Sorry guys, I gotta go, I have a raid in about 30 minutes

The race to finals debuff doesn’t just eat your brain and your soul, it lowers your sleeping skill by 60%. So instead of wasting my time by telling myself stories in the dark, I’m going to waste my time by writing a blog post in the dark. (On the bright side, I’m almost done immunology and did 2 tough chapters in therapeutics. I’m on a rooooooooll.)

So the other night, I was attending this recruitment casino fun night thingy for school. I try to get out of “social chores” as much as possible, but being a poor, starving college student, free food means I’ll show up. Free drinks are a bonus. I was even enjoying myself, winning at pretend Blackjack because our (kinda hot but happily married) dealer was cheating in our favor. It started getting late though, so I excused myself.

Me: Sorry guys, I gotta go, I have a raid in about 30 minutes.
Female classmate: Did you say you have to raid in 30 minutes?
Me: Mmhmm
Female classmate: What?
Male classmate who often plays WoW with me: She plays World of Warcraft and she has to run ToC tonight. Someone’s gotta heal it.
Kinda hot but happily married dealer: Oh, one day she’ll be one of those really attractive women who write game reviews.

I found that absolutely hilarious. The free wine probably had something to do with it, but I’m sure I would have found that insanely funny under worse circumstances. The image of Veronica Belmont (who, by the way, looks nothing like me) flashed in my head and I laughed even harder. It took me a few moments to compose myself, then I fled the scene.

I’ve mentioned before, a long time ago (which means 3 months), that playing WoW is like picking your nose and you should never publicly admit to doing it. Yet, I’m becoming more and more open about my WoW playing. I think blogging has something to do with it: I never realized how much fun it was and now I want to talk about it all the time. I spend a lot of my time in coffee shops (which I’ve always done anyway since I have nowhere else to study), surrounded by other caffeine addicts who have wordpress open. Sometimes they look over my shoulder and talk to me.

Them: Oh, are you using wordpress?
Me: As a matter of fact I am.
Them: What a coincidence! So am I!
*awkward silence as they smile at me*
Me: So, um, what do you write about?
Them: *insert very intelligent words that are beyond my meager grasp here*
Me: That must be really interesting!
Them: What are you writing about?
Me: Video games.
Them: Oh cool. I played guitar hero once at a party.
*We resume our silent tasks*

And thats the usual reaction I get when I say I play WoW. “Oh, cool” Not, “OMG you must a weird crazy freak with no life!”, no “OMG you pollute our green air with your lowly hobbies!” Just “oh, cool.” Really, no one cares.

Well, except my parents. They care but they’re getting better. I wasn’t impressed when I discovered they were telling family friends that I did nothing but play WoW all the time. I wasn’t impressed because that happened was while I was trying to get in pharmacy school and did nothing but study all the time. At least wait until I’m indulging in my bad habits before you accuse me of doing so, tyvm. I haven’t gotten any hassle for well over a year now, though, which is nice.

Even my being a girl rarely causes much commotion. Other girls usually give me “oh, cool” followed by “have you seen the new Twilight movie?” When I say no (I hate movies, sitting still for 2 hours is torture and I refuse to pay 10$ to be tortured), we run out of things to talk about and the conversation kind of dies. While I used to have tons of female gamer friends back in high school, they seem to be hard to come by now… A few female friends of mine watch The Guild, but that’s about it. It gets lonely. WTB IRL BFF who also plays Warcraft.

Guys who game also give me the “oh, cool”, but they add a “!” at the end. Yet, generally, after comparing our classes and roles, the conversation moves on to other games and music and whatnot.

It just seems so…anti-climactic. Here I am, revealing a naughty, naughty secret and I can rarely get a good story to tell from it. What a waste of a dirty secret.

I know there’s still a lot of gaming misunderstanding. You see magazine articles warning you to not reveal playing WoW during a job interview. Every now and again, you’ll hear sad stories proving that gaming will cause you to flunk out of school and/or destroy your relationships.

But in every day life, I find that it’s rarely as big a deal as I expect it to be. Oh, maybe the people around me think horrible things of me because I’m open about my WoW hobby. If that’s the case, they hide it very well.

