It's no secret that World of Warcraft players hate themselves, hate the game, and hate everyone who plays it.
And everyone who doesn't.
It's evidenced by the rampant trolling, animosity and highly obscene, profane and immature conduct that has become pervasive not only in-game and on the forums, but has also spilled over onto WoW fansites like a jiggly, pasty white, stretch-marked, muffintop.
In my opinion, the wellspring of our indiscriminate hate for everyone and everything flows not from our relationship with other players, but rather from our relationship with the game.
Most players are blissfully unaware of the sad, cruel truth that our obsession with the World of Warcraft is no accident, and stems from the fact that it is a living breathing organism (parasite?) on a mission to befriended us. To get close it us. To endear us to it. To always be there for us in our time of need.
Unless it's Tuesday morning.
Just as the sirens of Greek Mythology waylaid sailors upon their rocky shoals, it's always beckoning to us. Calling to us with its songs.
Mostly written by Jason Hayes.
In essence, the game meets all of the basic needs that we, as human beings, require:
- Companionship: The lifelong friendships we forge with the world weary travelers that we meet in dungeons, raids, scenarios or BG's, or even just the kind words of our favorite NPC's (/dwarf accent "Watch your back!" /end dwarf accent)
- A sense of belonging: Our Guild members, team members and raid members treat us as one of their own. They encourage us and protect us. It's like our very own Fight Club, but with less bruises, and less bombs made from discarded human fat.
- Self esteem: Maybe we get our jollies by flaunting our Arena Master, Gladiator, or Patient titles, or our new Transmog, or flashy new Heroic raid weapons and armor, or achievements, or mounts.
- Intimacy: ERP, The Goldshire Inn, cybering, naked girls dancing on mailboxes, or genuinely connecting with other players who share our passion, or maybe just going HAM with the /flirt
- Unconditional love: The game doesn't judge us, it doesn't know if we are a good person or bad person. It doesn't recognize our mistakes outside of the game. It just exists, and is always happy to see us.
It's because of this special bond that we share with the game that we become so passionate about it. Do dedicated. So involved.
We open up our hearts, our souls, and our wallets, and give them over so completely. So freely. We are so vulnerable, yet the game wraps us in its tender, loving, Yogg-Saronish embrace, and tells us that everything will be alright.
Just keep playing. Just keep paying.
Oh, and have you heard about our cash shop?
You don't realize it, but this is the reason that some of you spend more time playing WoW than you do with your family or loved ones. It fills a void they can't.
But unfortunately, just as with any real life relationship, the honeymoon period ends (Vanilla?), and you suddenly find yourself annoyed by all the little things you've never noticed about your partner before.
For instance, when the Mists of Pandaria expansion introduced the reputation grind system, it was like walking into the bathroom to find your perfect, precious, beautiful girlfriend hunkered down on the commode, grunting, face grimaced, with that little vein in her forehead bulging as she drops a massive six-coiler.
*plunk* Oh, sweet Jesus, the smell...
Cute and quirky "quality of life" issues that you used to find so adorable about him or her now have you screaming at your monitor, pounding on your keyboard, and frothing with unbridled rage on the forums.
But at this point, it's too late.
Go directly to jail. Do not pass Go. Do not collect $200.
You and WoW have already been together so long that it has become part of your identity.
You've merged into one being. Physically. Emotionally. Spiritually.
Now, no matter how dissatisfied you are with the relationship, you can't imagine your life without it.
Walking away from everything you've worked so hard to build and acquire over the last few years will do nothing but leave a giant, gaping hole in your heart.
And then there is the matter of community property.
Who gets the pets?
You sacrificed everything you had for this game. You gave up your real life friends. Your education. Your career. You shunned your family. You dedicated every waking moment to it, and this is what you get in exchange?
It's at this point you turn bitter, jaded and resentful.
Maybe you get a touch of depression. You start to let yourself go. You put on a little weight. Your hygiene worsens. Your acne flares up. Your self-image crumbles.
Your confidence, charisma and gravitas abandoned you, and were replaced by their fat, ugly cousins: self-doubt, self loathing and a raging case of the stage 2 diabeetus.
Who would want you now? In the shape you're in? With all of your emotional baggage? Your social awkwardness?
All that's left behind is an angry husk of a human being. Angry at the game. Angry at the players. Angry at the developers. Angry at everyone.
You hate them all.
It's their fault.
They did this to you.
It did this to you.
There's only one thing left to do: scream, and yell, and hate everything and everyone...
Yes, that's technically three things.
...and make everyone hate it as much as you do.
...And make everyone hate you as much as you do.