Friday, 22 June 2012

The Downward Spiral

I got what I deserved

I'm quitting gold-making.
Kinda.
Not right now, but soon.
Meaning I'm getting back to normal usage levels of auctioneering, like a simple commoner.
I've proved to myself all that I wanted and I'm still tinkering with things left and right (meaning I still have things to sell and a stockpile to get rid of come Pandaria), but soon I'll be shutting down the big factory to downsize back to the weekend bazaar and lemonade stand.

In fact I will tone down everything WoW because I can't go on with it being so integrated in my life.

This revelation came to me once I've finally accepted the truth about the game: I am never going to beat it or finish it.

Yeah - I KNOW.
Just... shut up for a second and let me explain...

More effective than 'Stay awhile and listen' IMO

First things first : in my mind, you can (sorta) beat the game.
The Achievement system is the biggest part in me thinking that.
It's just a question of ticking all the boxes until none are left.
In my mind, that's fairly simple.
(There are other things beyond achievements, but I'm not getting into explaining that.)

My problem is: I always finish what I start.
It's one of the ways I'm a retentive asshole.
I work better when I have deadlines, time schedules.
Give me a meter that goes from 0 to 100% and I can tunnel vision myself into completing whatever objective I have in front of me.
I can map out different strategies, try to min/max everything, and give progress reports on a regular basis.

But now the number of things to accomplish are just too great in numbers.
I've been a completionist in WoW.
Everything except raiding and PvP, I did - and there's a lot to do.
Sadly, I've been missing out on a lot of stuff and it's not everyone that wants to go back and try to get all those Icecrown and Bastion of Twilight achievements, or try to help out to get a Val'anyr or another Tarecgosa's Rest completed.
If I could solo all of this on my shaman main toon, I would.
If I had all the time in the world to do it, I would.
But I work, I have a sorta social life, and shamans go squish.

Looks big and buff - goes down like a sack of shit

So I'm giving up on the dream of completing everything in the game.
I've been trying to hold everything together, re-shuffling my priorities constantly to make the most out of every change and event that happened in-game.
I was good at that during Burning Crusade and Wrath.
But a growing worry started to cloud my mind throughout Cataclysm.
And now I look at the achievements left to complete...
The pile has been growing and the difficulty level and involvement time required is beyond my humanly non-raiding and non-PvP capacities.

I could make a list of all the reasons that are hindering me from accomplishing my incredible goal, but that would be like blaming the wind for blowing in my face: pointless, futile and doesn't do much in the overall scheme of things.

Browsing through the Pandaria info doesn't exactly make me joyful.
Yeah there's some cool and crazy stuff coming our way, but in an obsessive-compulsive way I'm seeing it as a huge pile of Things To Do.
Remember how everyone complained there wasn't enough stuff to do in Cataclysm ?
Well, you better be ready because there's enough things that make other completionists stare in awe and wonder and fright.



And that is what is ultimately causing the beginning of my disconnection from World of Warcraft.
Too many things to do, too spread out everywhere, with no logical way of me managing to complete everything within the time span of any expansion without sacrificing any part of my offline life.

Take a favorite example of mine : Jewelcrafting.
With a little luck (expected release date of Mists is not yet revealed at the time of writing) someone might be able to get all the Cataclysm Designs before Pandaria arrives.
I've missed about 2 weeks of the JC dailies, spent no tokens on Chimera's Eyes and I'll maybe still be doing these dailies after Pandaria lands just to learn all of them.
I know you're not meant to get all of them.
I know there's no special achievement or prize to get all of them.
But I'm still doing it.
Because I can.
Because I'm compulsive like that.
Because I have to finish everything I start. *twitch twitch*



Okay if you want the real reason behind this behavior, there's something about my dad having all sorts of projects that he started and never got anywhere with them, and a stream of events in my life that have been cut short or ended abruptly, and that's where I try to compensate for all of these things, but I don't want to bore everyone with my psychoanalysis.

This has made me remember my good old days of Before WoW.
Games ended.
They had no achievement systems.
An expansion popped up a year or two after the original release if the company wanted to extend the life of their property, but that was it.
I played the full game, I went online to check if there were secret levels and Easter eggs that I missed, and then I was done.

And that's something that I've lost and that I cared for dearly.
Unfortunately, there had been a series of bad experiences with rushed games that had me long for a good strong game that had enough staying power and re-playability to stop me from investing in gilded trash. (A bit like movies are)
WoW fell in my lap at the right point in my life (on so many levels).
Now it's time for the reverse effect to happen.
Don't get me wrong - I still absolutely love WoW and I'm a Blizzard fan for life.
But let's just say that the relationship between us has become way more symbiotic than I want right now.
There's a bunch of good games out there and right now I'm not even allowing myself the time to play them because of "X Y Z made-up paper-thin reasons", and that right there is just plain 'ol silly.
That means I have to scale WoW down as much as possible in order for me to get back to ''normal''.


But how exactly do you get rid of habits, ways of thinking, a whole series of pavlovian reactions ?
I've conditioned myself to be this way - there has to be a way to condition myself back.

Well, I mean, there is a method out there...
Okay, so...
So I guess I have to do this...

(Writes his name on a sticker, then sticks it to his chest)

Hi.
My name is Khalior and I'm an addict.


To Be Continued.