It’s almost disappointing.

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24 Comments on “Sorry guys, I gotta go, I have a raid in about 30 minutes”

  1. Windsoar Says:

    It’s only bad when there’s that weird silence followed by… what?

    After my first sharing experience — to my boyfriend who was talking to our mutual friend about how we was stuck, and I thought I was being helpful telling him how to get past that twister in Final Fantasy II — I too decided maybe talking about gaming wasn’t such a good idea. I mean, second head syndrome incoming.

    However, I’ve discovered that gaming is a lot more “in the open” both as a general hobby, AND as a hobby for both the sexes. I haven’t moved much beyond family as to what my commitment is on Tuesday night, but maybe one day I’ll get the courage as well :P

    • Ophelie Says:

      I kind of get a thrill from the second head syndrome. It makes for good stories to tell. There’s also something very entertaining about talking about games as if it’s the most natural thing in the world while the other person is all “OMG!”

  2. theanorak Says:

    It’s an interesting thought though, isn’t it. For much of its existence, videogaming has been seen as the preserve of geeks, social failures and children — and MUD/MMORPGers the social failures’ social failures.

    Now that gaming is such a mainstream activity, you generally have to search a little harder for people to sneer at you when you talk about gaming. You generally have to get anorak-obsessive about minutiae, disappear into hardcore simulation or whip out a bunch of erogames to get the same effect.

    It’s strange. The emergence of gaming as just another entertainment option for your evenings and weekends is a wonderful thing — but there’s a (small, irritating, “I was over that before you’ve even heard of it”) part of me which almost misses knowing something that others didn’t.

    I keep it carefully locked up though ;)

    • Ophelie Says:

      My being a student who is often mistaken for a teenager probably helps me get away with gaming more than if I was in my 30s, married with children, now that I think of it. I can get lumped into the “she’s a kid” category.

      I definitely see what you mean by a part of you that says “I liked gaming before it was cool!”. There is a certain sense of community that comes with being a gamer, and there’s a perceived difference between really enjoying gaming and playing Guitar Hero in parties once in awhile.

  3. Jaedia Says:

    Tbh, I used to be a practising pagan, so these days being a gamer is nowhere near the same xD I won’t openly admit it because hearing “I play World of Warcraft” does conjure images in my head :F and I’d rather not people think that of me, but, that’s all really, people find tree huggers a little more amusing in my experience lol.

    Though, bumping into WoW players and being able to compare ingame progress, and they find out I’m doing hardmodes or whatnot is ALWAYS fun :D “oh I bet you play a holy priest in a naxx guild or something?” “nah , 7k dps hunter in a totgc guild” “..”

    • Ophelie Says:

      Out of curiosity, what kind of images does WoW playing conjure in your head?

      I know I tend to associate being a girl playing WoW with the image of a bored housewife who spends 20 hours a day in Shalozar. While there’s nothing wrong with being a housewife, it’s the polar opposite of my personality and I take a lot of pride in my IRL occupations. But generally before I mention WoW, I make it quite obvious that I have a lot else going on in my life.

      I really like comparing in game progress with other people too! I find it interesting. The people you typically meet on blogs and forums are serious raiders or PvPers who are very invested in the game. Those I run into IRL are usually very casual. It makes you realize that Blizzard *is* addressing the vast majority of players by making the game as accessible as possible.

      • Jaedia Says:

        Well, my ex was the one who originally got me playing, and his parents were quite anti-the lot of us (me, my ex, his brother, our friends) playing WoW because they were worried it would ruin our grades and that kind of thing (they were also both teachers).

        I guess that’s just lead to me being a little embarrassed of my playing because I don’t want people to think that I’m wasting my time I suppose.

        Also, tend to imagine most female WoW players as the forced to play by their boyfriends/husbands/male friends, that’s how most of the girls I knew when I started playing started playing themselves and it’s stuck, though I know it isn’t necessarily the case anymore.

        • Ophelie Says:

          Funny you should mention that… I’m always adamant about insisting that it is *I* who makes the boys in my life play and not the other way around. I don’t know why I care so much about it, though. I try to avoid non humourous gender stuff on the blog, but I’m such a closet bra burning feminist.

