Alternative Chat is running a survey in advance of WoW's upcoming 10th anniversary. Here are my answers.
1. Why did you start playing Warcraft?
I was always interested in the idea of MMOs, though I hadn't really started playing any. Since Blizzard made WoW, I decided to try it out. However, it was actually sold out in stores, so I didn't get it until a few months after launch.
2. What was the first ever character you rolled?
My university roommate and I rolled characters on a PvP server. I made a Male Undead Warrior, and he made a priest. He stopped playing after a few months, but I kept going. I remember being a terrible warrior, because I didn't really understand the concept of threat, and so had a very hard time tanking.
I made it to about level 42 with that warrior. Then Blizzard introduced the PvP honour system. At that time, you got honour points for killing enemy players within a certain range of your level. At 42ish, I was just in range of the level 50s. The next couple of weeks were a constant barrage of ganks from level 50s.
I deleted that warrior in a fit of rage. I then created Coriel, my Female Human Paladin, on a PvE server. I think I made her because I had recently read Elizabeth Moon's Paksennarion and was inspired by the best and most hardcore paladin in all of fantasy! She's been my main ever since.
3. Which factors determined your faction choice in game?
My friend wanted to play Horde, so that's where we started. My second character was Alliance to see the other side.
As well, I love the Alliance paladins and their lore, so that's why I've stuck with that faction.
4. What has been your most memorable moment in Warcraft and why?
Doing Scarlet Monastery for the first time with a group of complete newbies. We were utterly shocked by Whitemane's "Arise, my champion!"
5. What is your favourite aspect of the game and has this always been the case?
I like questing and large-group raiding. I like seeing all the stories that Blizzard comes up, and I generally prefer to have done every quest before starting on endgame.
For raiding, I much prefer the larger raids, the 20-40 man ones. I like having specific responsibilities for different parts of the fight, and then seeing the entire team come together to accomplish a goal.
6. Do you have an area in game that you always return to?
No, I tend to move with the flow of the game and the expansions.
7. How long have you /played and has that been continuous?
I'm not currently subscribed, so I don't know my /played. Until now, I've been subscribed pretty much since the beginning, maybe with lapses of one or two months. However, I unsubscribed at the end of 2013, and haven't resubscribed since then.
8. Admit it: do you read quest text or not?
I read quest text. In fact, when expansions came out, I would turn Scrolling Quest Text back on to prevent the temptation of skipping it. I rather miss that option.
9. Are there any regrets from your time in game?
Yes. No. Maybe.
I wonder about this question a lot. Perhaps there's a universe where I didn't play MMOs and did something useful instead. But in reality, I probably would have just ended up playing other games or watching TV.
10. What effect has Warcraft had on your life outside gaming?
In some ways, not a lot. I do have this blog, and I've really enjoyed writing and thinking about things in more detail.
However, I do think it has affected me politically and philosophically though. I think that I am a lot more conservative because of my experiences in WoW. WoW is, for the most part, a level playing field. You can be anyone, you can be anything. And yet so many of us choose to behave badly when the restraints of normal society are lifted. I have come to a far more Hobbesian view of the world since I started playing MMOs.