A home on the internet

From the earliest days of my World of Warcraft career I’ve always been looking for a home on the internet. It started out with guilds and forums, which were the biggest thing of communications back in the day. Before there was something like Discord. I’ve had many homes throughout the years in multiple games and with multiple communities. They have always been temporary homes, as is the nature of most communities in games. Guilds come and go. I’ve made the jump to several ones over the span of my own gaming career. Sometimes it was because of the raidteam breaking up, sometimes because the guild make-up had changed so much over time that I didn’t feel at home anymore. I think the longest stretch I’ve been in a guild has been from Cataclysm through Legion, although on occassion I couldn’t really call it a guild but a two man show, on account of most people abandoning ship.

Then came the rise of Discord. I’m not sure when exactly I joined there but I’ve been active on Discord as a means of communication for a while now. Things stay the same though, communities come and go and at some point I realised that staying in dead Discords had no use at all, so I left most of the ones I was active in years ago. Some Discord communities are gigantic, so big actually that it’s almost impossible to actively take part in them. Look away for 10 minutes and you have missed a couple of hundred messages. These are also the types of communities that I learned to shy away from. How is it fun to be in a discord with so many other people that you can’t even follow the conversation anymore? That’s not really a home on the internet, that’s just a gathering of people shouting into the abyss.

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However, I think digging between all the dirt and weeding out a lot of communities where I didn’t really feel like I wanted to stay… I think I finally found a small home or two on the internet that are worth sticking around in. Both of them are Discords and both of them are built around League of Legends personalities. I guess it’s what you get when you start watching streams again and interact with the community in those streams. Both Discords are relatively small, small enough to follow the conversations that are going on in them, but also big enough to be lively constantly. There are some absolutely lovely people in both and I’m happy that I’ve been able to find a community where I can just be my crazy, geeky, League of Legends fangirl self and not be judged for it.
One especially has made my days so much brighter over the past few months of being stuck at home and feeling like I had nowhere to go and no one to talk to. Just being able to be around people who share the same interests and who are happy to jump into voice chat and have fun has absolutely saved my mental wellbeing from the dark place it was headed. Knowing I can just drop in the Discord for a chat with anyone who is online at the time has been so nice. There have been community nights, there have been awesome initiatives for tournaments and movie nights. As added bonus it was so nice to see everyone come together and send the most important member on the server some love and compassion when he was going through a rough time.
It’s just a very wholesome, supportive, drama free environment, although some jabs here and there are common, and it’s absolutely what I needed, and still need, in my life. With the pandemic dragging on and regulations getting more and more strict I feel like they’re slowly squeezing the life out of any offline interaction possible. So I turn to what I’ve been turning to for most of my life and take comfort in the presence of people on the internet. Because no matter what, they can’t take that away from me.

As such I’m going to stick around, talk to some of the lovely people I’ve gotten to know and for a while, even just a little while, feel like I’ve found my home.

Two Sides

As far as I can remember I’ve been fairly lucky when it comes to the gaming community as a whole. I’ve always been in friendly environments with overall nice guilds, nice people and nice servers. From the moment I set foot in WoW untill today I can honestly say that I’ve never experienced extreme toxicity, harassment or other negative experiences in the games that I play. Ofcourse there are some games where toxicity is unavoidable, MOBA types like League of Legends are one of the most notorious for this, but I’ve always tried to stay clean of that and if there was negative stuff in my games I just stepped away.
I think the “worst” experience I had online was with guys who couldn’t take a hint about me not being interested in them and they would stick around and be annoying for a little bit too long. In the end I either had to have a firm talk with them or just put them on ignore and they wouldn’t bother me anymore. All in all I’ve been lucky I guess.
It also helps that I’m not famous in any way. Most likely because I can’t commit to a game to become good enough to compete with the top people in that game, and that’s fine by me. I like poking about on my own or with a group of friends, just having fun and doing random things. That’s why I don’t hardcore ladder in Hearthstone or do ranked games in League of Legends. The only game in which I tend to tryhard and achieve stuff is Heroes of the Storm, and I am actually planning to actively ladder up when the season starts. Other than that though, I play relatively safe games where the only thing you have to deal with sometimes is DPS elitists, but even they are starting to become a rare breed.

