My posts last week about joining a new guild got a bad reaction. The guild in question removed me from the process based on the posts so it would seem that blogging a little bit too bluntly about being a new recruit is a bad idea. The trick is that now I need to figure out where my gaming life goes to next. There are lots of guilds on my server I could join but none are even close to the progression level I am at and I have little interest in working with people at a lower play level than I am used to doing fights I have already beaten. Basically everyone in my current guild is done with WOW and raiding for now so unless I want to settle for just a social guild I need to leave my server and find a new home someplace else. But I don't *want* to leave, dammit! I have all my alts, all my gold, all my old buddies on my current server. I know the guilds, the people, the heroes and scrubs. It feels like leaving home for the great wide unknown and I am very much a homebody - I like being with the people I know in the places which which I am familiar.
The other question is whether or not I should be playing WOW at all anymore. I have done the grinds over and over, raided every boss there ever was and have logged incredible numbers of hours. Redcape is very much me in so many ways so stopping WOW entirely would be so very strange. I remember playing Diablo 2 for a very long time in university and eventually giving it up; when I logged in again 6 months later all my accounts were gone and everything I had ever done was vanished into nothing. It is a special kind of thing to see that something you worked very hard on for a very long time was entirely destroyed while you weren't paying attention and nothing remains of the goal pursued so ardently. Only the journey is still there in my memory.
The main thing I am looking for is a really competitive gaming experience I think. There are plenty of MMOs out there where I can find a competitive endgame but I can't see any reason to explore that... if I want a competitive gaming MMO experience I can just go get one right now in WOW. Many years ago I played an awful lot of Starcraft so I could try to get back into that in a big way as there is certainly a competitive scene there to be involved in. I could also look into trying Ultimate Frisbee or Dodgeball or some other sport here but I don't know that I would get the really edgy competitive flow that I get from raiding in WOW. Pushing my mind and reflexes to the absolute limit is incredible and that experience is something I hunger for - now I really need to think about where best to find it.
I find it so bizarre that I am having something similar to a midlife crisis over stopping a particular video game. I feel a little bit adrift, unsure of what I will do and which way I will go. I long for the rose tinted version of days long past and for the security of knowing that I can find my friends any time I want right from my desk. For many years I have tailored the rest of my life around my playing of WOW, made sure that I had 3 evenings a week free to sink deep into another world. Now for the first time I really seriously consider leaving that world forever and I find that a disturbing thing to contemplate.