Happy 100 To Me!


As this is my one-hundredth post, it thought I’d review my game time over the last five or six years.

In the autumn of 2007 a couple of friends at work were telling me that I should try ‘Lord of The Rings Online’. It was great, they said. It was an MMO! I had no idea what an MMO was, and even when told, was distinctly unimpressed. Why would I want to share my game world with other people? Surely they’d just get in my way and annoy me? For several months I ignored their advice and continued my stand-alone gaming.

Taking a step back, at that time I was playing the likes of:

  • Command & Conquer
  • Civilisation 4
  • Baldurs Gate 2
  • Ice Wind Dale 2
  • Panzers: Phase 1 (my PC at the time struggled with this, graphically!)
  • Medieval: Total War

As this list suggests, I wasn’t exactly playing the super-modern games of the time, but they entertained me. In the end however, I relented. I borrowed a copy of LoTRO on CD from one of my pals, and installed it. The CD also came with an unused 14 day trial code, which I duly applied to my newly created Codemasters account. I was off and running.

The rest is history. I played virtually nothing else except LoTRO for the next three years, playing an hour or two a day, most days. An addiction? Almost certainly.

LoTRO - Atmospheric and Fun

LoTRO – Atmospheric and Fun

It wasn’t until the autumn of 2010 that I began to feel an itch to possibly, just possibly, look at something new. At the time, I couldn’t see past the MMO genre, so I first tried ‘Dungeons and Dragons Online’ (DDO) which was one of the free-to-play pioneers. I lasted less than two hours with DDO, finding it every inch the inferior sibling to LoTRO – at least in my opinion.

The next game to come along was a BIG thing – Rift. Most of my kin mates in LoTRO abandoned Middle Earth for several months to play Rift and I followed, albeit briefly. I spent my fifty odd Euro on the Steam store and gave it a whirl. It never caught my imagination though, and I lasted no more than a week or so. Back to LoTRO I went.

Then there was a lull until the end of 2011 when ‘Star Wars: The Old Republic’ blasted its way into the MMO world.

SWTOR - My level 25 Bounty Hunter

SWTOR – My level 25 Bounty Hunter

SWTOR’s gravity beam nearly pulled me in, but not quite. I stuck with it all over the Christmas period in 2011 and, by the time I lost interest in January of this year, had a level 25 Bounty Hunter to my name, as well as several lower level toons. I have several issues with SWTOR however:

  1. First is its two-sidedness. All my kinnies ended up playing on the side of the Republic. I wanted nothing but to be an Imperial. So we never met, and without your kin mates, the joy of an MMO is severely diluted. I could have joined another guild, but hey, it takes a good few months to settle into a new place, get to know new people, and I would have left SWTOR, anyway, before I’d come close to settling.
  2. Secondly, SWTOR is very quest-hub orientated. Quest chains are everywhere, as they are in LoTRO, and by the start of this year I was beginning to realise that this modus operandi was wearing a little thin for me.
  3. The final factor in my leaving SWTOR was the monthly subscription. I was already paying one sub for LoTRO, which I wasn’t willing to drop, and I couldn’t justify a second. So something had to give. It was SWTOR.

By February this year therefore, I was back in LoTRO, but getting increasingly bored with the end-game-grind and alt levelling. Then I had an epiphany. What about non-MMO games?! I started looking around, downloading demos, and looking at what others were playing on Steam. The first to be purchased were some first person shooters – ‘Left For Dead’ and ‘Orcs Must Die’ were both played through; both are excellent games but with limited re-playability.

The biggest time sink and the most fun, proved to be the Mass Effect series, the first of which dates back to 2008. I tried the demo for ME2 and was hooked, so bought all three and played through them twice, first as a fem Shepp and them as a male Shepp. What a brilliant trilogy!

Mass Effect 3 - The Finale

Mass Effect 3 – The Finale

By the time my Mass Effect journey was at an end, nearly four months had passed, and I had a small LoTRO itch again. That was back at the end of July this year so we’re almost up-to-date.

I’m now at the stage that I’ve decided to give up my VIP status in LoTRO. I’m done with being a daily player and alt-a-holic. I’m going free-to-play, to play occasionally, when I feel like it – or when my kids need me (see my last post!). There’s too much else out there and my love affair with LoTRO is over. She is still my friend however, so I’ll be buying ‘Riders of Rohan’ and will play though it with, I hope, relish…..but probably on only one toon.

So what’s new? Well, SWTOR is going free-to-play, so I may revisit that. However, in the here and now, Guild Wars 2 is the new man on the block. And guess what?! No quest chaining and no monthly sub. I’ll be writing more in due course…

Guild Wars 2 - New Man On The Block...

Guild Wars 2 – New Man On The Block…

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5 Responses to “Happy 100 To Me!”

  1. Well done on the 100th post mate, too many blogs never make it this far. also I’m really looking forward to your thoughts on GW2 – I left LOTRO after burning out on the grind and so far have found GW2 an amazing breath of fresh air – just pure fun every time I log in 🙂

  2. p.s. and no grinding so far!

  3. Grats on the 100th post. 🙂 I look forward to your GW posts. 🙂

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