Think to a lot of people including myself it is a lifestyle....and not particularly a good one. But there are worse outthere
It's a game, it's a hobby. Facebook I don't know about but I'm sure it's a hobby to some, but it's NOT a game. There are games ON facebook but in itself, it's just a social tool. Talk about a lot of bitter people with raging ex-partner syndrome posting in this thread.
It's both, really. I'm one of those "It's just a game" people but I still care to be the best I can be and all of that. IMO the difference between "game" and "hobby" is that a game is played occasionally, off and on (however "playing video games", as in the entire gamut of gaming, IS a hobby, and one we all have by virtue of playing WoW), while a hobby is something you play frequently and often continually work at to improve yourself for the next time you play it.
WoW isn't like a professional sport as much as it's more akin to the general environment in a tabletop wargame. Take Warhammer (Fantasy or 40K): It's a game that you play to have fun, but look at all the work and effort people do in customizing and painting miniatures (some of the Golden Daemon winners are nothing short of brilliant artists). Look at how competitive some people take the tournaments, especially the grand tournaments (assuming they still have them, it's been over a decade since I stopped playing). Yet on the other end of the spectrum you have the super casual players that pick armies that are themed, don't really care if they are picking the best units, do a very basic paintjob, and even if they lose every single battle they ever play they're great fun people to chat with and they have fun.
WoW pretty much has all of those people in it, in slightly different variations (the "serious business" raider, the super casual, the person who spends all their time on achievements/pets) and IMO is a much closer comparison.
Or I could read books instead all the time. Better?
Then they usually agree with me. But ofcourse they usually say that: well as long as you're not ALWAYS playing it is fine.
And that is key I think... I did play like all the free time I had. That would not/never have happened with anything other then WoW basically.
With a one player game.. I'd play 100% of my free time until I would COMPLETE it... after that I would go about my business.
WoW cannot really be completed.
For me, WoW is an amazing never ending game. I love the dark stories, and the lore is so huge that it just fascinates me.. I play wow when I have time, never allow it to become top prio, above IRL stuffs. But yeah, spending tons of hours still feels fresh to me to this day.
Wow is not just a hobby its a life style (in my case atleast) :P
It is by def. a game. Duh. What everyone means which is basically what the OP is asking for aswell: How does it feel to you?
Some people feel it is a hobby. Others feel it is an obsession. Others feel it is like work. Addiction etc etc etc.
If you read other peoples comments, do you actually think: "LAWL Do these people not know that it is a game, like any other?"