Friday, August 28, 2009

Too much of a good thing...

One of these days, I'm going to learn. But then again, after almost 37 years of life, my pattern of extremes is pretty hard wired.

I swapped from WoW to LOTRO and wholeheartedly embraced this game. I rolled a full cadre of 7 toons, deleted a few, then rolled some more. I've leveled four crafting professions to expert and a fifth to artisan. I have 5 toons over level 20 and a sixth closing fast.

And I am burned out on LOTRO.

Too much, too soon, too quickly. I rushed in and now I'm suffering for it.

You'd think I'd know better. This is the same road that led to much of my disillusionment with World of Warcraft. Solo play is fun to a point, but the fresh stuff is the stuff you can't get to without a group. Logging on every day out of habit more than desire to grind out another daily quest. Now it's logging on every day for a little while to grind out a quest I already did on 3 other toons just a few days earlier. Gets old fast. Different game. Same dilemma.

We should be starting our group activity soon, renewing our old WoW raiding schedule to do some instances, Great Barrow at the start. I told the rest of Heren Lokion that I'm taking a weekend break, and I may hold off logging in again until the actual start date. Not sure.

Either way, I need to find something else to do for a while, before I ruin a great game.


Andrew said...

Might I suggest some single-player games? MMOs aren't the be-all and end-all of gaming. =)

Amaeva said...

Knowing Nord the way I do I think I can say the problem here is not MMO vs single-player gaming, or gaming vs not gaming. The issue is focus. I know focusing is something you're not good at, so you need to develop some habits to help you with it. The best thing you can do to help you focus is to set some goals. Start with small goals first, don't craft some grand plan that will take forever to accomplish. The great thing about LotRO is that it has a lot of ways to help you do this, particularly with the deed and crafting system the way they are.

Pick a character you like and look through his deed list. Or look at the deed lists and title lists at lotrowiki. Find something that appeals to you. Say it's a class trait that you want. Log on, go find some mobs to wail on, and use that class trait until you can't get any more credit for the day. Then log off. Small goals like this a) help you focus and b) give you a sense of accomplishment.

You have this reflex-like habit of saying 'ding' in /k every time you level. Going from level 12 to 13 is not an accomplishment. The only levels you are going to gain that really feel like you've done something are 35 for the mount and 60 because it is the cap. Find more interesting things to work towards. Everyone is going to level, not everyone is going to get the Pork-chopper title, or get 10 ranks in Justice, or hit Supreme Master in a crafting skill.

Now most of the goals you're going to come up with are going to involve a grind of some sort. This is true of real life just as much as games, so there's no sense QQing about how grindy such and such deed is. The trick is to do whatever you can to make it feel less grindy. One thing I do is to turn off in game music and listen to a podcast, or put on some theme music. I don't mean the soundtracks from the movies either. If you're going out to kill 120 orcs for a deed, then pop in some music that will help. I find fast tempo music is really good for this. Make sure you're comfortable in your chair. Have a full beverage handy. Maybe some crackers or something. Then just do it. Don't get sidetracked. Don't say, eh, I'll do this later and play an alt now. Just do it. When you're done you will feel very satisfied and that satisfaction will go a long way towards making your next grinding session more enjoyable.

Also (should have put this at the beginning, no one is going to read this far in my wall of text), don't delude yourself into thinking that you are only going to be playing in groups for the rest of this game. There is a ton of solo content in the game. And the good group content has level gaps separating it. You're going to have to do some leveling solo. Try some pugs too - the community here is much better in general than it was in WoW. You've been playing for a month, and Blizzard throws some shiny Cataclysm footage at you, and now you're already planning to go back. You'll never enjoy the game if it is nothing more than a way to pass the time between WoW expansions. The people that made this game love the Lord of the Rings, and it shows in what they produced. You say you're a Tolkien fan, so take some time to enjoy it. Stop what you're doing and look around you occasionally. Take some screenshot. Look for Bilbo's trolls, they're out there.

Amaeva said...

Also, go listen to The One True Cast podcast. He hasn't had a new one in while, but go through his old episodes. If that guy can't get you excited about playing this game, no one can.

Nord said...

I see where you are coming from with this, Amaeva. I have been setting goals for myself in game, but I think my issue is that they are a little too broad.

"Level weaponsmithing to expert"
"Play all the quests from the Forsaken Inn"

The other issue is that many of even these broad goals have been accomplished. So I'm a little lost as to what to do next. However, working on deeds and titles is a good idea and something I had not considered before.

I also need to trim down the number of toons I'm focusing on for the time being.

(FYI, I used to do dailies in WoW. Grinding is not usually a problem for me.)