The abandoned children of MMOs

dollsLast night was a SWTOR night, but the launcher was taking an eternity to load (and slogging my computer down in the process), so after about 20 minutes I gave up and decided to make up some time in RIFT instead.

Instead of heading back to my Cleric and her (sigh) oh-so-exciting adventures through Seratos, I mixed things up a bit by dusting off my level 51 Rogue and getting her back into action.  She wasn’t on my current server, so I had to go hunting around for her.  I realized then that I had not only planted seeds on several servers, but as I flipped through them, I saw the same thing over and over again: abandoned characters in the level 15-30 range.

They look at me with sad, accusing eyes: “You promised us you’d play!  That we would be the grand new start you wanted!  And look at us now — orphaned, alone, doing nothing but holding on to a name.”

So what happens here, I think, is that this is the sad side-effect of altitis.  I start up a new character for that new character feel and that new character smell, have fun blowing through the early levels, but can’t quite push past the middle area before my interest is yanked elsewhere.

I kind of see it as a reality TV show, where these characters compete to see which one of them will make it to “main” status and stick around for the high levels.  One or two usually bubbles up to the top, but they leave behind all of these abandoned children.

It’s probably way worse if I loaded up the World of Warcraft servers.  I was forever jumping servers and rolling alts there, plus my wife shared my account and she’s got her stable of ridiculously named toons (GrimReapette was my favorite for her DK).

The weird thing is that even though I tend to like things nice and tidy, I also am loathe to delete these characters.  After all, I might need that name again some day or perhaps I’ll want to play them.  And it doesn’t cost me anything to leave them hanging around, right?


6 thoughts on “The abandoned children of MMOs

  1. Nick Foster (@goldenhornet) August 23, 2013 / 8:47 am

    Altitis has it’s ups and downs. You are correct though, there is nothing like the “new character smell” of a freshly rolled alt 🙂

    My CoH roster, now frozen in time, is a testament to the power altitis holds over some of us. There was always a new powerset combo to try, a new character concept in search of realisation.

  2. acbarberi August 23, 2013 / 10:20 am

    I wish I didn’t play so many alts…. Haha

    I usually just delete them if I don’t think I’ll play them again.

    I’ve put your blog on my blogroll btw! Check out my blog and maybe you could link to mine as well:

  3. coppertopper August 23, 2013 / 11:09 am

    Just had a weird thought: What if un-logged in characters became rare wandering mobs within the game?

  4. Uncle Dengar (@Degan_MG) August 23, 2013 / 11:39 am

    I usually start with 2 characters… a main, and a single alt. The main I play at full speed grinding level. The alt is there when I get burned out and just want to play around with no care of how quickly I am leveling.

    And then that’s where my alt ADD usually starts…. The I have to have another alt because I want X craft, then another because that class has a cool X, then another, and another until I realize I have a full stable of characters.

    In Rift, I have 8 characters… but I made myself a rule and have been sticking by it. None of my characters are allowed to be more that 10 levels higher than the others. This makes me rotate through them and its actually been a lot of fun!

  5. Tyler F.M. Edwards August 23, 2013 / 12:09 pm

    I have left a small army of abandoned alts scattered across the MMOverse, but I have few regrets. I enjoyed the time I played those characters. The only time it pains me a bit is when I have to abandon a character I’ve played very heavily (usually due to developers taking the class in a direction I don’t enjoy).

    My mage in WoW, for instance. He was my first main, and for two full expansions, we had many grand adventures together, but then I realized how much more fun a warlock could be, and now he sits abandoned and alone in Orgrimmar, sobbing into his mana potions.

  6. Lai-Lai August 31, 2013 / 10:42 am

    Well, you can always set them aside for Rift 3.0 & use them to test the new souls.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s