Thursday: All work and no play make Hawley a dull healer

April 16, 2010 at 6:19 pm | Posted in General | Leave a comment

Wotcha everyone,

All work and no play make Hawley a dull healer
All work and no play make Hawley a dull healer
All work and no play make Hawley a dull healer
All work and no play make Hawley a dull healer
All work and no play make Hawley a dull healer

So, Thursday was slightly less rocking in the corner and crying inconsolably at the pain than Wednesday was.  It’s just the feeling that all your mates are off having fun without you which is the kicker.

Human Beings, of which Geekus Superior is one branch, are social creatures.  And whilst Geekus Superior is often derided for their supposed lack of innate social ability, there must be some or we wouldn’t socialise around MMOs.

To many, the most popular image of the guild is The Raid Guild.  A group of individuals whose sole reason for joining and participating is to get through the content, to get to the juicy trez at the end.

Yet that’s not the only incarnation of the guild, and I’m not even sure it’s a popular one.  I’m pretty sure that Raid Guilds are easily outnumbered by Casual (or as I like to think of them; Social) Guilds, and then there are the Role-Playing Guilds.  And there are still plenty of Micro Guilds, populated by a few real-life friends.

I’m pretty sure that most people join a guild because of the perceived benefits to themselves.  That would be easy access to other players that will allow them to play the game in the way that they enjoy.  This might well mean the chance to go instancing or raiding without having to rely on PUGs, it might mean the chance to hang out with mates in a place other than the pub, and it might mean more people to find out all about your character’s secret history as Sauron’s top assassin (before they changed their ways, and now only use their leet ninja-death skills for good).

Okay, cheap gag at the role-player’s expense there.  Sorry.

Regardless of our initial reasons for joining a guild, there’s always the fact that once we’re in, we revert to our social imperatives, and we make friends.  We might not make friends with everyone, but we’ll make some friends, and they’re the ones that contribute to a fantastic gaming experience.

Downing a raid boss for the first time isn’t about one person, it’s a group endeavour, and it’s right that the group should celebrate it together.  It’s a community moment.  But that’s not the only community expression there is in the world of MMO gaming; just logging on and saying “Hi” is taking part in the community, and as it’s that sort of community I most certainly missed on Thursday.



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