World of Warcraft has finally broken me of my altoholism

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Now that Patch 7.1 is out and we’re moving deeper into the Legion expansion, I think it’s time that I acknowledge the truth that’s been growing over the past two months. It’s not really feasible for me to play and support multiple characters in this game any more.

World of Warcraft has, to put it simply, broken me of my rampant altoholism.

This is neither a good nor a bad thing (more accurately, it’s enough of both to balance out); it’s just how it is right now. I’ve been a while coming to this conclusion as I’ve harbored hope that I would be able to dig out and play my alts once I got my Death Knight to a good place… but that’s just not going to happen. I’ve actually entered a phase in this game where the thought of playing more than one character is too much — and far too time-consuming, particularly when my attention is split between multiple MMOs.

So why is this? Why am I not fielding my small army of alts that flourished in Warlords of Draenor? Other than pressing time concerns from outside sources, a lot of the reasons come from the design of Legion itself.

First of all, there’s no fast path to getting a character to the level cap and gearing her up; every successive character will need to go through the questing zones and retread territory I’ve already done. It’s not as if Alt Number Two can choose to level up in dungeons instead. Even with the choices of leveling zone picks, the game still firmly guides you down a path of Blizzard’s choosing.

Second, even if I had the time to work on a second character and put in another two months to get that character to roughly where my DK is today, it would be too much on a daily basis. The world quest system pushes you to log in at least every three days to do emissary quests for the reputation and bonus rewards. Right now, a half-hour a day of doing these isn’t unreasonable. But tack on alts, and suddenly that’s going up to an hour, hour-and-a-half, two hours of emissary quests. No. Just no. I have other things to play and don’t need that monkey on my back.

And while alting in Draenor was lucrative, as garrisons were self-sustaining gold-making machines, Legion’s decision to put order resources out into the world means that you can’t keep doing missions forever if you’re not playing that character. Two or more characters doing daily emissary quests, trying to keep the inflow of order resources going, moving between characters to set missions… it overflows the small cup of my time and interest and energy.

One character feels enough right now. It feels right. I can keep pursuing all of the quests, the dailies, whatever I want to do, and I don’t feel pressured to play someone else in the game. I’m a little worried that somehow I will lose this character, but other than that, I’m very happy with the DK as a whole. The wraith walk is a wonderful tool, as is the ability to run on water. Fighting packs of mobs is a joy and I have pretty decent (845) gear for a non-mythic player.

I’m actually glad that WoW brought me to this point, because it also makes jumping between games that much easier. In every MMO I play, even the ones I dabble in, I’m down to just one character. I don’t need alts in individual MMOs; MMOs are my alts. And I feel like I get a lot more out of them when I have that broader experience.

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8 thoughts on “World of Warcraft has finally broken me of my altoholism

  1. Wilhelm Arcturus October 26, 2016 / 12:03 pm

    Legion is indeed the breaker of alt-itis. I had five characters at 100 pre-Legion, now I have one at 110, four at 100, and a level 100 boost still unused. And while I appreciate to a certain extent them not making alting as trivial as it was in Draenor, I do wonder if this will come back to bite them, especially if they cannot keep themselves from having another content drought.

  2. Telwyn October 26, 2016 / 1:05 pm

    Yeah. After four or five weeks I started feeling the burn from playing WoW almost exclusively. Now I’m deliberately limiting my time and alternating between characters when I do play. I’ll only gear one character via wqs though. That and Shal’aran are steps too far for alts I feel.

  3. bhagpuss October 26, 2016 / 1:18 pm

    An MMO that doesn’t actively encourage and support the playing of multiple characters is a broken MMO in my book. You can maybe just about justify it with a set-up like FFXIV’s, where you can play all the classes on a single character, but if you set things up so that a player can only play one of the dozen classes in your game then from the player’s perspective your game only has one class.

  4. Dobablo October 27, 2016 / 6:01 am

    The Legion problem seems to be too much content. Historically I have always switched to alts when I’ve felt like my return is running low or I need a break. I hit that point far less frequently with Legion than I have done in the past.
    Alt will become easier as the expansion progresses and more catch-up mechanics are added. They have already removed the rep requirements for alts from the OP-whistle and mythic-unlocks. At the moment the only roadblocks are gear (no catch-ups yet since we are still on the first tier) and artifact power.

  5. Mari October 27, 2016 / 3:52 pm

    I’ve never been a big alt player, I had warrior my main and an alt Mage I enjoyed playing and like almost everyone in this post, I just don’t have the time to get the Mage past 102 and she’s been back burnered to making me pots and not even the good ones as I don’t feel like dragging her through emerald night to do what’s going to turn into I don’t have time for this multiple quest alchemy progression quest line. Sucks as I used to Mage as my non raiding just goof off time.

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