wtfpwned 2 HWL

omg. i feel like i am just now waking up from a nightmare. or an obsessive binge. where was i this past week? what just happend here?

WoW High Warlord

well i did it. i PvP’d my way to High Warlord in WoW. [for non WoWers: thats the highest rank in the PvP ranking system]

now before you say anything let me state: yes! pathetic! embarassing! and: i should grow up! and get a life! and get out more! all that … 100% true.

this clearly will go down in my auto-biography, an auto-biography that may very likely never get written, as one of the, if not THE, silliest things i have ever done. and the crap part is, i can’t even really explain why i did it. i always defined this endeavor as a social experiment, but that lame attempt at a justification lost its validity quite awhile ago. instead it became this almost obsessive fixtation to make it, to see this thing through, to push myself to my limits and beyond, to bite my way through this mad mad challenge.

on this quest to wards high warlord the pressure had been building up over the past month, yet this last week was the epitomy of crazy. it made me neglect my blog, something that has not happened in ages and i guess that means alot. i never would have thought a game could get to me in such a way, but this past week i got extremely nervous, afraid to fail on the home stretch. i must have slept a grand total of maybe 25 hours during the last 7 days, and not because i was playing all the time, although almost, but because i was simply too nervous to sleep. anything could happen to prevent me from reachung my goal. my internet connection could get screwy, some n00bs could decide to start using bots and push me out of the top standings. i tried to remind myself “its only a game” … but somehow i did not believe it anymore.

last wednesday i had reached 99.27% of rank 13, which is an almost sadistic result. even with only 0.73% of the rank were missing, i still needed another top 3 standing this week to make it to rank 14. needless to say the pvp ranking system blizzard has set up is nuts, and thats putting it mildly. it would go to far to explain it all here, no interest. but the skinny of it is, once you reach rank 13 you need 4 weeks of top 3-5 standings to make it to rank 14. if you don’t make a top 5 standing on your server you retro-grade. this means you have to play ALOT. more than most players on your server.

so i made it. and now what? my toon now wears fully epic armour and weapons. but it’s only pixels – and it means nothing. i may try to enjoy my 5 seconds of fame on my server, after all i am only the 8. player, who reached HWL on khadgar, and only the second from a non-pvp guild. but anyone who knows anything about ranking system knows, that it means nothing to reach rank 14. i don’t think the intensive pvp’ing has made me a skilled pvp player. i am still a lousy player tbh, even if i may have picked up the odd skill and quite a few tricks along the way. all it says is that i have determination and will power. and – most importantly – lots of time on my hands – yes, i still don’t have a day job. but it also says i have thick skin to put up with a huge amount of BS, and i don’t mean blacksmith in that instance …

it’s not all been bad, i did meet some great players during this time, people who realise that only the social aspect makes this all worthwhile, the chats, the humor, the playfullness, the silly moments, the moments of magic when people are just playing together in sync, helping eachother out. but i was also confronted with some of the worst of human behavior, some pretty lame stuff; all the dissing, the jealousies, the shamings, the ganks, the bickering, the venting, and tons of unethical behavior. at times it was almost too much. several times i cried from shame and humiliation. other times i was ready to throw my computer out the window or bunk my head on the keyboard.

if anything i am quite disillusioned. i always used to say that MMORPG games will teach people ethics in online behavior. we all have experienced how alot of people behave like pigs when they interact online, hiding behind the “anonymity” of the internet. in theory MMORPG games force people to interact and you would think they have to do so in socially acceptable ways. so in theory MMORPGs could be great instruments to get people to learn ethical ways of interaction. but after pvp’ing in WoW i am starting to doubt that this will work out. i am now convinced, that blizzard, the WoW developers, has cleary failed to provide the tools that allow this community of players to really evolve towards better online ethics. on the contrary, nobody seems to care anymore. its just wtfpwn your way to HWL.

if anything i hope to show, that one can make it by playing for the team, by staying polite with and respectful of both co-players and opponents, by taking it all with a grain of salt, and by always remembering, that it’s not the end of the world … of warcraft if one loses a game. or fails to make it to rank 14. although that would have stung …

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About Jan Zuppinger

Jan Zuppinger has been writing this blog since 2002. He likes to grow vegetables. He likes to eat them too. He has opinions on everything, but sadly no one cares. Jan Zuppinger is not joking, just joking, he is joking, just joking, he's not joking. *click.