What is fun? The state of my game.This week my best WoW friend asked me what I get out of the game. He doesn't understand how I can enjoy playing the way I play. I don't blame him. He's always been an end-game raider, and I used to do that with him. At some point things changed. I'm not sure why I enjoy it either, but I do. I've spent the last few weeks mining ore and maxing out my blacksmithing on Ice. I loved every minute. And now I'm working on the next grind-o-rific project - leveling archaeology.
I have become a strangely anti-social player this expansion. I have done my share of semi-hardcore raiding in the past. I got burned a few times in guilds that ended up falling apart. I have lost what I thought were friends. I just no longer have the time nor the emotional energy to put into being in a tight raiding group anymore.
I don't much care for the LFD and LFR systems. I haven't even tried Looking for Raid just because of my disillusionment with the Looking for Dungeon system. The problem isn't really the system, its the players. I once did a project in which I leveled a character purely through LFD, documenting how many bad, rude, and obnoxious people I ran into. I never published my results, but what I found was that a majority of runs were pretty normal, no problems whatsoever. What I did find was that normal dungeon runs in which no one talks to each other and you just get through it with perfect strangers that you will never see again isn't all that much fun to me. I don't think I'm the only one who feels this way either.
Despite my stories here, I don't actually role-play, but the stories my characters have to tell are vital to the enjoyment I get from the game. Azeroth is my creative escape from reality. The other key to my enjoyment is short-term goals. I never focus on a too distant goal. The amount of time I have to play just doesn't make long-term goals logical. I flit from one alt to another, working on one short project or another for brief spurts.
I admit that I haven't seen a lot of the dungeon and raid content for this expansion. I deleted max level characters and took a 6 month break from the game during the thick of the expansion. When I came back I decided it was time to start fresh. Once I had toons leveled to 85 it was now getting closer to the end of expansion, and it just doesn't make sense for me to try to look for a new guild at this point.
I do have long term goals for Mists of Pandaria, which I am extremely excited about. I do plan to try to see more dungeons and raids this next expansion, and maybe go back and do some fun runs of Cataclysm content that I missed, but I will do it on my terms the way that I enjoy. My first plan for the new expansion is to try to find a friendly casual guild that will accept my minimal and unusual play style.
What is your play style? Do you ever feel like you're playing differently than those around you? What keeps it fun for you?