ve been gaining AA like crazy, and it’s been way too easy.
My Brigand had the advantage of being created about a month late. I figure if I would have created him a month earlier, I would have had him to cap on AAs and level before ROK released. But as it was, I was 67 or 68 when Kunark released, so I gained above 100 AAs before reaching 70. My Paladin is a different story. He was created long before the level 80 cap increase, so he had his 100 AAs at level 70 (actually achieved them way after being 70 because it was before they changed the AA system around with EOF). But even with the slight disadvantage Thalinos has 115 AA and is only about halfway through the Fens. I see no problem reaching 200 AA with the content I have yet to conquer.
So with that said, I’m enjoying my comeback. I’ve found a happy medium where I play for just enough hours in a day, and don’t necessarily play every day. I’ve found that I now want to play the game rather than need to play the game. When I felt that need to play, it began to lose its luster in some aspects; it felt as if I was being controlled by the game (or maybe the players therein).