Friday, December 14, 2007

Another World, a Second Life

I have a confession. I downloaded a free ten-day trial of World of Warcraft three days ago. This is a MMORPG. (Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing *breath* Game.) It costs $15 a month, so my college life has provided an excellent avenue of escape from this truly awful maw of social death. Unfortunately, this version is free, so I'm caught, so to speak. My character is an Orc Rogue named Drokthar, who goes around with daggers and stabs enemies in the back. Why is this enjoyable? I'm not really sure. I'm just certain that it's addictive. I look forward to the end of my trial period with simultaneous hope for release and fear of withdrawal.

However, there are valuable life skills learned from games like World of Warcraft. They saved this kid's life. Also, Mr. T, as well as being the dark horse in this month's Poll of Awesomeness, plays World of Warcraft. Kind of.

This whole Massively-Multiplayer Game thing is, admittedly, naturally antisocial. These games create entire worlds for people to get involved in, building off the assumption that they would prefer it to the present and real one. These worlds are pretty intense, involving entire cities, differing modes of transportation, ability to learn trades like cooking and herb gathering (don't ask what for), and currency and trade. It can be very similar, actually, to life in this world (except for herb gathering) - in the game Second Life, they even have writer strikes. There is even a special class of nerds. Yes - even in a World inhabited purely by nerds, there is an even lower social class of nerds. They're known as "newbies," or "noobs," and they're the people who have just started being Nerds.

So, I've taken a few steps into this other world, and the effects are kind of creeping me out. Finals weeks is probably not a good week to continue this exploration, so I'll have to put this newfound habit away.

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