A thoughtful and personal exploration of games

Discussion – Tackling Challenges

As I believe I’ve already told you, I’m kind of an easy to stress out gamer. I get frustrated with difficult to obtain achievements and loot to the point where I had to pass an edict to keep myself from hunting the extremely rare ones. Anyways, this is regarding challenges of a different kind…

You see, I play MMOs with friends (Gasp, I play multiplayer games with my friends? Blasphemy!) and we each have a different playstyle, a different approach to the game, and somewhat different desires. Seeing as I’m mostly writing about my own perceptions and preferences, let’s tackle my side, shall we?

There occasionally comes a time where I just don’t feel comfortable doing a quest or mission until I’m higher level or I’ve reached a certain level of preparedness or I’ve got a party to do it with. Sure, it can be viewed as cowardice, but again, I’m attempting to avoid stress and increase my enjoyment of the experience. Also, yes, I’m scared I’m going to waste my time trying something I have no business doing on my own or in an ill prepared group. I would rather not beat my head against the wall, thank you very much.

Last night my friends and I did a quest in Lord of the Rings Online that had quite literally turned into a joke this last month or so (“Hey, how about we go kill a drake?” “Uh, nahhhh.”). There’s a difficult fellowship quest where you must kill a fire drake by the name of Bloodwing in the lands called Angmar. In our first attempt, it was just two of us about a month or so ago. The battle to get up to said drake was easy enough for my Elven Hunter friend and my Dwarven Rune-Keeper (as long as we took our time and we were careful), but when the two of us reached the top, disaster struck in the form of a fire breathing monster that slaughtered the Hunter before I could do anything and, in my haste, I jumped off a cliff to escape the creature. It did not follow, thankfully. In a later conversation with the newly-retreated Hunter, we agreed that our friend, a Dwarven Champion, would be most useful in the battle, but we were unsure how big a difference it would make. Last night we found out, after a month of avoiding the quest (and also the game). We gathered in Aughaire and set out to slay the drake. We cleaved our way up the path that winds around the spire that Bloodwing is based on and after a moments rest just outside the lair, we went to attack and, to our surprise, the Champion fell very quickly. As it happened, Bloodwing had a companion with him that made all the difference at the beginning of the fight. The Hunter and my Rune-Keeper backpedaled and the fire drake did not follow… but his minion (a smaller drake) wandered out. After the Hunter and I dispatched this smaller drake, I managed to revive the Champion and we gathered our strength. The Champion, better prepared, ran into Bloodwing’s lair as the Hunter sprayed arrows into the massive beast! As the battle ensued, I channeled positive energies and maintained a close watch on the party’s morale, bolstering it as needed, providing much needed resistances as I was able to do so. The Champion stood his ground as Bloodwing breathed great gouts of fire upon him and I managed to pour out tremendous amounts of healing energy to help him stay on the front line. At two points during the fight, smaller drakes jumped into the lair, but they were trampled under the immense outpouring of damage dealt out by the Champion and Hunter and the damage dealt by the enemy was reduced to nothing as I quickly  moved to heal the injuries. By the end, Bloodwing laid there in a crumpled form with his equally crushed minions and the Hunter helped us travel home with some of his pathfinding abilities. All in all, a successful run. A satisfying run.

We’re still going to reference the quest as a joke: “Hey, how about we go kill a drake tonight?” Only now it’s not looming over us as just a joke, but an accomplishment.

Yes, I’m not the first person to leap up to a challenge, but once committed, I’ll get to it. Eventually.

I’ve discovered that I have a bit of a different view these days. I don’t know what’s causing it, but my perception is shifting. There’s not much point in being scared to attempt a quest in a game, is there?

Until next time, have epic adventures with your friends!

– Elorfin

P.S. “I get by with a little help from my friends.” – The Beatles


One response

  1. Wilowah

    In SWG, I always enjoyed finding a Gorax on Endor or an Ancient Krayt Dragon on Tatooine – it meant I could get one or two dozen of my wookiee buddies on over to slay the friggin things. I enjoyed the challenge, and seeing everyone run in all directions to avoid being splattered or eaten. Melee was not a good idea.

    The thing is, I’m more of an explorer type, but after that, I lean in the achiever direction. I’d rather enjoy the view, but hey, look, challenging enemy, lets kill it! It really helps when you’re not limited to finding something in a specific instance.

    All in all, I feel it’s worth the potential stress if said enemy is said to be “impossible” for a typical small group and it’s a random world spawn. That Krayt Dragon still took a good few minutes to take down with or without a commando. >.<

    May 9, 2011 at 11:04 AM

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