Over the past weekend I’ve seen how truly toxic the gaming community can be. One of my favourite casters from League of Legends has gotten into trouble because of false allegations aimed at him personally. Very long story short, a streamer accused said caster of pedophilia for no apparent reason other than to create drama. Although he retracted the accusations the damage has already been done and Krepo has been dealing with the fallout ever since. This happened about a month ago after I visited the League of Legends playoffs in Rotterdam.
Fast forward to the present. Caster X has been streaming for the past few days, a mix of League of Legends and Digimon. The Digimon streams were small and fun, lots of viewer interaction and all in all quite positive. The moment he goes back to streaming League of Legends though, the jerks appear. Constantly reminding him of the false allegations, calling him out, trolling him in Twitch chat, on social media, via messages on Snapchat and Facebook. It’s gotten so bad that they tell him to go kill himself followed by “haha joking”. I can only imagine how tough it must be to deal with this on a daily basis and when things got too much for him yesterday he quit his stream and annouced he’d go blackscreen for quite a while.
As a fan and as a human being this saddens me. No one would have to deal with this amount of harassment and I can honestly not understand why people would do this to someone. I’ve seen some toxic behaviour already but this just overshadows everything I have ever encountered. People seem to enjoy bringing him down and I just can’t seem to grasp why. If it were only a handful of people doing this it’s one thing, but when it’s tons of people every single day it turns into something much more serious.
Suddenly the positive gaming community, the community I have always called my second home that was and is filled with nice people has turned a very very dark page. I guess there is always two sides to everything, but in this case I feel like Pandora’s Box has been opened and there is no way to close it anytime soon. It also makes me very sad that it gives the League of Legends community, and the gamer community in a broader sense, bad rep. All these people identify as “gamer” in one way or another and it just adds negativity to the tag. It only strengthens the stereotypes where gamers are kids and ragers and where gaming is bad for you and turns you into horrible people.
This has also shaken my core belief that people all have some good in them. Seeing people revel in someone else’s misery, seeing them make light and fun of serious accusations and seeing them just absolutely ruin someone’s day and maybe even career just for fun… I just can’t deal with it properly. My heart bleeds and I’m upset and angry at these people. I don’t think they feel empathy of any kind, if they are willing to be like this. But honestly what can I really do about it?

I guess this is the price you pay for being “famous”. People like bringing you down because of jealousy or malice and whenever a juicy drama occurs people are eager to jump into it. You see it happen with the normal athletes. With people from Hollywood and now also within E-Sports.
It does make me wish I could somehow punch them though.

Communities, Dailies and Destiny

Every now and then I realize how friendly and heartwarming community on the internet can be sometimes. I have a bunch of friendly people on my Twitter that I follow and that are also part of the dedicated positive blogging community. Some of their blogs are featured on mine, mostly the ones I actually read the most and would recommend to anyone trying to find their way in the big world of gaming.
Ofcourse there are a lot of others that should get the same recognition and maybe I will get around to that at some point. Some people might not be in my sidebar but that doesn’t mean they don’t produce great content and I poke around on their blogs every so often. Alas I only have so much time in the world and I wish I could feature and follow every single one of them more often, but that would leave me with little to no time for myself or my own blog.

With this post I just want to take the opportunity for a shoutout to a very awesome community. You all know who you are. Keep doing what you’re doing!

I’ve been steadily plowing away at doing dailies on my Priest to get my reputation up with the various Tanaan Jungle factions. Yesterday I managed to get Exalted with Hand of the Prophet and scored this adorable fel-tainted Boar. It’s the same theme as my fel-tainted Dreadhawk so I will have matching mounts for my Shadow specc and I love it.
The thing I don’t love is Blizzard once again forcing dailies upon us as the only means to get rep with factions. I remember back in Mists of Pandaria it would literally cost me one or two hours a day just to open up and then do all the dailies associated with all the different factions. It was mind numbing and, in my opinion, a horrible way to go about getting reputation. They have returned this practice for two of the factions in Tanaan Jungle and I will be more than happy once I can scrap that part off of my to-do list. The other side of the coin is that for all the other factions various grinds are necessary and I’m not really keen on doing that either. But the repetitive nature of the dailies, and the fact that they take about 45 miutes to get done, make them boring fast.
It’s unfortunately a system that has carried over into the few other MMO’s I’ve played so far. Beast-tribe dailies in FFXIV is probably the one that comes closest to the WoW system and, eventhough I worked through them, I didn’t like finishing them up at all. It was more to fill time and acquire mounts and pets that I did them but otherwise I would not have bothered to do them at all.
The same goes for me grinding out those reputations on WoW I guess. There’s not much else to do in the game so I try to set goals for myself. For now I can drop atleast a few dailies since that faction is done… And I should be done with Order of the Awakened in the next few days or so. This leaves me only with grinding rep with the Saberstalkers and then I will probably turn my attention to the Steamwheedle Preservation Society. They involve turning in various items from Nagrand, which ofcourse need to be farmed, but atleast they don’t rely on dailies…

King’s Fall
I’ve been poking about in Destiny aswell over the past few weeks and yesterday evening I finally managed to join a clan raid. They had a savepoint at Golgoroth and we managed to take that boss down in 2 tries. He dropped me new gloves and a legendary helm engram… Which turned into a very nice exotic helm. After that we had some tries on the Daughters of Oryx but didn’t get to kill them because our leader had to go. All in all it was a nice bit of raiding. The tactics on the bosses in this Destiny raid are not impossibly hard but they do require proper handling. There is no way to cheese your way through a fight and mistakes are punished… But it’s a serious amount of fun. I think Bungie did a great job with this raid and with the hardmode coming out next week I hope it will keep people busy for a while.
In the meantime I’ve been working on acquiring my Exotic Sword. Right now I’m on the part where I have to gather 10 specific materials, which are a rare drop from regular material nodes on the Moon for me, and kill 500 enemies with Solar abilities. I picked up the Solar sword for my Warlock because I figured I would never play Sunsinger so I wanted a sword in one of the elements that my abilities are not. It also seems that the Solar sword is quite rare and in my clan I think I’m the only one wielding it… Which could give me an advantage in raids.
Other than that I’m tieing up the loose ends of quests I still have in my quest log. I know where I can get a few more quests and gear upgrades and once I finish off my Sword I will probably turn my attention there. For now though I’m mostly content with shooting stuff in dailies and strikes and some general faffing about.