At the weekend, someone of my acquaintance offered a compliment I will be hard-pressed to hear repeated: my in-game playtime, they offered, was ‘just right’ and really, Azeroth doesn’t need 24/7 input to function correctly. When breaking down desires into manageable, constituent parts, time remains a really important factor in the equation. This is now so utterly true of Warcraft that the inevitable arguments continue to rage around who’s ‘fault’ it is that some people cannot accomplish what they desire in the timescales available.
In essence, it boils down to understanding that if this shit matters enough, you will find the ability to complete it. That’s what I’m doing now, in slow and manageable chunks. It doesn’t help however that each time I fire up my PC for a bit of pottering that the new Battle.net Launcher decides to remind me I’m stealing time from somewhere else:
Look, guys, I get the point. You’ve added this against your better judgement and the quite solid belief that gaming should be a social pursuit. The problem is, that being online makes for lousy time management. I don’t need people seeing me online and then wanting to talk or distract me when all that matters is using a spare 10 minutes in the most productive fashion. I’ve gotten really good at still playing without it destroying a day’s work. It’s like the mobile app, only with better graphics. Just stop it.
The final saving grace for me, salvation from the feeling of unhappiness when I did play for longer, is that I am now dictating terms going forward. I have the same friend who offered the compliment as thanks for this, and his continued wisdom via Twitter is greatly appreciated. Taking the weight out of playtime, simplifying progress down to a series of steps, continues to allow me not to get weighed down in details. This way, it is about completing portions of play, then going back to fill in the blanks as circumstance allows.
Just accepting my game time for what it is has been the biggest revelation since the start of Pandaria. If I’d have come to this conclusion sooner, so much heartache could be avoided. That’s why appearing online continues to be almost an essential part of the equation, allowing me the genuine freedom required to reorganise my MMO existence on manageable and satisfying terms.