Quantitative Task

Your group of 3-4 will be assigned one of the following tasks. Only do the one you were assigned:

  1. Internal Memo, Blizzard
  2. Curious Scholar
  3. Internal Memo, Commonsensemedia

 

 

Why play WoW?

The main reasons I have noticed people play WoW are for stress relief and help with social interactions. There are tons of stories out there about how people made real life (sometimes life-long) friends in WoW. The game provides a platform over which people can create communities and interact with each other. It seems to me that people with social anxiety or other similar issues come on WoW and they do not have to necessarily be themselves, they have this character that represents them, and they have common ground to start off a conversation (WoW). In addition, people say that for a wide range of stressors, WoW calms them down. My personal opinion is that question is what calms people down because chaos causes stress and quests are very ordered. In addition, games in general calm people down, plus, when you are feeling angry it never hurts to kill some virtual monsters. In conclusion, the game has a calming steady progression and a friendly community.

Why Do you play WoW

The two main patterns that we found were for basic adventures, and stress relief. Many people found satisfaction when they defeated a boss or solved a puzzle inside the game. One gamer played a ranged role for almost ten years, which reflected his personality through those years. Switching to a more melee-centric character he was,  “now wearing plate, being strong, running right up to the boss and bashing away.. this has snuck into my head and made me a more fearless person”(Orc Death Knight). The adventures that his character went through and witnessed translated into real life, making him into a stronger person. Stress relief also comes hand in hand with WoW. Narthexia, a level 110 Orc Death Knight character stated, “It smooths out my brain giving me excellent serotonin boosts, it’s a real moodmellower and improver”. Based off of the data WoW shows that it is an excellent escape and “moodmellower”. Given these examples gamers play WoW for the endless adventures and memories they can make while questing, raiding, or playing against other people, alongside with the stress relief from the real world, WoW creates a balance between real-world affairs and virtual memories. 

 

Jack Sullivan and Cameron  Binns


Why do you WoW? Rob Sullivan and Alex Verdi

People play WoW often for similar reasons and a common theme in these interviews is that players use online gaming and WoW for a fun, stress free escape from the real world. Players are able to play with friends they know in real life and with new ones that they meet in-game. These in-game relationships help players to reduce social stresses and provide a more relaxed and communal environment which supports the escape that players play the game for. Many responses claimed enjoyment in leveling up in the game when players might have had a bad day in the real world. For example, “I like to turn my brain off and make numbers go up.  Same reason I play most games.” (Synthpop, 100 Orc Death Knight) and “Do you think there is a certain type of person who will be more likely to be drawn to the game?  Someone who isn’t satisfied in their real life/needs friends” (Sam Merrill (non gamer)). The general stereo type of MMORPG players is that they use the game as an escape or a way to relieve stress, and often times that is the truth. “I deeply relate. I, myself, have an anxiety disorder. It becomes hard to function in life sometime, and WoW is my escape!” (Maroldars 110 human paladin). Many players admit to playing the game to relieve stress and escape the anxiety they feel in the real world or to build relationships that they might lack in reality. WoW provides that escape for millions of players everyday and continues to find new ways to fulfill the lack of enjoyment in real life.  

Why Do You WoW?

Sam/Wyatt

It seems that the primary motivation for people playing WoW is that it is very hard to get bored while playing the game.  The endless quests and expansions in the game allow players to play as long as they want without doing the same thing twice.  As one player put it, “I started playing in middle school and have continued to play because I found it entertaining and a good pass time. I also like it because it never ends and there is always a new challenge.”  Another player stated, “Alternatively, I really like exploring the world. Its style is timeless, and there’s just so much of it. When I made a new char with my friend who was new and gave him the reins, he took me to places I didn’t even know existed in stormwind, a place I’d spent most of my time in for the better part of 5 years, let alone surrounding areas. All these expansions and all this time have left a lot of neat little quests and secrets to be discovered that I don’t think I could explore every single one in my lifetime.”  (Narthexia – Level 110 Orc Death Knight).  Players find it so easy to get lost in the game primarily because of the size and detail of it.  As Narthexia put it, you can explore the same place for years, while not even scratching the surface of things you can do there.  Additionally, when players make a new character they have the ability to play the game a completely different way than they have in the past.  The endlessness of WoW seems to be the key factor which keeps people playing for years.

Why do you WoW?

By Mitch Mason and Griffin Gardiner

 

There were plenty of good responses to the question, but lots of them were so similar that they could be grouped.  The patterns in responses that we found fell into the following 4 categories: They play it cause they enjoy the game, they play it because they like the sense of community, they like the challenge the game entails, and they play it because it’s an escape from reality.  Our claim is a synthesis of two reasons the majority of players play.  The player Narakulock, a level 110 Undead Warlock, can be quoted saying, “It feels good to play a game where I can see my progression as a player.  Raiding and doing hard dungeons feels rewarding”.  Another player, Larrice, a level 110 Worgen Rogue said, “Raiding is my reason for playing, to be honest. Every dungeon, every raid is a puzzle. You read the abilities, study the fight, formulate a strategy to beat it, get together trusted friends and work together to beat it while learning your class and to squeeze the most out of it”.  Our last set of data comes from a player named Maroldars, a level 110 Human Paladin;  “I deeply relate. I, myself, have an anxiety disorder. It becomes hard to function in life sometime, and WoW is my escape!”  In conclusion, we believe that a lot of players might play because they don’t experience many feelings of accomplishment in their real life, and therefore log onto WoW and experience accomplishment there.  

