Sunday, 3 November 2013

Geeky gamer girl

I've always been a geek gamer girl. My husband and I met in high school and even when we were dating, we played pen and paper D&D together. It only made sense once the internet came along, and MMORPGs came into the picture that we would move to an online game.

Some of you may be thinking to yourself D&D? MMORwhaa??? Well, let me explain. D&D is Dungeons and Dragons. It's all done with pen, paper, dice and imagination. Sometimes with little maps and figurines but rarely with costumes. I KID. Well... mostly. Sometimes it goes full on "Big Bang Theory" but I've never been a part of those groups - although I know they do exist. MMORPG stands for Massive Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game. It's where thousands of other people from all over the world log into a game and play at the same time. They can group together and do quests and kill things. Kind of like Castleville, but with actual interaction and not having to wait 20 minutes for someone to send you a piece of cloth.

But I digress...

My husband and I took a temporary split for a couple of years, during that time EverQuest (AKA 'EQ') was released and my husband bought the game. He began playing, and when we reconcilled I can remember watching him play for the first time. He was getting a "port" to "G-Fay" (Greater Faydark) from "The Commonlands". He (or his character) had done something to fall "out of favour" with the druids so he was standing off to the side away from them so he wouldn't be attacked. He began to explain to me the game and I was amazed. He was on his way to attend an in-game wedding (yes people can and often do "marry" one another, or at least their characters do - it's all a role playing thing) at this Paladin guild in Felwithe. My mind reeled as he quickly ran the path through "G-Fay" heading to this place called Felwithe. He had me "drive" his "toon" while he told me where to go, and how to get there (ha,ha). And that; as they say; was that.

For me to say that we went out directly after the wedding festivities were over to get my own copy of "EQ" so that I could create my own account and play, would not be an understatement. I was amazed and instantly engrossed in this game. Mind = blown.

I can remember arriving at Electronic Boutique (now known as EB Games - I believe it's called Game Stop in the states) to see a myriad of other people shopping for computer and console games. I remember seeing one young fellow (about mid 20s or so, not much younger than I) standing holding the very LAST copy of EQ in his hands that the store had to offer, while he also held a copy of "Dark Ages of Camalot" (or DAOC) in his other hand. While he debated and weighed his options, I used my best jedi mind trick to persuade him in the direction of DAOC. I guess it must have worked because he put EverQuest back on the shelf and walked away with Dark Ages of Camalot. If memory serves I quickly snatched it off the shelf where he had put it and quickly walked up to the cash register before he could change his mind. SCORE!

We went home, forgoing getting me a new desk that night (We had just recently moved back in together and I had no desk to speak of, my computer had sat on a TV table for the better part of 2 weeks) as I was eager to install and create my character. On September 21, 2001 one high elf cleric to rule them all...Cheriqui Honeypies was "born".

I have spent countless hours in these online games. Early mornings and late nights. I won't lie, just like Farmville, Castleville or Candycrush -- it can be addicting. I've seen marriages be destroyed by these games, lies, cheating, but I've also seen friendships and true love blossom out of these games.
I'm not a bar going person, so this was and is my outlet. My social scene before Facebook came along.

The Prelate herself: Mistress Cheriqui Honeypies
I've have had the privilege of meeting a few wonderful people during my gaming "career". People I truly call friend both in game and out. We've moved from game to game together, laughed together and even cried together - hell we've even traveled together in a couple of cases! It's been an experience I certainly would not trade for the world.

Recently, SOE (Sony Online Entertainment) announced their latest endeavors into the realm of EverQuest called "EverQuest Next: Landmark" and "EverQuest Next". These have been long talked about "sequels" to EverQuest and EverQuest II. The release dates for these are within reach (I hope!) and I for one can hardly wait!! I am (and forever shall be) obsessed with the lands of Norrath even though I have played many other games since I began playing EQ, and the lands of Norrath themselves have gone through vast changes since I began playing 12 years ago (level upgrades, graphics upgrades) but it still feels like "home" when I log in.

I don't play as often as I used to. The folks who really made the gaming world for me are currently playing other games, but the moment this new game was announced for the EverQuest franchise - all of my old friends were in touch and were excited about the prospect of going back to some new "old" familiar hunting grounds. We'll have to see what happens when this all comes out, but I'm hoping it's sooner rather than later. This geeky gamer girl needs a fix!!!

One Last Glimpse,


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