Even if you don’t consider yourself particularly nerdy or geeky, you will have heard of World of Warcraft. According to the stereotype, it’s played predominantly by overweight fedora-wearing virgins in their Mum’s basements, but obviously, that’s not true. It’s been a part of nerdy culture for a long time, and WoW itself celebrates its 10th birthday this year. There’s an entire webseries loosely based on it in Felicia Days’ The Guild (which is mostly what made me want to play an MMORPG), there’s documentaries, and South Park have done a parody of it. It attracts thousands of fans worldwide who attend BlizzCon, and were I not poor and living in the UK, I would be right there alongside them. Generally WoW is considered as one of the more hardcore nerdy things to do.
As many of you may know, I love video games, and I’ve played a lot of them in my time (check out my 30 Day Video Game Challenge for some of my best) but I’ve predominantly been a console gamer, mostly through ease. It’s always been a hell of a lot easier for me to buy myself a console than it is to buy a PC and all the bits you’d need. As far as PC gaming goes, all I’ve really played is Facebook Tetris, Catlateral Damage and the odd Facebook game here and there. My main reason is that I’ve always had a pretty naff laptop. My old laptop was pushing on four years old, regularly blue-screened and the track pad didn’t work. After my laptop was so kindly burgled from my house, I decided to buy a new laptop, and it is so much more powerful and slicker than my old one. Ever since I’ve lived with Daryl he’s been quietly nagging me to start playing WoW with him, and the Boyfriend-Wonder Iain has been saying the same. With a shiny new laptop, I thought, “why not?”
As a quick bit of background, Iain and Daryl have been playing World of Warcraft for six years, and they’ve pretty much seen it all. They’ve watched the new expansions come and go, they’ve beaten the raids, got the epic loot. They’re the most experienced players I know, and basically the best people to help me out on the game. It’s partially been Iain showing me the Warlords of Draenor cinematic (I mean seriously, how good does it look?!) and various other things from the games that has made me want to play it so much, as well as a love for RPG style games that made me jump on board. So, after seeing that Blizzard had put the core game and all expansions going up to Mists Of Pandaria for £9.99 and including a month of free game time, I cracked my knuckles, reached for my bank card, and bought it.
So, I paid up and got a Battlenet account. Sadly, I picked Patch Day as the day to download it, and so I encountered many technical problems. First it wouldn’t recognise a default language to install in, and then when I fixed that, the download wouldn’t initialise due to ‘network problems’. I put the problems down to strains on the servers and whatnot, and continued trying to download it. Eventually, Daryl managed to fix it with some computer wizardry and it finally installed, and my grand, mega-nerdy World of Warcraft adventure began…
After a bit of research on class and race (thank you Beginner’s Guide!) I eventually decided on a Blood Elf Warrior. Blood Elf mostly because they look pretty (I know, I know I’m predictable) and Warrior because my main method of playing games is running and dealing damage as quickly as possible. I played a lot of Diablo 3 and Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls on Xbox 360/Xbox One and played as a damage Monk and really enjoyed it. Obviously, Diablo on console is very different to World of Warcraft and a lot more watered down, but I found it to be a good introduction to the game and to the battle systems.
I’m pretty unfamiliar to general PC controls, and it took me a while to get used to the WASD directions, but I was able to pick it up pretty quickly… I guess you have to when you play for four hours non-stop! After logging Wém in, I began my first quest- killing Mana Wyrms. However, because everything was still up in the air because it was Patch Day, and the Mana Wyrms were killing everyone in one hit. Thankfully, Iain swooped in with his Tauren and took them out for me, so I was able to start the game properly and explore and pick up quests.
That’s more or less what I did for the next hour. I ran around, killed monsters and did quests. Kill Lynxes to get Lynx Collars. That kind of thing. When I finally hit level 15 in the Ghostlands, Iain and Daryl took me through some dungeons which were super fun! There were enemies everywhere, and bosses around every corner. I managed to level really quickly and I finished the night on level 34, with tons of better gear and a better understanding of how everything works in WoW.
I’ll be on again tonight, levelling and doing more dungeons. If you want to add me as a friend on Battlenet, drop me a message on Twitter and I’ll tell you my ID. Otherwise, I play on the Chamber of Aspects server.