Sunday, May 13, 2007

When Your Mom Joins Your MMO

World of Warcraft - Easy to learn, Hard to Master.
I had introduced my mom to Animal Crossing on the Nintendo Gamecube last year and she loved it. At first she had a hard time navigating but eventually she grew to love it so much, none of her children had any wonder where we got our video-game-addictive-personalities from. She's been playing it for over a year.

So when she started to tire of it, I thought that World of Warcraft might be the next evolution for her. But before I gleefully went out and bought her the game, I asked her to come over to my house to try it out first.

I'll tell you now, we never finished a single quest.

My mom is not PC-experienced so most of the time we spent was getting her to move her freshly minted human from the starting point to the first quest giver - 3 feet away. But the most interesting part of the story is not how we repeatedly wound up staring at the sky whenever my mom tried to walk anywhere, but how many times she was propositioned.

Human Newbie Zone
"Nice jugs," the rogue said.
"Can you help me with a quest?" a warrior asked. 4 times.
"Dance for me," said the mage blocking our path.

Now, I don't know what it was about the character that my 60-some-year-old mother created (she chose all the settings) compared to the myriad of them that I create, but I have never been talked to the way they talked to my mom that day. (Maybe it was the way she kept looking up.)

I told her to ignore them as I usually do and swore that this was not what I typically see. The only whisper I answered was a very polite "Will you sign my guild charter?" to which I simply responded (reaching over mom to the keyboard) "No, thank you." He wished me well and went on his way.

But finally after one "Hey sexy," whisper too many, I grabbed the keyboard, hit reply and said "Dude, go away, I'm showing my mother the game, can you keep it clean for 20 minutes?" but somehow I messed up with the rules for "reply" because somehow I sent this message not to the most recent scumbag, but to the very polite guild-leader-wannabe. And shockingly he was still nice - "I'm sorry, I'm just looking for help to start a guild."

"I am so, so, sorry," I told the guild-leader-wannabe. I explained everything to him and how I was just trying to defend my mom and said, "Tell you what, I don't normally do this, but I would be happy to sign your guild charter. This is just a temp character anyway."

So in her first hour of play, my mother was propositioned, pestered, and defended. She learned about /ignore, print-screen, and the pretty, pretty cloud formations. And finally she met a nice player, joined a guild of seemingly decent people who gave her a free guild tabard, and decided that maybe she wasn't quite ready for an RPG game, MMO or not.

So that's my story of my mom's visit to World of Warcraft.

Here's how the story goes in the Simpsons:

Happy Mother's Day to all the moms out there.


Anonymous said...

Hi, I am new to blogging and WOW. In fact I just started my 10 day free trial with wow. I read your first page, I love it. Thanks. I am in Bloodhoof realm.

Anonymous said...

Sorry that didn't work out.

That is one thing I don't like about the noob zones -- seems worst right at the start. Fortunately it tends to go away about level 30-ish -- not soon enough. I don't really notice it as much, probably a combination of playing mostly male characters, mostly Forsaken characters, and ripping though the most noobish zones very quickly.

Maybe you should have popped the combat log on top to cover chat for your live demo. If you still use add-ons, I think there are some that auto-ignore or auto-busy so you can have peace.


Anonymous said...

Oh your post was just sooo cute :)My mom died unfortunately years ago, but I guess she would have been too shy and too delicate for the roughness of a MMORPG. Plus that she would never have killed. Anything. Ever. Not even in-game.

However I wonder how my father would react. I bet he'd like it, problem is he's clueless about English so communication would be a real problem.