 

Why do people WoW?

Connor Goff and Nick Page’s answer to: “Why do you WoW?”

A multitude of reasons were given when I asked people what motivations there were for playing World of Warcraft; these answers were reported from both players and some who had never tried the game. When looking at motivations of multiple players, similarities between their responses become apparent, mainly talking about the blandness of everyday life and the fact that the online-world serves as an escape. As we read in Nick Yee’s work, many people obviously use the game as a vice to deal with stress or possibly not much social activity in the real world. Many players admit to having boring jobs are not many friends and the World of Warcraft is filled with helpful guild-mates and mystical quests.

“Real life sucks but we are so conditioned that even our games resemble the daily grind and world drama’s, the difference I spose if I have a problem with a workmate or politician, I can’t strap on a sword and carve them in two and laugh merrily over their corpses. Well I mean I can.. but not really acceptable behavior. Nor can I say I hate you and your alliance.. eat large amounts of fire from the spell I can now cast etc.. But overall it’s boredom and a feeling that something is missing in the world.. like happiness, even the rng is better in wow.”

This response is very similar to many others who talk about how the real world gets boring, but the ever expanding world of the MMO holds their interest. It seems that once one has started playing the game it is far easier to stay in its clutches. The heroic tasks that continuously come up give the player purpose and a lot of online players testify to its addictive nature. The complexity and updates allow players to continue learning, getting better, and beating out other teams, increasing their feeling of personal achievement and social praise.

“Raiding is my reason for playing, to be honest. Every dungeon, every raid is a puzzle. You read the abilities, study the fight, formulate a strategy to beat it, get together trusted friends and work together to beat it while learning your class and to squeeze the most out of it.”

“Alternatively, I really like exploring the world. Its style is timeless, and there’s just so much of it. When I made a new char with my friend who was new and gave him the reins, he took me to places I didn’t even know existed in stormwind, a place I’d spent most of my time in for the better part of 5 years, let alone surrounding areas. All these expansions and all this time have left a lot of neat little quests and secrets to be discovered that I don’t think I could explore every single one in my lifetime.”

 

WoW research claim

Lucy Duffy and Tigger Nesbett

Most people play WoW because it is an escape for them from the real world, and most of them began playing because of their friends or siblings. According to a player, who thinks that “real life sucks”, the game is an escape. He states that you can be more violent and dramatic in the game to get your anger out on things when in reality you would not be able to do that in the real world. This particular player is a level 110 Blood Elf Demon Hunter and has had over 2000 posts on the blog. Clearly, they have been involved in the game for a long amount of time, and are very committed, so they have been using WoW as a way to feel more connected to something because they are unsatisfied with real life.  You can “immerse yourself into a different world and explore and enjoy your fantasies”. Another player uses WoW to help relieve their real-life problems as somewhat of a therapy because they “…have an anxiety disorder. It becomes hard to function in life sometime, and Wow is my escape!” The game normally spreads to people through word of mouth. For example people “hear from (their) friends that it is a fun game to play in (your) free time”.  While there are various reasons people may play WoW it is apparent that one of the main ones is the alternate world created within the game. It helps relieve their stress and is generally just fun, which is a large benefit to many players.

Why do you WoW?

Robbie Leslie

Alex Appel

 

Based on the responses given to us, some possible patterns within the data could be that people are more likely to play World of Warcraft if they are exposed to it by a sibling or friend as well as playing the game so much that it becomes a craving rather than a casual past time. Many people start the game out of curiosity and end up staying for the sheer time and effort put in. The more time players put in, the easier it is to get attached to your character and your surroundings. What novice players don’t know is that the world is massive. There are hundreds of places to explore and even more captivating quest lines. Here is what Narthexia, a level 110 Orc Death Knight player said about the grind in World of Warcraft:

“I love the world. I have played other MMOs and gushed over how much better aspects of them were than WoW but at the end of the day Azeroth is my old country. You can’t recreate all the feels and personal history and affection and just plain time spent there. It’s not something you can box and ship. It’s precious to me.”

People also start playing the game casually as a pastime and end up staying for all the exciting challenges and places to discover. “I started playing in middle school and have continued to play because I found it entertaining and a good pass time. I also like it because it never ends and there is always a new challenge.” Throughout the date and responses, no other patterns were deemed the same but all followed a general pattern of WoW being a solid pass time as well as an all around enjoyable game.

qualitative research

Qualitative Research Question: How do new players best learn how to play the game?

I watched Griffin play WoW for the very first time, he is a warrior Dwarf. When watching him play I noticed that he read every tutorial very intently when they would pop up. He also read the instructions for every mission before beginning. Because he was a beginner he struggled with the controls, it took him a while pressing random buttons before he was able to figure out which keys to use. When interviewing him he said that the best help he got was by the tutorial pop ups and support. He also said that he learned a lot through trial and error by testing out lots of keys.

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Why did you enroll in this World of Warcraft WRIT class?

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