May 10, 2012 – 7:42 am
I’m noticing more and more how deserted it’s been leveling Ancelyn and Annata. There might be one occasional player, though it’s seemed as often to be a Horde player as not, but I’m almost always alone while I’m out in the world. Hard to find even anyone to /wave at, let alone do things with.
Combined with the much-earlier times that I’m playing (I am offline by 6:30 or 7 server time unless I do some serious planning ahead) and the general lull that is the wait before an expansion, and it’s pretty darn lonely!
My guess is that all the people who are thinking about rerolling are going to wait for Cataclysm and roll Pandas (which I’m also planning to do), and all the people interested in seeing the new Cataclysm content are well and thoroughly past Ferelas and Shimmering Flats.
Still, it’s a little unnerving to see all the people hanging around in Stormwind only to find literally NOBODY out in the world.
May 8, 2012 – 6:59 pm
*this post is part of the Newbie Blogger Initiative – if you’re new to the world of MMO blogs or thinking about starting one, check out the site!*
Part and parcel of starting a new blog is, quite simply, deciding how you’re going to set up what you want to write about, and then naming your blog. Do you want to write about PVP? Maybe how to make tons of gold? Passionate about high-level raiding?
That’s all pretty easy to think about, but when you’re just getting started, quite honestly, you don’t know for sure what you’ll be writing about in three or six months. You also don’t know how limited you’ll find your chosen topic. Those things just come with time and practice.
So be careful, and don’t fence yourself in with a name.
Don’t pick a name like Pete’s Priestly Ponderings unless you are REALLY sure that in 6 months you’ll still have a priest as a main and not have run out of priestly things to say.
If you are even remotely tempted by alts, a class (or role) name may turn out to be too restricting. While some restriction is good, because it helps you focus what you want to write about, overly restricting yourself can set you up for the dreaded blogger’s block!
While it’s good to give yourself a focus, it’s not always good to name your blog after that focus.
We’ll take the example of Pete and his Priestly Ponderings. Say Pete really likes his priest right now, and has a list of 10 or so posts he thinks he could write about priests. So he queues up a new wordpress.com or blogspot.com blog and gets started. He manages to keep from being too enthusiastic and posting all 10 ideas in two days, and sets himself up on a posting schedule. In a few weeks, between his comments on other blogs and posts on twitter and other social media, he’s getting a few comments every week and his pageviews are going up. Then he writes a really excellent guide to Priestly Thingies just before a major patch, and his traffic skyrockets.*
That sounds pretty awesome right? Pete’s effectively set up an audience of other priests to create his blogging community.
But then… then Pete rolls a mage on a night when his usual raid is canceled. All of a sudden, mageing is really, really fun. It’s different! And new!
And his blog is all about priests!
What to do? Well, certainly for a few posts as a side project, there’s nothing wrong with posting about his mage alt on his Previously Primarily Priests blog. Most people have alts, after all.
But what happens when, after he gets his mage to 85, Pete decides to switch mains? That happens all the time – especially at expansion switches. (I know I’ve had a main switch with every expansion, though I was a shaman for both BC and Cataclysm)
Pete now feels kind of pinched by his Priestly Ponderings blog title. (Admittedly, if Pete doesn’t care, this doesn’t matter as much.) So he’s left to either write about mages all the time on a blog that labels itself about priests, or he has to switch blogs.
And switching blogs is, essentially, starting over – while some readers will follow you, you lose the continuity of community.
Of course this is a simplistic example. There are plenty of bloggers who picked a class and stuck with it, and other bloggers who picked a class name and are writing about whatever they feel like. But most bloggers go through some wandering before they settle on their true “calling” as writers.
It took me almost two years to get to writing much about RP, and that’s been my primary niche (or was, but getting back into it is a topic for another post). It also took me two tries to come up with the name Too Many Annas, but the flexibility of the name has let me switch mains, switch topics, and even (for a little while) switch games.
There are plenty of guides out there about how to name a blog. (Google!)
MMO blogging has a lot of the same concerns, but if you want to set up for the long haul, be careful not to pick a name that you’re going to wish you could change in a month or two. You can pick things like factions, or a character naming trend. A favorite passion in game, a profession you like, or even a favorite item. While you CAN change your name (I did, after my first month of blogging), you take a setback in the form of readers and community.
So be careful, as you get started.
Don’t fence yourself in!
*These are all good tips for new bloggers as well!
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May 7, 2012 – 7:03 am
I have a little warlock,
She’s pretty fun to play,
And when she’s feeling evil,
We DoT things up all day!
Amazing art by Loreli, of course. (I can’t explain how much I love this portrait. There is so much personality in it! Lore does commissions (of which this is one) and they’re worth every penny.
Right now I’m not playing a whole lot, but my attachment to my warlock is growing steadily. She’s a little bit evil, and that’s made her encounters with the largely sub-human populations of Ferelas (ogre, gnoll) highly entertaining. We’ve moved on though, and now we’re killing pirates in what used to be the Shimmering Flats.
Oddly, while there are some aspects of the quest layouts that bug me, the general levity and silliness is really suited well to Ancelyn. I’m not always a fan of rampant silliness on other characters – Aely and Angoleth are both more serious when they’re out “working”, and only really silly when they’re at rest/play. Ancelyn’s biggest motivation is “does this amuse me”, so she finds and enjoys all kinds of silliness as long as she’s the one doing the burninating.
I’ve kept up with Cynwise’s posts about warlocks in Cataclysm, and he has some really good points. There are definitely issues with the class design and it’s occasionally quite boring as Affliction (dot, dot, wand, wand, rinse, repeat).
But it’s also highly effective, (especially with how easy it is to overlevel the content) and she takes on elites pretty handily, so it’s kind of a wash. I definitely can see the complexity getting me in over my head once I start groups with her, but I am having a lot of fun doing the other half of the new content, so I’m not grouping much right now. (Annata leveled through the Eastern Kingdoms, so Ancelyn is doing Kalimdor, at least from Ferelas upward.)
Now all I need is to get her into some RP! And maybe find her some really warlocky outfits. She is a former (now excommunicated…) Dark Iron. She should look the part!
March 20, 2012 – 8:03 am
On one hand, all I’ve done for the last 6 weeks is log in, find the game channels deserted, not be interested in questing, and log out.
On the other, I wonder if I’ve really given the game a chance.
On one hand, the RP I thought would come out of playing Star Wars has utterly failed to materialize.
On the other, I wonder if I’m not a good part of that, and shouldn’t put more time and effort into writing it.
On one hand, Aely just isn’t working as a Jedi.
On the other, that doesn’t mean my other characters don’t have a story they’re waiting to tell, or that I’ve not actually given Aely a chance to really BE a Jedi.
On one hand, I don’t know jack shit about Star Wars lore.
On the other, maybe I can learn.
On one hand, it’s $15 I’m wasting.
On the other, it’s $15 I could be getting a lot more out of.
On one hand, I have very little time for gaming and no real interest to log into a game I’m not connected to.
On the other, I can experience the whole game in one-hour chunks if I want.
On one hand, I hate giving up.
On the other, there’s no reason I can’t re-up later if I have the time and desire.