Upon buying a new computer, my dirty little lazy mind thought: hehehe, GAMES!
You see, when you’re running a Pentium II 400, and all of the sudden you’ve got a relatively up to date machine, you can buy games again.
I asked some of my students, “So, what’s out there? Any good games in the last few years that I should know about?” And they asked, “Well, what kind of games do you like?” And I said, “Well, I liked Diablo.” And they said, “Well, they really haven’t done anything better than Diablo lately.”
So I thought: OK, go dig up your old Diablo. Which I did, but it wasn’t any good because it was an English version which (rightly or wrongly) I was told not to install on a German OS. So I went to the store and bought a new copy of DIABLO II for about 10 bucks. (Oh, the beauty of liking old games: they’re cheaper and they run smoothly). AND: this time I ALSO got the expansion set LORD OF DESTRUCTION (for another 10).
So I install it, and Vista tells me that there might be some compatibility problems. Blizzard tells me the best way to get patches is to go into battle.net (which I’d never done before–hey, I played Diablo long before I had a 24 DSL connection, and I was way too cheap to try it online). So I go to battle.net, which downloaded and installed a patch as quick as a bunny rabbit and with nothing coming even close to printer driver installation stress, and I’m ready to play Diablo again–this time with a decent CPU and graphic power to boost–and this battle.net screen is on my monitor, and I think:
“OK, I’ll give battle.net a try.”
Fast forward two weeks, and you have an answer as to at least one reason for my continued failure to blog in spite of my resolution to be more resolved.
My back hurts terribly—undoubtedly a pinched nerve from hunching forward towards my monitor for countless hours. The fingertips of my third and fourth fingers on my left hand are numb—undoubtedly from some kind of pinched nerve in my left arm, just before the elbow, exactly where my arm hits my desk. And I am TIRED…the kind of tired you feel when you have spent at least two weeks getting less than your usual amount of sleep.
Hey: my old necromancing ways are not to blame. I got bored of standing back and watching my gollem kill demons: I wanted to jump into the mele—with zeal and holiness! I made myself a PALADIN!
And I have learned that playing online is a much different experience. Instead of picking off monsters at the edges of groups, then slowly opening every chest and overturning every rock and corpse looking for treasure, you run around full speed in a whirlwind of violence and magic, stopping for nothing other than an occasion drink to refresh your energy, letting money and treasure lie around like so much rubbish. And you say things like, “GO!” or “GO BACK” or “LET’S GET ANDI!” or “GET ANY GOOD DROPS?” or “LOL” or “ENGLISH?”
You also say a lot of unintelligible things like “wp, tp, pppp” and—here in Europe—read a lot of stuff in languages like Polish and Danish.
But the worst thing is this: you decide to do a quest, and you do it, and you do it fast because you have help, and then you hang around to help others do their quests. And you go just a little bit longer about 10 times, and then you yawn and say, “I really have to stop” and you turn off the computer and it’s 4:00 AM. But you’re no longer 27 years old, and you have a family expecting you for breakfast. So you get up dutifully the next morning and say you were up a wee bit late and then you do it again the next night. And you don’t prepare for classes and you don’t really want to be celebrating New Year’s Eve with friends and fireworks because ACT IV is waiting—and not only that…there is an ACT V! because this is the expanded version—and at some point you realize…
…I have become addicted.
OK, I’m exaggerating. At some point I stopped staying up till four. But I still spend my days thinking things like where I should build up my skill points. And this, my friends, all in a game I already played out two or three times at least five years ago! All because of battle.net.
I do not dare—I do not even begin to dare, so don’t anyone try to tempt me—to consider some MMORPG. Those are either for the people who wish to give themselves over to a virtual world (I don’t) or for those with self control (not me). I figure that I’ll play this one out—Diablo, I mean—and then quit playing online.
That’s my plan.