Wednesday, May 2, 2012
What makes Everquest so appealing?
So tonight, I broke down and loaded up Everquest on my computer for less than an hour. Less than an hour because it only took me that long to realize that it would go no where and that my time with my wife, family, job, and life in general are too valuable to me to give up. It was nostalgic though, having spent over four years playing the stupid thing I still remembered how to get around and all the back alley ways through Cabilis and the book to the Plane of Knowledge in the Field of Bone. But dining around in Luclin and killing a few things got me to thinking about the sheer amount of time that it requires to get anywhere in the game. Definitely a turn-off. I mean besides being appealing to people who somehow think they have nothing better to do than grind out levels until you can raid and then spend a few hours a night on the thing, how do such games keep our attention?
Well, first, redundantly, it's appealing to those that don't want to do anything else. Great, besides that.
One thing I noticed is the sense of accomplishment there is built in to each little facet of the game. Lots of inventory items, lots of levels to grind out, lots of sub levels to grind out, lots of monsters to kill, etc. I think sometimes they built a game how we should be considering our goals in life. It's hard to have a little bell go off each time you level in real life; sometimes it is hard to track how far you really are getting in life. But, there is a sense of accomplishment that can be achieved when small simple goals are met, especially in a group setting, which leads me to my next point.
We are social creatures. I definitely sympathize with those out there that struggle socially. I was there for a while in my life as well, luckily the mission kind of helped me with that. Foremost there is something nice about not knowing who the other people are really. You can be whoever you want to be, be that kind, mean, male, female, outspoken or aloof. There is a certain amount of power that comes from being able to stop and think about a situation without giving anything away and then act as you can on the internet. But accomplishing things in social situations and with people to chat with and even help or to help is kind of nice. It's even better when they are real life acquaintances or friends that you are doing it all with. I don't have any studies, I am just kind of going off my own feelings and experiences from the past few years.
Thinking of this and other fun aspects of these games, it gets me to thinking about how we should be considering our own lives to make them more interesting; to get us more involved in our own flesh and not in games like EverQuest or Halo, magazines like Us or People, or soap operas or sitcoms. All these things stem from the same source and rob us of our time. Rob because in reality they give at best, very little in return, and at worst, nothing.
So let's do things with others. Be involved in a community of some kind, be that church or a club or some online gathering doing something creative and good that builds you as a person. Volunteer and give of yourself to others.
Then let's consider the little accomplishments in life, because that is what leads to the big things. The fact that we are here today and living and reading and loving and breathing and part of something, anything is a miracle of no small merit. So let's be grateful and take satisfaction in everything good that we do.
That's what I think.