          And yeah, I get that way about time wasting too. I try to rationalize it by saying “well at least I’m not watching TV” or “at least I’m not getting drunk and sleeping with strangers”.

          • Jaedia Says:

            Haha yeah, I’ve never watched much TV it’s all crap. I rationalise it with “at least I’m enjoying my free time” because after a while I get bored surfing, reading, watching, and I like to do, which is where gaming comes in.

            Also, I don’t tend to mention my being female much on my blog. Mentioned on my about page, and occasionally the bf enters a post, aside from that and “damn those teehee girls!” I just keep it to the writing. I would like to do a post damning teehee girls.. damn them.

  4. Lloth Says:

    Actually I once read an article saying that with MMO’s becoming more popular, some companies actually recognize the fact that someone being a raid/guild leader in an MMO is very good leadership experience. Because, in what other situation can you take 25 or more total strangers who are (usually) interested in only their own gains and make them work together? In the RW people like that all know each other (assumably) and are working towards a larger goal, not towards their own ends. On another note, I recently started a new job in retail, selling computers, and didn’t want to seem like the dork who played WoW…only to find out that not only does everyone in my dptmt -1 person play it, but so do my super and my manager, plus half of the rest of the store. Kinda fun to talk about our raids at work now :)

    • Ophelie Says:

      Haha!

      I’ve noticed that playing WoW is really common among people working in a field related to technology. Not so much in other fields! I have 3 classmates (out of 39) who play WoW so it’s a lot of fun to talk about what we’re all doing in the game. I also try to book a night here and there to play on their server. The rest of the class thinks we speak a foreign language.

      I recall reading an article about guild leadership being applicable in the workplace too. I would suppose it really depends on the type of company you work for. They were talking about it on some podcast once (I can’t remember which podcast!), and the conclusion they came to was that “online community moderator” sounded better than “guild leader” on a resume. While I personally wouldn’t advertise that I played WoW when interviewing for a job (unless it’s a gaming related job), I do find that my past experience as an officer and raid leader has had a huge effect on my offline leadership skills.

  5. Skip Cocoa Says:

    For the casual WoW guyness side, I tend to get much different reactions. Non-gamers are familiar with the existence of WoW, and seem to sort of assume I play WoW, Halo, and Rock Band as traits of wearing the title. It’s actually the WoW players who are more judgmental. I can typically hold a fruitful conversation with a WoW playing stranger for some time, until circumstance eventually demands I admit to having never hit 80. Suddenly, the conversation sort of trails off and I lose all gamer cred.

    But, WoW still gets me the closest I’ve ever managed to casual gamer conversations with strangers. Try striking up a conversation about the time you gutted a copy of Gyromite for the parts you needed to contrive a rigging for your Japanese import of Holy Diver to play on your North American Nintendo Entertainment System. You couldn’t clear a room faster if you farted.

    • Ophelie Says:

      I can see that! A lot of the WoW players I meet IRL aren’t 80 (or if they have more time on their hands, they have 5 80s but have never set foot in a raid), but back when I was slowly leveling Rykga, I would get the cold shoulder too. It seems that many serious WoW players don’t play other games and don’t have much to bring to a gaming discussion. Although, I can’t judge too much since I haven’t had time to play other games in forever. And when I did play other games, they were usually the educational or sort of girly kind so no one else has heard of them.

  6. Zecherach Says:

    Well, that is something what I heard to. That WoW now is bexoming popular and that it really increases the leadership qualities of the guild/raid leaders.

    Oh, and btw. I’m too looking for a RL BFF. I don’t think that WoW has a lot of feamle gamers on the german realms. For example is my guild one of the biggest and still I’m the only girl that raids the Trial of the Grand Crusader… Sometimes I get really lonley with all theese guys yelling and everything xD

    There has been a time when somebody asked “what’s your hobby?” I always hesitated, like you said, it’s kinda like picking nose. But the reactions here are quite diffrent. The worst reaction was: What, you play THAT game?! Don’t you know people have DIED from playing that?!?” And I was perplex… Cars too kill people but everyone drives them oO
    Anyway, maybe Europe is a little bit closed of if it comes to WoW. But still insted of gettin’ the neutral response “cool…” most of the time people look at me in a weird way kinda like “Oh, you don’t look like you’re a geek…”
    I don’t know…. xD

    • Ophelie Says:

      The worst reaction was: What, you play THAT game?! Don’t you know people have DIED from playing that?!?”

