The Abyss awaits

PenkSo, okay, it’s true.
I’m playing World of Warcraft.
I’ve been fighting this ever since the whole platform launched. Hearing stories of folks’ lives getting sucked into the game, coupled with tales of hordes of kiddies hacking and slashing their way across the landscape – not exactly ringing endorsements.
But recently Blizzard had an 11 day trial (not sure how recent this is really), and I decided to take the plunge and give it a try.
I… kinda like it.
I can completely see how it would suck people in and replace their lives. The game is immersive, the landscape interesting and beautifully handled, the levelling and character development are interesting enough to keep the game rolling, but not so hard to elicit complete frustration.
My Macbook is handling the game beautifully – frame rates are through the roof, though it does take a mere 5 minutes of playing before I hear the cooling fan kick on. It does take resources.
WoW is as close as you can get to ‘real D&D online’, particularly if you’re in a good guild (which I am) that has good players as well as a fun environment.
Will I stick with it? I’m not sure. The big draw for me right now is not the 3 hour dragon raids (which I haven’t participated in yet :), but the “I have an hour – think I’ll go run a few quests.) – this is very different (in my opinion) than Eve, where you couldn’t ‘just play casually for an hour, then go back to work’. In Eve, if you started a mission, you had to complete it within a set time period (days or a week or so), or suffer a major penalty. There’s no such issue in WoW. I have a dozen quests going at any given time, so when I log in, I can choose to do deliveries / messaging (mostly involving travelling), or grinds where you have to kill off X critters.
So far, it’s been enjoyable, but has not sucked the life out of me. We’ll see.

Fall in New England

Around the south endIt’s no secret I’m not a summer person. I don’t like heat and sweatiness and all that goes with it. So as fall rolls around, the weather gets cooler and drier, my satisfaction with being out in the woods goes up accordingly.
Sunday we took a nice 3 mile walk around Gates Pond, a good sized pond (really, IMHO, a lake), about a mile from us.
The weather was glorious. Low sixties, breezy and sunny. Perfect for enjoying the colors and sounds of the woods.
It also gave me an opportunity to haul out my camera, dust it off, and spend some time taking pictures again. I’ve really neglected my photography. I had to learn how to work with iPhoto and CF card adapters, but all in all, it went pretty smoothly.
Click through to see the gallery!