World of Warcraft Starting to Dismay

I’ve been playing World of Warcraft for 2 years and 3 months. Don’t even ask me how many hours I’ve put into this game. I have 3 accounts (I only play on two) and a dozen characters, including 3 that I’ve leveled to 70 and 2 of which are keyed for Karazhan.

I have lots of great things to say about the game and I’ve had a lot of fun playing it. But some things about the game are starting to wear on me. Sure, it’s a grind. It can be mind-numbing farming the materials for crafting certain items and for keeping an in-game income going. But the grind can be therapeutic also. After a long stressful day at work, doing a repetitive activity can be relaxing, so much more so if you can chat online with a friend or two at the same time.

I’ve talked about tanking and how it is preparatory for certain events in work life. Tanking is leadership, pure and simple, and the best tanks also make excellent leaders and managers. At work, if you screw up, you’re protected from viciousness by political correctness. In the game, if you screw up, people call you on it immediately and directly and in not-so-nice terms.

But I’ve reached a point where all of my in-game pursuits require other people, and sometimes lots of other people. Tonight I signed up for a Kara raid, which requires 10 people. 11 people signed up, apparently, so someone had to be cut. It came down to me and one other mage. I didn’t get to go. It’s like grade school all over again and you feel like the kid who was picked last for kickball.

The thing that annoys me, though, is that not going had nothing to do with skill or preparation or anything quantifiable. I was probably more prepared than the other guy - I brought double the minimum requirements for every consumable. I know how to play my mage very well. I’ve read all the encounters and know my role in each. I have the best gear of any mage in the guild (in terms of +spell damage) other than a few veterans. None of that factored into the decision. In fact, the raid leader offered to let us “roll” on the spot, meaning roll the dice, best roll gets to go. That’s a pretty good sign that I’m in the wrong guild. I like organization and planning, not chance.

Unfortunately, this is the 6th guild I’ve been in on Ysera and never once did I get to go to Kara with a guild. Some of that is my fault, for not pursuing a raid spot more often. But guilds are too often disorganized and unmotivated. They don’t recruit good players and don’t always reward dedication. And five man PUGs? They’re worse than a crap shoot.

Anyway, I’m done venting. But I’m starting to question this expenditure of time. I’m in the market for a new distraction. Might be, I’m ready to take my l33t skillz back into the real world and fight my battles in the ultimate arena: business. Time will tell.