      HAHAHA!! That is an awesome reaction! I love it!

      I do get the “you don’t look like a geek look” too. I like that because I want people to realize that being feminine and being a gamer aren’t mutually exclusive. It makes me sad when even other female gamers feel the need to say “I’m not like your typical girl so I’m a good player!”. Well, I’m not ashamed of my gender and I’m a good player (or at the very least, a dedicated player!).

      My guild seems to be low on girl power too, even though it’s an American guild. There are a few of us who raid regularily, but the ratio of F:M players is way lower than I was expecting. I remember my very first raid with them, a 10 man, I was scared shitless and really wanted to talk to another woman. I listened and listened and couldn’t pick up another female voice. I was shocked because my old guild had many raiding women. I don’t know if its the progression style, the average age of the members or just coincidence.

  7. Honeypot Says:

    I still don’t admit to gaming. I sort of feel like I don’t need anything else working against me, and I hang around the sort of people that either like to be academic or sexy (sometimes both, but I hate those people for being better than me at all aspects of life). Also, if I don’t admit to it, it forces me to come up with elaborate lies to tell to people, which is always entertaining, and useful for when extended family ask me about my hobbies.

    Also, I like that you laughed when the married guy said his comment. Laughing is always good. Your imagined reactions are also the best thing I’ve read today.

    • Honeypot Says:

      Also, dudette, these icons on the upper right hand corner of our posts are absolutely adorable.

    • Ophelie Says:

      Haha! Glad you liked them.

      Am I the only one out of your gazillion Facebook friends who has noticed that you’re part of a group called “Addicted to World of Warcraft”?
      Oh and I hate people who are better than me at all aspects of life too. I also hate that those people are usually really nice because makes me feel guilty for hating them.

      The icons are actually default wordpress ones. I saw someone else use them and was all “OMG I NEED THOSE!”


  8. [...] over on her blog The Bossy Pally and the Giant Spoon for her very amusing views and her article  “Sorry guys, I gotta go, I have a raid in about 30 minutes”  which actually helped me to start this [...]

  9. Rajjs Says:

    YAY!!! Other closet gamers. My husband makes fun of me because I don’t tell anyone I play WoW. When I get stuck he will ask his friends at work what I should be doing and they always seem dubstruck. I remember the first time I played Halo with my hubby, then boyfriend, and his roomies. There was one other girl there…another girlfriend, and we were like sure. They didn’t know that I had played other 1ps games before, just not halo. We cleaned house. They were shocked. I love it when a guys notions of girls is shaken up. It is the best elated feeling in the world. :)

    • Ophelie Says:

      YES! Pwn those silly boys!

      I’m actually terrible at 1ps games. My brothers always hogged those games so I never got the chance to practice. I did destroy a few of my classmates at WII Boxing once though. They were all “oooookaaaaayyyyy we’ll stay clear of you”


  10. [...] at Bossy Pally has also had several interesting posts the past week. I loved Sorry Guys, I Gotta Go, Have a Raid in 30 Minutes because it reminded me of my own embarrassment towards my WoW playing when it comes to the general [...]

  11. Zahia Says:

    “Well, except my parents. They care but they’re getting better. I wasn’t impressed when I discovered they were telling family friends that I did nothing but play WoW all the time.”

    My mom said that to some cousins of mine who play WoW too. But they (traitors !^^) didn’t dare saying they were playing too :(. So I’m still the only “strange” girl in the family “playing WoW all the time”.

    • Ophelie Says:

      I’m the only “strange” one too :( My parents seem to get over it, as long as I make sure I complain about how much work I’m doing in other areas of my life with enough regularly. (Geez, who would have though complaining had it uses. ;D)


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