Two weekends ago now, I finally relented to the crushing pressure of 11 million so-called peers, and installed World of Warcraft. Mainly because I’d been out the night before talking with Matt, in IHOP, and he’d described some of the more interesting sounding high-level stuff, involving big raids and PvP and vehicles, which sounded like it had some potential… I’ve played plenty of mumorpagers to have my life’s fill of grinding, but he managed to convince me that it wouldn’t be all that bad.

So I did that, and spent some time during the week playing as well, and whatnot. It’s pretty much as I expected – grindtastic – though there have been a handful of genuinely entertaining moments. Precious few, though. Matt insists this is just penance for future PvP sins or somesuch – some kind of hazing, or character test before you’re allowed to actually get some entertainment out of the so-called game…

The game itself aside, the experience was just laughable, in a most definitely unfunny way. The trial client is buggy as heck, crashing constantly and often in such ways that you have to essentially delete the whole thing and reinstall. It’s just mind-boggling that they can release such a piece of junk, especially as a trial client which you’d think would be intended to encourage people into the game, but obviously not.

Despite that, against my better judgement I attempted to actually sign up once the ten day trial expired, only to have Blizzard reject every one of my credit cards. WTF? I emailed their support – the second time, the first being for the crashes, to which they replied – no kidding – that I shouldn’t send such reports to their technical support line. Huh? Anyway, the second email to support yielded a polite but completely pointless and useless boilerplate response along the lines of “you’re an idiot and/or entered your card details wrong”, which is patently false.

And yet, despite all this, I find myself even now running the fully paid up copy in the background, awaiting completion of tonight’s journalling before I venture forth once more into the very samey-looking1 lands of Azeroth.

I went out with Matt this afternoon to see The Goods – also a good movie, though not as much as District 9, as it lacked any meaningful plot arc or conclusion – and afterwards, at our usual haunt of TGI, he convinced me once again to go for WoW. So I went to Target – GameStop was closed, lazy sods – and bought it.

To add insult to injury, which at this point I suppose I can no longer expect any pity for, acting like a self-destructive addict as I am, it then took six attempts over about as many hours to get the #$%@! thing to install. I can’t believe how buggy this stuff is. It blows my mind that they’ve not just released it as-is, but that millions of people apparently don’t mind wasting their lives just getting the stupid thing to work. But then, I suppose, if you’re intending to play WoW you clearly have no meaningful life to live otherwise, anyway.

So again, it’s kind of a trial by fire, in a sense. I suppose I passed, though I am inexplicably not satisfied by that fact. Whoda thunk it.

Grrr. Stupid WoW. I look forward to griefing many many people in an ignoble, solitary effort to bring the overall, average playing experience down ever so slightly.

  1. Also, whomever does their height-maps really needs to get off this six discrete levels of altitude business, it reminds me of Bryce 3D. ↩︎

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