Always The Nomadic Gamer
There’s a reason I call myself the Nomadic Gamer. Chances are at any one time I’m subscribed to at least two games. Typically more. I bounce from game to game depending on my whims and I rarely stay settled in a game for longer then a month. I realize this is an incredibly frustrating method to play – especially for my dear friends who have had to put up with my play style for far longer then anyone should have to tolerate it. It’s also the way I’ve always played, ever since EQ2 came out (EQ1 being the only game I actually stuck with on its own). I blame this on a combination of things. The need to constantly be multi tasking, and the blunt fact that since playing video games (and writing about them) is my day time job, the more games I play the more insight I have and the more articles I can write and then (eventually) the more money I make.
Still, it’s not easy. Especially for those good friends who like to game WITH me. If you’re not used to this life style then I can see how it would be incredibly frustrating. I keep waiting for that single game that will pull me in and make me forget about all others, but it simply hasn’t happened. I want to apologize to those friends who are unable to understand why I play this way, or who are hurt by the fact that I may be there one week and not the next. I always return to a few ‘main’ games (EQ2, VG, WoW, EVE, EQ, W101, LotRO), but I hardly expect everyone I know to jump around from game to game with me. All I can ask is that they have some patience with me. There are other methods of contacting me if I don’t happen to be playing a particular game that month (you can find me on various forms of IM as well as twitter and email) and I’m never that out of reach.
I’ve tried to stop apologizing for my gaming habits. I’m pretty up front and anyone who has read this site (or my sister site, nomadicgamer.com) realizes that this is just how I happen to spend my time in game. It’s one of the things I love about knowing so many people who play video games – we don’t all play the same way. I’ve always cherished my friendships and been proud of the fact that they transcend any video game out there, that a true friendship won’t be lost based on the games I’m playing (or not playing) but lately it feels like perhaps that is not the case. Online friendships are fragile things, and it’s all to easy to go the rout of “out of sight out of mind”.
Anyhow, sorry for the ranting today but it was something I wanted to talk about. Happy gaming no matter where you find yourself.
Personally I think Nomadic Gamers are pretty common, I just don’t think most people will admit to it. ;)
I know how you feel though, I have a buddy who started playing EQ after I talked it up, but I lost interest a couple of months after he really got into it. I did the same thing to him with WoW. Our normal pattern is, I find a new game, get really into it, get him excited, and then burnout just about the time his interest peaks.
I hear you on this one. I am worried that my nomadic gaming style will have effects on my WoW guild friends. I dont think it would matter but as I move away from wow, we tend to lose touch. Its a shame really. Im trying to get them into using more social programs so that we can keep in touch when I dont feel like playing wow or logging into vent. With a lot of great games on the horizon, my time in wow will most likely drop dramatically. Im hoping that wont be a damaging change to the friendships I have made in the game. Probably a lot of worry over nothing haha.
Any kind of relationship is a fragile thing, there’s no such thing as “Because it’s online…” thing, people are people and the way they act will always be the same no matter the environment. The truth is that very few people can survive a sporadic relationship (friendship, partnership, love, you name it) because the interest just fades. It’s not so unthinkable, if your best friend one day stops showing up and you don’t hear from him / her over the next year other than for the ocassional fleeting chatting sooner or later those feelings decrease…that’s with your best friend, now imagine for somebody you aren’t -that- close with~.
I don’t think that jumping from game to game is something to apologize for, even more if people know beforehand how you are. But at the same time, assuming they aren’t being douches about it, having those feelings of friendship and / or interest wane due to prolongued absence is nothing to apologize for either. We all have our ideas on friendship and whether people admit to it or not, most of us want a certain degree of contact. If you don’t keep that contact alive those friendships are bound to wither. Not necessarily die but wither. A flame can only be kept alive if you feed it regularly, alone it just fades~.
Just a perspective because I’ve met several people in EQ2 as well as in RL ™ who are like that, they come and go. For some people it works, for some it is just not enough~.
It is nice that the games will have your characters waiting for you when you return. I have spent some time with the MMO shuffle. My partner on the other hand, my sweet wife who watched over my shoulder during The Realm and Meridian 59 days and who finally joined me in EQ, doesn’t like the shuffle.
My job has moved me over the years from city to city, house to house and it can be taxing on a family. My wife who is now grounded in EQ2, had once followed me from game to game. Then one day, with a hand on her hips, waving a spoon like some epic weapon, she said…and I quote.. “Mr . .. I will follow you in real life to the corners of the world but I’m going home to EQ2 and that’s where I am staying. So if you want to play with me…you better be in Norrath.”
So, yeah…I am in EQ2. I still shuffle a little but I do like playing with my epic spoon waver.
Just letting you know you are not alone in this. I tend to play MMOs for 1-3 months at a time. Then I might take a month or three off before moving to another. I have been rotating through EQ2, WoW, DDO and WAR over the last few years. I’ve belonged only to a few guilds over the last 10 years and those guilds have players in most of the games I’ve played and allow for the guild member to pop in, play a bit, and leave.
I’ve had friends who learn I’m playing game X, then join and a month later I’m ready to move on :) Luckily, it hasn’t been bad for those friendships. They tend to play the same way, but even more sporadic :)
By the way, love the postings on VG recently. It’s a game I always wanted to play, but never did. Good to hear a bit about it.