Getting Back Into the Swing of Things – Rejoining an MMO

Posted: June 1, 2011 by Raparth in Uncategorized

Hello, avid readers, (all two of you)

At last I have the free time, the internet, and the motivation to return to World of Warcraft…  And, well, as anyone who’s ever left a current game for a couple months knows… Things change.  Sometimes these are small (“Oh, look, a new Counterstrike Map.”) or cosmetic (“What?  TF2 has hats?!”) or really big (“4.2?  What happened to Patch 4.1?”).  So, anyway, I’ve been out of the WoW swing of things for… around 3 months.  Maybe a little longer.  In a MMO, a game that is by its nature continually changing, that’s a substantial period of time.  Getting back into the swing of things can be difficult, particularly if there is a lot of new content or content changes that occurred during your absence.  This week I’ll cover Three Easy Steps that can make all the difference in your experience returning to the game.

Step 1: Update Everything and Use that Time!

This is a pretty significant step and the one that will probably take the most amount of time (if you’ve missed a lot).  Updating the game client itself is required to play for almost every game, so you won’t be able to forget it.  Do not, however, forget to update all your addons!  This is one reason programs like Curse client are particularly great.  Instead of me having to check all of them to see if they were out-of-date, Curse told me there were and then allowed me to update them all within a matter of 10 minutes, instead of the far longer (I’d easily say an hour) it might have taken me to update all 20 of those addons manually.  (And, yes, I currently have 36 addons for World of Warcraft… And that’s a lot fewer than I used to have back in late Wrath, pre-4.0 days.)  This, as with my case of updating WoW to Patch 4.1 right now, can take a substantial portion of time.  This time is most usefully spent doing the second step.

Step 2: Patch Notes, Patch Notes, Patch Notes!

Well, not all of this is just patch notes.  If your game has a great community/media site, like WoW Insider, use that.  Instead of me having to hunt down patch notes on Blizzard’s site and parse through them, I am able to just go to WoW Insider, click on a link to see all things related to Patch 4.1, and then go down the list.  WoW Insider is particularly great since I can sort also by each class, allowing me to make sure I know what I need to know about… Death Knights, when I decide to play Namira.  I can find out that, Oh, look, Raise Ally is now a Battle Rez spell.  And, wait, Guild Finder?  That’s cool!  Dark Simulacrum works on even more NPC-cast spells!  I love you, Blizzard.  *cough*When I don’t hate you.*cough*

Step 3: Profit! … from the Suffering of Your Friends

This is by far the most important step.  Once you’re in the game (which I hope to be within the next couple hours), make sure to exploit the suffering of your friends, guildies, and family members.  For those who might like a rephrasing…  You learn from their mistakes.  When we get into Zul’Gurub or Zul’Aman, I’m not going to know a damned thing about what it really feels like to be there.  (Note: You should, if at all possible, learn as much about new challenges you know you’re going to face, be they Heroic Dungeons or outright Raiding, so as not to aggravate your friends too much.)  I will, however, have 4 friends who have all done it before and who, through respectful, polite, and fairly insistent questioning, will tell me everything they know.  After all, the best thing about coming late to the party is that you get all the benefits of their knowledgeable experience without having to bash your head quite as many times against the wall.  If you, like me, used to be a party/raid/guild leader, this can be a strange occurrence, being the ignorant newbie.  So, Be Nice to those who are helping you, Listen Carefully to what they say, and, for gods’ sake, Stay Out of the Fire, because some lessons are timeless.

For Gnomeregan!

~ Mr. Pacman


  1. Cynthia says:

    “new challenges you know you’re going to phase” -hahahaha… phase.

  2. Ironbeardd says:

    Glad to hear you’ll be back soon, any second maybe. I hope I am not one of the four people you plan on asking questions cause I don’t know “crap” about crap.

    LOL Iron

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